Frantic. That’s how I used to feel all the time. Like there was no room to breathe. Anyone who’s known me for years will tell you that balance was a struggle for me. Sometimes it still is. I’ve searched hard for equilibrium, and I’m still a work in progress, but I do feel a lot more peaceful these days.
One thing that has helped me is the work of Michael Hyatt,
I remember the day my friend, Tina Chen showed us the cover of her gorgeous new novel: a lush, moving story written by a generous soul. Her success (and the book was award-winning) was well-deserved. And I was JEALOUS.
Jealousy’s not a regular thing for me. Usually my friends’ successes give me hope. So this unwelcome green-eyed monster growled a question: Jealous of what? I knew I could publish. But I had given up on publishing a novel;
With the Full-Bodied Novelist Retreat coming up this weekend, I’ve been playing the violin again. There is a connection, so stay with me here.
I usually let months go by without my music. I play only to prepare for performance, thinking I need an “excuse” to play. But lately I have played for the sheer joy of playing with no audience but the Universe. I work on a piece that is hard for me,
When I first began writing fiction it felt like all of the characters were me. Of course, all characters come from someplace deep in our psyche, but when I had a character who sounded, acted, talked and believed like me, I was BORED. I have great self-esteem and lots of people love me, but really I am BORING. At least to myself. And a character exactly like me doesn’t intrigue me enough to sustain a whole novel,
Here’s what I’m offering at Bellevue College in the Spring (Registration probably begins in March):
Geek Fiction Writing
This course analyzes popular sci-fi, fantasy, superhero and dystopian screen favorites to discover what makes them tick. Then we use these tools of excellent storytelling in our own original fiction. This is a step beyond fanfic, as you’ll create characters and worlds that are wholly your own.
I owe a lot to Anxiety: a degree, income, several books, resistance to credit cards. Anxiety has taken me places I may not otherwise have gone. Driven by work Anxiety, I have raced all night to meet deadlines. Financial Anxiety has carried me to jobs and business ventures that brought new friends, skills, and opportunities. Parental Anxiety has steered me to wise advisors.
But Anxiety is a zealous driver and riding with her is a little like being duct taped to the backseat of a ’78 Pinto.
You’ve just taken Pamela Protagonista, rebel goth girl, through the perils of cheerleader camp where she has scored a victory over Amanda Antagonistella, who was not as good at karaoke as she thought. The Final Showdown is twenty chapters away and you have no idea why Pamela would go to Kennebunkport nor how she will score a train ticket without Reginald finding out. You’ve made lists and charted character arcs and rechecked the color of Reginald’s eyes,
The task? Write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. Usually, Iuse NationalNovel Writing Month to get as much word count aspossible on my work-in-progress. This is already cheating—but since I’ve nevercome close to winning, I haven’t felt guilty about it.