"There came a time when it was more painful to remain a bud than to open into full blossom." – Anais Nin
Honoring National Novel Writing Month in November, known as NaNoWriMo, I'm sparking some inspiration, incentive, and encouragement for getting that book finished. GO for the gusto!
7 Writing Habits
Be Proactive – Do it NOW! Write it now while you're thinking of it! While the juice is flowing. While the idea is hot! Don't let it fly away. Write it down. Listen, visualize, let intuition rule… Do it NOW!
“Your intuition already knows what it wants to write, so get out of the way.” ~ Ray Bradbury
Begin with the end in mind – Lisa See states she only knows her story's first sentence and last sentence when she begins. What's your story arc, the necessary character changes? Endings – happily or hopeful? Fight or flight? Love 'um or leave 'um? Where is your story going and how will you get there?
Put first things first – Where to begin? Beginning hook? Characters… who wants what and why? By when? With whom? Conflict or support? Essential "Goal, Motivation, and Conflict" from Deb Dixon!
Think Win-win – Who wins, who loses, who gains insight? Deal makers or breakers? What blurbs - vision- do you want people to say about your book, characters, story? Write them down and write to them. Make your story meet the blurbs!
Seek first to understand, then to be understood – Motivation is key! Why or why not? Who cares? Who knows? Secrets revealed? Treasures found? Walk in your character's shoes. Who changes, who compromises, who loses?
Synergize – Interact with like minds, cooperate, give and take, network. Join writer's groups, critique groups, art groups, social media. Teach and you will learn and benefit.
Sharpen the Saw – Get out of your writing cave, be active, attend classes, meetings, conferences. Make lifetime learning your goal, everything is a learning experience. Follow your passion! Dream big! "DO THE WORK" from Steve Pressfield.
Compiled by Mary Tate Engels for myself, to create a spark and keep the writing flowing. Feel free to come along. And, thanks to Steven Covey for his 7 Habits of Highly Successful People!
THIS MONTH'S 99 CENTS SPECIALS
Happily Ever After in a small town isn't always easy, but we do love the idea. In a small town, we don't get lost in the crowd. We get to be a big fish in a small pond. But sometimes, jobs are scarce. And there are folks who know everything about everyone. It's hard to keep secrets. And if you're new in town, it's often difficult to fit in.
These are just some of the obstacles faced by the heroines in my Autumn Specials. And then there's the fortunate good luck of falling in love with the most unlikely hero.
Texas Sizzle is one of my favorite stories. Kathryn struggles to fit into a Texas town with her East Coast pedigree. And she doesn't help herself when she falls for the town's pro-football hero who happens to be younger than she is. Can she find bliss in Texas?
Note to self! I thought retiring to an apple farm would be wonderful, fun and delicious. But my research on Under the Desert Moon revealed it's a lot of hard work! Bless the apple growers! Our ideas of bliss change during our lifetimes. And all of us face conflicts. We want a place to call home and a fulfilling job. And-most importantly- love. My bliss is writing stories that reflect these common elements so my readers know they aren't alone. And love conquers all. What's your bliss?
The three Autumn Specials only $1.29 at www.marytateengels.com
Come summer and the urge to hit the road strikes, we pack our bags, grab a book (or eBook), and take off for the wide open spaces, ancient hills, or some beach (sigh). Just fyi, Ruby is my car and also my muse.
Pack 'n Roll – But you know this, right?
My best advice is to Pack Lite and Roll Baby Roll! Roll your clothes and you can take twice as much with less wrinkles.
Roll On – Save your shoulders and ditch the bag!
Take a small shoulder purse for strolling the streets after you arrive. For traveling, stuff that purse inside a rolling bag/suitcase and leave the nice, roomy shopping bag at home. Because – human nature is to fill the thing to capacity. And then, you have to carry it! Oh, aching shoulders! Instead, just take a rolling bag to stuff in the overhead and roll easily through airports.
What to pack – only what you NEED!
Take only what you'll need for the next few hours. For longer flights, there are some items to make it all more comfy. I have a friend who packs all this plus clothes in her overhead bag. She's a pro! Here's my overhead bag list.
Necessary items with you at all times: ID, passport, credit card(s), money, minimal makeup, prescription & other meds, jewelry, wipes, phone, ipad, unopened energy bar.
Stuff to make your flight more comfy:
Scarf plus soft jacket or sweater – flights are always too warm or too cold
Black tee – in case of spillage
Moisturizing cream – or small tube of Aquaphor, applied frequently
Thick, comfy socks to wear, even to the airplane toilet
Large, dark sunglasses to go incognito
Eye mask to block lights and maybe you can sleep
Earphones to block noise and tap into your own music
Books and/or eBooks, one to read, one to write!
Enjoy your journey and travel safe!
My three hot summer $1.29 specials found on my website at www.marytateengels.com are:
Callahan's Gold for Arizona gold digging!
Speak to the Wind, set in the cool mountains of Apache Country
A Man to Remember, treading Mexico's waters