Saturday, April 30, 2011

First Sentence Saturday!




I feel exactly like this lady today! I swear, I think it would be easier to write another book than to come up with new ideas for blogging!  I spent the past few days moving my WIP (work in progress) over to Microsoft Word and then going over it for the final edits.  That was fun compared to this!






Here is my current brain scan!-------->




So, it's really a good thing I ventured over to FaceBook this morning while I was trying to come up some profound thoughts on writing, blogging, and life in general. I happened upon one of my most favorite profiles, and I'm sure some of you know her, or are following her blog.  Novel Publicity, aka Emlyn Chand.  She has a fantastic site for writers.  I've learned so much from her about getting yourself out there in the world of social networking, and she has a lot of good stuff about writing in general.  Feel free to check her out yourself. If you are a writer, you will not regret it!

Here is her blog link:
http://www.novelpublicity.com/blog/
  
and her Page on FB:
 http://www.facebook.com/emlynchand

And in the meantime, since many of my followers here do not follow Emlyn, I am going to steal her idea for today's blog!!  (She won't mind - she's so awesome)
(plus I asked her!)

This question is for Authors, however if I get a bunch of comments, you Readers will enjoy it too!!
(which means you will have to click on the link to follow the comments or come back periodically to read them)

What is the first sentence of your book/novel/work in progress?
You can add the title too!

I will post mine first and a little photo to set the scene:

The sound of the blood rushing past my eardrums echoed the roar of my pounding heart.

For those of you who have read chapter one of Ravenswynd, you will probably notice that, once again, I have changed the beginning.  Hopefully, this change is for the better.  Let me know what you think!  

Don't forget to post your first sentence.  This will be fun!  

Thanks for reading and commenting!!



Saturday, April 23, 2011

Sunday's Coming

                                                    
    For my Jewish friends: Happy Pesach! *


                          

For my Christian friends:  May you all enjoy a blessed Easter weekend.  I'm sure most of us will be busy with family get-togethers, egg decorating, chocolate eating, and all that comes with this holiday.  :)





  









And I leave you with a short video: It's quite graphic, but I believe it's worth the 3:42 minutes. It's called: Sunday's Coming.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tn94B3GHcjY&feature=youtu.be



And here's hoping spring comes to all of us who have been waiting...and waiting...and waiting...


What are you planning for your holiday weekend?

Whatever it is, I hope you have a great one!

Thanks for checking in!











*Passover

Saturday, April 16, 2011

The Power of Words


I posted a video from YouTube a few days ago.  I posted it on my personal facebook profile and on my Writer's Page - which automatically posts it to twitter as well. I was surprised at how little response it generated.  I have no way of knowing how many people bothered to look at it, nor how many saw it and scrolled right on by as they looked at their homepages. But it made me wonder.  Am I wasting my time with all this "social networking" ?
                                                      











     My facebook profile shows that I have 169 Friends and my Writer's Page says that 90 people Like this.  My twitter account says I have 137 followers.  Out of all these potential lookers, there were only 4 comments and 4 likes, with 3 of those being the same people. Does this mean that most people just don't take the time to click 'like' or make a comment - even if they are actually reading and not just scrolling?


It's not like I was the creator of that video or anything.  But what it had to say in such a short amount of time was absolutely astounding. ( 1 minute and 47 seconds) As a writer it showed me how important words can be, and as a human it showed me there is yet hope in this world of ours.


Perhaps waking up to another dreary, gray day has dampened my outlook on social networking.  When I looked at today's weather on my computer it said: drizzle.  Now they have upgraded it to: Overcast.  Yay.

Perhaps I am spending too much energy wondering why people don't care enough to interact within this social networking world.  Or maybe I am spending too much time clicking like on my friends updates and videos and photos and quotes - making comments when I am moved by something they have posted or Blogged.  Lets face it - it is hard to keep up with all of it.

Looking up right now at my Google reader notifier, it says I have 30 blogs to read and my Google mail  checker says there are 20 emails, some of which will be Blogs I have subscribed to from WordPress. That's not counting both of my facebook account updates, twitter tweets, nor my Writer's Circle group posts.

I think I am trying too hard. And when so few people interact back, I tend to take it personally.  Or, like I mentioned earlier, perhaps it's just the bleak day.  It is only 29 degrees.  And did I mention how gray, bleak,  drizzly and overcast it is?  Oh, I just looked outside.  It's snowing.  Sideways.





In case any of you missed it, and are interested in the video that got me started on all of this...here it is:

http://www.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DHzgzim5m7oU&h=b5cc8

There are over 3 Million hits on this video. 3,700,755 to be exact.
What did you think the woman wrote?  Were you surprised?  How did the video make you feel?

And now I am going to get off of all the social networks and spend some time editing and writing.  That always makes me feel better, no matter what's going on outside.  Not to mention the great feeling that comes with knowing I am not wasting my time!




As always, thanks for reading!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

A Space for Writing

I've often imagined what kind of room I'd design if I could have my very own space for writing. It would have to be spacious, yet cozy.  It would be far away from the noise of the rest of the house.  I would like a few windows with beautiful views and of course, loads of book shelves and a comfy chair or two for reading.


I could picture myself in a room like the one above.  There's a big bright window, a fire-place for those cold Wisconsin winters, and a place for all of my books.  I would exchange the portrait above the fire-place for a Monet, and perhaps I'd like more modern carpeting, but everything else looks inviting to me.

Currently my writing desk is in our living room: half-way between the kitchen and the television.  Not that I'm complaining, mind you.  After all, I am usually home alone most of the day anyway.  But a writer can dream!
~ ~ ~

In a blog I read recently, the author said he had to move his writing room to the other side of the house.  The picture window that over-looked the ocean was too much of a distraction for him! (The Horror!)  If I want to look out of my window, I have to crank my head over my right shoulder - no scenic distractions happening around here!

This is a view of my little writing corner:  It will do for now...and I'm glad I finally got the bookcases.


And speaking of books...I am challenging myself to read at least two books per month.  To some of you that may sound like nothing...however, it is a real challenge to me since I tend to compare my writing to published authors which, at times, can make me feel a bit intimidated.  But I am very aware of  the saying: To be a good writer, you must read!  So - I am reading.  Right now I am reading Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte, and an e-book called Origins, by Sean Hayden.  (Vampires!)


Where do you do the majority of your writing?  Are you easily distracted by noise or windows with a view?

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

To Thesaurus Or Not To Thesaurus

~That Is The Question~

  



*I posted this quote/question on my Writer's Page this week from stand-up comedian, Steven Wright.  It's kind of cute, and made me think about how and why I use my thesaurus. 

~ ~ ~ ~ 

A very famous author has been quoted as saying: "Any word you have to hunt for in a thesaurus is the wrong word.  There are no exceptions to this rule."  ~Stephen King~

And when I say very famous, I mean VERY famous.  Is there anyone who has not heard of him?

Many of his books have been turned into some of MY favorite movies! 
The Shawshank Redemption
The Shining



I'm sure most of you also remember The Green Mile, Firestarter, Dream Catcher and 1408.  All Stephen King stories turned into great movies.  And so many more, which proves he is a great story teller. And yet, I beg to differ with his opinion about the use of a thesaurus. 

What about finding alternative words when you've over-used a word or you just want to avoid using a cliché?  What if you just want the right effect and you know the word in your mind just won't do?

I use an online thesaurus called WordWeb that also utilizes the dictionary- so as not to accidentally throw a word into my work that is incorrect.  I am aware that some writers do that, and I am very careful to make sure I understand the definition of a (new) word before I use it.  Perhaps that is why King believes any "hunted" word would be wrong.  


Do you agree with Stephen King?       If not, which one do you use and why?

And, what do you think (believe, consider, imagine, suppose) Stephen King meant (had in mind, implied, intended, thought) when he made that comment (remark, input, statement, assertion) in the first place? 

I would LOVE  (enjoy, like, desire, want) to hear your thoughts on this!

~ ~ ~ ~

*The answer to Steven Wright's question: Thesaurus = word finder, word book, synonym-dictionary.  

Thanks for reading!



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