Amy on writing

The Muse

If your muse was a real person…

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In mythology, 9 Grecian sister goddesses preside over the arts and sciences. The muses… Today, the muse is any personification of inspiration.

So what is your muse like? Look like? Talk like? Could you take them out for drinks and have a good time, or does that creeper need to stay chained in the basement?

I like to think of my muse as an uncut, despicable version of myself. She is ruthless and undiplomatic. She takes what she wants. She’s a bitch, but I love her. I need her because I will back burner everything and anything to meet the needs of my loved ones. I happily forgo me. But she reminds me, gives me shit for slackin’. And if I ignore her, she fights her way to the front of line.

It’s nice of her really…

Tell me about yours in the comments, I love it.

Cheers, Amy

Sculpture by Me

 

 

 

 

Amy on writing

Writing…with zombies

Is your writing being taken over by Zombies?

Avoid the passive voice with this unique and super fun tip I found from a most unexpected place: Archives.gov

I use it every time I taste the unpalatable flavor of inactive language in my own writing.

https://www.archives.gov/open/plain-writing/tips/passive-voice.html

image from Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

Amy on writing

50 Shades of Adult

Is your novel clearly defined?

Separating Young Adult and New Adult, is it just the absence of sex that defines them? Or something more? And where does Adult fit in?

I’d like to make a case for New Adult fiction. Not just to sex up YA or “young” down Adult. Perhaps there is a full fledged market of post education 20-30 somethings being somewhat dismissed.

There are stories that transcend time and space like Harry Potter of course 😏, and anyone can find resonance in any genre, but to have an actual section in a bookstore that speaks directly to this age group would be alright. Perhaps just as alright as any other subgenre? Fucking octogenarian paranormal crime fiction anyone?

I know, I know, the horror of more categorization, learning new things, stifling, finely wrapped boxes… I get it….

When I started my novel, I never considered the market I had in mind. I simply wanted to write a book that I would like to read.

But now that marketing is on my brain, I can’t help but wonder…

I remember reading books like Exit to Eden, The Silence of the Lambs and The Doors when I was maybe 13 years old, but would I want my tween to read them? Not yet. But did I also devour The chronicles of Narnia and Anne of Green Gables? Absolutely.

But something in between. Something if I’m not in the mood to recapture my youth or ponder the deep minutia (impending fucking realness) of seasoned adulthood. Hmm. Books for that nebulous in between. I say New Adult…Why not?

Image found on digitalsynopsis.com

Amy on writing

Readers Favorite

Hello my fellow fictioneers!

The last day to enter the Readers Favorite award contest is today: June 1st 2018

Readersfavorite.com

I think I might just put on them big girl chonies and give it a go.

Wish me luck!

Cheers, Amy

P.s. thought I’d share some of my art today. Maybe even do that portfolio thing once I figure it out 😬

Amy on writing

Unexpected Kindness

“I have always depended on the kindness of strangers”—Blanche Dubois, A Streetcar Named Desire

It’s been a week since I joined the WordPress family and I just wanted to thank everyone who visited, liked, reblogged, followed and commented on

amy-westphal.com

I’m way outside my comfort zone here, putting my name on things, saying stuff that will live in the internet forever, being findable, existing, more scary internet things….

It’s a funny thing, existing….

I always prided myself on my virtual anonymity. My focus on the life in front of me, real life, not the highlight reel. But I see that the world will continue its trajectory with or with out me and I have the choice to wield its power with as much authentic, duck-face free finesse as possible, all for the sake of my art.

I had this idea that I could be pulled begrudgingly out of anonymity by the sheer force of my literary prowess. But that’s just not how it works anymore. You gotta hustle. You gotta put yourself out there before the ink dries on your query letter.

So here I am, joining in, on purpose. No pen name, no Sia Wig (hard pass from the fam) just me.

Thanks again….

Amy on writing

Authenticity

“Stay gold Ponyboy.” — Johnny, The Outsiders

When building an online presence, or platform, how do You maintain your authentic self while riding the bloggernaut through the blogosphere?

In art school (15 years ago) I took a class on branding. (Was blogging even a thing then?) Anyway, what did I learn: You are your brand. Being your own brand before the internet made it famous was about presenting yourself in a manner that highlights your art. Easy, I thought, I have a great portfolio, education, unique personal style and excellent rapport with people in the know. I was unapologetically me. And like me or not, it worked.

But…… In today’s world. With the internet ready to hold your words and actions in infamy, how do you hold onto your authentic self without risking the empire you wish to build? I don’t know.

Until then, I suppose I’ll keep doing what I know best… Me.

…Because at the end of the day, if it doesn’t blow your skirt up, why fuckin write about it?

Cheers! Amy

Amy on writing

Why The Haters Never Have Anything Nice To Say About Your Writing

Great words to live by if you’re just starting out.

Meg Dowell Writes

People angry-tweet at me a lot.

This happens most often whenever I publish a piece about a certain high-ranking political figure whom Twitter trolls either really love or really do not love.

But it happens when I write health content, too. Apparently, everyone seems to think they know more than me when it comes to nutrition science, and thinks they could write better articles than I can.

Anyway. The point is, if you’re publishing things online, someone, somewhere, is always watching/reading.

This is great. Sometimes. I mean, it’s what you’ve always dreamed of. Strangers you’ll probably never actually meet in person are reading words you made into Things. That’s awesome!

But every once in awhile, it’s not.

The more of a “personality” you become online, the more vulnerable you become to the kind of scrutiny none of us ever really ask for — but have to learn to deal with…

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Amy on writing

Watch me platform

Now that I’ve covered who I think I am. Let’s talk about why you should care. Fuck, I don’t know. But I want you to care because I wrote a book, a story that I want to share with the world. That’s big for me. I’m an introvert, an infj if you’re interested in that. A Virgo if you’re interested in that. So putting myself out there is not my first nature. Its hard and so different now too. In my days of gallery art. I had my little black portfolio with slides that I put in an actual envelope with stamps. Maybe I had more confidence then too. The same is true with the cake world. It was still visual art. Writing is a different art. Obvs. And unlike my fine art skillz, without the education to back it up (Academy of Art University BFA) I often feel unsure. (Understatement) But I understand that’s normal based on my internet research. But at the end of the day I Continue because I do believe in my work, That I have something interesting to say. And a film adaptation would be just marvelous. Btw. As a visual artist first, I see the movie in my head already, with a glorious cast and all.

But let’s just get published first.

Cheers, Amy