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Monthly Archives: March 2012

Where Is This Story Going?

I am struggling with my outline. To be honest I can’t even say I’ve made it to the outlining stage. I keep trying to come up with plausible plot points and when I think I’ve got it, something jumps out at me that doesn’t make sense. I hope to be able to start actually writing my first draft this week.

So far, I have my major character profiles completed and I am very close to having the plot points where I want them. I need them as guideposts to finish outlining the story. If I could nail the plot points I think I have enough scenes for the first act so plan to start writing and plotting the final acts as I go.

I worked on it most of the day today and think I am so close. Just a little more and it will be there. How do you start out your stories? Do you plot or write by the seat of your pants? Do you know your characters or discover them as you go?

The other issue I constantly deal with is using my time wisely. I realized that I had to change something to make time to write. Getting home late wasn’t working. By the end of the day, I didn’t have enough energy to think about writing and too often found myself vegging out on the sofa after supper until time for bed. So I have committed to going to bed earlier and getting up at 5:00 to write. It gives me an hour and a half to myself before I have to start the day and I think I like it. The time change was a little difficult but I set my clocks back and went to bed early anyway. I will get this figured out so that by my next post I can start reporting word count for the first draft. It will happen.
What have I been reading? Alexandra Sokoloff‘s ‘Unseen’. And I’m liking it. So far it is a great ghost story. It has a good amount of creepy factor that and characters I care about .Love the premise. It kind of makes me think if Shirley Jackson’s stories. If you like a good ghost story, I highly recommend this one.

How is my weight loss going? Slowly but steadily in the right direction. So far 8 lbs. I have been wanting to snack a little more than I should and I didn’t work out much last week but I did buy a new Zumba CD for my Wii. Will be adding that to my routine this week.

Virginia

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Posted by on March 11, 2012 in Writing a Novel

 

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Weight Loss for Writers…

Okay so I have been at this since February 5th and I feel like I am slowly going forward. It hasn’t been a straight path. Some weeks I do lose a couple pounds and just keep going but most weeks, I fluctuate. I think I have figured out why I fluctuate mid week.

I have Tuesdays off so meet my writer friend Sara for lunch and coffee. I try to watch what I eat and I do use my app to check for calories. I continue to make better choices but sometimes I am weak and give in to something I really shouldn’t…

Obviously my weekly meetings with Sara make it more difficult but I think life would be more unbearable if I had to hide away and not enjoy it a little. So it may take me longer but I will enjoy the journey so much more.

One of the things I do that I feel is essential is keeping a log of what I eat. No matter what I eat, I put it on my log. I own it. That way when I gain, I can trace it back to what I did that could have caused it. Without a record, I would have to resort to guessing.

I did read the Loseit book in the beginning. If you are thinking of doing this program, I would recommend reading it. It goes into more detail about everything. I also discovered another free program called Spark People. I will tell you more about it next week. The website is a little more complicated so not sure how far I will go with the online stuff there. I did, of course buy the book to read  and think I may get the most benefit from the book anyway. The Spark People program encompasses more than weight loss. It is supposed to help you achieve all of your goals.

Well enough for this week. I continue to lose slowly, even though today I am on one of those rebound days where I regained the pound I lost yesterday, I know it will come off again soon. I keep floating between 6-8 pounds so far but because I have so many more to lose, I’m not sweating it. I know it will come off now. I am feeling more confident with each day that I continue.

If you are just starting the weight loss journey, my tip for this week is to keep a food log. It makes you think about what you are eating and it keeps you honest.

Until next week,

Virginia

 
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Posted by on March 7, 2012 in Weight Loss

 

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Do You Write Alone or With Others?

Last November, I proposed meeting once a month with another writer friend to write, critique, brainstorm, and generally keep both of us moving forward. My friend is Kerry F. and we decided to wait until after the holidays. Since we both are members of a local RWA chapter that meets the 3rd Saturday of the month, we decided to meet on the first Saturday of each month. We were both excited and then we had to deal with bad weather both January and February. We live a distance away from each other so meet half-way in West Des Moines.  Today we finally got to get together.

We’d had a chance to share our work by email so are now familiar with what we are writing. Today we had a chance to sit how it was going to fit. I think we are a great fit. We met to work out details of our stories that were hanging us up and I had the opportunity to iron out some issues I was having with my Act I.

We discussed what we are looking for and we seem to be on the same page. We both want someone to obviously help critique our work but also brainstorm with when we get stuck or something doesn’t seem to be working. We want someone to motivate us to keep going and someone we feel is sincerely interested in helping us get further into this business of writing.

We plan to open our monthly meeting up to other members of our IRN group who need the support we feel we can give. When it was time to split up and drive home, I felt good about the time we spent today. I left with a better vision of how my story needs to be told and couldn’t wait to get home and start writing.  We are both writing about similar topics, witches, ghosts, and a bit of the paranormal but in totally different situations. She is working on a historical series based around a manor house from the past and each generation of family living there into the future. I am working on a story about witches also, or at least a group of women accused of witchcraft and how those accusations affect a community in a contemporary setting.

Kerry is a talented writer and I feel honored to get to work with her. Will keep you posted as we travel along this adventure in writing.
Do  you write alone, are do you write with a buddy?

What have I been reading?  Finished Lisa Jackson‘s ‘Shiver‘. An interesting thriller set in New Orleans before the flood. It is centered around a tragedy that happened at an asylum and the aftermath that followed. The heroine’s mother fell out of a bedroom window and died in front of her family. Originally it was thought to be connected to her state of mind and she probably committed suicide but as the years passed, it didn’t add up and eventually a series of murders all came back to that tragic incident. Kept me guessing right up until the reveal. Will hopefully look for more from this series if I ever get through my mountain of to be read books.

Also finished reading Stephan King’s “Colorado Kid‘, a novella that the television series ‘Haven’, is based on. It was an interesting read but not what I expected from King. I enjoyed the story but think it could have been extended into something longer and obviously someone else thought so, with the aforementioned series. I watch ‘Haven’, ‘Supernatural‘, and pretty much anything with a paranormal theme to help me develop my current work. I would like my current story to be a series so like seeing how others approach similar subjects thinking I will see something similar to what I am trying to do. So far, not so much. That’s good though. I feel like maybe I can write about similar subjects with a fresh approach. Since I can’t seem to find what I want to read, it gives me more initiative to write it for myself.

Until next time,

Virginia

 
 

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