Thursday, December 20, 2012

Apples, Dreams, and Deadlines

The plague is finally lifting. Mini went back to school yesterday, and I settled in to get some writing done. I only managed about 1k words before I went to help hubby rearrange the dining room. This was planned, of course, but I had no idea when I started what a job this was going to turn out to be.

Earlier this year we moved a new desk for hubby into the dining room, so now we have no place to put our Christmas tree. To make a place for the tree, we had to shuffle the furniture around. A lot of furniture. Oh boy. My house is a complete mess for now. It was simply too much to take care of in one day. We moved the robin's egg blue, 1940s kitchen hutch into Mini's room to use for shelving. That meant I had to rearrange Mini's room and sort toy boxes to make room for it. It took about three hours just to do that.

Tomorrow we're moving the Cajun style standing pantry to the wall behind the dining table. The tree is going to be sitting where the Cajun pantry is right now.

Before we tackle all that, though, I have to go buy bins, because a lot of the stuff we had in the blue hutch is now homeless and sitting on the dining table. There's no other place for it. Before buying the bins, to try to save a few dollars, I'm going to rearrange my office shelves and see if some of the craft bins will fit in here. One room leads to another, then to another. Le sigh.

Back to writing. I'm working on a deadline piece right now, and it's just not flowing. I've written well over the required amount of words, but none of it "speaks" to me. Boo. I've already cut a lot out of it, and still it reads flat to me. I'm debating tossing the whole thing and starting from scratch.

Since getting sick around Thanksgiving, I've been low energy and not feeling very inspired. I know, lack of inspiration is no excuse for not writing. In the morning I seriously have to snap out of it and get some word count down before I run out of time with this project. The last thing I want is to have worked on a piece for a month then miss the deadline. I'll be stuck with a story I have to sit on until I gather enough similar stories for a collection. I mean, that's not necessarily a terrible thing, but I'm trying to avoid that because in 2013 I'm going to be focusing more on novels. And I'd like to focus on writing more romance.

One more thing before I go! A few days ago, I had this really strange dream. It was so vivid, and I've been meaning to write it down. In the dream I was walking in the yard with hubby. It was late fall, early winter. All the leaves were off the trees. We walked to the far corner of the yard where we have a rosemary bush planted, and a very tall tree had grown there. The tree didn't have a leaf on it, but when I looked up, through all the branches I saw this enormous yellow apple. Seriously, this apple was the size of a bowling ball. Or, as I thought in the dream, it was the size of a human head. Take your pick.

The apple was beautiful. It had one tiny bruise on it, but it was perfect in my eyes and I wanted to pick it. I asked hubby to come closer and try to pick the apple, which was pretty high up. Hubby looked at it and said we'd have to do it later, because we had to go. I knew he was right, so I linked arms with him, and we crossed the yard, walking along the road.

About halfway across the yard, we came upon more trees that had sprung up along this short path. I looked up at the branches and was awestruck because this tree had dozens and dozens of enormous apples it. They were so big and richly colored that they looked like heavy paper lanterns hanging in the bare branches. The fruit was beautiful and perfectly ripe, and in every color you could think of. Red, yellow, green, and that peachy yellow-to-red color some of the blushy type apples have sometimes when you buy them from the store.

I was very excited by just getting to see the this spectacular tree, and that joy and sense of wonder was on my mind when I woke up. It was a very nice dream. And so colorful. I don't usually have dreams that colorful. I'm even thinking about making a project out of it. I have a fresh pad of watercolor paper, and I may end up painting the apple laden tree. I already have a space picked out for it in my office, if I go through with it. All I have to do is find the time! :o)


  1. Are you solely self publishing now, Cora? I'm really thinking of doing just that, still submit to larger houses but self pub a majority of pieces.

  2. Hi Nancy! I'm not solely self publishing, but I'm not against going that route. Especially if someone makes good money at it. I hear you really have to work at building a backlist to make it worthwhile, though. I'm trying to build up more of a back list since I do plan to continue self publishing; however, I also like working with a publisher/editor, and I don't see myself giving that up entirely. Just being more selective about what I send out as a submission.

    That said, and this is just my opinion, if you make more money with your self publishing books than with small press/traditionally published books, by all means go into full time self publishing. Regardless of how you're publishing, I think it's a smart move to go where you 1.) have/reach the most readers, 2.) have the most distribution, 3.) receive the most money.

    When I have self published in the past (I've been posting on Smashwords since roughly 2008), it was mostly just for promo, but now I'm adding new titles for supplemental income. Even so, this year, I did more small press publishing than anything - four anthologies and a new Werekind book. I also released one short erotica collection on my own, and I've been pleased with the results.

    I'm currently editing a second collection that will be up on Smashwords in 2013, and I have a novel that I'm going to self publish through Smashwords around my birthday next year. I love their publishing platform, and shame on me for not using it to more. I'm trying to change that.

    My thinking these days is this: if I write a book that *I like* but I know I'm going to have trouble placing it with a small press/digital/traditional publisher, I might as well self publish it and save the headache for something else down the road.

    Anyway, I'm going to do a complete recap of my publishing year right before New Year, and I'm also going to post some goals for 2013. :o)

  3. I honestly don't know what to do. Self publishing seems to have such a learning curve and right now I don't really have the time, but then on the other hand, I would love to have to control that self publishing offers.

  4. For me, what eats up the most time is editing. And I'd say as far as the learning curve goes, formatting the books for uploading is the biggest headache.

    Smashwords makes it relatively easy to self publish, you just have to make sure the formatting passes so it will go through their "meat grinder" - so the book gets uploaded into all the available formats.

    If you decide to self publish and are worried about the formatting, or simply don't want to do that yourself, go through my FOR WRITERS links here on my blog and check out LK Design and Formatting. Lucinda is a friend from Romance Divas, and she has excellent prices. I'm going to have her format my self-pub novels for me when the time comes.


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