Short answer (for me): yes.
Wow. It’s been almost 2 months since my last post. Sorry about that.
I’ve been busy with work, life and assorted drama. I’m still here, so it’s all to the good.
I’m working as much as I can on my re-write of Revenant. My main issue these days is the whole “show, don’t tell” rule/guideline. That is my focus these days when I put words down. I still hope to be finished by the end of the summer, but I’m not rushing things either. I have a strong plot, good characters and in the end, I think it will be a good story.
Outside of my re-write, the workshop at TMI has ended (I am sad) but I’ve taken the final assignment, polished it up a little more and sent it out as a submission to a paying market! Yay!
As I’ve said before, this is a win in my book. Acceptance, rejection, rejection with notes are all icing on the literary cake. While it would be nice to sell something, it’s ok if I don’t because if I keep writing and following it all the way through, eventually SOMETHING will sell. Any other outcome can only mean improvement of my writing.
Besides, I’d love to actually meet my goal and collect 10 rejections this year (if not more).
Repeat after me: There is no such thing as writer’s block.
You with me there? Good.
Now, let’s talk about that (translation: I will now write about that, feel free to comment below)
Yesterday was my last session of a writing workshop offered at the Thomas More institute. 12 weeks of fiction writing.
It’s been swell.
Actually it’s been more than swell, it’s been great.
For 12 weeks, the workshop has challenged me, improved me and provided me with new ideas and fresh perspectives.
The readings were great and pulled me out of my comfort zone. The assignments were quite good at solidifying what I’d learned, the ideas I played with and they stimulated my desire to write and pushed it to new levels.
I went into it with doubts (having had bad experiences years beforehand). Anxiety mixed with excitement (an explosive combination) but from the start I was amazed, tickled and downright inspired by the students and the leaders. The leaders were insightful, knowledgeable and nurturing. The students, what can I say about the students? The group was enthusiastic, warm and full of life, eclectic in the best way possible. They were so full of skill and inspiration and it pushed me to try harder in my own work.
You were all wonderful.
I thank you all.
I now I have a month to write a short story which will then be read (along with all the others) at what is gearing up to be a very pleasant evening.
I intend to savor the writing.
I am sad to see the workshop end.
Time to write.
After a maudlin evening, I’m dusting myself off and coming up swinging. It’s been a very full week and I’m psyching myself up for a massive session of writing tonight.
But first, a pause for cuteness (and inspiration for me):
Ain’t she cute? A budding artist for sure. I don’t even mind that it ain’t writing. There’s time. She’s not two yet.
So, this week:
I mean the title in a GOOD way. Really.
This morning was good.
I’ve just experienced a few days (ok, more than a few) where I’ve only managed to write a few hundred words (if any at all). They’re not bad words, they really look good on the page. I can’t complain about them. It’s just that I had to ask, plead, cajole them to the page. I had to pull them out, yank them from my brain. The part of me that writes had to transform into a chunky lumpy bouncer in an overstuffed tuxedo and get in there and manhandle those words out of me.
That’s never fun.
This morning the logjam cleared up. I typed up a nice 1000 word scene and kept going. I didn’t even have to think, my fingers just moved. When I dared stop, I took a few minutes to re-read it. I had time, those words came so fast! I liked what I read. The words even sounded good out loud.
It’s an amazing feeling. I can’t tell you how it feels to anyone else, but for me, it’s a rush of confidence, joy and relief in a big ball of crazy sunshine. It’s a really smooth scotch mixed with frenetic rock n’roll.
I wanted to write it down because I need to write today. I need to write my stories, or just a blog entry. Anything and everything. Most important however, I wanted to write it down and share it because it’s a feeling I want to hang onto and remember well because the memory will carry me through in a few days when the words stop flowing out and my muse has to turn into a night club bouncer again.
I’m still alive and writing!
The workshop which started in January has been a surprising amount of effort (In a good way!) and between that and my own writing efforts, I haven’t been updating this blog as much as I’d like. I will miss it (and the folks in it) when it ends.
Thankfully I’m up at Stupid O’ Clock this morning and the munchkin is fast asleep and I’m in a procrastinating mood (I should be working on either my outline or my assignment). It’s a perfect time to write an update!
So what’s going on?
I find it so strange that after a sleepless night, the idea hose in my brain just sort of explodes. Anna decided once again that sleep is for the week, and since I was awake anyway (work related crapola) I decided to be a good husband and take a turn. J had stayed up the night before and I want to do my part.
Little did I know she’d be up until this morning. It was a rough night. I love my child, but her sense of timing is incredible.
I can’t take the day off, so I’m loading up on caffeine and preparing the best I can for meetings and the story ideas just won’t stop popping into my head. I wish some of them would help with, oh I don’t know – my current assignment – but I won’t turn away an idea just because I can’t use it yet.
It’s very sad that I won’t get much writing done today. By the time I can sit down and type something, it will be much later and I will be too punchy to focus.
I’m taking notes instead, for when I can write later.
Wow. It’s a real good thing I didn’t make any New Year’s resolutions. If I had, those resolutions would already be shattered and I’d be feeling terrible right about now. As it is, I still feel bad, but I can dust myself off and move on. Look I’m posting! See?
I’m two weeks into the Writing Workshop I signed up for at the Thomas More institute and in general it’s working pretty well. The workshop that is, personally, I’ve got to step up my game!
I want to share a disturbing post from John Scalzi’s blog here. Please read and spread the word.
Writer Beware is a great site and has saved me from a few possibly disasterous decisions in the past, the idea that these lowlifes want to try and “muddy the waters” so they can continue to scam hopeful writers bothers me to no end. If you are a writer trying to sell and you’ve received offers that sound too good to be true, that’s the site to check out first.
We see this sort of thing everywhere now and in all walks of life. We see it in politics, we see it in education (evolution debate anyone?) and in science (global warming?).
Stay informed, avoid “truthiness”, stick to the facts, learn and apply critical thinking and check the source. Seems to me Victoria Strauss and Ann Crispin have the credentials, the background and the honest track record that’s earned this writer-wannabe’s trust.
“The Write Agenda”? It seems very commited to innuendo, gossip and half truths and targets the people who provide decent information to help writers avoid the predators. That all adds up to deep shade to me.