Facets of a Muse

Examining the guiding genius of writers everywhere

Of Muses, plans, and panda-mics #amwriting #amrevising


First, more shameless self-promotion (because someone has to do it 🙂 )

There’s still time to vote!

And super-duper-with-fireworks-and-dancing-Snoopys THANK YOU shout-out to all who voted! You ROCK!!

dancing Snoopy

“Really, love?” My Muse settles into the visitor’s chair across the desk from me. Wait, when did I get a visitor’s chair? “You spent how long putting those images together?” He leans forward and rests a forearm on the desk. “You should have been working on revisions.”

Sigh. I slump in my chair. “I know. I hate the marketing stuff, because I know nothing about marketing.” All the “market your book” articles and posts sound logical, until it comes time to actually put it into practice.

“You’re a writer. You try to make people believe your stories are real. How is marketing different? You’re trying to make people want to read your stories.”

I stare at him. Today he’s sporting a black long-sleeved concert T-shirt for Crowded House, sleeves shoved halfway up his forearms. Black’s not really his color, but he sure fills out the shirt nicely. “There is a difference. One is storytelling, the other is persuasion. I’ve never been good at persuasive writing.”

“It’s like any other writing. You try to connect with the reader.”

“Sure. Easier said than done.”

“Maybe it’s your attitude, love.” He trains his striking blue gaze on me. “Your goal is to convince people to buy your book and spread the word.”

“You heard about this pandemic thing, right? All my panels have been cancelled. Heck, I’m not even sure my Totally Criminal Cocktail Hour appearance is going to happen. It works so much better when I can actually talk to someone face-to-face.”

He narrows his eyes. “You are good at that, once you get comfortable.” He straightens in his chair. “Well, since you aren’t spending time running off to panels and such, you have that much more time to write.”

“I’m trying.” I’m actually progressing on my homework. I need to submit up to 4,000 words that demonstrate my ability to use friends, foes, and foils. You know, sidekicks, antagonists, and characters that reflect or contrast the MC.

He raises a brow. “You have an empty nest this weekend.”

“Yeah. And I want to turn in my homework by Monday. Then there’s the garden.” After years of trying to downsize, it seems this year will be a bit of regression. Makes sense to have a bigger garden, all things considered. And the weather has been glorious the past few days. I need to enjoy it before the door opens on Summer. Weather guys say we’re getting hit with temps in the mid- to upper-80s next week. Ugh. Too hot for May.

“I’ll be here, love. And remember, just because you are outside doesn’t mean you don’t stop writing.” He taps his temple. “In here.”

Trust me, there are days I can’t shut it down. And days I can’t get it fired up. I’m progressing, though.

How is everyone doing? Remembering what day it is? Staying active? Yeah, me too. Thought I’d toss a little humor into things. Did you catch the “panda-mic” in my post title? Well, here ya go:

Heh. Get it? Actually, the panda is how I’ve been feeling lately as things keep going on.

Anyway, I have homework to do and a Dresden novel to read before the new one comes out. Re-reading Skin Game. If you don’t know Harry Dresden, you’re missing out 😀

Have a great weekend!

Author: Julie Holmes, author

A fiction writer since elementary school (many years ago), and NaNoWriMo annual participant for over a decade, I have been published in small press magazines such as "Fighting Chance" and "The Galactic Citizen". I write adult mystery with a touch of romance, mystery with extrasensory elements, contemporary fantasy, and epic fantasy, and I'm represented by the fabulous Cynthia Zigmund of Second City Publishing Services. My debut novel, "Murder in Plane Sight", has been released by Camel Press (an imprint of Coffeetown Press/Epicenter Press). In real life, I am a technical writer and empty-nester with a wonderful hubby, one cat (what writer doesn't have cats??), two dogs, six chickens, and more chipmunks, squirrels, and rabbits than any garden should have to deal with. My garden, our hobby farm, and Nature's annual seasons are some of my muses.

21 thoughts on “Of Muses, plans, and panda-mics #amwriting #amrevising

  1. Love those panda pics, Julie! And I know just what you mean about the difference between writing as in telling stories, and writing as in marketing. They are not the same. I hope it’s some comfort to know that you’re in company of a lot of other writers whose marketing plans got Covid-ed out. I had a book release in March, complete with launch party plans. Well, the release happened, but the launch party? Not so much. We’ll all get through this.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aw, man. Sorry to hear you lost out on the launch party, Margot. I know a few writers whose releases have been postponed. Hopefully you’ll be able to have a real launch party soon. Good luck with your new release!

      Have a great week! Stay safe!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Love the panda-mic and your Rock garden! 😀 As for the Dresden Files, I’m pretty sure you know how big a fan I am, and, I’m re-reading, too. Only I started with Book 1 (which I’d totally forgotten the plot of) and am nearing the halfway point in Book 2. I’m aiming to read all 15 before Peace Talks (#16) arrives. Reading along with my friend, Mae Clair, and it’s going to be a fun trip down Memory Lane. I love this series more than any other in the world, and that’s saying a lot, because I have several series I absolutely adore! Hope you enjoy Skin Game, but I can tell you, it was fun meeting Harry, Murphy, Gentleman Johnny Marcone and the whole gang for the first time (all over again!) 😀 Roll on, July! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • I was going to start with book 1, but as much as I haven’t been reading lately, I figured I’d start with #15 and work backwards as time allows. Or maybe jump around; I’d like to read Mouse’s origin story again 😀 And Mae is a Dresden-phile?! Woo-hoo! Maybe we should start a Dresden fanclub for writers 😀

      Oh, hey, my Muse said he found another candidate for you. Remember Marlin Perkins? Sounds like the muse candidate inspired a lot of those Wild Kingdom stories. Rumor also has it he was Edgar Rice Burroughs’ muse for a while. Hope he works out!

      Have a great week, Marcia!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Whoa!! A Muse who inspired both the wisdom of nature-lover Marlin Perkins and the loin-clothed Tarzan of the Apes? Okay, I’m sold. I’ll be waiting eagerly for his arrival, as I am in dire need of inspiration, for sure! 😀

        Mae had read some of the early Dresden books, but got distracted somehow. I’ve convinced her to pick up where she left off and I’ll read along with her. Then we can discuss each book after. I’m gonna get her on Team Dresden if it’s the last thing I do. You can put in your thoughts, too. There’s no such thing as too much Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden! 😀

        You have a great week, too! 🙂 ❤

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Love the panda-mic chuckle 🙂

    My May writer event was cancelled and rescheduled for October, but who knows what will happen come fall and cool weather. Like you, I hate the marketing thing. Plus it’s so hard figuring our what works and what doesn’t, kind of like a crap shoot.
    We hit 84 yesterday. Weird after hitting a record low just a week before. Today is more pleasant in the mid-70s. I hear a walk calling 🙂

    Take care, happy writing, and continued wishes for good luck in the Rone awards!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aw, man. I had an event in March that’s been combined now with an event in Sept. Crossing fingers the events will be able to take place. Ugh. Mid-eighties is too warm for May IMO. Today has been cool and rainy; glad I haven’t planted the garden yet. Can’t wait for things to dry out a bit. I’m planning to put the garden in next weekend.

      Stay safe and have a great week, Mae! And high-five for the upcoming Dresden book! Yippee!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. A great post, Julie. You sound like you are doing okay with your writing and also with your huge garden.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Wishing you best of luck with this contest, Julie. Your book deserves it.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I love how you teach stuff in these posts. 🙂 And your weather just doesn’t know how to be even-keeled, does it? Hope things work out with the contest! And the garden! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Nope. The weather can be pretty wonky this time of year. Today is rainy and windy and cool. Tomorrow will probably be nice, and by Friday, hot. Keeps things interesting, anyway 😀

      Have a super week, Betsy! Watch out for those snake heads 😀 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Oh, and, of course I enjoyed the pun.
    And my sleepy-weepy-sweet-pea, Zoey-Zoe-Zoe. Nmmhhmmnn (me rubbing my face in her fur)

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I lost track of the days yesterday. I thought it was Friday. Oops. Marketing sucks, Julie. There, I said it. But it’s one of those things we can’t (or shouldn’t) avoid. And yes, a big garden is in order. I’m glad you’re getting some sunshine. It’s been raining here for a week. The slugs are going to love it! I wish you a safe and productive week on all fronts!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Great pics! I know what you mean about marketing, Julie:) I voted for your book, hope you do well! Happy writing and gardening.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s