Showing posts from September, 2014

Of Central Perk and Rejection

I feel like I haven't blogged about any recent adventures in the past few months. I have no writing/life balance, so whatever I've posted in the past few weeks and months is what I've been up to. Well, my friend Jess wanted to know if I'd come with her to SoHo to the pop-up Central Perk on Lafayette Street.

Central Perk, you say? Yup. It's a small exhibition pop-up shop celebrating the 20th anniversary of the TV show Friends. 

There was a line to get in. It took a while, but Jess and I amused ourselves by taking pictures.

This building was in front of us for a good portion of our wait to get in.  It has a dome, columns, moldings, carvings, a clock, and sculptures upon it. It looks very grand--and very old New York, which doesn't really exist anymore. I Googled it. It used to be the headquarters of the New York Police. It's now luxury apartments.

While we waited, Jess was interviewed about Friends from somebody from MySpace.

And then we finally got to the f…

Introducing the Ponsonby-Courtneys

I originally started this story as a few play scenes--don't remember when--probably not long after I saw The Heiress on Broadway. I put it away after three or four scenes, because it was time for another revision on the WIP. 
Between The HeiressDownton Abbey, and The Buccaneers, I've been inspired to write a story that takes place in the 1890s. It's historical fiction again, but it's women's historical fiction, maybe even New Adult historical fiction, if such a thing exists. The story only has one POV so far and that POV is Victoria Elizabeth Matilda Ponsonby-Courtney.

As you may have guessed from that list of inspirations, this story has: an English country manor (yes, again), but this time it's falling apart. I think the Ponsonby-Courtneys live in a house that looks like this:

Entering the Query Trenches

This blog started with me posting up a novella--my first finished book-length piece of writing, the first book-length thing I didn't abandon. Since then, I have done three NaNoWriMos (winning all three), wrote a supernatural contemporary (shelved), a Regency historical romance (shelved, but reshaped into something else), a Tudor historical (not quite finished/shelved), wrote a light, sweet New Adult story (last year's NaNo; finished, if not quite polished), and then four drafts of a historical fiction.

Today, I entered the query trenches with that historical fiction. I sent off five queries to various agents today and hope to find more agents to query this work to. I think I'm being fairly realistic about this; the chances of gaining representation are not high in only the first round. But then I'm reminded that, only a few years ago, the idea of actually sending a submission out to an agent was both inevitable and terrifying.

So now I've done it. I've gotten a…

Top Ten Books That Affected Me

Krystal tagged me (as usual lol) to list the Top 10 books that have influenced/affected me. As y'all know, periodically, I'll post about a book that I really like on the blog. But a top ten list? First of all, I'm sorry to all the books I like that aren't going to make this list. And second, I'm not sure that this will necessarily be in order because how do you compare books like that?

My List.

10. The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory
If you were a historical fiction reader in the early 2000s, you'd be hard-pressed to avoid Tudor-mania, led by The Other Boleyn Girl. As a 15-year-old, I loved the intrigue, drama, politics, and, well, softcore porn contained in this book. I didn't know about Mary Boleyn before. Last time I read it (in my early 20s), I was wondering why Anne Boleyn was such a shrew, why the dialogue was getting on my nerves so much, and why it was so soap opera.

9. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
A lot of people seem to think this book …

Editing Is Done

I just finished my edit of The Keegans of Banner's Edge. I'm actually, for now, kind of at peace with this story. I'm ready to attack my query, figure out a synopsis, and get cracking on the queries! Maybe, if all works out, by next week!

The edit has come out to:

365 pages
50 Chapters
96,551 words

The unedited finished fourth draft was:

358 pages (but those pages weren't formatted correctly...i.e, when I write, I tend to let the chapters run together instead of separating them onto new pages kind of thing)
55 chapters (I combined several chapters in the edit. Getting rid of a character will allow you to do that.)
100,173 words.

100,173-96, 551=3,622 words gone.

Here's an excerpt below.

Protagonist, Antagonist, Plot

I don't naturally spring forth with plots.

And because I don't naturally spring forth with a plot, there has been a sad lack of antagonists in my stories. I don't know if it's a literary fiction leaning or just that I find antagonists hard to write, but...I don't know that I've ever really written one.

Although The Keegans of Banner's Edge has three antagonists; well, maybe four. They're not antagonists in a Voldemort/Sauron/Henry VIII/Wicked Witch of the West kind of way. The Keegans are definitely a Man vs. Himself or Man vs. Society kind of conflict.

Basic story structure is like this:

Protagonist wants something. Protagonist strives to get that something. Antagonist(s) stands in Protag's way. Protag maneuvers to either get or not get the goal.

Why my brain doesn't spout Protag vs. Antag plots is beyond me. It's a lot easier than illustrating an entire society being against one's main character!

Antagonists aren't merely enemies …

IWSG: Editing and Writing Friends

This post is for the Insecure Writer's Support Group, which posts every first Wednesday of the month!

I have finished the fourth and last draft of my WIP, The Keegans of Banner's Edge. I have a query draft that was read by my writing group and is now ripe for a revision. I have several literary agents in mind and am putting my list together.

But first, I am editing up my manuscript. Making sure things are as tight as I want them to be. Making sure things make sense (see Translating from the Rei for the truly wacko things I found in a past revision). Formatting so that each chapter begins on a new page.

Also, I'm cutting out a character. It probably seems like I'm cutting out this darling awfully late in the process, but--well--I mean, it's not gone out into the world yet, so it's not late at all. He's a minor character who has been in the story since at least draft two and he's one of my MC's few true friends, which seemed like a reason to keep him…