Writing, beaches and sand wishes

Sunday, September 9, 2012

The query and the synopsis - my 82,000 word novel

I worked from 3:30 until about 8 pm on these two items.

Taking shape, taking shape. The market is very tight for writers. E pubbing which is faster, higher return etc. may be the route to go.  I am not sure at this pint.

I still have a lot of tinkering and massaging of my manuscript. It never ends. I love my story. I love my characters.

I'm leaving it alone for a week, maybe longer, a vacation of sorts? I need a break from it. Each time I go back it takes a better shape.

Writing is re-writing. Again, again, again, again and a few more (several) agains.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

By the by Stickman put one of my short stories on.

Many of the reader submissions are tales of expats and their misadventures in Asia. My story Living the Bells of St. Trinium's can be read here:  http://www.stickmanbangkok.com/ReadersSubmissions2012/reader7485.htm

It is at the very bottom of the Readers Submissions column, scroll way down to the bottom of the page, look for Wilkins MacQueen dated 18/6/12 for a slice of a day in the life.

This story was destined for a monthly column I was to write that didn't materialize in a neighboring city monthly magazine.  The magazine was going to publish it and then tell me after it was published they couldn't pay me. So I yanked it. Hey, no hard feelings, I'm just glad I was able to pull it before it was published.

A boost by Rob Parnell last week & The Horse Whisperer Revisited

My unease as I finish my novel is behind me, at this moment. Rob's site is one of the top ten writer sites on the internet according to Writers' Digest. Rob went through some correspondence I sent him and published parts of it, commenting on my observation, queasiness, doubts, you name it. Overwhelmed is the word I used.

He walked through it, commenting, pointing out things that I had noted.

My panic, the sleeplessness, the loss of appetite, the stress - the last things I expected to go through as I worked very, very hard to reach my goal. But I did. I topped my manuscript out at 82,500 words.

From start to finish this piece has taken me about 5 months. I used to be happy with 500 - 800 words a day.  Now I easily can hit 1,500 a day and if I don't work at my day job I can put out 2,500. That's my record for one day.

You can't churn out garbage (although that happens often enough) they need to be good words, they turn into great words (we all hope/pray) with the endless rewrites.

Anyone can write. Few can write every day, face it every single day, without a break, all the endless rewrites and finish it. To revise again and again and again, and again.  The experience (this is my fourth novel, I also have a whack of short stories and poetry)  from the other three gave me sharper tools so I could immerse myself in it non stop almost every waking moment and reach the goals I set for myself a short while back.

I'm barely done this one, I will start on book two soon, the twins I hope will grow into triplets. .

It is based on a true story involving a real horse and a very prominent person who is still involved in horses. The more research I did early on, the more I knew I had to write it. It wouldn't leave me alone.

I owned, bred and showed horses. My novel is authentic in the jumping and dressage details of training and competition. I took up competitive jumping when most riders are retiring. It was great to put my experience to good use on the page.

Everyone who loves horse stories has likely read the book The Horse Whisperer. Great book with an unbelievable, disappointing ending that had no truth in it. The author didn't understand the nature of the horse and I guess no one told him what he should have known to get to the right ending. The ending didn't stand up and made me cringe and angry. He tricked us. He didn't knowing enough about the subject to a get a believable ending out. It happens.

The movie had a better ending. At least Hollywood avoided repeating his mistake.

So I need to sort out this blog, get the Thai stuff back on, the photos and the early days here when I was fresh to Thailand. I think I'll start up a fresh blog, just for writing and the odd thing that catches me, a photo. I never wanted to fill and maintain two blogs, but maybe I'll look at that.

I'm still having a lot of trouble with Thai showing up on my blog. The dashboard, the banner, why can't it all stay in English? Too much to ask I guess.

Anyway, I've written today from 12 noon until midnight. Time to read a few pages and get ready to do it again tomorrow. The more you write, the more you can write. I never experienced "block" of any kind. I doubt it exists.

I do know without writing a lot, without reading a lot nothing anyone produces will get any better.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Serious about writing? How much are you writing

every day?

I'm writing about 1,200 to 2,000 words a day. Every day. The only thing that varies is the amount of time I have available. I work. Until recently I worked 2 jobs, yeah, 7 days a week. The only days off I got were national government mandated holidays. 3, almost 4 years of that. I still wrote every day, but not as many words at each sitting, a girl has to sleep sometime.

I don't do that anymore.  Being in the habit of writing every day I can churn out my story like you wouldn't believe, because I acquired the habit.