Tuesday’s Tuesday 12 x 12 author, Orly Konig Lopez, braved Hurricane Sandy to get this post done in time. She may not have power today in her Maryland home, so we of course all wish her the best braving out the storm. It’s always interesting to hear about authors writing in multiple genres with success, as Orly is. I like the idea of going between genres when you feel burned out in one or the other. Also, I must say I love the first line of her post. 🙂 Please welcome Orly!

The 12 x 12 challenge was like a huge pile of autumn leaves for me. I couldn’t wait to jump in. I finished the first picture book draft within the first two weeks of January. The February draft took until closer to the end of the month. And the March draft, well … it’s still sitting unfinished.

Why? Simple, my confidence took a hit. In March I attended a fabulous workshop by my local SCBWI chapter and met with an editor for a critique. The picture book we were discussing had gone out to a handful of agents already but without success. The editor was surprised, she thought it was charming and would surely get picked up. Pity she didn’t have a magic wand with her because waiting for a positive response can seriously deflate a purple pen.

About the same time, the women’s fiction manuscript I was querying started receiving attention—agent requests, contest finals; at least in that genre I seemed to be rolling. So that’s where all my energy went and the picture book drafts got lost in the pile. I was still scribbling ideas down “for when I had time” but somehow there just never seemed to be time.

And now here we are, staring at the fluffy end of 2012. But instead of crawling under a rock and hiding in shame over my lack of progress with the challenge, I’m going to use that along with the inspiring stories from this blog and the Facebook page to pull me out of the leaves and back to my writing desk.

Bring on the 2013 challenge!

After years of pushing the creativity boundary in corporate communications, Orly decided it was time for a new challenge. Three women’s fiction manuscripts and a handful of picture books later, she’s found her creative outlet. She’s discovered that life with a 7 year old provides a constant supply of picture book ideas. When not writing she’s trying to hide from her family long enough to read “just one more page. You can find Orly on her website and Twitter.

Categories: 12 x 12 in 2012, Authors, Books, Goals, Guest Blogging, Picture Books, Writing · Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,



  1. I wish that editor had had a magic wand. Cogratulations on the interest in your other manuscript(s). Cheers to 2013 and I hope you survied Sandy ok. The news reports are horrible, so far.

  2. Great post! I like the first line too! 🙂 Stay safe from Sandy! For us, our electric is out (we have a generator), trees have fallen around us (but not hit the house), and I think our town flooded (we are up on a hill outside of town). I hope everyone else is safe.

    • Oh wow … stay safe! The storm may have moved on but lots of people will be digging out for a while. We got lucky – power went off several times but came back pretty quickly. And no damage to the house.

  3. So nice to get to know you, Orly (your whole name sounds fun!), and I too hope all is well for you and yours after the storm. Sounds like you’ve been quite productive this year despite unfinished mss – keep it up!

    • Hi Julie,
      Thanks for the welcome. Maybe “because” of the unfinished mss is more appropriate. I get annoyed when a project doesn’t come together and push even harder on the next. 🙂
      I’m looking forward to a fresh slate in 2013 though.

  4. Orly,
    great picture! I am ready to rustle the leaves of ideas too, and jump in again. It has been the best motivation to keep going. Of course it’s always at the last minute, like today! Thanks.
    Damon Dean

    • Hi Damon,
      Sometimes that last minute kick-in-the-pants works though. And at least you know you’re not alone – I’m dragging my feet through those leaves with you. 🙂

  5. I hope all is well in Maryland, Orly.I too like the idea of going back and forth between genres (though I’m not sure what women’s fiction is. Romance?). I never thought I’d write anything other than picture books, but I do have a chapter book series idea. Good luck with your MSS.

    • Hi Kirsten,
      Writing two different genres helps me stay motivated. There times – like this past year – when I just couldn’t get my head around the picture books. The year before, on the other hand, was much better for picture books. Go figure.

      Good luck with the chapter book! 🙂

  6. Orly, I admire your attitude. I’ve been feeling quite down because of not accomplishing much in my writing. Some people seem to flourish in their writing when stresses of life’s challenges come on board, but it seems to have the opposite effect on me. I wish you great success in finishing this year out and in 2013. I have a feeling you will do well. 🙂

    • Aww, Lynn, thanks. The trick – at least for me – is to set a goal that I can control. For example, having a draft completed in time for a critique at a conference/workshop or submitting to a contest. Whatever will push me over the hump. And sometimes you just have to know yourself well enough to say, “yup, it’s not going to happen with everything else on my plate and that’s okay too.” Those times you just switch gears – maybe the goals you set should be more about reading and giving yourself the down time to allow creativity back in.

      The beauty of the writing community is that you find so many supportive people. Enjoy that and don’t worry about the rest – it’ll come!

      Virtual hugs!

  7. Great inspiration and great to hear from someone else who juggles different genres. All the best to you!

  8. I admire that you write for different genres. You have to do a lot of reading and research, and, then embrace the spirit of a genre to find success. I am happy to hear that you are going to push ahead! Good luck with all your writing.

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