Monday, April 23, 2012

A Subjective POV on Subjectivity

Okay... Im getting a little crazy deep today, so hopefully you guys can bear with me.

There's all this talk in the writer's world how everything is so subjective. With getting an agent, reviews, landing a publisher, even beta reads... But Is it???

If good writing is subjective then why do we take courses, go to seminars, read books, etc. on how to write better? If good writing is subjective then is there any reason to get better at it? If this is the case, then isn't getting better relative?

Let me clarify.

I get the whole "We all have different tastes. What's good to one, is not to another." But isn't there a difference between taste and the quality of the product? A good critic should be able to separate the two, yes? Just because I don't like pork doesn't mean it can't be cooked to perfection. The phrase "Good writing is subjective" is usually referring to taste, not quality. So we must make a difference between "what you like" and "what is well done."

Also, there is a difference between "good writing" and "good story telling." Some of us are better writers than we are story tellers. Good writing can be both--but neither can stand on its own.

The difference between subjective and objective is a real issue with book reviews. It's why I rarely publish a bad review for a novel. There are some stories out there that I can't give a review to because it's so poorly written. But I can see how others might fall into the story and love it. That's when I choose to be silent and let the reviewing to someone else.

I don't believe that publishers think good writing is subjective. They expect a writer to grasp grammar, summon emotion, create realistic characters, unveil plot twists, hook the reader, bring the setting to life, etc.

I think that good writing is not subjective, but what makes a novel enjoyable is. Once you have good writing, whether you enjoy the story is what is to be subjective about. Or in other words: Good writing is not subjective--what *is* subjective is whether you like it or not.

Hopefully my point is coming across. Agree? Disagree? Id love to hear your thoughts.

*Oh! And dont forget that Tiana Smith’s awesome blog design shop give-a-way ends this week. So pop on over to her site and check it out!

**And I hope all of your projects are going well? Im still debating which WIP to tackle next... Ive tested the waters with both, am deciding which one Im more passionate about.

Red. Head. Out. :D 

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Hyperactive Writer?

So you write the words The End, close your word .doc on your screen, mail off your latest WIP to your dream agent and…

What do you do next?

Most might want to take a break. Read. Go for a bike ride. Or are you ready to dive into your next project? If so, how do you choose which story to tell next? Are you the type of writer that has tons of ideas bouncing off the insides of your skull at all times?
I’m not.

I’m a one-project-at-a-time girl. Doesn’t mean I don’t have a TON of stories to write, though. But once I’m focused on a project, I’m there. I’m absorbed. In it until it’s done.

Having just finished my WIP, I’m itching to start the next one. That excitement of delving into a new story is thick in the air. The possibilities. The fresh start. I want to do something different—something that will put me out of my comfort zone. I’m thinking a YA Historical Victorian (which I really think I could pull off) or even just a Contemporary that takes place in the harsh ballet world… (Which I wonder why I haven’t done yet, because that is SO my story!)

How do you choose? Are you one of those organized writers that keep a notebook of all your ideas? Do you work on more than one project at once? 

Are you a hyperactive writer? I know I want to be pumping out projects like Nyrae Dawn and Jolene Perry. These girls whip out brilliant projects in their sleep. They're machines. How many stories do you churn out a year? Or does it vary?

I know, lots of questions. But I’m curious!

Red. Head. Out. :D 

Monday, April 9, 2012

Are Writers Social?

I was texting with the lovely Cortney Pearson today and (with permission) I wanted to share this text:

Sound familiar?

Ever have someone knock on your door, only to invite themselves in and stay for a couple of hours chatting? All the while you keep glancing at your computer, legs bouncing, grinding your teeth, wondering when on earth your friend is going to leave?

You find yourself nodding, saying the “Oos” and “Aahs” in the right moments, keeping your face animated, but are dying to just dive back into your story? And then when the door slams you rush to your computer and curse that you’ve wasted so much time?

If you’re my neighbor, I’m not talking about you. *winks*

How many of you have a hard time socializing because you’d rather be writing?

In the mom/parent world, there’s this thing called cliques. Yes, they exist. I’ve never cared to be a part of them. I don’t know, I’ve never been a person that needs social interaction. I enjoy people, take pleasure from meeting other crazy breeds of people like myself, but I don’t seek it, don’t need it to thrive.

Most moms have play dates, park dates, stroller walks, IDK what else… Zumba? (Which is great, it’s just not for me) I’d rather be writing. Time is precious. And after giving as much as I can to the kids, my hubby, the house (okay, I’m kidding, writing totally comes before the house), I want to spend my time creating.

It fulfills that part of me that needs a release. And for some, the social is the release that people need. But when does it cross a line? Is it okay to be the social pariah in the neighborhood? Be the person everyone talks about because your blinds are always drawn and they never see you leave the house? (Yes, I’m exaggerating, but you get the point)

I know that balance is essential in all things, but does socializing ever seem like more of a burden than a fun thing? Granted, I’m usually happy after going out into the world and being sociable (But that’s usually because I’m studying people and behaviors to use in my stories)

Where’s the balance with you? Do you thrive on the social? Or are your characters enough company for you?

Red. Head. Out. :D 

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Nothing too deep or thought-provoking from me today...

And the blogging world releases a breath... 


I wanted to give two shout outs!

First, the lovely Leigh Covington, Mark Koopmans, Cassie Mae and I are celebrating a Blogiversary this next fall. But we need your help. We're going to do a Blog Hop together but there are too many crazy ideas!

So... we need YOU to VOTE! We've compiled a list of our ideas and and they're sitting right over there on that cool survey thingie that's over on my sidebar---------------------------------------------------------------->


We have a NEW blogger in town. And guys... she's amazing. Such a trusting friend and talented author. I bring you:

Nyrae Dawn

She just started her blog and needs a boost of followers. Will you check out her site and follow? She's definitely someone to be connected with.

Right now, Nyrae is promoting her story What A Boy Wants, and I can't *wait* to get my hands on it. I've read Nyrae's work before and she is fabulous. You can find her work here on Goodreads. 

So don't forget to vote, and check out Nyrae. And sending all my love to the crazzzzy A to Z challengers and all of you working on your WIP. I'm just finishing another read through now of my own WIP and I'm verrrrrry excited! Anyone else not doing the A to Z Challenge and feeling like a fish on the wrong side of the fish bowl?

Red. Head. Out. :D

Sunday, April 1, 2012

The Difference Between Your FIRST Novel And Your SECOND

With my first novel, I was pretty starry-eyed about the whole thing. I thought if there was passion, great writing, and a fabulous concept, I’d nail an agent like that. *snaps* After all, I’d watched my three closest friends get book deals on their first books with Big 6 Publishers and there wasn’t a doubt in my mind I couldn’t either. I almost expected it to happen. Cue wild hysterical laugh!

Man, was I deluded!

But don’t you think you need to be a tad delusional in your first stages of writing… If you weren’t, would you really jump into the process? I mean, no one enters this business thinking, “I’m going to write a book because I want to beat my head against agent’s and publisher’s doors just to see how long I can before I pass out.” (Well, I could be wrong) But I think we start because we want to create magic on the page, fulfill that part of our soul that needs to be set free.

Think back to your first story. Maybe you were a kid, maybe it was last year, maybe it’s today, but there’s magic to the first words you put on paper. (Regardless if it’s crap, there’s magic)

But now, with my second book, I look at it more clinically. I want to perfect this craft. Just like any talent. Most of you know I was a hard-core ballerina for years. And it takes YEARS to develop the muscles and skills with careful training to achieve perfection. Why would writing be any different?

Yes, I think that some have more natural talent than others, which will always be the case with everything, but the technique is still there. The tools are still the same with how to hone your skills and create a worthy piece of work.

Am I going off subject?

Anyway, my point is, I know my second book is better. But what’s interesting is I don’t feel the same intense passion about it. Do I love it? Yes, but it’s different from my first. Is it because all first novels are different? Is it because I’m looking at it more like a job? ß Which is great. My passion for writing is still the same.

Where are you in the journey? Maybe you can explain better what I’m trying to convey. I think the process is fascinating. I love it. And I can’t wait for a year from now when I’ll have even a better grasp on everything.

Red. Head. Out. :D 

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