Wednesday, April 15, 2015

We're on the Starting Line

So, here is where the rubber meets the road. It’s our first day. Everyone else in America is worried about taxes, but not us – we are beginning our journey, one that begins like all journeys do --with a single step.

First, because some people have been confused, and that means I probably wasn’t clear – I want to emphasize that we are each writing our own books. This project is not a combined effort. What we get from forming a community is momentum and support. Also, there is no physical location for this project until we are finished. If you want ongoing support in a physical location, I recommend that you attend the free Beyond Baroque Monday evening workshop or the Thursday evening classes at Camera Obscura which are four week session advertised on the Santa Monica Cultural Website

I hope you have your dedicated notebooks and a pen or pencil. I will be writing on an iPad most of the time using Pages - App. It’s simple, not distracting, and I can figure out what to do with the text later.

I have chosen a character, a name for that character, and a situation. That’s it. That’s all I have. I am not ready to share any of that yet. I think sharing your ideas too early can be like taking a pin to a bubble of inspiration.

I would like to recommend a recreational visit to an inspiring stationary store, a store that caters to the art of writing. You can find my favorite in Westwood, California or on Facebook at Ask for Joan or Phil – say I sent you. That will get you welcoming smile. Well, you'd get a welcoming smile anyway, but I encourage you to do it anyway.

There’s another thing: I was thinking about the extent of this undertaking. I don’t want people to quit if they miss a day. Therefore, I think we should each be able to take one day off a week without feeling we have failed the challenge. We're in it for the long haul. If you need a day off each week, take it and know that you are still succeeding with the challenge. I think that will give us all a little breathing room. Very little, but enough to let get our shoulders fall from somewhere up around our ears to a more normal location. (anything to keep us calm and motivated).

I try to provide what I need myself. Structure, support, encouragement, and community. These things will help me. I hope they will help you. It is almost 4:30 and I haven’t done my words yet, but thanks to this, I know I will. In fact, I’m looking forward to it.

Here’s to a great start. I look forward to hearing how your first day goes.


  1. First day- done. spewing words on pages is like pulling out my large intestines through my mouth- you kinda wanna keep on going to see where it ends, but you know you'll never get there. Disturbing? I thought so too.

  2. I just started late this afternoon. I have the same as you: a character, name, and situation. Or, since I'm writing a romance, I have two characters, names, and a situation. I'm trying to sharpen the main conflict between them and what they need from and can give each other, but I'm not worrying that I don't have it all figured out up front. Some things will come as I write. So, I made my word count. It's crap now, but I know that the real writing, for me anyway, comes in the second draft, when I start to shape the crappy words that are already there.

  3. okay, I just posted something and it disappeared, so I'll just write the salient parts. Procrastinated all day, but finally wrote and it was a breeze. I'm sending Pickyoo Critiquesky on vacation and she better not darken my door until I'm finished with this first draft. She has no business here. Now remember -- WHATEVER WORKS -- KICK ASS -- AND SEND THE CRITIC ON AN EXTENDED TRIP.

  4. I just got home from a dinner and don't feel like writing, but I committed so I'm going to do it anyway! :) Thanks, Laurie!

  5. I might do this just to read Laurie's "inklings" I love how you got a plug in here for the Flax folks!

  6. Ok this is kinda scary. And I am leaving for ten days so that sets the bar a bit high for me. But what the hell. I would follow my guru Laurie anywhere.