Monday, November 28, 2011

Pinterest Pastimes...

This was a low key Thanksgiving. I was reminded of Del in The Shell Keeper, who found herself attending rather than hosting the turkey dinner for possibly the first time in her life. On the one hand, there was the melancholy of parting with tradition...but on the other hand, there was a lot less work!

Of course, even though I wasn't in charge I couldn't resist making way too many desserts: apple and cherry pie, pecan pie squares, chocolate cake. Did I mention I love dessert? My time was well spent in lovely Breckenridge, Colorado, where our family convened for food, fun and general family mayhem.

It was also a time to put aside anything work related and do fun pinning items of interest on my Pinterest board. I don't know who invented this idea, and at first I thought it was fairly useless. It is, after all, just a place to save ideas, dreams, designs and maybe plot some creativity. Nothing it actually done there.

But then I realized that pulling together those bits and pieces, then perhaps combining them into something concrete in your life is an awful lot like writing a book. And I would never say that was a waste of I guess I'll go pin some more...

Photo courtesy of

Friday, November 18, 2011

Editing, edditing, editting....

I'm on the home stretch with the final edits of FRAMED, my next book. It's amazing sometimes to see what still remains to be tweaked...when I think of ALL the eyes that have seen this manuscript thus far! FRAMED is a humorous mystery that readers of The Shell Keeper will also enjoy.

Here's a little sneak peek at what our heroine, Kay, thinks of her son's soccer coach, Gary Bell...

His mere physical presence, every muscle pumped to its max, was enough to intimidate even a naturally cocky, thirty-something, under-insured, single mother such as myself.

"You're late, Mrs. Conroy," he said in a guttural tone that reminded me of his Cro-Magnon lineage. The late afternoon sun was hot, and perspiration already glistened on Gary's well defined musculature. Clasping his hands behind his head, he revealed sweat drenched armpits. Where's an air freshener when I need one?

"Actually, I think we just made it on--"

"Punctuality teaches boys respect." He paused.

Bell wasn't tall, in fact he was well shy of six feet, but he had made the most of what God (or the other guy) had given him. Every pec and glute was visible beneath the flimsy soccer shorts and tank top he invariably wore to practice.

He surveyed my insolently late arrival with a proudly hulking elegance. I smiled, teeth gritted beneath my lips. All that stood between me and insubordination was my personal belief that Gary's brain pan couldn't have progressed much past that of his Paleolithic ancestors.

"I'm very sorry," I said, ignoring the pits as best I could. Could I have been any more sincere? I didn't think so. It was no secret I didn't like his militaristic style. I'd even tried, ever so politely, to point this out early in the season. Maybe Gary's inner child was insecure...maybe he was just an asshole. Whatever; he had not appreciated my constructive criticism. Generally, Bell flat out avoided me and I gladly returned the favor.

Hope you enjoyed the peek. I promise more to come as we near publication!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

So, every once in a while I have to go crazy and grab a fun read! This is a challenge for a writer, because we are masters of procrastination and can get 'Lost in a Good Book' just as easily as Jasper Fforde's delightful and determined Thursday Next character.

I try to stick to the classics when I'm actively writing-they seem to improve my 'voice' rather than trash it. But after a while I want to wallow in some fun fiction just like the next reader. That's why I was delighted when an unexpected trip to the local library found me in the temporary possession of Janet Evanovich's lastest Stephanie Plum mystery, Smokin' Seventeen!!

No need for Twizzlers today-I've got some fun Brain Candy to consume tonight!

( courtesy of Janet Evanovich's site)

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

I TWEET...Therefore I Blog/Am!

Or is it the other way around? Either way, I'm learning they go hand in hand when it comes to getting the word out about anything! Being a Robin by nature, you'd think that little blue bird would come naturally to me. But being a writer, you'd be surprised how terribly difficult I find it to keep my thoughts limited to only a meager 140 characters!

When you are used to putting your thoughts into a format that runs to 80,000 words or more, sucking it all down to a tweet is a BIG challenge... Still, I think it's one that might make me a better, more succinct writer. Follow me on Twitter and let me know what you think. Just CLICK ON THE LINK TO THE RIGHT on this blog-see you there!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Nook: PubIt? Love it!

Woohoo! The Shell Keeper is up and now available at Barnes and Noble for all you Nook readers! No HTML's were mangled in the process and very little Riesling was consumed in the aftermath.

Super kudos to the folks at PubIt who have designed the MOST user friendly site for publishers of all the epub sites so far. Note to Kindle...why can't you make it THIS easy?! Truly, after only minimal account entry, it's a one page project, and that's MY kind of tech challenge.

For Nook readers, purchase and download the book as you would any other book from Barnes and Noble. Still an e-reader virgin?? If so, the Nook is pretty cool, as is the Kindle. The basic readers without all the wingdings and dodads are finally priced fairly reasonably.

I love the hard, cool feel of paper as much as the next person...but be brave, dear readers! e-readers fill a gap in our reading lifestyle and make it easy to traipse all over creation with a good book close at hand!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

No No! NaNoWriMo!!

Across the fruited plain, and really, way beyond, writers are hunkering down today to meet the challenge of NaNoWriMo! Their goal: write 50,000 words in one month! During a slightly delusional moment when I considered joining the hoards, I broke it down; it came to 1,667 words per day. If you decide to take off weekends, that takes 8 days out of the mix and adds those to the 22 days left in your writer's workweek/month. In that case, you'll be churning out 606 words per day for a total of 2273.
Okay, so on a great day I can totally do that-and more. But who has 22 to 30 totally great days in a row?! Egads!! Still, if I made the commitment I would do my best and truly, I'd end up with most of a hopefully good, new manuscript at the end of the month.
Truly, I was tempted. Then I was reminded-it's NOVEMBER! What, am I nuts?! Holidays are coming, shopping to be done (before kids are out of school-if you have that concern), relatives coming for Turkey dinners-Turkey dinners! There's at least ONE Thursday I couldn't write and another 606 words I'd have to squeak in somewhere.
Honestly, I'm as good a procrastinator as the next writer, but as you can clearly see, I've got some points. Which leads me to wonder...
Why November, NaNoWritMo!? Why not...February? In February I'll be stuck inside with hot beverages avoiding shoveling and, as we know, no one does anything. Just ask that dang groundhog; he peeks out of his hole-almost always determines there are 6 more weeks of winter to go-and pops back inside, not to be seen again until spring. Maybe he's writing a good book!