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Oh, yeah! The Writing . . .

In all the hoopla and post picture posting frenzy of conference writing seems to get shoved to one side. That’s my biggest problem with conference–it can be a total time-suck on the writing. And it is all about the writing after all (though all the party pictures and booksigning snaps beg to differ).

It took me until Tuesday night to drag my notebook and pages back out and dust off my manuscript. I find that my writing is like my commitment to yoga. If I lay out my yoga togs, my mat, and queue up the DVD the night before–getting up and doing an hour isn’t that hard. But if I don’t make that commitment, then the morning sun trickles through my curtains and I am more apt to sigh with relief that the kids are still sleeping and let myself snooze for another 30 minutes or . . . always just long enough so that I don’t have time to pretzel myself into a Bow or a Downward Dog.

Same with the book. I’m still getting used to the new office and layout, but I spent part of Tuesday night getting the basics together, front and center. Notebook? Check. Binder? Check. Word file ready to write in? Check. Ran through my notes the night before, added some ideas and dialogue fragments to them, so when I sat down Wednesday morning to write, I had that little bit of a nudge–like the PLAY button on a remote– to push me right into writing.

And The Plan? Egads! I spent 20 mintues the other day trying to find where I’d put it on the new computer. After a frustrating search, I remembered I’d done it on the laptop, so I had to go through the search once again on it. So now The Plan is resting front and center on the desktop of the my computer, like a giant ticking clock. And I need to make some revisions to it, as I haven’t been as dedicated as I should be. The key to the Plan is being honest about your writing: pages and time, no matter that it shows what a slacker I’ve been.

Darn that conference . . . Tell me why I went again? How about you–what are you doing to get back writing? Using notes from workshops? Which then begs the question: Which workshops? Taking a new look at the project before it goes winging off to the editor or agent? Come on, ‘fess up: Are you getting back to work? And if you didn’t go to conference, please chime in and gloat about your piles of pages.

Oh, BTW, those tapes and conference DVDs are still up for grabs….keep commenting and you could win your own personal conference!

18 comments to “Oh, yeah! The Writing . . .”

  1. Patti
    July 20th, 2007 at 1:47 pm · Link

    …drooling over your new Mac….

  2. Haven Rich
    July 20th, 2007 at 2:13 pm · Link

    I wasn’t able to buy the CD’s, as I was WAY over budget anyhow. I’m actually really lucky I was able to go in the first place.

    Now on to your question: I took lots of notes during the workshops I was able to attend.

    The main ones that took hold of my attention are the Beau Monde workshops and ones on character building. My thinking is you can have a great book but if you characters suck…you don’t have much to stand on.

    BTW I’m still so bummed about missing you. I don’t know how I did it, but I missed several of my favorite authors. *sigh* I have a lot of work to catch up with next year, aka seeing authors I didn’t get to this year.

  3. Stephanie
    July 20th, 2007 at 10:29 pm · Link

    I didn’t even go to the conference and just reading about it has cut into my writing time ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Crystal
    July 21st, 2007 at 9:11 am · Link

    I wasn’t at conference, but my mother visited for a week. I had already budgeted that week into my plan, but not the week before it that I spent cleaning and shopping in preparation. I’m trying to get my head back into it now by going over all my notes.

  5. Keira Soleore
    July 21st, 2007 at 9:56 am · Link

    I’m still digesting my chicken scratch. I attended most of the workshops I wanted to on Friday and Saturday, and I wrote like mad in the little journal they provided. Two of the best ones I went to were chat with Nora and JAK and SEP playing off each other. I mostly attended craft workshops, though I did go to one publisher spotlight. All week long, I’ve been posting my thoughts and the hand-journaling I did, while in Dallas, in three different places.

  6. Elizabeth
    July 21st, 2007 at 10:17 am · Link

    The new Mac is very cool, but I’m having a way harder time making the switch than I thought I would. Go figure.

    Haven, we will meet. Eventually. Really.

    Stephanie, you are still ahead of the rest of us, because I’ve been trolling around as well, wasting huge amounts of time making sure no posts really hideous photos of me. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Crystal–same with conference–you have to plan in the week before for mad trips to the store for Spanx and the countless trips to the grocery store because husbands can’t be counted on to get the right brand of Rice Milk.

    Keira, the JAK/SEP talk is always invaluable. They have got to be the two smartest women alive. Where are you posting your notes? Do share!

  7. Millie Bullock
    July 21st, 2007 at 10:58 am · Link

    This was my first conference and I was totally overwhelmed. It’s been a week and I am still physically recuperating. The two workshops that I really enjoyed were the one Karen Hawkins had on humor in writing (she had some really great practical tips) and the one on romantic suspense by Karen Rose. The biggest impediment to my getting back to my writing is that I came home with 85 metric tons of free books and I want to read them all.

  8. Shelly S.
    July 21st, 2007 at 2:42 pm · Link

    I didn’t get to go to conference (boo hoo). And I also don’t get to gloat about my pages. (0 for 2, I guess!) Gosh if anyone can come up with a magic formula for keeping on target, let me know!! It seems especially tough during the summer when the KIDS ARE HOME! (Insert primal scream here)

    I have a Mac and PCs; Macs are DIFFERENT, you almost have to think backwards to do simple things, like close documents! But they are great for multimedia (I use mine for movie editing!) (Like, when I’m not writing?)

  9. Haven Rich
    July 21st, 2007 at 3:43 pm · Link

    I’ve actually been really lucky, the only few horrid photos of me were taken by Candice Hern. She keeps you laughing so much it’s impossible to take a normal picture.

  10. Shelly S.
    July 21st, 2007 at 4:06 pm · Link

    HA! I guess I answered my own question. After logging off I checked the mail and there was a request from an agent for the full manuscript. Guess what I’ll be doing tonight???

    But here’s my other question… Do any of you have cats? If so, how do you keep them off the keyboard when you are trying to write??? She seems to think that because my fingers are moving I should be scratching her under her chin…

  11. Haven Rich
    July 21st, 2007 at 4:46 pm · Link

    I actually have 7 cats and have learned to type on the key board with my 24 pound “baby” laying over my forearms. He thinks he must sleep there. So when I type, I often just move my fingers lol.

    I must admit though, that’s a lot easier with my laptop than desktop. Spike doesn’t like laying on my lap, he’s always got to lay on the arms. He’s strange, but I love him.

  12. Shelly S.
    July 21st, 2007 at 6:18 pm · Link

    I do have to admit, I don’t mind it much unless I am really into a scene and she wants to type “kjwdncxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx”

    She also likes to print things for no reason.


  13. Crystal
    July 22nd, 2007 at 4:56 pm · Link

    Congrats on the request Shelly.
    My cat plops down on whatever I’m working on that I am giving more attention to, be it the computer, check book, whatever. And when I switch my attention to something that I can access, the cat follows. I just have to give in and pet him.

  14. Haven Rich
    July 22nd, 2007 at 5:33 pm · Link

    Reading is the huge issue with my kids. They don’t allow it! It’s against any and all cat rules.

  15. Keira Soleore
    July 23rd, 2007 at 2:05 am · Link

    Elizbo: I’ve been posting my notes at Candice Hern’s board, the Romance Novel TV board, and the Romance Novel TV blog, where I post every Wednesday.

    BTW, I’m from the same small town where you used to live previously, though generically speaking, Seattle.

    I did meet Lacey Kaye from your chapter (prez) in Dallas (I know, I know), and I was so hoping I’d meet you, too.

  16. Elizabeth
    July 23rd, 2007 at 8:56 am · Link

    Millie, all those free books mark you as a first timer! You’ll take home even more the next time because you’ll have brought the second suitcase!

    Shelly, I feel your pain on the kids home. Just got the “I haven’t had breakfast” wail from the living room. When is September????

    Speaking of kitties, mine used to sleep on top of my old Mac SE when she was a baby, and would occassionaly reach down and take a swipe at the cursor. Then she moved to my lap, then she slept at my feet for years and years. I miss her warm fuzzy presence and her purring. So love them and their goofy ways while you have them!

    Keira, I’m off in search of your posts!

  17. Shelly S.
    July 23rd, 2007 at 4:58 pm · Link

    Thanks alll! My cat really enjoyed reading your posts (I can tell by the way she flicked her tail)

  18. Mad
    July 29th, 2007 at 9:00 pm · Link

    My oldest is begging for a MAC…she’ll be a junior in high school this year and she’s trying to work her daddy over by telling him she needs it for her projects and papers for school. *G* So far he hasn’t fell for that line but we still have a month to go before they head back to school and I’m sure he’ll decide to get her one then make it sound like it was his idea all along. ROFL

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