Saturday, December 15, 2012

Consistency Is Key

    For the past year and a half since I started my writing career I've been off and on with my writing. But recently I decided that I would make writing a daily habit. I started with just 15 minutes a day (yes, I use a timer). From my business training I've learned that small and incremental changes create lasting change, so I have been improving over the past few weeks. For two weeks I wrote for 15 minutes, the next two weeks for 16, and am currently writing for 17 minutes a day. Since I've started this process I have brainstormed, written, and edited an entire picture book story and even done some major brainstorming and writing for a second story. Not bad for only 15-17 minutes a day. Every two weeks, when I feel like I have mastered the time frame, I will bump the time up one minute. Soon I will be at 20 minutes and in no time at all, an hour. My productivity will go up and hopefully my chances for publication. Good luck figuring out your goals and consistently reaching them!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Present Tense

  I am not quite finished with The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, but I have to say that I am amazed at the technique of using present tense throughout the book. Not only is the tense difficult to maintain, but it is so fitting for this particular story. Even with the jumps through time it feels like we're right there, experiencing the Circus, seeing Chandresh's mansion, watching the Illusionist. I love the mystery it creates along with the sense of urgency, pulling you through the story. I've tried this technique before. I love the end result, but I couldn't imagine keeping it up throughout an entire book. Of course it is a fun technique to try, even just as a prologue or summary. I am going to re-try this technique this month for a new picture book. I'm not sure if I can work with this tense without giving a creepy or mysterious feel (not very good for picture books), but worth a try anyway.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Becoming a Writer

      I have been putting off starting my writing blog because I haven't gotten anything published yet (or knew what to write on my blog). Really, to be honest, I have only been actively writing stories for about a year. My sister and her family moved in with me while job hunting and she said, "It has always been my dream to be related to an author. So I will take over the household chores like laundry, dishes, etc. That way you can earn some side income to help cover the costs of us living here." Well, when you say it like that, sure, I'll jump right in. I felt a little guilty giving up the grunt work, but I studied Creative Writing in college and have loved listening to, telling and writing stories my entire life. So, why not? To tell the truth my start was rocky, but I got in with a great group of writers that are positive, uplifting, inspiring and so much more experienced than I am. Through writing, reading about writing, and my "Critiki" group I have seem major improvements in my work. Of course I have a long way to go, but now I've got two middle grade novels in process, a five book picture book series (so far), and three more on the way. Most of my manuscripts need a lot of work, but all of them have great potential. My sister moved out in November and I haven't really had any "side income" just yet, but the process has started, the fire is lit, and now I'm on my way--housework and all.