Tuesday, March 31, 2009


My motto right now: One Step Closer; Just A Bit More Work

My thesis was accepted by my committee: yay! With revisions. But they're not too bad or too extensive, so I can do it. (just a bit more work) I also need to conceive and prepare a 40-minute powerpoint presentation for my defense, which is officially April 21st. (work) Along with that I have roughly one more month of school, in which to do a presentation and 2 final projects (almost there...just a bit more work)

And I'm working on a different Super Secret Project for writing, which I'm bouncy excited about. I can't wait to get to the page whenever I can to pwn this. (say the motto with me!)

I apologize if there are those of you I've been neglecting. As you see, my plate is a bit full...but it's all good. (And I still love you!) Someday, all this will be done and I won't know what to do with myself.

Or I'll be on to the next thing, more likely.

(one step closer; just a bit more work)

Thursday, March 26, 2009


So...I don't want to jinx this streak, but the past couple of days have been pretty ~*sparkly*~.

No huge news, but lots of little encouraging signs from the Universe that I'm on the right path...that things just might work out in the end if I put everything I've got into it.

You KNOW I'll do that! I don't know how to do anything else, really.

So onward. Next step forward on all fronts. Thank you, Universe and others (you know who you are), for the encouragement. I needed it right then. :)

Hope you get ~*sparkly*~ encouragement today too!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Props for Writers

Hello! Official excuse for not updating: I've been sitting in a corner thinking Deep Thoughts.*

*This is not true. I've been alternately detoxing from thesis push and catching up on everything, including getting back to writing. Yay!

To ease my way back into the blog thing, I created a meme for writers, to encourage each other. I don't tag people, but if you're so inclined, please copy and post for yourself! I'd love to see your names!

Props for Writers

It's all about sharing the love for fellow wordsmiths. Let's face it, this is not the easiest business to be in, and we can all use each other's support. I tried not to repeat names, since there are so many to give props to, but feel free to repeat if you wish, and list unpubbed authors too!

1. Name 3 "classic" (however you choose to define that term) authors you love to read.

William Shakespeare
Jane Austen
Douglas Adams

2. Name 3 current authors you love to read.

Courtney Summers
Libba Bray
Maggie Stiefvater

3. Name 3 authors you admire for their skill.

Vicki Pettersson
Melissa Marr
Bill Cameron

4. Name 3 authors you admire for their persistence in this crazy, potentially soul-sucking gig.

Joanne Levy
Emily Hainsworth
Linda Grimes

5. Name 3 authors who deserve props for their support of other writers.

Diana Gabaldon
Joanna Bourne
Linda Gerber

6. Name 3 people who really "get" your work--whose love of your stuff carries you through.

Janet Reid
Linda Grimes
Kris Reekie

7. And for a switch, name the 3 things you love most about writing.

The escape
The satisfaction of having written
That transcendent moment when it all clicks in

And you?

Monday, March 16, 2009

The Writer's Temperament

When people refer to the "writer's temperament", it's not usually such a good thing. Moody, they mean. Over-sensitive. Neurotic. Volatile.

Even, sometimes, crazy.

Look at how writers are portrayed in movies! I give you:

Stranger than Fiction (neurotic, crazy, alcoholic, chain-smoker)

Sideways (depressed, neurotic, self-destructive, alcoholic)

And, of course, The Shining.

I think you get the point.

Yet almost none of the authors I know fit this profile. We manage to hold down real jobs, not kill people, not self-destruct on a regular basis...we even look normal (mostly).

However, I do find that most of the writers I know--at least the ones I hang out with on a regular basis--have two basic traits in common, both stemming from the same source: our imaginations.

1. Worry
We do tend to worry a lot. We spin around and around in our heads the worst possible thing that might happen--our agent HATES our latest book, clearly, and that's why she hasn't responded in 24 hours...not that she hasn't even opened the email yet. Our family member's trip could end in disaster: we can picture getting the call, how we would react, probe how we would feel, a little, before we shove that thought away. See, it's our job to make the worst possible thing happen to our protagonists, then get into their heads and figure out how they'd take it. So it's natural for us to carry that over a little. What if there was a writer out there writing our lives? What finger-from-God would point down on us right NOW?

Okay, so maybe that makes us a tiny bit neurotic. Sometimes. But it's balanced with:

2. Gratitude

By this I mean gratitude for the present, for our current state of not-the-worst-possible-thing. If I can always imagine the worst, I can also always be glad it hasn't happened. This is how I can be driving into work this morning in heavy snow, fifteen minutes late because the extended care teacher for Child's school didn't show, and just be happy. Happy I didn't get into a horrific accident on the way, or have a seizure, or get attacked by anger-creatures or vampires or get sucked into an alternate world. Happy that my kid is well and at school, even if she left her snow boots locked in the other classroom. It could have been worse. If I was one of my characters, it absolutely would be worse, just to make things interesting.

Oh yeah, that last little bit might just be telling about the temperament of many of us writers too. We love to give our characters grief. Call it a little masochism streak, maybe. But in with the worry and the gratitude (and the generosity, which comes from empathy, I think), it all balances out. Not to crazed psycho self-absorbed people, but to us, hiding among you. Slightly crazed-with-worry, but ever hopeful. Seeing the world as it is alongside the world as it could be.


Thursday, March 12, 2009


Those on Twitter and Facebook already saw my glee explosion yesterday, but for here:

I turned in my thesis yesterday!! WooHOO!

I'll still have to revise it based on committee comments, and I'll have to defend it. But the bulk of it is done. It just struck me a couple minutes ago that I don't have to open and pound on it more today. I still have homework, and work work. But no THESIS!

Little taste of freedom, I welcome you.

Friday, March 06, 2009

Food Friday!

So as I'm finishing up the Dreaded Thesis, obviously I've been eating and thinking about food a lot.


What? It's true. Stress, sitting at desk all day, the nefarious influence of my fellow tweeters, all = food.

Hence, I declare: Food Friday!

Share a recipe you love (or a food, if you're a non-chef like some of my favorite people) in the comments. We all win!

Mine is one of my favorite quick recipes: Asian Grilled Chicken. I made it last night, and as always, everyone loves it. Here's the official recipe:


I adapt it by just plopping the chicken breasts IN the sauce for however long I have--even 15 minutes seems to work fine. Then I broil them, one rack down from the usual broil setting so they don't burn, for about 10-12 minutes each side depending on thickness. They get nice and brown/crunchy on the outside, but moist on the inside...

Last night I served it with fresh sliced pear and a steamed veggie mix of edamame, mushrooms, and green beans, but it's good with just rice too.

Now it's your turn!! Talk about FOOD!!

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Fun and learning on twitter: #queryfail

Hi all!

Yes, STILL head down on thesis. Nearly there. I *hope* to send the draft to my committee a week from tomorrow.

But I get to buy my cap and gown today! Squeee!

Anyway, the point of this post is to let all you querying writers know about #queryfail day on Twitter: TODAY. Right Now.

A bunch of editors and agents (so far Colleen Lindsay, Jeremiah Tolbert, Mari Adkins, Lauren MacLeod, Greg Daniel, Angela James...and more to come) have decided to post brief examples of queries that worked and didn't work, all day long, under the twitter feed #queryfail. For those uninitiated in twitter, go here to follow!


It looks to be useful info on what not to do, particularly.