Monthly Archives: February 2016

What I Miss — And Don’t Miss — About Facebook

November 30, 2015 was my official last day of spending time on Facebook.

After over two months of freedom from that site, I found there are both advantages and disadvantages to doing so.

First the disadvantages (because I want to end this entry on a positive note):

  • Daily happenings. I have little to no idea what my friends and family who don’t live nearby are up to. I’m way out of the loop, and feel a bit left out when people talk about the latest happening, or viral meme or video on Facebook.
  • No more writing ideas. At least as far as non-fiction is concerned. Facebook provided a lot of fodder for me to comment on, and inspired many a blog entry. It’s part of the reason I’ve posted fewer entries here since then. But only partly. The other reason is a big positive that outweighs this negative.
  • People miss me. More than one person has expressed how much they miss my updates — some of whom I see fairly often. I guess they like my stuff.

 

The advantages:

  • Writing and more writing. While I’m empty of ideas for inspirational blog entries, I have completed two novels, and am now working on completing a third. Since December 1, I have written over 110,000 words.
  • Reading. I have more books in the last two-and-a-half months than I’ve read the previous year, which further inspires me to keep writing. Which reminds me. I need to start posting reviews of said books . . .
  • No more — at least way less — anger and frustration with the constant flow of memes and angry proselytizing with regard to politics and religion.
  • No more pissing people off with my own opinionated opinions with regard to politics and religion.

 

At the end of the day, while I miss out on a lot, what I’ve gained is far more important. I may actually get a book published out of it. That’s the hope anyway.

Once I finish this third novel, I will have time to write and send query letters to agents (I’m not looking forward to it, but it’s got to be done. Maybe that’ll be the subject of my next entry . . .).

Since this blog is supposed to be about my writing journey, I will keep you apprised.

Just Another Day

Today is Ash Wednesday, and the beginning of Lent. Many Christians choose this day to give up something, whether it’s meat, candy, coffee, television, internet — the list is endless.

I feel about this tradition the same way as I do New Years resolutions. If people want to make a change in their life, why wait for a date to do it? What’s wrong with today? After all, none of us is guaranteed a tomorrow. Today, really, is all we have.

That said, a friend of mine wrote a lovely email about what she plans to do for Lent. She also admitted that in doing so, she’s not doing it so much for her faith, but for herself. The purpose of giving something up for Lent is to remind ourselves of Jesus’ sacrifice — his life for ours. Giving up coffee, television or chocolate doesn’t even compare to that.

For the last few months, a small voice keeps whispering this scriptural passage to me:

And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.

Philippians 4: 8 (NLT)

Concentrating so hard on finishing my novels, and delving into the darker side of humanity to make the novels work, I need to turn my gaze upon all that is good for a while. Especially now that all my books are now complete (more on that in my next entry).

So this Lenten season, I’m not going to give up anything. I am instead adding prayer, and study of God’s word. The fact I’m starting today isn’t necessarily because of Ash Wednesday. It’s because it’s today, and today is the best and only place to start.

96,653

That’s how many words I’ve written in my latest novel, over 70,000 of them in just over a month. It’s by far the most I’ve written in the least amount of time.

But now I’m sad.

While there’s always the initial elation when completing a book, afterward there’s a sense of deflation. Not one of fatigue but of, “Now what?”

After all the time I spent writing, part of me wants — and needs — to continue in that groove, and quite honestly the desire to remain engrossed in the universe I created.

And I could continue if I wanted to. My book is actually a sequel, and already I have ideas for how the third book is to proceed.

But I must stop. If I am serious about publication, I need to polish the first book and send out queries to agents. This particular trilogy is mainstream science fiction, so I shouldn’t have any trouble finding a lot of agents who’ll be interested.

Next on my agenda is to finish the fantasy novel I’ve been working on for the last few years. After that, I’ll re-read “Self-Editing for Fiction Writers,” because it helped me so much the first time. Having not read it in over five years, I definitely need a refresher. After that I will print out the first book, bleed all over it, and hopefully turn it into something publishable.

I will keep you apprised.