Motivation

Holiday Blues

I must confess:  I’ve not been in the holiday spirit AT ALL this month.  I’ve been the queen of not enjoying celebration.  I dial the radio away from Christmas music.  I proposed not having a tree at all this year.  It all just seemed too much, too involved, too wearing to contemplate doing it again.  And it will all have to be put away at New Year’s and that’s tiring too!  Bah, hum-bug!  I see other people having a wonderful time, dressing up, handing out presents, making merry, and I just feel sad.

Now, before you get all sad yourself and turn away…  at this writing, the tree is up, the stockings are hung, the garland is twined, the wreaths are on the door.  I’ve addressed half a dozen cards.  I’ve done all my shopping, except for a gift for MyMerman.  I even made a batch of Christmas cookies last night and was bad enough to eat them for breakfast this morning….
Read the Rest…

When Your Middle Name Is Love…

When your middle name is Love…

you should not be caught doing this…

as you write your romantic scenes.

If I were to be a photographic fly on your wall,

what might I catch you doing while in the throes of writing yours?

(or while reading for our awesome non-writing readers?)

Bad Boyfriends, Old Lovers and Ex-Husbands

Robin Mermaid’s post last week (Love It or List It? Nov. 17) got me thinking.  She had started with a book review, but then she mentioned an unfinished story that was haunting her.  She put aside a project that was giving her trouble when another idea caught her attention.  Now she’s had a chance to take another look at the unfinished manuscript and wonders if she dares to take it on again.  Can she fix it?  Will it change?  Do they have a future?

I know that story all too well, as I’ve had more than one abandoned (relationship) manuscript in a checkered, challenged and generally lackluster (dating) writing career.  There was the hero intent on restoring a vintage Tucker automobile.  The other hero who rode a motorcycle.  The heroine left at the altar (she kept the ring).  The flirtation with inspirational fiction.  The heroine escaping an abusive husband (no, not from personal experience!).

Not one of these stories saw daylight. The floppy disks…
Read the Rest…

Love It or List It?

I am an unapologetic HGTV-slut.  I. Love. That. Channel.

It doesn’t matter what is on – I’ll watch anything – but my favorites are House Hunters and Property Virgins.  But, a new program has caught my eye and I’ll definitely be tuning in when it premieres later this month – Love It or Leave It.

The premise is that when homeowners live in a house long enough and they lose the lovin’ feeling the question pops up as to whether they renovate or move.  In this show, two real estate professionals take opposite viewpoints and try to convince the homeowner to either stay in their home or list it for sale.  I think it looks fabulous!

It also reminds me of a recent writing dilemma I had about an old, unfinished manuscript. Now, I’m a little type A (don’t snicker, those of you who know me well) and I just can’t leave things unfinished –…
Read the Rest…

An Accountability Partner

In the course of your writing lives, I’m sure you have had a critique partner or participated in a critique group. But have you ever had an accountability partner?

Before this past August, I hadn’t. In fact, I hadn’t even heard of the concept before. (Okay, so the term, “accountability partner,” I made up. If there is a more official or creative name floating around, do let me know!)

Three months ago, fellow mermaid Kerri and I fell into an accountability relationship, and it has changed the course of my writing life. Here’s how it works:

— At the beginning of each week, Kerri and I each set a goal for the week. The goals do not have to be the same, but it’s always fun when they are. They range from word count goals (such as 1.5K words a day or once, when we were feeling really motivated, 10K words for…
Read the Rest…

Things You Love to Hate…Pet Peeves

Yes.  I’ve got some pet peeves.  Years ago, they may have merely been classified as annoyances, but today there are things that just bug the living hell out of me.

 What have I done about my pet peeves?  Well, I’ve thrown many of them into my writing!  Don’t you?

 Come on, admit it.  Don’t you have things that you wish you could say or do, but you feel like you can’t?  But, your characters can say and do anything they want!  You can’t be held responsible for their actions.  It’s fiction!  Right?

So, if I write that one of my characters finds it annoying when someone dips their French fries in her ketchup, what’s wrong with that?  Maybe those French fry dippers will stay the hell away from my ketchup and find their own…if they read my first book.  🙂

 If I can rid the world of things hanging off rearview mirrors, that’s a campaign I can seriously get behind.  I have a friend who admitted that she has tacky…
Read the Rest…

Do You NaNo?

Welcome to November 1st, my watery denizens. You know what that means!

Yes, in writerly circles, November 1st marks the advent of NaNoWriMo— National Novel Writing Month. In short, those who sign up (I believe you can still sign up today) pledge to attempt to write 50,000 words in the month of November.

I’m not sure why November was chosen as opposed to say, August, when there are no Holidays and people are expected to go to parties and shop for the holiday season of their choice…but that wasn’t up to me.

My handle on NaNo (as it is affectionately called) is Princess Alethea. I will also be tweeting some of my progress and writing sprints under the #NaNoWriMo hashtag.

I have participated in NaNoWriMo every year since 2005, and I have yet to get to 50,000 words. But I still participate every year, and I am still proud when I look at my word count come December 1st.

Now, there are…
Read the Rest…

Colors of Fall

For some fall is about buying a new backpack or lunchbox, sharpening those pencils and sending your children back to school. For others fall is symbolized with tailgating and crowding into stands to cheer on your favorite football team.

While the pools have closed, fall sports have begun and school has been back in session for a few weeks now, fall did not in fact officially begin until yesterday, September 23rd.

So what does it mean the first official day of fall? Well it’s more than the beginning of a new season. It is the autumnal equinox. Equinox derives from Latin’s aquaeus meaning equal and nox meaning night, and is appropriate since this is the time of year when night and day are almost equal in length. This happens twice a year, once in the spring (March 21-22) and again in the fall (September 22-23), when the earth’s tilt is neither toward nor away from the sun.

Read the Rest…

How Fast Do You Write?

I’ve been hearing stories in the last year about people who “write a book” in lightning fast times. Three months. Two months. Two weeks. Ten days. Seven days. To which my reaction is always: ?!!??!!

From idea to drafting to revision(s) to completion, the time it takes me to write a book is more easily measured by a unit of years. And before I heard all these stories, I thought this was completely normal. After comparing my process to other writers’, however, I would feel badly. Like something was lacking in my ability as a writer.

My husband assures me that I’ll write faster with practice. Conventional wisdom advises me to write at my own pace. But then, I realized recently, maybe it’s not one or another. Maybe, like most things in writing, the answer lies somewhere in the middle.

Over Labor Day weekend, my husband took the kids to his parents’,…
Read the Rest…

Why Do I Love Dark?

Why Do I love Dark? I don’t know…

I have never killed. Murdered or slayed. There are a few swatted flies that have felt the sting of my murderous wrath. But as far as I can recall, I haven’t actually killed. Nor have I had dark, murderous thoughts (about real people), or wanted to meet a real vampire, or run around naked at night with a were-creature. Nope. For the most part I gravitate toward the normal, routine everyday activities most sensible human beings partake in – well, except for my need to obsess about certain television characters (Spike, Joe Dubois, John Crichton, Alec Hardison—and BTW, the first to name the TV shows these characters appear in – will win a prize!).

But let’s get back to my premise. What attracts me to those dark characters, plots, stories? What makes my brain fall in love with a character and then what to drag him or her through the deepest, darkest…
Read the Rest…

Follow

Get every new post on this blog delivered to your Inbox.

Join other followers: