To Fellow Readers of Joy and Grief and All the Signs That Point Elsewhere

Dearest moonlit eyes, friends to the inventors of poetry and new magic. Dearest fellow readers of joy and grief and all the signs that point elsewhere—lost romantics, pretty little cynics. I have a story to tell. I have a million stories, but this one is about a day when the sky hung low. The sun hid behind a hot damp blanket of dark clouds leaving us all wondering if she would weep or set the world on fire.


Today the dying breath of July crisped sodden greenery and insects lost their buzz. It takes a lot of energy to buzz, more energy to navigate the steam rising over swollen gullies and washed out browning blooms. Priorities are important. We, the people, huddled inside praising whatever muse inspired the invention of conditioned air—we spoke in whispers for fear of heating up the splendid indoors by one degree. Mouths half-closed, eyes shaded as practice for the moment when the time came to risk outside. Outside where the threat of flames could rise as high as the rivers who’d fed fat and quick just yesterday.


Noah’s own flood from nowhere crippled a borrowed umbrella. Borrowed without permission. Cheerful wide-striped springtime hues of pink, purple, and yellow were no match. The only rainbow that appeared. Thank you just the same.


Lunchtime was forty-five minutes of frantic online reading. The [frantic] pace was necessary because the words, tedious tried and true methods for email list building and lightboxes fees fees and fees and newsletter subscribers and crowdfunding whatsits, made me wish for a fork to the eye. Those forty-five minutes are gone, spent without a good novel or lovely podcast. Shame.

This morning was a shining example of how routine wins everything that matters. Coffee/dogs out/write for 45 minutes/dogs in/dogs fed/coffee/write/shower while thinking about the story/cook for the hubby while thinking about the story/pack lunch & drive really fast to work! Thinking about the story! See. Routine wins.

Each morning I open a new document in Word and write as much as possible for the SECOND NOVEL in 45 minutes. In a month or so, I will print out all those pages, put them in a pile with the 10k or so words already written (ages ago), and all the right twist and turns of a plot will emerge as I read and take notes. The plan will come together. Or it won’t right away and I’ll throw a hellfire hissy fit, mix a drink and light a smoke, and get back to work.

Trust me, this has worked before.

I’ve received a proposal for editing of THE FIRST NOVEL from a freelancer with some nice credentials. He’s one of only three. I really expected a mad rush for the promise of speculative fiction. Making the call for freelance editors was a toe-dip into the waters of an alternate plan to seeking traditional publishing. Plan B. Not that it’s less than, just different. We’ll call this querying thing practice for learning how to query an actual audience. Isn’t that enticing? Query readers directly.

I wish such a beautiful thought had crossed my mind months ago. Since I didn’t go with Plan B as Plan A, I will wait patiently for the requisite 8 weeks in which the remaining queried professionals might call. Truth is I love both choices. Both options. I love the idea of a literary agent dialing my number. I love the idea of expectant, invested readers enjoying my letters, writing to me, until a gorgeous bound book arrives on their doorstep. Regardless of the route taken to that doorstep.


Talk to me. Tell me your writing routine. Are you a fit thrower or smooth as glass on a Sunday morning? Do you know the end before the beginning is written? Is that any fun whatsoever? Have you queried? What’s your resting heart rate? Talk to me, then #gowrite. ❤ Write well dearest fellow writers of joy and grief … inventors of new magic.

5 thoughts on “To Fellow Readers of Joy and Grief and All the Signs That Point Elsewhere

  1. jessicahalseywrites

    I love hearing about your process. I throw ALL the fits and I know ALL the endings (which is why I throw all the fits). I guess it’s fun…I don’t know my resting heart rate. I do know butt in chair works. It’s the only thing that works for me. Some days I’m better at sitting still than others.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Rio

    I make dice bags for D&D players, through word of mouth. I don’t play but my upstairs neighbours do. I was saying to one of them “I wish I could get someone to do an exchange with me for an edit and feedback on my book.” She had a friend on the east coast who was an English major who did a bit of editing and was also a D&D fanatic. Anyway I got some really good feedback and she got a really nice bag. I am a long way from publishing but feeling more confident.

    Liked by 1 person

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