Sodaro's Stories

June 30, 2014

reflection…year three of 30 days of Blogging

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 4:52 pm
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Well here ends my 3rd year participating in “30 Days of Blogging.” I didn’t make it every single day, but I did make it more days than I didn’t, so I am going to go ahead and count this as a success. 23/30 days…which is a 76% so definitely room for improvement…and I will definitely be back in 2015. I enjoy the challenge, just like I will do the National Novel Writing Month for the 3rd time this November. Next year I will add April’s A-Z of Blogging to the challenges I participate in as well.
This challenge definitely got me back to my neglected blog, but every day is sometimes unfeasible — not because I have nothing to say (okay, some of you can stop laughing…I know I talk too much) but because sometimes I have stared at a computer screen for far too long that day and can’t do it for one more minute.
I absolutely love my online teaching gig, love it…and actually love teaching again, but it’s a lot of screen time which some days makes me not want to type my blog on my computer or even my phone.
So I can’t blog every single day, but this month has taught me I can certainly do more than I have been doing. I can do 2-4 times a week…and I will do so for the rest of 2014.
This is currently my 315th blog. There are 184 days left in the year, so my goal for the duration of this year will be to get as close to my 400th blog as I possibly can. Then I will adjust my goals so that by the end of 2015, I am at my 500th blog. If I stay on track with my books as well, I will have between 3-5 more books published to add to the three that I currently have. Yes, I think that will work out quite nicely.
So there are plans, my friends, and you know how much I love having a game plan 😀

June 29, 2014

Come on…we have work to do

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 9:27 pm
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A little over four years ago, a friend I loved dearly, got me to embrace the idea that if I truly wanted to be an author, then I should do exactly that. Then he lost a battle to his inner demons and after he died, I didn’t know how I could possibly be the author WE had made plans for me to be. How could I possibly do this all by myself?
My beautiful muse has been in my life forever, but I never saw her clearly and I never knew her name until that day I hurt so much I thought I would never stop hurting.
She let me cry for a bit, as good friends do. I felt her presence and her pats on the shoulder and then she said, “there there, come on now — we have work to do.” And there she was — my beautiful purple fairy muse, named Stella, and she was right — we had all kinds of work to do.
Prior to that day, my relationship with Stella had been rather precarious, mostly because I would “play at” being an author. I would only write when inspiration hit; I was easily distracted by shiny things or video games (World of Warcraft was by far the SHINIEST of all distractions). But I would wait for inspiration to hit and she would threaten to leave me, even grabbing her tiny suitcase (which lost its threat when I realized it was empty.) She wanted me to be completely on board with my author life and that meant showing up every day to work…not just waiting for the days I felt inspired. That meant grounding myself from WoW (which I miss so much). That meant getting my butt in the chair and getting my words on paper.
My goal is 1500 words a day. Some times I make my goal, some days I go over, some days I can’t get it done. But every morning, I hear Stella in my head, “Come on now, we’ve got work to do.”
Yes we do.

June 27, 2014

And Baby makes three…

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 2:54 pm
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I now have 3 books published…it’s a pretty amazing feeling…I have to tell you. There are, of course a million things I need to do…to promote and get the word out…I need to get the paperback cover formatted…and my website…and just a million other things…but one of the most important things for me to do is to not lose any momentum. I have to get some writing in for my Lucky Charms series. I need to keep the wheels moving because there are many more novels to write and edit and add to my collection 😀 There is no time to slow down. Plus, there is the fear that if I slow down, I will find I like the slower pace and will stop altogether. And then where will I be.
So I clicked send on Arianna’s Destiny and I now have 3 publishing credits to my name. The ebook will be available soon and I have a huge party in my head at all times, but especially when we are celebrating our third book.
And now I jumping in with both feet to my 3-part series…not because Arianna is not worth a party…just because I am not wanting to slow down. I can’t just sit around and wait and see what people think of a book I love so much…characters I know so well. I’ll drive myself crazy doing that. (okay…those of you who know me may be questioning that, so I will put that I will drive myself Crazy-ER :D)
I have three books with my name on them…it’s surreal…just as it was with Whatever You Make of It and as it was with Arianna’s Honor…and soon I will be able to see my third-born on amazon, which is something that never ever ceases to amaze me. I love my characters. I can’t wait for you to see what Arianna got herself into this time.

June 26, 2014

Reality…

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 9:17 pm
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I missed two blogs in a row this week…I had been doing so well…and then reality came and just hit me upside the head…and I used to get so bent out of shape when that would happen. I used to look down at my list of things to do and shake my fist and scowl when I didn’t accomplish all of my tasks…then I realized sometimes you just have to let reality win.
I love teaching…I have done for 17 years and still love it more days than I don’t (a lot of that has to do with where I currently teach…it really shifted the points back to the “love it” category)I also love being an author…love it all day every day…and I have really worked hard to have balance between my teaching life and my author life…but the reality of it is some weeks I can’t give as much time to writing as I want to, because of the demands of my teaching life…but I always come back to my novels and my characters. That is also reality. They are a part of my present and my future.
I used to worry about EVERYTHING…and then I would worry about the fact that I worried about everything…and the reality of that is that it caused me a lot of undue stress. My reality is pretty amazing…I have a good job…a good family…more ideas than one person could possibly write in a life time…an education…an unquenchable thirst for knowledge…that is all part of my reality.
One day, I am going to live on an island…you bet that is going to be reality. I am going to get there. Watch me…but in the meantime, I am going to do all that I can, every single day…and I am going to play in my fictional worlds…and live in reality (most of the time).

June 22, 2014

Not Crazy…

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 8:49 pm
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“She’s not crazy, just a little misunderstood.” “Misunderstood” Better than Ezra
Not to mix my cultural references, but I know I’m not crazy even though my mother never had me tested.
At any time I have about 20 characters in my head and they all like to discuss their present and current scenes. I have a muse who is directing the entire universe that exists in my head. I have thoughts bouncing around my head about dreams that I have had that may become stories. I have a million things that I need to do now that Arianna is about to launch her sequel.
None of this makes me crazy. A lot of this makes me misunderstood. With this many conversations in my head at any time, I try very hard to act like a “normal” person and have conversations with the people in my life, either through Facebook/texting or face to face. (I still hate talking on the phone). Almost every conversation I hear, I am filing away for possible novel dialogue. I am constantly studying people…their mannerisms, their quirks, their speech. All of these things make me more than a little awkward with conversations…and interactions with people. Again, not crazy…just misunderstood.
As a teacher I have always been confident in my interactions with people. I always try to be very clear and easily understood. I focus my energy and really try to communicate well and efficiently. I’ve been doing it for 17 years and more often than not, accomplish my goal…somewhere in my personal life, I lose this ability. A couple of weeks ago I thought I was finding a new friend…a connection of sorts…and this has even added to my dreams. What I thought was a new friend, turns out I was creepy. I’m not crazy…but more often than not I am misunderstood. Ah well…luckily with my novels, I get multiple drafts to make sure my message comes across well 😀 My characters don’t have to be awkward, just because I am 😀

No words…

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 3:13 am
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I didn’t get my blog in yesterday, though I have been trying for this 30 days of blogging…but yesterday there were no words…just no words. Those of you who know me, will know how rare it is that I actually have nothing to say, as usually the problem is quite the opposite.
Yesterday, I sent Arianna’s Destinyoff to BookBaby for eBook publishing. It has to be formatted for the different eBook options and then it will be sent to the different eBook companies and will be available for purchase!!!!
It is so exciting to know that before the end of the month, I will have my 3rd book published. Despite obstacles and life events postponing and pushing things back, despite people from my past hoping for a distracting trip down memory lane. Despite me getting in my own way — despite all of this, I still got Arianna out in the world and opened up the path for the publication of future projects. It’s very exciting in my head right now and I have so much to do and say…but not yesterday.
Yesterday I just wanted to take a minute and just smile. Just enjoy that suspended moment in time where I just floated a bit, feeling a bit like Arianna who is floating toward the next step of the publication process.
I just wanted to float a bit yesterday and so I did…and now it is definitely time to be back to work on my 3-part series, Lucky Charms.

June 20, 2014

Magic time

Filed under: Uncategorized — michelle sodaro @ 12:17 am
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This quote by Meg Cabot is so true. There have been things I have written that I wrote in huge letters CHANGE THIS!!!!! because I knew it didn’t work,  but I didn’t want to stop the writing flow to figure it out right then. There have been scenes I hated  writing that I just had to get through.  And in doing all of this, the magic does indeed happen….and it makes it all worthwhile. 
I try my hardest to write every single day. Some times when I’m writing,  it is magic time and it’s all I can do to keep up with the words as they appear in my head (which is one reason I have a pen obsession). It is on these days I believe in magic. It is also on these days where I keep the Faith in my novels and my  future as an author.
Some days the magic isn’t as strong…but even a little magic keeps the hope alive…and when you see the finished product. …abracadabra! !!!!

June 18, 2014

And…SHIFT!!!

So there is an excitement in my head right now…well 99% of the time it’s pretty crazy inside my head…but it’s especially crazy right now with Arianna’s Destiny DONE and waiting for Friday so I can send it off to the next step (the step where my “work” on her is done and it shifts to promoting and selling), there has been a very distinct and specific SHIFT in my thinking. All of the characters that get to hang out with Arianna on a daily basis (and yes…she would be FANTASTIC to hang out with, trust me if you don’t know for yourself), but all of her crew have shifted off to the side to allow the next project to be front and center in my mind.
When the center position was emptied of Arianna and Peter and Davey and everyone else (no spoilers :D), the spot was filled to the absolute fullest it has ever been, with the next project…because this next project has a definite 3-book span with 10 characters who will be consistent throughout the three books and then the characters that will be added in as the series fills its pages. That is a lot to keep straight in my head. Especially because the books closely follow each other in time…and my goal is to have them closely follow each other in publication as well. So I have been working on all three of the books in the series at the same time (don’t worry, I have a cheat sheet as to what has and hasn’t happened, who has and hasn’t been met, and what is and isn’t coming up :D). The challenging part was keeping the three stories straight with their 10 + characters straight AND working on finishing up Arianna’s Destiny at the same time. Even I have limits to how many things I can focus on at the same time and when my characters over lap this much, chaos can ensue.
So Arianna is done. (It feels so good to say that.) Now it is time for me to focus on my Lucky Charms series with First Down, Stealing Second, and Hat Trick completely in my center of focus (which is not to say I won’t write on other things if I feel so inspired, it just means that I will write and work on one of these three every single day. They will be the next ones for me to get ready for the world and then the shift in my head can happen again 😀

June 17, 2014

Feeling groovy…

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 9:53 pm
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So one of the best feelings in the world…something that feels very groovy is that feeling when you KNOW a novel is ready to go. When you have edited her to the point that she is as close to perfect as she can get and any other changes would be superfluous and ridiculous and redundant and pointless and any other negative sounding adjective you would like to use.
Arianna’s Destiny is DONE!!!!! She is DONE. DONE. DONE. DONE. Oh, and she’s done. 😀
I have edited her, carefully polished her, and read her until I knew her inside and out, backwards and forward. She is ready!! Her cover is ready. Her story is ready. She is solid and good to go.
On Friday, I will send her off and get her ebook published and then will follow up with her paperback. My part of her story is done. It is now time for the world to get to read her new adventures! She is beautiful and is ready for the world. (In truth, she has been ready for a while now, and is finally done with me fussing with her.)
It’s always a good feeling when you know your novel is ready. I got to this magical part with Whatever you Make of It, I got to this point with Arianna’s Honor, and now I have it with Arianna’s Destiny.
I am not saying she is perfect, as there is no such thing as perfection and the search for that will drive a person crazy…but she is ready…and she is beautiful.
Thank you all for your patience and your support. I hope you love her as much as I do.

June 16, 2014

Creating Soundtracks…

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 10:33 pm

So I love music…all the way from classical (Tchaikovsky is a personal favorite) to musicals (Les Miserables and Rocky Horror Picture Show are my two favorites) to country to rock to oldies to rap to pop…I love music and as such I have Pandora playing in my ears every chance I get (Pink is singing to me right now, Staind was just on…:D) and as it happens, there will come on a song where I clap (sometimes out loud, forgetting other people can hear me even if I can’t hear them with my ear buds in…I also tend to forget they can see me when I’m dancing along) but I clap because this would be the PERFECT song for THIS PARTICULAR scene in THIS BOOK and I have a notebook that lists 15-20 songs for all of my novels. Songs that go well (sometimes too well…to the point that they would seem too coincidental if my characters were hanging on and this song played) with the events of the novel.
I think it would be fun to have a soundtrack with each novel…it would be a nightmare getting permissions for everything, but it would be amazing! I would love to have a CD with my novel that you could listen to while you read or after you read…I don’t know if I would suggest listening to the CD before you read the novel as there might be spoilers 😀
It’s fun though, to hear a song and know it would be perfect for when my novels get made into movies 😀 (Hey, a girl has to plan ahead, doesn’t she).
If you think of any songs that would go well with one of my novels, please let me know. My list is always growing as Pandora introduces me to new songs. (And then sometimes, oh no…what are you thinking, sweet Pandora…)

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