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Bite by Bite…

Bite by Bite…

BIte by Bite

 

What can I say. I abandoned my blog. I have not been out here in so long that I figured when I came back it would be dead. I was wrong. People have continued to check in and I feel bad that I haven’t had anything new for them to see.

I have not given up writing. I continue to work on different projects and this is the year that I will complete a novel and attempt for some kind of publication.

I did not mean to abandon my blog but I have been dealing with some scary life issues. My close friends know what has been going on this past year but as you can see, I survived.

I plan to blog as often as possible. I would like to start out posting something once a week and then see how it goes. Call me the come back kid. What can I say, I missed my blog.

The Bite by Bite theme describes my goal this year. I only have one goal and that is to complete a novel length project. Since writing a novel is such a huge task, just thinking about it can be overwhelming. I am fine until I think of all the work and to be honest it scares me.

Over the years I have heard other writers describe the writing process. They say it is the same as eating an elephant. It can seem impossible. But if you do it one bite at a time, it becomes possible. I happened to find this calendar and journal on Amazon with the elephant on front. It was developed by a writer and has goal setting information for how to break down your goal into smaller goals that are easier to achieve. It helps you feel good about the process along the way instead of waiting for that big reward at the end of the year.

I am not going to make blogging one of my goals but I will post each week about my journey.

Just so you won’t be too bored, I will post about what is going on with the different writing groups that I belong to and also some more author interviews and book reviews. I have been reading a lot this past year and I have met some very interesting authors. I was fortunate enough to attend a few writer’s conferences and would love to share whatever might be of interest.

My first bite for my goal this month is to finish my character sketches and my outline for my current project. It is a romantic comedy with a few characters who won’t seem to go away. I decided the only way I will get any relief is to tell their story. Next month I plan to participate in an on-line writer’s camp with a closed group I belong to called –  The Perley Writer’s Colony. We have these camps several times a year. Unlike Nanowrimo, we don’t have to write 50,000 words. We each set our own goal and then post our progress on our Facebook group page. We can ask questions, work out things when we get stuck and motivate each other to reach our individual goals.

I love to write and I am also interested in the writing process. Since I am in the pre-writing stage of my project, I would love to hear from you. Do you pre-write or do you just sit down and start typing? How do you start a new project? Do you outline? Do you know your characters and how well?

If you are published and would like a featured interview, please let me know. I am always happy to help out a fellow writer.

Keep reading and writing – until next week.

Virginia

 

 
2 Comments

Posted by on January 13, 2015 in What's Happening, Writing a Novel

 

Writing Prompt – What if?

What if you wake in the night to the sound of tapping, look outside your window and see a bloody hand print, reach for your phone and it is dead…

 
1 Comment

Posted by on April 2, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

How To Get the Most Out of a Writers Conference III

Hopefully you’ve had a wonderful time at the conference and you’re pumped to start writing. That is usually how I feel after several days in that environment. This year, I have scheduled an extra day off work to catch up at home and devote a day to writing before I have to go back to the day job.  It is my treat to me.

Now take a breath, unpack, and do those things you have to do after a few days away from home. Before you settle into writing, take a few minutes to evaluate your experience.

Pull out your goal sheet you prepared before the conference.

  • Did you meet your goals?
  • Were there some that you did not meet?
  • What was the best memory?
  • What did you learn?
  • Do you need to follow up with a pitch session?
  • What would you do differently next time?
  • Would you want to attend this conference again?

 

Hopefully you had a wonderful experience networking and plan to keep in touch with some people you met. Might friend them on Facebook. And did you share your blog site so they can start following you there too?

Well this is the last post about conferences. I hope it helped with even one new idea.

I will be attending the Spring Fling in Chicago in April. Hopefully I will see some of you there.

Next week I will list more conferences happening in June to allow you time to sign up.

April will be all about plotting. My local chapter of RWA, Iowa Romance Novelists,  will have a program “Plotting without a Net” with Leigh Michaels speaking. Leigh is a multi-published romance author who has also taught classes at the community college in Ottumwa as well as the Writer’s Workshop in Iowa City. If you live in the Des Moines area and would be interested in checking us out, we meet the third Saturday of every month at the West Des Moines Community Center on the second floor from 10:00 to 1:00. Hope to see you there.

Keep writing forward,

Virginia

 

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Writing Prompt – April Showers

Storm clouds gather. What does your protagonist do?

 
1 Comment

Posted by on March 26, 2014 in Writing Prompt

 

How To Get the Most Out of a Writer’s Conference II

Now that you have set your goals and decided on which conference to attend, You need to get your hands on a brochure. Most conferences will have this information on their website. It will list all of the workshops and programs.

  • Keep your goals in mind and choose workshops that are relevant.
  • Most are Q&A sessions or panels but some conferences will have hourly workshops to help with craft or the business of writing. Should be able to find something for whatever level you are with your work.
  • If you plan to pitch to an agent or editor, try to attend their panels to get to know them better before you meet.
  • At night they sometimes have sessions that are a little more laid back. I attended ‘Love is Murder’ one year and got to listen to true ghost stories from the authors. One of them was Charlaine Harris. Now how awesome is that?
  • If you catch yourself wanting to attend sessions that are scheduled at the same time – pick the one you want to see the most and purchase the recorded sessions, if they are available. Most conferences have started doing this.

Next post we’ll get into what to do before your one-on-one session with an editor or agent.

Hope you are working on something – happy writing.

Virginia

 

 

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Spring Finally!

You’re lying in a field of flowers looking up at the sky. Who are you? What are you thinking? Are you hiding? Are you in trouble?

 
2 Comments

Posted by on March 20, 2014 in Writing Prompt

 

How to Get the Most Out of Attending a Writers Conference

Before you do anything, take a few minutes to think about what you want to accomplish by attending a writers conference.

  • Do you want to learn more about the business of writing?
  • Are you wanting to become a better writer?
  • Is networking of interest?
  • Are you published and want to promote your work?
  • Do you just want to have some fun?

Any of these are legitimate reasons to think about attending a conference. But as you know if you have done any research, conferences are not cheap. You have your registration fees, travel and hotel expenses, meals, and who can go to a conference without buying some books? So to save yourself from signing up for the wrong conference, you will need to do some research.

Before you do that though, sit down and make some goals for what you want to get out of a conference. What are you looking for? Put it down on paper and be specific. When you get home afterwards what do you want to have achieved?

And then look for a conference that fits your needs. You might start your search online, get recommendations from friends, and if you belong to any national writer’s organizations – check those resources, also magazines like ‘Writer’s Digest’ or ‘Writer’ list information about upcoming workshops and conferences.

If this is your first conference would you feel more comfortable in a smaller more intimate setting or are you ready to jump into one of the mega conferences like RWA’s National or the mystery writer’s Bouchercon.

Just wanted to give you something to think about. I will post later this week about the next step in preparing for a writers conference.

Until then, what do you do specifically to prepare or do you just pack a bag and go? Hopefully I can give you some suggestions that will help make your next conference experience more memorable.

Happy writing,

Virginia

 

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