How To Get Out of Conversations With Cowokers

Short answer: Be a writer.

Longer answer: One of my coworkers asked me what I was doing this weekend. I told her the absolute truth. I told her that I was working on my novel again and then I went into fairly grim detail of how in my novel the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. I went on to explain how the fire caused the fictitious Chicago Steam Works to catch fire and explode along with the Central Chicago Gasworks to also meet the same fate, further expanding the destruction.  how the entire area of the manmade island between the North Branch Canal and the North Branch of the Chicago River were also consumed in my version of the fire. How because of these, more people were lost in the disaster and how I could really do justice to both what happened historically and what happened in my version of the Great Chicago Fire. How the fire jumped the north branch and continued!

Well, apparently, the fictitious imaginings of a novel writer, when explained with increasing excitement about a tragic event of huge proportions made worse by said imagination, produce horror in those that ask the simple question: What are you doing this weekend? The response I received was well, shocked at best, to be honest. My coworker, who’s eyes had grown quite wide, slowly backed away and never let her eyes leave mine. Although, I’m sure that my excitement over the imaginary happenings might not have helped.

I have come to the conclusion that the only people that would understand me, in this case, are fellow writers. What’s more and the added bonus is if I want to make my hasty escape from an unwanted conversation with anyone whom I really don’t want to be chatting with at that moment, is, to be honest about what in on my mind regarding my writing.

Why? Because only writers understand other writers because we are our own special breed of crazy.

 

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When I Should Walk Along, or Over the Edge

I want to let you in on something, Y’all.

I’ve has a kind of a downer week where I work. But I don’t blame my job, or the managers there, or my coworkers; I blame myself. When I’ve told my coworkers that I want to be a writer and that I’m writing a novel, I’ve let their negativity make the decision for me that I am not a writer.

One of the biggest mistakes that I’ve made.

I’ve never been one to have much faith in myself, even when my English professor, Alayne Peterson assured me that I have talent and she liked my writing.

I always had my doubts: “Is she just being nice to me/ feeling sorry for me?”

But tonight, as I was plodding along in my writing through researching the Great Chicago Fire for a plot point, I realized that even though this is the most tedious work of a fiction writer, that I am loving what I am doing.

Christ, I hate looking at the surface of aluminum extrusions for surface imperfections, setting up a saw to run the same length of part for gods know how many cycles. Cut the metal, stack on a skid, repeat ad nauseam.

But after (my real?) work today: I was reading about the Great Chicago Fire, it impacts on the citizenry, And trying to fit in how the protagonist of my story finds his first steps into the chaos of his future. I was trying to incorporate concepts like Maxwell Street, South Branch Chicago River,  Monroe & Dearborn to make a realistic storyline.

My point is writing is hard, like really hard! I am glad that I am doing it. Damn glad, in fact. To do a good job at it I need to be on my best game, but I need to have my writing friends with me, because dammit, I’m with them!

 

Full Disclosure

Yeah, I have a degree in journalism. In getting that degree I was taught that if there is any possible conflict of interest the writer must make a full disclosure statement. But now for the part that might seem weird to most, but maybe not my writer friends.

Full disclosure: I’m scared. And to be honest, as a writer, I’m not even sure of what. Rejection? Success?

I think it’s something unrelated, or maybe in between. All I know is this: For the last several months I’ve read through portions of my manuscript for Requiem for a Laborer. I’ve been able to make a few basic edits, correcting horrible sentenses, improper word choice, that sort of thing. But when it comes to making “flesh and bone” changes, I’ve been paralyzed.

Don’t get me wrong, I am in no way at all thinking that my work is beyond reproach. In fact, I think that like many writers (and musicians- I fancy myself a vocalist too. Blues, if you must know.) our own worst critics.

Every time I sit down to edit, I find myself thinking: Who would want to read this? Who would want to read a novel about a group of wannabe freedom fighters on a steam powered airship? Sure the aerial battle plays out super cool in my head but…      and the thoughts trail off…

At this point, I find myself thinking what right do I have to write a steampunk novel? Cheri Preist has it down with her Clockwork Century series but is there anything of real value that I can add to the genre? I feel like I have a different approach but  maybe it isn’t different enough?

And it is at this point that things get even more sticky for me. In college, (I graduated four years ago as a non-traditional student)  I was given very positive feedback from my professors, English professor Alayne Peterson,  about my writing. My thought? Oh, they’re just being kind. I’m really not that good.

Then again, maybe this is self-destructive thought. If I produce a story that a few people find entertaining I think that I have done my job. Maybe I could it evolve it into a series. Time and ability will tell.

So what brought me out of my writing funk? Well…

I was watching a #Joe_ Bonamassa Mountain Time video, awesome guitar work awesome musician. Beyond that, I don’t think I could really tell you.

I can tell you this, however, I am trying my damnedest to start moving forward with my writing.

Peace.

 

 

Day 22 NaNoWriMo 15

Does anyone else have problems transitioning into the third act?

The reasonI ask this is because I really am two-thirds of the way through my narrative and I seem to be having some trouble moving from my protagonist identifying his problem and taking the initiative of resolving it,

What am I supposed to do as a pantser, who is trying to come up with the evolution of my protagonist to the conclusion on the second act and moving into the third act?

Oh well, after all I fly my the seat of my pants.

Imsure it will all work out by the end of NaNoWriMo..

Congratulations Carrie Rubin!

A HUGE shout out to Carrie Rubin whose book Eating Bull had its paperback launch today!

I’ve started the ebook version it is really good so far.

Sorry Carrie, but I will get through it (along with my own NaNoWriMo project and Stephen King’s On Writing). Promise!

So here is the synopsis, from Amazon:

A fight against the food industry turns deadly.
Jeremy, a lonely and obese teenager, shoots into the limelight when a headstrong public health nurse persuades him to sue the food industry. Tossed into a storm of media buzz and bullying, the teen draws the attention of a serial killer who’s targeting the obese. Soon the boy, the nurse, and their loved ones take center stage in a delusional man’s drama.

In this novel of suspense, Eating Bull explores the real-life issues of bullying, fat-shaming, food addiction, and the food industry’s role in obesity.
Seriously, who wouldn’t want to read this?
Congratulations again Carrie Rubin. Best of luck!

 

Day 5 NaNoWriMo 2015

It’s day five of NaNo and I can say that I am officially 20% finished with my word count goal.

Noticed that I said word count goal and not finishing the novel. It seems that tthis project has taken on a life of its own and I will most likely crash through the 50,000 word barrier,

But I think that that is the fun of writing a fast draft; one never knows where the road leads.

And speaking of unexpected twists, unexpected even for the author;  I’ve written in a new character. A woman airship captain named E. (Elizabeth) Esher. This character is going to be fun for me to develop, for sure.

I have plans for tomorrow after work so I am not sure how much in the way of writing that I will get done but I will make a point of doing at least a little.

Word count for the day:2193

Word count for NaNo: 10,281

Day 1 NaNoWriMo 2015

Just a quick update, all. I made my word count for the day for my #NaNoWriMo project!

Yea, Me!

But what is strange for me here is that I tossed aside the idea of having any plan and just started typing what flowed through my mind, with a minimum sketch of a story line.

So my #steampunk story already seems to have some interesting plot twists without a high degree of planning, I’m looking forward to where this takes me

Best of luck to all my fellow NoNoWriMoers!.