Friday, June 24, 2011

I Have an Agent!!!

It's true!
It's been an interesting week. I got the offer of representation from her on Sunday morning then sent off the contract late this afternoon. In the meantime, I'd talked to a couple of friends for guidance as far as the contract and what to watch out for and . . . I signed. Not that this week was an easy path. I went against the advice of a couple people and decided to dive in and take a chance.

The agent I signed with is Dawn Dowdle of Blue Ridge Literary Agency.

The funny part is, I knew her reader and intern Joy long before I knew anything about Dawn. Joy and I were part of an online critique group for several months before she joined Dawn. Coincidentally, I had asked Joy for an edit of The Bookstore Lady before I'd even sent the query! Dawn had seen both versions and decided she liked what I was doing with it.

To Joy and Dawn: I'm looking forward to working with you both.

To my Devil's Advocates: Thank you for your love, strength and support. You make me a better writer and a better person!

To everyone else: Stay tuned!!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Last Regatta


This past Saturday marked the end of the rowing season for my son. We were in Barrie for, what looked like a rainy day of racing. We arrived at 7:30am to clouds and wind. The water was choppy, but not as bad as they had rowed on all week in practice. Nick was nervous, but ready to race. The picture above, was taken an hour before any racers had to be on the lake.

The first race for Nick was a four-man. The crew pushed hard and placed third. They are a good, strong team and I hope they'll be able to competer together again next year.

The second race for him, was in a two-man scull. Two rowers, two oars each. It was their second time in a two-man, their first time in a race boat. They did their best and, while not placing, they didn't flip which is apparently very easy to do in a race boat with strong winds.

His third race was after lunch when the brief rain shower we got subsided and the lake was calm.
This was a Senior Boys 8 (and Nick who is still a junior). It was far from the best row of their lives. One seat broke off, one foot board broke off, two different rowers "caught crabs" (when they are out of time with the others and their oar get caught beneath the water) and one rower was badly injured by a stuck oar. The name of the boat is "The Bus" and the kids spent the rest of the day contemplating ways to have it disappear and be replaced.

One of the most obvious things that occured to us, as parents, as the day went on was that unless one of our teams were racing, you'd never know there were boats on the lake.At the Island Lake Rowing Club, we have two schools that train in tandem and support each other even when they compete against each other. When neither of our teams were on the water, there was no cheering.

So, you may ask. What does this all have to do with writing? Painting? Anything?

My son and his teammates inspire me.
No matter what the odds against them, they don't give up. They are out on the lake at 6:30am every morning for the entire rowing season ready to give it their all.

As writers, we have a dream. We all want to be published and need to make the same kind of committment that these kids do.
We need to show up.
We need to give it our all.
We need to support our fellow writers.
And, last of all, we need to not worry about how we place at the end of the race.
After all, it is the journey to get there that makes us stronger people and stronger writers.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Reality Check

Sometimes, you just need to do something completely for yourself. Today, for example, I'm currently lounging (yes, lounging) on the front porch in the afterglow of a great massage. The massage therapist I see is brutal and has no qualms with both causing and ending my pain. Since I've already spent the better part of the last two months with hip and knee pain due to a fall last October, the extra pain I endured to rid myself of the "knots" and misalignment is nothing.

This morning, it was an early run to Walmart then to the chiropractor before I met a friend for lunch. I love meeting friends to hang out, catch up and spend time away from the "real world" for a while. Most weeks, I don't do that enough. If given the opportunity, I'll glue my butt to the chair and edit or live someone else's live vicariously in a novel I'm writing.

As writers, we can often overlook the fact that we not only need to create great stories and polish our grammar, we also need inspiration. That inspiration may come from within, but, more often than not, it comes from the work we do, the sights we see, and the people we interact with.
Like the honeybee flying around my yard trying to get through the fence.
Or the school girl running home, bursting with news to tell her parents.

A friend in my writing group once said that I could write about anything and everything.
And I have.
And I'll keep on writing about anything and everything until I can no longer hold a pen and have to dictate to my great-grandchildren.
That's just how I'm wired.

Keep Writing!