Friday, February 26, 2010

Yikes--a snipit...breathe ...oh and contests.

O.k. so I toyed with not thinking of my MC's Ian and Anna and it is difficult not to-- so after you read about more awesome contests you can enter go down a little further and read a brand spanking new clip from my WIP.  Why I put myself through constant torture is beyond me. I have decided that I have contracted a disease called knotinmytummyitis--it flairs up every time I post one of these snipits.  I guess I am getting myself ready for the world of rejection.  I think it may roll off my back a lot easier if I torture myself now.  Anyway, It is not in the original first draft and it needs work...a lot of work but I thought I would see what you thought.  I came up with it on a whim.  There is more to it but it would reveal too much of the story and -well- this post would be wicked long.  Please be gentle but I will take any criticism--I'm getting used to it. :) 

A couple of contests I have found and thought I would mention first --yes I am putting you off --the blogger--from reading my snipit.

Contest on Noelle Nolan--A Life Rewritten  Check out her cool blog and enter to get a $10 gift card to Wahoo!

Contest on Reading Writing Rachel Way cool--win a copy of her book Hex Hall-- autographed of course, a Hex Hall t-shirt (yes, they are cool too), and a $25 gift card to Barnes and Noble--Wow!

O.k. a snipit.  This is not in my first draft so totally brand spankin new.  Again please disregard the messiness. This is a dialogue between Ian and Anna again no teaser of the whole story just a simple back and forth.

I played with lace on my shoe as I prepared myself to ask.  "What about you?  You seem to hide behind a wall about your family."

"Like I said before, it would require therapy if I told you." he wrapped his arms around his knees looking away from my gaze. He picked up a small pebble and rubbed between his finger almost as if he wanted to tell me--tell me all of it but something held him back.  I was getting annoyed at his games and all the hiding he protected me from. In fact, It was making me angry.

"That's it!" I stood up with a huff.

"What!" His eyes laid back to mine but they tried not to portray that he was just as annoyed as me. 

"Really, are they that bad?" I put my hand on my hip and slapped the other hand on my thigh.  I had to stand my ground and show I would not fall.  Not fall into his beautiful eyes, or melt into the palm of his hands. 

Focus Anna! screamed from the back of my mind. I shook my head as I diverted my sight away from him and onto an ugly brown leaf that crumpled in the corner of the old ruin.

"Yes, they are." He stood slowly and turned his body to compliment mine.

"So that is how this relationship is going to go.  I pour my life onto you but I get nothing in return." I turned away and faced the cobbled rock wall sliding my finger across a jagged edge.

"If you mean return as in my personal detailed resume... then your right ...nothing." his tone so calm compared to my insides which were about to explode like a volcano erupting in annoyance at the fact that I know nothing about him.  I turned to face him and to my surprise he was right in front of me. 

How did he get here so fast? My thoughts began to toy with reality. Don't look at him in the eyes..avoid the eyes. If you do you will loose control and he will win.

He smiled then pushed a stray hair away from my face and my stupid eyes gave in-- catching his ice blue ones that tamed the angry fire that was burning in my gut. Every bit of me loosing the reasons why I was so annoyed and allowing his lips to cause a distraction --a distraction that made my mind clear and forget why I was angry in the first place.

There you go.  I wrote this quickly yesterday so it is by no means in any shape to be considered remotely good but I promised you a snipit so this one is fresh out of the brain. 

Thanks for reading and have a great weekend:)

Thursday, February 25, 2010

More thank yous and contest.

Contest Alert--Dangerous with a Pen --Lindsay--Is giving away a bunch of cool stuff for reaching 100 followers--Yeah Lindsay! Check out her cool blog!

Thanks to Amber Lough for also giving me the From me to you Award.  Since I just gave it away, I will let any of you just take it if you like. Thanks Amber! Check out her blog --I wish we lived closer we could go get that cup of coffee :)

I received a funny award yesterday! Thanks to Bethany from Aspirations!

This is way too funny --I have to make up six lies and one truth and you my fellow bloggers must uncover the truth.  This ought to be good.

1. My kids are the best sleepers in the world.  I don't know why other kids don't sleep. 

2. I am such a daredevil.  I love to skydive allowing the cool air to fly by my face as I plummet to the earth--so fun.

3. I turned down a cover shoot for French Vogue when I was 16.

4. I have a fairy named Emme that lives in a tree behind my house.

5. One of my best friends --who is so flirty-- is named Robert Pattinson.

6. I drove a 911 Porsche Turbo on a winding California mountain road--really fast.

7. I hate to travel in fact I have never left the country.

There you go.  Which one is the truth? I think I can hear the Jeopardy music playing.

So now I must give this to five bloggers--

1. Kelly-Kelly's Compositions -She an awesome CP and unplugged this week.  This is something for her to smile at when she returns.

2. Roxy- A Womans Write- I can't wait to see what you say.

3. Crystal- CrystalCookWrites--Her new blog --check it out!

4. Karen-Novels During Naptime--Great blog-- I can relate too!

5. Abby Annis--She has sucha  beautiful blog and also has a great contest going on right now.

There you have it and if you have not received this award yet go ahead and take it.  I have a small child in my arms so typing is a little difficult. 

Sorry for the short post! Have a good day!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The stats!

On a super happy note--Thank you to Michelle Gregory of beautiful chaos. I won an autographed copy of her book Eldala. I can't wait to read it. Thanks Michelle!

Whew! The first step of many is complete and I will put talking about my first draft to rest--I promise. I have fully finished my first draft. Yes, I know a few weeks ago I said I was almost finished but I added some things and now my baby will be taking her first steps to revision. 

I must take a break from her, then print her out and read her all over again. Then the ultimate of scary--revision.  I am scared--not sure why-- but I am on my way.  Sure for some of you this is silly for me to make such a big deal but it is the first story --out of the several I have started-- that I have completed.  I actually took my kids to lunch to celebrate-- including a milkshake.

So here are her stats --I feel like this is the weight and length of one of my children after being born.


Words- 87,230


There you go. I have alot of revising to do--so scared. 

So I may post a snippit, I may not, because I have a ton of critiques to finish and my CP told me no more thoughts of Ian and Anna--I need to take a break. She is sooo right but it is sooo hard. :) I may not post until Friday. 

Fun question---What is your favorite ice cream?  Totally unrelated and random but something fun and it helps me think of summer.  We are about to get another 10" of snow. 

Have a good day!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

My baby.

Two contests I saw this morning --

1. On Shooting Stars --You can win Two-first five page critiques by two agented authors.

2. On Kristi Faith's R.A.W.-Random Acts of Writing- You can win a gift certificate to the online bookstore of your choice.

I will make it short today because I have to finish my first draft.  I know I said I was almost finished it a few weeks ago but I added more so I hope to post the final stats tomorrow.  I can't wait to finish and revise. 

Well, I am scared because there is so much to be done.  I have to embelllish and my kids don't always cooperate in giving me any quiet time what so ever.  So my poor hubby suffers at night as I stare at the screen thinking and typing my fingers off.  Sorry honey, I'm doing what I love--thanks for letting me just take care of this baby. Yes I still love you :)

So what is your favorite part of your baby--Writing the first draft or revising?

I will not get into what happens after that-- the whole query/searching for agents, editors/ boxing yourself in a corner while you wait patiently, your body rocking back and forth from the nerves that took hold while waiting for rejection I mean an answer--because
     a. I have not done that yet--so no expert here.

     b. It already puts knots in my stomach thinking about the waiting and rejection.

I must go and finish and review some others work --critiques kiddos.

Oh! and where do you get the cute progress bars I see on some of your blogs.  It shows your progress  of what you are working on.

Have a good day!

Monday, February 22, 2010

What planet is that?

I hope everyone had a great weekend.  My time was mainly cleaning house and much needed family time.  I was quite a happy little bee when I looked over at my followers block.  51 --yes-- 51 where did that number come from?  I can't believe that anyone thinks that I'm interesting.  So thanks for making me feel accepted--it makes me smile.

Also, Thanks for your feedback on the Snowflake Method.  I am trying it but it was great to hear that some of you do things by the 'seat of your pants' and have had success.  So far, I have been flying 'by the seat of my pants' and to be quite honest it feels the most comfortable but I will try other methods to see if it helps me become a better writer.  I may post my one liner tomorrow.

So on with my post.
I thought of you Michelle Gregory (beautiful chaos) when I started this post. I need to come up with names for my novel.  Not just names of people but names of things not of this world.  I have been racking my brain and have come up with nothing.  I may be trying too hard and when I do that I get nothing.  I stand in awe at the authors/movie folks who come up with a whole planet that includes a whole new way of life ie. George Lucas, JK Rowling, Tolkien, etc.

Do any of you have any advice? Have any of you needed to come up with names of other worldly places, languages, races of people, etc.?  If you have, how have you gone about naming things?

Don't forget about Michelle's giveaway.  Her book Eldala--I have to read this one.

Have a great day!

Friday, February 19, 2010

One sentance.

Let me start out by apologizing for my long post on Wednesday but I thought I would get the snipit out there.Thank you, thank you, thank you for all your encouraging comments.  It means so much!

Yesterday, I had to catch up on things.  I finished four chapters in my first draft while I revised the first chapter.  Yes, I am doing things out of order but that is me. I do things out of order.  I am looking into the Snowflake Method for my revision and I am having the hardest time with Step 1.

Step 1. Write one sentance to summarize your novel in 15 words or less. I need to take 80,000 words and condense--holy cow! I know I will do this somehow but how?  I know my main points but condensing them is going to be a huge headache.  I am learning as I go and it only making me stronger.

So, I ask you any of you --any advice.  Have any of you tried this method?  If you have, do have any advice on your approach to writing this crucial sentance?

Also, Thank you to Summer from ..and this time concentrate for  From Me to You Award.  I just posted my recipients the other day.  I was flattered to receive this from two people.  You guys are so nice:)

Today is a short post.  Enjoy your day:)

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Yes, a snipit and breathe...

I missed the Valentine's Day blogfest.  My WIP is no where near a finished product but I felt the need to do this.  Call me insane or on the verge of crazy for putting myself through the torture that is twisting in my stomach --maybe it is cabin fever.  That could be a real disease.  Enough blabbing Christine, just let it out--whew! Like I said, this is in no form of a final product so please excuse any mistakes.  This is a scene between my MC's Anna and Ian.  I don't want to give too much away so here it goes--*cringe* *biting my lip*---sorry for the length--

My breathing ceased as the doorbell echoed in my ears. I closed my eyes doing my count to ten exercises before I opened the door.
“Hi!” came out with a nervous twitch. I looked at him with a stare I could not break.

“Hi! Are you ready to go?” he looked me over which I didn’t mind in the least bit.

I just nodded and pulled the door closed making sure it locked.

“You look very nice.” He leaned down to my ear as the words were softly delivered and I hid the warm shiver that went through me.

We walked to his car and he opened the door for me as he did the night before. As he started to drive, the suspense was killing me and I was hoping we would go somewhere without a lot of people.

“So where are we going?”

“You’ll see…it is a surprise.” he smirked as he looked at the road ahead.

We drove for maybe five minutes and pulled into the parking lot of the Country Club. Great—I really didn’t want a fancy dinner at the Country Club. The town’s elite along with their offspring dining in pure snobbery. I would be the talk of the school not that I already was.

Ian pulled into a parking spot and turned to me-- watching my reaction.

“The Country Club..Really?” I tried not to make it sound like I was disappointed.

“No..I just have to park here”


“You will see. Here put this on.” Ian leaned over me to get into his glove box. His cologne made my mouth water and his touch sent my blood rushing to my face.

“What is it?” I said with a hint of breathlessness.

“A blind fold, I don’t want you to see where we are going.” he held up a black velvet blindfold as I was taken back not sure what to make of it.

“Don’t worry I will guide you.” he handed me the blind fold.

“O.k.” my word flowed out with hesitation.

I placed the blindfold up to my eyes, tying the straps behind my head and Ian guided me from the car. We walked a short distance until the pavement turned into grass. I kept my mouth shut knowing his answer to my one and only question of the moment would be---- you will see.

My shoes crunched on some leaves and Ian stopped.

“Wait here for a minute” I heard him move something like a branch cracking in half and he took my hand to guide me to him.

 Where on earth are we?  I thought.

He then placed his hands on my waist to pulling me to our destination. We stopped and I felt him unravel the knot of the blindfold.

As the darkness lifted, I focused on bright lights that flooded my corneas. I tried to catch the breath that was becoming short with the excitement that was beginning to build in my chest.

Ian brought me to my sanctuary—the ruins of the old house. He had probably a hundred candles lit and scattered on any surface that would hold them. My mouth slightly opened without me trying. It was beautiful and so romantic I thought of possibly crying on the spot out of joy but I decided against it because it would ruin the moment.

“Well.” He stood there proud but waiting for my approval.

“It’s beautiful…It’s perfect.” I smiled back at him.

“Have a seat.” He pointed to a soft, blue blanket he had layed in the middle of the ruin.

I slowly sat still taking all of this in. It was so hard not to look in wonder. Ian sat down next to me just watching my face fully satisfied by his handy work.

“How did you do all this?”

“I know the security guard—Bill.” He smiled and handed me a glass of sparkling grape juice in champagne glass.

I looked at it strangely.

“We are not legal. You know to drink.” he winked.

“Right…so Bill helped you? How sweet.” The grape juice tickled my throat as it slid down.

“Yes, he really thought you deserved this. Oh.. and we need to be out of here by 10.” he turned and grabbed a few Tupperware containers opening them quickly. They contained fruit, cheeses and crackers.

“You didn’t have to do this” I picked up a grape and enjoyed the sweetness of it.

“No, I did-- especially after last night. You deserve a proper date.”

I tried not to let my staring freak him out but he has caught me off guard and making fall completely in love with him.

“What.” he noticed me staring.

“You are not normal are you?”

“What do you mean?”

“I mean --are you really a teenager? Because the last I checked no teenage guy let alone any guy would do something like this.” My eyes rolled to indicate the display he has set.

“Yes, I am a teenager but I disagree with you. There are a few –Guys—that would do this. I guess I am one of the few.”

“I guess I’m the lucky one.” My smile was hard to erase in fact I think it was beaming.

“Oh…. here I got you something.” He turned to get something from behind him.

“What …why…. did you get me something. Was I supposed to get you something?”

He turned back to me with a cupcake in hand that held a lit candle on top.

“No, you were not supposed to get me anything. This is for you.” his eyes lit up as brightly as the candle.

“What is this for?” my words came out confused.

“It is for your birthday.”

“But my birthday was a month ago.”

“I know. I just wasn’t there to celebrate so here I am celebrating with you. Happy Birthday …well belated birthday.” He handed me the chocolate covered cupcake with rainbow sprinkles. “Make a wish.”

My wish was already coming true so I just closed my eyes and blew the candle out with one small breath. I really didn’t want to eat it right there in front of him. It looked delicious but I guess the girl inside me didn’t want him to see me stuff my face.

“So who told when my birthday was?” I had my suspicions.

“Who do think?” his lips pressed together and formed a small curve in the corner of his mouth.

“Ivy….”I licked the frosting that smudged on my finger.

“Well she sort of said that you never really celebrated your birthday on the actual day.”

“No, I didn’t. You know another year older and an adult to top it off plus my dad not being there. Let’s just say the combo made for a somber birthday.” I caught his eyes which made my heart flutter.

“And now…”

“Now …the most incredible birthday ever….I can’t believe this really. I am almost speechless.” I began to babble as my nervous crush whirled inside me. “Almost speechless..really..I…

His lips interrupted my verbal train. Thank goodness because it was turning ugly.  He kissed me softly and I was glad I didn’t eat that cupcake otherwise it would have been a chocolate mess. He seemed very confident and forward with his feelings for me and I have to admit this personality trait would normally shy me away but with him it made me want to follow him wherever he went.

Our lips took a brake by slowly parting and my lips quivered with the electricity that was left from his.

“Sorry. You are so cute when you babble that I can’t resist you.” He smiled as he saw me regain my sense of reality. “Speechless?”

I nodded. He then slid back leaning up against the one wall of the ruin and motioned for me to join him. I put the cupcake down and made myself comfortable next to him as he wrapped his arm around me. I instinctively leaned my head back onto his shoulder watching his fingers intertwine into mine.

“Thank you” I whispered

Ian kissed the top of my head as we sat there gazing up at the stars. He managed to make me feel loved, accepted and wanted all at the same time. I know I would never forget this for the rest of my life.

Yes I know cutsy, cliche but I love my characters and this was just a cute moment I came up with.  Now, I need to get to writing, and revising--yikes.  Nerves calm down!


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

An award--too sweet!

Two posts in one day--This girl is insane.  I had to post this.  I received an award how sweet!  Thank you Kimberly Franklin for the From Me to you Award.  Check out Kimberly's blog --she is too nice. :) I have to list seven things about me--yikes.

1. I have mentioned this before but I really do not--repeat-- do not like snow.  This has been the worst winter and I am dreamin of warm sand and turquoise blue ocean--ahhhh! (Yes, I love the beach).

2. I fell in love with vampires in the sixth grade when my reading teacher read Dracula by Bram Stoker.  She skipped a few chapters for content but I have loved a vampire ever since.  (I may have mentioned this before too)

3. I do like fast cars but only if I can drive them:)

4.I tend to rush things.  I try to slow down but my brain moves a  mile a minute.

5. I love that I have started this writing journey.  I am learning as I go but I am thankful that I have such great supporters.  Thanks guys!

6. I have learned to become outgoing but it still leaves a knot in my stomach when I go to big social events.  Especially, with people I don't know.

7. If you don't know already --I am a big chocoholic!

You know I love all my fellow bloggers but I have to chose.  Here are the a few awesome blogs who I give this award to (really I love you all):

There you have it! Enjoy!

Cool Contests..yes more.

Yes, another contest --I really should try and post these on the side of my blog.  I'll work on that. Maybe tomorrow I will be able to just post but I feel I need to post contests for you guys. 

 Check out abby annis-She has reached 100 followers and is giving away Fallen by Lauren Kate and The Dark Devine by Bree Despain --and also a $10 gift card to Barnes and Noble.

And this awesome contest---Yes I jumped on the bandwagon for this one.  I can't wait to read this...

Linger Cover LargeIn Maggie Stiefvater's Shiver, Grace and Sam found each other.  Now, in Linger, they must fight to be together. For Grace, this means defying her parents and keeping a very dangerous secret about her own well-being. For Sam, this means grappling with his werewolf past . . . and figuring out a way to survive into the future. Add into the mix a new wolf named Cole, whose own past has the potential to destroy the whole pack.  And Isabelle, who already lost her brother to the wolves . . . and is nonetheless drawn to Cole.

At turns harrowing and euphoric, Linger is a spellbinding love story that explores both sides of love -- the light and the dark, the warm and the cold -- in a way you will never forget.

Comes out in stores everywhere July 20th. Pre-order here.

Enter to win an advanced review copies of LINGER, Sisters Red, The Dead-Tossed Waves, and The Replacement on Maggie's blog.

I still have to figure out how to post this on Facebook.  I am so technically challenged :) Whew! too many contests.  Thanks for all your responses on my silly question yesterday.  I hope to post a snipit tomorrow in honor of Valentine's Day.  If I can build up my courage.

Have a good day!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Does word count matter?...possible snipit? and-- of course-- contests

I opened my blog, looked at my awesome followers list and --what-- is that 40 followers--holy crow! You guys rock! I hope everyone had a great Valentine's Day! I spent time with my family and ate lots of chocolate.

Contest Update!

Catch the contest on Beautiful Chaos. Michelle is giving away a signed copy of her book Eldala.  It looks really good.  I think I will be picking up a copy :)

Thank you to Steena at Chocolate Reality for her contest--I won the book Thin Places by Mary DeMuth!

Now onto my post--

My first question is about word count.  Does this matter when submitting?  Why I am worried about this now is silly but I have been thinking about it.  I saw a post reagarding how some editors may not even look at your manuscript if it has more than a certain amount of wordage--especially a debut.  I read that a debut should have 50,000 words or less.  Is this true?  I am quickly approaching 85,000.  I know this most likely will change as I revise but I don't think I could have less than 70,000 to tell my story. 

Does anyone have any experience with this?

My other question--I missed the love at first sight blogfest:( I did want to post another scene from my WIP --a happier one.  So, should I post a cute love scene or steamy.  I am still a bundle of nerves with posting this but thought I would post one more before I start revising--well-- I have to finish it. I still am having a hard time with the last chapter.  Yes --Kelly I will get it to you:) 

I hope everyone had a great Valentine's Day:)

Thursday, February 11, 2010

New background and other misc. things

The designer in me made me do this. I changed my background and I promise I will try and keep it this way. 

It is contest month and I swear I have been finding one a day. 

Go over to Frankie Writes --She is hosting a contest --The Linger Arc Contest in honor of the new book Linger by Maggie Steifvater.  I can't wait to read this one.  Tell her I sent you :)

This is not a contest but a great website.  I have told you about an awesome illustrator Kaitlyn McCane.  Well she now has ETSY site where you can purchase her adorable prints.  Sooooo cute ! Check it out.

Another thing, I hope to post another snipit from my WIP.  If you didn't catch my very first snipit (that is what I like to call it) check out yesterday's post and let me know what you think. I want to thank everyone for their encouraging words.

I am still putting together a critique group so let me know if you are interested.  I may have two people interested so I am looking for one more person.  Check out my post from Febuary 9th for details.

Have a great day!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Contest and snippit..yikes

A contest I just found last night--

Check out Southern Princess you must post your most memorable Valentine's Day moment.  You must visit her blog to see the awesome prizes.

Alright, here I go --confidence --boost up.  My stomach is tossing about as I am about to press the publish post button.  *gulp*.  Here is a snippit from my WIP.  I am not going to reveal too much other than it is a sad scene for my MC Anna.  I may post a happier moment from my WIP tomorrow.

I stared at the furniture and wondered why my mom kept such odd knick knacks. I focused at the one on the coffee table--the small glass figure of a giraffe. Why a giraffe --I had no idea but I know my dad found it amusing and would tease my mom on how it did not match with any of the other decor. I could not believe that after all these years it never broke. It was tall, fragile clear glass yet it had an elegant stance as if it was readying itself for a ballet performance.

"Anna. Anna," a voice softly called as I shook my head to release the giraffes grasp on my trance.

"Ivy. Hey," came out in a soft whisper as I turned the onyx ring my father had given me on my birthday.

"It is time, you know go," her eyes squinted holding back her sadness.

"Right..I just need my crutches."

"I have them and Bryn has the wheelchair in the car." She pointed over by the door where my crutches leaned against the wall.

"Why do I need that?"

"Your mom insisted. It is better that you have it. We even have a blanket so you will be the warmest person there." she softly smiled.

I knew she meant well and I hobbled to my feet as Ivy helped me onto my crutches and assisted me with my coat zipping it up like I was her child. As we stepped out into the tundra, I exhaled releasing my pinned up emotion. I slowly made it over to the small SUV trying not to fall. Bryn stood there waiting with the car running and as I got closer he opened the door. He softly smiled as he gently took my arm and helped to lift me into his small SUV.

My mom was riding in a limo with Ivy's mom, and my aunt and uncle. We didn’t have much in the way of family but I felt more comfortable with my friends than anyone of them hence my choice to ride with Ivy and Bryn.

The ride to the cemetery was long and slow even though it was maybe fifteen minutes away. I stared out the window catching glimpses of the trees that stretched their bare lifeless limbs to the sky. I even caught a small red bird every so often in tree, on a wire, on a rooftop and I wondered if it could be my dad—watching. As we drove I tried looking for other birds thinking this could distract my thoughts but no other birds made their presence known.

My stomach churned as Bryn pulled up to the cemetery and I waited in the car staring at the multiple headstones that adorned the landscape. Under each of those stones lay someone who had left somebody behind--they left hearts sad and souls empty. They left, and I wondered where they went. Could they see us? Were they watching us now? Were they happy? My attention was broken as Bryn opened my door

“Let me help you out” he reached under my arms and guided me to the wheelchair.

“Thanks and I’m sorry for…” I felt I needed to tell him that for all my emotional garbage he dealt with.

He squatted down to be eye level with me. “Don’t apologize. O.k. ? “

He stood back up and lightly kissed my forehead. I just closed my eyes savoring his care. I knew Bryn had other feelings for me but today I couldn’t let that clog my mind and I could tell his intentions today were strictly friendship. He stepped back as Ivy placed a warm blanket across my legs.

As Ivy pushed me across the hard ground the wheelchair raised and lowered as we got closer to the site. The sky was covered in grey, dull clouds that tried to keep the sun hidden. I began to wonder how they could dig a hole in the frozen ground? Who did the digging? How did they become a "gravedigger"? Really what were the requirements for that job? My thoughts were so random and ridiculous all to keep my mind off of what was coming upon my sight.

Rows of chairs were set up around a casket that hovered above the hole that I thought might be impossible to dig. The gray casket that housed a body--- one that once held love, happiness, laughter now confined to a box that would be put into the ground. There was a crowd already seated including my mother who only slightly glanced at me as Ivy wheeled me up to the front row. She locked the wheels and sat next to me as Bryn sat on the other side. My own mother who showed such compassion in the hospital now was reverting to her old loving self but when she needed the attention-- a quick hug around me along with a sob and people would flock to her.

I stared at the ground not wanting to look at the coffin again. The air stung my lungs as I took deep breaths in trying not to roll out the tears as I exhaled. I really didn’t know if I had any tears left. I looked down at the blue blanket trying to distract my eyes and saw Bryn and Ivy holding each of my mitten covered hands. It made me smile for a minute knowing I did have people who cared.

As the priest started his prayers, my eyes started their hurtful journey from watching his mouth let out the breath which flowed out visibly into the cold air to the huge floral arrangement next to him. How these flowers stayed beautiful in the cold was fascinating but my eyes needed to move on they were anxious yet cautious to see it see what was to be final.

I moved my eyes to coffin and I could see the sun trying to shine a reflection on the metal decoration in the harsh air. The reflection was a little dull but comforted me into thinking that it was shining for him. As my focus pulled outward digesting the whole scene, the tears began to well again and a slight cry came from my lips.

He was gone.

There you have it. Whew--letting out a big breath. 
Please be aware that this is from my first draft so please, please, please understand it is not in final form. 

Another note: I realize I am not the coolest cucumber in the vegetable dish but I am looking for a few good folks to start a critique group.  See my previous post for details. 

I hope everyone enjoys their day! I'm stuck with a ton of snow falling.  :)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Contests and critique groups

My post today is simple --contests and critique groups. 

Contests--I have seen a few as I have checked up on my favorite blogs.  I thought I may list them and if you have any you want to add please feel free. 

1. Anissa Off the Record--I have posted this one before. Anissa--god bless her--is posting everyday in the month of February and in return to all your comments she is giving away a Barnes and Noble gift card.  There are more details but you can go check them out for yourself :)

2. Michelle Gregory- Keep checking on her lovely website Beautiful Chaos.  She will be posting about a new contest in a few days.

3. Lisa and Laura Write -- Lisa and Laura have a page on the Teen Fire Ning.  If you are one of their blog followers,join the Teen Fire group and post on the Teen Fire Ning Forum the first 1,000 words of you piece --they will critique it. You need to send them a message on the Ning to let them know you sent it.  Check out all the details on their blog.  I am not sure I am ready for this.  Wish I was ready --we will see.  I did join the Teen Fire Ning which is all things YA.  Very cool :)

I hope to post a little snip it of what I'm working on soon. Just trying to build my courage --stay tuned for that.

4. Jenni James -Is giving away a bunch of prizes if you pre order her new book. Check out all the details and tell her I sent you.

I have also heard of a blog fest for Valentine's day but I don't know anything about it.  If anyone knows anything please let me know.

I am also thinking of starting a critique group.  Working on my trust issues.  Does anyone have any suggestions on how to start? Here is what I would want:

1. Writers who write YA.

2. I would want to keep the group small-- say 4 people total.

3. Must be prepared to really beta everyone's work.  We all have one goal in mind--to succeed.

4. Always keeping tabs on each other.  Making sure we do what we say we will do with our work. I babbling here --sorry.  

5. Support each other in good times and in bad.
I am not sure when to start this.  I am just finishing my first draft and then I will be revising, revising, revising.   If you are interested please send me a message.


Sunday, February 7, 2010

Review and a lovely blog award--yeah!

I have a couple of things to discuss--so follow along.

First, I have recieved a Honest Scrap Award from Kelly.  Thanks!

I have to list 10 honest things about little old me!

1. I am a procrastinator--especially on things I do not want to do.

2. I like being around people but I also need my alone time.

3. I tend to seek acceptance from others. If others don't accept me, I worry and wonder why.

4. I have trust issues with certain things.  My novel for one.  I am learning on how to deal with this.

5. I really don't like snow.

6. I am a neat freak at heart but I have had to learn that the floor could be washed at another time.

7. I like it when people are completely honest and straight forward with me.  The truth can hurt but it is better than not knowing at all.

8. I dislike being interrupted when I am fully focused on trying to complete a task.

9. I have become addicted to blogging.

10. I am so thankful for starting this journey and finding such a loyal and supportive group of people.

So now I need to pass this on to I think 10 other blogs. All the blogs I have been following to date deserve this too but I need to narrow it down.

                      1. Anissa off the Record

                    2. Dangerous with a Pen

                       3. unedited

                   4. One Significant Moment in Time

                     5. A Woman's Write

             6. Coming Down the Mountain-From Reclusive Write to  Published  Author

                     7. Kimberly Conway
                     8. This is not my day job

                       9. Amber Lough

                 10. Chronicles of a Novice Writer

Second, My review of hush, hush by Becca Fitzpatrick. 

I loved this book.  Let me say that again --I LOVED this book.  I should have known just by the cover --see above. I will not go into the details of the story but there was action, adventure, mystery, love, the list goes on.  I could not put it down.  I love books that have continuous action and make me want to keep reading.  Fantastic!!   Oh and Patch (swoon) is now on my list of favorite male characters.  :)  Sorry for the short review but I need to get the kiddos to bed.

So here is a question-- I have a long list of books I want to read but I want to hear from you.  What book should I read next?  I need something that will be a page turner. 

Have a great day!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Blogs..blogs ..blogs

Oh blogging-- how I love thee. I started blogging not knowing where it would take me or if I could even get the hang of it. I was told it will help get my name out there-- more of a marketing tool.  To be honest my eyes opened wide when I realized it is not only a marketing tool but a classroom.  I have been a crazy blogger for about a month and I have learned way more than I could have ever imagined.  You can ask anyone your biggest fear or how to cure you biggest writing flaw and --wah la --you have an answer.  You really do get a response in the blink of an eye.
The other little nugget I did not expect is how many supportive people I would meet.  Really, I can't believe it.  All I have to do is write about my mood and my fellow bloggers lend a tissue when I am sad or rejoice when I am celebrating.  They give the best advice because they are in the same boat.  Writing is not easy but it is what we all love.  So keep it coming!  I will do my best to return the support. 

Again a short blog-- I know-- but I have been finishing up some writing on my WIP so my brain is not firing on all cylinders. 

Question: What have you gotten out of blogging? Was it what you expected? What attracts you to a blog? What makes you follow a blog? Are there changes you think I should make on my blog?

Have a good day!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Juicy answers

O.k. Well you guys certainly ask good questions --ones I pondered on for a while.

Here are your answers:

1.Kelly Lyman said...
I loved hearing how you were inspired. I never knew that! Mmmm...questions...I want to know what the ending is going to be and when I will get a chance to read it!

O.k. Kelly--I can not reveal the ending here but you definately will get a chance to read it soon:) I will be emailing you.  I came up with some more scenes so I just want to add them in before sending it to you.

2. Jonathon Arntson said...

Now that we know about your inspiration, I'd like to know about your motivation. I'll leave it up to you t share as much or as little as you'd like.

Ohhh good one -- Motivation.  There are many things that motivate me so I will try not to write a book but provide you with the most important stuff.
                1. I need to prove something to myself.  Throughout most of my life I was a very shy and non confident person.  These peronality flaws have made me miss many opportunities and put some regrets on my plate.  I have always loved to write as far back as I can remember but never really thought I could be or was good at it.  I did start writing in secret 10 years ago but never let anyone read any of the stories I had written.  Marriage, kids and career became my focus making me put down the pen but in my mind I would still come up with characters and stories -- believe it or not I never wrote them down.  The career I chose I still love (interior design) but I never felt the deep love like I have for writing.   My career in design has made me become outgoing, and confident to not only sell a product but  to sell my talent.  That is when inspiration hit as you read in my previous post and I started writing again-- but this time I let someone read it.  I was told to try and do something with it.  So not wanting to have another regret --I have now started on my passion path. Whether something happens or not, I know I will just keep coming up with stories and characters that make me smile. 
              2. My kids--I think my kids need to know no matter where you are in life it's never to late to do something you love.  You need to take that passion learn and grow with it --if you do-- it will make your life full.

So that is it in a nutshell.  


3.Mariah Irvin said...

If you could spend one day with one of your characters, who would you choose and why?

Mariah--this was hard because there are so many I want to spend the day with. 

Really one? --o.k. as much as I want to spend the day with my hottie MC Ian for obvious reasons.  I would have to say my main MC Anna --she is a really cool chick who is sarcastic, strong and no matter where she is danger/adventure is bound to strike.  I think it would be fun to live on the edge for a day. I am usually not very adventurous person so it would be interesting.

How much do you like the color pink?
Love it!

4.Bethany Mattingly said...

You said that your ideas came to you like a movie trailer. When you think about a scene you're about to write, does it play out like a scene from a movie?

Pretty much! I see all of it play in my mind then I try to put all of it into words describing the details as I go.  Music helps too and I sometimes find myself replaying the scene it over and over in my head to see what is happening to the chracters and if I need to change anything that doesn't make sense.  I am a very visual person so this is the only way I have found works for me. 

Thanks for visiting!

5.Kimberly Franklin said...

It's fun when I get to ask the questions. ; )

Here's mine: If you were stranded on a deserted island and you could only pick one food to eat (have with you) for the rest of your life, what would you pick???

Does chocolate count? If it does then chocolate if not then pizza (plain).


What made you want to be a writer/author?

I love to make up stories and drift off to other realities. I also like receiving feedback about my stories.  If you read my answer above I never let anyone read anything I had written before but when I did the reaction and the feedback I got was priceless (whether it was good or bad). Being a designer helped me deal with critisim.  I used to take it so personally but I can deal with it better now. 

There you go a little blurb on me.  Thanks for your awesome questions. 
Off to write.
Have a good day!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Questions for me.

Questions, questions, questions--I gave you some info on my first draft yesterday so here is your opportunity to ask me what you want to know (keep your mind out of the gutter people).

I will answer your questions--a short get to know me bit.  Just for fun!
My brain is fried with keeping up with the kiddos so I thought I would do something that may not require too much thinking :) and so this post was born.

Have a good day!

Monday, February 1, 2010

First Drafts

Happy Monday!

First, I wanted to tell everyone about a contest over at Anissa Off the Record. She will be posting everyday --in the month of February.  Check out the all details and prizes and tell her I sent you over.

Second, This will be short due to other demands that are flagging my attention.  First drafts --love them or hate them-- they are the beginning.  I am just about finished my first draft--I know I can't stop talking about it--and there is still a long road ahead.

Here is a little background of my journey so far:

My idea hit me hard in April 2009.
The song "Panic Switch" by Silversun Pickups began to play and I saw pieces play like a movie in my head of my MC's (this is how the majority of my ideas come about) running, kissing, driving.  It played more like a trailer to a movie --different scenes flashing as the music hit its dramatic highs and lows.

At the time, I had no laptop and didn't use my desktop too often due to convenience-- so I hand wrote most of it. 

When I finally got a laptop in September, my baby was born.    There you have it a quick little blurb on me.

 So here are my questions:

Typically, How long does it take you to whip out a first draft?

Do you remember where/when the first sparkle of an idea hit you to start your current WIP? If you want to give details feel free.

Have a great day!