So, have given up on the whole giving up caffeine. First of all, it's amazingly boring. There is so little that you can drink except for herbal teas. Second, I used to have a cup of coffee in my second hour of writing, and now that I've stopped, I've dropped down from 2,000 words to 1,000 words per hour. It's a pretty big difference. It might not be the caffeine (as I'm still drinking Jasmine tea which has quite a bit), but anything that might possibly help or even give me a placebo effect I'm utilizing. (What is this placebo? Where can we find it? Maybe it's over in this truck marked 'Killer Bees'! Ah, the Simpsons).
Writing-wise... not going at all well. Working at half speed for less hours somehow does not result in more words. Go figure. Up to a grand total of 12,000 words for this story and am a week (ie. halfway) in. The problem is I don't know why it is going slow (when I'm sitting down and writing. I understand why it's not as long as it should be in that I've been busy with family stuff.) I know the characters well enough, I have more plotted out in my head than I usually do, I'm giving it free reign to be as ridiculously corny as it can be, and yet it is just coming out at half speed. Where is my flow? Muse, why have you deserted me?
On a completely different note woke up this morning from a vivid dream with a really great idea for a children's book. Noted it all down, but restrained myself from starting on it straight away. Once I've finished this fortnight I'll decide whether to jump to it or the one that's planned (which also happens to be a children's story, an Australian fairytale, sort of a cross between Dot and Kangaroo and Alice in Wonderland.)
While my writing isn't going all that well, I have managed to send off query letters to two literary agents and to one publisher directly. Am going to wait and see if I get any useful feedback along with the rejection letters before sending out a few more. But boy, trying to get a Young Adult, Christian series published when you are an overseas writer (to America, obviously they are the overseas agents to me) is really difficult. I found one publisher that specalised in young adult Christian works, but they wanted absolutely no profanity. I have a handful of swear words dotted through out, because my main character and her friends are all non-Christian to begin with. There is not a secular Aussie teenager alive that does not use the lesser swear words, and to take them out would be inauthentic. I played with the idea, and knew this might be a problem for an American Christian market, but still don't think I can do it.
A lot of publishers and literary agents appear to refer to Christian Manuscript Submissions, which is a website that allows you (for a fee, of course) to upload your proposal and sample chapters and then agents and the big publishing houses refer to it from there. Don't suppose anyone has heard of it and have reviews/feedback about it?
I thought I would wait until I've been rejected a few times, and then look into it.
Oh, but life is not all bad. I'm still working on the whole lifestyle of a writer and so on Friday (while unsuccessfully trying to avoid my house cleaner, as I had absolutely no idea what time she usually came) I went out for breakfast and read Dorothea while eating at Laurent (beautiful French patisserie near my house.)
Green tea with a ham and cheese croissant and an almond croissant to finish. Perfect. (Well, didn't actually help the writing, but you can't have everything!)
Final words: am halfway through Dorothea's Wake Up and Live, and other than the great 1930's psychology and self-help nature, it has given me some interesting ideas to think about. She sets a challenge of just trying out her theory (no, am not going to spoil it by giving it away... just yet). So, I'll finish the book to make sure that it doesn't go super weird and report back on how the challenge goes for me, but I highly recommend you read it if you are feeling in a bit of a life rut.
And just a reminder: you have two days left to enter the Pre-Giveaway Giveaway! It's open to absolutely everyone, anywhere in the world. At the moment I'm loving the comments, so might have to put all names in a hat because I can't differentiate based on merit.