"The good writers touch life often. The mediocre ones run a quick hand over her. The bad ones rape her and leave her for the flies." ~Ray Bradbury
It's that time of year when I just sort of put my head down, dig in, and wait for spring to arrive. We've had a string of cold weather here, with nights in the single digits and days with the temp below 25 and the wind chill below 10. Everything's gray (my car most of all - yuck). The sun hasn't been shining too much. With the writers' strike, there's nothing good on television.
The bright side?
I've been reading a lot more. I know, I should be reading a lot anyway. But it's hard during school. I read my students' awkward papers and don't have time for much else. With no TV at nights, though, I've found new motivation :) Right now I'm about half-way through The Red Tent and enjoying it. It's quite interesting, and different: historical fiction, I guess. It's the story of Dinah/Jacob/Esau/Leah/Rachel from the Bible but focuses almost solely on the women's roles and points of view.
I've also been reading and reviewing not only for LASR but also for Black Lyon Publishing (you can see one of my review clips here). That's been fun.
I've also been actively working on marketing myself these last few months, mostly through writing free-lance articles for a couple different sites. In fact, I think I'm going to ask my webmaster (webmistress?) to add a page to my website just for article links. (Oh - and here's one I wrote for LASR this week. If you're an author, you might want to check it out).
Also on the marketing front, I've been working with Stella Price and some other sort-of local authors in setting up author parties (like the one last weekend) and book signings. In fact, I just marked the date for my first official signing: May 30th! It's the week after both my books come out in print. Exciting - even though many authors say signings are not the best way to spend time...we'll see.
Finally, I've been working through the galley for ONE NIGHT IN BOSTON - this is basically a line-by-line proofread of the manuscript to make sure there are no typos or words I want to change before it goes to the printer next month. It's rather tedious but it's allowing me to look at that book again. And that's been fun.
I sent back my signed contract to Samhain for ONE NIGHT IN MEMPHIS and hope next month to work through edits on my draft of SUMMER'S SONG (anyone out there volunteering to read it for me??). I haven't decided yet where I'm going to submit it...I had originally thought The Wild Rose Press, and I still might. But I looked at their contract again, and they pay less in royalties for both electronic and print versions than Samhain (I didn't really notice last year, I was so excited to sign a contract with anyone). So I may bite the bullet and query print publishers or agents. We'll see.
And that was probably much longer than you wanted to read on a Saturday! Time for me to go cuddle under some blankets and do some more reading.