Thursday, September 30, 2010

Well That Makes Scents.....

Ever notice how the aroma of somthing stimulates a memory? Or registers a feeling within your brain? Like  chocolate chip cookies baking (yum!) may remind you of the kitchen in the house you grew up in. Or freshly mowed grass may remind you of Saturday mornings as a child.

I used to wear "Sunflowers" perfume by Elizabeth Arden when I was in college. Every once in awhile I catch a whiff of it somewhere and it's like an immediate time warp back to that time in my life. I even still have a tiny bottle of it on a shelf somewhere in my bedroom with just a dash of the golden-yellow liquid left. I save it just for the memory effect.

As writers it's important we evoke all the five senses in our writing whenever we can. They are details that help create the setting and bring it to life in the reader's imagination. Sensory details should be present in all of our crafted scenes. We may be better at creating a visual or includng the sounds of a busy city. But don't forget the sense of smell! Give that busy city the odor of a full dumpster, or vendor's peanuts roasting.

We can't just use the pleasant aromas to create comfort and peace, but we need to use scents to scare or repulse our reader. Keep it sensible--meaning we shouldn't try to employ odors that no on can relate to--like a rotting alien corpse or dragon's fire. Sprinkle in scents the reader can recognize to help them imagine what a rotting alien corpse smells like... or how a dragon's fiery breath reeks. Keep it simple, but evocative. Perhaps a villain smells of cheap cologne ... or a funeral home smells of old flowers.

I find that after my first draft is finished, it's easier for me to go back in and add the sensory details afterwards, focusing on each scene to make sure all senses are stimulated. As writers we have to make the words "slip into the reader's bloodstream." On the flip side, you can overdo it just as you can underdo it. We have to find the perfect amount of sensory details to stir the reader's emotion without them even realizing it.

I read a suggestion once that said to highlight each scene with differet highlighters: yellow for sight, pink for smells, green for sounds. You should see your pages as a rainbow of color. If you notice more of one color than the others, go back and reevaluate how you can even it out so all senses are stimulated.

Happy Writing!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Weekly Spotlight! Could be You!

Happy Hump Day! Weekend is so close I can taste it!

Wednesday is the day I shine the spotlight on one of the blogs I follow, and tell you why I follow them. I follow quite a few, and of course I can't read every blog every single day... impossible. But I especially try to stay loyal to those who follow me and support me, so this is just a little way of saying "Thanks." :) Bloggers Unite!

And today.... *drumroll*   The Oscar goes to.......



Kathryn Kupanoff's Everything Boho 

*cheers* *streamers* *balloons fall from ceiling*

I discovered Kathryn's blog through Writer's Digest Community and started following it. I actualy liked it so much that I found myself wanting to read her work, so she's also currently a beta partner. She posted one day about her love of the letter U and how words are just so much more flavourful when they contain them. I was like, "This chick is adorable!" lol! She also dedicated an entire week to "I Wanna Be a Rockstar." How cute is that?

Not only is Kathryn a super talented writer, she's also down to earth and creative. And with a name like "Everything Boho" how could you not want to follow her blog and read more about this lady? And as if that's not enough reason to follow her blog already..... to top it off, she does a Cute Kitten Friday every Friday.  You can feast your eyes on some of the most precious little kittty-witties you've ever seen. They always put a smile on my face.

Those are just some of the awesome vibes coming from Kathryn's Everything Boho. But those are just bonuses... Kathryn posts regularly on the craft and I'm always impressed by her wealth of knowledge of classic literature.

What are you waiting for? Check her out!

http://www.kathrynsheridankupanoff.com/


BTW My morning will be spent volunteering at my son's elementary school at the book fair. Can't wait to check out all the kidlit!!

Welcome to my new followers and have a most excellent day!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

It's Not A Race!

I hear myself saying those exact words to my kids all the time. My four and five year old are VERY compettitive and they don't quite get it that being done with something sooner does not make it better.

I was reminded exactly why this same rule applies to writing when I read Chip MacGregor's blog post today. If you haven't read it yet, take a moment to do so. It's a guest post by another agent at his agency, Amanda Luedeke.

I love how she states "This isn't a race, folks. There are no extra points for finishing first. But there are extra points for finishing with a publishable manuscript. Don't query until the ms is perfect. You'll save yourself a lot of heartache."

I know sometimes I get so excited about my work that I think it's ready after the first revision and I sneak some queries out there just to get a feel. But Chip's post is such a great reminder why that's not a good idea. Check out the full post!

A big, heartfelt welcome to my new followers! I'm SO glad you're here!

WriteOnCon was a great chat last night. If you missed it, be sure to check out the transcripts for some very positive info. You can find Chip MacGregor's blog as well as the WriteOnCon site to the right in my blogroll.

Tune in tomorrow for my Wednesday Weekly Bloggrs Unite Spotlight ..... Could be you in the spotlight!

Monday, September 27, 2010

eBooks, Publishers, & Royalties, OH MY!

I take it everyone's had a chance to read JA Konrath's posting on The Acquisitions Editor?  If not, I'm leaving a link for you to check it out. It was also posted on the GLA blog as well, and in short, is a little bit of dialogue between an author and an acquisitions editor.

I had to laugh while I was reading it. I gotta say it makes perfect sense. All that jazz on retaining rights on your own book and keeping a larger percent of the royalties--it' pure logic. So why are so many of us still scared to do it on our own?? I know I've been hesitant because I worry my work is not polished enough to be out there yet. I want to come off as very professional, and having the stamp of approval from a traditional publisher is very reassuring.

But a writer friend of mine (thank you, Florence) pointed out one day--why not get some of your work out there while you're working on newer stuff? Hmm.... excellent point! Why not? What could it hurt? Well, maybe your credibility as a decent author if you're work is still in need of a lot of TLC..... But say you've had ten different betas critique your work and line edit and help you get your story where it needs to be. Say you feel you've done all you can, queried to no avail, and are ready to move on? I think uploading your book to Amazon and Barnes & Noble's is a stellar idea.

What could it hurt? It costs you nothing and you keep like %90 of the royalties. Of course, you have to have a reasonably low price for your eBook as a no-name author, but still... with keeping most of the profits, it's hopeful. JA Konrath has enjoyed a huge success with his $2.99 eBooks. He's got a much bigger name, but he started from scratch.

Just something to think about. After giving my latest ms a makeover, I'm going to resubmit another round of queries and if I don't have any luck, I may do just that. I have a friend who does cover graphics can create a eBook cover (if anyone needs a referral, please let me know and I'll send you his way) and at least that way my work would be out there instead of sleeping on my harddrive. You never know .... there's been many successful self-pub books (The Shack, Eragon, etc.) and at least you'd be proactive in your writing career.

What are your thoughts on eBooks and self-pub? Ever consider trying it while you seek out an agent?

Here's the link to Konrath's blog if you missed it:
http://jakonrath.blogspot.com/2010/09/acquisitions-editor.html

Also, it's the BIG monthly chat kickoff on WriteOnCon tonight!! It sounds awesome and there will be industry professionals available for questions. Remember, even if you don't write kidlit, you can still benefit from these chats as it involves all things writerly. :)

Also, if you haven't heard... there's a freaky-deaky Halloween Horror writing contest on Hannah Kincade's blog. What a great way to get in the spooky spirit--take a quick break from your WIP and try your hand at writing something scary!! Click on the link below. Entries due by Oct. 22 .... Muhahahahahaha ......

http://musingsofapalindrome.blogspot.com/2010/09/palindromes-prizes-for-prose.html

Sunday, September 26, 2010

The 90s Called, They Want Their Girl Back

At least, that's what they're saying in my mind. I was drinving yesterday and an old familiar song came on. It got me thinking on that little decade in time we like to call the 1990s. It was such a huge time for me. I kind of miss it--and the songs from that time are like potent sound capsules that open up my brain and flood it with memories.

I graduated from high school in 1991 (20 year reunion is next summer) and that pretty much sent me flying high through the nineties (in more ways than one). My first years in college was during the birth of grunge music and Dr. Martens combat boots. It was like I had found a place in life--a little slice of identity. Emerging from the carbon copy world of high school, it was a time of total placement. The music scene was blowing up with originality. Fashion did a total flip-flop into flannels and ripped jeans. I was pretty much in heaven.

I remember discovering all the new music and being nestled into the nice little slot my round peg butt fit into. The after high school years were such a special time of revelation--when things started really making sense, and friends were family. It was the first time I'd lived away from my real family. The first time I was in charge of everything involving me. Dang, that felt great!To this day, I hear a song played from that time in my life and I crank it up and bellow the lyrics because it's not only a great song, it's an intense reflection. My kids usually look at me like I'm nuts, but that's okay, because one day they'll be doing it, too.

I got my first (and only) tattoo in 92. Got my nose pierced that same year. It was all about expression... feeling free! Later I let the piercing close up, but my tattoo still reminds me of that time in my life. When people ask me what it means (my tat is a black tribal design on my upper back) I tell them it means "Freedom of Youth." And for me, it means just that.

Not only was Lollapolooza THE concert event of the nineties, House techno was thumping underground clubs for the first time. Kids (me included) were skipping the typical college hangouts with live bands and venturing underground to dark, blacklit dancing dungeons to hear DJs spin records and mix electronic beats that made the walls bounce. It was fantastic. With that freedom of youth, came a blur of nights and weekends with friends, staying out and dancing til dawn.

Music really is the soundtrack to our lives. Eighties music was fun at the time I was growing up, but nineties music was when I really found myself--who I wanted to be. The grunge and underground electronica have a special place in my memory, one my kids will never grasp til they're on their own for the first time, with the freedom to make their own choices and become who they want to be.

Later in the nineties, my self-discovery escapade sent me on a whirlwind of travels through out the U.S. and Europe, a little of Asia. It was sensational... knowing who I was and meeting other new adults from other countries who were learning the same. I have a poetry journal I kept along the way. It's filled with random verse that was totally in the moment. Whatever I was feeling right then, the words just flowed, the metaphors plenty. It's really fun to look back on, actually. And as my new WIP will involve lots of music, I've already been hitting the ol journal up for some verse. ;)

Well thanks for joining me for some nineties nostalgia. It's funny how one song can send you down memory lane. I guess I love that time in my life because it was my time of total freedom. I didn't get married til 2002, and that was closely followed by two pregnancies. Don't get me wrong, I love my family and I'm right where I'm supposed to be.

But from 1991-2001 I hold a special place--when MY place in the world was established. I'm sure everyone has their own little slice of time when everything just made sense. For some it may be their place right now. For me, it was the nineties.

Here's to the 90s! Thanks for rocking my world.


BTW: There's a pretty cool Ebay bid going on called Project Book Babe. You can bid on books signed by the author and the money goes to funding a cure for cancer. How great is that??

Here's the link:  http://shop.ebay.com/projectbookbabe/m.html?_nkw=&_armrs=1&_from=&_ipg=&_trksid=p4340

Friday, September 24, 2010

Compelling Characters

"Well, you really can't be afraid when you write a book, If it's going to be a good story, the main thing about it is it needs to be emotionally honest. And that means that there will be things that are difficult to write or to deal with because people have a tendency to shy off from going to very dark places." Diana Gabaldon

To me, this quote (from a very successful author) means breathing life into your characters through real, honest emotion. Really, the quote can apply to the entire story, but if your characters aren't real enough, no one will feel invested in them enough to read more. I think this is a mistake newbie writers make quite a bit. We tend to focus on plot and structure, while our characters are weak and shadowy.

I've learned to sketch each of my main characters before I start writing the first draft. I have a series of questions I ask them so that I truly have a clear picture of who each character is. I think sometimes the image in our mind is muddled, and that comes out in the story as well.

So let's say we have our story idea. First, we choose our protagonist to build the plot around. Next, we create the bio:

Ask your MC (main character):
 1. What does she/he want more than anything?
 2. What are the MC's core traits (generosity, bravery?)
 3. What flaws get in the way of your MC's goals ( pride, self-doubt?)
 4. What emotional baggage from the MC's past effects his/her motivations?

Additional tips: (taken from Morrell's "Thanks, But This isn't for Us" writing guide and told in my own way)

* Imagine yourself in your character's shoes. Force your character to do exactly what you're afraid to.

* Each detail and quirk you give your character MUST make the character come alive

* What fascinates you about your character? (wit, a secret)

* What is your MC's deepest fear? Knowing this will give your MC a soul. (You don't have to ever state the fear anywhere in your story, but YOU knowing it will create the depth in the character's actions)

* Your scenes should make the MC uncomfortable, put him/her in awkward situations every time to see how he/she reacts. These reactions will be what brings your character to life.

* Give your characters a past, memories, dreams, hopes (Again, you  don't have to ever state what these are, but you should know them in order to know your character)

*Give your MC emotional relationships that will reveal his/her complexity

*Give your MC a chance to pause or reflect after action scenes. Not too much introspection, just enough to watch your character grow.

*Give your MC a weakness that's the flip side of their strength. Maybe her/his strong will makes her too pig-headed

*Make your MC out of sync with her/his surroundings

*Make sure the other characters in your cast do NOT love, respect, or support your MC at all times.

* Play up the conflict in scenes between two or more characters. Do this early on in order to snag your reader and cause them to become emotionally invested.

*Your MC should grow over the course of the story. Make sure the potential for growth is evident very early on--from the first chapter.

*If you have a villain, make sure the villain is flawed and relatable. Perhaps the serial rapist was beaten/molested as a child. Make sure the reader knows a little of the villain's past, so the reader understands why he/she does the evil things.


My fave way to create compelling characters is to people watch. Real life peeps are about as amusing and fascinating as anything fictional. I like the real oddballs. I watch them in public places and take notes of their eccentricities. You can find amusing traits by watching peeps you know as well. Find out what fascinates you about people. What makes them interesting, even if you wouldn't want to spend any time with them in real life--these are the peeps that are fun to watch and read about.

Why do you think Jersey Shore is so popular? People ca't turn away because the characters are so fascinating. Not necessarily fascinating in a good way, but who ever said good is fascinating? Nobody wants a perfect character.

What to know what others are saying about Compelling Characters? Check it out here:
http://elanajohnson.blogspot.com/2010/09/how-to-write-compelling-characters.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+MindlessMusings+%28Elana+Johnson%2C+Author%29

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Just a Night Blogger...

Hmm, ususally I don't post at night, but thought I'd give a shout out to the night time blogosphere. And a very special welcome to my new followers... So glad you're here! Some of my old followers just found me again, so thank you to you too!! <3

I attended my first WD webinar today with lit agent Mary Kole. I was first introduced to Mary through the awesome WriteOnCon and I just loved her passion and good common sense. So I thought since she was presenting it'd be a perfect op to check it out. Most of what she said I had already learned, however, there was also a great deal of other info that made my ears perk up. And even with the market info, and writing tips that I already knew, it's always good to be reminded.

Plus, she's doing a first 500 words crit on any current manuscript for those who attended the webinar. So I couldn't pass that up. I just wrote a brand new chapter 1 for Coffee & Donuts, so I'm anxious to learn how it reads. I think my old one was not clear enough on the inciting incident, so I hunkered down and tweaked... yeah, I dug deep.

I've also decided to change the name of it to FLOAT. That's right, I just gave it a total makeover. It feels good, I feel like I'm on the right path now. Mary said something today that I just loved: "Your first draft is a map for where you want your story to go." How true is that??? It simply guides us in the right direction, but we have to really get in there and extract the story once the first draft is done.

I've always thought of the first draft as the backbone of the story. Then, with repeated revisions, you go back in and add the brains and the heart until you've got a full body of art. It's hard to remember that when after you've just wrenched your brain and soul for the first draft, but it's so true. I've revised Coffee & Donuts so many times, and I STILL have a beta reader finding stuff wrong with it. (Thanks, Kat!) LOL! It's neverending. But just think, once we finally do get it right, it could be a masterpeice for all time .... yeah I know, dream on, PK. :) And don't worry, I will.

Anyway, Mary broke down the word counts for children's, MG, and YA stories, and emphasized what every story requires to be successful kid lit. She reiterated how every experience for a tween and/or teen is magnified intensely and our writing should reflect the larger than life feel of in the moment. I don't write only kid lit, but it's what originally got me into writing to begin with.

I'll come back with a full on break down of what she said once I get access to the powerpoint again. I'll take some notes and share the juicy tidbits with you. ;)

Tomorrow I'll be back bright and early to post on Compelling Characters for the Big Blog Experiment. Should be interesting to read all the different posts on this subject. Are you participating? I hope so. Let's share our knowledge and become better writers. Although, these days I'm beginning to feel more like a crafter than a writer. Anyone can write, but a good story takes more than that. It is indeed a craft.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Wednesday Weekly SPOTLIGHT!

That's right! Happy Wednesday, we're halfway through the work week. Have I told you lately how much I appreciate you following my blog? I really do. So I decided to start a Wednesday routine where I blog about one of the blogs I follow. I spend a lot of time reading other people's blogs, and there are so many great things about them.

So, Wednesday, I dub thee... Bloggers Unite Weekly Spotlight! I'll introduce a blog I follow and tell you why.

This means you may see your own blog in the spotlight, since I follow all my followers as well. :)

Without further ado, I'd like to shine the spotlight today on: ELANA JOHNSON

http://elanajohnson.blogspot.com/

Okay, so most of you already follow her blog, but if not, you should be. She is a published YA author. Her book, Possession, is due out next year. You can check out the cover on her blog. Anyway, I know not everyone writes YA, but it doesn't matter. Elana's blog is full of helpful writing info. She also has an eBook out called From the Query to the Call. You can download it right from her site and she's offering a free query critique with every purchase.

So she is kinda my hero right now. Not because she already has a book coming out, but because she works so hard to give back to the writing community. She's a founder of Query Tracker.com as well as WriteOnCon. She blogs on tips for blogging and making connections, as well as crafting the best novel you can. She's got a pretty cool experiment going on this Friday on Compelling Charaters. Check it out on her blog and sign up for it if you haven't already. That's what I'll be blogging about on Friday.

Anyway, Elana isn't just a lucky duck who has this great thing happening. She works really hard. It's apparent in her very honest blog posts. She takes time out to answer personal emails and visit other blogs as well.

So that's my weekly spotlight. Tune in next week and you never know.... could be YOUR blog in the spotlight. (Tweet Tweet) ;)

BTW: I had a great workout last night and I've been off the workout routine since I wrote my last ms. I also gained 10 pounds because of it. BUT I'm on a mission to lose them again, and I thought, I bet there's a lot of my fellow writers who'd like to get healthier. SO I'm making it a point to let you, my followers, know each Wednesday and Friday that I did, in fact, work out the night prior. If I don't obligate myself, then I won't stay at it. (My routine will be Tue and Wed nights)

You have my permission to let me have it if I don't mention that I worked out. Of course, I could be lying and say I worked out, but we won't go there... no need to be dishonest. :s

If you're like me and want to not only focus on writing, but also on exercise, why not join me? Add to your posts that you've been working out too. We'll help each other through it. :)

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

You're It!

You're It!

So an internet tag has been going around where  the blogger answers eight questions, and then tags people to answer the same. If you're reading this, consider yourself tagged!

1. If you could have a superpower, what would you have? Why?
 
I would fly. I have dreams all the time where I can fly or even jump for a really long way... (must be all those video games). I also really like the Jumper concept. You know, form the film with that super cute Canadian actor??? Hmm, my mind is drawing a blank..... he has that effect on me. ;) But I'd pop in all parts of the world at any time. What a great feeling that'd be.
 
2. Who is your style icon?
 
Madonna. Love her.
 

3. What is your favorite quote?
 
"Less is more" Mies Van der Rohe
 
4. What is the best compliment you've ever received?
 
A girl once told me in college that if her boyfriend had to break up with her for someone else, she was glad it was for me. That was huge. Because she hated me when it happened. But I didn't know her at the time. Later, when she got to know me thru mutual friends she told me that. Neither one of us ended up with him.
 
Second best was my German friend who lives in UK. We met in London like 10 years ago and he was a senior in high school on a class trip. My hostel room window let out onto the roof so we had kids coming in and out of our room to hang out and drink on the roof. Peter and I met and kept in touch (were pen pals before Facebook came around). Anyway, we still KIT and he's getting his PHD in engineering in Bristol, UK. He told me once that it was because of me he decided to get out into the world. I was traveling all over back then and it had an effect on him. That was a really special compliment from a really special guy.
 

5. What playlist/cd is on your ipod/cd player right now?
 
I'm listening to all kinds of Indian music. Prepping for my next ms.
 

6. Are you a night owl or a morning person?
 
This has changed from decade to decade. Right now, I'm a total morning person. I write best in the early hours.

7. Do you prefer dogs or cats?

 
I love cats. Always have. I miss having one but my hubby is allergic. We have a dog right now, and I love him, but he's a total pain---very needy. I love cats' independence.
 
8. What is the meaning behind your blog name?
 
Chronicles of an Author at Large is about my path to publication. It's a hopeful title that someday someone will capture me and throw me into their literary genius and sell my books. :) 

    Enter to Win:

    Here's the link to Angela Ackerman's Mentor Contest. How cool would that be? To have a published mentor to help you with your ms?? Anyway, all you have to do is fill out the form and spread the word. Good luck!

    http://thebookshelfmuse.blogspot.com/2010/09/1000-followers-contest-mentorship.html


    I'm off to read a story to my son's kindergarten class this morning. And I'm wearing one of my fave tee shirts... from Out of Print ( I love this site!) http://www.outofprintclothing.com/

    I promote them because I think it's fantastic you can wear a tee with your fave classic novels plastered on the front, as well as the fact that Out of Print donates books to schools in Africa every time someone buys one of their tees. The're super comfy and high quality. What are you waiting for??

    Here's one of mine:

    Monday, September 20, 2010

    Do You "Own It?"

    I stumbled across a fellow blogger's post yesterday and found it intriguing. She didn't have it up for long, deleted it not long after she posted it. But she posed a very good question: Do you own it? Meaning do you tell others you're a writer, even if you are pre-published?

    She listed the reasons why she doesn't feel comfortable stating to others that she's a writer, even though she has an agent. I get it. I think a lot of us feel that way--mainly because we are NOT published yet. But is that really what makes a writer? At what point do we say, "NOW, I'm officially a writer." Is it after getting an agent? Or after holding a printed book with your name on it in your hands?

    The answer is probably different for everyone. But here's my thoughts.... I am a writer because a write. I put words down in the form of a story and ask people to read it. In my mind, this makes me a writer. Am I published? No. Agent yet? No.

    But I still write.

    Now, if someone decides they want to take a stab at writing and write a story, but then never continue afterwards for whatever reason, does that make them a writer? My answer would be no. I've tried playing golf once before, but does that make me a golfer? No.

    Quite simply, a writer is someone who writes stories, articles, poetry, etc., and continues to do so again and again because it is the basis of his/her existence. It is a crying plea from the depths of her soul, struggling to get out in the form of words and stories. And maybe we have faithful readers, maybe only betas right now, maybe only dear old mom takes time out to read our stuff. But the point is that we write because it's who we are. If we persist, we may become successful at it.

    Perhaps there are writers out there who don't care about being published. Does that mean they are NOT writers? No way! Think of the famous authors whose work didn't become successful til after they died. They still wrote.

    So if someone were to ask you what you do today, would you tell them you are a writer along with whatever your day job is, parenthood, etc? I hope so.

    I would. I can say it with all confidence, that I am, in fact, a WRITER. How about you?

    Sunday, September 19, 2010

    This is the Culprit...


    This is Ripley. He's my 65 pound, barely a year old labradoodle. HE is the reason I don't get as much writing done as I'd like. Seems every time I get an empty house with some quiet time to write, Ripley decides he needs a walk or wants to play catch.

    The up side is that he forces me to exercise. That's a really good thing since I gained 10 pounds writing Coffee & Donuts. But hey, with a title like that, how could you not??

    So here's to Ripley--a heckuva dog if I ever knew one. :)

    Saturday, September 18, 2010

    Stamp an R on my Forehead

    That's right--the big R for REJECTION. Ho hum. I had a partial for my most recent ms out, Coffee & Donuts, with a really great agent who would've been like a dream. She had my partial for almost three months, and just responded a few days ago with the dreaded, "Thanks, but no thanks."

    She was actually really nice in her response. She took the time to personalize it, and stated she didn't have any constructive critisizm to give because everything was fine. She said my dialogue and writing were good, and that she loved the premise. She couldn't offer representation because she wasn't passionate about the story.

    Oh, for the love of God! Really??? They gotta be passionate??? LOL! It's always something, huh? Well, a year or so ago I'd have been racking my brain trying to figure out what that meant. But now, after so much exposure to other unpublished stories, I can honestly say I understand what she means. I can read a story that's well written with strong characters, but would it be something I'd normally select to read? A lot of times, no. It goes back to that subjective taste.

    So this agent advised me to continue looking in hopes I will find the agent who is pssionate about it. I was really hoping she was the one. :( But she also encouraged me to submit to her again with other stories. So at least she left me with a sliver or hope. At any rate, it's good to know my work doesn't suck.

    Here's the deal, though. I want to move on. I know persistence is key, but I've got another story begging me to tell it. I really want to move on, but I love Coffee & Donuts and feel like it needs a chance, too. So I've decided to revamp the first few chapters (based on some beta feedback) and possibly change the name. Then, I'll query my list of other dream agents and see what happens. If no luck, I may just upload it to Amazon and see if I can get it out there as an eBook. Why not, right? May as well get my work out there to be read while I'm moving on to other stories. I've got a notebook full of story ideas and I hate wasting time.

    Which leads me to my next question.... how long does one really need to spend on a single ms? What do you think? How long do you toil away at perfecting your story before setting it aside and moving on?

    I know working on a new story will help lift my spirits. I'm not totally bummed (maybe a little). I understand this is my path and this story was a stepping stone to get me where I need to be. I'm always learning and that's the important thing.

    I'd love to hear your thoughts. :)

    Friday, September 17, 2010

    Instructions For our Great Grandchildren:

    Welcome, Friends!

    Listen, I am SOO glad y'all are here! I am super excited about this new blog!! Why? Well, here's the thing... my Wordpress blog went out to EVERYONE, meaning friends and fam who don't write, they just read my blog and wonder "Who does she think she is, anyway?" lol

    But THIS blog is going to be all about writing and the path to publication. And I feel so blessed to have you all here with me on the ride. I'm forever grateful for you hitting that little follow button. This also means that I can share the downfalls of writing.... the dreaded rejections .... the caffeine filled stupors ... the I-can't-wait-another-minute-to-get-this-first-draft-down-even-tho-I've-got-a-gajillion-other-things-to-do moments. (whew! that was a long one). Because that kind of thing is really lame for friends and fam who aren't writers. They don't get it. Why would they? They're not writers.

    I'll be posting very soon about my most recent rejection and the whoas that follow. So tune in next time!

    I'm super glad to have you here, my fellow spinners of tales!

    BTW I read the first chapter of The Duff last night ..... KAPOW! This eighteen year old writer tells it like it is and socks it to you like a pro! Impressive stuff. If you write YA, check it out, fer sure.

    Thursday, September 16, 2010

    Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!

    Stick around! I'm fazing out the old blog and making this my new home. Blogger is much easier.

    So thank you to anyone who follows! This new blog will make my life much easier. :)

    Welcome to my Brand new Blog!

    Okay, so this has been up and coming. I've had blog envy since I started my blog on Wordpress... mainly because all the blogger blogs had these nifty little follower buttons that make it so easy. So, based on mere ease ... I shall transition into this new blog, and faze out the Wordpress one.

    I've only been blogging since May, so this is a learning process for me. I REALLY appreciate anyone who takes the time to re-follow me. :)