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Scorched Earth

In 1997, I started college.  Living away from home for the first time was a game-changer.  As much as I enjoyed the time I spent with my new friends and neighbors, I wasn’t able to socialize all the time.  That’s why I spent some time in the dorm computer lab, essentially a closet with a pair of ancient computers.  Over the course of that year, I wrote a novel called Life Is Pain.

Eventually, I went to revise the novel, since I liked the story.  My only copies were on 3.25″ disks and my computer died, leaving me without a way to look at the old version.

It was a scorched earth scenario.

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NaNoWriMo 2014

I’ve taken part in the November ritual of fast writing in the past, crafting four novel drafts.  As much as I love the rush of building a story and its narrative in the span of a month, this year, I won’t be able to take part.

This isn’t me dodging my writing or feeling like I don’t have time.  There are other things I need to pursue.

Here’s a convenient list!

  1. Editing.  I need to get two of those novels I mentioned up to speed so I can tell editors and agents about them.
  2. Query letters.  I need to get more of these out there.  Won’t get published without making those contacts.
  3. Writing.  Can’t give up on making new strings of words.  After all, that’s the dream.

Maybe next year for me.  How about all of you?  Anyone planning on doing NaNo this year?

I discovered an odd development with my future noir novel when I showed the first chapter to some friends: I’d given great details to the side characters and none to the leads.  The more important a character was to the story, the less I’d said about how they look or move.

Talk about backwards.

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An Enduring Love Of Cartoons

Sadly, Saturday Morning Cartoons have come to an end.  No network carries animated shows for kids to watch as their weekend begins.  It was a ritual that started in the 1960s, bringing families together in such a simple way.

My family was no different.

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Jeanne or Margot?

Talking with two of my writer friends, I started wondering if I needed to change the name of the main character in my future noir novel, Blanc Noir.  I’ve been using one name for a while, but another was suggested to me.  For fun, I thought I’d share the dilemma with you.

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Searching For Word Counts

Most writers, myself included, are slaves to our word counts.  They determine how long our stories can be, mark our success over time, and serve as personal trophies proving how capable we are.

It’s no wonder I stress so much over getting something written each day.

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Years ago, my sister mentioned that she read to escape from the world.  Her point was that if she wanted to see reality, all she needed to do was look outside or turn on the news.  Like me, April tends to read fiction, though I favor science fiction and fantasy more than she does.

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I’ve been away.  Sorry about that.

Let me set the record straight on a few things and that might help.

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To Seek A Patron?

In the Renaissance, art and culture were funded by those with wealth acting as patrons for the artisans.  In many ways, this was the ultimate form of “know your audience,” since the artist had to please one person, though anyone could enjoy what was created.  Those who had the funds could keep the artisans creating instead of dividing efforts between art and other work.

I wish there was something like that now, something that could fund my writing.

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What I Want From My Writing

There is often a purpose behind an artist’s work, no matter what the medium might be.  Paint, music, even the arrangement of words can all carry theme, meaning, and substance.

I asked myself a while back what I was after.  The answer pleased me–and set a challenge.

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