A Writer’s Affirmation

Happy New Year. I am starting 2018 with the belief that I am a good enough writer. I may not be the best writer, I am not yet or may never be a best-selling writer, but my work stands on its own and is comparable and worth only to that which I give it. I am my own worst critic and by the same measure, I am my own best influencer.
I will start the year believing that no matter how many pieces I do or do not sell or manuscripts or scripts that get published or produced that I will have tried my best.
I will not compare myself to the writers to the left and right of me, whether you are friend or foe, celebrity or closet writer. I have realised I am and always will be worthy to be called a writer because I write. Because I answer the call to put words to the page when some never do or will.
I will not judge my success by quantity but quality of my work. I am not someone else, whom may be able to write a book in a day. I am only myself and therefore will only write how much I can according to what I can at the pace I can in the best way I know how.
I am me. I am a writer. I will spend 2018 writing with the aspiration that one day my words will make a positive difference in the life of a reader.

 

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Moving Forward to 2018

I am enjoying my holidays. Christmas was well spent with family and winter activities that for a change did not include bringing my notebook and taking notes for plots or future articles. I spent a lot of 2017 focused on family first but also doing freelance photography, writing my second children’s book and finishing up smaller writing assignments.

I hope the holidays are kind to you. Time for me to prepare for the new year ahead.  I’ll post again soon (the absence of writer’s block permitting).

Time to Celebrate

It’s been so long since I’ve written anything I’ve almost forgotten how to do this. Lucky for me it’s just after 3 a.m. and with very little sleep I seem to be able to do almost anything.
Christmas is just around the corner and I’ve had time to partake in almost every Christmas tradition my family has developed over the years from seeing the Nutcracker performed by the Royal Winnipeg Ballet to baking shortbread cookies with the family and putting up the Christmas tree before December first. (These are some of the joys of having young children) and might I add they are growing too fast. Both events and all tradition partaking were good times.
Due to personal matters I’ve needed to take the last few months away from focussing on my writing to sort out other aspects of my life. It’s been trying and still is but I’ve finally managed to start writing again. I have in the past month shopped my children’s picture book manuscript around to a few publishers. (It’s a Christmas story coincidentally) and I will be happy if I can reach my goal of having it on store shelves by next October. It’s a start at least.
A really great story editor sent me really valuable notes on my first feature film script which I am hoping to start the last edit of and shop around to producers by mid-March if circumstances allow. Just this afternoon I worked on a novel that has been under construction for nine years now. I think one of my New Year’s resolutions is going to be…. On second thought I’ll share that list with you in the New Year.
On that note I’m wishing you and yours happy holidays this season. Until the New Year…

Let the Challenge Begin

Welcome   to Day 1, week one of NaNoWriMo. This is the second favorite month of the year for many authors and first time writers who take on the challenge of writing 50,000 words that somehow morph into a novel in thirty days.

This is my second time participating. The last time I participated I came out with the rough draft for Nuka at just over 38,000 words and two years and four drafts later I have a polished version. Unfortunately mostly for personal reasons it will not be published but that’s ok and was my call. For my first novella(which is an okay result for a first attempt at writing a novel in my books) it was the writing process that I savored some days and other days hated the most.

Are you participating? Do you have an idea for a novel? If so are you using an outline or winging it?(If you have no ideas for a plot see the resources I’ve put together for you at the end of this post.)  Have you told anyone if you have accepted the challenge? Have you asked anyone to be your coach – to gently nudge you to write on the days when writing seems like the hardest thing to do? What is your writing routine? How will you accomplish your goal of 50,000 words in 30 days?

Personally, I don’t outline– ever although for kicks I’m going to this time and I’ll likely attend a few write-ins this year ( I hear there’s going to be one ever Tuesday at Oh So Good on  York St. in the market.)  Although to be honest, I’ll likely have my cake and coffee before putting pen to paper. I may write my first draft longhand this round.

I hear there are writers out there who will only allow themselves pleasures like going to a movie or eating their favorite cake at the end of the week if they have met the weekly word quota. Does this sound like you? What was your experience with that method?

Here are a few writing resources to assist you with this challenge.

http://davidseah.com/node/nanowrimo-word-calendar/ to assist you in keeping track of your wc.

https://nanowrimo.org/ (If you haven’t signed up yet or heard of this it’s where the Nanos go.

Looking for a book to assist on your writing challenge? Read, No Plot No Problem by Chris Baty

https://larawillard.com/nanowrimo-resources-for-writers/ for more resources

And, begin!

 

 

Dare to Suck

This is one of my fav posts from 2017

Not My Straitjacket

You heard me. Everyone says, dare to be unique, different, bold, daring, and all those other lovely verbs most of which are vivid descriptions of what a person could be if they applied themselves (as a writer in this instance) or maybe already are or already relate to or know someone with some or all of these character traits. Today my friends, I tell you all, dare to suck. In fact, don’t just dare it: succeed in spades.

Prologue: I was on my way to have dinner with the family when for no reason at all I struck up a conversation with someone about their music. (The giveaway was the guitar case on their lap. It turns out they have a passion for music like most people have for the ones they love. Their passion is intense and admirable. So they tell me about how they became a musician, how…

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Drown your coffee instead…in donuts

My 40th birthday has come and gone. I’ve had time to reflect on the fact that I killed a book in its early stages and thankfully I have no regrets. Sometimes the hard decision is the best one. For me looking at my blog objectively I had the opportunity to assess how it would serve as a book on a store shelf compared to the readers I reach simply by blogging and frankly, for this blog I am grateful for the readers that take the time to follow the posts on this blog.

I have to (okay choose to) take a moment to reflect on what turning forty has done for me as a writer: it has reinforced that at my age I am more worried about quality and less worried about quantity so if you notice periods of less posts or see periods of more posts that is in part the reason why. This blog has become less of an instructional pursuit and more of a record of my personal progress as a writer, scriptwriter and human being.

I am taking a children’s book writing course and I have offered up my first kids book to the gods of the underworld (I mean my classmates and esteemed writing instructor) to rip apart during our next class so I can get real world feedback on what did and didn’t work about my first attempt at children’s writing. My instructor is someone I would love to see sitting over coffee with Stephen King who first said, “Kill your darlings” and my instructor who in our first class called out, “You have to be willing to drown your children”. (children as a metaphor for writing). I will refrain from mentioning their name for fear that someone may misinterpret the translation of their statement in which the reference was to be willing to edit your manuscript with an objective eye and be willing to make sacrifices to get the material that belongs there, not the material you want to see there by cutting out what is inessential.

This same instructor had several other tidbits of deep, well thought out quotes which spilled out of his mouth much like he was reading a passage from one of Munro’s books. Rich and alive with thought.

I finished another short script recently and at present I’m deciding which script out of my collection I want to shoot for Digi60. Film pre-production, production and post-production is a very time consuming activity and as any filmmaker would tell you there are sacrifices to be made if you want to produce something of quality. This would be my second short.

Time for coffee.

Ciao for now.