Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Risks & Rewards

With every risk that is made, comes a reward. Risk - Reward. Risk - Reward. I've been taking many risks, yet haven't seen any rewards. Actually, that's not true. It was a risk to even write a novel and I was greatly rewarded when I finished it. Shouldn't that be enough? Why do I have this - at times zany - need to have others read my work? I'm not egotistic. I don't want to be glorified. I just want others to find enjoyment in what I wrote as I had. Reading rejection letters that clearly state the agent wasn't interested in the story or not interested enough to read more, is discouraging. It's a business and I understand that. But for me, it's more.

Friday, July 16, 2010


When it comes to writing, you have to have tons of patience. The whole writing process warrants it; from the inception of the idea, to the polished final draft (before agents and/or editors), even to querying and waiting for an agent to find your story compelling and worthy of his/her representation. As a writer, I have accepted all of this, but, at times, my patience (which I usually have plenty of) thins.

Putting aside the normal waiting game that comes with querying agents, I have been working on a chapter for three weeks now for my newest project. I have written the first ten pages three times and still there is no ending in sight. I wouldn't say that I have writer's block (that was last week), it's more like I'm hitting my head against an invisible wall. None of the other chapters have given me this much grief.

As it stands, I know how the chapter should begin and I know how it will end, it's what comes in between that is causing all of this chaos, pushing me beyond the limits of my patience. I will admit that this chapter is important. I know that's the reason why I'm slaving over it, making sure the written word is just as powerful as the image that won't escape my mind; proving that there is a method to my madness.

It's so frustrating to be stuck, desparately trying to figure out a way to navigate around the obstacle so that your patience can be restored. I am a truly patient person, overly so, I've been told, but nothing makes my fuse shorter than not being able to write this chapter!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Old School

The reason why I don't regularly blog the way that I should is because my computer is temporarily down. After seven years the monitor, not so quietly, went. When this happened there was no real dilemma, since the computer itself is out-of-date. I opted to purchase a laptop, saving buying a new monitor for later. There's only one catch: I'm cheap. I refuse to buy anything when I know a sale is coming. In the next few weeks, back to school sales will pop up from every perceivable outlet. So why should I buy a 500 dollar laptop now, when I can wait three-six weeks and get one cheaper?

The downside is this, blogging and doing whatever else computer needed task at work. As I previously mentioned, I write pencil to paper, so that's not a problem, but it's the ability to create on paper or edit, and then be able to instantly implement it on the screen. Not to mention, I'm an Internet junky. It's hard not being able to go on whenever I please.

So forgive me when it looks like I have given up voicing my journey. I'm still here, just periodically.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

To Be Sixteen Again...And Again...And Again

In my haste to expel my thoughts on this blog, I forgot a crucial one, what I write. Due to extreme paranoia, I can't nor would I go into specifics, such a titles, and overall plots (that is until the book is on its way to a store near you). Just my extreme bad luck, someone reads this blog and creates a replica (or at the very least, a likeness) of my work and gets it published. That is definitely a worse case scenario that refuses to leave my mind.

If you were unable to figure out from the post title, I write Young Adult (YA) Contemporary fiction. What does that mean? I write about teens and their journey through life. Essentially, through my characters, I'm reliving my high school years over and over again, one book at a time.

Drowning in Words...........

The job of a writer is never done. Regardless, if you have moved on to another project. Case in point, I have been tweaking (omitting a word here, sentence there, etc.) from my novel for the past two weeks. It started when an agent requested a partial (the first 50 pages). I was so crazed, I made sure the submission was polished, with the help of a trusted friend and my long time reader, this was accomplished. After reading those 50 pages three times in a three day span, I realized how I needed to read the rest of the novel, all 302 pages of it. Of course, it's different than reading a book. You do that for enjoyment. When you're looking for errors and possible omissions, you read it with editor's eyes. Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on how you see it, part of my day job includes being an English tutor, making it very easy for me to fall into that role. Dare I say, also making it painless for me to separate myself from my work. But there is a thin line between writer and editor, and I'm straddling it.

Then there's the role of the reader in me, who just wants to read it. Not to mention, the writer hearing the voice from the protagonist of the other project, ready for me to pick up where I left off. With the addition of bouts of doubt creeping in, per title, I'm drowning in words. Despite my complaining, I wouldn't have it any other way.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

What's So Great About Being Normal?

This is the question that I ask myself every time I put my pencil (yes, pencil) to paper. It's what my central characters ask themselves, contemplate and/or debate in my head. Personally, as someone who lived on the obscurity of normalcy as a teen due to ridicule and rejection (kids can be so cruel), I choose to exist there now as an adult.

Moving on to what this blog is about, my journey as a writer, it is important to start at the beginning. Not the very beginning, such as conception, but when my creative mind unleashed.

It was senior year in high school, second half of the year and the class was creative writing. Taught by an young adult author, my world was rocked. As a shy teen (for those who weren't, might still understand), I already imagined different scenarios of how my life could've been different and at times, lived in the land of make believe (though unlike Mr. Rogers, it didn't exist with puppets).

It was then characters began to talk to me. The first one was named Reed. Of course, they're not characters to me, they're people (voices really) who have a story to tell and chose me to tell it. Only fellow writers, creative types and eccentrics would understand that I'm not really hearing voices. It's my creative mind giving me an avenue for expression. Anyway, Reed and his "brothers" grew up together on the streets and became a family. Now I realize how much similar it was to The Outsiders. Although I can't remember the title or the rest of the characters' names, I know one wasn't named Ponyboy.

Fast forward high school graduation, college graduation, work, graduate school graduation and career, with many dallances in creativing writing (i.e. short stories, etc.), we arrive at the present. Not quite 2010, more like 2008 when this strange rollercoaster ride began. After reading a book and the further researching the author for her bio, I had one of those "if she can do it, I can do it" moments. So I did it. I wrote a book. And wrote it again. And again.

Three drafts and two and half years later it's finally ready for the public. More to the point, ready for literary agents to either love it or hate it. So far I've received more hate than love, but who's complaining. The hate doesn't weaken my determination, while the love (when I get it), strenghens that presistence within.

As most of the rejection letters (emails) state, "it only takes one agent." Who knows, he or she might be reading this very post. Regardless if he or she is, let me extend this to all: welcome to Lost and Delirious: Incoherent Thoughts Of A Writer.