Wednesday, January 19, 2011


Quick Update: Attempting the “Snowflake Method”. So far I haven’t stopped to stare, with self-pity, at my laptop screen so it must be going good. I’m still at the character description part though, of course.

Song Stuck in My Head: "Do That Thing You Do". For some reason, the audio visual class used that for the background song in the announcements. To each it's own....

The cool thing about us writers is that they’re sponges. Anytime we read a blog article, or a book that looked rather awesome and informative on the shelves, its vacuumed up and converted to an everlasting brain juice that could very well affect…well, everything we do.

But there’s always your first.

We don’t come into this world automatically aware of how the publishing process works. Or what the heck a “literary agent” is. Or, even, *gasp* that “fiction novel” IS REDUNDANT! WHAT! We enter the writing world full of random, reckless ideas and adoration of Harry Potter/Lord of the Rings/Stephen King/all of the above/other. Then - usually after writing the first horrible first drafts that at the time seemed so [insert corny and much-too positive adjective here] - we decided to know more about the craft.

I got a bit too lucky. I didn’t really leave the house a lot (this was before my obsessive-library-visit phase) and lacked internet a couple years ago as well. Then one day, our church had a yard sale. As in everyone who had stuff they wanted to throw out anyways just dropped it off and we sold about one tenth of it all.

Fortunately enough, I was helping. And since was business was, well, slow (we live in a rather deserted area) I wandered. I picked up the books, which were mostly the dull health ones that a lot of the old ladies in our park read. And then - shining beautifully, gorgeously, and happily in the afternoon sunlight - there it was.

HOW TO WRITE & SELL YOUR FIRST NOVEL by Oscar Collier and Frances Spatz Leighton.

(Cue: Opera singing of “Hallelujah”).

Perhaps you read this, perhaps you haven’t. I wouldn’t be surprised if you hadn’t (it’s a bit old, circa 1986) but at the same time I wouldn’t be surprised if you had (it’s a jackpot for the clueless newcomer). Pretty much, no matter how outdated it is, most of what I know and practice today bases from it. How plot and characters fit together. Different genres and sub-genres. True stories of six, different and famous writers. There’s even a chapter on how to handle tough stuff like character names or more R-rated material.

What was the first book, or the first article/blog you came by, that filled you in on the business? Or did you learn in a less conventional way? Awesome writer friend? Youtube video? Because no matter how much you learn from the blogosphere or your nearest library, nothing might ever compare to where you learned first.

Share, share, share! In the meantime, back to the Snowflake Method document I go….

And, though very random, anyone hear about a sequel to "Mean Girls" coming out this Sunday? Poor Hollywood. You know it’s bad when they they’ve already run short of 20th century teen horror flicks that they’re moving onto more modern classics. I can’t watch it (no satellite) though I do have reason to if somehow I had access to ABC family this Sunday (Avril Lavigne video premiere, hehe).

Anyone have a take on it? I’m mostly just feeling sorry for the wonderful Tina Fey, Amanda Seyfried, and Rachel McAdams. A made-for-TV sequel is the worst fate any pop culture icon can face, after all. Not that I can guarantee it will bomb.


No comments:

Post a Comment