Of Writers & Wroters: Pressing in to your Future or Settling Somewhere in your Past

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Where do you find the inspiration you need to make it to your writing desk faithfully? Is it your financial obligations pushing you forward? Is it your desire to prove everyone wrong who told you that you wouldn’t make a living as a writer; those family members and childhood friends who still crack little sarcastic jokes, asking when you’re going to get a ‘real job’? Are you in the fresh young love stage: you’ve recently discovered your passion for writing and have been caught in the honeymoon phase? Or, have you been writing long enough to realize that there’s nothing else able to bring real pleasure to your life than releasing the stories that are constantly being birthed inside you?

When I moved to Wichita Kansas from Northern California, I had a really hard time acclimating to the midwest culture. Over the next few years I became pretty impressed with Wichita’s music, art, and Independent film scene. Being excited about the art scene—and being the social butterfly that everyone says I am—I was invited to several Writers groups and I jumped at the offers.

Unfortunately, these groups didn’t bring any encouragement to me as a writer at all. In fact, after ‘hanging out’ at these so called ‘Writer’s Groups’ I ended up depressed with nothing to show for all the time I’d spent each week at these meetings. I wasn’t being encouraged to write. I wasn’t being encouraged to push myself; any encouragement I gave to the groups, to press on and believe that their best was yet to come, was shot down. I soon realized that:

(1) At these writing groups there wouldn’t actually be any writing happening

(2) There wouldn’t be any talk or challenging of each other to write

(3) Everyone was more than satisfied to live in the memories and stories of the few things they had written and had published somewhere in years long past.

The ones who had invited me to these groups, and those who filled the chairs in the quaint houses and local coffee shops where they met to tell their publishing stories from the ‘Good Old Days’—a time and place, within the stories of past moments. A place that I am not willing to live my future in—were all wonderful people. I love to sit and sip on a mug of hot coffee or tea and listen to their stories. I still do it today. I couldn’t, however, do it any longer as part of a ‘Writing Group.’ They were not writing groups; they were all reminiscing/talking groups—which were great for hanging out and reminiscing and talking. Not for writing or becoming better writers.

In a recent post, Gary Bizzo (www.garybizzo.com), shares an interesting quote from one of his friends. A quote that has been rolling around in my mind all morning:

“Some entrepreneurs are emotionally tied up in their smallness.”

Although Gary was using the quote to make a point about the potential that many small business owners miss out on because they’ve allowed themselves to find comfort in the ‘safety’ of what they are used to; the comfort zone of present success.

They’ve become satisfied living within the unsatisfying refuge of what they’ve already accomplished; giving themselves to the fact that thought that they’ve done their best, there’s nothing else to give, and they’ve accomplished all they are going to accomplish.

I don’t fit in with a group like that. You don’t fit in with a group like that. Those Writers (or I should say, Wroters) won’t be having cups of coffee or tea at 4 or5am—eyes barely open, still half dreaming—to continue working on their latest WIP; to edit pieces from the day before; to start their morning writing exercises; begin their routine submissions process, or—if like me or any number of literary Jedi out there—juggle the insanity of all-of-the-above.

Tenacity, Confidence, Addressing a Real Need.

These are what the patent specialists (www.2innovative.net) call “Key Concepts” when patenting business ideas. The same is true in the life of a writer.

  • TENACITY, to go against the flow; against the whispers and little cutting, sarcastic jokes; and against the temptation to find a home among the ‘Wroter’s Groups’ living in yesteryear. Tenacity to keep writing even when technical issues and computer crashes cause you to lose hundreds of thousands of words. Ouch, yes, I know and it’s happened to me too many times as well. That’s why God created Google Drive, iCloud Storage, BOX, Microsoft OneDrive, DropBox, and the Calitso it guys [ok maybe God didn’t create them but they can all be your literary salvation when your computer crashes.]
  • CONFIDENCE in your personal passion as a writer. The kind of confidence that propels you towards your computer, tablet, pen & paper, or typewriter every day to create the kind of literary magic that you do. It also takes confidence to respect your work enough to stay with it through edit and submission.
  • ADDRESSING A REAL NEED is at the heart of your talent. Humanity isn’t happy. Everyone is looking for happiness. Everyone is running after it as fast as they can; though no one is quite sure where to find it. Stories, books, novels, movies, comics, graphic novels, television shows and series, etc., ect., – these are the momentary escapes which, no matter how bad the economy is, continue to become more and more popular—and even more so when times are harder on people—because people want escape. People need their temporary escapes from reality to cope with a life that they’re not happy with. You and I are the writers, artists, filmmakers, who dream up and create those escapes.

Our creative talents and abilities create the alternate realities and escapes that fuel the mental vacations keeping the masses from becoming infected with the ‘crazies.’

For me, this is more than enough inspiration to meet my computer every morning over coffee. This is more than enough reason to keep romancing my Muse, to keep faithful with daily edits and rewrites; more than enough reason to keep submitting regardless of the rejections slips and resubmissions. With each published work we share another opportunity to offer hope and momentary relief to our fellow friends and family of humanity.

What inspires you to write?

What inspires you to keep meeting that computer each morning?

What inspires you to honor your heart, respect your purpose, fight for your freedom to be a creator?

I’d love to hear from you.

Cheers to you, Writers!

-Sam

@SamuelWConnelly

www.SamTheWriter.com 

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#RiseOfTheWriters :2013-2014 The Year of The Writer

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#RiseOfTheWriters 2013-2014  

We were excited to hear words very similar to these come from Quentin Tarantino at the beginning of the year. This year has very much been a year for writers. What’s more exciting, is that the rest 2013, and looking into 2014, it only appears to get better and better for the Writer.

#RiseOfTheWriters – It’s a social movement. A call to writer’s by writer’s. A move to encourage writers to be who they were made to be. A move to share encouragement, to motivate each other to write and submit, write and submit, write and submit. There are industries, literary journals, trade journals, editors of magazines, news groups, greeting card publishers, filmmakers, and Publishing Houses, all asking for new materials, new writers, new ideas. It’s time now for you to answer.

There are great writers out there. We read their works and see their new books advertized all the time. Yet the more I travel collecting stories and sharing stories; the more I connect with quiet-coffeehouse-writers and secret writers the more I’ve met many many prolific writers. These are truly passionate writers, gifted, experienced in the literary form.

I’ve had the great pleasure to sit down with many wonderful writers who find themselves writing for so many different reasons. Some write because they cannot stop writing. Some are so passionate about their literary masterpieces that they cannot dream of doing anything else. Most have other full time jobs, but are compelled to write. Some no longer see themselves as ‘A Writer’ although they find themselves scribbling on breaks, late at night, or just because.

These Writers may not be published. Some were published years ago. Some stopping trying to have their works put in print because of a few rejections. Yet, they write. Why? Because they are Writers and Writers must Write, it is in our blood.

However the Moment of the Writer is here… The Planet Needs You!

#RiseOfTheWriters is a call to Writers to awaken to this Moment. This Moment is ours. There’s magic in this Moment. There’s a need in this Moment. There’s an open door into the infinite in this Moment. This Moment is mine, it’s yours.

There’s a Moment that has opened up to us Writers. A Moment where our Muses’ are bidding us to come to the dance floor again. To dance between the pages and create Moments for those – the Readers – who are calling out for a Moment of relief, a Moment of escape.

#RiseOfTheWriters is a networking of SuperHeroes. Those REAL superheroes who, like Gods, create Characters, places in time, planets, other species. Like Gods, creating words in sentences, phrases, stanzas, paragraphs, articles, and poems which reach deeply into the souls of mankind and release emotions.

#RiseOfTheWriters is the signal light in the night, the shout from the front lines, the CHARGE to you authors, journalists, poets, song writers, and Lovers of the Muse to pick up your pens and keyboards and start romancing your Muse– to start making Love to your Muse to start filling pages.

Where are you Greeting Card Poets, Song Writers, and Copywriters? Where are you Novelists, Screenwriters, short, flash, micro-fiction Aficionados? Where’s you Fiction-lit, Creative Non-fiction, Horror, Scifii, Romantics, Thriller, Mystery, and Inspirational Writers?

#RiseOfTheWriters is an invitation from this Writer to you, Writer. An invitation to get completely drunk and wasted on the intoxicants of your literary Love, your Muse– and make something happen. Will you lose it with me? Will you write and submit like men and women on fire? Like Titans, who have just remembered who they are, and Awakening to themselves again?

This is your Moment. This is our Hour. This is a call to an Awakening of the Literary Kind. To join with Writers all over the world – to encourage – to share knowledge (of industry needs, proper formatting, submission tips etc.)  – kind works – motivation to keep writing and submitting and highlights of successful moments?

I’m In.

Are You?

#Fight2Write

#RiseOfTheWriters

Let me know your in. What’s your passion? What do you write? HashTag #RiseOfTheWriters and soundoff with what you do and lets know that You’re In. I’d like to be an encouragement to you and will need your’s as well.

My Twitter is @SamuelWConnelly find me – help me find you.

 

HashTag (#) #RiseOfTheWriters to share What you do, and share highlights, and connect with other writers from around the world.

Example:

“ @SamuelWConnelly: I am poetry, fiction, short fiction, horror, thriller, scifi, etc. I’m IN!!! #RiseOfTheWriters ”

Are You In Need of help (Writing or Industry Questions) then HashTag (#) #Fight2Write with your question- and Writers with the answers will respond – just be ready to offer the knowledge that you may have to help another Writer.

Example:

“ @SamuelWConnelly: I’m looking for a place to submit my short dark fiction ‘ArborDay’ 4,032 Word? Who should I submit to? #Fight@Write ‘

or

“@SamuelWConnelly: I need help formatting my story (or poetry collection,etc.) #Fight2Write

or

“@SamuelWConnelly: This Writer’s Block is freakin kicking my butt. Help #Fight2Write

There are many literary journals, editors, publishers, filmmakers, businesses, publishing houses, greeting card publishers, trade journals, etc., that are looking for your literary masterpiece.

And with so many wars, the financial, political, & religious fights, and humanities need for an momentary escape; a mental vacation from all the crazy– your particular ability is being called upon.

Let’s gear up – pen in hand…and fly.

SamTheWriter

Signing Out — but not off

“Write like you believe that you’re saving the Planet”

                  – Me

Do you have a Writer’s Page? Please share the link.

I’ll be Highlighting other Writer’s Pages, Blogs, Twitters, FaceBooks, etc. too.

As many resources as possible so that we have maximum opportunity to succeed.

You can also find my My Mistress Muse Poetry Blog here.

I am having www.SamTheWriter.com updated too so it’s not just about me, but filled with resources for Writers and Connecting Writers with Writers, editors, publishers, literary agents, and a large collection of places to submit your various works.

You Can also find and connect with me on Facebook or Twitter here.

Novel Writing Tip: SCENE Writing

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NaNoWriMo is under way and your fingers are all over the key board pounding away. Then at some point, if you’re like me, you get stuck and no matter what you do, you feel that you just can’t move forward because this piece is so crucial.

I want to share with you a quick tip on writing your novel that will help you move forward, without that piece done. This way you don’t get stuck, get discouraged, and give up.

SCENE WRITING:

Ok, so I know that not everyone works like this, but if you’re like me when it comes to writing then you see your whole story as a movie, in your mind.

Sometimes when I’m excited about my current WIP, and I’m telling a friend about it, I will actually say “And then in the movie” and I’ll get a funny look from them, “So did you write this or watch it?” They say. “Oh I’m writing and I hope you have the option to read and watch it in the future.” I reply Smile

Here’s what I do.

1. I’ve written down the bones of the story. The basic, skimpy outline.

2. Then I create a fold with each main character Titled “ Max’s Bones”, “Sharon’s Bones” “Kyle’s Bones”

3. In each other those folders I’ll have two more folders. (1) Character sketch (2) SCENES

4. Then I get writing. I read over my outline and as I’m reading a specific SCENE will hit me. Something that I know is going to happen in the book at some point some where.

5. I open the proper SCENE FOLDER and create a document called “What ever the scene is”

EXAMPLE FROM MY CURRENT WIP

As I was at work today sitting at my desk drinking some coffee, I turned around and faced my big dry erase board, and for some reason a tiny scene from my book played in my head. It was a scene where I could see a character frantically writing on the white board, trying to explain a theory about all the craziness happening in a way his love interest would be able to understand.

I quickly opened my IPad, took out my wireless key board, open up my novel writing app  ‘Storiest’, I found the WIP Novel, then the Bones Folder, Then the proper Character’s Bone Folder, then the SCENEs folder and titled a new document THEORY OF SWITCH EXPLAINED.

I started with these words exactly:

SCENE:

And I started describing the movie clip I watched play out in my head.

Remember, that you can always go back later and change things, clean things up, but for now…you need to write.

One of the big reasons that I love SCENE writing is because as I write more and more scene’s more answer come out to help with all the areas I got stuck on earlier.

Another awesome things about SCENE writing, is that so of the best twists come out as you write random scenes.

So if you are stuck, trying to start, or just needing something different to do to refresh everything, give SCENE WRITING a try.

You know, one of my favorite movie series is the Bourne series. I often thought, ‘how in the world did he write that? What a freakin genius.’ And then I watched an interview where the writer said, that all he started with in my mind was one scene, it was the scene in the first Bourne movie when Jason is in the café with the girl, and he starts telling her that he has no clue why he knows every how many cars are in the parking lot and each of their plate numbers, and who has a gun, and all this info.

He had one great scene in his head that he wrote out, and it morphed into an amazing a super successful series.

If you have any idea of any single part of your story, start there, and write it like you see it in the theater of your mind.

Hope this is helpful.

Now I’m off to writing some scenes that I’m excited to get on paper.

SamTheWriter

Signing off.

NaNoWriMo Writing Tips

Ok, so I normally spend more time on my blogs, but since this month I am cranking out 50,000 words with thousands of other NaNoWriters all over the world this month, I am going to make my blogs posts short, but sweet.

The tips I will be throwing out this month are not all for everyday writing. These tips are most geared towards those of you completing a 50,000 word novels.

If you are not familiar with NaNoWriMo (Nation Novel Writer’s Month), I will write more later, but for express info go to http://www.NaNoWriMo.com.

Ok let’s get into it.

Short and Sweet.

Tip 1 – You have a story in you that needs to be told. Just start writing.

One of the things that really help me here, is writing SCENES. If I’m not sure where to start my story, since I see my stories like a feature movie in my mind. I think about the movie and scenes from it and then grab my paper, computer, IPad (this year) and write – SCENE: And I’m off, creating a scene. It doesn’t matter where in the Novel this scene, or short story, fits. What is important it that a piece of your story is written.

Tip 2 – Don’t let anything stop you…Keep on Moving!

There are a several things that will come up that will cause you to want to stop writing.

The Characters names do not matter right now. If you are stuck on your character’s name, then write down one of the first names that come to mind just to keep yourself moving. YOU CAN ALWAYS COME BACK WHEN YOU REACH THE FINISH LINE.

Dialog Does Work. Don’t let your character’s dialog do you in. Today I was writing with a fellow author and she got really frustrated and said that she didn’t feel like her dialog felt ‘genuine’ . I reminded her that we have 30 days to produce 50,000 words. Go ahead and skip it for now and move on. Make a note that reminds you what you want the dialog to be about. Then move on and come back later when you are ready.

Writing Yourself Into That Dreaded Corner. This happens a lot. Solution. PRESS ENTER TWICE AND MOVE ON. You may not know where that scene is going, but you do know where another scene going, so step out of the corner and start somewhere else.

Tip 3 – Your Story Has The Answer. I have found that many times as you push on with your story, the story itself will answer your question, or work out the problems that you had to skip. Trust your story.

Remember, KEEP MOVING FORWARD, don’t stop for anything. Write what you do know, skip what you don’t.

HAVE FUN

SamTheWriter,
signing off