A year later

Nothing like starting a writing blog, posting less than half a dozen posts then forgetting all about it, eh?  See, things got busy. Crazy busy. Last November around this time I woke up to a text message from a friend in Halifax. Basically she was asking me if I wanted to start a young adult publishing label with her. Took me two seconds to say yes. I got out of bed, showered and haven’t really stopped since. Nanowha? Yeah, that so didn’t happen. But now I’m on the cusp of having a creative non-fiction piece published through my publishing label. We’re publishing monthly Fierce Shorts with part of the proceeds going to charity. We decided to do something fun leading up to Christmas and I’m it. I have a Goodreads author’s page and everything. I keep swinging from so excited I could pee my pants to so scared I could shit my pants. Lipstick and Bangs will be available for purchase this Friday November 24. Holy Hell that’s close.

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NaNo, pushing myself & yes I’m still here

OMG this blog has been woefully ignored. I shall have to try to rectify that. I won’t bombard you guys with posts every day, but I’ll shoot for a few a week.

So I guess this post should be about the fact that I’m doing NaNoWriMo this year. Again. Or at least I’m giving it the old college try. National Novel Writing Month is awesome and hard and addictive and mean and challenging and oh so much FUN! For those who don’t know, it’s all about writing a 50,000 word first draft in the month of November. I completed it successfully in 2006 and the resulting book was SUPERNORMAL.  This year I’m doing something completely out of my comfort zone. I’m delving into the world of short stories.

My project is tentatively titled  “East Coast Heart”. It’s a book of short stories with each one based on my feelings and impressions and interpretations of some of my favorite East Coast songs. I’ve already had the chance to talk to a few of the artists, and they all think it’s a super idea. I have all the songs picked out and the basic plot for most of them. I’m not sure if they’ll be connected or not. Still trying to figure that out.

I’m pretty excited about this project, but also scared beyond. I basically have no idea what I’m doing. But that’s half of the fun of pushing yourself in your craft, right?

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Pitch the publisher

Last year, before I had a word written on Weirdo, I pitched the idea at Word On the Street Halifax, as part of their Pitch the Publisher event. I did a pretty wicked job, and a couple of the publishers were interested. If only I had the thing written. When I pitched it, I was planning on it being a funny, witty, snarky, weird YA book. Well, it ended up being dark, depressing and heartbreaking. So….. I’m pitching it again! This time I’ll have a query letter AND a chapter all nice and polished to hand out.

I’m not hoping for a book deal or anything (well not hoping too hard) but I’d love if one of the three publishers wanted to read the first chapter. I had a blast doing it last year and learned quite a bit. I’m going to try to not be too nervous and just have fun with it.

Wish me luck!

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Musical movie moments

The other day one of my fave online peeps, author Kathleen Peacock, posted a youtube video of Til Tuesday’s Voices Carry. I am a HUGE fan of Amiee Mann and I think her soundtrack work on Magnolia was freaking brilliant. That got me thinking of some of my fave musical moments in movies. I’m not talking about musicals, no. I’m talking about those moments of perfection when a song and a scene meld together to create a goosebumpy moment. Or an “ah-hah” moment. The song is used to show something, rather than the characters telling. This is oh-so important in any kind of writing.

So Kathleen and I decided to compare notes and do a post about our top five songs in movies. Now, I’m pretty sure that Kathleen and I are sisters from another mother, so I’m interested to see how similar our lists are. Pop over to her blog, please, and check out her post.

Here’s my top five with a (hopefully) short explanation of why I think each rocks.

Bohemian Rhapsody – Wayne’s World

I wasn’t quite in my teens when Wayne’s World came out, but I thought this scene was hilarious. Of course, once I hit my teens and started cruising around town on the weekends, I came to realize the significance of the scene AND the song. Replace Bohemian Rhapsody with Smells Like Teen Spirit and you have every Friday and Saturday night of my senior year.

Don’t Fear the Reaper – The Stand

If you’re a fan of Stephen King, then you know music plays a large part in his writing. I think this is one of the best movie openings EVER.  I mean, it’s pretty creepy without the music. But once you add Blue Oyster Cult’s Don’t Fear the Reaper, it’s perfectly creepy and scary and, well, icky.

Wise up – Magnolia

This scene, well, I can’t watch it without crying. It’s just so brilliant and amazing and does an awesome job of tying in all the characters’ story lines. It’s an odd little scene, but I think that’s why I love it so much.

Mad World – Donnie Darko

If you haven’t seen Donnie Darko, then don’t watch the clip, cuz it’s the end. Actually, if you haven’t seen Donnie Darko, stop reading this post and go watch it. It’s freaking amazing. It’s one of my favorite movies and this is probably my favorite ending to a movie. The song fits the mood and the tone perfectly, and adds to the heartbreak. Another scene that always make me cry.

Tiny Dancer – Almost Famous

I strongly believe in the power of music to heal. The right song, at the right time can make a decision suddenly crystal clear, allow you to bawl your head off, or make you unbelivable happy. And that’s what this scene in Almost Famous is all about. It’s about healing, making amends and knowing that you are exactly where you’re meant to be.

What are some of your favorite movie music moments?

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And the torture begins…….

Yesterday I got WEIRDO printed off so that I can start my first round of edits. I think this is the part I hate the most. I love rereading the story and getting caught off guard by “Holy shit, I wrote that?” moments, but when it comes to the actual editing, getting started is always rough for me.  I never know where to start. I mean, I know I start at the beginning but I’m usually not sure what, exactly needs editing(besides the obvious spelling and grammar boo-boos). That’s why on the first round of edits, I prefer to use a hard copy rather than the laptop. That way I don’t feel cornered into making any of the changes. Kind of like I have an out.

I have no idea how long it will take me to go through these first round of edits. I’m hesitant to give myself a deadline, because those rarely ever work out for me and I end up feeling like crap when I miss them. I’ll keep the deadlines for when I have an agent and editor. :0P

How do you guys go about the editing process? Any tried and trued methods?

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What’s in a name?

So I’ve been married for a little over four years. That should be plenty of time to learn how to spell my last name, right? And it’s not like it’s a hard last name or anything. McKie. Easy enough. But apparently not for my wonderful brain. Because every once in a while I still spell it wrong. Usually I add an A. Or spell the kie part key. Or forget I have a new last name and write my maiden name.

So, what does this all have to do with this blog? Well, see this isn’t my first writing blog. I had another one for a short while and then I realized I spelled my name wrong when creating the URL. Which means if people just type in the URL odds were they weren’t going to find me. (this is, in fact, how I discovered my mistake).

Yep, I was at http://colleenmkie.wordpress.com but now I’m here. A bit confusing, yes. But such is my life.

Welcome to my brain. :)

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