Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Holidays and Hostages.

I don't have anything to say about hostages. Let's just say it's better than the first consonance I thought up.

Since weekend holidays aren't lengthy enough to justify the trip back home, I spent Easter with the Hockey Player's family. It was nice, and I ate a lot. I did not much get writing done, but I'm pretty sure I got a pass.

There was one moment, as we were sitting around before dinner on Saturday, that I kinda felt like an idiot. I was talking with one of the other women, who was bouncing her newborn, her third son, on her knee when she started to ask me about my writing. I told her I was working on a screenplay and a novel. The trouble started when she asked me what my novel was about.

I hate. hate. hate summarizing what I'm working on. Because this is what I sound like--

"Oh, you know, it's like a fantasy."

To her credit, she continued to ask. "So are there dragons and things?"

"No, you know, it's more like a subtle fantasy." Really? Subtle fantasy? Who am I, some emo high schooler pretending my swords-and-sorcery novel is literature?

And then, because I have to divert the conversation away from my writing but keep it on me, I start to justify my choices.

"Genre novels, paranormal, fantasy, are actually doing really well on solely virtual platforms, like Kindles and e-books. So if it works well, I'd really like to look into self publishing through the internet. People actually make livings that way."

If I had been that articulate, at least I only would have come across sounding like a pompous big-headed nerd. Since I sorta stumbled all over my words, I came across sounding like a dumb pompous big-headed nerd [the Hockey Player insists this wasn't so, but I'm pretty sure he was sleeping on the couch at that point].

And this woman, bless her heart, was nodding along like what I was saying actually made sense, all while I felt like a fourteen year old blathering on about my first novel attempt and how it was going to be brilliant enough that I'd actually make MONEY off of it.

But you know what? I really like this story. The more I think about it, the more excited I get. And whenever I figure out how to talk about it, I for sure WILL be talking about it.

Speaking of fantasy, while we were away for the holidays, George R.R. Martin's Game of Thrones, based on his Song of Fire and Ice books, some of my favourite books, premiered on HBO. Since one of the reasons I'm dating the Hockey Player is because he has HBO, I asked him to record it for us to watch when we got back.

I've literally been waiting for this series for over a year.

Needless to say, when we sat down to watch it, I was stocked. I broke the bank and bought name brand ice cream for the event. But when he pulled it up on the DVR, I was suddenly alarmed--

"Why is the description in Spanish?"

There was this silence, and then a very quiet, "Uh oh."

The Hockey Player doesn't just have HBO. He has HBO Latino. And guess which one he recorded.

Let's just say, lucky for our relationship, the episode was being offered on demand too. And the Hockey Player changed his DVR settings so that he'd record it in English. And it was pretty funny, too, watching the first five minutes, which has no dialog, and then to hear that dramatic first line--in Spanish.

I'm loving the series and wishing more and more that I had beyond basic cable [we don't even get TBS anymore]. Game of Thrones has already been picked up for a second season, so I told the Hockey Player that as long as he keeps his cable subscription around, he's got pretty good insurance on keeping me around too.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Sunshine and Sunburn.

I have not been writing.

I also have not been trying to wrangle a dozen babies, dodging rainy Michigan weather, or sleeping.

But I can tell you what I have been doing--

I've been bike riding on a palm tree-ed island. I've been paddling on a Yolo board in the Gulf. I've been renting a car for the very first time ever. I've been kicking it in to die for gold heels. And I've been eating insane amounts of ice cream, cinnamon roll french toast, and other delicious foods that are not seafood. Because I don't give in to peer pressure.

The Hockey Player planned a trip to Florida to visit his family, and I was invited to tag along. And I have to say, I don't feel guilty about not writing this belated spring break weekend, not even a little bit, not even at all.

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Nerves and Nerve.

Apparently, someone recently found my blog by Googling "single unmarried childless Christian."

Welcome, friend. You've...come to the right place.

So a couple months back my dad forwarded me this article about a young writer named Amanda Hocking who's sold nearly a million copies of her novels, largely through e-publishing. Like any decent writer of our generation, she has a blog, which I spend time reading through when I'm procrastinating on writing. She says some interesting things about indie publishing, about traditional publishing, and about writing in general. But here's what impresses me most about her--

She's got straight up nerve.

This is part of writing that I just can't comprehend anymore. The ability to let go of a piece, to say, "this is ready to share with someone else," to summon the guts to pursue publishing--and success. Amanda pursued traditional publishing but finally decided to take control of her career by e-publishing. And now she's a full time writer.

I am timid when it comes to sharing with others. I believe I'm a decent writer, but I know that nothing I've written is in the best possible shape it can be yet. I haven't even shared anything with the Hockey Player yet, though he persistently asks to read something I've written.

I'm not saying e-publishing is the way to be a career writer. I believe that anyone who's pursuing a career in the arts can find success a myriad of ways. Or, that they may never find financial success at all. But, as someone who's retreated to "work on her craft" for the past several years, I find the drive required to declare your work ready for others inspiring. Whenever I reach that point, however I pursue publication and success, I hope I have the sheer moxie needed to seize the opportunities when they come along.

Also, Amanda Hocking links this website that analyzes your writing and compares it to famous authors. Here's what I found out--

Novel: Edgar Allan Poe (um. I will definitely take THAT)
Blog: Douglas Adams and HP Lovecraft (are you freaking kidding me?! That would be the highlight of my life)
Anthology Fiction: James Joyce (no way. He's like a serious writer, and...these pieces are not)
The Exit Strategy: David Foster Wallace (I don't know who that is, but I also don't think the website can really handle scripts, 'cause, you know, it was designed to compare you to novelists)

PS. Amanda Hocking's made 2 MILLION dollars from sales. In the very best scenario, who doesn't want to be a twenty-something author with 2 mil in the bank? That is all.