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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!

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 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!*

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Day 6 – On the Way Out!

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Well, I’m done for the day. I wrote just over 2,000 words. Time to fill the pellet stove with pellets, and walk the dogs before bed. Hittin’ the sack before 1AM this time! lol. Yawning and sleepy-eyed so I know I won’t be up much longer. Much to do tomorrow. Need to make a meal for a family who has a family member going through chemo, so I need to get that done before any writing can be done. 

Well, God bless and everyone have a great night, or early morning, depending on where you live!

Night all!

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NaNo Day 3…Ready? Set? Go!!!

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Sitting here at the dining room table munching on Back to Nature’s Multi-Seed Gluten Free Rice Thin Crackers and drinking milk thistle and dandelion tea. Crackers for dinner? Yup. That’s right! My sinuses are draining and my belly is highly upset!  Seems to be the course since the weather’s been dry. 

So not feeling so energetic for tonight’s writing spree but I will try to make it anyway. I’m just happy I was able to punch out a few hundred words this morning before church. Pays to get up earlier than normal I guess.

Over 4200 words recorded on the NaNo site so far. Still need to update it from this morning’s writing session. Can’t update it much more if I don’t get crackin’.  Time to join the other NaNoWriMos who have probably already written if not exceeded their word count. I’m such a slacker. lol. Okay not that bad, but will be if I don’t get going.

Best of luck everyone!

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Day 2 In The Books!

Number 2

 

Well, it is midnight now and so I must stop writing…for a few hours at least. lol.

Wrote over 2170 words today. I am a bit ahead which surprises me. I hate to stop now since I am on a roll, but I have church in the morning. Thankfully, the clocks will set back and hour and I get one more hour of sleep!! Well, I hope to anyway. Will a four year old and two dogs, guess we’ll see about that one.

Congrats everyone who made their word count for day 2! If you haven’t quite gotten there, don’t be discouraged and don’t be hard on yourself. Pace your self  and try not to stress out. You’ll get there.

Good night all!

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NaNo Day 1 Word Count – Accomplished!

Ahhh… Here we are coming to a close on Day 1 of NaNo. Okay, so there is like 27 minutes left, but I am stopping for the night. I surprised myself by surpassing the daily word count and reaching 2,060 words today. I would still be writing if I didn’t have to go to bed. Have company coming tomorrow so I must get some sleep. 

Good luck to those of you who are still plugging away. Congrats to those of you who have reached or exceeded today’s word count! 

Good night all and see you back tomorrow!