Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Joy of a Byline!

Nothing like a byline to make a good day great! My article on the local labyrinth at the Episcopal Church is out today. I had just announced to my Guild on a Thursday night last month that I was finished trying to place non-fiction pieces. Then I came home to an editor’s email saying she wanted this piece. I have since written a second article for her and am waiting to hear her thoughts on a piece about WWII Red Cross activities.

I find non-fiction more draining to write for me than fiction because I am always worrying if I have every fact correct. Have I portrayed and quoted people both to their liking and with the truth?  I see non-fiction article possibilities everywhere, but often pass as I don’t know how to begin or what angle the market needs. Then if I suggest an article topic without writing the piece first, often an editor wants it in a week and then I have time pressures on top of all else.

However, fiction I make it all up and that is okay. Well, actually I have written some pieces that family members could see themselves if they looked! We use our own lives as springboards sometimes when we write. I know a piece of fiction is easier if I “see” someone or some event from past and then let the story develop.

Recently, I won first place in the Saturday Writers essay contest. It was about a fishing day I had with my husband. Now DH always says “Nice” when I win or publish, but he never reads my writing. When he heard me tell someone about this essay, he blanched because it tells the tale of his forgetting the boat plug. (Did you know a boat has a plug just like a bathtub? Not this gal who is NOT a water person!)

“Are you making a laughing stock of me all over Missouri?” he asked.

“Not really, but I did tell you what I was writing…you never bothered then to read or ask questions. So whatever…..” I warned him and the boys, Erma Bombeck laughed all the way to the bank on her family inspirations. I might give it a try!!!

So how do you find your own writing inspirations? Which do you prefer, Fiction or Non-Fiction…or are you Poetry buff?


Martha said...

Congratulations on your by-line! I'll have to get this issue of She!

Donna Volkenannt said...

Congratulations, Caludia. I am so pleased for you! You are on a roll.

Susan said...

Oh Bookie, congratulations on the fabulous news! The article looks great! And a prize in the essay contest! How wonderful. Congratulations! You should be very, very happy!

For me, it's non-fiction all the way! I am a freelance feature writer for a newspaper plus a couple other publications. I know what you mean about wigging out over accuracy. I do that all the time.

I find writing inspirations everywhere----during a drive, in the newspaper, from other people, overhearing conversations, on signs, you name it! I never, ever, ever run out of things to write about.

Not much of a poetry buff. I mean, don't get me wrong, I like to read poetry but don't write it myself.

Take care and congratulations again! You are awesome! Susan

Linda O'Connell said...

Claudia, hooray for YOU. About all of those calls for submissions that you've been passing up because you don't want to do non-fiction...pass them my way, please.

Your article is wonderful. I also had fun catching up on your blog posts. Especially liked the photo of the old fashioned hair perm machine. I remember going to the beauty parlor with my mom.