Oracle of the Day: Five of Fire

Focus on one project at a time.  Photo credit: Meli Halstead

Focus on one project at a time.
Photo credit: Meli Halstead

Positive Affirmation of the Day:

I have a clear focus for the little details and attract peace in my life.

Central theme of your writing piece for the day:

The Five of Fire cautions you to pay attention to those bothersome details of your narrative, your book contract, your editing, and more.  Find a way to make those annoying items a little more enjoyable to deal with.  Also, you struggle with two other areas: you’ve got too many projects going on at once and you’ve in conflict with others.

Now is a time to send out those LOVE vibrations!

Writing Focus:

How does one deal with project overload or finding a way to deal with bothersome details or manage conflict with others?

Operation Project Overload  — I met a writer who was working on 5 books at the same time.   After awhile, she eventually petered out and many of these amazing ideas.  Have multiple ideas in the fire is a fantastic idea!  By all means, write down anything that comes to mind.  It’s your most fertile time.  This was mentioned in the Sisters of the Seasons (link).

However, it’s difficult to pull two trains at the same time.  What happens is, you pull Train A 5 feet forward and then you shift your focus to Train B and pull it 2 feet forward.  You rush to Train A again, and then Train B.  Wouldn’t it be much easier to give most, if not all of your attention to pulling one train, getting it to the destination, and having something to show for it?

BothersomeDetails: –Recently, I picked up a book about writing realistic dialogue.  One task of being a published author and a life long learner (it’s the teacher in me) is that one can always learn something new.  However, I do have a weakness.  I do not like wading through a lot of narrative. It bores me right out of my skull, however the narrative is where key details are located sometimes.

So, I have to force myself out of the desire to skip ahead to where the good parts might be and take my time to read each word.  This is also the hardest for me to write.  I like writing the juicy parts such as the dialogue and the action.  I am not a big fan of fleshing out the narrative…. SO PAINFUL.

However, it must be done.  We all have a weakness.  No matter what our weakness is — we must forge on.

Another scenario is author contracts.  I’ve heard horror stories of an author losing their story to XYZ publication.  When I look over the contract, all the dirty details were in it.  Read the fine print before handing your work over to someone. Granted, the excitement of being published is great, however if you lose your work in the process — not so great.  If you’re uncertain, hire a lawyer that specializes in that kind of stuff.  To get a better idea  of the legal jargon, venture on over to Attorney David Koehser’s piece on How to Read a Publishing Agreement.   Or The Passive Voice – How to Read a Book Contract.

Quote 10.23.2014

Conflict with Others — As much as I want to provide something enlightening such as: get along with your fellow friends because it takes too much anger to state in the state of conflict.  I am not going to.  Now is a time to shift focus to your character!  Yay!  Let’s all scream in excitement.

Conflict in your personal life — sort that out, but conflict in your book?  That’s awesome.  Conflicts are what drive the story.  Without this spicy ingredient, the story doesn’t really have much kick to it.  I’m a big fan of ‘Slap Ya Mama Cajun Seasoning’ .  Some books I read, I feel a need to add a heaping spoonful of the spice because I’m struggling with all my might to read past page one.  Yes, I’m sure you’ve come across a few like that to.  However, my mama always told me to give a book a chance — up to page 50.

My mama would be proud of me because I do that!

I Dare You To Take Action Prompt:

Operation Project Overload Solution Pick your strongest work in progress and finish it through.  Write it, polish it, and publish it.  Then move onto the next one. It is okay  — totally okay — to jot down ideas for our other projects.

Bothersome Details —  Tackle your hardest part first and work your way towards the easiest task.  If you’re not big on editing, focus on that first. This forces you to tackle the bothersome details of grammar, syntax, flow, etc.  You can do this!  If you have quite a few things you do not like to do, then write a list out from absolute dislike to tolerable.  Work from that list.

Conflict with Others Solution — Rather than go into detail about HOW to write conflict, I have scored a great worksheet from that helps you work on the conflict in your story.  Grab “Creating Conflict“.

I’d love to hear how this oracle has enhanced your writing.  Leave a comment and enrich the lives of our other readers.  Pay your experiences forward.

Join @MeliHalstead on Twitter for a weekly chat on Wednesday @9 pm EST at #writersoracle starting November 5th, 2014.  The more the merrier.

Get the latest news of short story contests, publishing trends, and more on the Writer’s Oracle Facebook page.

Meli Halstead is a kickass teacher who helps writers get their stories written using a variety of oracles.  She has held several workshops to help writers get their thoughts into book form.  Her goal for the 2014 – 2015 year is to help 1300 writers write their book.  She has written and published several short stories in her life time.  She also gives a voice to those who are trapped in the cruel world of human trafficking.

Wondering where in the world I got this amazing card? It is part of the wonderful Angel Tarot Cards by Doreen Virtue and Radleigh Valentine. *I am not an affiliate in any way. I bought the card deck because they were AWESOME!*

Leave a Reply