Just Keep Writing

Dear Writers,

Just because someone you know has not been able to publish any of their 20 manuscripts….does not mean you won’t be able to publish your 1 manuscript.

I finally met a fellow writer…in person. I feel like most of the writers I know are trapped in the glass, plastic and metal components of my cell phone or laptop, in the world of social media. Every now and then I think to myself I wish some of these writer people lived nearbywhat great friends we’d be! It’s strange because sometimes it’s hard to imagine these people (often in different countries!) are actually real. And I am sure Pennsylvania has writers…I just need to get out more… visit more coffee shops perhaps.

But finally, I was able to sit face to face, shake the hand of an actual fellow writer. Let me just say, it is awesome to be chatting with someone and discover they are a writer too!

I was in Colorado last week, at an interview. You know me, it seems lately when I am not writing I spend my time either at interviews or preparing for interviews. LOL. I even have an interview later today (wish me luck)!  A blog post may be coming soon about interviews, What I have Learned So Far or Interviews and Introverts (Although I don’t know if I’m exactly an introvert…just SCARED SILLY when it comes to interviewing!). I have now had Skype, Government, interviews in front of a board of 5+ people, phone interviews, interviews with presentations, interviews with literary agents (the MOST terrifying!), interviews in which the interviewers pretended to be students misbehaving (the latest)….and more. So definitely have had a broad range of experiences, some very positive and some not so much! So stay tuned for this future post!

Anyway, back in Colorado. The writer I met was a History Teacher and let me just say the man was intelligent.I'm Brilliant It wasn’t that he was one of those people who tries to shove their intelligence in your face, “BTW…I’m brilliant!” He was one of those people whose words, mannerisms, and whole persona spoke of genius.

Like without trying the intelligence would pop out of him in little bursts. Anyway, SUPER, SUPER nice guy! In conversation he hears me say that I’m a writer/working on writing a Historic Romantic Suspense series. We get to talking and he has written a several books. Boy was I excited to hear from this more seasoned writer’s experiences. One of my favorite comments he told me (while laughing) he received from an agent rejection letter was, “Loved your characters, but the end of the book was like an empty room with white walls.” As he told me more and more about his experience he said he could probably fill a small room with the number of letters, emails and notes of the times he’s been rejected. I felt my stomach twist.

I’ve always believed that some way, some how if I don’t give up I will find an agent, I will get published. It may take a LONG time and a lot of rejections but I believed that if I didn’t quit it would pay off. Hearing that this amount of rejection happened to a man who doesn’t quit easily, who is incredibly brilliant, and his book had yet to been published… was discouraging.

But then…

That is his story.

Not mine. (NOT YET anyway!)

I just want to tell all of you writers out there it can get discouraging when you hear about the failures and rejections other writers have experienced. (Especially when those writers are brilliant and creative and good at what they do!) But just because they got rejected does not mean YOU will.

DON’T GIVE UP. KEEP WRITING!

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A close up at the best bookstore…ever

A long time ago I wrote a post called Beautiful Bookstores. In that post you got a glimps of The Barns and Nobles located in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. 

Last week I decided it has been too long since my visit to this amazing book store! This time I went prepared to take pictures and share them with you!

   
     

  

  

  

  

  

  

 I know some of the pictures are blurry  but I think you can still see the awesomeness! 

If you ever visit Baltimore you’ve got to check out this bookstore!  

The little seed that sprouted into a book

I was thinking today about the first little thought I had that led to the creation of my book. What was it? Where did it all begin? What was that one little seed of an idea that led to something huge–hopefully really huge, as in published huge–?

The idea of my book literally came from a dream I had a long time ago, when I was in my teens. 

Several types of people show up in dreams…there’s you, the main character; then sometimes, many times your best friends, they are the side kicks or the Robin to you, Batman; then there’s the people you think about ALOT, the Prince Charming of your dream. Of course you have your dream villains who come out in every shape and form (cafeteria lady, random customer, your arch nemesis, a cupcake….etc.). Beyond these main players in a dream you also have random people–the fillers; they make up the backdrop. I don’t know about you but half of the time I am like “who are these people?!?!” I don’t recognize them at all…not a bit! I’ve told myself they come from images my mind retained but I don’t remember at all. For example–the people you pass by in Walmart. 

Getting to the point, one of these filler people appeared more and more in my dreams….slowly working up to becoming Robin status. And I wondered if the person really existed out there somewhere. 

There was the idea. 

My book is about a girl who in her dreams is madly in love with a guy who in real life doesn’t exist….or does he? I threw in a murder and a wedding, to spice it up. 

So that’s my story on how a little thought sprouted into the creation of my book. 😀

What about you? What was the idea, life moment that led to your book? 

Writing Update

Writing update! 

Last week ended on a high note with lots of writing and editing done. For several weeks I was frozen at this one spot in my second book, but finally the words started to flow. The inspiration flow all started with research on the meaning of flowers. Haha..yes, flowers. The two books I am working on are right now are set in the 1920’s, and the second one involves a serial killer who leaves a certain flower by each victim. For the longest time I really wasn’t sure which flower to use, so I got to work looking up the meaning of flowers.

During the Victorian Era people spoke through flowers, which I find fascinating (but I’m so glad it doesn’t really work that way today!). Flowers, colors of flowers, leaves off or on…it all meant something. A red rose meant I love you…but a deep red rose meant “bashful” or “shame”. A thornless rose meant “love at first sight” and you better hope no one gives you an orange lily…it means they pretty much hate you. (How sad! What if orange lilies were your favorite flower?). Some other interesting meanings I found: one of the meanings of the herb Dill is lust. Hmm.. just doesn’t scream lust to me! And Bachelor Button, as the name suggests, means “celibacy”, “single blessedness.” Pretty interesting stuff. Kind of strange that it got the writing juices flowing for me, but there you have it!

Other Updates: 

I am getting a new computer. At the beginning of February I did my taxes. I bought a certain tax system, downloaded it onto my lap top. Apparently it was too much (too depressing?) for my lap top and right after I pressed send (thank goodness!) the screen turned into a mess of black, blue, orange, green, pink, etc. lines. Then it went black. =( My poor laptop. The good news is after letting it sit for a day I figured I would go ahead and try to turn the thing on…and it actually still worked! The bad news is I could no longer get on the internet. BIG SIGH. It has been interesting using my phone as my main source for access to the internet; I only attempted to write one or two blog posts through my phone (haha…that was fun!)…so thankful for friends and family who let me borrow their laptops for blog writing. To make a long story short, I should have a new computer by the end of the week. Yay!!

Hiking Season is here! YES! Went to Rocks’ State Park in Maryland, which if you are ever in Maryland you should check out. My favorite part is a group of rocks called the “King and Queen’s Seat”; Indians used to hold meetings here years and years ago. By the way…I love hiking, so any trail recommendations, if I am ever in your part of the world?

What I’m reading: The final books of the Sebastian St. Cyr series. I held out until my birthday and got them as a gift. Speaking of this series, I got my little sister reading them! WIN.

I hope everyone is having an awesome Wednesday! =)

How many books did you read in 2014

Before I get into this post I have to put it out there…I know it is already less than 10 days until the end of January. Now that is out of the way I had been going over 2014 accomplishments. One of my goals was to read…read…read and read some more. I truly believe that the more you read the better writer you will become. At the end of the year I counted all of the books I read and my count was 72! I know there are people to who would laugh at reading only 72 books in a year, but for me…72 is AWESOME!

What was your 2014 books read count? Do you have a reading goal set for 2015? What are your 2015 goals? Do you think reading has helped improve your writing?

My 2015 goals:

To have my book Published! (every year’s goal until it happens! NEVER give up!)

To read more books than I did in 2014…so 73? ha ha..

To finish my second book

Go to Charleston, SC (setting for my books) and excited to say I am going in the first week of March!

Be a better, more faithful blog writer… LOL I started off semi-strong at the beginning of 2014 but sort of deflated there towards the end

Brushing up on all those fun rules of proper grammar and composition (kinda important for us writers!)

Book Store Find, Bethany Beach

This past weekend I got the chance to visit a place where a I got to discover a new and adorable book store.

Location: Bethany Beach, Delaware.

Driving to Bethany Beach was an experience in itself. I expected the tiny state of Delaware to be packed with houses and buildings. Instead, there were fields of wheat that looked like they belonged in Spain, a bunch of side-of-the-road fruit and vegetable stands, even homemade ice cream and cheese stores. The drive was picturesque with plenty of winding roads and rural scenery.

When I got to Bethany Beach I was amazed to see a town with quaintness and charm and yet full of that exciting boardwalk atmosphere. The main street is lined with white beach-style buildings Imagehousing food, candy stores, beach wear, surf shops, boardwalk fries and funnel cakes, and….a book store. Bethany Beach Books has been around for 20 years and it is fabulous! Painted white and red and featuring a rounded room full of windows this book store was the perfect place to pick up a novel and bring it to the beach…which was like 200 feet away. I walked inside making the door bell jingle and immediately felt happiness flow through me. Books books and more books. Aisles of books, shelves of books, rows of books. The entire store was filled with that relaxed beach vibe. The latest and most popular novels were well stocked and extremely organized. After walking around the round room with glass windows I noticed pictures on the walls. A bunch of pictures of novelists that have been to Bethany Beach Books. AWESOME! Then  I noticed a bunch of the books had been signed. Not just one or two…there were dozens of autographed novels! What a cool experience this was; I only wished one of the authors Imagewould have been there for a reading! Perhaps next time I can plan it better. Other things happening at Bethany Beach Books : There are photography contests , Where’s Waldo Search, and other fun activities.

This book store was also great because it was right in the thick of things. A coffee house was two doors down, a live music arena was a few feet away and the beach was right there. There were people everywhere ( we all seemed to bond as the World Cup game was going on! It was awesome! Everyone cheered and booed together. What a great beach town atmosphere!) but plenty of beach and plenty of places to steal away and dig into a novel.

Where are some of your favorite summer bookstores?

visiting Delaware? visit http://www.bethanybooks.com

photo credit: bethanybeachbooks

 

Beautiful Bookstores

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 What Do you think is the All-Time coolest bookstore or library?

It can’t be THIS pictured library from Beauty and the Beast either. haha!

There are three bookstores that really stand out in my mind.

#1. Riversby Books in Fredericksburg, VA

This little book store I wanted to buy and live in! Everything about it is quaint and adorable and of course it is filled with books. What makes this boImageok store unique is that they have old books, new books, antique books, blue books (hehe). They actually had books for sale that dated back to the 1830’s. (AWESOME!) The Book store is right in the historic downtown of Fredericksburg wedged in between coffee shops, antique malls, and boutiques. The inside is charming complete with a squeaky staircase, built in book shelves, indoor balcony, Persian rugs and comfy Victorian style chairs and couches. Everything about Riversby is inviting and unique. Ever in Fredericksburg, Virginia? Check it out!

Image #2. Barnes and Nobles on the Inner Harbor

This bookstore is AMAZING. First of all it is simply, overwhelmingly enormous! It is a two story masterpiece that is 35,000 square feet. It has glass escalators (you can see all the inner-working parts) and probably over a million books.  Secondly, it is sitting right on the Chesapeake Bay. I love the water. I love boats. I love the Inner Harbor in Baltimore, MD. This bookstore is practically on the water. You can read up stairs on one of the balconies that gives you a lovely view of the harbor. Thirdly? The booImagek store is in a renovated Power Plant that was built in 1901. This feature sets this Barnes and Nobles apart. Right when you walk in there is a brick dome you can walk through. The layout is just different and interesting to explore (like you are in a maze of books!). Lastly, there is a giant Hard Rock Guitar right on top. Total awesomeness.

 

 

 

 

#3. The Island Bookstore

When you hear the words “Outer Banks” you probably imagine gigantic mansions sitting on the sand right next to the sparkling Atlantic Ocean, wild ponies and scenes from Nicolas Sparks’ books. At least that is what I think of! The Island bookstore is located in Corolla, North Carolina. There were a lot of windows and white and yellow and wood panel walls giving the place a sunny and beachy feel. It feels like home being in this bookstore.  I think why I loved this place so much waImages that I felt so inspired to write in there. I wanted to see my book on one of the shelves!  I visited The Island Bookstore last September and started my NImageovel right when I got back! This place will always have a spot in my heart!

 

Any awesome book stores in your area?