Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Random Thought #2

My second Random Thought seems a little more writerly focused.  Yay!

Why do I have such a difficult time saying "my writing"?  I always use some kind of euphemism, like "creative pursuits" or a similar phrase.  Sometimes I say, "my work", because that's also what it is.  I never say, "my book".  I think that sounds too presumptuous, as though I assume it will be a published book when I'm finished.  When you're working on your writing, is that what you call it when talking about it with others?

Friday, December 6, 2013

Here Is A Link

Just one this week.  I'm sure there are a lot of great articles I've missed lately, I've just been busy.  I did enjoy this one about being too realistic in a story.

Too real to be believable? - Heroines with Hearts
http://heroineswithhearts.blogspot.ca/2013/12/too-real-to-be-believable.html

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Quote #8

Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.

–Ralph Waldo Emerson

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Random Thought #1


I thought I'd start posting some of my Random Thoughts.  I have them.  I either keep them to myself or I use them in my creative pursuits.  Sometimes they're confusion, sometimes they're gross.  Maybe some of them sparkle.

On Walking Dead, which my Hubby and I watch, why is the Govenor such a popular character? He drives me crazy.  I don't know how he lived so long.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Ways To Say... Sad

There are many different contexts for being sad, different degrees. I try to use the word that best for the depth if the sadness. 

Despondent
Depressed
Down
Blue
Unhappy
Discontent
Miserable
Teary-eyed 
Sniffling
Blubbery
Grieving
Gloomy
Miserable
Cheerless
Forlorn
Sorrowful
Upset
Downcast
Tearful
Somber

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Today's Quote #7

“Sometimes, immersed in his books, there would come to him the awareness of all that he did not know, of all that he had not read; and the serenity for which he labored was shattered as he realized the little time he had in life to read so much, to learn what he had to know.” - John Edward Williams, Stoner

Sunday, November 24, 2013

It's Been Four Weeks

It's been four weeks since I posted anything. I couldn't believe that when I looked at my last post. I don't know if I've ever gone that long without posting something on my blog.  I've been going through some changes.  I've been very emotional about it.  One of the first things to fall to the side was my blogs.  I think about it, I think about how long it's been since I put some kind of thought about anything up.  I have drafts of posts that haven't been finished yet, that aren't even close!  

The centre of all this is the new job.  I posted a while ago that my contract was ending at my old job and they weren't keeping me on.  I (luckily) found a job that started right away.  It's in the same industry, but different in what they want me to do.  I know they hired me for my industry experience and I'm grateful for not being unemployed.  This job is just a lot of work. A LOT. Much more than my last job.  What I've lost is my work/life balance.  I'm learning to deal with the tiredness I now feel when I get home from the office.  It's mostly mental, but it seeps into my muscles.  I only seem to have the energy to take care of the kids.  Often, by the time they've gone to bed, I'm spent.  It's been a process of getting used to this and bringing my energy levels up, which I don't know if I've even accomplished that.

I almost didn't write about this absence.  I don't usually do one of those "I'm taking a break." posts.  If I don't have anything to say, I don't say anything. But it's never been this long.  It's been a week, maybe two, but not four. I have still commented on other blogs, I've still tweeted.  My new job has blocked a lot of social media sites. Apparently it was a problem, but it seems to actually go against what my job does, as I think we need to go on Facebook, Twitter, etc., for actual, professional reasons. It was hindering my job one day, which is how I found out...  I digress.  What I want to say is that I'm going to try to be back. I'd like to finish the posts I've already started, I'd like to get back to a happy work/life balance.  I think today is a start.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Life Update

I have a new job and I haven't finished the old one yet! Yay! (I hope.)  I'm still a little sceptical because of my recent track record. The Hubby says not to be ridiculous; I haven't started the new job yet.  I can't help it though.  I have had a string of disappointments on the employment front. Whose fault is it?  No one's, I don't think. It's just life.  Financial situations.  Whatever. 

I'm trying to be hopeful.  What I know for certain is that I'm lucky.  The job is close to home.  The people seem nice.  The offices have a nice combination of a modern and homey feel, very warm and comfortable, neat and clean.  I hope that is a reflection on what the working environment will be like.  I start in a week and a half.  I will hopefully be smiling.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Monday, October 7, 2013

Some Stuff That's Been Happening

I'm skating toward unemployment again.  It's my own fault, really.  I took a job last summer (2012) that was a maternity leave contract, which meant only a guaranteed one year of employment.  I listened to the promises. We're so busy, we'll need to keep you on.  We'd like you to stay doing all this stuff. We're 99.9% sure we are going to keep you, etc, etc...  Well, that .01% chance happened.  It is just not financially feasible to keep both of us.  Well, fine.  I was not surprised but, still disappointed. 

It's really affected my mood.  I couldn't concentrate on the book I was reading, so I stopped and switched books, something I rarely do.  That helped some.  I didn't feel like blogging.  This blog is sitting with 8 unfinished posts.  My other blog has three, I post less often there, so three is a lot.  I'm hoping to pull myself out. I want to finish my blog posts. I want to read more. I want to figure out a way to have fun without feeling guilty. Thanksgiving I coming up. Maybe I'll blog about my meal? Maybe not.

Friday, September 27, 2013

I Am Linking

More links this week.  I'm thinking of coming up with an actual name for this post.  I post links usually on Fridays.  I like coming up with the titles though.  But am I going to run out?  Anyways, here are the links for the week.

Self Editing - Seek & Destroy Word List #3 - Seeking The Write Life
http://www.aimeelsalter.com/2013/09/self-editing-seek-destroy-word-list-3.html?

Deep Point of View - Heroines with Hearts
http://heroineswithhearts.blogspot.ca/2013/09/deep-point-of-view.html

How One Successful Indie Author Marketed His Work Up the Bestseller Lists - Writer Unboxed
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/09/23/the-year-of-the-reader-how-one-successful-indie-author-marketed-his-work-up-the-bestseller-lists/

25 THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT WORLDBUILDING - terribleminds
http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2013/09/17/25-things-you-should-know-about-worldbuilding/

Query Letters: How To Think Like A Literary Agent - Writer's Relief
http://www.writersrelief.com/blog/2013/09/query-letters-think-literary-agent/

Red Flags: Shortcuts That Agents & Editors Will Use To Reject Your Writing - Writer's Relief
http://www.writersrelief.com/blog/2011/02/red-flags-reject-your-creative-writing-submissions/

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Ways To Say... BIG

Huge
Giant
Gigantic
Enormous
Large
Massive
Colossal
Immense
Bulky
Hefty
Tremendous
Jumbo

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Today's Quote #6

“The cake had a book drawn on it, in icing. My mother, who had organized the party, told me that the lady at the bakery said that they had never put a book on a birthday cake before, and that mostly for boys it was footballs or spaceships. I was their first book.” and “Books were safer than people anyway.” – Neil Gaiman, The Ocean at the End of the Lane

Friday, September 20, 2013

Links for Linking

I think I might be addicted to links from terribleminds.

23 Literary Agent Query Letters That Worked - GalleyCat
http://www.mediabistro.com/galleycat/23-literary-agent-query-letters-that-worked_b76306

WHY I DON’T LIKE TO NEGATIVELY REVIEW OTHER AUTHORS’ BOOKS - terribleminds
http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2013/09/15/why-i-dont-like-to-negatively-review-other-authors/

WHY I LIKE THE TERM: “AUTHOR-PUBLISHER” - terribleminds
http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2013/09/09/why-i-like-the-term-author-publisher/

Margaret Atwood’s Ten Rules for Writing Fiction - Aerogramme Writer's Studio
http://aerogrammestudio.com/2013/04/28/margaret-atwoods-ten-rules-for-writing-fiction/

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Today's Quote #4

“He never went out without a book under his arm, and he often came back with two.” - Victor Hugo

Friday, September 13, 2013

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Today's Quote #3

“If ever there is tomorrow when we’re not together… there is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” - A.A. Milne

Friday, September 6, 2013

Linking

I found quite a few interesting links this week.  Part of the reason is that I wasn't internetting a lot last week.  Some tweeting, but not much else.  I blame Oryx and Crake.

No Words on the Page, But I’m Still Writing - Fiction Notes
http://www.darcypattison.com/first-drafts/no-words-on-the-page-but-im-still-writing/

Kobo Writing Life: Publish Your eBook with Ease - Fiction Notes
http://www.darcypattison.com/ebook/kobo-writing-life/

How One Author Used Public Domain Images To Create a Book Cover - GalleyCat
http://www.mediabistro.com/galleycat/76331_b76331

Explore the Manuscript Wish Lists of Countless Literary Agents - GalleyCat
http://www.mediabistro.com/galleycat/explore-the-manuscript-wish-lists-of-countless-literary-agents_b76319

25 STEPS TO BECOMING A SELF-PUBLISHED AUTHOR - terribleminds
http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2013/09/03/25-steps-to-becoming-a-self-published-author/

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Today's Quote #2

“Another belief of mine: that everyone else my age is an adult, whereas I am merely in disguise.”  - Margaret Atwood

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

So, The Summer Is Over?

Where I live, the first day back to school, the day after Labour Day weekend, marks the end of summer and the beginning of fall. Summer isn't technically over until the Autumn Equinox on September 22nd, but that's not how it feels.  I love autumn, but there's so much more work.  Summer always seems to feel more relaxed.  Everything slows down.  I thought I'd take a look back at the summer of 2013 and see what some of my favourite things were.

Books:

I read a lot this summer.  A couple of my favourite summer books were The Cuckcoo's Calling and Emma... and Who Could It Be At This Hour?. (It was really difficult to pick.  These were just the first three that came to mind.)

Movies:
It was a slow summer for movies for me.  I blame the children... we just couldn't always find a babysitter.  I did manage to get out and see Wolverine, which was so much better than I expected.
I also did a full rewatch of Clueless after reading Emma.  It's a pairing I highly recommend.

Television:



I tend to think of Continuum as a summer show, even though it premiered in April. It's on throughout the summer when all the "regular" shows are done. The season finale was fantastic and I can't wait to see what they're going to do with the show next year.

Theatre:

We went to Stratford to see Tommy this year and it was amazing.  I recommend it to everyone.

Food:

At the beginning of the summer, I blogged about using the Bone Dust Rub.  I still enjoy it... I made enough that I still have a fair amount sealed in a container.

Those are just a few highlights.  How was your summer?

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Today's Quote #1


'To hear the phrase "our only hope" always makes one anxious, because it means that if the only hope doesn't work, there is nothing left.'
- Lemony Snicket

Friday, August 23, 2013

I've got an Oprah link this week!

I was just surprised by the headline.  I thought I'd include the Oprah link, though I think the article over-simplifies things.

6 (Easy!) Ways Anyone Can Become a Writer - Oprah.com
http://www.oprah.com/spirit/Writing-Tips-How-to-Write-Better-Natalie-Goldberg

10 Things To Consider When Naming Characters - Writers Write
http://writerswrite.co.za/10-things-to-consider-when-naming-characters

25 STEPS TO BEING A TRADITIONALLY PUBLISHED AUTHOR: LAZY BASTARD EDITION - Terrible Minds
http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2013/08/13/25-steps-to-being-a-traditionally-published-author-lazy-bastard-edition/

And just for fun....

How And Why To Use Whom In A Sentence - The Oatmeal
http://theoatmeal.com/comics/who_vs_whom

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

I Think That's A Love Triangle!

What did I do!?!

I've been working on a novel, off and on for the past... while.  I've been thinking about it more and more as my non-fiction first draft was finished and my short stories are being edited.  What do I want to do with this novel (besides finish it)?  I think about the plot.  I think about the characters.  I want to change my main character's job. I'm thinking about her relationships with the other characters.  (How many is too many supporting characters?)  Then I think about her "love-interest".  He's not really, but he is.... Then, there is someone else, who is off-limits and so she never considers him as a romantic possibility.  I didn't either until the story started developing. Then, what do I realize?  It's well....a sort of....LOVE TRIANGLE.  Yikes!  I've said several times that I'm not a big fan of love triangles unless they're done well. I never wanted a love triangle in my novel.  But there it is.  What do I do? Do I hope that I do it well?  Do I take it out?  Bah!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

I've Been Working On Some Short Stories

I've been working on some short stories.  Below is the beginning of one that I have completely re-written.  I recently read and thought it was awful and I wondered what I was thinking leaving it like that for so long.  I suppose I hadn't looked at that particular beginning in a while.  I was more focused on the ending.  If the beginning isn't good though, how can I expect a reader to make it to the end.  Below, I know it's better than what I had before, but is it enough?

Cool morning light streamed in through the glass doors and floor to ceiling windows.  The rough whip of shirts, as I shook them free of packing dust and smacked them onto the rolling folding table, was the only noise that broke the silence.  I looked at the beauty of the day, my jaw clenched.  I wanted to walk out the glass doors to somewhere else.  My retail job had become comfortable and stale.  I yearned to make a difference somewhere, but I didn’t think it could be here.

The glass doors broke open, a young man walked into the store.  He was attractive, possibly my age, not one of those middle-aged businessmen and women I had gotten used to seeing in the mornings.  I noticed him and smiled.  Neutral smile.  The smile of greeting that I give to all customers. He seemed generally pleased by it, as any other customer would.  I took it as just another moment in a day that I expected to be uneventful.

Friday, July 26, 2013

I Haven't Posted Links In a Couple Weeks

That's because I hadn't really found anything interesting or helpful to share.  I found somethings this week though.

Dialogue: Make Each Character Unique - Fiction Notes
http://www.darcypattison.com/characters/dialogue-make-each-character-unique/

Twitter: A Dangerous Sense of Entitlement - Writer Unboxed
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/07/13/twitter-a-dangerous-sense-of-entitlement/

Literary Terms Defined: The Uncommon and Common - Writer Unboxed
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/07/22/literary-terms-defined-the-uncommon-and-common/

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Two Readers

source
I've had two of my readers finish reviewing my draft and give me feedback.  It's very exciting. I'm having to restrain myself from starting on edits, however, because I have a couple more people reading my draft. I want to review all the suggestions and edits before I start making changes. Some of the comments from both people have been things I was feeling while reading it over myself. I wonder if everyone is going to say the same thing.  That would make me feel better about the changes I think I'll be making. Though, that also makes me wonder why I didn't write those things in the first place.  I wonder how much the draft will change.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

A "Story" I Created On Storify... Thoughts?

So there it is.  A "story" I created on Storify.  I saw someone post a link on Twitter, so I followed it and that's how I discovered Storify.  I was attracted by the ideas of creating stories using various social media sources.  I think the site definitely needs to make some tweeks to improve how you use it.  Also, they don't connect directly to Pinterest.  We'll see if I stick with it.  It's not like I need another distraction, but it's kind of fun.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Some Links

Some of the most helpful posts I've linked to in a while, I think.

Ten Facebook Statuses to Instantly Engage Your Readers - Book Pregnant
http://bookpregnant.blogspot.ca/2013/07/ten-facebook-statuses-to-instantly.html

Avoid the Passive Voice with Zombies - Galley Cat
http://www.mediabistro.com/galleycat/avoid-the-passive-voice-with-zombies_b73753

The Bedside Notebook - The Bedside Notebook
http://heroineswithhearts.blogspot.ca/2013/07/the-bedside-notebook.html

5 Quotes to Plot Your Novel By - Fiction Notes
http://www.darcypattison.com/plot/5-quotes-to-plot-your-novel-by/

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Another Draft Done


It has been two months since I finished the first draft of my non-fiction project.  I've read it over and made edits.  I've taken out whole chunks, and added new ones.  I've reformatted, reorganized and I hadn't even let anyone else read it.  

I'm a little nervous about letting other people read it. But I'll have to in order to make it better.  I can't tell what to change anymore, not on my own.  This story has lived with me for the last year.  I can see it, picture everything.  Can a reader?  I need those outside eyes to view my story.  What can't they see? What bores them?  What gets in the way of the narrative?  What makes the narrative better?  These are the things I want to know.  So, I have let it out into the world.  I have a few people reading it, maybe too many.  I'm nervous about what they'll think, but I'm excited too.  


Friday, July 5, 2013

Friday, June 28, 2013

The Links Sharing

Here are some links I found this week. Thanks for stopping by.

8 Tips For Writing and Selling Articles to Magazines, Websites, and More - Writer Unboxed
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/06/24/8-tips-for-writing-and-selling-articles-to-magazines-websites-and-more/

Your Book in a Sentence: An Ode to the Subtitle - Book Riot
http://bookriot.com/2013/06/24/your-book-in-a-sentence-an-ode-to-the-subtitle/

I Dare You To Be Original! - Parajunkee
http://parajunkee.com/2013/06/i-dare-you-to-be-original.html

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Writer's Group Break

Last night was the final Writer's Group meeting before the summer break.  I didn't know this when I signed up, but I did learn it about two months ago; the group stops meeting during July and August.  Because this is a drop-in group, attendance always varies.  In the summer months it varies even more.  A couple of years ago, they decided to stop for the summer and resume in September.  At first I was sad, and I still am a little, but I do understand.  July and August is when most people take vacation (in Canada anyway), so attendance had been spotty.  I'm wondering if my Hubby will still let me be absent two Tuesdays a month so I can write uninterrupted.  Though I plan on enjoying as much of my summer as possible, I'm looking forward to September and re-connecting with the writer's group.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Some People Said Some Stuff And Now I'm Sharing... Again


The 25 Most-Hated Books (By Book Riot Readers) - Book Riot
http://bookriot.com/2013/06/19/the-25-most-hated-books/
I've read 10 of these books and liked all of them... Though one I'm on the fence about and might need to re-read just to make up my mind.

Quick Tip: Remember Why You Started - The Sharp Angle
http://lydiasharp.blogspot.ca/2013/06/quick-tip-remember-why-you-started.html

Out There: The Wrong Goal of Self-Publishing - Fiction Notes
http://www.darcypattison.com/alternate-publishing/out-there/

Tequila and Cookies: Writing Perks to Push Your Pages - Writer Unboxed
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/06/21/tequila-and-cookies-writing-perks-to-push-your-pages/

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Some People Said Some Stuff and Now I'm Sharing

Links from the week:

The Road To Publication is a Long and Bumpy One - Book Pregnant
http://bookpregnant.blogspot.ca/2013/06/the-road-to-publication-is-long-and.html

So How's the Book Coming? or Why You Shouldn't Talk to Non-Publishing People About Publishing - Book Pregnant
http://bookpregnant.blogspot.ca/2013/06/so-hows-book-coming-or-why-you-cant.html

Everything I Thneed to Know About Writing and Publishing I Learned from THE LORAX - Writer Unboxed
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/06/09/everything-i-thneed-to-know-about-writing-and-publishing-i-learned-from-the-lorax/

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Sharing Some Non-Fiction

Here is a little bit of the non-fiction I've been working on lately.  I'm sure it needs editing.  I've only read it over once, which is never enough....

I was just making a cup of tea.  The kettle boiled.  This is where I wasn’t paying enough attention.  I reached over the kettle.  I think I stifled my scream.  Burns from steam hurt.  A lot.  There was no ice in the freezer.  Once I showed the President of the company and a couple other co-workers my would (that was quickly getting red and blistered) someone suggested I put aloe on it.  I ran out to a local pharmacy and got some, but I didn’t know what to get.  I should have asked a pharmacist while I was there.  I should have gotten ice on it.

I spent most of that day coating my wrist with green gel.  I watched it intently.  It just got worse and worse.  At least my aloe gel kept it from constantly hurting.  It was gross.  It was a triangular blister.  Eventually, the blister went away and turned into a dark scar.  Now, it is a light, polka-dotted triangle.  It’s become part of my arm, but if I ever really look at it, I remember what happened, the story behind it and after writing this, all the stories that come after it.

Friday, May 31, 2013

More Links To Share

A few links this week.  Some are helpful, some are just fun.  FYI, I'm totally addicted to books.  If you want to know how addicted, you could always visit my other blog: www.loniseye.blogspot.com.

25 Signs You’re Addicted To Books - Buzzfeed
http://www.buzzfeed.com/summeranne/signs-youre-addicted-to-books-reading

38 Wonderful Foreign Words We Could Use In English - Mental Floss
http://mentalfloss.com/article/50698/38-wonderful-foreign-words-we-could-use-english

The King's English Dethroned - Writer Unboxed
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/05/23/the-kings-english-dethorned/

What Makes A Page-Turner - Heroines With Heart
http://heroineswithhearts.blogspot.ca/2013/05/what-makes-page-turner.html

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

I Miss Traveling To Other Worlds: Fiction and Non-Fiction For Me

I love writing fiction.  I always have.  The main project I've been working on lately, however, is non-fiction.  I would not normally have chosen to write something non-fiction, but some things happened to me and I wanted to share it.  As I work on this non-fiction, I find myself missing the act of creating new worlds and new characters that only exist in my mind.  Even as I write blog posts, occasionally I find myself thinking, I should really get back to that story.

I noticed this a lot yesterday.  I was at my writing group.  I wrote a couple of pieces that I think could develop into full-fledged stories.  One story in particular is weighing on my mind.  I keep thinking about it, about the main character and what is going to happen to him and his group.  (At least I think the main character is a he, I hadn't actually decided, I left it ambiguous.)  The time for writing during the group is limited, which is normally fine.  With this one piece, though, I knew it should become a story or rather; it just won't let go of me.

Though I know I need to focus on finishing my non-fiction, (draft one is done and I'm currently re-reading and editing it), I can't push away my love of fiction.  Besides the writing group, I'm thinking of designating one day a week where I can look at my fiction again.  Maybe?  Maybe it'll remain with my feelings, when a story or character move me enough to keep writing writing about it, I will.  I will not ignore everything else.

Thanks for listening.  I think I'm going to keep writing that story now....

Friday, May 24, 2013

I Like Sharing...Links

Only two links this week, but I really enjoyed both articles.  I hope you do too.

The Road Can Be (Very) Long - Book Pregnant
http://bookpregnant.blogspot.ca/2013/05/the-road-can-be-very-long.html?spref=bl

Ten Ways To Torture Yourself As A Writer - Writer Unboxed
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/05/19/ten-ways-to-torture-yourself-as-a-writer/

Monday, May 20, 2013

Camomile

I'm having trouble deciding between two types of Camomile.  I really enjoy drinking Camomile in the evenings.  It contains no caffeine and it has relaxing properties.  I often have a  cup after the children are asleep, while I read or write or watch tv.  It has only been about a year since I started drinking it and now it's a regular part of my evening.  

Can you believe Teavana doesn't sell Camomile?  The sell some fruity thing that has Camomile it in.  Ugh.  Not for me.  In case I haven't mentioned it before, I don't typically drink fruity teas.  In general, they're too sweet. When I asked the sales person at the store why they didn't sell Camomile, her response was that it was too common and I should get it at the grocery store.  (Wow.)

Fine.  Except that most Camomile teas come with either mint or lemon flavouring already in it.  Really?  Why is it so difficult to find plain Camomile? Eventually, I actually came across two (the only two I could find) brands that had plain Camomile.  Twinings used to be the only one.  So I bought it.  A lot.  Then one day I was at the grocery store and the Lipton Pyramid teas caught my eye.  There was another Camomile! I was so surprised, I had to buy it, not because I disliked the Twinings, but because there were now two Camomile teas at the grocery store!  But, can someone tell me why I can't find a link to this tea online? Or even a picture?  It's new, only a few months since I first saw it, but come on!

I think the Lipton might have a stronger flavour than the Twinings, but it's so difficult to tell in such a mild tea. Anyone drink Camomile and have a preference?

Note: pregnant/nursing women should NOT drink this tea because it causes uterine contractions!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

I Went To Writer's Group...

I'm not sure about the writing I produced.  - To recap:  I joined a writer's group that does "freeflow" writing from prompts, 4 prompts writing for 10 minutes each time.  This is not a critique group. -   I felt good about some of it, but not all of it.  I don't expect an instant stellar piece every time my pen hits the page, but I usually feel better about the quality of my work than I did this last time.  I've even given myself a couple of days to think about it and perspective isn't making the "meh" feeling go away.  

Why am I feeling that way?  We all have off-days, right?  I don't go to the group just to feel good about myself.  I go because I enjoy it and it keeps my writer juices flowing.  I've definitely left the group before and looked at some of the pieces I wrote and thought, well, I'll never use that for anything.  Do I feel this way because I'm tired?  I've had a busy couple of weeks and not a lot of sleep.  That can produce either work that's questionable in quality or a lack of positive feeling about work regardless of the quality, right?  Meh.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Links and Stuff

geralt

It's been a little while since I posted links... mostly because I haven't been keeping up on the blogs like I usually do. Here's what I've discovered this week...

What is New Adult Fiction? - Quick Brown Fox

What Novelists Should Know About Short Fiction

Just how many readers do you need? - Book Pregnant

I'm posting this because it was funny:

Funny Oxymorons for Writers - Writer Unboxed

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

It's Almost Been A Week


Tomorrow, tomorrow is the day when I pick up my first draft again and read it through. Can I read the whole thing through in one sitting?  I doubt it.  Maybe if I started in the morning...  But there's this little thing called a day job...  I'll probably end up reading a bit each night for a little while until I comb through the whole thing.  I'm anxious and excited.  I'm also worried.  What if now that it's written and I've stepped away from it, I think it's awful?  What if I read it and wonder: what was I thinking?  Why am I worrying about it?  This week was supposed to give me perspective.  Maybe I'm just neurotic.  Or crazy.  It's okay, we can call it crazy.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Draft One Finished!

Yay!
I finished the first draft of the non-fiction story I have been working on since last July.  I can't describe the feeling I had last night... or the feelings I'm having today as I think about it.

I've put it aside.  That's what you're supposed to do, right?  You're supposed to step back and let it simmer for a week.  That way you're coming back to the work with a fresh perspective.  I can't stop thinking about it.  That's probably why the advice is weight a whole week, you need the time.

What do I do next?  I read it and edit.  Then... I make my Hubby read it.  He reads everything I write.  I also have a girlfriend who knows I've been working on this and has been waiting for me to finish it so she can read it too.  Then, do I need Beta Readers?  Probably, yes.  Where do I find them?  The Internet?  Bah!  I need to figure out what to do.  In a week.  In a week, I'll figure out what to do.  Or something.


Friday, April 26, 2013

Not The Same Old Links

Waterfalls are good for mediation, right?
I've been going to a writing group lately. It's twice a month.  I'm really enjoying it. I find it quite stimulating.  For the most recent group, I was in charge of coming up with the meditation that we use before our first writing prompt. I found the idea of coming up with a mediation challenging, so I Googled it, of course. Below are some interesting links on writing and meditation.  

I also read an interesting and slightly scary article from GalleyCat about someone who lost 5 years of schoolwork, including their all-important thesis. Writers, back up your work!  Below are two articles that list some options for online backups.  Of course, you could get yourself a portable hard drive or a USB drive or CD or DVD or even floppy disk if you have a REALLY old computer.  (I do, in fact, own a computer that has a floppy drive.  I don't even know if it still works.  I think it's been two years since I turned it on.)

After writing two little paragraphs about the link topics this week, I would feel remiss if I didn't at least mention my last link today.  Make your quotes pretty!  Then Pin them.  Or use Tumblr.  Or some other image/blogging thing that you want.  Also, quotes as imagery makes them more noticeable.  Am I wrong?

Thanks for stopping by!

Meditation and Writing:

Meditation and the Art of Writing - Copyblogger

Loving Kindness Meditation for Writers - Writer Unboxed

Writing as Meditation

Helping Writers De-Stress: Meditation Apps

Back Up Your Work!

Why You Should Back Up Your Writing Right Now - GalleyCat

Top 15 Free Online File Storage Sites - Social Times

Making Quotes Pretty: http://quozio.com/

Monday, April 15, 2013

Links This Week

Bah!  I forgot to post this on Friday.  Oh well...  Here are some links to some interesting/helpful stuff I discovered last week.  Enjoy!

Using Places I Know - Or Do I? - Heroines With Heart
http://heroineswithhearts.blogspot.ca/2013/04/using-places-i-know-or-do-i.html

How To Find Images for Your Author Site, Ethically - Galley Cat
http://www.mediabistro.com/galleycat/how-to-find-images-for-your-author-site-ethically_b68183

Public Domain Photos - I'm not linking to an article here.  These are websites where all the photos are public domain!
http://www.public-domain-photos.com/
http://pixabay.com/

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

I Have Chosen...


Feedly!  I've been using Feedly for a week.  I like Feedly better than Google Reader, I think.  I like the options for display.  I can make it look a lot like Google Reader or I can give it an expanded look.  I like the interface.  I find it very user friendly.  I really like that I can see how long it has been since a blog has posted.  As I've been making the change from Feedly to Google Reader, I found some blogs that were on my list hadn't posted in over a year (or longer!).

I know there were some people who chose Bloglovin' as their Google Reader replacement, but it just wasn't right for me.  It's a good site; if you want to stick with something that feels a lot like Google Reader, then this is probably your best option.

I had been considering Pulse, but there were a lot of options missing.  There were no dates on the articles.  No "Mark as Read", or "Keep Unread" button.  Pulse is lovely to look at.  I really liked the display.  But there weren't really any customizing options.  I like making things feel like mine and Pulse just felt like Pulse. I actually sent suggestions to Pulse and after looking at their forum, it looks like many other users did the same.  They were very nice about deleting my account and user data, so I have to say, their customer service is fantastic.

I don't think I'll be switching from Feedly anytime soon.  I enjoy their tablet and phone apps.  They're very easy to use and also easy on the eyes.

What Reader do you use?

Sunday, April 7, 2013

More Links!!

Note:  The link from Heroines with Hearts might be considered racy....

Quick Tip: Remember the Quiet Moments - The Sharp Angle
http://lydiasharp.blogspot.ca/2013/04/quick-tip-remember-quiet-moments.html

Linda Howard's 12 Steps to Physical Intimacy - Heroines with Hearts
http://heroineswithhearts.blogspot.ca/2013/03/linda-howards-12-steps-to-physical.html

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Who Do I Choose?

I'm still trying to decide about what to use to replace Google Reader.  Right now, I keep going back and forth between Feedly and Pulse.  I've eliminated Bloglovin' from the contest.  It looks a lot like Google Reader, but I was thinking, if it's time for a change, why stay the same?  Though, I've seen a few of the blogs I follow decide on Bloglovin'...  Both Feedly and Pulse have mobile apps...  I suppose I could just try each out and then decide after a couple days of playing with it.  What do you think? Feedly or Pulse?

Monday, April 1, 2013

To Link or Not To Link

I got some interesting links from last week.  I think a little different from what I usually post.  Enjoy!

Robin Benway Tackles Writer’s Block - The Perpetual Page Turner
http://www.perpetualpageturner.com/2013/03/how-to-deal-with-writers-block.html

The Future of Publishing: Asking Ksenia Anske - Book Riot
http://bookriot.com/2013/03/25/the-future-of-publishing-asking-ksenia-anske/

Guest blog: Marta Acosta on the close calls of writing - Misprinted Pages
http://misprintedpages.wordpress.com/2013/03/27/guest-blog-marta-acosta/
(Not sure what I actually think of this...)

Friday, March 22, 2013

Linkity Links

More linking!  I like to share my journey through the interwebs....

The best writing rules and advice - Misprinted Pages
http://misprintedpages.wordpress.com/2013/03/11/the-best-writing-rules-and-advice/

Does Your Protagonist Have Amnesia? - Writer Unboxed
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/03/14/does-your-protagonist-have-amnesia/

5 Industry Trends Requiring Every Writer’s Attention - Writer Unboxed
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/03/18/5-industry-trends-requiring-every-writers-attention/

Does Your Platform Represent The Complexity Of Your Work And Your Journey? *
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/03/22/does-your-platform-represent-the-complexity-of-your-work-and-your-journey/

*Probably one of the best articles on "Platform" that I've ever read.  Ever.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Goodbye Google Reader

I'm sure most people have heard by now that Google Reader will be no more come July 1, 2013.  I'm not sure what I'll do yet.  I like getting feeds in Google Reader.  It's so easy to use.  I've been using it for years.  YEARS!

Going through my Google Reader this morning, as I do most mornings, I found that Kelly from Radiant Shadows has already done some research about what she'd like to use to replace Google Reader: 

I also found a similar post from Parajunkee:

Thanks bloggers for doing all that research for me :P

Seriously, they list a number of alternatives I plan on exploring.  I'll see which one fits me best.  Even if I have to import each blog/website individually.  That will give me an opportunity to go through my lengthy Google Reader reading list and maybe I'll cull the blogs I don't actually read or haven't updated in months/years and maybe I haven't noticed because of the number of sites in my Reader.  This could be a good thing...  I'm still a little sad though.  At least there are alternatives out there.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Some Feelings

I've been rejected again.  I know it's not really me.  It's a story I wrote that perhaps did not fit with the style of the literary journal I submitted it to, but it still feels like me.  Every time this happens I wonder why I'm still trying.  I know the answer is because I love writing.  I still continue to hope to be a published author.  I hope that people will read and enjoy my work.  I'm still a little sad.

Here's a snippet of the rejected story:

A pink rose, her favourite; he placed it on the hood of the car as he leaned back against the driver’s door. His beautiful red car, which he also loved. Ashley had always said that he loved it too much. He spent too much time with it. That was no excuse. There was no excuse for her betrayal.

What was he going to do when she arrived? Chad waited patiently a few doors down and on the other side of the street from her parents’ home, a home he knew so well. The home Ashley had moved back to when she left him. This was her home now, but Chad could not let go. Her home ought to be with him.

Would you change anything?  What would you do to make the story better.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

A Themed Link Post

Just a couple links, both involving the use of social media for writers (or anyone really).  I hope you find them helpful.

What Writers Need To Know About Tumblr - GalleyCat

Twitter: My 5 Unshakable Beliefs - Writer Unboxed

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Maybe I Can Stop Thinking About It

I've been distracted lately, by daydreaming about future plans.  I've been working on a project and I can see the end approaching.  I'm very excited/nervous/tense/happy.  However, I keep letting myself get distracted.  I start thinking about what I'll do when my first draft is complete.  So, I was hoping that if I share my thoughts here, they'll stop occupying me when I should be writing...

When my first draft is done, I'll let it sit, ferment, for a week.  Then I'll read it over again.  Once those edits are done, I'll give it to my Hubby.  He reads everything.  When he's done reading, I'll probably read it again too... while looking for Beta Readers.  Then the Beta Readers will read it.  More changes.  Then I'll hire an editor (right, editor after Beta Readers?).  I think editors are very important.  Then I'll try to get it published.  That's a good plan, right?  Now, maybe, I can stop thinking about it.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Do I Have A Problem?

On my other blog, The Eye Of Loni's Storm, I participate in a bookish meme, Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by The Broke and The Bookish.  (FYI, I really enjoy this meme.  It can be fun... and informative, apparently.)  This week's topic was series you want to, but haven't started yet.  Making the list for yesterday's Top Ten Tuesday brought something to my attention that I wanted to share here too.  I own the beginnings to A LOT of series.  This doesn't count series I've already started. For some of these series, I own multiple books.  Am I ever going to catch up?

Here is my list from yesterday's Top Ten Tuesday.
1. The Raven Cycle (Book 1: The Raven Boys), by Maggie Stiefvater
2. Falling Kingdoms (Book 1: Falling Kingdoms), by Morgan Rhodes
3. All The Wrong Questions (Book 1: Who Could It Be At This Hour), Lemony Snicket
4. His Dark Materials (Book 1: The Golden Compass), by Philip Pullman
5. Forever Girl (Book 1: The Forever Girl), by Rebecca Hamilton
6. The Strain Trilogy (Book 1: The Strain), by Guillermo del Toro & Chuck Hogan
. 7. Cadence Jones (Book 1: Me, Myself & Why?), by MaryJanice Davidson
8. Legend (Book 1: Legend), by Marie Lu
9. Fallen (Book 1: Fallen), by Lauren Kate
10. The Wolves of Mercy Falls (Book 1: Shiver), by Maggie Stiefvater

 Here are the books/series I didn't put on yesterday's list.

11. Infernal Devices (Book 1: Clockwork Angel), by Cassandra Clare
12. Delirium (Book 1: Delirium), by Lauren Oliver
13. Eve (Book 1: Eve), by Anna Carey
14. Sword of Truth (Book 1: Wizard's First Rule), by Terry Goodkind **
15. Abandon Trilogy (Book 1: Abandon), Meg Cabot
16. All Souls Trilogy (Book 1: A Discovery of Witches), by Deborah Harkness
17. A Love Story (Book 1: Bloodsucking Fiends), by Christopher Moore *
18. The DemonWars Saga (Book 1: The Demon Awakens), by R.A. Salvatore **
19. The Frey Saga (Book 1: Frey), Melissa Wright
20. Darkness Falls (Book 1: Darkness Falls), by Jessica Sorensen
21. Fallen Star (Book 1: The Fallen Star), by Jessica Sorensen

21!  How do I have books belonging to 21 different series that I haven't even started yet?  Seriously, I need to consider not buying the first book in a series, only to have it sitting on my shelves for years (YEARS!).  What is it about series, or books in general, that keep me accumulating more and more?  Am I ever going to be able to read all the books I own?  Ugh.  Any advice on where to start with this list?


*Christopher Moore's series is the only one where I own books 2 and 3, but not book 1.  How did that happen?  I wanted to read Moore, because there are bloggers and people I know in real life who love his work.  I saw You Suck (book 2), liked the title and synopsis, plus it was a hardcover on sale for $5.99, I think (I remember it being really cheap), so I bought it.  After I did some more research, I found out it was book 2.  Ugh.  This past summer, I was in a used bookstore and saw Bite Me (book 3).  Since I already had book 2and the price was right, I bought it. 
**The Terry Goodkind and R.A. Salvatore books are technically my husbands, but there's still there, sitting on the shelf, with all the other books I want to read, but I could have left them out if I wanted to seem less crazy.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Words!

I know it's been a while, but I have words that I want to share!

Stately Argosy
*I started Word(s) of the Week ages ago so that I could share all the new, brilliant, crazy words I kept coming across in my readings of fiction, articles, blogs, etc.*

From Sonnets From The Portuguese, by Elizabeth Barrett Browning:

Sonnet II: Amerce: To impose a fine on. 

Sonnet III: Athwart: From side to side; Across the path (of something); In opposition of. 

An Argosy
Sonnet XIX: 
Argosies: Plural of argosy 
Argosy: A large merchant ship. 

Sonnet XIX: 
Purpureal: Of a purple colour. 
Via Wikimedia Commons

Sonnet XXVII: 
Asphodel: Eurasian plant of the lily family, typically having long slender leaves and flowers borne on a spike. 

 Sonnet XLIV: 
Eglantine: A Eurasian rose, Rosa eglanteria, having prickly stems, fragrant leaves, pink flowers and red hips. Another word for Sweet Briar. 

via Wikimedia Commons

From Undead Reckoning, by Mike Slabon

(pg 337) Wattle and Daub: "Wattle and daub is a composite building material used for making walls, in which a woven lattice of wooden strips called wattle is daubed with a sticky material usually made of some combination of wet soil, clay, sand, animal dung and straw." 

Friday, February 22, 2013

This Is From Part One...

I've been working on my non-fiction a lot lately.  I actually think I'm getting close to finishing!  It's not going to be very long, but it's also not short.  I'm not sure what it will be.  I just know it's my story and I have to tell it.  Below is a small sample of what I was working on.

There was some space between all these events.  The firings/lay-offs (whatever), I vaguely remember, was spread out over a few months.  I know I didn't see my lay-off coming.  I didn't even consider it.  I helped the Controller reorganize the office.  I helped with whatever they needed.  Everyone was nice to me.  I did my job properly, but it happened anyway.

At the end of March, I quit my other job.  It was retail.  I liked my co-workers very much.  Everyone seemed sad to see me go.  I quit because I wanted to spend more time studying.  Exams started in April.  Final essays and assignments were due.  With two jobs, it just seemed like too much.  We were also planning on moving out of the city in September so that my boyfriend could do his graduate work at another school.  The retail job was great (I still have some of the clothes, excellent quality), but the other job, part-time administrative assistant, paid more.  Apparently, I made the wrong decision.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

In Which I Post More Links

All the links are from Writer Unboxed today!

Twitter Lists to the Rescue
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/02/10/twitter-lists-to-the-rescue/
This is something I'm thinking of doing...

Lessons Learned from the Original Star Wars Trilogy to Up Your Writing Game
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/02/03/lessons-learned-star-wars-up-your-writing-game/

A Question of Description
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/02/20/a-question-of-description/

I hope you find them as informative as I did.  Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Earl Grey

(c) Loni
Yup.  Today, I'm going to write about tea.  I love tea.

The tea shop I used to buy most of my tea from was bought out by a larger chain.  I was very sad.  I had been going there for a few years.  Now, it has left me trying to figure out where to buy the teas I enjoy.  This new chain, while also selling loose leaf tea, does not sell the same tea selection of the previous store, so I've lost a couple favourites.

The first tea I had to get was Earl Grey.  I was hesitant to buy the Earl Grey at the new store because their small size was huge compared to the old store and I wasn't sure I wanted to spend the money.  Mistake.  Bagged Earl Grey doesn't cut it any more (unless it's the kind you get at Starbucks).  So I sucked it up and bought around 225 grams/ .5 pounds, which trust me, is a lot.  But it's so yummy.... However, to save a little money, I saw another loose leaf Earl Grey that was specially selected from blah, blah, blah...  It is about the same price and it comes in a smaller quantity, so I thought I'd get it.  It is not good enough.  It has a bitter taste to it.  If I accidentally steep it too long, I HAVE to add milk and sugar otherwise I can't drink it.

So, in the end, I'm buying Earl Grey from Teavana.  It's so good.  

*I almost wrote, "Earl Grey, hot." as the title to this post because I love Captain Picard.  He's probably the main reason I tried Earl Grey Tea in the first place.

Monday, February 4, 2013

I Link

Just a few links I've come across in the past week and a half.  I hope you find them as interesting/helpful as I did.

How to Change Telling Into Showing, from Writer Unboxed.

Tor UK Now Accepts Direct Submissions from GalleyCat.

Successful Query Letters for Literary Agents from GalleyCat

Friday, January 25, 2013

I'm Not Sure What I'm Doing; or Working on Non-Fiction

I just like the picture... also,
used to be home.
From here, photo by Paul Bica.
Though I love fiction and I've been steadily writing short stories for a long time, I've decided to write something different.  I have a story I want to tell and it's about me.  Why am I writing a story about myself?  Well, after some stuff happened to me last year, and after discussing these events with my Hubby, I felt like I should share it.  I couldn't have made it up.  I thought about using it as inspiration for some fiction, but decided against it.  I might still change my mind once the piece is finished.  Getting to the point of this post... since I've never written non-fiction before, I decided I should look up some non-fiction rules.  After all, what I'm working on will be about my life, I've interacted with people, and I wanted to know what the rules were for writing about other people, as it affects me and my work.  I want to stay out of trouble.  But I also don't want my desire to stay our of trouble to affect the quality of the piece I'm creating.  I wanted to share some of the helpful links I found in my research.  

Six Guidelines for Writing Creative Nonfiction

Creative Nonfiction: How to Stay Out of Trouble

Writing Creative NonFiction

In trying to classify my creative non-fiction work in progress, I would guess it to be most like a memoir.  So these are memoir specific links:

7 Mistakes To Avoid When Writing Your Memoir

Tips on Writing a Memoir

Can You Tell Your Own True Story Even If It Impinges on the Privacy of Your Lovers, Friends, and Family?

I found all of these links helpful and insightful.  They told me things I didn't know, which I suppose was the point of the research.  Any suggestions for writing non-fiction?  Rules I should know?