Saturday, May 30, 2009
When Wordsworth wrote the lines, “The world is too much with us,” he was referring to the fact that people were more concerned with material things and social status than with nature and spirituality. Well, this weekend the world has been too much with me. What I mean by this is that all of the crazy things in my life have stifled my creativity. Instead of reading a book or writing, I have watched movies, texted friends, wrote emails, surfed the web, shopped, baked, and entertained the idea that I should buy a new thumb drive.
Wordsworth would be so disappointed. I really should have been outside observing nature like a poet, but instead I opted to observe technology. Perhaps I should write a sonnet, Ode to my Blackberry (which, incidentally, I cannot live without). Maybe I can be forgiven because of the fact that my apartment complex pales in comparison the English countryside. Also, my margarita bucket has nothing on opium or laudanum.
What is this crazy woman's point you ask? My point is that my poor novel is sitting there waiting for revisions, and I am neglecting its needs! My characters are suspended in time. They are waiting for me to give them life again, and to write some new experiences for them. They want to be seen and heard, and I have chosen to ignore their voices. When I get caught up in writing, time flies by, and before I know it, the weekend is over. I really needed to rest, and I really needed a nice long break.
So, sorry I haven’t been commenting on blogs or beta reading this weekend. I’m just tired. On a happy note, I have decided to adopt a King Charles Cavalier Spaniel rescue pup. I filled out some applications, prayed about it, and am waiting for the right one to come along. It was easier than finding a husband. *snicker*
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Do you ever feel frustrated because you have a vision for your WIP, but you don’t know how to go about getting it there? It’s pretty overwhelming at times. I am working hard on revisions for The Heart is Lonely Still. Some days I feel like I have a handle on it, and other days I feel completely out of control. I know all about layers, and perhaps I am just frustrated at how long it takes to perfect a manuscript. I can’t possibly get this up to snuff after two revisions, maybe not even three or four, five or six, or ever! I do know this…I won’t put this book down until I get it as perfect as I can.
The amazing thing is that I am reading and taking in everything I can from agents, editors, and other writers (published and not). It has helped tremendously to beta read too! It’s good to know that we all experience the same things, feelings, thoughts, and emotions. There is a whole community of people out there who are willing to help. How cool is that? So what if some of them have margarita drinking gladiators named Tyrone as their main characters! We still love them, and that's why I love all of you.
Speaking of amazing writers and blogs. I just got through reading this post on Linda Sandifer’s blog, Writing out West, about using your senses in writing. If you haven’t already read it, jump on over. She has published numerous books, and her blog rocks!
Monday, May 25, 2009
Thank you so much Danyelle from Myth-Takes for the lovely blog award. You are simply awesome too my dear!
Now, I am going follow in Beth's footsteps and award this blog award to the first five people who respond to this post. As far as I'm concerned you are ALL winners. Thanks for the constant support and for helping me keep my sanity!
Friday, May 22, 2009
Scott, I thought I would post it for you...since you aren't up on that whole adding photos and videos to blogger thing. Photoshop snobs, appreciate the comedic value please! I have no clue what I'm doing. *snicker*
Here is a link to Scott's blog...jump on over for a visit!
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Kate Beckinsale as Kate Harrington
Colin Firth as Henry Clarke
Jude Law as Jude Matthews
Richard Armitage as John Clement
Rosamund Pike as Jane Clayborne
Lucy Griffiths as Claire Clement
Question: What faces would you pick to represent your characters?
Not only is Hamlet my favorite play by Shakespeare, but the character Hamlet is one of my all-time favorite literary characters. He is so wonderfully complex, yet simple at the same time. I was also inspired to post this because of Michelle's post at the Literary Lab. If you haven't visited the Fab Three at the Lit Lab...jump on over.
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Literary Agent Rachel Gardner's post, “How Do You Learn to Write,” drew in comments and infinite wisdom from published and non-published writers alike. The comments read like a tutorial on how to become a good writer, and ultimately, good enough to publish. If you haven’t read it, I recommend that you do.
Authoress on Miss Snark’s First Victim posted on the “over shopped” query. Sometimes writers send their queries through so many critiques that their voice gets lost in the shuffle. Great post...something to think about.
Oh...don't forget about Editorial Ass and his "Publishing Light Bulb Jokes". Great comedic relief!
Saturday, May 16, 2009
So, all day today I have been reading through my manuscript, crossing things out, and rewriting when I came across a scene where one of my main character’s mother passes away. To set up the scene, the character (John) gets a phone call from his family, saying they want to take their mother off of life support. Well, when he arrives at the hospital, he is able to talk to his mother. In fact, she talks to everyone until the doctor comes and takes away the life support.
I laughed so hard I was crying. Obviously, if someone is on life support, they won’t be talking to anyone. If they are awake and talking…why would a doctor come in a pull the plug on them? Can you say…bad soap opera? Not what I want, so clearly I will be doing some heavy duty edits there. So funny!
What are some of the funniest things you found while editing? Especially a first draft…
Thursday, May 14, 2009
I was inspired to write this post from Nathan Bransford’s post about not letting writing define you. I wholeheartedly agree. I used to define myself by the work I was doing. When I became a teacher, I was thrilled. My job meant everything to me, and anything that threatened my position would cause me to sink into depression. Every “see me” from the principal of the school where I was working might as well have been a pink slip. It came to the point where the fear of losing my job became all encompassing. Then I realized something very important. I was tying my whole identity and self-worth into my job. My job defined me. Without it, who was I?
I see this same thing happening to some writers. In fact, I felt this way when I finished my novel. I entered a small tidbit into a Drop the Needle contest on Miss Snark’s First Victim. Of course, I had no business doing this because my novel is only a first draft! What did I expect? Well the outcome wasn’t good. It makes me laugh now because I have grown so much since that time. Seriously, too funny! After the contest I was crushed, and now I know why. Once again I was putting my self-worth into something that I had no business putting it into.
Your job and your writing are transitory, meaning they come and go. Change is inevitable. If you tie your self-worth into transitory things, it will also come and go. Self-worth may change and grow as we change and grow, but it should be tied to only one thing, you. Perhaps this may be the key to acceptance when something doesn’t work out the way you want it to. Usually when things don’t work out, your higher power is sending you in another direction.
Having said this, I think publishing is a good goal but not the ultimate goal. I put a lot of work into my novel, and I plan to put a lot more work into it. What if it doesn’t get published after I put all of that work into it? Well, I will ask myself what I got out of the process, or what did I learn? Perhaps that is the ultimate goal… the experience, the learning, the life lessons. I have learned so much already, especially from all of you.
This brings me to critiques. A critique, good or bad, is a gift. They help you grow and develop into what we all desire to be…good writers. I always hear successful writers say how the harshest advice they had ever received helped them grow leaps and bounds. Think about it, sometimes rejection puts us back on the right path. It sent me to grad school! Perhaps if we don’t define ourselves by our writing, it might be easier to stomach harsh critiques and rejection. In the end, your book is not YOU.
I know, harder said than done, but think about it. If a book doesn’t work… you learned something. It was worth your while. Now, move on and write another one. You won’t get anywhere by quitting.
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
Friday, May 8, 2009
Here it is open and sitting on my end table...
It is kind of nice to hold it in my hands. It makes it feel more real. Now I take deep breaths as I prepare to read. Oh yeah, and edit. Or, maybe I could have something to eat, watch a movie, take a shower, and then edit.
|Your Sensitivity Score: 89%|
You've probably been called overly sensitive before, and it's partially true.
Highly sensitive people tend to be highly intelligent. And you just can't turn off that part of you.
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Wednesday, May 6, 2009
Sunday, May 3, 2009
Typing takes muscle! That’s right…MUSCLE. If you don’t build those typing muscles, there is no way you will be able to get to the finish line. Here are a few tips for building typing muscles:
- Weights - tape miniature Hershey bars to all of your fingers for extra weight, then type as usual. The extra weight will help build muscle and you can save the chocolate for Nano month when you are finished! Remember, high reps, low weight!
- Finger pushups (aka. spider doing pushups on a mirror) - press the tips of all of your fingers together and stretch your palms out, then back in again and again. This can even be done while watching television or talking on the phone.
- Tap to the music – turn on your favorite music and tap your fingers the beat. Make sure you give all of your fingers the chance to tap…not just your forefinger.
- Walk – well it’s just good for everything.
- Clean your bookshelves – it’s good for the arms and shoulders.
- Wash the tub – builds arm muscles.
- You get the point…get those fingers a moving!
In order to make up for the ten pounds we are bound to gain from Nano month, we must lose at least ten pounds now to counteract it. A well balanced diet of fruits and veggies will suffice. Watch those carbs! It takes five pounds of chocolate to get a writer through Nano… we want to save our carb calories for that! Don’t forget to take your vitamins.
Gather the Necessities
The following is a list of must-haves for Nano month:
· Chocolate – duh!
· Wine – to relax
· Aspirin – eye strain and muscle strain
· Friends – to bring supplies when needed
· Easy to cook meals – you won’t have time to cook
· Soap – yeah…take showers! Please!
· Vitamin D – you won’t see a lot of sun
Feel free to add to the list!
Just a few pointers for getting ready for NanoWrimo. Hopefully this year there will be the most productive year ever. Good luck to all of you!