Writing and Learning

Well, I certainly did not intend for a month to pass but it has and woosh it was gone.

 I have been re-writing my little book and I continue to learn. I am taking a fiction class at the University and the learning curve is huge. Some things  in the tool box I was using naturally and just didn’t know it had a name but sooo many are tools that I didn’t know existed.

My book is directed at middle grade but it is still too tidy; too Pollyanna.

I am working to correct that and add more dimension. My protagonist has a gift of incredible faith but she is still a 12 to 13 year old girl. I have worked out most of that but I still have the problem of her not struggling enough to find solutions. She can see her Guardian Angel and she has chats with her but ultimately the decisions she makes are her own. I want to create tension without making it too complex.

I am also taking a look at the secondary characters and deciding if they are developed enough. The third character is Zach. He is best friends with the protagonist but other than going to the same youth group my reader doesn’t know much about him.

I am also reading the manuscript and looking for imagery, and narration. I have a lot of dialogue and internal dialogue but not a lot of narration.

I will never look at another book without thinking about how much the author thought and re-wrote and then re-wrote again. I have a much greater respect for writers!!

I can look at a chapter and see it as a scene and I can use the tools given to us in our fiction class and take it apart paragraph by paragraph. AMAZING!! I find metaphors, drawing the reader in with the senses, or painting a  scene and letting the reader discover through dialogue and implication what they want to reveal. I can tell where the writer builds tension or sets tone.

I haven’t had a lot of time to revise my own work but when I do I will have a lot of skills to make it a better manuscript.

 

 

Still querying

I have been sorely tempted to work with a publishing company that does the marketing and publishing but it is pricey and you are basically paying someone to publish instead of being paid to publish. It is a mix of vanity and self publishing.

Sooo I am going to review my book again, find ways to improve it and continue the query process. I have has some good feedback and suggestions and will consider all of those things as I continue the journey.

The good news is, I have written about three chapters of the second book and my characters are changing and growing. I am learning so much in the fiction class that I am taking and I will look at my transcript differently and with new tools as I review it this time.

The process can be frustrating and even a little discouraging but I am truly enjoying the adventure. It is opening a completely new world for me and I love every minute of it. I am anxious to finish this project and begin another chapter. Maybe a poetry chapbook or another fiction genre. There are only the boundaries we impose on ourselves.

Happy Writing!!

Happy New Year

 

Hope: that is my word for 2017. Hope that all people will be recognized and treated with respect. Hope that respect for life will overcome selfish endeavors. Hope for all people who suffer from incurable disease or mental and physical anguish. Hope for peace, prosperity and God’s Grace and guidance for all.

Have a wonderful 2017!

Christmas Thoughts

I have been so caught in Holiday planning and life that it has been awhile since I sent in a submission. I did that today and I will begin to look with vigor again after the 1st of the year.

I want to share my thoughts of Christmas. It is such a special time of year and yet it seems the beauty of the real Christmas gets lost in the shuffle of buying and getting and we lose so much. The reality is so beautiful.

A child was born all those years ago to save all of us. We are given free choice by our living God and we so often choose badly. God knows our shortcomings and as long as we can admit that, He is willing to forgive.

Christ takes on all of our sins. Dies, to give us eternal life. It sounds like a fairy-tale and yet all these years have passed and the promise is still real. We have this beautiful promise. In a short 30 some years Christ did more for mankind than any one can ever, ever do again. The ultimate gift.

My hope for this year is that more of us will embrace the true reason for the season and not let the hoopla interfere. I want to see more than lights and gifts and decorations that are all superficial. I want my family and each person who reads this blog to be Blessed by this season. To feel a real connection to Christ and his purpose. WE may not know the exact date that Christ was born but this celebration is for the purpose of reminding us what Our Father did to allow us, weak and selfish as we are, to have the opportunity for eternal life. I hope you take time to really meditate on the story of Jesus’s birth and life. I hope the true reason for Christmas will manifest itself in your heart for the entire year and continue to uplift you and bring you Joy!

 

 

Snow

White

soft

quiet

A blank canvas waiting for life to..

change it

paint it

imprint the motion of creatures and man.

Snow..

silent

glistening

bright

A squirrel dances gingerly under the

tutu of an oak with a barren top.

The cat shakes her paw

wonders at the feel of…

Snow..

cold

wet

intricate

A single flake,a unique design

no other can duplicate.

Like a finger print

not one the same.

Snow..

amazing

beautiful

gracefully falling…

created by God

Snow

Rejection, Again

Yes, that’s right. Another rejection letter, this time from one that I had great hopes for.

Sooo where to from here? Actually my actual count is somewhere between 12 and 15 queries  and so far 7 or 8 rejections. Some are time related. More often than not authors send out many more queries than  I have so far and I have many more to select from. I just wish that I would get more than, “It’s just not what we are looking for at this time.”

I have been taking a creative writing class and after learning so much about moving the action and creating tension etc. I am going to revisit my story and see if some changes are in order.

My actual real tension doesn’t take place until about the 3rd and 4th chapters so maybe I need to start with that event and look back on the earlier chapters. I also need to think about the actual title.

I have also not heard from my age level Beta readers. That may be a bad omen. I am sure I have something and I will keep working to make it a book young people will want to read.

I am rather attached to my characters and I will not abandon them. I may have to create a deeper plot and stronger voice but I will eventually get it right.

I hope all of you have a wonderful holiday season and beautiful Christmas. I will post another of my lovely poems before then.

Here’s to plots and characters!

 

Veterans

A poem for Veterans. God Bless you for serving our country.

Many of our Veterans live with trauma, mental and physical and we need to be aware of their sacrifice.

 

Hero’s Reward

A warrior wears his battle scars
with pride upon his face.
Across his breast a row of stars,
he brings us no disgrace.

He’s welcomed with a big parade,
“Hero,” they proclaim;
but in his heart the whole charade
pounds within his brain.

The memories haunt his every dream
no sleep is ere content.
Faces; women and children scream
the weapon’s round is spent.

Each life is counted on this earth.
All children are held dear.
Somewhere she who gave him birth,
shall never hold him near.

The terrors implode, consume his life.
He can’t live with this heavy yoke.
He has no friends, no job, nor wife.
He’s hungry, lonely and broke.

“It’s a syndrome,” some big name,
“Send him to a shrink. ”
There has to be something to blame,
but it’s not what one would think.

He is not weak or just depressed.
His demon’s drive him mad!
Another “Hero” is sent to test,
we say, “It’s just too bad.”

Keeping On

I have been working on specific requirements for select agents. I have no idea how anyone can do simultaneous submissions. The last two were very specific in how they wanted the submissions. The good thing is that I am learning so much about the process. I have a new admiration for published authors. It is work.

 I am moving forward with the second book in the series and continue to discover who my characters really are. They reveal themselves as I write. I love discovering where their young lives are leading them. I am still working in my salon and taking a writing course at Emporia State University. So I also have a new respect for the students, especially those with jobs and family commitments. I spend quite a bit of time just working on the assignments for one class so I can’t imagine the challenge of carrying a full load.

The turbulence in our nation and world have been a distraction, but like everyone one we come to a place where we make a decision to move forward. We have our personal agendas but we have a common goal. Every American wants our country to be strong. We all want a strong economy and equal rights. We are still a christian nation. Regardless who holds the highest office in our nation, we are ONE NATION UNDER GOD. One person can not make change without the consent of many. We all have to stand for what we believe in and keep on, keeping on.