Wednesday, August 3, 2022

GEARING UP TO PUBLICATION...AN INSECURE WRITER"S SUPPORT GROUP POST

 

Hi All, 


Welcome to another IWSG post! Every month we writers get to voice our insecurities and help other writer's with theirs.Thanks to the talents of Alex J. Cavanaugh and the IWSG team.

If you would like to join us, please hop over the Alex's site and sign up.

When I first found out my story was chosen for this year's IWSG Anthology, it was way back in the beginning of the year. So, I had very little time to stress over it...but now, that is another story. With only one month away to my first short story publication, I am stressing. I have so many hopes for, FIRST LOVE- THE ART OF MAKING DOUGHNUTS, which is why I am anxious. I guess because I want the readers to love it.

It is an honor to be part of this publication with nine other extraordinary writers, and the publisher, Dancing Lemur Press, is amazing. The wonderful input from the publisher during the editing process and up until now, has truly helped calm my anxieties. So, why am I anxious. I guess all writer's experience this with upcoming publication. But, this is my first, so I am even more so. Even though I have been writing for well over a decade, I still feel like a novice writer starting out on my journey. This is my first "baby" going out into the world. 

Thankfully, with all of your support, I know I have nothing to worry about. Our community is AMAZING, and I am grateful to be apart of it!

So, until next month, I will try to keep positive and not worry.  I hope you will ALL ENJOY the wonderful stories about first love!

Keep cool everyone and have a great rest of summer!



COMING SEPTEMBER 6th.










Wednesday, July 6, 2022

A NEW APPROACH TO HEALTHIER LIVING AND WRITING...AN IWSG POST

 

Hi All!


I hope everyone had a festive fourth of July. Living in a historic town tends to take this holiday VERY seriously. Fireworks ablaze, parades, and a riverboat parade, too. Lots of fun for all, but I kind of hibernated because my pup hates the noise, and being such a good pet parent, I stayed with him to keep him calm.  We retreated into our lower level until it got quiet around 11pm. 

I can't believe another month flew by, and we are now ready for this month's IWSG post! Once again thanks to Alex and the AMAZING IWSG team for giving us the opportunity to voice our writing insecurities and offer advice to our colleagues who need it. If you would like to join, hop over to Alex's site and sign up!

This month, I have put writing on the back burner to concentrate on finishing up my gardens. I am almost there! But, it has given me the time to do a lot of thinking about future projects and where I would like to go next on my writing journey. This time taught me that it's OK to take time off from writing to do other things. It brings us a fresh perspective. So DON'T beat yourself up if you decide to take off a month or two to do something else you enjoy. It will only make you happier in the long run AND it may lead to a fantastic new idea! 

Another tip I would like to share with you about taking time off is to work on getting healthier. Many of us over the cold winter has put on extra weight and may have become lethargic. Also, with COVID, I had gained a ton over the past few years. At the beginning of July, I decided to do something about it. GET OFF the couch and get outside and walk again. I also started intermittent fasting. For those of you who are not familiar with this eating plan, it is basically very easy. You pick an eating window of about 8-10 hours depending on how much weight you want to lose. I started with 8, and now I am down to a seven-hour window. In a month I dropped almost twenty pounds! I eat almost everything I want, so it really doesn't feel like dieting and depriving myself of CHOCOLATE. LOL. It truly isn't as difficult as you think. It is AMAZING how clear-headed I have become. I stay more focused, and I feel so much better. Staying focused is a GREAT feature of fasting. Imagine how much writing you can do when you stop focusing on food. The first few days can be a challenge, but after the first week, the food cravings stop and you really can feel so much better. I have thought of several new writing projects this past week. I am also brisk walking an hour a day. The best time to do this is at the end of your fast because the last hour or so can be difficult, especially if you have a family who is eating in front of you while you are fasting. Luckily, I don't have that problem. Try it for a few weeks and see how you feel! You will have only POSITIVE side effects from this program. One of mine... I cut out one of my blood pressure meds. YAY! 


Well, that is it for this month! Enjoy your summer fun, and I will see you next month. Hugs to you all!

Thursday, June 2, 2022

NO INSECURITIES THIS MONTH...A QUICK IWSG POST...


 Hi All,

Welcome to another IWSG post. Once again we are privileged to write about our writing insecurities and ask and give advice to those who are in need, thanks to Alex and his amazing hosts. If you would like to join our group, please pop over to Alex's blog and sign up. 

Spring is upon us and I can't help noticing all the signs of rebirth. The trees and flowers are blossoming everywhere and the birds and bees are chirping and buzzing throughout my property. It has been a busy month for me working on my gardens and enjoying all the benefits of spring and the warmer weather. I haven't had much time to write, but I have thought about many things during my time in the great outdoors. It made me realize that we should all commune with nature from time to time. It clears our heads and brings joy to our hearts. It is the perfect way to sweep away your writing insecurities and take back the parts of your soul that have been craving some peace and solitude. Even if it is only for a few short minutes, stroll around your yard, or take a walk to a nearby park and open your eyes and heart to the wonders of nature. It truly is food for your soul.

I would to share with you some pics of my garden to inspire you to commune with nature. Have a wonderful month everyone, and take good care of yourselves...


















Wednesday, May 4, 2022

WHEN IS IT TIME TO DO A COMPLETE REWRITE? AN IWSG POST...

 Hi All,


Welcome to another IWSG post! As we all know, we meet on the first Wednesday of every month. If you would like to join us, please visit Alex's site to sign up.


Today, I would like to discuss a problem I have been anxious about for a while, when is it time to do a complete rewrite of your novel? For over three years, I worked on my novel and have been querying it for about a year now. This is the FIRST time, I have was not asked for a partial or full from any agent. I sent out at least 50 queries. I know it is more difficult now, but not to get ONE request. it doesn't sound right to me. I know it is not the subject matter, so there must be something wrong in the story. Originally I wrote this as a memoir and had sent it to a top editor in NYC. She made several suggestions and I was almost finished when the person I am writing about decided she wanted changes. MAJOR changes. I did the best I could, cutting the parts she wanted out. I queried again, and nothing. I don't want to CAN the project because I still believe in it. So, now I am deciding if it needs a COMPLETE overhaul. I can do a complete rewrite cutting out the daughter completely and concentrating solely on the subject. It would be a much more fun and LIGHT piece with no internal issues from the narrator. I would have to write it in the third person instead of the first. So, a lot of work would need to be done. 

Should I do it or scrap the project? In all honesty, I would like to cut ties with this person completely. If I go forward, I would still have to work with her and share the profits. I just HATE having to throw away three-plus years of writing. It is a tough call, and I would appreciate any advice.

On the plus side of this month, an article I wrote for the IWSG blog will be featured on May 9th...I hope you will drop by the blog and read it. 

Have a wonderful month, everyone!


Thursday, April 7, 2022

APOLOGIES.... SORRY FOR POSTING LATE... AN IWSG POST...

 

Hi All,


I am so sorry for spacing the time...again! Yesterday, I was getting my house ready for my friends visiting from South America! ALL six of them! So, I am sure you can understand my spacing to post.

This group is an important part of all our lives because we get a chance to voice our insecurities once a month, thanks to Alex! The advice and support are truly amazing. If you haven't joined yet, PLEASE visit Alex's site to sign up. 

I would also like to CONGRATULATE Alex on his newest book, Casa Dark. All the best Alex! I know it will be a hit!

For this month, my only real insecurities were getting accomplished my many tasks within my home. Thankfully, I did and my guests are comfortable and happy. We have discussed my writing and I was happy to tell them that my short story was selected for the new IWSG Anthology! I can not wait until September when it will be published. I was also THRILLED to have our first review be so positive. The reader enjoyed the anthology and actually mentioned my story as one of her favorites! A writer can not ask for more than that. So this month I feel truly blessed. I am also in the process of submitting a few more short stories...we shall see. We all know that rejections are a part of our lives, but we also know, that if we DON'T submit, we will never have a chance to have our works read. And, isn't that why we all write in the first place? It is very important for writers to get their work seen. No matter how long it takes. It took me over a decade to finally have one of my works published, so don't ever give up. I don't regret any of that time because I learned to hone my craft. A writer must write in order to improve their writing. Sometimes it takes years. We all write at our pace and with each new story, we learn so much.

SO KEEP WRITING, even if you don't feel you are getting anywhere with it. Your time will come.

Well, everyone, April is certainly coming in with tons of wind and rain. I am looking forward to a lovely spring BURSTING with spring flowers. It seems to be taking a bit longer this year, but I know it is worth the wait.

HAPPY SPRING!!!





Thursday, March 3, 2022

SORRY... AN IWSG LATE POST...

 

Hi All,

Arrived in Florida on Sunday and totally spaced it was Wednesday yesterday; I actually thought it was Tuesday all day. Sigh.

I hope everyone is well and I hope Spring has "sprung" in your neck of the woods!

Nothing much to say except that I am THRILLED to be out of the frozen tundra of the north, and I intend to THOROUGHLY enjoy the beautiful weather in Florida.

Take care everyone and I will see you all next month!

HAPPY ST. PATRICK'S Day and Early Sring!!!!

Wednesday, February 2, 2022

WINTER TEMPS AS UNPREDICTABLE AS OUR LIVES...AN IWSG POST.


 Hi, ALL

Welcome to another IWSG post. I almost always forget to post when the first Wednesday of the month is so close to the beginning. I just can't believe it's February already. Winter is certainly surging like mad all over the world. Snow in the Greek Islands? Unheard of, yet it happened!

Sadly, this winter, we also lost one of the most caring and gifted bloggers, Jeremy Hawkins. I didn't know him well, but I knew him for over a decade through his comments on others' blogs and occasionally on mine. I know he will be tremendously missed by our community. Please take a moment and say a  prayer in his memory...


As you know, we get to vent on the first Wednesday of the month, thanks to Alex and the IWSG team. If you would like to join our group, please pop over to Alex's site and sign up. Who knows, you may get some great advice or help another stressed-out writer with a problem.

A few unexpected things happened this past month. I was fortunate enough to have a query and chapter request from a YA agent during the IWSG Twitter pitch. I was thrilled, of course, but now the waiting begins... So, I decided to start pitching to magazines to use my time wisely. A first for me. I spent a whole day preparing the pitch and added the proper links to my work for samples. I felt confident because the article I was pitching was for the home section of a woman's magazine. Who better than an interior designer for over twenty-five years, right? Well, it didn't take long to get a response... ANOTHER rejection. In this case, I was honestly surprised it was rejected.

We are not talking about a novel; we are talking about an article. So, fellow authors, it is a tough sell even in this venue. Honestly, I feel like chucking the whole writing thing at times like this. TWELVE years I have been pounding away at it. THANKFULLY, I did have some fantastic news before the holidays that my short story, OLIVER'S GIRL, was chosen for the IWSG Anthology. This news is keeping me going. I know rejections suck big time, but we still need to keep at it. SO don't give up. I don't plan to any time soon. I promised myself to keep plugging away this year with query after query and pitch after pitch. My goal is to have five of my stories accepted this year. It may be unrealistic, but I am aiming for that. With short stories and magazine articles, it may be attainable.

To aid me in my quest, I bought Shannon Lawrence's THE BUSINESS OF SHORT STORIES... (You can read about it in my previous post). It is a concise and helpful guide on writing and marketing your short stories. I have read through half of the book already, and once I finish, I will put her suggestions to work. Thanks, Shannon!

Well, that is all from me this month. I wish you all a warmer winter and an EARLY spring. Take care and stay safe and healthy...