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Friday, October 12, 2012

Throwing Sticks at Sleep

One of the most interesting ordeals of being a writer is sleep, or lack of it.
I try to step away from my mind so I can sleep, but it seems to constantly be there.  I am forever creating plots full of conflict, personal struggle and intrigue; most especially when I lay in a dark quiet room listening to the sound of the counselor’s steady breathing.

Not being able to sleep started out as an annoying habit, but has turned almost debilitating. 
I’ve never been one to take drugs, but I’m seriously considering it.
Anyway, since I’m already here I thought I’d check in and say hello.
Hello, my friends.

I received a box of 100 books today, titled The Memory Catcher, a revealing true story of how author and researcher Sarah Hinze gathered accounts of spiritual visitations of unborn spirits and became a champion of their cause in a society that rejects them.  This is my mother’s life story and it was such a privilege to write it with her. 

I am beyond thrilled to hold a book I’ve worked so hard on and believe in so much.  I can’t wait to read it, again.  I will be taking it to the gym and reading it as I bounce up and down on the elliptical machine. Order your own copy by clicking here.

But now with The Memory Catcher published, I am working again on my other passion; Young Adult Fiction.  The best writing advice I received was at an ANWA (American Night Writers Association) Conference.  I apologize, I don’t remember what author spoke such fine wisdom, but the advice suggested good fiction writing was like putting a dog in a tree and throwing sticks at it.  What does that possible mean and should someone call the Animal Abuse Hotline?   No, because it’s just a visual as to what needs to be happening in a writer’s storyline.  If the conflict starts to lift, throw another stick at it.  Keep up the turmoil, the chaos and dysfunction; a.k.a think The Hunger Games. Now that’s throwing sticks at the dog!
I’ve started a new YA novel that has taken over my life.  My Dear Lucy is the working title.  The story is of a girl named Lucy who lives in a time when reading is illegal.  Lucy is a reader, hiding her skill and on the run from a variety of different rotten people.  Let’s just say, she’s having plenty of sticks thrown at her.  I can be so mean, but make note I love Lucy.  So far gypsies are trying to kill her because they think she’s a witch, a mysterious book she’s been hiding her entire life is about to be discovered by the wrong people and she’s falling in love with the man who’s kidnapped her.  Eventually, with a few twists and turns in the plot, she’ll not only find out how her gift can bless her nation, but she’ll play a vital role in helping Martin Luther start the protestant revolution.

My gift for my 40th birthday, the gift I wanted to give myself was 40 pages of my new manuscript.  Writing a book is like trying to lose weight; it’s a numbers game.  Sometimes the numbers speak louder then they need too, because what they represent is some sort of progress.  Well, like my never-ending weight loss goals, I did not reach my goal, but am happy to report today I was able to write to page 40. 
My Dear Lucy is going incredibly well and I’m pushing myself to finish it in the next few weeks.  Something I learned from writing The Memory Catcher is books are started and eventually, books are finished.  I have a publisher I love working with, which is another bonus I never had before. 

I feel I have a grasp of how overwhelming this whole process can be, minus the sleep problem of course.  So, my dear friends, I wish you a good night, or a good morning where ever you are.  I will open my manuscript and work until my eyelids start to droop and sleep finally kicks in.  


  1. Laura:

    Your new book sounds exciting. And for some reason Farhenheit 451 came to mind as you were describing it...

    I also write as part of my job. I TOTALLY agree that it is a numbers game. I have to force myself to write sometimes and just keep revising and revising...and then just when I think it won't turn out...the story unfolds.

    It's hard to quiet the negative voices in my head (saying "this is dumb") and get through it. Eventually, though, with persistence, it works out.

    Thanks to you and Kelly for sharing on this blog!

  2. Before you turn to sleeping pills, you might want to try Valerian Root herbal capsules. I had a son and daughter who couldn't sleep the night before exams until they tried Valerian and were sold on the subtle, relaxing effect it had on them.

    Good luck getting to sleep dear Costco Buddy! ;) BTW you've got friend request on FB.

    Carry on!

  3. I wanted to stop by and say thanks for following my blog! Your new book and the one ypur working on sounds interesting! I will definitely be looking to buy The Memory Keeper! I'm a big reader when I find time! I totally get the no sleep thing it is my mind too. It never seems to want to rest! Ideas constantly buzzing!Good Luck! Traci