Here’s my latest 5-pronged update:
I don’t really have any updates on the first book. I’m still submitting to agents and looking into self-publishing. WHEEEEEE!
The last week has been an exercise in writing query letters. For those of you who forgot, a query letter is a one-page introduction meant to sell your book. They are a HUGE deal, as many agents won’t even look at your novel unless the query is appealing.
A few days ago, I found a website with forums dedicated to writing and critiquing book queries. They have hundreds of members of differing skill levels, all ready to lend a helping hand.
Stumbling across the site, I posted my query and immediately got several responses that made me realize it was too much a synopsis and needed more “pop.” My query was also too long; you need to sell your book in 250 words. That seems crazy, but people have been doing it for decades.
Consequently, I’ve spent hours writing and rewriting and tweaking my query. After many versions, I’m finally at a point where it feels pretty good. There are still a few things I’m canoodling with, but I’m so grateful to have found that site. Hopefully, the reception to this query will be decent.
Oh man, we had another train wreck at church on Sunday.
There are four places in the Mass where I play a short piece on the tablet (we have a Google tablet now with all the music installed) where a guy actually sings. It’s really kind of weird, this invisible person’s voice echoing through the speakers. But Father likes it, so I do it, and people try to sing along with the floating headless man.
This past Sunday, I had the correct song all cued up and my finger hovering over the button, ready to press “Play.” When Father reached the proper spot, I obediently hit the button.
That’s when the tablet was possessed by a demon, and started playing a completely different, random song!
I have no idea how; it was impossible for me to select such a wrong track. I could understand if I had “fat-fingered” the screen and accidentally touched the song before or after the correct one. But a completely different piece began playing, one that wasn’t anywhere near the right one.
Demons, I tell you!
Then a demon possessed me, because I couldn’t take action and fix it. I was soooooo confused by what was happening, I just froze and stared at the screen. Instead of playing the right track, my brain had to sit there and try to analyze how something so wrong could have played. I guess the developer in me took over and started debugging the tablet.
Finally, after several excruciatingly long seconds, I finally snapped to attention. But then I panicked, wondering if another random song would play when I touched the correct track. Practically closing my eyes, I held my finger over the correct spot, and tapped.
Miraculously, the proper song began playing. But, to make matters worse again, I looked up to see Father with his face hidden behind a piece of paper, laughing. Right in front of everyone. Seeing him, I couldn’t help it, so I started laughing, too. It got so bad that I had to crouch down and lean over so people couldn’t see me.
When it was all said and done, I still don’t know what happened. And that sucks, because now I’m going to worry that, every time I use the tablet, a completely random song could begin playing at any time.
Enjoying the Area
Last week, I mentioned that there was some big news coming and I guess it’s time to spill the beans:
I’m moving to Phoenix!
Or, more accurately, we are moving to Phoenix!
About a month ago, Chris’s job listed an opening in the Phoenix region. He and Windy had been talking for some time about how they eventually wanted to end up there. That, coupled with a lot of weird things going, led them to decide to at least discuss the opportunity.
So, we all sat down (or, in Windy’s case, lay down in a hospital bed), and debated, at length, if it was the right decision.
After much deliberating, we decided it was and, together, we’ll be making the move.
I am going to miss Page soooooo much. It’s the place where I got to take a year to work on passion projects. It’s the place I got to explore for weird hiking trails and nooks where I could sit and meditate. It’s the place I met a bunch of really cool people. It’s the place I got to finally spend time with my sister.
However, I think this change will be good. Phoenix will give me the opportunity to find established writers groups where I can really learn. The “big city” should also have writing conferences and things like that to help me connect. Finally, there will be more opportunity to make some money, as I’ll be looking for contract work in the near future.
Random Insights or Stories
This week, I’m combining this section with the next, because I’d like to share a short story that also has some random insights about me.
I’ve been working on my second novel pretty heavily the past few weeks. It’s about a gay kid who accidentally comes out to his parents. The book deals with his journey after that moment.
To commemorate the work, I’d like to share the story of my coming out to my mom. Granted, I wasn’t a kid at the time (I was 27!!), but I still think it’s appropriate.
This is actually not a new story – I wrote it a few years ago, after my mom passed away. See, after her funeral, I sat down and wrote a collection of stories about her, and gave it out as gifts to the immediate family for Christmas.
This is a story from that collection, called Coming Out. Enjoy!