Posts Tagged ‘doubt’

I’m Kathleen Freaking Dienne

Warning: The link contains language that is NSFW (not safe for work, if you’re new to acronyms). I don’t know why you’d be visiting an erotic romance author’s website if the f-bomb troubled you, but better safe than sorry.

At any rate. Kate Harding is a wonderful writer. She writes essays and blogs on feminism, fat acceptance, and more. I came to her site originally when I was asking Google for help with a friend’s situation – his wife had been a big woman before they got engaged, lost a lot of weight right before he proposed, and was back up to her normal weight before the wedding, and I was trying to tell him “Dude, this is the shape she is and all the weight loss tricks and products aren’t going to change that in the long run.” Kate says that with biting wit and incisive observation.

But what got me going most recently was this link, which was actually in response to someone else.

Women, generally speaking, waste so much time with self-deprecation. We don’t wait for the world to dismiss us. We come up with all the reasons why we’re not good enough to be successful. That’s some seriously internalized bull doots, right there. But wait, there’s more.

Erotic e-publishing is something nearly everyone does under a pen name. Some of us are doing it to protect professional reputations in other fields. But here’s the thing – out of all the various types of publishing, erotic e-publishing is the only genre where other writers sniff and say “Oh, you’re not really published.” Oh? I’m not? I’ve got a contract with Harlequin that says I am. “The standards are lower with erotic e-pubbing, anyone can break in.” There are a lot more e-pubs out there, because the demand for these stories is so high. New publishers that can’t pay well due to the lack of volume do exist – but at least they exist. New publishers don’t try to open in other genres nearly as often.

It’s for women, written by women, published by women, and acknowledges the sexuality of women, and therefore no one takes it seriously as art or commerce, despite racking up some of the most respectable and fastest growing sales numbers in the industry. And the people who write it do half the dismissing.

No. Today, I am Kathleen Freaking Dienne.

Categories: Thinking Tags: , , ,


I finished the revise and resubmit material on the Widow and the Gentleman story. As much as I would like to think that my original story was a thing of beauty, with rainbows sparkling off every golden word, the revised material is about one billion times better.

The final stretch of rewrites went hard, though. Not the writing, the ignoring my own doubts part. The revised piece is 12K words longer, and I was/am terrified I’ve done harm to the pace the editor liked so much. And of course, the reason the suspense subplot was so puny in the first submitted version was because I am positive I’m a terrible suspense writer.

That’s a ridiculous statement, mind you. I haven’t written suspense before this story, so I have no outside opinions as to if I’m terrible or not. Guess I’ll find out… in a month.

But as soothing as it was to go back to characters I knew well, I’m relieved to have it off and done, and I feel much more confident about my ability to plot a longer story now. Heck, at the rate my word counts are rising, I might even write a novel someday.  /snort

If it sells, I’ll write a post about the before and after and show you the story charts, but meanwhile, I need to cleanse my brain of Vanessa and Derek, and get back to figuring out my new characters.

A Writer’s Mental State

March 30, 2010 4 comments

I was doinking around on Absolute Write instead of writing last night, because my story sucks. I still met my word goal for the night, but those words were all boring. The story is boring. No one could ever possibly want to read it. Fortunately, there’s a chart for this.

The AW poster said this chart is courtesy of a science fiction author named Maureen McHugh. I am now going to purchase one of her books because A) science fiction author, B) I owe her one now.

One Hit Wonder

February 18, 2010 Leave a comment

On one of the forums I frequent, there was just a chat thread about one hit wonders. I’d been absolutely paralyzed over that very fear. If nothing else, writer forums are good for making you realize that while you’re working alone in your basement, you aren’t alone in a larger sense.

Anyway. You’d think selling something would be this ultimate validation – yay! You can write something people are willing to buy! – but no. You don’t retire the fear of “god, I suck, I’ll never sell anything.” It merely transmutes into “god, I suck, that was just a fluke.”

I will tell you what I did, though. I thought to myself, well, maybe it was a fluke, but you have two hours to write this afternoon and it’s time to get on it. I obsess, panic, twitch, and second guess throughout the rest of the day, but writing time is to write. Not to research, not to surf writer boards, not to daydream about staying at a writer’s retreat, and definitely not to think about anything besides words on a page. As soon as I was done each day, I went back to moping about what a loser I am. But for those two hours, more if I could swing it, I was just writing. When I’m writing, I don’t feel like I suck. In fact, the more days in a row that I stick to writing, the more effortless it becomes.

So while I may indeed suck, a pretty damn good novella is out in the wild making its rounds, the next one is started, and the one after that is in outlines.

Categories: Thinking, Writing Tags: ,

Michaelangelo Thought He Sucked, Too

January 29, 2010 Leave a comment

Just something to keep in mind on those bad days. I saw this on Slate:

I’ve had a crush on the man from Florence ever since I read The Agony and the Ecstasy. On some level, it pleases me that the greatest artist in history would say, while painting the Sistine freaking Chapel, “I’m no painter.” I’m no Michaelangelo. Still, it’s a comfort knowing everyone questions themselves when in the throes of creation.

Categories: Thinking Tags: ,