To be mid-thirties and still getting toys for Christmas…magic.
(Thanks, Mom! )
And that video is what I’m feeling like in these young months of 2013. In a good way. Slappy…but happy.
I know it’s been a looong time, and if you’re still with me, I love you for your loyalty. Thanks for havin’ a monkey’s back. And now I hate to inundate you with a laundry list of all I’ve been up to, but we’ve got some catching up to do since my last post.
First of all, I discontinued my writing services as a web content writer. This isn’t to say I wouldn’t take on new projects, just that I’m done with the old and not presently soliciting new. Should any fall in my lap with no douchebag-SEO-guy strings attached and the content requested sounds meaningful and fun, awesome.
Second of all, I’ve since then thrown myself into my editing work and recommenced my querying process—for my first manuscript, yes, but also some short stories I’ve had lying around and collecting dust on my hard-drive. It’s been a much more pleasant process since my discovery of Duotrope. Why in hell has it taken me this long to know about it? If I’m at least still one step ahead of you, allow me to expound my new-found knowledge: the site allows you to filter through a comprehensive listing of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry markets (~4,500 of ‘em) based on your criteria (e.g., genre, word count, etc.).
In any case, it’s been a lovely time getting reacquainted with my shorter pieces of fiction, but, alas, I haven’t been doing much new writing lately. For shame, I know, but I’ve been editing multiple manuscripts back-to-back. My workload in this respect has significantly increased since agreeing to assist with editorial direction on fresh acceptances as well, which is much quicker turnaround apiece but still a crapload of reading, analyzing, and plan writing.
I don’t know, maybe I kill myself too much over them, but I care, gol’ damn it. I know it’s not my name that’ll be attached to a book in the end and that it’s usually very different from my own writing, but I strike up lovely little synergies with these authors, and, in the end, a lil’ piece of me is in that book. I’m there in spirit, existing in the syntax and idea development. I might be the reason a description really enhances a setting or character, or that POV is third-person limited and not omniscient. I might be why that villain exhibits vulnerability rather than a caricature of evil intent. I might be the one blasting a hose of cold water on the fiery libidos of two love interests, asking them to please keep it in their pants until at least the next chapter. Or I might be why lush summer gardens fade to blustery winter landscapes when the original time frame doesn’t sync. And perhaps I’ll be why an adult paranormal novel becomes new-adult contemporary, as I reduce characters’ ages to something commensurate with their behavior and situations…and save the world from one merman story at a time.
And I will always be why a writer feels good about his or her work in the end. Because for as much grunt work as I can take credit for, it ultimately has to stay in keeping with the author’s vision and style. They are the ones who provide the clay to work with. As two of them recently emailed me:
“[T]hank you so much for the kind words. As someone with the fragile writer’s ego, I appreciate them!”
“Just wanted to thank you for all the wonderfully encouraging comments and smiley faces. As a writer [...] there have been many moments when I reread my own stuff and thought, ‘this is terrible.’ I can’t tell you how gratifying and inspiring it is to view the parts you particularly enjoyed as I revise.”
It’s such a special collaboration to be a part of, and I look forward to (hope for) the opportunity to experience this process from the other side someday.
As for someone who already has walked that wild side of publication for her second time now, I’d be remiss not to close on the very happy news of my sister’s latest book! Divine Temptation—a paranormal romance and Nicki Elson‘s second novel—is fresh off the presses as of last week:
Maggie Brock has everything under control…until an angel shows up in her bedroom.
God speed to this good read!
And now—with a *slap* *slap* to both of my cheeks—time to happily get on with my work.