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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?

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WINNER Announced!

The winner of my first creative challenged is Heather Montford, from Sackets Harbor, NY with her story Freedom.

Freedom 

 

There was freedom in the water.

On the land… People weren’t free on the land. They hurried back and forth, their heads in their phones, in their tablets. Their heads were down because anyone who was seen as too proud or too free were looked down upon those looking down on the world from their windows in the high metal and glass buildings. People on the land worked for people they didn’t like, at jobs that drained the very lives from them. People on land went home to families who would not look up from their phones, their tablets, their computers, their gaming systems, their televisions and Blu-ray players.

People on the land had no sense of wonder, no definition of imagination. There was no time in the day to look up, beyond the grayness of their city worlds, to marvel at a sunset or wonder at the colors in a rainbow after a downpour. There was no time to read, to see movies of one’s own making playing in their heads as they read wondrous words across the pages.  

Nobody enjoyed the beach she now sat upon, the glorious cliffs of white stones and the faces carved into them by a nature much more patient than the world as a whole. None of the people on the beach with her stopped to look at the rays of sun streaming like rain through the clouds over the island just yonder. Nobody on the beach sat and listened to the music of the water, lapping gently over the stones and shells on the shore. For some of them on the beach, that had been their intention. To forget, even momentarily, the pressures of the world on land and lose themselves in peace, but their phones held their attention, and they were not free.

She was tired of life on the land. She was tired of not being free to see the world around her. She was tired of being alone in a world overflowing with people. She stood, and shook the sand from her skirt. She slipped off her shoes, and dug her toes into the pebbles, the shells, around her, relishing the feel of each one.

She stepped into the water, feeling it wash the dread and gloom of life on the land away from her. She walked forward, to her ankles, to her knees, to her waist. Her skirt drifted up and became a pool of white ever present around her. She walked until her feet lifted from the ground, and she stayed there, treading water.

She could already breathe better.

When the sun set over the horizon, and the sky turned from orange to a dark, navy blue, her legs turned into the tail she had so missed in her years upon the land. She dove beneath the waves, and she was finally free.

Camp NaNoWriMo, Children's Stories, Uncategorized

Quiet Solitude

It’s after 10PM and everyone is in bed asleep. Even the dogs. I should be. Having a newborn I should be sleep when he sleeps but it’s so hard when the writing bug has come and won’t leave! Not that I want it to, mind you. I have one project in the works right now and thinking about another one I am planning to write for Camp NaNo in April. I know you’re probably thinking I’m crazy even thinking about doing this with a baby. And no I’m not one of those that does fine on little sleep. I do best on 9. But I am finding that even a little bit of writing, helps me cope with the stresses of everyday life. Plus, it’s fun and I enjoy it. With only 500 words as my word count goal, I think I should be able to reach that each day. We’ll find out!

I’ll be writing a short story this time around. Fantasy like. 

How many of you will be writing this April?

Will you be writing fiction, nonfiction, novel, or short story?

I would love to hear from so feel free to leave me a note in the comments.
Bye for now!

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Hmm…Wondering.

Hi everyone,

I haven’t written anything in some time. I have hit a dilemma. I would like to know what you want to hear from me. Do you want to hear writing updates, writing related posts and news, guest authors, ect. Please let me know so that I can serve you better. Looking forward to your comments.

All the best,

Janis
Happy writing! 🙂

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Sunny and Breezy in the Writer’s Doldrums

Okay… Here goes. I have to admit I think about this blog and about writing often. Does that mean I actually get to any writing? Um…no. I wish thinking about it meant I was doing the physical work with writing. Like Bobbi does in Stephen King’s The Tommyknockers. What writer wouldn’t love a contraption that typed up the story you were thinking about, even while you were asleep?

The thing is… I haven’t been doing much writing. I think about it constantly especially the current story Facade and several other ideas I could work on after I complete Facade. But I have to concentrate on completing one story or I’ll just jump around feeling all uncertain. Why uncertain? Here is the admitting part…I have low self-esteem and battle with self-doubt. There… 😦 I said it. 

I want to write and publish more but always wonder what I could write that would possibly interest anyone and have thoughts of, “What does it matter? Someone else probably has my idea anyway.” It’s hard to get past this. 

Do any of you deal with this? I am wondering how many writers, or other creative individuals, deal with either low-self esteem, or self-doubt, or both. I would love to hear your stories and what, if anything, you have found to help yourself through those rough moments, and actually get to writing your masterpiece.

A couple of nights ago, I did start writing a new short story from an idea I have had for several years. So that is prgress! Hoping to write more later today.

Best of luck to you all you creative indivdiuals!

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Sun Shine & Warmer Temps

The sun i shining brightly through the south windows warming the house. The snow is melting, icicles dripping off the roof, puddles forming in the driveway. Could Spring finally be here? (or close) I sure hope so. I can’t wait to get outside and get my hands in the dirt as I plant seeds in our garden, or pull up earthworms for fishing. 

The warmer temperatures and fresh air bekon me out the door and energize me. I feel energized not only to adventure outdoors, but usually to write and to take a new book off the shelf. It’s like the fresh air and just knowing Spring is close helps to shake of the winter doldrums. 

In one of my last posts I talked about moving away from writing personal experience pieces such as my story of discovering I had Celiac Disease, or losing a parent when I was a teen, and how I want these pieces to be encouraging to those who have gone through something similiar. Well, I must say I have been dealing with self doubt because I have been away from the craft of writing for quite some time. I haven’t taken my writing seriously for so many years and I mean sitting down every day and being dedicated to one project until it is finished. It has been years since I have published anything and now sitting down to look at a blank page even though I have ideas causes anxiety. I think I have run too long and now work through the anxiety. Perhaps many writers deal with this, but this is a first for me. I had no idea that being away from something for so long could being anxiety when trying to get back into it. The fear of, “Oh, no! I forgot what front piece goes where.” or “How do I even begin?” “How should I start this, in the present looking back, or should I start from the beginning as a child?” The questions go on and on until I’d get frustrated and angry and then walk away. I had to break that cycle if I was going to be the writer I claimed to be. The writer I used to be a few years back. The kind of writer I can be again.

Take a deep breath… Relax. I can do this. Let everything go and just write. It’s the first draft and I’ll figure everything else out later. And I’ve done just that. I am happy and excited to announch I have written the first few paragraphs of my next novel tentativley titled Secret Anguish: A Discovery of Celiac Disease. 

Have you been through something simliar? How did you break through your anxiety? Feel free to leave a comment or send an email to jisoucie@hotmail.com

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Sounds of home…

It is evening, and the day is quieting down. The dogs are asleep, the dishwasher humming and the pellet stove roaring away while my husband reads my daughter a dinosaur story and a Bible story before bed.

I haven’t been blogging much, I guess because I haven’t had much to talk about. Or so I thought. It seems I have some decisions to make.

I have four poetry books and one nonfiction book that are published and I was thinking of putting them on Smashwords. I took them off to try KDP Select but my sales bottomed out the last few months. KDP Select was a bust so I am going to go back to Smashwords. I have covers already and now I just need to make sure the manuscripts are update with relevant biographical information and then upload the stories.

Now something I don’t think I have mentioned before is that these books, are published under my maiden name of Janis I. Monroe. Anything I publish from now on will be under my married name and will look like this J.I. Soucie. I should have made a formal blog post when I switched my blog name. Sorry about that.

Next after updating the inside of the manuscript, I have to really think of the book descriptions. I am learning how to write better descriptions and really get smart about this kind of thing. I will be using the book the Indie Author Guide: Self-Publishing Strategies Anyone Can Use by April L. Hamilton, and I have read a blog post by Catherine Ryan Howard titled The 11 Ingredients to a Sizzling Book Description http://catherineryanhoward.com/2012/10/05/the-11-ingredients-of-a-sizzling-book-description/

I am at the point of admitting to myself I don’t know as much about being and Indie Author as I thought. I think there comes a point where we all have that realization or one that is similar. I have been doing more reading up on details and learning more about the craft of writing, editing, etc. I was getting ahead of myself and I am learning to slow down and take things one step at a time and to realize that it takes TIME!!! Any quality work requires effort and a great amount of time. I obviously didn’t realize this before and just wanted to write and things out there quick. Did it work? ..uh…no. I have the same five books published now as I did last year and the year before that. It is time for a change, folks, and I guess this is one Mom’s journey to becoming a better writer, editor, book cover designer, and publisher. May God guide my every thought and effort to make this happen.

I am off to get ready to sing my daughter some bedtime songs. Good night all!

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In the wee hours of the morning…

Here I sit in the quiet of my bedroom, listening to the pellet stove roaring away, the clink, clink, clink, of the pellets dropping and the fire burning hot, the warm air filtering into the room. My daughter is a sleep, the dogs are curled up in the living room in the respective chair and couch, and my hubby is asleep, snoring lightly next to me on the bed.

The snow lies like a blanket outside and crunches underfoot. The air is cold, crisp and invigorating! I know, I just took the dogs outside only moments ago. One of the reasons I am awake. The cold has a funny way of “shocking” you into awake mode.

I have been reading The Power of Memoir… and the subtitle and author escape me for the moment. I will have to edit this post later, but the book has helped me with restructuring my memoir A Daughter’s Reflection. I am in the stages of picking apart the book and using index cards to help me with this. I could use Scrivener but I do hate being on the computer all of the time. Just seems like I have been on it way too much and it is a time sucker. However, there is such a thing as shutting the wireless off..so I guess it is not so much being on the computer as it is the Internet! There is something to be said about being connected to it all of the time and that usually means chatting on social networks or forums even though you (I) had originally attended to work on writing. I may start using regular index cards, but I will have to keep them away from my Chihuahua because she loves anything that is paper; she tears it to shreds. So, I have a dog that will and has literally, “eaten my homework”.

I am restructuring and rewriting A Daughter’s Reflection so much I will probably have to publish it under a different title. I guess we will see when I reach that part.

Well I must be off to sleep. Hope to get an early start to the day and to make the most of the time God has given to me. It’s a challenge, but working on it. (Aren’t we all?)

I pray you are all snuggled in warmly tonight. It has been one heck of a winter for us all. Snuggle up under those blankets and sleep tight!

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Change of Plans

I had been contemplating lately on whether I should continue with a memoir, but even though I have good intentions, I don’t want to hurt or upset anyone in my family. I think I’ll write experience articles where I can share what I have been through, how it affected me, and what I did to get through situations and thus it all will be brief, unlike a whole novel on family stuff. That way, the articles focus mostly on me and won’t reflect so much on anyone else.

So, I guess it is now to fiction for me. I have a story idea but I need to work on coming up with the characters. This is my favorite part! I love developing characters and thinking about what they may look like, what their likes and dislikes are, etc. I can’t wait to get started.

Chat with you all a bit later and will let you know a little of what my story is about when I get it all together.

God bless!

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NaNo Day 7 – Unexpected Things!

Image

 

 I haven’t begun my word count for the day. Honestly, not sure how much I’ll be able to do today. Guess that happens when you get a phone call saying someone who you have known since childhood has died suddenly. Been crying and on the phone all day. 

But alas, I need a break from things. Writing is a welcome break. I will take a stab at NaNo for a little while. Any amount I get done today will be helpful. 

*God, please guide me in my writing endeavor. I can’t do this alone. Please, help me to reach the minimum word count today. In Jesus’ name, Amen!*