The life of a writer is so much more complicated than I ever expected it to be. As a reader, I just thought of the finished product - the book in my hands. As a writer and published author, I've discovered the printed book is just a tiny portion of what a writers life is like. Finding a way to balance everything a writer needs to do takes some serious organizational skills. Here are some updates of what's happening in my writing life right now . . .
(dis)Abilities and the Gospel: A Guide for Parents and Teachers
Lynn and I were just contacted by our publisher at the end of last week, asking for feedback about our book cover. We are so thrilled and excited to work with our designer (who still remains nameless cause I was so excited, I totally forgot to ask who was creating the cover!). Lynn and I emailed our thoughts and suggestions in, and now wait to see the results.
We also found out our book is being going to press (sent to the printer) in March. Booyah! We should soon hear from our editor and once I'm done reading for the Whitney Awards, Lynn and I will jump in with both feet to start planning our publicity, book tours, and speaking engagements. Book Release Date: May 2011.
This is my romantic suspense novel which I completed during NaNoWriMo 2010. I'm now rewriting to smooth everything out before sending the manuscript out for freelance editing. In May, I'm meeting with Sara Megibow from The Nelson Literary Agency to pitch the book (while I attend the LDS Storymakers Writers conference). Yeah, can you say "Danyelle's SUPER excited?" Oh yeah! My goal for Rebound is to have edits and rewrites completed in May and start agent submissions in early June.
Dawn's Morning Light
This is my next work-in-progress. I have the first chapter ready, and another document filled with my initial info dump. I signed up for the Publication Primer class at The LDS Storymakers Writers Conference. This is basically a mega intense boot camp style class that whips your writing, query letters, and everything about the submission/agent hunt process into shape. I'm looking forward to it! But first, I need to get the first ten pages written for Dawn's Morning Light. The first chapter is only four pages long, but they are packed with emotion that just rips your heart out. Seriously. You need a box of tissues, preferably Puffs Plus so your nose doesn't get all dried out and sore. So I need to do a bit of plotting, character development, and writing this week. The material submission for my class is due by the end of this month. Which means I'm temporarily setting aside Rebound to get this done. Then I'll be right back to rewrites.
Do you see what I mean about the balancing act? And this is just for my writing alone. Once I throw in family, church, and my volunteer committees, life just explodes all around me and my BlackBerry becomes my best friend. Sometimes I think I live my life around its little alarm dings.
My husband once overheard a conversation between one of his friend's mom and her friend. The friend was telling the friend's mom that she was so busy, she was burning her candle from both ends and needed to slow down. The friend's mom replied, "But I don't want to get to the end of my life and find out I still had candle left to burn."
I love that quote. Sometimes my life is super busy and I have to rearrange my priorities to make sure everything is in order and that I'm spending my time where it's really supposed to be. But like my hubby's friend's mom, I don't want to look back on my life and regret that I didn't burn my candle a little more to try to accomplish my heart's desire.
Finding balance isn't easy. It takes a lot of re-evaluation and making careful decisions. But the effort and the rewards are most certainly worth it.