Monday, January 9, 2012

Manic Monday with Laura Vosika

Welcome to 2012 Manic Monday series and I’m pleased to start the year with Laura Vosika. Laura, the author of the Blue Bells Chronicles, is working on several other novels and a non-fiction book on raising a large family. Past publishing credits include an essay in Glamour magazine.

Laura grew up in the military, visiting castles in England, pig fests in Germany, and the historic sites of America's east coast. She earned a bachelor's degree in music, and master's degree in education, and worked for many years as a freelance musician, private music instructor, and school band director.

She currently lives in Minnesota with her nine children, and assorted menagerie.

Writers’ Resolutions by Laura Vosika

So 2012 is here! Every new year is a time to reassess, take stock, and see where we can brush up and improve. The world of writing is no different. So what are good resolutions for those who love to write? Anything that’s going to take you closer to where you want to be.

Write. Maybe for some, the first resolution is to decide where you want to be this time next year. Do you want to have written a novel? Then follow the National Novel Writing Month model and sit down and do it. Don’t have time? Make time. Are there TV programs, internet forums, or computer games that could be given up? Even if it’s ten minutes a day, sit down and write. Even if it’s journaling, sit down and write. If it’s a four-line poem whose first line ends with Nantucket, sit down and write. Write a description of what you see out the window. Write a story about what the neighbor kids are doing as they walk home from school. Write a letter from your dog to your cat. Have fun. But sit down and write.

Read. And read good writing. Try the classics, try books with lots of five-star reviews. Re-read things you’ve loved in the past and think about why you loved the story, why you loved the character.

Read about Writing. There’s a feeling out there, I think, that great art just happens, like magic; that artists either have talent or don’t. As a writer and musician, I say the real magic is in making so much work look so easy. Doctors study for ten years from the time they start college to learn their profession. And not to take anything from doctors (I’m very grateful for them!), but many musicians have been studying their profession for ten years before they even start college. Writers, likewise, have often been writing from a young age. However, I think we as writers can also learn from other professionals, who routinely take classes and are continually learning. Pick up a book on the craft of writing, and see what new ideas you get. Find a website with advice for writers. There are thousands of them out there. Take a class. Have fun!

Meet other Writers. This can be a dangerous thing. Writers, well, we write. Including on forums, including on blogs. It can be very easy to spend all our writing time communicating with other authors instead of writing our novels. Still, writing has traditionally been a fairly solitary craft. Now, technology has given us the ability to network with others as never before. I have learned a lot from the other authors out there, about writing, about business, about life. I have made some great connections that have helped me, and have hopefully helped others along the way, too. And I’ve made some really great friends all over the country, who I never would have met otherwise.

Get out and enjoy life! You know what they say—write what you know. The artist in the ivory tower is an enduring figure, but I believe our writing will be deeper the more we meet other people, see other places, explore new ideas, and try new things. Does one of your characters love skiing when you’ve never tried it? Go try it. Visit a place you’ve never been before. Take a class on something new. Then write about it, or work it into your next novel.

Take a risk. If you’ve always wanted to write, sit down and do it. If you have a drawer full of novels and always wanted to get them published, start contacting agents. What’s the worst that can happen? Usually, the worst is not really all that bad. If the first novel doesn’t work out, re-write it—ten or fifteen times. If it still doesn’t work, start a new one. If one agent says no, contact another.

Have a wonderful writing year!

Blue Bells Trilogy Blurb:
Shawn Kleiner has it all: money, fame, a skyrocketing career as an international musical phenomenon, his beautiful girlfriend Amy, and all the women he wants--until the night Amy has enough and leaves him stranded in a Scottish castle tower.

He wakes up to find himself mistaken for Niall Campbell, medieval Highland warrior. Soon after, he is sent shimmying down a wind-torn castle wall into a dangerous cross country trek with Niall's tempting, but knife-wielding fiancée. They are pursued by English soldiers and a Scottish traitor who want Niall dead.

Thrown forward in time, Niall learns history’s horrifying account of his own death, and of the Scots’ slaughter at Bannockburn. Undaunted, he navigates the roiled waters of Shawn’s life-- pregnant girlfriend, amorous fans, enemies, and gambling debts--seeking a way to leap back across time to save his people, especially his beloved Allene. His growing fondness for Shawn’s life brings him face to face with his own weakness.

Folks, you can find out more about Laura at the following places:
Author site:
Author blog:

Laura's books are available at the following places:
Amazon     Barnes & Noble   Smashwords   itunes     

Thanks for swinging in!
Until Next time,

1 comment:

J. R. Tomlin said...

Great interview. It's always nice to hear from Laura. Her Blue Bells of Scotland is a fun read.