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Wednesday, February 1, 2017

IWSG - Bring out the Clowns!

A brand new year, and new breezes in the writing world. What a fresh IWSG!

This is a monthly blog hop created by the super stealthy and amazing Alex J. Cavanaugh. Writers are a species of their own and often misunderstood. This hop offers a safe place to seek support or offer it to others.

Go ahead and head on over here to find out more or jump on board!

My writing mood this month?

The circus is in town, and if I want to to perform, I'm going to have to start the hard, back-breaking work of pulling up that tent... organizing the performs...getting those animals calmed down...and the clowns???
Pft! You try to control a bunch of pie throwing clowns.

That's what I feel like this month.

One short story is warming in publication giddiness...I can already smell the cotton candy.
One MS is on the tight rope, being viewed by the ring master as to whether or not the world is ready to see the act.
Another short is being mended...hopefully, those stitches hold in time for the acrobats flight!
And yet another story has shown up at the gates, wanting a chance to join in on the fun..exactly the sort which might bring the audience to cheer.

It's down to a juggling act and lots of hard work. Will the circus take off? Will it run out of funds before the big day and have to postpone...shutdown? That's why this month, I'm screaming---bring out those clowns!

As to the question: Has being a writer changed me as a reader?

Big yeppers to that! As a reviewer, I read 195 books last year. I still get lost in the stories and fall in love with characters. BUT I see the mistakes. Not only grammar but pacing, plotting and bad descriptions. I've learned what works, and what doesn't (for me, at least, as a reader) I recognize and analyze the reasons right away. I've even thought of starting a series on my blog about it.

That's the good part. I could learn from this. I should know what to watch out for and improve my writing immensely.

Then reality hits - I know all of this, but that doesn't mean I can use the knowledge myself. Not completely. As a writer, it's impossible to step back far enough away from your work to be able to see these problems...even if you know what they look like. And it frustrates me to no end. This knowledge has made my inner editor a pathological psycho and all but strangled my writing. It's turned into an out-in-out war to get even one page written and not want to tear it up.

And this kind of ties in with my circus. I only wrote one new short story last year. Only edited the year before. Everything else...all bright new WIPs...were killed before they were born thanks to the inner editor psycho. But I'm pulling up that tent...fighting those stubborn elephants.

The show will go on.


  1. Yes!! Bring it! I know the struggle when it comes to fighting with the inner editor all too well. I did that for years. The only thing I did in 2014 was edit, and that didn't turn out well. Then in 2015, I felt bad initially because all I did was brainstorm and draft a few chapters in the summer. It was motivating in hindsight. Determination goes a long way, that's for sure. You can make friends with that beast! ^_^ Funny enough for me, my writing made it harder for me to read for awhile. I think I was bitter. Lol!

    By the way, I'm completely freaking out over your 195 books last year!!

  2. Whoo-hoo! Go for it, Tonja! The circus is in town. :)

  3. But the beauty is, as a writer, the more you understand the balance, the more a part of you it is, and thus, the easier it is to recognize where things should happen in your story.

    Circus time--I'm excited to see what announcements come in future months.

  4. Knowing it and doing it are two different beasts.
    I really like your writing mood description!

  5. Good luck with your circus, it certainly sounds like you're juggling a lot of acts at the moment!

  6. 195 books?! Woot!

    Juggling projects really does feel like the circus sometimes, doesn't it? And I know what having a psycho inner editor is like--one of the reasons I haven't finished my Victorian novel yet. And you're totally right, knowing something and being able to point it out is different to being able to execute it.

  7. I'd be very interested if you started a series on the mistakes you see in books. You don't have to name names, just clue us in as to what we need to avoid.

    Sounds like you've got a lot of circuses going on in your house!

  8. Great analogy in this post. I feel the same about editing. Why can't I find my own errors?

  9. Yes, turning knowledge into something you can see as an author is super difficult for me too!

    Hope your circus doesn't get too out of hand.

  10. Good luck with your circus ;) Learn to put those blinders on for zero drafts!

  11. You control the circus Tonja, be the ring master and on with the show!

  12. I love the circus allegory. Yes, being a writer and editor does make you more critical and I find it a bit of a struggle to maintain my enjoyment of the story if there are too many flaws.

  13. Writing is a bit like a three ring circus. Best description of it ever.

  14. Great analogy! And wow -- 195 books is a lot!


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