Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Writers' Wednesday: Be Persistent, Always

"Writing a book is an adventure. To begin with, it is a toy and an amusement; then it becomes a mistress, and then it becomes a master, and then a tyrant. The last phase is that just as you are about to be reconciled to your servitude, you kill the monster, and fling him out to the public." ~Winston Churchill

If there is one piece of advice I give new writers, it's this one: be persistent, and develop a thick skin. That second bit is especially important when it comes to hearing the words "No" from an editor, agent, or even reviewer, but it's also important when that voice comes from inside your own head.

What I mean is that it's really important to keep going, keep trying, and if necessary, write and rewrite no matter how many times it takes to get the story right. Most of you know I've been working on my contemporary romance novel Entwined for about a year now. It's messy because it has a few different plot lines and a twist that can't be revealed until precisely the right momet - and I've been having a really tough time putting it all together.

This weekend I got about 3/4 of the way through my 4th draft when I realized, yet again, that certain elements weren't working.

So I stopped. Opened a new draft. Eliminated a huge plot point that I think has been getting in the way, and now I'm on draft #5. Yes, true. Sigh. It's been frustrating for me, I won't lie. And this may end up being a story that doesn't ever find publication. There are some like that. Still, I'm not ready to give up on it just yet. I think Summer's Song ended up with about as many drafts, and it was about 8 years from first draft to final print publication.

So, new writers, stay strong when your manuscript takes a turn (or many turns) for the worse. Be patient with your characters. Call on your beta readers to help you. And hang in there.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Monday Mentionables: A Day of Remembrance

In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, here's his great "I Have a Dream" speech. It's definitely worth watching/listening to. Enjoy & be inspired :)