Tuesday, September 11, 2007

To-Do Tuesday: Savoring Success

Welcome to today's edition of To-do Tuesday. Eli's challenge continues to inspire me, and I hope it's done the same for you. The pleasure of reaching a small goal is what keeps us going, and it's the backbone of this column. My in-box is very lonely lately (other than all the emails asking where this baby is already . . . ). Remember, you don't have to meet a huge goal to brag, nor does the goal have to be publicly significant. If writing 100 words a day for a week is HUGE for you, then we want to know about it!

Savor each success, each victory along your path!
MWVRWA Meeting September 18!

Our September meeting will be at 7:00 p.m. at Salem Public Library on September 18, 2007. Our guest speaker will be Lisa Pulliam. In addition to being a witty blogger, Lisa is also a PR guru. Lisa will be sharing all she's learned doing PR full-time for both large and small entities. She's got great ideas that will energize your efforts, no matter if you're published or unpublished! Please join us & email one of us if you are new and would like more information.
Reminder! Sign up for Whodunnit!

The September Meeting would be a great time to turn in your conference registration for our October Conference, Whodunnit: A Writer's Guide to Working a Crime Scene. This conference should appeal to both romance writers and writers of mystery/suspense, so feel free to invite your non-RWA friends along! If you register by September 18, you pay a reduced fee. Not going to be at the September meeting? No problem! We also take pay pal & mail-in registrations!

As an added incentive, we've got goody bags with free books for all attendees, and a record number of raffle baskets, many of which feature critiques from published authors! The day promises to be the most fun you'll ever have discussing capital offenses!
Perfectly Good Nanny Gets Second Perfectly Great Review!

Paty Jager's newest release, Perfectly Good Nanny continues to make friends with the critics! Paty received four lips from Two Lips Reviews, and once again the reviewer raved about her characters, noting she "is astute in weaving a realistic love story with characters dancing the timeless tale of love."

Congrats, Paty! Your success with the reviewers reminds us that the most important part of success as a writer is our connection with the reader.
Elisabeth Naughton Finishes WIP

She's finished! She's finished! Not only is she making mincemeat out of her challenge, but Elisabeth Naughton reached another goal over the weekend! She finished her WIP, dropping the last of her blood onto the page and writing "The End!" She fought hard for this WIP, and her determination to push through and grow as a writer inspires us to leave our comfort zones and seek new heights as writers. Her next goal? Moving onto to a new WIP. She's on a roll!
Scenes and Sequels Workshop

Beloved instructor and author Patricia Kay will be offering her scene/sequel workshop on story construction from October 8-31. The workshop will focus on story construction, and at $25, it's a bargain! One past attendee raves:
"Out of all the writers I've listened to over the years, you're the one who
has been able to explain things in a language that I can understand. Since I
first heard you speak about Scene & Sequel on the AskAnAuthorAll e-mail
loop, the aspect of PLOT has really been clicking for me. I'm not quite
there yet, but I'm getting close to being able to put the whole story
structure thing together." --- Sheila
Sign up today! This would be a great workshop for anyone gearing up to do NaNoWriMo (novel in a month) in November, or anyone else seeking direction on a new WIP or looking to revitalize an old one!
Question of the Day: What are you proudest of?

Eli's infectious joy over finishing her WIP reminds me that the sweetest successes are the ones that we fight the hardest for--the ones we doubted would happen, the ones we gave whole chunks of our sanity for. These successes aren't necessarily the most visible. A writer might be prouder of sticking to her writing schedule during a time of personal crisis than she is of becoming a best-seller. You may be prouder of the WIP that never sold than you are of the 10 that do. It's a very personal thing.

And of course, we want to know the answer--what writing success are YOU the proudest of? Which little victory was the sweetest for you? And why?

Enjoy your week, keep making progress on your goals, and continue to send me your news and updates!


Karen Duvall said...

Tough question, Wavy. I've had so many great little surprises over the years that it's hard to pick out the best victories from among them. None were terribly big, but all were very special.

Selling nearly 60 books at one booksigning was definitely an awesome experience. I felt pretty victorious that night, I can tell you. Another would be the delightful surprise at seeing my little novella rank as the #1 Bestseller on The Wild Rose Press website. By the way, it's still at #1! Not that I'm checking. *cough*

Elisabeth Naughton said...

Aw, shucks. Thanks, Wavy. ;) Finishing this ms was definitely a personal victory for me. There were many times I considered scratching the whole thing and starting fresh with something new. Yesterday and today while I was editing, I realized why I wrote this book in the first place though. I love the characters and the story and that - ultimately - is what kept me going when I was stuck or thought I'd never reach the end or had lost so many eyelashes I looked like I was going bald of facial features.

I live for those other little victories that might not seem like much. Hearing my CP say, "Wow! I love this!" or my agent reassuing me this WILL sell, it's just a matter of time. Or the hubby leaning over and kissing me and saying, "Way to go. I knew you'd finish this one even when you thought you wouldn't."

That all said though... man, oh, man, I really hope the new wip is a gimmee. ;)

Karen Duvall said...

Eli, I so envy you! Finishing a book is such an incredible feeling. Your eyelashes must be very relieved as well. 8^)

Alice Sharpe said...

Kudos to you, Eli, for finishing your book. Shall I point out that your 1,000 a word goal thingy showed up right as you were hitting the home stretch? That some might think that was a form of...er, cheating? That writing a thousand words a day when the heavens have opened up and a silver ladder has descended isn't quite like writing a thousand words a day when the clouds are thick and the skies are angry and there is no ladder, rope or stairs?

No, I will do no such thing! Pats on the back.

What am I proud of? Well, Wavy, you are right in your wisdom that the small accomplishments can mean the most. Briefly making the Walden's Book top ten list last summer was a lovely moment and being told by the senior editor of my line that it had happened made it even nicer. I'm not used to making lists and such and it was good.

Starting a book and feeling it click and knowing that sucker is going to sell feels great. When it follows a dry spell or block, the feeling is sublime.
Having my husband be proud of me is special, too, as are compliments from friends. I was looking at web sites with my daughter the other day and we looked at Eli's and my daughter said, "She has three of your books listed on her web site, she's a good friend, isn't she?" That made me feel pretty damn special, too.

How about you, Wavy? What are those times of success you savor?

Alice Sharpe said...

I am quoting an email from Eli here so those of you who think I was too hard on her won't judge me too harshly!

"Loved your response to me on the blog. Shhhh...you weren't supposed to point that out!!! I suppose writing the beginning of the new book doesn't count either because it's the BEGINNING and hence easier...but wait...if that's true then you should be flying too as you're writing BEGINNINGS."

See, she dishes it out, too (esp since I am currently lucky to make 2 words a day...)

And btw, Karen, congrats on your continued #1 status!

Paty Jager said...

Congrats, Karen on staying at # 1 with the Brooch story!

Congrats Eli, with finishing your book and starting a new one. Sounds like the edits are going great!

Alice, what an awesome thing! Top Ten at Waldens!

I think the best thing for me so far is just having people say they can't wait for another book. And the fact I am starting to enjoy talking to groups about writing.

Also when my CP said, "Wow, I didn't see that coming," when she critiqued OIP. That made me giddy. I think I finally figured out how to write a twist!

With each book I am gaining knowledge. And that's what it is all about!

so far no words today. But I hope to hit at least 1000 before I go to bed, though I'm finding that when I write in the evening my brain doesn't shut down when I go to bed and I'm starting to become sleep deprived! ~thanks Eli~ LOL

Genene said...

Eli, CONGRATULATIONS on finishing your WIP! I am still slogging away at mine. It's going well, but beginning to feel like the book that will never end. Sound familiar? LOL!

Oh, Karen! Congrats on your continued #1 status.

Alice, hitting the Waldenbooks list is definitely something to be proud of! Thank you also for sharing your words of wisdom and perspective. You are a class act!

Paty, so nice to hear you are hitting your stride at promo opportunities!

Gonna do a quick check of the rest of the blog and e-mail, then back to my WIP. Nice to take a break and "chat" with you ladies!

Elisabeth Naughton said...

Moi? Dish it out? I think I just spewed coffee all over my laptop. (Alice, I'll get you for that.)

Okay, okay. I can see her point. That the oomph to finish the last 25% of a book is different from writing the sagging middle. However, having toiled with this ending more times than I can count, I will say there is something about forcing yourself to write when you don't want to that makes writing that much easier (hence, the 100 day challenge).

As for what I said to Alice about beginnings - I retract that comment. That was for Alice only because she's uber-writer and her beginnings always seem so effortless. Beginnings (for me) suck, usually. But this time (for some unknown reason) I think I got it right on the first try. We'll see...

(knock on wood)