The Insecure Writers Support Group meets online every first Wednesday of the month. Founded by Alex J. Cavanaugh, IWSG was created to support and encourage writers in every phase of their work, from writing to marketing. Click here to join, and for information, writing tips and more.
Co-hosts today are Lauren Hennessy, Lisa Buie-Collard, Lidy, Christine Rains, and Mary Aalgaard!
Hi! Well, if yesterday was any indication of that old adage for the month of March, "In like a lion, out like a lamb," I have proof! In one of our usual hour-long trips out of town, doing errands, taking care of eye appointments and vehicle needs, etc., we decided to take the truck so we could purchase cement blocks for a small garden wall we are building. All went well: Costco for warehouse purchases, a short stop at Winco for those Asian sauces I love, and Lowes to purchase our cement blocks.
While at Lowes we also discovered arborvitae on sale and decided to buy ten. So, with the truck fully loaded, we headed home about eight o'clock last night. Whoosh!! Thirty minutes down the road a wild wind came out of nowhere like a lion that nearly took off with our shrubs and groceries. The tarp we had tied down broke lose and was flapping in the wind like a loose sail. With the roads narrow in spots and limited shoulder, all we could do was slow down, and hope the drivers behind us had enough sense to pass. We didn't want things flying out and landing on their windshields. Thankfully, none did.
We finally found a save spot to pull over to access the damage. The shrubs had rolled to the back of the truck bed, but they were now protecting our purchases. The tarp, however, was shredded where the rope ties had been. Sitting on the roadside, deciding what to do (we contemplated waiting out the storm), we put our sailing knowledge to work. We untied all the short ropes and used sailing knots to tie them together. We also found extra rope in the cab. Crisscrossing these over the bed, Vince managed to tie everything down, enough to get us safely home. It's amazing we lost nothing. Utility lines were whipping around and one we passed was hanging precariously low over the highway. Vince had a well-deserved beer when we got home. Home sweet home felt pretty darn good.
As to the contest between Vince and me--painting his airplane vs. publishing my novel, we have good news. Vince is hours away from finishing the paint project. I remind you that this is the plane he built in our garage over a period of 12 years. It's so beautiful and I share the almost finished plane below. Bear in mind it was gray aluminum before. I've joked before that it felt like we were flying in a tuna fish can. Now this little plane can hold its propeller high when it flies in. We're thinking of names: Blue Bird, Bird on the Wing, Blue Jay.... Any suggestions?
|Vince's RV8. The canopy on top is still being painted (vinyl wrapped).|
I'm thrilled to give the final win to my husband, even if it means surpassing my goal. I'm still waiting. I haven't submitted to any publishers yet. Seeking an agent first has always been my goal, but I'm in a quandary, as none have expressed an interest. This has been my goal from the start and I spent hours perfecting the 'perfect' query letter. I finally quit submitting, after a group of agents never replied at all. I reworked my novel some and added a prologue. Actually, it's a scene from the middle of my novel, and one that readers had liked in particular, because my main character experiences a new culture for the first time. I knew I could never start with that scene, because the prior buildup was essential to the story, but as a prologue it works. Nevertheless, the 'redoing process' kind of 'undid' any energy I had had to get this book published. I found myself in a slump and eventually put the ms down....AND the new project. It was that old love/hate feeling returning again, and a huge part of me was struggling to take my writing seriously.
"Why am I doing this?
It's not as if I'm incapable of succeeding in other areas."
SO, I diverted my creative energy to areas I felt successful in and that made me feel good about myself. I know how to make things grow. I know how to landscape a new property and design the interior of a home. I make blankets for the needy. I'm on an interview board for teens running for Distinguished Young Woman. I do our taxes every year. I've been a food engineering editor in the past. But as an author/writer of fiction, I still crave 'professional' affirmation. I need a reason to take my fiction seriously.
Then, yesterday, an agent replied after nearly four months. Again, it was a nicely written form reject that encouraged me to keep trying, but her words of respect for me as a writer and my hard work spoke to me the most. Her kinds words were enough to rekindle the flame. REALLY. It made me realize how fragile my feelings about writing really are. I wish I didn't need such affirmation to continue, but I do. A thoughtful reject helped me take my writing seriously again. A small voice inside started singing again. "You CAN do this. You ARE going to do this. You WILL do this." So I'm 'sort of' on track again. But considering it's gardening season and the A-Z is almost here, I have some competition ahead.
One word I have consistently heard in agent rejects is that the selection process is "subjective," and I'm trying to bear that in mind. I need to find my audience, the one that was clearly in my head when I wrote this novel. My audience is out there somewhere. So it's back to the submission process. I have a small publisher in mind too. Perhaps there are more. I'm whittling down all the options before I consider self-publishing, a whole different learning curve. I need to be patient and not rush things. Maybe the book will get published by a small quiet publisher, like a lamb, and then roar with success like a lion, OR the other way around.
Oh, why not? Let's face it. Anything's possible!!