All 14 AMELIA COLE covers so far…

I just really love this screen grab from ComiXology.Amelia 1-14

Writing, Just Can’t Help It

I love to write. It’s so fun. Creating a story, whole worlds sometimes out of nowhere, just using words. Lines and squiggly things — letters — put together to make words. It’s kind of amazing… and weird. And ridiculous.

And often really hard.

Hm… I hate to write sometimes. When I’m racking my brain to come up with a plot or just something interesting to say. Writing is all well and good, but you have to write something worth reading, right? But lots of people have different ideas as to what is worth reading. Heck, I don’t even know why I read what I read sometimes. I guess if it’s something that someone is willing to stare at until all the words run out, then it was worth writing, right?

Do I have something to say? Well, yeah… I mean, maybe not always some amazing truth or some passionate cause or occurrence that I feel really needs to be expressed, that might really resonate with a reader or whatever. But just thinking something is funny or wacky or might make someone laugh, maybe brighten their day — that is worth it, too, right?

Of course, after writing one has to get the story in front of the eyes that will be doing the reading. The internet, blogs like this one and whatnot, has made that much easier. Still not effortless, though. I used to think that being published in print was the end goal. If I write something that some company is willing to put on paper and bind together and make into a book — boom. Success! I’m done!

Not true. Sure, some writers reach a certain point when the publisher or an agency or magical fairies will take care of the getting the work out to the readers for them, but that’s rare. And even then, lots of authors blog and Tweet and set up interviews and appearances and tour on their own to let people know their work is out.

I guess it’s never as simple as just writing until I hit “the end” and then that’s it.

Honestly, this has become the hard part. How do I get the word out effectively without becoming a pest? And might all this time talking, blogging, Tweeting, Friendstering (I kid) about my writing be best spent actually writing new stories?

It’s all so confusing. Hm… and perhaps not worth writing about, really. Oops.

Writing… freaking writing. Crap. I just can’t help it.

Cabin Fever, Job Worries, and… SCIENCE!

Good god… when is the last time I left my apartment? I don’t mean for a walk to the nearby grocery store for milk or whatever. I mean really went out, did something either productive or fun or funductive (combining words can be fun)… It’s probably only been four days or so, but it feels like FOREVER. Yes, I’ve made decent use of the time, getting some work done, but, really, I’m going stir crazy!

Why am I trapped in my apartment? Well, I suppose I’m not technically. First there was the crazy LA rain that made me want to just stay in, and now that it’s sunny again, I’ve been feeling under the weather and figure I should take it easy and let my body heal via drinking beverages with vitamin C instead of alcohol, getting decent sleep, and just generally taking it easy. I predict by tomorrow I’ll be feeling back to normal… at least I hope so. Right now I’m so antsy and bored that it’s making my skin itch. Ack! Just… TRAPPED.

Continue reading

Writing Is So Dang Hard!

Writing is way too difficult for me – when one considers the fact that I claim to be a writer (when not claiming to be a robot superhero). Some folks just have so many damn ideas and don’t have time to get them all out. That fascinates me. Oh, what a problem to with which to valiantly struggle!

When I was younger it was different. I remember in junior high school, maybe seventh grade, we had creative writing assignments. The teacher, Mrs. Smith (who always had a large cup of soda on her desk… how I wanted some of that soda… I often imagined it was Mountain Dew), gave us a minimum word count for each story. I don’t remember what that word count was, but I always went over it. I asked if it was okay to do this, which seemed to surprise the teacher – and my fellow students. They had no idea why I wanted to write more than necessary. I wasn’t sure either. Then I thought about it and came to a conclusion…

Writing is loads of fun.

And it continued to be for such a long time. I started writing epic adventure stories loosely based upon me and my best friends Nate, Tadd, and Patrick (who also doubles as my brother)… well, based upon us if we were somehow vaguely descended from Sherlock Holmes, John Watson, and, strangely, Inspector Clouseau (which I misspelled “Clueso” – an accident at first, but then I decided to keep it that way because it was all “Clue? So?” … so clever).

The stories were not really inspired by the Sherlock Holmes adventures. I read Author Conan Doyle’s stories, and I had a ridiculous love for the movie Young Sherlock Holmes (still do, kinda), but the stories I wrote were really just putting me and my friends (or absurdly exaggerated versions of us) in crazy adventures that barely qualified as mysteries. Lots of non sequitors, silly action, and goofy dialog – mostly done to make us all laugh.

Handwritten stories in spiral bound notebooks was my technique. Sometimes the length of a story (or “book,” as I called them) was dependent on the notebook, actually – a sign of quality?

I’d wake up before school to write (or draw), and then write when I got home. So, while it seems difficult nowadays, it must not have always felt that way. I mean, even right now, I’m thinking, “I promised around 600 words every Monday, and I do not want to let down my reader!” I’ve gone from a footloose kid who just had to write, filling notebooks with silly adventures, to this crotchety old cuss who has trouble blogging.

This might not be the best subject for a blog, actually, but… well, it might be interesting to read about a writer who has trouble writing. I don’t know. Is it?

My hope is that by writing these blogs, I’ll get the writing muscles stronger again, and that’ll help me get some of my enthusiasm for the writing. And with that, hopefully I’ll start doing it more consistently and more… better…er… more betterer.

It just takes more discipline, I suppose. Back when I was writing stories with pencil, getting that magical graphite all over my left hand as a sign of having written, I had far less distractions. I mean, typing on the computer as I’m doing now, I have the internets right at my finger tips! How many times have I checked my email then drifted off to other sites before remembering that I’m writing this very blog? I’m not sure of the answer, but it’s definitely happened more times than it should. (Appropriate number of times for this to occur: zero.) It’s just so easy to do. I’m fighting the urge to check my Twitter page now. (I hope you’re not fighting similar urges for your own Twitter or Facebook or whatever else the kids are using to crap out often inappropriately personal info to a worldwide audience while reading this, dear reader, but I wouldn’t be surprised if you were.)

This is just another writerly discipline issue, though. So! I must write more and stay focused on my writing while writing!