About Me · Dreams · Editing · Indie · Observations · Positivity · Publishing · Writing

The Long Road Ahead

The beginning of a rough draft is always exciting and magical–like unicorns and fairy dust. Somehow, that random spark of an incredible idea seems to settle in our minds and then (usually at night when you’re trying to sleep), the spark grows and flares into a huge undeniable story. Such an instance happened to me last night when I was trying to get some shut-eye. I needed to flesh out the idea I had for the third novel in my Tales from Niflheim. Of course, a bevy of ideas began to fling themselves at my mind–vying for my attention. Somehow, I was miraculously able to remember them this morning. It’s a good thing, too, because I was way too tired to get out of bed and write them down.

So, despite waking up feeling kind of sick, I sat down and was able to start the very first page of the first draft of  my sixth novel (I say sixth, because I wrote four manuscripts last year and one so far this year.) Words always seem to fly from my fingers on the first 1/3 of manuscript. Things typically get tough in the middle (can I get an “Amen”?) and then by the last 1/3, things are back to flowing again. It’s sometimes hard to remember on the first few days of a new novel that there is such a long road ahead.

For some people, this keeps them from attempting to write a novel. “It’s just too hard to finish!” they might whine. For me, I think the long road ahead is an adventure to be experienced, returned from, and shared with the world. I love every aspect of writing a novel. I love the tingling beginnings of an idea in the brain…the cemented relationship of drafting and editing…the formatting and prep-work for publishing…I adore it all. That’s part of why I chose to go with indie//self-publishing. I like having my hands in it all–getting them messy and covered with wordy goodness. I love making cover art and learning about the marketing process. I may not always love these things, but for right now, they’re just a part of the long road to producing a book and getting it out to the public.

For you, does the long road of brainstorming, drafting, editing, and prepping seem daunting or exciting? I’d love to hear your thoughts! 

Regardless of what your thoughts are on it, I truly hope you enjoy your writing! Happy Friday!

Thanks for stopping by!

~L.M.

 

About Me · Editing · Indie · Writing

Moving to Paper for Some of the Day

Good morning, all!

Well, yesterday was an extremely busy, but productive day. I was able to finish the first draft on the sequel to the novel I’m currently prepping for publishing. I also finished the 5th edit on THAT novel. *Whew*.

Today, I’m moving to notebooks and pens for the morning. I need to start some planning for the next novel I’m writing and get some overall “universe” brainstorming done. 🙂

I’m mostly a pantser like I’ve said before, but for the beginning, I tend to plan out a few things before I jump in and see where a story takes me! 🙂

I hope you all have a fantastic morning! I’m off to get my writing done! 🙂

Blessings,

 

~L.M. ❤

About Me · Dreams · Editing · Indie · Publishing · Reading · Writing

Changes to the Blog!

Happy Saturday, all!

WOW. I slept in really late, due to the fact that I stayed up past 1 AM reading a Zoe Winter’s book. I am coming to you (sleepy-eyed) this morning to announce some fun and exciting changes to the blog!

“But it looks the same!” you might protest. Look closer. You’ll see on my pages above the entries that there is now a News! page and a Books page! As well, in the drop down menu beneath Books is the Tales from Niflheim page. Time is quickly moving towards my deadline, which is August 31st! My first book should be available on Amazon and the Smashwords distribution sites by Fall 2012! As soon as I know it’s available on those sites, I’ll be having some release week excitement on the blog!

Now, these pages are not super thrilling at the moment, because I am still gathering the material I’d like to put on those pages. As soon as I’m ready, though, I’ll update them and make them look shiny (yes, that’s a Firefly reference.)

Also new is the Facebook Fan Page link to the right on the sidebar. It’s underneath the Twitter feed. Go ahead. Go check it out! You know you want to. 🙂

I am in sort of a surreal state of mind right now. I am actually on track to meet my deadline, I am actively prepping my novel for publishing, and my life-long dream is about to come true! SO exciting! *little girl squeal ensues*

Have a very happy Saturday!

~L.M.

Dreams · Editing · Wednesday Wanderment · Writing

Seriously Cool Idea

Novel in a  Notebook!

I may SERIOUSLY have to do that for my next novel. I am one of those super organized people when it comes to much of my life, but when it comes to novel-writing, I’ll admit that I have notes and random scribblings stashed around in various notebooks//journals. That sounds like a FABULOUS idea.

As well, one of the posts I discussed yesterday in my Wednesday Wanderment talked about writing a novel in a notebook first before transcribing it into the computer. I actually may try this as well. I love the feel of pen and paper. It is so romantic and it can really help me, personally, to get into the zone a bit better. The interwebs are just so distracting!

What do you think? Novel in a Notebook might be a good idea? Do you ever write your novels down on paper first? I’d love to hear from people who organize their stories physically in a notebook and those who also write their first draft on paper! Share, share, share!

About Me · Dreams · Editing · Indie · Publishing · Writing

Update on Writing Progress

Morning, everyone!

I thought I’d give you all an update of what’s going on in my little writing world. Jumping right in, I’ll tell you that my tentative deadline is coming up at the end of August. I will be finishing up the fourth edit of my novel manuscript today and starting the fifth sometime this weekend or Monday. I am finding less and less to fix each time (which is ideal) and I am upping the amount of pages I edit a day with each subsequent editing session. Things are moving along. I am about 3/4 of the way through Zoe Winter’s bookSmart Self-Publishing: Becoming an Indie Author. GREAT book. You should all check it out if you are thinking about publishing independently.

As well, I’m about 70,000 words into the sequel to the novel I’m currently prepping for publishing. Last year, I wrote four manuscripts. This year, I’m not even done with my first, but I’ve been focusing so much on editing the first novel I wrote last year that it was hard to get more writing done. However, I have confidence that I can finish one manuscript, publish a novel, and at least get half-way through another manuscript by the end of 2012.

Things are getting really exciting in my writing life. I am going to achieve a life-long dream by the time fall rolls around (or at least by winter!), and I will hopefully be successful enough to keep pursuing my dreams full-time. It has been an exciting ride. My advice to anyone who is dreaming of becoming a published author and work full-time on their writing is this: make it a priority. Make sure you communicate fully just how important your writing is to your family, friends, and yourself. Start with an hour a day. Seriously, just sit down and write an hour a day and you’d be surprised how much work you can accomplish. Once you’ve got your hour down, start making a word-count goal for that hour. Once you’ve got that down, keep it going! Read about the craft, try different styles and exercises to strengthen your skills! Practice editing your own work to learn how to think objectively about your own writing. Dare to dream! But, also dare to make goals of your dreams. Typically, dreams remain in the clouds unless you put feet to them and bring them to earth as goals.

Get going! What are you waiting for? You can do it!

Working on anything exciting? I’d love to hear about your current writing escapades and goals!

Thanks for stopping by,

 

L.M.

About Me · Balance · Editing · Writing

A New Week

Well, three full days have passed since the tree has come down. It still sits in our backyard, cluttering up the place. We still don’t have power in our bedroom and master bath. But you know what? It’s alright. The Philosopher and I had a surprisingly awesome weekend despite all the tree drama. We got to spend time with family, friends, and each other. We also got some healthy perspective that we can come through anything with joy and peace. Our biggest prayer for the week ahead is that we don’t get overwhelmed with normal life, social obligations, insurance meetings,  and construction with the tree removal and roof work.

I was able to get my normal writing done this morning. I actually have a meeting I have to go to at 11:00, so my workday will be interrupted just a bit, but when I get back, I’ll jump right back in and get my editing and Maiedae work finished. Tonight, I’m looking forward to cooking some ricotta and spinach pasta shells and doing some chores around the house. Then? REST.

It is so interesting to write when you have a bazillion things on your mind. I find it much harder to get in my zone when my mind is full of thoughts and to-do lists. But that’s okay. My mind can’t always be clear every single day.

Some things I’m looking forward to for the day:

~Seeing my hubby at lunch and after work

~running through a night yoga vinyasa before bed

~reading

~cooking something new

~editing on my novel

~Maiedae work

~quality devotional time with God

~quiet and peace

 

Some things I’m looking forward to this week:

~getting back to martial arts training (last week the dojang was closed)

~continuing to make time for yoga every day

~getting the fourth edit of my manuscript done or mostly done

~catching up on Maiedae work and discussing new responsibilities!

~intentionally practicing wellness–physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual

~getting a lot of writing done on my current novel

~spending time with my husband and friends

~resting

What are you looking forward to today? This week? I’d love to hear! Share, share, share!

~L.M.

About Me · Dreams · Editing · Indie · Positivity · Publishing · Writing

Developing a Plan

For many of us dreaming, pre-published authors out there, getting a book published would be on up there in the list of “life goals”. For those of us who are self-publishing through Amazon, Smashwords, or some other program, that dream is realizable. However, it is still work. In fact, it might possibly be more work than going the traditional route. When you’re writing on a shoestring budget (or no budget at all), you’re it. You’re the cover artist, you’re the editor, you’re the formatter, you’re the marketer…the list goes on an and on. Of course, for some the hope is that once they get published, they’ll be able to make enough of a profit to keep doing what they love and be able to hand some of the prep work batons off to someone else. I don’t know about you, but formatting MSWord documents for Kindle and Smashwords sounds a bit daunting. I’m fully prepared to give it a shot on my own, but that might be something that I’ll pass off to someone else one day. Maybe. We’ll see. 😉

Even if you end up loving every single aspect of prepping a book for indie publishing and want to end up doing it all yourself forever, there are methods that can help you maintain your sanity and put out excellent books.

Develop a plan. That’s right. If you never do anything else to help guide yourself along this path, start making a plan. This plan needs to include how you will handle editing, beta reading (if you will at all), cover art development, marketing, building up your reader platform, money you’re willing to spend to get your name out there, which publishing programs you will approach, formatting for those programs, etc. The list is much larger, but you get the idea. Having a plan for how you will tackle these things will be of great help to you in the long run. It may even save you some of the major headaches of not having thought about these things on down the road.

Is it possible to become a success without at least refreshing yourself on the aforementioned list? I don’t know. I’m not published yet. 😉 However, my goal is that I will be published before the end of 2012 and I, myself, am definitely making a plan.

Some resources I’ve been using to help me develop this plan are:

>>J.A. Konrath’s Newbie Guide to Publishing blog

>>Writer Unboxed

>>Amanda Hocking’s specific posts here and here

>>Zoe Winter’s: Smart Self-Publishing: Becoming an Indie Author

Sure there are countless other links I could give you, but these are the ones that I continue going back to over and over and over again! Check them out. I hope they will be helpful to you. For those of you who are going the traditional publishing route, I feel the advice is the same. Know what you want out of your writing career so that you are better able to communicate with agents, publishers, and editors. This is your dream, your passion! Be aware of how things are flowing in the writing world! Educating yourself on the art and craft of writing and selling your books, will be a huge help in your journey!

Thanks for stopping by! Go get yourself a plan! 🙂

 

~L.M.