StoryStorm 2019

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I’ll be joining many others for StoryStorm.  For those that don’t know, StoryStorm is a challenge to come up with 30 picture book ideas in 31 days. Originally, it was called Picture Book Idea Month held in November, but creator Tara Lazar switched to to January a couple years ago to give everyone a fresh batch of story ideas to work with for the new year.

I first did StoryStorm back in 2015, when it was PiBoIdMo.  I have “won” the challenge each year, and some of those ideas have been turned into manuscripts. For the ideas that do not get turned into a manuscript, I keep them on file on my iPad, and also as a small booklet in my bag. 

I create a file on Scrivener for each year, with each idea following the same format:

Idea # 7


Characters:

Setting:

Problem:

Adventure:

Solved:

Notes:

I used to keep each as a separate notecard on scrivener, but putting them in one file is so much easier. From there, I just fill in the info that comes to mind when an idea slaps me on the back of the head.  The idea might just be a location, characters, or a problem.  I rarely end up with just one part filled in.  I usually get three of them filled in.  Many of my ideas come from Storybird.com For ideas that come from there, I write in the notes what pic it was.  On my account, I try to remember to favorite them so I can look back at them.  Sometimes I’ll e-mail myself a link for the pic.

 

Do you participate in StoryStorm?  Where do you get your ideas from?

My ‘To Do’ List For(ever) 2019

                        Dream To Do List

                        Dream To Do List

Well, I started to write this a while ago, and got the title, then got distracted by searching for memes for this post, on which I’d written nothing until now. 

I decided to go with a ‘To Do’ list this year instead of a list of goals for the new year. I feel like I write the same goals year after year, whether on here, or on the blogspot blog I kept for a while. So, rather than repeat the same things over and over, I’m going to create a specific list of things I want to do (hence the term ‘To Do’). I must say that I LOVE the To Do list I found.  I was going to cut it for the top, but the whole thing is fantastic!

So, back to my To Do List.

1. Write six or more picture book manuscripts. 

Overall, I’ve been able to do this each year, except for one. That year I had five.  Other years I’ve written more than a dozen, but I’m hoping for six this year. 

 

2. “Find” two more picture book manuscripts to edit to the “Done” level of being able to submit, or to have ready if an agent asks to see more work. 

So, I have two, and close to a third already.  I guess that ‘close to a third’ counts as one of the two I’d like to have ready, so I’m almost halfway done with this one! It feels like writing ‘Write to do list’ at the top of your to do list and checking it off right away. It’s not cheating, it’s an accomplishment. 

This will probably be the face I make when I read that early CB...

This will probably be the face I make when I read that early CB...

3. Edit my contemporary fantasy early chapter book.

This is one I’ve wanted to work on for a while.  I finally printed it out (two months ago) and have been working on (ignoring) it. I have a possible connection to trade similar manuscripts, but, I guess, me working on it should come first. 

4. Continue to plug away at agents with Steve. ..maybe...

Steve is my first done picture book manuscript that I was told I should start sending out.  Cow came next.  Steve has been getting a steady flow of unpersonalized rejections, Cow was sent to one agent, and I got a personalized rejection. Hence, the maybe.  Should I switch which one I’m sending? Should I send Cow to the same agents once a year has passed? That, I need to figure out. 

5. Write on this blog at least once a month.   

I think I’ve been doing this, but it feels like I haven’t. Ultimately, I’d like to do it twice a month, but once makes for an easy check on my to do list :) 

6. Read thirty plus books. 

                       This is totally true. 

                       This is totally true. 

This one is personal.  I love to read, and I fell off the wagon a bit this year.  I don’t think I’m going to even hit twenty, which isn’t too bad since I didn’t read much from April until July.  I have several books at home I haven’t read yet, and I bought a new Kindle after my old one refused to charge anymore. Fantasy is my favorite genre, though I do have a couple non-fiction book on WWI, and a couple WWI, and WWII fictional books, as well as a craft book on writing picture books that I’ll read after I finish The Skaar Invasion by Terry Brooks.

7. Keep chasing my dreams. 

I’m chasing my dreams, like Jason chases campers- slow and steady. 

 

So, what’s on your ‘To Do’ list for 2019? Let me know in the comments!