Friday, July 9, 2010

Friday Hodge Podge

Been a while since I used that, eh, but it seems appropriate this week. Why?

You win some, you lose some, yeah? I've had a couple victories this week... Part of it just making up for lost ground...

Back to Writing

Progress on the Cozy Mystery took a little bit to get under way after the WriMo (speaking of which, anyone interested in a summary of the WriMo, please check out this post) It is the first for the Burrow's new blog (which has launched fabulously, thanks to a ton of YOU GUYS!)

Anyway... switching projects can take on several faces... sometimes a new project is nagging at you and you can't wait to get to it, and when you FINALLY give in, it FLIES. THIS one though, I wrote four chapters for the audition, then polished and polished and polished. I had written the next chapter, but I STILL have no clue where THAT is. In June (during the WriMo) I managed to REwrite chapter 5... but somehow I couldn't do both. I have at times done two projects, but it wasn't working this time—maybe because the stakes are higher on this.

And then chapter 6 took AGES to force out... but 7 and 8 have flowed... (the ones since the story board... funny, that... maybe it works) I am definitely outlining more closely, but that doesn't mean I don't get beautiful moments, like the Boxers versus Briefs argument Cam and Annie just had *cough*

It seems to be coming together well though—I'm pleased with it and plan to send the first two chapters out on Saturday to the Burrowers who are reading the Chapter By version.

What the heck is a Chapter By, you ask? I have 3 Burrowers reading weekly what I produce, and another 2 reading the whole thing when I'm done. It is backward from how I think editing is IDEAL, but under deadline, it is most logical to me. I CAN'T share the whole thing until it's DONE, and if I wait until after THAT edit to fix the smaller stuff, then I am rushing. If I do it this way, I shouldn't be too stressed over the timing.

Back to WORK

Not that I've been vacationing or anything profound, but I've been distracted and inefficient for a while, but it seems to me that mojo is in line again. So that's something.

My Insanity Where Bills and Bureaucracy Are Concerned.

I also gave in and ordered the blasted unnecessary marriage certificate. You know what? The phone people at the state records in Oregon are a heck of a lot more pleasant than ANY OF THE REPRESENTATIVES OF THE EVIL BLUE CROSS, THE COMPLACENT UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN OR KELLY FREAKING AUDITING BASTARDS. Erm... sorry. Had to get that out of my system. It STILL rankles me (and I DO plan to send a bill for my cost of $32.50 to order the UNNECESSARY document. I can get carried away with making my point, but it makes me feel better)

I also send my monthly power bill to the DTE Mafia (seriously—that is who I make the check out to) and have been known to write checks to 'The Crooks at AT&T. Funny thing... they still cash them. I HAVE though, given in to Chase taking over the world.

And then... because I'm helpful... some stuff you may not want to miss...

Interesting Chance to Help

Wednesday Arleebird posted a couple links to a blog that was being posted by the sister of a man who was writing posts from prison. He is a writer who admits to mistakes but wants very much to turn his life around, yet WRITING requires access to a computer, and NETWORKING requires access to the internet. His sister is therefore helping him out I encourage you to go see what Dan has to say.

I think he offers a very interesting perspective on prisons, which I think we could ALL use some awareness of, and I also think maybe we all have a little chance to keep him determined to make this life change.

Fellow Blogger could use help

Lisa, a friend I met through Amazon, has a novel that has made it all the way to the TOP 2 in the Fresh Blood Writing Contest. What I am asking is that you go LOOK AT THE ENTRIES and vote. I believe in her work strongly enough that I know I don't even need to tell you who to vote for... just vote.

The prize is a writing contract, and she is SO CLOSE! The deadline is next week, so do it soon!

Super Supportive Buddy Having a Contest

Go and read and enter—Erica is doing a follower drive with giving away SEVERAL books in honor or her hubby's pending return from Afghanistan.

And finally: A note on widgets and followers and visitors... I LOVE my flag counter—I am at 91 countries (This is the latest—though I am vaguely curious why Guernsey gets a flag and Wales and Scotland don't...) and have had visitors from ALL 50 states—how cool is that? I also followed a link yesterday to a search engine and found a Swedish fashion designer who seems to follow me... how cool is THAT? It is really a strange experience to trace backward and find all this stuff about your blog in a language you can't read. There is this surreal feel to it that is both big and small at the same time.

So that is what I have today...

I hope you all have a really fabulous weekend!


Cruella Collett said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cruella Collett said...

*offers translation duty* You know, if you REALLY want to know... :P

Happy Friday, Tamster! :)

Cold As Heaven said...

It has happened before that great authors have started their writing career in prison (for instance the insane genius Jean Genet) ... get that man a computer and a network connection >:)

Cold As Heaven

Jayne said...

Hello Hart! I can shine a light on Guernsey getting a flag - it is a crown dependency of the UK, but isn't part of the UK itself (hence it has its own flag as is its own country). Wales and Scotland are part of the UK, so get a UK flag. Hey I do remember some history! :)

I love that top illustration you have used - beautiful colours! Glad your mojo is working again. :)

Hart Johnson said...

Mari-I happen to KNOW you can only speak Swedish after a 3rd glass of wine, but if you're willing to make the sacrifice...

CaH--I would imagine prison has a lot of things that make writing ITSELF appealing--a lot of retrospective, unoccupied time. The dangers though, are pretty harsh. I agree, it would be nice if they could see he was serious and would grant him some privileges.

Jayne-AHA! Interesting! (though Scotland and Wales DO HAVE flags--I've seen them! Just not here! But that does make sense, so thank you for helping me!

As to the illustration--that is 'clip art' I found on google, when I searched 'cozy mystery' so all I can take credit for is picking it, but thanks!

Jan Morrison said...

Sounds like everything is humming along there kiddo! I am remembering you asked me what the beat sheets were about - they are a scene by scene look at the novel - I've used symbols and little tiny writing and posted the seven sheets on a big board so I can rest it on a chair near me when I'm revising. They give me the entire overview as I know that polishing a chapter that might not last is not a good thing. I got the idea from Roz Morris at which is Nail Your Novel. She is a powerhouse of generous ideas. There. Promise done.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

The people at AT&T are crooks - a lot of money for crappy service. And I've been following Daniel's blog since the beginning - some scary stuff.

Anonymous said...

Yeah for the return of your mojo! And boy, oh boy, are AT&T a bunch of crooks. HATE that company. They're also the only reason we have Comcast for internet who, by the way, are also crooks - they just rankle my fur far less than AT&T.

I think your ideas for editing are sound and sane. Doing bits at a time can help you catch so many problems along the way that the big edit should then be less arduous and less, well, big. :)

Hart Johnson said...

Fabulous, Jan! Sounds like one of the MANY great ideas you are using for this round of editing. I think I may very well follow you when I get back to my books.

Alex--it really IS interesting stuff that Daniel has. I also think writing--aside from the novel writing, can also help with personal processing and maybe be a habit to keep him on track.

Kimberly-I got wrangled into AT&T because the hubby really wanted direct TV and Comcast raised our rates and we BELIEVED the promotional pitch (STUPID STUPID STUPID)

Thank you!

Patricia Stoltey said...

We're at it again, Hart. Please stop by my blog when you have time. I have something for you.

Falen said...

ahhh bills. My sister pays the bills. I just pay her. it's awesome

Wanda said...

Hi Hart, glad to hear your mojo is back. Couldn't help but laugh about the check writing.

Hart Johnson said...

Patricia, thank you so much!

Sarah-I wish someone else would pay mine! Though to be fair, hubby maybe WOULD. I just don't trust him to do it right. *shifty*

Wanda-thank you! I can be sort of a pill, but it eases the pain a little.

Old Kitty said...

Gosh - lots going on here!!! First well done with your chapter by chapter re-writes! It's so interesting how one chapter needs extra special attention and others just flow!! Good luck with this. Second - well done you for getting your marriage certificate and other bits and bobs bureaucracy requires of you!! Oh dear!! Sometimes you just despair but the end result will be worth all this hassle!
Third, thanks to all the links - will go and check them out over the weekend (or when I get off work! LOL!).

Have a great weekend too!
Take care

Boonsong said...

I derive internet and telephone service from the Bingbongyingtong Communications Company in Singapore. It is staffed entirely by ducks, all of whom are capable of and encouraged to stick their bills where the sun never shines (that's my first ornithological double entendre ever - Wow).
Have a nice day, Boonsong
PS: The sun never shines in shaded parts of Singapore....

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

Ohhh..."the complacent U. of Michigan." Snort!! TOO funny! I've had to deal with some customer service folks lately at both Dell and Verizon and "complacent" when you want "fired up on your behalf" is just so irritating! Boonsong almost made me choke on my lunch. Y'all are so funny today!

Glad the writing is moving along--mine is sort of in peaks and valleys, too.

Hart Johnson said...

OK--thank you so much for the fabulous support--I just really wish beaurocracy would GO AWAY, but I suppose it must be slain.

Boonsong- *dies* That's hysterical!

Elizabeth--you've caught the snort! teehee--I suppose that means the Burrowers are having appropriate peer influence! And YES! Fired up on my behalf is EXACTLY what I wish they would be!

I actually laid out main points for an extra chapter this morning...a very good day when I have coherent writing thoughts straight out of the shower--and good to get the extra chapter, as they are running closer to 10 than 15 pages a piece...

Erica Mitchell-Spickard said...

I'm glad the cozy is coming along =D and I actually do understand your editing process for this one. On my newest story there is such a major twist in it that I told one CP the twist so I could get the full on edit, but I've left the other in the dark to get the full on reaction and then I could revise from there. So it really doesn't seem that backwards to me considering what your writing.
Thanks so much for the shout out in your hodge podge post!
I just went through all my bills this morning. All the bi-monthly ones came in. Yuck. Sorry I've been so MIA the last few ;)

Will Burke said...

I'm getting back in the saddle with my WIP today too -- good times. I tend to edit "yesterday's" work before starting, just to get back into it, but I've yet to get so far as a whole book edit.
Yep, I'm Canadian. Born in Alberta, but raised in Ontario, an hour north of Toronto. Moved to BC when I was 18, then back to Ontario (no place like home...) when I was 30.

Hart Johnson said...

Erica--makes sense to me, too, to have one reader know what to look for and the other reading cold. And I KNOW you've been absent because you are sick! Just get better now!

Will--AHA! Now Ontario isn't so surprising... a little familiar even... you just said Banff and I thought, say... near home... you and I have beeen living at similar longitude, but on opposite sides of the US/Canadian border our whole lives, it looks like! (I've lived in Idaho, Oregon, and now Michigan. Good luck getting back to the WiP!

Raquel Byrnes said...

Oh my goodness...I'm checking out Daniel's blog right away. Good job on the two finished chapters!

Lisa K. said...

Hi Hart. I'm so glad the cozy is coming along, and I wanted to say thank you for the shout-out for the contest. I can't believe there's less than a week to go.

I also wanted to let you know that there's a blog award waiting for you over on my blog! :-)

Anonymous said...

I'll clicky on these links. The writer in prison sounds intriguing. I hope he does turn his life around.

I have a blog award for you.

Charmaine Clancy said...

That's a big day. Lots of links and sites for me to visit now. Sounds like you're making great progress on your cosy mystery :-)