Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Voices in My Head

Don’t worry, I’m a writer: We’re supposed to hear voices. The trouble comes when there are just so many of them. I am to the point of actually plotting out a career path for myself. Sure, luck will have a big say in it, probably a bigger say than even I have, but there are a few decisions I can make. Most notably, what kind of writer do I want to be? What kind of stories do I want to tell? Because really, there are lots of different kinds of stories floating around in my head. My novel, the completed and polished one that has my heart all over its pages, is a fantasy romance. And even that label isn’t sufficient, but labels never are, so that one is close enough. But I also have a straight contemporary romance that is completed but not polished. And there’s a paranormal time travel romance (whew, talk about your layered plot) that won’t get out of my head. So now I am faced with the decision of where to focus. I suppose I could take the approach of just throwing stuff at a wall and seeing what sticks, but my time is limited. Right now, I’m working on the business end of my fantasy romance, which is tentatively titled Star of Prophecy. I’m doing the query, agent and editor research, and proposal work for that one, and that takes a different part of my brain than straight creative work. So even though the business work on Star is my top priority, I have a need to create as well, and have to make time for that. So the big question is … which story do I tell? I suspect lots of writers have this problem, and maybe lots of them write many different kinds of stories. But I also know that readers get used to certain types of stories from authors and get frustrated when authors go off on what readers perceive to be tangents. As a reader, I’m the same way. I want Patricia Cornwell to stick to Scarpeta novels, Janet Evanovich to stay firmly in Stephanie Plum’s head, and I want Diana Gabaldon to be the scribe for Jamie and Claire exclusively. No, this isn’t fair, to expect writers to limit themselves, but hey, life is not fair. So, that leaves me with the question, now what? Do I draw characters from a hat? Try to write a little on everything? Go ahead and have that nervous breakdown I so richly deserve?

Monday, September 14, 2009

Finished-- Again!

How many times now have I gleefully announced that my manuscript is finished? Many, many times. And likely, this isn’t the last time, but once again, hurray! The book is finished! Any excuse for a margarita, right? Honestly, I am so sick of this manuscript this time, I have no desire to go back to tweak story or grammar. It’s all done except for formatting and printing, which I’ll need Michael’s help with and which probably won’t get done until the weekend.
And I’m taking some online advice from published writers and researching editors based on the works of other authors whose books I have really liked and which can sort of be considered to be in a category with my own book. I’m sure I’ll manage to drag this process out well into next year because the whole idea of the business side of writing is just so dreadful a thought to me, but I do have a game plan for how to proceed. That counts for something, right?
So now, I must put in a new Baby Einstein movie and get back to procrastinating.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Enough Already!

I am officially tired of my manuscript. Not surprising, since I’ve been working on it for about four years now. I’m just about to finish my final read through, then it’s on to the query, synopsis, and other torments. I have so many ideas for books, and a few that have a good chance of actually being written, but I can’t write when I only get a random hour here or there. Unfortunately, I need a bit more structure than that. Structure with a toddler is impossible. I’m looking into hiring a babysitter to come here one day a week while I get some writing done.
Believe it or not, I’m actually looking forward to writing the query and getting this manuscript on its way to publication. I’m terrified, sure, but ready. And despite my being tired of this story, it is still a damn good story.
I’ve read many books that I wonder how they ever got published. I console myself by realizing that an editor somewhere liked this book and no doubt a lot of readers did to. What makes the author of those books worthy of publication is that they stuck with it. They overcame the fear and they sent out their manuscript. Even if I didn’t like their books, I admire the writers for that. So, that’s my plan. Just keep at it until somebody sees the value in my story. And in the meantime, I’ll write other things. Assuming I find a babysitter.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

I'm Ba-ack

I have been woefully neglectful of this blog, but I’m okay with that. What with having my first baby and all, things have been a little busy around here. But Sprout is fourteen months old now, and I get a little (and I mean little) more time at the computer these days. Most of that time, I have been spending on my manuscript, which is now completely edited and in one document. Now all I have to do is check the formatting, add page numbers, and do one more final beginning-to-end read through and I’ll consider it ready to go. Go where? Well, that’s a hairy question. As I work on my query and synopsis—odious tasks indeed—I’ll also be researching agents and editors. This is the business part of writing, which I hate. Actually, everybody hates it, so I take some sick solace in that. If every other writer manages to overcome the synopsis-induced Malays and actually get published then surely I can too. So I’m taking over this blog again with a few goals in mind.
First, I want to keep an accounting of my writing. I suspect nobody is reading this blog, so it’s not like there’s any pressure. Second, I’d like to connect with a community of writers, so I’m gearing up to do NaBloPoMo this year, which I believe is in November. And finally, I’m warming up to the idea of letting the world know that I am a romance writer, and this is a very low-key, the-pressure’s-off way of doing that. I suppose that once I actually get an editor and a contract, I’ll do a different blog that’s heavy on promotion. All in good time. Right now, it’s time for me to reclaim that writer part of myself and this blog is one of the ways I’ll do that.

Thursday, July 17, 2008


Yesterday, while we were on one of our first outings with Sprout, Michael spotted a motorcycle with a handicap license plate. Hmmm. What disability would allow a person to both qualify for a handicap plate and drive a motorcycle? Really, I’ve thought and thought about this but can’t come up with anything. Michael said it’s like those old women who park in the handicap spaces at the mall and then go in to power walk. I’m sorry, but that’s just wrong.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


I realize this blog has been a little all-baby all-the-time lately, and to my five loyal readers, I apologize for that. Michael and I have embarked on a joint blogging venture called Adventures in Sprouting. If you aren’t sick of the baby stuff and want to check it out, go here.
I will blog about other things soon, but right now, there is nothing else on my mind as the C-section is scheduled for tomorrow. Tomorrow! Can you believe it? This time tomorrow, I will be a mommy. Just pick an adjective, that’s how I feel; overwhelmed, excited, terrified, unprepared, you name it. So, I likely won’t be blogging here for a week or so. Thanks to everyone who has stuck with me on this blog for the last few months. We will return to regularly scheduled programming soon, I promise.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Sibling Rivalry

The following is a discussion Michael and I had last night on the topic of sibling rivalry:

Michael (about his younger brother): “Nobody ever remembers the stuff he did to provoke me. Every time I’d finally had enough and threw a rock at him or something, that’s when the bus would come and there he’d be with blood dripping down his face. That’s the part everybody remembers.”
Me (sarcastically): “Who could blame you? I mean, you were provoked.”
Michael (in all seriousness): “It wasn’t that I was violent, I was just really accurate.”

This has got me thinking maybe just the one kid is enough.

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