If you are going to try to make a go of this bizarre hobby/profession/pursuit/obsession calling writing fiction, ya gotta have friends. I don’t mean the “hi, how are you, we should do lunch, call me” kind of friends. I’m talking about people who you can tell about your latest writing funk, confident that they will simultaneously hand you a sympathetic chocolate cupcake and give you the proverbial swift kick in the gluteus that will jump start your muse.
I’m particularly blessed in this area, because I have two groups of friends who fit this description. In realtime, I have the greatest bunch of writers to hang with at the local Books A Million. So a great big shout-out to the Pensacola clique – you know too much about me for us to ever stop being friends!
And in the virtual realm, I am proud – and humbled – to be a part of an incredibly talented and supportive crit group known as the Super Fly Writing Group! (Aka #SFWG on twitter).
They encourage me, challenge me, and inspire me on a daily basis. And the very fact that they let me play in their sandbox gives me hope. I mean, seriously – if these brilliant ladies treat me as a colleague, I must have some tiny bit of talent there somewhere!
Last week, the awesome Candie Leigh, a fellow SFWG member and helluva YA author, sent out a blog challenge called The Lucky Seven. Now, at the time, I was in the midst of a trip to Orlando’s theme parks with my babies, and I didn’t get to play then. But the challenge reminded me that I had been inexcusably lax in my blogging, so now that I am back in the real world, I am picking up on Candie’s meme and running with it. You should all go right now to read her Lucky 7 post at http://adventuresofyawriting.blogspot.com/2012/06/ive-been-tagged.html. It gives you a fab little taste of her latest novel, SEEK.
As to playing Lucky 7, here are the rules:
Go to page 77 in your current manuscript
Go to line 7
Copy the next 7 lines/paragraphs and post them as they’re written (no cheating!)
Pass the meme on to at least 7 other writers.
I’m sending a shout out to my peeps, so hopefully there will be a whole bunch of you who play along by putting a link to your lucky seven in the comments below!
Now, here’s 7 paragraphs from my most recent finished book, HOLDING OUT FOR A HERO. Cassie Grace thinks all her historical-romance dreams have come true when a wealthy British businessman comes to her small Georgia town. But real life isn’t quite as tidy as a book, and it isn’t always easy to recognize a hero …
A little after two, James called to check on any messages. Right. In a word ruled by cell phones and e-mail, nobody leaves messages for anyone anymore. I told him there weren’t any, but Rosemary had asked about him when he didn’t show up this morning.
“Right. Listen, Cass, just as a favor to me, don’t tell her which towns I’m visiting. Of course Rosemary knows we’re looking at several other sites. That’s no secret, by any means. . . Do you mind?”
Ok, I was torn. I mean, I work for Rosemary, and I owe her a certain amount of loyalty. But on the other hand, James had given me the info on his plans under somewhat exceptional circumstances. And if I had any hopes of my relationship with him going anywhere (which of course I did, in a major way), I needed to help him out, right? So I did the kind of hairsplitting I’d seen Rosie and Mr. F. do. Lawyers can always find irrelevant distinctions that justify what they already wanted to do.
I decided I wouldn’t tell Rosemary anything else. And since he hadn’t asked me if had told her anything already, I figured I could cover both sides of my divided loyalties.
Yes, I know that kind of thinking never ends well. But given my stop to see Trina that morning, what was a little more moral relativism? I had decided to put aside the black/white, right/wrong mentality I was used to and look at things in shades of grey for a change.
Janice and Bobby invited me over to a get-together they had Friday night. The Georgia basketball team was involved in some sort of major game that all the guys in town just had to see, so Bobby set up his computer to project onto a screen in the backyard and threw a cookout. Neither basketball nor Bobby’s hamburgers were high on my must-have list, but it beat staying at home and trying to write while I wondered what a certain British Greek god was up to wherever he was.
I got my crispy black burger – e. coli stands no chance when Bobby Harvey is cooking – and settled down on a quilt Janice had spread to the side of the main game-watching area.
And yes, dammit — I used the phrase “shades of grey” in this MS months before any Twilight Fan Fiction using that phrase hit the mainstream!!! (grumble, grumble.)