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Archive for January, 2011

Just thinking….

What does being an author mean to me? Or, for comparison, what does it mean to you?

If you are reading my posts, it is probable you are either a reader or a writer of novels. Probably both.

If you are a reader, I am sure you have favorite authors whose works you read all the time. You possibly follow their careers and purchase the books as they are released. (I, for instance, adore books by Judith McNaught. She spoke with me once years ago about my love of writing. Not only did she impress me with her enthusiasm for writing….she inspired me to follow my dreams someday.) This habit goes all the way back to my childhood. Nancy Drew. The Hardy Boys. Victoria Holt Gothics. Mark Twain classics. Even (for those who can remember) the Bobbsey Twins. LOL, I still have a couple of these books in my shelves as well.

And what if you are a writer? Do you write each and every day, is this your primary career or is this your “other” job? Believe me, many authors have to hold down jobs in addition to their careers as writers…it isn’t always as you’d imagine. Many authors can call this their primary career, jet off to amazing places to savor exotic locales for their novels or earn their living solely doing what they love. Even more work regular jobs then come home to their writing. Which would you prefer to be?

Pictures of Barbara Cartland and the overwhelming number of books she’d written come to mind. It is hard to fathom, but she earned a place in the Guinness Book of Records for having sold over 1,000 million books! Unbelievable! But impressive to say the least!

My friends I’ve come to know via Facebook or Twitter or writers’ conventions often are homemakers and nurses and teachers and secretaries and new moms…the list goes on and on. In those few minutes they have free, these writers follow their dreams and write many of your favorite books. They are published authors with books with beautiful covers sitting on the shelves of your favorite bookstores.

So, back to my question. What does being an author mean to me? I’d love to be a Lisa Kleypas or an Eloisa James. Maybe even tomorrow’s Judith McNaught. I want to write those novels that touch your senses, creep into your dreams, make you reread favorite passages. Then again, seeing my name on that one beautiful book on the bookstore shelves…what a rush it would be!

To the readers out there, we appreciate you so much!  To the writers out there, keep on writing! And yes, to the publishers and agents and editors…you are invaluable to the whole process of  of connecting readers and authors!

As for me, I am still following my dream,

KW

 

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Inspiration in a New Year

I grew up reading everything I could get my hands on…a fact my parents loved to pass on to everyone who knew our family. My nightly reading material as a kid wasn’t a comic book….it was the encyclopedia. I’d choose a volume and find articles that blew my mind. I’d read about a subject, then pull another volume to read more about that person or subject, then more until I’d exhausted most of the available material about it. Computers were not available back then, which may tell more about my age than I’d like but it also meant more reasons to go to the library or to hit those encyclopedias.

Not only a lover of research, I was a huge fiction fan. I remember reading Victoria Holt Gothic romances and loving them, imagining myself on the moors of England. I was a fan of Westerns, of biographies and of romance.

I was even a huge believer in sending mail, that written word to connect with others. A favorite uncle in New England would send me letters, I’d subscribe to pen pal pages and I’d write friends and family nearby. This is one thing I truly  miss…that handwritten letter or note from one person to another seems to have such a personal feel. I have become an email person but I cherish mail I receive even today.

Since the start of this year I have three, yes three, ideas I plan to develop. Two fictional stories and another based on the time spent as a caregiver to my parents and to my spouse in a period of over ten years. I really believe anyone who cares for or loves or knows a terminally ill or seriously sick family member or friend could get a little inspiration from another who has been in their shoes.

2011 is an exciting year for me! I have been filled with ideas and with the need to write….I am hoping this is the year for me to blossom. I’m not sure I can keep up with my muse…

I am proud to be a member of the writing community,

KW

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Becoming an Author

For years I have admired authors of all genres. To many people, becoming a writer is probably considered a simple accomplishment….write a few words, intersperse them with a few scenes (depending of genre, this could be murders, pirates pillaging or bodices ripping), mail this off and wait to become an author. Trust me, this is not the case.

Writing is a career not to be taken lightly. If one has a regular day job PLUS pursues a writing career there are so many pitfalls. Kids need attention, jobs need attention, spouses need attention, housework has to be done and yes, manuscripts require time. Think of this as two full time jobs in one…added to the everyday chores of being a homeowner, student, parent or whatever.

For those lucky enough to write and not have that other day job to contend with, there are still the rigors of everyday chores and childcare, dealing with issues with others who view your “writing career” as a silly venture and actually scheduling and getting to your writing. Gosh, so many writers I have spoken with spend hours in the middle of the night or early morning fitting in this vocation.

Self-discipline is a must. Working in your home is a very hard thing to do. So many times housework intrudes in a writer’s world. Honestly, who can sit and concentrate when just a few yards away you know there is a load of laundry waiting to be washed…the buzzer goes off on the dryer and no one is home to do this task (but you, of course), your children or spouse calls and needs errands run (since you are home…probably not doing anything LOL), schools expect you, as a stay at home parent, to volunteer more, ah, the list could go on indefinitely.

This year I am learning to maintain my discipline. This isn’t easy, given things going on in my life. BUT, I intend to be an author and I intend on focusing more on my career this year than ever before. Therefore, I am setting limits to the things that can divert my attention, I am researching publishers and agents while researching and writing my manuscripts, I am thinking of setting myself a regular writing time and seeing how well I can stick to it…and I am digging my heels in when it comes to adding on to my pile of “to-do” lists.

I want this to be MY year,

KW

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Welcome New Year!!!

We are three days into the year 2011…have you made (or broken) any resolutions in that short time?

I usually make the usual New Year resolutions. You know the type…lose weight, spend more time with my family, achieve something I let slide the past year. LOL, to actually KEEP my resolutions has even been a resolution on occasion.

This year, however, I have set goals instead of resolutions. True, I have resolved to be a more optimistic and happier person but I mean I have really set goals for myself. Barring tragedy or unforeseen barriers, I have taken time to assess my writing and my personal life and have set goals for  2011. Realistic goals…not to be the best-selling author of all time by December but goals for my writing times, books I have in varying stages of creation, resetting my attitude toward what I want from my writing. These types of goals.

2011 is a special year for me. My oldest daughter completes her senior year of college while my youngest daughter completes her first year of college. I see them goals I wished for them so many years ago!!!

What have you done to ready yourself for 2011? Started a journal to keep track of your experiences? Reassessed your personal lives or professional lives and set into motion a plan for your future? Bought that treadmill or workout set or gym membership and thrown out all those wonderful, decadent chocolates and goodies?

This year I want to plan realistically. I always have my dreams hitched to a star…for 2011 I plan to grab on and hang tight….and start that climb to my star one day at a time.

I wish you health and happiness for the New Year,

KW

 

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