Monday, September 22, 2008

First Day of Spring!

Welcome to my blog, a public diary chronicling the joys and frustrations of writing for a living, and a few points of interest along my life's meandering journey.

I write inspirational stories about relationships that share wisdom and teach important moral and life lessons, stories in which the reader might find hope, guidance, rekindled affection and a reason to smile.

Please visit www.gregoryelang.com and click the red corner on the home page just beneath the “Projects” tab to learn more about what projects I may be working on.

Now on to today’s post~

The copyedited version of Mom’s Little Angel has been returned to HarperOne. A new editor worked on this book and she did a great job. You don’t realize how often you use the same words or sentence structure until someone else points it out to you. So the manuscript will go to the designers next who will add my photos, create the layout that will include space for the buyer’s own photo and personal story, and add in the quotes I collected from those I interviewed. I should see that version of the book in early October, and then it will take its place in line at the printing press. It is exciting to see what began as an idea formed while drinking a cup of coffee materialize into something you can actually touch.

I’ve also recently completed the ump-tenth revision of my novel Trees and have recruited three readers to take a gander at it and give me feedback. I wrote the first draft of this book in four months, but have been revising it for six years. I hope it works this time; I’m ready to send it out. It is a real challenge for a writer to jump genres but I’d jump in a hurry of I could finally break into the fiction market.

One thing I’ve learned in the last six years – it really is true that in order to write well you need to read a lot. I did not read much fiction when I began writing Trees, and it showed. Now all I read is fiction and what a difference it has made in my efforts to write fiction. BTW, right now I’m reading To Kill a Mockingbird. Just for fun, here’s a sample from Trees:

“That girl is going places,” Dr. Lewis Montgomery remarked, watching his son’s fiancĂ© saunter across the room at the Paces Ferry Club, gliding toward a select cluster of Atlanta’s elite.

“But she’ll run over anyone she thinks might get in her way,” Kyle murmured, “and won’t think twice about it.”

“You can’t fault ambition, son.”

“That depends on whose ambition we’re talking about,” Kyle frowned.

Dr. Montgomery (rather ambitious himself and had the burgeoning practice and wife to prove it) and son stood a comfortable arms length from each other and watched Evelyn work the crowd, she being very careful about the order in which she greeted people and how much time she graciously allotted each. Funny how you can act like you’re going to kiss someone yet never your lips touch their skin.

“Have a drink, Kyle,” his father said before walking away. They didn’t talk much, both finding that much easier than to risk having to speak out loud about the things that disappointed them in each other.

So I cross my fingers and hope to see Trees in print one day too.

Weight loss update – I’m now down 32 pounds. It has taken longer than I’d hoped but at least I’m still headed in the right direction. I’m only three pounds away from what I weighed when I asked Jill to marry me, and six from what will be my lightest weight in ten years. No salt, sugar, caffeine and alcohol did it (my neighbor calls it the Amish Diet, I call it HELL), albeit a very hard diet to stick with.

Jill, Linley and I drove to Athens to have dinner with Meagan last night. She’s doing well at UGA, loves her boyfriend, roommate, classes, and independence, and she seems to be very, very happy. What more can a dad ask for - his little girl is blooming just fine.

Well, I guess that’s enough for today. Thanks so much for visiting my blog. Now go out and hug somebody!

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