Category Archives: my writing

What is my earliest memory? and pics of a baby me~ #CalisaRhose #MFRWauthor #52weekchallenge2

Osiyo~

Marketing For Romance Writers (whom is not actually only for romance writers, but ALL writers) started a 52 week blog challenge last year. Cool, huh? So, you’ll be seeing a lot more posts from me this year with this challenge and, hopefully, in my writing as well.

I don’t know how I missed this challenge last year, or maybe I was aware and I just don’t remember it. Which, ironically, goes with this second week’s preset topic; My earliest memory. Considering here lately I don’t seem to have any memory whatsoever, or at least no short term memory, now I have to sink back 45+ years to an early one! Well, here I go…

This is me. Cute little bugger, huh? I was about 4-6 months old, I believe. No, I don’t remember this particular moment, or where it was taken. I’m guessing Alva, OK. where I was born, since we supposedly moved to California when I was about 6 months old (and that’s not our California house or dogs behind me).

I remember, once in California, living on the farm owned by Daddy’s Greek boss in Lancaster until I was just over six years old when, we moved to Texas (where I had to repeat kindergarten because of the age/date of birth thing).

I think I was three in the color pic (that’s me on Momma’s right, my older sister on her left, and our older brother behind sis. It seemed my parents took quite a few pics in those fields surrounding our house because there are a butt load of them. 😆 

I admit, the country around Lancaster was beautiful, so I can’t really blame them.

But I digress. So, what is my earliest memory?

Before she was school age my sister and I were wild little hellions, running all over the Mojave desert (within range of Momma’s voice, of course). My birthday is late December, and hers late November- and two years older than me- so she didn’t start school until I was almost four. Which meant, I was alone, a lot, in the two years after she started school.

See what I mean? Those fields were the backdrop of many memories. This is my adorable parents.

One day when I was probably five, and this might not even be my earliest memory–those years were about childhood and it was all one big fantasy time for me of interchangeable memories–I had my bff with me, aka sister’s walking doll she told me not to play with. (I have a pic of the doll somewhere.) I was playing in the barn, talking to the boss’s many horses in their stalls. My favorite horse was a deep red three year old sorrel named V-O. He was off limits to us kids because, being a stallion, he was quite mean, or so we were warned. I loved him anyway and spent many hours sitting on his gate petting and talking to him, while my older sibs were in school. Of course, the grown-ups didn’t know what I was doing!

That day I heard the stock trailer rumble into the barnyard and I got very excited at the sound. The trailer always meant NEW HORSES!

I remember running with that doll, who could not keep up and  I don’t remember whatever happened to the doll after that. lol I got to the trailer just as the 2000 pound cargo unloaded. To this day, I can remember my breath escaping as I got my first look at the black-as-pitch massive horse with long, flowing mane and a thick tail that dragged in the dirt when he moved. All I do remember is how the sun gleamed off the slick fall coat of the huge beast.

It was the first time I’d ever seen a Frisian, though I didn’t know what he was at the time. I can still remember the giddy feeling as Gus Elliopus swung me up onto a back wide enough to play on! I grabbed a handful of that silky, wavy mane, and held on for dear life because it seemed like I was a hundred feet off the ground! And I rode him as Gus lead us across the barnyard and inside the barn.

That memory stops there. I don’t remember getting off the horse and I don’t recall ever seeing him again. It’s like a mystical dream of a five year old little girl. It is also one of my more vivid memories.

Here’s a horse that looks exactly like my memory, http://www.horsechannel.com/horse-breeds/profiles/friesian-horse-horse-breed.aspx

Thank you for dropping by and I hope you enjoyed my little trip into the way back recesses of my mind. 😆 Join me and visit other authors earliest memories by clicking their links below.

Dodadagohvi~

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Writing that first draft~NANO Day 11~ #nanowrimo2017 #firstdraft #mfrwauthor #amwriting

Osiyo~

Writing is like building. The more you add, the more people want experience the thrill for the first time. Readers are a big part of the writing process. There’s nothing worse than having a reader fall into the murky depths of a book they can’t relate to in even a small way.  You want a strong “bridge” off the bat to help your readers get to the end and then, want to revisit that bridge again, and again. 😀

 

Writing your first draft is the model of your intended project.  Once you have an acceptable model, you begin the framing and creating–rough draft edits 1-1000– until you have that finished masterpiece that others will see. Edits build a better, stronger ms, but you can’t edit what you haven’t written.

Wait to do improvements until it’s first finished. No builder remodels his bridge before it gets finished, and others have a chance to give it a test run.

Here’s a little extra for you. I subscribe to Writer’s Digest blog for their informative articles and tips on writing. Here’s one with tips on first drafts (what you’re writing during NaNo), by  Kathy Leonard Czepiel.

Just a reminder. Keep holding that inner editor at bay. Wait until you reach day 30, or 50K, before you turn that editing minion loose. Personally, I like to take a short breather from a completed first draft.

What about you? Do you have to take a week to congratulate or reward yourself for surviving NaNo? Two weeks, maybe you need more, to allow your brain to relax before jumping back in. I usually end up taking notes for my next project, which is usually already steeping on a back burner before I get half way on the current wip.

Here’s a thought, go check out Silver’s website and books while you let that wip set up. Multi-genre talent there, folks. Fantasy (embrace your inner fae!), paranormal (love you some alpha wolf shifters?) and contemporary romance (Sigh-cowboys). She’s a self-published author, small epress author and HQN~Big 5. Seriously, check her out!

After you’ve finished your NANO word count for the day, of course. 😉

Dodadagohvi~

Are you a freakin’ psychic?~NANO Day 12~ #nanowrimo2017 #plotorpantz #mfrwauthor #amwriting

Osiyo~

Day 12! Almost to the half way point.

How do you avoid the dreaded “sagging middle?”

Do you know what your story is about? Are you one of “those?” You have a 75 page synopsis to guide you. A pre-story that you will follow to an astounding T, or damn near, if not exact. You know when your characters will pee, though you won’t show that to readers (or will you? O^o). Do you know when they will take their next breath. Do you know what that breath will sound like before you even write that scene?

You…are a true plotter.

I congratulate you! Foresight like that is a real gift! I mean, freakin’ psychic!

I, on the other hand, am like this cat. I eat plot bunnies for dessert! Thank you very much. What a dreadful thought. I take that back. 🙂

However, I do not begin with a synopsis, and if I do, it might be a whole page, or not, of random thoughts. Will my heroine go pee? Well, who knows? I sure don’t! 😆 Will they breathe? Um, they’d die if they didn’t, so… Yeah? I assume at least  one will take a breath. When? What will it sound like?

HellifIknow!

I am a pantser.

We-e-e-ell, maybe not 100%. I’m told I’m not a true pantser anymore. Nope. I’m not a true plotter, either.

I used to be a solid pantser. Really.  But, I spent most of October trying to figure my story line out before NaNo began. I took notes.  I MADE A PLOT BOOKLET! Yes, I did that. I even used a page or two in it.

Okay, I admit, I wrote in it mostly because it’s such a stinkin’ cute thing, and also because I wasted a day making it, so I had to at least write something in it.

Guess what? I haven’t looked at it since! Nope. I just looked and it wasn’t where I thought I’d seen it last.

 

I semi-plot-pantz, or since I’m a pantser first, do I semi-pantz-plot. Either way, I’m a hybrid.

I am a plotser.

You might be completely out in left field, maybe you’re an outliner. Another method many use, and I do not. I tried it; didn’t work for me.

What I want to know is, will that bunny still have me with his tea since I’m part plotter?? LOL

Just remember, whatever method you use, as long as it works for you to get words written, that’s all that matters.

Don’t let anyone tell you how (they think) you HAVE to write to be successful. Whatever it is that keeps you writing one word after another, one page or chapter after the last—you just keep doing what YOU do and you are already a success! You are a writer.

Happy Nanoing!

 

 

Thanks to Silver James for this fun meme that kinda reminds me of my Trouble Kitty.. 😉

Dodadagohvi~

NANOWRIMO Day 9- Are you playing it safe or jumping in head first? #nanowrimo2017 #jumpin #mfrwauthor #amwriting

Osiyo

I’m a couple of days behind. Okay, a week. But that’s because I’ve been trying to get as many words written as I can each day. I’m going to make these next few short and sweet, hopefully even a little inspirational for all of you! If you’ve been reading these meme posts all along, I am so very sorry to have left you hanging on day 8!

So, here we go!

Really, what’s there left to say that inspirational Silver James doesn’t say with this “throw caution to the wind” meme?

As my mama used to quote from Doris Day, que sera, sera. Whatever will be, will be.

Short and sweet to do a few catch-up memes, because life is busy for us all and I fell too far behind. 😆

Happy NoNoWriMo!!!!

Dodadagohvi~

Push through the ruts ~ NaNo Day 8~ #nanowrimo2017 #mfrwauthor #keepwriting

Osiyo~

So technically this post should be the one on nutrition, but I didn’t know this one was coming. lol I can only thank Silver James for this. LOL (Good thing I love ya!)

I will reiterate that eating is important. I’m one of those who, when I get into a writing groove, the words fly, adding up and before I realize I’ve reached or passed my daily goal…and lunch or dinner with it. Those are days I love, but suffer for the most. 😆

So, we move into week two with a better handle on my characters and their story. Words are coming easier now that I’ve passed 500 for at least five times over the past two years. Yes, this is a new story, because I haven’t been able to find the right beginning, so ten pages into it I would lose the thread, the motivation, the whatever-it-is-I-need-to-keep-the-story-moving forward. Some of this is because I’m more panster than plotter. Part is that I’m writing the story wrong, and my characters don’t cooperate, won’t “talk” to me, until I finally get it right.

Eventually I work my way through the rut and all will be okay again. 🙂 Most of the time this is by writing. I won’t say daily, because I can’t always write. But when I can, I do. Sometimes that nets me five words and six deletions, but it’s writing, all part of the process.

Day 8- 1382

Onward!

Dodadagohvi~

It’s YOUR story~ NaNo Day 7~ #nanowrimo2017 #mfrwauthor #petsdontwrite

Osiyo

Welcome to the last day of week 1!! We’ve made it seven days, though my word count is suffering drastically by this time. This week I’ll have to make up the difference by padding my word count each day. I’ll let you know how it goes right here each day. I appreciate you hanging with me as we go through November NaNo.

Here’s Silver James Day 7 meme for your pleasure.

Since I don’t have my precious Trouble kitty, I’ll have to entrust my new Bitsy Boop to take over. If she could, but for all her cuteness, she can’t write MY story. Only you can write your story, so distractions aside, keep writing even if all you manage to squeeze out is ten words a day. That’s ten words you didn’t have before you sat down.

Day 7- 203

If you need inspiration, visit the NaNo site. There are forums, tips, ect. Join in and get the boost you need.

In the meantime, I have more writing to get done just to catch up. Check in tomorrow and see what progress I make.

Dodadagohvi~

 

 

Send your muse on vacation ~ NaNo Day 6~ #nanowrimo2017 #mfrwauthor #NaNOmuse

Osiyo~

This week is the first Monday of the month which means UnCover Monthly time. To give that post, and the authors who waited so patiently to have their covers  shown, respect I decided to pause on my daily NaNo blog. Now, of course, I have a three day catch up to get done. It’s just too bad I can’t count all the blog posts I’ve racked up this week as NaNo word count! I’ll make these next three short and sweet (so I can get back to my NaNoing!), then later tonight or tomorrow I’ll post today’s post.

To start off I have another fun NaNo badge from the most awesome Silver James. Folks, when I say this woman is awesome, or any number of nice things, it’s not simply courtesy from one author to another. She truly is a sweet and kind and patient (one of the most patient I know) woman. I am also proud to call her a friend and fellow Okie. If you want to meet someone who you’ll love, visit Silver and say hi. Seriously! She’s letting me steal her NaNo badges! 😆

where he sits when I ignore him

So, I’ve been doing pretty good at not rereading or editing every word (too much) while I write during NaNo. Choppy has been pretty quiet this first week, which I thought might be why I haven’t been able to write a lot. Well, I’ve told him to stay on the back burner and just let me write, make mistakes, write horrible content, during this month. He didn’t like that, but he’s been compliant (notice where he insists on sitting when I ignore him –>).

<– Ok, so he butts in once and a while. Yes, I let him. Have you met Choppy? We-he-l-l-l, let me introduce you…

While you get acquainted… 😆

Day 6- 139 words

At the Orthopedics office,  for Andee’s appointment to get results of her knee MRI, I was able to open my wip (Word version since I haven’t purchased the Android/Windows Scrivener app yet) on my phone and wrote while we waited. People, I don’t have a ten inch phone and my 10 inch tablet was at home. I wrote these words on a small 5.5″ screen. LOL Just goes to prove anything is possible if we try. 😉

Unfortunately I didn’t have a chance to write more Tuesday with a day of errands, but it’s more words than I’ve been getting.

As my Daddy always said–God rest him–Tomorrow, the good lord willing and the creek don’t rise, is another day. 🙂 Happy NaNoing!

Dodadagohvi~ 

Nutrition is Crucial~ NaNo Day 5- #nanowrimo2017 #mfrwauthor #NaNotips #dontforgettoeat

Osiyo~

Still hanging in there? Awesome!!!

Ready for more Silver James NaNo inspiration? Are you borrowing her badges too? She said it’s ok. 😉 So, Day 5. Her badge makes me remember I forgot to eat lunch, so I guess nutrition is a good tip for today.

Good thing hubby made me breakfast early this morning. But a midday snack never hurts progress at the keyboard, which I totally spaced on today. Do you have a “writing treat” you must have when pounding the keys?

In case you missed my hint the other day, I keep Hot Tamale candies close at hand most days to nibble on, and sometimes a Milky Way Simply Caramel mini bar, those two bite sized ones in a pack of 6. Hubby gets half of those. 🙂 I also have either water, coffee or Dr. Pepper at the ready.

I’m not a total junk-food-junkie, I also try to keep something protein at hand.

Okay, on to NaNo word count.

Day 5- Two sentences or about 23 words.

Not great by a long shot, my characters are giving me a bit of a hard time. Then it’s my turn to make them suffer. <evil grin>

But a wise woman said today, “Even if you only write 5 words, 500 words, 5000 words, or 50,000 words, it’s a win because 1) new words, but more importantly, 2) YOU ARE THINKING ABOUT WRITING!!!” ~ Silver James

She doesn’t even know I’m quoting her. I prefer to think I’m “sharing her wisdom”! 😆 I believe that’s what counts in the end though.

Of course, she also went on to say she’d gotten almost 3000 words yesterday… Some people just make it look too easy. LOL

If you are struggling with keeping up a steady 1667 words per day with NaNo (I am), it’s ok, and it’s ok to tell yourself it’s ok. If I don’t finish Nano…well, hell. I’ve already done better this year than I did in 2016, which I dropped on day 2 because I had a lot of stress going on in my personal life and I couldn’t handle my world, much less a fantasy one.

This year is different. This year is the first I’ve wanted to write in four years! Oh, I wrote here and there, but not always on the same WIP, which doesn’t get me very far on any one. But 2017 is MY year to make a comeback and I’m thrilled you are here for the ride!

Glad you stopped by! Tune in Monday for a new NaNo post and UnCover Monday will also go live at midnight tonight.

Dodadaghvi~

Are you having fun? Day 4! Week one NANO back stretch! #nanowrimo2017 #mfrwauthor #amwriting #lovemyjob

Osiyo~

I love today’s Silver James NaNo badge! If it looks like coffee, I’m on board. Seriously!

Why not go let her know what you think by clicking any of the badges from any of my NaNo posts.

Writing is work. Hard work at times. No one who ever tried to write, seriously write, anything will tell you it’s easy. At least, I won’t. But at any job, whether you write full time or work at a job place, you should be able to have some fun, be able to enjoy the job. If you can’t, why do it? While working at my retail day job over the last two years, I did not particularly like my blah job where I had to wear solidblackonblack (my least favorite color) every day (except on OU game days I was allowed to rock the crimson 😉 ), but I still had fun when I could.

This last year was spent using one arm because I injured my right shoulder and had to wear a sling at work until surgery. But even though I was in pain more often than not, and hated the painful bi-weekly PT I had to do, I still tried to have fun with my co-workers, whom I loved.

Writing, for me, is like that. I have to enjoy what I’m writing at any stage, yes, even through a gajillion repeat edits. 🙂 Don’t we all just love those like an ingrown toenail? LOL

After all, if we don’t love what we’re doing, again, why bother?

What about you? Do you write because you love it? Or, maybe you’re more like me. Even though I enjoy writing, sometimes ask myself what the point is when there is so much tough competition out there. All those others are so, so much better than I am, right?

No. Not even a tiny bit right.

But writing is a challenge, and I write because I can’t NOT write. It’s in my veins, it’s who I am.

I’m. A. Writer.

I love that about me.

So keep writing. If you love it, don’t let anything discourage you. And if you’re NaNoing, buddy me! If you aren’t, that’s okay. Thanks for reading and commenting. Who knows? Maybe we’ll be buddies next November!

For now—

Day 4- this blog post (and only because I’d written most of it last night, too).

0 NaNo words

Hubby had me helping him today, so I planned to write until bedtime (or 1 am, which ever came first). Again, why I avoid planning very often. My pc suddenly went to a blue screen shortly after writing this post last night, so the ‘0’ stands for this day. Thankfully, the blue warning screen seems to be resolved after a restart. I’d forgotten time fell back last night, now I’m wondering if that had anything to do with the blue screen? At any rate, I didn’t get to post this so it’s a day late, which means I need to spend time this evening writing today’s day 5 post. That’s fine. I’m also trying to get UnCover Monthly put together and scheduled to go live at Midnight+01, but it’s still early. Plenty of time! 🙂

Yesterday I ended up doing a restore on my pc to try to get rid of spammy game sites that kept ghosting open with every link I clicked on, anywhere. At times there would be upwards to ten individual windows open! Grrr So far, so good. Keeping fingers crossed. 🙂

In the meantime, I can always use more NaNo buddies, so hit me up! For those doing NaNo, how is your week shaping up? Better than mine I’d guess. 😛

Dodadaghovi~

PS. For anyone who is new (or maybe forgot), or merely curious, osiyo means “hello” and dodadaghovi loosely translates to “until we meet again” in Cherokee, of which I’m one fourth and proud. 🙂

NANOWRIMO Day 3! Don’t give up! #nanowrimo2017 #mfrwauthor #amwriting #noedits

 

Osiyo

I’m sharing the third NaNo badge, courtesy of author Silver James. Click on any of her badges to visit her website.When working on any WIP, we, authors—and yes, as-yet-unpublished writers ARE authors!—are encouraged NOT to edit along the way. The goal is to get the words out of our pretty heads and onto paper, or monitor. Editing slows the creative progress, ‘they’ say. I guess some writers may have a hard time actually completing that manuscript (MS) when we start each day editing what we’ve written the day before. And editing again, and again, before we start adding new words to the end count.

As 79% pantser, 21% plotter (I just pulled those numbers out of my writer’s hat so they are probably not accurate lol), I am not one of these writers as a rule. My daily goal is to get words down, out of my cluttered brain without worrying about what went on the day before. And that is a total lie. I can waste a day editing one sentence! I just try hard not to. I think there may be a club for people like me. LOL So don’t feel bad if you’re a member too.

BUT— But, as an editor…holy hot tamale do I have a devil of a time NOT editing every little thing I’d wrote ten minutes ago, never mind what I wrote a whole day ago!

Come on, now. I can’t even watch a good movie anymore without editing scenes I have absolutely NO control over! What makes ‘them’ think I won’t edit MY OWN work…that I DO have control over??? (And now I want hot tamales, the candy…and I’m fresh out. :/ )

Anyway, with NaNo it is actually harder for me to edit along the way. I (we—all NaNoers) have to write 1667 new words per day, while at the same time moving closer to that all important 50,000 word count by November 30th. That’s not December 10, or December 1. And if I spend all my time fleshing and fluffing pre-written words, I’ll never get to The End by the last day of the NaNo month, November 30.

Which, of course, is the whole point of NaNo. 🙂

So, I haven’t edited anything…yet. Unfortunately, it’s just the end of day 3… So many words ahead… Oy.

Day 3- NaNo blog post catch-up, 0 words (at the publishing of this post)

Luckily, I’m a night owl and there’s plenty of night ahead still!

On to a new day, in which I will post all progress I make, as well as any words I manage to get down tonight. Again, I would love to be NaNo buddies so find me here, and thanks so much for following my NaNo progress.

Dodadaghovi~