Friday, June 20, 2014

What Do You Do In-between Manuscripts?

Here I sit, at an impasse. Finished two novels and querying one, somewhat, with the other on hold. I have a NaNoWriMo rough draft I'm just dying to revise on my fancy Scrivener program. It's going slow with Scrivener being a huge learning curve for me. I'm unsure of what's  in store for my two "revised" manuscripts and should probably hold off before I begin another.  Maybe?  So in the meantime . . .

I’m playing around with Scrivener and learning its features by writing short stories. I usually enter writing contests or flash fiction, to keep the ol' brain muscle flexible. I like to jump around genres and POVs with each story, figuring this is a good exercise. Write about people I've never been, or want to be, people who scare me, or I don't understand, situations that change us, dreams of a better world. Valid reasons to tell a tale I suppose. 

If I write everyday I’ll develop into a better writer, one that gets published. Right? That’s the mantra I repeat every morning. That’s when my internal world will finally see the light of readers. If I’ve touched their hearts as much as my own—then it’s the ultimate dream to reality.

I write mostly at the day job, lucky to have a place that's quiet enough (except for the kids’ chess camp). In the mornings I can usually clock in a few hours, before the bustle. Did I mention we have espresso on tap? 

Anne Lamont says the joy is in the writing itself -- and it is.  It's a lifesaver for me. When the world and my family -- and their problems, become too much, I'm happy to have an escape. It's a personal journey, one most writers long to share with readers. Of all the arts I love and experienced: singing, painting, sculpture -- writing a novel has been the most fulfilling. I feel most connected to the world somehow. I may open a page and pick up writing where I left off, and find myself surrounded by the scene in some way similar to what I’m writing.  An example is when I wrote a hospital scene for a book, years ago, and found myself in the hospital (comp book in bag) writing a scene in a hospital. Those were the days I used to carry a composition book around with my little two boys in tow. Writing wherever, and whenever I could squeeze in a few pages.  I’ve come a little further on this journey. I have a set writing schedule. This is huge. I can organize myself much better. . . and in time, who knows. 

So, what do you do when waiting for beat readers to finish with your manuscript? Or waiting for editors notes, or just waiting?  I’m going to work on the short stories of wild and crazy ideas I love to entertain -- and if I’m lucky, if it’s pertinent, I just might get one published.  Keep writing. 
-- ( it's the fun part) 

* Had trouble finding Ann Lamont's exact quote. But here's a slew of some of the BEST quotes on Writing and they're from Ann Lamont. 
Thank you, Ann!  We need these. 

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