Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Employment Changes

How to Decide Whether You Need to Change Your Job
My husband recently made the career change from sales to manufacturer representative. While that may not seem very much of a change, the amount of work involved in changing from one company to another is quite complex. He had to delicately let his customers know that he would not be servicing their accounts while at the same time arrange the perfect time to tell his boss. Once the old job was finished and the contact information was returned to the company along with the company laptop, he has to then prepare for the new job. Since he is representing a specific company, he had to upgrade his wardrobe, clean out space in the garage for new product and so on...

As you can see, there are a lot of details involved, most of which are pretty boring but exciting to the person involved. I like to use these experiences as reference for my writing. By living life longer, more people will be able to relate to the circumstances I write about.

Is it a stressful time? Sure, but by experiencing emotions like stress, I can become a better writer. There are so many aspects of change that can spark an idea for a conflict or plot of a story. It's the "what if's" that provide materials for writers. What if the new job has a corrupt boss? What if the job requires us to move? What if he doesn't make as much money as hoped? You get the idea, I am sure.

What are you going through that can help you write better or simply relate to other folks better?

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

NPR Contest

One of the ways a writer can become more established in the writing market is to enter writing contests. Now there are hundreds out there but I was pointed in the direction of a really fun one set up by NPR, National Public Radio. Here is the link for any of you other writers that might be interested, Three-Minute Fiction. It will be a good exercise to come up with a really good story in just 600 words!

Fall is here and with that comes all the chores of changing seasons from raking leaves to changing out the closets and preparing for winter. It is a nice change and I like the new opportunities. Stories I write in the fall tend to reflect the weather since I can experience the nuances first hand. Have fun with your writing and take your laptop outside and enjoy the cooler temperatures....

Friday, September 14, 2012

The Missing Cyclist

Today I was finally able to finish a story I have been working on for a few weeks! I am almost ashamed that it took me so long, but at least I did. The story is listed as, The Missing Cyclist and will be available on Amazon as an electronic download within a few hours of writing this post.

I hope to be writing a little more frequently as my last child is away at college, but I am surprised at how many little things pop up each day that need my attention. Maybe I have to find a way to hide away...not really!

Once I have a couple more stories finished, I will be able to format my second book. Now I need to figure out a title for it...

Here is a short excerpt from The Missing Cyclist;



 ...I tried to drive slowly so I could look down the roads that branched off the main street down which he typically rode. Thoughts of anger and irritation at him prevailed in my thoughts, but really, I was worried. About half way through the course, I started to wonder if he had come this way at all; I couldn’t remember if he had told me where he was going to ride today. Realizing how hard it would be to find him without knowing which direction he had headed, I finished the route he liked to take and then drove through some of the other streets around town. After thirty minutes of fruitless searching, I headed back for home, hoping that he would have returned in my absence.
He wasn’t home either. I double checked my cell phone to make sure he hadn’t left me a text, and sat pondering what I should do next.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Free Downloads this Sunday!

A Short Story
Well this coming Sunday is the second Sunday of September. Who cares? Well, I offer a bunch of free downloads of my stories on Amazon. Each month on Second Sundays I offer my stories for free. For the time between midnight on Saturday until midnight on Monday morning, you will see the price listed next to my stories as $0.00.

So mark your calendars and grab a few easy reads!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Life's Experiences

Many times as a writer I am tempted to use stories from my life. Unfortunately, often these are not as exciting to other folks as they are to me so I need to embellish them. When my friends read my stories, they tend to be kind and wonderful in me telling me how great the stories are. However, now that I am writing to an international market where most of the readers do not know me, their criticisms are a little less careful. I appreciate this even though at first it seems harsh. By reading their candid remarks, I can learn and adjust.

I experienced a great Labor Day weekend on a small island just south of Boston. Everything seemed almost too idyllic with the full moon at nights, cool temperatures during the day, delicious food, whale watching, fishing, etc... Funny that perfect can seem almost boring! Anyhow, on Sunday afternoon, we were hanging out on the beach watching the boat traffic when we saw an old red dinghy being rowed into the inlet by a man with a white ponytail. He seemed out of place so we watched him a little longer than usual. We were very surprised to see him row up to the lobster trap buoys and start cutting the lines. It was bizarre that he would commit such a crime in bright daylight with people all around. Of course, our hosts were quite irate and jumped quickly to call the authorities.

Sounds like the beginning of a story, doesn't it?!