Monday, May 25, 2015

Memorial Day

Please take a moment to remember the members of our military, past and present, 
as you celebrate the Memorial Day holiday.

Friday, May 22, 2015

This I know for sure...

My work hours will be changing almost back to what I was working before. I'm thrilled to have my old writing time back - 3:30pm to 5:00 or 5:15pm. I'm not sure how long these hours will be in effect. The company I work for is moving in the next month or so to new space in the same area and they're using the move to reorganize in terms of job flexibility as an added benefit so that it'll be available to almost all of the employees except for management.

My permanent new hours will depend on who I get teamed up with and what we can work out with each other of when we want to come in and leave each day. Regardless of whether I get out at 3:00 or start later in the morning, I'll get that hour and a half or more writing time in one block instead of trying to grab 15 minutes here, 30 minutes there like I've been doing for the last few months.

I'm looking forward to being productive again instead of just inching along at a pace of a few pages a week.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

What's Up Wednesday

This week...

My current WIP (work in progress): I was right. I didn't do any writing to speak of. I managed to jot down a few ideas but that's about it.

Quote of the week: "Believe you can and you're halfway there." ~ Theodore Roosevelt  I've printed this out and it hangs where I can see it every day.

What I'm reading: I'm still reading It's Always Been You by Jessica Scott. I didn't have much time to read last week either, but I did have a great visit with family that I don't see that often.

Random things:  I received news that my work schedule may be changing again. I'm really hoping it happens because I'll go back to almost the same hours I had before. I should know for sure within the week. Keeping my fingers crossed. :o)

Random Photo of the Week:

A picture of my cat recovering from his trip to the "dentist." They shaved part of the fur off his front leg for the IV.

Monday, May 18, 2015

What's In A Title?

If you ask any writer what's the hardest part about writing and submitting a manuscript to an agent and/or editor for consideration for publication, I would say the majority of us would say it's writing the synopsis.

A synopsis is a brief summary of the entire book highlighting the theme, the characters, their conflict, and their relationships. In my opinion, the synopsis is the most important part of what a writer submits to an agent or editor. It's what convinces the agent/editor to offer a contract or representation. I think the reason most writers refer to it as "the dreaded synopsis" is it's so difficult to take a 400 page novel and distill it down to a 4 or 5 page summary and still be sure that it includes all the pertinent information and still hooks the reader and isn't just a flat recitation of the main points of the story.

While I struggle when writing a synopsis, coming up with a title for a work in progress is almost as difficult. I usually refer to the book when I'm writing it by either the hero or heroine's name i.e. Jason's book. It's only after I've revised it a few times and have gotten feedback from my critique partner and beta readers that I start to play around with possible titles.

You would think that coming up with a title would be easy, but for me it's one of the hardest parts of the entire process. I try to find something that either relates to the theme of the story or the hero or heroine in some way. I then send out an email to those beta readers and my critique partner and ask which of the possible titles they like best. I also usually include a desperate plea for suggestions as well.

The title, along with the cover art, and the back cover copy are the first things a reader will use to make the decision to purchase the book or not. That makes the title one of the most important tools a writer has in their arsenal which is probably why I struggle with it so much.

And I have a feeling I'm not the only writer who does.

Friday, May 15, 2015

This I know for sure...

My nephew's fiancee, who earned a degree in forensic science, accepted a job offer in her field after toiling away for 2 years in a low paying retail job. It's great news and we're all very happy for her. She's a great person. We all love her and can't wait to officially make her part of the family. Their move is a little bittersweet because she and my nephew will be moving two hours away.

My nephew and I are close. He's lived across the street from me almost his entire life (his college years notwithstanding) and now I won't see nearly as often as I have in the past or that I would like. So I went out to dinner last night with my sister, mom, and nephew as sort of a goodbye dinner for him. (We invited his fiancee, but she had to work and told us to go ahead without her as they are moving this weekend.) Thank goodness there's Skype and Face Time.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

What's Up Wednesday

This week...

My current WIP (work in progress): Had a good week with revisions. I feel like I got a lot accomplished this week and have solved one of the sub-plot issues I was having. Most likely, I won't be doing any writing next week. We're having family come for a visit so we'll be spending time catching up and showing them the local sights.

Quote of the week: "In any project the important factor is your belief. Without belief, there can be no successful outcome." ~ William James

What I'm reading: I've just started It's Always Been You by Jessica Scott. I'm still in the first chapter, but I've enjoyed the other books in the Coming Home series.

Random things: It was ninety degrees yesterday after being in the 60's for the last few days. It's hard to believe we had snow two weeks ago. Our trees have burst into leafy bloom almost overnight.

Random Photo of the Week:

Found this cool twisty carrot in a bag of organic carrots from the grocery store.