Monday, January 14, 2013

Getting Back on Track

By Evelyn David

It's easy….way too easy…to get de-railed.

Over the last two months, heavy day-job responsibilities, family illnesses and celebrations, the holidays, you name it, and the two halves of Evelyn David have had trouble composing coherent grocery lists, let alone creating murder and mayhem.

It's not that I think 2013 is going to be any easier or less complicated. Life is often like a roller coaster, slow, sometimes an excruciatingly measured climb upward; perhaps a whiplash turn or two; then a calm, level track with no dips or slips and the temptation to relax and just coast along; and then a dizzying, stomach-dropping, but possibly exhilarating ride down. And then it starts again.

So no, I don't suppose or even want our lives to get less complex. But the last couple of months of creative indolence have taught me what every successful writer has said countless times. You've just got to park your bottom in a chair and DO IT.

Anne Lamott, one of my favorite writers, in her brilliant book on writing, Bird By Bird, talks about the creative process. I find it reassuring – a lifeline when I don't think there are any words I could possibly put down on paper that would tempt a reader to enter my make-believe worlds. But Lamott reassures me – and then makes me laugh:

“I know some very great writers, writers you love who write beautifully and have made a great deal of money, and not one of them sits down routinely feeling wildly enthusiastic and confident. Not one of them writes elegant first drafts. All right, one of them does, but we do not like her very much. We do not think that she has a rich inner life or that God likes her or can even stand her. (Although when I mentioned this to my priest friend Tom, he said that you can safely assume you’ve created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.)”

So we're back in the saddle again (a worn cliché, but heck the Southern half is from Oklahoma, home of The National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum). We have already had multiple conversations about upping the danger quotient in this novel. The stakes have to be high in order for the reader to care what happens. So far, we've got one heart-stopping car accident, one fatal robbery, and a drive-by-shooting Рso I think we're definitely back in murder and mayhem central.

 I know writers who have daily word goals – and I sorta, kinda do, but you know, life sometimes has a way of moving those goalposts. Instead my resolution for 2013 is to buckle my seatbelt, it's apt to be a bumpy ride – and write, revise, edit, delete, but most of all, to reengage my creative self in the wonderful world of make-believe.

Happy, Healthy, Have-Fun-Writing New Year.
Marian, the Northern half of Evelyn David


A Reason to Give Thanks includes: Giving Thanks in Lottawatah, Bah, Humbug in Lottawatah, Moonlighting at the Mall, The Fortune Teller's Face, A Reason to Give Thanks, Sneak Peek – Murder Off the Books, Sneak Peek – I Try Not to Drive Past Cemeteries
A Reason to Give Thanks

Sullivan Investigations Mystery
Murder Off the Books Kindle - Nook - Smashwords - Trade Paperback
Murder Takes the Cake Kindle - Nook - Smashwords - Trade Paperback 
Riley Come Home (short story)- Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Moonlighting at the Mall (short story) - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords


Zoned for Murder
Kindle Trade Paperback

Brianna Sullivan Mysteries - e-book series
I Try Not to Drive Past Cemeteries- Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
The Dog Days of Summer in Lottawatah- Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
The Holiday Spirit(s) of Lottawatah- Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Undying Love in Lottawatah- Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
A Haunting in Lottawatah - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Lottawatah Twister - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Missing in Lottawatah - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Good Grief in Lottawatah - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Summer Lightning in Lottawatah - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords

The Ghosts of Lottawatah - trade paperback collection of the Brianna e-books
Book 1 - I Try Not to Drive Past Cemeteries (includes the first four Brianna e-books)
Book 2 - A Haunting in Lottawatah (includes the 5th, 6th, and 7th Brianna e-books)

Love Lessons - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords


  1. I hear you, ladies! And my mantra for this year is the nugget of gold at the heart of a shining commencement speech from Neil Gaiman.

    "When things get tough, this is what you should do: Make good art. I'm serious. Husband runs off with a politician -- make good art. Leg crushed and then eaten by a mutated boa constrictor -- make good art. IRS on your trail -- make good art. Cat exploded -- make good art. Someone on the Internet thinks what you're doing is stupid or evil or it's all been done before -- make good art."

    Thank you, Neil. I need that reminder on an almost daily basis.

    Best of luck, Marian and Rhonda!

  2. Best of luck getting back on track to us all.

    Trivia question for you: You know (I assume) that's Dale Evans in your photo. Do you remember the name of her horse?

  3. Many thanks Linda for the quote from Neil Gaiman. It is always the art that keeps us going. Good Luck to you this year too!

    Thanks LD Masterson -- for sure I knew it was Dale Evans, married to the King of the Cowboys. Her horse was Buttermilk :-)

  4. I'm looking forward to the results, so have fun getting to it.