Sodaro's Stories

September 30, 2011

So I had this idea…

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 9:29 am

I read about some writers that say they struggle with knowing what to write about and I mentally stare off into space for a minute to wonder what that is like. What is it like to not have a single ping-pong ball bouncing around in your mind? What is it like to actually have to go looking for an idea? To have to wonder if you have written your last idea and you’re done? What does that feel like? And does it feel as much like death as I’m picturing?
I have the opposite problem. I have too many ping-pong balls bouncing around in my mind. It is a constant barrage (isn’t that a fun word!!!!) of ideas bouncing around like that pop-up “vacuum cleaner” that we had when we were younger. My problem is never “will I have another idea” my problem is focusing on one ping-pong ball long enough to finish it…of course I thought that publishing Whatever you Make of It that it would be done…instead, it became about 5 more ping-pong balls because now evidently it needs to be a series.
So I have a new idea…and that plus my sinuses had me restless and irritable at 3:30 this morning…thus causing the kittens to be restless as well. So I stopped fighting sleep and got up…the tabby and the Siamese are now quite content to be sleeping by my feet…because they are the ones that have to be up in a couple hours…sigh…
So my new idea is this…I am going to write the book everyone has told me I should for years…yes, yes…I’m still finishing Arianna…and Ten by Ten…this book idea is going to take a while for collaboration and won’t be published until the doctorate is done. It is going to be called “The Dog ate my flash drive” and will be a compilation of creative reasons students have given as to not have homework done or be at school. I will be asking my friends in the field for their examples as well. So that will take some time to gather up…
And in the interim (another one of my favorite words) I will get the first draft of Arianna done (I promise I promise I promise) and Ten by Ten will be started on the publication path early next month.
My 3rd set of doctorate papers was accepted, so now I can dive into number 4!!! And maybe…just maybe…if my sinuses continue to prevent me from sleeping…I might actually get all this done and still keep my jobs. Ahem…


September 25, 2011

She’s baaaaaack!!!!

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 4:00 pm

All it took was a little shift here, and a little change there and my writer’s block was broken. I shifted my hours for my main job, am going in longer on Friday and not at all on Monday, thus giving me 3 mornings of writing and 4 mornings of teaching and with this shift…my muse came out to play in full force yesterday. Seriously…I could not write fast enough or long enough or enough…enough. I wrote 11 pages (one chapter) of a novel that is only (now) 2 chapters long, though I have a rough outline for it in my head. I no longer really write down outlines because I have learned that my characters very seldom like the map that I create and would prefer to find their own way to their conclusions.
So I started writing and got a couple pages down and was excited to have the chapter started. Then I walked away from my desk and tried to play some World of Warcraft…but even my pretty pretty pally could not weave her web and soon I was back at my desk…then after a few more pages, I tried to watch Law and Order: SVU marathon…but not even sexy, sexy Elliot could keep me interested (you know it was some pretty serious writing time, if I walked away from him!!!) so I just surrendered to the Muse and let her play to her heart’s content. It had been far too long since her attention was held that long.
Today it continued…I have added a page to my doctorate paper so far and will be playing with that while trying to pay attention to the football games…

September 22, 2011

Just Right!!

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 1:27 pm

I don’t mean to sound like Goldilocks here, but…
My schedule last quarter was great — mornings free to write, evenings to teach — but I didn’t make enough money and I don’t like driving at night…
This quarter, I make enough money, but I teach in the mornings, which is not conducive to my ideal writing…
What would be the perfect schedule for me? What would get my inner Goldilocks to say “this is just right,” you ask?
I would wake each morning with the sun…have my coffee and French Vanilla creamer…
I would write on my Doctorate and my novels and my poems for 5 glorious hours (and if the kittens could be napping at that time…that would be magical). JUST RIGHT!!!
I would then go swim for the peace it brings my mind, body, and soul. JUST RIGHT!!!
I would then teach for 5-6 hours. JUST RIGHT!!!
Eat food that is JUST RIGHT!!!
Sleep in a bed that is JUST RIGHT!!!
Cycle, rinse, repeat…ad nauseum
Sigh…as it is very rare to be able to teach from 2-8pm (unless I taught online) it is very unlikely for me to obtain this ‘just right’ schedule…what I must do, as always, is make the best of it…help my muse to embrace afternoons which is our lowest creativity zone — and still get things done. I never wanted to be Goldilocks anyway…she always seemed a bit too high-maintainance for me.
“You can blame your circumstance or you can find time for what matters to you. The choice is yours.” Sage Cohen — the Productive Writer. Mrs. Cohen, I choose productivity.

September 18, 2011

Everyone loves a game

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 3:16 pm

So…my writing has been sporadic at best and non-existent at worst. I have all of these lofty goals and amazing projects that would be fantastic to finish and get out into the world. I can see the beautiful results of getting my works done and out into the hands of my readers…all of this is going to be just amazing…if only I could write…for without putting pen to paper, then these projects and goals and dreams remain cobwebs in my head.
While I was driving to work the other day, or should I say, sitting in the parking lot that is highway 470…I had an idea for a non-fiction book…a book about writing…like the many I have read and taken notes from…but this one, would be different in that it would be all about the Muse…It will be called “Coffee, Pancakes, and Playtime: how to keep your Muse happy and productive.” I came up with ideas for 10 chapters (have to have things end in 5’s or 10’s…damn OCD) and I think with that outline, it will be enough to shop around to Writer’s Digest books…since it’s nonfiction, an outline is enough to see if there is interest. To say the least my Muse is thrilled to be the star of her own book.
So it occurred to me that perhaps my writer’s block was due to a disconnect from my current project. I haven’t been able to completely jump into Arianna because of how long it has been since I have visited her world. So, I took all of my current projects and wrote the title of each one on 3 pieces of paper (15 projects…damn OCD), folded the pieces of paper and put them in a box. Then I draw out a piece of paper (this makes my Muse giggle and clap at the game) and whatever I grab I have to write on for an hour.
So far, I have grabbed Whatever #2 and Arianna’s Honor…so I added to Chapter one of the former and Chapter 18 of the latter…and the writing has flowed out of me…and it has been such a relief.
So maybe my beautiful Muse just needed it be a game…I don’t care what it takes…just need to keep her dancing and frolicking about. And she’s thrilled to have a book all about her…so this may work out for both of us.

September 11, 2011

Rather Random…even for me

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 11:44 am

“Chance is always powerful. Let your hook be always cast; in the pool where you least expect it, there will be a fish.” Ovid
I don’t like fish…well at least I don’t like the actual act of fishing…and those of you that know me know that touching cold, slimy, germy things is right up there with getting random hugs from strangers in a crowded bus to nowhere…
I was talking with a colleague who has unwittingly become a friend, and I told her that what I really wanted was to meet and get to talk to more writers…that I really felt disconnected in that regard and while my friends and support group are amazing and beyond all that I could hope for…it is not quite the same as talking to someone else that walks in writer’s shoes.
Evidently the universe took me at my word and presented me the opportunity to talk to a VERY random, very creative writer…via Twitter of all things…Thus the quote from Ovid…for of all the people I know, I am probably the least likely to be a regular “tweeter” though as an author I acknowledge the need for this…
The conversation started about Dracula but by the end we were decorating a pea pod…and it was hilarious and inspiring. He is an author…his books are available in e-book format only, so in order to be supportive of my new friend, I will have to join the e-book revolution…sigh…it won’t be the same…unless they come up with an ap that is “new book smell”
So thank universe…for fishing me up a writer, who so far…has not proven to be cold, slimy, or germy…but time will tell

September 5, 2011

Energy shift

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 10:03 pm

“A man must drive his energy, not be driven by it.” William Fredrick Book
Okay, I will probably never get married…but if I were to get married, it would completely be to Mr. Book. How amazing would that be, to have BOOK as a last name…
but looking at his quote, it reminds me that I have control over my energy. Looking at my calendar and my resolutions, it appears I have slipped again. Looking at my site stats, I have once again neglected my pretty pretty blog, and for that, my friends, I do apologize. Consider me back on track…again
For my novels…I got so excited by having Whatever you make of it published, that I have neglected my other novels…consider that back on track as well.
My finances…well…hmmm…next topic.
I am going to start swimming again…one because it will help me to be as beautiful and healthy on the outside as I am on the inside, and two because it brings me a calm that I don’t experience anywhere else.
My book signing…I am planning mid-October. My plans for that are based entirely on my being able to get some copies of my book to have at the signing…so plans for that are on track.
My first book…is so beautiful…and thanks to a friend, that book is in fact going to be a series. I’m excited by this possibility…especially when I came up with some rough sketches for ideas of future magical book stories…and it will let me play with Jac and Jyn again, so that makes for the whole Alpha/Omega thing that I like so much….much to the detriment of my doctorate this is happening…but don’t tell my advisor just yet.
My doctorate is one more element of my life that needs an energy shift…and turning in my 3rd paper this week will help with that as it marks one more thing off my ever-shifting list.
So, Mr. Book, I am taking your advice about being the driver of the energy…and I am taking it out for a test drive. Buckle up, my friends…we’re in for a heck of a ride.

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