This article has mostly good news for writers of self-published books.
Category Archives: Archives 2010
One of the first exercises I tackled when I started writing was to create my own obituary. The point of the exercise was to get me to think about what I wanted to accomplish with my writing. Why was I writing? How did I want to be remembered? What kind of stories did I want to leave behind? That was many years ago and I wish I had kept the exercise because I can’t remember what I wrote. I’m sure I wrote something like “her books are entertaining and character driven” because I always wanted to see my books on the same shelf as Charles Dickens.
This may be a depressing topic for the month of December when things are festive and people are thinking about Christmas, but because it is the end of the year, it is a good time to reassess goals accomplished, and maybe set some new ones.
I’d like to share a story about my friend Mary Inman. Mary joined the Twin Falls Chapter of the Idaho Writers League back in the early 1990s, about the time I left my job at the bank to pursue writing full time. Mary was one of those interesting characters who had more ideas and experiences to recount than she had hours in the day. She was health conscious and walked everywhere she could. She was usually bubbling with energy and ideas. Always interested in life and history, Mary created Gramma Maudie, and from her rocking chair gave many presentations about life on the Oregon Trail. Mary organized walking tours of the original Twin Falls Village, and wrote a book about Twin Falls, Idaho, called Twin Falls Centurybook, 1904-2004.
Not only was Mary interested in history; she was also interested in conserving the planet. She started a xeriscaping club that met once a week at the Twin Falls city council chambers. She did all the legwork, sent out notices, arranged for knowledgeable speakers, organized fieldtrips to the South Hills to view native plants, and xeriscaped her yard to set an example.
Mary was the kind of person who wasn’t afraid to take a canoe down the river alone, or sleep in her car. Instead of shying away from strangers and “No,” she’d extend her hand and ask, “Do you have my book yet?” She was positive, full of energy, and probably had no idea how many lives she touched.
Mary Jane Inman died October 27, 2010, at her home. She was 82. At her request, her body was cremated and her ashes were scattered. Also at her request, no service was held, nor did an obituary run in the local paper. She was a pleasure to know, and I will miss her.
As 2010 draws to an end, take time to reflect on what you stand for. You don’t have to write an obituary, but it would be a good time to determine what you have to say, and what you want to leave behind.
Like my friend Mary, I want to be remembered for making a difference. I want to create characters that live long after my demise. I want readers to ponder my poetry after the books are closed and put away.
What would you like people to say about you when you are gone? Decide how you want to be remembered, and then get busy and do the things that will make it happen.
I know that many of you aren’t screenwriters, but here is an interesting take on being a prolific writer. The title of the article is ‘The Key Ingredient to Screenwriter Success.’ The website belongs to Marvin Acuna, a producer who offers help on screenwriting. Whether you agree or not, it is something to consider.
Here is a nice article on how to write one. Nathan Bransford is an author and former agent.
In addition to writing, I also love movies so what’s better than movies about writing? Here are just a few of my favorites. Please share yours.
Shakespeare in Love
Something’s Got to Give
Sleuth (the old one)
So after a hard day at the computer, sit back and watch one of these.
Patricia Santos Marcantonio
Today is the start of National Novel Writing Month and the challenge is to write a novel within the month of November. It’s a fantastic way to get that idea that’s been rumbling around your head onto paper. You just charge ahead every day and at the end of November, you have a great start. It’s fun and free. So what are you waiting for.
“The easiest thing to do on earth is not write.”
– William Goldman, Academy Award Winning Writer of “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” and “All the President’s Men”
This quote was sent to me in a newsletter and it is so very true.
Now we have to do the hard thing — and sit down and write.
–Patricia Santos Marcantonio
At the state conference held in September 2010 in Coeur d’ Alene, Idaho, the Idaho Writer’s League named Bonnie Dodge 2010 Writer of the Year. Dodge earned the award for the significant body of work she published in 2009 consisting of articles for newsletters and websites, and as co-author and graphic designer of the anthology, Voices from the Snake River Plain.
Here is a good article from Writers Digest about why you may be getting rejections. So before you open a vein, read on…
How do you write words that say one thing, but are really saying something else?
This is an excellent article on that subject.