I will thank the Lord with all my heart as I meet with his godly people. How amazing are the deeds of the Lord! All who delight in him should ponder them. Psalm 111:1-2 NLT

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Elementary, Dear Watson

This is Jenness here, (well, not in the picture...) writing from my couch and wishing I could just sleep for about a month. You see, last weekend was pet adoption weekend. So for my birthday, we went to find the new addition to our family. We’d done research beforehand. We knew the size we wanted, the gender. We even had a particular dog in mind, and I was trying to come up with a new name for her, because well, she didn’t look anything like a Pinky.

Two hours after arriving, we left the shelter without Pinky. Instead, we had Watson—a dog that didn’t fit our expectations, but stole our hearts anyway…even if he is currently stealing some of our sleep while he’s at it.

Sometimes shaking things up a bit can result in something surprising. This month we’re blogging about change, so here are a few I’ve experienced in my writing journey:

~ Thanks to the suggestions of a Genesis contest judge, I rewrote a scene of my debut novel, Double Take. Because of her advice, I had a much better scene as well as a new, vital thread to weave throughout the rest of the book, making it stronger.

~ Years ago, I tried to write a romantic comedy. It amused me, of course, but the editors? Not so much. Then I tried writing with a very funny friend, and lo and behold—people other than me find us amusing! (Until January 14, our first book together—Bliss—is on sale for $2.99 for the Kindle and Nook. Feel free to see if you agree. :-) ) .

~ Currently, I’m working on the Story-That-Won’t-Go-Away. Do you have one of those? This WIP has scared me for years. It’s not a romantic suspense, really. Not a comedy, for sure. It has a lot of the things I don’t usually care for in novels. And yet, it’s the one that won’t let me go. The one that has challenged me the most, that has the most potential. The one that’s changing me—my perspective, my craft, my appreciation for God’s amazing grace.

It’s the one I am going to finally finish in 2012. That’s a resolution you can hold me accountable for! (The fifteen pounds, not so much.)

Your turn: What is one thing you’re planning on changing up this year in your journey?

~ Jenness Walker


  1. Congratulations on your new adoption!! Watson looks like he's pondering. He'll fit right in with our group. And I've always said puppies are like small children.

    I'm so thankful you listened to that Genesis judge. Double Take is one of my all-time favorite books! And I truly hope to hold DRG in my hands someday. I still think about her and wonder what's happening with her. Bliss is still in my to-be-read pile.

    Change for me this year includes stepping up my game. I'm challenging myself to write 4 books. My first book took 10 years, my second 2 years, and now I want to write 4 books this year. People say it can be done, but they don't have my crazy schedule either.

    Hopefully you can get some sleep!

  2. Fun stuff, Jenness. Watson is cute!

    Excited for your new story-that-must-be-told!!

    My changes this year: Um, I actually have a writing plan for the year! Healthier living (i.e. no thanks to the CONSTANT barrage of snacks at work and yes please to the elliiptical). Greater commitment to not just quiet time with God, but actually observing a Sabbath.

  3. Lisa, Watson does do some pondering--mostly on the best place to hide his rawhide. Jason's pillowcase is my favorite spot so far. lol. I believe you can do the 4 books. You amaze me with all you get done.

    Melissa, I have the exercising solution for you--get a dog too big for your place. I don't think I've ever walked so much in my life! Your changes sound similiar to ones I want to make this year--being more purposeful and disciplined in several areas.

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  5. Watson is so cute! And I love the name.

    Agreeing with Lisa--Double Take is also one of my favorite romantic suspense novels and I absolutely loved Bliss. Hated to see The End.

    Change for me this year? Hmmm. With my ADHD, every hour is a change. lol

    Seriously, I'm going to us My Book Buddy (haven't named him yet) to plot my next book instead of the way I've done it in the past.

    Great post, Jenness!

  6. Jenness, what a fun post, and your Watson is cute! Hope you're able to catch up on sleep...in the next few years. :)

    Changes for me: getting more serious about keeping the writing goals I set. I also want see if there's a way to balance writing and real life a little better. :)

    Personally, working on being the wife and mom I need to be for our family.

    Off and running to get kids to school.

  7. That's a show-stopping analogy/transition--masterful! Also congratulations on your awesome addition. I'm sure he'll be appreciative and loyal.
    The change up for me is writing a historical and loving it, instead of three coming-of-age in a row, that I still hope will get picked up eventually.
    Keep it up, Jenness--there's more success ahead (for you and Watson).

  8. Thanks for the challenge! This year I'm changing from contemporary to historical, like Dolores. It's challenging, but I'm loving it so far.

    I'm glad you're going to write the story that won't let you go.

    Lisa--writing FOUR books?? Seriously??

  9. Ooh, good idea, Jenness, on getting a dog and chasing him around. Except, I don't know if my landlord would allow it. Which would be a great excuse to move into a house of my own...which also makes for a great chain of actions: Moving into a house so I can get a dog so I can chase him around so I can get exercise... :)

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  11. Jenness,
    Your dog is so very cute. My husband almost brought one home the other day. Until I reminded him how much sleep he would lose during the adjustment period. I think our family German Shepherd loves me, I saved her from another "puppy" invading her space.

    This year, like MTagg, I'm working on a more scheduled time for my writing and balance. I'm constantly challenging myself to enjoy the journey.

  12. Watson is a winner!
    We're losing sleep in our household, but not because of a puppy...
    Our lab is getting old ... and he doesn't sleep too well at nights.
    I think I remember the plot of your story-that-won't-go-away. I'm glad it hasn't released it's grip on you. It's got so much potential and I know you will do it justice.

    For me? I always recall Susie and Rachel's challenge to up our writing game every book. So, while I write book 2 I am focusing on 2 specific elements of craft, pushing myself to be a better, more skilled writer.

  13. Thanks so much, girls. Really appreciate the encouragement. Glad you liked the books!

  14. Pat, good luck with the plotting! I'm an SOTPer, but want to give the Book Buddy a try one of these days.

    Melissa, you do have a point. It might be a bit cheaper to just buy a treadmill or something. :-)

  15. Jeanne, if you figure out the balance thing, let me know!

    Dee, thanks. And yeah, we adore him already.

  16. Teri, good luck with the switch!

    Alena, I think the dog we babysit kinda wishes I resisted. Although he seems to almost enjoy his annoying one-puppy fan club. :-)

    Beth, that's a great goal. Something I need to pay more attention to, for sure.

  17. Watson is too cute! Can't wait to meet him in person. :-)
    My change for this year: be more intentional about a writing schedule (sounds like some of the other comments here). Hmmm, that's actually more of a tweak than a full-blown change, isn't it.
    Okay, here's another one...pursue one of two offers to collaborate on a non-fiction book. And working with another author will help me keep to that writing schedule, too! ;-)