Saturday, August 30, 2014

Current and Future Writing

Hi All,

I've received my book cover mock-ups this week.  They need a few touch-ups and they'll be good to go.  I am not sure how my editor is doing with my book at the moment.  A part of me wants to know and the other part of me is happy to be in the dark.

While my current book is being edited, I have begun fleshing out new story ideas in anticipation of NaNoWriMo in November.  I have some basic character names and several story ideas. Not sure which story idea I will go with but I'm sure I'll have it figured out by November.

Is it just me or has 2014 flown by?  Already there are stores with Christmas displays which makes me cringe only because my favorite holiday is Halloween.  I love Halloween.  If you go back to reading why we carve pumpkins and bob for apples, it's all very interesting on how everything came to be.  It really is fascinating.  I like I like Halloween because I get to decorate the section I sit in at work. It's a lot of work but I like it doing it.

It's too bad I'm allergic to chocolate because if I could get away with trick-o-treating I would.

Okay that's it for me.  Today's musical treat is Paul Rodgers feat. Donna Bonham singing "Oh I Wept" which was recorded by Free around 1970.  Gosh, I wasn't even born yet!

Rock on!
~Maynard 


Saturday, August 23, 2014

Book & Guitar

Hi All,

My book went into my back-up editor this week.  The story and the blurbs are now in another person's hands. The original cover I wanted for my book was denied permission by the owner. I get why but at the same time disappointed.  I scrambled this week to find a new one and emailed several people but no no responses at all.

Thankfully, a co-worker saved the day and went out and took photos similar in nature to what I was looking for mid-week. They came out very nice and I have several options I can go with regarding the cover.  I sent my photos off yesterday to a friend who is doing the cover design.  I hope to have some mock-ups in the next two weeks to pick from.

With my book out of my hands for a bit, it allowed me time to take my first guitar lesson.
My guitar instructor is really nice and easy to talk to. It's nice to talk to someone who not only loves playing the guitar but is willing to help others learn to play the guitar. I may have only played four notes today but my fingers certainly are feeling it.

I used to play the viola when I was a kid and so a bit of that old memory was starting to surface. Every Good Boy Deserves Fudge and FACE came to mind. I couldn't quite remember their importance but obviously my mind is try to do a bit of recall.  Do Ray Me Fa So La Ti Do raced through my mind and movie snip-its of Close Encounters of the Third Kind came attached to it.  You'd think I would have thought of Julie Andrews and the Sound of Music but no...It's Close Encounters of the Third Kind that came traipsing in.  Funny how our brains make associations.  The movie came out when I was six I think and the fact that I can remember it so well after all these years is pretty amazing.

Music is a universal language so let's talk to some aliens.  Enjoy folks.

Rock on!
~Maynard




Saturday, August 16, 2014

Book Publishing Setback

Hello All,

This month my book was to be edited but my editor is now unavailable after being told he was going to be available for August. All is not lost as I have a back-up editor who I'll hand my book to next week.  I'm behind schedule and my buffer zone is pretty much gone now.  I'll be lucky to get my book out by mid-October but if I can get it out before November 1st I'll be quite happy.

I hope I can get my cover done soon too.  I finally finished writing my book blurb and my author blurb.  Choosing a cover is not an easy task but I hope with the ideas that I have and the ones my designer has that we can cook up something wonderful.

I do not have much to report except that I finally have scheduled my first guitar lesson which happens in a week.  I'm looking forward to it and hope that I have better luck with the guitar than I did with playing the viola when I was a kid.

It should be interesting trying to read sheet music after all these years. It's been so long I'm not sure if I can remember what everything means.

Today's video fun is My Mind's Eye from the band Sirenia.  There was a time in my music exploration of symphonic metal that I came across them.  It's hard to believe this came out in 2006.  I honestly didn't think it was that long ago that I was listening to this song.

Rock On!
~Maynard





Friday, August 8, 2014

Writing is Not One Size Fits All

I had the pleasure of speaking with someone about writing earlier this week.  It was nice for a change to really talk about writing.  I very rarely get the chance.

After the conversation, my mind as usual went into reflection mode and I started to pour over the many do and don't lists that I have read over the years.  I have learned that writing is customizable. Writing is not one size fits all. There are so many do this and don't do that, I think many people who want to try and write - anything - get discouraged because of all these lists. Let's face it, rules suck.  Yes, there are the basic grammar rules and all that goes with it but there is some leeway to express what goes on in our heads that drips down on to paper (or keyboard).

For the longest time I feared handing my work over to an editor because I thought they would destroy the voice of my characters and the overall feeling of my writing.  I have been lucky in not experiencing that and hope I never do.

I will be the first to admit that my grammar is horrible and even I get tripped up on where words should go in a sentence but if it comes out the way it does, that's the way it is.  It is the truth of the story.

For those of you sitting out there who have longed to take pen to paper or fingers to keyboards - DO IT!  There is no rule that says you have to share what you write.  I have written a novel every year for the past ten years and am only managing to publish my third.  Write my dear friends, write. Let the words fall where they may on the paper and enjoy the worlds they create.

Today I offer you a bit of humor from Weird Al and then a slow song from Beth Hart.

Rock on!
~Maynard





Friday, August 1, 2014

Where Ideas Hang Out

“Ideas are like rabbits. You get a couple and learn how to handle them, and pretty soon you have a dozen.”  - John Steinbeck

A friend of mine once asked, "How do you keep track of your ideas?"

Personally, I like to write them in my journal book or on a sticky note and slap it into my journal book.  I do keep a small leather notebook on a bookshelf.  Each page has an idea, a potential character name, careers for my characters,  a potential book title, a plot idea, etc.

I have ideas all over the place but they eventually end up in one place.  I'm slightly disorganized with my ideas but they tend to grow.  For instance, the book I'm working on now was written in a certain way but I didn't like it.  So I changed it but still didn't like it.  I put the book down trying to figure out the best way to tell the story I wanted. It sat for weeks and months.  I'd tackle it here and there and then nearly gave up on it.  It was during a journal write that inspiration struck.  I had come up with an interesting idea.  It meant ditching what I had written and starting completely over but it was worth it.

An idea is like a seed.  You have this baby idea and then it starts to grow and mature into a great idea.

When it comes to keeping track of your ideas there is no right or wrong answer. As writers, we all have our ways of dealing with our ideas.  Find what works best for you.

Ideas can be like a runaway train - in a good way!  With that in mind, it seems only appropriate that today's music treat is Albert Lee performing Runaway Train