Sunday, September 30, 2012


Okay, So I have a confession. I'm writing a story with a partner--someone who I've written two other (very good if I do say so myself) stories with that are currently out on submission--and its my turn to write.

I'm a little intimidated by the scene--I won't bore you with the details. Suffice it to say it's supposed to be a very hot sex scene. I don't generally write very hot, and so I'm procrastinating.

Yep, again.

So, I've made a deal. I'll write a blog post, then I'll do some free writing from my character's point of view, and then I'll write the scene.  Yes--I often make these kinds of deals with myself--something to allow me to put off what I want to avoid doing for a little while by doing something else useful, but with a commitment to actually getting what I need to done at the end of the set period of time.

The funny thing is I don't often renege--never that I can remember really, so it works for me.

So, blog post first. Ta dah!

Then free writing. I find it useful to help sink myself into the character with free writing when approaching a difficult scene. For me, it helps me find my opening spot. If I don't free write when approaching a difficult scene, I usually just end up writing myself into the character's point of view and the correct opening spot, then have to go back and cut everything in the first few pages. And once it's in--cutting is difficult for me to do. I manage, but its always painful. Hence the free writing--when I approach it knowing none of what I write is going into the manuscript, it helps me get where I need to be more quickly and with less angst.

I'm all about less angst.

So, I'm going to go write in a minute. But I wanted to do a quick update first.

Okay, I can see why everyone raves about this program.

I'm still learning my way around it (if anyone gets it and needs an overview, youtube has some fabulous tutorials to help you get up and running) but it seems like a very useful tool--particularly when it comes time for editing.

If you (like I do) break your story line up into acts as well as chapters and scenes, the Scrivener program really works well for that. Edits-wise, the feature I've liked best so far is the ability to take small chunks of text and move them around easily in your story to tweak the flow of the story.

I've been trying to edit my first manuscript that's been sitting in a drawer for a few years now. I love the story, but the arc and writing both reflect that its was my first attempt. After reading it through, and importing the pieces into Scrivener, I decided that the story just needs a complete rewrite, but using Scrivener in the evaluation process really helped me decide where the arc needs changing. I've also been using it with my work in progress (the one-third complete urban fantasy) and I've really liked the ease of building my acts, chapters and scenes using the Scrivener tools.

So, Scrivener gets a thumbs up from me. I think it is well worth the asking price and am happy I got it.

Kiddo went in on Thursday. It was very interesting to watch the way Neurofeedback works in practice. I'd done the research, read the clinical papers, and had looked at comments/blog posts written by other people who'd tried it first, but the mechanics had eluded me. It is really interesting to watch how the brain corrects its waves to produce a particular result.

The therapist was encouraging about the session and how kiddo did, and we will be going back again this week. Of course, its way too soon to report on any kind of results. But we have hope that perhaps it will help kiddo with some of his difficulties, and if it does--it will be well worth the time, money and effort we put into making the therapy happen. I am trying not to be too hopeful, because if it doesn't work out I want to limit my disappointment.

We do a QEEG this next week, to give ups a baseline on brain waves and what his brain looks like, and then  we'll start sessions in earnest. wish us luck.

Jury's still out on Neurofeedback.

And now, good people, I'm running off to write, just like I said I would. Hope you guys all have a wonderful week.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Trying New Things: Neurofeedback? Scrivener?

Here it is, mid-September. It's the time of year that I always find myself wanting to start fresh. The weather is finally cooling to bearable--crisp mornings, toasty days, cool evenings--it's perfect.

I want to overhaul myself, my life, my--well, everything.

It's a sickness. I know.

And knowing that, this year I'm approaching the urge to toss it all out and start anew with a healthy dose of caution.

So here it is.

As you guys know, my middle kid is on the Autism spectrum. I've been researching therapies that might help him with some of the difficulties that go along with being on the spectrum, and came across Neurofeedback. Now, at first glance it honestly seems a bit like voodoo. Playing video games with your mind? And this helps what?

But in looking at the research and the information out there, the consensus seems to be that this is a viable therapy for many people. So we've found a certified, reputable therapist in Neurofeedback and we're taking kiddo for a trial run. Fingers crossed that it helps him. I'll post on this once we've gotten underway and I have something to say.

Secondly, Scrivener. I've been playing with the idea of purchasing Scrivener to help with the writing/rewriting process. And since I'm itching to make changes, I have gone ahead and made the leap. As of today, I'm a proud owner of the Scrivener for Windows platform. I'm playing with it, and once I've gained some proficiency with it I'll post about that as well.

For  now, I'll sign off and enjoy being self satisfied that I am curbing my sometimes destructive tendencies to demand huge change constantly.

Who knows--if I keep up the minimize change thing long enough we may get to the point where we only move once ever three years or so.

In the meantime, enjoy the crisp weather!