Tuesday, July 5, 2016

I.W.S.G. (11) - This Is Amazing

I'm pleased to announce I'll be co-hosting the IWSG this month along with: Yolanda Renee, Tyrean Martinson, Madeline Mora-Summonte , LK Hill & Rachna Chhabria

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For a writer, every kind word about our writing, even a simple one, can be a big deal. When I write, am I looking for the phrase, "This is the best thing I have ever written!"? No, not really. Because that would be very unrealistic, and for a writer, we have to be realistic. Would I love it if someone said that to me? Of course, but I don't expect it.

Well, that brings me to the question of the month. Something new we are doing here in the IWSG. Asking a question and seeing how we all answer it. So on to this months question.

What's the best thing someone has ever said about your writing?

Outside of my blogging, I really have not received a comment about my writing in a long time. As some of you are aware, I've been trying to rewrite a series I started almost thirty years ago. In fact, I finished another chapter for episode three this weekend. I know I must have received a well word abut it, because I had several people who loved reading it. I guess the best thing someone has said about my writing is, "When is the next one finished"? Yes, thirty years ago I had a loyal readership. There were several people who read it, but two people were really into it and read each of my then finished episodes, seven in total. Several times before I was finished they would ask when the next one was finished. That made me feel more like a writer than I have ever felt. Just knowing someone wanted to continue reading something I had written was a big motivation. It gave me the courage and confidence to keep writing. Without people like Virginia and Joel, I'm not sure I would still be writing today.


Goals and such:

Old Goals:
Test readers:
Last month a few expressed an interest in being a test reader for me. I'm kind of new to this so I'm going to suggest those interested to let me know via email so I can send a copy of what I've writte.
My email is a gmail account, jeffreysg. If anyone has other suggestions, please let me know.

Find Writing Schedule:
Still looking to time my non-negotial time. Summer is a bad time for me. So much going on. Can I still find the time?


New Goal:
Make it through my IWSG duties to the best of my ability.


My Encouragement:
Only YOU can give your story that special touch. Oh sure, if you give a room full of monkeys a typewriter and enough time, they could re-produce the works of Dickens' - A Tale of Two Cities. But most likely it would read like, "It was the bast of times, it was the blurst of times."


Questions to Ponder:

Outside of school, what was the first thing you wrote that others enjoyed?

 
Have you ever written something, put it away for a long period of time, then returned to rewrite it years later?



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The Insecure Writer's Support Group posts the first Wednesday of every month. Please follow along as my fellow writers and I relate why we feel insecure, or read as we help encourage others suffering from insecurity.

Are you an insecure writer? Why not join the group? Find out more information via the group HERE.

The site is founded by Alex J. Cavanaugh - Thanks for all the support!

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92 comments:

  1. Hi,
    thanks for co-hosting the IWSG this month. Slowly but surely you are resurrecting old bones and making them new through revision. Keep going, you are on the right path. And you're right about each person being the only person that can give their story the special touch. I call that special touch, life, because we breathe life into the words we write.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Patricia

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    1. We certainly do breath life into whatever we are writing. Which is why we never tire of reading different books on the same theme or various blogs on a similar theme also.

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  2. How great to be asked, 'When's the next one out?'. A lot of pressure but amazing non-the-less. Great post. Thank you for sharing and for co-hosting this month.

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    1. I appreciate you stopping by. It's been a while since I received those comments. But they still were helpful in motivating me.

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  3. Thanks for co-hosting today!
    Cool your friends were so excited to see the next installment.
    And yes, I did write something and then forget about it for thirty years. After a complete rewrite, it became my first published book. (So you just keep working on yours.)

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    1. Wow! That is so cool. That is great motivation for me. Thanks for sharing!

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  4. I recently took out a project that I wrote in high school, stuck in a box, and never looked at again. And it was so terrible that I had a good laugh over it, and put it right back in the box. It will receive an rewrite one of these days...just not today.

    And I've received the "When's the next one coming out?" question a few times. It's definitely flattering, but then I'm just filled with dread because it takes me so long to finish a book.

    Hope you're enjoying your co-hosting experience!

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    1. I have many other writing projects from about 30 years ago that are just as laughable to me too. At least the series I wrote was/is salvageable (I think). So we shall see what happens with it.

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  5. I think than anxious needling for the next installment is one of the best compliments. I love it! Yay for uber-fans! I'm amazed you're rewriting the series. That's epic! I have one that I wrote 14 years ago that I KNOW I'm going to have to completely rewrite, but it hasn't seen the light of day yet. One day at a time, eh?

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    1. My problem is I worry they were so anxious to read it because they were close friends and a lot of what I wrote was based on actual people. I keep telling myself it was probably the novelty they were more interested in. But that's me, always doubting myself. So we shall see how things go when I do this rewriting.

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  6. I agree with Crystal. When readers are asking for more, that's a compliment in itself.

    I have written a few things that more than likely will never be published. And I have gone back to them to see if I can revise and edit, but then I quit. I rather start anew.

    Thank you for co-hosting!!!!

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    1. I have done that with this series several times. It's now been my main goal to completely rewrite it, and leave it as is. That is, no more major rewrite overhaul. The first episode in this series has probably been rewritten six times. In fact, the first draft would really be unrecognisable today I think. When compared to what I have finally finished.

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  7. My first novel is still sitting on the computer, waiting, (as is my second) but I have so many other projects right now that I don't think I will be getting back to it anytime soon.

    Thanks for co-hosting.

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    1. I hate when I have so many pokers in the fire. It's gets distracting and hard to decide what I want to work on first. I vowed after I finish the major overhaul of this 8 part series, I'm going to leave it alone for a while and start something new. Of course, that's still probably a few years down the road. LOL

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  8. I have people like Virginia and Joel in my life too. I know exactly how grateful you feel. Thanks for co-hosting, Jeffrey. I can relate with your post on so many levels.

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    1. Virginia and Joel were a long time ago. I'm hoping to find new Virginia and Joel supporters as I work on this rewrite.

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  9. Virginia & Joel are the types of readers we all love!
    I like to put away stories for a while and get back to them. I've got one in particular that needs a HUGE revamp but I adore the story so I know I'll get back to it one day :)

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    1. One of my reasons for rewriting the entire series that I am, is because I love it. Even if it is never published and sits around, I will be happy if/when I am finally finished with it. Which is the biggest reason why I'm working to get it done.

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  10. When a reader wants more, it's a great compliment and motivator! Keep going, I've no doubt you'll achieve your goals!

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    1. Thanks for the encouragement. It means the world to me.

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  11. I haven't gone back to look at my old writing, but I'm now inspired to do so. I think it's cool that you had people who were literally waiting for you write something else. That's the best.

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    1. Let me know if you go back and find something worth investing more time in again, even if it's just to look at again. :)

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  12. Good luck with the rewrite! I've had little success with rewriting old things, but I've got so much abandoned stuff lying around I feel guilty about it, like I should dive back in and try to make something work.

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    1. I think it's always good to go back and try to finish something once started. Don't want to have too much unfinished things laying around. But then again, if you have something already published it might not be such a bad thing, if you were able to make some work. Then there shouldn't be so much of need.

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  13. It's nice to recall the comments from friends asking when is the next coming out. I know that creates some pressure, but maybe that's a good thing? Helps keep the spirit alive and focused on creating an environment that supports your writing goals.

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    1. That sort of pressure is a good thing. Because then you are tying to make double sure what you write is what someone is going to enjoy. Especially those who have already told you they enjoy it.

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  14. The fact that people were eager to read more of your work is one of the best compliments. You had them hooked on the story and that's huge! :)

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    1. I always thought it would be cool to track them down and get their opinion on the rewrite. Or, maybe that's not such a good idea. LOL

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  15. Anytime someone wants to read more of your writing, that's a fantastic feeling. I can see why that buoyed you up. Good luck getting more people to say the same thing.

    Thanks for co-hosting this month's IWSG!

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    1. Thanks for the comments, I'm hoping to hear more soon.

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  16. It's an amazing feeling when you have a couple of people who are devoted to their stories. It really pushes us to keep going no matter what. :)

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    1. Here's to hoping I find a few more people like that again.

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  17. Jeffrey, I think it is amazing you have been writing for 30 years and still have insecure moments. I never saw myself as a writer, but I always LOVED creativity. After the drama and trauma in my family and after my mom died, I needed to use one writer's term to "word vomit." I am learning as I go. I have published four short stories. However, now as you may have seen on my blog, especially if you read any of my A-Z Challenge this year, I have been caregiving for my husband. I'm EXHAUSTED! Finding something to write about that challenges me and that I enjoy seems to have escaped me. However, I need to pick up the reins again. It is great to hear that you are still chugging along and NOT giving up. You are inspiration! Thanks!

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    1. A lot of those 30 years went not writing. Back when I was married, I really didn't get much done. She was not supportive of my writing and talked it down every chance she got. So I really never did much.
      I love that 'word vomit' phrase too. Sometimes it's all we can do.
      Keep going, keep writing. It's great you had a few short stories published. I hope one day to have something published.
      I can't be THAT bad of a writer, can I? ;)

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  18. Awesome goals. That is a great compliment and great story too. Wishing you much luck and that loyal readership for your future. Happy IWSG Day
    Juneta @ Writer's Gambit

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  19. I agree with you that it is a great compliment to have someone want to read more of your writing! Thanks for hosting!

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    1. It's been a blast to host this month. I may have to do so again.

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  20. Thank you for co-hosting. Having people ask about your progress is a high compliment. It must be music to your ears!

    Elsie

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    1. Yes, the music still rings from time to time. It's on ear-worm I don't mind having.

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  21. I'm so glad to meet you thanks to your co-hosting duties! I hope you are enjoying the day.
    And it is definitely a thrill to hear that someone wants to read more of our writing. Wonderful!

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    1. It's always great to meet new people through the IWSG.
      Yes, I have been enjoying the day.

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  22. Yes, asking for the next book is about the most direct compliment you can get!! Thanks for co-hosting :)

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    1. It has been a good time co-hosting. Thanks.

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  23. I think asking when the next one is coming out is a wonderful thing to hear. I love it when readers say that.

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    1. I'm not sure what more than can say. It's an amazing feeling.

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  24. Having people urge you to write another book, because they want to read it asap, is one of the best compliments any writer can get, I think. Thank you for co-hosting. I really hope you keep on writing. I'm saddened to say I had thrown out my old works back in college when I was in the "serious person phase." I still regret giving up writing during that time. But, I indie published the book I wrote after that phase, last year. I just couldn't give up on it. Good-luck with the writing.

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    1. I have no plans to stop writing. So yes, I shall continue writing. I can't imagine how disappointed I would be if I ever threw out my old writing. But something like that did kind of happen. I lent the story (the only version at the time) to a friend. When she gave it back, half the story was missing. She never found the last half and I had to rewrite everything from the beginning.

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  25. Doesn't matter if we have two diehard fans or 2 million, it feels nice to have that reaction. Keep it up! Thanks for co-hosting :-)

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    1. I agree. Though I wouldn't mind the two million. ;)

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  26. My debut was a work that I put away and pulled out 10 years later. Ha, it looked nothing like the original beyond the main character's name. That's a good thing. ;)

    It's nice to hear people say they're looking forward to more. Thanks for co-hosting!

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    1. Most of my story has changed considerably. Even the names have been changed to protect the innocent. But the rest of the series I wrote is pretty much the same as it was. Maybe a bit more toned down. I used to use a very bizarre writing style.

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  27. Having readers looking for your next book as a great compliment. :)
    The book I'm working on now was one I had set aside. (Several times, in fact.) I've plucked the characters out of the original story and am working on a new adventure.
    Thanks for co-hosting.

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    1. Eventually, I may end up doing the same thing if I can't get enough people interested in this new rewrite. Which would be a sad thing considering I already have seven first drafts of the entire series.

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  28. What a great post Jeffrey. I love the monkeys part especially. :) I do thin writing guts and drive and definitely goals. I have worked on old stories. In fact when I get done with my next work in progress I will probably dust off an old historical fiction piece I wrote 25 years ago. I never finished it. This time I will finish it.

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    1. That's amazing! I hope the story works out well for you. It's cool to return to those older stories, but it can also be a lot of work. But, I know you can do it!

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  29. Hi, Jeffrey,

    Nice to meet you. Good for you! I think it's amazing that you are revisiting your writing and revising it for a whole new generation and audience.

    Keep positive and it will fall into place. You have a head start already having story, characters, and interest in your story... Well done.

    I have been working on the same story for almost seven years. Wrote it... edited it about a hundred or more times, put it away for a few years and edited it another ten times. Still has a few more before I'm done. That was my first novel.

    I had many people read this novel and my second novel but neither have been published yet. The second has a lot of interest, so we shall see...

    Thanks for co-hosting...

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    1. It's shocking how many times I've rewritten this series. Especially the first two episodes.
      I'm just starting to get serious about my writing enough to start getting beta readers. Then comes the next step. Taking the criticism and seeing where I can go with it.

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  30. Anticipation is the best flattery, Jeffrey! Stop making them wait! It's the blurst of times, after all. This Huey Lewis fan also has a drawer of stuff to be revisited from that era!

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    1. Make sure you pull one out and consider reworking it again. Hey, if monkeys can do it. LOL

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  31. Thanks for co-hosting today Jeffrey! Yeah, fans who are eager to read more of your work is one of the best boost there is for a writer. It gives you the warm fuzzies.

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    1. That, it certainly does. Thanks for stopping by. :)

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  32. Hi, Jeffrey! Thanks for co-hosting the IWSG this month! I have a feeling you're going to get through your IWSG duties just fine, because you obviously care about them! Loved the anticipation of your early readers for your next installment in your writing and how it kept you going! What an inspiring thing! I'm working on a memoir I've carried in my heart for decades; one which I wrote pieces for off and on over the years while I worked. My writing is progressing slowly, but never-the-less, I'm so grateful to finally be able to work on it! Good luck with rewriting your series! Your extra life experience can only make it better than it was to begin with!

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    1. It seems all writing is a slow process. Which sucks at times because we can think so quickly. For me, sometimes the words don't get fast enough out. I mean don't get out fast enough. See?
      With time, all of our writing improves. Be it because of writing practice or more life experience.

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  33. Hi Jeffrey!
    I had no less than ten readers request a sequel for my maiden novel before an editor said I should "shelve it". Crushing, right? That was eleven years and hundreds of other stories ago. Like you, the overwhelming desire to write transcends all discouragement for me. Write on, my friend. I like to think of re-writes not as starting over, but as going to the spice cabinet :-)

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    1. I like the spice cabinet comment. Wow, being told to 'shelve' my story would be crushing. But even still, I'd continue to finish it, at least, for my own entertainment.

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  34. Yes, I have, as a matter of fact, started to re-write my first novel! Glad to hear you are pushing on with your work. Thanks for co-hosting this month!

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    1. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one bringing out an older manuscript to try and give it fresh life.

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  35. Thank you so much for co-hosting the IWSG July blogging session. I've just joined the group and I've just joined your blog. All the luck with this series. You can do it! I've written a few YA adventure stories for Cricket Magazine, a literary magazine for 10 to 14 year olds. Thanks for sharing. All the best!

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    1. I've heard of Cricket Magazine before. So cool you have been able to do some writing for them. I hope you enjoy the group and the blog. :)

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  36. I'm still smiling over the monkey version of Dickens. :)
    My support system now is far more amazing than it ever was before. I've tried hard to surround myself with supportive people, and they still surprise me with their encouragement.
    The first thing I ever wrote outside of school that received some ongoing support was a novel I wrote in my twenties - one of my friends' husbands (sounds like I'm going to a bad family reunion here) who reads sci-fi kept asking me for the next chapter. My friend didn't read it, but he did. For some reason that made it even better.
    And that's my closet project - the one that's been buried in a closet and in memory for years and years now. I keep digging it up and then putting it back. I love those characters so much and I want to make that book amazing - so I get terrified in perfectionism. So, then I go off and write something else.

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    1. It's great to know you have an amazing support system. We don't all seem to have such.
      As for getting terrified, can you perhaps make a goal of returning to it at least once a month? Something to that degree so you keep it in mind? That might help keep the story going and the perfection you seek can be worked on when not writing.

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  37. I'm glad you shared your insecurities. It's inspiring to all of us with doubts and worries that we'll never be good enough. Thanks for co-hosting this month.

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    1. It was a great month to co-host. I'm glad I finally talked myself into do it.

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  38. Oh man, I feel like that a lot! I did start working on something I started back when I was a kid and kept playing with. I think I'm old enough now for it to not be super-dramatic or derivative. :)

    Thanks for co-hosting!

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    1. I'm sure once you revisit it, it will turn out great.

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  39. I'm sure you will garner lots of positive feedback, once your writing is in the hands of readers. It happened before, it will again.

    You've got attainable goals, that's a start :)

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    1. You make some very good points. If someone liked it before, they must like it again if I revisit it and improve it. Especially with the story.

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  40. That's always a great question to hear: when's the next one? It can certainly pep a person up. Thanks for co-hosting!

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    1. Once I start putting this out to potential readers, I'm hoping to hear the same comments back. Not expecting it, but hoping.

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  41. Congrats on co-hosting the IWSG! People asking for more is a great sign that they are enjoying your story and your writing. That's an awesome compliment.
    I think the best thing that I've heard about my writing is when someone says that my writing pulled them right into the story and they felt like they were there. I need to hear more of that...therefore I need to do more writing! It's always a challenge to carve out the time and commit to it.

    Great question: just answering the question should give us writers the motivation to keep going...

    Michele at Angels Bark

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    1. Thanks for the congrats. :)
      That is a great statement for someone to say. That your writing really grabbed them and pulled them into the story. Yes! You do need to do more writing!

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  42. Congrats on being a host!
    Very realistic that we writers can't think every single line the the absolute best line ever. We'd drive ourselves insane.
    Best of luck rewriting series. Must be fascinating to see the changes in society and your writing style in all that time.

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    1. Yes it is interesting. And has presented me with a few challenges. Back when I originally wrote this series, no one had cell phones. As these are high school kids, I had to address a small problem along that line when rewriting. So many things change in 30 years, at times when we pick up an older piece of writing we really have to search for them. This was just a trivial note, but it could have been more serious if a lack of communication was a realistic problem for them. 30 years ago it would be assumed. Now, people would wonder why they didn't just call each other.

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  43. I loved your encouragement - that only you can give your story that special touch. Truly wonderful. And yes, having someone who really wants to read what you've written is superb. I offer my services, if you can call it that, to read your next bit of work. Thanks for hosting the IWSG this month.

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    1. As long as you don't mind checking out the first part of my YA series. I think it's actually a short read. I would love to get some feedback on it.
      Thank you, I'd really appreciate it. :)

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  44. I think the best way to hear about your writing is to put a book out there. People will be all too willing to tell you what they think (good and bad!).

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    1. Good point. And I'm working on that. :)

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  45. How cool about reworking a series you've published. I love the inspiration about only the writer can add that special touch. You're moving forward. That's awesome.

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    1. Though the series was "complete" at the time, it was not published. To be honest, it was far from perfect and I've had to change much of it during my rewrite to ensure it made more sense. It still has a lot of work to do.

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