Blog Tour, Final Day: Jackie King

December 7th, 2011

This is the Way the the Tour Ends: Not with Bang or a Whimper, but with Jackie King.

Jackie King loves books, words, and writing tall tales. She especially enjoys murdering the people she dislikes on paper. King is a full time writer who sometimes teaches writing at Tulsa Community College. Her latest novel, THE INCONVENIENT CORPSE is a traditional mystery. King has also written five novellas as co-author of the Foxy Hens Series. Warm Love on Cold Streets is her latest novella and is included in the anthology THE FOXY HENS MEET A ROMANTIC ADVENTURER. She is a member of Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, Romance Writers of America, RWI, Inc, Oklahoma Writers Federation, and Tulsa Night Writers.

So here she is, and it’s great to have her as the closing act for the blog tour.

Good morning Timothy, can you believe this is the last day of our Holiday Blog Tour? These last two weeks just flew by, didn’t they? And thanks to each of your readers for taking a break from their holiday preparations to join us. Remember everyone to make comments on each member’s blogsite, (all 15 of us). We’re giving away over 50 books, either during the tour or immediately afterwards. I’m giving away a signed copy of my cozy mystery THE INCONVENIENT CORPSE and a signed copy of THE FOXY HENS AND MURDER MOST FOWL. Names will be drawn by random from those folks who take time to leave a comment.

My Writing Routine Is a Moving Target.

One of the hardest things for any writer is to find time to write. Sounds strange I know, but it’s true. My writing routine continually evolves. I think that’s because life keeps throwing fast-balls and I have to keep ducking and dodging to get in my writing time. Odd as it may seem, my schedule was easier to maintain when I still worked my day job. “She works,” everyone would say, “better not bother her.” For some reason most folks don’t consider writing to be a ‘real’ job. “She’s in charge of her schedule,” they say now, then call me to chat or to ask a favor, since I have so much free time…they think.

Time is a problem for everyone nowadays. Writers must decide to lay aside things that are of lesser importance to them. Each morning I walk 16 steps to my computer and write in my pajamas.

Jackie’s pajamas are so pajama they’ve got pajamas of their own

I’ve given up both putting on makeup and shopping except when absolutely necessary. I limit my TV watching and do little housework. Since I live alone, the only one who seems to care about this is my granddaughter’s cat Pawly, who occasionally visits when her sister-girl is traveling with their parents. (Another cat who insists that she’s human.)

Writing rules are tricky. Like most of my colleagues, I don’t seem to ‘cotton’ to rules. Like cats, we writers refuse to be herded from one place to another. Ask us nicely, and we might meander in the direction you point. Or maybe not. In any event, it must be our choice.

Here’s my one and only rule regarding routine: I must write every day. I write usually write two to three hours a day. If this doesn’t sound like very long to you, get yourself a stopwatch. (A tip I learned from Jodi Thomas, author and friend.) Put it on your desk (or wherever you work) and start the watch just before your fingers are ready to hit the keys. Stop the watch when you pause for any reason: potty break, to grab a cup of coffee (or other drink); check your email or whatever. You’ll be surprised at how little of your ‘writing schedule’ is actually spent writing.

The main thing a writer (and you’re a writer if you write, even if you’re pre-published) must do is teach other people to respect their writing time. This is HARD. It may help to set office hours, or post a sign on your office door, or even buy Crime Scene tape and drape it around your chair. Folks finally get the idea. My grandchildren learned long ago to call so I could pencil in our play dates on my calendar. They don’t mind this at all, it makes them feel important and grown up.

Other Tips for writers: (besides writing every day)

  • Never allow anyone to discourage you; this includes your family and friends.
  • Submit what you write. Like taxes, rejection will be a regular part of your life. Grow a tough skin. Rejection means that you’re a working writer.
  • FACT: Writing is 2% inspiration and 98% perspiration. Work hard, even though most days you won’t ‘feel the muse.’

I’d love to hear from cyber-friends. Tell me what you’re thinking. I’m nosy and want to know. Perhaps I’ll even put it in a blogpost.

Thanks again, Timothy, for being such a gracious host, and thanks to each reader for stopping by. Be sure and leave a comment so your name will be in the hat to win a signed copy of THE INCONVENIENT CORPSE or a copy of STATEHOOD FOXY HENS AND MURDER MOST FOWL. My novella The Spinster, the Pig and the Orphan is one of three stories in this anthology, a historical mystery set in 1889 Guthrie, Oklahoma Territory. I’m giving away a signed copy of each book.

Also, don’t forget to leave comments at each of our Holiday Blog Tour team member’s sites for a chance to win their books.

THE INCONVENIENT CORPSE is available at my website: www.jacqking.com

Or my blogsite: Cozy Mysteries and Other Madness: http://bnbmysteries.blogspot.com

Amazon and Barnes & Noble as well as all bookstores.

Paper trade back: $15.95. Kindle $2.99 http://amzn.to/gMv7CH

Nook $2.99 http://bit.ly/fovbLR

Thank you, Jackie — great advice, practical and useful for all of us who slave over a hot keyboard.  I am the closing act at M.M. Gornell’s site, where I have the gross presumption to suggest ten commandments for writing.   http://www.mmgornell.wordpress.com/

This has been fun!  I hope you’ve all enjoyed it as much as I have.

13 Responses to “Blog Tour, Final Day: Jackie King”

  1. M.M. Gornell Says:

    Jackie, your advice and comments are excellent! Don’t let anyone discourage you and rejection is part of writing are such good thoughts. Great post to end your tour.

    Madeline

  2. EverettK Says:

    I agree with you, Jackie (and Thomas Edison) writing (like inventing anything) is mostly perspiration. Which, of course, means that you’d better really want to do it, or you’ll never “stay the course!” The hardest part about writing is the first part: making up your mind that you are going to write, today, tomorrow, until your fingers stop twitching.

    Thanks for visiting! (Now get back to work!)

  3. Beth Anderson Says:

    Very nice and important words, Jackie. I’ve SO enjoyed meeting you here, and listening to your own words about writing. Love your book, An Inconvenient Corpse. My gosh, the talent on this blog tour…it’s enough to boggle anyone’s mind, but oh so nice at the same time.

  4. Jackie King Says:

    Timothy, What a charming host you are! And your humor always makes me smile. (Although your books sometimes bring tears to my eyes–that’s how real your characters seem to me.) And you do a really good job of writing the female POV.

    So glad I’ve met you in person. We were at Bouchercon 2011-St. Louis, you were in the hospitality room, visiting with fans and keying words into your laptop, alternately.

    I was impressed.

    Hugs,
    Jackie

  5. Timothy Hallinan Says:

    Jackie, you couldn’t have said anything more gracious, and I thank you.

    Your post was a fitting punctuation mark to a remarkable experience. It’s been great to get to know you virtually after our brief chat in St. Louis.

  6. Alice Duncan Says:

    Oh, Jackie, I can so relate to your post! Not only did I get more writing done when I worked a regular day job (I sneaked in paragraphs during dull moments), but my very own sister told me I write trash! Not exactly supportive, my family. Well, my kids are. And I love your pajamas, too 🙂

  7. Marilyn Meredith Says:

    Great advice, Jackie. Just write!

  8. john m. daniel Says:

    Good advice, Jackie. And yes, rejections are as inevitable as taxes. We must have the hides of rhinoceroses.

  9. W.S. Gager Says:

    Jackie: Excellent post to end on. We all need to remember it takes work and not get discouraged. Thank you! I’ve enjoyed getting to know you!
    Wendy

  10. Pat Browning Says:

    Great post, Jackie! Thanks to you and Tim for a fine ending to the blog tour.
    Pat Browning

  11. Anne K. Albert Says:

    Well said, Jackie, especially about respecting one’s time to write. I have no qualms of letting the machine pick up incoming telephone calls. But I am going to get a timer and time my actual writing time. I love that idea. Thank you!

  12. Jackie King Says:

    Madeline, I’m so happy we met via this tour. I will keep checking back on your blogsite, and the blogs of other Tour Members. I love to keep in touch with friends!

    Thanks for all your kind words.

  13. Jackie King Says:

    EverettK, Thanks for stopping by. Often I feel cranky and out of sorts, and think, I’m not writing today.

    The only person that makes unhappy is me.

    I realize that and walk to my computer.
    Cheers,
    Jackie

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