Monday, December 28, 2009

Mentally Ill Cats and Multitasking

I've been dealing with both. We thought for sure our poor kitty was nearing her last breath: hadn't eaten or taken water in nearly a week, was in perpetual hiding, breathing was shallow and rapid. We finally flushed her out of hiding and got her to the vet. Several hours & dollars later, we hear the verdict: cat is perfectly fine, she's just suffering a feline form of PMS. Might need some anti-anxiety medication.

I guess it's true that pets take after their owners.... :-P

But now that I can rest more easily knowing only a hefty dose of Midol is needed for kitty, I have more time to worry about my own issues. Like, when am I ever going to finish another one of the many manuscripts on my hard drive. The three shorter ones that I did finish have all been published, so shouldn't I try to something longer? After all, the last couple of rejections I received for one of them all said the same thing: this one is too short for us, but please send us something longer. They said they liked my writing - just needed to see more of it. Longer, more developed. Sigh...

However, I want to work on an idea I have for Samhain's Steampunk Anthology. These characters have been knocking on my door for weeks, and I'm on my last round of edits with the one coming out with Cobblestone, so I should be good to go, right? But... but those other editors... they were so encouraging. Shouldn't I jump on that first, before they forget they requested more material? Shouldn't I hurry and finish one of those novels for them? What's a gal to do?

Edie Ramer had a post about the various characters going in and out of her life this past year, and it was great. Shana Galen also has an article about when it's a good time to cheat on your books. (In truth, just like every other rationalizing cheater, I want people to tell me it's ok if I hang with several characters at a time.) ;)

So, what about you? Are you a faithful or a fickle writer?

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Check it out...

Got a first look at my new cover art. It also came with banners, buttons and various sized editions of what you see here. I don't have a release date yet since we're just going through the first edits, but I'm happy. :)

Monday, December 07, 2009

These are a few of my favorite things...

  • For those who are trying to lose/gain/maintain their weight: (It's free, though takes a little getting used to, but has been worth it - two of my friends and I have been doing it for a month and all three of us lost 10 pounds.)
  • For those of us who are “pantsers” and procrastinators: The Marshall Plan Software (Expensive, but has been worth it to me - my friend and former CP, Amber Scott recommended it, and it was just what I needed.)
  • And getting a contract for my novella from Cobblestone Press. :) Will let you know when it's coming out.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

For Halloween Art Fans

Hey - if any of you like Halloween art, one of the artist groups that I belong to is having a giveaway at their blog. Stop by and enter to win. :)

Sunday, August 02, 2009

On the Move...Again

Fortunately, it's my writing that's on the move again and not me. I had determined a month ago that it was time for me to quit procrastinating, stop making excuses, and in general, just stop whining and get to work. I looked over all the false starts I had in my writing folders (far too many) and asked which ones were actually viable - could actually turn into something if I got off my lazy duff. It seemed there were several.

So, I gave myself a deadline of at the very least one book finished by the end of the year; preferably two. I also decided to complete something with a view to submitting it to Silhouette since their word counts are smaller than most publishers. Figured that would give me something to work toward - 60,000 words is a reasonable goal - something that should easily be accomplished. After all, I already several things (sure things!) started that were already up to 25K. Piece of cake, right?

Those of you who are snickering can stop now. Those "sure things" quickly became doubtful; but one started to look hopeful. Until I had no idea where it was going or how it would end. Then I found Holly Lisle's site, and in particular, this beautiful formula. I put it into practice, and wham! back in business. Holly now has a new fan. Also, I can't wait to order and read her Devil's Point series (Sympathy for the Devil - scroll down toward the end of the link to find it ) -it looks like a lot of fun.

So, after scrapping most of my WIP, I started over with major changes (it's no longer paranormal, for instance) but it's going much more smoothly now. I'm excited. I never thought getting rid of the vampire element would make it a better story, but it actually has. It was hard to kill that darling, but it was the right thing to do. And I might actually finish it on time now. :)

Have you ever had to completely gut a book and start it in a new direction? How did that go for you? I was surprised that this worked - I was very reluctant to give up the darker elements (especially since that also changed the line I was goign to submit to), but something kept telling me it was the right thing to do. And when I applied Holly's formula to the new path, it all started to click.

Now, in the meantime, if you want to check out some of my brother's writing and sense of humor, you can go here. He's watching the dog's blog while his wife is away. I don't know what she was thinking leaving them alone like that....

Sunday, May 17, 2009

On the Move

Well, it's been another busy month. Computer crashes, viruses and work have kept me offline and out of the loop for a while, and now I have to move. I hate moving, but sometimes it's a necessary evil. Have been trying all day to motivate myself to sort & pack my bedroom, but the bed keeps singing its siren's song and calling me back.

On the other hand, I was slightly stoked when I saw my shall-remain-secret short story is now up on the publisher's website. :) That motivated me to want to write some more, but I also have two friend's novels that are awaiting my edits and feedback, so I'd feel guilty about working on my own when I have promises to keep. Hence, I'm still sitting here doing nothing. (In self defence, did I mention my computer crashed and it had viruses? It took almost three weeks to get all that straightened out, so I'm way behind.)

Anyhoodles... hope all is well out there in your world. I'm off to look at all the work I need to do. And sigh. What are you up to?

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Family Matters

Just wanted to take a moment to show some love to my new sister-in-law (and her dog).

Will be back later for more updates. :) Meanwhile, how's it going out there?

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Magical Mondays - Real Goals

Have been thinking about goals and manifestation lately, and came across this interesting video:

You'll need to watch through the end to see the main point - how we can test whether we REALLY want something or not. I did a little self-test with this and the results were somewhat surprising. I already knew I've been hesitant about some things I've thought I wanted to have in my life, but there were others that I didn't realize I would have still hesitated for. That got me to thinking about creative visualization and why some things manifest ,while others do not. Could it be I was holding back and the universe knew it before I did? I think it's likely.

You don't even have to have a partner to do this test- just really picture yourself being able to grab whatever you want out of someone's hand as they offer it to you. Do you take it automatically, or is some little voice in the pit of your stomach going, "well, maybe..."?

Honestly, who knew I would have had second thoughts about that winning lottery ticket? I sure didn't. But it did get me to thinking about why that is, and now I think I'm a little better equipped to start manifesting the things I really do want.

Try picturing someone offering you health and happiness for your loved ones - pretty easy to take that one. Now, picture them offering you fame, fortune, 6-figure writing contracts, etc. - whatever you think should entice you. Which ones are easy takes, and which ones might make you hesitate?

Saturday, February 14, 2009

I Get by with a Little Help from My Friends...

So, how is everyone out there? It's been a while, huh?

I've been under the weather for so long (and in Chicago, that's some pretty bad weather!) that I sometimes wonder if I'll ever dig out (literally and figuratively). Nevertheless, I wanted to log in and say "thank you" to those of you who've stuck with me, and get caught up on some of the good news around the blogosphere.

I'm still making the rounds, but here a few items of note:

Lana Gramlich's talent seems to grow every time I visit her blog. Her photography is incredible, as are her paintings. And her husband, Charles, (also extremely talented) has a short horror story on the (also very talented) Sidney Williams' new podcast.

Edie Ramer is in the finals of the American Title V contest - go, Edayyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!!!!!!!! Here's hoping she wins that publishing contract!

Zoe Winters was a finalist in the Better Sex Erotic Fiction contest, and won a "hot new author" prize.

Cynthia Eden keeps pulling in the publishing contract. Yay, Cindy! :)

Now, those are just a few highlights. I'm still making my way through my favorite blogs, so I'm sure I'll come across many more.

On the home front, I reviewed The List I made some time ago, and found things are still coming true. I definitely needed that pick-me-up. Among other things on the list, my daughter is now happy in acting classes, and I finally got a website started to help raise money (selling folk art paintings & sculptures) for a worthy cause.

I also created a new pseudonym and finished a short story that I'll submit tonight under the new name. (Sorry to be a tease, but this came about with a little help from another friend whom I promised to not mention, lips are sealed.) ;) It's the first thing I've finished in quite a while, too.

So, to those of you whose blogs I haven't gotten to yet, feel free to post all your good news. :)

Oh, and Happy Valentine's Day. Hope your day (every day) is filled with laughter and love.