Wednesday, November 4, 2009
you get what you deserve, mama warns,
karma hides under the bed, counting
to ten, to a million, waits, for tables to turn,
then delighted, jumps out, gotcha!
it will shout, deliver a finger-wagging lecture,
never, ever forget, I am always right behind you,
I see what you do, I hear what you think,
don’t cover your ears, there is no escape,
no, go away, I reply, you are not welcome,
but karma does not obey, our eyes lock,
a stare-down, within minutes I sag, guilt-
withered as always, I am first to look away
Sunday, November 1, 2009
Saturday, October 31, 2009
Was invited to a party with a 'murder' theme. I went as 'the swine flu'. Here is my picture, taken by Ryanne. I got the bizarre 'suit' in the robe department at the St. Vincent's. You stick your feet out through 'cuffs' on the bottom. It was warm though, and that was my main criteria.
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
sweet becomes sour
in the nightmare hour
fear, worry, hate
dreams twist and curl
hopes billow and whirl
much creative vanity
converts to insanity
‘til deep in the dark
a spark lights the way
a return from sleep's madness
to dawn of new day
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Saturday, October 17, 2009
Friday, October 16, 2009
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Friday, October 2, 2009
I got my critique back on The Ghost of Old Man Watson - it has a plot problem that is not really defined, and some stilted dialogue at the beginning. I'm not sure, I know Joyce hated th title, and may have been put off by that at the beginning, her comments were much more positive at the end... I rewrote for the small stuff, but haven't done a major rewrite - need more time and distance.
My in person critique group is finally meeting again tomorrow. I won't see them again for months and months since I'm going to ID, which is okay. I don't think they are regular enough to do me any good. The good news is we finally have an online critique group coming together and hopefully that will be more often and regular.
I'm thinking that while I'm in ID, I may take the Anastasia Suen class on non-fiction. It would be a good way to pass the time...
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
The picture is one of a pair of eagles that live in our neighborhood. This morning the two of them were up in a tree that Harley and I passed by on our way home from getting Dale coffee. Dale has been sick for three days, sleeping almost all the time, but just now we think he has turned a corner. I guess we'll see in the morinng. I wonder how many days until we find out if I'm going to get sick too. We tried hard to make sure I wouldn't get it. Elbow kisses... funny memory.
Friday, September 18, 2009
Reading aloud really helps me hear what other people, who aren't familiar with the story, will hear. It helps you find the rough spots. I think we have about two of those left right now, and then we'll have the story back where it was before we sent it out for review, only missing an unnecessary character, and with a whole new ending that is more 'right'. I'm pretty happy with it. I wasn't sure we'd make it through another review/rewrite... it can seem like too much work. But it was really worth it.
Thursday, September 17, 2009
I finished the rewrite of the ending of Old Man Watson and sent it to a friend for review (after it got my husband's blessing, that is) Hopefully she will have a chance to look at it before I take it to Joyce's class in Fort Lauderdale next Monday. I'd like to have it finished and sent out. Old Man Watson has a Halloween-ish theme as well as boy characters. I'm hoping both of those things add to it's appeal.
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
1. Unhappiness - what I would call dissatisfaction with your path, your life, been there, had that
2. Wanting - this would probably be my longest phase, as I think back I have been 'yearning' for a writing life since I was a child, since reading the titles off the back of Golden Books, and trying to thing what I would write for that title, through song-writing, poetry, NaNoWriMo, and now children's writing
3. Commitment - well, that happened right here, a couple of months ago
4. Wavering - and this is where I am, or where I was, stuck with three manuscripts, all with problems and wondering if I could do this after all,.... but reading it in the book was really helpful. It was comforting to know it was a common phase, that everyone questions and it's just a stage, That got me off my butt to try a rewrite on the first manuscript and think up a direction for another...
5. Letting Go -
6. Immersion -
Haven't read about 5,6,7 yet, and probably haven't been there yet either... more later.
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Monday, September 14, 2009
Anyway, today was a partnership challenge. We did NOT agree on where the story needed to got. I'm fighting to remove a character and my partner fighting to keep her. It takes a really open mind to work together. You have to be willing to give up sections you've put it place, ideas you had, to at least see it another idea can work better.
In the end we worked it out, the solution was my partners idea, which puts the whole story back in play. It means we're going to have to polich and re-send to the editor - more expense, but probably worth it.
Friday, September 11, 2009
I also finished the first draft of The Ghost of Old Man Watson. It has a good ending. Hopefully I can get a really good first draft next week.
And that was all I got done. Up next is the follow up to the Lucky Dog Biscuits book. I need to plot that out next week too. And when that one's done I'm going to try non-fiction I think.. take another Anastasia Suen class...
I have job interview at Beall's Monday. I hope I get it. We really need some more money to come in. Writing may or may not ever pay off... Wish me luck.
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Biggest problem was POV - we said things we couldn't know, like how Emma felt, when the book was supposed to be from only Abby's point of view. This is pretty hard. We were aware of POV before we sent the manuscript, but we thought we'd only left one bad piece. Wrong! there were several places that need correcting.
We also had an unneeded character and need to add some more delineation between Abby and Emma. That means strengthening, and making consistent, the examples of their strengths and weaknesses.
There needs to be a minor change at the end, and a pretty big rewrite in the beginning. After this and after my critique group, I'm seeing that the first chapter is a big weakness of mine. I'm doing to much telling of the backstory, not getting POV set early enough, etc...
So - aside from that, I worked on Lucky Tuesday today, finished a whole rewrite - changed chapter 8, where my biggest problem is trying to explain how Tuesday comes to deal with the problem of Aunt Lydia. It's better than it was, but I don't know if it will hold up in the long run - I'll take another look at it tomorrow. Then I think I'll send it to Joyce!
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Sunday, September 6, 2009
Now the really exciting part - I came out of the library and got two story ideas from NPR within 5 minutes of leaving. One is non-fiction and one is fiction. Since I have never done non-fiction before, and I totally don't miss this incredible opportunity, so I am trying to find a non-fiction expert to be my writing partner. I asked Joyce and she forwarded my info to another writer she knows. I am crossing my fingers. If you want a clue about the new project, just look at the picture on todays post!
Friday, September 4, 2009
Worked a little on my PB concept and read an Australian chapter book, which was funny because of the language... 'biscuits' = cookies, and going on holiday... there were lots more, but they escape me now. The book was called Being Bee by Catherine Bateson. It was good... one of the adults had a mental illness which I hadn't seen in a book before. I wonder if I should right about a child where the mother is depressed. Wouldn't need much research for that!! haha..
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
Dale says, the thing to do is get to be my best and then we'll worry about the who you know element. I guess there's nothing else I can do. So be it.
I wrote about a chapter and a half on 'Ghost'. Mary Ann and I worked on the end of 'Lucky'. I'm going to send that to Joyce instead of 'Lucky Tuesday'. I'll take 'Lucky Tuesday' to critique group. I'm trying to get hooked up with an online critique group as well, since every two weeks is not going to be enough for me... at that rate it would take 3 months just to get through one chapter book.
I started looking at PB ideas, because there is so much more out there as far as support and also publishers. I don't love PB's but, I do love to rhyme, so maybe I can make something work out with that. I also need to get back to plotting 'GUN'.
I got a book called Save the Cat today, that analyzes movie plots. It was recommended by Anastasia Suen. I keep learning...
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
Tomorrow I'm going to the library for a new load of books, and at 5PM Mary Ann and I are going to do a (hopefully) final rewrite of the last 4 chapters of Looking for Lucky or whatever we wind up calling it... Also need to write at least 3 more chapter of Ghost.
Monday, August 31, 2009
And still I think - 'this is the one' she will love it, she will call me immediately and want to represent me. Hope is Crazy. Whoa... that would make a good title. Gotta go write!
Saturday, August 29, 2009
Friday, August 28, 2009
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Then I sat down and wrote 5 first draft chapters of my new and best so far chapter book. Tomorrow I will finish the first draft. Next week - rewrite!
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Working my way through a Suite101.com class on Writing for Children, Reading 3 chapter books and analyzing them against various plot systems, working my own idea through various systems...
The most valuable idea I came across was in the Suite 101 class and had to do with plotting the MC (main characters) emotional state against that characters norm and seeing if the plot took her up and down in a manner that moved toward a good rise/fall of action and a knockout ending. I discovered that my 'new' idea, the one I haven't actually written on yet, did not rise and fall as I would have liked, so I get to move my scenes around or add/delete based on that before I write. Hmmm, that's probably a good idea!
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Sunday, August 2, 2009
Saturday, August 1, 2009
Unfortunately, the lady who was prompting the art projects disappeared, so Inch x Inch bit the dust. However, not before prompting me to get going on my writing projects...
My friend Mary Ann and I are working madly on a couple of chapter books for young readers based on the idea of 'gutsy girls'.
We have invented Emma and Abby Harris. Abby is in a wheelchair due to a bike accident a couple of years ago, however, it doesn't slow her down much. Abby is still the braver of the two. Abby is interested in cooking, and Emma would rather live on peanut butter sandwiches. Emma loves drama and plans on being a famous actress.
Mary Ann and I are refining our writing skills by taking an online class given by
Anastasia Suen. So far so good... wish us luck!
This morning I went to a Kids Against Hunger event and packaged meals with a bunch of teenagers from the New Apostolic Church. It was a last minute thing, and I didn't know what to expect, but it was fun. A team effort. Everybody has a job, either opening the bag, pouring in vegetables, vitamins, beans, soy or rice, then weighing and sealing the bag. In two hours some 150 or so people packaged more than 50,000 meals. The meals supposedly contain 6 servings (probably anywhere but America, where we seem to have completely lost track of the size of a serving) and the cost of the ingredients of the bag is about 14 cents. I know that two local curches picked up 3000 bags each while we were still there. Many others were going to the Harry Chapin Food Bank and some go overseas if needed for disaster relief programs.
Anyway, it was a much better use of two hours than I originally had planned. If you go, take a donation. I didn't realize they expected that, but if you have a little cash, it's certainly a good cause.
Monday, July 27, 2009
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
don’t kneel in the shadow
praying for sunshine
where there is darkness
there must also be light
gloom begets gloom,
get up, choose a direction,
any road will take you
don’t kneel at the window
the way is transparent,
Friday, July 3, 2009
Thursday, July 2, 2009
Today we were supposed to write in the style of another poet. I'm not very familiar with the style of other poets, but Billy Collins is my favorite poet. If you would like to hear him read one of his poems (and be blown away) try this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=56Iq3PbSWZY Meanwhile, here is my poem of the day. Enjoy....
as we strolled before sunrise,
chattering in three-quarter time,
a Mallard couple waltzed across our path,
we stood, silenced by our desire
to avoid trespassing on their moment,
when, behind us, the rising sun
cast it’s light over us, like some
enormous flashlight wielded
by God’s security guard, creating
cold shadows over the dancing ducks,
and the one I took for mister, lost
his footing, stumbled into miss.
Did you see the look he threw me
before he ran across the grass
to plop into the pond, leaving
his date suddenly alone,
of course she squawked about it,
but she followed his lead, taking
her time, tail-feathers flouncing
in her best “I’m not afraid of you” walk,
wading gently into the water,
paddling away from him, and he,
forced to follow instead of lead,
dipped his beak beneath the water
tipping ass-end-up, a fowl gesture
we soon forgot in the yellow wash
of dawn’s early light
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Monday, June 29, 2009
what if this is not my real life
what if I am an embryo inside
a shell, consuming yolk and albumen,
growing eyes, ears, feathers,
what if I never realized it is my job
to break the shell,
what if the wall has gotten so thick
I can’t get out,
what if I find a tiny crack I can use
to shatter the shell and escape
what if I let myself out into the world
only to find I can’t fly
what if I open my wings
and discover I can
Sunday, June 28, 2009
Saturday, June 27, 2009
I did catch these two guys in a very friendly, grooming moment - can't you just here the red one saying "a little more to the left, lower, lower!! Ah, that feels good!"
And then there were the twins... this was just before the wind changed, blowing the mister-water onto the bird on the right, who moved left until it was shoving the left bird practically off the perch... this resulted in a bird fight. They were still going at it when we walked on.
Friday, June 26, 2009
Then later at night (now) he brings a variety of toys over for a game of tug. He's really smart about his toys. If you tell him to get the monkey, he'll bring you the monkey, not the dolphin.
He likes fruit and carrots. If you have an apple, grapes, even raspberries, he wants you to share. It's pretty funny to watch him eat a grape. It's round and slippery and doesn't feel right, but he's got experience and knows it will be good on the inside, so he plays with it and finally bites.