A Resolution, Not a Resignation

Dear Readers,

It doesn’t seem all that long ago that I started this blog. Doing so, for me, was a logical step in seriously launching my journey—or perhaps I should say relaunching a journey I’d started long ago, but strayed from over the years. Whatever the case, my intention at the time was clear:

Follow my dreams,

Follow my heart,

And most importantly—

Follow the stories that filled my mind and soul.

And so I did.

Along the way, I discovered things about myself and the way I write. I learned things about the craft through incredible posts made by other writers. And perhaps the most dear to me, I met dozens of amazing people on a similar journey, sharing their hearts and souls as they blogged, commented, and became part of a wonderful cheering squad that we as writers must strive, always, to be for one another.

In the last few months, I’ve stuck closely to my intentions. I’ve been writing like a fiend behind the scenes, often waking from a trance at the end of the week and realizing I’d somehow managed 15-20 hours alongside my teaching hours. I explored new venues and tried new things, putting my pieces out into the world and discovering exactly how deep this passion to write burned within me. I whittled down my blogging because I wanted to focus, and in doing so found more time to write, more ideas to run with, and more exciting things ahead.

And so, over the last couple months, I’ve been toying with a notion I wanted to avoid, but one that I’ve come to recognize as a necessity if I want to truly follow my heart and run with my creative burst: the time to step back from my blog as I navigate the full landscape of my writing dreams. The decision to step away has been a difficult one—and that’s because of you. My connections here have been so satisfying, and I’ve found so many thoughtful, supportive, and intelligent people through this blog that letting it go seemed liked the craziest choice of all…until I dove back into my writing and realized where my heart was, and where I needed to be.

Since I’ve always been one to avoid saying goodbye, and since I also don’t intend to disappear from here forever, I’m opting not to call this a resignation from blogging. Instead, I’m calling it a resolution—a resolution to continue exploring my writing journey, and to continue spending as much time as I can focused on the craft and where it leads me.

I will still be around. I’ll still be reading blogs, and replying to comments for anyone who happens to mosey on over my old posts. I’ll still be reachable by email (evariederauthor at gmail dot com) and through my contact form. You can also find me on Facebook, or follow me on Twitter (though I’m pretty quiet on the latter). Finally, you can connect with me on Goodreads, where I’ll still leave short reviews for the books I read.

I’m excited about putting my full focus into creating right now, and in doing so, fully committing to my original intentions. And while I’m gone, I hope that you, dear readers and writer pals, are doing the same! Always remember to follow your passion, your heart, and your dreams, and most importantly…

…live your fantasy!

Best wishes to all,

Eva


Tech Tools for Writers—A Help or a Hinderance?

Not all that long ago, writers practiced their craft with exactly one piece of technology: the typewriter. It was a heavy, bulky thing, eventually moving from the mechanical world into the electronic one, and then morphing into something more portable. Later, it became a computer, which nowadays is standard writer fare. Most of us can’t imagine a world where we can’t tote around a laptop—while others have become so savvy with smaller, more portable devices, such as the ipad and cell phone, that even a laptop sounds like old news. (This post was brought to you in part by the WordPress app of my iphone, after all—not my favorite mode, but handy on the go.)

800px-Skrifmaskin,_Smith_Premier-maskin,_Nordisk_familjebok

Old School

Yes, the times, they are a-changin’, making a plethora of technological advancements available to help your writing along. Programs like Scrivener provide entire writing “studios,” enabling authors to organize, research, structure, and format (among other features) far beyond the writing itself. The Dragon series of software allows dictation into a headset or remote microphone for easy transcription. Various editing programs both for purchase and on the internet (like Smart-Edit) help authors fine-tune prose, whether through spelling and grammar checks, or more complex functions such as flagging overused phrases or clichés, or counting specific word usages. These are just a few of the many computer-based assists available to writers.

Then, of course, we have a bounty of social media outlets to connect with readers and other writers—Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Goodreads, LinkedIn, Tumblr, G+, etc—all methods the writers of yore most certainly never imagined. Truly, there are options, options, and even more options, some of them helping authors to overcome hurdles that might have originally kept them from the craft, or advancing in it.

So I suppose this begs the question—are all of these tech tools necessary? I myself am a bit old-fashioned when it comes to software. I operate on a Mac, starting long ago on PageMaker (the blame goes to my mother on this, since she was in advertising and it fit the house requirements), then switching to InDesign. Eventually I caved into Word because it was simpler, but since I’m fairly stubborn I used Open Office…until I started having all sorts of formatting conflicts. Now, it’s Word. Just Word. Sure, I use social media programs, and occasionally run a Smart-Edit when I can be bothered to open up my old netbook since the software only runs on PCs. I also picked up Dragon Dictate for a while, but I haven’t gotten much into it. For the most part, I’m an old school student of the new school—new school being A.T.: the After Typewriter era—which leaves me armed with just my computer and Word. Heck, I’ve even been so tech-boring as to bust out a pen and paper when I have an idea at work, and then scrawl two to three pages by painfully slow longhand to type up later!

Technology is grand. Technology is the future. Right? But writing is writing. Whatever it takes to get you writing is good, whether it be gadgets or mind-blowing software or even the rattle of a little radio in the background. I’m not sure where all this tech will lead, but I often wonder if for some it’s an advancement, or a hinderance.

What about you—what are the tech tools you use for your writing? Do you find that they help, or hinder you? If you don’t use anything “fancy,” do you wish you did?

Please share your thoughts below, I’d love to know!

And for now, it’s time to sign off [another piece of tech: WordPress]. Until next time…

Happy writing!

 


Don’t Bother Me, I’m Writing

I’m sure we all remember those ridiculous Carl’s Jr. ads—the ones with the beautiful woman biting into a burger and spilling ketchup all over herself to the voice over of “Don’t bother me, I’m eating.” Well, for some reason, every time I saw these ads, I warped the images and started making a joke of it. I’m sure I’m not the only one, but for me it seems to have stuck in one clear way…

That is, lately—and of course internally—I’m often catching myself saying, “Don’t bother me, I’m writing.” And in my image, instead of an inappropriately dressed woman, it’s little ole me, and instead of ketchup, it’s an ink pen blowing up everywhere because I’m scribbling away like a possessed, writing maniac.

You see, that’s what I’ve been doing: writing. Writing a lot. Writing like a focused machine. Writing so much I’m finishing my writing sessions like I’ve been in a coma-like trance, because I’ve ignored the house phone, used the nifty “do not disturb” feature of my iphone, and barely remembered to eat. In fact, I’ve even had to set alarms to stop so that I didn’t just write on through my meals, or my workouts, or my personal favorite, my cues to leave for work. (Yikes!)

This writing mania was fueled by a special schedule last week to accommodate our state standardized tests, because, thanks to the level of students I was testing, I got to go in late to work on two different days (yeah!). And then of course, there was the weekend I left fairly open to focus on writing. But really, it didn’t matter what else was going on. I just kept writing. And writing.

And writing some more.

It’s felt amazing. I’ve been creating like mad, and I’ve also been extremely happy. Rejuvenated. Content. Alive. And it wasn’t until last night that I pulled my head out of the sand and said, “Oh my goodness. I nearly forgot my blog again. Sheesh. But don’t bother me, I’m…”

You get the picture. :)

Anyway, I just wanted to make sure to post, and to share that I had an exhilarating last week jam-packed full of writing. Which made me realize, all over again, how very much I love this thing we do.

So to all my fellow authors—keep writing.

And to all my fellow readers—keep reading.

And to everyone—never stop being inspired.

See you in a couple weeks, folks! And for now…

Don’t bother me, I’m writing. ;)


A Special Midway Post: My #DFQWBS Entry in Honor of Anna Meade

While my next post isn’t actually scheduled for another week, I just had to make a special midway post in honor of the lovely and amazing Anna Meade!

Who is Anna Meade, you ask?

*Scoff!*

Well, you may remember that a while back, I entered the Once Upon a Time: Unexpected Fairy Tales blog flash fiction challenge. That brilliant idea was launched by one Miss Anna Meade at Yearning for Wonderland, and her writer pal, Susi Holliday. These two darlings decided they loved everyone’s entries so much, they would throw us all into a beautiful book of unusual flash fairy tales available on Amazon.

So basically, Anna was one half of a pair who made a whole bunch of us very happy published people!

Then, as if that wasn’t enough, Anna managed to take over Facebook and the Twitterverse with her amazing social networking and promotion skills. She is a superstar at marketing others to the world, even building Nine Muse Press to support underrepresented authors, and all of this has come to make many of us feel extremely loved in about a million different ways. And here’s the fun part: we’re all over the world, and not a darn one of us has met her! Clearly, she’s got a heart the size of Texas!

Which leads me to the great news—Miss Anna is getting married in a little over a month (congratulations!), and to celebrate, Rebekah Postupak, Laura Jamez, and Miranda Kate decided to join forces and create the Dark Fairy Queen Writerly Bridal Shower: a flash fiction collection of wedding-themed stories in honor of Anna—also known as the Dark Fairy Queen—and her upcoming nuptials!

How cool is that?

In case I was unclear in anything above, I love Anna. She’s just my kind of funny, she sings, she calls me out on Twitter to go for a run (um…I’m not sure why this delights me, but it does), and she even featured my writing space on her blog with A Room of My Own. I also think she wants to steal my eldest cat, which leads right back to that whole Dark Fairy Queen business…

Anyway, I couldn’t very well not write something in honor of Anna, so the following is my mushy fantasy tale to add to the #DFQWBS collection. Did I mention seriously mushy? Because it totally is. Oh, and I should probably also mention that there was some commotion over Anna’s beautiful wedding shoes making her taller than her hubby… ;)

Hurray for Anna and Michael!

*****************************

Title: Love’s Truth

Author: Eva Rieder

Include in eBook: YES

Website: http://evarieder.com

Twitter: @evariederauthor

(Toast below.)

700 words

*****************************

Deep in the forest that lined the sea, they’d gathered to witness something beautiful.

From the east and the north came the Elven and Troll Kings, their alliance forged at the news of the betrothal, and their hollering clans hoisting their swords in honor of the bride-to-be. From the south came the Nymphs, who donned lavender and tulip-lined silk that rustled in the warm, sea-kissed breeze. On the rocks along the distant western shore, the Sirens’ song drew the Unicorns. They scratched their hooves and brought up the back of the crowd, uniting the circle that formed beneath the canopy of trees.

While all of these creatures had grown to love the bride, they watched the fellow, Michael, who waited for her at the altar—for it seemed to them that no human man could tame the mischievous beauty known as their Dark Faerie Queen.

A horn sounded, pulling the creatures from their thoughts and their eyes to the back.

The Dark Faerie Queen blushed, clutching a bundle of white roses to her chest. Her amber hair fell in waves around her face as she padded forward, and doves swept down from the trees to scoop up her beaded train and follow her to Michael’s side. There, the altar griffin licked regally at his front talons and rolled his gaze from the Queen to her handsome, yet shorter, lover.

“We are gathered to witness the most unusual of bonds ever known to the Fae, for the Dark Queen has chosen a human for her mate,” he purred.

Anna smiled. Most could see her sharp incisors peeking from behind her lips, but it was uncertain if the human Michael could detect them.

With a shake of his head, the griffin splayed his paws. “Are there any naysayers before we begin?”

“Aye!” Out from the trees slithered the Dragon Princess, the heiress of a dynasty stripped of power once the Dark Faerie took her throne.

“Oh dear,” Anna muttered.

The Princess curled around the Unicorns’ hooves with a flick of her tongue. “How do we know the Dark Queen hasn’t won the human with her Fae spell?”

Everyone gasped, for in the old tradition, if the love of a Queen and her mate wasn’t true, all rights would revert to lesser royalty—and in this case, the savage Dragon Princess.

The griffin tapped a talon against his chin. “What say you, Queen?”

Anna shifted back and forth in her wedding shoes, then frowned down into her lover’s face (for her Faerie Queen stature made her an inch taller than he). But when she began to protest, he interrupted.

“You’ve not a thing to worry about, darling, you or any of your kingdom, for I adore your darkness,” he said, his voice resounding over the creatures and beyond. He faced the Dragon Princess. “You, on the other hand…such a scaly, jealous thing.” He pointed, a ray of crystal shooting from his fingertip and forming a cell around the beast. It glittered bright enough for everyone to see, and clamped shut when Michael released a loud wail—a sound remarkably similar to that of a Faerie King.

The Dragon Princess recoiled. “You’re a Faerie!

At this point, Anna stared at her mate in great surprise. She realized for the first time that her lover was indeed much taller than her, and his eyes seemed to shimmer with the same light she’d seen in her kind. “Michael?”

He nodded. “I, too, am Fae royalty, a King from an alternate line. I sought you, Faerie Queen, for none in my realm are as exquisitely dark as you.”

The creatures of the woods gasped, then sighed.

The Dragon Princess rolled her eyes, and the griffin gave a loud chortle and flapped his wings.

King Michael drew up Anna’s hands and kissed them. “Can you love me even if I’m not human, my Queen?”

She tilted her head, the last of the sun’s rays glinting off her cascading hair. “Sweet Michael, even more.” She snuggled close. “Now we can be the Dark Faerie Couple!”

“Hurray!” the onlookers cried.

And thus the griffin commenced, wedding the Faerie Queen to her Faerie King to rule the darkness for all time.

*****************************

Wedding Toast: Dearest Anna and Michael—may you find great happiness and ever more love in your fairy tale! XO-Eva

Read other great stories here:




Life…The Hamster Wheel

I consider myself a runner. I think this because I conquer a few miles three days a week for both fun and fitness. For me, it’s a time to enjoy being active, to breathe fresh air, and to meditate while burning off calories. It’s also a great time to come up with story ideas. Bonus!

However, while my usual run is along a winding trail, my life is more akin to running on a hamster wheel. Kind of like this.

Today, for example, I opted to cram in a run after cleaning my house, then went straight to the store to buy the fixings to make 15 bean turkey chili for my step-dad’s birthday tomorrow. It’s a simple recipe, but one I’m excited to make for him. However, the beans needed to soak overnight, which is why I thought I’d hit the store now.

Except Safeway didn’t have any bags of 15 bean soup mix. Odd.

I grabbed some other things, then ran over to Trader Joe’s. There I picked up other items for my house and the chili, and went hunting for their 17 bean barley soup mix.

“We don’t carry that anymore,” the grocery attendant said.

Um, what?

So then I ran over to Lucky’s, which fortunately had bean soup mix. Only two bags—no more, no less—which thankfully was all that I needed.

While still pondering the absence of beans in the world (I mean, it’s a bag of beans, one of the oldest staples known to man), I got home, unloaded my groceries, and looked at the clock. The following is where my brain went:

8 p.m. Way overdue for my blog post. Dinner is not made. Groceries are scattered in bags on the floor. Must soak beans. Cats need to be fed. Dear gawd, I still haven’t showered since my run. Yuck. Um, wait, did I ever move that laundry over?

And then:

Oh crap. I forgot the ground turkey!

All of this, a typical evening in the life of me, and not surprisingly, most people.

So tonight I wanted to take a minute to honor those who run this hamster wheel called life, somehow managing to swing it all while still writing. I heard some statistic that 90% of writers have day jobs, and while I’m running over here on my wheel, doing the usual wake-up/feed cats/cook/write/work/run/grade/write/cook/consider doing dishes/throw hands up in air/feed cats again/ponder the existence of people who actually sleep enough/pass out/repeat, I have to wonder how we all do it. And often when I think this, I am baffled at the realization that I don’t even have kids and I’m still running on this hamster wheel trying to get it all done. Kudos to those of you who balance work, writing, and a family—like you, Jessica Vealitzek, and Rebecca Lane Beittel, and a dozen other people. It’s mind-boggling, and sort of amazing, really.

But it forms an interesting question: how do we do it? Specifically—

How do you find the balance? How do you “fit” the multiple life and writing goals you have into your day without falling off the hamster wheel?

I’m sure I’m not the only one to wonder such a thing, so please share your thoughts below!

As for me, I feel like I’m still working on that balance. Always running, always spinning, always…

Oh dear. It appears I just burned a pan cooking dinner (and blogging at the same time).

*Sigh.*


Good Reads and Goodreads

Lately, I’ve been doing a ton of reading alongside my writing. While the school year poses an insane challenge to getting everything done, even a quick fifteen minute read before bed leaves me content.

So, what have I been reading?

A whole mix of things, really. Sometimes, I’m reading short stories. Others, I’m reading books in advance of my freshmen English students. I tend to bounce a lot, switching between literature and young adult, then fantasy, then suspense, etc., and on the nights I can only cram in a small amount, I’ll knock out a short story. I admit I switch back to young adult fairly regularly, a fact I attribute to originally writing YA, and to the genre “growing up” a bit over the years. Currently, Christopher Pike’s Thirst 2 has taken up residence on my nightstand, alongside Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart and an anthology of H.P. Lovecraft tales—all of them equally adored as my go-to reads before bed.

Speaking of that nightstand—no matter what the genre, it seems the books are piling up. This is due to my currently exploding To Read bookcase (yes, I said bookcase), which is about to get fuller with the six book order I just placed on Amazon. I should probably put a hold on any more book purchases, or break down and get a Kindle, but I’m still a greedy little kid whenever I hit a bookstore or hop onto Amazon. The only thing that would make it all better would be finding more time to read, since over meals and before bed is simply not enough!

In the past, I wrote some [long-winded] reviews of books here on my blog, and posted what I was reading on my Links Page. This worked out great, until I ended up finding I was tackling more books than I could keep up with while simultaneously writing about writerly topics. So, I moved on over to Goodreads to both write about what I’d read but also keep track of what I’d finished. Hopefully, you’ve heard of Goodreads, and if you haven’t, I’d like to tell you a few reasons you should check it out.

Goodreads is a social network-style website devoted to readers and all their reading finds. On the basic level, you can keep track of books you’ve read and are currently reading, as well as books you want to read. You can also share detailed reviews that you can link to your social media sites, and create customizable badges to proudly display your books on any blog or website (like the one I have to the right, for example).

But the networking aspect of Goodreads is what makes it the true reader’s home—here you can find readers of similar styles and choose to friend them or follow their reviews. You can also find your favorite authors and follow their blogs, books, and reviews. This might be my favorite feature, as I love hearing what some of my favorite authors are reading and their thoughts on books I might have read as well. In addition, Goodreads hosts groups and forums so that you can share your love of books/authors/genres with other like-minded individuals. I haven’t taken full advantage of this feature, but for those more into the social media aspect, it’s a real boon.

While I am no longer writing the detailed reviews I used to, I’ve still made a habit to share some thoughts on my reading on Goodreads for anyone who might be interested. I don’t follow others’ reviews as much as I’d like to, instead keeping tabs on a few connections that have exhibited similar interests or solid, thoughtful reviews.

What about you—do you follow book reviews and share your reading on Goodreads, or do you use/reference an alternative website? If you do use Goodreads, what features do you use, and have you found it helpful in connecting with other readers and writers?

If you are on Goodreads, I’d love to be connected. You can find me here. And if you aren’t there yet…well, I guess we know what you’ll be signing up for momentarily…. :)

Happy reading, everyone!


Two Blogger Awards

It’s taken me far too long to get around to this, but—today is the day! Great news: Catrina Barton has kindly nominated me for two blogger awards, the Versatile Blogger and the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. Catrina writes YA paranormal novels, and she runs a blog following the writing process and the adventures of her recent book release, Dangerous Temptations. I am, of course, completely flattered that Catrina bestowed me with this honor, especially considering my less-frequent posting makes this feel far too generous.

versatileblogger111So, thank you, Catrina!

The Versatile Blogger Award has been floating around for a while now, and the nomination requirements are:

          • Display the award logo on your blog.
          • Link back to the person who nominated you.
          • State 7 things about yourself.
          • Nominate other bloggers for this award and link to them.
          • Notify those bloggers of the nomination and the award’s requirements.badge-veryinspiringbloggeraward

Conveniently, the Very Inspiring Blogger Award has the same rules, so I’ll be doing this once for both awards.

7 Things About Me:
  1. I have a group of really amazing friends. In addition, in the last couple months, I’ve had a few old friends come out of the woodwork, giving me the feeling of being surrounded by awesome, loving people. Add this to my blogger and reader friends and I’m sitting here wrapped in a mental hug. You all rock!
  2. I’m a crazy proud auntie, which I’ve said before and I’ll say about a gazillion times. (In fact, I might have been so proud that I was tempted to circulate her recent report card on Facebook, but I held it together. Swear.)
  3. I love to bake, but am so-so on the cooking. (We can’t just eat cookies and banana bread all day? Really?)
  4. While I do despise traffic, I actually love to drive—call it prep/decompression time for work, or just time-to-ruminate-with-loud-music, but I’ve liked it since my 16-hour roundtrip travels to get home my freshman year in college. Which leads to…
  5. I love to travel and want to do it more. No, more. NO, even more than that! I try to take a trip every year, but this hasn’t worked out the last couple. Fortunately, this summer I’m heading to Italy and Croatia! I can’t wait!
  6. I am really into countdowns. (Like to my summer trip, for example.)
  7. There’s a brown thumb, and then there’s what I have, which is like the thumb of death. I have two plants that have suffered carried along with me for a while—Seymour, a 13-year-old Ficus Monique, and a 4-year-old Cactus aptly called The Cactus. Seymour has some extraordinary branches and a few (read: twenty-ish) bright green leaves. This leads me to believe that Seymour is doing fine, but friends like to tell me otherwise. I just looked up a picture of a Ficus Monique, and I’m going to continue believing Seymour is the minimalist relative of that plant. Meanwhile, the cactus has some brown leaves. (What?!) But you know, I figure I’m too busy tending to my attention-hungry and adorable cats, so…uh…yeah.

Okay, that wraps up seven facts about me. Now on to nominations, where I’ll be bending the rules a bit.

The award requirements suggest nominations for 15 blogs. Instead, I’d like to focus on just a few. Quality over quantity, here, so…the following are three great bloggers I follow:

  • Jessica Vealitzek at TrueSTORIES — Jessica’s blog always makes my list, because she is constantly inspiring, thoughtful, and entertaining. I also enjoy the reality of her posts, since I’m generally more “light and fluffy” and can use a good dose of reality here and there. (Say, Jessica, think you might want to do a post on how to properly care for plants?)
  • MariNaomi at MariNaomi – Comics about real life and stuff — I won’t lie; Mari happens to be a friend of mine who’s been running various comics around the web for years, and after much prodding/nagging/cajoling from her little pal (that would be me), she finally upped and started a WordPress blog. This means I can now spread the word of her awesomeness more easily by sharing her blog with you! Mari is the author of Kiss and Tell, a graphic novel that I immensely enjoyed, and I’ve been following her since I read it.
  • Katherine Checkley at The Intrinsic Writer — Katherine has all sorts of clever thoughts and posts on the writing process, and her blog is one I not only read as often as I can, but one that I reference frequently.

And that’s it—yes, only three. I’m handing five nominations each to these three spectacular people (technically ten, since there are two awards). I read a lot of wonderful blogs, but these three are the ones that I read faithfully and the ones I think you should check out, too.

However, I still think giving commendations to other blogs is extremely important. There are tons of phenomenal blogs out there that I haven’t seen, and they, too, might very well be worthy of these fabulous nominations. That said, I would like YOU to tell me about your favorite blogs and bloggers.

Who are your “go to” bloggers? Whose posts do you regularly read, and who would you recommend for others to read?

I’m always in the market for new reading, so please share your suggestions/loves/favorites below!


Blog-iversary

Just a quick note to say:

One year ago today, I made my very first post on this blog. It’s been a wonderful experience made extra special by all of you!

So, happy blog-iversary to us, and thank you for being a part of my journey. (And fun fact: the title of my first post was…The Journey!)

Thanks again, everyone. :)

-Eva

P.S. For anyone who missed Wednesday’s post, it’s now up on my page. My WP fail apparently created little technical foul-up waves so that it only went out to some email addresses (what?)… Hopefully by year two there will be no more mishaps! ;)

 


Excuses, Excuses…and a Different Approach

Hello again, readers!

The last two weeks have been a bit of a whirlwind, and I admit, a lot different than expected.

As you may recall, I had big plans to start my next book in February, the goal being a first draft by mid-April and in turn, a daily devotion to my protagonist’s cause. This plan started off beautifully—on February 1st, I began drafting!

And then stuff happened.

I had a cat come down with pneumonia, which was better than the original diagnosis, mind you—immediate heart failure—which then led to adverse reactions to antibiotics and twice-weekly vet visits. Meanwhile, work grew unusually stressful, my sleep patterns got seriously whacked (read: 5 hours was a good night), and somewhere in there, I irritated a nerve in my elbow. Yes, she-of-random-and-bizarre-ailments had actually leaned on her elbow enough numb out her hand for two to four hours at a time…so I write this post to you accompanied by my beautiful and temporary new friend, a splint. Yay!

But you know how it goes—one must write to be a writer! So I kept trying to write. I really did. I put in 3,000 words in two days as the mess started. I wrote a blog post aligned with Valentine’s Day. I sat in front of this computer almost every morning at the ridiculous 4:45 time I wake up to do this mad thing we do, but I was coma writing—and not the good kind of coma writing, where one is just writing in a creative trance. Nope, this was pure and simple coma writing, lacking quality, form, and inspiration of any kind.

But I sat there. I typed. I stared at the wall. I typed. I stared again. I sighed a lot (more than one really should). Somewhere in there I thought about a couple anthologies I’d planned all along to write for and submit to “on the side” while I wrote my book—and I realized at that moment, I was really excited to write these short stories that kept popping into my head. Maybe with my rollercoaster real life already clogging up my brain, and my Glamour horoscope validating my concerns by telling me to do a great job on one thing instead of a shoddy job on several, I had to attack this a little differently.

So, I closed up the file for my charming protagonist, Simone, and opened a couple new ones for the short stories. In just a few days, I wrote them. Fast. Thoughtfully. Fairly darn cleanly, I might add. And I smiled the whole time!

Then I got on a plane—leaving my almost-out-of-the-woods cat with a capable and caring cat sitter friend—and went to visit my parents in southern Nevada. It turned out to be an incredibly relaxing trip. We walked, talked, and played cards while yelling at the Jodi Arias trial on tv. It was perfect! There was also a lot of good food, coffee, and rum and cokes, courtesy of my master chef and perfect latte-making dad. :)

These extremely therapeutic days dropped me at home four days later, ready to edit the shorts (which I did) and prepare them to submit (which I am). So what does this mean?

Well, March 1st is Friday, so it seems like a good time to go back and focus on that novel I intended to write. It might be a month later than planned, but now that my table’s really clear, I think it will play out much smoother in the long run. Phew!

As my Cascade Conference mentor, Ken Scholes, once said, you have to “prioritize your anxieties.” I’m pretty sure he got that from his mentor, Patrick Swenson.

No matter who said them—they seem like smart words to keep passing along, if you ask me!

:)

Happpy writing, everyone!


An Accidental Post

Dear Readers,

Consider this morning’s post a preview of Wednesday’s real (full length and actually edited!) post—I blame my splinted trigger finger, which managed to hit “publish” instead of “save.”

Love those awesome tech-fail moments. :)

See you Wednesday!
Eva


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