Monday, December 31, 2018

So Long 2018, Howy-Do 2019


It's eight p.m. on New Years Eve 2018, and here I sit. Fat and full of homemade chili and store-bought shortbread cookies, steeped in the undeniable knowing that I've gotta quit. Got to let go of the cookies, chocolates and sweets and get my bad Self back to a gym. Or down in the floor for stretches and push-ups, bridges, downward dogs, a cobra or two. As you are my witness. Hand in the air. Pinkie promise. I am doing it.

I love these rambling posts, and must admit I got lost earlier—clicking on post links, reading here and there. About Letting Go. Of anger. And sadness. About Forgiveness and Highly Sensitive People.

I have always been a voracious reader. In my first thirty years, I devoured fiction, leaning away from horror and the macabre, and toward dramatic literary works, classics, historical fiction (the fatter, the better) and later fluffy romance, and procedural mysteries, with an occasional jaunt through Middle Earth or Watership Down. Over the second thirty years, it's been mostly nonfiction—self-help, spiritual, philosophies, a few autobiographies, now and then, a classic.

And I LOVE research, which is a definite asset to an author. Over the last eight years I've combed every site I could find on Reptilian aliens, every book and web page on druids, William the Conqueror and related history, places, animals, climate, cultures and so much more. But how did I get off over here?

Oh. Yeah. Research. I do a lot of it. Including reading what I can of the writing-related articles I run across on Twitter. Like The Fantasy Hive's 50 Most Anticipated SFF Books of 2019.

But I'll be honest with you, reading through those blurbs taken from Amazon and Goodreads put me into a funk about my Awen trilogy. I stewed in it for days. Days in which I wondered if I should shit-can the whole trilogy and go back to doing what I do best. This. Creative Nonfiction. The stuff of real life. Because for some reason, I seem to be pretty good at this. And I like it about as much as air.

After a few days of the funk, I did what I do when I'm in a creative huff. I watched a movie. This time, Frozen. When the Disney castle flashed on the screen and the Nordic music filled the room, my writer self sighed, relaxed into the chair, and let the film weave its magic—not just on the screen, but inside of me. I'd been wrestling with the WHAT of my trilogy for seven years, trying to categorize, label, explain, or otherwise distill it down to a simple explanation, or comparison. And as I watched the sad story unfold before me, I had an epiphany.

It's an R-rated Disney(esque) sci-fi/fantasy. That's what the Awen trilogy is. It's definitely not a gore-fest, not heavy tech, no sword fights or fist fights (for the most part), at least not until the third book when all hell breaks loose. But yeah, R-rated Disney, if there is such a thing.

I wrote a new blurb. It's rough, but I can hone it and polish it and make it every bit as attractive as those I read. Because I'll be published soon, baby. And I want my work to stand next to the big girls' and carry its weight.

So I will stick it out with Awen and William. I promised them both I would tell their story/ies years ago. So I will. And I'll have faith that I've done it justice. But I will also be here, at That Rebel with you. Doing what I seem to do best—airing rebel laundry. Are you ready for 3000 Questions?

Here's to a break-out 2019. I'm predicting a fantastic year for PeaceMakers Publishing, beginning with the debut release of Awen Rising on October 1, 2019.

So goodbye, 2018.
Goodbye, rebel souls.
I'll see you often in 2019.

Happy New Year!

~ That Rebel, Olivia J. Herrell, writing as O.J. Barré

O.J. Barré is author of the upcoming Awen trilogy, an urban druid fantasy set in 2042 and steeped in current, ancient, and future history. Book One, Awen Rising, will be released October 1, 2019. Book Two, Awen Storm, is currently in edits. And the first draft of Book Three, Awen Tide, is in process.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Letting Go of the Sad

I bought a new car today. Instead of excited, I’m intensely sad. I miss my old car & feel like I sold my best friend for $900 & will never, ever see her again. Or took a beloved pet to the pound bc she got old.💔  
That was my Twitter post from last night. Have you ever felt this way about trading or selling a car? Even knowing you made the wise choice?
  1. My new car is a 2013 Mazda 3, eleven years younger/newer than Starr Bella, my little 2002 Mercedes C230K.
  2. The M3 is the base model, but everything works. SB's pieces and parts were failing. Like the sunroof that didn't work when I bought her, the DVD player that bit the dust a couple years ago, the heater/AC switch that had to be manually moved twice a year, and most recently, the fluttering door locks. Oh, and the tires that lose air and deflate when it gets too cold. (Uh, I live in Idaho)
  3. My new Mazda 3 has front-wheel drive to maneuver better in the snow. SB had rear-wheel drive, though she's a German car. (It's pretty snowy in Germany, right? What up?)
  4. The M3 gets 24 city miles per gallon. SB used to get 20ish. But for the last couple of years she's topping out at 18 in town, which is 95% of my driving.
  5. I'm sure there's more.
  6. And I'm just as sure that I will come to love the Mazda.
I haven't named her yet. She will have a V-name, 'cause of the Mazda emblem. I'm leaning toward Violet. Or Violetta. Or V. Vi? Or how about Vanellope, after the princess from Wreck-It Ralph? Vanellope glitches, so I don't think it'll be that. But I so relate to that little princess. Any other V-suggestions?

For all who were worried about me driving in the Idaho snow (as I was!) you can rest assured that I'll now be fine. My research reports V is excellent in the snow, even without snow tires. Of course, my bro-in-law pointed out that All Season tires ARE snow tires. Just not the sticky kind.

That's all on the sad. After the copious tears, sharing about my sadness, a good night's sleep, and telling you kind rebels, I feel somewhat better. It's time to let go of the insidious sadness.

The car-hunt that had taken control of my writing mind-time for the last few weeks has now been handled. Today I get back to writing. The first round of Awen Storm's edits will be finished before this year ends. I promise.

~ That Rebel, Olivia J. Herrell, writing as O.J. Barré

O.J. Barré is author of the upcoming Awen trilogy, an urban druid fantasy set in 2042 and steeped in current, ancient, and future history. Book One, Awen Rising, is complete. Book Two, Awen Storm, is in edits. And the first draft of Book Three, Awen Tide, is in process.

Sunday, December 9, 2018

3000 Questions About Me?

Last night I watched Julie & Julia and was filled with a longing to get back to my blog. No, That Rebel hasn't garnered me a book deal, or anything close. But it HAS nurtured my writing, and revealed a voice that I've parlayed into a shelved women's fiction novel and a fantasy trilogy of epic proportions.

That Rebel also introduced me to other writers, many of whom are still friends today, nine years later. And it gave me the confidence to call myself a writer and to know with all my heart that I AM.

Then why has it been five months since I've written a post? Why do I stay away so long?

Because I waffle, mired in the not-good-enough feelings and too-busy-doing-other-things mode. Things like work, life, and the writing of a TRILOGY. But the truth is—I miss my blog. I miss you. I miss our interactions, our conversations.

Julia Child committed to her cooking classes and to helping two friends write an American French-cookbook. She ended up with a best-selling (to this day) book of recipes, Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Julie Powell committed to creating Julia's 524 recipes in one year and to blogging about the experience daily. She netted a book deal, a movie, and a large fandom. To what am I willing to commit?

Umm...pssst...hell-oooo...a trilogy. Isn't that enough?

Well, of course it is. But I LOVE my blog. I love knowing you're reading That Rebel in now-time, not one day in the future when I finish the endless rounds of edits involved in bringing my books to market.

The other day while journal shopping, I ran across a Piccadilly journal with 3000 questions, each designed to know one's self better. As a journaler of 28 years, I had to buy it. Then in flipping through page after page of the probing questions, I thought of That Rebel.

Wouldn't it be fun (and enlightening) to answer the questions as blog posts? Some would likely be short and sweet, others longer and more thought-provoking. I could weave my writing ventures and progress into the posts, or include them as postscripts at the end.

YOU could make my self-pilgrimage your own by sharing your answers in the comments, or keep your AHA's private. Either way, we would embark upon parallel journeys together. Does this sound like something you would enjoy?

Any thoughts? Comments? Rebel yells?

~ That Rebel, Olivia J. Herrell, writing as O.J. Barré

P.S. Unless something changes (like an agent or publishing deal falling from the sky), I plan to go indie and release Awen Rising on October 1, 2019. Yep. You read that right. The first in the Awen trilogy will be hitting the shelves in less than a year!

O.J. Barré is author of the upcoming Awen trilogy, an urban druid fantasy set in 2042 and steeped in current, ancient, and future history. Book One, Awen Rising, is complete. Book Two, Awen Storm, is in edits. And the first draft of Book Three, Awen Tide, is in process.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...