Yet another novel done, and I’m still loving this thing called writing.

After twelve weeks and almost 106,000 words, I’ve finished my seventh novel’s first draft. Now for the editing, which I happen to enjoy almost as much as the writing. It went over by quite a bit because of a few interesting aspects, but I’m extremely pleased with how it turned out. Now to see how much fat I can trim without trimming the lean.

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Fingers crossed, toes too.

I’ve taken a break from writing to edit, write synopses, and write “blurbs” (that’s what you read on the back of a book that makes you like it or not) for all the novels other than what an agent requested in December.

I did all that for a portfolio of sorts I’ll put together for a March workshop when I meet her. I’m hoping they’ll all create further interest, which might land me an agent this year. Cross your fingers and toes so I can make this happen.

I’ll likely start on a new novel soon, one in which I’ve completed the first chapter in December, before things started getting exciting concerning that agent.

Quote for … life?

Leaves bear the seasons as we bear life. Yet they remain true to themselves, even sharing beauty as they pass into forever, imprinting their colors into our hearts and souls.

Let not foul words or deeds, especially words not meant to harm, alter your colors.

For when we blame something or someone for our lot in life, we make excuses. It’s how we react to outside forces that define us, not outside forces.

 

Novels and queries and synopses, oh my!

As anyone who aspires to publish their writing knows, not only is it hard work, it’s work that’s hard on you. I continue to dream the dream, working that forty-hour grind while trying to be grateful all the while for that forty-hour grind.

I am grateful, but I’m more grateful for being able to write. Penning a story, characters, places, conflicts, and resolutions is an enjoyable thing, likely within the top two personally enjoyable attempts at a creative pastime I’ve ever attempted. And having beta readers enjoy my work is great also. Recently, a woman said her sister came into her room and asked what was wrong, because the reader was cursing. Her answer? She was angry with one of my characters. When you can illicit emotion like that with mere words, what a thrill.

At the moment I’m working on a synopsis for my fifth novel, and it’s (they all are, right?) special. With great characters, a great hook, a great conflict, and a great (I’m a romantic at heart) love story, what’s not to love?

Fellow writers, you know how it is. We hope for that break, but it only comes with hard work, not only learning the craft of writing but learning the craft of storytelling so the reader stays engaged. My mantra is this: If I write something a reader skims, I’ve failed.

Here’s to us, the hard workers, the writers.

Best.

 

It’s Not Often

In the canoe, in my heart, the dark of her curls blend with the gold of sunrise.

With water glassy we paddle, unison’s time, rhythm’s endearing.

Over her shoulder she smiles. Hope leaps. Love pains at future’s parting.

It’s not often colors blend such as these.

Mercurial silver of water. Hazel of eye. Red of lips.

It’s not often to welcome falling into depths like those below …

… when she must leave.

 

A few writing tips, thoughts, conjectures I have learned along the way.

You’ve no doubt heard variations, and some will be present, but if not, here you go.

A writer without imagination is like a musician without rhythm; it’s doubtful anyone will enjoy either.

MC needs to show someone a vital phone pic? Break the phone. Needs to get somewhere? Break his car. Don’t make goals easy.

Don’t tell your readers he smelled the coffee. Instead: With rich coffee aroma, steam rose in lazy swirls from the dark brew.

An important part of writing is in the details. Yes, your character may taste, touch, hear, see, and smell, but does the reader?

You know you’re writer if you love editing. Well, you might not be a sane writer. Polish that passion–make it pop.

Dialogue: Never boring. Constantly use tension, whether anger, humor, fear, or sexual. Unexpected is great too.

I love it when an unintended character pops into a scene, taking the plot in a different–better–direction than I’d intended.

Friends ask how I write. My answer? By knowing my character’s perspectives; their hearts, souls, & struggles.

Recently made three women cry. It’s okay…actually, it’s great. They were reading one of my short stories.

Let characters interrupt. Hey, did you see– Yeah, it’s– Don’t interrupt me when– When what? Arrgghhh! (You get the idea)

Mornings

Mornings are variety

With sun edging over horizons, red then orange then yellow bursts through white or gray or nothing at all,

Only blue.

Mornings can happen over oceans, bays, sounds, lakes, river, streams,

And even creeks.

They can happen over emerald fields of wheat, over shadowed desert sands, over forest and valley and mountain.

Mornings are minted daily,

New with fresh, breezy breaths or sultry, humid doldrums or with glistening dew on blades of grass.

Enjoy mornings. Revel in them. Allow their touch and tease and laugh to slip inside with each warm and golden sunbeam.

For mornings are these things and so much more.

Surely you have mornings of your own.

Be a morning.

#STRINGSNSOULS

Have you ever considered playing a musical instrument? Consider no more and do it. It is one of the most creative as well as personally enlightening things you can do. And when you advance to the point of playing with others … well, lets just say there is nothing like it in this world. When you do it’s like you are connected in an invisible soul-bond, ending only as the song fades, picking back up with the notes of the next song.

The 5 string banjo was my first love, followed by the resonator guitar and the guitar, and though learning them and playing by myself was a fine thing, that was no comparison to when I advanced enough to begin making music with others.

Do you play, or have you considered playing? If so, which instrument do you play, and if not, which instrument interests you?