Saturday, June 30, 2007

Where I'm At on My Writing ...

Aneeka recently visited my blog and had a good question. She asked how my fantasy novel is going. I realized, that I've never talked a whole lot about my writing so thought I'd take this opportunity to tell ya all about it!

That fantasy novel I referred to earlier is called The Knotted Heart. It's a full epic fantasy about a girl, a wizard and a beast of a man and the way the journey they take to find love. I wrote it, it's done. BUT it needs HEAVY revising. I missed putting in a lot of the necessary detail ... At 200 pages it's basically only a detailed outline, lol. I thought I would revise it, but so far I've been enjoying working on other projects. The Knotted Heart was the story that called to me and made me want to be a writer, so the story is special to me. Some day, maybe, I'll have the courage to go back and revise it.

I've written three children's pictures books: The Famous Mouse of the Opera House, The Lullaby LadyBug, and It's Hard To Be A Dragon. I turned out to not be too much of a fan of the Dragon story, but I love the other two stories! The LadyBug has an original song with it too. I've sent The Opera Mouse out to publishers, but did not have any luck. I have not done anything more with it or The LadyBug, even though both are totally done and ready to go. Submitting is a weakness I need to work on strengthening.

Next I wrote a Middle-Grade novel called The Jump Boys. I entered The Jump Boys in the LDStorymakers contest in the winter and I won second place for the first chapter contest. It was great to get that validation! I haven't published anything and I think deep down I thought maybe I wasn't much of a writer after all. Maybe I had neat stories, but no talent for writing.

At the Storymakers conference I took a class from Tristi Pinkston. Oh man, I was there for that class alone. It gave me all I needed. She talked about how if you've felt that little feeling "I think I should write a book", it's not just a whim, it's a calling. If you've gotten the call, it also means that at somewhere deep inside of me I Do have a talent for writing, and if I desire it enough I can work on that skill and make it a useful talent in my life. Tristi's lesson changed my life.

I came away from the conference feeling like "I AM a writer!" Since then, I've been treating myself like a writer, acting more like a writer and working (though that could still use more help) like a writer.

I finished The Jump Boys, wrote a short story, "The Kings of Chaldea" and began work on another book. The Devil's Daughter will be a Young Adult novel about the literal daughter of Statan who desires to be good.

But I know, I know, I've GOT to start submitting. Jump Boys is done, yet I put it aside and work on writing other things, with Jump Boys gathering dust. I did submit it, my short and several poems in the League of Utah Writers contest, but otherwise, I'm not doing it justice just letting it sit around. I need to take some time, conquer my fear and start submitting.

I'm honestly not worried about rejections. At least I don't *think* that's why I'm hesitating to send it out. I think it's just that I don't feel skilled at finding editors/publishers to whom to submit my work. I need to work on that. Like I said, submitting is my weakness.

Goes back to that "Just Do It" thing. Life is really worth LIVING and ought not to be filled with TRYING, but DOING. So I think, starting now, I'll take a spoonful of my own medicine and start submitting!

I shall return and report!

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Dog Heaven

Boys and girls, we have doggy!

This week we had the distinct pleasure of adopting a little dog who we've named Jack. He won't be a little dog for long, but for now, we can enjoy his compact little self.

I've been looking for a dog for a long time, but my husband has such specific doggy-requests that he's impossible to please (probably the point). But the opportunity to adopt Jack came with just the right incentives, just the right 'potential' that I jumped at it. When it came time to meet the pup, my husband couldn't go. I had to clarify;

"You know that if I go down this path, I'm coming home with a puppy, right?"

"Sunny, I knew we'd passed the point of no return about twenty Humane Society page views ago!"

He gave me a few more things to look for and sent me on my way. Guess what? I saw all those things and yup, came home with a puppy.

Lucky for me, my husband took one look at him and fell in love. I did good!!

We had our first hard day with Jack today. Four days, and all's been well - almost too well. Today, there were lots of battles of wills between Jack and my two boys. One, when Jack got the best of Xander and left bite marks on his hands. I found Xan crying his eyes out, cornered by a bouncing playful 10 week old puppy. *sigh* Just litter mates trying to fight their way to the top of the pile.

So Jack can't be at the top of the pile, that's true, but with work, he'll eventually win the prize of our hearts and hopefully he'll feel like a million bucks.

We all want to be happy in our families. We want to know what our place is, where we belong in the scheme of things. Who's loved more than the others. But the truth is, we're all a lot more like this little pup then we realize. We hunger for love. We want to be good. But we need calm assertive guidance to reach our goals for happiness. If we're lucky, we'll have someone to provide that calm assertive leadership and we'll grow to be the best people we could possibly be.
Not too different from little Jack, eh?

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Go Thou and Do Likewise

I haven't written on my blog for a long time because I didn't think anyone was reading and because I was busy writing other stuff. BUT two things have happened that have made me realize that I need to make time for blogging and consider it as important as my daily creative writing.

First, my dear friends asked me why the heck I wasn't blogging! Even though they don't comment all the time (and thus I thought no one was reading), they were checking and were disappointed to find I hadn't written anything new. Who knew??!! But heaven forbid I let my readers down. I will write, I will, I will!

And secondly, all the people I converse with in the writing world are telling me I ought be blogging. Many publishers nowadays want their writers to have a web presence, and to have readers already established.

So here I am with a renewed committment to write and hopefullly to entertain. But please, if you have the time, drop me a line or two? I'd love to know you're out there and to read what you have to say too!

Thanks a bunch!