Time for an update. Woot! Okay, not that kind of woot. Just a general let’s get this done woot.
SHADE – I finished my most recent round of editing on my novel. It was a major change again, like the one I did over the summer, but I think it’s stronger for it. My Pitch Wars mentor Marieke said she’d take another quick look at it (I’m guessing just the parts that have changed). Hopefully I’ve made much improvement. I know there’s more to be made, but I need a break and so I’ve been letting it get cold. I’m pleased with its progress thus far, however, and there are a few scenes I’m particularly proud of. I’ll probably take parts of it to writers group and bother a few of you peeps for feedback soon. But like I said, break needed.
QUERY – This is what I should be working on right now, but I’m still in recovery mode from Pitch Wars I think. But this is next on the docket. I’ve got a decent-ish one now, but Marieke gave it a once over and now I need to fix it up again—which I’m fine with. I’d rather have a query that kills than a query that chills.
CONTESTS – Unfortunately I heard back on my Gotham Writers contest and it was a no win. *shrug* I still have the Writer’s Digest coming up which I entered my short story Trick or Tree into. I should know about that at the end of February or so. I’ve got Cupid’s Literary Connection running next week, at least the “bouncer” round of it. If I get a “you’re in!” then I move on to the agent round. I’ll be sure to update you on that progress.
There’s a few other short story ones I’m looking into, but first the query. If you’re interested in trying to write short stories, I recommend reading a lot of them from either Ray Bradbury, Ernest Hemingway, or Anton Chekhov. A lot of Anton’s are available online for free. I wasn’t sure about being able to write short stories (I’m long-winded) but after reading a few dozen of these I started to get a feel for how the story flows when it’s short. Plus these are all great writers and they’ll help make your own writing better for being exposed to them.
BOOKS – Right now I’m reading Writing the Breakout Novel by Donald Maass. It’s a lot of great stuff on getting your plot and characters to as he calls it, a breakout level. Some of it is similar to Story by Robert McKee, but obviously more novel-focused. I had wanted to read On Writing by Stephen King next, but my bro let me borrow The Wiseman’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss, and I’m probably going to look into that next. It’s thick—real thick. But hey, can’t be any longer than Atlas Shrugged, right? Right?
GUITAR – I did get my replacement guitar, for those who remember my previous post. It’s been a lot of fun. Too much really. I go back and forth between softer songs and hard rock. I’m getting close to nailing the timing on Thunderstruck and Johnny B. Goode. Apparently most of the Top Gun theme is ridiculously easy. I’ve also been messing with Danger Zone (another easier-than-I-thought piece). I usually get home from Kung Fu around 9ish and play until 10 (don’t want to tick off the neighbors). I really hadn’t been playing guitar that often before the electric. It’s interesting what a little change will do for your habits.
What about you? Making lots of progress in writing and otherwise? Any contests you’re waiting to hear back on? And you’re looking into entering? What movies are you most excited for?
Oh, and I should also mention one more thing. Kid History finally came out with another full episode. *grin* I’ve posted it below. Enjoy!