Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Mighty King

Happy Wednesday, friends!
I am sure that most of you writers invest in books dealing with the craft. My latest purchase is 'On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft' by Stephen King. Great stuff.
It was released in 2000 and how I missed this until a few weeks ago is a mystery. Thankfully, dear old Dad recommended it and I am glad I got it.
I saw a bit if myself in King's recollections from his youth and I wonder how many of us started by printing our own newspapers or little books, just as he did? I have my pitifully bound little booklet about the Boston Red Sox of 1986. Five sheets of notebook paper painstakingly sewed together with red thread. Gutenberg I was not.
I related well to his thoughts on giving up and also to his musings about needing to write.
Bottom line: I think it is a must have for anyone who writes. He has a section on the toolbox of writing that is useful also, but I think the part that you will remember once you finish is his spot-on examination of his feelings during his journey to best-sellerdom.
Long live the King.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Is Chivalry Dead?

On the radio this week, the two morning dee-jays were debating this question. One male, one female giving their opinions.
The man claimed that women didn't want chivalry. The woman claimed that when a man held the door for her, she felt he was 'on the make' (her words) He then chimed in that 'women have the attitude that they don't need men's help anymore'. So if chivalry IS dead, did it die a natural death OR did the feminist movement murder it?
I WANT a man to show me some consideration. Yes, open my door. Help me with my coat. Treat me with respect. I couldn't care less if the man has some ulterior motive. Men are (to use Miss Dee-Jay's words) 'on the make' anyway. At least let the man treat you well! I recall Suzanne Sugarbaker on Designing Women telling her date in one of the episodes, "I don't want to be treated like your equal, I want to be treated much better than you!" (That's a stretch, folks.)
I guess after thinking about things, the whole idea of chivalry's demise made me sad. It's not just that men don't hold the door, we as a society have gotten so much less kind than in my grandparents' days.
Maybe we should bring out the portable defibrillators and resuscitate Chivalry. Maybe that would be the start of making courtesy part of every day life once more.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

It's the Journey, Snookums

Three years ago, I embarked on my maiden voyage to having my first (and thus far only) story published. Green and filled with excitement, I headed out like the Fool in the Tarot deck, eyes focused on my dreams, not really watching where my feet landed. I didn't know enough to be concerned with all I didn't know.
Here I am now, looking back over the journey, reviewing the ways in which I have grown.
1. I've discovered I write best and most using an old fashioned pen and notebook. That blank, crispy-white screen of the laptop gives me the creeps.
2. I've discovered that even multi-published authors have insecurities and doubts about their work.
3. I've learned I need to stay connected to other writers.
4. I've learned the hard way that not writing for a few months steals your creativity and slows down your pace. Hence, the reason it's been two years since my first release.
5. I've learned to let go of any idea of perfection in the first draft. Who needs that anxiety?
6. I've learned to stop comparing myself to others. We all have different goals.
7. If I'm learning something new every day, I am ahead of most of the people in the world.
8. Giving up is not an option.