Sunday, December 30, 2007

My New Favorite Song

"Paralyzer" by Finger Eleven. Enjoy it, peeps.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Post #300

Aren't you glad you're here for this momentous occasion?

On the writing front: back to the grind today after taking some time off around the holidays. Over 600 words on the antho short story. I think I've finally stumbled onto the right idea. Now it's just a matter of putting it on paper and getting the tone right. It feels good to be back in the saddle. After this story is done--I'd like to have a rough draft done this week--I'll work on a story for the market I posted about a few days ago. That one sounds like a lot of fun and I've already got a good idea for that. After that I'll work on a pirate short story for yet another anthology I've been invited too. Yes, you read that right--I've been asked to submit a story for the next Blue Kingdoms anthology. It's not due until March, so I've got plenty of time. Good thing, too, because I don't have a good idea yet. Of course, between all this is work on the YA book Through the Portal. I've got plenty to keep me busy.

Oh, good news about the Blue Kingdoms anthologies. Walkabout Press has been working hard to make the books available on If all goes well, you'll be able to buy a copy of your very own over the Internet after the first of the year. This is such good news for everyone involved. It'll bring much-needed exposure to the Blue Kingdoms world and the authors that have gotten to explore it, not to mention Walkabout Press. I'll keep you all posted about that development.

Oh, yeah, I got another agent rejection today. Never fear. I'm too busy writing to worry about it much.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all my blogland peeps. Stay safe and sane, and I'll see you all on the flip side.

I Am Legend--movie review

Ken and I saw I Am Legend on Friday Night. It was ... good. Will Smith did an excellent job protraying a man on the verge of insanity. The special effects were cool; the vampiric humans were scary and the deserted New York was impressive. There were a few themes that weren't fully developed (I'm told they were in the book) and there was a time-shifting method of story-telling that wasn't that effective. My vote: go see it, but don't pay full price.

The movie was good, but our theater experience sucked. For one thing, we saw a 7:00 p.m. showing, which was probably our first mistake. Our second mistake was not moving when the frat brothers behind us couldn't shut up during the previews. The dudes laughed and heckled their way through the movie, which made it hard to be as emotionally wrenched as I wanted to be during a few painful/suspenceful scenes. Also, a few girls in front of us kept saying things like "Oh my gosh, oh gosh, that did not just happen," during tense scenes. It took all my will not to either strangle them or yell at them. Who raised these people to not shut up in a movie theater?!? I want to see several movies in the coming weeks--Charlie Wilson's War and National Treasure among them--but now I'm rethinking it. If we do go, it'll be at 4:00 p.m. on a Wednesday.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Market gem

Here's something from CatCurious press:

There are two sides to every story...And we here at CatsCurious Press think that our readers deserve to read BOTH!A Call for Submissions... of the Faery Taile Kynde!CatsCurious Press will open to submissions starting January 1, 2008 for all well-written, humorous fairy tale re-tellings! But there's a catch -- these stories must be written from ONE POV only... the protagonist's.Why would we be so strict, you ask? Because Jim C. Hines, author of 'Goblin Quest', 'Golblin War' and 'Goblin Hero' has already gotten on board to write a counterpoint story! That's right -- once I have plowed my way through the slush, Jim will review my favorite stories and then choose ONE from among them to write a counterpoint to.The end result will be a double-sided book with two covers (one featuring artwork for Jim's story, the other featuring artwork to coincide with the protagonist's point of view). Stories will be printed upside-down from one another -- flip the book over, and start fresh from the top! I can't wait to see the end result!Here are the requirements:Story length must be between 5000 and 10,000 wordsStories must be single POV, from the protagonist's point of viewStories must be humorousStories must appeal to a broad range of folks -- from twelve years old to adult (so no raunchy humor, please!)Submission period: January 1st, 2008 to midnight March 31st, 2008Any fairy tale is fair game!The payment? $.05 per word (up to $500 maximum) and seeing your name next to Jim C. Hines'!

Come on, you know you want to give it a shot. I know I am.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Time for you to shout out, peeps.

Time for a little meme cribbage:

I know very little about some of the people that read my blog. Some people I know relatively well. (Some I know too well. You know who you are.) I read your journals, or we have something else in common and we chat occasionally. Some of you I hardly know at all. Perhaps you lurk, for whatever reason. But you visit and I thank you for your interest in my words.But here's a thought: why not take this opportunity to tell me a little something about yourself. Any old thing at all. Just so the next time I see your name I can say: "Ah, there's so and so...they listen in rapture to the love-music of she-turnips." I might feel compelled to mock your musical taste, but I'll certainly remember you.I'd love it if every single person who reads would do this. Yes, even you people who I know really well. Then post this in your own journal and see what gems of knowledge appear.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Brother Odd by Dean Koontz

Just finished this book last night. I've been a fan of Dean Koontz since his "recombinant DNA" sci-fi/horror days. He's mellowed out in the past ten years or so, and this book is a reflection of that. While not a trilogy, Brother Odd is the third book featuring Odd Thomas. Odd can see dead people, and that's just as much of a pain in the ass as you'd imagine. He's had a hard time recovering from a horrific event (detailed in the first book, Odd Thomas) and so has escaped to a monastery to find peace. Several of the monks have colorful pasts (one is even a former mafioso). The nuns are sly as foxes. And someone or something means to harm them all. In the course of events, the very nature of God and creation are put in question.

I loved Odd Thomas--the book and the character refused to leave my head for several days. I read Forever Odd, the second book in the series, but it didn't leave much of an impression on me one way or the other. I fear that Brother Odd will be the same way. The idea had potential, and if the story had featured any other protagonist, I probably would have really enjoyed it. For me, the first book in the series was so amazing and heart-wrenching and beautifully simple that the others just can't compete. Unfair? Perhaps. Will it keep me from reading another book with the same character. Probably not. I'll keep chasing perfection.


One more rejection for SW.

Note that I've changed the comment settings. While I still don't allow anonymous comments, I do allow "openID" comments, which means you can use your livejournal url to comment here. I'm not sure how it works, but it seems pretty flashy-dashy to me. Give it a whirl, won't you?

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Christmas memories

1. Ken asked me to marry him on Christmas Day, so that's obviously my favorite. We were living together at the time, and so it was our first post-college Christmas. We opened gifts before eating a nice breakfast of french toast, sausage, and orange juice. As I cleaned up the breakfast dishes, Ken said, "Hey, Santa left you another gift." I walked into the living room to find a little Precious Moments birthstone chest. I opened it and there was the ring. I looked at it for awhile and finally Ken said, "It's an engagement ring." That broke my amazement enough for me to tell him yes.

2. Decorating sugar cookies with mom and dad. Dad would bake them, mom and I would decorate them. Dad didn't usually want any part of the decorating business but he'd watch. He'd also purposely burn the last batch so he'd have cookies to dunk in coffee. His sugar cookies were of the puffy soft variety, and I loved them. I need to ask him for that recipe; somehow I don't have it.

3. Stealing Christmas lights. This would be when I was a teenage houligan, probably around 14 or 15. Remember the old-school lights that if one bulb burned out, the whole string shut off? Well, a group of us walked around town and pulled one light off of random strands of lights. At least, I pulled them out; I figured it'd be easier for the owners to find the reason their lights went out. One member of the party only loosened one light so the homeowner would have to twist every light to find the defective one. Ah, youth.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Planetary alignment question

Is Jupiter in retrograde Capricorn or something? Okay, I have no idea what that meant, but listen to my day.

First thing this morning--I'm talkin' 7 a.m.--I had a periodontist appointment. I have a 12 mm pocket behind my distal #14 molar, and it had to be scraped clean and stitched down so the gum could reattach to my tooth. Good times. I told the doc I didn't need Darvecet and would just use ibuprofen. He gave me some amoxicillin and special mouthwash and sent me on my way.

So I finally get to work a little after 8 a.m. We had our computer upgrade yesterday and today was the first day for most people to work on the actual live system. Sure, we'd been working on the test side for months but it's just different when you're actually live. I'm the Superuser for Micro, and so it was pretty important that I be there. Then around 9 a.m. I got a phone call from Ken--when he started his car the cabin filled with smoke and so he didn't want to drive it. Could I take a long lunch so we could car shop? I got very lucky because we had extra people on hand for the upgrade and so I was able to leave work around 10 a.m. Ken drove a Saturn Vue, then we had lunch ....

.... where I tried to eat chunky soup in a bread bowl. No dice. I ate the soup without chewing and passed off the bread bowl to Ken. Mouth pain at a definite peak, so I popped more ibuprofen before we hit another car dealership ...

... where we spent four hours looking at two cars. The dealer let Ken bring home a Hyundai Sante Fe for the night. Ken's leaning towards the Saturn, but at least this way he'll have a way to get to work tomorrow.

When we got home, I found another agent rejection in my mailbox.

So. My mouth hurts bad enough that I can't eat solid food, we have to buy a car, I didn't get to the gym tonight, and I haven't written anything in three days. All I want to do is curl up under a blanket and suck on a piece of cake.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Blatant commercial rip-offery

Three collapsable cat carriers: $36
Three rabies vaccination tags: $30
Three rabies and distemper vaccinations, plus distemper boosters and well-kitty visits: $159
One peed- and pooped-in collapsable cat carrier: Free
One cat scratch: Free
Three kitties with a clean bill of health: Priceless

A side note: Moonshine is a petite 6.25 pound kitty, but she is ALL CLAW. Shove her in a carrier at your own peril.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007


I reached 10,000 words on the WIP tonight. Last night a funeral scene tried to make me stumble, but tonight I owned it. That whimper you hear? That's the scene begging for mercy.

Lifted weights, too. If I can walk tomorrow I'll be a happy girl.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Christmas Spirit

I had a moment of sadness when I hung up the stockings because I had to leave Bailey's in the crate. So I hung up the fish-shaped stocking instead. It made me feel a teensy bit better.
Since Ken and I are doing the whole "Biggest Loser" business at the gym, the cookies are going to work tomorrow. Ken doesn't like sugar cookies and the fun for me is decorating them, so it's all good. Note that I gave the gingerbread man with a broken leg a little bit of red-icing blood.

New post ...

at the Writer's symposium. Go clicky the linky on the left.

Saturday, December 01, 2007


It's only 2 p.m. and I've already been to the gym, mailed Christmas cards, and survived the grocery store. I say "survived" because we're at the beginning of an ice storm the place was nuts. I didn't see any fights break out or anything, but I think I personally bumped into about 20 people. I don't know why everyone was there--yeah, we've got an ice storm coming, but it's going to be 52 degrees tomorrow. It's all going to melt, people!

Ken and I were at the grocery store because we've joined a "biggest loser" program at our gym. This morning we got weighed and measured, which motivated us to buy lots of fruits and veggies and fiberous cereals. I'm actually pretty jazzed about it. Between working out and writing and reading and internetting, I won't have time for much else. But let's face it, what else do you need?