Friday, July 11, 2008
A Few Thoughts
I have a couple things to blog about today. An author, generous with her time, offered to read the opening chapters to my new NIP (Novel in Progress). On my homepage, I have two novel offerings, and beneath the synopsizes I have 'Author Comments'. I wasn't 'blue' but I was feeling somewhat discouraged. You know those thoughts we writers deal with...'is my book any good? Maybe the reason my submissions are getting rejections is I suck'. Those kinds of crazy things.
Terri sent me back her comments and here is what she said. I know she hadn't set out to stroke my ego, but was clearly honest in her assessment of my work.
For my website:
From the first chapter, BESIDE TWO RIVERS promises to be a very compelling story. It is beautifully and sensitively written, with masterful descriptive passages. I was immediately drawn in by interesting characterizations in an evocative setting. Wonderful handling of romantic elements. Great portrayal of the historical period. Love the opening poem. I look forward to reading the completed book!
Then she added some words of encouragement to me that lifted me out of a slump.
Off the record, I must say that your writing is so far superior to a lot of what I see in many historical fiction books currently being published. It's tight, not overworked or 'sappy', with judicious placement rather than overuse of adjectives and adverbs, and believable dialog, rather than what I so often see.
I'm sharing this not to toot my own horn. Rather I want you, as a writer, to do your best to think positively about your work. Give yourself a peptalk if need be. Think about the areas where you are the strongest. Also stick to your own style. Don't try to write like everyone else. Don't overwork your manuscript. And lastly, write first and foremost because you love to write.
Next, I've been getting a lot of comments from readers about the artwork I use on my blog, home site, and on Stepping Stones Magazine for Writers. Many of us use music to inspire us. I do, and I listen to a classical radio station out of England when I am at my keyboard. The soaring musical scores cause my heart to flutter and the words pour out. Art can does the same, but in a gently subtle way. Portraits especially, give me a visual of characters, place, setting, and time. They aid in research for clothing, hairstyles, jewelry, etc. I've include on this blog just a few of my favorites.
Posted by Rita Gerlach at 8:57 AM