Radio & BIAW

So, I’m super excited to report on two writing activities.

Let’s talk Radio Interview first in case you don’t keep reading. LOL So, I’m a member of Texas Authors and one of the perks of belonging is you can have two interviews a year. I did one a couple of years or so ago, and it was fun. Now, however, Texas Authors has set up a YouTube channel and the interview goes out on I Heart Radio and Indie Beacon Radio. I hope you’ll take a few moments to look at least a bit of it and maybe share it on your social media. Here’s the link:

I left out two important things in the interview. One was this blog site ☹ Boo on me. More importantly, I left out the statistic that one in four women have been physically and/or psychologically abused. That’s the focus of the 4th book in the Second Chances Series, ACT OF SURVIVAL.

Act of survival 200x300

Now the other thing that was going on last week was BIAW. Some of my fellow sisters here on the blog will recognize those initials. They stand for Book In A Week. We are members of the Kiss of Death, online chapter of RWA for writers of romantic suspense & mystery. Four times a year, the chapter sponsors BIAW. I’ve never participated before, but when I saw the emails, the timing seemed perfect.

I’d been saying I needed to start the next book, especially if I expected to publish it in 2020. But life just kept happening and something always got in the way. BIAW was a good kick in the pants. Before I could begin writing on Monday, September 16, I had a lot of prep work to do. Like figuring out who my characters were. I had the location. Red River, New Mexico.

I use charts to describe my characters, give them a back story, and figure out GMC. So, for several weeks before Monday a week ago, I did my planning. Those charts may change, but they form a basis from which I begin.

Well, as life would have it. BIAW fell during a week when I had lots of other things going on. The radio interview was only one small part. I committed to writing 2 hours a day as opposed to 4 hours. Thank goodness! But I’m also committed to walking 10 K steps a day, and that takes a good 1 ½ hours to pull off on top of just regular walking. Then there were church meetings and grandkids stuff. I also began working with NOOM, it’s my latest weight loss project. (I’m sure I’ll write more about that later.)

My stress levels have been high with all the deadlines, timelines, steps, and word counts, calorie counts to achieve. Yesterday afternoon, I totally crashed and slept soundly for two hours.

Here are my results. I did in fact write for at least 2 hours every day but Saturday. We were having company for supper, and it took longer to get ready or that than anticipated. But even that day I wrote almost 600 words. Most days I wrote more than 2000 words. Sometimes only a bit more, ending up for the week of more than 14000 words.

So, I’ve learned a few things from the experience:

* The accountability worked for me. Knowing I had to turn in my words at the end of the day, and that I was helping a team.

*I don’t have to have a whole day or whole afternoon of a weekend blocked off to crank out a decent number of words.

*I’ve learned that setting the timer (at least figuratively) works for me.

I’m not committing to continue to write two hours a day. Before I do that, I need to work on some time-line issues in the story that I saw but didn’t want to stop to fix. But when that’s fixed, I think I’ll set between 1-2 hours and see how that goes.

Have you been on radio or TV? Do you have your own YouTube channel? If you’re in KOD, have you done BIAW before? How did it work out for you? This is the first book I’ve started from scratch in over four years. I’d forgotten how hard that is. While I did the pre-planning, I seem to be mostly pantsing this book. Kind of magically scary for this person, who’s gone from being a plotter to a plotser. Love to hear from you.

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Older Characters

What do I mean by those words? For some people, 35 is older. I’m sorry, I really have a hard time wrapping my mature mind around that concept. 40? Yeah, I can go there. Except I was really in my prime during my 40s and 50’s. I ran for the school board for the first time when I was 40. (and lost–not fun, but ran again when I was 44 and won. Much more fun. 😊)

IMG_3312 kids hate this pic.:)

I was in my 50’s when I went back to school to get principal certification. And I didn’t begin writing until I was in my 60’s. Maybe I’m just a late bloomer? Well, yeah pretty sure. But I’d argue age and our perception of age has changed. Even for women.

Women in the real world anyway, perhaps not in Hollywood. But the last I checked, I don’t live there. 😉

I write romances with heroes and heroines in their 40-s and 50’s. Second chance love, but always with danger thrown in. My tag line is “Romance, Suspense, Second Chances. Experience Required.” My stories almost always have the parents of the main characters in them, too, as supporting characters, so folks in their 70’s. I like the generational thing.

I remember attending my first RWA convention. It was in Dallas, and I’d just retired from being an elementary school principal. I went not knowing a soul, not even belonging to a local chapter. Everyone was welcoming and friendly. One of the sessions was put on by Harlequin, I think, and they were touting their new line of romance with older characters. I can’t remember its clever name, but I do remember thinking, Yea! There’s a place for me. LOL Remember, I was very green.

I didn’t even know that I don’t write category romance. I believe that line fell by the wayside. But as we’ve all grown older (a thing, if we’re lucky. we do), the idea of reading about folks who are closer to our own age falling in love and solving problems and getting into scrapes and getting out of them has grown in popularity.

On Facebook, I belong to a group for writers of Seasoned Romance. I understand at RWA this summer there will be a panel on this subject as there was at the recent RT conference.

This makes me happy. Partly because maybe there will be more readers for my books, but also because there will be more books for me to read.IMG_3926

My husband read a recent NY Times article about the importance of reading and raising kids to be productive adults. The author accepted a challenge to read 100 books a year—of all kinds. He and his wife challenged their teenagers to accept the challenge. They haven’t yet made it, but that’s one of those goals that even if you don’t make it, you accomplish a whole lot with the attempt.

I confess to not reading a wide variety of books, but even when I was laid up all last summer with my broken ankle resting above my heart, I didn’t read 100 books in that year. That’s a huge goal, but a worthwhile one for a person of any age to set.

So, where do you fall in your reading? Only read books with younger heroes and heroines? Do you read multiple genres? How about the number. Are you in the 100 Club?  Love to hear from you.

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