Tag Archives: blog writing

Top Ten Posts of All Time on Anatomy of Perceval

Recently, WordPress sent me a happy anniversary e-mail, reminding me that I’ve been a member of WordPress for ten years. Ten years!! How time flies, eh? I remember that I joined WordPress with a great deal of trepidation. I had no idea how to write a blog, but I wanted to establish my authorial presence and write about the experience of being a writer. So, being nervous made me delay actual writing of any posts. It would be a good month before I actually posted anything on September 18, 2007. I continued to work on the pages, also.

I’m especially pleased to have 2,672 followers as of today!  Thank you for following!  I hope in the next year to increase that number.

Over the years, I’ve tried to keep the Table of Contents up to date with only middling success. I’ve also changed some of the pages, added pages, deleted other pages. This blog has been organic in its development. It is still evolving. Recently, I realized it was time to update the Table of Contents and make copies of all the posts from 2015 and 2016. I know this will take some time, so please bear with me. The Table of Contents page will be updated eventually!

So, this September 18th marks the 10th birthday for Anatomy of Perceval. I’d like to celebrate by listing the Anatomy of Perceval top 10 posts and pages of all time here. I began this blog to write about the experience of writing, yes, and specifically writing a novel series, my Perceval series. It’s interesting that most of the popular blog posts I’ve written are more general. This list does not include the Home page/Archives which received 21,037 views or the About page which received 1,127 views.

Here are the Top 10:

What Does Title of Publication Mean?  on March 5, 2011

Writing a Blog: Is it a Publication Credit? on June 19, 2010

Facing the Blank Page on September 1, 2012 – this post was “Freshly Pressed” on WordPress’ main page

To “Maestro” or not to “Maestro”   on May 31, 2008 

What does “commercial success” mean to you? on May 17, 2014

WRITING: Vocation or Avocation? on April 12, 2008

Choosing and Using Pens on February 4, 2012

Screenplay vs. Novel on July 20, 2013

“Seven Pounds” or About Character Motivation on June 27, 2009

What Does Publication Mean? on August 15, 2009


And here are the ten runners-up:

Creating Character: Lisbeth Salander on October 23, 2010

How Does a Composer Know What to Write? on November 6, 2010

Does Height Make the Conductor? on February 29, 2008

Job Description: Creative Writer on February 26, 2011

Music Humor, or Music that makes me laugh on March 10, 2012

EVAN QUINN – this is the page about Evan, the main character of my Perceval series

Politics in 2048 — An American Dystopia? on June 14, 2008

Reading as a Writer: Lisbeth Salander Again! on July 24, 2010

Sticks and Drones: Conductor Blog on September 13, 2008 – the conductor blog I wrote about here no longer exists, unfortunately. I think the conductors have left up the content they’d written, however.

Heroes or Wimps? on June 2, 2012


Happy Anniversary!

7429pic2-thumb man in shadowsAs I began thinking about what to write here today, WordPress sent me an anniversary card.  It was 9 years ago this month that I signed on with WordPress and began to develop this blog. On September 18, 2007, I published my first post, “Writing to Date.”

Nine years! When I began, I focused on writing each week and never imagined how long I wanted to keep this blog up and running. Weekly posts challenged me enough.  But there have been some favorites over the years, and flops, too, and times when I needed to take some time off although I didn’t really want to.

I want to say a hearty Thank you! to all my readers who have stayed with me over time, and a welcoming Thank you! to new visitors and readers. I hope you’ll find much of interest here, and perhaps even a novel you’d like to read like my very own Perceval’s Secret.

Designed by Christopher Bohnet, xt4, inc.

Designed by Christopher Bohnet, xt4, inc.

Out of curiosity, I checked the stats for my posts over the last 9 years. I don’t usually pay much attention to stats, but today I wanted to see what had been popular over time.  Here are the top 10 posts in no particular order:

It amazes me how often ideas grab my imagination when I’m doing something truly boring and mundane. Showers seem to be the best place for me to muse about my writing. Yesterday, two ideas battled for my attention in the shower and while I dressed. One was for a short (or long) memoir or nonfiction assessment of The Golden Rule. Go figure. But it really excited me. The second was about taking a screenplay I wrote years ago and transforming it into a romantic suspense novel. This idea shocked me. Romantic suspense? Me?! But I’d recently reread Mary Stewart’s The Moon-Spinners and was so ridiculously happy after finishing it, I wondered if perhaps I actually like romantic suspense stories — or was it only this particular story that I like? And I’ve pulled out all my files for Perceval’s Shadow, the second novel in the series, to begin work on the first revision. I do wish I didn’t need to work to pay my bills.

I plan to continue this blog, writing about the Perceval series and my struggles and successes with it, my work on my other writing projects, writing about writing, being a writer, reading, classical music, and the occasional book or movie review. I may even write about writing a blog. I hope you will all continue to visit and talk to me in the comments section!  I love hearing from you.

My writing desk

My writing desk

Updates November 2012

During a normal year, update posts occur two to three times.  Nothing has been normal about this year.  Fortunately, it’s almost over and life has settled down, so it’s time for an overdue update on my writing work.

PERCEVAL Novels:  The year began with concentrated work on the second draft of the second novel in the series, Perceval’s Shadow.  The work included a complete read-through while taking notes on what the story needs, then a careful rewrite of the first chapter.  I planned to work on the rest of the novel and finish the second draft by the end of June.  Life and health issues intervened in February and March.  I decided to put this work aside for smaller projects until the life/health issues were resolved.  I renewed my membership in the International Thriller Writers in July.

Short Stories: I began a new science fiction story that grew out of The Light Chamber.  Still excited about it, too.  Started to search for new markets for The Light Chamber.  Did not work at all on The Negligee.

Essays:  I continued my monthly “Word Power” articles for Mensagenda.  Began to think of an essay collection about the medical patient experience, and write notes.  After considerable research into newspaper markets, I decided to put aside the “essay project” for the time being.  The newspaper business is in flux at the moment, and it may end up growing more online than in print.  Bloggers have replaced columnists to a certain extent online.  I need to decide if I want to pursue blogging for one or several newspapers – at the moment, this type of writing is mostly unpaid.

Marketing:  I joined MediaBistro.com at the end of last year thinking that it might be a good resource for freelance jobs, especially for the “essay project.”  I’ll probably allow my membership to lapse.  Nothing else new on this front.

Eyes on Life Commentary Blog:  I began writing a commentary blog last January under the pen name Gina Hunter at http://eyesonlife-ginahunter.blogspot.com.  My original plan was to establish it in the spirit of the late “60 Minutes” commentator, Andy Rooney, and publish posts two to three times each week.  As the blog  developed, however, I seemed to be putting my own sometimes snarky spin on it.  I’ve settled into a twice weekly publication schedule, which was interrupted twice this year due to life/health issues.  My interests in healthcare and how money affects culture could determine the direction this blog takes in the future, especially now that I’ve begun writing a book about being a patient.

“The Patient Book”:  Tentatively titled The Successful Patient, this nonfiction project is a book-length memoir of my experiences as a patient, including my mistakes and successes, combined with a self-help emphasis to show readers how they can benefit from what I’ve learned to be successful in dealing with our healthcare system as a patient.  Ambitious, I know, but it’s been flooding my mind with ideas.  At the moment, I’m working on its structure.  I’ve already set up a presentation based on this book for next May.

Anatomy of Perceval Blog:  As with the Eyes on Life blog, I’ve written weekly here except when life/health issues intervened.  I was extremely surprised and pleased to achieve “Freshly Pressed” status at WordPress.com for my post “Facing the Blank Page” last September.  I continue to write here about fiction, the Perceval novels, classical music, movies and book reviews, and anything else related to writing, especially fiction.

Guest Blogging:  I plan to begin exploring possibilities for guest blogging to expand my readership, both here and at the Eyes on Life blog.

Job Search:  I’m back at it as of the beginning of October.  I’m looking for a solid part-time position in healthcare, education or the arts.

Oddly, as frustrating as 2012 has been in many ways, I feel that it has been a year full of interesting, challenging, and new experiences, all of which can serve as raw material for my writing.  I’ve had my first experience of trying to write while on morphine for post-operative pain – believe me, what I wrote was extremely repetitive and barely legible, and I kept falling asleep.  Not a very productive experience, to say the least!

May the next six months or so see positive movement on the job search front, and more good writing time….

July 2010 Updates

Time to take stock on what, if any, progress I’ve made so far this year.  My frustration level has not changed, especially regarding the day job search.  Those way up there at the pinnacle of government may be trying to put a positive spin on the job market situation in order to keep up the recovery momentum, but down here in the trenches, there’s nothing positive happening.  The other day, I heard that for Minnesota there’s approximately 300 applicants (min.) for each opening posted of the job I’m looking for.  So, still not enough jobs out there. 

When I’m not writing cover letters and filling out job applications, I’ve continued to write and send out essays and short stories.  Current status:

Perceval and the Perceval Novels:  No real change from the update in early May.  I finally added another file box to the four I have for the series.  Marketing takes up an entire file box on its own.  At some point, I will re-read Perceval and do another revision.  This would be about number 15 or 16, I think.

Essays: MORE PUBLICATION!! I published an essay in the August issue of Mensagenda and submitted another one today.  I think I’m developing a regular monthly column called “Word Power” about language and communication for this journal.  It’s been fun.  I’ll submit an essay to the Mensa Bulletin next week.  Four or five more essays in development.

Short Stories:  I changed the title of Lights to The Light Chamber and put it through another ruthless revision.  Clarifying the theme really helped.  I completed the revision this week and submitted the story to Strange Horizons yesterday.  I began writing the second short story, but it has been very slow forming in my mind.  I know how it ends, I know why I want to tell the story, it’s just a matter of letting it come in its own time.  I’m somewhat surprised that short stories come so much more slowly for me than novels.

Memoir:  Rare, the memoir essay, resides on the proverbial back burner at the moment.  I want to finish it this year, at least the first draft.  I’ve outlined the book-length memoir like a table of contents so I have an idea of how many chapters and what each covers.  The outline allows me to see some chapters as potential stand-alone memoir essays that I could submit for publication.  The second and third book-length memoir ideas are on hold at the moment.

To Freelance or Not to Freelance?  This past week, my dwindling bank account convinced me to make a decision about this.  I am now employed as an independent contractor working freelance for Demand Studios.  It’s too soon to know how much time this will consume away from my own writing, but I know I need to generate far more income than I am right now.  Fie on this economy!  More to come….

Nonfiction Book Collaboration:  On hold at least until January 2011.  Due to circumstances beyond our control, we cannot proceed with the contract talks or the actual work until my friend resolves an unrelated legal situation. 

This Blog:  Whatever happens with my work life, I plan to continue posting here at least once a week, as usual.  I hope to be back to work on the novels perhaps this fall or winter with more thoughts on them and doing revisions vs. first drafts.  I enjoy hearing from my blog’s readers and encourage everyone to leave a comment or two, and certainly return regularly for more!