Saturday, October 31, 2009


I just signed up for NaNoWriMo. Dude, I must be crazy. November is always the month of insanity for me, so why add to it?

On Thursday, I am flying to Washington for the Western Washington SCBWI's Writing Retreat program (wheeeeeeee!) and will be tired, busy, brain-drained, and happy when I come home. How will I write 2k words a day in my NaNo novel? I have no earthly idea. My goal this month is to try.

November is also Henry's birth month, so his first birthday is coming up.

And Thanksgiving.

And Jim's final long stretch before the end of the semester, which means lots more studying, grading, and homework which will keep him away.

But if I write (even pure unadulterated crap) at any moment I get, then it should benefit my writing career. Right?

Oh. I am focusing on improving my plotting abilities this month, too, and characterization.

And I am sort of cheating. I know, we're not supposed to cheat. And we shouldn't admit to it publicly on our blogs, but I feel like I have to. I won't include any prose I've already written, but I am going to re-write the first portion of one of my novels. So it's an edge. I know my characters, have sketched them out (and printed off "photos"), and am working on plot. I am hoping that NaNo will get my first draft in gear.

December can be all about rewriting and perfection.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Super Secret WIP

Jacqui Robbins gave me a great idea yesterday to keep myself writing every day, even if I don't feel like working on my "out in the open" projects. I tried her suggestions (demands, really) and discovered that my internal editor was penned in. She didn't feel like chirping up because it would have been a waste of her time. After all, this is a novel no one will ever see.

Brilliant, really.

I'll keep you posted on word count, just because I like to brag, but you won't have a clue what it's all about. Tee hee.

In other words, I just discovered a musician that apparently everyone had already heard about but I had not, having been in a daze the past few years. I am in love. With Regina Spektor. She comes very, very close to Tori Amos. If I weren't so nostalgic about Tori....(who, by the way, singlehandedly supported me through high school).

Oh! Oh! Oh! I cannot forget: I won. I won the jody call contest at Sara Lewis Holmes' site. And I get a prize! (A signed copy of OPERATION YES! delivered by a person in uniform.)

Friday, October 16, 2009

Novel Wordles!

This is a wordle of ROHANA, my first novel. Isn't it beautiful? You can see which words I overused, but you can also see what's at the heart of the novel. Matioro is the primary antagonist and Rohana is the main character.

Here's one of my current YA Work-in-Progress:

And here's one from my MG WIP:

Can you tell I've had too much coffee and sugar this morning??


OPERATION YES! Author Sara Lewis Holmes is having a jody-call contest until midnight tonight! Enter or be...chicken.

Here's my entry, for you all to read and snicker at:

I don’t know but I’ve been told
green eggs and ham all smell like mold
I do not like them so I say
Now let me be and run away!

I do not like them here or there
I do not like them, so beware
Green eggs and ham are strange to me
The color’s off and they’re slimy!

Green eggs (and ham!)
Green eggs (and ham!)
Don’t make me eat them
Uncle Sam!

You serve them in the dining hall
To eat, be strong, and grow real tall
Ok, one taste--just go away
Don’t come again another day

Say! (Hey!) Say! (Hey!)
Green eggs and ham are on my tray
And in my mouth and down the hatch
These eggs and ham are quite a catch!

Yum! (Yum!) Yum (Yum!) Green eggs and ham
Please give me more, chef Uncle Sam!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

New Color

I will probably increase the contrast, but for now, I'm happy. I love raspberry.


The National Book Award committee has chosen a brilliant, amazing, beautiful book as one of its Young People's Literature finalists.

Laini has a talent for turning the English language into something that has passed through markets in Morocco, simmered in Indian chai, and braved the icy drafts of the Russian steppes. The stories in LIPS TOUCH don't all take place there, but as you read, you know that the words have come together after traveling every alley, every leaf, and every cooking pot in the world.

Jim Di Bartolo, the illustrator, has an equally amazing gift. His drawings are real, and yet ethereal. At the very least, they're gorgeous. And the colors! Wow! To see a book put together like this is a prize, and I truly hope it wins the award.

Now, go read it!

(I started reading it last night, coincidentally, so was pleased to hear the news. Goblin Fruit, the first story in LIPS TOUCH, haunted my dreams all night, and I woke up hungering for apricot toast.)

Friday, October 9, 2009

Contest for ICE!

The next hit book by Sarah Beth Durst, author of Into the Wild

This book is based in modern times, up in Alaska and the arctic. Cassie lives with her father and their team at a research station in the middle of the ice-desert. Cassie's grandmother often told Cassie the story of how her mother was promised to the Polar bear king by her father the North Wind, but then she fell in love with a human man and the Polar Bear King(love him!) agreed to protect her from the North Wind's wrath, on the condition that their first-born daughter be his wife. But North Wind found her anyway blew her to the edge of the earth to be with the trolls.

Now it's Cassie's 18th birthday, and the Polar Bear King has come for her.

Enna Isilee ranted and raved about the awesomeness of this book over at her blog, and now she's offering anyone an opportunity to own it.

This giveaway is awesome and easy, head here to enter the drawing and to get more information (open to US residents only).

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Secret Middle-Grade Novel

Shhhh. Don't tell anyone else, but I've got a secret crush. And my YA jinn novel is not going to like it. I started a new book today, and it's going really well---already at 2200 words. It's a middle-grade novel, and it might be the biggest waste of time ever. Or not.

But it's oh so fun!

P.S. I wanted to add that my mom just read it and said it's hysterical. Phew! As we all know, our mothers are the best, unbiased critics out there.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Nerves of Jello

I just sent out my first portion of my work-in-progress to my agent and am now all shaky. What if she doesn't like it?


Ok. Back to writing. Hey, you---get back to your projects, too. Shoo!