Thursday, August 28, 2008


Okay, this blogging/writing is a little like having a sliver. It’s painful, but if it’s there, you have to get it out. Oh, and it may require disinfectant.

Okay, I’m holding my nose and diving in. (No, you don’t need to visualize that.) Why not introduce a little scandal into my mix here?

Close the doors.
Pull the shades.
Take the phone off the hook.
I…**whisper**... have a confession….

It is something from my recent past that I really try not to advertise. You know, because the neighbors…They ask questions. If word gets out, things could get messy. I…ready???...have written a book. (sorry to disappoint any Jerry Springer fans.)

It’s a prepublished (no contract yet—but optimistic) YA (young adult) book entitled One for the Murphys. For those of you who’ve written something for the eyes of others (not for a teacher, but because you thought it would be…fun…you know, like bungee jumping with an extra long cord) it’s kind of like ripping your heart out, slapping it on the table and asking, “So, what do you think?”

It feels like the epitome of “vulnerable” because you always—even if you don’t intend to—crawl into your own basements to write it. And then you have to sit back and wonder what others think. Truly, if you’re brave and serious about seeing your book at the bookstore, (gulp--did I just say that???) you must get to this step of putting it out there. A thick skin (titanium), a sense of humor (how can I not laugh at myself???) and an open mind (but no holes) are all going to help.

Readers of One for the Murphys have given me good feedback on it—of course, good feedback has cost me a fortune in margaritas. :<) The better the feedback, the more margaritas…or is it, the more margaritas, the better the feedback??? Hmmmm…..

I laughed when I saw the above picture. It’s totally me.

Every morning I sit down. I scan my bookshelves with the likes of Laurie Halse Anderson, Ellen Wittlinger, Alan Gratz, Jerry Spinelli, Katherine Paterson…And, here I sit: room mother, juggler, lint collector. I don’t know. I have to tell you, seriously, that I think it’s pretty brave to write an emotionally authentic book at all; that’s what writers (or the people supporting them) will say when they consider the odds of “making it.” I say, don’t consider the odds—or anyone else besides your living, breathing characters—just put your butt in the chair (Hi, Anita). And, if you’re like me, the journeys you take with your characters, will change your own journey in ways you’d never have imagined…

Be brave. Grrrrroooooowl...


Ria said...

Your bookshelf sounds like a clone of my bookshelf.

Anonymous said...

Loved this post! It resonates big-time with me (and great pic, too). I can't remember who said it (maybe Ray Bradbury?), but some wildly prolific writer, when asked about the secret to writing success, answered, "Two words: Butt glue." Isn't that fabulous? I have the following quote tacked above my desk (and of course I didn't think of writing down the name of the author all the years ago when I stumbled on it, so now I have no clue who said it, but rest assured it was someone really smart and writerly...hey, maybe it was you, Lynda!):

"The real writer is the one who stays at the desk."

Looking at that has convinced me (many a time) to sit there for a little longer (although I grumble), to sit and just try to eke out another sentence or even paragraph and not succumb to the nearly irresistible urge to hop up and see if anything else needs doing (like, even an unpleasant chore) or to see if there's whipped cream or Fluff for some cocoa (and if not, what better reason to leave the writing desk than to go to the grocery store and get some?).

Okay, shutting up now...

Keep blogging, Lynda! I'm so enjoying your posts!