Friday, May 27, 2011

Stupid People and Other Things

Even though I'm not at work right now (maternity leave) I do hear a lot about what is happening there and I still get really stressed out about some of the stupid crap people do. I can't stand stupid people - I have very little time for them and even less patience. I especially hate stupid people who have no ability to self-reflect and therefore do not know that they are, in fact, stupid.

I'm not talking about arrogant people - you know, the ones who think they're good but aren't - I'm talking about the ones that people say are "so nice" or "super sweet" and therefore can get away with a ton of crap on that excuse alone. I know it was a stupid mistake but he meant well...grrrrr!

Okay, so now that I've gotten that out of my system on to other things. I've finished my latest draft of my rewrite and I feel really great about it. It's with a couple of beta's right now and there's still some editing to do but all in all I feel that it has vastly improved.

And, there's one week left in this month's contest for an e-copy of Ghost Bride - all you have to do is leave a comment any time this month and you're entered to win.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Writing as Therapy

This week marks the anniversary of one of the worst days of my life and it got me thinking about how writing could help me cope with what I experienced. I thought I'd start with this post and see where it takes me.

Almost a year ago, I lost someone who I'd known for some time. I can't tell you a lot about how I knew this person, other than that I worked with him (I want to keep my day job concealed.) but I can say that his death was very unexpected and very untimely. It was also a terrible, terrible shock. I'd just been talking to him the day before and he'd made some comments to me - seeking reassurances about some plans he had for the future and then the next day he was dead. No future. No plans. Just dead.

He was a vibrant person and I when I saw him ( and I would see him every day) he would always be smiling and he would always take the time to stop and chat with me, even if it was only for a few moments. His death left a huge hole at my work - it was such devastating loss.That day there were so many tears shed - the weight of sorrow palpable.

I've had a difficult time making sense of his passing. I've never had to mourn someone who hadn't died of old age. I've been very lucky that way. When I think about what happened, what the world lost when he died, I feel like someone is kicking me in the gut - like someone is taking my breath away. I still have the occasional dream about that day and I wake up sobbing. I'm told that it's normal to grieve in this way. That the mourning process has it's ups and downs - that there aren't neat and orderly stages to go through and then you're done. It is getting better. I am moving on - it's just taking more time than I thought it would.

Now that a year has passed, I find myself wondering if I should document what happened - use it as a kind of catharsis for me - maybe it would help me to stop dwelling and perhaps could help other people who may be experiencing the same thing. Or maybe I'd just write it for me, to get it out of my head. Either way, I know that at some point I will have to write it down - it's in my nature to write. It's what I've always done to purge my feelings.

So I ask all of you out there - do you use writing as therapy? Has writing your thoughts down ever helped you cope with a difficult situation?

Friday, May 6, 2011

How The Voice Reminds Me of Publishing

As promised, I've drawn a winner from last weeks comments (well, actually my daughter pulled the name out of a hat) and the winner is: Falcata Times! Congratulations! Send me a quick email at so I can get you your copy!

I have to admit, although I'm not a huge tv watcher - I've recently discovered a new show that really caught my attention for a while - The Voice - a competition type show where music industry hotshots pick from a group of singers to vie for the coveted superstar status of their mentors - the catch is that the coaches/mentors can't see the singers when they are auditioning - it's called a blind audition - no judging based on looks!

The reason why I found this so interesting is that it's a lot like the publishing industry. Writers who are looking for representation go through a similar "blind audition" when they send off their multiple query letters and sample pages, being judged for their writing talent and potential as opposed to their personality and looks. Everyone has a shot as long as they can write, just like on the show.

What really struck me was the idea that out of the 32 hopefuls, only one will actually get a recording contract even though they are all very talented. It's an interesting parallel to all of the writers out there who are after the same prize - getting a publishing contract.

I wonder if viewers would be interested in a competition where writers pitched their work to agents or publishers. On second thought, probably not - it wouldn't be as exciting - although it might be interesting for someone to put together a documentary on a writer's path to publication. I know I would watch it.

New contest starts today: Comment any week during the month of May for a chance to win an e-copy of Ghost Bride!