Friday, January 31, 2014

You know you're a writer when... Ignore Your Inner Critic

Mission accomplished several times now, yet that inner critic still likes to take me for a ride and buck me off into the Mud of Doubt... but I'm no longer afraid to get up, hose down, tie that inner critic to a fence and carry on without it. 

Eat that, Inner Critic!

What are your methods for shutting up your inner critic?

Monday, January 27, 2014

Writing Retreat with Beverly Birch

I signed up for what sounds like an amazing event for May of this year, organized by SCBWIA Writing Retreat with Beverly Birch. It will take place on the beautiful island Frauenwörth on the Lake Chiemsee in Bavaria. Check it out:

We'll be staying at the convent (the large structure in the front) - an honest-to-God Benedictine convent! How. Cool. Is. That?!

Of course, the location alone doesn't a writing retreat make. Leading the event will be Beverly Birch, both author and editor, whose latest novel RIFT was nominated for the Carnegie Medal. The main theme will be "Grab your reader by the throat and don't let go". Included is a one-on-one critique with Beverly on the first ten pages of your novel/work-in-progress.

The topic and chance for a critique are all kinds of perfect because the beginning of the novel I'm currently revising isn't quite working... which was pointed out to me in the workshop I attended in November last year. I've tried fixing it, and it's definitely better than it was. With the help of my alpha readers, it's going to get even better. But will it be enough to entice a reader to read on? I'm excited to be able to find out in May.

Ten writers.
One published author/editor.
In a convent on an island, during the merry month of May.
Talking about nothing but writing for two and a half days.


Friday, January 24, 2014

You know you're a writer when... Writing Every Day

It's hard to feel like it at 5:30 in the morning. That's when I get up in order to write for an hour before I go to work. But all I need nowadays is a blast of cold water in the face and a cup of coffee. That flips a switch in my mind and what follows is the most productive hour of my day, writing-wise: between 500 and 1000 words in that one hour. And no matter what happens during the rest of that day, I always have that boost of knowing I've already been productive. 

It only took me about ten years to get to this point, but hey - better late than never. 

Who else out there is honoring this commitment? 

Thursday, January 16, 2014

I guess I'm moving to LA... Not!

The Bitter Script Reader explains in this short webshow why it's essential to move to Los Angeles if you want to earn a living as a screenwriter.

It makes sense, but still... Aww man!

I absolutely admire those who take such drastic measures to fulfill their dreams! You go, guys!

But it's not for everyone. The question you have to ask and answer for yourself is: how bad do you really want it? (My personal answer: definitely maybe not bad enough)

Bad enough to uproot your whole life, move away from family and friends? (Yes)

Bad enough to dig into that nest egg, small or large, you've painstakingly built for yourself over many years? (It's not much, but yes)

Bad enough to work crazy-schedule shifts as a waitress/shop assistant/taxi driver/other low-paying-job? (Not with any motivation, but yes)

Bad enough to work your butt off without knowing whether it will ever amount to anything? (It's what I'm doing right now, so yes.)

Bad enough to stand in front of those important executives, even though you think you're not really the type of person to "work a room" and "be engaging"? (Umm... maybe?)

Bad enough to push and dig, and keep pushing and digging, in the face of rejection after rejection? (Without the support of my friends and family close at hand? I shudder just thinking about it)

My guess: If the answer to every one of those questions isn't a resounding yes, then moving to LA with the goal of earning your living as a screenwriter will probably make you miserable. 

Personal conclusion: for now I'm going to stick to novels and German screenplays; I might be able to sell those without having to move halfway across the world. 

How far would you go to make your dream come true?

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

December and 2013 Writing Tallies

I was pretty busy again last month, especially considering I was on holiday until the 11th. I finished a German screenplay – yay – and started on a new novel. 

All in all, I wrote 26.655 words in December 2013.

Previous Tallies:

January: 19.675 words
February: 15.781 words
March: 19.215 words
April: 27.336 words
May: 49.403 words
June: 20.329 words
July: 33.900 words
August: 1.132 words

September: 15.100 words
October: 45.800 words
November: 7.305 words

Which means I wrote a total of 308.286 words in 2013. All within the first drafts of two novels, a full movie screenplay and a pilot episode for a TV-series.

Holy crap! O_O