Saturday, December 6, 2008

December Rambles

Dear faithful readers I've been so bad. I've neglected you! That's what happens in the life of a part-time writer. If I was full-time I'd write on here more often! I'm still working on re-writing another piece of work and just began and finished the first draft of another story. I've got two stories going on at once which does make it a bit hard to go back and forth. I'm thankful that the story lines are completely different.

Besides working on two stories, listening to Peter Frampton and completing National Novel Writing Month with 53,000 words with my sanity intact I have found time to read a book. Imagine that! I'm currently reading Runway Runaway by Lorelai Shellist. The first chapter made me cry! I have read the first half of the book already and I find a lot of myself in it. I should send her a copy of my book. :-)

Other than working on two stories that need more revisions and editing I am hopeful that one of them will come out in 2009 if all goes well. One day I hope to make this a full-time career but for now I am content to be able to do as much as I can now.

As my ears are filled with Peter Frampton and Rainbow's Greatest Hits these days I'm in the mood to explore the music realm even more. If any of you have music recommendations I would be most appreciative if you drop me a line.

Take care all.
~Maynard

Thursday, August 28, 2008

August Update

I'm long overdue with making a post but July was spent finishing the latest draft of my new book and was caught up in all the fun of the Olympics.

The most recent draft of my book is being looked over by a Continuity Editor. I made lots of changes to the main story and even to characters so it's nice to have a pair of fresh eyes take a look. I have a lot of story lines weaving about and I must admit it's ambitious story that I've written but even I have gotten confused while writing it.

While my book is off being read I have begun to assemble ideas for another story as National Novel Writing Month is fast approaching. The challenge of writing 50,000 words in thirty days is great for me as it forces me to really work on a story. It is something I do for fun every year and I hope that some of you will meet the challenge and give it a try this year. From doing NaNoWriMo whatever story I write is then worked on for the next twelve months. I must admit that I don't know yet if the book I am writing now and the one I'm assembling will be published but I'm willing to say "yes".

Music and reading have taken backseats while I work on my book but I did manage to pick up used CD's from Marc Cohen, Fish, Robert Plant, Coverdale & Page and some other little goodies.
The most recent discovery for me thanks to listening to the radio at work has been a version of the Beatles classic "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" by Peter Frampton. I think it was released a few years ago but I love it .

That's all for me.

Take care.

-Maynard

Saturday, July 12, 2008

July Update

Several months have passed since my last update and I'm long overdue for a new one.

First off, I'd like to thank everyone who has purchased my book. Personally, I never intended this book to be a best seller or to make money off of it. It was written because it was time for me to give life to what I went through and then send my book out into the universe. What happened from there was any one's guess but the book has it's own little life.

In the past few months I reconnected with someone from my high school years and someone from my college days. Both revealed to me the tough times they endured and told me of their own depression and times of suicide.

As a person and a writer it makes me feel good knowing these people from my past but now part of my future. For once I can get into a conversation about it and the other person understands what I'm talking about. I have plenty of friends but unfortunately none of them understand the dark world of depression and suicide and while I have tried to explain it to them there is a major disconnect. So to be able for once in my life to have people truly understand is a wonderful thing.

I haven't given up hope on my other friends but I suspect that a couple of them have been on the dark journey but aren't in a place in their life to talk about it. They may be to scared to admit to themselves or anyone else that they ever were depressed or had thoughts of suicide. Some people like the world of comfort that denial can bring. Then again, we all have secrets that never get told.

As for my second book, I made it through a second re-write but never got around to make the changes to create draft three. I'm very creative in other ways and that has taken up a lot of my time in recent months. I have pledged to get my butt in gear to finish draft three and move on in getting this book published sometime this decade. If all goes well maybe I'll have it out next year. Getting it out by the end of 2008 is pushing it but miracles can happen.

~Maynard

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Spring Fever

Hello All!

It has been a couple of months since my last post and in that time I've completed editing the first draft of my new manuscript and am in the midst of going through the second draft. The process of editing has been tricky as I still have sections that don't seem to work as well as I would like. It probably doesn't help that I come up with new ideas, new twists and new ways to mess with some of my characters.

Character development is key and during the first draft my characters were very hollow. I knew what I wanted them to be in the way of their personalities and appearances but it never came through in the first draft. Now that I'm on my second draft the characters are more developed and evolved enough I believe to make someone want to care about them. I have plenty more to write in order to develop them and give them more depth. Honestly, if the characters in my book were on a movie screen I'd have one good looking cast. The appearance and traits of my characters are influenced by various actors and roles they have played. Even musicians influence my cast of characters.

As I trudge along with my new story I am of course expanding my musical horizons. My ears have been introduced to Leaves' Eyes, Vanden Plas, Visions of Atlantis and Sirenia over the past few weeks. I like it! I love discovering new music. I sometimes think I should open up a record store.

Even as Spring arrives here in Vermont the birds and other woodland creatures that show up around my house have initiated their typical nature orchestra. It is nice to hear all the sounds of nature and sure wish I could find a way to drown out the Domino's pizza delivery guy who zooms by the house continually night after night or the awful air conditioning unit from the office building next door. Someone seriously needs to fix that thing.

-Maynard

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Ramblings

Hello All,

As winter rolls along her in Vermont, I have been enjoying the outdoors by X-C Skiing. Yesterday, I finally fell for the first time. OUCH! I wasn't expecting the fall at all so I had to make sure to do it again. HA HA. My wrist and ankle are killing me a bit today but I didn't break anything which is good.

On the writing front, I'm slowly trucking along on my new manuscript. I will admit I have been absolutely lazy in making changes to my electronic file. I have my notes but have been buried in books on the conflict in Northern Ireland and how Ireland became a Republic. I find it all very interesting. Then again, I've always felt that part of the world is home.

I hope that many of you have been finding the Journal Corner section of my website to be helpful as you start your own journal. There are many books that are so regimented when it comes to journaling that I find it takes all the fun out of such things.

As always, if you have questions for me just drop me a line.

Take care!
~Maynard

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Busy Little Bee

Happy Sunday!

Hope all of you are well. I have finished marking up the first draft of my new story which I now admit has been sitting untouched for several days. I have been wrapped up in movies, books and music as of late.

On the music front I'm enjoying the sounds of Gary Moore, Peter Frampton and Cathie Ryan. I nearly fell into shock earlier in the week when I met someone who had never heard of Peter Frampton. I could understand not knowing Gary Moore but not knowing Peter Frampton? How absured. However, I was shocked even more moments later when the same person admitted of having never heard of Jimmy Page or Led Zeppelin. The person is question is older than I am by about 20 years so it was a shock to me. At least they had heard of Eric Clapton and Jimi Hendrix.

I recently watched "Michael Collins" which I have to say had an incredible cast. Liam Neeson is awesome. While I did enjoy the movie it is the one I watched after it I liked even more. At the recommendation of my friend and co-worker Teresa, I watched "In The Name of the Father" starring Daniel Day Lewis about the Guildford Four. Amazing movie and am glad I sat down to watch it. As with most movies based on books, they aren't exactly the same so I've purchased the book because the movie was so good.

My pile of books to read continues to grow as always but I have one less in the pile as I just finished "Ten Men Dead" by David Beresford. It was an interesting read about the 1981 Irish hunger strike.

The Snow God has answered my prayer by dumping sixteen inches of the white powdery stuff on us. I can finally go cross-country skiing! I'm still getting adjusted to the whole thing and after four trips out I have yet to fall on my butt. YEAH!

Hope all of you are doing well.

-Maynard

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Writing, Reading, Snow & Steve Clark

Hi All,

A new year is here and I am busily working on a story that I started in November. It's a very complex story, the type of story I have never tried to write before and I find it very challenging at this point. Whether or not I publish this story is far from my mind right now as I write sections over and reorganize the story.

I have found comfort reading the Harry Potter series (I decided I needed to figure out what all the roar what about). Let's face it, it's a complicated story. How JK Rowling kept track of timelines, characters, places and the list of spells boggles my mind as I find myself in this very situation which drives me batty. If only I could pick her brain to find out how she organized herself to keep it all straight!

I don't wish to reveal too much of what I'm working on now but I've got a small town with thirty families to keep track off. There is a main character of course with nine others in supporting roles. I have several plot lines going on at once and at one point my timeline was out of whack but thankfully I've fixed that issue. I'm not sure how to describe this story. I think it's too early to say what genre it is besides fiction. I'm in no rush to get this story done so I'm going to take my time with it.

Speaking of time, I wish it was time for a snowstorm! Yes my friends as I sit here in Vermont the January thaw has swept in and melted all the snow. Normally I would be happy with such an event in the middle of winter but I went out and bought a pair of XC skis before the thaw and have yet to go skiing. It is Vermont so you just wait five mintues and the weather will change. Thankfully, there is snow in the forecast. I just hope it's enough for me to go out and play.

I apologize for the lack of updates to the site over the past month but writers need to take a break too! HA HA HA. Never fear new features will be coming soon to my little space here on the net.

As I wind this post down my mind fills with an image of Steve Clark as January 8th marked the 17th anniversary of his death. There are others like me who took a moment to celebrate his life this week knowing full well that he touched so many of us without knowing it. Little does he know that he still keeps touching people with his music so many years after his death. What we heard from Steve yesterday can still be heard today and we'll hear it again tomorrow. Music is the perfect gift. It keeps on giving.

-Maynard