Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The New Plan

So, I've been dancing with the ancestors a lot lately. Okay, more than a lot. It's been a mini-obsession of mine - almost - to the exclusion of all us.

So, tomorrow, June 1, 2011, I step back from my dance with the ancestors and step forward to work on my writing.

Perhaps I just needed a break. Perhaps I was wallowing in self-pity. Perhaps . . .

Well, I don't know why I stepped back from the writing. I'm not a doctor, and I don't play one on TV.

I think I just needed a break.

I think - see yesterday's post - I needed time to dwell on things and decided the best course of action for me, because, well . . .

. . . it's all about me. Ha!

Seriously, I needed a break, took one, and now I'm gearing back up to throw myself in the query trenches while . . .

. . . also researching some indie/small press publishers that deal with my niche (which, in my opinion, really shouldn't be a niche) market.

I've started the one page synopsis required by one of the indie publishers. It's gonna take a wee bit of work to finish. Okay, it's gonna take a lot of work.

Have I mentioned I hate doing the synopsis thing? Oh, yeah . . . hate, hate, hate.

Then again, I hated doing algebra. Boy, did I hate doing algebar (see I hated it so bad, I spelled the word wrong - LOL). Man, I hated algebra. In fact, I barely passed algebra in high school, and yet . . . "A" was the name of the game in college. Go figure. Ha!

So, I plod every forward, doing what I must in this crazy writing journey, to get my brilliance published.


Monday, May 30, 2011

Niche Writing

My name is Scott and . . .

. . . I'm a niche writer. Yes, I admit it! I'm not a mainstream writer. I don't write about vampires or mermaids or, well, whatever.

I write about the life I see around me, the life I want to read about.

I don't want the overt stereotypes constantly portrayed by the media.

I don't want the marginalization of a distinct group of people.

I want - some of the time, not all of the time - characters I can relate to on a deep level, rather than a peripheral level.

Yes, there are books there our there that deal with what I'm talking about. There are writers - agented, multiple published - who write what I write.

But . . .

. . . the market is still niche. The market is still . . .

. . . limited.

In all fairness, the market shouldn't be limited.

In all fairness, equality should exist for all people.

It doesn't.

So, in submitting my query for my cozy mystery, I've begun to wonder if . . .

. . . the main characters weren't gay, would it be more marketable?

If I made the characters heterosexual, would it have more marketability?

If I made the characters female, would it have more marketability?

Okay, perhaps marketable isn't the proper word for the first question. Perhaps the question should be . . .

If the main characters weren't gay, would it be less rejectable?

Yes . . . rejectable.

Is the fact that the characters are gay a deteriment to acceptance?

Then again, perhaps my query just sucks.


I don't know. The more I think about it, the more I talk about it with others, my instinct (normally right, not always right) is telling me that gay is too niche.

So, do I alter the first 20 pages so gay is not so evident, not obvious. Do I do a test and find out whether it's my query, or the gay aspect?

Do I want to know that truth?

I'm not sure.

I'm really not sure.

So, rather than submitting the query further, I've sat back and done, well, nothing. I haven't made the changes in the opening pages that would imply heterosexuality over homosexuality. I haven't researched more agents on the slim (maybe, maybe not) hope that someone will see beyond how the characters were born, to the actual story.

Yes, perhaps I'm being a bit too cynical. I don't know if I am or not. I just don't know.

I do know that one publisher pretty much said that gay is too niche. Go figure. So, scratched that potentiality off my list.

So, what would you do? Would you alter the first 20 pages to imply heterosexuality versus homosexuality? Would you query until you could query no longer?


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

New Blog

Okay, in case any one is interested in doing ancestor research, check out my new blog devoted entirely to that subject at . . .


I'm going to offer tips, what I've learned, what I'm learning, and provide examples along the way, as well as neat info I've discovered.

So if you're interested, if you know someone interested, go ahead and check it out. The first post went up today, and I have posts schedule to appear tomorrow and Friday.

And, since this blog is about writing . . . I'm back into that mode as well as I pull somewhat back from the ancestor research.


Tuesday, May 17, 2011


Hi, my name is Scott and . . . I'm a blogging slacker! I've failed at my duty as a blogger. It's been . . . OMG, flashbacks to confession! How many Hail, Mary's do I have to say for not blogging in, like, forever?

Waaaaayyyy tooooooo many!

So, since confession is allegedly good for the soul . . .

I've been consumed with family history research, plus traveling - both personal and for work. My life has been crazy.

Things are finally settling down a bit as I pull away - a bit, a smidgen, a tad - from the family history research. The main search - mother's paternal/maternal sides, going back on the paternal from each grandparent - is done, and a nifty little book, with all sorts of neat information compiled. Woo-hoo. The next project is the many branches of the family tree . . . as well as the twisted roots. Oh, the roots are so twisted or, perhaps, the better analogy: the branches have twisted into each other.

Well, as with any family history research, a skeleton or two tumbles out of the proverbial closet. Okay, we knew about my mother's uncle who shot and killed his wife. She was cheating on him. Mom always tells the story of how excited they were when their uncle that killed his wife got out of prison. Yeah, great thing to be excited about. Ha! Then . . .

. . . there's the mysterious disappearance of my great-grandfather. He went to get a pack of cigarettes . . . okay, kidding on that end. I just remember, from the time I was little, mom and her siblings talking about their missing grandfather and how their father (my grandfather) searched his entire life for him.

Well, lo and behold, one of my cousins also doing research stumbled on a clue about why he might have disappeared. Woo-hoo!

Now, what I knew and what the clue is = INSPIRATION!!! The wheels in my mind have been spinning into overdrive! From the moment I read her email with all the juicy little details, Inspiration has been singing to me non-stop, which . . .

. . . leads to my next project.

Yes, the next project will be a fictionalized version of the disappearance of great-grandpa. Where did he go? What did he do? Did he start a new family? BTW - that was always the assumption in our family since a woman in the same town disappeared the same night he did. Uh-huh, do the math on that one. Ha!

Anyhow, suffice it to say that Inspiration isn't being fickle right now. I have a list of chapter titles, what happens in those chapters, and I wrote the first few pages last night.

I still have some decisions to make with the entire concept, but the groundwork is laid.

Other than that, I'm querying my quirky mystery and may also consider indie or small press publishers since, unfortunately, some might label the book niche because it has gay characters. Go figure! Seriously, a quirky mystery is a quirky mystery, no matter that the amateur and inept, but lucky, detectives just happen to be gay! Geesh!

And, I'll try to do better about blogging . . . and catching up on what I've missed these past few weeks . . . er, maybe longer! Slacker I am!!!