Archive for the ‘Meg & Matt’ Category
What do you do when you get great news at 11 p.m., when everyone who cares is sound asleep? I have to share it with someone … I already tried texting the Boyfriend, with no response. I shared it in my Facebook status and got one “like.”
But I’m still too excited to settle down, so now I’m going to shout it to the blogosphere: The gals at the Ruby Slippered Sisterhood picked my first line as one of 10 finalists in their “Make It Golden” contest.
I was thrilled — and a little stunned, because I read the competition. There were some fantastic first lines. Many of them made me want to read more.
For the next round, I give them the first 250 words. I was pleased when I discovered my first 240-ish ended on a mini-hook.
The grand prize is my $50 Golden Heart entry fee. Not too shabby!
But even if I don’t win, I’m excited to have finaled. There were 79 entries. Yes, 79. I’m not great with math, but I think that puts my first sentence in the top 12 percent — and that has to be a good place to be.
In preparing “Beauty and the Ballplayer” to send to the friends who’ve volunteered to read it, I found something handy to share. It’s a free service that converts Word documents into pdf files.
Nice, eh? And so much easier than the way I thought I’d have to do it … laying it out in an InDesign file (all 205 pages of it!) and then converting from there.
For better or worse, it’s in the hands of three volunteers. I can’t wait to see what they think of it.
I know my writer friends are busy — some of them getting ready for the same contest I plan to enter. As such, they’re probably too busy to read anything of mine. (And they could well be my competition!)
With that thought in mind, I posted on Facebook that I was looking for friends to give me feedback on “Beauty and the Ballplayer.”
That was at about 1 a.m., and I had no idea what to expect in the way of responses … So imagine my surprise when I checked my page this morning and had not one, not two but FIVE takers.
How exciting! Now I’m waiting for them to e-mail me so I can send them an e-copy of the story.
This is the tale I got a little feedback on from NARWA members at our July meeting. (That was the day we read through the first three pages of several stores submitted by members. It was anonymous, but we really didn’t have much trouble guessing whose was whose … I think we all confessed to writing our stories in the car on the way home. Ah, carpools!)
Still, I’m eager to see what other people think of it. Hopefully they’ll be able to point out any plot holes big enough to drive a truck through … Although I don’t think there are any of those.
It always amazes me how attending my RWA chapter meeting recharges my creative battery.
Sure, it means a long day for me. I usually don’t get to bed until at least 2 a.m., and I’m up before 8 on meeting day. We meet from 10:30-ish to 2 p.m. and drive an hour and a half back home. Then I usually have to head into work and put in a full day there.
But I wouldn’t miss it. The chats while we’re carpooling are a great way to get new insights. And the meetings themselves always serve up something useful.
This time, we had a group critique: Several members submitted the first three pages of their WIP. Entries were read aloud, anonymously, then everyone shared their thoughts.
There wasn’t a single one that didn’t intrigue us enough to want to read more. That, of course, begs the question: Why haven’t any of us wannabes made a sale yet? But that’s probably a question best left for another post (in which I’ll rail against the publishing industry that depends so much on sheer luck. You have to be in the right place at the right time and know all the right people. Your MS could sparkle like the Hope Diamond, but if it crosses the desk when the editor’s having a bad day, too bad for you.).
Sure, a few of them had issues: Too much backstory, head-hopping. But the only way to improve is to have someone point out where you need improvement.
Our members are great at offering the right mix of encouragement and advice. I think (hope) we all left with a warm, fuzzy feeling — and some tips to take us another step closer to the ultimate goal of publication.
For my part, I realized (with feedback) the new beginning works really well. It was also pointed out I need a solid description of my hero in those opening pages.
As a side note, I had no idea Matt sounded so arrogant. But when you read it aloud, he sure does. He doesn’t remain arrogant throughout the novel, though, so I’m not sure what to do about that.
Since those first pages are in Meg’s POV, maybe we can chalk it up to her perception? He’s not really all that arrogant, she’s just in a bad mood, so she sees him as more arrogant than he really is?
I spent most of today working on a couple of scenes from Bethany and Cody’s story … 3,115 words written. I was surprised again, though: Beth’s mother sounds like a guest on “Jerry Springer.” She must be from Southern Illinois! 😉
It’s time for me to start polishing next year’s Golden Heart entries, though. My Orange Rose scores came back Friday. With those and Saturday’s feedback on the contemporary series story I want to enter, I’m ready to put the comments to good use.