I got a new iphone and I seem to be learning how to use it fairly easily. I did need help with a couple of things, but both seem to be working themselves out. Hopefully, it will allow me to do a bunch of things I would normally do on my computer when I am away from my computer. That would be nice!
Dec 27 2013
Other than submitting my art to the Calgary Stampede Western Art Show for next summer (wish me luck: they select the artists and pieces to display by March), I have had a restful holiday. Finished Among Others, by Jo Walton, a thoroughly enjoyable read, and started 419 by Will Fergusson, Read a little Asimov’s, and worried away at my traditional Christmas jigsaw puzzle. I only allow myself a jigsaw puzzle once
Had an excellent writers group meeting on Tuesday at which we discussed blurbs: each of us wrote one or more for books we are working on, and we sampled several published ones. We each made a list of qualities that seemed to be important in a blurb, discussed our list, then applied these criteria to the blurbs each of us had written. Then we discussed whether we’d buy the book based on the blurb, and if it gave an accurate indication of what the book was about.
It was very cool, not only for improving our blurbs (which are notoriously hard to write), but for focussing on what the book is about. We told one of our members that the inciting incident was buried toward the end of his blurb and should be closer to the top. The author said, “the increasing violence in the world IS the inciting incident.” No, the point where his brother goes missing is the inciting incident, because this makes the world’s problems personal: the increasing world violence is only setting, but the personal connection turns it to plot. The author had a real “aha!” moment and decided to go back and re-write chapters 1-3, but was very happy to do so.
Here’s the list we generated:
The central idea we came up with is: if the protagonist is the entry point for the reader to everything in the book, then the main thing the blurb must accomplish
Dec 15 2013
Thanks to Randy McCharles, twelve authors from a variety of genres with books out in the last few months did a reading at the Owl’s Nest Book Store on Thursday. It was a great success! Three authors did 3-minute readings, followed by 5 mins of visiting/networking/shopping, rinse, repeat. During the breaks, a wonderful duo performed. There were tons of people there, so lots of fun–like a party!–and I was able to meet and talk to writers from a lot of different backgrounds. It was great!
I read from “The Gift,” my story in The Urban Green Man, and the story went over really well.
Got an excellent rejection from Penguin Canada today, with three paragraphs of critique and the option to resubmit! I guess I know what I’m doing for the next little while!
Spent the week painting and completed three more–larger paintings. I sold a second painting after the crafts fair, for $250, so I am a bit short on inventory of larger paintings. I am very pleased with the results.
So, I took some time off in November to paint, and today was the Christmas Craft Fair where I sold my paintings. I made $150, plus I sold a copy of Immunity to Strange Tales. And, I painted another (small) painting while I sat behind my table. Got lots of compliments on my work, too!
IFWA’s semi-yearly write-off is this weekend and I got a story critiqued last week so I am ready for revisions! I need to get more short fiction out in the mail. This is the weekend to do it!
So, I have been working on larger pieces that probably won’t sell at the craft fair, but now I am thinking of submitting to the Calgary Stampede under their “Emerging Artists” section, and for that I need 4-8 larger pieces. So far, I have 5, but today, someone expressed an interest in purchasing one of them. So…you never know!
I decided to try to sell some of my paintings at a Christmas Craft sale, so I signed up to rent a table on November 23. This week I have been framing completed works like mad (I just love the effect the right colour of mat and the appropriate frame really brings out the best in a painting), and I painted a new work. Now I have about 18 pieces to sell, but I still have 3 weeks before the sale, so hope to have several more by then. I certainly have a plethora of sketches to work from.