Technical writers or non fiction writers scribble to pay the bills and for the love of the analytical or the exercise of truth or deception.

Fiction authors write to illuminate their world or escape it.

Whichever kind of writer, it's all about staying alive and helping or entertaining others.

The Writing Life

Like most writers, I have a love of reading and the power of words. When I was younger, I read everything I could get my hands on, but I don’t consider myself well read. I consumed books like a starved person, so quickly I hardly knew what I had read. By some strange process of osmosis, I learned from everything I read, but I cannot give you an erudite discussion of characters, plots, or authors. I can only tell you it’s lodged some where in the core of my being and informs my writing.

In addition to reading, I’ve spent a life time writing---from that first elementary school composition to my college days when I studied French literature and wrote explications de texte. Along the way, I fell into technical writing--to put food on the table and pay bills. In the 90s, I had the good fortune to take a dialog class with Sol Stein, former owner of Stein & Day publishers in New York and a prolific author. That led to his California-based writers’ group, Chapter One. It was a rigorous, ego-bruising experience, but I was intent on learning everything I could about fiction writing. A few years ago, I also had the good fortune to study with another writer, Louella Nelson, an experienced romance writer and teacher of fiction writing. She provided a different perspective and balance to my writing.

My novel, DREAMING OF LAUGHING HAWK, a mainstream, Sixties era novel, is available on Amazon in print and ebook (also available in Canada, Europe, Japan, and Brazil). Download a free sample. If you like it, I hope you'll download the book and post a review on Amazon.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Gray Day with a Glimmer of Hope

As I look out my window I see gray skies and tall skinny palm trees across the street, the kind I hate. The kind that grow and propagate themselves like giant Jurassic weeds. I am forever plucking their seedlings out of my back yard. It is cold and wintry today. The furnace is running and I even lit a fire in the fireplace earlier this morning. The preceding beautiful, balmy days are a freak occurrence in my memory. I am waiting for rain and avoiding all my authorial tasks.

I have to say there is a lot about being a new author that is gray and murky. Who would ever guess that the hard work of writing would be a mere cake walk compared to the entrepreneurial demands of marketing a book. Dammit. If I wanted to me a marketeer, I would have majored in Business not French Literature.

I do not look forward to slogging through my social media and email accounts. It is a vast jungle full of those damn skinny palm trees. I pluck the weeds every day in search of gems, but mostly there are authors like myself hawking their books along with other types of entrepreneurs. Some people yammer on about their illnesses and post their umpteenth update to their profile picture. Some post stupid cartoons or invitations to games and argue with others over politics. Still others post about vacations, the accomplishments of their children and grandchildren (guilty). There's so much stuff, it makes my brain hurt.

At the far end of my garden is an Australian Tea tree and beneath it is an orchid plant that blooms every February despite its ugly, confining pot and the unpredictable weather. It reminds me that I need a new survival skill for myself--the ability to find the gems and overlook the weeds and gloomy weather.

I got an Amazon review recently for DREAMING OF LAUGHING HAWK that I thought was a gem for an author. It goes like this:
I work with a daughter of the author and was thrilled to read this book and see what it was all about. I'm an avid reader but have been in somewhat of a reading hump, and not getting through any of my books lately, which is highly unlike me. I started reading this book yesterday and am completely finished a day later.

I enjoyed that the main character moved to CALI in hopes for all things new, as I did myself about a year and a half ago. Although this story is set before my time, I enjoyed the personal growth and struggles of Elizabeth. I truly appreciated how the story made me switch my 'loyalties' from liking and wanting things to work with Collin, to suddenly realizing how wrong he is for her and realizing I too have fallen for the heart and soul of Hawk. I find myself choosing sides in a story like this, but found that it was impossible to stick with my original choice and I'm glad I didn't.

I highly recommend this book and look forward to the next story!

Thank you Linda for giving me the opportunity for a 2 day escape:)I plan to loan it to my Mom on her Kindle now too!

 
That's a gem because someone I've never met genuinely fell into the story and lived it. That makes me want to survive as a writer.

2 comments:

  1. hello, i found your blog through WLC blog follow. it's great to be able to connect

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  2. I found your great blog through the WLC Blog Follows on the World Literary Cafe! Great to connect!

    ReplyDelete