Monday, November 30, 2009

A book for Christmas?

Well the turkey and fixings’ have been put away, brought out, reheated, put away again, and now have been thrown away. And it’s that time again. Christmas! Shopping, more shopping, and oh dare I say--shopping!

I’ve been reading quite a bit lately on helping your fellow writers out. Giving books as presents seems to be a nice way to do that. But if your son wants a new Ipod does it make good fiscal sense to buy him a set of books? I’d rather him read than listen to music, but will he? Or will they just sit on the bookshelf gathering dust while he complains about his buddy getting the exact Ipod he wanted?

Although I have some doubts, I’m on a mission to expand the minds of those I’d like to influence. I’m going to try to find the perfect book for each of my children. (Even the ones that don’t like to read.) No expensive sets, just one solitary book that I think will peak their interest. A good steam punk romance will do for the oldest. The youngest loves animals so something along those lines for him, and the others? Well I’ll have to do some digging and figure out which genre they’d most likely read.

If my experiment goes well, I’ll have the pleasure of knowing that this one particular present will be around for a while. After all, how many times will you read a favorite book? I have several in my library that I’ve had since I was thirteen. I still enjoy them. I wouldn’t even consider getting rid of my Wind in the Door, or any of my LOTR’s. And my Shanara series? Touch it and die!!!! (I don’t even loan that set out.)

If you decide to have your own reading experiment, here are some things you should know. First off, don’t buy used books. Writers don’t make any money off of used books. (Remember we have two goals here.) Secondly, if the book is part of a set, buy the first in the series. Third and most important, don’t assume. Look through each book. Just because your daughter loves the Twilight Saga, does not mean that other paranormal romances will be appropriate for her. I’ve read many that are filled with vivid sex scenes and although I enjoyed them, I wouldn’t want my thirteen-year-old reading them.

Well that’s it! Good luck! Should you decide to embark on this quest, let me know how it panned out.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Deciding between wants and needs.

I’ve been absent for a while. Sorry about that. (again.) Life took over and so many things were going on it was hard to choose between what I wanted to do and what had to be done. It’s funny how often that happens.

Today it’s raining. A dark dreary day that screams, “Grab a good book and read all day!” Except I really can’t do that today. There’s this blog that needed to be written weeks ago, I have a new book I seriously need to work on. And of course, there are agents to research and queries to send out. Not to mention I haven’t written the synopsis for the second book yet.

I have one free day this week. Today. My new story has filled my dreams for the last week or so. My fingers are twitching to hit the keyboard and allow the words to escape. So I’m asking myself what the smartest course of action would be. With book one on submission, and book two close to being submission ready, should I really take the time to work on book three? Or would it be prudent to complete the synopsis for two and send out more queries?

While I’m trying to figure this out, time is passing. They day is growing shorter. My gut says to do what the heart wants. Write. There is time for the other. I don’t have to get published this year. I don’t have to find an agent today. And I sure don’t have to figure out a way to break into the writing world this morning. I don’t have to write either, but I want to.

So for today, want supersedes need. Today, I’m going to allow myself the pleasure of putting words on paper. How do you prioritize? If want is the inner child, and need is the grown up version of your psyche, how often to you allow the inner child to play?