New Year? New You?
This week on the podcast we talk about:Mr. Taco, Attacking Seagulls, Doing the Raccoons, and Goals. Also, Shaun sings.
So it’s the New Year and as we all know it’s all about goals and looking back and creating our lives in a new way.
People are spending money on exercise equipment and diet food and all that, but you know what? The you that you are? It’s totally fine.
Writers especially feel pushed towards outside affirmations and validations.
We think, “If I traditionally publish a book, I’ve made it. I’m a writer.” Or we might think, “If my self-published book sells 100 copies, I’ve made it.” Or even, “If I get 10,000 Twitter followers, then I’ve made it.”
You are a person in a moment.
Every moment that you write? You are a writer.
You don’t have to aim for any goals other than the goal of self realization.
You are a writer by writing, not because you hit a list or make an editor you’ve never met buy your story or a critic that you’ll never know give you five stars.
Writing is communication and exploration. It is craft and art. It’s all these things bundled together and just like you – the writer – the human – it is shiny and real and just fine the way it is.
You are a writer by writing. You are a human because you do human things.
This year maybe we can give others and especially ourselves the empathy to not judge each other by our end goals, but by our journey and actions that we perform every day or every week, by how we create our stories and our families and our communities.
Let the goals that you create be about process as much as they are about achievement.
And have a happy new year as you, not a new you, but the you that you are, right now, in this moment, a beautiful, shiny soul.
Three obstacles are important in your story especially if it's a picture book about a seagull trying to nab a French fry.
Life is about community. Make your community good.
The music we’ve clipped and shortened in this podcast is awesome and is made available through the Creative Commons License. Here’s a link to that and the artist’s website. Who is this artist and what is this song? It’s “Night Owl” by Broke For Free.
The Write. Submit. Support. format is designed to embrace all aspects of the literary life. This six-month course will offer structure and support not only to our writing lives but also to the roller coaster ride of submissions: whether that be submitting to agents or, if agented, weathering the submissions to editors. We will discuss passes that come in, submissions requests, feedback we aren’t sure about, where we are feeling directed to go in our writing lives, and more. Learn more here!
“Carrie’s feedback is specific, insightful and extremely helpful. She is truly invested in helping each of us move forward to make our manuscripts the best they can be.”
“Carrie just happens to be one of those rare cases of extreme talent and excellent coaching.”
My new book, IN THE WOODS, is out!
It’s with Steve Wedel. It’s scary and one of Publisher’s Weekly’s Buzz Books for Summer 2019. There’s an excerpt of it there and everything! But even cooler (for me) they’ve deemed it buzz worthy! Buzz worthy seems like an awesome thing to be deemed!
Order this bad boy, which might make it have a sequel. The sequel would be amazing. Believe me, I know. It features caves and monsters and love. Because doesn’t every story?
Buy limited-edition prints and learn more about my art here on my site.
Get exclusive content, early podcasts, videos, art and listen (or read) never-to-be-officially published writings of Carrie on her Patreon. Levels go from $1 to $100 (That one includes writing coaching and editing for you wealthy peeps).
WHAT IS PATREON?
A lot of you might be new to Patreon and not get how it works. That’s totally cool. New things can be scary, but there’s a cool primer HERE that explains how it works. The short of it is this: You give Patreon your paypal or credit card # and they charge you whatever you level you choose at the end of each month. That money supports me sharing my writing and art and podcasts and weirdness with you.
Shaun: So, Carrie's not the best in the mornings and too much noise, clutter, extra to-do items pretty much throws her completely off her game. Carrie: One of the reasons that the dogs and I do daily motivating thoughts on my Facebook and Twitter accounts is because it helps ground me and make me feel less cranky and stressed.... Usually. Shaun, however, is a morning person who craves noise and tropical music while I'm a Pachibel's Cannon morning person. Shaun: True. Carrie: So, this week's podcast is the first in a series of podcasts about how to make your life and your writing life better and our first tip is.... DOG TIP OF THE CAST: Just say no to the stuff you don't want to do. You don't have to say yes to invitations or the extra responsibilities. You don't have to respond to every single text and/or email. You get to be in charge of these ancillary parts of your life. If you don't want to email/text/talk to someone, there might be a really good reason why. In this life, we have a limited amount of time to expend. Expend it well. Do it on your terms. Dogs get this. WRITING TIP OF THE POD: Yep. Same point. Write the stories that you want to, that resonate with you. Say no to the stories you think other people want you to write. When you get rid of the baggage, the things you don't want or need to do, you free up your mind of clutter and give it space to create. Listen to the full podcast to hear Shaun's random thought all about marketing - KaPerPi. It's knowledge, awareness, public relations and ...
Sometimes in life we want to be memorable, right? And other times? Not so much. Shaun is so tall and formidable that he doesn’t have much choice in being memorable or not. Carrie? She can fade into walls if she wants to. In writing, there are some pretty simple things you should do to make sure people remember your character. Mention the ACTUAL CHARACTER A LOT Talk about that character every 30-40 pages. People forget the characters they don’t see. This is true in real life too. Remind people you are out there. Give them a cool name. Carrie Jones? Not a cool name. Give. Just give. In real life and in writing, giving matters. People remember kindness. Give them something that makes them stand out physically and intrinsically. What do I mean by that? Give them something like a tattoo, a way of bending their foot to the side when they talk. Give them a strong personality trait. Do the work to make them memorable. Focus. In real life, it’s the people who focus on one goal, strategy, process who tend to make a big bang. Embrace Your Quirkiness. This is linked to that memorable trait. Being quirky might make you a bullied kid, which is basically hell, but when you’ve embraced that difference, your originality, your authenticity? That’s when people remember you. If you’re in a room full of a dozen white guys in suits, none of them are going to pop out. It’s the woman in the flowing skirt that you’re going to end up remembering. ...
This week on Carrie’s blog, carriejonesbooks.blog, she’s talking all about chapters and so we’re talking about them on the podcast, too, because Carrie’s controlling like that. And what we’re talking about specifically is chapter titles. You can divide your books into chapters and just label them numerically, 1, 2, 3… But you can also give them a title like: Chapter One Surviving the Podcast Here’s the thing. Chapter Titles Help Your Readers How do they help your readers? In a lot of ways. Grab attention. You put these bad boys at the top of the chapter. And the reader thinks, “Ah! Look at that! I am paying attention.” Tell readers who they are focusing on now. If you have a story with multiple point of views, you can put who this chapter is focused on here. Show location or time changes. You can give the reader some help. If you have a time jumping, place jumping novel. You can use this space to say, “Hey, we are in sexy Scotland in 2021.” Or you can say, “Look, we’re in Zambia in August.” Show theme or the future. It’s like a happy little spoiler where the reader goes, “Oh, that’s what this chapter is about.” This can be about theme, too. Show Echoes. A chapter title can be a first sentence. Summing it up: And there you go. A quick bit about chapter titles and what they can do for you. WRITING TIP OF THE POD Chapter titles are good tools. Use them. DOG TIP FOR LIFE Use whatever you can to communicate things to your human. Wag. Growl. Bark. Spin in circles. Hit them with your paw. They are stupid and need a lot of ...