Monday, March 19, 2012

The Question

For writers, and people with anxiety, ideas tend to swirl in their minds. I'm used to ideas floating about in my mind and getting mashed and formed. I'm used to scenarios and what if questions.

I finished a cold reread of my manuscript, Manipulations, last week. I even transferred it to iBooks so my husband can read it and make comments.

I have to recommit to the writing game. Either pitching my fiction to agents or pursuing some nonfiction opportunities or both.

When I interviewed for Cedar Crest College's Pan European MFA in Creative Writing, we talked about portfolio building and the administrator said something very succinctly that hit home: what kind of writing do you want to do?

The fiction answer is easy. But I realized in an instant that I have not found a sustainable voice for nonfiction. Sure, with 15 years in journalism under my belt, I can write anything at any time. But it has no soul, no enduring message. It's a glimpse of a moment that I may or may not have witnessed.

I still don't know if I'll apply to the program. I want to, because it's time I took my words as seriously as I take my history or my economics.

But the next few months, barring the necessities of school and life, I will write something every day. And explore my voice and the different things I can do.

Last night, I finally started a non-fiction piece on my recent travels to Tunisia and I edited my Jimi Hendrix bio review. I had a paragraph in my head that I thought would open the Tunisia piece but something else came out.

In about an hour, I wrote 2,000 words.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

That might be settled

I submitted my first review to Hippocampus, and filled out their contributor form and am trying to get a nice headshot from my favorite photographer.Meanwhile, I had batted around some ideas about altering the secrets in my characters' pasts and I think those ideas have been defeated, pretty much by friends who reiterated to me my own logic of why I created those secrets in this manner in the first place. An author's slap in the face to snap me out of it.I have managed to transfer files from the computer to the iPad without an Internet connection. I thought this would facilitate editing on the iPad, but it doesn't. I had editing with the limited functionality of the Pages app. I can create this way. That's fun. But editing is tumultuous.I also figured out how to format my manuscripts so I can read them in iBooks. Now that is far-out cool!Spring break from my college courses commences tonight, and once this ends I'll be knee deep in projects and papers: an oral presentation on the Brazilian real, a paper on central bank policy during this global recession, and a capstone project on French and American politics/military presence and its effect on nation building in Djibouti.