Sunday, February 26, 2017

Finding Time to Write

I am by nature, a planner. I've been making 'To Do' lists since birth. Over the years, I have come to realize that not everything goes as planned. I now make my lists with plenty of wiggle room to accomodate the unexpected.

But lately, things have become a bit overwhelming and I find that I can't cross anything off of my list. Since when did my days become so out of control?

I've been working on my NHRA romance now for two years. TWO YEARS! Okay, granted The Sin Bin had to find a home, (THANK YOU, RESPLENDENCE PUBLISHING!!), Cruise Into My Heart needs to find a home but you'd think by now, I'd be done with the NHRA story.

For the last two years, it seems as if I've done nothing but put out fires. My house is haunted. There is no doubt about it. Every other day, something breaks down or Mother Nature decides to wreak havoc with me. (This week, we had an influx of black horse flies in the house. We killed over twenty of them. Where did they come from? Who knows? And let's not forget a broken ankle and now I'm dealing with Plantar Faciiatis...

It's as if the minute I sit down to write more on my story, something happens. Ugh.

Now, I'm preparing for our vacation to Maui (where the forecast is cool and rainy, really???) I told my husband I am taking my laptop with me to write. While he's on the golf course in the rain, I'll be at the condo writing. He's not too happy about it, but I told him that's the way it is. Maybe I can finish this story and move on to another!

How do other author's find the time? I must be missing something....

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Double Standards

I am bad. I am SO addicted to my cell phone, it's not even funny. What did I do without one before? I am trying an experiment and let's just see how long I can hold off. I will not use it until Wednesday.

Okay. I admit I've used 90% of my data and my billing cycle doesn't end until the 21st of the month. That's how bad I am. I don't have unlimited texting which is okay. I don't text that much anyway. I email or FB message instead. I can go months without recieving or doing a text. But every once in a while, all of a sudden  my friends text me and I get the "I'm a being a bad person" warning from Verizon.

Now, my writing career is on hold. In all of my rejections, I've been told that I 'tell' rather than 'show'. I finally figured it out. I had a career as a technical writer for programming specifications. Yup. I'm trained to "telling' how the program functions. The program is to be seamless to the user, you can't 'show'.

You say, what's wrong with that? Well, I'm learning a lot even though my ego has taken a beating. I have three stories I'm rewriting to fix that very thing!

I've also done research on recent romantic releases. I've been told my stories have too many adverbs and I should shy away from them. Gee, those recent releases have tons of them. What about the word 'said'? I was told you should use 'said' rather than 'replied', 'answered', 'groaned', etc. By using the 'said' word, it makes the reader gloss over to the next sentence. Guess what I found in the four recent releases I read? Yup! Replied, groaned, growled and answered. And these are authors that I love their story telling. What gives?

Is there a double standard I should know about? Sigh, Back to the drawing board....

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Never Ending Saga

You know, I would never bore my readers....working on a couple of projects....

1) I set aside my Holiday Cruise book to take a break from it. I'm not pleased with it, even though it's finished. I need another set of eyes to look at it...

2) Working on my NHRA romance....it's too serious and I have to change that. Then yesterday after writing over 1000 words, my characters stopped talking to me. Not nice!

3) Seque to When the Runway Went South keeps getting more material. Dead animals stuck in the walls of the house? This series is true to life. I swear this house is haunted....

Thanks again for all of your support! I really appreciate it!

Keep reading!

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Super Bowl

In honor of the biggest day in the NFL, I chose Intercepted to represent my theme today! (Even though hockey season is going strong!)

I have not had the best of weeks....Monday morning, I opened the door to get the morning paper and didn't think anything of it. Sat down to read the paper, came upstairs to my work out room and started. The next thing I hear is a 'LLLOOOIIISSS! There's a bird in the house!" Huh? I ran downstairs and lo and behold, there's a sparrow soaring around downstairs. We have very high ceilings and this little dinosaur loved it. Finally, we were able to coax it out the open front door.

Now, I'm wide awake! Finished working out and headed to the library to write. I did! I wrote about ten pages. I felt accomplished! Got home and went to get my cell phone out of my purse...where is it? I have no clue! I didn't use it at the library so where is it? I drove back to the library and no one had turned it in. I came home and used my daughter's cell phone to 'Find my Phone'. It showed it was home but it wasn't where I could find it.

I called Verizon and they suspended service for 24 hours while I searched for it. I don't like losing things, so I became obsessed, to put it nicely. I couldn't even eat, I was so worried. My daughter with a calm I haven't seen in a while, went into my car and found the phone. It was underneath the passenger seat, in the back. I always put my purse behind the driver's seat. Apparently, when I threw it in, the phone went flying out and lodged there. Last place I would've thought to look for it. Whew!

On Thursday, I went out to get the paper and when I came in and sorted it by sections, I noticed bird feathers all over my counter tops. Not again! I got my husband, who was only in his shorts, and sure enough there was another bird flying all over the house. Jim grabbed an umbrella (like Sean Connery in the Indiana Jones movie) and flapped it, forcing the bird to come back downstairs. I held the door open and the bird flies out when another one flies in. Aughh! Twenty minutes later, we were bird free. Jim was late for work and I began to scrub the house clean. The birds pooped over the carpet, the walls, the windows, the drapes, it was a mess!

I have a 'between season' season wreath on the front door which has a big bow. The sparrows had built a nest in the bow which is why they kept flying into the house when disturbed. Needless to say, the wreath is off the door and hanging outside on the fence, airing out.

So, I read the supersitions of birds in the house and it freaked me out. It says that death is near by. I don't want to hear that! I've lit candles to ward off any evil spirits.

Friday was a quiet day and I was able to write more with a clean house free of birds!

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Back to Writing!

Last Monday, I was proud of myself. There's been so much negativity in my writing career, I've been down in the dumps. After wallowing in self pity, I told myself to look at the great authors out there who have had worse things happen to them, yet they still keep writing.

So, I put my big girl pants on and sat down with my NHRA book and took it apart. I jotted notes in the margins and as my mind opened up, I now know where I want to go with this story.

But, I had to put it on hold for the rest of the week, which was okay. There was a lot going on in my life!

I had scheduled my second colonoscopy for Friday. That meant, switching from my high fiber diet to a low fiber one. After I've trained myself to eat healthy, I had to eat junk. On Tuesday, I gagged and hoped I didn't die of a heart attack before the actual procedure.

Wednesday, wasn't too bad. I discovered mac and cheese from the blue box and for dinner? I treated myself to the greasiest pizza ever. It was so good!

Come Thursday, it was all liquids before the prep started. I went to Dairy Queen to get a Lime Arctic Blast to sip on all day but the machine was broken! Really? I discovered lime popsicles at WalMart which worked well.

Needless to say, once I started the prep, I didn't get an ounce of sleep. I read two books within twenty-four hours. *Note to self: We need better lighting in the bathroom!

The day of the procedure came and the results were amazing! I only had two small polyps and the doctor put me on the five year plan, rather than the three year! Yay!

The next day, I felt like a Mack Truck had hit me. Found out that I still had the anesthesia in me. WebMd told me to drink lots of water with Sea Salt in it to rid my body of the toxins. It helped a little, but I was in bed by 9 pm. (I'm such a swinger!)

But today, I feel back to normal and come Monday, full speed ahead on my writing!

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Applying What I've Learned

Where did I find the time to write before? I swear, these last two weeks have been exhausting with taking care of personal business!  I've spent only one hour of writing.

This has got to change. It's been nice outside and I've taken advantage of walking outside. It's only then do my characters for my next book, Breakout Heat, have been talking to me. And they keep changing their minds about how the story goes.

When I started this last year, I had it all mapped out. But after publishing The Sin Bin and having Cruise Into My Heart rejected, I sat back and took a good long look at what I had written and sat back. There were so many errors in it, I couldn't believe it.

I absolutely love my editor at Resplendence Publishing and she gave me excellent advice and tutoring during The Sin Bin. I want to apply everything she taught me to this endeavor.

I have a Wellness procedure on Friday so my mind will be on that. Maybe while I'm under anesthesia, the characters and I can have some productive conversations!!!

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Moving Forward

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Last week, I posted about how some publishers (not all!) are not paying their author's royalties. It breaks my heart that this situation is allowed to happen. I have so many author friends who are owed thousands of dollars and won't see a cent of it.

I am praying that this situation will soon end and the author's will be appreciated and compensated accordingly.

In the meantime, I will continue to work on my NHRA story. I have the rights back to my first three books. I am taking this as a positive sign because once you see it in print, you see where you could make it a better story. At the time of editing, I was always under time constraints and was afraid to challenge what the editor wanted me to do even though I disagreed with some of their suggestions.

A good example was with my work, Play for Me. The editor had me change the heroine's mother's personality saying she was too mean. I had based this character on someone I knew, but is no longer with us. This lady was a character who told it like it was whether you liked it or not! I changed it anyway thinking the editor knew what they were doing to sell the book.

I've learned a great deal from my editors and thank them for their knowledge and help. I particularly love the help I get with writing the blurb for my books. It's funny how you can write a story, but to sum it up into two paragraphs to get the audience's attention? It's a stumper! Kudos to all of you who have helped me!