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Monday, June 13, 2011

Lend Us Your Ears

Welcome to our blog! I'm Pam, the first "P" in "Writers Li.P.P."


You will meet Lindy - the "Li" - on Wednesday. There is no longer a second "P" - she bowed out before we ever got started - but that's okay. Because "Li.P.P." also stands for "Life in Penned Perspective." And that's really what this blog is about. A couple of romance writers sharing their views on life and love and everything in between.

We want to start a conversation with you - readers, writers, family, friends, Romans, countrymen. So please feel free to jump in with comments and questions. The more personal, the better. If there's one thing we're not, it's shy.

Each week, we will address a new topic; this week it's introductions. So please allow me to introduce myself. I wear a lot of hats: single mom, daughter, sister, friend, lover, dog owner, piano teacher, jewelry designer, novelist. Today, I want to share my journey as a writer.

Regret for the things we did can be tempered by time; it is regret for the things we did not do that is inconsolable.
~Sydney J. Harris

I have always loved writing. I earn my living teaching piano lessons, but if I hadn't majored in music, I probably would have studied English. Most of my writing was nonfiction: papers for school, pieces about home education for home schooling publications, articles about teaching piano for my studio newsletter and business website. But what I read was fiction, lots of it, and dreamed of writing a great story myself. Someday.

Shortly after my divorce in 2001, I came up with an idea for a novel, based loosely on my experiences as a single mom looking for love, but not a memoir; after all, the guilty must be protected. Years went by, though, before I finally decided to take action. It came to this: at the end of my life, I didn't want my epitaph to be, "She meant to write a book."

Well, it is one thing to contemplate writing a novel; it is quite another thing to actually write one. I assumed the words would just flow, perfectly formed, from beginning to end. Not! I signed up for an online fiction writing class and quickly found out how much I didn't know. There was so much to think about: setting, character, plot, point of view, dialogue and scene. Finding my "voice." "Show, don't tell." Determining whether I am a "plotter" or a "pantser" (I have elements of both). I started my novel with a rough outline, but I have changed my mind about many details - including the opening scene and the name of one of my main characters - as I have gone along.

I love the process, although it is much more difficult than I ever imagined. For me, consistency is key; I do my best to write 500 words a day, seven days a week, but even a couple hundred words moves me in the right direction. And though it's inevitable that I might miss a day every now and then, I try to never miss two in a row. A few days has a way of turning into a few weeks. And, as they say, you can't edit a blank page.

Sure, I would love to become a New York Times bestselling author, but right now what I want most is to have a finished manuscript that I am truly proud of. I am working on the second revision of my novel; I plan to have it finished and ready to query by the end of June. I am eager to start working on my next project. I am hoping that what I lack in talent, I will make up for in determination. I am looking forward to sharing the ups and downs of my experiences - in writing as well as in other areas of my life - with all of you.

If you dream of writing a book but haven't yet started, what is standing in your way? Fellow writeres, what are your biggest challenges? Is it an aspect of craft, or simply finding the time to work? Leave a comment and you will automatically be entered in a drawing for an autographed copy of Suzanne Brockmann's Kiss and Tell and a Writers Li.P.P. t-shirt.
Designed by Lindy Chaffin Start.

It’s what all the cool kids are wearing! Follow this blog and you will be entered twice. The deadline for entry is midnight on Tuesday. Good luck!

30 comments:

MedievalABD said...

I'm just starting to dive into the pool with writing. I've done it all my life, tossing everything in a drawer since it wasn't perfect; even if it was okay, I didn't have the self-confidence. It's great to see a blog like this!

WritersLiPP said...

Hi Medieval! Welcome to our blog! I can definitely relate to what you are saying, and I am glad you have decided to join the rest of us here at the pool party. Our intention is to provide support and inspiration; I hope you will come back and visit often!

Sandy Elzie said...

Hi Pam...
Congrats to you two brave ladies! Yes, I dabbled for years....and years at writing...on and off...and then hubby tossed down the gauntlet and, being the strong woman that I am, I picked up the challenge and wrote a book. That was in 2001 and now I have two framed covers on my wall, several more completed manuscripts and tons of ideas fighting for time to be written.

I look forward to following you two as you start this venture. Have fun!

unstoppablestart said...

Hi Partner! I love your introductory post. It's so "You". I'm proud to be part of this new venture with you and look forward to many wonderful days ahead. See you Wednesday!

KendallGrey said...

First, WOW! What a great beginning to your blog! I wish you guys the best with this.

As far as writing goes...I procrastinate. I read blogs. I do crits for my CPs. I mess around on Twitter and claim it's "marketing" for my book. I find a lot of excuses not to jump in and get dirty.

Your comment about having a goal of 500 words a day is a great idea. I've discovered goals work for me, but I don't make daily writing goals because I'm afraid I won't reach them. 500 words is really not that much. I could do that! I'm gonna think on this for a while and maybe follow your lead. 500 words a day. Yeah. Totally doable!

Can't wait to read more of your blog. Going to follow you now. :-)

Marilyn Baron said...

I want to wish you both luck on your new venture. It's very exciting. Even writers who've been at it a long time find that the more you know, the more you know you don't know. But that's no reason to be discouraged. Keep at it, keep writing and your dreams will come true. Love the T-shirt, by the way.

Marilyn Baron

Linsey Lanier said...

I want to wish you luck on the terrific new blog, as well. I LOVE the background! And the quote. And the photo of you working hard.

Yes, writing IS hard work, no matter who you are. My biggest challenge? It varies, but I'd say finding the time to write all I want to write. It's a frustration I have to live with.

Megan said...

Hurray for Li.P.P.! I'm glad I wasn't part of your group, or you would've been Li.M.P.P. So sad.

My biggest challenge is completing my story. I think I have a superstitious fear of it, as if finishing will somehow take the magic out of the story. I keep throwing roadblocks up in my own way. Ah, well... I will finish someday. :)

Pam Asberry said...

Thank you very much, Sandy! Your support means so much to us. And we always have fun! ;-)

Pam Asberry said...

Likewise, Lindy! I'm looking forward to your inaugural post - and a powwow - on Wednesday. We've got lots of planning to do. The best is yet to be!

Pam Asberry said...

Believe me, Kendall, I procrastinate, too. I am trying to do better, but as long as I get at least 500 words written, at least I have the comfort of knowing I didn't "waste" the entire day. ;-) You are right - 500 words is quite doable, even on a bad day. If you decide to go for it, let me know how it goes. Thank you so much for your comments and for following us!

Pam Asberry said...

Thank you for your support, Marilyn. Your success is certainly an inspiration to me. I fully intend to follow your advice!

Pam Asberry said...

Wow, thank you, Linsey! Launching this new blog has really been a labor of love; we are so happy to finally be live! You are absolutely right: it isn't easy to find time to write, but you sure are providing us all with a good example these days. :-)

Pam Asberry said...

LOL, Megan! Li.M.P.P. would make for a whole different t-shirt logo, wouldn't it? ;-) Now, for some encouragement. Finishing your story won't take the magic out of it, but it will free you up to start your next story. Plow through the roadblocks! Write, write, write! I'm not going to leave you alone until you do!

leslie tentler said...

Best of luck on your new blog! I'm sure you'll have lots of great insight and adventures to share here. :-)

Pam Asberry said...

Thank you so much for stopping by, Leslie! Insights? Maybe. Adventures? Definitely! ;-) Stay tuned!

Anonymous said...

Pam,
This is wonderful. You and Lindy are strong, empowered women to put yourselves out there. I love that because you won't have any regrets. Great quote! Also, love the t-shirt. Good luck on your journey.

Sia

Tami Brothers said...

Hey Pam (and Lindy)!

The blog looks great!!! I wish you guys all the best and have you bookmarked to read often.

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the picture of the two of you together. I'm a big fan of themes, too, so I'm glad to see you using those.

Live long and Prosper

Tami

Pam Asberry said...

Wow, thanks, Sia! My life isn't always easy, but it's always interesting. I appreciate all your good wishes!

WritersLiPP said...

Thanks, Tami! We have One Six Photography to thank for the photograph; what a great day that was! Lindy and I are super excited about blogging together; who knows where we might end up? We don't have a clue, but it's sure going to be fun getting there. Thanks for being part of our journey!

Julee J. Adams said...

Congrats! Love the 1st post, love the T-shirt (and please pick me, because you know I'd send you a pic of me wearing it proudly!)and love, especially, your enthusiasm!
I'm Lucky 7 of your soon to be many followers. My downfall lately has been my health problems and general procrastination, but Dean Wesley Smith (sf, fantasy and "Star Trek" author)said recently that if you write 15 minutes a day, you can usually knock out a page. If you do that every day for a year, you'd have enough for a 90,000 word novel. How about that? Just think of what you can do with more than 15 minutes a day.
Go forth and shine. I'll be egging you on all the way!

WritersLiPP said...

Thanks a million, Julee! Glad you like what you see here; we love the t-shirts, too! You are absolutely right about the writing; slow and steady WILL win this race. And it's great knowing you have my back! We really appreciate your commenting and following; good luck in the drawing.

Anonymous said...

This is real cool ladies. I love the layout and LiPP idea. For me just regualr old life gets in the way. Doctors visits, church work, house work, repair work--get the picture. Good luck on your new venture.

Susan Carlisle

WritersLiPP said...

I know exactly what you are saying, Susan. But we refuse to let the mundane stand in the way of the extraordinary. You are pretty extraordinary, yourself. Thank you for stopping by and for your support!

Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn said...

Hi, Pam!Lovely to re-meet you. Best of luck with LiPP.

I never dabbled, except in my head and I thought that was just the kid in me still making up stories when I was bored with mundance household chores. LOL Surprise, surprise!

Pam Asberry said...

Love it, Carol! Thank you for stopping by and commenting. It's been a great year so far, hasn't it? :-)

jazzyjinx said...

love the new blog. keep up the good work.

Pam Asberry said...

Thank you for stopping by, Shawn! Looking forward to writing with you soon!

Maxine Davis said...

Hi Li-Lindy and 1st-P Pam,
I love your blog. It looks great. So good to see you two Saturday. I wrote for years before going public; now on the the 2nd P (so to speak), Publishing - some day!

Pam Asberry said...

Hey Maxine! Welcome to Writers LiPP! Saturday was a great day; the memories will inspire me for a long time to come!