Welcome Writer Mama, Christina Katz!!

After years of being a SAHM, I realized I needed some education and guidance to do what I wanted to do. Write – write well, get published, and still raise my four busy, busy children. Some of my questions were: Where do I start? What are the steps to become a successful writer? How can I make this work and balance it with my role as mom?

 

Enter Christina Katz’s book, Writer Mama, How to Raise a Writing Career Alongside Your Kids.  The title got my attention because it appeared like it might answer my questions. Christina’s book delivered. BIG TIME. It helped me to address what kind of writing I wanted to pursue and and a “map” of how to do it.

 

I’ve gone on to take Christina’s classes (you can find them through the the link below). The curriculums are based on Writer Mama, How to Raise a Writing Career Alongside Your Kids (and her new book as well), but go into far more detail. As a writer I have come away feeling challenged, focused, and confident.

 

Writer Mama, How to Raise a Writing Career Alongside Your Kids is a practical no-nonsense guide on to how to have a writing career while being a mom and offers the tools to get it done. Christina provides healthy doses of inspiration and support along the way. The book is a wonderful resource for non-moms too.

 

It is my great delight to welcome a woman I deeply respect and admire – my teacher and mentor, Christina Katz.

 

 

The Writer Mama Two-Year Anniversary Blog Tour Giveaway!

 

Post #25: Turning In the Full Draft of Your First Book

If I have done a good job describing just how much work it takes to get from the idea stage of a book to the finished full draft stage, then I probably don’t need to suggest that you take the time to celebrate this momentous occasion but I’m going to do it anyway.

 

Here’s the thing: your book-writing journey isn’t over yet and your book-marketing journey is about to kick into high gear, so if you don’t pause and celebrate this huge accomplishment, it will just blur into everything else you still have left to do.

 

For example:

 

You will likely receive requests from your editor or editors for changes (chapters in Writer Mama were swapped around at this stage).

 

You’ll likely receive requests for additional paragraphs or sidebar material (my editor wanted more on platform development in the last section of the book).

 

A chapter might get cut (a couple of mine did at the end).

 

A sidebar or exercise or two might get cut (I had to replace one or two).

 

Of course, there is always the possibility that you won’t have to make many or any changes to your manuscript. If this is your experience, then you probably invested more planning time into the front end of your book proposal process or had plenty of “curing” time during the writing of your manuscript.

 

Be certain if you are dealing with any kind of permission requests that you started the process long before now. You don’t know how long it will take to procure permission and if you are denied the right to use some material you’d counted on, you will possibly need to substitute other text or your own words.

 

Remember that even if your book is complete and is in satisfactory editorial shape, you are not done with your book, not by a long shot. And this is why you should celebrate. The fact remains: you just finished writing your first book and it’s a big deal.

 

Otherwise, you might zip right into tweaking the manuscript you just worked so hard on, and miss out on a little bit of a break. If you can take a week or so off from working on your book, this would be a good time to do so. Celebrate, regroup, renew, you’re going to need your energy and your clear head for the next phase.

 

In this way, the full draft celebration is part celebration, part ritual. It’s your opportunity to pat yourself on the back and congratulate yourself for crossing the finish line and it’s a way of signaling to yourself that even though you still have plenty of work left to do, the hardest part is done.

 

So I hope you will go out to dinner, splurge for a pedicure, or do something snazzy to mark the occasion. Once you get to this point, you truly deserve it.

 

Today’s Book Drawing: To enter to win a signed, numbered copy of Writer Mama, answer the following question in this blog’s comments:

 

Describe, in some detail, how you will celebrate the completion of the full draft of your first book manuscript.

Thanks for participating! Only US residents, or folks with a US mailing address can participate in the drawing. Please only enter once per day.

 

Where will the drawing be tomorrow? Visit http://thewritermama.wordpress.com/ to continue reading the rest of the Writer Mama story throughout March 2009!

 christina

 

Writer Mama, How to Raise a Writing Career Alongside Your Kids by Christina Katz (Writer’s Digest Books 2007)

Kids change your life, but they don’t necessarily have to end your career. Stay-at-home moms will love this handy guide to rearing a successful writing career while raising their children. The busy mom’s guide to writing life, this book gives stay-at-moms the encouragement and advice they need including everything from getting started and finding ideas to actually finding time to do the work – something not easy to do with the pitter-patter of little feet. With advice on how to network and form a a business, this nurturing guide covers everything a writer mama needs to succeed at her second job. Christina Katz is also the author of the newly released Get Known Before the Book Deal, Use Your Personal Strengths to Grow an Author Platform (Writer’s Digest Books 2008).

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12 Comments

Filed under Christina Katz, Writing

12 responses to “Welcome Writer Mama, Christina Katz!!

  1. Today’s the last day of the blog tour and the hostess gifts are in! Come on over to Robin Mizell’s blog and chime in if you have time!

    And thanks again for hosting!

  2. Congratulations, everyone, on your future full draft celebrations! It’s funny, since I write nonfiction, I don’t think as much about how to celebrate a complete fiction or children’s book draft. But every completion of the book writing cycle strikes me as a huge deal. Enjoy!

  3. Anna

    Just the idea of finishing my book is daunting…I haven’t thought ahead to what I would do if I finish…no no WHEN…I finish it 🙂 But I joined a writers group and am taking more classes (ones that make me write) and I have made progress.

    So, once the final draft is done and ready to “cure” I think I’ll throw a party on my deck (it’s a nice big one) for all my writer friends and others who helped me. Or maybe we’ll rent the local trolley and drive around town (I’ve heard it comes with a bar 😉 In any case, I want to celebrate with those who supported my dream.

  4. Debbie

    When I finish that monstor, since it will already be sold, I will first go to a salon that does not welcome walk-ins and get a hair cut along with a little gray coverage that doesn’t come out of a box from the corner drug store. If that doesn’t take long enough, I’ll find a masseuse and continue this deserved pampering. Arg! I’d have to shave my legs before a massage so between hair and muscle treats I’ll find a waxer. Yeah- new do, leg waxing, massage…makes me want to get on with a book!

  5. When I finished the first draft of my novel (OK, not the actual first draft, but the first draft I was willing to let anyone read), I called my husband in from the other room and told him it was done, finally. I had been working on the silly thing for longer than the poor man has known me. I noted, rather nervously, that at more than 700 pages, it was probably too long. His helpful hint: “Don’t try to print it here. Take it to Kinko’s.”
    That’s life with an engineer.

  6. In August, 2008, I finished and submited my first two full-length manuscripts before my contractual deadline. The catch was that I was in the hospital for the six weeks prior to that eventful day, awaiting the birth of my triplets. I celebrated the awesome moment of sending my publisher those two manuscripts by delivering my three babies. It was a HUGE time of accomplishment for this Writer Mama!

    Thanks for a great post and some new resources!

  7. i think my celebration of completing my manuscript will be a quiet and personal one.

    i see myself taking a long weekend at my favorite yoga retreat center and just enjoying a nice break from writing for a few days while i gear up for the next phase of the project!

  8. Well, first, I’ll probably stare in stunned silence at the monitor. Then I’ll hit ‘save’ a couple times, just to make sure I don’t lose it. Also to reaffirm that I really just DID it, just finished off that huge, hairy beast that’s been haunting me for years.

    Then I’ll cry. Maybe whoop or scream too.

    Then I’ll call a few close friends and family members and giggle in triumph, and maybe cry some more.

    Then I’ll sit and stare numbly at nothing while I think about ALL THE STEPS it takes to get published. And try to sort out what happens next.

    Then I’ll give myself a day or two off and probably plan a celebration, which I will use to coerce a hand-picked group of friends to read the finished product for me and give me feedback.

    That’s what I’ll do. 🙂

  9. I’d blog about it! And tweet about it! Definitely toast it!

    And then I’d probably take a couple of days away from the project, to relish in the excitement, and then be able to come back to it clearer and refreshed.

  10. Well, I’m pretty sure there will be drinks involved. Also some whooping and hollering. And I might have to bump up my cell phone plan so I can tell everyone, and anyone, who will listen all about it.

  11. Wow. I’m not sure what I would do. The project I’m working on is so big, I’m not sure I’ll ever get there.

    I’ve often thought I should shelve the project and start something smaller, but I love this story that I’m working on. I have started a few other things, but I always end up coming back to this one, and then the cycle starts all over again. I start to feel overwhelmed and guilty for not being able to put adequate time into it, but also guilty for taking time away from my family. What’s a mother to do?

    If I ever finished it? Well, I would first print the whole thing off, just so I can relish the size and scope of what I just created. It will definitely feel more real to see a pile of paper. Then I would probably leave that pile in a central part of my house for a few days (like the kitchen island), so I can walk past it and reflect and admire. Then I would sit down and reread the whole thing start to finish, and once again congratulate myself on finally finishing this labor of love.

    Then I would let someone else read it. I would send a copy off to a dear friend who has always been so supportive. Once I have critique from someone else, it will start to feel more real. My confidence and good feelings will start building. Then I may let my hubby read it, then my family members. Their acknowledgment of my efforts will be celebration enough, and I’ll be able to show my son and say “look what Mommy did.”

    What better feeling is there than to get a wide-eyed look from my son, and a “wow Mommy” reaction?

  12. zookbooknook

    This is a great blog! Thanks Christina for introducing me to it 🙂
    Describe, in some detail, how you will celebrate the completion of the full draft of your first book manuscript…
    Although I’ve finished several children’s book manuscripts, it is the young adult book I’m writing that will be the first book to celebrate when I complete it. To celebrate the completion I think I will first print it out in book format, so I can reread it (several days later) like it is a book. I love doing this. Then, knowing my hubby, I’ll probably be taken out to a wonderful dinner to celebrate. But honestly after that it’s hard to imagine how else I will celebrate, because I most likely will just jump right back into writing and reading. Perhaps I’ll do something for me, like go to a bookstore alone or take a walk outside alone 🙂

    (please don’t put me in the pool for winning a free copy of Writer Mama since I’ve already won one)

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