Monday, May 30, 2011

Happy Memorial Day!

Thank you to all who have served and are serving in our Armed Forces.

Every year this time of year, the poppies in the backyard bloom, and I recall the first lines of  "In Flanders Fields".  I remember listening to it in a Charlie Brown special I only saw once, but can only remember the first two lines.  In honor of the men and women who have sacrificed their lives in defense of our freedom, I share this poem with you today.

In Flander's Fields
by John McCrae

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
 Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
 In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
 If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Time Flies

I can't believe it is almost June-- seems like just a few weeks ago it was Christmas!!!  Is time going just as fast for you?

I had hoped to be further along in my WIP at this time, but am pleased with where I am.  I had also hoped to be back to a regular exercise schedule, but that hasn't happened.  I find I have a hard time getting up earlier in the morning to do it then, and when I come home from work I feel I am missing time with my family if I do it then.  Maybe now that the sun has decided to make an appearance I can do the morning thing-- they say if you do it for 28 days it becomes a habit!

I read some interesting posts in the last week.  Lindsey Roth Culli (A Pinch of Panache) has a great post on Beta's, and Margo Berensden (Writing at High Altitude) has a post on extreme writing with a link at the end to suggestions for writing your synopsis.  Hop over here to check it out!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Juggling WIP's

When you are writing, do you focus on one WIP at a time, or do you have multiples going?  I've been trying to focus on one WIP, but my mind keeps dropping other stories into my mind to play with.

I am thinking of rotating between the two WIP's, so when I get stuck on one, I can work on the other while my subconscious works out the problems.

In the meantime, I have been beta reading from Graeme of The Fool and The Fair.  He has great humor (and a cool website with an awesome dragon!), so go check it out!!!!  And Graeme, thanks for all the help the last couple of weeks!

So- how many WIP's do you have going?  Pros and cons to working on more than one??

Friday, May 20, 2011


Yesterday it felt like I had been struck by lightning when I finally realized the reason I was stuck in my current WIP.  I hadn't made a character do something they needed to do, and they were sulking.  To add further to my dilemma, I needed to change POV, and hadn't.

So, with my character doing what she needed to do, and my POV changed, I was able to get some writing done.

I probably should have realized this earlier, as these are the two most common reasons I get stuck. What have you found that gets you stuck in your writing?

Hope you all have a great weekend.  We are off to see Trans-Siberian Orchestra's Beethoven's Last Night Tour tonight.  And, maybe if it ever stops raining, we can have a meal out on the new deck (now fully stained and cured!)  See you all Monday!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Out of Order

The last few days I haven't felt like writing.  It isn't that I don't have an idea to work with, I do.  In fact I gave myself a deadline to get this idea down so it can rest while I get a few other ideas down.

I tried sitting and forcing myself through the scene-- not a good idea.  The writing read forced, because it was.  Yesterday I tried writing scenes out of order. This worked a bit better than I hoped.  I was able to get at least one scene down, in rough form.  Now, I just need to bridge to there.  I think I figured out how, by working out of order.

What do you do when the mood isn't there?  Do you push on, hoping to just get the idea out there?  Do you take a break?  What are your secrets?

Monday, May 16, 2011

Using Twitter Effectively

How many of you have a Twitter account? (Yes, I realize there are those who don't and understand why not-- this isn't to make you feel bad because you don't Tweet, or force you to Tweet).

I have an account I opened at the urging of some friends (Thanks guys!).  We used it to chat back and forth with each other.  Then, last year I had this huge reading thirst and was offline for about a month (I know-- I can't believe it either, but it's true!)

When I came back, I slowly got back into blogging, but Twitter has been hit and miss.  I try to remember to post when I update my blog (and usually forget), and occasionally I post that #Iamwriting, or #Iamrevising. 

In the end, I find that I am not using Twitter effectively at all.  So I ask: How do you use Twitter?  Has it helped with your writing?  Have you made contacts in the writing world through it?  Has it made an impact on your blog?

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Law of 3, and the Dreaded Synopsis (not related)

OK- you've had to heard the expression bad things happen in 3's.  Well, here are my 3 (I hope they are done!)

Saturday our water heater went unexpectedly.  Not a big deal (although kinda pricey!- and the rub was we missed the warranty by about 2 weeks.)  Fixed.

Yesterday when I was returning to work, my vehicle started driving funny.  IM'd hubby about it, and we figured it was something with the 4 wheel drive.  Then he came home and found a long bolt laying in the road near our driveway.  It was supposed to be in the rear end housing holding it in place.  When he tried to put it back, he discovered the piece that should hold it in had broken into multiple pieces.  A call to the dealer told us they could get the part-- in two days.  Oh well, at least it is fixable and didn't happen while towing the camper!

Finally, we've been seeing little ants in our bathroom all weekend and trying to find where they are coming from.  I keep looking in the window, but see no trace, until this morning.  I killed about 5 before I got in the shower, and when I got out, there were more.  I pulled back the curtain to find about 40-50 congregated in the upper corner.  Great!  Went looking for the ant spray.  None.  Called hubby--and we realized we were out.  Not wanting to leave the there to go who know where, I kept searching and finally found the bug spray for my roses (been looking for that all winter!).  It didn't mention ants as something it killed, but at least I could say I tried.

Unrelated to all this, I've noticed several blogs posting about writing the synopsis.  As this is something I am currently working on, I thought I'd share some of the links with you.

Chuck Sambuchino shows how to do a synopsis with the movie The Fly at

Graeme shared this link on the Writer's Digest Synosper Sentral forum.  I found it interesting and helpful.

Have you found any helpful synopsis sites to share?  Post them below!

Monday, May 9, 2011


For those of you who haven't heard, is having a contest that begins today.  What is the contest?  Roseanne Wells, of Marianne Strong & Associates, is judging first pages of completed YA novels.

The information can be found here.  Just follow the directions.

If you are entering, good luck!

The weekend was crazy here, with an unexpected water heater change, and scattered showers that kept us from finishing staining the deck (I'm beginning to think it will never be done!).  But it ended nicely with an extended family gathering for Mother's Day.  Hope all of you had a wonderful weekend and are looking forward to an exciting week!

Friday, May 6, 2011


Special post to send congratulations to Lindsay and Trisha on their acceptance of representation by Ginger Clark!!!!!!

Information on their YA dystopian novel FATUM can be found here.

Congrats, you two!

Practice makes perfect

Last night we went to our son's String Fest concert.  They did a great job, and I had fun listening to the progress from the first year students, to the 2nd and 3rd year, to the Jr. High and High School.  As expected, the tone quality and caliber of play increased as the students matured.  It was interesting to note, that as the students playing improved, the number of students on stage decreased.

I was reminded of how with our first stories, all the components were there, but they just weren't fine tuned, but as we continue writing, our work improves  The quality improves as we apply all the new things we have learned.

Then we work on revisions,  tightening our work even more, until only the best quality remains, the same way these students practice and work until their performance is the best it can be.

What have you seen that reminds you of the growth in your writing?  Hope you all have a great, sunny weekend, and Happy Mother's Day to all you mom's!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Rain, rain, go away

Oh mighty weather gods, I beg you to send at least three sunny days my way.  One day to dry out my deck, one day to finish staining it, and one day for it to cure.  If you could see fit to send more than three, I would be greatly blessed and honored.

In all seriousness, I am grateful we haven't had the storms and flooding that have hit so many in our nation.  How are things in your neck of the woods?  Has it been sunny and warm, grey and wet, or somewhere in between?

Monday, May 2, 2011

Catching up!

It was so nice to see the sun again on Saturday.  We even managed to get a bit of our deck stained.  We had hoped to do more yesterday, but with rain threatening, we decided to wait.  I did get my new rosebush planted, though.

I spent time working on my agent to query list and tweaking the synopsis so I am ready to go once I hear some feedback on my ending.

So, how was your weekend?  Hope this is the start of a great week for everyone!