Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Company's Coming...

I am taking a week off to do some hiking and sightseeing with my brother and his wife. They arrive tonight from Alberta. When they arrive, I will be somewhere in a canola field doing a photoshoot.

You read that right. The Headwaters Writers' Guild is finally kicking our anthology production into high gear. Stories have been submitted and are being edited. Our group photographer is going to be busy doing a group photo shoot this afternoon as well as taking headshots on July 11. We'll see what comes back from that!

My biggest problem with the photo shoot is that I don't know what to wear. Something that stands out against bright yellow and something not too light because the breeze is cool today and . . . who knew I'd be having these sorts of issues before my own novels are even published!

After today, the kids are done school for the summer. I hope to get in lots of hiking and a bit of camping between work and editing. No new novels for me this summer. Editing only. Ideas can come and visit, but will be relegated to the file cabinet. Really. Well, unless they are really good ideas and sweep me off my feet and into another world. Then we'll talk.

Have a great summer, I'll be in touch....

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

A Great Use for Writing Prompts

I have a new dust collector for my bookshelf. Okay, it's really not a dust collector.

I am pleased to announce that the rough copy for my YA novel The Mural is done aside from a quick revision before my junior and senior (I use that word very loosely) get their mitts on it. As with the three other novels I've written in the past three years, it was sewn together from several prompts written in my writer's group. As well as vignettes I've written while my kids were doing karate classes.

Writing prompts are wonderful things to get your imagination stirring so you can add to novels or just write to create something new. This weekend I had the pleasure of attending a Writing Reteat out at Eramosa Eden. It was fun to play word games and practice the art of alliteration - using repetitive initial sounds in adjacent words. In other words, writing a short story or paragraph in which as many words as possible start with the same letter or sound.

I have to admit, I was not very keen on the concept at first, but found it a good exercise in seeing how many different words you know that use that sound or letter. Who knew you could make an entire paragraph using words that begin with U? I do now and I'm very impressed that Clare could!

Now that I'm done procrastinating, it's back to revising. I'd like to print my new novel off for revision before the kids are out of school next week.
Keep Writing!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Clearing out the Clutter

A total change in routine today got me started cleaning. Don't get me wrong, I am not one of those hoarders you see on television, but I do have my share of clutter. Mostly because I'm one of those people who was taught never to waste. I always have a crafty use for things, even though my kids no longer want to do crafts. I always have a great idea for an empty bottle or broken glass. (It's the artist in me, what can I say?) But the time has come, my husband said, to relieve ourselves of many things.

This morning I cleaned off the catch all in the kitchen (aka our cupboards), next will be the bookshelves in the livingroom and office. I have a habit of hanging onto books I love and ones I have yet to read. To most people that's a normal thing, to some people it's more clutter. But I refuse to get rid of my autographed collection.

The one thing I am passionate about (aside from my own assortment of manuscripts, photos and binders) is the books my friends and acquaintances have written. Aside from my kids, they are my pride and joy. People may thing I am bragging when I say "I know someone who wrote a book about..." but I'm not. I'm genuinely proud of their efforts and that they put that part of themselves out there for everyone to read. I gladly show them off, just as I hope someone will for me one day when I get my work published.

I have learned a great deal over the past three years as a part of the Headwaters Writers' Guild. I have met people who excel at editing, dialogue, description. I have met others who have determination oozing out their ears. And I have found the support I have lacked for most of my life. That support gives one focus.

Focus can help to decrease your clutter. How? Because you know what you want and you know how to get it and you won't let things stop you. Clutter stops you. Clutter makes you sit and stare and wish it away. When it is gone, you can concentrate on the page and not the baskets of laundry or stack of dirty dishes or the mound of papers on your desk that taunt you.

This morning, I am getting rid of the clutter around me and dusting.
This afternoon, I plan to write without distraction.
Well, unless I think of something else that needs to be done....

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Tying up Loose Ends

I've had a busy week cleaning up the things that I need to have done before the kids are done school for the summer. I'm almost caught up. This afternoon, I even have some time to write. This morning I spent with a friend and her mom who is here from Vancouver. Nothing but giggles all the way around. Especially after getting nearly lost in Shelburne.

I love this time of year. The kids suddenly have more field trips, which makes for some great photos and interesting happenings. My garden is in constant need of care, but I love walking barefoot in the grass to tend to it all. The rain over the past two days has made the colours of the flowers even more vibrant. My artist eye is in overdrive - and the imagination is soaring with possibilities.

Now that the "duties" of school volunteer are almost at an end for a couple of months, I can relax and put some of those energies into more creative pursuits: camping, biking, hiking and day trips. There is always something exciting around every corner. Like a swarm of dragonflies that flew in front of my van one day.

Enjoy each day. Don't let the moments get away.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Guest Writer on C. Patrick Schulze Blog June 1, 2010

Today marks my first stint as a guest blogger on someone else's blog! Very cool. The Headwaters Writer's Guild are guests on C. Patrick Schulze's blog this week. Yesterday was Jayne Self's turn, today is MINE! Wednesday it will be Laura LaRocca, Thursday is Richard Goodship, and Friday should be Gloria Nye.

I was nervous about submitting my article, but, now that it's up there, it's pretty exciting!
There is a rating at the bottom of each of our blogs. Whichever one of us is rated higher gets a book on Manuscript Submission. Glad to say that it's merely a fun thing and no feelings will be hurt during this rating.

Hope you get to check it out!!!