18 June, 2018
Recently I had the opportunity to direct a horror short I wrote, at Warner Brothers. It was my first short film and it was an amazing experience. That experience gave me the final push I needed to start self-publishing my fiction. LA is the land of don't wait to be discovered, go out and do your thing. In the world of publishing, there is still this division of "I got an agent and I got a book deal from a major publishing house", vs. "I decided to self-publish my novel." Despite the number of best-selling, self-published authors, traditionally published authors and agents, (not all, but enough), look down on a self-published author, whereas in LA, an actor or writer that goes out and does their own short film or web-series, is praised for taking the initiative. Doesn't make sense does it? Glad we are in agreement. So I had a choice. I could continue submitted my writing to agents, even though I knew dozens of people, just in my circle alone, wanting to buy my books, or I could start self-publishing, knowing that my novels are: well-written page-turners that are marketable. And I have an Mfa in writing from prestigious Hamline University. I have a network of people I can call on to proofread and edit my novels. Beta readers ready to read ARCs. The only thing that was missing was for me to let go of "waiting for an agent to discover me", and get on with my work. I am an author now. And I have work to do.
14 June, 2018
Today Today I published my first piece of fiction. It's up on SMASHWORDS. The title is The Do Over Door. Go get it! It has been an interesting journey, this road to being a published author. My family and friends have stood by me and encourage me. My MFA alum have also been there--go HAMLINE! And along the way I got to direct a short I wrote at Warner Brothers. It's been an amazing June. What's next for the author? I'm up to page 118 of 370 of my YA fantasy novel that I will be self-publishing. It needs one more revision after this week, then a final revision. then an editor's eyes. Then a revision based off of that, then a proofreader to check my spelling and grammar and incessant use of commas, then a book cover designer to give it that Wow factor, then it'll be ready. Devoting 8-10 hours a day and giving the editor (who I still need to acquire), time to do his or her magic I hope to have it ready by June 30th. From there, I have a YA fantasy to complete the first draft on and a horror script to write. July is looking good. Thank you for being with me on this journey and I will post updates on my status as a AUTHOR!
02 April, 2018
Nothing and Something Every time a writer puts pen to page, or binary code to laptop, he or she takes a risk. Will the audience love my writing? Will I get an agent? Will this book ever get published? Then there are other risks like: should I get an Mfa? What happens if you don't take a risk? Two things. Nothing and Something. Wait, you mean I don't have to take a risk? I can leave my novel about giant chicken invaders in the drawer or on my laptop? Yes. That is your right. And nothing will happen to the novel. But something will happen to you...if you are truly a writer. Because someone who is truly a writer can't let their writing sit for weeks or months or years without be touched, without doing some work on it. Someone who is truly a writer can't go a day without thinking about their writing. It could be thoughts on a novel in progress, or an idea for a new novel that bubbles to the surface of your psyche. Regardless, you will feel the effects of not writing: sorrow, a feeling of being out of step with the world, confusion, irritability. A complete shut down of all mental faculties, leaving you howling in the corner of your bedroom in a tattered robe, with a boiled egg in your pocket. Okay, the last one was an exaggeration, but you get my point. Not taking a risk in writing your novel or short story, or picture book affects you as a person because you are a writer. There is nothing on this good Earth that will satiate your writing passion except writing. I have a YA scifi novel that I am editing. I think I'm on draft four. It should be done by the end of the month. I don't write dozens of drafts. I write a solid, meaty, first draft and hit each revision hard--not allowing myself to shy away from dumping paragraphs or characters, or going line by line to make sure I told the story in the best way possible. I am ruthless at editing and revision. I have a list of ideas for at least half a dozen scifi and fantasy novels that I'm ready to get started on. My mind is a writer's mind and it never stop. And I am so blessed and grateful that it doesn't. What if you don't think about writing every week or you pull out your novel you've been working on for the past ten years and have a go at it once a year? Does this mean you're not a writer? I think it means your a hobbyist. Which is fine. Writing isn't your passion. Something else is. Writing may be your stress reliever or quirkiness that exhibits itself once or twice a year, but it is not who you are. What if you used to write daily or even weekly and it's been a month or six months or even a year since you've written anything beyond a report for work? Are you exhibiting the signs I mentioned above? If so, you need to cut out the fluff in your life and get back to writing. If not, that means your passion lies elsewhere and you should figure out what it is. Being a writer doesn't mean you have to write 5,000 words a day or even 500. Sit down and write. Your writing brain will let you know when it's time to stop for the day. Let writing be a natural extension of who you are. I don't know who said it, but it's so true "we always make time for what's important." You have time to write 5 pages a day in your twenty four hour day.