How Not To Write a Book
When I read this name of this blog, “Ramblings from a Chaotic Mind,” I knew immediately that whoever came up with that title was my kind of peeps. So, of course I was delighted to contribute my own random crazy thoughts for the cause. So, in no particular order, I will share my experiences of how NOT to write a book based on the processes I’ve gone through the past three years, especially as I wrote the first two books in my BILLIONAIRE TRICKSTERS of BOSTON series: THE LADY VANISHES and A FRENCH WHIPPING.
1. Don’t fall in love.
Seriously. I fell in love at the same time I sold the idea for THE FETISH BOX. But when you fall in love, you lose at least half your brain cells and suddenly sitting on the couch with him and watching a ridiculous movie called Stuck on Netflix seems like a good idea. It’s about a woman that hits a man with her car; he gets stuck on the windshield, and everyone ends up dead. Dumbest movie ever. And I watched it instead of writing because the man I was newly enamored with wanted to watch a movie. Gack. Also, when a new man enters your life, you suddenly lack the prerequisite lonely horniness that inspired the book you were writing in the first place. On the other hand, when reviewers get all twitchy about an otherwise strong, level-headed woman doing something dumb in a book, I can point to that experience and say, “Falling in love makes everyone an idiot.”
2. Don’t get married.
Unless you’re down to go to the courthouse or independently wealthy, don’t plan a wedding and try to write a novel. Just saying. I was all about the courthouse as long as I could wear a pretty dress, but I was outvoted by fiancé, family, and all but my most anti-establishment friends.
3. Don’t start graduate school.
My only excuse is that I wanted to do something (anything) other than teaching. Teaching is a noble profession. Too noble for me. I taught 9th graders English for four years. Four years. 9th
|Pile o' Hershey Kiss therapy.|
4. Don’t buy a house.
Here’s to anyone who’s ever bought a house without piles of cash on hand. You know who you are.
5. Don’t join Pinterest.
I don’t understand where the time goes. I just clicked on it for a second. A second and now…I have pins that tell me how to organize my craft room. My “craft room” is an empty bedroom with workout gear, Christmas decorations, empty boxes, and piles and piles of romance novels from the 80s and 90s. Some of them were stolen from the paperback section of the library when I was twelve. It will never be organized. Odds are it will never be cleaned. Until my next book is due, of course.
6. Don’t Procrastinate.
I do this. I don’t know how it happens. But with THE LADY VANISHES, I was two weeks overdue with the book sitting in a coffee shop at 5am with my head in my hands and crying, “Why? Why? Why do I do this to myself? EVERY FREAKIN’ TIME. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. I need someone with a whip and a chair to keep me on task. Oooh…a hero that can use a whip. I’ll just take ten minutes and jot down some ideas about that instead of working on my book. Or write this guest post. That’s productive at least. What’s this email for 20% off at Diapers.com? I’m sure I need more diapers. I’ll just take a minute and order some. Wasn’t there a cute idea for a diaper station on Pinterest? I’m sure there was…
7. Don’t get pregnant with your first child.
I suppose this one is self-explanatory. Still, it’s not just that you can’t sleep or can’t stop sleeping, don’t feel well, can’t think straight, and have someone kicking you from the inside. You also spend time on Pinterest reading things like “How to Save Your Vagina” and “How to Make a Coochie Soother” and “Ten Tips to Surviving a Newborn.” I never realized that I would have to save my vagina, but I’m assured this is a thing. I won’t even go into the coochie-soother.
8. Don’t have to work for a living.
If you can avoid having a job and paying bills, I recommend you go that route. Working and writing sucks.
That’s about all I have in the way of recommendations. Not particularly helpful, I’m sure, but I never promised to be helpful. Unless of course, you need advice on how to save your vagina. I’ve read up on that. And sex swings. And something called Shibari, which is erotic stuff where women are tied up. One of my characters in A FRENCH WHIPPING is obsessed with knots. So, you know, if you need help with that, feel free to visit my Pinterest boards…after you’ve worked on your book.