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So, I can’t stand it any longer. I like wordpress so much better than blogger. I thought this would be a great opportunity to keep up with my blogger/”public” blog, but I hate that it doesn’t have a like feature, so I can’t tell if people are actually reading it. So, even though it involves publishing the exact same thing on two different sites, I am going to post my 15 minute writing updates on here too. After all, I only have a couple friends who go to both blogs, so I think they will understand the double posts.

That being said, my “Day 1” post on blogger was essentially the same post as I put here a few days ago, so I’m not going to bother repeating that. But you may expect a couple additional posts in quick succession catching you up on my challenge progress with Days 2 and 3.

 

 

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I read it over and over again. 15 minutes a day. Write at least 15 minutes a day. To the extent that I half roll my eyes when I read it now. I know, I know. Okay? It’s not my fault that I had to . . . [insert whatever I am busy with that day]. Then there is the plaguing thought that maybe I’m not a real writer. Maybe I don’t care as much as I should. Maybe I am just a failure all around. Maybe if I truly cared enough I would make the time. That’s what everyone says. If you really care about something you make the time for it. But I do care about it, I know that in my heart. I just – shy away from it sometimes. I consider it extraneous and feel like I am neglecting other duties when I spend too much time on it. I am trying to refocus that – yes, again. This will be a constant subject, I’m telling you!

So, anyway – yesterday I went to the Library of Congress. ALL DAY. It was epic. I had a day off because I put in so many work hours last week, and decided to take advantage of my living situation and go do research for my book. I was thinking that I would spend a few hours there at the most. Nope. I spent over an hour in the geography and maps room, looking over maps of the Oregon trail from the 1800s, about as long in the newspaper room looking at newspapers from the 1800s to get a good idea of what the general news/headlines were back then, and then a few hours in the reading room looking at fashion from the 1800s and at a Writer’s Digest Publishing book to get tips. I got home around 5:00, feeling like I’d gotten a full days work in and surprisingly content, satisfied, and thinking about quitting my day job (jokingly, of course). And ready to move forward in the book, whereas I’d felt rather stuck the last few months editing-wise.

This morning I woke up surprisingly early for how little sleep I’ve gotten over the last week – early as in 9:30 – and in a reading/researching/writing mood again. So, I grabbed a writer’s digest and started reading it. And I ran across an article talking again about the whole “write 15 minutes a day” thing. Whereupon I immediately felt my normal guilt that I didn’t make a point to do that, and a little resentful. But there was a follow-up comment that really resonated with me. It was “You have to stay in the story.” Or something along those lines. The basic idea is, if you force yourself to work on a story for 15 minutes a day, you will continue to know what it is you were in the middle of, how the characters were feeling, what you were trying to figure out, and all that. And I was like – hmm. That is a good point. It isn’t just about the discipline. It is about staying with your story. And I do have that trouble when I go back to a story after awhile, getting back in the heads of the characters and what I was trying to do with that particular section that makes no sense.

So. I have decided to make a goal. I am going to aim to write for 15 minutes a day for a week solid. And to blog every day about how it went on my attempt-to-become-a-social-media-writer-guru-blog-that-isn’t-going-well-at-all blog Once Upon a Story, if you care to check in. Starting tomorrow. 😛

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If there is one thing you get out of all those random writing articles, online writing tips, and even tips from writing friends, it is that – these days – you are supposed to establish an online writer’s presence before you even get published. Apparently your agent is going to look online for you to make sure you will be able to market yourself or some such nonsense. Really, I think it is stupid consider most writers are introverts and hate pouring their souls out to people. You, my readers, don’t count, because I don’t know you, and therefore have no fear of judgement from you. Don’t be offended. Be complimented. You know things about me my family doesn’t even know. 🙂

But in any case, I can’t get around the fact that, as a serious writer, I am supposed to get myself “out there” via twitter, blogging, and Facebook. Ugh. I absolutely refuse to make a Facebook page featuring myself as a writer until I am actually getting published. Otherwise it will just be too humiliating to be touting myself as a writer when it is years and years before I actually get anything published.

Twitter- well – I try every now and then. I tweet something random and then forget about the service for a long time before remembering I am supposed to be tweeting every day. I’ll work on it. Probably.

The blog thing? Well – I don’t really want to advertise this blog because – it is my sanctuary. Once everyone I know knows about it, it becomes another fear instead of my forest retreat. I’d really prefer to just keep this blog between us. Therefore, I have come to the conclusion I need another blog. I know – I’ve said this before – but I made the mistake of forcing myself to publish excerpts of my writing before I was ready. So, my thought NOW is that I can revamp that blog to be one I don’t mind actually sharing with people. The trick will be to do that and still enjoy writing the posts so that it doesn’t go the way of twitter where I write one post and forget about it for three months. So – here is the thought I am currently having: I have to do research for my books, right? Well, the best way to reinforce research results is to write about it yourself. So what if I take various subjects I am researching and turn them into blog articles? Like fashion in the 1890s, or the Oregon trail route – things like that. Then, I not only have something to write about, but I reinforce the results in my own mind, and I help other writers with their books in case they are looking for the same information. So, I think I will give that a try and see if it works. We’ll see how long that lasts.

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I know I haven’t written in here in forever – well, forever compared to how much I was posting the previous several months. And I finally admitted to myself why. I am afraid. Of you! Yes, all you readers! I am more of an introvert than I thought, it seems – even talking on blogs that people might read scares me! I went to a church function last month specifically for women, and became so afraid of talking to people, that I sat by myself in the back and then hid in the bathroom waiting for my husband to pick me up while the other women milled around socializing and eating cupcakes. How sad is that? That is what comes of not making a new friend for the last seven years! But all that is besides the point I am about to make.

So, I got all excited when I started getting followers on my blog – I was like, how cool is that? People want to read what I have to say! 10 followers, 20, 30 . . . 40 . . . 45 . . . as the amount of followers grew, so did my fear. What if they didn’t like what I was writing? What if they judged what I said? Worst of all, what if they posted a negative comment that compelled me into . . . *whispers* arguing.  I am probably the least confrontational person you will ever meet. I do almost anything to avoid an argument. And, also, a lot of them joined when I was writing about NaNo – that means they probably only want to hear about writing stuff! So, maybe I should restrict my posts to writing? But that took away my inspiration to write in my blog at all – because – A Walk in the Forest is – about ME – about MY walk through the woods – as I meander this path they call life – and all the random obstacles in my way – both the beauty and the pitfalls of walking in a forest. I should be able to write about anything I want here – right? That is the beauty of a blog no one in my family knows about, and only a very few select friends!

Whenever I become so scared that I hide inside myself and refuse to do anything that might upset other people – even on my own blog – I start becoming lost inside myself again – and I do have opinions – contrary to common belief – strong opinions about things – and I shouldn’t be scared to write about them, right?

So here is the deal. I am going to outline exactly who I am and what I believe and then go back to posting whatever the heck I want on my blog, and this way at least you were forewarned. 🙂 You can post arguments on my blog if you want, but I probably will delete them because I hate arguing with people with a vengeance, and my blog is supposed to be a haven for me to come to so I can relax and vent in a safe environment.

  • I am an introvert who loves writing, read, cross-stitching, Jane Austen, all girly things, and my family.
  • I am a born again Christian, who believes that Jesus Christ died on the cross for my sins and the only way to heaven is through Him.
  • I believe homosexuality is both a choice and a sin, just as adultery, fornication, stealing, and lying are. That being said, I have lesbian friends I love who know my beliefs in this area. I don’t judge people – I just don’t believe that what they are doing is right, just as I don’t believe people who live together before marriage are doing right.
  • I am an ultra-conservative Republican, who believes firmly in the right to bear arms, freedom of speech, parental rights, and small government. I do not believe in the right to kill your baby just because you weren’t ready to have one. I do not support President Obama, and every time I read about another executive action he pulls to get his way over that of the people, it makes me so mad I can’t see straight.
  • I am a passionate, but quiet person, and I have both career and writing goals. I want to be successful in my career so I can pay off my debts, invest, become independently wealthy, and settle down to writing sappy romances, which has always been my first love (besides God).
  • I have an inordinate fear of making any type of mistake (yes, that includes typos), of people not liking me or judging me, and of failure, and anytime one of those fears come true, my heart begins pounding like I am about to have a heart attack, I go into panic mode, and don’t come out of it until it is either resolved or my husband calms me down.
  • I feel insignificant next to almost anyone else and tend to assume everyone else is right and I am wrong in everything except my political and religious beliefs. Those I believe with deep tenacity and fervor.
  • I am a VERY boring person to hang out with, until I get comfortable with you, and then “it’s getting [her] to shut-up that’s the trick!”. (yes, I did just quote Shrek)
  • I am old fashioned at heart, and wistfully watch movies where the women get to walk around in beautiful, frilly dresses, hoops, bustles, those gorgeous hats, parasols . . . sigh . . . where have those days gone? Someday I will get enough courage up to join a reenactment or renaissance of some type so I have an excuse to wear an outfit like that. Or maybe someday I will wear one just because and never meet people’s eyes so that I don’t know they are judging me.
  • I love cooking and baking and making things look pretty and trying new recipes and having people over so that I can plate them really nicely. I hate hanging out with crowds of people, but love having parties as long as I can stay in the kitchen and make everything pretty.
  • Very random fact: I hate the taste and texture of onions in everything except bloomin’ onions and onion rings and hate the taste of all fresh fish, but love frozen fish sticks. How weird is that? I do adore seafood – specifically, crab, lobster, and shrimp – shrimp cocktail is my weakness.

There, I warned you I was going to tell you exactly who I am. All of that being said, you should know that I also believe in freedom of choice – that is, everyone has the right to choose what they believe – God gave us free will for a reason. I am not the type to shove my beliefs down someone’s throat – I simply believe. I may firmly believe that Christianity is the one and true way to heaven, and in Biblical values, but I also believe you have the right to decide if you believe that too. I am happy to talk to people who ask about my beliefs (in a non-argumentative way), and strive to ensure that my life emulates a Christ-like life so that people do ask – but whether or not you choose to believe is between you and God.

So, you are welcome to unfollow me if you like, but I am tired of being hidden inside my fears and scared to be who I am. I am not going to hide any longer. Well – at least I am going to try – it is hard to change a characteristic I have lived with my entire life.

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So if any of you have been checking my storyidyls blog on blogger.com, you will note that I haven’t posted much in it. Yeah. For some reason, I don’t like it. I tried. I gave it a good go – mostly because my husband and friends are all using blogger. But – I find wordpress just so much more comfy and friendly. Something about blogger feels very cold and exposed. I find it hard to believe anyone I know except friends I invite will ever find this little nook of mine in the wordpress world, whereas I don’t trust google not to randomly publish to my world of acquaintances that I have a blog on blogger. So, I have decided to give up my brief and unsuccessful try at blogger and stick to the world I have known and loved for years. The website that really introduced me to blogging, and where my friends and I used to have joint blogs. Yup. Like it or not, I love wordpress oh-so-much-more than blogger. And that is my random post for the day.

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