Sunday, October 23, 2011

No Shame--Owning My Genre

Writing, and, research, and reading, and...bah.  Can't get it to fit.  Was going for a these are a few of my favorite things vibe but I couldn't figure out what else I'd really done this weekend that would fit :)  I don't know if I ever mentioned that I have a book blog!  It's why it looks like I've gone days without posting, when actually I have MANY MANY MANY on the other blog.  The "novel I will be writing" is going to be a YA fantasy/paranormal/sci-fi/fairy tale type story.  Partly because that's what I read and so it's what I know.  Partly because I think that's such a pivotal age.  Partly because I'm a big, fat nerd and LOVE that genre.  I know that may be surprising to some, however, you're talking to a Doctor Who watching,World of Warcraft playing, young adult PNR reading girl, and that's just for starters! ( Seriously, I need a shirt that says NERD. *hint to hubby for Xmas present*) In the infamous words of Popeye, I yam what I yam!  Sooo from now on, most of my posts will be at , at least the ones pertaining specifically to the writing process and NaNo, and YA books that I've read/reviewed,  other stuff will be put on here.  Unless my personal tech support can figure out a way to link the two blogs.  So pop on over to the other blog and see what's what!  Not sure how long this maintaining 2 blogs thing will last ;)

Monday, October 17, 2011

In a Funk

I've been in a funk today.  Not really sure what caused it.  We had a really fun day yesterday celebrating Liam's 12th birthday.  (I am so not old enough to have a kid this age)  He picked sushi for his birthday lunch-WIN-and my mom and grandma came down to celebrate with us.  This morning started out fairly well, I put on the gym clothes, though as many of you know the gym is not my friend, and got Liam to school.  The plan was gym, home, shower, write (and laundry/house cleaning as needed).  None of that happened as I got a call from Quinn's school telling me I needed to come get him.  He probably has pink eye, they said.  Wonderful.  Naturally my eyes started to itch and water at the mere mention of the dreaded pink.  Gotta love those psychosomatic reactions.  Fortunately, we were able to get into the doctor and he has drops and can go back to school tomorrow, but after getting home I didn't want to mess with anything.  Q doesn't really feel bad so he's driving me more than a little crazy.  Even trying to hide in my room with a book didn't work very well and we only have 1 bathroom so I can't lock myself in there either.  Needless to say, nothing really got done today and I completely hoovered the mom thing-actually continuing to do that..  I don't even want to write this.  At this point it's more an act of discipline then something I want to do or am enjoying.  Add to that there's no Godiva in the house (my stash is depleted) and we're out of my favorite wine. Though it seems I have enough whine to go around.  So there ya' have it.  My daily post.  At least it's done.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The Three D's--Distraction, Discouragement, Doubt

I did not write yesterday.  Not a bit.  Unless you count texts and twitter responses.  One kiddo was out of school, the other came home sick and I was exhausted from leading the choir on Sunday.  So there was no trip to the gym, and no writing time at Starbucks, and no hiding out away from the kids anywhere in the apartment.  I did NOT like it.  I felt blah throughout the day.  I did a book study a couple years ago that talked about "The Three D's".  It said these are the three things that are going to hinder you from doing what God has called you to do.  Two of the D's, doubt and discouragement, have been pretty well taken care of the last few days.  I've been very fortunate to have had people speak positively about me writing, and the changes they have seen in me, because of what I am now doing.  Distraction, however, has been rearing it's ugly head.  One thing after another has thrown me out of the routine I had established to keep me on the writing path.  Distraction is the one that starts you down the slippery of slope of not doing.  I could very easily see myself letting the distraction get to me and keep me from doing my daily allotted bit of writing.  Then, having not written for days, how easily that could turn into a deep discouragement, which could then flip easily into doubt.  What I find so surprising is how much I don't what that to happen.  I didn't expect in such a short period of time to be so invested.  I'm begging for perseverance.  If this is what I am supposed to do, then I am praying that I can do it even through the distractions, in spite of the distractions, because of the distractions. :)

Saturday, October 8, 2011


Today has been a difficult day in trying to find time to write. Saturday is normally a day for rest or preparation depending if we are scheduled to sing in the choir the next day. Tomorrow is a choir day so today was supposed to be a prep day. Get the kids' uniforms washed, get the house cleaned, practice the new songs, etc...I didn't plan on going to offer moral support for a friend, or that it would take nearly half the day. I don't regret the way the day was spent, and I DID get uniforms washed. The thing about today that surprised me was how much I wanted to sit down and write. How frustrated I was that I was "stuck" doing all these other things and couldn't take the time until now to put pen to page. When I started on this adventure I was honestly expecting this to feel like a chore. I knew I wanted to do the book blog. I wasn't sure about this whole write a blog post everyday to get ready to really WRITE thing so I was pleasantly surprised today to find it was what I wanted to do. I was resentful (kind of) of the time I had to spend doing other things when I could have been writing. Hurray! This feels like confirmation that writing is what I'm supposed to be doing right now. The trick now will be balance. Balancing the responsibilities of wife, and mom, and life and finding the time to hide out in whichever world I'm crafting.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Good Beginnings

The last three days of trying to write or post something everyday has been a little trying. I don't feel like I'm a writer and so getting into the discipline of writing everyday has been a struggle. I haven't written any fiction yet, just explanatory blog posts and today i decided to do something a little different. I chose to sit down and write the first few sentences to multiple story lines. Only the first few lines to see if there was one I could pick for NaNo next month, just to get in the swing of things again and I LOVED it. I.LOVED.IT. I had so much fun with a couple of them that I had to force myself to stop at just the first few lines. I can't wait to see who these people are going to be and what obstacles they will have to face, who they love, who they hate. It's going to be awesome! So here for your reading pleasure are 5 firsts. Have a fav? Let me know in the comments below!

1) "It was a dark and stormy night..."
"Dani! You can't start a ghost story like that! It's lame." Eleven year old Alyssa scolded her best friend.
Danielle pointed to the darkened window across the room, where lightening flashed and rumbling thunder shook the panes. "Lys," she responded with a hint of exasperation," It IS a dark and stormy night."

2) I took in the stone facade of my newest school and let out a sigh. My sixth in less than four years. I didn't it expect it to be any different than the previous five. I didn't expect to finish the year here. In the end, we'd be running. Again.

3) "Have you lost your mind?" a deep voice growled behind me. "They will banish you if you challenge them, especially publicly with the others here."
I stared out across the coliseum where the leaders of my pantheon held court for the visiting dignitaries, then turned to face the imposing figure behind me. I reached up to cup his cheek gently and he placed his hand over mine. "They've left me no other choice, Brother. It must be done."

4) His crystal blue eyes shown brightly in the pitch hall as he made his way to the council's meeting chambers. He could easily hear the cacophony within and inwardly winced at the words being tossed about. Reaching the doorway, he stopped just short of going in. He ran his hand through his wavy, dark hair in agitation before schooling his features carefully blank and stepping across the threshold. He glanced around the room and thought one thing, This is going to be bad. Very bad.

5) "Edward Cullen is a stalker," I said just loudly enough to earn me dirty looks from most of the teens, and some of the moms, standing in line near me.
"Ellie," Myra hissed at me.
"What? He followed her around, didn't want her to hang out with other guys, and snuck in her room night after night without her knowing." I shrugged, "Says stalker to me."
Myra crossed her arms across her chest and tapped her foot impatiently, giving me her best "don't make me end you" look. I threw up my arms in defeat, and smiled slightly. "Fine. I won't make any more disparaging remarks about your precious Edward."

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Reflections I

Getting back into writing for the first time in decades (?) has certainly had me thinking about the times in my life where it was a major focus. I now wish I had saved some copies of old writings instead of throwing them all away when I moved out of my parents' house. We used to do this thing in my English class called Writer's Studio. We would first do rough drafts in our spirals/3 ring binders, that's right-pen to paper, and then have time to type them into the computer and print them out. My notebook was ALWAYS a disaster. Papers torn out of spirals in no particular order. Multiple copies of the same poem. It was an ink-stained mess! During one of our free writing (as in not directed by way of writing topic) days I was *ahem* inspired by the neatness of my friend's studio. This is the only thing I wrote that I can remember. I'd edit it for a modern twist but not a whole lot has really changed. Here it is with bizarre formatting thrown in per my style back then:

I sit at my desk with a sausage shaped spine,
my studio's cluttered and so is my mind.
Typed papers, garbage and final copies I find,
a cluttered desk; a cluttered mind.
I flip through the papers from the front to the back,
the pages of my story aren't in order
Oh, what a wreck.
I look around and what's this I see? About the person sitting next to me
Their desk is empty, now what a find,
Could an empty desk mean an empty mind?

There it is, an original Heather Nesmith from 1988 when I was in the 6th grade. I sure hope I've gotten better with age ;)

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Practice, practice, practice

One of the things I'm struggling with in this new venture is what to choose to write about. I've heard the seemingly simple but oh so true phrases: Write what you love. Write what you know. Write what you would want to read. Write because you have something to say, not because you just want to be heard (OK, I just made that one up but it's applicable). I've also read, just write until the end. Don't go back and edit until you finish. That's like rinsing the dishes and then not putting them into the dishwasher! Pure insanity. It will certainly be the biggest challenge to overcome when I get to NaNoWriMo. Because, it's not a challenge now as I'm sitting here in Starbucks and people watching as I mull over what I next want to say. And now any transition I try and make into "more serious matters" just sounds awkward.

Someone remind me again why I'm doing this? I'm still in the nervous want to throw up but getting kind of excited stage. I'm curious to see how God will use this in my life, because I have no doubt that He has planned this for this time. Yes, He used others to help bring it to fruition (and is continuing to use them with encouragement) but that doesn't make it any less His. I also can't help but ask, why me? What is the story I can tell or have to tell that no one else can? At this point it becomes necessary to fight hard against comparison, perfectionism, and doubt and just be obedient to what I'm being asked to do. Trying to take it just one day at a time and not get overwhelmed seems a next to impossible task.

I wonder about the story I'll write next month. My favorite genre is Young Adult fiction with an emphasis on paranormal/fantasy. It's just so much fun and has endless possibilities (and improbabilities) that you can explore and play with. You can create a world exactly as you want it to be. Need someone to have superpowers? Done! Want to hang out with ghosts? You can! There are absolutely no limits that can be put on the imagination as you create your own lore and birth the characters accordingly. I can give my characters the wisdom I wish I had had at that age. Wisdom of a thirty-four year old, in a 19/20 year old body--girl will be unstoppable!! That's assuming she's not a vamp or wolf or someone who's already lived a really long time and is way smarter than me...hmm...maybe i need to rethink this. ;)

Looks like I ended up with a blog post after all. It's not the length that matters, but the act of putting pen to page, right? Huh. Sounds like a good book blog name...

Monday, October 3, 2011

The New Adventure


I got in a twitter conversation with some authors yesterday. They are all indi-published, brilliant women that I greatly enjoy reading and interacting with. While looking for information for the new book blog I'm starting I came across an article on wordpress--the irony is not lost on me. In my self-appointed role of "positive reinforcer" (that's for you Tammara) I tweeted the article out to the gals. Imagine my surprise when I was asked: are you going to NaNo? In a knee-jerk, immediate response I tweeted back "I'm not a writer." I laughed out loud at the preposterous thought. I'm a reader; two, three books a week THAT'S what I do. It's why I decided to start a book blog. (Yes, I know that involves writing, people, just work with me here. I'm about to have an epiphany.)
And, yet...
When I went back and read the first post on this blog for the tumor-versary. I was stunned. I wrote that?! Those words were too eloquent, too well put together, too...too..too... to have come from me. I certainly don't SPEAK that way. My thoughts aren't close to that cohesive! I'm NOT a writer, am I?
There was this quiet, little voice in my head saying, "You used to be. You used to write everyday. You used to have notebooks full of stories, and poetry. You spent more time inside your own head and imagined worlds then in the real one. You used to spend hours scribbling on a page. What happened?" Have I been neglecting a gift I've been given? Is this why, seemingly out of nowhere, I'm making connections with these authors? Could I do this? Do I even want to? Regardless of want, am I supposed to? Is this why I haven't been able to find a job? Am I crazy for even contemplating this kind of a commitment? I'm not very disciplined; is this even worth trying? What if I don't try? Is this another thing I'm going to attempt and just be mediocre? Am I wasting a talent I'm supposed to be using?
All these questions from 2 simple comments created enough confusion to keep me up late after a LONG day of serving the choir. Enough questions to give me butterflies, and tear up about writing this post, and I am not overtly emotional. Enough questions to resolve me to two things. I'm going to do the Wordpress post a day challenge until November 1, either here or on the new book blog. I'm going to NaNo and have a completed novel by the end of November, which is omg terrifying! I will exercise the atrophied muscle of my creativity and see what comes from it. One day, I might even thank Tammara, Michelle, and Addison for nudging me towards this path--maybe. For now, though, I think I'm going to be sick.