“Today is the day the Lord has made..

..let us rejoice and be glad in it.”

I stopped the English Patient book after the first 10 … no 5 pages. I kept falling asleep. As a movie, it seemed well-done, years ago. I read a few Christian novels and moved back into the edit/slash/gnashing of teeth stage, the raw pain of slicing my favorite scenes, and trying to cut the word count down.

OK, you ready to hear what the count was? 104,000. I now have the MS at 96,000 (and change). The easiest and most difficult part is rewording, ridding unnecessary words. Today, I tossed “that.” I cut 318 “thats” to 37.

My goal is simple. Spread the Gospel in a fun, exciting, romantic and in a realistic way. Wow, if you read the Bible daily (which BTW you should), there are scenes of every evil under the sun. . . it’s a wondrous honest look at humanity including the many sighs of God. Then repentance. And backsliding.

I am praying for an agent or PH accepting Christian manuscripts for the genre. I am finding through others, the genre is stricter than the Bible. If the Word of God were to be sent to any of the Christian publishing houses now, I am certain it would be turned down for graphic violence, debauchery, incest, seduction, pride, breaking the law consistently, rape, prostitution, the downfall of kings, murder, and the lewdness of Ephraim, Benjamin, Sodom (the cities) etc. And that’s just the Old Testament. Wait ’til you get to the New Testament.

We are all the same. All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. YET GOD intervened. I am blessed every day because of Him.

While fiddling with How to Steal a Romance, I am now intermittently fiddling with Forget Me Not: Non Compos Mentis. This, too, is a Christian romance, but with much more police procedure. A few bullets. No explosions in this one. Did you like the lack of segway, there?

Well, I believe I will post something on my wix site for good measure. You are welcome there, and I’d be happy to hear from ya.

http://cmahoneyfnp.wixsite.com/claireosullivan

Facebook: authorclaireosullivan

Twitter: authorclaire1

Also.. on LinkedIn under author Claire O’Sullivan

Hope to catch up to you and network ūüôā

Have a happy Wednesday.

The Solitary Life

The writer’s life is the most solitary and misunderstood endeavor I have seen. What about you?
     We have literary groups. Online presence. But we spend a great deal of time writing, in a group, critiquing, editing our own work, writing synopses/queries, and of course, reading.
¬†¬†¬†¬† I don’t know about you, but my family sees this as laziness.¬†A silly non-job. After all, it doesn’t contribute to the GDP unless money is made. Think of JK Rowling. Near homelessness, she began to write stories to read to her son. Imagine the agents and publishing houses still kicking themselves for pushing her books into the slush pile. I’ve never read her work, not a genre I am drawn to (and I take issue with witchcraft), but you see where I am going. Her family is now flush with money. I wonder what they said before the millions¬†came in?
¬†¬†¬†¬† The same thing happened to Dr. Suess. You think his family said, ‘wow, what a great endeavor!’ Beatrice Potter went on to create her own publishing house amid her family’s negative response. Her books are still popular today.
¬†¬†¬†¬† Aching to be a published author is hard work, and heaven forbid other writers disparage our dreams. Other writers and readers¬†may say 1. No one gets published as an unknown author, 2. your chances are one in a billion. 3. Where’s the money? 4. I don’t see any training or gold medal . . .
¬†¬†¬†¬† Agents don’t tell us why our manuscripts hit the slush pile. This creates only more loneliness in our frustration. And, if you do get published, the reader may wonder why you want all of three dollars for a book. Please, readers who do this,¬†sit for a month and pretend you’re a writer.
¬†¬†¬†¬† Admit it.¬†Writing is a misunderstood profession.¬†It took five years for my husband to recognize that if nothing else, it is a gift, a path¬†(obsession, ahem) that I must, must follow–lest I¬†despair (Proverbs 13:12).
¬†¬†¬†¬† The rest of my immediate family¬†says, ‘That’s nice,’ but¬†wonder why I would waste time on a hobby that one they can’t hold in their hands, can’t sell (hope springs eternal for me). I may spend a month (Nanos, ya hear me?) furiously writing a novel, only to¬†miss Thanksgiving, birthdays, important holidays. Spending money on coffee shops. Leaving church¬†afterward, speeding off¬†to spend time with a group of like-minded folks.
     It is important that we spend time with groups whether online or in town, and if your (paying) job allows it, travel to conferences.
¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† I struggle with writing, not the¬†‘writing drunk,’¬†but the ‘editing sober.’ I struggle with the craft. Why? There are too many experts who have different opinions. The only hope right now is to follow what agents want, what editors say, the usual guidelines. The process can take up to two years (after you write, edit).
¬†¬†¬†¬† I have learned characters are bigger than plot. Heavenly writing — well-written and grammar-perfect manuscripts.
¬†¬†¬†¬† Are you a lonely, solitary writer? Find a good group. If you land an agent on your first draft, that is awesome. If you do–please don’t gloat. Instead, extend a hand to help, to encourage, share the names of¬†agents and publishing houses that accept¬†manuscripts. Withholding this is greedy.
¬†¬†¬†¬† So, if your family disses your writing, pray, tell them the importance of your hard work. And when someone asks you what you do, say you are a writer. Claim it¬† not just within your soul, but to anyone who mocks you. It’s¬†time to stand up–your paying job is not what you are called to, not if¬†writing is your passion, what God has written on your heart. ¬†
¬†¬†¬†¬† Agents are overwhelmed but keep on submitting, tell your family (or just ignore them), whether you are ever published or not. Our passion is our passion. It’s not golf, rock-climbing with friends and family. It is solitary. When family rolls their eyes, it is lonely.
¬†¬†¬†¬† You may feel alone, but you are not. Perhaps you can call your family the family of writers across the world. OK, don’t neglect your family–but if they don’t understand, don’t argue. Not worth the angst to deal with their negativity. You may be the next NYT’s bestseller.

Now What?

NanoWrimo is over for another year. Well, wait until Nano Boot Camp, but that doesn’t quite count.

What to do once your 50,000 mark has finished? I used to say, keep writing, editing. I’ve changed my mind. Why? ‘Cause I had to face plant into bed, and other Nano events were quite similar.

After a few days of babbling, drooling with a blank stare, and slack-jawed, I figured I needed a rest. Go for a walk. Hit my boxing stand. Put the cookies away (okay, I finished them. That’s away, right?).

Rather than fiddling with the MS, I am letting it stew. I have worked ‘a bit’¬†more¬†on the¬†synopsis for How to Steal a Romance.

What I have actively done is get back into social media (like, today was dedicated to it, and now my arse hurts). The English Patient is next on my list of books to read while I finish a Kindle book.

I’ll go back to Scribophile in a bit when I have at least one chapter of Non Compos Mentis ‘mostly’ edited to my satisfaction.

I’ll give it ’til perhaps the end of the month to let my brain cells regenerate before I go hog wild on editing.

‘Scuse me, I gotta go read.

ūüôā

A Nano Event

Well, howdy.

Today, I meet with other Wrimos in Rogue Valley at a coffee shop were we abuse more coffee, connect, dish about anything and everything . . .  and I suspect stick our heads into our respective laptops.

I’ve never been to a Wrimo event. So all of the above could be true or false. What I do know is we will support and encourage each other in our endeavor. That 50,000 mark. Whew!

I planned and plotted, spent a bazillion days doing so, and the bones have come alive much faster than in the days of pantsing. Yesterday, I broke my record. Of course, I had time to do so .¬†. . 6000 words. IN ONE DAY. And, it’s not the same word over and over.

I hope to keep up the frenzied rate. . .¬†HOPE is the operative word. Once it’s done, it will take time, slogging through the edit(s).

Off I run. It’s closing in on Nano and coffee. Wonder if they have any doughnuts?

 

‘Sup?

Well, been a long time since posting here. I do¬† have a new website/blog as well. I put Glass Slipper to the side. YES. As well as AIR. For now. I’ve completed the final draft of HTSR (how to steal a romance) that I do believe I have been working on since before time began.

For NanoWrimo this year, I have completed the outline, plot, and characters for another Christian romance, this one called Forget Me Not: Non Compos Mentis.

Yes, crime. No gore, but mystery and the romance that blooms between a man, a woman — two police in a small town in Northern Minnesota who work together to solve a murder and save a friend from prison.

Five days left. Nano begins. Wish me luck. Cross your fingers. Better yet, pray.

New this month

So, AIR simmered on the back burner for a month and I worked on Glass Slipper. That actually worked well. I am in the copyediting process of AIR, will send it to my beta editor (grammar freak friend) and then off to my real editor, and publisher. Whew. After that task is complete, I plan to put AIR’s characters out of my brain, go back, finish Collision and then Glass Slipper. Make sense? Ya, me neither.

AIR is a novel that I ripped from the headlines, researched the heck out of, and I feel an urgency (not the healthcare kind) to get it published NOW, since my other novels are not based on reality.

AIR is a geopolitical thriller crossing the globe, chasing terrorists, plagues and those who would play God.

Link

Author blog

Glass Slipper is my second crime fiction. I’m having a fit of fun writing noir. My MC is a cranky medical examiner,¬†trying hard to change. Unfortunately, obstacles are thrown in his path every which way. It gets tough trying to reconcile his past, chase down a murderer, and steer clear of the¬†roscoe his tech¬†carries.

Noir is a special category, funny and horribly sexist and never PC. But, what a riot!