Welcome Wednesday guests for November:
11/05 Maya Corrigan's Five-Ingredient Mystery, By Cook or By Crook.
11/12 Death by Blue Water, a scuba-diving adventure-mystery by scuba-diving author, Kait Carson.
11/19 Susan Van Kirk--Three May Keep A Secret.
11/26 Tagged for Death, a garage sale mystery by Sherry Harris.

Gloria Alden has released the fourth book, The Body in the Goldenrod, in her Catherine Jewel series. It's available in print and in eformat. Here are two links to the book: Amazon and Kobo. Put it on your "TBR" or Christmas list!

Carla Damron's latest project, THE STONE NECKLACE, a literary novel about five lives that intersect, and are forever changed, by a senseless accident, has been picked up by Story River Books for publication in 2016. Story River is an arm of the University of South Carolina Press and is under the leadership of editor-in-chief author Pat Conroy. Congratulations, Carla!


A great stocking stuffer, Chesapeake Crimes: Homicidal Holidays is available at Wildside Press or Amazon. This anthology includes short stories by WWK bloggers Shari Randall ("Disco Donna") and E. B. Davis ("Compromised Circumstances").

KM Rockwood's short stories will appear in two anthologies. They are: "The Lure of the Owl" in Swamp Mansion and Other Dark Stories, to be released as a ebook, (great cover, KM!) and "Aunt Olga and the Werewolf" will be included in the third Creatures, Crimes and Creativity anthology released by Intrigue Publishing.

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Friday, January 20, 2012

And then you go on

And Then You Go on

When I got my Masters Degree I went back to work the next day to find that nothing had changed. I thought, “Now that I have an advanced degree, it will be easier to do therapy.” It was not. The people who were difficult to work before the degree ceremony with were just as difficult afterward. Shouldn't they appreciate the time and effort that had gone into getting my degree? Maybe they should but they didn't.

I had some of the same “magical thinking.” i.e., irrational ideas, about my Ph.D. I put in additional time and effort, managing to rack up considerable debt, very little changed in my life. Nothing changed about my work. Friends of mine in the program, who had been selling off their furniture piece by piece to squeak through financially, went to a car dealer with proof of their degrees. Before they had the pieces of paper that showed their degrees, the dealer would not sell them a new car. With the documentation, the dealer accepted their rust bucket, which was coughing up its carburetor and sold them a new car at a ridiculously high interest rate. I noticed people returned phone calls more quickly to Dr. Bull than they had to Mr. Bull. That was about it.

I wrote a 100,000 plus word novel. Nothing changed. Nine years after the idea for the novel came to me, the novel was published. A few things changed. I could call myself an author, although I later met unpublished people who used the same word for themselves. There is no clear demarcation so I don't disagree with them. I tried to sell the book. Ha! I tried to understand the voodoo of Amazon's rating of sales. Triple Ha!

I started attending the Great Manhattan Mystery Conclave, working with a critique group and seeking professional editors, which did improve my writing. I started to learn from Sisters in Crime and Guppies. I used Mystery Writers of America as a resource and found other information on line. I continued to write, won a few prizes, and started the process over again. I joined the Border Crimes chapter of Sisters in Crime. I put three novels up on Kindle. A small publisher talked to me and brought one of them out as a paperback. I won a mysterious photograph of the month contest by Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine which edged my earnings from approved publisher just above the requirement and became an active member of Mystery Writers of America.

And now its time to go on. The more I achieve the more I change the goals I have for myself. It's great to win an award, to get something published, to have more than one title up at a time. I have enjoyed all of those achievements, but even though I believe and have evidence to show that my skills are improving, the process of working as a writer has not changed a whit. I sit down in front of a screen, type something crappy and then I have to tighten it with a red pencil, check to see that I did not change the characters names mid plot and send it through the refinery. Not much has changed in the day-to-day activities.

Now I go on.

10 comments:

E. B. Davis said...

I ran into Beth Groundwater while having lunch during a conference last year. She assured me that writing, even after you are successful and have a series, is the same as before you were published. Her words hadn't suddenly turned golden. She writes with her same critique group, and she goes through the same agony with every book.

It's just you and that blank page.

Warren Bull said...

I've known Beth for years, She is a very good writer and a wise woman.

Morgan Mandel said...

Too true. I suppose there are some authors out there, but I can't think there are many, who can sit down and write something clever and not have to do any edits. As for me, I did tons of edits before sending Forever Young: Blessing or Curse off to my editor, then got it back, followed her suggestions, and found even more to apply. Whoever said being an author is easy?

Morgan Mandel
http://morganmandel.blogspot.com

Warren Bull said...

Morgan, I don't know any writers who do not struggle and work hard. When we succeed we jut move the target a little farther along the road,

Gloria Alden said...

It's one of the reasons I didn't pursue a doctorate - the expense, and the only thing I felt it would give me was a Dr. in front of my name. Not too important for a 3rd grade teacher at the time. There were other and better ways to pursue my writing career. I've learned a lot from the writers I've met and heard at conferences, and know that hard work is what it takes - some skill, too, but mostly hard work to succeed as a writer.

Warren Bull said...

Gloria, I agree. Hard work plus persistence.

jennymilch said...

There's always something more to do. Thanks for the post, Warren. You are a friend to many in this community, and that's part of why you have so many friends. Your list of organizations reads like a resource list for emerging writers.

Warren Bull said...

Thanks, Jenny,

All the organizations have been helpful. I can brag the I was the first lifetime member of Sisters in Crime.

Anita Page said...

Warren, this post says it all. It's about the writing, and what we accomplish by silencing the inner critic and sitting down at the computer every day.

Kaye George said...

When I have gripes about being an *author* my husband reminds me--This is what you wanted. I need to keep that in mind. Yes! This IS what I wanted. For better or worse, kinda like marriage. :)