Tuesday, February 10, 2009

No news is good news...

Willow, reporting for blog duty!

Well, it's been a week since I sent off my short story, On Occasion... to the publishing house and no response yet. Part of me keeps reminding myself that in publishing, "No news is good news..." is a general rule. If the editor has read it and didn't immediately send me a form rejection, that's always a good start. Now, of course, my story could be one in a long list that he has to read and he simply hasn't gotten around to it. Either way, I'm just happy that I found the courage to send off my story for consideration.

I wouldn't even blame this editor if he hadn't gotten around to reading my story yet. In the past week this publishing house has made the news several times. Once reporting their financial situation and another announcing that they are doing away with a couple of their imprints. With all of that going on, I wouldn't blame anyone at the company for being behind. It doesn't appear as if they are going to scrap their short story project though, a new short story was posted on their website this week... so that's a good thing.

I'll just maintain my standpoint that no news is good news and even if I end up with a form letter. At least my story was read by a professional editor. If I hear anything, good or bad, expect a blog post about it. If it's bad news, I'll chalk it up to my first professional rejection and see it as an opportunity to develop the thick skin necessary for this business. If it's good news... well, I'll be freaking out again. I'll call my husband, if he's not home. I'll call my friend, M, who beta reads my writings. I'll have my husband start calling the family because at that point, I'll most likely be a quivering mass on the floor. Once I'm able to function normally, I'll email the editor back, thanking him profusely, but professionally, and then write up a blog post. Not that I've thought this through or anything...

Now for an update on Instinct...

I'm still having a blast writing this story and working with these characters. This past week I've continued my useless scene weeding. I found several places where I had outlined a scene that would be more powerful if I just mention it in passing.

For instance, at one point Casey is sent to a counselor about something that happens to her. I had the scene all outlined out with her and the therapist, but then realized that the entire scene was one big info dump. Not a good thing. The story will be much more powerful if I begin the scene with her walking out of the session and let all of the information she was going to spew out to the shrink reveal itself in small chunks throughout the rest of the story. I'm really excited with how the scene is outlined now and can't wait to write the short transition from the counselor's office into the next scene. I love writing Casey mad!

I've also been going back and finishing up scenes that I found myself stuck writing before. If I find myself stalled on part of a scene, I simply add a comment about what I want to add in and move on. I have these "incomplete scenes" scattered throughout several of my otherwise complete chapters so I'm going back through now and seeing if any of them are clearer now.

Once I'm done rechecking my incomplete scenes, I'll click through my document map and see which unwritten chapters want to be written. I have several of these chapters that are attempting to write themselves in the back of my head, but I don't think they're ready yet. It's like baking a cake. I take my characters and my outlines and mix them up and toss them in my subconscious to "bake". Every once in a while I'll check on them and see if they're done early for whatever reason, but if not, I leave them to do their thing. Right now I'm waiting on that mental "ding" to let me know they're done.

The scenes that are appealing to me right now are the more paranormal ones. I've written a few scenes where Casey has random episodes, but these scenes are different. The ones I'm cooking right now are where she is going through training, trying to learn how to control her gift before it controls her. Of course having her try to avoid getting back together with her ex the entire time will add some interesting internal drama for her. This point in the story is especially cool because this is when Casey starts coming into her own and accepting herself for who she is. She deals with making new friends and losing old ones... she's able to move past events from her childhood and recent past... she decides to give love another shot... In other words, it'll be a blast to write!

Here's an update on where I am right now:
  • Pages (single spaced) - 232
  • Words - 89,053

So I'm making pretty good progress considering how little time I've been able to devote to the story this past week. Even with cutting a lot of scenes, my word count at the end of the day keeps going up. My goal is to have the first draft done by April. I'm giving myself plenty of time because, if things go well, we could be moving in between now and then. My husband is applying for a pretty good job about 6 hours from where we are now, in the same area where his family lives. I really, really, really, really hope he gets this job. Not only would he be making more money, but we'll be so much closer to loved ones. All-in-all, we'd all be a lot happier if he gets this job, so fingers crossed!

Well, that's about it for today's update. I have to get some work done off of the computer... blech! So...

Until I blog again...
Talk 2ya later...

~Willow
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1 comments:

Sue Glasco said...

Well, you have't written in a week. Makes me wonder if your husband got that job and you are packing!! Let us know if that happens. Hope to see you tonight at Writers Guild. Loved what you wrote about the Guild folks on January 31.

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