Sunday, July 20, 2014

A smokey Sunday ROW80 check-in

This week's ending with a slight drop in temperatures, perhaps as low as the 70s, but wildfires out of control bring a smokey tang from the west. Smoke alert. Hazardous levels of pollutants in the air. Spokane is several hundred miles away from a massive, 200,000 acre fire dubbed the Carlton Complex that threatens small towns. Families have lost everything, and our local newspaper is posting ways to help. I cannot go outside without the taste of smoke reminding me of tragedy.

But the morning is my time to work, and so I shall.

Sunday ROW80 check-in:

Writing: Posted a snippet on Wednesday for WIPpet and am working through Randy Ingermanson's SNOWFLAKE for Years of Stone. Drafted 2,000 words since Weds, but I'm really not happy with plotting. Usually my plot ideas come more organically as I write, and I start with NaNoWriMo to pound out a free-flowing draft. This time, I'm trying to map out the book ahead of drafting to improve my three-year turnaround from idea to publishing. But I'm noticing it's easier to link my characters to motivation and action. I'm just having trouble coming up with enough disasters. What would a forest fire be like in 1845?

Community:  The week ahead looks a little less frenetic in some ways. J. A. Jance is coming to Spokane, and I get to attend her lecture Weds night (if all goes well). She was rejected by a college writing program early in her career, just like me! She's also an OTA (older-than-average) writer, just like me.  She's written 50 books in 30 years. Aargh! So not like me! Here's her interview in the Spokesman.

Marketing: Not so much since Weds. E-mailed a bookstore in Tasmania re Years of Stone. Others in progress: Following up on a review that didn't appear on a book review site. Working on a library panel on e-publishing, a workshop on Building an Author's Toolkit at a local bookstore, and confirming a date for a visit later in the year with a local book club.

Now please consider visiting novelist Francene Stanley's latest post, "The Fragile Endurance of a Writer." Francene publishes her books through a small indie publisher in England, is active in the Internet Writing Workshop, and was a very helpful beta reader for Years of Stone. I'm moved by her comments here about what success for an indie writer means (and will most likely write further about this later on my writing blog).

Meanwhile, may your writing and reading go well!

Hop over to other ROW80 writers HERE.

Manito Park, Spring 2014 (Camp)


  1. Are you in the path of the fires? Someone else was talking about them.

    Nice week. I'm an advocate of writing first, then outlining before rewriting. I've heard it referred to as "plantsing."

    1. We just downwind, as they say. The fires are about 135 miles away. Yes, I'm a pantser as well, but I'd love to up that productivity (and sidestep the plotholes!).

  2. I tried the Snowflake Method back in 2007 before I did NaNo for the first time. It worked, in as much as I had the story worked out, but the passion fizzled out quite quickly. There was too much pre-planning for this pantser, unfortunately. Not knocking the Method. It works, and many writers love it, but it's not for me.

    Now I prefer Jami Gold's Planning for Pantsers worksheets. All the structural elements are in place before I write, but only in enough detail to allow me to get inspired and discover the story as I go along. It's much more enjoyable. I liked John's comment. Write first, and then outline before the re-write. That's a good tactic. :)

    I'll head over to check out Francene's post now. All the best for the week ahead. :)

    1. Wow! Thank you, Lisa. These worksheets offer amazing resources for developing plot, checking story arc, and simply getting organized. Yes, I'm a pantser at heart, just always feel vaguely guilty for not being better organized. Thank YOU!


Thank YOU for visiting and commenting!