Sodaro's Stories

June 27, 2011

4 corners

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 1:47 pm

No…have no fear; I’m not talking about math…or geometry or even geography…I am talking about 4 people who are the corners of my support system. These four people…keep me grounded and focused…and help me from floating off too high…or too low.
It is self-acknowledged that I am a difficult person to care about…I am self-absorbed when it comes to my writing, I am not always observant of things that are going on around me, I am demanding and sometimes rather needy, and I am constantly amazed that people care for me in as many numbers and in the depth that they do.
Somehow, despite my faults, these four people, my corners, are able to block the paths of self-destruction, fill in the gaps of my logic, accept me (and my characters) for our quirks, and keep me focused and productive.
In the past few weeks, through some weird joke of the universe, all four of my corners had things that needed to be attended to…and I should have been fine…but one of the hardest quarters of my academic life had just ended, and stress wore me down to the point that I listened to hurtful words that never should have gotten past my bubble…and I found myself drowning in a darkness I haven’t felt since I killed my elephant late last year. I had thought that with the elephant taken care of that the darkness would no longer have any hold. I found out I was mistaken. I didn’t care about anything…not my doctorate, not my novels, not my goals…not even my pretty novel sitting in production. This worried me…
I have reconnected (reattached) my four corners…my anchors against the darkness…the core of my support group. I have come to need these four more than I am comfortable with, but as none of them would abandon their post, I suppose it is okay to depend on them. My disconnect was entirely my fault…I didn’t communicate with them quickly enough, foolishly thinking that with the elephant safe and on my shelf, that I had no need to worry of the darkness…
I am so appreciative of my corners…I am also fairly certain I am not worthy of their unwavering support…but I’ll take it…and continue to thank the powers that brought them to my world.

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June 22, 2011

All will be well…

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 12:51 pm

This was the start to a conversation between my best friend and me…and it never ceases to do the job. Whenever one or both of us gets out of whack for one thing or another, this banter is started…it came from a book whose title escapes me at the moment…
Yesterday I was speaking with another friend and it worried both her and me that I didn’t even crack a smile when discussing my upcoming book…I’m having some issues at my job…and seperate from that, am having some insecurities caused by a careless and thoughtless remark made about my goals…it was made by a person that probably had no idea (at least I want to believe it was unknown…unintentional) the impact that the words would have…but they annihilated me, not for the first time…certainly not for the last.
I have an amazing support system. There are countless numbers of people that believe in me without question, without condition, without end. It is truly awe inspiring and I know at times I try their patience, but they are always there, cheering me on and pulling me back up to my feet. All will be well. This is my time to do this…and despite anything else…I will be able to say very soon, “look….it’s my book…here’s the cover that was brilliantly designed by a student who cares about the design as much as I do….and look here, this photograph…didn’t she make me look amazing?” And that’s just the cover…
So…all will be well and all manner of things will be well…WOLF.

June 20, 2011

Poetry pet peeve

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 1:35 pm

As I was listening to Pandora this morning…which seriously is a blessing for anyone with any attention problem who can’t decide what they want to listen to…anyway, as I was listening a song came on that reminded me of a poetry pet peeve…so I thought I would blog about it…and it’s always nice to start the morning with a bit of alliteration. And typing the words instead of saying them means I won’t spit when I talk (try saying poetry pet peeve…).
I hate when writer rhyme words with themselves. That is cheating. You can’t rhyme heart with heart…with the millions upon millions of millions that exist in this world…why would you cheat like this?? Serioulsy…I have the alphabet written out on a post-it on my filing cabinet for instances such as this…and no, I don’t forget the letters of the alphabet…this way I can systematically go through and find a better way to rhyme with heart…let’s make a list, shall we? art, Bart (little homage to the Simpsons, why not), cart, dart, fart (not very romantic…moving on…), mart, part/apart, start, tart…that’s just one-syllable words…we could go on, but I think I’ve made my point. Many other options…
Sigh…please don’t rhyme the word with the word. Buy a rhyming dictionary and a thesaurus like the rest of us and do your work.

June 15, 2011

Clone me, pretty please

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 5:03 pm

I know…scary thought, right? The absolute last thing this world needs is another me…I wonder sometimes if the world is ready for the one me that already exists. But ready for me or not, I’m here and making as much progress on as many things as is possible…thus my request for a clone…or, to be more specific…a separation of my inner twins. Let me take full advantage of being a Gemini and have a completely separate, fully functional logical side and an equally separate, equally functional creative side. That would be perfect.
Logical me could take care of the teaching, the newsletter I want to start sending out, the website I need to create, the business side of promoting my writing, the contacts, and the networking, and it would all be organized and easily accessible…I would not, for a non-to-hypothetical example, not be able to access my website because I had lost my login information…ahem…logical me could also edit Broken Trust…and Cassidy…and Jo/Eddie…
Creative me could play…and by play, I of course mean write…I could write on Arianna (which is difficult to do because it had been too long since last I lived in that world), and #3 in my series, and my new idea that will have a co-author of whom I am very fond, and my 3rd doctorate paper, and my next doctorate paper (which for some reason is #5 though there is no #4), and my poetry and every other toy in my toy box…
And yes…I know that logical and creative have to co-exist…that logical alone would forget to live and creative alone would forget to eat…sigh

June 12, 2011

Friends trump fear

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 12:39 pm

Henry David Thoreau said, “Friends cherish each other’s hopes. They are kind to each other’s dreams.” I like Thoreau (and Emerson) so much more now than when I studied the Transcendalists (Dickinson has always appealed to me…Whitman I can take in small doses). I have this fear of my dreams coming true…a fear that all but paralyzes me. I almost dropped my Masters a month before I graduated because of this fear…as the fear’s strength is directly parallel (a perfect negative relationship) to the level of exhaustion, I have no doubt that as my Doctorate comes closer to completion that the thought of running away will again raise its disturbing head. The more that I want something, the higher the fear goes as well…so this should be an interesting next year.
Luckily for me, I have and have always had, people in my life that ABSOLUTELY refuse to let my fear win…I don’t often let people carry me…the fear of being dropped, even metaphorically, is so great and has happened so often as to prevent that level of trust from existing with too many people. But there are those that have proven they will not drop me, that they will support me and be fountains of positive energy…and they are carrying me right now.
Today, I type the changes made to Whatever you Make of It and tomorrow I call iUniverse and ask them 5 very important questions: How long does production take? Can I keep it fiction and not change it to young adult as was suggested? How does it work with Amazon? What do I do next? Are there discounts for publishing future books with them? And then I click send. My cover is perfect. My picture is perfect. My novel is perfect. And yes…I am biased.
But if not for the friends that cherish my dreams as surely as if they were their own…if not for the hope and kindness that my friends have chosen…the fear might have had a chance. But fear not, for friends trump fear. The friends I have now…most definitely are stronger than the fear.

June 8, 2011

Details…details…

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 3:59 pm

So today I read through Whatever you Make of It for the last time (well last time until it is in book form…I will revisit Jac and Jyn many times) before I send it back to iUniverse to go into production. (Just typing that gives me goosebumps) I have my cover designed..thank you Matt Nolan. I have my cover picture…thank you Julia Viles. And this is very close to getting off the ground.
I was making a list (I know…me, making a list??? That’s crazy talk) of the things I needed to work on …webpage, newsletter, contact list for aforementioned newsletter, planning my book signing, etc. etc. etc. and I realized that I need an assistant…have one in mind and would LOVE to be able to offer him the job today so that I could just play with my pretty novels and my characters…can’t pay him yet though, so it’s up to me to try to balance both sides…but future plans…
It’s so exciting to be at this stage…to stand in a place I have never stood before and to know that I will never stand in this exact spot again. Never again will I be within skipping distance of publishing my FIRST novel…it’s an amazing view…more beautiful than I have imagined…which is saying a lot as my imagination is without a doubt the healthiest part of me.
So I work on the details…an aspect that has never been my strong suit…and I figure this out as I go…with a support system that both humbles me and keeps me flying higher than I could if I were alone. This is a pretty amazing time to live in my head.

June 6, 2011

A muse, two kittens, and a notebook

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 11:17 am

So a muse, two kittens, and a notebook walk into a bar…no, no, no…that’s not what I want to write about…
My sweet kittens have come to learn that if they wake me before the sun comes up, what they get is a rather grumpy human…so they generally try to refrain from making their demands until Mother Nature’s alarm clock has shown itself in all its beautiful glory. This provides for a more harmonious household.
My muse, who has been sitting quietly (almost too quietly, given my constant paranoia that she is going to leave for good every time we go for periods where real life has to take precedence yet again), whispered a story idea into my ear this morning…and I dreamt of the story and watched it play out in my head…which made my muse dance and clap in my head…then, when I did not get up to write down her gift, she tilted her head (in my head, yes…it is a busy place up there, but it’s completely with a disco ball and a meadow) and started listing off on her tiny fingers the number of times we had had this conversation. The “trust me, this idea is TOO good to be forgotten; I will remember when I get up” conversation which very seldom leaves me with anything more than a memory of an idea (and a growly muse) the next morning.
I used to keep a notebook and pen beside my bed for such thoughts. I tried a recorder for a while, but evidently I sound like a drunken person that not only knows not a single word of English, but is also very enthusiastic about that lack of language knowledge. I write better than I speak, the majority of the time, but in the middle of the night especially, so the notebook has been placed by the bed, where it belongs.
Of course once I got up (another reason the location of the notebook makes a difference), the kittens were like “yeah!!! fair game!!!”

June 1, 2011

Mid-year reflection

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 3:15 pm

Somehow it is already June…so I thought I would take a moment to see what, if any, progress I was making on my New Year’s Resolutions, and what I needed to kick up a notch.
Financial…hmmm…I am 0 for 5 on those…but I knew this year was going to be a tough one financially…perhaps my goals were a bit too lofty on this front…perhaps I should have merely stated that I would keep my head (be it ever so barely) above water…that is a Resolution I can get behind….sigh, next…
Doctorate…well, I was making really good progress with this one…everything in line and ready to proceed…until the class I am in hit a roadblock I don’t know if I can ignore. Because of everything else on my plate at current, I may have ended up with a C in the class which does not exist for the school, which would mean I would have to take the class over again, which would put back things a bit…I almost have my 3rd set of papers completed…that should be done by the end of this week, actually. I have already started in on the next set of papers, so that is right on target.
Writing…well in some areas I am doing well, and then in some areas I need to kick it up a notch. I need to finish up Whatever you Make of It and I need to read through my other finished first drafts to see what needs to be done to get them ready to send off as well. I have started writing on Arianna, but it has been so long since I was immersed in her world, I need to go back and read a bit. Writing one hour a day minimum…that one is a given. I have been getting back to blogging twice a week again too…so this another bit of progress.
Hmm…my “other” category…I have been working out more, so that is kudos to me…I haven’t gotten even halfway to my book goal…haven’t gotten a new tattoo…sigh…but I have met someone…which has introduced me to more story ideas and new ideas…so that is a definite bit of progress…
All in all…it’s not a bad halfway point. There have certainly been years where I accomplished far less…
Monday was my birthday and I was thinking about how far I had come from my last birthday…and how far I will go before my next one.

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