Conferences, Conferences, Everywhere…

GOD IS SO GOOD!

The ACFW Annual Writer’s Conference is in Beautiful St. Louis this year and I am beyond excited!

The only reason I am going to conference this year is because GOD PROVIDES!

 

Only a few weeks ago, I was certain we could never afford to go and I was heartbroken but trying very hard to buck up and let it go.

I wasn’t terribly successful but my wonderful family didn’t let on too much… that I was annoying them to death.

Then mum sprung the surprise on me! We were going! God provided the money we needed to make it happen and it was just in time too! Another few days and we would have been saying no again – because the registration would go up by $100!

GOD IS SO GOOD!

So, instead of being heartbroken, I am now in a mad dash to get my manuscript (MS) as perfect as I possibly can before conference so it’s ready to be shown to agents and editors and anyone else who might happen to want to see it!

And a HUGE Thank You to VistaPrint for having such AMAZING deals on Business cards! If not for their deals, I wouldn’t have business cards to pass out to the aforementioned agents and editors and fellow authors!

 

So now I will go back to my MS and keep polishing! I might even find time to work on book 2 of the series!

 

Good night and God Bless!

 

©Rachel L Miller 2014

Once Upon a Time…

Recently I was chatting with a friend who told me she is on a vacation from writing and… before I go on I want to say something else here

(YUP! Writing ADD strikes again)

Isn’t it funny how often we writers leave it at “a friend”?

I have discovered that “a friend” is usually code for someone who has some pretty incredible news they aren’t ready to share with the rest of the world yet. Every so often it is really code for – they are telling us something deep & dark about themself and it’s not something they may ever be comfortable sharing with the world.

And I say writers but I’m certain we’re not the only ones who do that.

Anyway, so I was chatting with my friend and it struck me as so odd when she mentioned she was on a vacation from writing. Which made me think – how does a writer take a vacation from who they are?

However, like everything else in life, it makes perfect sense really. Like snowflakes, no two people are exactly alike. That means in everything, including why they do something and how they do that something.

Years ago I made some decisions about my life and how I was living it.

In my bio, I mention that I’ve been writing since I was very young. Well that is true.

But…for a very long time, after high school and divorce and doctors telling me I couldn’t have children… the voices went away. For a long time, I couldn’t write anything.

In the years since my AMAZING son was born (clearly God had other plans!), I have finally come back to the place where those stories showed themselves to me again.

So I wrote a book and then I wrote another book and then I queried agents. And then I cried because every single one said “No Thank You” or just “No” and even in some cases just ”      ”

But I kept writing and I finally realized that God had a plan for my writing. I just wasn’t listening. HE has a plan and it is going to be so much better than absolutely anything I can think of so I am now editing my third book (1st in a new series) and waiting for God to show me His plan!

And who knows… maybe some day I will get to the point when I relish a vacation from writing. But I doubt it. Because now that I finally have that part of me back, I feel whole again. I feel real again. I feel sane again (that probably sounds odd since I’ve already admitted that I hear voices).

And I hope that I never lose that part of me again.

And whether I ever get published, self-publish or just write for me and my family and friends – I am beyond overjoyed to have what I like to think of as my connection with Heaven working again!

GOD BLESS and Good Day!

©Rachel L. Miller 2014

On Conference and NOT finishing Camp NaNo…

Irony that this article is coming out so soon after my quippy post about ADD and writers.

No – I did not finish Camp NaNoWriMo. No – I did not get to the word count on my story that I set for myself as my goal for the end of July. No – I still have not finished filling in holes on that particular story.

Yes – I went to a conference at the end of July. No – that is NOT the whole reason I did not finish Camp NaNo.

I did not finish editing and I did not reach my word count goal mostly because I spent those two weeks deleting more out of the story than I put back in.

And trust me when I tell you that what was deleted, NEEDED TO GO! Remember that I wrote “A Mother For Leah during NaNoWriMo last November. It was a struggle to even get to 50,000 words in that month… but I did. And I had more than a few unnecessary words in that document.

Fast forward to March of this year – I started editing, polishing, refining – and it took a LOT of work to get to where it was by April, when I put it aside to prepare for my first conference.I was confident that it was good enough to give the first three chapters to someone but it was far from done.

Fast forward again to May, when I had to put it aside again in order to pack and then move to Nashville.

June was spent mostly unpacking, settling in and trying to figure out how to find the most basic places near us – places like Starbucks, Lifeway and Barnes & Noble!

Then came July and, though I was late to the party, I joined Camp NaNoWriMo and got serious about my editing again!

And then I deleted… and deleted… and deleted some more. And I have taken out easily twice what I’ve put back in.

Yes – it is a tiny bit disheartening. Yes it is frustrating. Yes I am ready to scream at times.

BUT…

I AM NOT DONE! I am not quitting! And I am not going to let anything stop me from finishing this book! And then going on to the next!

So, I return once again to editing and I am going to make a conscious effort to stop complaining about how much I delete because – like I said – it NEEDED TO GO!

 

Good Day and God Bless!

©Rachel L. Miller 2014

Don’t ALL writers have ADD… or something like it.

Recently I read an interview about up and coming author Dawn Crandall (which you can find HERE). In it, Dawn talks about writing while dealing with ADD. Now I have my own ideas about ADD, ADHD and all those other handy diagnosis but I’m not going to get too far into that here.

I’m simply going to say… if ADD is just as everyone thinks, wouldn’t it make sense that almost every writer in the world has it!

Common adult ADD / ADHD symptoms: Trouble concentrating and staying focused

Adults with ADD/ADHD often have difficulty staying focused and attending to daily, mundane tasks. For example, you may be easily distracted by irrelevant sights and sounds, quickly bounce from one activity to another, or become bored quickly. Symptoms in this category are sometimes overlooked because they are less outwardly disruptive than the ADD/ADHD symptoms of hyperactivity and impulsivity—but they can be every bit as troublesome. The symptoms of inattention and concentration difficulties include:

  • “zoning out” without realizing it, even in the middle of a conversation

  • extreme distractibility; wandering attention makes it hard to stay on track

  • difficulty paying attention or focusing, such as when reading or listening to others

  • struggling to complete tasks, even ones that seem simple

  • tendency to overlook details, leading to errors or incomplete work

  • poor listening skills; hard time remembering conversations and following directions

Zoning out – Don’t we do that constantly? I know I do, every time an idea comes to me for a good story, every time something I see reminds me of something in my story that needs tweaking or adding. I go to that place in my head where the characters live and I “zone out” to everyone real around me.

Extreme distractability – Didn’t we just go over this one? Everyone we meet, everything we see, everywhere we go – there is SOMETHING that distracts us and makes us think about THE STORY… or gives us a new idea for a story… or reminds us of something we didn’t do when we were last immersed in THE STORY!

Difficulty paying attention or focusing – Does it seem to anyone else like this list is repetitive… and redundant? Paying attention, focusing… well, except for the current story in our head. THAT we never have trouble focusing on.

Struggling to complete tasks – Not THE STORY, never THE STORY but everything else that we’re supposed to do throughout the day… YEAH! Especially when we get sucked back to the computer to work on THE STORY!

Tendency to overlook details – Can anyone else say THANK GOD for spell-check! And proofreaders! And critique partners! And ARC readers! And then for double and triple checking the manuscript!

Poor listening skills – I’m sorry, what were you saying? Because I was thinking about THE STORY! And again – I KNOW I’m not the only author who does this!

 

So it begs the question – is it just me? Or do all Authors have ADD… or something like it?

 

©Rachel L. Miller 2014

BTW… The scientific info above came from HERE.

Packing, Moving, Unpacking and… Finally getting back to it.

April 11th –

I posted a special sneak peek at the Prologue of “A Mother For Leah”

 

And on May 6th –

I announced that I was approaching the finish line – on my final edit before querying.

 

However, between April 11th and May 6th, we found out that we were moving. And initially I did pretty well keeping to my schedule. I wrote each evening before bed. I got to the point where I was ready for the final edit. I was doing very well.

But…

If you’ve ever moved then you know, as it gets closer to the deadline, it gets more and more difficult to find time for anything other than packing and cleaning.

And so I put the laptop away. I packed and cleaned and then we moved. And for over a week, I did nothing but unpack and put away – because locating things like socks and plates and shampoo was my first priority… as it really should be when you move.

Now…

The boxes are not all unpacked but most of them are. And I am determined to get back to my poor neglected manuscript.

So back to the laptop I have come.

The finish line is not as near as it looked a month ago but it is still in sight. And I am running for it!

Pray for me…

 

GOD BLESS YOU!

 

© Rachel L. Miller 2014