Sodaro's Stories

September 23, 2012

Breaking Point

So, for the past two weeks, I have been auditioning my stories to see which one would be next to be my primary focus. I have been writing random scenes using Judy Reeves’s Book of Days for inspiration (she has 2 editions out and a writing prompt for every day of the year in each edition…so 730 ideas…can you say DROOL!!!!)
So, I have been trying to see what my next project would be…and I have run into some issues…
Logically, I should write First Down which is the first in the series that ends with Hat Trick whose first draft is finished. That is the logical choice and if writing were in any way logical…then that would be what I wrote…but here is a problem. I love Ty and Mac, the couple that meets in Hat Trick. If I write about Ty in First Down, as I will have to, because Josh is his best frend…Ty won’t know Mac yet…and what happens if he is dating a girl in Josh’s book…I would be pissed at him for going behind the back of a girl he hasn’t met yet. (If you can follow that logic, you have spent too much time with me, and for your safety, you may want to take a step back.)
Another point worth mentioning is that I should work on sequels…
**Supposedly Whatever you Make of It is going to be series…I am torn on this one, but I did leave it open for either way, so we will see…I do like the idea of Jac and Jyn getting another story…because I really do love them lots…
**Arianna’s Honor will have a sequel…there’s a war coming and who could Arianna trust to keep Nick’s head attached to his shoulders.
**Broken Trust is first draft done and ready for her edit…and she, of course, has a sequel, called Redeeming Trust
**Then there is my Back on Track</em series…of which I have the 1st and 2nd first drafts done. There are at least 2 more in the series…which have been started…
So any of these would be the logical choice…the rational choice…the choice that makes the most sense to the outside world…what did my muse pick??? Breaking Point…a story that has some hard parts and some soft parts and has absolutely nothing to do with anything else..but the good news is at least this one doesn't have a sequel…yet.

September 20, 2012

Checking for Numbness

“I hurt myself today, to see if I still feel,
I focus on the pain, the only thing that’s real.” “Hurt,” Johnny Cash
I know Johnny Cash covered this song, but I actually prefer his version, which almost never happens because too many covers are only cheap imitations of the real thing…like Pleather…but I digress.
The opening lines of this song made me think about my novels and the writing I have been doing lately. For the past 2 1/2 years, I have had to keep checking for numbness. His birthday is next week and while I feel his presence with every word I write, I would give just about anything to talk to my friend again.
I haven’t wanted to feel, but what that did also was affect my ability to write any feelings. My writing comes entirely from my emotions, and while making myself numb has been acceptable in my dating life, it is not acceptable in the lives of my characters (Let’s not psychoanalyze that just yet, shall we?)
There are certain scenes that stay with you. I remember when I had 4 sections of American Literature and we watched Of Mice and Menand I had to watch Lennie get shot 4 times in one day. I cried every class period and would start to cry earlier and earlier, knowing it was coming.
In my novels, I have these scenes also. There is a scene in Whatever you Make of It, there is a scene in Arianna’s Honor, there is a scene in both of the Back on Trackseries, there is a scene in Broken Trust, etc. With these specific scenes, which may or may not affect the reader, I feel absolutely every bit of emotion…felt it when I wrote it…feel it every time I read it. These scenes let me know I’m not numb…These scenes let me know I am still alive. I find comfort in them as well as sadness…and that means I can still feel.
I have also started to write poetry again…which is of course the best sign as no poetry can be created when you are not feeling anything at all.

September 16, 2012

Peaceful, Easy Feeling

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 11:34 am
Tags: , , , ,

“And I get a peaceful, easy feeling, and I know you won’t let me down. Cuz I’m already standing on the ground.” Eagles, Peaceful Easy Feeling
I am home. I am finally home. And some of you may wonder…well where the heck have you been this whole time, if not home. And the answer…I’ve been restless. I’ve been searching for the epitome of perfection…a place that had everything I needed and I was absolutely certain that that place was not Kansas City. I have joked that I have moved so many times in my 23 years in Missouri (not to mention the number of moves in the first 14 years as well), but I have joked that I moved to stay one step ahead of the stalkers…and that is, of course, (mostly) a joke.
Mostly I moved because, like Goldilocks, this one was too this and the next one was too that…and I was sure that if I found the perfect place, then every thing would fall into place…
My writing would be magical every day, I would be motivated to work out, my love life would finally be something that made sense, sunshine would wake me every day, and life would be a Disney movie.
I read a book called Pursuit of Happinessby Jennifer O’Neil and I liked most of the points that she made…but one in particular stood out for me, perhaps you will see why. “Remove all contingency clauses attached to your happiness” I read this and I realized how many times my sentences start with “I’ll be happy when…” or “I’ll take care of this, when…” and it occurred to me that I am happy now and I can take care of things now.
I also realized, that no…my apartment is not perfect…ideally I would like a window that had a view instead of looking at the back of a hill…but I have a picture of a beach in front of my desk…and that is nice to look at. Besides, I should be looking at the paper that is on the desk more as that is what I want my future to be. My novels. My PhD.
My full-time job is not perfect. (I’ll stop the sentence there). It pays my bills. It gives me the opportunity to still teach at ITT. It has provided me with an excellent group of friends.
My support system here…I have been thinking of them as a safety net…or training wheels…I have been convinced that I was a big girl and could do it by myself, on my own. But why would I need to? My friends and family are amazing and I want to stay near them.
So…I am removing the contingency clause from my happiness…I am not going to wish for the greener grass of another place to live, or a lover who knew all angles of me, or I will work on my health when my PhD is done. I will write here because I can. I will work on my things now…here…and I will allow myself to be happy.
It’s about damn time.

September 9, 2012

Clicking Send…a Second Time

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 12:47 pm
Tags: , ,

Last year, I sent off my first novel to be self-published and I equated it to a first-time parent sending a child off on a bus for the very first time. Even though I have no children, parents that I talked to…the experience was very similar. Were they ready? Would they remember to be nice to others? Did they have everything they needed in their backpacks? Did they have their lunch?
Here I am on the brink of clicking Send on Arianna’s Honor and I find myself as nervous as I was with the first book. Will they understand why she is the way she is? Will they think, as I do, that the prince is annoying in the beginning, but becomes a decent human being thanks to her? Will they understand why the ending had to be the way it was? Will they see the chinks in Ari’s armor? It’s nerve-wracking and I don’t know how parents do it…
I have gone over line by line and word by word. I have read through it and tweaked it. I changed the opening scene to give it more of a feel for the two characters. I have used find and replace to get every instance where the prince’s name changed…It started out William/Bill/Billy and then became Zachary/Zach and then Timothy/Tim and finally became Nicholas/Nick with the added bonus of Ari calling him Nicky when he is behaving like a little girl.
So here they go…hopefully Ari doesn’t use her sword on the first day on the bus…

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