Context, Goals, Following Directions!
I have been doing beta reads for the past two months for two different authors and have fallen way behind on my blog posts! Yikes! And I was supposed to publish this post on Sunday (Two Sundays ago), but sometimes personal life, i.e. my dad, takes precedence over professional life.
I have some goals set for today. Some personal, some professional.
Like; Clean my house, do laundry, and get the Halloween decorations put up (DONE!). I’m a big fan of Fall and Halloween.
On the professional side I need to;
Finish the first draft of one of my short stories, write this blog post, and edit, revise, and rewrite, The Good Dr. Grant.
I’ve been thinking I need to get some of my writing projects finished just in case I decide to do, NaNoWriMo, this year. And I found this great link in case I do. It’s called the, Pacemaker Writing Schedule and what you do is put in your target word count, target dates, and then select how you want to write/proceed;
Steadily : the same amount of words every day
Rising to the challenge : start small, take on more later
Biting the bullet : bite off large chunks at the beginning
Randomly : every day is a surprise
I went with Randomly.
Check it out and create a custom chart or calender for you. This might also work, if you are at a standstill with your writing. Think of it as a challenge.
Okay on we go.
I have been writing short stories to submit to magazines and to enter in contests and I had entered my short story, The Spy, a couple of months ago to Glimmertrain. Sadly to say, it didn’t win, but…I got an auto DM on twitter from another author. I check my DMs on a regular basis, but normally I dismiss the auto ones that say, “Thanks for the follow. Do you like romance? Buy my book here.” You know the ones. What I don’t get is; why send it as a direct message? Tweet it out to me so my followers can see it too, or is it, I’m the only one that you want to read it? Is it a secret? Frankly, if you send me one of those, I am not going to share it with my followers. If you tweet it to me, I’ll share. I’m all for helping to promote others. Anyway :-) The DM I received was thanks for the follow, let’s be friends on facebook. So I clicked the link and on her facebook page she had shared a link for a short story writing contest. Needless to say, I jumped at the chance to once again enter, The Spy. To me it was fate or karma, or whatever word you want to use, that I had gotten that direct message and the invite to friend her on facebook. And I’m kicking myself.
Let’s talk about following directions. When my youngest son was in 5th grade, his teacher passed out a paper titled, “Can you follow directions?” (I would have failed too!) The paper consisted of a list of directions numbered 1 thru 25. And went something like this;
#1 Write your name in the top right corner of the page. Karen Einsel
#2 Write today’s date below that. 10/02/2013
Okay I am going to skip a few, because I don’t remember all of the directions, but let’s say we are now at number 19.
#19 Write your last name first, followed by a comma, and then your first name. Well shoot! Grabs eraser and changes how name is written.
#20 Write the date as follows October 2, 2013 and no abbreviations. Darn it! Same for date.
#21 Only fill this out in blue ink. UGH! Eraser comes back out and then you grab a blue ink pen!
#22 There should not be any eraser marks on paper.
Okay let’s skip to;
#25 Read through all directions first and then wait for the teacher to tell you to begin, before making any marks on this paper.
How many of you would have failed?
What does this have to do with my submitting stories and why am I kicking myself? Well, when I submitted my last story for a contest, I downloaded the PDF booklet of their submission guidelines and there were two categories you could enter. I was only entering the first category, so I read the rules for that one (at least 5 times) and when I came to the rules for category two, they didn’t apply to me and I didn’t read any further. So after I submitted my story, I came back and read through the rules for both and found additional rules under category two that I assume apply to both categories :-( What can I say, i should have read the entire booklet before submitting. Hopefully they don’t deduct points for indenting paragraphs, which I did, and they say not to.
Moral of the story: Read through to the end, even if you don’t think you need to, before you begin!
Here are a few links of different writing contests going on now if you’d like to enter.
And as for context of a story, well…Next time :-)