Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Stuff and Things

I feel like I've been neglecting this wee little blog. In reality it's just that I haven't posted in, what, four days? Certainly that doesn't rock the writing world, but I feel a little less... involved. I think, in part, I can blame my "vacation brain," whichs still hangs around after our trip two weekends ago. And then, too, we've had an incredibly packed schedule, trying to do all the doin' before school starts. Somehow none of it's conducive to blog post idea after blog post idea; even though recently it had been my habit to churn posts out daily. Maybe once school starts, for which I'll be sending one off to kindergarten *sniffle*, I'll get myself lined out into a better routine. I'm hoping, anyway.

I did start on my non-fiction project. I've looked high and low for how one goes about it, and all signs point to doing your idea and market research first, gathering all the data into your proposal (and writing an overview, etc.) before writing the book itself. So I've taken those initial steps, started down that path. Though the whole kit and kaboodle is something I've never done before, I've found it a worthwhile challenge. And the brainstorming continues.

Likewise, my second novel has still been tugging at my brainwaves. And I love it. I love that there's potential in more than one project; that there are ideas which could take me different directions, depending upon my daily mood and goal. We shall see where they take me.

You may remember we're remodeling our house. It's an A-frame and, along with many other changes and improvements, we've extended the balcony off the Master loft. This new, bigger space will be my writing/reading nook, and I can't tell you how excited I am to get myself set up there. It's still probably a month out, what with everything else we still have to do, but once I'm all settled and decorated, I'll post pictures. It'll be my "special place." Did I tell you how excited I am? (Plus I get to go shopping for a few new pieces to fill it!)

I've been reading voraciously the last few weeks. I've always loved reading, and done it often, but I've been in a particularly good mood to sit down, paperback in hand, these days. Usually I prefer reading just one book at a time, though I've got three going now. The first is Freezing Point by Karen Dionne. She's the aunt of my friend Melanie [I decided today, Melanie, that calling you my "writing buddy" isn't sufficient anymore ;)], and is touted as "the new Michael Crichton." How totally cool is that? I've taken part in Ms. Dionne's virtual book tour. Here's my picture, taken in the chicken house at the Missouri State Fair, five-dollar hat to boot. Yee haw!

I've also begun Anne Lamott's bird by bird. So many people have recommended it, particularly once they've found out I write, and so far it's not the least bit disappointing. I have yet to finish Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert, which I started months ago. I've loved it so far, but fell out of the mood for it, and it's really just a matter of picking it up again.

And my last stuff (or thing, if you're keeping track), is that I haven't heard word from any agent in almost two weeks. (I say this not to whine, just to state the fact.) So, the count remains...

11 rejections, 13 queries out


Melanie Hooyenga said...

Aww. *sniff* Hugs for my friend. :D

I love the picture! The hat is perfect for the setting, not what you said at all.

I hope you like Bird by Bird. It was one of the first writing books I read and it really resonated with me. You know how I feel about the other two. ;)

Finally, I can't WAIT to see pics of your new space - how exciting. Will you also post pics of the little one when she goes to kindergarten?

WendyCinNYC said...

Thanks for keeping us updated. It's been tough for me to keep up with my blog, too. Kids, vacation, Olympics--it's all taking up brainspace.

Nice photo, cowgirl!

Anonymous said...

Don't worry about churning out a post every day. We all have lives and they are always more important than the words we put down on our bloggers/wordpresses/websites.

Best of luck with the non-fic and I'm sure you'll rock it out. I agree with the feeling that having more than one idea is a big thing because it can solidify you as someone who can sustain a writing career.

Bird by Bird is a fantastic book and just like everyone else, recommend it. It was required reading for one of my writing courses in college and one of the very few books I didn't sell back to the bookstore after graduation.

Woohoo for writers!

Janna Leadbetter said...

You guys rock!

Yep, Melanie, I'll be sure to post a picture or two from the first day. I'll let you know about Bird by Bird.

Wendy, are your girls gearing up for school? ...hee hee... my girls called me a cowgirl the whole day of the fair. :D

Aaron, thanks! I really appreciate your words of encouragement.

Anonymous said...

How do you like Freezing Point? Anything that's similar to Michael Crichton is something I would be very interested in reading!

Joshua said...

great update cuz. cant wait to see the pics of the renovations, and the post about your book being puiblished :)

Janna Leadbetter said...

dube - Freezing Point's characters and building plot have drawn me in from the get-go. I have to admit, some of the science and environment stuff (okay, a lot of it) is beyond me, but it's still digestible. And my husband's going to love it!

Thanks, Josh. *hugs* :)

Joshua said...

thanks J, got some funny stuff coming up :)

colbymarshall said...

I definitely go through spurts where I hear from agents A LOT, then not at all for a while. So, hopefully you're rounding that corner and getting to some news!

Janna Leadbetter said...

I've noticed that, too, Colby, just in the short time I've been querying. I hope I'm on the up-swing, too!

WendyCinNYC said...

My girls are pretending that school doesn't exist. School, what school? Although my eldest misses her friends a lot.

I, on the other hand, am SO READY to go back to the city.

Janna Leadbetter said...

I can't believe you're not home yet, Wendy!