Thursday, February 5, 2009
Still dark – don’t know the weather, only that it’s below zero
I had a lot of paperwork to get out yesterday, which took a good chunk of the day, in and around computer crashes. I also pitched for four wildly disparate jobs. For one, in particular, I am so far out of the background of those who will apply – and, in my letter, I told them why that’s a strength. It’s also in the area where I plan to relocate.
Creatively, the day was somewhat of a bust. Most of it was focused on the workshop I’m teaching, which is how it should be. Because it’s a smaller group than some of my others, I can really give them a lot of attention. I’m pushing them hard.
I’m also having a blast developing a piece in Karina Fabian’s World Building workshop. I took it two years ago and developed a book I plan to write later this year. For me, it doesn’t work to just slap something up I’ve already done in a workshop, unless it’s a workshop on editing or revision. The point of a workshop, in my opinion, is to have a safe haven, a “shop”, in which to play with new work. The piece I’m developing there fascinates me. I’m working from setting instead of from character. Until I started on today’s exercise, I had no idea about the characters.
Usually, I have a character show up and start telling me his or her story, and then I figure out the setting, or it naturally evolves. Even the last time I took Karina’s workshop, I had an idea of my main characters before I built the setting. Not this time. It’s fun. And the setting and culture is unlike anything I’ve ever read before – but it’s the kind of thing I’d love to read. And, Costume Imp, it’s right up YOUR alley!
I’m also having fun in the two other workshops I’m taking.
I had a scene appear, fully formed, in my head last night, and I quickly typed it out before I could lose it. I don’t know what it’s for, although I know it’s pretty far into whatever story it’s meant to anchor. At least I’ve got it, so when more of it reveals itself, I’ve got a place to put it. This is a contemporary piece.
Hey, Ryan, thanks for your comments the past few days. You’ve made me feel a lot better! And I know what you mean about trying to get in everything – I’m trying not to jump at every anthology about which I hear. I love reading anthologies and I love appearing in them – but sometimes I go overboard and I’m juggling so many anthology pieces on spec that it gets in the way of my scheduled, contracted writing. And that has to come first!
I gave a reality check to someone on a forum yesterday who posted a question about a writing venture this person wants to join. I pointed out that first, the person needed to learn the craft, such as spelling and grammar. I’m sure the person will be mad, but that’s the reality. You want to be paid by a legitimate employer, not some scam mill – sit down with the style manuals and some grammar books and learn the basics. I’m so sick of people thinking this is quick and easy money – and that “pay per click” making $25 over six months is a good income. It hurts ALL of us who bust our butts every day to do good work and earn a real living.
Tried a new yoga sequence last night, and I really like it. It’s hard, it pushes me, but it’s worth it. I realized last night that my evening practice has grown to about an hour long now most nights. Wow. I need to tweak the morning practice, because mornings, when I really need it to set the focus for my day, I’m so eager to get to the page that I’m rushing through.
I’ve also got some health issues raising their ugliness, and that will have to be dealt with in the coming weeks. Not fun when you have no insurance.
Back to the page. I’m determined to make this a more overall creative day.