Saturday, January 1, 2011

New Year's Resolutions

Let me start by saying I dislike the idea of "Resolutions" for the New Year. I prefer to think of them as goals. A goal is something you strive for, look ahead to, work toward. A resolution just seems more... foreboding. You are resolving to do this. What happens if you don't? Dark clouds form above and lightning strikes your head? Rumpelstiltskin sneaks in and steals your first born? I'm always thinking of consequences. I don't know, maybe I'm a bit of a commitment-phobe.

But on the other hand, when you have a goal to work for, the consequence is that you reach your goal.  Unless of course you don't reach your goal, but then nothing happens and your first born stays right where he is.

So for me, personally, I like to have a few goals for the new year. Which isn't to say that I'm not inspired by other people's resolutions. A fitting example can be found in the comments of this PW post.

Oh, and the Bransfordonians are having at it as well! Read on!

My Goals for 2011:
  1. Have Chroi and Keira professionally trained. After baby comes, that is! :)
  2. Attend a yoga class more often. I recently discovered Yin Yoga*, and it is awesome; think deep stretching. (*if you can't find a Yin Yoga class near you, there is a great DVD available Here.)
  3. Post at least once a week to this here blog.
  4. Launch my second blog, Senior Share Project: a partnership with my friend Eileen. Check it out! If you have any special Seniors in your life (and you know you do) you'll love it.
  5. Write more online articles. Click here to read my review of the movie Burlesque.
  6. Get my eldest to college. Ugh, a biggie this year.
  7. Get my youngest into a music and/or sports program.
And my biggest personal goal this year (drumroll please):

FINISH WRITING MY BOOK!

Ok, there it is. Yes, I am writing a book. I have been kind of quiet so far, only a few people know about it. The reason for this, as many writers know, is that once you tell people you are writing a book, then every time you see them, they'll ask you, "Hey, how's that book coming?" "When do I get a copy?" or "Hey, I thought you were writing a book..." And then you have to go through all the excuses as to why you cannot whip said book out of your briefcase and point to their name on the dedication page: "Uh, I'm still working on revisions..." "I've got a few queries out..." "I'm still looking for an agent...know any?"

I don't even carry a briefcase.

So my excuse is that I am still writing my book. Fifteen chapters and counting. But I am coming out of the writing closet, so to speak, and announcing it to the world (or to you, my four readers) that I AM writing a book, and hopefully my public acknowledgement of this will hold me accountable for the fact that now I have to finish it, that I cannot go another year planning on someday, when my book is finished... No, this is my signal of commitment.

I, the commitment-phobe, am offering you the proverbial diamond ring and promising to you that I am going to finish this book, and that one day, after I find the perfect agent for a partner, who will find the perfect editor, and after hours and hours of labor we will give birth to two covers filled with many many pages of gripping adventure, a healthy dose of fantasy, a dash of romance, and a fulfilling conclusion, all wrapped together with a nice neat character arc.

Will you read me?

Not quite ready to say "Yes?" I understand. You don't know enough about this book. You're not ready to commit. What if it's a Vampire-Time-Travel-Alien-Western-Noir, and you're just not into that? Well, to further educate and entice you, my novel-to-be is a low fantasy (set in the real world, with elements of magic) adventure for 12-15 year old readers.

The story was inspired by my dear Chroicoragh, during a visit out to the barn on a stormy night. My aforementioned friend, Eileen, always referred to Chroi as a Unicorn, and after a particularly impressive lightning strike during the storm, whose electric energy must have sparked the idea, I looked at Chroi and thought, "Hmm, what if  you really are a Unicorn?"

And that's how ideas are born.  Lightning and magic.

To even further entice you, here's an excerpt:

RUBY AND THE UNICORN


Ruby sat up, shrugged off the wool blanket that had protected her from the rain, and brushed damp hair out of her eyes. She looked up at Chroicoragh. Moonlight shone down on the mare, highlighting her silvery mane, and gleamed on her horn.
Her horn.
Standing up to get a closer look, Ruby examined it in awe. About as long as her arm, the horn shimmered with a pearly iridescence. Unable to refrain from touching it, she traced a finger along the smooth surface, which twisted whorl-like to a rapier-sharp point. Beautiful and dangerous, the horn made Ruby regard Chroicoragh with a new reverence. 
...
Chroicoragh looked at the girl, and the blue of her Unicorn eyes was the same blue where water meets sky: endless. Ruby stared back, lost in that horizon. She became transfixed in a vision -- no, more like a hundred visions, flashing past her like the view from a jaunty carousel, spinning around, trying to find faces in the crowd. Flickering shadow, light, shadow. An ancient forest; gossamer wings; a gypsy caravan; a storm at sea. A journey. Many journeys. Danger. 
All at once it hit her. She didn’t know why she knew, but she knew. 
Chroicoragh needed her.


That's just a small tidbit from somewhere in Chapter 10. I hope you like it, and that it will appeal to at least some of you, or someone you know. I will be working on this story, quietly in the background while maintaining my blogs, so hold it in the back of your mind, and I'll keep you posted as to relevant progress.
I'll take all the good vibes I can get.


And here's to you and your New Year. 
What's in store for you?

8 comments:

  1. Congratulations, Heidi! It's great that you're coming out of the literary closet! Keep going...you have lots of fans already.

    ReplyDelete
  2. My last post must not have gone through :-(
    What I said was: great job; glad to see you back online; keep writing you have a great voice.
    Fondly,
    Pascal

    PS Thanks for promoting my book release.

    ReplyDelete
  3. OK, so am I to be one of those friends that keeps asking, " hey did you finish your book" only kidding. Some suggestions to keep in mind. Please make sure you don't have chapters that are too long, I always like to stop reading at the end of a chapter. And some illustrations, I love pictures, and I bet your target audience will as well. Does that mean I have the reading level of a 12 year old, but I digress.You know I am your biggest fan, wish you all the luck in the world even though you don't need it. You're a fantastic writer. Believe in yourself, everyone else does! Eileen

    ReplyDelete
  4. Your book sounds great, Heidi -- and I love the excerpt. KEEP. GOING. !!

    And I agree with you about resolutions, and am all for making goals.

    Here's to us all reaching our goals in 2011!!
    :-)

    ReplyDelete
  5. My heart is so full of pride, I can hardly breathe. How beautifully crafted. I was right there with Ruby. The horse needs her, but, oh, how she needs that horse!
    Mom

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thank you, and CONGRATULATIONS to my two comment friends above who each had their first books published this year!
    Amy Dominy: http://amydominy.com/
    and
    Pascal Marco: http://www.pascalmarco.com/
    Please visit their pages and buy their books! Emerging artists need your support!
    Looking forward to hearing Amy speak of her publishing journey at this year's SCBWI AZ conference.

    ReplyDelete

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