Archive for the ‘All of the Above’ Category

Squirrel!

Hi there.

So… it’s been a chunk of time, yeah? Yeah. So… you think maybe in that chunk of time I would have accomplished more than day to day survival? Not so much. I have the attention span of a toddler. Maybe that’s because I have a toddler… but that smacks of excusism. None of that!

Writing

LOL! Oh wait, you thought I was maybe doing some of that? LOL! Yeah. Not so much. Maybe I should rename the blog to Yeah. Not So Much.? Anyhoo. So… contests: I didn’t win the GotYA agent critique – which is cool since I haven’t a manuscript (YA or otherwise) to be critiqued. The good folk at Heart & Scroll: Magic Moments contest cashed my check so they have in fact received my entry. But I haven’t heard from them and I’m not sure when/if I will. I assume there will be some kind of rejection materials but their website has no dates on when the winner (and therefore LOSERS) will be notified. That’s cool, too. I managed to write a first draft essay for the Share Your Glee contest… the day before it was due. And then had no time (or energy) to rework the thing. Oi. Noticing a trend here? Moving on…

The RWA National Conference was moved from Nashville (because it’s under 10 feet of water) to Orlando (which is not), which would have been cool. But. Yeah, there’s always a “but”. My kids love that word, cracks them like an egg… but I digress. So the conference site was moved BUT I didn’t act quickly enough on the new link to the conference rate hotel reservations and they ran out of rooms for the whole span of the conference and were setting up an “overflow” location. Ugh. If I can’t stay on site at the conference hotel, I’m not interested. At least I bought the trip insurance for my flight through Expedia. Yay me.

Gee, aren’t I full of entertaining ennui today?

Reading

The hubbin has embraced the lure of the e-reading – primarily on my iPad, which he mocked when I impulse-bought one a few weeks back. He keeps sneaking it away and I’ve been finding a steady build up of Dresden novels on my Kindle account. I think I know what he might be getting for Father’s Day.

I’ve been reading a lot of Sherlock Holmes of late, actually. I’ve always enjoyed SH but I find I have a new appreciation for the humor now. It doesn’t hurt that Robert Downey, Jr and Jude Law pop immediately to mind on this current re-read. Rowr.

I came across a book called Nancy’s Theory of Style. I followed the link because the name and cover amused me. Then I read the cover copy:

Real style takes risks.

Lively, pretty young socialite Nancy Carrington-Chambers has always believed that an excellent sense of style and strict attention to detail are what it takes to achieve a perfectly chic life. Now, however, her own haute couture marriage is starting to resemble a clearance rack, as husband Todd manifests more and more symptoms of a dread disease—incurable tackiness. Seriously concerned, Nancy flees their vulgar McMansion for an apartment in San Francisco’s posh Pacific Heights. She’s determined to make her event planning company, Froth, a real winner, but her new prize assignment—reinventing the turgid Barbary Coast Historical Museum fundraiser—must be spectacular in every way. Luckily, Nancy now has the perfect assistant. Derek Cathcart is British, impeccably dressed, gorgeous, and clearly gay—so why does Nancy find him so attractive?

Before Nancy can unravel her feelings for Derek, her irresponsible cousin Birdie abandons her four-year-old daughter at Nancy’s and takes off to parts unknown. Nancy, Derek, and little Eugenia make an unlikely “family,” but strangely it all seems incredibly right. Nancy’s parents are pressuring her to return to Todd, however, and she still has to pull off the party of the year. For someone who has always prided herself on knowing exactly where she is going, Nancy is sailing into dangerously uncharted waters.

Irresistibly funny, romantic, and heartwarming, Nancy’s Theory of Style shows that happiness and love—just like fashion—have never been about playing it safe.

This is what jumped out at me like Christine on a road trip: Luckily, Nancy now has the perfect assistant. Derek Cathcart is British, impeccably dressed, gorgeous, and clearly gay—so why does Nancy find him so attractive?

Holy crap! I have a story idea that’s been marinating in the morgue for eons with a hero who is an assumed-gay wedding planner. The similar set up was too tempting to pass by. Fortunately, the perfect assistant bears not even a passing resemblance to my wedding planner. Whew! The book on the whole was cute, but irritating. The author was very concerned with clever turns of phrase and her characters suffered as a result. I spent the first half of the book wanting to duct tape the title character’s mouth shut – I mean, who talks like that? No one I want to spend more than five minutes with. Luckily, she shed some of the pretentiousness and found some growth and I didn’t feel like throwing the book against the wall at the end. Which is good since I was reading it on the iPad. I’m not sure I’d recommend it. However, some good came from the experience: I pulled that story out of the morgue and put in a little work on it and it’s a lot stronger than it started out. So it’s now on the Wild Wheel of WIPs. Woot! Oi.

This morning, however, I came across an upcoming novel that I am highly intrigued by – Restoring Harmony by Joelle Anthony. Oooooo! Looks like it’s available now (for some reason I was thinking it released this summer). Will let you know how it goes. Eventually.

I was poking around the author’s site and found an article she titled Red Hair’s Not As Uncommon As You Think. Ok, I’m a redhead, so the title alone caught my attention. HILARIOUS. And sooo true. Actually, quite helpful as well; one of the ideas I’ve been kicking around of late is a YA sleuth series. Aaaand my current antagonist is a Mean Girls cheerleader. Actually, I’m guilty of quite a few of these cliches. Oops. Back to the drawing board! My favorite from the list: #15 – Main characters named Hannah and making a note of it being a palindrome. LOL! Forewarned is forearmed. Even if you’re not writing YA, the list is totally worth checking out.

Well, that’s all for now. Contain your disappointment, people, it’s embarrassing. Hmmm, judging by the sounds emanating from the backyard I need to go save my children from themselves. The cat wonders why.

Squirrel!

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potpourri

I’m back! Miss me? Admit it, you know you did. Ok, be that way. ((very mature raspberry))

Life

So here I am today, blogging from the EZ Lube on my sparkly new iPad. Ain’t technology grand? I wasn’t actually going to give into the sparkle of the iPad but I came into some extra cash and had just finished an amazing book on my iPhone that I wanted to read bigger, so…

Reading

What book inspired my spendy spree, pray tell? Columbine by Dave Cullen. I picked it up on the recommendation of Janet Reid and could not put it down. Absolutely riveting. Anyway once I finished it, I went right back to the beginning and started over. The book, much like the event itself, is too much to absorb in one pass. I don’t know that I’ll ever truly comprehend it.

Writing

I entered my very first ever contest – yay! Over on GotYA they were offering a 30 page critique by an agent – just post up to 200 words of your ms that best illustrates your “voice”. Easy peasy. So I put up 207 words from Roxy. After I posted I found a glaring typo and a lot of the other entries are incredibly strong, so my chances are slim. But hey it’s a first step.

“Hold the phone!” you cry. “Roxy? WTH?” Yeah. I started another one. It’s disgusting, I know. Roxy is my attempt at YA, kind of Nancy Drew with a hint of Veronica Mars – without all of the attendant rape and incest. Or maybe Nancy Drew with a hint of Buffy – without all of the attendant monsters and supernatural. Not exactly original, but I’m having fun with it.

So what about Tucker? Yeah. What about Tucker, anyway. I’ve made no progress since last reported here. Ugh. But, there is a contest I have my eye on and I think the first scene will do very nicely for it. All I have to do is trim it from 11 1/2 pages to 10. Easy peasy…? Not exactly… see I’ve decided to swap the inciting events around. AGAIN.

Maybe there is some kind of counseling or pharmaceutical aid I can partake of?

Anyhoo. That’s me for now.

Ciao.

ps – Want to see what I posted for the contest? Of course you do.

Roxy turned just in time to reach out and catch the keys sailing through the hot morning air at her head. She grinned and scrambled into the Jeep behind the wheel. Eddie hopped in beside her as Brenda rushed to the door.

“Gun it, kid.”

Obediently Roxy turned the key in the ignition and the Jeep roared to life. She found first gear – with only minimal grinding – and eased out onto the street.

Eddie stretched like a cat. “You’re getting better at that, kiddo.” A tinny rendition of “Rehab” exploded from his phone, which he ignored.

Roxy, eyes diligently on the road, asked, “You aren’t going to pick that up?”

“Nah. I’ve heard enough lectures from your mom to last three marriages. Besides, what’s the point of having a driver’s permit if you’re never permitted to drive?”

“I’m pretty sure that’s her point.”

Brenda was an ER nurse who’d seen one too many examples of the hazards of teenage drivers. As far as she was concerned, Roxy was S.O.L. until she turned eighteen.

She’d nearly stroked out when Eddie’d picked up Roxy to go surfing and brought her home with a freshly minted learner’s.

Father and daughter found themselves grounded for two weeks.