Wednesday, May 25, 2011

My name is...

As I go throughout my day I have a half dozen ideas for new stories flit through my mind. Most of them are discarded almost immediately, mostly because I already have a dozen unfinished stories that I need to get to, and starting a new one is just insane, but now and again i get one stuck that refuses to leave me alone. The character starts to take root in my mind, talking to me.
It generally goes something like this.
My name is Alix. (The scene begins to form here, this time being the side of a beautiful lake with a palace behind it.) I'm an elf, the last born of the king of elves, and unofficial leader of the seven realms. So how did I end up in a fire, the heat searing my lungs, and burning my flesh. And who is the guy watching as I die?
Thus a story is born, and yes I'm writing this. It's currently at about 100 pages. (Started 2 weeks ago). For me that's how a story begins. Just a thought flitting through my head, and a desire to find out if they'll live. (Read many of my books and you'll see that most of the time they start with a character in mortal peril, though how they are changes.)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


Most writers are busy people. I have met a few who learn how busy I am and ask me "How do you do it?" Maybe this will help a few of you if I explain. I work a fulltime job, have two kids (who I'm teaching to read), work another part time job, and find the time to write at least a hundred pages per month, while fixing all the broken things in my house and looking at Real Estate I plan to buy. It's a lot. I never have a spare moment. But this is how I manage it.

In the morning, before I even get dressed for the day (sometimes I do this the night before) I write out 5 things that MUST get done that day. (This does not include feeding the kids, or cleaning the house.) Sometimes it is critque someones work, others are paint the bathroom, or fix the roof.
With those five things in mind I start my day. As I get the kids going (too young to send to school) and make sure they don't wring each others necks I also work on one thing from my list. When it's done I go to the next (saving the things I must concentrate on for when my two year old takes a nap and I can put a movie in for my four year old, yes I use the TV babysitter, but only once a day). By naptime I've finished at least 3 things from my list, and the house is quiet for an hour or two. I eat lunch while writing finish my last two items for the day and get ready for work (which starts at 4).
After work (11 pm) I come home and crash into bed to get up and do it all again the next day. Now even as i read this it feels overwhelming, but it's really not. And this is why: Whenever I start to wonder WHY I'm doing all of this, and wondering WHAT I can POSSIBLY cut back on I realize there's only one thing - Writing. Except without writing there's no way I could get everything else done. It is my release, my way of coping with the stress in my life. My dreams, the things I want to be and do in REAL life involve me writing. I could never give it up.