The writing and the vetting part
|August 23, 2019||Posted by Melinda under Uncategorized|
I’m writing a LOT.
“Where?!” you might say, looking at the lack of blog posts, facebook happenings, and any other proof that words are flowing from these fingers.
Turns out that writing anything other than blog posts requires some patience. I’m so used to the instant gratification of PEOPLE TELLING ME THEY LOVED IT NOW that waiting weeks, or more typically months, to share something is really weird.
It has its own schedule of gratification. The editors are usually very pleasantly surprised by the quality of work I send them (“why yes, I’ve blogged for ten years and my mom is my editor,” is NOT what I say), getting the proof before publishing is so giddy exciting, and then of course there’s getting to share it with everyone when it’s finally published.
If you are interested, some of the articles are linked on this page. (about half-way down).
I have an article scheduled to be published *soon* in Equus that I’m very excited about. It was going to go in the summer edition but it got bumped so I’m crossing my fingers that we see it this fall. It’s about a topic that I’ve briefly mentioned on the blog, but I’ve never written about! I wrote it back in February, so I’ve been waiting a very long time to share it with you, Dear Reader. When it does come out, I’ll link it on facebook and DrMelNewton.com and since it’s a special article to me, I probably won’t be able to help myself and I’ll post on the blog about it too. Sorry for the vague-ness. If you are a long-time reader you know that I rarely hint at something. My rule is, if I can’t just speak plainly about it, then why post it about it? It’s just irritating for both of us. But in this case I really REALLY hope that the suspense I’ve lived in since March when I submitted the article WILL BE OVER SOON AND I CAN SHARE AND SQUEAL OVER IT LIKE A LITTLE GIRL. So humor me just this once?
“DrMelNewton.com? What is this?” Up until recently if you went to drmelnewton.com it redirected you here, to the blog (melnewton.com). The blog has been my internet identity for a long time and I’ve stretched and massaged this site to be more than just a blog. As I start to apply for more freelance writing jobs and submit pitches to editors, I needed a page that concisely described who I was. The blog is a big part of that, but I also needed to be able to link examples of my work and describe who I was without a bunch of clicking around. So, I took one of my unused URL’s and turned it into a glorified “about me” page. You can check it out at drmelnewton.com. I have no plans on moving the blog or significantly modifying it. It’s business as usual here at melnewton.com – stories, cartoons, event reports, and random musings. Oh, and 1600+ posts to wade through from the last 10+ years. Sorry not-sorry?
If I was smart I would focus on writing articles. They are mostly quick and easy, pay enough I could buy all my running shoes for the year, and give me legitimacy as a free-lance writer.
But, I’m convinced if I only wrote words for editors and what I think they want and like, instead of reserving some of my writing for myself, my writing would grow stale and uninspired.
That’s my excuse for how much time and energy I’ve spent obsessing over my two current projects.
This blog has a ridiculously large archive. I’ve been doing this for an absurdly long time. I know that many (most?) readers like having access to my unedited and un-curated archive because it gives them a real-time perspective of what it took to grow from a rider with a few 50 milers under her belt, to completing 100-mile rides. I’ve gotten into vet school, graduated, and had a baby on the blog. I prepped and ran for my first 100-mile run.
How do I know readers like the archive? Because every time I offer to “do something about” it, I’m flooded with emails and messages asking me to leave the archive intact.
Here’s the problem. Some of the best and most helpful material is buried in that archive. Never to be read except by accident because of the sheer volume of posts there.
Here’s my solution.
Put the best, most-helpful posts in a book.
I have the first book completed. It’s called “Go Ride Far” and will be available in paperback through Amazon, and as an ebook everywhere.
This first book revolves around getting started in endurance, first rides, and some of the basic information I wish I had as a new endurance rider. It is not a how-to book. For that, I recommend Aarene Storms book “Endurance 101.” Instead, this is the advice I would give you if we were sitting around a campfire trading stories and sharing advice.
Readers who have been with me since the beginning will recognize many of the posts in the book, but I’ve added new material that I’ve never put on the blog too! If you are the sort of reader that is bothered by the “second draft” feel of the blog posts, never fear! My fearless red-penned editor (do I have to admit that she’s also my mom?) has helped proof it half-way to death.
I have not released it yet– there’s a few things I need to coordinate and sort through. When I do publish it (probably September or October) I’ll make an announcement.
Here’s a page devoted to my book projects.
I’m pairing up with the very funny and talented Becky Bean from Beckybeanwrites.com to write a fiction book! There’s not much that I can say about the project right now except we are writing the sort of book that I would love to read and would probably curse the author for making me stay up past my bedtime finishing it. (Swordheart by T Kingfisher…..I’m holding you directly responsible for my lack of sleep this week.)
When do you have time to write a legit fiction book? is a legit question.
I’ve been getting up at 4:30 am every day. I can’t run or ride that early because I have a kid at home that can’t go to daycare until 7am, but I can sit on my couch and write and plot.
That sounds very civilized. Early morning coffee and writing a book. Practically living the dream. Except…just as much writing is getting done in the parking lot during the last 10 minutes I have before I absolutely must walk through the door and get to work. While holding puking toddlers. While hiding in the bathroom during family events, frantically taping out the words on a tiny phone screen.
Find passion, do crazy sh*t. Is there any other way to live?
My mom is publishing a *middle-grades novel (a novel that’s directed towards an audience that is a bit younger than a traditional young-adult genre) and decided she would create a cute little publishing company name and logo.
I’m helping her with editing and formatting her book and when I saw what she did, I knew I **needed to do the same thing! This is what I came up with:
*If you want to check it out, go to www.carolynrroberts.com. The website is still in progress (you can read content but most of the links don’t go anywhere and you won’t find it on amazon…yet) and the book won’t be live for at least another week, but I’m really proud of her for seeing the project to completion. I helped design the cover!!! Do you like it?
**why? I have no idea. Except it makes me laugh every time I see my cute logo and that’s a good enough reason.
I’m sort of in love with my little logo and will probably find an excuse to slap it on all sorts of things. #thingsIobsessabout #notadmitinghowlongthistookme
The Vetting part
I typically do surgery 5 days a week, sometimes vet an endurance ride on the weekend, and still have a few (very few, mostly friends) private practice clients. it’s a good life, but a busy one.
To those of you that want to be vets, or have kids that want to be vets, here’s my advice. Don’t do it unless you can wait until your thirties to do it, and you can borrow less than $100k to finish the program.
I won’t get on my soapbox here about the predatory lending practices, the exploitation that regularly occurs in this industry, and the necessity of drawing hard and fast boundaries in order to survive in the profession right now. Maybe we will chat about it some day, but not on a day like today when I’m staring at a beautiful sunrise and I’m about 15 surgeries away from leaving on my wedding anniversary weekend trip.
Ta-ta! It’s off to work I go! I hope you have enjoyed these ketch-up (heh heh heh) posts. Onward and forward to more adventures.