Thursday, July 31, 2014

Alligators on the way!

Torquere's free read anthology "Please Don't Feed the Alligators" is coming on August 5th! I got a sneak peek as part of the editing process, and there are some really excellent, well-crafted short stories. It is so exceptional to see how different authors took one prompt and went in such different directions. I am excited to have others read the anthology so there can be discussions about some of the amazing ideas, and really, how well-tuned the stories are given that they needed to be short. (I believe the term is 'flash-fic'.) I'm quite pleased to have a story of my own within the anthology, and I love the quirky little idea I had for my own version of what not feeding the alligators meant. Not that I want the weekend to whisk away, but when Tuesday gets here, it will be fun to have everyone finally be able to read it! As soon as I have the actual link to the anthology, I will make sure to post it.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

the fleeting nature of time, and how editing sucks it away

You would think that three hours was a lot of time, but not where editing is concerned! I cajoled out a wedge of writing (editing) time for today, while the rest of the family was doing other things and I didn't need to be involved. I sat down at the computer, started to edit, blinked my eyes once, and the family returned! My to do list accomplished: --edit Nuts, Bolts, and Chihuahuas for final proofing edits --edit a free 1000 word story I'm submitting for the Dreamspinner newsletter --submit the aforementioned story If the story isn't accepted, I plan to post it up around about these here parts. *g* It's a wonderful story, but it isn't exactly a *romance*, so I think I've probably got a 50/50 shot. My to do list not yet accomplished: --write up a guest post for Nuts, Bolts, and Chihuahuas --work on writing a story for a submission call, I'm about 2500 words into it --work on writing any one of the half dozen ideas I have for other stories, or edit any of the four stories I have that are novella-sized I always find the novella-sized stories a bit more intimidating. There's a lot of continuity to keep organized, so I find that if I don't have a big chunk of time (4+ hours) scheduled, then I stay away from those. Finding 4+ hour chunks is not easy!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Jacob's Ladder

Years ago, I bought a few Jacob's Ladders to put in the garden, because they do well in the shade. I didn't realize how sweet the flowers were -- they have a delicate, candy-like scent, but I appreciate this plant more each year that it comes back up. This year, it is looking slightly different. The leaves have always had some variegation both green and white. But this time around, two of the stems have these all-white leaves (which can't be good for photosynthesis) but my, they are unusual and lovely.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

wheat paste and other observations

I spent the time doing some research on an idea I had for a very short story (I've been enticed to do some free give-away stories), and it was quite fun. One side component of the story was graffiti, and I've no knowledge of it other than of what I see around me. I learned about wheat paste. Or I should say re-learned. Because I used to play around with that stuff when I was a kid to make paper mache masks (strips of newspaper dipped into it and then placed onto a blown up balloon, allowed to dry, and trimmed, makes an excellent 'face'). Apparently, it can also be used to stick things to walls. It was sort of a lucky find because I was very much unsure about how spray paint can be so manipulated to make good graffiti rather than some of the blocky, runny, not-enticing markings that I've seen. And I learned about some famous graffiti artists that make some beautiful work. Of course, it is still not good to go about defacing other people's properties, I fully recognize that. But at least in fiction, no one is actually put out. Graffiti goes up as easily as it comes down when it is all in the imagination!

Then, the meeting was over and everyone returned, and suddenly all that lovely quiet I had vanished. I definitely need quiet space to do my better writing. I like it best when nobody is around me. Oh, I wish I could be like other writers who can write through the thick of sturm und drang!

On the very good side, just over 900 words were written, I'm letting it sit so I can go back for a hearty edit, and in the meantime, I am trying to figure out a title.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

I'm guest posting today!

I'm over at Torquere's Romance for the Rest of Us blog today, posting my various thoughts about writing, and particularly about research I did for my upcoming short story "Nuts, Bolts, and Chihuahuas". Come over and read:

Sunday, July 13, 2014

not bad, not bad

I got 650 words down last night before I decided I ought to go to bed. It's tough in the summer -- I feel like I want to be a night owl just for the cooler temperatures. I'd like to do some baking, but I've been waiting to do it at night because the oven will heat up my home too much. I don't want to swelter, and then add heat! Perhaps tonight, it should be cooler. My eye is on the weather stations!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

decompression, it's more important than you think

This weekend I finally got to be by myself. I love my friends and family, and I adore the time I spend with them. But it generally keeps me very occupied, and my mind on non-writing things, and there's this certain miasma (I suppose that's as good a word for it as any) of attention that I must exude. I don't really relax for a day or two after I get back on my own again. Even though it would be free time, it is time I spend waiting to be rested. Then, I feel like a writer again, and those little coals of writing desire flame up, burn bright. I spent all of today and last evening just decompressing from four straight weeks of a flurry of activity (generally fun stuff! but still, my energy was spend on different attentions), and finally tonight I am mellowed out, calm, and content with sitting still. Things are quiet (it is quite late now). Some writers can grab time in-between so many other things -- an hour or a half hour snatched from the jaws of scheduling. Sometimes I can do it, but usually not. I've already had some great successes -- the free 1k read has been submitted (yep, the story where I was trying to be funny!) and I finished crafting a guest post that is due for August (a little ahead of the curve there), and now I'm going to focus on actual, real writing. Whew!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Full Thunder Moon

It's a beautiful moon out tonight. I was outside for a little while as the moon rose up. When it was hidden behind the trees, it seemed an enormous dinner plate. Now that it is higher in the sky, it seems no less impressive, but smaller for not having much around it for comparison. According to the news, it is a 'supermoon', meaning that the full moon happens at the point of earth's orbit when it comes closest to the moon. (I'm paraphrasing from the news, so hopefully I got that fine point correct.) I looked up what the moon in July is called -- Thunder Moon, or Hay Moon, or even the Full Buck Moon.

Monday, July 7, 2014

apparently I think I'm funny

There's a free newsletter I'm trying to write a story for, and for unknown, galactic reasons, I decided I was going to try to have a sense of humor in this story. Yee-gads. I need to edit. And I need a sense of humor. ;)

Saturday, July 5, 2014

weekends are bizarre

I understand week days. They are work days, and I know the schedule. But weekends? All over the map! Sometimes I get to sleep in. Sometimes not. Sometimes there are lazy breakfasts, endless cups of coffee, and long conversations. Sometimes people get their danders up and go rushing about, cleaning things, running errands, and accomplishing tasks long left to mildew. It's like the Productivity Fairy came and sprinkled go-get-'em dust over everyone. Except this morning, she sprinkled everyone but me! I want lazy coffee time, and everyone else is waving their 3-feet long To Do lists!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

working on my extras

So, I'm deep into working on the blurbs and summaries for "Nuts, Bolts, and Chihuahuas", and there is the option at the very end to provide an extra. It can be just about anything, really. A photo, a recipe, an intense essay, additional story. So I get it into my head that I do have a little bit extra to say about the story, which seems very nice. But I had to laugh at myself, because in the first two paragraphs alone as I was writing, I had to stop no less than a dozen times to go look something up on the internet. Do I know another word for "maintain"? What's bigger, a miniature schnauzer or a poodle (or what variation)? Shepard, Sheppard, Shepherd? What is a pup's night acuity? (Pretty good, actually, so many rods in the eye! That sounds worse than it should....) I'm to a point where I can let it sit for a bit and come back to it later, my own personal editing razor, sharp and prepared to strike. Although it is a bit of a bummer to delete all the stuff that research time was spent on. Sometimes it happens!