Friday, February 19, 2010

Catch-up Day

I've been so swamped this week I've had everything on auto-pilot, but light is finally appearing at tunnel's end.

Today I have to nail one more chunk of the current copy-edit, do one more contract review, make one more trip to my shipper, and endure one more day of invoking the busy writer's mantra, aka Please God Don't Call Me About That Because I Swear My Head Will Explode. Then I get the weekend off to cook, clean, do laundry, file, update the ledger, answer comments, answer e-mail, answer voice mail . . .

Yes, I love my job. All nine of them. Who wouldn't?

Anyway, a few things I actually did accomplish of late, so you don't think I've been a slouch:

1. Dreamveil, Kyndred Book Two, is completely done production and off to become a print book.

2. Frostfire, Kyndred Book Three, is finished and in NY.

3. Primary and alternative outlines for as yet untitled Kyndred Book Four are roughed out and ready for brooding over.

4. Prepped and ready to test out my new writing workshop on a class of unsuspecting public school fifth graders. (I love fifth graders. They're too old to be adorable and not old enough to be obnoxious. And they write like total fic fiends.)

5. Finished all but one of my interviews of expert folks who are advising me on various aspects of my new publisher/new genre trilogy. My final expert, the horse trainer, I saved for last because we're going to be spending a lot of time together. And there will be horses and barns and saddles and stuff.

So what's up with you guys? Anything interesting happen out there while I was slaving away over a hot keyboard?

14 comments:

  1. Er...um...
    Did I read that right?
    You?
    And horses?

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  2. Ooooh, writing workshop aimed at kids? Good ones are something that I just can't find enough of, homeschool-wise. They're learning "Apply rear to chair and type SOMETHING" pretty well, though.

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  3. Business email, contract stuff, final proofing of one project, writing another. Got both kids off antibiotics, worked w/ husband to get water softener cleaned, filled and working so the hard water deposits stop clogging up the coffee maker. Being muttered at by local school people about "talking to kids about writing" so you know which expert I will want to talk to!

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  4. Raine wrote: Er...um...
    Did I read that right?
    You?
    And horses?


    Yep. We've decided that being mortal enemies is silly, and it's time to K&MU. They plan on not scaring the crap out of me, and I plan to stay at the far end of the barn and not faint. :)

    Seriously, while I won't be climbing onto a horse unless the ground catches on fire, I will be getting some barn time, handling the equipment, learning the daily care routine, helping to clean stalls, and otherwise getting my boots dirty. I'm hoping it'll be at least as much fun as hanging out with a killer whale was. :)

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  5. Shawna wrote: Ooooh, writing workshop aimed at kids? Good ones are something that I just can't find enough of, homeschool-wise. They're learning "Apply rear to chair and type SOMETHING" pretty well, though.

    The idea of writing a story can be intimidating to kids who have only been introduced to it via traditional public education (which is woefully wrong-headed about teaching writing anyway) so I always go for short and sweet exercises that are fun and work as story starters. Asking kids to think up a title, a dedication and cover copy for their autobiography was a big hit, and during that one I passed out blank chapbooks and had them write the titles, dedications and back cover copy on them, and then asked them to take them home and write one page a night about their lives. The teacher told me every kid in the class turned in a completed chapbook, many with photos and drawings.

    During another workshop I showed the kids my great-grandmother's journals, and pictures of her nursing Civil War soldiers, and talked about how much I wished she'd written more about her experiences because what must have seemed ordinary to her later became of enormous historical value to my generation (I also invoked Anne Frank's diary and how much that meant to the entire world.) Then I asked them to draw a picture about an event from their lives and write a paragraph about what they did. Some wrote about soccer games and family vacations, but others went for things like Hurricane Katrina and 9/11. One girl drew a picture of her dog and wrote about how it felt when she lost him that was one of the most heart-wrenching pieces I've ever read by a child or an adult.

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  6. Charlene wrote: Being muttered at by local school people about "talking to kids about writing" so you know which expert I will want to talk to!

    Kids rarely have the chance to meet a pro writer or see behind the scenes of creating a book, so I like to take in my novel notebooks, sketchbooks, mansucripts, galleys, cover flats, etc. and walk them through the process. I have one poster covered with seven different versions of one cover, from the original artist's sketches through all the changes to the final cover, and that's always fun to present. I also cite statistics so they know the reality of publishing -- how much an author earns, how many writers are competing for jobs, average salaries, etc.

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  7. Spazzing while waiting to hear on a proposal, spazzing over a book due out in about 10 days, sighing because my 19 year old is about to be an 11 year old, dealing with taxes, etc, etc, etc...my sanity is in shreds

    Dreamveil would make me feel better.

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  8. Anonymous8:52 AM

    Lynn,
    Wow! Horses! YAY! Hold on, have to stop smiling. . . . . .

    still grinning. . . . . . .

    Okay, almost normal. . . . .

    Whew, I'm ready to write now. I'm very excited for you to work around horses. They have been my pleasure and passion for many years. Something I always think about is how trusting these animals can be. Here you are, a lowly little human, one-fourth their size, but they let you get on their backs, ride them on the sides of a ride with cars going by, through black puddles of water that must look like giant holes and all kinds of other unnatural things for them. But they trust you. I was very lucky to be given another horse the day after Christmas to help me with the loss of my big guy, Duke. Although Doc is not a replacement, he has helped start the healing process. Every day he is a little friendlier with me and a little more trusting. I think he knows he's a "fill-in", but he's still trying. I wish you all the luck in the world with your horse experience.
    Tami
    Jacksonville

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  9. Shiloh wrote: Spazzing while waiting to hear on a proposal, spazzing over a book due out in about 10 days, sighing because my 19 year old is about to be an 11 year old, dealing with taxes, etc, etc, etc...my sanity is in shreds

    You can always tell a working writer by the torturous quantities/qualities of stressers. Btw, I have a 15 year old who still is an 11 year old. :)

    Dreamveil would make me feel better.

    Ha. Shameless book hussy.

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  10. My kid's picture book is going back for a third printing (Yay!), a good thing because the munchkin needs bottom braces. I'm sure it's just a co-incidence that the orthodontist has a trip to Vegas planned for next month.

    And like Shiloh I'm waiting to hear about a proposal. Dreamveil would make me feel much better too. :)

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  11. A minimum of 4 Kyndred books? My week suddenly just got better.

    As to the "anything interesting" that happened while you were slaving away... the most interesting thing that happened here was a demonstration of time travel. Somebody moved from Monday to Friday without experiencing all the days in between. Or at least that's my theory, because I have no other way to explain where the week went...

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  12. Ha. Shameless book hussy.

    Your point being...???

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  13. You, Lynn, on/near/within a 100 yards of a horse? So, if I hear screaming coming up from the south, I shouldn't worry, right? :-) All kidding aside, KUDOS to you for feeling the fear and doing it anyway.

    To what's up in my world (other than mucking my way through a long recovery from a badly broken ankle) I am super jealous that your teaching 5th graders and I'm not one of them. :-) Teaching is what I love to do more than anyting. Combined with writing, it's simply the bomb. Last year, a local school district invited me to do a Poetry Slam for a group of middle-schoolers I was blown away by what those kids took off the top of their heads. It was a poignant lesson for me in how badly I allow others (agents/editors/publishers/you-name-it) to strangle my creativity.

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  14. Experienced my first episode of author cognitive dissonance. Working on the proposal for the Hollywood anecdotes book (which involves skimming bios and guidebooks for essay ideas), while brainstorming marketing ideas for the writers anecdote book. Several times, I had to stop and remind myself which book I was working on.

    Later, I know it'll get worse when I work on the proposal for the third book, edit the second book, and market the first. I'm looking forward to it.

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