Tuesday, March 29, 2011


Picture this. The kids are at school. The husband is taking a nap after working all night. The dog has been fed,  walked, and is happily gnawing on the remnants of a rather disgusting looking bone. Sweet iced tea, check. Tissues for allergy season, double check. Cell phone, silent. Notebook filled with ideas, open. Word doc, open. Glare from the picture window, zero. Chicken and lettuce wrap, consumed. Pants, check. Bra, optional. Status, absolute heaven. Hey, don't be a hater. The kids will be home in twenty minutes and this day of peace will be coming to an end.

But its been awesome. I'm not even gonna lie. I spent the day writing, daydreaming, and going through my original WIP to see what I could bring over to my revisions doc. When I revise, I usually open a new doc, transfer one chapter at a time, and revise. It makes the whole process seem less overwhelming. There's just something easier about ten pages as opposed to looking at 284. Maybe its just me. So, as I'm looking through the older version, I was surprised to see that there was very little I could transfer over. The story itself has just changed so much, but more importantly, so has my writing. I mean, I know I'll never be Hemingway or Austen, but I was blown away by how much things have changed in a year. I haven't looked at the older doc in months. Its amazing what we learn as we go along and we don't even realize it until its happened. I wonder if I'll read my revisions next year and laugh. I hope not.

It wasn't all a wash though. As I looked through those first pages, I remembered the excitement through it all. The way the story flowed through me faster than I could type it. The way the characters took over my thoughts and dreams, weaving themselves into my life like strands of thread throughout my wedding gown. They became almost a part of me during that time. They still are. There's just nothing like the feeling of the first draft. Mistakes and all. Its still the best feeling. How do you feel when you open those original docs and reminisce?

Saturday, March 26, 2011

The A-Z Blogging Challenge.

Well, we have less than a week left of blogging freedom then its the A-Z blogging challenge that's going to take over my world. A blog everyday. YIKES. Already, I'm wondering what on earth I'm going to blog about. And I'm not gonna even lie, I'm struggling with some of the letters, although, I did think of a word for A after some um hum cut me off at Walgreen's earlier. What's worse is that I tried to go through the alphabet without singing. Yeah, that was embarrassing. No judging, you try it.

I hope you're taking the challenge too. Just click on the little box to the right if you're not and join in on the fun. I personally can't wait to see all the U's X's and Y's. That's gonna take some googling. Is that cheating? Omigosh, I hope its not cheating. I'm over-thinking this.

In other news, I have very little. I've promised myself an entire hour on the treadmill and then its writing for the rest of the evening. Ugh on the first part of that, yes to the rest of it. I think I had more time to write when I worked full time. Hope you're all having a wonderful weekend and your muses are in full swing. Mine is chomping at the bit to do something reckless. I may just let her roll with it.

Happy Weekend People.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Romancing My Protag.

Okay, so in the midst of life and how ridiculously busy its been lately, I've been thinking about my characters. Or, obsessing as my significant other likes to call it. Course I like to dream about little quiet moments where I get to shave my legs, paint my toenails, and tan too, but hey, no one calls that obsessing. Now that winter seems to be over, I'm really stressing over those Christmas pounds and don't even get me started on the level of paleness I've been able to achieve. Holy lord, my legs look like two bottles of Elmer's glue. But time to tan could be time spent writing. I wonder if I could get my laptop in one of those beds. Doubtful, and who needs an HP tan line on their stomach? Actually, that would be kinda cool.

Moving on to my protagonist now, and I promise not to discuss her legs or her weight. There's another problem. Her love interests. Ever read a book or twelve and find yourself diggin both hotties? Hello, team Edward over here. Can't decide on Gale or Peeta (The Hunger Games)? Ugh, what do you do when its your very own WIP and you have to make one of them the keeper and one them the weeper? Can't we keep em both? Come on, one of them is good with a knife, the other makes lovely little cakes. I like cake and if you add a man to that cake. Oh, my, gosh. Fantasy number four on my list. So, I came to a place in my WIP where I don't even know anymore. I mean, I think I do, but jeeze they're both so lovely. How do you let the other one down? I'm so sad right now. I hate break ups. I think my protag is going to have some ice cream in this next scene. I'm so depressed. Sigh.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Why Not E Everything?

 I vote to never have to use the printed word again. Calm down. I'm not counting books, just anything you might  want to print from home. See, I bought a printer and it hates me. No really, it does. It's a wireless printer but it doesn't work without the wires. How cool is that? Not. At. All.

I went through this whole evening of trying to get the router to cooperate with the little blue WiFi thingy on the front of Satan, I mean Cannon, and it finally came on and stayed all blue. And its still on. But it won't work without the wire hooked up to the laptop. Love me some techno bullo on a Saturday night. Doesn't make sense and I want to back over it with my car right about now (Get over here Rob!). But who needs to hear hubby complaining to the kids about the mess they left in the driveway (I will blame it on them, always do, makes them understand the whole life's not fair thing, gotta prepare them for the world). Hold on tho, there's a silver lining.

See, I was printing out random things with Satan when the wire was hooked up, and of course not printing out things on Satan without it, but I found an old bunch of papers from way back in college.  Okay, it was last year. Anyways, I found this list of phrases and words that can often be eliminated from our writing. I had forgotten all about it. And my writing proves it. I thought I'd share a little while I wait on the priest to show up.

Words:   extremely, really ( really? I can get into that whole YA voice crying out the word "really"), very, about, a lot, few, many, some, dull, stupid (well good lord, do we have to use daft instead), little, big, huge, wonderful, beautiful, pretty, incredible, so much, usually, unique, and typical.

Phrases:   needless to say, in my opinion, I think, I believe, I feel, unbelievable (that's like one of my favorite words), I can't describe it, for example.

So, needless to say, in my opinion, me thinks this is wonderful information. I mean, none of us want to be stupid or god forbid nondescript. Shudder. I hope this makes a big difference in your writing. I know mine is going to be pretty incredible after this. It's always the little things that make such a huge difference for me.He he. Sorry, couldn't resist. But in all seriousness, I forget about his at times when I do get lost in that YA voice. Kids talk a certain way and grammatically correct is not one of them. I suppose there is a time and place within our stories where we know when its right to keep them or better to let them go. What do you think?

Happy Weekend People.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Awesome Week!

I'm so far behind guys. I've been wanting to visit all of you, check out what's going on, and get all with it and everything, but a few fabulous things happened to me this week and one of them has kept me pretty busy. The first is my follower button. Check it out. Yep, 100 followers. Shweet! I'm so happy to have each one of you. Its  amazing to go down the list of your followers and see all the amazing talent that's out there. I'm so blessed to have so many people to learn from, to lean on, to relate to, to just follow. After being around so many other walks of life, the writing community is by far the most giving, supportive, and understanding group I've ever been associated with. They can be brutal too, but I'll still take this community over any other. Thanks for being there and following my blog.

The other biggie is totally not related to writing. But I'll share anyway. I'm a small business owner in addition to this whole writing dream. It's just a small concierge business that I operate out of my home. If you're  not familiar with one of those, it's basically a personal errand and consulting service. They're pretty big in major cities. We had none in mine.

So, it's been really slow with the economy in the condition that its in, and it took awhile to get people acquainted with the whole concept. But some hard work, lots of prayer (thanks Carol, Rob, and God) and networking (hey, we do that here too) and this week, it took off.  I'm gonna have to hire people and will begin interviewing soon. I just cannot believe it. Happy dance and I don't even care what I look like doing it. I guess one out of two dreams coming true in a week is a pretty good week. Now the skeptic in me keeps waiting for the "but". I keep telling her to go away but she keeps hovering.

So that's my news, people. I hope all of you have had some great news this week too. Now I just have to find time to work on the writing dream. My muse is going to be nearly intolerable. I wonder if buying her shoes will keep her sated until I can find time to write. I may have to try.

Monday, March 14, 2011

So here's the story.

Muse attacks writer with awesomest (she knows its not a word, let it go) idea ever.
Husband calls writer to tell her they're out of ham and bananas.
Muse throws fit in the car. Writer nearly has to pull over to address Muse's behavior.
Muse gets excited as writer unloads the car and puts away the ham and bananas.
Dog is wounded because writer did not bring home another stuffed toy for him to disembowel.
Daughter number one needs to make schedules clear for tomorrows extra curricular activities.
Daughter number two is playing something unintelligible on the drum set that some moron (me) got her for her birthday.
Writer decides to put on pajamas and pour a glass of wine.
Writer gets comfortable and demands quiet.
Dog decides he has to go potty.
Dog sees cat and forgets he has to potty.
Writer gets back to her laptop. Dog remembers that he had to potty.
Writer walks dog AGAIN and returns to her laptop.
Muse is now pissed and withholding information.
Writer closes laptop, pours the wine down the drain and goes to bed.
Goodnight all. 

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Daylight Savings Time.

Gah! I just lost a whole freaking hour. Any idea what that means? It means that I am now an hour later than I usually am. So, seeing as how I'm usually fifteen minutes late no matter what, I'm now going to be an hour and fifteen minutes late everywhere I go. Wonderful.

I don't know why we even do this, but I'll be screwed up for the next few days. Believe me. I know its a mind thing. Its not like someone came in during the night and actually removed an hour from my life, but it feels that way. See, I read till like two which was really three. The alarm was set for nine which was really ten and then by the time I hit snooze three times, you get the picture. Not good if you've got a lot to do.

On a good note though, I have been able to do some writing and me and Cooper went out for a wonderful walk in the park( weather here is so awesome) And I managed to visit with my mother and clear her computer of a dreadful virus. Unfortunately, I also removed Windows and it looks like everything else too. Whoops. That's gonna get complicated. Not bad for lost time. Hows your life going today? What are you up to in your writing world? I'd love to know.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


You probably thought I was going to report that I'd "finally" gotten myself an agent. Nope. Not even close. I can't bring myself to experience the whole query letter debacle again until I've really finished these revisions, and stocked the wine rack. I'm not bitter, I like watching the whole story unfold. But every time I think its unfolded for the last time, something else changes. Its like my manuscript is a fitted sheet. No matter what I do to it, its never gonna fold quite right. I can hold it up, turn it around for all of eternity, say things to it that makes the dog look at me funny, but at the end of the day, its still a freaking circle meant for a square. Will it ever look perfect? Well, not in the linen closet it won't. So, I'm staying the course to finish this story before I die. Even a fitted sheet looks perfect every now and then right? At least until my husband drops unidentified crumbs on the bed. Trust me, you haven't lived until you've vacuumed a man's chest. Just saying.

What I really wanted to say was that I "Finally" read The Hunger Games. Holy Lord, what was I waiting for? Pk, if you're reading this, get on that like yesterday. Amazing. I could not put it down. Seriously, I was up till two thirty last night reading it then ran out this morning just to buy Peeta pockets at the store. That's a lie, I did no such thing. It did make me wonder about finality though. Not in the life and death sense. That's depressing and I choose to believe that one day, I will become a vampire who can survive on sweet tea and Mexican food instead of blood. I will live forever and I'll never have to worry about gaining weight or feeling so much animosity towards those jogging Barbie's at the park. But it made me wonder when other authors realize that they are truly done. Ready for the agent, the book deal kind of done. Do we ever really get there with ourselves? Somehow I doubt it. We are our own worst critics I'm sure. So, how do you know when its time?

BTW: You have to go check out a brand new blog called Butterfly Pages. Let's welcome Madame Butterfly and show her some writerly lurve. Thanks guys.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Can Too.

Okay, so I've been arguing with myself again lately. And yes, sometimes much to the dismay of my family, its been out loud. Over the last few days, I've finally had the time to open my WIP. It seems I've also had the time to stare at it until I feel like I'm looking through a kaleidoscope filled with black and white images.While I sit there biting my nails and wishing for more interesting hallucinations, the problem finally occurs to me. Music of doom begins. I...must...make...changes.

Revisions are like that, I know. You send out your story. Someone reads it and makes all those suggestions that you have needed to know for so long. You're now armed with the tools to delete what needs to go. Keep what you need to keep. But sometimes, the story needs to change dramatically. Or at least some parts of it. And you think, well, I can't do that. Its not how it goes. But...why not? I mean, are we not the authors? I can change this or that. I can do whatever I want (right now anyway, I'm not published or even watched closely, it's a free for all over here). The point is, we should never feel so confined to our stories. I was accused of being "so open" by my beta and that made her happy and a little more relaxed. She didn't have to worry about hurting my feelings. I just had to worry about letting go of the things I needed to let go of and where to go from there. So, I did it. Yes...I...did.

 I toasted a waffle (chill out, it was whole grain. I'm not an animal), sprayed on a fat free butter substance and some blackberry jam, circled the laptop a few times to work off the waffle and made my changes. I feel so alive. So free. I'm blaring the Sound of Music before the nights over just to piss off the kids kind of free. No, wait, I do that when I'm feeling mischievous.

With the sugar rush from the waffles( said they were whole grain, not sugar free) I was able to focus and make myself get to it. Every time I hit delete, the words "Can too" came out right after. Now, I just have to go back in there and delete a whole bunch of "can too's" from my WIP then I'll be golden. He he. Oops. Got a little jacked up, I think. Seems to happen to me a lot.

Happy Monday.

Friday, March 4, 2011

I Can't Find You.

I'm not the first person to mention this on a blog and I certainly won't be the last. But it's an important reminder from time to time. I have a few followers I cannot follow back. I want to. I really want to know you, see what you're all about. Build a blogging relationship with you. Find creative inspiration in your daily musings. Miss you when you're gone. But you're invisible.  I cannot have a relationship with an invisible person. Just ask my ex husband.

So here's the deal. When I click on the little thumbnail picture of your smiling face, your blog is not listed in your profile. So, I cannot stop by for a visit. I've tried to Google a few of you, but have found nothing. I want to be there for you. Watch as you go down this tumultuous road to publication or public drunkenness whichever comes first. No judging, we've all been there. I can't help you celebrate the day you get an agent, or talk you off the ledge when I don't know what building you're in.

So, lets do this. Sign into blogger. Go into your dashboard, click edit profile, and find where it shows your blogs to list. Click on that and make sure you have your blog listed there. Make sure your email address is there also. What if I'm an agent who just happened upon you and I want to make you my pretty? Only to discover that you are hiding from me. Ugh!

So make sure you can be found and I will be right over. Also, I'm still trying to catch up on my blog visiting. I took a few days off last week. Catching up is soooo hard. And with the kids, the hubby, the dog, the stray cats, and well, you get the picture. Time is not on my side.

Happy Weekend People.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Perfecting Description.

As writers, we read all the time. It's entertainment. It's also research. Sometimes, we get stopped short. You know the moment I'm referring to. You're reading a good book, totally engrossed then you come to that sentence, a paragraph that's so amazing it takes your breath away. Everything comes to a screeching halt and you just have to reread it. Well, I read this next paragraph just yesterday, and that's exactly what happened to me. Prepare to be in awe.

And, in the midst of the feathered darkness, an unknown faery arrived and stood staring at them with cavernous eyes. Her body was partially wrapped in a torn gray winding sheet that trailed behind her like the train of a gown. Vivid spots of red stood out on the cloth, like scarlet poppies in a field of ashes.
     Darkest Mercy by Melissa Marr (HARPER an imprint of Harper Collins)

This is from the fifth and final book of the Wicked lovely series and it left me in awe of her talent. I can only hope that someday one of my own descriptions causes the same reaction. I was amazed that someone could make such a violent scene seem so beautiful. Guess Wicked Lovely is more than fitting. How are your descriptions? Are they this beautiful? How could you make them better? Give us an example of your own favorite description or from your own work if you like. I'd love to read it.