Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween

Image courtesy of glitter-graphics.com

Happy Halloween, everyone!  

I'm officially 20k into rewrites as of last night. It's still kinda messy, but I've discovered fighting that is like trying to cook while cleaning the kitchen. I'm taking the day off from adding new words to tidy up what I've got, and to be with the family. This is also our last day of vacation. We're going to bake haunted cupcakes and let Mini dress up a pumpkin. Do you have any special plans for the day? 

Friday, October 29, 2010

Dream of Graduation and That Book on Your Desk

scary jack o lanturn Pictures, Images and PhotosLast night I dreamed I was late for my own graduation. I'm not sure what it was a graduation for, but I was in a house and there was this red LED alarm clock on a table with a vase of orange and brown synthetic flowers (I think they were my grandmother's, actually) and a reminder note to be there. The note had 9 written on it. And the clock said something like, 9:17. I started to panic.

I shouted at Oldest to hurry up, we were late, and I realized I didn't have anything pulled together. I was sleeping, I guess, since I was wearing nothing but a long T-shirt and undies, no pants - hahahahahaha - and had to race around to find something suitable to wear. I was worrying the whole time that we would miss "the walk", but then I remember how long it took them to actually do the four opening speeches, and I was pretty sure I could make it there by diploma time.

Jack o Lantern Pictures, Images and PhotosI skipped the makeup and went in jeans and the shirt I'd slept in. Oh, hell, now that I think of it, I hope I wore a bra! That would be a thing of nightmares, no bra to graduation? :P

Anyway, I made it in through this side door and there were all these folding chairs. It looked like a church, rather than a school of some kind. Oldest had on his red cap and gown from his actual high school graduation, but I didn't have one, so they gave me one at the door. I was kind of glad for that, because when I took a seat with the faceless other graduates, I was suddenly dressed to the 9s...albeit like I'd just stepped out of a roller disco movie. It was wearing this striped, satiny, pleated blouse with colors like purple, green, and gold with poofy angel sleeves, and trousers. And I had a full face of makeup and my hair was all arranged liked I might do for a special occasion.

I sat down in a folding chair, and Oldest came in and sat near me. I was sitting on the edge of the seat and was in the process of pulling on the graduation gown they had given me, when I woke up. I have no idea what it all means, but I even when I woke up I was glad I hadn't missed the graduation.

Mummy Cat Pictures, Images and PhotosOn a completely different note, I have a writerly question for those who care to answer....

I have a book on my desk right now. It's currently Alien by Alan Dean Forester.

If I'm writing along and I get suddenly stuck, I pick it, crack it open and read a few lines. No more than a short paragraph, just enough to see someone else's words in motion. After that, I shut the book again and start writing again. Works like a charm. I don't know why it works, but it does.

The book itself utterly unrelated to what I'm working on, and yet it's one of those stories that always inspires me, because it's well written, the characters have great depth, and I can visualize what's going on not just by the text, but because I've seen the movie eleventy billion times and it's still one of my favorites.

So my question is, do any of you have a book like that?  One you keep close to your desk to get you typing again when you hit a tough patch?  If so, what's the book?  What is it about that story that inspires you?

By the way, all of todays pictures are linked directly to their source, courtesy of www.photobucket.com  .

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Celebrating 20 Years


Today marks 20 years for me and the Hubster. The funny thing is, we were so very young when we married even the judge didn't think we'd last two full years.

If I remembered the man's name, I'd send him a card - not to be a smarty pants or anything - but I'd like to let him know we beat the odds.

X0X0

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Back From the Dead

 Ugh. So very sick. I'm actually feeling a little better today, but still not 100% . Whatever stomach virus crud Hubby brought home on Friday, he managed to pass around to the rest of us. First Mini, then to me, and lastly to Oldest. Hubby, who is over the mess, has had to deal with three of us sick at once, poor guy.

Since I've been in bed with chills and fever for the past few days, there's nothing new to report. As soon as I'm feeling better, I'll be back to blogging, and Blitzing (Bejeweled on FB), and tweeting. Until then, have pizza and cheeseburgers for me please, because as much as I want, I can't hold it down. Yet.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Black Cat on My Doorstep

I planned a blog post for yesterday, but Google Chrome has been giving me fits. I went rounds with a website, trying to get things to load, and once I contacted tech support, they asked me what browser I was using. Turns out Google Chrome can't always process every bit of java script, so it simply decides not to load the page. Uh, inconvenient much? *_* So, I'm now using another browser and the things I couldn't access before are now working just fine.

Yesterday I hopped into Second Life to attend Cassandra "Sharktooth" Curtis's Near Death Experience workshop over at Haunted Fruit Islands - Fig. She talked about her own NDE as well as went over some of the basic and most common elements of NDEs. What a great presentation!

And what a great place to have the presentation... Haunted Fruit Island - Fig is absolutely gorgeous this time of year. The sim owner has decked out every square inch in a Halloween theme. There is a haunted Carosel, a haunted house ride, a corn maze, and in the picture below, Cass is standing in front of the Spider Queen's lair. It's a truly beautiful sim to walk through.  

Yesterday afternoon Oldest and I drove to Ruston to pick up his medical records for enlistment in the Coast Guard. We were told on the phone to arrive at the doctor's office before 3pm. We got there at 2:40, and apparently they decided to close early, because the doors were locked and there was no note. ARG. That was a complete waste of time and gas money.

When we got back home, I had Oldest call around, and on Monday we're going to see if they will fax a copy of his records to us. Otherwise, I have to make another drive to Ruston. We will see.

All next week hubby will be off work. He's taking vacation time for our anniversary, although with the current issues with his yellow Jeep, I'm kinda doubting we'll end up in Little Rock - unless Oldest has all his papers by then. On Friday, hubby called home to inform me the transmission is going out on the Jeep. At this point, he may just have to park it and tinker with it on the weekends. Dad and Jay just replaced the transmission in dad's truck, and that was a $900 operation when you figure in the cost of a new tranmission, three trips to Monroe, extra things needed to seat the transmission in there. It makes me dizzy just thinking about it. I have no idea where we'll get the money to cover repairs for mustard Jeep. A call to the dealership nearly KO'd me. Just for the diagnosis of what "might" be wrong would cost us $88 an hour, and we'd likely have to tow the Jeep up there so they could even look at it. And that $88 doesn't cover any repairs. That is just to hook our Jeep up to a diagnosic machine. He told us that and I thought, you gotta be fucking kidding me. So that's one full scoop on our plate right now.

I've started on section 2 of my vampire manuscript. There are over 24 scenes to straighten out, clean up, whatever. I'm trying to psyche myself up for it. Telling myself that when this section is done I'll be half way through the book. There is a lot to this section though. For now, it seems like a daunting task. I wish I could be one of those writers who can just lay it down, tidy it up and go. But my thinking process (and writing process) just doesn't work that way. C'est la vie.

There you have it, the weekend skinny. I'm going up to the store in a few minutes to pick up a copy of Jonah Hex for the hubster, and some popumcorms for the boys. After that, it's nose to the grind stone.

What are your weekend plans?  Doing anything special?  Reading any new books?

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Black Magic Thursday

courtesy of glitter-graphics.com
Thursday has it in for me. Hubby called me to let me know the yellow Jeep is having transmission problems. Every doctor Oldest has ever gone to - with the exception of one - has somehow lost his medical records. My BFF called, and I think her boyfriend needs his legs broken. And at the end of the day, once hubby made it home we hosted our own vomit fest. One minute he says "do I feel like I'm running a fever to you?", and the next... Well, you get the idea.


Sigh. In a few minutes I'm going to figure out something for supper. Mini got a "happy face" at school today - which means he didn't get in any trouble - so I think I'll have him help me make that potato salad I talked about fixing yesterday. But what can I make to go with it... I may have to peek in the deep freezer.


Today I added 2k to the vampire book. I'm trying to make sure  all the information I need at the beginning of the book is packed in there before I print it up for proofing. I'd hoped to be on that already, but life happens. A lot, apparently. The second draft is currently sitting at a little over 12k (approximately 40 pages), which is roughly the target I'd had set for the beginning section. Any less than that, and I think my book might come up too short. I DON'T want to go another round with this thing, so...more tidying up before moving on to section 2 (of 4). I'd actually be thrilled if the beginning word count would go over by two thousand words or so. I like having that buffer zone. 


I have a folder on my desktop with nothing but bits and pieces of this story, and I cleared out several note pages today. That felt pretty good. Tonight I'll be copy and pasting some stuff directly from older versions of this story into my main document. Pieces that don't need much work, that are ready to be patched in. That should jump jump up my word count a bit too.  


In looking at the conflict up close, I think I need to add a little more to my hero's plate. Something to really push his buttons.  A sense of doom to hang over his head, so he worries about the ax dropping through the entire story. So, that's another thing I have to work on tonight. Despite the slow going process, and a few moments of doubt, I'm starting to see a sliver of progress. It doesn't stop me from wishing I could wave a magic wand over the whole thing, and wish it finished, though. ;0)


That's all for now. I hear Mini playing ball in the dining room. My mom senses tell me disaster is imminent, so I better step i. Have a wicked Thursday, everyone!  

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Purple Wednesday

Protect our kids. Say no to bullies!
I'm getting a late start to the day. I stayed up until well after midnight looking up funny pictures and gif clips with Oldest while talking about career goals, college, and other stuff. Basically mom and son time.

Everyone who reads my blog knows how close I am to my kids. I can't - and don't want to - imagine what I'd do if something happened to one of them. And if something happened to them because of a bully?  I wouldn't let it go. Period.

All this talk lately about teen suicide and bullying shakes me up. And the thing is, it's not just teens bullying other teens. What about the girl on myspace who committed suicide after she was bullied by another girl's mother?  It makes me wonder what the hell is wrong with some people?

It's a cruel world out there, but I refuse to be cruel with it. I believe in karma, and I believe we must eventually face what influence we have sown during our life. I will continue to be the change I hope to see in the world. People need a serious reawakening of compassion. This goes so far beyond tolerance of our differences...it's about decency as human beings. You don't see any other species treat each other the way we treat our fellow man. What does that say about us?

Today's image is courtesy of glitter-graphics.com.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Red Tuesday

image courtesy of glitter-graphics.com
An update on the vampire revisions...I'm roughly a fourth of the way there. (My manuscript is separated into four parts right now. Beginning - beginning/middle - end/middle - Ending)

I've now gone through all the scenes on my first cloud sheet, twelve in all. My word count is a little short, but I'm not worrying about that just yet. I re-wrote the scenes that needed it, and added in the three additional scene cards (green note cards). Pretty much, the entire beginning of the book is there.

Tonight I'll print it all up and do a throughly line edit on everything there. By the time I'm done with that, I'm pretty sure two of the scenes will ended up greatly expanded. I'll be surprised if not. I'll be working on that until it's polished to my satisfaction, and once it's done, I'll move on to the next section of manuscript and start the process all over again.

How do you do revisions?  Do you go one chapter at a time?  Scene per scene?  Have a crit partner run through your draft with a fine tooth comb?  I'd love to hear your revision strategies if you'd care to share.

Today, while putting away bath towels, I knocked a box down on top of my head and found a package of Garnier Nutrisse that I bought two years ago. I don't remember why exactly I bought it at the time, but I'm notorious for impulse buying hair color then putting it away for later. Right now I've got at least 7 boxes of hair color back in the bathroom cabinet: a garnet color from Feria, a champagne blonde, a frosting kit, two boxes of dark blonde and a few others. I should take a picture of the stash. Anyway, the color on the Garnier Nutrisse box is medium golden mahogany brown. I shuffled it in with the other boxes of hair color and put the towels away. Blah blah.

However as I was writing, the lure of untapped chemicals began to sing the siren song that can only mean one thing: impulse hair change. I had a hard time choosing whether to use the Feria or the Garnier, but ended up going with the lighter of the two tones because my hair had so much blonde on top. Notice - HAD.

Around 9 thirty, hubby called home and asked what I was up to. Ooooh, nothing. This, as I'm talking on the phone with a head full of hair dye. 35 minutes later, I ended up with this:

No make up in either of these photos, so don't freak out. :P

The box said brown tones, but I figured with my starting hair color it would end up a medium auburn. I was right. Red hair always makes my freckles more obvious, but what the heck.

I think it's cute. I hope Mini recognizes me when I pick him up from school.

Anyway, that's that. I trimmed my fringe a little since I took these this morning, but it didn't make that much of a change. Just enough to get the hair out of my eyes. I wonder what hubby's gonna say when he sees it. Ah well, he knows I'm a color junkie. He shouldn't be too surprised. And at the very least, he should be glad that I didn't have to pay for it, per say. The color was already here, so I didn't go buy anything.

Off to load the dishwasher before I have to go pick up Mini Bear. Bless his little heart. He got his first report card yesterday (did I mention that already? #oldage) and he managed all As...except for his conduct grade. LOL Yep, that's my little Gemini chatterbox. Oh well, he still got an S for satisfactory. ^_^

Happy Tuesday, everyone!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Weekend Accountability

This weekend, I edited a full chapter from the vampire book. Okay, editing doesn't even begin to cover what I did to this thing. I tore the heart out, broke bones, removed ribs then took the whole big gooey mess and reshaped it into a chapter that said pretty much the same thing, just in a better, clearer way.

After undergoing 12 hours of reconstructive surgery, it's polished and has finally been tossed onto the finished stack. I'm about half way through the next chapter. As you can probably guess, It's very slow going, but at least something is getting done.

Tomorrow I'm going to try my best to get this new chapter polished and on the final stack. I had a near freak out moment earlier today when I opened my master WIP and there were only 14 pages. Um, yeah, that was a little disconcerting since I left it somewhere around 253 pages. Apparently I'd made a duplicate so I could tear apart the theme. I tossed that sucker in the trash. No more heart attack moments for me, thank you very much.

Anyway, it's going to be a long week ahead. The Little Rock trip is coming up, and I'm not sure Oldest has sent off his forms yet. If not, that will be the primary agenda for tomorrow. Anyway, I'm off for now. Sassie Dog came in covered in dirt, so she has to have a bath before I can go to bed.

Hope your weekend was a happy one!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Friday, I'm in Love

Image courtesy of glitter-graphics.com


Friday! Has this been the longest week ever, or what?  I'm looking forward to spending the weekend with the guys, maybe watching a few movies. I bet Mini would like to bake cut-out cookies, so I'm picking up sprinkles and all that jazz today when I buy groceries.

Mostly I'll be working on the vamp novel this weekend. I'm stuck on one scene, and I need to tear it down, find the key points (what I'm hoping to accomplish with the scene itself, it's beginning, middle, and ending) and then stitch it back together.

NaNoWriMo is coming up and I don't think I'll have time to participate since it looks like I'll be editing/revising/rewriting...and all that.  Ho hum. But if I'm going to finish this book by the end of the year, I can't afford to get lost in the middle of another project no matter how tempting. It's been a while since my last werewolf book and this one is calling to me. One book at a time, though. I can't submit an unfinished project.

Yesterday I took a few minutes to update my website with the release information for Connection. Once the book comes out, I'll link it up on the books page. Only three weeks to go! How exciting! :0)

That's it for now. I've got until 10:30 to write before I have to get the bills together and run the weekly errands. Happy Friday, everyone! 

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Sassie vs. the Office Ghost?

 Beautiful Thursday!  This week has seemed so mixed up because of Mini's schedule. After I put him on the bus this morning, I went back to bed and slept for another hour and a half. I got up around 9:30, talked to dad on the phone, and now I'm settling in to get a little work done.

Yesterday I came up with a brand new idea for a novella that would be perfect for Ellora's Cave, so I wrote down all the pertinent information and stored it in a word file on my desktop. I won't be able to start on that until I finish up the vampires, though. I'm taking it a scene at a time with the vampires, and fixing anything that doesn't work, adding in anything I missed, and in some cases rewriting the scenes entirely.

You know, sometimes I forget that I am working out of the "haunted" room in our house. We have four bedrooms, and this room was Oldest's when we first moved in, but he was always scared of it. He said he always felt like he was being watched, or that someone was in the room with him. When hubby and I moved our bedroom into the back bedroom for more space, Oldest too our room on the right corner of the house. He's been happy there ever since. I had my home office at the back of the house, in the smallest bedroom, which does not have a closet. When I got pregnant with Mini it was natural to turn Oldest's old bedroom into the nursery. So we did. I figured if Mini grew up in there, he wouldn't be afraid of the room like Oldest was.

Wrong answer.

Mini wouldn't even play in the third bedroom, much less sleep in it. In fact, he slept with Hubby and me until I finally said, "You're too big!" and made him move into a toddler bed. Even now, he gets up in the middle of the night and climbs into bed with us. But that's not uncommon.

Since both boys were too afraid to stay in the "haunted" room, I decided to make it my office. We took a weekend and shuffled furniture, repainted my Old office for Mini and set it up with two book cases and a dresser for his clothes. I've been using the nursery as my office for at least a year now.

The windows rattle, but that's the only thing spooky-ish I've noticed. Then again, this house was built in the late sixties or early seventies. They didn't use the energy efficient panes back then, and we've never bothered to replace them. Anyway, I've long since said my peace with the ghosts in this room. As long as they don't mess with my computer, my papers, or my coffee, all will be well.

And now, there is this deal with SassieDog. Yesterday, around noon, she started acting weird. Like staring at walls with her ears back or up, and her tail between her legs. There are two front doors to our house, because the house was built in two sections. She kept staring at the hallway door as if expecting someone to walk through it. We never use that door. It's locked, and can't be opened from the outside.

During her staring into space routine, she'll sometimes flinch at the weirdest moment and take off running. It's like she sees something otherwise invisible to the rest of us, and has a panic attack. This went on until Hubby came home, and then she wouldn't let hubby pick her up. She was pacing the house, and at times hiding under the dining room table. Even when she did calm down enough to lounge with Hubby in the recliner, she didn't really relax. She'd sit there like a Sphinx with her ears on high alert.

Today it's the same thing. I can't figure out what it is that has her so spooked. Certainly nothing she encountered outside. Our dogs are inside furbabies, although they have a huge fenced yard that is actually connected to the back of the house, so they can go out through the utility room. They are never allowed to roam the neighborhood. So, I have no clue to what might be causing her paranoia. My only conclusion is that baby dog is nuts.

That's it for now. I'm going to snag the last cup of coffee and get writing. Happy Thursday, everyone!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Slightly Off Balance

Image courtesy of http://www.glitter-graphics.com
Mini is back to school tomorrow, so once I get him on the bus and the house has settled from the morning chaos, I'll be back in the office catching up on writerly things. I have rewrites to work on, and I need to check in over at the theme workshop.

Oldest found out yesterday his enlistment into the Coast Guard is going to be a three part process. So, it looks like we'll be making three trips to Little Rock before it's all said and done.

We're taking him for his physical on the 25th. We have to schedule him to retake the ASVAB test, too. He took it his freshman year, and had well above the required score, but apparently the results are only good for two years. We had no idea. The last trip we take will be for his actual enlistment.

When I was at the grocery store earlier today, I ran into my mom and she asked Oldest if he was 100% sure the Coast Guard is what he wants to do. I think my parents secretly believe hubby and I pushed him into it, when Oldest actually surprised us with his decision. We suggested it as a possibility, since he has always wanted to travel and go on an "adventure" (those are his words). Then again, I also suggested the Peace Corp. But that was the end of it. Then, one morning I walked into the kitchen and he came out of his room to tell me he'd  registered online. I thought Hubby would fall out when I called him later and told him about it. Just this afternoon, Oldest told me he planned to go in as a cook.

Anyway, I know now that's what we're going to be doing over the next few weeks?  Months? I have no idea for sure how long this is going to take. Mini went through a crying jag over it earlier today because he thought his bubba was going to war. I had to explain that bubba would be going through training, and showed Mini some videos of the Coast Guard doing helicopter rescues and such. He seems to accept it better when we explain he will be rescuing people.

Once I sat down and thought about it this evening, I realized just how strange this is going to be not having him in the house. Depending on when Oldest goes to basic training, we may not have him home for Thanksgiving or Christmas. This will be the first time he won't be home for a holiday.

Yep, it's going to be a big change. For all of us.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Micro Holiday

I'm sad to see the weekend go, but I get two more days of being able to sleep in because of Mini's fall break. Now, being able to sleep in doesn't mean I actually will - sometimes Mini is up at 5:30 and wide awake. But it's all good because I won't have to get up and stand at the door to watch for the bus. *thumbs up*

Boot camp is over, and I think it went very well. I met several new people who were specifically interested in writing erotic romance, and one of the ladies in particular said she'd been looking forward to meeting me because she likes my e-books. How very sweet of her! She has said she wants to join the chapter, and I hope she will. It would be awesome to have more erotica writers on board.

The e-publishing information I pulled together for the panel is now available as a free download on Scribd. It's intended for new, unpublished writers, so if you've thought about writing e-books, it will hopefully answer a few basic questions for you.

Now that boot camp is out of the way, I'll be focusing on getting the vampire book out the door. If I am not around on twitter and facebook as usual, that's why.  I'm giving myself to the end of the year. It would thrill me to bits if I could have it ready to send in sometime in December.
What a Christmas gift that would be - submitting a full.

So there you have it, the weekend dirty. Everything has been relatively calm and peaceful, and I can certainly appreciate that. I'll have both boys home until Wednesday, then it's back to the grind. So I'm going to try and enjoy the time I have, while I have it. Nite nite, everyone! :*)

Friday, October 08, 2010

Getting Stuff Together

Zombie Antoinette

Hurray for Friday!  On top of that hurray - I'll add another because Mini doesn't have to go back to school until Tuesday because of fall break. *dance, dance*  

Tomorrow is the NOLAStars Boot Camp for writers. I think I have everything together aside from the book marks and such to put out on the giveaway table. I have all my worksheets printed out and stapled, and I'm going to drop by the store in the morning to pick up something to carry for lunch. Afterward, if my sisters can meet up with me, I'm heading over to Chef Lee's before the ride home. 

Speaking of my boot camp worksheets. For those who cannot attend, I'll be posting a free pdf version of the E-publishing Basics for free on Scribd this Sunday. It's the same sheets I've printed to carry to the Bossier meeting. 

So anyway...on to other things...Oldest got skint a few hours ago. Hubby came home early from work and I hadn't yet run errands. Oldest wanted to go, but needed a shower. And the minute he came out of his bedroom, I noticed his hair has gone from fluffy on top to Big Top bozo proportions. I am not kidding. I told him before he got i the shower, I wanted the hair shaved. Since he's going into the Coast Guard anyway, he might as well shave it. Hubby took the trimmers and I kid you not, his hair had gotten so thick it nearly jammed the blades on the razor! *_* 

When he came out of the shower, he looked like a different kid. Heh. He said it felt great. I can imagine it does. After he got out of there, I went in to change shirts and brush my teeth before jetting off to the store and his wad of hair in the trash looked like we'd thrown away a shaggy blonde dog. Yikes! That's disturbing and fascinating all at the same time.

That's all for now. I need to check in on my theme class and wash clothes for tomorrow. Oh, and now I have a request from Mini. Chicken nuggets and macaroni. Sounds so good for a growing kid, doesn't it?  Fine, fine...but he's gonna have to pick a vegetable to go with. All that aside... Happy weekend! 

Thursday, October 07, 2010

I Wish I May

This week is going by so fast!  Tomorrow I'm off to the salon to have my hair shredded and blonded. I have all the hair pictures ready for my stylist, and my phone is charged so I can call my mom to pick up the Minibear if it looks like I won't be back home in time.

This weekend is the free to the public, NolaStars Writing Boot Camp in Bossier City. It's going to be held in the History Center (attached to the Bossier Parish Library) on Saturday from 9 am - 2:30. I have about half of my worksheets printed so far. So a little more to do before I'm ready to go. I'm totally looking forward to it. I always leave our writing meetings motivated and ready to hammer away at the keyboard. If you're in the Shreveport-Bossier area (or feel like driving the distance) I hope you'll drop by and hang out with us.

I'm a couple of days into the theme workshop I talked about a couple of days ago. In the meantime, I've been prepping my manuscript for the write-in. I've been going over all my notes, adding scenes, changing things, etc. It's almost ready to start the clean up. Almost. It's gonna be a job and a half to do this main pass, but I'm super psyched about this book. I love these characters to bits. The hero gives me butterflies! ^_^

Speaking of butterflies...

Hubby and I have decided where we're going on our anniversary at the end of the month. Or rather, Oldest decided for us. He surprised us a few days ago with news that he'd decided to join the coast guard. While we're nervous about it, we're supportive of his decision.

There are three "nearby" recruiting offices: New Orleans, Little Rock, Arkansan, and Jackson, Mississippi. Since hubby is going to be off the week of our anniversary, and Oldest needs to go to a recruitment center, we let Oldest choose where he would like to go. He chose Little Rock. So, for our 20th anniversary, Hubby and I will be taking Oldest to Arkansas to enlist. I'm happy for him, and a little sad. My baby is growing up, and moving out. It's hard not to worry.

Well gee...it's after midnight here in the great big CST. I better get to bed. I have beautifying to do tomorrow. Night night, everyone! 

Monday, October 04, 2010

They Call Me Sta-Cey

What a gorgeous Monday morning!  It was chilly first thing out of bed, and this is the first day I've had to send Mini to school wearing trousers instead of shorts. Much approval from me. I'm tired of the blistering summer heat.

The Man isn't feeling good. On top of that, he drove all the way to work (2 hrs one way), and realized he'd forgotten his work keys, so he's back home and taking the day off. Poor guy. He hasn't said much, didn't drink any coffee this morning, and generally looks like someone who has been plowed down by the sick truck.

Not only is he not feeling well, but my crit partner and BFF Cassandra Curtis is in the hospital. I talked to her on the phone and she sounded so very weak. Poor thing. :*(

Today is the first day of Lori Wilde's Plotting from Theme workshop. This is my last elements workshop of the year. In November I'm taking a self edits class. I signed up for it several months ago. It's not one of the six basic elements of fiction writing, but I'm thinking it will be useful in the long run. I won't be signing up for any other 'shops this year though. I have to focus on getting the vampire novel patched up and polished so I can send it on. It's edging a little closer everyday. I'm going to take advantage of NaNoWriMo motivation to get any rewrites completed. Anyone else NaNo'ing this year?

The boot camp is coming up this weekend, so Thursday I'm off to the salon. For those who follow astrology, Venus is going retrograde soon, and since Venus reigns over beauty and therefore beauty treatments, it's theoretically risky to go for a cosmetic procedure during that time. I'm going in before the retro because I'm paranoid. And because I have a history of past hair disasters. I have faith in my stylist, I just prefer to leave nothing to chance. Anyway, I'm getting my hair razored again. I'm taking the blonde/pink combo picture for my stylist. I won't be going pink, but that's definitely the cut.

Last time I got highlights, but they were super subtle. I want to go with a two-tone color this time though, a little more blonde, though not a head full of it. Oh, and I do love the look of Jes's pink, peek-a-boo bangs. I'm in my mid-thirties so I'm thinking more neutral tones would look best on me. Maybe a blonde/brown color clash, with the blonde concentrated on top.

At any rate, I usually give ideas to my stylist and let her judge what would work best for me. She knows more about proper tones, and the texture of my hair. Once I'm back home from the chop shop, I'll post pictures of the new 'do.

That's all I've got going on at the moment. Stuff. I guess I better get back to work, or at least make it look like I'm working. ;0)  Hope you all have a snazzy Monday.


That's not my...name!

Sunday, October 03, 2010

The Continued Education of...

Another Sunday gone, another week to come. It's been such a nice, relaxing day. Once Mini and the guys are finished with supper, I'm going to put Mini in the bath. Beyond that, the evening is all mine.

Today was the official end of Lori Wilde's High Concept workshop. I'm thrilled with everything I've learned throughout the course. If you ever get the chance to take the same workshop, go for it. Without a doubt, I'll be using the lessons I learned there throughout the rest of my writing career.

Not only that, but I discovered the high concept for my current project - the one I'm about to start the write-ins on. What I learned totally helped me sculpt my idea. Not really in a new way, but it gave the story a new focus. Everything seems to gel better than it did before. I don't think I've ever been this excited about a writing project in the past. The workshop was totally worth the investment. I highly recommend it.

Starting tomorrow, I'm taking Lori Wilde's Plotting From Theme workshop. This is the last of my "right now, as I see it" writing struggle/learn it or die trying learning sessions.

Theme has always been that elusive element for me. Until the NOLAStars, Written in the Stars conference back in March, I ignored theme when writing. I didn't understand how to find it in my work, so forget trying to label it or hone it. Pfft!

At NOLA, I took Robyn DeHart's writing workshop and she explained theme in a two step process that jammed a grain of understanding in my brain. A character has a "wrong idea" and by the end of the book, that idea has changed. That quest from point A to point B is your character's theme. That totally blew my socks off. I wondered why no one had ever explained it to me like that before.

Now I'm digging a little deeper. After this upcoming theme workshop, I should have no excuse to say I don't know how to put together a story of [pick your poison] length. None. Zilch. Nada. My hope, after all this, I'll be able to look myself in the mirror and say "I set out to do what I planned to do January 1st, 2010. I tackled my writing weaknesses, and I overcame them."

The truth is, you never stop learning as a writer. I know this is a fact. I've heard countless successful, published authors say this. So, really this has been a quest to reach the baseline for writing knowledge. This is the where I touch nose to the intermediate level of writing. The only thing I wish is that I'd made a pledge to learn these things ten years ago.

Friday, October 01, 2010

It's Friday - Dance, Dance

Whew! I survived errand day. The alarm clock didn't go off this morning, so it was Mini who actually woke me. What a lil man he is! He came into the bedroom and said, "Mimi, you have to get up so we don't miss the bus." I looked at the clock at it was 6:58. Yikes!

I leaped out of bed, got him dressed, teeth brushed, hair brushed, face washed, and his home work signed and place in his backpack in less than 15 minutes. It must be a new record. He made it to the bus just fine. Me, on the other hand, after that, I was wound for sound.

No way could I go back to sleep, so I went on to my office and sat at my desk. I read for a while - I'm currently reading Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code (for a class I'm taking) - then I checked emails and chatted with hubby over TweetDeck for a bit.

I woke Oldest up around noon, and we went to buy groceries. Hubby wanted a copy of Iron Man 2 as well. I bought a new ink cartridge so I can print up all my sheets for the boot camp next week. I hope I do okay with this thing. It's the first time I've been asked to sit on a panel. At any rate, I prettied up the sheet, and it's organized to the best of my ability. Eh. It's what I can do, so there it is.

I have added a lot of depth to the current WIP by revamping characters and giving them solid histories, jobs, and creating solid lives for them before the start of my novel. It's amazing the conflict that can arise from giving a character a solid past. Good stuff.

So, anyway, I'm gonna start playing with scene order tomorrow. I thought I'd be able to start on that tonight, but my brain is...out of it.When I put Mini to bed around 7:30 this evening, I fell asleep across the bed. I woke up around 10:20 thinking it was morning, and that the clock was wrong. Heh. My first thought: Mini's gonna be late for the bus. I sat there staring at the clock for several minutes and finally it dawned on me it really was 10 ish, and that tomorrow is Saturday. Tired much? Heh.

Happy weekend, everyone. 


Someone backed up a truck and dumped a whole lotta 80's on this video.