Thursday, January 31, 2013

Thursday Three

1. Kate Epstein rocks! I was extremely disappointed when I received a rejection from her for a MG project—but the blow was softened since she was no longer representing fiction (that meant the rejection wasn’t because of my manuscript). She told me about her editing services (check out her site here). Extremely affordable! I jumped at the chance. Her feedback has been awesome! It’s so worth the $$. She tailored the critique to my specific questions (mostly—why do I keep getting rejections?) and opened my eyes. A-Ma-Zing!

2. Instead of working on one of my new novel projects, I’ve been diving into revisions based on Kate’s feedback. It’s been a joy to transform my manuscript! I’ve asked Kate if she’d be interested in helping me whip my query letter and synopsis into shape—we’ll see what she says. (crossing my fingers)

3. It’s been hard to get the kids up and moving in the mornings. They missed one week of school when they were sick and another week after grandpa died so they got in the habit of sleeping in. Hopefully next week will be better (I can dream).

Hope everyone is enjoying a happy and productive Thursday!

Oh—and I’m looking forward to Super Bowl weekend! I don’t care who wins the actual game—I like the commercials and the fact that I don’t have to cook. Yay! Winking smile


Write on!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Update—Friday Five style

1. Things have been crazy. Last week I had sick kids home from school and wasn’t able to get much done.

2. One week ago today, my father-in-law passed away. His funeral and graveside were on Wednesday. We drove to Flagstaff on Tuesday, spent the night, and attended the funeral Wednesday morning. That afternoon, we drove to St. Johns (a town about 2 1/2 hours away) for the graveside and burial (my father-in-law grew up in St. Johns and wanted to be buried there). It was a very long day full of high emotions and lots of driving. Their grandpa was the first person they were really close to that has died, and the kids are having a hard time. We’re doing our best to comfort them, and I know they’ll get through this. We all will.

3. I’m not sure if it’s because of all the travel or the emotional exhaustion or that they weren’t fully recovered before we had to travel, but my kids are sick again today. I’m out in my writing space, hoping to get some queries sent out (yes, it’s time to send things out again), but I’m not sure how much I’ll really get done since I keep having to go in and check on the kids.

4. I sent my MG fantasy off to an agent for editorial services a while back. She’s gotten most of the novel back to me and her comments have been extremely helpful. I’ve managed to revise through the first three chapters and am looking forward to receiving the final thoughts/comments from the agent as soon as she’s done (she mentioned she might have it finished later today).

5. I’m worn out. Why is it that whenever I get a new idea for a novel, all heck breaks loose and I can’t ever find the time to actually write the darn thing? It’s crazy! But I’m determined to get the new YA idea written. Somehow—someday—somewhere. Winking smile 

Hope you all have a great weekend!

Write on.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Monday’s Muse

Today’s muse comes from Jon Gibbs (An Englishman in New Jersey). He posted seven lines from page seven of his WIP. They are completely awesome and you really need to go read them. You can click on his blog title above and be taken to the post.

I’m taking the challenge and posting seven lines from page seven of my WIP. I wasn’t sure which WIP to choose, but after reading through page seven of my WIPs, I settled on these lines from my YA Horror, Behold The Dead:

"So, Angel boy, you came all this way to tell me I'm going to Hell because I don't have a physical body to finish my unfinished business, and I can't possess a physical body because I'll go to Hell?"

"Yes—I mean no—there are people put on Earth for this very purpose. If you're ready, I'll send you to your assigned Beholder."

I look over my shoulder. My murderer is continuing his dissection by pulling veins and arteries out of my right arm. "Sick," I say. "Yeah, get me out of here."


Not as intriguing as Jon’s, but there you go. This exercise opened my eyes. Each page seven of my WIPs was mostly dialogue—so I wondered about some of my favorite novels. What are their page sevens like? So I looked.

There were many page sevens to choose from, some heavy on the dialogue like my WIPs (which made me feel better), but I went with The Healing Spell by Kimberley Griffiths Little. I chose this because her page seven is filled with great lines! It was hard to choose, but I went with these as my favorite:

I glanced at her name tag. NURSE WADE.

Her gaze landed on me and she wiggled a finger. One of her marble-green eyes was staring off at three o’clock. I’d-a sworn she had a glass eye, which made me wonder if she could pop it in and out or if she performed demonstrations.

“Young lady, you can unpack,” Nurse Wade told me. “Put this card table right here against the wall next to the bed.”

My legs felt stiff, like one of Crickett’s Barbie dolls. Breakable if bent in the wrong direction.


Such great images and beautifully crafted sentences. That’s why Kimberley is one of my heroes. Smile

What about you? Will you post seven lines from page seven of your work? What does page seven of your favorite novel say? Feel free to post in the comments or post on your blog and leave a link so I can check it out.


Write on!

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Wednesday’s Word


I’m very good at it. For example, my Christmas decorations stayed up until last night. I kept saying, “We’ll take them down tomorrow.” And each day would come and go and the decorations remained. I tried to blame it on the snow that had frozen to ice and still covered some of the outside lights (the ones on the ground—yes, I had lights on the ground), but the reality was I just didn’t want to do it.  It was a pain trying to reclaim my lights from the icy clutches of winter, but with hubby’s help and several cups of hot water, we got it done. But I do feel so much better with the tree and all the decorations are packed away.

This got me thinking about other things I tend to procrastinate—like writing.

Yesterday after dropping my kids off at school, I came home, got K’s homework, went back to town, and took the homework to K (along with the kids’ lunches). After that, I came home again and took my little self out the door, through the back yard, and into my writing room. I even went so far as to open my computer and get it booted up. Once everything was running, I quickly checked my emails and dutifully opened Word.

And that’s as far as I got. I remembered J was sitting on the couch as I passed and she needed “encouragement” to do her online schooling. So I went back inside, told her to get started and come get me if she had any questions or needed help. I returned to my writing room, sat down, and logged into the online school to check her progress (and I needed to record attendance). Once there, I found she was missing some work. So I went back in the house and found her still sitting on the couch.

Yeah, I spent the morning making sure she was focused on her work and going through the concepts she hadn’t mastered. After overseeing her completion of quite a bit of work, we had lunch and I returned to my writing room. But did I write? No. I wasted valuable time surfing the web.

As I said in my first post of this new year, I plan to take 2013 one day at a time—and yesterday was not much of a writing day. I’m not sure how much I’ll get done today either. I have to oversee J’s science project—it involves dissecting a chicken wing and requires a sharp knife . . . and I’m a bit overprotective when it comes to my kids handling sharp objects.

Today J needs me (at least for a little while), but yesterday I realized there will always be a way to procrastinate. Not a huge revelation (I mean, I KNOW that already), but realizing I’m more prone to give in to the distraction than to force myself to focus on writing is a huge revelation—at least for me.

Face it, writing is hard work. Even the research, plotting, planning, etc. that sometimes comes before the writing is hard work. Okay, it’s not hard physical labor (though typing can wear out fingers/wrists/arms), but mentally and emotionally it takes its toll. No wonder we sometimes need a break.

I’m pleased with myself for identifying my tend to give in to distractions. Now that I know the problem, I plan to do something about it. There will still be days when I probably won’t get any writing done, but I believe I can eliminate many of those days by making the conscious choice NOT to give in to unnecessary distractions (that includes my kids unless they REALLY do need me).

I’m not setting a goal or making a resolution here—I still plan to take 2013 one day at a time—I’m just realizing a weakness in myself and deciding to work on strengthening that aspect of my character.

After all, I am a character in my own life, and I need to experience some growth by the end of my story too. Winking smile

Before I go inside to help J this morning, I intend to either fill out at least five 3 x 5 index cards or come up with names for the characters in my YA SF.

What about you? Are you easily distracted and allow yourself to procrastinate?

And finally, if you chose one word for today, what would it be?


Write on.

Monday, January 07, 2013

Oh yeah, I have a blog.

Yeah, it’s been awhile. *waves to anyone who might still drop in to read*

So the holidays are over, and I survived. Whew! The kids went back to school today so I had time to finish a critique I was doing and jot down a few more ideas for the YA SF project I’m hoping to write. I’m still working on the new MG—but now I’ll probably bop back and forth between it and the YA. We’ll see.

Last night I sent my MG Fantasy off for a professional edit. I’m hoping the edit will help steer me in the right direction so I can get an offer instead of rejections. It’s going to cost a bit of money, but I really think it will be worth it in the end. It seems like I’ve hit a wall with it. I’ve gone as far as I can go with critiques and my own revisions, and I’m hoping a more professional eye will show me what’s wrong so I can fix it.

I didn’t set any New Year’s resolutions this year. I usually try to at least have a goal in mind and say I’m going to do better with keeping up with my blog or get in shape or whatever—but not this year. It seems I never reach the goals or succeed in that which I resolve so I’m not sure it helps me at all. Inevitably I look back on my resolutions/goals and realize I didn’t reach them and get all depressed and upset. It’s just not worth it. Besides, things were too hectic with the kids and travelling to relatives and everything. I didn’t even look back at my goals/resolutions for this year—heck, I’m not sure I even made any. And I don’t care if I did (so if you remember, don’t remind me). My plan for 2013 is to take it one day at a time and see where this year takes me. I’ll write when I can and not beat myself up when I can’t.

What about you? Do you set goals or resolutions? If so, how do you choose what to resolve/what goal to set? If not, why don’t you?

2013 on!