Today is the last day of November’s NaBloPoMo. With this post I have successfully blogged every day this month! It’s not a pace I can keep up regularly, but it did inspire me to attend to my blog again. I will be sure to post something on a weekly basis. I hope you’ve enjoyed my diverse entries this month, and that you will stick around.
Wednesday, November 30, 2011
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
I’d like to showcase two of my favorite theme songs with some fan renditions.
Another epic theme is the opening to HBO’s Game of Thrones. Here is a violin rendition, all done by one man.
And we’ll end with some lighter entertainment. The Sith Who Stole Christmas.
Monday, November 28, 2011
Sunday, November 27, 2011
I am thankful for my husband. He understands my quirks. He has expanded my video game comfort zone by introducing me to games like Rock Band and Gears of War. Often he will buy me flowers or treats just because he loves me, and not only for special occasions. He supports my writing, is a helpful critiquer and also good to talk through story ideas with. For my birthday, not only did he buy me awesome boots, he got me Sims 3 Pets, and these lovely glass figurines of a hummingbird and a butterfly. Love you, Jeff! Thanks for all you do.
Saturday, November 26, 2011
I am thankful for coupons.
Due to a late, and filling, lunch yesterday, we put off birthday dinner until tonight. We went to Sizzler (yummy and very filling). Thanks to one of the summer reading programs, B had a coupon for a free kid’s meal. We have coupons for free kid meals just about anywhere we want to eat now, between summer school, reading programs, and school.
Friday, November 25, 2011
I am thankful for early Black Friday deals. I don’t like the early hours and super business of Black Friday. I’m glad some stores begin their deals early, and that a lot of deals are also online. Wednesday we took advantage of Home Depot’s early deals to buy a new washer and dryer. Much needed!
Thursday, November 24, 2011
I am thankful for family. I’m from a big family (nine kids) and it’s amazing how close we still are. As glad as I am for technology to make keeping in touch easier, it’s still great to get together for holidays like these. Got to see all but two of my siblings today. Love you all!
I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving.
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
I’m thankful for my neighbors. I may not know the ones living right next door, but there are a few women in the area that I’ve become close to. They keep an eye out for me in bad weather to offer me a ride home from the school. I also teach their little four year olds in Sunday school, which gives us another connection.
Tuesday, November 22, 2011
I am thankful for hugs. One of my major love languages is physical touch. So hugs are the best thing in the world.
I am so grateful to have both a mom and dad who give plenty of hugs, both as I was growing up and now that I’m an adult.
I’m cherishing the fact that my son still gives me a hug and “love you” before going into school each morning. I know I won’t get that much longer.
Monday, November 21, 2011
To celebrate Thanksgiving, I’m doing a week of gratitude on my blog. Now through Sunday my posts will focus on things I am thankful for. Feel free to join me!
I am thankful for Sparks.
Our kitty, Sparks, provides much entertainment. From his funky sleeping positions, to his snoring, to ambushes from beneath the edge of the couch or a blanket. Sparks got our attention at the shelter by swatting through the bars of his cage, hitting my husband when he walked by. He loves people, loves to play with my son, and is currently warming my lap. We didn’t name him, but his name is quite appropriate, as he rolls on the floor lots for attention, and rubs against everything, thus creating plenty of static electricity.
We love you, Sparks!
Sunday, November 20, 2011
Saturday, November 19, 2011
My husband’s computer has died. Motherboard problem, so we are declaring it dead dead. At least he was using Mozy to backup important files. Like those for school. And since he has more school work to do… and research for a laptop to replace his desktop, I haven’t been able to use my computer much today. Hopefully my computer lasts at least a few more months!
Friday, November 18, 2011
My husband stopped by mid-day to bring me flowers, so I sent him back to work with some business cards and a copy of the book. His coworkers had a potluck today, so he shared it then. Got some nice comments. One coworker actually wanted to take the book over the weekend and read it! Hubby said no. She needs to get her own copy. He was, however, able to whip out my business card with all the book info on it so she wouldn’t have to write it down.
People were very impressed by the cover, and even more so to find out one of our group members created the picture (kudos to Lin!).
If you read Lifelines, do consider leaving reviews on Amazon and/or GoodReads. The more feedback the merrier.
Thursday, November 17, 2011
My local writers group, Writers of the West, is using our weekly meetings as write-ins for NaNoWriMo this month. As I am not participating in NaNo, I have been using the meetings for reading through last year’s NaNo story (still incomplete) to refresh myself on it and do some editing.
We have another meeting tonight, so the story is on my mind. And since it is a Thursday, what better time to have a Thursday’s Tale.
Without further ado, here is the opening page of The Minotaur Staff:
"Hey, Weed, I found something!"
Wesley "Weed" Larkin squinted toward Ahmed's location. Fair enough, the sun glinted off something shiny in all that sand. He pulled the rim of his fedora down, and adjusted the scarf over his mouth. This better be good. Wes stepped into the roped enclosure. As he approached Ahmed, his foot hit something harder than sand. "A structure?"
"Na'am." Yes. Ahmed pointed to the cleared spot at his feet.
Wes knelt and brushed the sand away with his hand. Metal, not stone, glinted from beneath. "This could be it. Our city of gold. Clark!" The Irishman rushed over, red hair too bright, glaring in the sun. "Get a sample of this metal. I'll need it analyzed before I can inform Danvers."
While Clark extracted some metallic flakes and transferred them to his lab tent, the rest of the team moved in to start digging. Wes wanted to know what was in that building. It could be a temple, a throne room, a nobleman's house. Hopefully with something valuable preserved inside.
He grabbed a shovel and dug in with the rest of the team. His robes were covered in sand by the time Clark hollered. Wes took off his face scarf and used it to wipe the dirty sweat from his brow as he walked back to the tents.
Clark's brow was creased, making his glasses slide down his nose. He pushed them up as he looked up from the computer. "Not gold."
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
As I’ve been focusing on blogging and marketing, I haven’t felt like I have energy left for writing. The first month of a new book release is the most important in getting the word out. But I am not a publicist or a marketing guru. I am a writer. I found something I wrote years ago, back when I was struggling with finishing my first book. I found inspiration in a song. I’m hoping it will inspire me again, to not forget who I am.
Song lyrics in orange, interspersed with my own thoughts at the time:
Reach for the light
Deep in the night the winds blow cold,
And in a heartbeat, the fear takes hold.
The fear can freeze me—
fear of failure, rejection, even success.
Deep in the storm, there's a place that's soft and still,
Where the road waits to be taken, if you only will.
The potential is in me,
all I have to do is find the iron will within.
The voices inside you can lead you so astray,
Believe in what you dream,
don't turn away, don't you turn away.
I must overcome the doubts that haunt me;
I’ve wanted this my entire life, I won’t give it up.
Reach for the light,
you might touch the sky.
Stand on a mountain top, and see yourself flying.
Reach for the light,
To capture a star,
Come out of the darkness and find out who you are.
I know who I am—I am a writer.
So many dream but don’t follow through.
I can never be published if I don’t finish writing the book.
Somewhere in time the truth shines through,
And the spirit knows what it has to do.
This is my purpose in life; without it, I am not complete.
Time will show my dedication. Time will bring success.
Somewhere in you there's a power with no name,
It can rise to meet the moment and burn like a flame.
My muse will lead me if I give it the chance;
I simply need to set her free.
And you can be stronger than any fear you know,
Hold onto what you see don't let it go, don't you let it go.
I’ve made it this far. I have it in me.
Nothing will stop me.
There's no turning back.
Your destiny is calling.
Listen to the thunder roar,
And let your heart break free.
Whether I chose this path, or it chose me, it is the path I’m meant to be on.
The thunder of my accomplishments shall roar, and my heart shall break free from fear.
Oooh, Reach for the light!
Yeah! Yes reach for the light.
If I don’t reach for the light, for my dreams, then the light may as well go out.
I will finish my book. I will get published. I will reach for the light.
** Music: James Horner. Lyrics: Barry Mann & Cynthia Weil. Singer: Steve Winwood
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
My brain is fried from all the marketing stuff at the moment, so relying once again upon that strange, very long survey.
711. What is your favorite store that is open 24 hours?
712. Do you find that sleep is just so much sleepier when you are supposed to be doing something else?
Absolutely. My body helping me to procrastinate. My brain retaliates though, as I tend to be thinking when I'm supposed to be sleeping.
713. Do you also find that the books you chose are so much more luscious when you have a stack of actual assignments that you Should be reading?
Indulgent reading for the win. Probably why I didn't do homework in high school. If it didn't get done during school hours, it tended to not get done.
714. If you have had the chance to compare the original 5000 Question Survey to this edited version, what is your opinion?
This is the only version I know. Taking me years to complete as it is!
715. What's the most creative answer you can think of for 'what is black and white and red all over'?
Your eyesight after I punch you for making one of those jokes! (Figuratively of course. I do not condone violence.)
716. Why do people slow down on the highway when they pass a cop car pulling someone else over?
People are innately curious. And a subconscious need to not be the ones caught speeding next.
717. Are they afraid that the cop will STOP pulling over whoever he is pulling over and pull them over instead?
Yup. Didn't I just say that?
718. It's daddy's birthday. What do you get him?
Chocolate and a book.
719. What's your 5,000 question survey nickname?
Look at the word [or phrase] next to the 2nd letter of your first name
A anything but
H heaps of
M Mr. (or Mrs.)
T the one and only
W wishing for
Y yearning for
Now take the first letter of your last name.
C creme pie
D drag queen
M mannish boys
Put the two words together for your nickname.
“anything but juice”. (could be worse, but could certainly be better!) Can I pick my own? Funky Octopi.
720. You know that shaky feeling that you get when it's all coming to a climax, and everyone involved is breaking into the good kind of cold sweat, working as individuals and at the same time as a single force of energy, and it all meshes together, and for a brief moment, you're holding your breath and tingling all over, and after it's done you're on an explosive and dizzying high for the rest of the night?
What does that feeling come from?
creative endeavors ;)
Monday, November 14, 2011
Sunday, November 13, 2011
Not tired of saying that: My Publisher.
So go check out Betty’s side of the story.
Saturday, November 12, 2011
It seems that at one point or another I try most social networking avenues. I’ve tried MySpace. I’m currently on Facebook and Twitter. I have profiles on LibraryThing and Goodreads (though don’t use either much anymore). I now have blogs on Blogger, WordPress, and LiveJournal.
My new venture? Google+. If you have any experience with this one, or want to connect, speak up. It’s certainly not the most intuitive process. Don’t even know what questions to ask!
Friday, November 11, 2011
Just ordered business cards from VistaPrint. Finally took advantage of one of their many specials. I also got an online business card.
Having a book out is a very good reason to get a business card. Met a bunch of new writers at my local writers meeting last night. The NaNoWriMo write-in brought in plenty of new faces. Also talked to another local writer and fellow poet and wished I had a card to share.
Thursday, November 10, 2011
Wasn’t sure what to write about today, so dug up the 5,000 Questions and found where I’d left off.
701. What is your favorite mixed drink? Strawberry Daquiri
702. When answering these questions are you often pulled in different directions, as if committing to one answer eliminates the possibility for all others? no. If I feel more than one applies, I say so. :)
703. Chicken Masala, Pasta Primavera, Veal Cutlet Parmesan or Linguini with Clam Sauce? Pasta Primavera
704. If you were alone in your friend's house/room/apartment would you look in their drawers and notebooks? Ooh. Tough one to say without being in the situation. I think that would totally depend on the friend. I probably wouldn't poke into drawers, but would more likely peruse things more in the open.
705. What would you really like to do but you don't because you are afraid of getting caught? hitch-hiking. It appeals to my sense of adventure, and that itch to travel that I haven't been able to fulfill.
706. Of the following, which word best describes you:
responsible, spontaneous, tactful, uninhibited. tactful
707. Which band would you most likely check out?
The Smiths (indi-pop 80's-90's)
The Lords of Acid (acid/house/dance 90's)
Front 242 (80's-90's industrial/dance)
Not being familiar with any of those, based off the names and description, I'd go with Front 242.
708. How can one put an end to procrastination, as a bad habit? Hah! Wouldn't I like to know. Seriously. If you have an answer to this one, do share.
709. What feature would you want on your car that is not currently offered? Self-driving.
710. What kind of poetry speaks to you? lyrical, emotion. My favorite classic poets are Walt Whitman and Emily Dickinson.
Wednesday, November 9, 2011
I am not a shoe person. I own about half a dozen pairs, and wear them as little as possible. And heels? Why would anyone want to wear heels?! I am all about comfort and style.
So for me to want boots with 4-inch heels? Have I gone insane? Possibly. But while browsing Amazon for Steampunk fashion, I found these awesome Steampunk Butterfly Boots. And I simply had to have them. I initially shrugged it off. Oh, they look cool, but they’re not for me.
Then I bought a new skirt. Knee length, frilly… and I had the thought “Now I have a skirt to justify those boots.” So when my husband actually offered to buy them for my birthday? I gave in to the insanity.
They arrived yesterday evening:
Tuesday, November 8, 2011
Since my website was way out of date, and focused on one of my books rather than myself, it’s gotten a makeover! It’s now my author website. Check out the new look! I’ll be adding a weekly writing tip and a new article each month in the effort to keep up fresh content.
There are ads, but, until I’m making actual money on my writing, they’ll have to stay. Other than that, feedback is welcome!
Monday, November 7, 2011
The Poetic Muselings is a group of poets who formed from the Muse Conference to share poetry, push boundaries, and support each other. We complied a book of our best poems, worked as a group to make them even better, and pulled them together in a cohesive theme. The result? LIFELINES poetry anthology. Our collection was picked up by InkSpotter Publishing and is now available! You can order it through Amazon or request it at your local bookstore.
Our poems and purpose kept us afloat through the years. We became each others' Lifelines.
LIFELINES plays off both meanings: those on the palm of your hand, as well as those linking us adrift.
Our poems flow with the tides of the sea as they follow the ebb and tide of life itself. Childhood and friendship. Romance and loss. From death to new life and inspiration.
Sunday, November 6, 2011
Saturday, November 5, 2011
We all have things that inspire us. Excite us. Images that take our breath away. Some people do collages or create vision boards. I use a nifty site called Pinterest to organize mine.
I have a board for my wish list, one for favorite places, books I love, anything Gamer Girl, and a newly added one for my Inspiration Room I hope to have someday.
Friday, November 4, 2011
Was trying for the poem-a-day challenge this month. Doesn’t look like it’s going to happen. Maybe there’s just too much other stuff going on. Or my poetry muse is still sleeping. But I still want to surround myself with that spirit of creativity. So, instead, I will share an older poem of mine.
A R T
I pull the cardboard box off the shelf
too long dusty
set it on the cleared table
trace my finger over the markered three letters
and open creation in a box
I remove the items one by one
too long neglected
set them in their proper place
next to water, canvas, towel
creation in a box
I see pencils, paints, stencils,
too long idle
set by projects incomplete
search for a paint brush
creation in a box
I wet the brush and moisten paints
too long dried out
set colors to a scantily clad canvas
bringing life to the scene
creation in a box
Thursday, November 3, 2011
Today, we ordered my birthday present from Amazon. Yes, I do mean we. For once I actually know what I am getting. It’s something I don’t have now, and never thought I’d want. Guess it’s true that you don’t always know what you want until you see it. And no, I’m not saying what it is. I will show them off when my package arrives in the next week or so. I am so excited!
Wednesday, November 2, 2011
Know that new writers group I wanted to start? Now that it’s been up and running for a few weeks, I’m opening it up to new people.
SAGA stands for Society for Arcane Gibberish Authors. We are a fledgling critique group for fantasy writers, started in October of 2011. This is currently a group for adult fantasy only. If you write YA fantasy and are interested in a critique group, you can still apply. If there is enough interest I will create a sub-group. There are already a couple of us with YA projects that could use the company.
We have room for three more people. Membership is capped at ten. I’ve been part of some very successful online critique groups. May be crazy for starting my own, but I wanted something small. And something less structured. We do have a forum, but no deadlines. Our own lives and writing come first. Just fellow writers grouping together for support and feedback.
If you're interested in joining, send me an email or post below. Would love to get a few new faces.
Tuesday, November 1, 2011
I’m not doing NaNoWriMo this year, but I am participating in some challenges.
Every November, in the same spirit as NaNoWriMo, Robert Lee Brewer (editor for Writer's Digest) hosts a Every November, in the same spirit as NaNoWriMo, Robert Lee Brewer (editor for Writer's Digest) hosts a Poem-A-Day Challenge. Each day he’ll post a prompt on his Poetic Asides blog, and the task is to write a poem based on that prompt.
National Blog Posting Month helps set the habit of blogging by posting every day for one month. If you’re interested, you can sign up through November 5th. There are even prizes! I figure if I write posts in advance, then my weekends are still free—just hit publish and I’m good to go.
This is more a year round commitment than a challenge. PubSub3rdFri means submitting something every month, on the third Friday, and was started by Joan Y. Edwards. I definitely need to get back into regular submitting, for both poetry and fiction, and this should give me the encouragement and support I need.
In addition to these challenges, my poetry group is staring a group blog in anticipation of the publication of our anthology. More on that later.
Busy can be good. Hopefully this birthday month will be a good one. What are your plans this month? Good luck to everyone who is doing NaNoWriMo or any of the other creative challenges.