Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Ninety-Nine and Counting

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Today is my ninety-ninth post! 

That’s almost two years of blogging. Wow! It’s quite a challenge coming up with an idea each week. When I first started blogging, I thought I would gradually work my way up to two posts a week; one on Wednesday and one on Friday, but I find that a once a week post is challenging enough for me. I don’t know how some bloggers handle three or four posts, or more, per week. Perhaps it’s the only writing they do.

Each of my blog posts takes several hours to create. After I get an idea, it typically takes me an hour or so to get the ideas organized on paper. I do a lot of re-reading to try to make my work as clear and as mistake free as I can. Sometimes my brain goes faster than my hands, or I read what I WANT it to say, not what I’ve actually typed!

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 After that, I spend (probably definitely too much) time finding images to go with my text. Then, I get everything formatted on the blog page so that I’ve created some white space between paragraphs and added images to go with most of them. 

Finally, I create hyper-links if I want readers to look at something else on-line.  I also create labels that allow readers to click to blog posts having particular key words in them- like: Writing a Novel. (If the words are a different color than the rest of the text, you can click on it!)

Three hours or so later, I can look at a preview of my post before I schedule it to appear at 4:00 AM, Pacific Daylight Time, on my BlogSpot page.
This is the book I need!
Image courtesy of Google

So, what’s in the future for this blog? Can I maintain another hundred posts? Well, I hope so. This blog is part of me “building my platform.”  Writers need that. We can’t live in a vacuum.  I’ve been doing some marketing research and I’ve learned enough to know that I don’t know much at all. (Is that a song???)

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My goal for this blog is to continue to talk about books, and life, and writing. With the writing in particular, I hope to share my process for self-publishing. I hope to self-publish THE INK OF TIME by August, 2017. (Just typing that makes my stomach do flip-flops!)

I will chronicle the steps I take in this process. Right now, I’m at the sort-of rewriting/revising stage of this novel. I thought it was done. I sent it out into the publishing world. I found out, it was not ready. With the help of Story Genius, By Lisa Cron, my novel goes much deeper than what I’d previously put on the page. I’ve already written some very interesting scenes that I’ll be adding in.

Here’s a sneak peek:
Courtesy of Google Images
My eighteenth birthday came and went. Polly was the only one to wish me a happy birthday. She’d bought a Bear Claw at the gas station on the corner and we split it. Crazy Polly even lit a match and stuck it in the donut and made me blow out the flame, like a real birthday candle she said.

Polly and I were sitting on the front stoop of our apartment building a couple days later. Quinn, without actually having any chalk to draw a real one, jumped in a hop-scotch pattern up the sidewalk and then picked up the little rock she’d tossed and continued to jump.

 “Otto, I’ve got a secret. It’s a bad one,” Polly said.
“How bad?” I asked.
“What did you do this time, Polly?”

“I went to the free clinic.” I stared at her, afraid to ask and maybe not wanting to know, but she blurted it out anyway. “Otto, I’m gonna have a baby, look!” My sister pulled her sweatshirt tight against her belly. It looked like she’d stuffed Quinnie’s favorite cereal bowl under her shirt...

Believe it or not, Otto’s life gets even more messed up from this point on. I knew Otto had siblings, but until I wrote this scene, I didn’t know they were younger sisters named Polly and Quinn.

Here’s my thing: It’s exciting to create. It’s very scary to share.

Do you have an exciting/ scary “thing,” too? I think maybe we all do at some point in our story, don’t you?

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God gives us each our unique “things” to make us braver, stronger, and more humble.

Take a minute to think about yours (maybe now or in the past..).

Until next time,

Be Good to Yourself.


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