RSS Feeds

Saturday, April 20, 2013


Who are you?

The internet and social media has made it possible for people to have close friends thousands of miles away. It’s also provided a means to get to know people you might never really meet in real life. But with Facebook, and Twitter, and Linkedin, and Blogger, and Wordpress, and … the thousands of other social networking platforms that exist, how do you know which one is best. I mean, are you really the person you are on Facebook? Should people expect you to be the person you seem to be on Twitter?

I don’t know.

For me, I find I really over-think posts on social networking sites. I filter, and filter, and question if what I’m about to tweet, post, share… etc is something that will come back and bite me one day.  For every post I make, I probably write 25 and delete them, even though they're probably just fine. As a result, I likely come across rather stiff on certain sites.

But it got me thinking about the people I follow,  and if my opinion of them is based on fact of fiction... or even just filtered fact. Do I know enough to have an opinion of them? I started thinking about the sites I'm on, and if people would know me from those sites.

I’ve reached a conclusion. There are three sites where I am most myself, and I think the same three might apply to others too.

There are no status updates. It’s just a pinup board of things you’re interested in. My boards show my interests b/c I made each board for myself. I started looking at my friends and family boards and I saw that they too are pinning things for themselves. As a result, I think it's a great way to get insight into someone.

For most people, these sites are bookshelves. Reviewing a book is a lot of work and you have to really invest time to do something like that. I think you can get an idea, somewhat, of what a person is like by the books they read. Not fully, of course, but it’s a reliable piece to the puzzle.

3/ Blogger. (no link... you're already here)

Admittedly, I am totally guilty of over thinking posts on my blog. I worry about offending people, and I worry about my sarcasm not finding it’s mark, but when you post long posts, it’s impossible for your personality not to come though somewhat.

So what about you guys? Where do you think you are the most yourself? Where do you think you can look to get the best indicator of what someone’s like? If there is one you think represents you best, add a link to it in the comments section.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Writing and human-turtle hybrid babies... oh yeah, there's a connection!

I remember finishing my very first manuscript and practically collapsing on the couch after making that final keystroke. It was as if I’d just run a marathon. The manuscript took me about six months to write, and came in at a daunting 90K words. Sadly, it was a pile of garbage that pains me to think about. Of course, I didn’t realize how garbage-like it was at the time. I thought it was a masterpiece.

I was like a mother who’d just given birth. You know what I mean? Mothers always think their newborn babies are gorgeous, but if you ask the fathers – those brave enough to answer honestly – they’ll tell you that, while witnessing a birth is an amazing experience, a newborn baby tends to look a bit more like some kind of human-turtle-bald-monkey hybrid. “Cute,” I’m afraid, is not the first word that sprang to mind when I saw my little guy for the very first time. “Perfect,” sure, even “Wonderful.” But “cute?” No sir! 

-REDACTED FOR REASONS OF SELF PRESERVATION … I just learned my wife reads this blog.-

In any case, that first manuscript is now, as I’ve mentioned in previous posts, forever locked in a trunk marked “SHAME” (along with a few other manuscripts). 

But last week, when I finished my latest manuscript, I realized that that exhaustion, which I really have felt with almost every other manuscript I’ve written, wasn’t there.  In fact, I’m a few thousand words into my newest work-in-progress (WIP), and feel confident that I'll finish it by summer.

I’ve decided writing is a muscle. I’ve heard the analogy before, but it never really made sense until recently. It's strengthened with each manuscript. Your endurance increases. Even staring down the first page of a new WIP is easier each time. This last time I just ploughed right into it. Finished the last sentence of one book, and started the first sentence of the next.

I have one more rewrite to do on the book I just completed. I took the plot a different route during the last rewrite and while I’m happy with the story, and the pacing, it’s sufficiently different that I only consider it a rough first draft. I’m taking a few days away from it (and starting in on something new) before I dive in to that rewrite, but I think it’s going to be a pretty quick one.

What about you guys? Have you guys found that each manuscript you write is easier than the one before? Are you less exhausted when you're finished? Or do you have that same struggle each time? Maybe you've found the opposite to be true, and it's actually harder than before because now you know how much effort goes into writing.