Saturday, March 01, 2008


The attached picture is from a contest where people had to create art using a single piece of white paper. The entries were wonderful. I chose this one for today for two different reasons. Pick the metaphor you like or offer a new one:

1. We help each other, we offer a hand, an ear, a heart...
2. Sending a book out into the world is like giving a piece of yourself. It could be argued the book is reaching out to save you or that you are letting it go...

I guess this is the last challenge check-in for awhile! Everyone seems to have met or redirected their stated goals and I haven't heard anyone start something new. I will say that I sent my book yesterday, unsure if it's any good, but that's par for the course. Though there is still some work to be done, the Cast of Characters, for instance, and galleys on the previous book staring me in the face, I feel a kind of hollow sense of loss, I guess it's post book blues. I always feel like my writing career is over at this point, and though I have been told (by the Postmistress for crying out loud!) that I ALWAYS feel this way when I send a book, I have no real memory of having done so.

So, maybe someone out there wants to start a new challenge????


Alice Sharpe said...

checking the e-mail response box...

Genene said...


This is indeed a week of accomplishments for our chapter. So glad your book is on its way out into the world, but sorry to hear you have post-book blues.

Cyber-hugs and chocolate to you! I'd offer other suggestions for celebrating, but I told Eli I wasn't going to razz her any more. :)

Alice Sharpe said...

Genene (and Eli) OMG! I just realized I cleaned the toilet this morning!


Lori Barber said...

Alice, congrats on sending the baby out the door.

I've passed the straight-stretch in my quilting projects and I can see the final turn insight. I want to make one more quilt before the baby comes which pushed the finish line back a bit, but I'll work on that quilt at a slower pace, piece by piece, block by block. I don't need to finish it until the baby's arrival in June.

I've dabbled a bit in my book and I'm anxious to do more than peek through the window at my characters.

As for a new challenge I don't have any in mind except to write and check for accountability.

Lori Barber said...

Checking box.

Danita Cahill said...

I am so going to clean my toilets today, whether they need it or not. I'm sure they do. I feel like I'm missing out on something by not whisking out the bowls. Ha!

Big congrats to you, Alice for getting your newest darling out the door. There's 50 ways to leave your lover. I'm glad you found a way that works, even if you are feeling a little empty inside. If it makes you feel any better -- which of course it won't -- I'll be feeling a little empty inside myself in about 6 weeks. Ha!

Let's see. I still have to input the changes on my book, but yeah, the revisions are done. Now comes the continued submission process. I stayed up late last night trying to decide which editor at which publishing house is most likely to love my book, and which houses will take unsolicited submissions. Not an easy task, but I definitely narrowed it down. I may send to a few more agents too, although they aren't too interested once a book's been shopped around...

Also revised and tweaked my query. I'm pretty happy with it now. And did a slight tweaking on my 6 and a half page synopsis this week, only to discover that most editors want 2-3 page or 2 page, or 3-5 page synopsis, which means more tweaking and lots of cutting. Dang it.

I also polished an essay I wrote this week and sent it off to the Sunday paper to consider for their Writer's Corner section. Mentioned to that editor, who I don't have an in with, that I'm open to freelance assignments. Like Paty said, keeping a hand in the local newspapers is a good way to keep my name out there, at least within a couple of counties.

So my goals are to finalize my partial package -- sounds like something a beta guy might do, huh? -- and submit.

Alice Sharpe said...

Lori --I bet while your quilting, your brain is running amok! The old saying is "Idle hands --" But I've found just the opposite. When that part of my brain is busy, the little devils in my imagination come out to play. So, I wager when you walk through the door into your book and stop peering through the window, you'll have lots of ideas.

Elisabeth Naughton said...

ROFLMAO, Alice. Boy, are we a couple of party girls or what?!

Congrats on finishing. I agree with the postmaster - you have a habit of forgetting the ups and downs. ;)

Go do something fun to celebrate. You earned it!!!

As for me and the challenge check-in - I'm starting something new!!!! (Eli waves like a wild-woman. LOL)

Today my goal is to skim through book one and read the sections that pertain to the character I'm going to write about in book three to try to get into his head. Then tomorrow I hope to outline my plot ideas and come up with the "whys" of why things will happen. If I get this book roughly plotted out in my head this week, I'll be doing good.

Alice Sharpe said...

Danita, LOL on the Beta thing.

Scrub toilets at your own risk, girl, as your biggest production at the moment is six weeks from being ready to hit the world.

It sounds as if you've been very busy with writing and writing related chores. I wish I knew more (as in anything) about marketing so I could help you but I just don't.

You can cut that synopsis. If you need a second opinion, I think it's been long enough now that I could read it fresh again and would be happy to help.

Alice Sharpe said...

Eli -- Once you get an outline for book three will you run it by your agent before writing???

Did she like book 2?

My bowls sparkle. For fun I am writing the Cast of Characters and changing the bed sheets. I also dusted.

alice (who needs a life)

Paty Jager said...

Okay, after I wrote a long, interesting comment, the darn blogger wouldn't let me publish it. And all I said dirty was I didn't dust when I cleaned my house! Sheesh!

Anyway, Congrats Alice on getting the book out the door. I can't wait to read it after watching you act it out the ending at the retreat. ;)

And Eli- count me in on another challenge. My goal is to have five proposals (2 contemp with synopsis and first three chapters and three historical westerns for a series with synopsis and firt three chapters) ready by the end of June.

And Lori get those quilts done so you can join the challenge fun!

Genene, don't you have a new book you're working on? Come on- join us!

Danita, I think getting queries and synopsis out to editors is a good challenge.

Paty Jager said...

YEESH! Sorry for all the bad spelling and estra words. That's what happens when you type fast because you don't want to forget what you already wrote and lost!

Alice Sharpe said...

Paty. thanks for the congrats everyone. I'll join the challenge, too. Need to get some new ideas into Intrigue. You and Eli figure out who the challenge moderator is going to be!

Meanwhile, sounds as if you are going to be a busy girl the next few months...

Karen Duvall said...

That's great news, Alice! I understand the blues after sending off a book.

I did next to no writing last week, just work stuff. Stress! And I received two rejections on Knight's Curse (sniff!) and another request for a partial (yay!). No requests for a full yet, which I'm kinda glad about because I'm still revising.

I want to write the second book in the series, but I'm holding off. If this one goes no where, there'd be no point. So I'm contemplating writing a 10-15K word short to submit to Silhouette Nocturne. I like to write short stories now and then and I think this would be a fun interim piece between book projects. I'm afraid my brain might blow up if I tried filling it with a lot of big story stuff right now.

My husband cleaned the toilets last weekend, and all 3 kitty litter boxes. I had a date with my house to clean it this weekend, but I'm afraid I stood it up. I've got too much other stuff to do! Like helping judge The Sandy writing contest. It's a contest for a writer's organization in Crested Butte, Colorado. They found me through Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers and I just couldn't say no.

Paty Jager said...

Well since Alice is handing off the reins to the Challenge Check-in and Eli has done it before, I guess it makes it my turn.

At the moment we have Eli, Alice, Lori, Danita, and myself! Anyone else going to jump on the challenge wagon? All you have to do is let us know every Saturday if you attaining your goal. It's just making your writing accountable to someone other than yourself.

Come on, you know you want to jump on here!

Kendra said...

If all you need is another warm body, I can do it! My goal for the week is...6500 words on my WIP. That would put me at 35K, more than one third through the first draft.

What is checking the box?

Alice Sharpe said...

Kendra, checking the box refers to that little box down below the comments that says if you check this, responses to what you have written will be emailed to you. Only it doesn't say exactly that. Look below the comment box! And hop aboard the challenge box, honey, there's room aplenty!!!!!

Paty Jager said...

Welcome Kendra! And I'll add you to my little challenge list!