Ready for Fall

Everywhere I look on social media are postings about fall. I’m sure ready for it. Plus right now we really need the rain in Washington. I’ve never been a fan of the heat and prefer the dreary days. Proof I’m a Washingtonian.

There is a lot I’d like to achieve in the next few months. I’m working on a novella that I plan to submit to a few publishers. It’s different and sort of out of my comfort zone, but I’m trying to expand as a writer. I wrote a different novel where I completed a rough draft but want to give it time to cool off.

I hope to get my manuscript back from my editor and see what the next step is. I’m guessing more rewrites and self editing. It’s a long process and harder than I thought.

Writing is my outlet for stress right now, every time I read the news there is something terrible going on. I can’t control the world, but I can control my stories. I’m just going to keep on writing.

On a side note, I really hope to get out of the house this weekend. I’m thinking a hike sounds refreshing right now.

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Reading Bad Reviews

This post doesn’t relate to bad reviews based off anything I’ve written, I don’t have anything published yet. This is about reviews from other readers that I’ve found on Goodreads or Amazon.

Sometimes if there is a book I’m interested in, I’ll look at the overall rating but typically don’t read reviews. I’d rather see something for myself and make my own judgement. I also don’t want spoilers. I’ve read several books that had a poor rating but I enjoyed it.

Most people talk about what they hate and sometimes dwell on that only. We often forget to write about something because we enjoyed it. I’ve read book reviews because the reader didn’t agree with who the main character chose for a love interest in the end. Another reader left a poor review because they didn’t agree with actions a character did because it wasn’t realistic. It’s fiction! It’s not supposed to be realistic! That’s a joy of being a writer, it’s your ball court and anything can happen.

I rate a book on the overall story, even if I don’t like the ending. Here are a few items I consider.

  • Did the book entertain me?
  • Could I not put the book down?
  • Did I enjoy the characters?
  • Did the story compel me?

Let me know your thoughts in the comments and your experiences.

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The Rush

So many story ideas and not enough time to write them, at least not all at once. It’s hard to buckle down on one project because my mind tends to wander. At any given time I’m working on a novel, a novella and a short story.

I get in a mad rush.

I’m trying to change these habits and work on one at a time, but it’s hard to do. It feels like I’m not doing enough but doing more isn’t always the answer. Burn out and writers block make me not want to write.

I’m trying to simplify it. Even if I only write 500 words a day that’s still 168,000 words a year. That’s quite a bit! That’s a couple of novels and some short stories.

Being a writer can be a very tedious journey, especially when trying to get your foot in the door. For now, I’ll keep it simple and only do what I can, without going too crazy.

Anyone else in the same boat?

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My Quota

Pick up a book on becoming a writer and somewhere tossed in there is having a quota. This ranges from 1000-2000 words a day. If you can write more that’s better.

I have a quota but it’s not strict. I write more on my days off work and sometimes I don’t write at all. It also depends on what project I’m doing.

Editing may not add any word count to your project, so do you consider it a quota? I do. Most writers hate the editing process. It’s the least amount of fun. We want to create, not line edit and find all the flaws in our work.

I have a quota system with editing. I’ll edit 500 to 1000 words at a time. This ensures I get a small break in between and don’t get burnt out. I’ll edit and then work on something else so that I’m still writing and creating something new. This doesn’t happen everyday, but I do my best.

During the holidays I took a break and wrote little. Now I’m back in full swing. My goal is to get something out there in 2017. Not sure if I’m going to self publish or keep going the publisher route. It’s all a learning process, the hardest part for me is to not rush it. The need for good stories will always be there. At this point I need to make sure it’s the best it can be.

In the meantime, let’s hope I can hit my quota. How is everyone else’s writing going?

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Oh The Holidays

The holidays are here and bring lots of distractions and setbacks. It’s the time of year when things we want to accomplish are pushed away to make time for family gatherings or working more hours. Maybe you’re doing last minute shopping and fighting through crazy shopping malls. Finding time to write is often pushed aside.

This is happening to me.

I try to remember one thing; a small accomplishment is still an achievement. Even if I can only edit one page a day or write two paragraphs, it’s still something to get me further along. Doing something is better than doing nothing.

The last few days I haven’t done much writing at all, not even reading. I don’t plan on writing much the rest of this week. I want to enjoy the rest of the holiday season. I still need to watch Edward Scissorhands and Die Hard. Yes, I consider Die Hard a Christmas movie.

The truth is, there are always setbacks when it comes to writing. Life always has some hiccup to get in the way of reaching our goals. As much as I despise work, it’s what pays the bills and allows me to write. Without income, I can’t pay the power or Internet bill.

For the next week, I’m going to give myself a break. I know this weekend I’ll be enjoying a few drinks and stuffing my face with cookies. Mmm, cookies. Anyone else feel the same?

I hope everyone is having a nice holiday season. Although, I can’t wait for it to be over!

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My Favorite Christmas Things

I’m not going to fool you, I had no idea what to blog about this week. However, since it’s the season I thought to share my favorite Christmas things.

Movie– Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer. Maybe it’s the clay animation but this movie still is number one in my book. I also bought it at Target today, guess what I’m watching tonight?

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Favorite Christmas Treat– Cookies of any kind. I did make some, but ate them all before I could snap a photo. Oops.

Favorite Christmas Decorations– Shotgun shell lights my brother made. He gave these to me a couple of years ago, they still rock compared to my other decorations. Plus, I love shooting, so it’s a win.

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Favorite Christmas Games-This one is a tie between Tripoley and Cards Against Humanity. You can play these anytime, but my family likes to play Tripoley when we’re all together. We end up talking smack and losing our money. It’s a good time.  Tripoley is basically several different poker games combined into one.

Cards Against Humanity is a game you play with some others after a few drinks. I guarantee you’ll be laughing. It’s probably not a good game to play with children around, it has profanity and adult humor.

Favorite Holiday Drink– Hot Buttered Rum, except I usually put bourbon in mine. Maybe too much bourbon. 🙂

I hope everyone is having a good weekend. Tell me your favorite Christmas things!

 

Writing Update

This week has been so damn long and I’m glad it’s the weekend. I thought I’d share some updates to my writing.  I don’t feel like there was much accomplished, but I did okay.

There were several times I stared at a blank computer screen or kept getting up to take care of something else. Maybe next week will flow differently.

  • Finished a short story called Mute.
  • Sent out two more query letters. I currently have about 5 pending. Fingers crossed!
  • Worked on a rough draft for my novella.
  • Started a new novel yesterday, it’s going to be called The Hatch. 

It’s really not that bad, but it took me a long time to accomplish these tasks. Darn day job.

On a side note, I hope everyone enjoys the weekend. Let me know what your writing update is. What projects are you working on?

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Cheers!