A whole lot of stuff, actually. It’s been a crazy week, it really has. But, first and foremost I have to thank the wonderful Eveli Acosta. I woke up this morning to an email notifying me that she had nominated me for two blog awards.
Not only did I have a *sqwee*, but there was a momentary-huge-rush of awe. I am completely honoured to have been nominated for these awards. It is some kind of awesome.
Now, there are rules that I have to follow in accepting these awards.
1) Thank the person who nominated you and link your post back to them.
2) Share 7 things about yourself.
3) Nominate 15 bloggers you admire.
4) Leave a comment on each of their blogs letting them know they’ve been nominated.
All righty, well since I needed to do a blog entry anyway to kick off my return back to the writing scene; here it goes, seven things about myself. In the form of a blog entry. Something. I don’t know. Shut up. Trying to kill two birds with one stone over here.
It’s been a crazy week. I said that already, right? Well it has. From receiving an on-the-spot cash award at my job (and my boss scaring the bejeesus out of me in the process), to my Roundtable Podcast dropping, and then to learning how to tell a story, it’s been a week.
For those who don’t know (or who have just started following this blog) I’m currently writing a number of books, one of which I have been working on for the last two years and who has stubbournly refused to be written. For whatever reason Blood on the Quarter just does not want to be written. Or didn’t, anyway, now I have a better handle on the whole thing. It might actually see some work done on it here soon.
It took some getting to, though.
The sheer headache of trying to write the book is what drove me to the guys over at the Roundtable Podcast. Dave, Brion and I, along with the wonderful Cherie Priest hashed out the book. They gave me so many ideas it wasn’t even funny. But, Blood on the Quarter still sat, refusing to be written. So, I took a step back and started in on The Airship Leviathan. It didn’t solve all of my problems, but it helped give me an outlet for the ideas in my head.
Big ideas. Iddy biddy living space.
Friends are a wonderful thing. Especially writer friends who can sympathise with a plight and offer grand advice.
I am lucky to have the ones I do.
One of them is a former wrestling columnist whose acerbic wit I’m absolutely in love with. He sat, listening to my podcast with me, pressing pause and drilling me like the men in the Smokey the Bear hats, ontinuing where Dave, Brion and Cherie left off. Through him I learned that less is more and, if you try to squish too many ideas into one story, you’re gonna get lost and write yourself into a corner. Kind of like what I did. Apparently I have enough within Blood on the Quarter to fill up three or more books. He said as much with an eyebrow raised and a smirk on his lips.
Story telling, he explained, isn’t about cramming ideas, or trying to stretch one idea, it’s about having enough meat to keep the reader’s interest.
Now, you have to understand something about me; for years I’ve had this thing about writing a novel. A NOVEL. Not a short story, not a novella, not flash fictions or any of that. I wanted to write a novel. 100,000 words. I’ve almost made it, twice. Both times in Jr. High when I first started writing. Both stories rounded out at 80,000 words and according to my word processer where somewhere in the vicinity of 200 pages.
How that works, I’m not sure. I think the title page and a page or so of quotes have something to do with it. But that’s beside the point, I hadn’t really written a novel. I hadn’t hit the 100,000 mark. I wasn’t any good. I would never be any good. I would never be a novelist because the word count didn’t qualify me.
(remember that one blog post about my special kind of crazy? I’m pretty sure I have a post about that somewhere.)
So, I was determined to write a novel. Well, long story short, I didn’t think you could write a novel based on one single thing. Something has to happen, right? Well so does something else. And something else. And, oooh! this too!
You see where I’m going with this?
I told my friend as much and, after laughing at me, he shook his head and told me that I had it all wrong. That one idea was all that was needed. Yes this and that could happen, but it had to be organic to the story. One cannot simply throw something into the story line just because it sounds cool.
It might not sound profound to you guys reading this, but to me it was as if a damned lightning bolt had struck me stupid. How obvious does something really have to be for me to miss it? How could I have missed THAT?!
Then again, it’s not a suprise that I did. Knowing me? I’m an airhead that way. And honestly, I didn’t know. Just as I was under the wrong impression about writing characters, so was I about writing a book. Less is more. And, when you think you’ve got something, you don’t. It takes someone else to point you in the right direction. Or listen to your podcast and ask the right questions.
Jay pointed me in another. After sending him both outlines for Blood on the Quarter and The Airship Leviathan I received not only questions but one word:
Both books. Podcast ’em. And don’t just podcast them, write it like a television series. Give us backstories. 3,000 words to tell each character’s story and 3,000 more to tell us the events of New Orleans and anywhere else that is important to your world.
So, yeah. I just might. I love listening to the BBC. Love the old radio shows. A podcast might just happen.
After the books are written, edited, and rewritten for radio, that is.
The internet is a wonderful place. And the book industry is changing. Plus, I love audiobooks. Easy to travel with. Take up less room in my purse.
Is that seven things? Can we make that seven? No? Crap. I suppose the ‘About’ page doesn’t work in this situation. All right, well, here are a few more things about me.
1. My favourite colour to wear is green but my sheets or some part of my bed has to be blue.
2. I don’t go clubbing or do well in social situations. I’m a house-hobbit and overcompensate with my personality for my nervousness.
3. The quickest way to my heart is to keep me interested in what goes on in your head, not how many reps you did at the gym.
4. I don’t want children. Not that I don’t like them or anything, I just don’t see them in my future.
5. Anything with the word ‘aquarium’ or ‘museum’ in it is automatically my favourite place. Ever. Besides Disney World.