Monday, July 30, 2012

Pick a Dream, Any Dream

January is a terrible time of year for resolutions. All that Christmas pudding and New Year’s champagne. You don’t want to commit to writing—you want to commit to Slim Fast and Insanity Workout. After all, what’s there to look forward to in January? Exactly. Bikini Season. And it’s here all too soon, isn’t it?

Now last week of July, that’s the time of the year to recommit to writing goals. You’ve come off the RWA Conference high: you’ve either been there or heard about it; you won or have friends who won; and the Golden Heart is right around the corner, just the perfect deadline before Thanksgiving. You’re not eating much anyway: it’s too hot and the bikini, after all. After a few months of tireless writing, you’ll need to eat your way through Thanksgiving through New Year’s to fatten up for your January resolutions.

But back to now, the end of July, your post-RWA high. It’s time. You need to dust off your AICHOK signs and write past the blank page. And by you, I mean me, but you’re welcome to join my post-RWA resolution.

Fortunately Sabrina will commandeer this whole thing and make sure we all report our weekly goals and award prizes at the end set-date (say Labor Day weekend), and that will gear us up for other favorite time of year, NaNoWriMo.

But back a second—it’s not enough to have a goal. You gotta have a dream. But it’s a medium dream—there are all sorts of dreams. Last night dreams when I thought I was eating worms (what is up with that?) and fifteen years from now dreams when I’m making millions of dollars and dreams that can occur about a year from now. That’s the dream I’m looking for here.

So here’s my dream: to go to the 2013 RWA Conference with a completed book to pitch. My supersonic dream is to have completed the book in time to enter it in the Golden Heart, but I don’t know if I want to be that crazy. Still. I should probably put it out there. And if the conference is my DREAM, then my goal is to get cracking on that book.

I’ve got about 70 pages of the book so far, but not enough scenes so far to have gotten to any turning points (which is actually more important than pages, if you think about it.) But it’s doable. Break that puppy into scenes and start cracking at scenes. It doesn’t have to be perfect; it just needs to be written. You don’t need to know every bit about someone’s character, you just need to go with your instinct and let your fingers type. Don’t let the inner bastard edit. Seriously. Whatever you need to tune him out, do it.

So that’s my goal. I’m going to for the supersonic goal: complete book for Golden Heart. Which means I need like 300 pages, but let’s not worry about that. Don’t panic; just write. New motto.

What’s your dream for the next year and how are you going to go about achieving that? Sabrina is listening. Me, I’m plotting out scenes and trying not to break out in a cold sweat—though in this weather, sounds rather appealing.

P.S. Daddy-Pops has a doctor's appt for a checkup on his skin cancer (or to make sure his skin cancer is not growing into anything malignant)--I'll be out mostly, but will answer when I return. I promise. Have fun you guys and dream big!

28 comments:

Maureen said...

I'm in a good place for this! Nationals started slow for me but really picked up after a few days. I've got so many changes to make and I've got to think about specifics and a particular goal to push for. Be back...

And yeah, I wanted to see Terri win, but just being there with her and seeing her glow was a total pleasure!

Marnee Bailey said...

I'm sharing your dream, Hells. I need to write a book by Golden Heart time. I'm going to enter again this year and I'd like to get to Atlanta in July either way.

In the short term, I'm still debating the NJ RWA conference. I've got nothing to pitch and I'll never be able to finish something before then (less than 3 months). So we'll see....

I was sorry for Terri too but you guys look like you had so much fun! :) Looked gorgeous and I watched the results on Twitter and was so excited. :) On a side note, congrats to Caroline Linden for her RITA win! So happy for her.

MsHellion said...

Yeah, Mo! I'm glad you were there to represent all the pirates during Terri's 2012 RWA Golden Moment. :) And I'm glad you're in a good place to work on dreams and goals for the next year. It sounds like you had a writerly productive conference too, with a book/proposal request, yes?

MsHellion said...

Huzzah, Marn! I'm going to need another person to be accountable to...so to speak. If I don't freak myself and all that. (Don't talk like that, Hells, I'm not thinking that!)

Conferences are great for writing inspiration, so if you're able to go to the NJ conference, I think you should. Just so you can go, "Woohoo! I'm a writer!" and mingle with other freaky writers who all get the Voices and the need to write. :)

I concur about Caroline Linden--love her books--but despite how happy Terri is about the conference and stuff, I think she was robbed. There, I said it. Her book was like awesomesauce...so I refuse to believe someone else's was "better". *sticks out tongue* Though I realize the winner's friends are all dancing around a bonfire and saying it was all obvious, but whatever...

Marnee Bailey said...

Hells - I'm completely there. And you don't need to freak out. I'm going to set myself a daily word goal (or weekly, whatever) and just Disaster Draft it. I did so much editing last time that I'm not sure why I spent so much time on the first draft. :/

So I just need to get 70K or so to start with and then I can flesh out and fix it later.

Or so I keep telling myself.

Janga said...

Yay for Terri! She came back with requests and energy to start a new book. She will always be a GH 2012 finalist, she's got some wonderful memories, and she looked great in all the pics posted on FB. It sounds like the conference was all win for her, even without a GH necklace. Maureen came home with requests and new energy, and she too looked great in the pics. More win! I'd say the pirates had a super successful conference. Cheers for both!

I too was delighted with Caroline Linden's win and thrilled for Tessa Dare. And I'm still smiling when I think that Barbara Samuel/Barbara O'Neal's win put her in the Hall of Fame, a much deserved, and delayed, honor.

The writing goal is timely for me since I wrote in my journal on my birthday that I was giving myself a year to do a final polish on my Home trilogy, finish the current WIP, and get a positive response from an agent or editor. If my status is unchanged then, I'm going to read that as evidence that I need to forget fiction and focus on other kinds of writing. This means I'm going to have to say no to some freelance projects that bring in the $$$ in order to have time to write fiction. That's tough, but I've turned down two in the past week. That's a start.

MsHellion said...

Okay, Janga, when you put it that way. I mean, I know that's how Mo put it too...but I guess if enough of you say it often enough, it was still kick ass awesomesauce, as Terri has been saying all along.

I just saw this morning that Tessa Dare won--that's awesome! I loved that book. Great choice to win! And I'm with you: Barbara O'Neal was much deserved (and much delayed) in being recognized. I'm so glad she is now in the Hall of Fame!

Huzzah! Janga is in the boat with us this year! Fantastic! Good for you in turning down a couple money making gigs to give this a fair shot! Keep up up to date. I love your stories and I'm looking forward to you getting them in print.

Leslie Langtry said...

What do you need me to do to help you do it?

Marnee Bailey said...

Go Janga!! I would love to read your stuff. So I hope you don't forget fiction. I'd be sad. :(

Maureen said...

I thought a lot about what goal to really state. I'll enter the RITAs with The Chameleon Goggles (I think it's eligable, publish date wise) but more importantly, I want an agent by then, I want something on the release calender and I want a few titles out in self-publishland.

I got some real attitude adjustments that I needed in Anaheim and those kick-in-the-ass moments that I was ready for.

I'm with Leslie, what do we need to committ to as a helping hand to get Marn, Janga and Hels with Golden Heart entries in Atlanta?

Di R said...

My goal is to enter the Golden Heart this year. I have about 100 pages done. But I know where it's going. (I think)

I am very happy to hear both Terri and Maureen came home with their well refilled and excited about writing.

Janga-if writing fiction brings you joy, but you don't get a favorable response, perhaps it means you should look into self publishing. I know I would love to read your books.

Di

TerriOsburn said...

This blog is making me cry so it's good it took me until now to get over here. Hellie is coming to Nationals with a finished MS!!! OMG!! Someone pass me a skull-n-crossbones hanky. This is awesome!!!

And Marn and Janga. I'm so excited I'm (virtually) happy dancing here at my desk. (Yes, I'm back at work. And there is no champagne. WTH??)

I will push and plot with and beta read anything necessary to see you ladies hit your goals. As for me, I need to get moving on book 2 since an editor wants to see something for ALL THREE BOOKS! So must get my ass in gear. I took advantage of the long plane ride last night to plot book 3 which now has a title. Huzzah!

Another GHer made me shake hands on a deal that we'll both have the SOLD! ribbon on our badges in Atlanta. Heather is a tough former sailor so I cannot let her down. LOL! So that's my big dream. To have the SOLD! ribbon next summer.

As to not winning, I've never been less disappointed in my life. LOL! Truly. I was more disappointed that I didn't get to give a speech. I love any chance to get on a microphone and make people laugh. :)

TerriOsburn said...

Oh, and Di too! I missed that one. You can do it, Di!!!

Sabrina Shields (Scapegoat) said...

Sorry I'm late! 2013 Budgets are due this week and that officially declares it HELL WEEK...and they let one of my bosses go on Friday...so guess who has more work to do on the budgets than normal? :)

Hellie - Freakin Fantastic goals and huzzah for putting it out there!

I hate to say it but I dropped the ball on the rewards for our April challenge, but I still have the list and will get everyone awarded their prizes next week. *aggggggg* I knew I'd overlooked something.

Okay - goals...be back in a few with that. I want to think on it a little.

Maureen said...

Knew you'd chip in sooner or later, Sabrina. We need to clone you! You sound way too busy!

Sabrina Shields (Scapegoat) said...

Okay - I'm going to match Hellie's goal.

"to go to the 2013 RWA Conference with a completed book to pitch. My supersonic dream is to have completed the book in time to enter it in the Golden Heart"

I think it would be awesome if Pirates invaded RWA 2013. It would be fantastic if most of us could make it and it sounds like many are planning on it.

Also, I know we're coming up on the 5 year end thing but I'd like to put it out there that we could use now, and then continue to use, the Yahoo loop as our daily/weekly goal tracking. Check ins there and calls for help, etc. I think we could leverage that to help push each other a little...

Maureen said...

Ditto what Scape said!

Marnee Bailey said...

I agree completely with what Scape said. Turn the loop into a bit of a pom pom waving thing.

TerriOsburn said...

Now I don't want to end the blog at all!

Maureen said...

Well, I never have, but I understood the concerns about time management...

MsHellion said...

Leslie, you need to stand over with me a gun and say, "I will shoot your DVD collection if you don't write something NOW!" and then threaten my Harry Potter and Twilight collections repeatedly.

I'd say "free wine" comes with this job, but I'm afraid if I did give you some wine, you would shoot those DVDs to do me a "favor." *LOL*

MsHellion said...

Janga, Marn, I agree--Janga, if you gave up fiction I would be sad. We would ALL be sad. But I'll be momentarily supportive in order for you to commit--and if the time comes, I'll show you your success statistics. I'm excellent at creating statistics.

MsHellion said...

I'm glad you react well to kicks in the ass, Mo. I don't usually have that approach, but if it works for you, I'm Huzzahing all the way! I think it sounds like a sound plan--and you should keep going!

MsHellion said...

Excellent, Di is another GH do-or-dier! Excellent. So far, me, Marn, Mo, Di, Scape, and Janga if we can convince her. :) A rowdy crowd! This is going to be fun!

MsHellion said...

Well, Terri, you know I only wrote this blog to make you cry. That's my goal in life. *LOL* But I love your goal (and Heather's) for a SOLD ribbon! That would rock!!! Can't wait to see it happen!!

Love your plotting on the plane back--most excellent to hear! And good distraction when you're in the air. I don't like flying. I hate falling--so I prefer the flying, but you know what I'm saying.

MsHellion said...

Sabrina, it was more the joy of participation than anything. I just want someone to keep notes if we succeeded. I may be a "secretary" in real life, but in my writing life, sooooooooo disorganized. *LOL*

Huzzah for the GH goal!! Spectacular!

MsHellion said...

We'll see about the blog. I think we should see who wants to keep going and how logistical it is to keep going with who's left. If it continues to be a motivational tool--or actually becomes a motivational tool (however you want to look at it *LOL*)--then maybe it's worth thinking about. If only as a bragging spot to say, "I finished something!"

MsHellion said...

P.S. And the yahoo group will always be open as a bragging spot regardless. :) And a place to ask for votes. *LOL*