I #amquerying and it’s so damn hard. (A letter of encouragement to myself)

I #amquerying and it’s so damn hard. (A letter of encouragement to myself)

 

Hey, you with the tear in the corner of your eye and the frown dripping down your face,

I know you’re querying and I know you’re thinking of giving up.

Here’s the truth: Querying is hard. It’s hard work, and it’s hard on your spirits. There’s a lot of research involved. It requires a lot of time-consuming attention to detail, and you are most certainly guaranteed to receive a lot of rejection. Maybe–all rejection and nothing else.

It’s brutal on the heart and spirit. You feel like a complete loser. It’s embarrassing. And there comes a point where you may feel like an untalented piece of shit poo, and you should just quit. But you have to look in the mirror or open up those pages and look at all those words that spilled out of you with great passion and heart. Ask yourself–how much you want it?

Don’t forget that every writer has been rejected. Even those you think of as being “the greats.” Maybe they didn’t get quite as much rejection as you are getting, but they still got rejected by someone at some point.

When you get those rejection letters that tell you that the agent or publisher just “didn’t connect” with your book, think of all those books that your friends so highly recommended, but you just didn’t love. Over and over you’ll hear that this is a “subjective business,” remember that it’s not just a line that agents feed you. It is, in fact, a very real truth. It doesn’t mean that you, or your book, suck. There are a lot more factors that go into someone deciding whether they want to take on your project than just the words you wrote.

One day, you’ll get something other than a rejection if you keep working to improve and you don’t give up on yourself no matter how hard it gets.

And remember…

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal_ it is the courage to continue that counts.”

You just need the courage to continue. Be tenacious. Work to improve. Do not ever give up. You can do this. I believe in you.

 

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Writer Interview 📝 with Jim G. Black

Writer Interview 📝 with Jim G. Black

I’d like to introduce you all to a fellow writer I met on Twitter. He’s such a supportive and wonderful person, I wanted more people to know about him and his writing.

***

I asked Jim a few questions and here are his answers…

Q: What is your favorite thing about writing?

A: My favorite thing about writing is the research. Writing outside of what I know gives me the opportunity to learn new things.

Q: What is the most difficult part of the novel writing process for you?

A: The most difficult thing is staying on track. I’m ADD, and get distracted easily.

Q: What inspired you to write your work in progress How long have you been working on your work in progress?

A: What inspired me? Long answer lol. I have always had several book ideas floating around in my head. As a result of two rounds with renal cancer, I lost a kidney in 2012. In August of 2017 my other kidney shut down, resulting in a hospital stay and several weeks of recovery. During that recovery time I started thinking about my bucket list, which included all of the books I ever thought about writing. I told myself that, if I was ever going to do it, now is as good a time to start. I’ve been working on it since last November.

Q: Do you plot out your stories, fly by the seat of your pants, or some combination of the two?

A: Some of it I have outlined, however, I tend to write it in my head as I go along, then just type it up when I get time to sit and write.

Q: How do you select the names for your characters?

A: My MC is named using my middle name, Grant, and the middle name of one of my ancestors, Canaada, yes, with two “a”s in the middle. My book has several “beasties” in it, and it’s hard to come up with names for them.

Q: Are you working on anything new?

A: Not really working on anything new. I also blog, and am doing more of that lately. I have a couple ideas for short stories, but haven’t made any notes on them yet.

Q: Do you prefer to write in the morning, afternoon, night, or whenever you find a spare moment?

A: I write whenever I can find time to sit down and do it.

Q: Do you have any writing rituals?

A: I don’t have any rituals. Maybe I need to develop some. It may help me get into a routine lol.

Q: What do you think makes a good story?

A: I think relate-able characters make for a good story. When I read a book, I like it when I can actually place myself in the story through one of the characters. Not necessarily the main character, but one with whom I can find something in common. It just it that much more fun and easy to get into.

Q: Dogs or Cats?

A: Lol…I love all animals. We have five cats, and I love them all, however, I would love to have another dog in the near future.

Q: Savory or Sweet?

A: Savory always lol. My dessert philosophy has always been “no sweets, more meats”. I’ll take an extra burger or hot dog over cake and pie any day. Tastes better with beer 😉

Q: Beach or Forest?

A: Forest. I grew up in Southeast Tennessee and spent a lot of time in the woods, camping and hiking. I never even saw the beach until I was a teenager. Living in South Carolina, I do go to the coast, but prefer dirt over sand. Another philosophy, “any place with more palms than pines is no place for me”.

Q: When you’re not writing, what do you like to do with your free time?

A: In my free time I’m reading. I also like attending plays, concerts, ballgames and singing.

Q: How can readers keep in touch with you?

A: Twitter: https://twitter.com/BlueHose2006

Facebook: Jim G Black Writing https://www.facebook.com/jimblackwriter/

WordPress:

I hope to have my website up and running by the summer.

Q: Do you like to hear from your readers?

A: I love hearing from people, and am always happy to talk with anybody about most anything.

Q: Is there anything else you’d like people to know about you?

A: There is not much else to tell. I try and be laid back and just exist for the most part.

***

Thanks for spending some time answering these questions for my blog, Jim. I hope my readers will check out your blog and social media sites.

 

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Feelin’ good!

Feelin’ good!

I took a week off from writing on the blog, but I’m back!

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And I’m feeling good, friends.

First, I can tell my Vitamin D supplements have made a world of difference in my mood and energy level. I can’t tell you how exciting it is to feel like I might feel like my old self again.

Second, PeachyTags had its debut game on February 10th, and it went very well. The tag was #LifeIsPeachyWhen and here is a link to the moments if you want to read some of the tweets that came out of the tag.

Third, I got some more patrons on Patreon! I was completely shocked. I had just decided I’d give it six months and then I’d give up. So now I have a total of five patrons, and I’m so excited about it. In a world where people want everything for free or aren’t willing to spend more on a book than a cup of coffee, I’ve felt like my dreams aren’t worth much. But then here come these people who want to support me and my writing–my art and make me feel like it’s a dream worth believing. So to my patrons, if you’re reading this, Thank you! My heart could just burst–in the best possible way.

Finally, I’m very close to finishing my novel. I only have a few chapters to write to reach my word count goal. And that’s what I’m going to do now. I’m going to finish that book, let it rest a few weeks before returning to it and starting draft two.

I feel proud of myself. I feel optimistic. I just feel so damn good!

Also, thanks for reading my blog. I appreciate you, my dear friends and readers.

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https://www.patreon.com/KAliceCompeau

Trust Yourself

Trust Yourself

It’s only been a few months since I started writing my first adult novel. When I wrote the words “Chapter One” on the blank page, I have to admit, I seriously doubted I could reach the adult-length word count. I had only ever written middle-grades, and the thought of doubling my longest novel scared the living shit out of me.

I had so much doubt about whether I could do it or not but I didn’t let it stop me. And unlike before, I also didn’t try to write in any of the ways that I hear suggested by other authors. I stayed true to my creative process. Fast forward a few months and I’m nearing my target word count with no fear of not getting there.

The best part…I’ve had fun writing again. I haven’t struggled (much). Writing in a way that’s right for me (flying by the seat of my pants) and setting my doubts to the side has proven to be a winning combo.

So, lessons learned.

1) Don’t listen to anyone on HOW to write. Trust your intuition.

2) Believe that you can do it. (And if you don’t believe, just pretend you believe and get started)

 

I did, and now I’m a #NanoWinner2017 with less than 20,000 words to go to reach my word count goal.

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rocky
https://www.patreon.com/KAliceCompeau

💔

💔

My heart has disintegrated. I love music and I love Tom Petty’s most of all. The music and lyrics he created connected deep within my soul, touched me, moved me. I feel so much more alone in the world today.

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One of my favorite songs is Walls. I posted those lyrics before. I’m doing it again. There is nothing on earth that can reach you in the deep places that music can and Tom will always be the greatest.

“Walls (Circus)”

by Tom Petty

Some days are diamonds
Some days are rocks
Some doors are open
Some roads are blocked

Sundowns are golden
Then fade away
But if I never do nothing
I’ll get you back some day, ’cause

You got a heart so big
It could crush this town
And I can’t hold out forever
Even walls fall down

All around your island
There’s a barricade
That keeps out the danger
That holds in the pain

Sometimes you’re happy
Sometimes you cry
Half of me is ocean
Half of me is sky, but

You got a heart so big
It could crush this town
And I can’t hold out forever
Even walls fall down

Some things are over
Some things go on
Part of me you carry
Part of me is gone, but

You got a heart so big
It could crush this town
And I can’t hold out forever
Even walls fall down

You got a heart so big
It could crush this town
And I can’t hold out forever
Even walls fall down

Rest in Peace, Tom. I hope I get to meet you someday. Maybe we can raise a little hell and roll a joint together. All my love. All my thanks. All my joy. All my sorrow. Thank you for the inspiration.

Inspiration is everywhere!

Inspiration is everywhere!

Yesterday, I got some new neighbors. Here they are…

Aren’t they amazing? The best part is that I’m going to get to watch real magic being performed before my very eyes. And what is more inspiring than that?!?!

I like to write fantasy, as you know, and I put so much work into making sure my magic is believable. Is that silly? It’s fantasy, after all. But I do. Sometimes, I can get so wound up in making sure my magic makes sense that I will quit what I’m doing. Question myself. Will people believe that? Will they set aside reality and believe my little lie?Real miracles happen in the world around me.

But real magic….miracles happen in the world around me. And if someone told us what this beautiful little caterpillar was going to do and we hadn’t already known about it, would we believe it?

Looking at my new neighbors, I’m inspired to believe in the miraculous magic that happens in the real world. It’s fantastic! It’s fantasy! Almost unbelievable. Yet, it’s true.

So I ask myself, “What if…?” and I pick up my pen…

 
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