I'm somewhat shocked to find it's been over a month since we were last here together. I do apologize for that. May was a little less frenetic than April, but somehow it felt just as busy.
You will no doubt notice a face in place of the sparkly shoe in my profile picture. Yes, that would be me. I finally decided to face the world with...well....my face. If I'm going to be a famous author, some people will want to know what I look like eventually so why not make that happen ahead of time and get it over with, right?
Even had my hair professionally done for the occasion. Ok, it was my normal hair cutting appointment but I do believe Terri took extra pains because she knew her work would photographed. I think she did a good job. The breeze, however, decided to do a little rearranging of its own. Still, I love this cut. I must do because I've been sporting it for most of this year already with no plans to change.
So what have I been up to in the last month? Well, a little bit of this, a little bit of that, a little bit of haven't done a whole lot of anything.
I don't know. I suppose the whole unemployment issue has begun to prey on my mind a bit. The savings is dropping to dangerously low points and with nothing coming in, I'm getting just a tad nervous here. And since going without health insurance isn't an option (thank you, Obama), I'm going to have to find employment soon, maybe even another cube (ugh!).
But on the bright side, I did get a call from my former employer inquiring about my interest in doing some contract work for one of the other offices. That deal has yet to be brokered but if it does become reality, that will ease the furrowed brow a bit and give some breathing room.
I did work on a short story idea for the Writer's Digest competition, however, me and my writer's group have come to the realization that I do not know how to write a quirky, nerdy hero. The hero in my short story is supposed to be the stereotypical computer nerd who lands an unbelievably gorgeous blond who isn't all she seems to be. One writer friend said he sounded like a less physically developed version of one of my stronger Alpha heroes.
Ah, yes. Mr. Thorpe. You do seem to invade my writing quite often these days. Must mean I need to get back to your story at some point in time but not right now, my love. Be patient (not one of his virtues, by the way).
Muddled short story heroes aside, I've also been working on my other career pursuit - copywriting. The profile picture you see here is also my official portrait for my professional profiles at LinkedIn and with the Professional Writers Alliance through AWAI.
I must admit to being a bit nervous about the first foray into this copywriting thing. No jobs yet but I sit here, almost in fear of the first one actually dropping into my lap. I know I learned how to do this copywriting thing, but I still have heart palpitations when I think about actually doing the work. From what I hear, it's perfectly normal to be anxious about the first job. I still feel like I don't know what I'm doing and that I'm not ready to take that first step out into the real world.
But will I ever be? Probably not. I guess it's a little like pulling off a band-aid. It's gotta be done eventually and no matter when, it'll still hurt like....well, you know. Just need to get in there and do it.
I've never considered myself very good at selling, and now I find myself in a position that requires I sell myself, or rather my skill as a copywriter. My heart is in fiction, though. Can the two coincide peacefully? Only time will tell.
What about the book, you say? Yes, the book is still there in rewrite hell. Because of working on the short story, I did miss my June 1 deadline for that but my writer's group is flexy-bendy, as one would say. I am currently going through and putting scenes together in as much of a coherent format as I can. I have one scene early on in two different versions. I love each version and trying to merge the two into one has been an interesting experience. Talk about killing your darlings. I made a merge attempt at Panera on Tuesday but did more staring out the window than merging paragraphs. My mind just couldn't stay focused for some reason.
I have been doing more reading lately. My writing always improves when I'm reading at the same time. Romances mainly but even before I finished the last one, I realized I do need to read some sci-fi soon. My stories do have a romance thread running through them, but my main focus is the action. Sweet romances have their place and are a nice change but I gotta have some action with my romance, or I get bored regardless if I'm writing or reading.
And I mean non-romance related action, people. Get your minds outta the gutter. Sheesh!
My Kindle is stuffed with a ton of books right now in both fiction and non-fiction forms. It'll take me years to get through them all and I don't stop getting them, especially the free ones. I also get the anthologies for 99 cents. I've discovered some excellent authors that way. A few duds, sure, but even one really good one makes up for the crappy ones, and there's usually at least one really good one in every anthology.
Then again, I've read some that I feel pretty sure were written by raw beginners who never once looked at a writing how-to before putting their stuff out there. Two words - info dump - the bane of the new writer's existence.
I've been guilty of it myself, but after reading so many books where you get the entire background of the story in the very first chapter, I can see why there's tons of advice against it. You get a sentence to start the story and then whammo! You're sent careening back through time without the benefit of a madman with a blue box (Oh, Doctor, where art thou?). For pages upon pages, you read how the hero or heroine got to this time in their lives.
Really? Any chance we're getting back to the current time anytime soon?
So, no info dump, people. Please. Weave those details into your story but sparingly. Don't get me wrong. I do care about what came before, but mainly I'm there to watch what's happening right now, this minute.
Whew! Glad I got that off my chest. And since this post has become more of a ramble than anything, I'll leave you there. I can't promise I'll be more timely with posting, but I do hope to be.