Wednesday, May 3, 2017

IWSG


It's time for another meeting of THE INSECURE WRITER'S SUPPORT GROUP . . .Better known as IWSG because otherwise, it is a mouthful.

For those who don't know (And you don't???), this is an awesome group of writers, started by the just as awesome Alex J. Cavanaugh, with the purpose to support, help, assist, offer advice, offer a shoulder, cheer on, and about anything else you can think of along these lines. Writing is a roller coaster ride, and writers need all the support they can get.

If you want to join in, head over to the main site and sign up.

Special thanks goes to this month's co-hosts:  Nancy Gideon, Tamara Narayan, Liesbet @ Roaming About, Michelle Wallace, and Feather Stone!


I got slammed with words of writing wisdom this last month from my 11-year-old son.


"Mom, you're not a writer. You don't have your own book yet."

That hit a sour spot in my gut, the one I've been thinking myself but trying to ignore. "I know. But I have several short stories and--"

"Those don't count." He even scowled. Mean kid. "I mean your own book. Not a book with all these other authors' stories in too." (Amazing that kids know how to grind that knife in just right)

Of course, I know that short stories count but my dream is to have my own book out there. He knows that.

So I told him again about my very own story, which is coming out this June. It's a short story BUT it's going to be under it's own title. Even when I was telling him, I knew he wasn't convinced because my so-called book is a narrated Ubook (head over to blackandwhitepublishingco.com to see what that means). And that's not a 'real' printed book.

"So what's wrong with you, Mom?"

I started to paddle for explanations and told him that I do have one story out with publishers for consideration. . .the same one that's been out for oh....2 years? Yeah, the excuse sounds lame even in my ears anymore.

The truth is that my inner editor is killing me. I write, rewrite, rewrite, rewrite and never get past the first 25,000-30,000 words. If the story isn't right, I'm not happy.

"That's trash, Mom. You're doing it all wrong. Write the story once all the way through. You're going to edit it a thousand times anyway, right? So it doesn't have to be a real story at first. Just write down what happens, and then go back and make it into a real book. That's why you edit, isn't it?"


He's right. I know it. But having him say it, made it finally hit home.



21 comments:

  1. You can totally be a writer without having your own book out in the world. Some people choose to write stories, to write plays, etc. They don't have novels but they are still certainly writers. :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love that he knows what editing is. Of course, you're a real writer and a published one at that. But finishing matters. It's in our bones to tell stories. If we don't finish them it makes us feel crazy. Not to mention all the other ideas that also want our attention. Nothing is ever going to be perfect. The only way to shut the editor up is to make peace with it. If it's going to be there, it has to help. My inner editor sits on my shoulder and pokes at my stories while I write. It's trying to help, so I let it. But it's not in charge. I am. Have you read Big Magic? In it she says that fear can come along for the ride, but it's not allowed the drive. I found that really helpful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lol! My kids know editing well. That's when Mom locks herself in her office for several days + makes Dad cook dinner (for deadlines, of course). You've mentioned that book before. I'm going to have to take a look at it.

      Delete
  3. I remember seeing an interview with Anne Murray way back in the 80's where she said she had to get on the Muppet Show in order to convince her kids that she really did have a job singing. To them, we're just mom. LOL

    I did a Ubook too! Such a cool idea.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I read your Ubook + loved it! Now, I'm wondering if I hit that 'like' button or not. Hmm... LOl! Yep, moms are moms.

      Delete
  4. He's right that you need to power through the whole story first. But tell him you are a writer. Just not a published author with a full length book. Big difference. Although yes, that short story still counts as being an author.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Powering through...yep, that's what I need to do.

      Delete
  5. From the mouths of babes. =) I get it though. If my beginnings aren't just right, I have a hard time powering through. But it has to be done. Then again, there's a difference. If you're happier as a short story writer, then that's a good place to be. Novels are a totally different beast, eh?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In the past, I'd write a novel MS, and then a couple shorts before diving back into a new novel. I just lost my groove, but it'll come back.

      Delete
  6. Oh, from kids' mouths! Of course you're a "real" writer. Whatever the hell that means. And short stories totally count! Some of our best Western canon writers were primarily short story writers. Just power through to the end somehow. Maybe you aren't in the place to chase ideas or maybe the idea isn't as ready as you think yet, but you will get there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm sure his definition of 'real' writer is a little limited ;) I just have to put my backside in the chair and go through. The outline is completely done, so it's a matter of will power now. (I so prefer the editing part!)

      Delete
  7. Words of wisdom, I suppose. But I would probably have wrung his neck at the beginning. Of course, I don't have a book out either, so I might be a little sensitive.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Knowing my kids, the 1st book will come out and they'll claim it didn't sell well enough to be 'real'. And then it will go up from there. No winning with some crowds ;)

      Delete
  8. Hey, you're a lot closer than I am, all I've got is a bunch of flash fiction posted on my blog, and the odd anthology story! My problem is starting projects and not finishing them. However, I write, therefore I am a writer. We'll both get our stories out there one day soon :)

    ReplyDelete
  9. I'm so blessed to have tackled Camp NaNo and NaNoWriMo a couple years back or my internal editor would have killed me, too. Especially after doing so much flash fiction.

    So dig in, write it and FORCE yourself to NOT look back (other than a sentence/paragraph or two when picking it back up after a couple of days).

    You can do it!!

    DB McNicol, author & traveler

    ReplyDelete
  10. Wow. He sounds like my youngest. She tackles me with tough questions and comments sometimes, but I find them helpful.
    Just dig in and finish. Revise later.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Yikes! You certainly got slammed with writing words of wisdom by your son! I have published short stories and newspaper articles, but never a book, so I have that insecurity of not being a real writer either. One of these days! Good luck with your writing in May, T.D. You'll get there!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Your kid had the right idea in the end, about writing the book all the way through first. But man, he was mean in how he got there. >_< And he's wrong. Having a book published doesn't make you a writer. Hell, getting published at all doesn't make you a writer. And there are well-known writers who've made most of their careers on short stories and the like.

    ReplyDelete
  13. We all have our own ways to go about something. However, if you continue to stop and not push on, I wonder if maybe you might consider letting go and giving a new technique a shot. :) Hang in there. Writing is the toughest love in all the world. Happy Friday.

    ReplyDelete

I'd love to hear your valuable Tidbits -