A Game of Inches

I was recently reminded of the value of taking little steps to achieve a big goal. If you’re a football fan, you are probably familiar with the phrase, “It’s a game of inches,” made popular by a screaming Al Pacino in the 1999 film, Any Given Sunday.

I truly believe that writing is also a game of inches. That’s how I wrote my very first novel. I had no idea what I was doing and it would be another ten years before that book actually became a published novel, but I started by simply telling myself to write a few paragraphs every day.

Writing a book seemed impossible, even writing a chapter, but a paragraph? I could do that.

Continue reading “A Game of Inches”

Did You Make It?

It’s down to the wire now on my Goodreads goal. How about you- will you make it?

Last year, I upped my Goodreads goal number to 100 books this year. (and for those of you uninitiated, if you are on goodreads, you can set an annual goal and Goodreads will track your progress all year, letting you know if you’re on track to reach your goal).

I raised my goal this year because I wanted to challenge myself to read more and mess around on my phone less. I’ve still got six books to go, but I’ve got three weeks (and four books in progress) so it seems doable.

Continue reading “Did You Make It?”

Getting My Sparkly Back

Lackluster.

That’s how I’ve been feeling lately.

Maybe it’s my age. At fifty-six (fifty-six!), I’m feeling what everyone probably feels at this age—past my prime.

Everything is harder.

Continue reading “Getting My Sparkly Back”

Writing or Wasting Time?

Are you wasting all your time with all these words? #areyoustillwriting #amwriting #writerswrite

I have gotten out of the habit of writing.

And serious writing depends on just that—habit. Not waiting for inspiration or time or a good night’s sleep or a better outline or the dog to shut up or until you take some class/webinar/retreat.

Writing requires that you sit down and do it. No matter what. As often as possible, every day if you can. You start where you are and spill your jumbled thoughts, wandering storylines, and vast emotions on the page. Your fingers tap along as your heart and mind try to make sense of it. (or maybe that’s just how it works for me.)

If you keep going, pressing past the doubt and frustration and discouragement and that little nagging bird fluttering all around you chirping that you’re wasting so much time, if you wave her away and type on, I promise something will come of it.

Continue reading “Writing or Wasting Time?”

I’m Enough

I’m jumping off this crazy merry-go-round of publishing and promoting. Enough is never enough, but, you know, I am enough. #amwriting but #amdonepromoting

I’m losing my gumption for writing.

Or at least for publishing.

I can’t imagine myself ever not writing. The publishing part, though, it drains my soul.

As much as I want my stories to land on the hearts that need them, I am tired of how ‘less than’ publishing makes me feel.

It’s an incredibly competitive industry and one that is skewed towards the people who

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Finding the Focus to Write

Finding the time to write isn’t always as hard as finding the focus to write.

My house is full of distractions—animals, chores, deliveries, laundry, phone calls, the list goes on and on especially since this has become as much our bunker as our home.

And then there’s the other inhabitants who are currently working from here instead of where they have always worked for most of my writing career. I am never alone at my house. And even if these people are on a different floor, doing their own thing, not paying a lick of attention to me, their presence stifles my writing.

And yes, I know that makes no sense.

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#Truth: The Publishing World is Rigged

Let’s be honest—the publishing world is rigged.

After twenty years wrestling with words, agents, editors, publishers, and social media, I’m not saying this in a bitter way. Just as a matter of fact.

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Finding the Gumption to Start

The hardest part of writing is the first line—it’s just summoning up the gumption to start.

startSome days I sit for minutes that drag on and on, finger poised over the keyboard, unmoving. When nothing comes to me, I distract myself with e-mail or Instagram, talk to the dogs, or scroll through Facebook, anything to delay those first words.

 

According to popular writing advice, those first sentences are critical. Publishing blogs quote agents who advise writers to Continue reading “Finding the Gumption to Start”

HELP WANTED: From a Distance

So much can change in a week, right? Our world turns upside down. Everything is different.

And yet it is still the same.

For me, there are still dogs to rescue, family to feed, books and blogs to write, and with spring, a garden to tend.

I am so hyper-aware (and incredibly grateful—to what? God? Fate? Timing?) that we are lucky. Continue reading “HELP WANTED: From a Distance”

I’m Just a Distractible Girl

“The more willing we are willing to separate from distraction and step into the open arms of boredom, the more writing we will get on the page.” -Ann Patchett

#truth: Writing is boring.

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My assistants waiting for me to write something

It’s very easy to find a suitable distraction to Continue reading “I’m Just a Distractible Girl”