Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!



I, like most bloggers, will be taking off until the first Monday in January to enjoy my new Netflix subscription I got for Christmas from my awesome bosses family and festivities. 

Though my posts will be ZERO until the 3rd, I will probably be lurking around to whomever has decided to stay in posty-business! Yeay!!

I wish you all a wonderful, safe, happy holiday! And please believe me when I say how terribly grateful I am to know you all as much as I do and hope the next year to know even more!

Merry Christmas! Happy New Year and all that jazz!

Catch you all on the 3rd!  

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Ho Ho Ho, Jingley Balls

Last day of my best's visit. Boo! Will be back full force tomorrow(Thursday. Seriously have missed you all. Hate to think about all the great stuff I have missed from you too...) Thanks for being so patient and wonderful!!

But,

IT'S CHRISTMAS WEEK! Hurray!!! Holidays!!!!

No Writery Wednesday this week. Most people are taking breaks, so I'll just use it to celebrate.

I'm off for the week after Christmas. Mandatory vacation(not a complaint) Intending to use it for writing things and NOT sleep till noon and watch daytime T.V. until I start foaming at the mouth. Nope. Definitely not that.

This Christmasy post could have been all about how I love to go light looking. How Christmas lights always brighten my holidays. And how the people right across from us put up some beautiful and TASTEFUL lights this year so every time I shuffle to the kitchen at night my whole room is full of red and green and gold loveliness.

It could have been about my favorite part of Christmas morning (no not the presents). The STOCKING. Why is this the best thing to "open"? No idea. It just is.

It also could be about the foo. OH THE HAM!!


How about the feeling in the air? The crisp ping, chance for snow/ice(gross) the necessity for a fireplace or the icicles (fake or real) sparkling from overhead? Nope. Not that either.

Or getting together with family and celebrating life and love and good things in the world. 

Those of us who celebrate it for the birth of our Savior(though everyone knows by now that this isn't the actual time of year for it. I am aware of what really started it all, just like everyone else.), and that's an amazingly awesome thing for us too. And I love to remember the days when I was little and my mom would light a new candle until we got to the middle one on Christmas(eve?) She would read the story and we celebrate the life that was born to save billions. (no haters. BE NICE or BE SILENT) 

Or even how I adore, no no no ADORE the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. My favorite Christmas music bunch EVER and how seeing them live is as amazing. And how these light shows, this music, and this song never ever ever get old:



But this Holiday Festive post is about none of those wonderful, amazing, fantastical things. Because I can't REALLY get into the spirit to appreciate all that without...

Elf.

Ah... Love it. Him. My favorite holiday movie. It puts me in the Christmas spirit every time. Not A Christmas Carol, A Christmas Story, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, or Miracle on 34th.

Actually. I kinda hate those movies. *ducks* It's not because they aren't good movies, it's just because they  are tedious? Aren't...fun? Umm...no no not the right word...not peppy? No...no...bland? Okay...maybe if there was a word for all of those. Lemme think... Aha!

Tedlandull? Yup. That's the word.

I have just seen them to DEATH I guess. I'm sorry if you like them. I'm not TRYING to be insulting. Good movies. But my holiday film love goes to...



Elf. And Nightmare Before Christmas. And Scrooged. And The Santa Clause. And Christmas Vacation.. Ugh! Love em! Nonconventional Christmas movies rock my holiday light-up socks. Yes indeedy! (also Anne of Green Gables and The Sound of Music are also holiday MUSTS)


 But Elf is by far my favorite Christmas themed movie. Cause I like smiling. Smiling's my favorite.

What is your favorite holiday movie?? What is that one thing you need to get your holiday mojo going? If you don't celebrate Christmas, what do you celebrate and what is your favorite thing about it?

Merry Christmas! And just remember these wise words:

"We're all in this together. This is a full-blown, four-alarm holiday emergency here. We're gonna press on, and we're gonna have the hap, hap, happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby tap-danced with Danny fucking Kaye. And when Santa squeezes his fat white ass down that chimney tonight, he's gonna find the jolliest bunch of assholes this side of the nuthouse." - Clark W. Griswold.

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Be Jolly By Golly DUDES!

Be Jolly By Golly is an AMAZINGLY FUN Holiday fest hosted by Melissa and Jennifer Daiker! Hope you all will be enjoying all the holiday cheer today! HERE you can find the list of all the entrants!


The hubs surprised me one night. The night before I mentioned how I didn't want to be the only house on the street with no lights. And he knows how much I LOOOOVE Christmas lights and have always wanted my house to be decked out! SO I'm pulling around the corner after a long day at work and all I see are red lights strung all around where my house is supposed to be. It is such a shock, so unexpected, I seriously had to double-take my own house to make sure I was looking in the right place. (blonde moment) THE MOST beautiful thing I had ever seen. I know, it's simple and not that flashy, but to me, it was amazing.                                                     

              (that little spot is from the wind storm we had that took siding off the house. I was impressed that those were the only lights to come down!)
(the white glowing is our Christmas tree. It only looks awesome in the night, or I would have a day picture. So. Yea, GLOW)



You guys, don't laugh, but these are seriously our only indoor decorations.(awesome snowman ornament from DONEA!) I WAS going to do a tree and lights and that metallicy ribbon crap, but then...I thought of all the mornings and nights I would be picking it up and putting it back where I had it. And all the times I would have to yell at the cats for pulling it back down again...and...well, that just doesn't scream CHRISTMAS to me. SO, as the mantel is the only place in the house the cats can't get to, I just put up a few old decorations from my childhood. The red stocking is my FIRST stocking and only one. :) The pink angel was one of two my mother painted when my sister and I were small. Hers was blue and they sat above each of our stockings on the mantels or bookshelves or wherever the stockings were hung that year.

The sign was a house warming gift that says "Love Deeply". And that weird shaped tan thing is my attempt at indoor plants. It...it is a very SAD plant...And YES those candle sticks are actually supposed to have candles on them but...they never have. Did I ever tell you guys I HATE decorating? Our house is very minimalist. I would KILL to be able to afford to hire someone to make it beautiful one day. Cause I am not doing it.
My favorite holiday treat, while fudge is simply scrumptious and undeniably delicious, petit fours are too classically Christmas for me.**I just got my petit fours this past week! Woot!!

Every year my mom makes the best steak/roast thing (I forget what it is actually called) But it is the most delicious savory meat you have ever had! YUMM.

My drink of choice, around the holidays, is HOT CIDER!! Or sparkling grape juice. TAME I know, but so so so good! OR my moms punch. (alcoholic or non whatever) Which is just 1 can of pineapple juice, 1 can frozen orange juice, 1 package of cherry kool-aid, and sprite! (I think that's it. I did this from memory and didn't have a chance to confirm with the mom.) I say "alchohol or not" because you can throw vodka in pretty much anything (if you're over 21 in the states, I mean). If you're interested in the recipe I can verify for you. But if not, no skin off my nose! More for me! 

And last thing I want to share with you all about my personal life on this festive day is that I got to open one of my presents early because I "ruined Christmas" as hubs likes to say. OR guessed my present and got to open it because he is TERRIBLE at lying! I got a BAMBOO! I have been playing with that thing no stop. It's so much fun.

There you all have my Christmas house. Hope you enjoy having dinner and stepping into every other blog in this fest! I know I will!!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Funny Friday Absentee Quicky.

So, my best lovey love love friend is coming this weekend. I have posts ready to go, and I will be here as often as possible and answering e-mails but as it has been now, I see her maybe 3x a year. Next year she will be going BACK to school AGAIN (she's a wicked smarty pants) so I will be seeing her less. I don't think you will hold it against me if I'm MIA for just a little while.

But just in case, no one write any blogs I might enjoy. Okay? Seriously. I don't want to miss anything good. You guys need to stick to: Westerns,  MTV, what you ate for breakfast...no wait, that might be interesting. Okay no that. Umm... Westers, MTV, Binary(Hart!), bowel(it seriously said "bowl" for half a day before I realized that wasn't it.)  movements, and how long your hair has grown over the week. Those are approved topics.

Now on to...

Cutest old couple ever:





Two camels in a tiny car? Sure. Why not?


Awe! Sleepwalking dog is so funny but...I feel bad for laughing! Like, when you laugh at a kid falling. It's...soooo funny but...they're soooo cute! Same thing, right here.



Happy weekend you guys!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Sayings say what?

Did you know that "cowlick" became a descriptive term because cows can lick their own heads?

"Getting your goat" is from the belief that a goat in a barn will have a calming effect on the cattle who would then produce more milk.

"Spring Chicken" was because farmers found out chickens born in the spring sold for more than older chickens that had hashed out the winter.

 If you stare at the lobster eyes long enough the plate fixes itself.

"Big Wig" is from the 18th century when the dude wearing the biggest wig was the most important. Ugly custom, but alrighty.

"Pooped" is a sailor term thingy that refers to the poop deck(the stern). Any stern that showed wear and tear from the storms and waves smashing it constantly was called "pooped". Sailors would say they felt as battered and tired as "pooped" as their ship!

When an unwanted guest dropped by at dinner you would give him the "cold shoulder" of mutton instead of the hot, good meat so that he would never come again.

"Wrong end of the stick" came from (they think) Roman times before toilet paper where a sponge was attached to one end of a stick to wipe. Gross much.

"Bite the bullet" is from war days when there was little to no painkiller for injured soldiers and had sometimes all they could offer was a bullet to bite on while doctors did whatever painful thing they had to do.

Stare at the black dot long enough and all the colored ones will disappear.

"Dead Ringer" was started when a slower horse was run around the track before the race for everyone to see and drive up the odds. Come time for the actual race an identical, faster horse was put in. 

"Spinster" was, in the 18th century, a woman who spun wool on a wheel but it was so common for an unmarried, older woman to make money that way that it became a term for older unmarried women.

A "whipping boy" was a boy who got smacked when the crown prince did wrong in the 15th and 16th centuries. But this kid was more a companion for the prince, so it was meant to harm the prince to see someone he cared about getting punished because of him.

Now, as these are internet "facts", take them for what they are and don't hold me to them as 100%. I just writes it like I finds it. And, really, isn't it kind of fun to believe them anyway? I think so.


HERE you'll find the website of a recovering Lazyholic. Definitely check out their 12 step process. Wonderfully fun, brilliant website!


The hubs wanted to know what I wanted for Christmas. Well...what a loaded question. I WANT a new comforter for the bed. I want new PJ pants. I want a pair of expensive shoes. I want my car fixed. I want new tires. I want new brakes. I want a dinning room table instead of the empty VOID in our dinning room. A 50" TV. New cloths. New picture frames. Shoot. I can think of things I want all dang day long. It's easy when you get going.

BUT, I debate telling him all those things. Then...I did the math. And do you know how many books can be bought with the money spent on a new comforter/TV/Cloths or anything else on that list? So instead of all that I just tell him books and movies.(and this is all going on in the span of a minute that my brain has figured all this out)

Apparently my brain doesn't work in money anymore. It converts money into books. Groceries this week cost about 4 new releases. Gas was a new release and a sale book. Get my hair cut for about 3 books and a magazine? Pft. No way!


HERE you'll find a list of gift no one should be given. I was with this list until they mentioned gold pills. Ah... The gift that keeps on giving.

How about a doggy mustache. Add a little class to that pooch. 

Or a bedbug stuffed animal? Cause that is a super cute and snuggly little bit of kid fun.



HERE you can play more optical illusion games. Like we all need ANOTHER time waster, I know I know. But it's fun!

Sorry for the absence this weekend. We had a minor catastrophe. But it's all good! Nothing to get me down for long. But I will be here, full force this week! I can't wait to catch back up with all you guys. I missed you this weekend.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Funny Friday and I totally need it.

Hurray! It's Friday and no one died in my house from undercooked chicken! Thanks, all. It was really sweet of everyone to be concerned. We were too. No more bony chicken!

On with Friday goodies!!

HERE you'll read about the worlds most expensive book selling for over $10 million dollars!

Anyone see where Mark Twain's autobiography was published this year as per his request? Who else can say they released a book 100 years after their death? (ignoring the fact that they wouldn't be able to SAY that...) SO COOL! 

Anyone else notice how you could put the Requiem for a Dream theme (by Clint Mansell) behind a Bugs Bunny cartoon and it would make it sound EPIC? That's the music I want behind my book trailer(yea right) Wouldn't matter if I wrote pages of  "My foot itches. Man this is taking forever. Have I gotten to 50k yet? That milk smells funny.", it would still be EPIC.




Now, watch this little diddy.

Did You See That!?! Ninja Motorcyclist! I wanna be that slick! But I trip over my computer cord while I'm still sitting down. So...never gonna happen.

How about a totally random cheese commercial!?...or 5.


A MUST SEE:

Dudes. I was seriously crying.


And finally, L'Aussie presented me with her very lovely, amazingly thoughtful, and cleverly phrased award! Isn't it so pretty? She is good!
Now, as of this moment as I type this out so I don't forget to include it this week, I HAVE NO IDEA what Fair Dinkum means. Like, so much so I can't even try. Okay, maybe, good people? See...No idea. But she will tell us! And I can't wait to know! (cause, I'm not 100% sure I haven't just been called something bad. No... SHE'S good people, so  I doubt she would do that...publicly.)

**IT MEANS True Blue!!! Don't know what that means, sucks for you cause I totally get that phrase! (visit her blog if you wanna know for realsies.)

Anyway! Now that I totally get it, I want to pass it along to some fine women who never disappoint:

Jen Daiker -  Everyone knows Jen. She is super cool, kind, funny, and guess what...That's all real! She is genuinely a kick ass(sorry, but she is) person! Who now runs not one, but several blogs. So. Impressive!! 


Candace - This gal is ALWAYS doing something giving and kind. She is so sweet and caring and really, can't see her not deserving all the awards for all the good she does and being so damned funny while she does it!! SHE is real. 


Erica and Christy - They run an informative, fun, and interesting blog. It's  a new haunt that I am loving to be in on! And what never fails to amuse me, (it really doesn't take much, folks) more than a few times(so often!) I have commented and gotten not ONE but TWO responses. Now, granted, two people run the blog but you think (I do) that they would only bother with one response but these gals are so great, that wouldn't do! So wise. So fun!

Abby - My crit. partner saves my sanity. I feel so lucky to know her. Honestly, I say things I know I will regret when she is deleting me for being so danged forward and mushy, but I really am grateful for her.  Before Abby I would flip out stressing over all the little writery stresses we get. You know, things that you can't talk to regular people about, or can but they tune you out, nod and smile until you walk away. But after Abby, I just shoot her an email and she is there. She has been there, she's going through that, she was wondering about that, etc. And then we chat until I feel better! Ugh. Everyone needs an Abby!(Back off! I didn't say "everyone needs Abby" Grrrrr)


Ugh, okay. That's all. I really do appreciate every one of you guys. I love communicating with you all every day. I love to read up on you all and I love your opinions and stories. And I love that I can come here and post stupid videos and tell nonsensical stories and everyone is just so darn wonderful about it! But, it might be a variation of  "never try and tell the mental person they're mental" but I'm fine with that either way. Yeay!

Happy weekend, all!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

If you don't hear from me no worries, I just have salmonella.

 Hubs and I had a 3rd attempt at fried chicken. The first two went well in the past but this time we didn't go the boneless strip route, and fried up some legs. Well...the first 4 were kind of pink but we were sure that was because of the bone. Sometimes it is colored closer to the bone, right? Well...we munched down those waiting for the last 3 to finish. By the time we got to the last ones, they were all pretty and NOT colored ANYWHERE. So, at this point, as I edit this post on Tuesday night, hubs and I are waiting for the salmonella. From now on, to do away with any doubt whatsoever, we're sticking with boneless.

So, I read all the time about how writers lack confidence in themselves. We are always the hardest on our own work. And, while I am inclined to believe this is true(as I know a little about myself and all) I don't see it as a bad thing. And I don't really think it's a flaw I need to work on.

I think, as a writer, we look at our work and think "we'll that could be a lot better." or "my dialog could use some work." or even "man I really blow." because we need to. We need to acknowledge that we have areas we could always improve so that we can cope when we get critiqued.

If you already believe your writing needs work, your characters aren't very strong, or your plot drags here or there then when someone tells you "hey, don't you think this is a little weak?" you don't fall apart.

Writers need tough skin, can't take it personally, so on and so forth. But the truth is, how do we not take it personally? We spend hours, days, months, and years with our characters. We poor our hearts and souls into our work; blood, sweat, and toil and all that jazz. How can we not take "I'm sorry but it just isn't what we're looking for" personally? 

No one likes a bad critique but the reason we deal, the reason we persevere, and keep on plowing ahead for our dream is our one coping mechanism: Low self-esteem.

Sound weird? wrong? Don't agree?

Okay. But when you already believe throwing a ball in the air will only come back down again, are you surprised when it does? Nope. You knew that.

I'm not saying we all really do suck like we believe. And I'm not saying taking your low self-esteem to an extreme isn't dangerous, you do need to believe you're awesome in general. But how much better does it feel when you think "oh this is just okay" and you get a critique from a partner that can't stop gushing about its awesomeness? SO GOOD, that's how!

Lacking confidence saves writers from falling apart right at the first sign of negativity directed at their work. It keeps their manuscripts out of the flames and away from the shredders most times. Instead of freaking out, doing handstands on the tables and screaming incoherently until someone carts them away in the big, white, padded van, most just curl up with a gallon of ice cream, a big blanket, and a feel good movie to drown their woes in for a while. Then pick themselves back up and try it again.

Being prepared for rejection keeps writers in one piece, whole, and ready to work a little harder, push it a little farther, and keep doing what they love. Instead of running away and joining a circus. Wait. That sounds like fun.

Anyway, believing in yourself is different than believing in your writing. Believing you CAN do it and being prepared to accept your MS needs more work are the two most important tools a writer can have. And when an agent/editor/ publisher picks up your MS and is pleased with what they hold and its saleability, I doubt you will believe it's real, really happening this time, because of all the times you had to try again during the process. And, to me, that surreal feeling, can be so nice. And so worth it.

Humility, lack of confidence, all those negative feelings you have toward your MS keep it and you whole.
But that is just my opinion, after all. And, really, what do I know? I could just be trying to make myself feel better. It worked!

Don't let yourself stay down, if you're in a low place with your writing and that journey you're one with it. Thinking you suck and actually sucking aren't the same. Chances are 95% good that you really don't. Look it up. That is a totally accurate statistic. Yup.

But, really, how many times have you read someone else's work who has been telling you how low they feel and you're blown away? It's the same with you, dude. You are leaps and bounds better than you believe you are. It's a writers curse. And it makes you strong. In a weird, butt-backwards way.

HERE are 12 ways to create suspense.

HERE you'll find a contest to win Across the Universe (which I DESPERATELY NEED TO READ!) from Scribbler to Scribe. 

We went to eat Chinese for the hub's birthday and my fortune was: "Every artist was first an amateur" HA! Right? Love when those pesky cookies are so well placed.



Happy Writery Wednesday!

Monday, December 6, 2010

How about a game

Firstly, If you have/haven't noticed, I changed my domain name. It was because of info someone posted about being a professional, having a pro. domain, so forth and so on. I figured, if I was going to change it, now was better than later. I'm so sorry for any inconvenience this may cause! Hopefully not a lot. And it wont change again promise!***Changed back because no one could find me! It was such a hassle, I'm leaving it. So sorry. This is ridiculous! Nothing has changed!

Secondly, Erica And Christy, one of my new favorite haunts, awarded me The Versatile Blogger award!! Whooo!!! Gosh. I love awards. They never DON'T make me feel all warm and fuzzy. So Thank You Erica and Christy!!! You guys ROCK! I have already paid dues to this award so no factoids but it's one of my favorites so I had to mention it!

You dudes definitely need to check them out, especially this month for their 25 days of best and worst things about being an aspiring novelist. It has been BRILLIANT so far. And they are down to 22 so hurry up before you miss it!

So, here is the game for this Monday. I give you random discussion points(+either my opinion or the reason behind the question so you don't think I'm completely insane.), you can pick one and give me your opinion! Topics will get increasingly more difficult to discuss. Ready?
 
We'll start with an easy one.

Beastly Trailer finally! Yeay!
Have you read the novel? Plan to? Gonna see it? I hope to read it before the movie comes out. Looks so darn cute. And I LOVE Beauty and the Beast.


Guys, I think Angelina Jolie is the most beautiful woman I have ever seen. (Chelsea Handler called her the "C" word in some stand up thingy!! Booooo! Unclassy. Judgmental. And just plain rude!) Johnny Depp is my man choice. Who would you say is your choice for most beautiful person?


HERE you'll see that, while not the number 1 names anymore, 2 characters from Twilight are STILL in the top....2 names of 2010. For or against trendy fictional character names for your children? AAAAAND discuss.


Last topic, the hubs and I were watching Most Evil, which is a show on the Discovery Channel (if you don't know) about horrible murderers and where they rank on a scientific scale  of 1-22 created by Dr. Michael Stone. The scale is used in gauging how evil a person is based on their childhood, background, mental state, crimes they committed, reasons behind the crime, etc.

The thing that made me curious is,  if one person had come to this person's aid in their life, would they have done the things they did? Most of these criminals had traumatizing childhoods, crazed parents, or some other factor that changed their perspective of life. Could more than one person be saved by just one someone reaching out to an obviously hurting human? Most all these people showed obvious signs that they were troubled, disturbed, dangerous, depressed, and in a dark place. If someone has gotten the children help, if parents had cared more, if anyone had done SOMETHING to help them, would it have made a difference?

There is also a brain scan study that shows that tons of real, live psychopaths are just wired differently. So, could they really be helped?

On to making it writing related, how are your villains shaped? If someone had reached out to them, would they still be villains? Did their past create them? Or are they just that way?

Pick your topic, my friends. I'm happy to hear anything you have to say on any subject!

HERE are lessons learned after 2 years of blogging from Joanna Penn of thecreativepenn.com 

Friday, December 3, 2010

Weiners Weiners, Chicken Dienners!

Firstly, I want to thank every one of you (and hopefully I have individually by now...I hope...*runs to check really quickly*) The turn out for a writer calling to other writers for their help was mind-blowing to me! Thank you all so much. And it helped tremendously!

I have decided to mix and match ideas. Do a few chapters in 1st and see what I like. Add more perspective into my MC in 3rd and see how that goes. And honestly, stupidly, I hadn't thought of doing that. I was all ready to do one or the other. Sometimes I can be very dense. Derp. Of course I can do both. IT'S MY NOVEL. *facepalm* So thank you all for making me realize I was being too narrow minded about it. And for all the time you all took to read and comment and think for me where I was not.

Now. We have business to do, right?

Funny Friday again! And I have 3 winners for my gift cards. So if you see your name, shoot me an email: ce . murphy at yahoo dot com. Include your info and where you want your gift card to be for. If you are not in the states I will need a little more info. But will get to that when it comes!

Here we go!!

3rd place, $10.00 Gift card to a book selling establishment goes tooooooo: LISA  GALEK!!

2nd place, $15.00 Gift card to a book selling establishment goes toooooo: DONEA LEE!!

1st place, $25.00 Gift card to a book selling establishment goes tooooooo: LIZ!!



Congrats you guys! And, yes. I did hand write and cut AND fold each piece of paper into relatively the same sizes (to compensate for longer names. My hubs things I'm insane. He had no idea wth I was doing. Still didn't tell him come to think of it. Ah well.) You were selected out of my special, winter, sexy pirate man couch blanket.

Such a great turn out for this contest! Loved it! Some really incredibly funny ideas. You guys are good at bad ideas. I take that to mean you're even greater at good ones! Some of them actually sounded like funny novel ideas...I mean...*steal*

Lisa, Donea, and Liz please email me your info, where you want it to and how to get it to you.

This has been blowing up the internet for days but I couldn't not pass it along just in case someone hasn't seen it yet.


Literal Music Videos!








If this isn't funny, I don't know what is!

Yep. That WAS Urkel.

To keep it short, those are the only videos I have today. As much as I want to keep you all here all day long, I wont be selfish.

HERE Natalie Whipple will break your writer heart. I only know her of now because of this entry. And I think the whole blogging writer community has come out to give her a pat and a hug and support. It's beautiful. And crushing. But hopeful, for her. We all need to hope for Natalie Whipple. 

HERE is a guest blog post on Rachelle Gardner's blog by Mary DeMuth that I really really enjoyed. It's about doing what works for you in the writing world.

Happy weekend! I have already had a great start to mine and can only hope and wish for yours to be amazing as well!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Last Call!

Today is your last day to get in on the gift card giveaway bonanza-thon! Click the frightened, concerned, quizzical, skeptical kitty head on the sidebar to get yourself in it to win it! Do it. Now. Please. Wait,  why am I begging you to take my money? Oh yeah, it's cause you guys totally deserve it! Win Win!

Go now.



Like, right now.



Why are you still here?

You should have clicked that cat face the minute I said "gift card"

It's because you are a kind person, huh?

You don't care about monetary things as  much as SOME PEOPLE.


Right?




Fine. Go. Already. I'll just sit here by myself...

Winners will be announced tomorrow morning right along with your Funny Friday post. So keep an eye out!




Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Writery Wednesday gets down and dirty with some begging.

My critique partner trudged through my MS last month and made some great corrections/changes/suggestions. But one suggestion has been hanging around my neck like a weak midget (Mitch Hedberg anyone?). Just nagging at me. Is it the right thing to do? If I say NO is it just because I'm lazy and don't want to do all that work? And if I do what if it doesn't work well? What if I don't and no one wants it because of the POV?

You see? It's stressful!

What I'm talking about is: My currently, almost polished novel INTO (she didn't care for the name after reading it either!)  is in 3rd person. She made the comment that it might read better and get more into the MC from first person.

AUGH! Change the whole thing from 3rd to 1st!?

*Le sigh*

But what IRKS me even more than the possibility of turning the whole novel into first, is the fact that I started writing it in first and changed my mind!(some nonsense about trying to master 3rd omniscient. HAHAHA. Riiiight. It didn't work out for either of us. We had to break it off before anyone got hurt, omniscient and I.)

Part of me wants to leave it and see where I get. If I don't get far I can always change it later, or if an agent/editor would rather see it in 1st then that can be done BUT the other part argues and says "if it wasn't a valid point she wouldn't have noticed or said anything." "what if the editor/agent doesn't want to waste all that time waiting for you to change it if they want it the other way?"

So, I'm asking you all, on this Writery Wednesday, what should I do? I have rewritten the opening first paragraphs in first and will give you both POV. Can you, please, read them and then tell me what you would like to read better?

It's YA Fantasy (dark...fantasy) If you don't want to, no skin off my nose. The world is a busy place, and I get that, so no worries! If you do, thank you in advance!

      A figure, cast in shadows, skulked around the vine-covered stone wall that bordered Shady Way Orphanage. It stooped low, rooted around the ground, then rose to begin again.
      Faith couldn't be sure of it's motive for the behavior from where she perched. The window seat of the crumbling mansion's third floor wasn't an ideal spot to be night watching. Behind the filmy, funk-smeared windows of her dorm room, she was surprised she could see the silhouette at all.
      Her hasn went absentmindedly to her stomach where the slight bulge was apparent to no one but herself. Rubbing her hand up and down the front of her dad's olf Pink Floyd T-shirt, she watched the human-shaped form stand abruptly. It's head snapped back and forth, as if searching for the cource of a sound. 
      The bun and sharp, long nose was then recognizable even from the distance that separated Faith from her widowed orphanage director. Mrs. Simp's profile was fixed on a spot on the wall and Faith was stunned at her peculiar behavior. 


     A figure, cast in shadow, skulked around the vine-covered stone wall that bordered Shady Way Orphanage. It stooped low, rooted around the ground, and rose just to do it all again.
     I couldn't be sure of the beings motive for such behavior from my perch. The window seat of the crumbling third floor wasn't an ideal spot for night watching but it beat staring at the water damaged ceiling from my cot. Behind the filmy, funk smeared windows of my dorm room, I was shock to have made out the silhouette at all.
      My hand left the mildewed cushion and went to my stomach. I absentmindedly rubbed the slight bulge through my dad's old Pink Floyd T-shirt, trying to focus on who was in the yard at this hour when the figure stood abruptly. It's head whipped back and forth as if searching for the source of a sound.
     The bun and sharp, long nose was recognizable even from this distance. It was a shock to realize I had been watching the strange behavior of none other than Mrs. Simp, the no-nonsense, widowed director of Shady Way. Why was she out, doing God knows what by the wall?



Not too long, right? The second hasn't been edited, I just wrote it out quickly to get a feel and decided to ask for more opinions on POV. I would be much obliged for any you all can offer.

How do you decide your POV? What would you do if someone suggested you changed it after your novel was finished?

HERE is an AMAZINGLY AWESOME guide to follow if you have a passionate writer in your life. Or one to pass out to your friends and family if you are the writer.

HERE is a great article on the damage being late can do to your career. (It's like it was written for me! Except I'm usually late because I get lost, but it is still no excuse. At all.) 

and HERE is a link Nicole Zoltack @ Where Fantasy and Love Take Flight shared on Tuesday of the 10 Commandments of Social Networking! Brilliant! (I just mentioned someone should make a list of do's and don'ts for bloggers the other day! Perfect.)

Duders, I'm sorry. I'm going to have to revive the HP spirit. If you were with me leading up until the HP movie release, you will understand that that means themed images/videos leading up to and event. This event, is obviously Christmas. So. Buckle up. 25 days of a Christmas comic, video, or whatever the crap amuses me that is Christmas themed! 


You all enjoy your Wednesday! 

(still LOVING Firefly. 3 Episodes a week just isn't enough. Going to have to find time to pencil in a few hundred more a week. But today my TV time is just for Glee.) 

Monday, November 29, 2010

Why do you come?

Gotta kick off this Monday on a very sad note. I'm sorry. Mostly because Leslie Nielsen has passed away. Please, lets honor generations of funny that is no longer lighting up this world with some silence.



“You're excited? You should feel my nipples!”
Leslie Nielsen

 Thank you.

It's a question I have been curious about for a while, why do you frequent? Not necessarily ME specifically, though that would be some useful info to have for writing posts that please you guys, but I mean about blogs in general.

What is it that makes you page through them all? Seeking information on books, movies, TV shows, sports, etc? Connecting with people all around the world? Nosiness(non-offensive nosiness of course)? Entertainment?

What is it that draws you to people you don't know? Is it easier for you to be you without meeting in person? Easier to connect with people without the pressure? I know it is for me anyway.

Why do you become a repeat stalker? The person who writes? Their voice? Or more the information they have that you want?

It interests me to know what you all think.

For me, I don't stalk without a good writery voice behind the blog. Good information is always great but if the person dealing it out doesn't dill my pickle, I can't sustain interest. I like to feel the writer behind it. I like to think I get to know a person by reading their blog. That it's a real life I get to connect with in some small way. Life. That's what it's about to me. If there isn't life I could just be reading a how-to article or information written in that oh-so sterile voice of newspapers. Ba-or-ing.

What is it for you? What do you like to find when you click on a blog title? What are your expectations like for the writers behind them?

I hope everyone had a lovely holiday/or not weekend! Mine was juuuust fine. Could use a few more of those 4 day weekends though. That was nice...ah well.

(the picture has no relevance to the post. I just thought it was funny...) 

Donea, The Queen of Procrastination awarded me the Versatile Blogger award! Hurray! I have already done my duties to this award but needed to share my appreciation for her and the award again anyway! So thanks a million Donea!! Be sure to check her out too. She always has some amazing blogging going on over there (And I love her chosen blog name!)

Brad Jaeger paid me a HUGE compliment last night on his blog, putting me in a list with some amazing bloggers and authors. And I am beyond grateful for that. I can't even put into words how this inflated my ego melted my heart. Thank you so much Brad!

No matter how many commercials they have trying to highlight all the "good" and "funny" things about the Yogi Bear movie, I just...can't...like...it...gah. Nope. Sorry. I did try. But as I am not under the age of 13, I really don't see it being targeted at me anyway, so no spilled milk?

And lastly: Don't forget to click the skeptical kitty head for a chance at winning some $$ from me! Deadline is Midnight Friday. I say midnight but I realize we are in different time zones. And it really doesn't matter either way. I'm not going to pick winners until I wake up Friday afternoon morning anyway so you could theoretically post up until those points and it would be cool. Okay...I got rambling a bit...

Happy Monday!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Unintentional Novel Title Slam!

Saturdays I don't usually post but:

Abby (crit partner shout out!) emailed me and was all "this would be fun" where I was thinking "ugh. I can't do that. I would have to think and stuff" but I totally trusted her and it WAS fun. So...

Friday, Jen Daiker over at Unedited made some lovely poetry with her books, which is apparently crazy fun bit of stuff to do. As I have already said. But it was her that brought this to Abby's idea-full mind who passed the idea on to me. So, thank those two.

I may have taken some drugs. And by drugs I mean medication. I'm a whiner when I'm sick. Even if I know it isn't that bad(this is just a sore throat), I still throw myself a pity party so excuse me if this has been nonsensical thus far. Anyway!

Here is my entry into this TBR Pile Novel Title Poetry Slam Thingy! (Abby is providing the other poetry side to the "slam" on her blog. Random poetry-blogging-show-down going on here...FYI)

So here you go!


 Fade, Beautiful Creatures
The Pillars of the Earth Die for You
The Iron King is
Everlost. 

I bring that poetry stuffs right? You like how they are all artfully arranged, semi-chaotically. I must be a frikkin' genius. (you can totally see haunted lamp gathering dust in the corner. Creepy kitty was there too for a while, but she wouldn't sit still for a picture.)

My TBR pile is bigger than this but there are some in it I am ashamed to have not finished, so they couldn't be included. Ever have a book like that? Just really awesome writing and captured your attention until...something else came along and you just stopped? I have 3. They are like these things just giving me the evil eye all the dang time. 

 Oh well. Anyway. Point is, it's time to head over to Abby's blog and see what she came up with! So Scoot!
Happy weekending!



Friday, November 26, 2010

Funny Friday with Turkey Belly

It's that time again. Funny Friday is back at you after a fairly big break! Anyone else stuffed? Had a good Thanksgiving? Ate tons, had good time with family? I hope so.  Everyone had a great Thursday if you aren't in the states?

Check out this hilarious Dan Radcliffe skit on Funny or Die. Priceless.

OBVIOUSLY I lied about the "no more HP till next year" but really...can you blame me?








Oh you dudes, the food, she was goooood. The hubsters grandparents and brother surprised us by calling from a fast-food joint 45 min before they showed up at our house. There was much, tornado-like cleaning done. It was a nice visit. He missed them and vice versa. So it was nice.

Did you all see the awesome banner Kristal Shaff made??? Awesome!

And lastly: Have you all seen THIS hilarious post? I haven't yet confirmed it, but I assume the whole blog is full of these funnies. I snickered at this one till I couldn't breathe. Ah dogs...

You all have less than 1 week to get in on the contest if you haven't(or have and want another entry). Click the kitty head in the sidebar for a shot at some $$. Ends December 2nd.

Happy weekend you guys!! Will see you back here Monday. Tah!!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Thankful Fest, Fools!

You know, I don't post reviews. And this really can't count as a review, but on Saturday night I crawled in bed early(out of boredom). My TBR books, stacked in 2 piles next to my bed called my name. But instead of picking up any of the 3 that I had already started (2 of which are almost finished) I grabbed Wake.

Why? No idea. I just wanted to try out the first chapter. Now, I know I'm behind on picking this one up but the opportunity just never presented itself till recently.

A few hours later and I'm staring at the back of the book plotting out when I could go get Fade. Many times in those hours I told myself: "after this part I'm going to bed", "this is the last section before I need sleep". But the funny thing about this book is, the right place to stop never came. I could never find a good spot to put it down. I was so impressed, maybe because my expectations started out pretty skeptical.

I think I love Cabel...

I have heard mixed reviews about Wake, so it could be and couldn't be for you. Either people have loved it or hated it. I am in the lovin' it category.

In honor of Thanksgiving I joined up with Jeffrey Beesler's Thankful Fest! Head on over there to get in on all his thankful participants!

This year I am thankful for all my many blessings in my life. My house, my hubs, my family, my amazingly awesome mother(yes she deserves to be excluded from the "family" category because she is THAT awesome), my 5 loverly cats, my beautiful crazy fantastic friends, my job, my car, my ever improving attitude-you know, all the normal things. But also...

I'm thankful for/that
  • amazing critique partners
  • triple cheese and bacon roast beef sandwiches at Arby's.
  • I haven't been sitting outside Best Buy since Monday for Black Friday (no joke. They are really out there!)
  • flannel sheets
  • central Heating
  • not being a skeezey butt hole, like certain people. Who...shall remain nameless.
  • being able to read and write!
  • bosses who don't make me work on holidays (hello, department stores...you should be ashamed!)
  • having hope 
  • being able to laugh on a daily basis
  • not being a fork. Cause...really, ew. 
  • cake, cookies, and icecream
  • Christmas lights going up
  • gellyroll pens
  • cats in general
  • it's almost tax season again(one day I will hate this, so all the more reason to enjoy the hell out of it now)
  • Natural Calm supplement that helps me sleep well(no I'm not getting paid to mention it, it's just great stuff)
  • Firefly! (guess what. . . I watched my first full episode ((that wasn't the movie)) last week! And I lurrrv it!!)
  • food in my fridge and cloths on my back
  • finding books I have been wanting on random-sale everywhere
  • 2.5 day work weeks
  • left overs! 
  • hot showers
  • my husband just THINKS he's growing his beard out even longer because "what's wrong with looking like a mountain man" but really...he's wrong. 
                 
I am also thankful for THIS Giveaway! From Sparkling Reviews, you can win a Nook Color!! So be sure to get in on this one. That's Huge!

Also thankful for Ishta Mercurio @ Musings of a Restless Mind said it the best, about this "turd" (her word and it is just PERFECT to describe this...) who wants to buy your books for 250$ so he can rewrite them and sell them under another name and then give you 40% while keeping 60% for himself. Umm... yes. Go read what she has to say.

and HERE is a wonderful auction of AMAZING writery things (first pages critiques, query critiques, full MS critiques ((from real live actual authors!)), signed ARC's, and soo much more!) for a fellow writer fighting colon cancer! Amazing cause to help with!

You guys... Have an amazing Thanksgiving! No matter where you are or what you celebrate, I hope you all can find a bunch to be thankful for this year. And if not:

Monday, November 22, 2010

Get Naked.


I got an awesome award 5x in 1 week! How flipping kick-ass is that?!

Thank you Quinn, Jessica Hill, Lisa Galek, Jennie Bailey and Lettuce Head !!!
 

 

Five very awesome, very friendly, very entertaining blogger/writers whose places I NEED to haunt every day, they are so great. Don't know em? You need to. Them's good people.

I would like to pass this on to:

Matthew Rush @ The Quintessentially Questionable Query Experiment
Kristal Shaff: Fantasy Author

Alexia Chamberlynn

The rules say I have to share 10 things about myself. Aren't you guys sick of me talking about me yet?

1.I got up to do some work and forgot my first fact I was going to share with you.

2.When I graduated high school my friends and I went to the grocery store, picked out a cake and had the nice bakery woman write "Get Naked" on it. To her credit, she didn't bat an eye. Which was sort of disappointing to a group of giggly girls

3.In my younger days I used to be able to hop a fence one handed without having to stop running.

4.I grew up in a small town . ("the hell" you say.) It was and is a retirement town. Very beautiful but very...old.

5.No matter where I move, I seriously always work out an escape plan for zombie attacks. Judge me not. Always better to be prepared than caught off guard and get eaten.

6.Cold feet are the worst thing about winter.

7.No matter how hard I try, I kill all household plants. I'm terrible with greenery.

8.I always wanted to learn to play an instrument. I have a harp I have had for many years and can't play more than a part of the super mario theme on it. This fact makes me terribly sad.

9.I am terrified, paranoid, and stressed out when it comes to boogies and being in public.

10.My eyes are terribibble. So bad. Awful, no good, and rotten. Can't see anything without my contacts.

11. (This makes up for the forgotten fact) I value manners above most other personality traits in people.


Second Award is from Samantha @ Life, Love, and Living in France! I loved this award when I first saw it. It's ridiculously adorbs.

I want to pass this one on to
Lisa Galek @ Read. Write. Repeat. 
Jennie Bailey @ Garden Full of Lily (this is just too appropriate for her too!)
Abby Minard @ Abover Water
Sara B. Larson 

THIRD AWARD(That's right. You love it...why..? ..what is wrong with you people??) is from an incredible new blogger, Alexia Chamberlynn! She is some good bloggin' stuff wrapped up in a...umm this got weird. But she is totally amazingly awesome!!

Melissa @ Through the Looking Glass
Lydia Kang @ The Word is My Oyster
Lettuce Head
Jessica Hill
 

So there you have it, all. Some of my favorite haunts, writers, and internetty people, all right there for you. You guys all rock my world every day. Lurv!

I had the very awesome pleasure of meeting my crit partner Abby Minard for the first time in person. We communicate all the time through emails and I knew early on that I liked her. She's funny and sympathetic, kind and a good ear. Think she's pretty in pictures? Prettier in person. Makes me sick...

But she really is a fun person to meet! It was like I had already met her before. You know? Not nearly as awkward as meeting people for the first time can be which can be terrifying.

Dudes, I am always lost and running late so if we ever meet in person, lets "plan on" one time and then you guys show up 30 min. later cause it is really embarrassing for me...

I'm super excited to announce that I have INTO in my possession again! Okay...I never didn't have it but I have the copy Abby worked on for me in my hands! Couldn't be any more excited to dig in again.

When I started out writing I hated critiques. I hated that people thought they could tell me how to make my story better because, what the crap did they know?! I took it too personal. I was too attached and too cocky. My first adventure into the critique group world I was awakened pretty harshly to the fact that I knew nothing. And I have been grateful of that ever since. It was hard. I didn't take it well at the time but it did make me realize what I was writing was crap. Big bunch of blabby crap and I needed to work hard to not be crap.

That isn't to say I'm still not crappy writer but I have worked to improve over the past year and I am confident, if nothing else, I have improved.  And now, when I see a page full of marks and notes my world isn't destroyed. I don't tense up and immediately get defensive.

All those notes and marks are there to make it better. Make the story stronger. Make my writing flow more easily. And make my world more clear to see.

So, as you can tell, I can't wait to make my love, my story, my book better.

And thanks to amazing people like Abby, I have the ability to. It isn't always easy to admit you have room to improve. But you always do. So get over yourself and make sure you get some amazing people to have your back and show you how to do it.  


HERE is an amazing article about JK Rowling and writing advice.

HERE is a crazy amazing/sad post about human's, beauty, and missing out on a great experience in life by Laini Taylor.


And to finish out my obsessive Harry Potter fanatical posts until next year:

Friday, November 19, 2010

Mrs. Rowling, how we love thee

Jen Daiker @ unedited, Melissa @ Through the Looking Glass , Lisa Galek @ Read. Write. Repeat, and Renae Mercado @ The Siren's Song, Laurel @ Laurel's Leaves, and I are at it again for the last installment of HP yummy-madness bonanza extravaganza!

Firstly, midnight show was crazy awesome. My bud got there at 7 and it was packed already so he got in line and texted me to hurry up. In my haste I got a few pictures but it was so hectic I didn't take any in line! I'm sorry! But there was a chick dressed up as....wait for it...a Firebolt! It was pretty freakin funny. Some great costumes and some...I didn't get...but whatever.



My mask, I made that thank you. My mark...I scribbled that as quickly as possible...thank you... and ME! If you saw that girl last night, HI! If not. Sucks for you. Apparently I creeped people out. Which was awesome. Sadly I was a lone death eater as far as I saw. There were a few guys in capes with white face paint which we assumed were death eaters but...it was hard to say for sure. LOTS of Dobby ears though and that was crazy awesome.

Some news crews were there as well. I had hoped to link it if there had been something cool to see for you all but I can't find anything on this blasted internet and it's 4 am so...I quit for the night. Hope you all enjoyed the movie who go to go. If not yet, I hope you will enjoy it! I won't say anything more about it than this: I was pleased. I loved it.


Today(you will probably find me snooooozing in after the midnight release) marks the beginning of the end to an amazing series. (which is soo close to being over *pout*!) And so we must honor the woman who made it all possible. Without her, we would have no Harry, Snape, Dumbley-dore, Weasley twins, or any other characters we love. (and love to hate)
J.K. Rowling had a hard start. I think her journey to being published is one every writer clings to these days. Even epic novels like Harry Potter didn't make it easily. Which is something I know I will have to remind myself every day when I set out to query. She worked her ass off for what she has. It is easy to be jealous of her but impossible to think she didn't earn it all, or deserve it all. She did. She does.

I wanted to highlight some facts about her that I thought were interesting and reflect in big and small ways in her writing.
  • Did you know her parents met on a train traveling from Kings Cross? Her father was off to join the Royal Navy. Her mother the WRNS (apparently the woman's equivalent)
  • As a child she lived near a brother and sister who's last name was Potter. The boy claims to be "the" Potter and his mother says they used to dress up as wizards but she says that is not true at all. I believe Mrs. Rowling. 
  • Her favorite grandmother, Kathleen, is whom she took her K in JK in honor of. 
  • When she was 11 she met Sean Harris who Chamber of Secrets is dedicated and owned the original Ford Anglia
  • She was traveling alone on a crowded train when the idea for Harry Potter struck! (he's alone on the train in the beginning? eh? Neat.)
  • Her mother died young in 1990 at only 45. Very sad...
  • Sometimes, as she fought to finish Philosophers Stone before she ran out of time, Mrs. Rowling HATED the book, even when she loved it too. So. Yes that is a real thing, to hate your own amazing work and love it all at once. 
  • Her name is NOT pronounced Row(as in an argument) but Row(as in what you would do in a boat.) Nothing to connect with her stories actually but I thought it was interesting...I didn't know that anyway.  
     And something I read on her site that I just loved, I don't know why exactly but I did:
    "You need to write something that a publisher would want to publish (it only takes one, but it might take a while to find them. If you are turned down by ever single publisher in existence, you will have to consider the possiblity that what you have written is not publishable)." -HA! Yes. Love. 


    So this weekend as you head the theater with your friends and family, spare a moment to marvel at the one mind that dreamed it all up. Because that is what this week was all about, Harry and Imagination. And one imagination has been the cause for all your fond memories that involve waiting in line to see the next HP movie and counting down till midnight to get your hand on the next book just to see what happens in the life of the boy who lived. Amazing, right?

    HERE is JK Rowling's official website, if you don't already know it. And where I collected most all my info on her to guarantee its truthfulness.


    Mrs. Rowling, I salute you and all the strength, imagination, and genius you possess. Thank you.


    (you notice how I had a few pictures to finish out there? Yea...no, my supply was never ending!) 

    JK Rowling texted Daniel Radcliffe and promised no more HP! Boo. But I bet he is relieved. 

    Enjoy your Harry Potter weekend, all. I know I will!

    Saturday I get to meet one of my newest critique partners for the first time in person! Talk about someone being psyched! Abby Minard is amazingly awesome. She is my go to when I have a whine or a question or a concern. So I really am so stoked to get to meet her and get to rave about and discuss her MS in real life!

    Oh, and Christmas is coming up so...you all pitch it, K?

    Finally, Don't forget to get in on my contest before Dec. 2nd.. Click the kitty head!