Sunday, January 25, 2015

Readers Report Push and Pull!

Before Christmas, I got back a rather lengthy, substantial and very worthy readers report from my agent. Those reports, like editor revision letters, take time to take in!
Gravy Hungry animated GIF
I once received two editorial letters from two very prominent publishers, but unfortunately both letters had varying opinions on the direction of the book. One saw it one way, the other took it in a completely different direction. That was a very rough experience, in that what direction DO YOU CHOOSE?
Like life. 
Like those crossroads. Like hey, do I take a leap or run for cover?
That sort of thing.
Okay, this wasn't life. 
This was a book.
It was a special book and I loved the premise, but the original concept and texture was becoming murk and muddle and lost in what I thought the editors wanted, or some middle ground between the two.
Not good. So not good!
Don't do it. You must incorporate, but also stay true, or it becomes a case of too many cooks!
Wantering animated GIF
So getting back to this report, which is for another book, another story that is hell fun to write, but it is taking time. Throw in some wolf-like distractions and y'know that thing called life and it was taking even longer.
I didn't mind. I knew it would eventually reveal itself to me.
It did.
But when I first read the letter, when after only twenty-four hours I screeched in over-enthused delight that I was onto it, tackling it, saw the direction to go, my agent, savy and wise said only one thing.
"Linda. Take your time. Let your character drive the story."
I thought about it. Her words sat with me and have sat with me the entire time I've been writing.
So...
Don't be the writer who intervenes in the journey.
Be the writer who witnesses it!
It's your character's story. You're just lucky enough to tell it!

All best, in love and writing!
Art Book animated GIF

The real Neil?

Last night, I saw Neil Gaiman perform, “Truth is a Cave” at the Athenaeum Theatre. 
It was a full house, as expected. I sat there among the other Gaiman fans listening to the incredible  "Four Play" lubricate us in anticipation. 
The music was truly astounding. I tried to work out who was making what sound as the string quartet overlapped the unusual in what was a haunting delight.  
And then Gaiman arrived.
He was not wearing his traditional black on black but went for something a little more avant-garde in a plush velvet throw back to more romantic times. He read a few short stories from his yet to be released “Trigger Warning” and I found myself drifting into those stories, enjoying the cadence of Gaiman’s voice, but then I slipped into some other place. 

I found myself studying Neil himself.

Who was this man ten years ago, or even twenty more? 
I could see glimpses of the boy under the man. I sensed who and what he was versus who he now is.
 Those glimpses fascinated me, the old Neil peeking out from the new. 
I became curious about the transformations we take in our lives, the influences that influence and from whence they come. 
I found myself getting lost in that story.

We broke for intermission. 
The throngs gathered around the books all signed by Neil, all snapped up with nothing more than a few posters left on the table. 
Did I want a book signed by Neil? Yes and no. 
It is a signature of a man who was once a boy who once dreamed of things and made them real.
The proof is in the words. 

But still, I wondered as he walked back on stage,
who is the “real” Neil?

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Birdman Flies! And Keaton? Well damn if he isn't a mighty fine surprise!

I was putting it off.
Keaton floating meditation mid-air in his underwear? Come on! "Pretentious piece of shit!"
I WAS SO, SO WRONG!!!
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu Birdman animated GIF
Yeah, okay, still not my favorite scene, but damn, just damn, there wasn't one performance in BIRDMAN that wasn't spot on. The "following" technique in the camera work, whilst some might say slightly overdone, I thought perfect!
It had me right in the moment, living those moments.
Isn't that what we're meant to do? What we actually forget to do in our own lives?
Live the MOMENT!
Agron Ande Cunningham animated GIF
So, I LOVED IT!
It took me completely off guard in its honesty, in the vulnerabilities of both
youth and age, in the dogged perceptions of our childhoods and relationships and how one can shift a view- birds eye or otherwise.
Gene Wilder Movie animated GIF
I've been talking a lot about this, about wanting more, being more,
about what we perceive we should be vs. what others make us believe!
How often do any of us skirt the truth?
How many of us want the truth?
Life does not exist inside a box and nor should it!
Box Gif animated GIF
Someone said to me today that if you have to work hard for something, fight hard,
maybe that something isn't worth having!
I nodded. I even agreed- to some extent- but it sat with me, those words, and by the end of the day I thought otherwise.
Sometimes, you do have to fight. You have to work hard to put it all together in the right way, and that sometimes takes guts and digging deep, but wouldn't anyone, ANYONE, just want to try!
I want to be that!
I don't want to be that person afraid to do at least that much!
It's trying that's succeeding.
 So take me down the damn rabbit hole and let wonder be my guide! 
Alice In Wonderland animated GIF
Listen to your BIRDMAN voice!
Let it pester you out of a diseased complacency and pushing for more! We are and can be, MORE!
But please, no loaded guns!
No one needs a nose like Barnaby Jones!
Birdman

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The Walls Around Us!

Ever since Nova's IMAGINARY GIRLS, I've been a fan.
She's got style, and a unique edge to her writing that gets me hooked right from that first page!
Nova's also the one who got me hooked on residencies, something I know she's particularly partial to, something I've just begun to enjoy! 
There really is something special about Nova! Take a peek, you'll see why!
First 7 chapters on preview!
 Link below.
http://www.amazon.com/Walls-Around-Us-Chapters-Material-ebook/dp/B00QXZIS50/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&sr=&qid=

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Magic Magical Realism!

I believe in magic!
I really do!
It comes in all ways. Love tops the list!
But it can come in a conversation, a smile, the beauty of a particular day.
A tree that glimmers as you pass it by each day.
It's simply finding that beauty, that magic. Opening your eyes to it.
Big Fish Circle animated GIF
There are friends that are magical and magic in friends, but beware of the friend that prefers pulling rabbits from hats instead of letting you wear your own!
There simply is no magic in that! 
1k Chandler Bing animated GIF
Now I am particularly partial to magical realism in literary pursuits.
It has always tickled me simply because it allows magic to enter the real world.
It's just a touch, just enough and it feeds our minds, our hearts
to see the magic in what could possibly exist!
And so, Sarah Addison Allen's new release comes out soon.
First Frost
And then, of course, there is Hoffman. I love Alice Hoffman, particularly some of her earlier works like...
Here On EarthGreen Heart
Green Witch
Pick up anything by these two and you won't go wrong!