Posts Tagged ‘Writing’

Get a Grip (some) People!

Thursday, July 22nd, 2010

Writing is a lonely business. For must of us, while we’re working on our opus, there’s no team of coworkers providing support. There’s not even anyone in the room, or if there is, they’re either involved with their own venti latte or trying to distract you because they just thought of something you need to do for them and writing, hey, so cute that you do that but it’s not really important anyway. There’s also no boring meetings with that person who can’t freaking shut up already so we can get to work, which is a godamn mercy if you ask me.

We’re introverts, a lot of us writer types, with the known-to-me exception of Victoria Dahl. I’m pretty sure she’s an extrovert. The rest of us can only aspire.

It’s easy to get so wrapped up in the solitary drama of your writing that you loose touch with certain realities of the Real Writing World.

Here’s a handy reference list:

Your way is NOT the only way to write a novel. It’s the one that works for you, so you need to hold that precious to you, but you can’t go around telling other writers that their way is wrong. If you’re doing that, stop. All you can legitimately do is offer your experiences about your process and why your way works for you.

Your experience with people is driven at least in part by the way you act and react to them. Free advice: if you have been going through life thinking the most other people are mean nasty and ignorant (especially if more than a few people have suggested you are rude (the nerve of them!) it’s time to take a look in the mirror or at your emails and tweets and what have you and ask whether you might be the cause of this reaction. Really. You might be acting like an asshole more than you should be.

Actually, your book IS different. In that it is the book that YOU wrote and not the book someone else wrote. But it isn’t necessarily special just because you wrote it. Maybe it is. But maybe you should listen to outside opinion, too. (I said LISTEN not accept, OK? — though if you actually listen, you might end up accepting some of that opinion.)

Agents and editors aren’t going to steal your story. Seriously.

There is no conspiracy against your writing. There is, however, the quality of your writing. If all you get are curt form rejections your writing is probably not of high enough quality yet. For published writers, there is only the conspiracy of your sales history.

The vast majority of readers don’t pirate books. Quit acting like they do.


Hmm. Who Am I?

Tuesday, July 13th, 2010

Golly. Just call me flexible, I guess.

This is from a not quite done and needs-more-editing paranormal short

I write like
Stephen King

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

BUT! A promotional letter for my upcoming paranormal got this:

I write like
Vladimir Nabokov

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

Text from my historical Scandal got this:

I write like
James Joyce

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!


Do writers Understand Copyright and Free Speech?

Wednesday, July 7th, 2010

I get so frosted by writers who don’t think about copyright and free speech. I’m a bit tired of hearing authors get all hot under the collar about the Chilling Effects site and the fact the many sites refer to the site in their DCMA takedown information.

Authors should be the first to speak up when Fair Use and copyright gets abused. If the current corporate mind set of companies gets carried out to the conclusion they seem to want (no Fair Use, no Fan Fiction, no speech they don’t like) how long do you think it will be before they come after novelists? How long before an author’s ability to write gets compromised.

Read the whole article by Dan Gilmore.

Some comments here suggest it’s time for a remedial column or two on copyright. Whether copyright holders like it or not, they don’t have the absolute right to decide how their published work may be used, and by whom, through eternity. And those who believe we should ban tools that can be used for illicit purposes, not just beneficial ones, should ask themselves what would happen if we applied that standard widely.

Thank you.


Too excited not to share!

Friday, May 7th, 2010

As many of you know, I doing some FREE short stories set in my Mages and Demons paranormal world. I’m sooooo close to having the first one ready.

To that end, I found an AMAZING artist who did this for me:

Artwork depicting Telos, a demon hero

My Hero

The artist is Seamas Gallagher.


Hey, Carolyn! What’s it Like To Be a Seat of the Pants Writer?

Monday, April 12th, 2010

I’m hard at work on The Next Paranormal. Chapter 5 to be exact. The villain is supposed to do something scary, stuff would happen and then the hero and hero would be closer than they were at the beginning of the chapter. This is what you call scene arc (at least 2 or 3!) and rising tension, by the way.

There I am, sitting in the back of the car while my son is at his tennis lesson. The villain has set fire to a car outside the house she’s in. She knows he’s there. She calls the police AND the secret bat phone number given to her by the hero. Help is on the way from TWO sources. The police knock on her door.

Editor Me (EM): Uh oh. The police are not the villain or the hero. This scene is at high risk of being boring…
Writer Me (WM): Shut up. I am in control. She opens the door and the cop is accompanied by the villain!
EM: (Being quiet as this was unexpected).
WM: The cop is on the villain’s side. He believes the villain’s lies. Heroine in trouble.
EM: Ahem! That’s a cop. How much trouble can there be?
WM: Just a minute! Sheesh. This book has demons and mages in it. The cop is possessed and is acting according to the villain’s wishes which are to be in the house with the heroine.
EM: (Being quiet as this was unexpected).
WM: The villain sent an evil minion around the back, distracting the heroine. Possessed cop pushes heroine into house—
EM: Excuse me! The hero has proofed the house against mages. The villain can’t get in.
WM: Oh. Right. Possessed cop pushes heroine outside . . .
WM and EM: Uh oh.
WM: Wait! I’ve got it!
EM: What?
WM: The villain takes off with the heroine . . .
EM: (Being quiet as this was unexpected, but also kind of impressed.)

I didn’t know any of this when I started.


I’m done! And now I’m starting. . .

Wednesday, April 7th, 2010

Revisions for My Immortal Assassin have been emailed to my editor. (Can I please hear a w00t!!! that authors can email these things instead of overnighting them?) Yay!!!!

And now I jump right into The Next Paranormal, because I am now on a deadline so tight my eyeballs are popping. I confess, though, that I am VERY excited about this story. I’m enjoying the honeymoon when everything is bright and shiny with the new story.

How about a picture to prove Spring will soon be here?

Small purple Iris amid greed

Iris from garden outside my window

There. Doesn’t everyone feel better now?


Sooooo close

Friday, April 2nd, 2010

Actually, I am done with revisions. I’m just checking over the more recently (re)written sections for weaknesses and stupid mistakes. It will be out the door very soon. I hope to (re)start some work on The Next Paranormal this weekend. Which means I don’t have much to report as I have been very very very very busy. Writing. I hope to be interesting soon.


Stuff I did in April 2001

Sunday, April 29th, 2001

Worked out additional scene and updated outline. Will still be working in notebook, since it’s not ready for drafting yet.