Friday, December 26, 2014

2015 Journaling Challenge

I searched on-line for some sort of journaling challenge for the year to sign up for.  I didn't look too much, but couldn't find anything.  I checked Facebook, but didn't see anything for writers.  So, I've decided to create my own journaling challenge for 2015.  My hopes is that once a week, probably Sunday nights while anxiously awaiting The Walking Dead, I'll post a prompt, along with my writing to go with it.

What kind of prompts?  I have no clue...okay, maybe I do.  Some will be personal, some will be humorous, scary, fantastical, goofy, or whatever else comes to mind.  Yes, that's right, I don't have 52 posts with prompts ready to go.  I'll be making it up as I go.

If you'd like to join in, awesome!  If you just want to follow, awesome (but take the chance and write, too!)!

I'm hoping to use this experience to help improve my writing, and to explore different areas of writing.  I love writing and just want to write more, not just for manuscripts, but for myself.

I plan on writing in my journal first, then put it on here each Monday night.  I guess I need a new journal then :)  That's such a shame...

I plan on ordering one from in blue handmade on etsy.

I'll leave you with this quote from Neil Gaiman:

'Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write and draw and build and play and dance and live as only you can.'

Monday, December 8, 2014

Writing can be soooo easy (insert eyeroll...)

No, it's not really, not all the time anyway.  Some days the words just flow.  Other days I stare at the screen, or my journal, and all I can think is...uuuuuummmmmmmmm...hhhhmmmmmmmm...

I saw this picture on Jennifer Frith's FB page and couldn't help but think, "Some days, it's just like this!"

"This is awesome!" You have the great idea that 'can't miss.'  You get to writing, your ideas are flowing and swirling all around your brain, and it seems like the story is just going to shoot right out of your brain, through your fingers, onto the paper.

"This is tricky..." As you type, the story doesn't quite flow like you thought.  You begin to have trouble with the wording, the right verbs.  What sounded perfect in your brain, just doesn't seem the same.  Getting your thoughts and images onto paper is not quite as easy as you thought.

"This is crap."  Ug, your story just doesn't seem to work.  It sucks.  You're ready to give up, but you still have more in your head, so you just keep banging on the keyboard like a monkey with a typewriter.  You don't even know if what you have is going to make sense...

"I am crap!"  Now you're just getting personal.  That monkey on the right?  Yeah, he's smarter than us.  That awesome idea?  It was the dumbest thing ever.  NOW it's time to move on!

"This might work."  Ok, so you've come back to that 'next great story' and decided to work on it again.  You hashed it out, you thought it sucked and you walked away.  It happens.  Sometimes you need to give those frustrating moments some time alone; time to think about what they did wrong :)  You get your journal back out, or open up for story file and get back to typing.  You read through your story and new ideas pop up.  Now it doesn't seem so bad.  This might be worthwhile.

"This is awesome!"  Wow!  Now it sounds like I wanted it!  It may have been a couple, or a dozen revisions, but you never gave up on the great idea you had.  You worked your butt off and your determination has been rewarded!  Your piece is exactly what you were hoping for!

Yeah, I have those moments, too.  How about you?  What do you do when you get stuck?

Saturday, December 6, 2014

What a day!

What a busy day!

I met with my first in person critique group. I was just to get to know each other- no MS sharing yet- but we talked about writing for about two hours. It left me feeling excited to meet again (though it won't be for a couple months) and wanting to write!

I went through a pdf of The Lost Squirrel, my latest children's self publishing effort illustrated by the amazing Jennifer Frith, checking for word placement

I wrote a PB MS and revised (a bit) two others. The MS I wrote was one of the ideas I got from PiBoIdMo. Tomorrow I want to rank my ideas to see if any others are good ones.

I got this back as part of an e-mail from an on-line critique group member "Thank you for the privilege of reading it." Wow! That made my day!!

And? I just submitted a PB MS to an author and his publisher for approval to use a quote from his book in the MS. Of course I'm hoping the publisher will love it and want to sign me to a PB deal!!

Now? Not sure...maybe a movie, maybe some idea creation time, maybe a bit of both.

Either way, I've got a warm fire in the fireplace, a cat on my lap, and the christmas tree lights are on. The sound of the flames (and the keyboard) is amazingly peaceful (sorry, Mr. King, for the use of the adverb).

How was your day?

Friday, December 5, 2014

November wrap up and EOY goals

November came and went like fall leaves on a tree.  One day you're admiring the colors, next day they're gone.

There were two main writing events that occurred (for me at least) this month:

1: I signed up for PiBoIdMo and ended up with 35 picture book ideas.


2: I got the images from Jennifer Frith for The Lost Squirrel!

Right now (well not right now) I'm working on the text placement, cover and formatting to upload to Ingram Spark.

As of now I don't have a specific date for when it'll be available, but, that's EOY goal #1:

1: Have The Lost Squirrel ready for sale!

2: To send out a manuscript to six agents.

3: (This is ongoing) To land an agent :)

I've been slow to go with mailing out manuscripts.  I have only three that I'm waiting on right now and that's too few.  You want to get an agent?  You need to have that one awesome manuscript and send it out to a boatload of agents.

4: To write at least one more manuscript for the year, preferably two.

I'm not going to force this one.  I went with quantity this year, I think..., and I really want to work through them and have several that are "ready" to be sent out.  For now, I have four picture book manuscripts and a poem that I feel are set.  Of course that doesn't mean I won't work on them.  I still send them to my critique groups (I'm in three right now and run one of the three).

That's it.  Just the four, but they are big ones :)

What are your writing goals for the rest of the year?

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

The Lost Squirrel images are in!!!

And here's a sneak peak:

There's still a ways to go. What do I have done?

Text inserted into the images, the images saved into three different formats, in one format I cut the images in half for page sizing and then resized for eBooks (but forgot a step, so I'll have to redo that).

What's left?

Sending eBook to Jennifer (once I have it done) for formatting ideas, set up the cover, set up the ISBNs for various formats, centering into .doc format to create into pdf for file uploading to Ingram Spark and to Smashwords.  I think that's'll be a while longer, but it's oh, so close!!!