Life and Times of an Aspiring Novelist

January 19, 2007

Both a slacker and an attention whore…

Filed under: Uncategorized — wordsmithwannabe @ 7:07 pm

I have written a grand total of 300 words since Wednesday.  Oops!  Not 100% my fault; the baby brother just moved to town, and we’ve been helping him get his bearings.  I can’t begrudge the quintessential gross little brother who taught me a lot about love (prime fodder for a writer, right? I have made my Dale Carnegie classmates cry with these stories) a few days of my time.

But while my laptop has been sitting idle, I’m noticing people are reading this blog and I got my first ever comment – Good luck wishes from Ellen.  (Thanks! 🙂  ) The only Ellen I know personally hates my guts, so I’m convinced I garnered a fan.  Go me.

I’m just waiting on pins and needles for my ‘zine contract to come through.  I haven’t heard from the editor in over a week and am starting to get nervous.  Yeah, I know that these things take awhile, especially with a brand new website.  I’ve just been on Cloud 9 since she hired me, and the evil pessimist that dominates 90% of my soul is always waiting for the other shoe to drop.  Sigh. 

Tonight, the Man is out of town, the weather sucks, and my friends have all ditched me, so…  it’s to the laptop I go. 

January 14, 2007

My non self-published web debut.

Filed under: web publishing,writing — wordsmithwannabe @ 8:24 am

So it’s just a book review.  Point is, it’s free books (I get Janet Evanovich’s new one in the mail hopefully this week!) and it’s writer street cred.

And, what with the weather being crappy and all, I got a grand total of 8,188 words written in my novel yesterday.  I am just a hair shy of 70 pages, or 20,000 words.

 Word count

January 12, 2007

Aww…

Filed under: Uncategorized — wordsmithwannabe @ 8:07 am

I have the sweetest and most supportive fiance in the whole world.  (Yes, yes, please take a trashcan and puke).  Internets, he was bragging yesterday to my parents about the magazine gig, and how many hits I have on my other blog.   I wasn’t going to tell them about the magazine until it was actually up, running, and ranked, but the Fiance was just too excited.  He waxed on about how gifted a writer I am, how happy I seem to be when I write, and how much he hopes this pans out into a full time job for me.  (Yeah, he and I both!)  The latter means a lot coming from someone who not only earns rings around me, but whose family is so rigidly corporate that, in their eyes, not working in Industry X or Y automatically classifies someone a loser.

Then of course, ensued the conversation with my 50-something Dad reassuring him that yes, you can access most Internet sites from any computer.  Is he a dumbass who did too much acid in the 60s?  Not even close; he was Phi Beta Kappa and an Ivy League valedictorian in the 70s, and started a very successful (non-dot com) business in the 90s.  Gotta love that generation. 

What with staying out late, though, I got all of 400 words written yesterday.  Oops. 

To go back to school, or not?

Filed under: Uncategorized — wordsmithwannabe @ 8:07 am

I have been eyeing a really cool class on novel writing being offered by UC Berkeley Online.   One one hand, I totally have better things to do with $525 (which, bad as this sounds, is pretty cheap for college credits) and I am scared my classmates might steal my ideas, but on the other, the program is world-famous, there is probably a lot I could learn from a published author, and I bet I’d have fun.   Screw that 100K already spent on a BS in Business. 

Decisions decisions. 

Life and Times of an Aspiring Novelist

Filed under: Uncategorized — wordsmithwannabe @ 7:53 am

Life and Times of an Aspiring Novelist

January 9, 2007

Success!

Filed under: Uncategorized — wordsmithwannabe @ 9:02 am

In related news, Saturday I turned in an application to work at a new online magazine, and three hours later, got a phone call from the editor with an offer to write for them!  It won’t be full-time (yet), but I’ll get to do two or three peices a week for the first two or three months or so.  The freelance pay’s not bad either, it’ll make a nice little addition to our nest egg.  Yay, a feather in the cap for when I try to publish my novel, not to mention a marketing channel already open.  I’m so excited.  But of course, trying not to get ahead of myself…  which is hard when I have to haul my ass out of bed every morning and leave the house for the freezing cold before dark just to avoid the horrendous train wreck that is rush hour around here.   It’s really hard not to daydream of working at home in my PJ’s, doing something that doesn’t really even feel like work to me on days like these.  

Right now, I’m just kind of waiting on pins and needles for that contract to come through.  Yup, any day now, Ms. Editor… Sorry, lady, but you did just say you’d grant a dream I’ve had for the last almost 2 decades, and my cynical ass wants to see the paperwork, so I can know it’s real. 🙂

Not suprisingly, I guess, I got over 2900 words written on Sunday in between football games and errands, and even better, almost 1000 words written last night in the space of 3 hours.  It just flies by.  And either because that magazine completely inflated my ego, or because I’m ironing out some of the kinks, my storyline’s seeming all the more interesting, original, and cool. 

Today, again, I’m on track to leave at 4:30, and I can’t freakin wait to go home and write some more!  I’m such a geek, and I’m loving it.

January 2, 2007

My first plot outline, and self-doubt (related to this particular project that is)

Filed under: writer's block,writing — wordsmithwannabe @ 4:52 pm

So I spoke too soon, Plot and Structure was in fact good for something.

 I made my first actual plot outline yesterday and filled it in – it’s a little shy of 10 pages long.  Brought attention to one gaping hole that I need to fill in (I think I can, I think I can).  Brainstormed for a bit, but got discouraged and put the laptop aside. 

I don’t know if it’s the typical dark cloud that slides over me every Sunday (or Monday on a long weekend) night, but I am starting to doubt myself.  Yeah, I know.  Rome wasn’t built in a day.  Just put black on white, no matter how much it sucks, and make it not suck later.  But still.   It’s not like my attempt at the career I was “supposed to” want has really been all that successful, who’s to say this writing thing will be any different?  I’m getting all intimidated by the myriad who have gone before me – what if someone, somewhere, has already had my idea and published it?  How am I ever going to manage to be as good as So-and-so?  What if I can’t manage to stand out from the crowd?  And so forth.

It just sucks because I feel much happier and more motivated when I’m writing than at any job I have had.  I love to write.  I just don’t know how good I am, or how marketable my writing is. 

January 1, 2007

Gateway

Filed under: Uncategorized — wordsmithwannabe @ 3:49 pm

Urged on by my better half, I purchased a new laptop today, that is to be used expressly for my writing.  Yeah, it would’ve saved me a couple hundred bucks to just bring my work one home, but this way I leave work at work completely. 

How to Write Great Fiction…

Filed under: Uncategorized — wordsmithwannabe @ 9:37 am

Truth be told?  Plot and Structure would be great for inspiration if I didn’t already have a plot in mind.  I’ll finish reading it, and definitely keep it on the shelf for future reference (ie, books 2 – n) , but I don’t think this is going to move my novel as far along as See Jane Write did.  It may help me fill in some “meat”, of a sub-plot or something, but that’s about it.  And honestly, what it’s doing is making me question, am I so miserable in my own job that that will bleed over into my main character? (Who grows increasingly dissatisfied with her own career). 

It is like the English class I never took in college though, and a good investment/reference book.  However, I will say, having done 99% of all my research online since the late 1990s, looking stuff up in books is a pain.  I wish there were just some edit/find function in regular books like there is soft copy materials.

Sigh.  And tomorrow it’s… back to the office.  For four days.  Followed by a string of five-day weeks.  I’m trying not to think about it, that job stresses me out more and more by the day.  

December 29, 2006

Character Sketches

Filed under: Skeleton — wordsmithwannabe @ 1:19 pm

According to See Jane Write, I put the cart before the horse in doing the plot.  So last night, I sat down and hammered out the character sketches of the 6 principal characters of my embryonic novel.  Now I just need to find someone, anyone, to do a “sanity check” for me.  Takers? 

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