Monday, July 12, 2010


Good Monday Morning, gentle readers. I'm back. I think. Well, I've been back for a couple of days now, but with my cousin in town, and the traveling I've been doing, I feel like I've been gone for months.

I spent most of the early weekend catching up on blogs and following new friends (and for those of you I haven't followed back, please leave me your address in the comments so I may).

I want to say Thank You and say Welcome to all my new friends: Natascha, Lisa K., Stacy, C.R., dirtywhitecandy, Uma, Jennifer, Writing Nut, Liza, February, Nicole, Dawn, Cynthia, Meoldy, Olivia, Chazda, Theresa, Barbara, Jamie and Angela. Wowee, I can't believe I even found new friends while I was away. There's a pot of coffee and a buffet in the dining room, and the pool is open from 9-5, bathing suits are required (sorry). Feel free to grab a cup and hang with us, there's always something to talk about.

And if you missed my awards post over the weekend be sure to scroll down and see if you're there. Because I've got some heavy duty linkage going on and I don't want to waste it. Especially those of you who are new to my blog.

Al from Publish or Perish is having a fantab contest, he's giving away piccies from his blog and if you haven't checked out how wonderful they are you're missing a trip Down Under!

Now as most of you know, I've been having thoughts about retiring MASQUERADE from the querying trenches. I still have two partial requests out on it and of course, will probably not hear back for some time. While on vacation I decided (I'm almost positive) I am going to set it aside for the time being. I've heard from my alpha readers and I know what I have to do to "fix" it, not that there's anything "wrong" with it, but I know it's not marketable as is. (Well, truthfully for the market I want to sell it to.) Now that's not a bad thing, I just don't have it in me to rework it right now. It's a time consuming task and after all the rewrites I've already done, I'm just sick of it. Sure it's a good book, and I'll always love it, and I know once you get past chapter 4, it's a great book, but the beginning, although not totally sucky, just isn't what it could be. So she's going under the bed for now.

I also want to say the heat down here is totally kicking my ass. I can't form a coherent thought to save my soul. Genna is languishing at an open air bistro on the bay with Pete and I just can't seem to write the rest of the conversation. Oh how I want to. I need to move on, I need to find out what the doctor said about Aunt Fortuna, I need to find out what Robby decided about Lauren and the baby (oops, didn't know about that did you?) I need to find out when Tony is going to show up again. But I just can't seem to get 'er done. I even joined the Summer Novel challenge. Everyone else has already finished with their WIP but me.

Now I know 2000 words a day isn't much. I've done it before. Hell, I've even been known to write 5K a day. 14k in one weekend once. I don't know if it's the summer, or the heat, or the fact MB is in the background singing to any of her new movies and I can't concentrate, or if it's just me.

I know there are other writers out there who are sort of in the same sticky wicket that I am. I am not alone. Which is nice, in a way, but not. Now some say, just sit down and write. Every day. Others say -- take a break, do something else. I'm all for taking a break but I've been breaking for so long I feel I'm stopped. Which I am.

And it's not a block. I think I'm just overwhelmed with my choices. Going into Genna & Tony, I had a clear cut picture of what the book was going to be, how it was going to look, and the ending. Now, because of some of the choices I've made, I'm going off in all kinds of directions and the outline has been thrown out the window.
Aunt Fortuna is one of my main sticking points. She's told me she doesn't want Alzheimer's (and I can't blame her one bit) but I also know someone else has used the other diagnosis Lydia kindly gave me. I don't want to plagiarize. So I think Aunt Fortuna is going to have a heart attack instead. But when, and where, and will Pete still show up at the right time? See what I mean?

And now Robby has told Genna Lauren is pregnant. Why? Do I really want to have that happen? Does it move the story forward or is it just filler? And what the hell am I going to do about Tony? He and Genna had sex but I can't put the scene where I want because it would screw up the timeline I've made, and if I put it anywhere else, it doesn't make sense. And do I really want to make him the bad guy? He does love her. He always has. And she's been in love with him since she was 14. So now what????

It's funny, I'm always saying I love angst -- I guess I should rephrase that now -- I love angst when it's happening to someone else, not me.

Stay tuned for Wednesday...I wrote the scene from Tony's POV of the night when he first meets Genna that I'm going to post. Maybe after you read it, you'll understand why I'm/Genna's having such a hard time deciding between Pete and Tony.


JustineDell said...

Do you still have those other sections posted? I would like to catch up on the all the story I missed!

Oh, and welcome back ;-)


Stina Lindenblatt said...

Hey, what's wrong with 2000 words? I did that yesterday (when I had to add a new scene) and was proud of myself. I think my husband got a little sick of hearing about it, though. :D

I'm glad it doesn't get super hot here for long. Maybe a few days at a time. But you're right. It is hard to write then.

Summer said...

The heat has been really life-draining the last week or two. I couldn't imagine not being able to run my A/C--I know I wouldn't be productive at all.

I know you'll figure out the right direction for Genna and Tony, and until you feel better about it, maybe you should just take some days off and read. It always helps me. :-)

Susan Fields said...

I don't know how I'd ever write anything without sticking to the outline. I'm sure I'd go wandering off into Never Never Land and not be able to get back. If you're an outliner, maybe you could redo your outline to incorporate your new directions and try to go from there?

And I think it's a good idea to give Masquerade a break if you're not feeling into it right now. When you come back to it, things will probably look a lot clearer.

Terry Towery said...

Don't slide Masquerade TOO far under the bed. It's far too good to stay unpublished. I know this, of course, because I've read it. I've now re-done the opening of my novel FOUR times. Four! Don't give up on it, Anne.

sarahjayne smythe said...

It's ok to put something away if it's just not working for you now. You can always pull it back out later and give it another go. I'm in the middle of doing that now.

And as far as Genna and Pete go, I'm just gonna hang out here in my little corner of the universe and wait for you to gift us with more of that story. Because I love Pete. :)

DL Hammons said...

I would think that being stymied by too many choices would be preferable to being BLOCKED. I've not been down either road yet, so I'm really not one too comment.

And you should try the heat down here in Arkansas. YIKES!!

Lydia Kang said...

Summer is such a hard season to be prolific in. I hear you. I also agree that I love creating problems in my fictional world. I'm so glad I'm not my MC sometimes!

Melody said...

Awwww, I feel you! Been there - it's no fun, but I will promise it's EXHILARATING to get out of it!

Also, and I don't know if this will help you, but I had the same problem that you're having with MASQUERADE that I had with the beginning of my MS. I had 3-5 chapters of just backstory that was honestly a bit boring. On my third draft, I ended up cutting it to a prologue and 1 chapter. One of my better choices.

And then I read a quote somewhere (and I can't remember where). I paraphrase: Go ahead. Write the first chapter. And then cut it out.

It works! It's true! :)

Keep writing! It will all come together, I promise!

Elliot Grace said...

...shelving a manuscript for a time isn't necessarily a bad thing. My first two WIPs have been filed for several years now. Sometimes a break from the characters, or the plot can be like a morning swim...a refreshing break from tedium. And who knows, maybe someday you'll rise from bed and decide the time is right to begin anew:)

Shelley Sly said...

Sorry I didn't get to stop by earlier, but thank you for the award in your last post, and congrats on those many awards!

I am super excited for all this new drama in Genna & Tony's story! And I'm dying to read the next scene that you post! :D

Jen said...

2,000 words is awesome! I think writing anything in one day is good, whether it be 200 or 20,000 (okay then your hands should kill, lol)

I'm with Shelley, I'm all about the new drama, and you know how much I love this story!!

Piedmont Writer said...

Justine -- I tried to send you an email but your address isn't working.

Stina -- There's absolutely nothing wrong with 2000 words. I did not mean it as an insult. I just usually write more.

Summer -- I have been reading. I've been cleaning. I've been doing all the stuff I usually do to get me motivated but it's not working. I had another idea, maybe that's the one.

Susan -- Glad you're back. I've had a semi-breakthrough so I'll see what happens with that.

Terry -- Thanks so much. I think I just need some time away from it for a while.

Sarah Jayne -- Oh my love, wait until you see what I pull out of sleeve next week.

DL -- No thanks. I know how hot it is in AR.

Lydia -- I so don't want to be Genna and face her choices. She's a mess!

Melody -- That's the whole problem, I've already cut out the first 3 chapters and the prologue. It's not backstory, I don't have any, it's the characters. They're too nice. I have to change them and I don't want to.

Elliot -- I hear you. someday, but not right now. I've got to get G&T finished.

Shelley -- I've got something for Wednesday. It's not all that, but it's Tony's motivation.

Jen -- I jsut need to write. Period. I don't care how much. It's just not coming.

ali said...

Welcome back! I think I totally get putting Masquerade to bed for a while. It happens. Maybe after a good sleep, she'll not be as cranky when you wake her up. ;)

Elana Johnson said...

Um, 2000 words a day is about 1500 more than I usually write, if I write at all. So go you!

Falen (Sarah) said...

i think it's a good idea to set aside masquerade for a bit. At the very least, you won't have to worry so actively about it, adn worrying just leads to negativity.
bring in the positivity!

Liza said...

I'm with Elana. I'm thrilled when I get 1,000 words in...14K over a weekend is a dream!

Christine said...

Welcome home! I'm in the process of making sure all my silly quotation marks are the same in the ms that was requested. Blech. Talk about boring. But it has helped me find some minor typos and errors so not all of it is a waste.

Sometimes it is a good thing to set something aside and move on to the next project. I'll be rooting for you as you figure out your new direction!!


The Words Crafter said...

D-Dang, Girl! You need a new word. Angst is just not big enough to cover all that. I know what you mean about the heat. We have to take the kids out and it was like a sauna. My brain feels melted. I have no idea what your plot is, or your ultimate goal for the Aunt. And, if Genna has feelings for both, and they're seems that usually the long time friend is usually the one to get the girl. What if you just let it flow, making Tony look good, then throw a curve ball and make Pete look good. Keep the reader off balance...while Genna makes up her mind. Did that make sense? I have a whole scenario in my head...if you're curious, you can email me. Uh, when you get time, after 7pm, visit my blog....and breathe!

Piedmont Writer said...

Ali -- I think we both need some sleep.

Elana -- I write in scenes so I have to finish it or I go crazy and am up all night tossing and turning.

Sarah -- Bring in the positivity!!!

Liza -- I haven't done 14k in a very long time and I paid dearly for it. Writer's cramp in the fingers and bum cramp in the arse.

Christine -- There's nothing like a good line edit to snag all those pesky typo's. Keep on plugging.

Becky -- Angst is a sturdy word. I think anything bigger might prove fatal. To me at least. It rained today so it wasn't too bad.

notesfromnadir said...

Looking forward to Wednesday's blog.

I like how Aunt Fortuna's telling you she doesn't want Alzheimer's. No she doesn't!

Don't worry about writing 2K or 5K words a day -- just write something & realize that some days you'll write more than others. :)

The Words Crafter said...

Hey, I just saw you gave me an award, too! Thank you!

VR Barkowski said...

Welcome back, Anne! Eesh, I've been having issues squeezing out 200 words a day, 2000 would be a godsend! lol.

As for shelving MASQUERADE for a bit, I think you have to go where the writing takes you. If it feels like right thing to do then it is.

Lola Sharp said...

I'm looking forward to Tony's POV...and a love triangle is always fun angst to read.

The heat has been brutal. I know you can't run the central air because of MB, but could you put a small window unit in your bedroom, so you have a relief zone in which to write and sleep?


Piedmont Writer said...

Lisa -- NO she doesn't. I've taken care of people with it and it's awful.

Becky -- You're welcome.

VR -- I don't really know what the right thing to do anymore is, I'm just sick of dealing with it. So under the bed she goes.

Lola -- I've got more great stuff coming next week so stay tuned. I've got fans all around the house and dark blue curtains. It still reaches crazy numbers but then I think of all those people in Haiti still sleeping in tents so who am I to complain.

B. Miller said...

Whooo... I am feelin ya on the heat, my friend. It's brutal. I've been out working in it almost every day and last week I finally got sick from the heat... it was awful.

GOOD LUCK with all your different issues. I know how it feels to continually second-guess yourself about stuff like this. But you are such a talented writer - I'm sure you will iron out most, if not all of your wrinkles. :)

MB Dabney said...

Thanks for your comments on my blog last week. I can always use the encouragement.
And I followed your advice on the 'follow' widget on my site.
Thanks for that, too.


Guinevere said...

Good luck! I think it can be hard to write in the summer... I know I feel like I'm on vacation right now, and it's hard to keep writing/revising/blogging. Because, well, it's summer.

Anonymous said...

Personally, I never placed myself in a position with another guy where I'm competing for a girl. If she can't make up her mind, I'll find someone else. I know, I'm no fun. But neither is she.

Stephen Tremp

Al said...

Thanks for the shout out Anne!