Sunday, March 17, 2013

A Step in the Write Direction, March 18, 2013

Step in the Write Direction
March 18, 2013
The virus has been hitting our family: first our daughter, then my husband, then our son. Hope it’s over for now! (Definition of virus: what the doctors call it when they don’t know what it is!)…Sunday: My husband got worse and went out to Urgent Care today. Because of a dangerously high potassium level (supposed to be 3.5 – 4.5 and his was 6.2), they sent him to E.R. with orders to admit him. Doctor said this high level could kill him. It affects the heart, also the kidneys, and because he already has a bad heart and diabetes, it worried them. They’re taking all kinds of tests, so we should know more tomorrow. Father/Grandfather Anthology: If you sent in a submission this last week and haven’t heard from me that I received, two of the submissions disappeared into no-man’s land, so please resend them. Deadline is March 31st. Books: My three gift books and another picture book were rejected last week (rejected means “pre-acceptance"), so will get them out in the mail again I hope this week. Publisher is still considering another book I submitted.
Thought for the Day:
In the biography of Leonardo da Vinci, Antonio Vallenten tells of a time when the great artist was at work in Milan on his famous painting of the Last Supper. Da Vinci spent many hours meditating in the chapel of the monastery where he was working. The monks resented these "idle periods" and accused the artist of wasting time. But da Vinci defended these periods of reflection by saying, "When I pause the longest, I make the most telling strokes with my brush." (Robert A. Beringer, Turning Points, CSS Publishing Company). Your writing time isn’t wasted when you’re cleaning, taking care of your family, taking a walk, or just thinking. Sometimes that’s where you’re getting your best ideas.
Laugh for the Day:
Eighty-two-year-old Morris went to the doctor to get a physical. A few days later, the doctor saw Morris walking down the street with a gorgeous young woman on his arm. The doctor said, “Morris, you’re really doing great, aren’t you?” Morris replied, “Just doing what you said, Doc. ‘Get a hot mama and be cheerful.’” The doctor shook his head and said, “Morris what I said was, “You’ve got a heart murmur; be careful!’”
Writer’s Tips:
Proofread carefully to see if you any words out. (Author Unknown)
Organization: F.A. Rockwell defines an expert as “someone who knows no more than you do, but who has it better organized and uses slides.” Successful writing requires organization. For me that means at least one four-drawer file cabinet. I did give in and put all my manuscripts—sold and unsold—on a CD, with a copy in a fireproof safe and this emptied two drawers. For my posterity, however, I printed off copies of each one and put them in notebooks divided into nonfiction, fiction, devotionals, poetry, and so on. And I still keep paper submission records, even though I include that information on the CD with each manuscript.
One writer friend subscribes to Carbonite, a software program that automatically and securely backs up the contents of your computer for an annual fee. Even if your computer is stolen, Carbonite has it all. (See for more information.)
I also keep idea folders. When I get more than one idea on the same subject, I give it a tentative title and a folder. Then when I find more material relating to that theme, or I have time to work on that particular manuscript, everything is in one place. You can also scan this information into a computer file.
And I keep files of quotations and articles. I read the newspapers with a pen and scissors, and as soon as I clip something, I immediately put the source and the date at the top. These clippings can be scanned onto a CD or into a file, but I like the idea of going through the folders looking for a specific illustration. Whenever I do this, I always get ideas for other writing.
More tips next week. This is also included in my book A Step in the Write Direction—the Complete How-to Book for Christian Writers. See description on my Web site:
Have a good week spreading the gospel through the printed page!
Donna Goodrich
"A Step in the Write Direction--the Complete How-to Guide for Christian Writers"

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