Monday, December 25, 2006

I LOVE Rhapsody

I've been using Rhapsody for about a week now. I think it's great! I've been able to start some "soundtracks" for each of my WIPs.

Rhapsody also has a "Dynamic" Playlist feature that keeps track of what you've been listening and creates a playlist based on that. Some of the songs are songs you listened to, some of the songs are songs I guess they think you'd be interested based on your listening choices. How cool is that? So here is my playlist for this week...

1. Simpatico - William Ellwood
2. Charango - Oregon
3. Tom's Diner (A Capella) - Suzanne Vega
4. The First Cut is the Deepest - Sheryl Crow
5. Run To The Sun - N.E.R.D.
6. Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas - Alana Davis
7. Nothing Seems To Matter - Bonnie Raitt
8. Raised On Robbery - Joni Mitchell
9. I Must Be High - Wilco
10. Boogie On Reggae Woman - Stevie Wonder
11. Be Still My Beating Heart - Sting
12. Just Like Anyone - Aimee Mann
13. Crazy (Radio 1 Live Lounge Session) - Nelly Furtado
14. I Am So Ordinary - Paula Cole
15. Pieces Of The Night - Gin Blossoms
16. Brick - Ben Folds
17. Hurt - Christina Aguilera
18. Chelsea Morning - Joni Mitchell
19. Are You Happy Now? - Michelle Branch
20. Little Sister - Jewel
21. Bombastic Love - Britney Spears
22. Flux - Penguin Cafe Orchestra
23. Redwood Nocturne - Spencer Brewer
24. Cold Tea Blues - Cowboy Junkies
25. Vogue - Madonna

Interesting! I've been listening to a lot of popular stuff and 80's stuff, looking for the right combination for one of my WIPs. I guess it shows. I've never even heard of some of this stuff. Well, I'd better get to listening. I may find something cool for one of my characters!

Sunday, December 17, 2006

As If It Wasn't Hard Enough For Writers to Get Published!

I first read about this on the Paperback Writer Blog, the Signed and Filtered post. Here is the NY Times blurb and link:

A Pledge for Authors

Any author who signs a contract with the Christian book publisher Thomas Nelson Publishers must also swear to two religious articles of faith, regardless of the subject of the book. The company’s chief executive, Mike Hyatt, told Publishers Weekly that under a new rule that Thomas Nelson, based in Nashville, is calling a “content filter,” authors must agree with the Nicene Creed (“We believe in one God, the Father Almighty ...”) and Philippians 4:8 (“Whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure ... dwell on these things”). The rule will apply not only to writers of books on Christianity, but also to those of secular titles, like business books. JULIE BOSMAN

I think Ms. Viehl's response is hilarious. However, after you finish laughing, you really have to begin to think. My first instinct is to just ignore this. Inspirational literature is NOT my genre. But for this publisher that doesn't matter. Even if you write a secular title you must be a "sign on the dotted line" Christian?!

My next question is how will this affect business. Was this just a "ploy" to get their name in the news? Will readers boycott this publisher for his actions OR will he receive MORE business because "Christians" now know he's a man that they can trust? Something to watch closely, no?

Friday, December 15, 2006

I Just Love Blogger Too Much!

They just HAD to make this beta.blogger really COOL and easy to use. Screw it! I'm just switching my writing blog over here. It really is easier. It will take me a couple of days to switch over all my links so, PLEASE, be patient.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Opening the Door

Well, blogger has changed since the last time I was here. I just started my WRITING BLOG. I don't know what this is going to be. Whatever it is, I know it will be cool.

Keeping Character Journals

I first heard about character journals in Script Magic by Marisa D'Vari. In that book she sugggested writing a journal entry for each of your main characters daily. That seemed like a lot of work to me.

However, Lou Willett Stanek in So You Want to Write a Novel offered similiar advice. She suggests doing writing exercises from your character's POV. So that's two pings for the character journal/exercise route.

We all know three is the charm. PBW talked about character journals and posted a journaling excerpt. She also asked people how they get to know their characters and did her customary - comment on the post, enter a drawing thing. I was too late for the drawing, but I did look through the comments. Lots of good ideas.

I was probably hasty (read-LAZY) in my initial assessment. There's something to this Character Journal/Exercise thing, and I'm jumping into the deep end. I've started a list of websites that have writing exercises and/or journaling prompts that I can use...

These are just a few of the hundreds of websites that have prompts. While I like the idea of prompts, I'm not going to overlook the obvious ideas

  • asking what if?

  • pulling one, two or three words at random out of a dictionary, thesaurus, textbook, etc.

  • using a line from a poem or song

  • using a first line, last line or random line of text from a book

  • using a quote

  • using a headline from a newspaper or magazine

  • using a title

  • using a question from The Book of Questions

These are just off the top of my head. I'm sure there are many other sources that I'm not thinking of right now.

Will I post my character's journals? No. I tend to do a lot of free-writing in the early part of my story writing. I know that no one else is going to see it, so I'm free to go anywhere I want to go in the writing. I might start sensoring myself if I start posting character journals. I will DEFINITELY post the prompts I've used that day. Someone else might find them useful.

Borat Says

I was just at the Generator Blog...

and I found THIS! It's a generator! How cool is that?! Geez, I'm a geek!

Borat in cowboy hat.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

The Secret Lives of Books

I stopped by the Paperback Writer, who was justifying why we writers still waste our time writing books in this day and age, why we even bother because many just end up unsold and destroyed. Obviously the critics of books (not to be confused with book critics), don't read. I can't imagine having to defend books and writing. (Actually, I can; but that's a whole other story!) Luckily, we have her to do it.

She spoke about the secret lives of books, how besides the story inside the cover many books have a life and journey of their own. We never know who we are going to touch with our writing.

Hey! Stop laughing at me. I know that I write speculative fiction, I write romantic fiction, I write erotic fiction, and most times ALL of those elements are in the same "work in progress". That doesn't mean that my work can't touch someone. (Hey get your mind out of the gutter, I didn't mean touch someone that way! Geez, try and be serious for a moment...)

Anyway, she asked what books we thought might have secret lives. There are sooo many possibilities answers to that question. My answer was The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury. The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury

It's one of those books that made my mind start wandering and that eventually led me to writing.

AND THAT makes me wonder what books other people think have secret lives and what books have made people stop and wonder, think or ask what if?