The Latest in My Writing Saga

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Posted by Jodi | Posted in Some spare thoughts from a writer | Posted on 15-08-2018

The smoke hangs heavy over my hometown. Every year it seems to get worse, but there a those who don’t understand why. They would deny climate change, yet acknowledge that each year there are more forest fires and smoke in the air. The winters are warmer. There’s less snow fall than there was years ago. I’m not sure what it will take to wake some up. Maybe they never will. Sad this is a saga to fit into one of my stories.

I grew up among the Redwoods in Northern California, on my Grandmother’s 40 acres. Along with my sisters and cousins, I took all the beauty and splendor for granted. More and more, I understand how lucky we were to have those forested acres to play in and explore.

Instead of being cooped inside playing video games, we were outside, building forts and playing war. We dug in the dirt and went on long walks down the logging road that snaked through the property. Adults and kids would spend hours together picking wild blackberries.

Close to the Pacific Ocean, the draw to spend time hunting for agates and playing in the surf drew us each summer. Rain or shine, out of doors kept us coming back.

Those were great times. Each generation needs to find their own ways of escape. Mine helped build my imagination and my yearning to write. It took a very good friend’s challenge to inspire me beyond my stories. The challenge to write a book was, at the time, a no brainer. I look back now and realize what a massive feat it is to write a book. That I accepted the challenge and started is something I will always owe my dear friend the biggest debt anyone can imagine.

So for now, it’s time to get back to the edit of the book that grows each time I sit down with it.

Keep the coffee flowing.

Respectfully submitted,

Jodi

I Missed You Last Week

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Posted by Jodi | Posted in Some spare thoughts from a writer | Posted on 01-08-2018

This time last week, I was missing in action. I needed to take care of me. That included some dental surgery.

This week I’m back and ready to dedicate even more time to my writing. I have two sets of edits from my critique group to work on, as well as another chapter to finish preparing for them.

This edit is feeling really good. One of the things that makes this possible is that I’m getting input that helps build dimensions to my story. I also find myself in the position of defending some the science that takes place in the book.

The latest of these is where an evacuation takes place and why. I had thought that it was because of the defeat of the army of my male protagonist. I find it is not the defeat by the other waring faction, but by the inhabitants of the planet where the battle takes place. This just happens to be the nursery of the species represented by the antagonist of the story. Now, I just need to work this into the book, and also foreshadow some of the evil to come.

Whatever your creative passion is, I hope that you find it as mesmerizing as I find mine.

Until next week, keep the coffee flowing.

Respectfully submitted,

Jodi

What am I Working on This Week?

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Posted by Jodi | Posted in Some spare thoughts from a writer | Posted on 11-07-2018

This week I continue to work on the edit of my book “Not Too Late Forever”. It’s feeling really good, because some of those in my critique group are down to the point of “I like it, but…” Where the “but” comes in is something like, “You like to make up words, so give me a word that one character feels for this emotion or similar word for feelings toward another character. Some of the group have been through multiple edits with me. For others in the group, it’s the first time they’ve heard the story.

The thing that thrills me is that the comments and suggestions, for the most part, are adding an incredible amount of depth to the story and characters without changing the main premise and content.

I’m also finding that the suggestions are thought provoking, but don’t add a lot of extra words to the book.

So back to making up words. That’s one of the more fun parts of my writing. I’ve made up words for time measurements, from the second up to and including the year. I’ve also made up words for cultures and forms of transportation. Another thing that’s happened with my writing is that I’ve gotten to know different cultures and some their traditions. I’m sure that as I go along with this edit, that I’ll get more suggestions on how to add more depth and dimension to the story and characters.

For now, it’s time to get back to learning what the new words are and working with or choosing not to work with the suggestions made.

Keep the coffee flowing.

Respectfully submitted,

Jodi

Working on My Creative Passion

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Posted by Jodi | Posted in Some spare thoughts from a writer | Posted on 22-05-2018

This week I’m determined to work through another edit of the first chapter of my book. I never thought I would enjoy the edit as much as I enjoy the original creation, but I do. More than that, it is like having a small shed and transforming it into an gleaming sky scraper.

Over twelve years ago, I made a commitment to write a book. After that, I worked to learn more about my craft by traveling to my first writers’ conference. Going to the conference I had three very rough chapters, that have since been transformed into a book of over 107 thousand words.

Each day I work on my writing, I enjoy other worlds and cultures that up to now only I and a few in my writers’ group have come into contact with. It continues to be a dream that I will some day be able to share it with others and inspire their imaginations.

I’ve said it before, and I’m sure that I will say it many times more, that it has become so much more than I ever anticipated. Many things, not the least of which are the names and expressions of the characters, have changed. Words that at the time seemed to take a lot of thought to create, now seem like the only words I could have chosen to express what they portray. An example of this is the skimboard. Shaped like a skateboard, it is hydrogen powered, using water that is broken down into oxygen/hydrogen atoms. The oxygen atoms enrich the atmosphere and the hydrogen when split release the energy needed to propel it and its passenger(s) forward.  The boards come in various sizes and carry anywhere from one to four passengers.

That’s just a sample of something on my world and in my new universe. There is still much work to do, but now is the time of the edit. Words, time and circumstances are in place, but may yet change. Only by getting back to work on it will I ever know.

Keep the coffee flowing.

Respectfully submitted,

Jodi

On My Way

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Posted by Jodi | Posted in Some spare thoughts from a writer | Posted on 10-05-2018

The more I work on my writing, the more excited I get. I’ve started another edit of “Not Too Late Forever”. So far, each week at my writers’/critique group, I’m getting better and better feedback. Whichever of my two genres I work on, Soft Science Fiction with elements of romance and Midgrade Urban Fantasy, the joy I get from my writing continues to grow. Now I need to publish in one, then the other. From that point I can pursue working with both. I can do it, but how?

Last year, at The Surrey International Writers’ Conference, I went to a workshop with Meg Tilley and KC Dyer. They both talked about having to self publish, because they felt a need to write in a different genre than what they had first sold with their agent’s assistance. I’m not saying that I am anywhere near as good a writer as either of them, however I am a writer and I want to get my work out there and get my work published.

Over the time that I’ve been working on my books, workshops from multiple writers’ conferences have helped me polish my craft. Along with the best critique group that I can imagine, I have gained greater insight into my writing and me personally. Combined with these experiences, over the years, years because I have written some form of fiction all my life, I have built on my knowledge and passion for writing. I have also escaped into the lives of characters, some like me, some not.

There are so many opportunities I have had the privilege of enjoying that have led me in the direction that I now pursue. When I started writing, I was lucky enough to participate in a workshop class put on by local best selling author, Con Sellers. it was amazing to take a class at the local community college and listen to the brilliant creativity of others. The first I shared something of my own creation, I did not have the courage to read it. Instead I asked one of my gracious classmates to read it for me. Even at that, my heart was pounding so heard I could hardly hear the words being read.

I have come a long way since then, in so many ways, not the least of which is that I have a complete novel. Someday soon, once I’ve gone through at least one more edit, I hope to share it with the world. After that I have so much more to write.

So for now, keep the coffee flowing.

Respectfully submitted,

Jodi