Sentential Links

Linkage, huzzah! All of the links this week are to blogs of fellow NaNoWriMo participants. There’s a forum on the NaNo site for people in their 30s and 40s, and on that forum is a thread for folks to leave links to their blogs. I’m selecting some at random here. (Well, not that random, really — I’m going through from the top of the thread and checking out each blog I come across, leaving out the ones where the writer indicates along the lines of “I have a blog but I almost never update it”.)

:: Before spending money on romance novels (or any books, for that matter) I like to check out the reviews. I used to simply read whatever reviews were on the main page and then make my decision. Recently, I’ve started reading a few out of each rating level to see what I might be getting into. As a fledgling writer, I have to admit that one star ratings make me a bit nervous to put any of my own work out there for the world to see. I can’t imagine logging on and seeing them on a novel I’ve poured my heart and soul into. But then, I found a recurring theme in romance novel one-star reviews. (I worry about this particular concern. So far nobody has reported back on my manuscript to Princesses that they could see the ending a mile away, but…well, we’ll see!)

:: Today, my psychiatrist told me that I “look and sound better” than I have in a very long time. And I must confess, I agree with him.

:: But I do think, now here at the beginning, that the ending will also have something to do with music. With the ability of music to connect people, and to help them find what they are searching for, and to bring them home. (Her tale is apparently set in WNY. I wonder how she sees Future Buffalo — drying husk of a city, or once and for all risen from the ashes!)

:: So, I’ve already started National Novel Writing Month. I just couldn’t not start. Monday, on a flight, all that time to write, I had to get started. Now, sitting in the airport, waiting for the next flight, this one home, I am writing again. (I was able to resist temptation to start early…but then again, I am using a story that I had already started a couple of times before, so the opening scenes were fresh in my head, even though I completely started at the beginning. And I’ve already decided what I’m doing for next year’s NaNo, which is another story that I’ve taken a couple of whacks at and gotten nowhere!)

:: It was just one year ago that I decided to take a weekend road trip to Marion, Ohio to meet up with the Heaven’s Saints Motorcycle Ministry (HSMM). Once a month they load up a converted bread truck and head in Columbus to reach out to the people living in the various pockets of homeless camps. My wife and I knew then that we needed to come back and bring some youth from the church to engage in, essentially, an urban missions trip. (I love the title of this blog.)

:: Actually, a word like “landmark”—or even words like indelible or transcendent—probably can’t even begin to appropriately describe this song’s impact and where it stands in the landscape of modern music. “Unchained Melody” is one of the most recorded songs of all time; there are over five hundred different recordings of this song across multiple languages. This is the version that everyone knows. (This looks like a fascinating music blog. Gotta check back on this one.)

:: I’ve been thinking about what I am learning this month by writing my first novel for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). One of the things about writing fiction is describing the environment and getting the reader to see what is in your head. I’ve read from other writers that this is a balancing act. Too much, and you are boring the reader. Too little and you are confusing the reader. (I generally try for the ‘pick a few really standout details and then let the reader fill in the rest’ approach to description. Very few writers can do long passages of description without boring me to tears — Tolkien is one, I think. I also try to select words that connotatively suggest what I want the reader to see.)

:: Under any circumstances, the fact that the protagonist has an IQ around 140 (which is still somewhat lower than his author’s) ought to count as some justification for his speech patterns. Besides, readers who have trouble with the words on that list aren’t going to ‘get’ the story anyway, so why should I nerf my word choices for their benefit? (They make programs that check grammar? Never used one. Spell-check and several rounds of proofreading. Of course, sometimes that doesn’t even work…my Princesses beta-readers are finding all manner of whacked-out errors that I didn’t catch the first time!)

:: Nope, concurrently noveling is not for me. I’m forty-six, in overall good health, can plow through 5K mornings with a few flicks of my wrists. But I cannot write two books at one time. (Me either. That’s why I had to put Lighthouse Boy — not the actual title — on the back burner for a while, as I get Princesses ready to send out into the world.)

More next week! (And that’s just the first page of that thread! What a bunch of fine-looking blogs. Yet another nice side-effect of doing NaNoWriMo this year!)

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3 Responses to Sentential Links

  1. Roger Owen Green says:

    The music link (Righteous Brothers, et al) is GREAT!

  2. Anna Scott Graham says:

    Checking my WordPress stats as I sometimes do, I saw your blog pop up under the referrers heading. Thanks for linking to my blog! It's also nice to know someone else felt as I did about writing novels concurrently. I'm just not that young anymore. :)))

    Good luck with NaNo; I really love this time of year!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Thank you Roger for the kind words. Kelly, hope you like the site if you've had a chance to revisit it–there's a little bit of everything on the site. Thank you too for the kind words and for linking to Pantheon Songs on your site.

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