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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

I'm still here...mostly.

People of blogger nation, it's been almost 2 months since my last post. Yikes! Sorry about that. Since I became a mother last January, my life has been thrown into a tailspin straight into the pit of everlasting chaos. But I have been writing, not as much as I'd like to, but I'm still at it.

My focus has changed, though. Prior to baby I was all over the place, writing this type of story or that, trying to get published. Last month I had a little run in with one of my critique partners. She pointed a couple things I wasn't ready to hear, but they were so true. Ultimately, she did the best thing a CP could do- guide me in the right direction.

When I first started writing, I wanted to tell a story about a vampire and the mortal girl he chased over the centuries as she reincarnated into different lives. I rewrote their story of her second life 4 times, the third life 3 times, and dabbled a little in their first life together before he became immortal. It's a love story, but not the traditional type you see published. I've submitted versions of this story multiple times and got rejected. The common theme was, "we don't know what type of novel this is and wouldn't be able to market it."

So I got discouraged and then would try to write something else. I splashed around with mermaids and Atlantis. "Too high fantasy" was the excuse I got from editors and agents that represented the high fantasy genre.

I even wrote an adult contemporary romance that I loved and got many requests for but didn't send. Mostly because it needs serious editing and I don't know if I have the stomach to do it. Why? *sigh* It's a great story, but not really representative of what I want to write. Sure, I want to get published, but if that is my first story out, then the expectation is that I write more of them and I'm not sure I have that in me. Contemporary romance, both adult or YA, is really not what I want to produce. Give me magic and supernatural creatures any day!!!

My dear CP said I needed to focus and stop being all over the place. At first I wanted was like, "yes you're right." Then the next day I woke up and growled "How dare she tell me what to write!" I shot her off an email. Her response a couple of days later was, "This is the story I enjoyed reading from you, but you stopped sending me stuff and changed to something else." (I paraphrase.) The story she referred to was The Vampire Novelist. Yes, my baby. After I cooled off, I realized she spoke the truth. TVN is reflective of me. It's my soul in that book.

I made my decision then. Stop trying to get published and write the book that I want out there. So what if NY doesn't know where to put it on the shelf. In the world of self-publishing, I don't have to rely on them to get my book out to the readers. Stop trying to make it fit into a category. I added so many characters and scenes so it would fit urban fantasy or romance. I even lowered my heroine's age so she could YA. But I don't need to worry about that anymore. I just need to worry about writing the best story possible.

For the last month, I've focused on revising my baby and applying all the wonderful things I've learned in the last few years. When I have it the way I want, then I'll start looking to publish it whether traditional or indie. It's been a very slow process because I have an almost 6 month old and I've started working full time again at day job. To add to the madness I've been compiling a collection of tips and solutions for new moms that I've found helpful along the journey as a mom. I even started a blog yesterday to post some of these things. Some things I've learned the hard way, others from friends and other moms. Regardless, I feel that I should share these things because someone out there could use the information and possibly save her sanity.

Here's link to my new blog. I'll try to post more often (at least more than once every couple of months) here too, but I'm not going to make any promises. Mommyhood is my priority right now. Speaking of that, I'll leave you with this adorable pic from 4th of July.

You're welcome.

Cheers,
M