Happy Summer! At least I hope it was. I hardly can believe it is the middle of September. I am still catching up with Back to School. Though I have been in absentia here, I am staying in my writing flow, and I am returning to the blog *soon* (Who knows? This could be the day!). I know this has been said before, but it’s true! I have been channeling my writing time and energy elsewhere this summer because my “spare” time was rare. Most of my summer was a blur of work, kids and heatwaves. I did do some good reading and, yes, tweeted away a few hours of my life. Well, more than a few. Some of those hours were my most productive though. I’ve found fabulous information and inspiration from people I have connected with on Twitter, including the community at YAlitchat. I even attended a virtual writing conference (which was “Fab-u-lous!”) which I learned about on writer chats. WriteOnCon was an amazing whirlwind of activity and information, mostly from pros in children’s publishing, but with plenty of publishing insight that most writers can use. All for free! Next year’s conference is being planned already, and I highly recommend interested writers check out the archived information and forums.
I am almost done with this WIP and looking forward to going to a Real Live writing conference next month. I registered for the James River Writers Conference in Richmond, VA. I’m really excited and, of course, anxious at the same time. Fortunately, I feel well prepared from everything I’ve been learning online and in my own studying. The writing community here, there and everywhere is one of the most amazing facets of the entire vast Interwebs that I have discovered. I never cease to be amazed at the resources, outlets and support that I find.
This Fall, I plan to revive this blog and focus on sharing what I have found, and learned, as well as connect more with the networks I have online. This blog is going to go through more changes, just as I am. I remember when I started blogging, I thought of it as a learning process, starting in order to learn more about Blogging, in general. I liked reading other blogs, and as a writer, I wanted to understand more about the medium and try my hand at it. Like many writers, I turn to books and articles to learn about any topic at hand. I also like to practice new skills and improve my writing as much as I can. So, I jumped into blogging and learned even more about myself and my goals as a writer.
I have seen some chatter around town about what the term “writer” actually signifies. Apparently, the question is whether one must be published in order to actually call oneself a real writer. Personally, I don’t think so. And that’s not just the non-book-published writer in me speaking. I can’t really speak for non-writers, but I venture to guess that they truly feel a different way about writing than people who choose to write, no matter what the reward. I know that I will always be some form of writer, because I always have been. I have turned to writing as my most comfortable form of expression, since I learned how.There are people I know who scoff (or shudder) at the idea of writing for anything other than a grade or payment. Even if they were capable of stringing the standard 5 paragraph essay together in school, they feel they have done their time and they do not write much more than business proposals and emails. Or not. Isn’t there something to be said for those of us who want to write, not just for the results, but for the act itself? The closet poets, daily journal-keepers, aspiring novelists, and, yes, bloggers? We are definitely writers~aka, people who write.
Well, all that being said, there is still the fact that one cannot call oneself a blogger and not actually blog. I saw my “Last Post” listed under a comment on someone else’s blog and I was embarrassed. I also realized how much I miss it when I visit some of my favorite blogs and see what they are up to, and what I am missing. I considered throwing in the towel, but I hate throwing anything perfectly good away before I have done all I can with it.
I have found that I put my writing into different focus depending on what is happening in my life, which projects are most important, the changing seasons, etc. Hence, my struggle to finish a simple coherent post tonight, when I know I really should be writing the climactic scene of my YA. I admire writers who can write several different types of projects at a time. I’ve been able to juggle better before, but I do have extra baggage and duties these days that don’t involve books or words. And they keep getting bigger.
I do tend to work on several projects at a time, but they usually complement one another. I am currently in my KidLit phase. I cannot stop thinking of ideas and writing opening pages or sketches for future projects. I am working on a Young Adult novel now and I have several more in various stages, as well as the picture books I have written and am currently submitting. Sadly, other channels of my writing flow are stagnating these days, including this blog, other sites I supposedly write for and my poetry. I can comfort myself with the knowledge that those words will return to me someday.
I will always be a writer, but now I am on the path to becoming an Author. For that is what I truly want to be. Authors have always been some of my favorite people. When I was young I felt like I truly knew and understood who Laura Ingalls Wilder was. Authors seem to be our extended friends because they tell such great stories. I always imagined that I would get along famously with my favorite writers. We would be able to talk and laugh and regale each other with witticisms and tales for many hours, if not days spent on dream literary vacations. In reality, I would probably get tongue-tied and go into a secret panic attack; I am so much more verbal in writing 😉
I did get a glorious opportunity to meet Margaret Atwood last Spring (which I meant to blog about, natch) and despite my desire to tell her how much her writing has meant to me (particularly CAT’S EYE and her poetry), I ended up blurting out that I follow her on Twitter. As trite as it sounded, this at least brought a smile to her face and we did have a mini-chat about the wonders of that social network. I will never be a writer of her magnitude, but she and other writers I love inspire me to use my ability, and desire to write, to improve the world, whether providing information or entertainment.
This post is in serious danger of becoming too long and full of personal drivel, which I have promised to avoid, but I did want to check in and do some dusting. I am going to be focusing more on what I call Writer’s Flow, as well as the condition of Writer’s Block. There are a ka-jillion great writing blogs out there that can guide you to better characters and query letters. I will surely link to some of the ones I find helpful, but I am still a virtual student too, so all I can really share is my own experience and what has helped me. I did attempt to start a separate Book Blog about an eon ago, which did not go far, but I will be using that to share non-writing books and literacy info I find.
If you made it this far, thanks for sticking with me and I hope you will return to see the next phase of my Writer’s Flow 😀