Christmas has been over for more than a week, I almost have it all cleaned up and put away. We’re focusing on the new year and moving forward.
One of the ways I’m moving forward is by working on a novella length Christmas romance that my dear friend Jacquolyn Mcmurray and I are hoping to publish as a “duet” in November. (A duet is when there are two authors and two stories in one volume.)
I’ve been dreaming and daydreaming, the story brewing in my head. This is unusual for me. I guess I usually have so much in my head, there’s not time, space or energy for the characters to bounce around in there. But, winter break means getting up late and long walks.
One character: I’m thinking of a young man who graduated from college and moved to Hawai’i to teach for two years with Teach for America. He planned it for several years and saw it as a peace corps experience. But after only a month or two, he is so worn down and homesick, he’s thinking of leaving during winter break. What or who will help him through Christmas? Will he stay and persevere or leave, with no self-respect remaining? We’ll see….
(I don’t know yet either!)
I’m praying for a wondrous new year where God uses me in every way possible, including in this Christmas romance.
This is Nick Vujicic, author of eight books, college graduate, husband and father of four. I recently saw him speak in Hilo. What an amazing person! He has some great videos on youtube and I’m reading Life Without Limits now.
I’m thinking more about hiking these days. The Hawai’i Volcano National Park close to my house that I’ve been hiking in for many years has been closed since May 5. This loss makes me pine for the trails there.
I’m thinking more about the Appalachian Trail too. I hiked about 200 miles in 2000 and a smaller section in the 1990’s. Now I realize how long ago those hikes were. I want to get in backpacking shape and do a weeklong section in the summer of 2019.
Especially since I’m not a spring chicken any longer, I need to plan and prepare. Equipment will need to be added to the budgeting, children need to be invited, prepped or otherwise engaged during the hike, the husband needs to be shaped up or otherwise engaged, and I need to be ready. People will need to be assured that I will be safe or accompanied by a safe partner. Expectations need to be mentally prepared.
Compared to all of that, writing is easy. I already have the equipment, my family is used to my monthly retreats, I’ve been getting in shape for years and my writing partner is the perfect blend of a mentor, no-nonsense boss, and best friend.
Even though I don’t really do bucket lists, this year I have two things I really want to do.
#1 Backpack a section of the Appalachian trail
#2 Publish a novel with a nationally known publisher
I read a blog today about writing. A woman was writing about what she planned to do when she finished writing her novel. Drink champagne? Go on a hike?
No, if she is like most writers, she will need to: tweet, facebook, blog, REVISE, rewrite, EDIT and repeat.
That’s the stage that I’m in now with my current WIP (Work in Progress). It’s done. Polished. My dear Jackie McMurry and I polished it, shined it, edited..
I’ve been working on the tweeting, blogging and facebooking.
I’m really excited to be doing my first #pitmad. I know, it sounds like a mad pit bull to me too. But that’s not at all what it is! It’s when you tweet your book in 280 characters. If an agent or editor wants you to send them a query, first ten, whole manuscript, whatever, they favorite (heart) your tweet. Sound like fun??
I can’t wait until THURSDAY. And since I’m in Hawai’i now (not near lava!) I will be tweeting at 3 am, 6 am and 2pm. The #pitmad is from 8-8 EST. Tweeters can tweet 3 times for each manuscript (I only have one.) You can tweet when you want, but these are the times I picked.
I’m going to use #hootsuite to tweet them for me so that I can sleep (and work!) But you can bet I’ll be checking my twitter to see if I got any favorites!!
I’ve only just begun to read and study the writings of C. S. Lewis, but I’m fascinated by the way he weaves Christianity into his fiction and the support of his friends. I agree that creating is a call from God and best done with other like-minded writers.
So much to learn and so much to write.
Today I’m doing final edits on my early reader chapter book, Rudy. I plan to submit it to publishers today. Today I worked on frequently overused words. I greatly reduced the number of thats and justs. I couldn’t believe how many times I used that. Sometimes three times in one sentence. Yikes!