5 more days. Don't forget that National Novel Writing Month starts November 1. Some kickoff events start the end of this week. Sign up soon!! http://www.nanowrimo.org/
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
Last week, on my way to meet my critique group, I stopped by the University of Massachusetts - Lowell to pick up their book, "The Offering". It's a book of poems they publish every year. Last year, thanks to David Daniel, fiction author and English teacher, I decided to submit a poem I wrote in his class. The editors accepted it and it was published in this year's "The Offering". It was just released 2 weeks ago and if you haven't picked up a copy you should.
So after I picked up my copy, okay several copies. I mean I have to give one to mom and dad. :-)
After I picked up those books I went to meet with a couple of writers. We went to one of the local Irish Pubs, Old Court. Food is terrific and music is Irish as well as some of the fare.
Anyway, it was a great evening! First, it was excellent for me because I had just worked on those chapters several days before and it gave me an opportunity to see if I was on the right track, and if not to fix it before I blew through even more writing. Plus, I got some plotting help. Sometimes having guys to critique with is so interesting. David and Steve both came up with the next event in my book. I couldn't believe what they came up with. It never even dawned on me but what an event and surprise!
HA! Got your interest, huh? Well, you'll just have to wait for Killer Bunny Hill to be published. :-)
Okay, so besides that plot adjustment, I also had something even more exciting happen. David Daniel (www.daviddanielbooks.com) - go check out his site and his books, offered to read my ARC (remember that stands for Advanced Reading Copy) of my first book IT HAPPENS IN THREES and provide a blurb for the book. Now how can a girl get any happier? Hm...hopefully he likes it.
If David reads this. . .thanks very much! And thank you and Steve for the terrific plot idea.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
If you didn't know November is National Novel Writing Month. . .now you do.
What exactly does that mean?
Every year thousands of writers sign-up to write as many words (50K) as possible in a month, ergo a novel in a month.
If you haven't done so, do it now. What have you got to lose? If nothing else you'll get some words written and hopefully a start to a new book. Go for it!
Ever go through those days when you feel like you've been cooped up and the walls are caving in, but you've got to do some writing? Or have those days when the family, friends, or pets just won't let you do any writing? Maybe you can't turn off your brain from thinking about the job, the house work, etc.
What do you do?
For me it depends on the time of day. Some mornings I get up and drive to a relatively close Panera. They open at like 6:30 AM and they have free WiFi so if I need/want internet access it's available. I get there, grab a Mountain Dew (not a huge coffee drinker unless it's a flavored cappuccino) and half a bagel or pecan twist, then find a booth, boot up the laptop and go to town.
If it's at the end of the day and I need to unwind in order to write I tend to go to a local restaurant like Margarita's or Billy's Bar & Grill. Neither of these places have WiFi, but they have the requisite booth, great wait staff, and an environment that gives you the ability to forget everything else, relax, and write like a crazy woman.
I went to both places yesterday and it was fantastic! I revised one chapter and it's much better (even if I do say so myself). Then last night I managed to write another chapter. And as soon as I quit chatting on my blog I'm about ready to attack the next chapter before I meet my class tonight.
What do you do when you need time and place to do some good writing?
OH! One added benefit to going to some local places is that people get to know you and when they find out you're writing a book they're very supportive and excited for you. Try it!
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
How important is a good website?
The answer is always mixed. Some people firmly believe in the value of a website while others could care less.
Now I'm a computer person by day so for me a website is very important. Anytime I want to get information I search the internet. If I want to find out all the books a particular author has written I go to the web and check for their site and then others.
The website I have now is based on the title of my first book coming out. Well, I've recently been working with a woman (Jeannie Ruesch) on re-doing the site and her opinion is that my website should be under my name. After speaking with her on this I did the research and she was right. Most authors have their website under their name, not their book title.
People are going search for my books based on my name, not my book title.
Anyway, back to the original question. How important is a website?
Look at it this way, it's a relatively cheap way to advertise/market yourself and your work. Plus, it will be seen by way more people on an average daily basis than a flyer on someone's car, or an ad in a local paper, or even in the yellow pages. A website is international.
From my perspective a website is a HUGE marketing tool. Use it. Take advantage of it. But, do it right.
This is where Jeannie comes in. She's helping me make the site right. Stay tuned for the unveiling soon. In the meantime, check out Jeannie's site at www.WillDesignforChocolate.com.
Monday, October 20, 2008
As I sit here getting ready to go on a job interview I thought I'd write a quick note.
This past weekend I met with some other writers to discuss our current Works-In-Progress. I tell you they are the best. When I'm stuck they criticize and brainstorm and then you walk away energized to write.
Wednesday I'm meeting some other writers to do the same thing. This group is a unique mix of men and women (my other group is all women). I like this because you get that "other" perspective, which is especially helpful for me when my current WIP is more of an action-adventure/romantic suspense. I love it when the guys say, "whoa. no guy would talk like that." hehe! :-)
Plus, there's usually someone who has knowledge on a particular topic you may need that can pony up some details. Way better to get firsthand information than reading it out of a book or off the internet.
My goal for this week is to come up with an outline to finish the last of my WIP. Keep your fingers crossed.
If you haven't taken the time to join a writing group you really should try one.
OH! and remind me to tell you about my trip to Barnes & Noble bookstore.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
This past weekend the New Hampshire Romance Writer's Group met for their monthly meeting. If you've never attended a meeting it is truly worth it.
Because it can be a hoot. We always talk about the "business" side of the group and upcoming events which are listed on their website at http://nhrwa.tripod.com/, but more importantly we talk about things that we're struggling with.
The PITCH - the infamous 5 to 8 minutes you get with an editor or agent. How the idea of that meeting makes your palms sweat and you want to wet yourself due to nerves. This past Saturday we went around and helped each other get that 1 to 3 sentence description of what you want to say to the editor or agent so they ask for more. That would be kinda like a hook!!
One of the members spoke up when people were talking about how nervous they were. She said the editor pitch is kinda like sex. "Even if it isn't great, you still had sex." Funny thing, she's right. Look at the pitch as an opportunity and if you never take it you won't get any further. Even if you blow it (which kinda isn't possible because you're selling yourself and your writing - what's not to love), but let's say the agent/editor doesn't ask for any more, you still took the step, learned from it, and now you move on to the next one and you won't be so nervous.
BTW - I highly recommend any of those workshops on "how to write a pitch". They're usua;;y very good at narrowing down your long-winded spiel, or beefing up your hook.
I say go for it!! And good luck!