Friday, November 30, 2012

The power of Arthur...yes the children's book character

In beginning a  new unit on Narrative writing in my 2nd grade class room I have the students watch a variety of Arthur cartoons.  Arthur experiences very normal things in these videos.  One he wants a puppy and figures out a plan for getting a dog.  Another he gets glasses and another takes place on picture day and his best freind Francine has a very bad hair day.  Each of these videos shows the kids that even their simpliest day has the potential to be a story if they look at the events through the eyes of a writer.  After we watch the initial stories we then watch Arthur Write a Story.  In this one he takes one of the events from earlier...getting a puppy and writes a story.  Here is the connection to my own writing and publishing companies.  Arthur gives a very nice story to his friends to read and they all have advise.  The first friend tells him a story is not interesting unless it has romance, so he adds romance.  Another tells him a good story has aliens so he adds aliens, you get the idea.  So by the end of the video Arthur has lost HIS story and created a random story that has all the elements the friends wanted but lost his voice and his heart.  Sometimes I feel that when we jump through the hoops of writing and publishing this happens to us. I have had a variety of writing partners that have shifted my story and I have to step back and say no, this isn't the story I wanted to tell.  Funny how a childs cartoon can help me remember I need to please myself in order to be proud of whatever I put out there.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

I did it! I made it! Whooop Whoop

Doing a happy dance around my kitchen as I type.  I had planned out my day tomorrow to finish the last 2000 words and then sat down and BAM! I finished.  Nothing better than seeing that WINNER sigh flash across my page.  YIPPEE

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

I'm not sure I'll make it!

I'm at 37743 words and I have three days left.  Sickness, thanksgiving, college son many interruptions but I will not give up until the last minute has passed.  Only 12,257 words left. ") That is 5000 words a day.  I CAN DO IT!

Writing Class

Spent the day in an inservice for writing for elementary students.  Love to hear the ideas we are given to make students love to write. Exposing them to great literature, lots of opportunities to write, all good ideas...but I have to say I believe that everyone can write but not everyone is a writer.  I think it is important to give kiddos the skills and not fight them to develop a passion.  Not everyone has stories screaming to come out.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

First Sentences

I am currently a part of a workshop on the blog Ink in the Book, wonderful workshop!   We are currently working on first lines of our WIP.  Which I agree is so!! so!! important when pulling your reader in.  However the process makes me think Hmmmm?  We are all working so hard at developing this beginning but REALLY, how many books have we read that you think "Is anything ever going to happen?  Who are all these characters?  What is going on?
I especially had to stop and wonder after I was reading Twitter and one of the authors I follow was asking if the current book she was reading ever got better.  All the responses were just keep picks up in the middle...  Don't give up it starts slow.  And I had to again ask REALLY?  Are we really giving these authors a free pass at boring beginnings?
So today I am sending out a great big ATTA BOY to my fellow authors who are working so hard to write a beginning that catches us and won't let us go!  Keep up the good work.  And I send extra magical wishes to all of you that a publisher will read your beginning and love your story.  

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Books for a Good Cause

To help out the American Red Cross and so many of the people who suffered through Hurricane Sandy go to Curiosity Quills or Shanon Bayliss's blog for titles where the authors have agreed to give 50% of the procedes of sales to help those in need.  Books are available thorugh Amazon but check out all the titles available.  Big thanks to the authors!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Monday, November 5, 2012

Ryan Winfield: South of Bixby Bridge

So I found this book on the side of my Facebook page.  I didn't realize someone could advertise their book there but Hey! it got me to go find it on amazon and put it on my kindle.
This is an adult book with very adult topics.  Primarily about a man who has just finished rehab and is looking for a way back into the world.  I liked the book and had a hard time putting it down.  Very vivd language and description and I actually felt really bad for the guy and wanted to yell "Stop!  Don't do it! Things will get better!"  What I found odd was the style of writing.  It was written in a "tell voice"  as if the author, or the guy is telling us the entire list of events.  It actually is only the span of a few weeks and it seems like a lot longer.  He will write....and then so and so said.  Instead of actually having them say it.  Not a quotation in sight.  At first I thought, how in the world did a publisher let him get by with that?  They are always harping on show don't tell.  Well he does show and the farther into the book I got the more I realized how important that it was down this way.  It is really like he is telling this story of the horrible path he is going down.
I would recommend this for a reader of a bit more steamy novels.  I found the writing style interesting and the events believable.  It was refreshing to read a coming to terms with yourself book from a man's point of view.

Operation Agent

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Things that make you go Hmmmm....

I sent a query and first chapters of to a publisher that requested New Adult books.  They asked for revisions, asked for chapters, kept me waiting for a little bit.....then sent me a very nice email that said they don't represent Contemporary.  Wouldn't they have noticed the genre in the query and the first pages to have saved us a lot of time and anxiety?


Day three and I am averaging 1000 words a day.  At this rate I won't finish until December 5th which is past the deadline so I think I need to step up my volume!  I am going to set a goal to write for at least an hour every morning before work.  If sleep doesn't interfer I should be able to do it!