Wednesday, March 4, 2020

IWSG: March 2020

I can't believe it's been a month since my last post, but it's the first Wednesday of a new month and that means IWSG blog hop. Thanks to Alex J. Cavanaugh, this vibrant group on this list support each other not just once a month but whenever called upon.

I'm skipping this month's question since I only had the simple answer of 'no.' Instead, I'm going to whine about a major distraction interfering with my work on my newest project. Except I can't yet. It's too secret. LOL  I'll fill you in next month.

In the meantime, I'm working on the outline for the last book in my fantasy series and ready to search out a publisher willing to take on a series that has already had the first book published and then unpublished when the small press closed. I've decided if I don't find a publisher by the time I complete the last book, I will self-publish. Something I didn't want to do, but will.

"Perseverance is failing 19 times and succeeding the 20th." Julie Andrews

In the meantime, a special shout-out to my friend, Jo, for help she's been giving me. And not just advice from my Insta Pot.

My granddaughter turned 3 yesterday. It goes so fast. She is so much fun and exhausting for her old grandmother. The best use of my time is spending it with her.

TV is so boring.... But Supernatural is back on soon. What else is there to watch. I tried a few shows on Netflix and Amazon. Couldn't get into any of them. This is giving me lots of time to read and work on that distraction. I'm rewatching Stargate Atlantis on Amazon for now. I loved that show when it was on. More than the original.

The unusually warm weather is making me anxious for spring. The bulbs are all sprouting already so I guess it's well on its way. I don't miss the snow and cold, but I did think I would get to sled ride and build snowmen with my granddaughter a little. She did learn the joy of throwing snowballs at me this season.

"The glow of one warm thought is to me worth more than money." Thomas Jefferson

Have you had a warm winter? Any thing good on Netflix or Amazon? How is the writing going? Are you going to any conferences or other traveling or is the coronavirus interfering? I've heard of things being canceled or put on hold.

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

IWSG: February 2020

Welcome to another month's addition of Insecure Writer's Support Group blog hop. Thanks to all the great administrators for IWSG and Alex J. Cavanaugh for starting this amazing group. Find the entire list of participants here.

I'm going to skip this month's optional question and get right to some insecurities. And there are a few.

First, I haven't been very good at visiting my blogging friends the past few months. I promise to do better.

Second, I've been preparing my second fantasy series to send out to publishers I've identified who might take on a previously published book. As I've mentioned the first book in the series was published for a about a year by a small press and then they folded a few weeks before the second book was due to be released. Both books have been through extensive edits so I'm mostly refreshing my connection to my characters before I write the third book. The first book sold well while available. I sold out of every copy of every book signing I did for it. Now, I hope to get it back out there while I'm writing the third book. No matter how many books I've had published, the submission process is stressful.

Third, I'm so busy with the Pennwriters state-wide writing group where I serve on the board. So much goes on behind the scenes which I'm sure the masterminds behind IWSG will empathize with. It's been very time and emotionally consuming for a few months now, but I think I see a light at the end. If you're not too far from PA, I hope you'll consider our conference being held in Lancaster this May.

All this really makes me feel spread a little thin. A few concerns with the extended family including my baby sister finally leaving an abusive husband has added to a stressful end of 2019 and start of 2020. 

LOL. Thanks for the therapy session, IWSG. Really, I've very lucky and surrounded by a loving family and friends. My problems are small compared to so many.

Good things going on! My granddaughter is such a delight. She's is like my shadow for 8 or more hours per day. She is so well behaved and easy to take care of. Another blessing on my plate. My daughter is doing great in Boston and has been asked by one of her professors to serve as a editor for his academic book. This is the second time she's been asked to do this kind of work. The last book was in Arabic. Not sure about this one.

TV is in a blah period. How many times can I re-watch The Witcher? Supernatural is on break. Evil finished its season as did Emergence. Sometime in the next year, my husband and I are cutting the cable. I'm taking notes from those who have already. I already have Prime and Netflix. I'll need Hulu to get local programming. What else would you recommend?

What are your insecurities this month? Do you still pay for cable? Anything good I should check out on Netflix or Prime. You guys always give me the best recommendations.

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

IWSG: January2020!

2020!!! Wow! Ready or not, it's a new decade. Will we be blogging still in the next decade? Who knows. But for 2020, IWSG group is still the best there is. Started by Alex J. Cavanaugh, this group offers support and assistance to new and veteran writers. Find the entire list here and don't forget to check out the guidelines for next week's Twitter pitch opportunity.

This month's optional question: What started you on your writing journey? Was it a particular book, movie, story, or series? Was it a teacher/coach/spouse/friend/parent? Did you just "know" suddenly you wanted to write?

My 9th grade English teacher had us read The Hobbit. Then she lent me her own copies of Lord of the Rings. I was hooked on fantasy, but I wasn't really thinking about being a writer at all. I'd always loved reading and continued into adulthood and parenthood though there were years I was so busy I barely opened a book for pleasure. Almost thirty years after that dedicated and inspiring teacher turned me onto Tolkien, I created my own fantasy novel. Once I started writing, I knew I would never quit. As a busy mother, teacher, and coach, knowing I would be a writer didn't suddenly come to me. It was a plan. A plan for me to have some time for what I wanted. Usually that time was 10 PM to midnight, but it was mine.

Writing Business
I've been stuck. The space opera romance I've been working on just isn't flowing. I like my characters and know where the story is going, but I can't seem to sit down and write it. I brooded on it for most of the last four months and then decided I needed to set it aside for now. Instead of writing new stuff, I pulled out the manuscript of First Dragon, the first book in my second fantasy series that was previously published by a small press that went out of business. I'm determined to get that book back in print this year as well as the second book which has been through two rounds of editing by the now defunct publisher. Only a few independent publishers will consider a book that has been previously published. I'm making a list and checking it twice.

How good is The Witcher? Really, really good. I've watched it three times. The first one left me confused until near the last two episodes. The story is told along multiple timelines and it took me two viewings to totally figure it out. Then I watched the third time just to enjoy the Witcher's interactions with others. So much humor I missed at first though it is a dark, violent show.  I wasn't over-the-moon thrilled with the fourth season of The Expanse but it was okay. Hoping season 5 is better. The Bone Collector is a new show premiering on Friday. I'm going to check it out. Criminal Minds returns tonight for its last season. It's a creepy how, I'm going to watch anyway.

Happy New Year to you all. Our holidays were fun and stress-free. I'm grateful everyday that our children all get along with each other and us. They love spending time together. As they get older and busier, those times become more precious and appreciated. 

"May you have warmth in your igloo, oil in your lamp, and peace in your heart." Inuit proverb

I'm a long time member of RWA. If you've heard about anything going on with that largest of writers' organization, you'll understand how incredible it all is. Members like me who have only casually paid attention to the leadership don't even know what to think. It's like watching a train wreck in slow motion. That's all I have to say about it.

We've had our first real snow and I'll be taking my daughter sled riding today. And she wants to build a snowman just like Olaf. Yes, we're there already. Frozen has entered her understanding of the world. LOL

Have you watched The Witcher? Were your holidays pleasant? Are you enjoying any snow? Participating in the Twitter pitch?