Wednesday, September 2, 2015

INSECURE...YOU BET!...BUT THERE'S SOME GOOD NEWS, TOO.

Hi, Everyone...

September already! Where did the summer rush off to? Thankfully Chicago has warm weather again this week. With a cold SNAP in the air over the weekend, PANIC struck me that winter is well on its way. And I am NOT ready to even fathom that thought, especially after the past two winters...

As you see from the badge, it's time for another posting of the IWSG! Imagine FOUR years now. I remember so well when Alex Cavanaugh first posted about this group. I was one of THE FIRST to sign up. Spend a little time if you can and pop over to the list of bloggers who post for this monthly event...It will make you feel sooo good. Here's the link...

This past month has been a whirlwind for me. Never a dull moment for sure. I have two announcements to make. First, this may shock many of you, I've decided to stay in Chicago for a while. My work here has escalated and since Tampa really hadn't panned out, destiny is keeping me here. Since my lease will be up shortly I decided and DID buy a LOFT!!!! And, not just any old loft. The building I purchased in is a former CHILDREN'S BOOK PUBLISHER... AMAZING. Donahue Publishing opened it's doors in 1883 and closed in the mid 70's... A rich body of thousand of children's books published! How appropriate for me to live in such a stellar old building. Since I write MG and YA...it's a perfect fit! 

Once I entered, the VIBE was there. I felt happy. Funny, I hadn't felt that way about any place in a long time. There was just something about the exposed brick, eleven foot ceilings, the HUGE windows, the rough, oiled stained, beat up, maple floor, and the massive metal door leading to nowhere, anymore. I felt like it called and needed me. Of course, it's been terribly neglected and needs TONS of work, but I am totally up for the challenge. I've spent the past three weeks picking out cabinets, slate, marble, lighting, wood flooring (for the bedroom, which is carpeted and on another lever), appliances, etc. It will cost a fortune to make it livable, damn my expensive taste. LOL. Now to just find the right contractor. THAT has been the ultimate challenge. My usual guy has sadly taken ill and is not up for this much work. One thing I am anxious about. I only have two months before my lease is up! This week I am determined to sign with someone.

My second bit of news is an update from my amazing time at the SCBWI conference in LA. If you recall, I had won a manuscript critique from the PRESIDENT himself. About two weeks ago I received his response and notes. Since he was kind enough to agree to read both my ms', he had told me he would only have enough time to read the first 100 pages of each...

The first line in his notes to me read as follows... "Hi Michael—Your story was so compelling I read it all the way through." 


I was flabbergasted... The rest, he pointed out a few things he thought needed tweaking. Also told me what he most liked about my story. Overall it was a very positive critique and I'm very excited about the future for this story. He's agreed to read my other ms, but when he has time. I was glad to hear that because it needs another revision or two. I had worked on it like crazy and had half of it completed when my computer FREAKED and ATE the ms. I couldn't find it anywhere. Now I am INSANE, trying to get it finished. I should have sent it to him this past Monday. I need to get it out by the end of this week. SO if I can't get around to you guys right away, I know you understand. Deadlines...

So to wrap things up... 

Be prepared for ANYTHING. Well made plans can change in an instant. Although I will be staying in Chicago, I still hope to get my winter getaway before the year ends.... but who knows what will happen. We just have to GO WITH THE FLOW... lol. And that pertains to our writing as well. I worked on that MS for FOUR years... look where it ended up. So you never know. Keep writing. Keep dreaming...Keep positive.

Let's keep the positive vibes flowing and let me know what's happening in your writing...

Take care everyone. I'll be dropping by your blogs soon!


36 comments:

  1. That's awesome he was compelled to read all of it! And give you some great tips.
    That loft was meant for you. I can only imagine how amazing it will look when you finish.

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  2. Hi Michael - that is brilliant news about the escalation of work and the fact you've found somewhere to live .. it sounds absolutely ideal.

    That meeting and winning the prize at the conference has really turned up trumps for you ... so so pleased -

    Gosh - so it's all turning out so well after all that .. that's great news and good luck with all the ongoing sorting out .. cheers Hilary

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  3. It is awesome that he felt compelled to read it all. Best of luck with what follows. That loft sounds great -- in fact, you could write a story or novel about a similar loft and the influence it has on its new occupant. :-)

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  4. So excited for you about the loft. I know you've been disappointed in the real estate area a few times recently. Winter....don't even go there. And great news of the critique. I love reading upbeat IWSG posts.
    Susan Says

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  5. Congrats on all your awesome news. I'm learning to go with the flow too. Good luck with your manuscript. Hopefully you'll have more good news soon.

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  6. The description of your new loft made me fall in love. That sounds AMAZING!

    Congrats about your manscripts being looked at by a head honcho and that he liked the one so much he read all of it! And I hope you get the second one sent out when you're supposed to :)

    - Madilyn Quinn @ NovelBrews

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  7. Michael, Michael, Michael, that is so cool! Congratulations! Looks like publication is on the horizon. I'm so happy for you!
    Love the idea of the Loft, wow, do you have some work ahead of you!
    Are you even aware that you were named as an honorable mention for the WEP??? Too busy, I see, still Congratulations, that photograph still captures my heart. Are you making prints?

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  8. Congratulations on all your good fortune! Computer troubles happen to all of us, but sometimes it's a blessing in disguise to be forced to start over, or to recreate the portion of a manuscript we lost.

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  9. Wow. That is a boatload of news.

    Sometimes we think we belong somewhere, but life has other plans. I'm so glad you found this loft that makes you happy. Sending out good vibes that you find the contractor who will help you get it into shape.

    As for your novel... if you emailed it to anyone, you might be able to find it in your email. Just a thought. From now on, save it on a flash drive:)

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  10. I;m happy dancing for you, Michael!!! That is such awesome good news. From the loft to the note- fantastic!!! Do you know how hard it is to hook a busy reader like that?!! No one deserves good things more than you, prays this is the year!

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  11. Hooray! What wonderful news. I can just imagine how excited you were when you read his note. And I agree with Elizabeth, it has to be hard to hook someone that busy so what an accomplishment. Yay!!

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  12. Michael, that's wonderful! I want to see pictures of your loft, before and after.

    What a boost that was to know he'd read the whole thing and passed along some notes.

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  13. Congratulations Michael!
    The loft sounds like it has the perfect ambience for you.
    The president reading the whole ms - awesome! I'm SO HAPPY for your burst of good fortune!!
    You deserve it, Michael. Every single bit... and more!
    The Blurb King Rises!

    P.S. You received an honorable mention in the WEPFF Challenge!

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  14. That is awesome news on both counts, Michael, your new home in Chicago and the positive comments for your book. Way to go!!

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  15. Yea!!!! I'm thrilled for you!!!!! :D
    Your loft sounds so cool!

    One word: Dropbox :)

    IWSG #119 until Alex culls the list again

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  16. Your Chicago winters, ouch. Hurts just thinking about them.

    Congrats on the loft. Sounds incredible. And how cool is that building's history??? Great writing mojo.

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  17. Wow, that's amazing! Congrats on the unexpected full critique. For someone to agree to 100 pages -- and then just not stop reading says A LOT! Woo Hoo!

    And if you're staying in Chicago and found the perfect place, it must be for a reason. Congratulations on that, too!

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  18. A great big congrats and way to go.

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  19. Yes. Keep plugging along. One never knows. Good post!

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  20. How thrilling to get a first sentence response like that from an agent! I hope to hear good news about that submission. Your loft sounds amazing! Congratulations on your new place!

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  21. Well, knock me over with a feather! Congrats on the loft. That would be so cool.

    The MS news is totally cool. Congrats on that too.

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  22. I can't believe you are going to live in a former publishing house! I'm so jealous! It sounds amazing. Good luck getting it all done.

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  23. First of all, I'm so excited for you and your manuscript critique! That sounds like he recognized your talent, for sure. Good for you, Michael!

    Your loft...oh, baby, I am purely jealous. A loft...in Chicago...what could be better? Love to hear the excitement in your description and I can't wait to hear more about it.

    God bless and keep us posted.

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  24. The loft sounds interesting, hope you keep us updated on its progress. Great news regarding the manuscript, too - a positive turn can foretell many things. Yes, you do have to go with the flow, and bide your time in the windy city. Good luck with the renovation of your new place and with the writing!

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  25. That's great news about the critique Michael. Congrats. Sorry abut the computer, I know first hand how difficult life is when the computer is broke.

    I know you will love restoring the loft. And I'm sure Chicago can be beautiful in winter.

    Good luck with it all.

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  26. Love the sound of your loft, Michael. It's just so important to feel that vibe and what a good vibe that is,,,children's publishing co. Wow! Love it. And the positive critique. How amazing. Keep seeing the beauty of Chicago and using it in your stories.

    Denise :-)

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  27. ooh very exciting about the new place and how appropriate it used to be a book store. No wonder it has such a great vibe! Cannot wait to see before and after pics. And awesome news about your manuscript! I love encouraging news!

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  28. What a fantasist critique! I'm SO happy for you, you totally deserve it, Michael! And the loft? In the former Donahue Publishing building . . . with the positive vibe? Perfection! Congratulations :D

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  29. Awesome news, Michael. The loft sounds perfect for you. Just imagine if those brick walls could talk--the stories they'd tell. What a great compliment from the prez of SCBWI. Let that encouragement carry you through any difficult times.

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  30. Such wonderful news! Hooray for snagging a place on Publishers Row. It's so fitting. And what amazing feedback to get from the president of the SCBWI. Everything's coming together. :) Good luck on what remains of your edits!

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  31. What an incredible month, Michael! Talk about an inspiring place to live and write. So there you go, you own a former publishing house. Doing great, sir. Doing great. :)

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  32. I am excited for you that you found a place to buy. And it sounds perfect. I've always liked the idea of lofts. They sound like they'd be fun to live in

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  33. Michael, just goes to show things work out as we persevere and are rewarded for our work. I know you've been looking for "that place" from your previous posts and Congrats!

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  34. Awesome, congratulations on your new place, and on the story front too!
    Looking forward to some before and after photos if you'd like to share :-)

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  35. Oh yay! I'm so glad to read that you're landing on your feet. I hope you share some pictures of your loft. It sounds absolutely charming.

    Best of luck with your writing. :-)

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  36. I'm a bit late. Great news that he read it all the way through and gave you advice.

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