Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The Rules of Writing

You know you have to sit and stay to write. But so many things call you away--the clothes dryer buzzer, the timer on the stove, the phone ringing, that annoying beep that sounds when you have another post on Facebook, etc. etc. etc.


So how do you stay put and do the job, the words, the edits, that writing requires? Is it a to-do list, accountability partner, a critique partner who demands to see what you're working on now, or is it just sheer determination?

What motivates you to write? The story? The characters? The theme? I'll admit to all of these. My Cherry Hill books are about family, pain, loss, abuse, wounds, and how people cope with them. Without the people of Cherry Hill, I wouldn't have a story. Once I learned who they were, the themes jumped out and grabbed me. Research has expanded my compassion for those in the same situations. Writing has made me a better person.

So back to you. What makes you Sit! and Stay! for the job? How do you keep working on your WIP?

Besides if all else fails, try this option
How I Stopped Procrastinating
LOL! I'll try the rules, thank you. ;-)

Announcement! My buddy Elle Druskin got me on Twitter. Check out the neat message for AN EASTER WALK she posted HERE. You can follow me on Twitter @ZanMarieS.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Write-A-Thin Check In

One month. One goal. That's the plan at least. The Women's Fiction Writers Association sets aside January to focus on one goal--rewriting, revising, editing, writing. Whatever the member needs to do, we all fall in to help and congratulate each other on achieving that goal.
My goal is to add rough, new words to the nine known holes in Part 2 of FRIENDLY FIRE.
Here's my initial list and where I've gotten on it.
  1. A Few Days Later
  2. Meeting with Manuel Nunez to talk about Samantha's abuse--First pass has been done. There's notes on what to do with it later
  3. Rosemary on Samantha and Eric
  4. Cassie Attacks--first pass has been done
  5. Need general life with Samantha, maybe folded into Violent Violet and Comfort foods, etc.--First pass has been done.
  6. Birds and Bees after X-rated and New Year's Eve--first pass has been done with notes on what to do with it later
  7. Laura Grace's birthday? This is a possible cut
  8. Getting out of the hospital
  9. Paying to Parent/Possible cut or image folded into another place--folded into Violent Violet and first pass done.
I'm also one of the Program Coordinators for this year's Write-A-Thin. Along with my partner Cathy Vignolini, we have been keeping everyone on track. We have eleven days to go. ;-)
If my plans work, I hope to announce that I have a complete draft of FRIENDLY FIRE sometime in March to mark the sixth anniversary of the idea that have become, not only my current focus work-in-progress, but the start of a series of stories about a family and town who live in my mind. Cross your fingers. ;-)

Tuesday, January 14, 2014


Time out for a fan girl moment!

If you know nothing about Diana Gabaldon's epic series OUTLANDER, I have a treat for you...

And if you do know OUTLANDER, I have a wondrous event for you...

Announcing the first official trailer for the STARZ production of OUTLANDER due to premier this summer.

And if you want to know more, check out THIS for more info, pictures of the spot-on perfect casting, and videos of Diana and Ron Moore the Executive Producer talking about staying true to the story and adapting well-beloved books to the screen.

Another squeeeee-worthy announcement is that Diana's newest Jamie and Claire book (the 8th) WRITTEN IN MY OWN HEART'S BLOOD will be published June 10. If you haven't ever read Diana's work, you need to now before all the excitement breaks out. You'll be glad you did.

I'm just saying that if there ever was a time to go book shopping, this is it! ;-)

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Happy New Year and...

...Happy Birthday to me! 

Yep, today is my birthday. As the years pile up, gifts become less and less important to me, but this year, I have two that take the cake.
  • My dearest John bought me a Kindle Paperwhite to replace my Kindle 3. He did buy it in November, but I knew it was my birthday gift. ;-)
  • My good blogging buddy, Charlotte Rains Dixon, writing teacher, coach, and author, gifted me with a 25 page critique. It's due to her today. And I'm excited to get her feedback.
BTW, if you haven't read Charlotte's EMMA JEAN'S BAD BEHAVIOR, you should check it out.  Also check out my interview of Charlotte HERE.

January is a busy month. Not only am I trying to fill in all the last holes in FRIENDLY FIRE, but I'm also a co-Program Coordinator for the Write-A-Thin at Women's Fiction Writers Association.

I hope your new year is going well. May all your resolutions be achieved and may you be happy, healthy, and rested. ;-)

And brrrrr! It's only 5 this morning here in Georgia--the coldest it's been in decades. Bundle up, folks!



A CHRISTMAS WALK, DEVOTIONS FOR ADVENT and AN EASTER WALK are now available as ebooks at Amazon
Check this out. And this.
Needless to say, I'm excited. ;-)