July 30, 2010

Recap #1 from Midwest Writer's Workshop

Wow! What a weekend! I got here to Muncie IN on Wednesday afternoon. I went to call hubby and realized that there was a time change. The time in Chicago is an hour earlier than Muncie. This would not make a huge difference except that I am a night person and the workshop started at 8:00 every morning so, 7:00 my time. Not to mention that I couldn't sleep the first night. Needless to say, I drank a lot of coffee.

At the welcome they reminded us that, "Playing it safe is the most popular way to fail."

For my intensive session I took "The Art Of Characterization in Fiction and Non-Fiction" with Dinty W. Moore. I was a little disappointed that he fired me as his best-friend. I sat next to him during the workshop and in an example he put me in the story as his best-friend. Somehow I managed to get fired because I wasn't laughing enough or something. I was just concentrating on what he was saying. Oh well.

The session dealt more with non-fiction than with fiction but I think I can use some of the exercises while I am reworking my book. He was basically reverberating the show don't tell rule by having us describe someone from our past in detail. I suppose I could have just used one of my characters instead if I had wanted to bend it towards the fiction side. Too bad I didn't think about it at the time. It was a good session and I learned a lot even though it wasn't quite what I expected.

One the main things that most of the speakers that I saw at the conference was stressing was that you have to learn to use the social media to your advantage so I am going to make a point of posting a lot more. I probably have at least five posts just about the workshop. But, for now,
Goodnight and good writing....Patti

July 28, 2010


Time runs away from me. In February I was looking forward to May. In May I was looking forward to July. Now it's July and I'm in Muncie Indiana not able to sleep because I'm excited and nervous about the Midwest Writer's Workshop. My birthday is next week and I want to know where the time went! I don't post often enough but before I know it I'm going to be posting about nano again. I try so hard to get everything done but sometimes the time is just...a runaway.

My book is ready. I am meeting with an agent on Friday or Saturday. Part of me hopes it's Friday so I can get the nervousness over with but part of me hopes for a little more time. I have to be up at 6:00 Chicago time but I know I'm not going to sleep yet even after the four and a half hour drive earlier. I didn't take a nap but I'm used to going to bed after midnight. This year I promise to post some good stuff from the conference. Hopefully it will be before the next one.

On a serious note. I love this conference. I love learning about the industry. If you want to be a writer you have to learn as much as you can. I hope, if there is anyone reading this, I will be able to bring you some kind of insight. Now I better attempt to go to sleep so my brain can absorb as much as possible tomorrow. Good night and good writing.....Patti

May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

First of all I want to start by saying Happy Mother's Day to all of the mothers and grandmothers out there. Mother's Day doesn't really mean that much to me anymore because my mother and grandmothers are gone and I am not officially a mother. It means that I am missing my family that has passed on more than usual. R.I.P. Diana, Doris and Minnie. I miss you very much. We need to honor the people in our life everyday instead of just certain days of the year.
I know I haven't been writing as often as I keep saying I'm going to write. My only excuse is that life keeps getting in the way. I am still working on my revisions and I already registered for my conference. If things go well I should be ready to pitch for the agent at the conference. I am currently working on another outline with things that I want to add and delete. I'm working on a new subplot that will hopefully tie it all together.
I am looking forward to the summer and being able to sit outside and write. My good friend is also coming in town for at least a month so I also looking forward to seeing her. The nice weather always inspires me so I hope I will get back on the right track.
Good luck and good writing. Patti

February 28, 2010

Sunday Afternoon

Good afternoon.

The snow is still on the ground. There is a snowman on the side of the driveway that the grandkids made yesterday. The living room is a mess but what else is new. It's like life is limbo right now. Tomorrow is the first day of March. It is staying light out until six o'clock now and the Cubbies are practicing. Even though the weather doesn't act like it yet, spring is on the way. It is in the horizon. The sun will be setting on winter very soon and I can't wait!

Yes, the pictures are of the same dog. The top picture is of Dolly after her haircut, the second is Dolly before her haircut. The only thing I will miss this spring is Dolly. About a month ago we had to put her to sleep. She was almost thirteen years old and she got very sick, very fast and went blind even faster. She loved to be outside with me in the spring and summer. Even last summer she would run and chase the ball. I love to sit outside in the nice weather and read or write. A lot of evenings I will have a few glasses of wine (not me) and Dolly used to get excited whenever I would come in the kitchen and pour that first glass even if I wasn't planning on sitting outside. She was also my protector, letting me know anytime someone was even walking past the house. It's going to be so different this year without her.

I took a short vacation from writing because I was out of town, then my friends were in town, then I went out of town again. I am back again. I am working on editing again and I am finding a lot of things that I can cut and add to my manuscript. I am hoping to have it finished by the time I go to the writers conference at the end of July because I want to pitch to an agent again. This will be my third year going to this conference and I'm really looking forward to it.

Now that I am back in writer's mode again I will be posting more often. Talk to you soon! Good afternoon and good writing!!!


January 15, 2010

Some Thoughts For The Week

Hello again,

Here I am again for another January blog. I sent out two queries this week. The first one I sent out Monday and got a rejection on Monday. The second one I sent out tonight. I am always disappointed with a rejection but it doesn't bother any more or less if it comes right away. It keeps me from waiting on pins and needles. Now, if the agent needs more time to decide if my work is right for them I am totally okay with waiting. As for the agents that only respond if interested, I send my work out and keep my fingers crossed but I don't hear anything within a week or two I basically figure it's a no go.

I read as much as I can about the publishing industry. I am fascinated by the in's and out's of the publishing industry. I understand that agents work extremely hard for their clients. I followed #agentsday on twitter and I understand how many queries they have to read on top of taking care of things for their exsisting clients. Oh, by the way, if there are any agents reading this blog I am not trying to suck up I just understand a little bit about the business.

Yes, I understand that some writers can get away with not following the rules. But, why burn your bridges and bash people that follow the rules? I have been reading one blog in particular where the guy bashes agents and I find that very ignorant. I know everyone is entitled to their opinion but still...

On another note, I don't remember where I got this website but it is really interesting:
http://www.academicearth.org/. You can actually read transcripts or watch videos of classes from some of the top schools. I got interested in a philosophy class from Yale. Now I know I have to go back to school one of these years!!!

Well, as of now, I still haven't gotten a rejection so I am going to do a little writing and then head up to bed. Good nite and good writing. Patti

January 1, 2010

New Year, Time for Change

Wow! I actually posted a picture on here, Facebook and Twitter and I changed the look of my blog. It's a start. I just wonder if there is anyone out there that reads this!

It is 2010 and this is my 20th blog post so I better make it a good one. Now that the fun and excitement of the holidays are gone, I have to get down to business and make some changes. My main one is manage my health better. I have specific goals on how I'm going to do that but I'm not going to share them on here. At least not at this point.

As for writing goals, I am going to share. I am going to read a lot more. I am going to read about writing but I am also going to read more in general.

I am going to get up earlier in the morning so that I can do some writing before work.

I am going to manage my days off a little better so I can get more done and get some writing, reading or editing done.

I am going to network in a more productive way.

And...I say this every year, I'm going to write the blog more often.

I am currently going through Chain Reaction one more time so I can send it out again. So far there hasn't been much need to make any major changes so I should have another round of queries out by the end of January. While I am doing that I am either going to edit or write start another project...or both! I have a few things I'm playing with but I don't know what direction they are going in yet.

Well, now I am going to have a snack and do a little writing!

Good night and good writing!!!! Patti