Writing My Life

Now and Then


If you THINK it, INK it.

“Vomit and THEN clean it up.” – by Not-Sure-Who

I don’t really like the word “vomit,” but the alternatives are not much better. So when talking about getting words/stories down on paper, some writers call it “throwing up” words or “puking on paper” – POP?

I don’t mind “hurling words” or “word hurls” as there’s an element of assonance in those phrases. What do you think of “barfing up big ideas” or “upchucking info?”  Oh, and then there’s the lesser known term “ralphing” or “ralfing” – not sure of the spelling.

The point of all these sickening metaphors is the idea of purging oneself of the thoughts, ideas, details, and developments clogging inner creativity. Once all those chunks are splattered across the computer’s screen, the revisoinist’s clean-up can begin in ernest.

This is hard for me to do as I am a “clean/revise as you go” kind of writer, (not a domestic attribute, I’m afraid.) That process works for short pieces, but it can stop up the work when contemplating a novel.

So my challenge to myself is to write until I puke, hurl, or vomit – OR throw up 750 words a day, whichever comes first. (Of course I can’t pick up the gauntlet until I return from CA!)



So much to write; so little time.

“Writing became such a process of discovery that I couldn’t wait to get to work in the morning: 
I wanted to know what I was going to say. “

~Sharon O’Brien    

I have three NOVEL ideas – I know that’s a lame pun, but it’s the truth. The first idea is a work of historical fiction, and I’ve written 2 chapters. I stalled because I decided that I needed to research the location, which just happens to be in Great Britain. That is out of the question, and so I just stopped writing.    

But now I have an important reason to continue this project as I am attending the Young Readers Annual Writing and Illustrating Workshop, and it starts next week. May I say I am PUMPED? Nervous, too, but VERY excited.     

Because my historical fiction piece is the only one of my ideas that have made it onto paper, I think I need to go with it. There’s lots of information I have researched in books and online, and I can continue. For example, I located shires on Google Map and was able to see highways and byways, shops and cottages, etc. Albeit, these are 2010 views, but let’s face it, some of G.B. remains much the same. Of course, I’m guessing, having NEVER made it across the pond to visit our cousin’s homeland.    

Moving on.     

I also want to write at least ONE page for each of my other ideas because the workshop is also sponsoring a First Page Contest for Writers and Illustrators. If I have first pages for all 3 ideas, perhaps I will receive peer feedback that will help me decide which to submit for the contest.     

Besides my historical fiction idea, I am toying with recreating an incident I witnessed while teaching 7th graders some 14 or 15 years ago. It involved 2 tragic situations experienced by two wonderful girls. While the circumstances were sort of similar, student reponses to the girls and their ordeals was vastly different. And I think that would be interesting to explore. 

  • Why did their peers treat the girls differently? (There are many possibilities.)
  • How did the girls cope with their individual tragedies?
  • How did they respond to their peers’ attentions of lack thereof?
  • How did their peers’ reactions affect the girls during that time period and the years following?

I think these are good questions to get me started. What do you think? Is your curiosity piqued?    

My last idea is to rewrite a classic novel. NOT like Pride and Prejudice and Zombies! I may have chuckled at that “revisionist” telling, but I couldn’t bring myself to force another classic author to roller over in her grave. No, my idea is to write a modern version of children’s classic because the world of 2010 bears some similarities to certain decades of the 19th century.  This means, however, that I need to re-read the classic as it has been years.     

So, with all these fun ideas swimming around in my brain, I jump out of bed each day, eager to start writing. BUT start writing WHAT? Historical fiction? Realistic fiction? Classic update?  

And then there is THIS question? What is currently popular in young adult fiction – besides vampires? Any thoughts about all this? PLEASE share! 

So MUCH to think about!