Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Um, well, that last post didn’t really predict everything so well. My sister was out again this summer and kicked me in the butt to start blogging again. I have got to get better writing habits!!

Writing has been good. Not producing a lot, but I am producing. I’ve got about 94 pages on a first draft. I showed a scene to a writer friend here in town, she liked it by the way, but told me, “You know, your draft would be longer if you double spaced it like you’re supposed to.” Yeah, I know, but I’m trying to save a few trees here. It’s nowhere near submission quality, hell, I’m not even finished with the very rough first draft. At least, I can say I’m half way through the first draft. The real test will be during revisions. I’ve made tons of notes along the way, and I’ve got lots of layering to do. And I have to struggle with Sam and not let her take over the damn story. Sam, it’s about Kathleen, your story is later!

I’ve reluctantly entered the world of Facebook. I avoided it, complained about it and generally whined. Who has time anyway? Well, I guess the gods that be heard all that and decided to zing me with irony once again. They’ve made it so easy it’s hard not to play on it. I’ve connected with an old friend from high school, connected with the parents of Miss M’s friends, and of course the person who usually holds my hand on all the new social networking stuff, my sister. Thanks sis, for giving me something to do instead of work. ;)

I’m going to stop here and TRY to blog again next week. We’ll see if I can do it.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Summer ReCap

Three months. It’s been three months since I’ve written anything in my L&D series. At two months I was beating myself up pretty good. Now I’ve let it slip to three months. My goodness, where did it go? How did I let this happen?

This month, I’m done beating myself up. I just need to get in gear and start writing again. Damn it.

But, in all fairness to myself, I've had a very busy and eventful summer. As some of you know I’m in a summer oriented business. So the real job does suck a lot of time out of me. Before Miss M came, I used to pull 60 plus hours a week. Now I can’t do that anymore, but some weeks during summer, it’s not too far off that mark. And we’re still battling the alphabet agency. They’ve changed a few things, we’ve backed off of a few points, but then they will turn around and do some else to make you cringe. It’ll be an ongoing battle with no clear end in sight.

My sister came out for a long visit. She got to come out with her youngest son, who is only 30 days younger than Miss M. My sister and I had a great time. The kids annoyed each other for most of their three weeks together. But declared how much they missed the other when my sis and her son went home. Go figure.

Oh, I also had a wreck. Not a minor one, a ‘my truck has been in the shop for two months now’ kind of wreck. I have a really good, strong SUV and man, I’m sold on it. I don’t think I’ll ever have another kind of vehicle, as long as I can afford it. Considering the damage done to my truck, no one was seriously injured. It was amazing to look at it and realize how lucky we were. The kids were in the back seat, they came out scared but unscathed. My sister was hit in the ear with the airbag and I was hit in the face. Her hearing came back in full within a week. The inside of my forearm was over half covered with chemical burns from the airbag. And about a week later, once the swelling went down I discovered I had a very minor, albeit annoying, concussion. I kept feeling out of sync. I’d do something at work and about fifteen minutes later, think, “Ah, shit, did I do that right?” And have to go back and check. Plus the headaches didn’t help either.

That was the major stuff that pulled me out of my writing routine. Not to mention that my other nephew and niece came out for two weeks right before Miss M started First Grade. So I’ve had a little bit going on. I think I’ll stop beating myself up, be glad for everyone being safe and just force myself back into the writing chair. And blogging chair.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Just call me MacGyver

I had another post that I planned on. Even wrote about half of it. But then something more interesting came along. My office was without power for 48 hours. Most would think, great, two days off. Not really. In fact, the power went out Wednesday night and payroll is done on Thursday by yours truly. Sure I can hand write a check, but for 50 employees, who wants to do that? Plus you have to make sure that you have all the correct withholding info and guess where all of that is stored? On my server. Yes, I have a battery back up surge protector, but it doesn't last two days.

So I had to take an old back-up copy of my accounting program, reinstall it on my laptop. Wait the two hours while it updated the tax info on the internet before I could even do payroll. Do you know how that wears down a battery? Lucky for me, I have an inverter. Out of over 40 men working with me in this semi construction business, I'm the only one that has an inverter. (BTW, an inverter is an outlet that plugs into your cigarette lighter. I had to explain that to some of said guys.) Maybe I was a boy scout in a past life? Or maybe I've experienced so many things going wrong that I try to always be prepared. (My sister voted on the later. She doesn't think I was ever able to play nice enough to be a boy scout. She's probably right.)

Once I had everything updated on the laptop I had to install the printer driver on my computer. By this time my laptop started losing power. I had it unplugged for awhile so I could get some other work done in my flashlight lit office. So then it was a matter of plugging in my computer and then switching the power to my printer in time to print checks and back and forth for the other batch of checks (there are three different groups that get paid separately). All in the back seat of my truck in the 100 degree weather. Fun huh? But everyone got paid and was happy. Then they gave me the nickname MacGyver. I kind of like it.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Black hole

I’m starting to crawl out of my black hole. Allergies have been beyond my patience. I had scheduled for new tests last month, since I haven’t done any testing since I was a teenager it sounded like a good idea. But I was forced to cancel. You can’t be on most of my allergy meds a week before the testing, and if I skip just one dose, I relapse. Damn rainy spring weather. When is it ever going to be hot again?!

I have been sick on my Birthday, Mother’s Day, DH's birthday and every other weekend in between. I’ve put off cleaning my house, laundry and even a trip out of town because I’m just too miserable and need to feel better. Okay, to be honest, it doesn’t take much for me to put of cleaning and laundry, but the trips, now that is a clear indication that I don’t feel well.

Hot weather is supposed to be coming this weekend, so I can see a light. I hope that light burns all the damn pollen and mold in the air.

I had a funeral to go to this past weekend, so I had to force myself well to make the trip. LOTS of mixed feelings go along with this funeral. I’ll try to do another post on the complicated position I found myself in this weekend.

Writing has suffered, couldn’t keep up the writing everyday pace. But I did get a tiny bit done while I was out of town and that helped me immensely. Just for my own head, it felt good to being doing something that was totally for me while I was there. Miss M is out of school now and starting summer camp (day camp, no sleep overs) next week. I plan to get back on track by then.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Personal Protection

Run to go get Leah's new book. Personal Protection. It's so hot and right now its #2 on MBaM. Let's push her to hit #1.

C'mon, you know you want to read it...

Thursday, May 7, 2009


I’m writing away in Kathleen’s story. Kathleen is a prim and proper girl and is being introduced to the seedier sides of life. One of the things her new partners insist on is her getting a license to carry a gun. So I know this, I planned on this, have major stuff happening in this scene but I forgot one important thing. I’ve never shot a handgun. I’ve never been to a shooting range. I shot a rifle a few times out in the desert when I was much younger. But that is not the same. So I quick called a friend and she took me last Friday afternoon to the range not far from my house. I’ve been there a couple of times, looking and asking questions in the store. I already know the type of guns Sam uses, but I need to learn how the whole process works so I can make Kathleen’s story that much more believable.

I had an awesome time. I did really well, shot a couple of different guns. Even did well on my targets. I learned a lot and had a great time. My friend was impressed that I wasn't intimidated by the whole thing. In fact, she kept exclaiming, "You're not scared at all. That's great." My reply, "Yeah, NOT being scared was usually my problem." You see, I've always dived head first into anything I wanted to do. Much to the dismay of all those around me. I met my future husband and just a few short months later I moved half way across the country to a city I didn't know, no friends or family near by and started a business venture with my now husband. It took us seven years to actually get married. (Boy, what a conflict that caused my family. :) Oh, and did I tell you I was only 18? Yeah, I think I'm a big NO FEAR advocate.

Now if I could get the No Fear going for my writing.

A moment of panic

I’m feeling a whole lot over my head. I’ve kept up my daily writing, although it hasn’t been solely to L&D1. I got stuck, more on that in another post. But since I need to wait just a couple of days for me to get unstuck, I turned to Sam’s story. She has a prologue or short story that happens in Kathleen’s timeline. It doesn’t fit and is completely unnecessary for the Kathleen’s story (L&D1) but it is a must for Sam’s (L&D3). Plus it’s really HOT. It turns out to be a central piece setting up the internal conflict for Sam’s story. And I just figured out the plot of the external conflict, I have to admit, I’m impressed with myself. Didn’t see it coming but I love it. It’s more interesting and stronger than I originally planned.

Many of my writer friends have said that if you get into the ‘groove’, ‘zone’, or whatever name you give it, then your creativity will start to overflow. I believed it, but never really experienced it. I let too many real life/ job things get in the way of writing. And while the real life/ jobs thing still have to come first, I am making writing a priority too. Then I had that overflow they talk about. I had the spark of an idea for another series. Four sisters, four witches, four books. Can you believe that? Plus it’s something completely different, for me anyway. I know the sister/ witch thing is feeling a bit overdone. And it may be, but it’s being done because people like it. Something about magic and witches resonate with people and I don’t think they ever get tired of reading stories done in a fresh way. Now let’s hope I can get the fresh part done.

In the craft of writing, I know what needs to be done, the layering, the 3 or 4 drafts, laying the clues, showing vs. telling, emotions, etc. But when I think too hard on if I’m doing all these varied things right I get overwhelmed. Fear sets in. Doubt is its close partner. Not good. I know I listened to them before. I have the privilege of being a beta reader/ crit partner to some very talented writers. And it’s easy for me to think that while I may be creative, I doubt my stamina and ability to complete the novels they have. However, these habits that I’ve been forcing myself to do have helped curb fear and doubt. Let's see if I can maintain it.

How do you keep fear and doubt at bay?