Saturday, May 31, 2014

93% Done! Maybe.

As I near my original goal of 70,000 words for my book (currently 66,091), and watch the word count meter rise toward completion, I am thrilled at the thought and possibility that because I do not quite feel "done", that I may surpass my original word count goal.  Why on earth would I want all that additional work?  Well, when I think back to the beginning when I started this book, hesitant at the daunting task that I laid before myself, I couldn't help but to doubt that I would actually reach 40,000 words let alone 70,000.  Silly really that I let fear of the unknown and a questionable amount of confidence attempt to paralyze me.  But now that I actually see the finish line up ahead I have a renewed energy and my momentum is gaining.  How many words will I actually end up with?  Who knows.  The important thing for me is that when it feels done to me, then it will be.  Unless of course my beta readers tell me otherwise!

Now there's another scary thought -- releasing what I wrote to beta readers . . . . . but this an essential and important step.  A beta reader will see what's missing on the page that I do not.  A beta reader will point out errors, admissions, and let you know when something doesn't sound quite right.  Some writers only chose a couple of readers, while others get as many as they can.  I'm not sure how many I'll ask, but I do look forward to their important feedback no matter how much it bruises my writer's ego.  How else will I learn?  So sock it to me beta readers!  But let's not get too far ahead of ourselves, I still need to finish the book!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Illustrator Link-Up - The House With No Windows

I received word today that the illustrator link-up for my next piece, "The House With No Windows - Bringing Chuckie In", will be with the talented Lakshmy Mathur.  I can't wait to see what see comes up with for this story!

Have a great week!

Monday, May 26, 2014

"The House With No Windows - Bringing Chuckie In" Coming in June!

Good Morning Everyone,

Have you ever seen a house with no windows?  What kind of people would you imagine to live there?  What do the town rumors tell you about people who live in houses without windows?  Well, that is the exact subject of my next flash fiction piece, "The House With No Windows - Bringing Chuckie In", and I just received word that this story will be published on Story Shack Magazine on June 25th.  There were many avenues I could have chosen for this piece.  Hopefully the path I decided on will surprise you.

Have a wonderful Memorial Day and please take a moment to remember why we celebrate this holiday.

Take care,

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

A Beginning, A MIDDLE, and An End

Time and time again I read articles about how writers procrastinate because they don't know how their story will end.  The suggested advice?  Just keep on writing and it will work it's way out on the keyboard.

But here's my stumbling block -- the middle.  Oh yes, I absolutely know how my story is going to end.  I had that figured out over a year ago!  My challenge is to tie the beginning to the ending by creating "the middle".  Under the circumstances (that this is my first go-around), I think that I've been doing a fairly good job of this task thus far, albeit it's taking longer than I had hoped.  What works for me is that I sit down, look at the story and say to myself, okay, you need to tie this scene to this scene.  How do you get there?  The easy way, the hard way or the unexpected way?  All three options will work depending on your goals.  Also, what questions still need to be answered or what holes are there in the story that need to be filled?

You know, they say that there are two kinds of writers -- outline writers and non-outline writers.  I'm a little bit of both, but lean further to the non-outline side when it comes to creative writing.  This of course is a complete contrast to the way I work at my job.  On the job, I am highly organized and plan everything out whenever possible (allowing flexibility of course for the unexpected).  However when I write, I just let the creativity go and clean it up later.  And frankly, I kind of like it that way.  I don't want to be so structured with my writing that I let "plans" get in the way of the creative process.  When it comes to the story being told, plans are made to be broken!  After all, some of the best ideas come out of those unexpected diversions.  This is one of the reasons why I think my middle is so challenging.  Which path do I want to lead my characters down to get to the end of the road?  Or better yet, where along the path will they ditch my outline altogether and lead me?

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Unexpected Inspiration From an Old Friend

It started like this.  A simple invitation to a former colleague to join Goodreads.  This friend inquired as to whether I had a book on the site.  No, I regretfully stated, not yet (I had stalled and was starting to gather dust), but I had hoped to maybe pick her hubby's brain a bit about his publishing experience (agent, self-published, etc.)  She graciously offered to foster this connection should I like to ask questions about his experience.  Then, the unexpected inspiration occurred.  She said she couldn't wait to read my book (with an exclamation point).  She had no way of knowing that I greatly needed this motivation.

I am honored old friend, that you would want to read something that I am writing.  When it is finished, you may love it or you may hate it, but the fact that you are willing to invest several hours of your time to read it, is an honor.  You have unknowingly given me a little nudge, because I now want to dust myself off and finish this book so that you and my supporters can read my book.  Thank you!

P.S.  My flash fiction is still going strong and I am now a regular monthly contributor on Story Shack Magazine.  Check out the site for some wonderful stories and illustrations.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Quote of the Day

"Be kind, for everyone you meet is facing a great battle."
-- Philo of Alexandria