Friday, July 29, 2011

Fun Facts Friday

Just some random facts today. I'm working hard this week.

1. I didn't realize today was Friday for some reason, I keep thinking it's Thursday. Don't ask. I knew Wednesday was Wednesday, so what happened to Thursday. I missed a book signing. Brain is too busy thinking of manuscripts.

2. K.M. Walton's book Cracked is now coming out Jamuary 3, 2012. Yeah, you can pre-order and go read her blog regarding No Name Calling Week that will be going on in schools across the country.

3. I'm addicted to Storage Wars.

4. I'm excited to continue revising. Really, what's wrong with me.

5. I don't know how to use Google +. Ummm, yeah, one more distraction.

6. I either read books super fast and slow down on writing, or write fast and slow down on my book reading. The two parties are never in synch.

7. Check this out. Whoops in Monaco. Five car pile up. Some people have way too much money.

8. I'm having a hard time sitting and watching a movie. Too much going on in my head.

9. I can't shut off my brain and I don't think I ever will. There is no vacation mode button.

10. Optimism is sprouting through a sea of doubt.

Any weekend plans?

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

To Kill a Darling

Thanks to everyone who commented on my 200 words. Your feedback was very helpful.

Killing your darlings, trimming the fat, if you will, you know what I'm talking about. Those scenes your characters told you to write, but they don't fit the story. The ones you read and then a pit forms in the upper part of your stomach because you know you must get rid of it. A CP might of mention it with a red comment box or they may simply put a black line through it. So, your finger trembles as it hovers over the delete button. Your instinct says do it and your heart says no. Yeah, those. This is my next round of revisions. It sometimes makes me sad because some of those scenes I really love, but they must be gone.

So what do you look for? Scenes that do not move the story forward, and really (to me), just seem like filler. They are not easy to spot. They will be in disguise and may require someone else to force them out. Trust me, they give me the puppy dog eyes all the time, making me love them.

Why do we write them? Sometimes to get the know the character, story, or setting better. It's not bad to write them, you have to understand that they are helping you, just not helping the overall delivery of the story, and so, sadly, they must be chopped, killed if you will.

How do you find them? Remember they will be in disguise, making you love them, playing all innocent. So, you will most likely not be the first person to see them. Most of the time (95% of the time), for me, a CP will say, "It slows here for me." Or "This doesn't need to be here." Other times (5% of the time), I'm the one who sees that the scene isn't working. Ask yourself, "Does this have anything to do with the final outcome of the story?" "Is it forwarding my character along, helping them get to the goal I've given them?" If the answer is no, then chop it. Don't worry, the police won't come for you, in fact, your CPs and future readers will love you for it.

Tell me, what questions do you ask yourself to help you see what you must chop?

A couple of interesting posts on the subject
Writing rules misapplied

How to kill your darlings without remorse

The meaning of the literary expression "Kill your Darlings"

K is for Kill your Darlings

Have a great day!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Gearin' up to get an agent week 4

So I've missed two weeks. Summer can be crazy. I'm submitting something that I've worked on for a while. Thanks to Deana for putting all of this together. Go here to check out the other entires.
This is a YA scifi romance titled Lingering Souls. Let me know what you think.

The little brown pill bottle that sits on the counter is the best birthday present I could ever give myself. It sits next to the bottles of my mom’s vodka. The bottles seem so sleek and elegant compared to the stumpy, pill bottle, yet they look like a compatible pair.
Sweat drips down the center of my back. The July heat wave is becoming unbearable. Since the air conditioner died, the windows are wide open. Not that it helps in air as thick as mud; in fact it’s only letting more in. I’d rather them closed so maybe I can suffocate by accident instead of a self inflicted death, but my decision is made.
            A white moth flutters around the light on the fan above me. Every time the moth hits the light, an annoying ping interrupts the silence.  My conscious has played tricks on me all day, controlling my motions and decisions. Gazing around the room everything takes on a yellow haze. I glance down through blurry tears. The edges of a picture I’ve been holding for hours seem fuzzy and worn. Just like me. Nothing’s clear and all signs point to exiting my existence.
My cell buzzes. I ignore it. Don’t want to talk to anyone.

Thanks again and have a great day!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Tenses are switched

So  I did it. I finished converting a mixed tense manuscript to all present tense (except for the flashbacks which are in past). I actually can't believe it, all 204 pages, and I'm giddy about it. I still have a lot of work to do. Some fill  in stuff, re-doing the beginning then check the plot things (kill some darlings, you know, the usual). I'm down right excited. And the cup of inspiration is filled.

See I'm hyping myself up for the next round of revisions.

So hype yourself up, people. Situations change, people change, learn, grow, and write, write, write. Only you hold the key to your success.

Inspiring? Good. Now if I could only psych myself into running. I'm going to eat a piece of chocolate and some baked Cheetos (don't ask).

Have a great weekend
 Oh and I tried so hard to embed this all sorts of awesome movie poster for a little movie called The Hunger Games, but the darn thing gave me trouble. So go check it out here (the first novels club, because those gals are way more talented than me at embedding this stuff) or here.

Can't wait for it!!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Oh the butt

Yeah, your butt, your behind. I think I'm getting the butt of a writer. I naturally have had wider hips than the average lady, but sitting a lot, does nothing for it. Now, this may not apply to the guys (just statin' the facts, I'm not a hater) or some of you model like gals (again not a hater, a little jealous, but not a hater).

I mean, really, you sit for hours looking at a screen, creating, (I'm not going into what this is doing to my eyes, which are already in bad shape--most of us wear glasses, right? That's a whole other post waiting to be written), traveling to other worlds, etc. And most of my motivation to do anything else is poured into my passion, so as much as I want to run cause I know it will tone me, that motivation moves to putting another piece of chocolate in my mouth. Hey, it's easier than getting up and sweating.

So, I thought how can lose weight, well tone, and write because we all know I'm not stopping that.

1. I want to run and type so maybe the Wii can be involved, somehow, I'm just throwing this out there. Would it look weird? Controller in one hand, the other hand on the keyboard...that's an accident waiting to happen. And the typing may not be the best.

2. Make it easier. Stand and type, you're not sitting so everything that was going to the butt is going down to your feet. Although, I'm doing this right now and it's not good on the back.

3. Yeah, so out of ideas already. I guess I have to go back to dividing my time. **groan** My ADD will be mad at that one, since it likes to do two things at once. I like trying to accomplish two things at once, it gives me more time. Wait a sec. It gives me more time to write. Dividing my time it is.

Are you dividing your time, getting some exercise? I need to pump myself up for it. A little fresh air could help the creative juices. **opens door** **cringes** Except when it's 100 degrees and the humidity ceases all air flow to my lungs. Yeah, motivation definitely needed.

Let me know some of your motivation techniques to get into the mood of exercise.

Have a great day!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Back to reality

I was on vacation last week. The beach. Soft sand, ocean rumbling, sea gulls making weird calls and dive bombing people for french fries, the smell of fried food, and the light cool sea breeze. Can you feel it? I'm sort of still there in my head. It takes me a while to get back into the groove, but I have to snap out of it, I've got a lot of work to do.

Revisions. Now, don't go running. I know it can be a scary word, but I'm trying to push away the fear and look at it with a set of optimistic eyes. It's one of those things where you take a deep breath and dive in. I feel like I've been working on them forever, but really it's only been a few weeks for baby number 2. I got a great critique earlier in the week and it really put things in perspective on what I need to do to this baby. You know, one of those a-ha moments. It gave me a push really on where I need to be and made me really believe in this story. Of course, this will require the following things.

Focus. Another one of those words. More like easier said than done. With a few piles of laundry, dust on all hard surfaces that now have faces drawn into them and cat hair all over the carpet (creating tumble weeds), it's easy to lose sight. Not to mention, two small kiddos needing something every five minutes. Frustration can build causing writers block and totally ruining the mood. I'm trying to get back to "the schedule" that allows me some sort of writing time.

Determination. It's burning so hot I may breathe fire soon. I can't believe after an awesomely (yes, I said awesomely) helpful critique how much hotter the fire could burn. I never knew I could want something so badly and how hard I'm willing to work for it.

So, I have a goal to finish my first round of revisions by next week. Hopefully. I want to get started on any plot revisions soon.

I also read an incredible book on my vacation. Cracked by K. M. Walton. It's not due out until March 2012. I will give my review closer to the release date, but let's just say it's really, really good. Awesome. Fantastic. Okay, I'll stop. You will love it. Yes, I will be doing some promo of this as the birth of this baby comes closer. Stay tuned.
How was your weekend?

What are your goals?

Have you read any good books lately?

Have a great day!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Yes, I'm alive

I am alive, just revising. The hubs is off so family time is in order and I'm fitting in some revising. I'm excited because I can see the whole tense thing now. Amazing thing, the learning process. I'm about 1/2 way through my first round of revisions (changing to present tense and adding some things).

So tell me folks--How was your weekend? How are your goals coming along?

Short one guys. Have a great day!

Friday, July 8, 2011

My feet turned cold.

Lately, I've been having an issue. It's called cold feet. I don't know what it is. I've been through all of this stuff except the query part. I should be able to feel confident about my stuff. I do, but I'm scared to send my stuff to my CPs. I know when they read this I'm going to get a talking to, but I don't know why I'm feeling this way.

Last year, I would've given my story to anyone. I was sending stuff to my CPs at an annoying rate. Now, I'm clamming up. I feel like it has to be perfect, and I know it's not, and that's what CPs are for, to help.
Then why am I getting so jittery. I'm trying to get through the first round of revisions of my latest MS and I get a fear ball in my tummy with the thought of sending my stuff to my lovely gals. Why am I so afraid? I know they are to help and they support me to no end. It's awesome. They are awesome. Yes, I will tell you right now, they are the best. You can argue, but I will tell you, they are the best in the world. Yes, I said world.

I should get over this, and I know I will, but this is one of the strangest feelings I've had on this journey.

Anyone else have this happen to them?

I did make great progress in my converting past to present tense on my MS. Tedious, but it should make it much better. I hope.

Since I'm working hardcore on revisions, my posts may be random next week.

Have a wonderful weekend!! 

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Gearin' up to get an Agent week 1

First of all, thanks to Christine Tyler (Writer Coaster) for the Seriously Cute Blogger award. I will dedicate a post soon, but wanted to send out my thanks to this awesome blogger. Thanks, you're so sweet.

Here is my question for Week 1 of Gearin' up to get an Agent hosted by the lovely Deana Barnhart.

What's the best time of year to query?

Silly question...maybe, but I'd like to know.

How was everyone's weekend?  Mine was full of family, friends, and BBQs. Lots of fun. Now, I need to get back to work. I hope to get some revising done.

Have a great day!

Friday, July 1, 2011

First thought

It's Friday and it's summer, so lots of folks are away or just enjoying this awesome time of year. So, being that it is a holiday weekend here, I will not be posting on Monday (BBQ galore). I thought I would post an exercise. Simple, and quick. Below is a photo.
photo removed. Sorry.

See it.

Now, pictures and photos can be a source to ignite ideas.

What is the first thing that comes to mind?

For me: A trail that leads to a secret door which opens to another dimension.

Now, it's your turn. It can be one word or a sentence. Have fun with it.

Have a great weekend!