Friday, November 1, 2013

All I Want For NaNo

My friend, Jennie and four other writers are celebrating NaNo and the release of their new book with a blog hop. The Spirit of Christmas is now available for purchase. Make sure you get your copy here! It's only $2.99 and it's for a great cause. The proceeds go to NaNoWriMo.

Authors of The Spirit of Christmas are J.A. BennettJessica Salyer, David Powers King, Kelley Lynn, and Cassie Mae.

What do I want for NaNo?

To finally succeed at writing 50k words in a month without getting sidetracked. The problem is that I have two books to work one, a novel and a non-fiction how-to herb book that is under contract. So I will be tracking my 50k myself and splitting the work between the two projects. Got to be flexible sometimes.
Check out the blog hop.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Author Interviews: J. Scott Savage, A.E. Cannon and Carol Lynch Williams

The blog for Writing and Illustrating for Young Readers has posted interviews with J. Scott Savage, A.E. Cannon and Carol Lynch Williams. Next Tuesday's interview will be Ammi-Joan Paquette.

I love reading through these interviews and learning little tidbit like the fact that Ann started writing as a child because she got sick and Scott started writing because he couldn't sleep.

It's encouraging to know that even these amazing authors, whose books I love, get stuck. It sounds like Carol keeps working through it when she gets stuck and kind of works the pieces out. Scott makes a note that something cool happens in that spot and he keeps going.

I guess learning our own style is the key, but it is helpful to know how others work through the hard spots or how they get their inspiration.

View these interviews and more from upcoming authors, including Martine Leavitt, Sharlee Glenn and illustrator Steve Bjorkman.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Family Life

Family life is important. It can be a challenge to keep your family strong, write a book and keep all the other balls in the air that add to the juggling act. I’ve heard many successful writers say that their greatest accomplishment is their family.
How does a writer keep it all in perspective and prioritize effectively? It can be stressful to spend time with a child struggling with homework, when you have a writing deadline. But remember, you can never get that moment back. You may never have another opportunity to teach that child what can be taught only in that moment.
Scheduling your time helps a lot. But as the mother of six children I've found a few other tricks that can help too.
Writing in timed segments can be effective, especially if you have small children. Be sure children have something to do, then set a timer for a chunk of time and let children (large or small) know that you are writing. Explain that when the timer dings, you will be able to listen again, but you need this focused time to write. Even small children can learn to understand this at an early age (if the writing segments are short).
Sometimes small segments of time don’t do it though, and you need some focused writing time. That’s when it’s time to escape. Leave somebody else in charge and find a quiet library or motel room. I’ve even take my laptop and parked in a less-than-easy-to-find parking lot where nobody would find me. Accomplish what you can in that focused time and then enjoy your family when you return home.
That delicate balance between family life and writing and the rest of life can be found.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Original Ideas

There are no original ideas.

Or are there? 

If there are no new ideas then why are we all still trying to write something original? And why do people keep reading?

I have been excited about the novel I’m starting. The idea seems new and fresh enough that I have thought a lot about how to make it work. I couldn’t think of any other book that had been written from this angle. Then I picked up Far World by J. Scott Savage, and there it was. A character who was born on earth, but we are meeting her in another world as the story begins. She doesn’t even know earth exists. My idea. It’s already been done. Of course.

What’s fascinating is to see what Scott Savage has done with this idea. It’s very different than what I’m writing. Even though it’s the same idea, it’s a different angle. A different character. A different world. 

If you stare at life from a different angle you may see a new facet to an old idea. A writer asks new questions that haven’t been asked quite like that before. We turn life inside out and find the extraordinary. We examine it and look for a new facet to that old way of looking at a situation.

We write something original.