Friday, September 27, 2013

Drip, drip

So this writing faucet? Sometimes it's just a drip. I've got nothing today. Just drip after slow drip. The bright side ('cause there has to be one), is that, eventually, enough water collects to amount to something. (That is, if you've set out a bucket to catch the drops!)

I've been working on an idea for a new children's book now, too, since I've finished my other three manuscripts. Unfortunately, I haven't gotten past the idea stage, though, so I don't know where it's going. I do think it's funny that a question I get asked a lot is, "Are you going to write a book about each of your kids?" I wasn't planning on it, although I guess I've set a precedence of sorts with having two of my children as the inspiration for the characters of my other three books.

I'm also toying with the idea of writing a children's book from the perspective of a child who has lost their brother. I'm not sure about the "nuts and bolts" on this one, but I do know from experience that there are definitely not enough books for children on losing a sibling. They say "write what you know." Unfortunately, my children do know this, and I've watched them deal with the loss of their brother for the past two years. I'm just not sure I want to write about it, yet I know it's needed.

 The faucet just shut off. I've love to hear your feedback on my new book idea.

Friday, September 20, 2013

A real gusher?

I love both of these quotes! They seem quite contradictory, right? But they're really not. I think the expectation is to turn on the faucet of writing and see an instant, gushing flow of sparkling fresh ink when, in reality, what comes out is something much slower, quieter, and duller.

Yet we all want thrilling and entertaining, right? But what we don't realize is that the nature of thrilling and exciting is that it is also short-lived. It simply isn't sustainable over the long haul. A gusher is a powerful element, but I want a lasting spring. I appreciate the exciting and rushing waters, but, honestly, I can't take too much of it. It's noisy, exhausting, and eventually loses it's awe. Instead, I'm working at keeping the writing faucet flowing steady.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Writing is the easy part

Since digging deeper into this craft of writing, I've unearthed a thick layer of clay just beneath the surface. Writing truly is the easy part when compared to everything else this industry involves, especially if one's actively seeking publication. All the peripherals that require attention take time away from writing, and I find that frustrating. A writer's passion is to write, not spend time tying up loose ends! Writing query letters, building social media connections, and critiquing others' work is time consuming.

However, as annoying as these things are, I realize they're necessary cohorts in the endeavor to getting published. These added elements ultimately develop a writer's character. One learns (if it doesn't come naturally, that is), to be organized, disciplined, and persistent. The biggest challenge for me, by far, is being disciplined; to be consistent in setting time aside to do the actual work of writing, and to take care of those loose ends.

I learned that I can't just write when the inspiration strikes or the mood fits or the words flow easily. To do otherwise is to leave it a dream, a hobby, an immature adolescent. It requires hard work, courage, and the determined choice to see the dream into maturity. It's time to stop coddling my fear and kick it out of the nest. Are you with me?

Friday, September 6, 2013

Eating that elephant

You remember the question, "How do you eat an elephant?" (Answer: ONE BITE AT A TIME!) Well, I'm still chewing. The last bite I took had a pretty good flavor to it, however. I finally found a critique group! It's been a really tough search, surprisingly. I thought it was going to be an easy thing. The writer's conference I attended also made it sound as if critique groups were as numerous as the number of car dealerships in town! Unfortunately, it wasn't so. 

After a disappointing, drama-filled encounter with one critique group, I was relieved when a Christian Children's Writers and Illustrators FB group member subsequently formed a critique group. I'm looking forward to finishing this serving of elephant. After that, it's on to a second helping when I submit my manuscripts to a publishing company next week. Maybe I'll receive my first rejection letter! (I'm not being pessimistic or negative here, just realistic.) It's exciting, nonetheless, and I'm looking forward to it! Have you eaten any elephant lately?