Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Do Ya Miss Me...

Yeah, like a thorn in your side. ::Snorts:: Just kidding! I'm certainly missing all of you, but life is hectic still. This week I will be moving in to our new place. Seems to me the move is going pretty smooth, just my luck, as soon as this hits the Blog-o-sphere, I'll have to eat those words. Good thing I have salt. So this is just a quick note to let you know that I will be offline for a few days. Depending on just how long it takes the phone company up here to lift their little finger and lay down that keystroke that will re-connect me to the World Wide Web. Wow...maybe I'll be able to get in some quality writing time? Doubt it. It will just have to wait, what can I say. So for all of you out there, you know who you are. Yes, even you lurkers! Have a great rest of the week, have a super weekend and a SAFE 4th of July. Seriously, you can't drink and drive, because if you hit a bump you'll spill your drink and that, my friends, is alcohol abuse. I'll have to hunt you all down, you alcohol abusers, you. ::Shakes a fist:: A good beer is a terrible thing to waste... Unless of course you insist on drinking that cheap stuff. I mean... ew. Yes, it is late, I am rambling and missing my world map. It will be the crowning jewel of my new home once I hang it back up on my bedroom wall. Have fun kids! This lager is for you.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

I Love Creating...

So my little blog prompt thingy popped up with this question: "What do you love to create?"

Wow. Loaded question! Of course I love to create fantasy stories, but it goes way beyond that. I love creating the plot line, the characters... all of it. Some people have issues creating characters, I don't. I can come up with a name off the top of my head in a heartbeat.

Stories are abundant in my little brain, too. I have all sorts of ideas and pages upon pages of these ideas. I sometimes don't know where to begin.

Characters are the best, though. Which leads me to dialogue. I can sit here and listen to my characters having conversations in my brain while the action plays out like a movie in my mind. There are times when I will sit here and get odd looks from my family while writing and realize I have been chatting up the dialogue out loud. I just look at them and say, "What?" Hehe... so fun.

Creating my world was more difficult, but still a fun challenge. I had to change the over all design of it, splitting the one large continent down the middle, removing some kingdoms, etc. But change is what makes it work, makes it better. Nothing is concrete as soon as you set it down on paper.

So what do you love to create, eh?

Don't Sweat It...

So what do you think when you hear, "Don't sweat the small stuff?" How does that figure into your writing? Do you take it seriously in your daily life as well as your writing?

It took me several years to learn how to stop sweating over the small stuff. Seriously. I'm a worrier by nature. I used to fret and fume over the smallest of things. Especially after I had children. My firstborn got all the "proper" care. Meaning boiled bottles and nipples, sanitizing the hands of my friends so they could hold the baby. All that stuff. By the time my second child came along I just washed the bottles and nipples thoroughly in hot, soapy water, just checked to see that my friends weren't completely filthy and mellowed out quite a bit.

In writing, I've had to re-learn how to not sweat the small stuff. Making sure everything was perfect in the first draft, no typos, no grammatical errors, etc. It used to take me forever to write anything and get it done. I tell you what, now I just whip out the story (unless it blocks me somehow and I change it) and then move on to the corrections and stuff.

Now that I have found a balance in my writing and my daily life, I really don't sweat the small stuff.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Fear Factor...

Yep, you guessed it. Another post that includes a prompt. I like these, they're sorta cool and really make you think. Others are just silly and I skip through. So this prompt is based on fear. I'm going to list ten things I fear and (hopefully) why. Are you ready? Okay, ten things I truly fear: 1) Failure. I am sometimes so petrified of failing at something I don't ever complete it. So I have lots of unfinished projects laying around my house. Some of that has to do with procrastination or even getting truly bored with it and dropping it altogether, but mostly I'm afraid of failing or having someone criticize what I did. 2) Success. Yep. Those are two of my biggest fears, but not as big as the next one. Why do I fear success? Because I have seen how success changes people. I'm finally at a place in my life where I am truly happy with myself and the person I have become. A far cry from the skinny girl in high school who used to be kind of mean to boys... and cheerleaders... and well... ok let's move on, shall we? But yes, I fear success simply because I do not want it to change the person I have become. 3) This should have been number one, but it isn't exactly a unique fear. I fear Death. Dying. Non-existence. While I really don't have much of an issue with the fact that I will eventually die, my fear is HOW I will die. And, just like any other mortal being out there, I worry about what I will leave behind. What will immortalize me? Did I make a mark on the world? Is someone going to remember me? Fondly? ::Snorts:: Aside from my kids, people. :D 4) Drowning. Yeah, weird, isn't it? I love being out on the open water, sailing or whatever but I'm terrified of drowning. Don't know why on that one. 5) Snakes. Oh yeah, big snake phobia but I have a bearded dragon as a pet. Go figure. Always have had this fear so no idea where it stemmed from. 6) Ignorant people. Okay, maybe I don't exactly fear them, but they certainly are scary, aren't they? 7) Oooh, heights. I didn't used to be afraid of them. Then I got swimmer's ear, which in turn gave me some vertigo and ever since I don't like heights. I get all dizzy and vertigo-ish and am afraid I will fall. 8) People. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not like one of these people that can't be around other people. My fear is specific in I don't like judgmental people. Especially if I feel like they're judging me. But I don't like it when they judge others and tend to do the same thing that they dislike in other people. 9) Gossip. See number 8. lol! I admit, I listen when people gossip but I don't always repeat what I hear unless I have the absolute truth and will always go to the source if possible. If I don't have all my facts straight, I shut my mouth. This has gotten me into trouble numerous occasions so I try to avoid it if at all possible. 10) Never being published! I have a story to tell and I want to share it in my writing. But I have this fear (See numbers one and two) that something will happen to me (oh yeah and number three) and my stories will not get published. Is it weird? To think that if I die, who will put out my stories? No one can write them like I would want, not even my kids and closest friends and family. My voice in writing is just as unique (in my own mind) as I am to the world. There isn't anyone else out there quite like me. Yes, be thankful. I heard that... Ah well. So what do you fear?

Monday, June 21, 2010

Oh, The Possibilities...

So continuing on with these writing prompts, this next one is a doozy.

What would you do if you knew you wouldn't fail?

I have to give this one some serious thought...

Pshaw! Not really. I'd write! I'd write and get published and then so many other possibilities would then be opened to me.

I'm a generous person. If I have an over abundance of anything, I share. Okay, maybe not the chocolate. I said NOT the, who am I kidding, I'd share!

One of the other writing prompts that I passed up said, "What do you desire?" I couldn't honestly come up with an answer other than just being secure. I don't mean that I have a ton of insecurities... I do have a couple. However, being secure in the knowledge that my future will not be as difficult as my past would be my biggest desire.

I am one of those super, easy to please kind of people. My desires are few and my ideas are many. So in keeping with the writing prompt, if I were to do anything knowing I would not fail, it would be writing so I could publish, be successful at it and then I would give, give, give. That also happens to be a desire of mine.

So what would you do if you knew you wouldn't fail?

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Where In The World...

Okay so we're doing yet another writing prompt. Just trying to have a little fun while hanging out with my mom and son as well as packing. Something to take my mind off of it all.

So with that being said, here's my next prompt:

If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go?

Personally, I've got dozens of places I want to go. However, first on my list would be Scotland. I'm half Scotch-Irish. I absolutely LOVE the sound of bagpipes. They stir my blood and call me to battle. They help me to remember my ancestors. I'd love to see where my Clansmen came from.

My other half is Dutch. I'm second generation Dutch in America on my mother's side and have our family tree documented back to the 1600's in the Netherlands. I'd visit the Netherlands next. I could really get back to my roots there. My mother is the youngest of 11 children and I am the youngest of 53 grandchildren. That's right. 53. My sister and I were looking through our family tree once and figured out we have at least 2 first, second and third cousins in every state, if not more. Huge!

I'd also like to visit England, as I have friends over there. Germany as well, for the same reasons. I'd like to visit France, but I can't honestly claim that is all for me, my daughter would like to go someday. Ireland would be on that list as would Greece and Australia. I bet I have family in Australia. New Zealand of course would be right there and I would have to go there too! Last stop would be China.

If I absolutely had to pick just one place... just ONE... it would be Scotland.

How about you? Where would you go?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Ten Things In My Pocket...

I'm going to utilize the next couple of weeks by using a blog prompt...thingy... that I found. I'm sort of cheating, scheduling them and all... but the next few weeks are going to be packed with... well, packing! ::Snorts:: Yep, I'm moving the beginning of July and then will only have a couple more weeks with my mom and son after that. So while I'm off in my day to day living stuff, I still want to stay connected to you all. So here is the writing prompt and my answer. Feel free to leave me comments, I do read them and comment back if I don't drop you an email. (Most of your comments give me a "no reply" address when I try to send back a personal message. So look here for some of my responses in the comment section.) Okay, ready? Here's the prompt: If I were going to be stranded on a desert island, what 10 things would I want in my pockets? 1) My iPod. If it isn't damaged, that is. I'd listen to one song a day to conserve the battery. 2) Pictures of my family. 3) Ummm...oh! One of those emergency blankets that are folded up so small but you can never fold it back to that size again...ever. 4) String. 5) Matches. 6) Paper clips. (String for the "tent" and a fishing line and use the paper clip for the fishing hook.) 7) Gum. 8) A bandanna. Strain water through it maybe? 9) An eyepatch so I could pretend I was a pirate. Arrgh! 10) A mirror. Then I could signal ships and see how horrible I look after not having a shower for several...months. How about you?

Monday, June 14, 2010

Lean On Me...

I was just leaving a comment over at Christi Goddard's place. Got my little brain thinking about the support we offer up as writers in our little community and the importance of it.

Now most people will tell you this is a super competitive business. Well... what business isn't competitive? Oh yeah, selling cow manure. Maybe. Unless the guy down the road has some cows with the best poo.... Okay, I'll just let that one go.

Yes, writing is a competitive business. Advertising is competitive, retail, you name it. But there is another aspect to writing that makes it more than just a business. It is an art. We are artists, painting scenes in your mind with our words. Brushstrokes here and there leave feathery traces of color on your memory as we speak and weave our web of intricacy.

You support other artists, you don't tear them down. You help your fellow authors along this long, rocky, arduous path. You don't spread rumors about them and how horrible they are. That if it weren't for their editor they wouldn't be able to string two sentences together after a drinking binge... Know what I mean?

We all have our likes and dislikes when it comes to other writers. We all have our own tastes in genres. We have strong opinions about what we read and what we refuse to read. We may not like some of the stuff out there, but we support the person who wrote it because they accomplished something that gave us hope. Even if it is a, "Hey if something like this can get published, they'll love my stuff...". More often than not, though, it is like, "So and so got a book deal/agent contract? Sweet! I can't wait to read it."

Yes jealously does tend to raise its ugly head in most of these moments. But we still root for people who write. We offer up our advice, our help and we encourage rather than tear down. It is important that we, as writers, continue to act like a community. Personally, I don't feel any other writer out there is better than me, per se. I just think their stuff is different from what I write. I admire and respect authors from all genres for putting their heart and souls on the line to try and publish their work. When I lose respect for them is when they begin to act like superstars and think they're better than anyone else in the field. Having a talent for writing is very important, but the readers make or break you. Just like the fans make or break musicians or movie stars.

Hope I am not rambling too awful much. Just had a little bit of a tangent and had to get it out of my system. Hope everyone had a great weekend and have a good Monday morning!

Thursday, June 10, 2010


I've caught up on my reading of your blogs. I commented on a few, whatever I had time for.

I'm having a great time with my mom and son. My daughter had her first job interview today. She played at a local coffee bar last week and they want her and her friend to open on the 18th of this month for two bands. One is a Ska band, not sure about the other. But it is a paid gig. They're seriously excited.

I move in a couple of weeks so packing has been priority around here. Ugh... I hate moving, but I am so looking forward to it.

My veggies are doing well in my tiny little garden.I submitted my new beginning to my Critique Group for LoBR (Legend of Black Rose) and got some awesome feedback on it! That is what I was looking for, the fact that I pulled the reader right in and got down to the action with little back story to catch people up.

I made a good choice. I need to listen to my instinct more often.
So what does your instinct tell you when you write? Do you listen or do you try to shut it up like the other voices in your head? My instincts, so far, have been spot on. My instincts were telling me to re-write my first book after it got published (poorly) and I'm glad I listened. It has turned out so much better than I could imagine! So I guess the combination of listening to my instincts and listening to my characters has really worked out well for me.

When my first book got published a few years back, it was exciting, then turned quickly to devastation. A friend of mine happened to be in the exact same position as me. We met through our publication. The difference between the two of us, is I have not given up and my friend has refused to finish the trilogy they began. At first, I did want to give up. My 7 year contract stretched out endlessly before me. Flipping through my copy of the book and finding all the errors just made me fall deeper into a depression. No one would buy my book for $24.95 when it was so THIN. The book, not the plot. The cover looked like a bad Harlequin romance novel (sorry, no offense to romance readers) and I was horribly disappointed. People who read my book (mostly friends and family) all told me the same thing: If it had gone through a professional edit or even if I had been given the opportunity to edit it better, it would have been a good book.
So when NaNoWriMo came along this past year, I started to write about my character, Nightshadow. I got stuck two days in. I thought, "I'm not going to finish this year!" But then my characters, who had gone quiet for a couple of years after I ignored them, began to whisper to me. They told me "Write our story over! Come on, it'll be good for you! It'll sell! Please?" Their voices got louder and finally I just gave in, sat down and as I wrote, the changes just came to me like light bulb revelations one after another. I actually GIGGLED as I wrote the new version. I don't giggle. EVER. I chuckle.

Poor Nightshadow is stuck in the wings, but she's been whispering to me lately and I have begun her story as well. We'll get their eventually, eh girl?

Monday, June 7, 2010

Ah Summertime...

So the days have been decent. There hasn't been a whole lot of rain. Which is nice. Apparently lots of you are having Blogger issues. That's all right, I haven't been on much.

I have been mulling over my "Crowning Absolution" WIP and wondering just how to end it. Then I showed my son my map and got to chatting with him, because he read the first book I had published about half-way through. He was pretty familiar with the characters by that point so he offered up a way to possibly end it. I absolutely love it! I'll have to work it in somehow. But I don't want to tell anyone and give it away!!

I think that's the hardest part of writing. I've got all these cool ideas and I can sit and chat with people who know my characters and tell them, "Yeah, I have this and this going on with so and so. Later, someone is going to do this and that and the other..." But to put that all out in the Blogosphere??? Are you mad??

I don't like being a paranoid writer. I don't want someone just coming along and taking my stuff. But I hate when I get all these cool ideas, look around for someone to talk to and I'm all alone. Does that ever frustrate you? Don't you wish you could sit down with a bunch of other authors and just go on for hours about what you are working on and what they're working on and understand it all?

I know my husband gets as excited about it all as I do. Half the time, if I hit a wall with something, he's right there to offer up several possible solutions because he knows the world just as well as I do.

So what do you do when you have all this exciting stuff to tell people? Who do you talk to and where do you go with it?

Friday, June 4, 2010


So I got back from Anchorage late, late Thursday. Well, technically it was early. 5:30 in the morning kind of early. Cheri knows all about that, don't you Cheri.

Yesterday was rainy, but that's okay, because the sun is out today. That is all that matters. Let it rain while we sleep and have the sunshine while we're active.

Not sure how much writing will get done but I will keep everyone posted and keep working towards my goal of the end of August to have Legend of Black Rose revised and completed. Woohoo! Then I get to start sending out queries.

Let the rejection begin! Ha ha!

Hope everyone has had a great week and hope you all have a great weekend as well.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010


Here's hoping everyone had a good and SAFE weekend. We had a four car collision on our highway. Seems there is always one or two on weekends like this.

It is Tuesday! Tomorrow I go pick up my mom and son from the airport. Things will start getting busy around here as I prepare to move and all that good fun stuff. SO. If you don't see a post from me or a comment in a while, know that I am most likely lurking.

Have a great week everyone.