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Writing Prompts

It’s been almost a month since I posted anything. The Coronavirus has me monitoring things like how many have it in Maine, and how many have died from it. The numbers for who has it keeps rising. We’re still under a stay at home order except to get medicines and groceries. Toilet paper is still hard to find. It’s just crazy. So I thought I would start writing prompts and post one a day.. That way there is something positive to read and something to read more often on my blog. I don’t now that I’ll post every day as that will be as that will be overwhelming, but maybe a couple times a week. At least I will start out with that.

After the writing prompt, feel free to let me know what you liked or didn’t like about what I wrote, or if you find a particular prompt that you would like to see me write more on.

I’ll post the writing prompt that I am writing to so you will be able to write from it too. When you finish with your writing prompt feel free to leave them in the comments section or email them to me at jisoucie@hotmail.com. I would love to read what you have written.

Take care, stay healthy!

Janis

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COVID 19 & PTSD

I haven’t been writing on any stories much. I have mostly been monitoring the COVID 19 crisis and writing in my journal about it. That and taking care of my family. My daughter doesn’t have school for at least two weeks, at the same time I’m potty training my son, and my hubby is home today to help with things. But he goes back to work tomorrow. So far his work hasn’t done anything about working remotely. I hope that comes soon.

And lately I have been struggling with PTSD not related to COVID 19. I am struggling with hypervigilience mostly but anxiety as well. I didn’t sleep much last night.

This is all hard to deal with because I want to keep my mind on something other than this coronavirus crisis and something other than worrying about the my PTSD symptoms. But it’s hard. My brain is in mommy mode and I feel like cleaning, like that is somehow going to help us. I’m sure it will just work to make me feel better.

It’s all so crazy with all that is happening that my brain is just caught up in all. I know it’s temporary it’s just waiting it out like everyone else is doing.

I wish you all the best. And if you’re a writer finding it hard to focus amid this crisis, how do you deal with it? Any tips for other writers?

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The Holiday Season

The Holiday Season is upon us. We are all busy making sure we have presents for everyone, ingredients for baking and the big Christmas dinner and desserts. And there just isn’t time for much else. But I have most everything I need so I thought I take a timeout and give everyone an update.

On my last update I told you I was working on my story of weight loss. I set that aside for the time being because I wanted to finish working on this story “Where Can My Baby Be?” That I started shortly after my nephew’s death. I made him a character in the story because I know writing helps me through my grief. There were times I had to set the story aside because it hurt too much to keep going, but then there are times when I am doing okay and I can write more on the story. So that is my main goal now. I would like to publish the story but someone said that if I did I would be making money off someone’s death.

I don’t believe that and that is not what I am trying to do. So I don’t know if I’ll publish this story or not.

Thankfully I’m not just relying on this story to get published. I have a much larger novel I have to go through and edit and that will be in my goal for next year.

Enough of this update from my side. What are you working on? Are you ready for Christmas? Or do you celebrate a different holiday? Whatever holiday you celebrate I hope it’s a good one filled with wonderful memories.

Ill see you in the New Year!!

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Camp NaNo Day 10

Camp NaNa day 10 is here and I have been working away at my story. But I’m realize my story is winding down and I haven’t hit my word count goal yet. I guess that does’t matter so long as the story is finished.

But I think of you out there wherever you may be in your story, or what your word count might be. How is everything going for you? I wonder what kind of story you might be working on. What are you imagining?

Then I have to do my own work and snap out of it and work on my own story. I guess it’s a good idea I’m not reading someone else’s WIP because their work may may be captivating and steal me away from my own story. Best to wait until you are both done I think.

Thought I am reading Dean Koontz’ Husband. Do you read published books while you’re working on your own? I do but because it gives me inspiration. I allow for both reading and writing time.

Okay, so I’m not going to stay long and I don’t have a lot to say in my posts as of late. But here is the list of what I have yet to do for this story and this includes editing, finding beta readers and such like that.

Edit Book

Find beta readers

Make corrections

Possibly rewriting story if need to

Look for a literary agent

There may be more steps in there like more editing, but we’ll see about that as I go. Well that’s all from me for now. Take care and happy writing!

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Story to App

So lately my story writing has slowly been turning over to writing for an app my husband has going. He is creating a garden app and needed someone to write the plant information and input all that information into a data base. Now mind you I never saw this coming years back but it’s here now. I still have this second book I am working on . I didn’t make it for camp nano unfortunately. I”m hoping to write the third book come this next camp nano. We’ll see. I”ll really have to get this second story done first.

So how am I going to manage this work for my husband and my own writing? To be honest, I don’t know. I’m still trying to figure that out. I think for today I am going to try to work a little on the database information and then I’ll try working on writing a blog post for my character Cora, and then end the day with some writing.

Okay! So that’s the plan. I’ll be back at the end of the day and let you know how everything turned out today and if my plan worked.

Take care!

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Secret Angiush

It has been a long couple of days. I have been working on my next book, Secret Anguish: My Metal Health Journey and I have had to toss out so much of my book because I realized it would’t help my story at all. It had to do with allergies and asthma and that has nothing to do with mental illness. I think this book may be a novella by the time I’m done weeding everything.

I have a couple of chapters I can keep that do have to deal with mental heals so I’ll start my rewrite from there, and see what I come up with. Hopefully, I’ll have a decent manuscript by the time I’m done.

But I’d better get going while I can. Before my 3 year old son needs something and I’m interrupted,

So I’ll work on what I have ready to use and then I should also consult the journal entries I have from years past and see what information they can provide. Well, I’m off. Best of luck to you if you are editing your manuscript. It’s a tough job so take your time and don’t rush it. So long for now!

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Taking a Writing Break? Harder Than I Thought

Okay so I said I was going to take a break from writing, but that is proving harder that I thought. I was talking with another author friend, Heather Montford, she suggested I try doing writing prompts instead of trying to write a whole novel while watching my son.

So I did it. This morning i looked up writing prompt sites and found one at Writer’s Digest’s website. I worked on the very first prompt they gave and I found it so freeing to still write even if I may not use what I’m writing. And I’m keeping my writing muscles exercised. I think by doing these prompts and reading, I’ll be in good shape.

Another lesson learned, don’t throw away the advice of a good friend! You never know where it will lead you.

Do you have a favorite writing prompt site, or book? Let me know in the comments.

Have a great day.

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Beta Readers

Well I did it. I wrote a book about a month ago with the help of Camp NaNo and I just finished typing up the corrections I had from editing. And I sent my book off to three beta readers. I’m just trying to be patient while I wait for them to receive the file and then read it. Just so curious as to what they will think.

Something else I have gotten into thinking about is setting a more rigid writing schedule and adding goals. You see basically I don’t have a writing schedule which is why I don’t have a whole lot of books published. Part of it is a confidence thing too. So I’m reading at http://www.magnoliamedianetwork.com/use-smart-goals-to-get-your-book-done/

So I’m not setting goals just yet. I want to read more at this latest website and maybe check out a few others. Just thinking about setting goals for writing more has me nervous. You’re probably wondering why and I’m not sure. I want to write more on my next book but I don’t have a story about it yet. I guess I’m waiting on feedback for my first book back to see what I should do.

Do you set goals to help you overcome procrastination? What do you do to keep yourself writing? I’d love to hear from you so please leave comments or write to me at jisoucie@hotmail.com.

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Secret Anguish: Update

Months have flown by without a new post springing from my fingers. Life has been pretty busy with the holidays and all. But I have some time to update you all on what my current project is.

I’m working on Secret Anguish which at one point was going to be about gluten sensitivity, or what we thought was gluten sensitivity until we later found out I really didn’t have one. So now I am recycling the title and using for my story on mental illness.

I have been diagnosed with PTSD, unspecified bipolar disorder with psychosis,  generalized anxiety disorder, borderline personality disorder, and depersonalization. And I have been going through journal entries since 2005 trying to piece parts of my life together to make this book.

Well I discovered this morning, a journal that I had handwritten and yet typed up like I had done the others to make copying and pasting sections easier (when I needed to do so such as what part is PTSD related, or anxiety related and so forth). So now I have more work to do on top of what I was doing.

Once I get these journal entries typed up and sorted, I’ll be able to go back and work on piecing my book together. My goal is to have my book out before the end of the year. I’m going to work hard on reaching that goal.

Something else that has come my way is teaching my daughter how to create characters because she would like to write her own books. She is 9 and in third grade so I’m curious to see if this is just a passing phase, or if this is going to grow into something more. Whatever the case, I am having a proud mommy moment for the time being.

What are you working on right now? Is it a new novel or short story, a poem, maybe planning a new blog post? I’d love to hear what your’e up to. Or even if you have questions about what the story I’m working on I’d be happy to answer you.

Have a great day and for others who live elsewhere in Maine, be safe out there. Winter Storm Grayson has started unleashing his fury.

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Words Fly

This morning I have my iced coffee next to me, the radio blaring WKIT Stephen King’s Radio Station here in Bangor, Maine, while my daughter and her friend play in her room before the bus comes. My son is in his bouncer next to me jumping away and singing to himself.

I have Scrivener open and I’m working on my second book Secret Anguish: My Story of Gluten Intolerance. Problem is I see a couple of different versions of a few chapters and I’m not sure I like either one of them. It’s so tough writing memoirs. I’m not sure if I want to start in the present and work my way backward, or start more toward the beginning, or should I start in the middle. Oh, boy! I sure have my work cut out for me. A lot of brainstorming will be going on today.

Are you writing a memoir, or have you written one already? What did you find most difficult about writing it? Do you have any advice for those writing a memoir?