Easter clean-up

Okay, so I didn’t get this posted yesterday. I did, however, get three others drafted and ready to go for next week (still have some others to put together yet). I know, I know. But it is Easter weekend, and we have company today. Why am I writing this now, then? Because I’m in the backseat of my car on the way to a family gathering that’s two hours from home and I can’t hear the conversation happening in the front seat well enough to take part.

In other news, I’m hanging out with fellow author Mary Fan over at her blog today and talking about writing process. She’s a wonderful host and you should all check out her site. You can find my post here.

So! What are all these mysterious and entertaining posts I’ve been promising? My good friend, Will, is out on tour at the moment, and will be stopping by next week. I’m sprucing up the place in case he brings his friends, the Banned Underground, along with him (which means I’ll be stocking up on pizza and beer and reinforcing anything that might be prone to shattering as a result of feedback). For a full list of tour dates, check out his publisher’s page here.

Also, tomorrow is April Fool’s Day. Since April is National Poetry Month, I think I’ll take it upon myself once again to try writing a poem a day. I’ve done it before and really enjoyed it, so why not? This serves as your warning: Prepare to be inundated with bad poetry. 🙂

And now I think I’ll leave you to it. I hope you all have a very happy Easter!

(c) 2013. All rights reserved.

A fun little post to pass the time

I found this survey thanks to S.T. Lakata, a friend I would not have were it not for GUTGAA and Twitter.  And since I’m bored and my posting has been a bit sporadic of late, I hope you enjoy this while I draft up a whole bunch of posts with which to keep you entertained.  More on that tomorrow.  But now, a little more about me! 🙂

Filling in your kid years:
What’s the one television show you wanted to stay up late to watch?
Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman.  My parents watched it every week and my sister and I used to beg them to let us stay up and watch it, too.  Sometimes we won; sometimes we lost.  But now I have the entire series sitting in my DVD cabinet, awaiting a rewatch.  Muahahaha! 🙂

Boot Scootin'.......

Boot Scootin’……. (Photo credit: Sandy/Scarlett Images ♥ Finally back!)

What two songs remind you of that period the most?
“The Thunder Rolls” by Garth Brooks
“Boot Scootin’ Boogie” by Brooks and Dunn

Clearly, I listened to a lot of country as a kid. And if they still played it on the radio, I’d still listen to it. (Yes, I am aware that country music stations still exist. That was a comment on the state of country music today.) Continue reading

Mix tape memories, Part II

Last night I saw a Buzzfeed post on Facebook about the Backstreet Boys doing a Harlem Shake video.  I missed out on that particular sensation, but I still love the Backstreet Boys, so I had to see this one.  I still don’t get the whole Harlem Shake thing, but whatever.  This made my night:

Also this:

If you don’t know why, then you need to go and watch the video for “Everybody (Backstreet’s Back)”.  It’s terrible and cheesy and I can’t believe it’s the sort of thing I adored as a teenager, but there you have it.  High school flashbacks for the WIN! 😀

(c) 2013.  All rights reserved.

Sunday Sunday Sunday!

So this weekend I wanted to get a bunch of different writing projects squared away between a surprise party and visiting family.  No problem, right?  Wrong!  Well, I got one of them taken care of, anyway, but a visiting headache kept me from the others.  Our weekends are always so busy, it seems, yet they’re the only time I really have a chance to get caught up on things at home.  So this morning is going to be catch-up time till the family arrives.

In the meantime, I acquired a shiny new DSLR a while back and have been having loads of fun with it.  For your viewing pleasure until I return with a post of more substance, behold, the things with which I’ve been filling my weekend: behind the cut!

Mix tape memories

Rumor has it that my generation was the last to make mix tapes.  And you know what?  I believe it – by the time I graduated high school, my friends and I had moved on to making mix CDs of stuff we downloaded from the internet at places like Napster and Kazaa.  I marvelled at the lightning-fast download speeds on my college campus, where you could download a song in only five minutes…while the rest of the campus lay sleeping.  Any other time, you could expect to wait at least a half an hour.  And that was if you were lucky.  It’s hard to imagine routinely waiting that long for a download now.

mixtape

Photo by Kay Kauffman

But back then, it was hard to imagine digital music ever fully supplanting physical copies of songs.  For some people, perhaps it still is.  Playlists are the new mix tapes.  Where CDs were once the height of technology, now they are as antiquated as dinosaurs.  And tapes?  Well, you might as well have crawled out of a cave.  “Tape?  What’s a tape?” the kids will say.  Don’t even get me started on vinyl.

I stumbled across some old mix tapes I made in high school the other day and have been listening to them in my car during my commute.  As a teenager, my living room boasted a stereo system that included a five disc CD changer, a digital AM/FM tuner, and a dual tape deck with auto reverse.  Now I think the only CD player I have in my whole house is in my computer.

Tuesday thoughts

I’m too tired to come up with much in the way of a post tonight, so I think I’ll just leave you with these pretty pictures instead.  Seymour surprised me with a visit this morning and gave me some pretty lilies before taking me out to lunch.  Then for supper tonight, the kids and I tried our hand at making homemade donuts using Pillsbury biscuits and a deep fryer.  They turned out pretty well, but the kids were wired for the rest of the night.

Now if only the sugar had had the same effect on me… 😀

(c) 2013.  All rights reserved.

 

The madness continues. . .

. . .but not for me.  The emails are out, and I didn’t get one, which means I’m not moving on to the second round of Pitch Madness.  I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t disappointed, but I’d also be lying if I said I’d been holding my breath.  My pitch needs work.  Maybe I should have gone with my gut and used the short pitch I’ve got up on authonomy.  But the competition was pretty stiff; 300 or so people were culled from the competition, so I’m hardly alone in my disappointment.  Besides – I’ve made a bunch of new friends, and that is quite obviously the best part of these competitions. 🙂

So for me, it’s back to querying the old-fashioned way – research and submit, research and submit.  Oh, and pray.  Cuz, you know, you gotta pray.  A lot.  The competition out there is stiff, and marketing is not my strong suit (I’m working on that).  Meanwhile, there’s always the #PitMad contest on Twitter next week… 😀

Congratulations to all those moving on, and good luck in the upcoming rounds.  I’ll be cheering you on from the sidelines and doing my best to keep thinking positive while I hunt for agents to add to my query list.

(c) 2013.  All rights reserved.

 

Pitch madness!

LipeiArtwork by Hazel Butler

Lipei
Artwork by Hazel Butler

That’s right, folks, I’ve got pitch madness!  What, pray tell, is pitch madness?  Why, it’s a lovely competition run by the lovely Brenda Drake and it’s happening right now! 🙂  Well, kind of.  The submission window was yesterday and the task for those who chose to accept it was to submit a 35-word logline (a pitch) and the first 250 words of their completed novels.  The slush zombies are currently wading through all the submissions and choosing who will advance to the next round.

Unlike during GUTGAA when I was on the edge of my seat, I was slightly more relaxed this time around because there was no entrant cap – everyone who entered during the window got in.  But!  That hasn’t stopped me from second-guessing every bit of my submission ever since I hit send yesterday morning.

I’ve been working over my pitch and my MS quite a bit over the course of the last six months, but that hasn’t stopped me from feeling insecure about the whole big mess, especially since I have a variety of short pitches in the works now.  Do I use one of the ones I created for the #PitMad pitchfest last fall?  Do I use the one I currently have up on authonomy?   Do I use the one-sentence synopsis I spent a whole day trying to draft?

Why I read

So, what has prompted me to write about my reading motivations?  Well, I’ll tell you!

In addition to being lousy at blogging so far this year, I haven’t been so great at keeping up with Facebook and Twitter, either.  This means I spend a lot of time playing catch-up.  During one of my crazy bursts of catch-up reading, I found the following tweets in my stream:

And I got to thinking: Why do I read?