Monday, May 21, 2012

SFC Blog: Families Matter: The Benefits of Blog Hops

SFC Blog: Families Matter: The Benefits of Blog Hops: There are so many cool benefits from cruising over to a few of the blogs on a Blog Hop. For parents it is a golden opportunity to see fi...

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

So Many Challenges: A to Z, 12 x 12, Picture Book Frenzy

My mission here is to inspire those who love picture books and those who write picture books. As part of that mission I am doing the 12 picture books in 12 months challenge for 2012. There are hundreds of successful writers doing this challenge and it is important to learn from and not be distracted by the numbers.

It is an individual challenge really, a time to put my writing into full gear and a time for you to do the same. It is a way to be accountable to others, not jealous or intimidated by others.  A time to go full speed ahead with ideas by using writing skills to get the story on the page.

Here are my stories so far in various stages of development:

January- Pepper Runs Away  ( thinking of reworking the title and it has already been rejected- it is about a blind kitten and addresses disabilities for the young reader but it seems publishers can't get past the kitten character and many say they have enough cat stories.)

February- One Black Bird  ( a counting book in a different way- counting pairs of eyes who don't see a busy bumble bee)

March- Saving Aunt Rose ( this is a story of matching the right animal for the right place on Aunt Rose's mixed up farm. Almost ready to send this one out there)

April- First Aid for First Grade ( both fiction and nonfiction facts woven into a story for first graders on what to do if a friend is injured.)

Stayed tuned for more exciting tips and inspiration on writing picture books for kids.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Cancer prayer book 2/12 at OneTrueMedia.com

Here is a book trailer for my prayer book. It was a great learning experience and one I will use to make more trailers for more books.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

12 x 12 January Story

I sent my January Story to the critique group, and with minor changes it is ready to submit. Now, on to the February draft. I am loving this challenge but at times Writing is overwhelming.

The 12x12 contest is not the only writing that I am doing, hence the overwhelming feeling at times. My major goal this year is to be financially dependent on my writing and to let go of the steady pay check by December 2012. I am stepping out in faith so to speak.  The pressure is on for me to make writing the dream career that I have said all along that I wanted. But........

I have several ideas perculating and a big paying gig with tight deadlines. I have a few writing obligations that I have taken on as a way to " learn the business" and "hone my skills" but those take time and have deadlines too. I have a full time nursing job. I have grandkids I don't see enough and family that need my attention too....

Does all of this sound familiar? It should to most of you who have a full time job and are trying to make a full time writing career along the way. It takes discipline and it takes a deep desire to keep at it.

It helps if I remember that everything that I write, whether for pay or for the byline, for the experience or to help out a collegue- the writing is good practice in discipline and in writing tight. It is good experience in writing to a target audience and it is giving me skills in marketing and social media. It is all good.

But I also need to remember that I do have grandkids that need me to spend time with them and a family that won't always be around. I need to sometimes put the writing aside to give a hug, make a visit, or do some laundry. I might even sit and watch a movie with my husband. That doesn't mean I turn off my writer brain, you know that I will be taking notes, listening to dialogue, and outlining in my head.

Yet even in my sleep, the stories are twirling because after all, I am a writer.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Critiques... The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly



Critique groups are a wonderful thing, but there are several sides to wonderful.

The Good: if you have a great group of writers who care about growing as writers and who can critique honestly and kindly the critique group results will be good. You will learn from the critique and you will write tighter with more success. You will produce work worth publishing and you will gain confidence.

The Bad: if your group is critical, shows any signs of jealousy amongst the writers, or become hateful in their discussion of your work or the work of others, then this can be a bad thing. You can actually loose what confidence you had and become blocked as a writer. It may even make some of you turn away from writing. This would not be good.



The ugly:  I had a critique partner on that started out being very kind and helpful until my publisher refused to accept her manuscript. The said critique buddy had taken advantage of my relationship with a very small publisher on a very limited financial path who simply could not afford to produce the work of my friend as fast as she thought it should be published so it was rejected. I took the heat in the way of very nasty emails, hateful actually and I have been skeptical of critque groups since this incident.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Have You Joined 12 x 12 ...The Picture Book Challenge?

Have you joined the 12 x12 in 12 challenge. It is really going to be fun. Each participant promises to write one picture book manuscript every month in 2012. I am almost done with my first manuscript... come back here often to watch my progress and to see what the book is about. ( think alpaca)

Not so hard, really. A beginning, middle, and ending. Not polished and ready for submission necessarily but first draft quality and something that will be ready for submission eventually. What fun, and how productive is this? I'm in and so appreciative of author Julie Hedlund for sponsoring such a fun challenge.

Check out her site and sign up soon. You have until January 29th to get on the list.

Visit her site here and get started. See you on the page. http://writeupmylife.wordpress.com/

Friday, January 6, 2012

New Beginnings: See-Hear-Speak No Evil

New Beginnings: See-Hear-Speak No Evil: See No Evil! Beginner writers jump into their work with both feet. Their eagerness and sometimes overconfidence drive them forward in thei...
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