Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Overtaken Update (and Another Blog Award--Yay!)

Wow--the last few weeks have been hectic, sending me far away from my blog, my usual social media sites, my life...  Proofing Overtaken has been intense to say the least.  Scary, nerve-racking, and insomnia-producing would be good descriptions of the process, too.

But during all this sturm und drung, there have also been some bright spots along the way, starting with The New Mexico Women Author's Book Festival in Santa Fe where I presented a workshop on making book trailers (yes, it will be a future blog post!) and where I signed copies of Better Than Perfect as well as The Essential Guide for New Writers


I received another blog award--this time from the wonderful "writer of creative nonfiction, poetry, and musings" Chris Galvin Thank you, Chris!  I really appreciate you thinking of me.

This is the second time I've been given the Versatile Blogger Award, and it's an award I love.  Versatility is the soul of creativity and I'm grateful that my friends acknowledge how much I enjoy blogging and sharing new ideas with you.

The requirements that come with the award are that I share it with 15 other bloggers, notify them that they have received the award, and that I then list 7 things about myself. 

Because 15 is a rather hefty number, I'm going to break it down over the weeks so that I can include not only some of my favorite blogs, but new ones that I discover along the way.  This week I'm going to start with two:  

Congratulations to these lovely and multi-talented bloggers, people who truly epitomize what it means to be a  "versatile blogger." 

As for the "7 things about me," I thought for a change of pace I would list 7 things about Overtaken.  These are:
  1. The story is set in London and a privately-owned Greek island.
  2. My main character is named Sara Elliott and she is an artist.
  3. I started writing the book as an exercise in a workshop at the International Women's Writing Guild summer conference in Saratoga Springs.  Pages 15-16 of the finished manuscript were first written in a morning workshop presented by poet and author of Gifted Grownups, Mary Lou Streznewski, and the last page was written in a class I took later that same afternoon, led by Emily Hanlon, author of Petersburg and The Art of Fiction Writing.  When I got home from the conference I was too busy with other projects to even look through my notebook.
  4. But when I did start thinking about turning those exercises into a full draft, I entered the first 50 pages into the Gothic Romance Authors Haunted Hearts contest, the first contest I'd ever entered, and I won 3rd place!
  5. Overtaken is the most unusual book I've ever written, a modern literary gothic, part fairy tale, part metaphysical search.
  6. It was also the first book I'd ever used my "magazine cut-out" collaging techniques to help develop my plot, setting, and characters.
  7. I wrote my entire first draft and all extra material long hand.  I then transcribed it onto paper using my trusty Panasonic KXE-700M typewriter, and then finally transcribed it again onto my computer.  Writing long hand and using my typewriter were definitely my two favorite stages.
So there we are!  Just a few more weeks and with any luck Overtaken will be published at the end of the month.  Whew.  Now back to my proofing.

Tip of the Day:  It was fun for me to make a list of "7 things about Overtaken," making me think it would be a good idea to do something similar for my other books, including those already published and those still in the WIP stage.  Not only is it a good jumpstart to future marketing, but it helped to clarify my thinking for those times when I'm asked, "Where do you get your ideas?" or "What is your book about?" 

In the meantime, do visit the blogs I've mentioned here and say "Hi!" to their writers.  You'll be glad you did.