2 year novel

As if I don’t have enough on my plate right now, I signed up for a 2 year novel course which started in January. It’s all done online and best of all–it’s FREE!!!

So far there have been three assignments posted. Have I completed all three? No. But I’m not terribly far behind, either. I’ve got the first two done and posted. I decided this would be a good place for my foray into the world of crime writing. Will I be successful? Who knows but it should be great fun along the way.

First blog of 2009

I can’t believe the last time I wrote anything was in October! My, my, my time sure flies. So what have I been up to since then?

I’ll start with my current project(s). I’m working on the second edit of my “The Anniversary” manuscript. When I finished the first draft, I was at a whopping 122,011 words! The publisher I’m sending it to, wants 100,000 maximum. After getting through the first 36 chapters, I’m happy to report that I’m down to 105,958 words–a reduction of 16,053 words!

While I work away at this, I keep sending Sarah’s Gift out to various publishers–all without success. Last night, as per the agency’s guidelines, I e-mailed the first three pages off to them. If they like that much, they’ll ask for more. So, fingers crossed. I should say that this agency is looking for young adult material which where I believe Sarah will fit in perfectly.


I’m sorry to have to say that for the time being, there will be no more snippets from my novels going up here. After much researching of the matter, it seems that even though it’s on my blog, put there by me, it’s considered published material.

Rather than prejudice my chances of getting either of my novels published, I’ve removed any entries pertaining to either Sarah’s Gift or The Anniversary…

Sorry folks, I know you enjoyed reading them.

Outsmarted the ghost in the radio

B-duh… should have thought of it sooner… CBC radio is available to listen to online! It was just a matter of finding my Ontario morning program. And I did and am happily listening to it as I type.

After discovering that my “ghost in the radio” doesn’t particularly care for other radio stations either, I decided it was time to take stronger measures.

I think it’s coming back… as in the motivation

Well, I’ve managed to start the wedding scene. Okay, I already had “the wedding goes off without a hitch blah blah blah” but hadn’t written any of the details. I’d left Sarah having a confrontation with the bad-ass outside the wedding venue and looking over her shoulder as she took her father’s arm to make the walk down the aisle.

Not sure why I decided to pick this missing scene to work on but, hey, I’m at least working on it. That’s a start.

I agree with Stephen King… when it feels like work, it’s no fun.

A photo…

Robertson weddingI’ve never tried adding a photo to a post before so thought I would give it a try. I chose this picture because it’s my grandfather, presumably on his wedding day in 1876 to his first wife.

The first time I saw this photo was on a trip to Scotland. One of my cousins had it and gave it to me. I thought I was seeing my father staring back at me when I first looked into the face of the man pictured. It was like seeing a ghost!

This portrait plays a huge role in my first novel, Sarah’s Gift. It’s a large oil painting of the Laird and Lady of Weetshill–John and Elizabeth Robertson.

Now my character, Sarah, looks exactly like this young woman. Robert Robertson (grandson of the Laird) and David Robb (Sarah’s nurse) both look like the handsome young man.

Not to spoil things for those who haven’t read my first novel, I’ll not say anymore. For those who have read it, or a portion of it, or have seen my people and places in Sarah’s Gift pictures, you know what I’m talking about.

Motivation… or should I say lack of

Motivation, where did you go? Are you under the desk? Snoozing upstairs? Where are you? I’m not sure if it’s because the end of the month is quickly approaching and I have so many things I want to have done for the conference or what, but working on The Anniversary isn’t what I want to be doing.

I need a kick in the butt or something to get me back on track.


The Ottawa Romance Writers’ Conference

Well, it’s not much longer now. So much to do… so little time…

Now that Andy is back in school, I really have to compete for the computer. School work is more important. Good thing I’ve got a laptop and a full sized keyboard I can plug in to it so I can work in another room, although it’s not always as comfortable.

It was my intention to have the first draft of The Anniversary completed in time for the conference–not that I need to take it with me. It’s just my goal to have it done. I think I’m 75% of the way there but with the way I’ve jumped about writing scenes as they come to me, I can’t say for sure.

What can I say? I am so looking forward to this shindig. It’s the first writers’ conference I’ve attended and I want to make a good impression. You know–look the part of a professional. I’ve bought new clothes, still looking for the right “bling” to set them off–although I’ve seen some possibilities.

I want to get more business cards and bookmarks printed, too. Now that I’ve got my new colour laser printer and business card stock for colour lasers, and some heavier card stock to make the bookmarks from, I’ve got that part pretty much covered. I plan on collecting and swapping as many business cards as possible while I’m there so even though I’m printing my own, I want them to look as good as possible.

All I can say at this point is, it’s a good thing that I’m off work the week leading up to the conference.

Receipt Acknowledgement

I had a letter today–on the finest bond paper, no less–from Mills and Boon. They’ve received Sarah’s Gift and will read it carefully and reply in due course.

Now that I know that they actually received it, I can rest easy. Not really, now I’m on pins and needles waiting to find out what the verdict is.

In the meantime, I continue to work on The Anniversary and if a re-write of a portion of Sarah’s Gift is necessary to get her published, I’ve had some ideas rolling about in me wee heid…

The saga continues…

The ghost is still playing silly beggars with my radio dial. Except in my case – it’s digital. The only good thing was, this morning it seemed to get bored much sooner than earlier in the week. Yesterday, you couldn’t get from the radio back to the computer without it changing stations again.

I like your theory MJ, some disgruntled ghost who hates the CBC, has found his/her way into my house when we had all that rain in July and August.

We’ll see what tomorrow brings.

My Scottish roots and writing by Melanie Robertson-King