Friday, April 17, 2015

Catching Up, Part 2 and Writing

Back again.
So Mr. K is now 31, and I'm sorry to say, that happened last month. Sorry!

Here are some fun photos of the first party, Easter, and the second party.

I had a blast decorating the main room of our rental home.

Sam and Rosie are supposed to represent us. 

Great quote. 

My ring cake with the quote "In a hole in the ground lived a hobbit."

Map of the shire on top of the ring plus Tolkien's signature.

We had friends come over for a bit of board game fun the Friday before his actual birthday.
I call it first party.

Then on the actual day, I made him a chocolate cake with caramel frosting. And Lego candles just happened to find their place on the cake.

It was so fun to see Mr. K get all excited about it.

Then we had a glorious Easter Day. And I had to take out my camera for the peach tree.

Peach blossoms from the tree in our yard

I must say that I love peaches. And the tree itself is just gorgeous.
The blue skies here really help too.

Of course, we also had to get our annual Easter picture before going for one of the most amazing meals with friends later that day.

Just an FYI, plan more time for 24 deviled eggs than you think. I ran out of time to make a dessert. Oops.
But Smith's, our grocery store here, had a fantastic brownie cake that saved the day!

Other than that, I've been a bit busy.

You see, this month is Camp NaNoWriMo and I've committed myself to writing a 50k word novel in 30 days. A large undertaking, yes, but I'm enjoying the crazy writing part. Even if I don't always manage to make my word counts for the day. 

All that matters is getting the count by the end, right?

Then I'm going to be critiquing a novel for a friend and sending her back some feedback by the 5th of May.

The rest of May is my big month of reworking my contemporary romance novel which I'll be trying to get out to query. I got some great feedback, so I'll have to go through it and actually read it.

The great thing about feedback? You don't have to change everything just because someone said so. You can consider where they're coming from and the point they made, then see if maybe all you need is a little sentence here and there to flesh out your idea better. 

Or, the person could be spot on, as is the case with my friend and writer buddy, Amy. (Go check out her blog; she's awesome.)

Seriously, she's one of my writing friends who really kicks my butt (in a good way) and pushes me to write better and more frequently. She writes everyday and it shows. 

By the way, have I mentioned that she has two hobbits under 5 years old?

Well, she does. And yet, she still manages to get her writing in. 
(Coffee helps, too, but I think that's a given when you are a writer.)

Anyway, my goals in writing have dramatically changed since when I first started picking up a pen and journaling in middle school. Nowadays, I try to write everyday, but more often it's about four times a week, when I'm not doing a NaNoWriMo stint. I find that works better for me. 

And since my time in France, I've begun to see myself as a writer with writing as a profession, not something to be shy about and not just as something to do when I have free time. This is HUGE coming from a lab bench chemist who was used to an 8-5 job.

Writing's a lot of work and it's wonderfully hard. I admit that somedays I struggle to get a paragraph, let alone a sentence, down the right way. 

Anyone who says writing is easy is either: 
1) lying 
2) not really writing seriously 
3) an alien

To do it well, you have to, pardon the cliché, put your heart and soul into it and also treat it just like any other job. 

Writing is not a hobby. 
It's not a free time thing. (If it were, I don't think novels, scripts, poems, and stories would ever get completed.)
Yes, I have a flexible schedule, but it does not mean I can just forget it. By me putting off my normal hours of writing and researching to do (X), it just means I'll have to make up for it later, usually late that night or early in the morning. Or both. (Research is a beast that just grows and grows, just so you know.)

Every time I enter my office, it's a concerted effort to put my butt in that chair and work out situations, dialogues, and scenes on a computer screen. Sometimes on paper with pen. Characters make demands and refuse to do what you want them to do. It's a war somedays in that little office. 

So yeah, when people ask me what I do now? 
I tell them I'm a writer and I tutor in my spare time.

And I wouldn't trade this job for the world.

Until next time,

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