Friday, December 30, 2011

Trying Again

I'm going to see if I can manage to post more often on here. The problem with a writing blog is that if I am in a writing mood, I want to write books rather than blog posts.

I DID publish my second book this year! You can visit it by clicking the link to my website on the side bar. Let me know what you think!

Other than that, this year has been a quiet one where writing is concerned. I have had several other projects (non-writing-related) on my plate. But, the past month, the itch to write has come back, and writing a dramatic reading for our church's Christmas service only served to whet my appetite. The project I've had on the back burner for two years - a biblical-setting novel, is officially moving!

The outline is always the hardest part of a book, for me, and my outline for this book is just about finished. It stands at a whopping 7,200-some words, and will only grow, I'm sure. I try to practice strict control over my word-count in actual manuscript writing (I'm very long-winded), but I let myself ramble in my outline. It's part of the creative process.

I meant to discuss different types of outlines, and how I've gone from not using them to loving them....but I'm getting ideas for my first chapter, so if you'll excuse me.....

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


I know I haven't written in awhile, but I have the best of reasons:

I'm getting a second book published!

The process is drawing to a close; I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. The last step before printing is a final read-through to change a few typos. I am on page 100 of 190, as I speak.

As soon as these changes are made, I will be sending the PDF to the printer. They have already approved the book, and - bless them! - are excited about printing it. The cover is done. I have an ISBN. Potential distributors are in my mind.

So close.

Fixing typos and designing covers isn't quite like "real" writing. But not to worry; I've been doing lots of the real stuff on other projects, in addition to getting my book print-ready. I have some tips on editing that I want to share as soon as I get some free moments to blog.

Just thought I'd pop in and say hello! :) I'll share the news when my book is finally in print. :) ...And I'll tell you more about the book itself, too. :)

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Snow Day

Our city is crazy, when it comes to winter weather. At the slightest chance of snow, schools shut down, grocery stores are ransacked, and traffic dies away.

But today the predictions came true; we do have some ice out there. True, it's less than an inch, but ice is ice. My plans for the day - which included spending most of the day out - were rearranged at about 8:00 this morning.

I wasn't very upset. To have a day freed suddenly like that is like having someone hand you a lovely gift; roughly 12 unexpected free hours.

I chose to spend at huge chunk of that writing.

I haven't work on my story in ages. I purposely set it aside, to marinate. You story writers know what I mean, don't you? Sometimes a story just isn't ready. This one has been cooking for over a year, and I was starting to think it would never turn golden brown around the edges, but that familiar tingle in my fingers is beginning; that itch for a pencil and keyboard - that day-dream feeling of being in another world is just beyond the outer edges of my mind. It has begun.

I got a lot done this morning, but a certain point keeps stumping me. How to begin?

That's it; how to begin. The first three chapters of a book have always been my weak point. My weak, weak, weak point. Just show me the characters in trouble, then I'll get them out! Getting them into trouble has always been hard.

I know all the popular solutions; begin with action. Try dialogue. Try a narrative bit.

You don't understand. I don't just need to know how to start the scene. I need the scene!

My outline is written...sorta. I've gone with the looser "Beginning, Middle, Ending" framework, instead of a detailed point-by-point guideline this time. My Middle and Ending are filled with lovely scenes, but my Beginning remains sketchy.

What do you do when you need a plot to form? What strikes your creative spark into full flame? Or are you one of those blessed creatures who always has a storyline for any character or situation, and can make up an ending for every story you've ever read? (I always disliked those assignments, "finish this story..." I guess I should be glad they never were, "begin this story..."!)

As a side note, which do you prefer; A-B-C outlines, or the looser three-part story form of an outline? I've always preferred the more detailed one myself, but this story is creating a lot of firsts!