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Showing posts from September, 2011

The Friday Five - It's Almost Time for NaNo Edition

Tomorrow is the first of October. Which means one big thing, dear writers or readers of blogs.

It is exactly one month until NaNoWriMo begins.

As you may or may not know, it wouldn't hurt my feelings a bit if a voice spoke from the heavens and said, "Go to bed the entire month of November. You will wake up well-rested and at peace with the world on the first of December."

I hate November.

But it certainly does have its writing advantages. Millions, yes, millions of people all over the globe will be BICHOK on November 1. They gather on one website like excited children to rejoice in their successes, moan about their failures, laugh at the antics of their characters or weep over repetitive motion injuries. November is the writing warrior's battle and the fields are being prepared right now. As a seasoned veteran myself (this will be year three of manic, fast-paced writing), I am honing my tools for the next campaign to take the noveling world by storm.  So. Five things…

Stuff I Find While I'm Walking Episode 8

This Monday stuff rolls around too soon. Am I right? Of course I am. Lucky for you, there are weekend nature pictures. Huzzah. This weekend I tried to talk dear old husband into the Springfield Nature Center, but he wasn't having any. So it was back to Hayes Spring. I got to break in my awesome new fluorescent orange vest. Just in case someone mistakes me for a deer or turkey.
The spiders! You wouldn't believe the spiders I saw. And every time I tried to capture a spider on camera, the ever-lovin' thing would blink and say 'low battery'. I had some really great spider photo ops. But no! And I had one of this tiny, adorable little frog. It was so cute and ignoramus camera chooses not to take it. Geez. So instead, I have a couple of other, less creepy pics for you. Like this weedy-flower thing. Pretty pinky-purple, huh? Um, don't eat it because I mostly recommend not eating anything you find.

This here is a nifty rock that I must have passed a hundred times in…

The Friday Five - Favorite Books

Today's five is a discussion of my favorite books. And ironically, all but the last of these books were made into movies. Pity about the last one. I'm sure it'd get watched by at least one person (pointing at self). The thing they all seem to have in common is that they contain a familial sense, even if the characters aren't related, they're close to one another and will do anything to keep their families ties. How touching.

#1) The Outsiders - S.E. Hinton In the YA genre, I first read this book in high school. In a class full of rowdy heathens. My teacher got really bad when I told her I took the book home and read it. She screamed at the class, "Look, she had to take this book home to readbecause you are all so disruptive!" Um, I took it home because I wanted to finish it. I'm quite capable of blocking out disruptive high schoolers. A story many of us can relate to, the journey of Ponyboy Curtis, who only wants to fit in. Or at least have people und…

How I Became a Writer

Warning: This is maybe not the most cheerful post ever. It includes no love of buff superheros. Only personal struggle.
It all started with the sentence, "Sally is my dog". A great illustrated classic about one girl and her beagle, Sally Jessy Raphael. For starters, let me tell you that I didn't name the dog. That was my mom. I don't know, I don't ask questions, I just roll with the weird names. Which is probably where I got my talent for naming animals weird stuff. Yes, the cat named Steve. Although technically that was my husband's doing.
One little sentence was my start. It forever changed the way words work for me. Actually, it was probably more to do with my best friend in fifth grade said, "I want to be a writer!" And I replied, "Me, too!" 
Because I'm a copycat. 
Yep. That was it. Except it wasn't an eleven-year-old's passing fancy. Well, at least for my eleven-year-old self. Best friend moved on to other things. For me,…

Stuff I Find While I'm Walking 7 - Retail Edition

It rained. And rained. And rained and rained this weekend. Which we needed, so I can't complain too much. But more than a little rain, it thunderstormed. A lot. Which makes for dangerous hiking conditions. Yours truly, rather than risk life and limb, brings you SIFWIW The Retail Edition. Indoor adventures can be fun too. It's wildlife, just a little less... wild. I cruised Bass Pro Shops for photos to entertain the masses. BPS's goal is to get you to buy guns, bows and fishing poles so you can shoot your own furry/finned friends and mount them on your walls. But they don't mind if you take photos of theirs.

You'll have to use your imagination a little bit, but take into account that this was once a real live raccoon. Here's little Rocky (you know, after the Beatles song) lounging peacefully on some driftwood alongside a pond filled with some kind of long nosed gar fish. No, he really is lounging beside a pond full of real live gar fish. The fish are alive and h…

The Friday Five

Whew! We made it. In a few short hours we can once again celebrate the weekend by kicking our shoes off (though you may be wise to keep them on, as it's supposed to rain here all weekend), letting our hair down, and getting our lazy on.

What is on my mind this rainy Friday morn? I'll go with it. The changing of the seasons, that is. Just to eddy-cate you-all. Because summer is my favorite time of year. Blue water and sunshine are my drugs of choice. I can't tell you how confused my body gets once the days start getting shorter. Eight p.m. rolls around and I think it's bedtime because it's dark outside. Well, fortunately, the leaves haven't really started to change yet, so I can still enjoy the green, even if I do have to don my coat.

Five things about fall. Go!

#1) William Butler Yeats wrote a poem called The Wild Swans at Coole, describing the swans departing during fall. To get all symbolic, he compares the dying season to his life and how like summer leache…

Why I'm in Love with Thor

Can you say holy cow, that guy is stacked? I can. And not only was I going, wow those are some great man boobies! I was also thinking, that is the man that I want to play Alwin van Buren! He's huge! He's blond (techincally VB is dark-haired, but in my mind's eye, I always see him as a dark, dark blond. I will correct this when I get around to fixing that MS). His voice is deep. He's built just the way I picture an airship captain. Now I'm just dreaming, thinking about A Sky Pirate's Wife movie. That's probably not a really cool title for a movie anyway. Okay, back to my thoughts on the Marvel-ness that is Thor.

Ahem. I saw Captain America first. I was... disappointed. I love the setting, love the idea of an all-American hero. I hated the end (it was weak. Soooo weak) and frankly, I'm more than a little worried about Bucky. I watched The Hulk sometime after I got married, maybe a year or two after, so I haven't seen it in a while. It was...worse tha…

A Bone to Pick

Cards on the table. I'm going to be honest with you. This will come as a huge shock to some people and probably cause very little surprise in others.

I am impatient.

I was born that way. I want what I want and I want it five seconds ago!

Which made the writing more difficult when I decided to expand THL. My first attempt was pretty vapid. It felt empty, forced, fake. I got it done, but I was in no way proud of what I'd filled the pages with. And when I was able to admit to myself that it was not something anyone wanted to read, I cut the parts that didn't work and rewrote, incorporating very little of that word slurry that had been there.

I am stuck at 72,000 words. I know how to kill the evil serpent that wants to destroy all man-kind. Or, at least, Abel for right now. I recently decided to change the very end, but I haven't done it yet. I'm just so tired of kicking these characters, I could lay down on the floor and have a temper tantrum. Some of the things I rea…

Stuff I Find While I'm Walking - Episode 6

Mondays are evil. I'm just sayin'. The answer to that evilness that is the beginning of the week, we'll look at some pictures. Yay! Taken at Old Wire Road CA.

I want you to know first off, that I saw the biggest spider. I tried valiantly to get a photo of the horrible monster, but my camera (naturally) would not take the picture. In all likelihood, the camera was as terrified as I was. It was big and black and had eight legs and eight eyes. Just awful. Which brings up to the first photo.

A snakeskin. A very good snakeskin, in fact. It's not often that you find them intact. Or out in the open. On a trail. Where humans are trying to find a little peace and relaxation from their otherwise stressful lives. Yo, snake. Take your nasty skin and go elsewhere. My husband asked why I didn't bring it home. Because I'm not touching that for love or money, that's why!

This is a ginormous anthill. To help you understand how ginormous, I photographed it next to my foot. O…

The Friday Five

Why is it that a four day week seems longer than a five day week? I swear it takes twice the time to reach a weekend again. That doesn't seem fair at all. But we're here at least, so let's take a peek at five random things my brain found interesting on this Friday. Ooo, ooo, I know. How about random facts about writers?

#1) William Faulkner - Once refused a dinner invitation from President Kennedy at the White House. "Why that's a hundred miles away," he explained "That's a long way to go just to eat." I bet they lay out a mean buffet though.

#2) Louisa May Alcott - The first female writer who registered to vote. Louisa was a suffragette. She registered to vote in 1879 in Concord, New Hampshire.

#3) Victor Hugo - He suffered from writer's block while writing Les Miserables. In order to beat it, he had a servant take his clothes away because he figured the only thing he would be able to do naked was write. Um... I'll leave that one open.

Not Sure How I Got Here, But Not Sorry I Came

In spite of our vehicle woes this Labor Day weekend, I managed to get a ton of writing done. I watched my word count rise from an uncertain "I never intended THL to be this long" to a triumphant "I can't believe I'm only 9,000 words away from 80,000". When it hits the 80k mark, it will make THL the longest book I've written. I think my head is still spinning. In July, when I pitched this novel, it was 54,000 words. I've been busy.

I never thought there was that much story to tell. It was intended to be a novella, something I wrote for a lark because it's just too weird. You read last week how I incorporated my love of the Old West with some steamy technology. All that came about from watching movies like The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Van Helsing and more recent movies like Jonah Hex and Sherlock Holmes.

I gobbled up Cherie Priest'sBoneshaker like it was candy, pleased with her somber world that didn't incorporate too much techno…

Stuff I Find While I'm Walking Episode 5 - Broke Down on the Side of the Road Edition

I spent my weekend in various locations, broke down on the side of the road. Hope everyone else did better. It was nice weather for it, I suppose.

We had an Ozarks Romance Authors meeting on Saturday. This year I'll be serving as the webmistress (I like it, sounds a little dirty) and the vice president. A big step for someone as goofy as I am, but I'll do my best or die trying. Well, maybe not die... Hells, I might be even good at it.

The fan motor burned up in my car. It was not doing well. Saturday after the meeting, husband and I are on our way to get a fan motor. We're four miles from the auto parts store and his truck goes "bluh!" We are stranded. On the side of the road. For two hours.

He was ranting about his POS truck. I'm muttering, "Shh, I'm trying to focus on this article in the six-month-old Missouri Conservationist about Billy Bob Tommy Joe Frank who caught a world record Goggly-Boggle bass." Or something. Husband's dad hauled t…

The Friday Four

I couldn't think of five things. So here are four items to fill your noggin for Friday. Say that five times fast. You know, to cover for the missing fifth thing. Drat.

Update: 4:10 p.m. CST

#5) Out of order, but so what? I hate when I don't have time to read PEOPLE on Friday mornings. This is thing 5. And oh, so dumb. A contest called The Fashion Malfunction. About a fashion malfunction. I'm not upset by this contest, just annoyed because Band-Aid is making these cool looking bandages for wounds. What is wrong with the kind I grew up with? Plain, boring flesh tone? Granted, they seldom match anyone's flesh tone. I mean, I went to the doctor last winter and got a flu shot and wound up with a Sponge Bob Squarepants Band-Aid. I'm twenty-ni--er, nineteen years old! I don't want Sponge Bob. I actually wanted Hello! Kitty, but no. Ugh. These Band-Aids look like skins for computers or Kindles. What is this madness? It's a seeping, bloody wound. It doesn't need…