Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow!

You can tell by the title, I’m sure, that I love the snow and it has brought to mind a new and fascinating idea for my book.  I love how the weather, the climate, and the landscape of a location or world in a story somehow add an entirely different sort of character to any tale.

Rainy days can add an element of sadness or reflection, storms add anger or drama and tension, ahh but snow for me snow is the most dramatic of all.  It is quiet and cold, peacful but deadly.  Snow is both hope and horror depending on the story and the situation and either one is a remarkable.

It can lie like a serene white virgin ocean when untouched by foot or claw.  It is a sea of cold and death and wind driven fury when you are exposed to its strength unintentionally.  Snow is all those things that most fascinate me about life.  In one moment hopeful, beautiful, and something to spark the imagination in the next it is fury and death with icy fingers.  But most often it is both at once and in my story I think I shall make it that way also.

So enough of my pointless meanderings through the foggy depths of my twisted mind.  Thanks again for any of those unfortunate souls daft enough to read this strange stuff and for those of you who read and write keep dreaming, writing, and believing.  Adios till next time.

Published in: on January 10, 2009 at 7:00 am  Leave a Comment  

I am doing something!!!

Okay so that is not the standard title one would expect to find in a blog but it fits.  I am doing something.  What you may ask.  Well I would love to expand on that.

I am writing my fool head off between work and readying for my latest excursion into the realm of higher education.  I am so enjoying and hating this re-write.  I love it because it is finally coming to life in a way that more closely resembles my imagination version of this particular story and hating it because it isn’t done yet.  Impatience will kill my drive so I am busy distracting myself, when I get too frustrated, by working on my school project, work, home, kids, and this blog.  Enough irons in the fire?  Why yes actually, a few too many.  But it is enjoyable and I’m discovering that taking time out for what I enjoy is an endeavor that is thoroughly feeding my soul.

I thought being single again at this point in my life would be a sentence worse than death but I am so full of hope and energy I can’t find enough things to keep me occupied.  It’s wonderful.  For those of my fellow writers out there who may have a similar life change in their present set of circumstances just know that the result and what you get out of the experience lies entirely in how you look at it.  I have found in my new direction, freedom, purpose, and hope.  I am so thoroughly thrilled with all the places and things I am able to experience now.  Not because I have more money, I have less.  Not because I have more time, I have less of that also.  But because I have found that I am free of the smothering oppression of a situation that was depriving me of emotional oxygen.

Thank you all for reading this drivel and if it applies and you needed to hear it I’m glad.  If it didn’t and you read it anyway thanks for your time.  And if by some chance you just enjoy my twisted mind machinations thanks for the effort at trying to follow along.  Till we meet again in cyberspace keep dreaming, keep believing, and keep writing.

Published in: on January 4, 2009 at 3:28 am  Leave a Comment  

Going, Going, Gone

It is strange to think that this year is already over.  I watched it fly by as my life flew apart and back together and all the while I was wondering what is going to happen next.  But next is almost done for this year and I figured this was a good a place as any to make my plans (insert God like laughter here) for the year to come.

I am nearly done with my re-write and am shopping agents again but in this market and with things and people being so pessimistic I am doing the unthinkable for us writers that are set on getting published for that horrid thing called money.  I am going to self publish with a reputable firm that I have thoroughly researched and highly recommend to any writer who is writing g-rated fiction, Tate Publishing.

Then I am finishing my bachelor’s degree as an English major and getting my teaching certificate.  Then I am going to see how many of these plans actually manage to come to fruition by the end of the year. (again insert God like laughter here) So this time next year I am going to check back and let you know.

Well that is all I really had in mind to share tonight but I appreciate your time spent on reading my aimless rantings.  As always keep writing, reading, dreaming and believing.  Till next time, or next year whichever comes first, dream on.

Published in: on December 27, 2008 at 2:41 am  Leave a Comment  

I’m Back

For those who may have stumbled across my page and looked on with sadness at my absence, I apologize.  I have had some serious life changes.  However, these changes have only temporarily interrupted the rantings of this workaholic writer.  I am now back and able to write at will on my obscure little blog.

I have, since my brief hiatus, been working on the re-write I have mentioned formerly in my blog.  It has been going well and I have managed to cut it down and weed it out considerably.  The third, and hopefully final draft, is racing along at a whopping pace of, okay so I won’t embarrass myself here and mention it to anyone.  But it is going.  I hope this latest post finds someone who reads my little ramblings entertained and happy that I have not completely vanished from the cosmos.  I will return with hopes that you will also.  Until then, keep writing, dreaming, and chasing the dream.

Published in: on December 24, 2008 at 5:15 am  Leave a Comment  

Morning Pages

This is my morning pages.  Its a task that is less fun than you can imagine but something that lets my brain get boiling so to speak.  For all you wanna be professional writers out there, just like me, it is a must to get in the habbit of writing every day and I’ve found that per suggestions of my writing group and mentors like Holly Lisle that sitting down to write in the morning with a specific goal of a certain number of pages is a nice warm up for the real deal, you know when your pounding away at the next great american novel.  Don’t I wish.  But even better it allows your mind to be free to express itself in ways you might not have considered before.  You never really think about what your writing you just write.  And sometimes, lately to be honest for writers lump has me stumped, all I seem to write is this is my morning pages over and over.  Trust me its boring but it is a habbit you know, like that dirty word excercise, you make something a habit long enough it becomes part of the routine and thus something that is a daily must do. 

So I am making my writing a daily must do, much like I’m attempting to make that other word, what was it, oh exercise, a daily must do.  The writing is much easier trust me.  I’m one of those block heads that thinks exercise is something you get when you work in the yard, chase your children, walk the dog, it never occured to me untill recently it might be something I should do purposely.  Purposely, that is a good word write with purpose, on purpose, every day that is what makes anyone a writer not being published or doing book signings but the real everyday grind of actuall work it takes to write.

If you notice I haven’t edited this.  I’m simply typing away with my thoughts wandering willy nilly all over the place.  That is the purpose of this excercise, oh dang that word again, it is meant to get your mind wandering and oil up those gears so you can sit down with purpose and work on you novel, short story, poem, or childrens book with all the creativity and gears in perfect working order.  It works too.  That’s the best part.  There have been several times since I’ve started this per suggestion that I didn’t have a clue what I was going to write about that day because that dreaded writer’s lump had me blocked but this excercise helped take off the pressure I put on myself to be perfect and do everything just so.  Yes I know I’m very type A.  But the good news is its not catching. lol

As for writers lump, why do I call it that?  Well because I think block is just not the correct word.  A block is solid and unmoveable it sits there in your way without intention or motivation to move or adjust.  A lump is softer more maliable and though it too is in your way you can knead, pound it, and punch it right into shape or at least reduce it to a size you are able to easily climb over or move.  Block is just to permanent sounding so therefore I only ever get writer’s lump. 

Now that you have had the disturbing glimpse into my strange mind workings I encourage you to take a chance set aside a time every morning to write three pages.  That is your goal, not what you say, if you say anything at all, maybe you just write words you like or simply these are my morning pages when you can thing of nothing else but give it a try it really helps.  So this is the end of my morning pages and I am signing off.  I’ll be displaying this post exactly as it was typed, typos and all, so that you can see this is not about doing it perfectly just doing it and allowing the thoughts to flow.  Do you know how hard it is for me not to use the spell check function or go back and read this before I post.  I’m practically hyperventalating here, so type A lol.  Well all till next time, keep writing, keep dreaming, and keep being you.

Published in: on May 6, 2008 at 1:48 pm  Leave a Comment  

Who and How Many

This may sound like the title of my next project but the truth is its a conundrum I can’t seem to wrestle to the ground and hogtie.  I’m finished with my novel a whole 75,000 words and its a women’s fantasy fiction with christian themes.  It has a great pace, an involving story, and the characters and world are not paper mache. 

This may sound like the perfect novel, however, it has gremlins.  How short is too short?  How long is too long?  When is involved too involved? Who do you send it to in hopes of finding out?  These questions have been plauging me as I’ve sent it to agent after agent only to receive a form rejection without explanation.  So I began surfing the web, handy little tool that it is, to find the answer to my burning questions.

Guess what; its a crap shoot!  You get what you get.  Some agents want the next C. S. Lewis and some want the 130 page airport novella.  It depends on their agency and what mood they’re in.  This shouldn’t discourage you (I say this tounge in cheek as I battle with frustration, aggravation, and a tinge of depression over my continued failure at finding an agent).  It is a combination of providence and the process of elimination, I’m quickly discovering, that lands you an agent. 

So I will close this blog on a positive note.  There is no recepie for getting published.  J. K. Rowling couldn’t be farther away from Louis L’Amour and the common denominator between Christopher Paolini and Francine Rivers well there just isn’t one, except for the fact I love them all.  They are all exceptional writer’s in the genre they represent but the length depth and breadth of their novels are completely different.  The only definite in this business; your persistence will pay off if you’ve done your part and made sure the book is as close as you can get to publishable the minute it is accepted.  Keep writing, dreaming, and putting thoughts on paper folks it will pay off. 

Published in: on February 27, 2008 at 1:54 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Writer’s Rant

**The Myspace blog post as mentioned previously.  Enjoy my rancor, or not!  

 Okay people I have to rant today.  It’s been bugging me all night and I can’t even tell you how long it took me to get to sleep; so here goes!  I understand that there are honest mistakes out there; when you spell a word that you’re certain you know you’re positively sure you spelled correctly so you don’t bother to check, then later end up smacking yourself in the forehead when re-reading.  But what is up with misspelling a word then putting this behind it-(sp?). 

Are we writers or not?  If you’re truly authors then practice a little professionalism please! It’s called a dictionary for cripes sake; it doesn’t cost that much, and for the digitally inclined they have them all over the web for free.  If you make an honest mistake well that is bound to happen to anyone, but if you aren’t sure of a spelling don’t add in an inane little symbol like (sp?) that proves you’re just too lazy to use spell check or look it up in a dictionary. It makes you look like a complete amateur!  Challenge for this week find three completely new words, use a dictionary (online or hard copy), look them up, learn to spell them, and how to use them in a sentence.  I’ll submit mine tonight!  Who is going to take up the flag and carry the message that to be a writer you must have a soupcon more intelligence and ambition than your average blogger.  Till tonight, keep dreaming, believing, and writing.

Published in: on February 13, 2008 at 5:10 pm  Leave a Comment  

Things I’ve Learned

After listening for hours to acquaintances and friends gripe about the evils of agents I was almost convinced they were right.  But then my logical analytical side took over and I began to examine the truth in what they were saying.  The first thing I discovered is that like us, agents are people too.  They have needs like food, career, and futures to protect or to provide for.  That having been established firmly in my mind I began to consider things further.

We are writer’s, we (or at least some of us, they shall remain nameless) think that the only reason to write is to enlighten others, to make the world a better place, and to see their words in print, blah, blah, blah.  The pie in the sky I’m here to serve my fellow man speech.  But here is the bottom line.  If you’re submitting your manuscript to a reputable agent (I’m assuming you researched), you are (no matter your protests to the contrary) looking to make money from your effort.  If all you wanted is to have it printed or to save the world with your soul searching prose you could publish it any number of places for free on the web or resort to the dime a dozen rip off artists that would print it for you for some exorbitant fee (picture an arm, leg, and first born here people).  But you didn’t you are sending it to a trust worthy (No cost to you) agency, that doesn’t get paid till you do.  Here is the clincher folks, you probably researched them and chose their agency based on a client list you recognize and are familiar with, based your decision on their ability to sell manuscripts to publishers, this means you want money for your effort (evil as it is, it’s true).

Here is the big reveal, agents need money too, they won’t represent just any Joe Shmoe off the street that comes in and guarantees his scribblings will make them a million.  They want to read your stuff.  But only if it’s appealing to them, well written, professionally presented, and marketable in their area of expertise.  Given your work matches all those criteria they may ask for a manuscript.  If your writing is full of typos, misspellings (refer to my myspace blog), and other annoying marks of non-professionalism they will reject it.  They can’t live on your hopes and dreams alone, or theirs either for that matter.  They only get paid if your book is purchased for publication by a publisher they present it too.

While fiber is a necessary part of anyone’s diet your manuscript is not edible even with ketchup.  You need to be considerate of their time.  Don’t send it if they specifically request submissions of only children’s fiction and you have an adult R rated thriller.  Don’t think that being cutesy is the way to grab their eye.  They want someone who is succinct and professional with a well thought out synopsis and a writing style in their query that represents the individual and what they have written.

That having been said they are not some evil, devil with a pitch fork, who sits with a finger poised over the delete button waiting for the moment your unfortunate email should arrive on their screen.  They don’t have a trash can in their offices marked “Author’s dreams go here!” and they certainly don’t mean anything personal if your manuscript isn’t what they’re looking for.  Know your work.  Know its market, its message, its themes, and subject.  Chances are if you can’t find those things neither will your agent.    Be certain of your goals and outline them.  Don’t beef up your resume to appear more than you are, they check, trust me.

And while this is all sound advice you may have noted I don’t yet have an agent.  The point here being; it takes perseverance and finding just the right person to fit with what you want from your career and someone who understands your particular voice.  Take it easy there are thousands of us out here.  The encouraging news is even some of the greats were turned down over and over.  Keep your chin up, your dreams alive, and remember keep writing.

Published in: on February 13, 2008 at 4:15 pm  Comments (1)  
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