Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Writing Goals #IWSG

The thing about writing goals is that they can change over time. Mine have. Originally my big dream was to get traditionally published by one of the big houses and become a household name.

Notice I called it a dream rather than a goal?

This is because I had no clue what it would take to make the dream a reality. Once that reality reared its slightly-quirky head, I formed more realistic, achievable goals--goals that were far more in keeping with what I actually wanted.

So what did I actually want?

I wanted to write my own stuff, my own way, at my own pace. I didn't want to be told no. And, because life is too short for nonsense and faffing, I wanted a faster process from finished manuscript to publication (without being silly about it, of course). Oddly enough, this means I'm going to have to wait just a bit longer before I'm ready to reveal to the world my debut young adult fantasy adventure novel.

There are decisions to be made, books two and three to be written, titles to decide and covers to be designed. I may even use a pen name.

So whatever your goals might be, it's ok to change them. I'm so much happier with my new goals now. I feel revived and enthusiastic, and I'm loving writing again.

This post was written for the IWSG. Every first Wednesday of the month the members of our group post on their blogs about their writing insecurities or offer some encouragement to others. If you are new to the IWSG, then please go HERE

And don't forget, the next #IWSGPit is Thursday July 19th 8:00am - 8:00pm Eastern Standard Time. Over a thousand agents and publishers have been invited to tune in that day. Polish your story and your Twitter pitch and be ready!

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

The Agony of a Name #IWSG

The IWSG question of the month: What's harder for you to come up with, book titles or character names?

Definitely, without a doubt, titles are harder. I'm not so fussed with character names. I once wrote an outline for a story and I didn't want to waste time coming up with the main character's name just yet so I put in a placeholder: Guy. That ended up becoming the character's official name. With character names I can simply look up baby names and find one I like, but titles carry more weight. Along with the cover, titles are part of the first impression you make with potential readers. You want to capture the genre, the essence of the story, maybe even the drama. In a way, the title explains what the book is about. So, yeah, coming up with the perfect title is something to lose sleep over. For me, anyway.

Please note: The July IWSG posting will be on July 3, a Tuesday, due to the US Fourth of July holiday.

Announcing the IWSG Anthology Contest!

The genre is Young Adult Romance.
The theme will be revealed on September 5, along with the judges and other details. This will be our fourth anthology. Our previous anthologies were Parallels: Felix Was Here, Hero Lost: The Mysteries of Death and Life, and Tick Tock: A Stitch in Crime.

The next #IWSGPit is Thursday July 19th 8:00am - 8:00pm Eastern Standard Time. Over a thousand agents and publishers have been invited to tune in that day. Polish your story and your Twitter pitch and be ready!

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

The Changing of the Seasons

The IWSG question of the month: Does this season inspire you to write more than others, or not?

For some it's Spring, but for me it's Autumn. The weather is at last getting colder and I have to say, I am loving it. I far prefer the cold over the heat. I can think better, I'm more inspired. I love rugging up and drinking hot chocolates. I love those slow cooked meals. And generally writing is easier. How about you? What's your favourite season?

Tick Tock: A Stitch in Crime

An Insecure Writer’s Support Group Anthology

The clock is ticking...

Can a dead child’s cross-stitch pendant find a missing nun? Is revenge possible in just 48 minutes? Can a killer be stopped before the rescuers are engulfed by a city ablaze? Who killed what the tide brought in? Can a soliloquizing gumshoe stay out of jail?

Exploring the facets of time, eleven authors delve into mysteries and crimes that linger in both dark corners and plain sight. Featuring the talents of Gwen Gardner, Rebecca M. Douglass, Tara Tyler, S. R. Betler, C.D. Gallant-King, Jemi Fraser, J. R. Ferguson, Yolanda Renée, C. Lee McKenzie, Christine Clemetson, and Mary Aalgaard.

Hand-picked by a panel of agents and authors, these eleven tales will take you on a thrilling ride into jeopardy and secrecy. Trail along, find the clues, and stay out of danger. Time is wasting...

“Each story is fast paced, grabbing the reader from the beginning.”
- Readers' Favorite, 5 stars

“I thoroughly enjoyed this collection of thought-provoking crime stories.” - Denise Covey, author

The Insecure Writer’s Support Group offers support for writers and authors alike. It provides an online database, articles and tips, a monthly blog posting, a Facebook and Instagram group, Twitter, and a monthly newsletter.

Amazon - B&N - ITunes - Kobo - Goodreads -
Tick Tock Mystery Facebook - Tick Tock Mystery Blog

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Writing when Life gets Impossible #IWSG

I wasn't going to post today, but then I noticed this month's IWSG question and I felt it was important to share my thoughts so that maybe I can help someone else.

When your writing life is a bit cloudy or filled with rain, what do you do to dig down and keep on writing?

My life has been filled with rain and storms and thunder for the last two and a bit years. You see, my brother was diagnosed with Motor Neuron Disease (MND). Some of you might recognise it as ALS. There is no cure. It's probably the worst disease anyone can suffer through. It was why I moved up from Sydney to Brisbane--to be with David. Ultimately I became one of his carers. My writing took a massive hit. It's too easy to focus on the chaos, on the grief. Sometimes it's impossible to focus on anything but.

Over the two years, I learned how important it is to care for yourself especially when caring for another. A powerful and insistent part of who I am is my creative self. I needed an outlet and everything got harder if I didn't nurture that creative side. So on the days I could write, I wrote outlines and the beginnings of short stories. I wrote rubbish and mess and that was ok. I wrote hope. I created something new. On the days I struggled to dredge up something new, I edited. I pulled out my old manuscripts and read through them, discovering they weren't as bad as I first thought. As David's disease advanced, writing stopped altogether. I turned to photography because it required no brain power. I even joined Instagram! If you are interested in checking out my photos, you can find me @lyndaryoung

David passed away two weeks ago today. He is no longer suffering, but sheesh I miss him an awful lot. There is still rain in my life, but I can honor his memory by getting back to writing, by moving forward, by living a good and rich life. 
While you are checking out my photos on Instagram, also check out the IWSG on Instagram. We have an open photo prompt challenge there.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

6 Ways to Celebrate Writing Milestones

This month's question posed to the writing community by The Insecure Writer's Support Group, is How do you celebrate when you achieve a writing goal or finish a story? A while ago I wrote an article for the group's website covering the 4 Reasons to Celebrate Your Writing Milestones. Today I will be talking about the ways.

1. A Special Beverage.
I have been known to crack open a bottle of champagne after finishing a novel's first draft. There is something momentous about finishing that first draft, getting past the doubts to get down the terrible words (and no longer having to chant the mantra, "The first draft doesn't have to be perfect. It's okay to have an ugly first draft.")
2. Chocolate.
Need I say more? Chocolate suits all occasions, but especially writing celebrations. 
3. Time to read just for the joy of it.
I don't know about you, but there are certain times when my writing is all consuming. When I complete a milestone, it's time to sit back and take a mini break. It's time to allow myself some me time. Reading is one of my favourite me times.
4. A Night Out.
I'm not what one would call a party animal. I like home. But occasionally, I love to go out and enjoy the city at night, a fine restaurant, the evening out. It's the kind of thing I do for a celebration.
5. A Walk through Nature.
There is something wonderfully revitalizing returning to nature, enjoying the fresh air, discovering everything it has to offer. It's awesome to get away from the computer for a while, and a great way to celebrate.
6. Write Something New.
Yep, sometimes I jump right into a whole new story. Often during a writing project, I'm bombarded by multiple ideas for other stories. So I don't lose focus, I write down the gist of the ideas then push them aside. When I finish a project, I finally have the freedom to explore those ideas that have been waiting not so patiently on the sidelines.

There are so many different styles of celebration. For example, spending quality time with loved ones, doing something I don't normally do, jumping up and down and shouting out to the world, sleeping in, playing a game. And the list goes on.

What do you do to celebrate a writing milestone?