For the Criminally Inane

For the Criminally Inane

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Break Through

I contacted an old college professor I really admired that helped me establish my style of writing. I humbly asked him to look over my manuscript and he'll give me some feed back. It's so nice to have an objective person read it. I can't have friends read it because 1) they are too nice. I mean, I have nice friends. 2) They won't give feedback because they're afraid to hurt the friendship. Understandably. I mean, who wants to say to your friend, Hey I think this stinks? 3) Because they are similar to me, they may actually like the book and have a hard time seeing its flaws. I appreciate all the people who have already read the drafts. That's just awesome! THANK YOU!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

My first rejection

I didn't tell anyone I was sending in a query. I didn't have time to. It came back within 24 hours and I was grateful! It was a very polite rejection letter, just in case you didn't catch the title and I was holding you in suspense. Now, looking over my query, it needs to be tighter. I've been researching agents and it's nice to know what doesn't appeal to one, may appeal to another.

I may shelve it for a while and then see what it looks like. I might try one more cast before I store it.

Also, someone was complaining about how authors are treated so poorly in the publishing industry, even though writers provide the fodder to sell. I pondered that for a while. It seems to me, that's true of many industries. Take fishing. The fishermen are the lowest ones on the totem pole and the chefs, the ones that prepare the fish and distribute it, are the ones with all the glory, calling the shots etc. Well, writers are like the fishermen. The industry couldn't survive without us, but it's not a glorious job. Happy fishing!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Research

Ok, I'm almost done editing my book. My middle still needs some work but the beginning and ending are really strong. Hubby is doing a "quick read" and looking to see if the story is doing what it's supposed to.

I've started researching some agents. I've been following an agent's blogs to get an idea of her personality and what she is looking for. And I wrote a query letter and working on a synopsis. Some sites were helpful and books: Give Them What They Want was a good one for helping me put my thoughts in to order.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Parents in town

My parents were in town. I thought for sure I'd get lots of writing done since they would be here to babysit. Nooooooope. In fact, quite the contrary. I played host and had fun instead. They left for the weekend but should be back.

I wish I had a writers group. I've emailed two copies of my chapter one and haven't heard back from either friend. Either it really stinks and they don't want to tell me or it's lost somewhere in t their email file.

Discouraged again. Sometimes I read over my work and I'm amazed I wrote something so fun, thinking I'm almost done, almost ready to let my baby go out to the world. Other times I look at all the flaws (I did a search for 'would' today, thankfully I didn't count them, but there were a ton!) and think, I'll never be done. Maybe I should can it and work on some other projects. I have stories flying through my head all the time.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Exceptional

Is my story exceptional? It is something that some agent will spend hours peddling to the editors, believing in me when heads wag no? Or should I just scrap it and write other novels floating around in my head?

When I was a little girl, I had three goals: One be a missionary for my Church, two go to Switzerland (they had four national languages, what 9-year-old knows that?) and three to be a published author. When I was twenty-one I went on a mission to Switzerland (not of my choosing but the Lord's). When I was younger I wrote a lot. I remember I had stapled a peice of blue construction paper to some printer paper, an empty book and called it presumptiously, "young author" only I couldn't spell, I think it really said "Young Arther". But it had a pretty picture of a quill and ink stand, I also liked to doodle. But I never learned how to spell well. That was discouraging. I asked my dad, "How do you spell CHAOS?' "Go look it up in the dictionary," my dad would say. K-A-O-S, wasn't in the dictionary. So, I used another word. Oenery was another word I'd heard my mom use, but didn't know how to spell. Thank goodness for spell check because I'm always tripping up.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Odds are getting worse

I've been following this one agent's blog. It's not an agent I want to send my MS to, but I thought her insights were interesting. Well, she posted that one of her YA agent friends were so relieved to find a straight fantasy, no urban in it. What a bummer! I mean, is urban-fantasy on the way out? There goes my delusions of my book making a huge splash in the literary world. Sigh.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Daily Journal

As part of my research for my story, I read over some of my high school journals. I kept a daily (and I mean EVERY DAY) journal writing about the vicissitudes of growing up. I was doing ok, reliving my teenage-hell until I came to a part where I wondered, really wondered if someone would ever love, when I wondered what he was doing. I cried. I really cried, real tears. I hurt for that poor, lost 16 year-old who didn't have a clue about how make friends with guys. I stewed over this boy I liked, every page mentioned something whether he said hi or what his reaction was to what I said, notes I wrote to him. He ended up liking some tall blond girl who was 1) Popular 2) practically perfect 3) pretty 4) kind (I think even my brother had a crush on her). The guy was probably just as socially retarded as I was and thankfully we're not in contact anymore. I was a nerd in high school. (I didn't have my first real boyfriend until college, I was such a social retard). I never got asked to Prom. Am I still bitter about that? No, I went to my cousin's wedding. But there's just something about having a group of friends that I hung out with and none of them asked me. As I reread these painful memories, I feel sorry for that lost little girl. I wish I could go back and tell her, hey, life just gets better and better. There is a guy out there for you and he's perfect for you. You'll have kids and do things you never thought you could do. Chin up, don't worry. Everything will be all right.

Friday, June 5, 2009

*Shiver* Good book

I read Hunger Games in one day, it was that good. Of course my kids were at the sitter for nearly four hours while I went to the doctors or else it would've taken me two days. In fact, I woke up in the middle of the night and thought about it some more. I wish I could write compelling books like that. Hopefully there's still a market for almost-funny books out there.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Reviews

I just wanted to write a few books I've been reading:

Robin Brande Evolution, Me and Other Freaks of Nature

Interesting read, but it seemed to me that she thought of the point of the book, (almost a little didactic) and then thought of a story to go with it. Wasn't all that compelling for me. But funny and has a good point which I happen to agree with: You can believe in God and Science. Of course, I don't like being hit over the head with any point, even one I agree with.

I also went to a bookstore and actually bought a book, two, really. Princess Bride, a classic (we're on our third copy, we keep giving it away) and Howl's Moving Castle. Love the Myazaki's version, too.