Friday, May 22, 2009

Everyone Who Doesn't Need to be a Writer, Do Something Else...

I've reached a deliberate slow-down in the word count. It's not that I can't write, but that I must take a break from it. I need time to evaluate what was produced over the last couple of weeks. It all felt as if I was on a roller-coaster, with no access to brakes. I'm going to relax and enjoy this no-writing period for a bit longer.

This leads me to a difficult observation. If this blog was meant to be about my experiences with the writing and final revision of the work, and then the ensuing agent-query process, well - I don't have anything new to say about these things. I've exposed my frailties when it comes to the agenting adventure, and I simply have nothing new to add. Over the weeks, I discovered that word counts for first novels need to stay relatively low, and that the amount of pain involved in cutting 30k from the manuscript was incredibly difficult for me. My stubborn use of the first person POV in my second novel is not encouraged by a lot of editors, but I stuck to my guns and my reasons were recounted in earlier postings. I talked a bit about my attitude to self-publishing, and enough was said on the subject, really. Avoidance of writing was talked about several times, and isn't to be confused with writer's block, which is a totally unrelated thing. The first requires artistic and creative flare, and the second doesn't.

And so, other than changes to those stat numbers I provide, this current process is notoriously slow - even the positive rejection letter will be a rarity, but how many times do you really need to hear, "It was a polite and helpful rejection letter..." I mean, what good will that do for you? (Naturally, should I get an offer of representation, we'd stop the presses for that.)

So my posting is not going to have too much in the way of new material for a while and I wanted to be honest with you about that. I do have a wealth of writer's quotes (other people's) which I'll pop in here from time to time - your literary Thought of the Day, if you like, to help you with fresh resolve. Perhaps I could run a Writer's Recipe of the Week if there was enough interest.

Anyway, this is just to remind you that I'm useless at the day-in-the-life-of-me kind of blog, but I am thinking of having a weekend in Montreal soon, where I can practice my French, so that might qualify as a reasonably good read, considering how very poor my French is. Oh, and I'm off to London late summer, where language won't be a problem, but over-sentimentality, or schmaltz, could be a disturbing influence.

Hey, perhaps this could be a dual-purpose blog - one facet covering the dilemmas of an unpublished novelist, and the other addressing her neurotic wander-lusts, because - believe me - there will always be more of those.

My current stats: 16 Pending, 2 Partials, 10 Rejections. Total 28.

"Everyone who does not need to be a writer, who thinks he (she) can do something else, ought to do something else." Georges Simenon


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Quotes to Consider

"If you would not be forgotten, as soon as you are dead and rotten, Either write things worth reading, or do things worth writing." ~Benjamin Franklin

"Well behaved women rarely make history."~Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

“A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.”~William G.T. Shedd (1820-1894), theologian, teacher, pastor

"It is common sense to take a method and try it. If it fails, admit it frankly and try another. But above all, try something." ~Franklin D Roosevelt (1882-1945), 32nd U.S. president

“Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.”
~Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), essayist, poet, philosopher

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." ~Mark Twain

"You miss 100% of the shots you don't take."
~ Wayne Gretzky