See My Dilemma? #IWSG

Here’s my dilemma:

  • Focus on one project (work is done quicker, but reaches fewer people)
  • Focus on multiple projects (takes longer for each piece to finish, but reaches more people)

Focusing on one thing (like, say, writing an epic saga of a book) can still take forever. I should know. I’m still writing the first draft of RTD, and I started late last year. I should be around done with it by now (or at least close to it) but I’m not. Because it’s a monster and there’s sooo much to it. I’m focusing all my creative energy on finishing it, but in doing so, I’m not entering any contests, writing short stories or extra pieces. I’m not getting other work out there. See my dilemma?

Do I stretch myself thin by working on multiple projects so I can reach more people, or keep steady so I can finish the damn book to complete the series? Which makes more sense?

*pulls out hair*

I’m seriously considering doing the NL (newsletter) again. I know. I know. I sort of didn’t follow through with it last time, but I was way overwhelmed, it was confusing to my dumb non-tech brain, and I didn’t see the benefit. What’s changed? Not a bunch, but I think it’s probably pretty necessary at this point. Just being honest. I’m not a big fan of NLs, so having my own is foreign, but as I’ve learned lurking in FB writing groups, it’s a necessity in this business. I have to get one. But it’s okay, because I have stuff I can share. Plus, I like to think my dumb-tech brain has gotten a little smarter (it hasn’t. I just like to pretend).

I’m thinking of doing a quarterly NL—what do you think? Some opt for monthly, or a few times a month. That’s too much. As a writer and reader, too much. A little update four times a year should be plenty, right? Anything more, and we’re on stalking terms, especially since I maintain this lovely blog with fresh content every Wednesday.

In other super-related news, I stumbled upon a writing contest (I get notifications for them constantly, but don’t participate because…read dilemma above). Although there’s a monetary prize, this contest offers something better: targeted audience. Actual BETA READERS in your genre! It’s a new site with a program that connects writers with their intended audience, and potentially permanent beta readers. As a kickoff, they’re launching contests (novels, novellas, short stories) across all genres, and will match readers interested in that genre to judge. HOW COOL IS THAT? It’s called fresh.ink. Check it out! 😊

Please offer dilemma and NL insights—I’m open and welcome to it all.

Insecure Writer’s Support Group (IWSG) is a monthly blog hop for writers at all levels to share their fears and insecurities in a safe and encouraging place. Please drop by and say hi to Alex Cavanaugh who started this nifty concept in bringing us all together.

Maybe There is Hope After All

So, I’m an idiot.

I’m not Marissa Tomei in My Cousin Vinny—or anywhere close to it—but I *guess* I should’ve realized the reason my air conditioning wasn’t blowing is because I had the main knob turned down to the lowest setting. You know, the knob that basically indicates how much air should be blowing out? Yeah.  That one. That sucker was on the basically-off setting while I had each vent and the circulation BLASTING. Batman got into my car to take it to Napa (to charge the AC unit) and before we even left the driveway, he turned the knob and there was instant cooling relief. And then he made a face as if to ask, really?

Like I said – I’m an idiot.

The door-handle is still detached, and I’d still prefer to travel via unicorn, but at least I know I won’t drop dead of heat exhaustion at a McDonalds drive-in (like I did nearly a week ago) since I now know which knob to turn. Mind you, I’ve only had Georgie for ten years, but you know how things randomly change in cars. Don’t they? No? Shut up.

Batman and I booked our wedding photographer 😊

I was smart with that. Read the contract three times to make sure I wasn’t agreeing to be turned into a human centipede (you never know), and maybe only so much intelligence can be used per person in a short amount of time. Or maybe I just have my stupid days/weeks/months. Whatever. At least I used my smarts accordingly with nabbing our photographer. We’re about to nail down our florist next, so after that, all the *main* wedding components will be done, and Batman and I can reward ourselves for all this adulting with our trip to Colorado Springs! 😊

Two weeks and we’ll be walking through Garden of the Gods and checking out Manitou Springs and going white water rafting which I am both excited and terrified for. Believe me,  I want to go. I was the one who signed us up. But I also have no upper arm strength and I’m slightly awkward and definitely non-athletic, unlike Batman who used to be a tri-athlete (true!) So, if I suddenly stop blogging early September, you’ll know the excursion didn’t go so well, and Batman will probably be in hiding somewhere after killing the guide that let me die. (Most likely true!)

Non-wedding/car/Co trip stuff: I’m on my third Jenn Bennett book. The first one I read, Anatomical Shape of a Heart, was good, not great (for me, at least). I liked it, finished it, but didn’t grab for her next book. In fact, I forgot her name until I read Alex, Approximately and I still didn’t realize it was the same author. Well, you know how when you think about a story a lot, you realize how much you liked it? I went back to see who wrote Alex, Approximately and started another book by the author – Starry Eyes. I only NOW realize it’s the same author of  Anatomical Shape of a Heart. Huh. I guess I do like her stuff after all. What I’m saying is it took me a while to be a fan of hers. Maybe all my “non” fans are people who haven’t read a lot of my stuff, or even know that I write. Maybe there is hope after all. 😊

Had to get in my little bit of writing-related news in. Happy Hump day to all of you!

P.S. Look what I sent Batman the other day:

He is so going to love being married to me.

Oh, How the Tables Have Turned

Aaaaaaand I’m writing this Tuesday night again. Meh. Obviously, I can’t get my shit together on Sunday/Monday and plan ahead. You know, like I normally do. I don’t know what it is about July but I’m off my game with my blogging. Except…I’m super ON MY GAME WITH RTD 😊 😊 😊

Don’t know what that is? You can leave now. Kidding. RTD is Return to Dellapalania, the fifth and final book of my super popular series, Arizal Wars. I feel like it’s going to be a saga since I’ve been writing it since last November and I am STILL NOT DONE. I only emphasize/shout that because normally I can crank out a first draft (even this series) within that time frame. Typically…6-10 months. Usually. But this is the final book which has to bring everything back together which means more stuff happening, which means more writing. A lot more writing. I’m also planning a wedding too, so there’s that. 😊

Now, since I’m a panster, it’s pretty safe to assume I’m not entirely sure when I’ve hit the middle of my WIP, but I think I’m there. I *think* I’ve just tipped past the half-way point because I’ve got a better idea of what needs to happen instead of letting my characters go wild. They’ve been doing their own important things, but now I have to step in and make sure it all comes together. So, yes, I will still be pansting, but the barely-there lines are becoming sharper, and the WIP has now given me an outline. Oh, how the tables have turned.

Haven’t spoken much about writing here since I save that for Patreon, and this is more of my “I went to jury duty/am planning a wedding/things are happening in my life” sort of place. But writing is still a huge part of it, and I didn’t want you thinking I jumped ship on the whole thing and am now dead inside. (I’m not. Not yet. I have a wedding to plan 😊)

What about you? Any jury duty/wedding planning/things happening on your end?

Taste Testing and Character Traits IWSG

Batman and I went to our first wedding taste-testing 😊

I must say, if I’m ushered into a room with an open bar and a three-course meal (with passed appetizers and a display station) on a Tuesday night and NOT have to pay for any of it, I plan on getting married more often.

This freaking rocked.

I’m not sure what I expected. That’s a lie. Yes, I do: I expected to walk into a plain conference room where there would be a long table filled with couples sitting in front of a plate, waiting to try a sample of each entrée. This is not what happened. Batman and I attended a “fake reception” complete with a cocktail hour and dinner so we could access not only the food, but the wait staff, service, and overall appearance as well. So far, we liked what we saw:

Since the selfie option on my phone isn’t working (and because I can’t figure out how to fix it) I asked Batman to take a picture of us. This is what he sent me:

So, yes 😊 Wedding things are happening. And I’m super into company’s offering me free food and booze to secure potential business.

Now, onto writing things! July’s question for Insecure Writer’s Support Group:

What personal traits have you written into your characters?

Hmm. Probably more than I like to admit. I think—whether subconsciously or not—we tend to write our own traits into our characters, but for me, personally, I think I include a lot of my humor. What can I say—I like writing characters I could be friends with. I’m not sure if this counts, but I definitely write in my fears. I’m not terribly fond of spiders (if you haven’t noticed) and since I’m not keen on drowning either, I had Fallon battle this giant underwater creature—the Gorgen—which is very similar to a giant sea-spider. (Plague of Mybyncia – Book 2). Again, not sure if that counts as a trait, but I use my characters to battle my own fears. You know, writing is cathartic and stuff 😊

Insecure Writer’s Support Group (IWSG) is a monthly blog hop for writers at all levels to share their fears and insecurities in a safe and encouraging place. Please drop by and say hi to Alex Cavanaugh who started this nifty concept in bringing us all together.

Life Can’t Be That Bad

This should probably be saved for IWSG, but I’m not feeling confident about writing. ☹

At all.

Let me start again.

I’m not feeling confident about writing for a living. I want to (really, really), but I’m just not confident that it’s ever going to happen. Like, ever. Hopefully, this is the tiny pessimist in me screaming to be heard, and she’ll just shut up. Maybe she won’t. She’s been singing this bull for years and sometimes I get sucked in. Grr.

I’m just overwhelmed. Not by the writing part, but the everything-else part. Some people can write AND hold down a fulltime job (with overtime) AND be happy in their relationships/social lives AND only sleep three hours but that’s not me. I need eight hours.

I’m fine, really. Just feeling a little sad, and maybe disappointed. I’m sure this will pass until the pessimist returns again in five or six months, but by then, I should have a decent wine collection going, so I’ll deal with it discreetly.

There’re a lot of positive/encouraging things I post on FB, and yes, it’s mainly for all of you, because I know you’re all hurting in your own private ways. But I also post them for me as a reminder to breathe, and that it’s going to be okay. So, maybe I won’t write for a living, and maybe I’m not supposed to. Maybe there’s something else way cooler  that I’m supposed to do? *shrugs*

I honestly have no idea.

But it’ll be okay.  I have a wine collection growing. Life can’t be that bad. 😊

I’m Being a Good Writer

Batman took me to my first Bridal Expo.

I paid and there was free food and a bar so…yeah. Plus, he’s a gamer, so I spun it like we were doing recon. Because we were. Because this entire year is recon for next year so when the time comes to make the hard/expensive decisions, we know what we’re doing. 😊 (realistically: we know slightly more than nothing).

I’m a planner. You? I have to look at things months in advance. Interesting since I’m a panster when it comes to writing, but I usually spin my wheels thinking when I’m not at my keyboard. So…sort of off-duty planning, I guess. (We’ll call that backstage recon writing).

I’ve been working on Return to Dellapalania which has been coming along at a slug’s speed, but I’m constantly distracted with Pintrest and the Knot and Wedding Wire and JUST KNOWING there’s so much stuff I could be looking at. I’m excited, guys—what can I say? But I’ve decided to limit wedding-stuff to thirty minutes to an hour AFTER I’ve committed myself to around an hour of writing.

See? I’m being a good writer 😊

But what I really need to do is work on RTD, so I’m going to do that. Need to give the Patrons over at ol’ Patreon something to read on Friday. That’s right. I have little snippets from my first draft that I post to Patreon so you can sneak a peek at what first drafts look like (and how much they suck).

Hope you’re having a great week!

Happy hump day!

I Need Some Purchased Hours IWSG

Besides writing, what other creative outlets do you have?

(I figured I’d jump right into the IWSG question; no introduction. I’m dangerous like that😉)

Let’s see, besides writing, I have a ton of creative outlets—I just don’t utilize most of them. There is a very dusty keyboard to my left that I wish I would play more of, but any available free time goes to this keyboard (see what I did there?) I also love to sketch sarcastic cartoon comics that I day-dream will be the next Garfield (but like, a thousand times different. And darker. Way darker.) If we could buy time, I’d never have money for anything because I’d spend it all on more hours. Forget the wedding. Batman and I will make due at the courthouse—with a kickass honeymoon, let’s not get crazy here—but everything else would go to the “purchased hours” I could actually be productive in.

Ah, society. I could serve you much better. But you keep making me pay for shit.

What about you? Do you dabble in more than one artistic field? Or when you’re fed up with your favorite medium, what do you switch to?

Insecure Writer’s Support Group (IWSG) is a monthly blog hop for writers at all levels to share their fears and insecurities in a safe and encouraging place. Please drop by and say hi to Alex Cavanaugh who started this nifty concept in bringing us all together.