Saturday, December 29, 2007
I've Been Awarded a Roar.... meow...
My favorite Resident Alien bestowed this award upon my blog... and I thank her wholeheartedly for the accolades. Now, as per the rules of being A Roar for Powerful Words recipient, I must publish three tips, for to be powerful and writerly, and pass the award on to five more bloggers of worthy esteem.
So, here goes:
Tip #1: Don’t take wooden nickels :
The lovely thing about writing circles, blogging buddies, critique groups, and books on the craft of writing is that you find new ways to look at and edit your writing... Wanting to evolve and grow, many of us have a keen ear for picking apart our own prose and others’... and this tip is not to say that you shouldn’t listen to critique, you absolutely should, especially when you’re getting identical crits from multiple sources...
As an author of your own creation, though, you have to know where to draw the line between others’ views and your own voice. For example, I did a lot of rewriting specifically with active voice in mind because I’d been around a lot of writers who touted this absolutely... It messed with my voice. Luckily I had only edited two chapters of my ms with these ideas in mind, but once I realized how far off it was, it took me weeks to bring it back to my own voice... honestly, some of those cuts and edits were necessary and I still am a back story writer who needs multiple weedings, but to the extreme that I had followed... well, all action and no prose is not good writing to me, it’s manic and it disrupts the flow of the language... I won’t read that type of book, so I certainly don’t want to write one.
Tip #2: Network, Baby :
For blogging in general, networking is a necessity. You develop a readership by reading and commenting thoughtfully on posts around the blog-o-sphere. For writing, though, I think we often think it’s more procrastination than helpful, but that is somewhat untrue... while you can get sucked into blogging and networking to the extent that it interrupts your writing time (yes, I’ve done this... my own fault, too) – ideally, if you use a little discipline, what networking with other writers offers you is invaluable.
Not only will you find more avenues for submission, critique groups, and a like minded set of people exchanging thoughts and ideas... but you will get your name out there in a way that you couldn’t sitting at your keyboard alone. Networking is good for the soul if nothing else. It lets you gain a bit of support from others who are where you’re at, or have been there... and those who have made it higher or are just coming up... community is always a good thing – no matter where you find it.
Tip #3: Write, dammit!
This is so basic and so overlooked. If you’re not writing, you’re not a writer. You can spend twelve hours a day critiquing others, discussion craft, and reading books on writing... you can be the most prolific agent and publisher watcher imaginable... you can have a handle on every book your list of most wanted agents has ever represented .... but if you haven’t put your ass in the seat and done the actual writing, none of that will make you a writer.
Do the writing. Do it first. I know, stories flesh themselves out in your head all the time. Even when you’re not physically writing, some part of you is working on it... I know that. I do that, too. So does every writer I know... Guess what? That’s not writing... it’s a perk of writing, but it’s not the actual work. Sit your ass in the chair and write. Do it every day. Do it first. Don’t walk away because nothing’s coming... write it out and edit it later... write it out and trash it later... but write. Yes, we all need the research and the research on publishing is more time consuming than most people think... the writing still has to be primary, or you’re only daydreaming with conviction.
Oy... five bloggers for to pass this on...
Okay, guys, some of you may have received this one already; in which case just take the kudos and don’t worry about posting... here are my picks...
Anita Daher I first met Anita on Myspace, and a nicer author you’ll never meet. She’s a Canadian author with multiple books out, and she’s always very generous with her time and insight, even to us unpublished newbies.
Angela She always has thought provoking posts and always responds to comments with the same amount of consideration with which she pens her entries... This particular blog is more about parenting a teen, but she has another all about life as a freelance writer... both are excellent.
Pinhole I can think of nothing else to say about Pinhole except that he is brilliant... and even more attractive, he doesn’t seem to know it. His blog is full of hand drawn illustrations, beautiful prose, and some of the best wit you’ll ever find. I highly recommend him whenever you’re in need of deep thoughts or a chuckle, you’ll find both.
Travis Erwin I can’t believe that Travis hasn’t already been nominated for this one, he’s brilliant and his voice is just the most fun ever. You’ll find the best turn of phrases and the most fantastic stories here. If you haven’t stopped, check him out.
The SUV Driving Bitch Your Mother Warned You About Suv Mama is a favorite stop of mine... she had a blog that I visited regularly and took down some time ago, but she’s back... and better than ever. The name says it all, so I’ll let you all check her out on your own.