Thursday, May 13, 2010

Avoiding the Black Hole in Your Blog: Tips from a Non-Expert

At the beginning of April, my career as a freelance writer and children's author definitely outlasted the fabled 'honeymoon' stage.  That is, the kids have learned to whine when I go into the office room and close the door, knowing Mommy won't be coming out for probably a few hours.  The husband forgets the "I'm not here" rule, and I've run into those sources that, once enthusiastic about providing firsthand information for your deadline-approaching project somehow forgot how to pick up a phone or hit reply on an email.

But the real indication that the honeymoon stage was over was this–my blog.  The black hole that every day got deeper and deeper, signaling to my followers (and whoever is reading this) that perhaps I've given up on writing.  On becoming a published author.  That I just don't care.

I assure you, nothing could be farther from the truth. 
And let me tell you, even though the 'honeymoon stage' is over–I'm still happy!  Optimistic!  And, I've been getting paychecks (although the amounts vary from week to week when you're freelancing).  I want to share with you some of the absolutely amazing projects I've been working on, to help you understand why I've been tucked away in a cave for the last two months!  Hopefully, then, you'll be inspired by my 'black hole' and not discouraged!

Currently, I'm in the middle of editing a wonderful MG/YA novel for girls, set in East Africa.  It's a book about the life of an HIV/AIDS orphan, and her struggle with embracing her culture and escaping some of the more challenging aspects of it that restrict opportunities for girls and women.  The story, written by a native of Kenya, is one that balances extreme sadness and death with hope for the future that can be wielded with education, faith, and the recognition of one's own talents put to good use.  Yes, it is a great black hole to be in!

A project that I just completed yesterday is the opening chapter for a non-fiction, academic-style book about entrepreneurship in Africa, and more specifically, Nigeria.  The author, a Nigerian business icon, is hoping to inspire the growing population of educated youth in Nigeria to turnaround the country's economy through small-scale enterprises, tackling head-on the domination of the oil industry in the nation to determine its economic fate.  Another breathtaking, meaningful project and reason for the black hole in my blog!

Obviously, there have been more.  Actually, a lot more.  I'd be happy to share - just comment on my blog and ask!  Remind me to post!  Tell me you're out there and that I really do have an audience! :)  I can't promise that my blog will be a black-hole free zone, but as always, I'll do my very best.

Share your writing stories with me! I love hearing them.  Peace out!


honeymoon registry said...

Your new book sounds wonderful! I have found with my writing that I can't even reach the married stage. I start many books but I hit a block and give up, then I'll think of a new plot and begin. How do you come up with new ideas?

Arnold said...

I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


Miranda Paul said...

Hi Honeymoon registry! Thanks for the comment. I can't say that ideas are ever a problem for me. I think of them everywhere, but usually in the most inconvenient places–while driving, in the shower, or at 4 am in bed. The key is to keep paper and pencil strewn about everywhere. I think just about every piece of junk mail eventually gets used in my house, as I scribble thoughts on them all and make a pile near my computer. Whenever I get the chance, I transfer the ideas to a special page in my writing log called "project ideas." Now, the question for me is how to get them all finished!

Oh–and the ones that get finished typically are the ones I'm being paid to complete, by a certain date! (That definitely helps motivate a writer). Good luck with reaching the marriage stage, it's wonderful!

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