Saturday, January 24, 2009

Trying to Focus

Whenever I can get to the computer, I've been following this discussion of focus groups vis-a-vis critique groups with interest. I write more or less in a void, and thus am always surprised by the reaction of anyone who reads the final product.  I seem not to have the slightest idea how other people perceive things.  I more or less write to please myself. Not to say that I don't care about reader reaction, because I do.  I really want people to like my books.  However, I find that if other people read my work while it's in progress, I am more influenced by their opinions than I like. How to find that perfect balance between salability and artistic satisfaction?  

Speaking of satisfaction, I did get to go to my own book launch at Poisoned Pen Bookstore on the 17th, and it was a lovely event.  We had a big crowd and sold a lot of books, and I was on my game.  What with all the excitement around my house over the past month, I was so happy to be there, talking about writing and not worrying about life and death issues, that I was practically giddy.  

The Sky Took Him has been getting some nice reviews, and I have managed to do a couple of guest blog spots and a radio interview or two, even if I did have to cancel most of my personal appearances for the next couple of months.  I'm not able to work on the next book right now.  Even when I'm at home, I find myself unable to concentrate properly at the moment.  Yet I think about the story all the time.  Many years ago, a psychic told me that I would write books by talking into a tape recorder.  Never have done it.  Perhaps I should consider trying it now.

(Would that mean the psychic could see the future, or did she just put the idea into my head, where it has been stewing for 30 years?)


Rick Blechta said...

How about getting one of those small digital recorders? I use one of these, mostly for dictating ideas to incorporate into a story, occasionally for chunks of dialogue, the odd interview. Since I seem to get a lot of my ideas when I'm driving or out walking, it's really handy.

Best thing is, you can transfer it directly to your computer. I haven't bothered to try it yet, but apparently you can use a program that will transcribe the audio recording, sort of like OCR software. That would be really cool.

These recorders are small enough for a pocket or purse and cost less than $100. Seems to me it could be a good solution for your situation.

Donis Casey said...

That's a good idea. In fact, I'm being forced against my will to learn all kinds of modern technologies for writing and for promotion as well. I'm just getting ready to propose that I do an event I have scheduled for the middle of next month by computer rather than in person. Not being able to travel is making me think outside my comfort zone.
If you do try transferring your recording directly to the computer, Rick, I'd like to know how it works.