Saturday, March 23, 2013

Touching the Past

It's official. I'm working on my new project.

"But wait," you ask, "haven't you been working on that for a month or so?"

Yes. Sigh. I've been doing the research, laying out my characters, and procrastinating about really starting. Sure, I wrote the first chapter --but I wrote this with the understanding that I probably would end up throwing it out when I got halfway through the project because feedback would finally convince me that I hadn't started the story where the story starts (because I never learn).

What makes me serious now? Well, I know this is silly, but I have a Pandora station all set as my writing soundtrack. I also, finally, know what my male lead looks like. What else? I've finished the research that gives my entire reason for using Ireland as my setting validity, so now I can start applying the story. (Side note: I'm using Pinterest as a mode for collecting my data. It's very visual and much better than my Word.doc cut/paste of URLs.)

And I have! I'm only about 4k words into the manuscript, but the story has everything it needs to grow at this point.

On that note, I should get back to writing. Liam is walking Gillian home, but she really doesn't want him too -- or does she? (she does, but she wishes she didn't, just in case you wondered)

BTW: Touching the Past is a temporary title. I needed something. It had to be sexy/suggestive, but also touch on the mystical elements in the story. 

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Countdown to RWA 2013, Atlanta

As soon as I paid for the conference, I was all ready to go. You'd think I was about to embark on a luxury cruise or something by the way I'm looking forward to it. It's really not like me to WANT something like this. I mean, I'm socially awkward. I have to push myself to be outgoing. I can fake it, but the stress that comes a long with that is bad for my digestion. Still, I can hardly wait for July. It sounds like it's far away, but really, four months is nothing. Seriously, I feel like Hallowe'en just happened (I think I may have missed Christmas by blinking).

That said, it's not unreasonable for me to look at evening gowns for the awards ceremony, is it? Or buy a new purse that I don't plan to use until the trip? Maybe make a Pinterest board dedicated to online shopping for fabulous things ranging from formals to suits to tee-shirts that say creative/professional/edgy/mature-but-not-too-mature isn't taking it a step to far at all, but good planning.

Clothing, of course, isn't the only concern. Packaging (myself) matters, but I have to be able to deliver. Maybe now is a good time to start revising my one-page, proposals, etc... instead of the weeks before like last year. Last year did teach me that it was great to have my promotional pages, but that I didn't  need nearly as many as I brought. This year I'll have four completed novels, maybe five, ready to sell. This year I'll also have the experience from last year, so maybe be less spastic during pitch opportunities. Who knows?

Last year the conference was in Anaheim, which significantly cut down on cost for me. Atlanta is going to be pricey, but I consider the conference an investment in my career. Last year I felt like I had finally joined the professional community of writers, like it wasn't just a hobby. I didn't get a contract out of it, but the experience was wonderful and necessary for my growth.

This year I have a different product, a sexy paranormal, which means a potentially different agent and publisher pool from those I stalked over my Tudor historicals. I guess it's time to start my preparation.

Are you going to the conference?

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Recycled Post: You Know You Write Historical Romance When...

I just came across this post, originally aired 5/31/2011 and decided it deserved to be re-shared. I added some of the original reader commentary.

You Know You Write Historical Fiction When...

  1. You find yourself using "anon" in everyday conversation.*
  2. You have words like "bumroll" and "farthingale" added to your spell-check's dictionary.*
  3. You actually own a bumroll or farthingale.*
  4. You programed auto-correct to change all "qe" to "Queen Elizabeth." *
  5. You cannot stand perfectly good period movies because of the fabric choices.
  6. You have become more lax about food sitting out because, hey, five hundred years ago there was no refrigeration.
  7. You find yourself inserting interesting historical facts that have nothing to do with your story and feel like you are doing your readers a disservice when you delete the unrelated history lesson later.
  8. You cannot stand reading a perfectly good historical romance because of the fabric choices (and, in a disappointed rage, may or may not have written a strongly worded letter to the author about his/her responsibility to the reader to portray their era with accuracy).
  9. You understand why many authors do not touch on anything to do with hygiene.
  10. You think nothing is wrong with having a beer at breakfast.
Just in case you wondered what a bumroll was.
Feel free to expand upon this list.

Sidenote: This post could also be titled, "You Know You Take Renaissance Faire Too Seriously When..."

* I write Elizabethan historical romance. Please feel free to insert whatever era appropriate terminology to make this relevant to your writing.
end original post .....................................................................................................................
Thank you to Kathleen and Mary for adding the following points:

Kathleen said... I love #8! OK, how about these:

11.You make up all sorts of reasons about how your widowed heroine is actually a virgin.

12.You figure out plausible excuses to explain why your widowed heroine (who is not a virgin) might respond like a virgin in a love scene.

13.You suspend reality to make every virginal heroine's first time fabulous and multi-orgasmic.

Interestingly, I can only think of sexual examples. Hmmmmm.... should I be worried?

I think #9 needs this add-on: "Not only do you understand, you agree and ensure that your main characters take more baths during the course of your story than most people of their era took in their lifetimes.
mary said...
OK, how about this:

You know the years each swear word came into common use.

You insist on capitalizing "she" when it refers to the Queen.

You know more about the laws of the 16th century than the ones today.

Am I on the right track?
 And Laura added a comment about her genre, mystery.
Laura M. Campbell said...
It's funny how serious writers take their genre and craft. I'm a mystery writer and I'm doing research on serial killers and I like to point out their is a distinction between psychopath and sociopath. I also know a thing or two about finger prints and trace evidence. The things swirling around in my head could make for a frightening story. 
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