Sunday, November 27, 2011

Soon-To-Be-Published in SUCKER LITERARY MAGAZINE

GUESS WHAT???

I have an edgy YA short story soon-to-be published in Sucker Literary Magazine's inaugural issue. An exact publication date is undetermined, but Editor & Founder Hannah Goodman and her suckerlicious staff are working night and day to wrap up this issue very soon!

Knowing Hannah, she's selected some spectacular authors and illustrators to showcase in her first issue. (Nope, not biased...just proud!) It's going to be sensational!

Don't be a sucker and miss out on the first-ever issue of Sucker Literary Magazine!

Find Sucker Literary on Twitter @SuckerLitMag
Facebook: Sucker Literary Magazine

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving Thoughts...Where, Oh Where Has My Writing Spark Gone?

We are all sleeping in here at our house, all except my husband, who's working. Police Officers do not always get the holidays off. We arrived home after midnight last night after visiting our Nana in ICU. She's spent the better part of the last two weeks fighting for her life after suffering a major stroke and then a cerebral hemorrhage. Now, she's battling pneumonia. 

Yesterday, she endured seven hours of an adverse reaction to morphine. Had the admitting nurses noted her chart correctly two weeks ago, they would've known NOT to administer her an Opiate drug. I won't go on about the ordeal, as it was extremely traumatic. I'd like to think it was an honest mistake, and that they will now care for our Nana like she was their Nana. One can only hope.


As the matriarch of our family lies in her hospital bed, with many color-coded tubes running in and out of her frail body, I am saddened today. Thanksgiving is usually spent at her home, as we all bustle around her cramped kitchen preparing dinner. 

I ask that you count your blessings today as you sit around your table. Consider yourself lucky to be sitting with your loved ones, friends & family. I'm comforted by the mere fact that Nana probably has no clue it's Thanksgiving today.


With all of the current stress in the family, my writing spark has dwindled. I can't find it at the moment. I feel like Sweet Polly Purebred, searching for her Underdog. "Where, oh where has my writing spark gone? Oh where, oh where can it be?" Then along with not writing comes the crushing guilt of not writing. It's a vicious cycle.


As I sit here, typing this post, it occurs to me that I must cut myself some slack. Relax. Take a breath. Do some yoga and just be. Be happy that Nana is alive. Be content with what I have written in the past and all that I WILL write in the future. 


Hmmm...what a novel idea! Be happy with what I have. Count my own blessings.


I think I'll get in the kitchen and bake those Spiced Rum Pecan Pies I've been meaning to bake for the holiday.



Happy Thanksgiving, my friends & followers. 
May your day be beautiful.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Warm & Fuzzy Blog Fest Week 4

Ugh, it's almost over! I've had such a great time meeting all the spectacular writers / authors during Juliana Brandt's Warm & Fuzzy Blog Fest. 

Week 4 we're supposed to post what makes writing worth it for us. Then we are to post one of our Warm Fuzzy moments. It can be a scene from a WIP, short story or poem.

What makes writing worth it for me? It allows me the ability to release. Express. Share. Give. It makes it all worth while when someone reads something I've written, and they say, "Wow! tell me more!" 


Here's a tiny warm & fuzzy from a picture book I wrote last year:


Little Acorn wiggled around and found a cozy place to rest.
Although a bit frightened, he trusted Father knew best.

"Sleep tight, Little Acorn, have no fear.
I will watch over you. I will be right here."

Little Acorn twirled around until he was tucked in snug.
He pretended the leaves were like Father Oak's hug.

He whispered, " Be brave,"  and he tried not to weep.
He closed his eyes, and settled in for a long winter sleep.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

SCBWI Regional Conference & Blog Award

A ginormous THANK YOU goes out to Allyn Stotz  for nominating my blog for the One Lovely Blog Award! Make sure you check out her lovely blog, too. Her blog heading is absolutely adorable!

The requirements of receiving this award are:

1. To thank the giver and link back to her site.

2. Provide 5 random facts that folks may not know about you.
3. Pass this award on to 5 other lovely blog sites. Let them know you're awarding them. Link to their sites.
4. Copy the award logo and paste it onto your own site.
Here are the 5 random facts about me that you probably do not know about me (unless you've peeked on my quirky me page).


~I'm tremendously afraid of driving in the mountains and riding on boats.
~I have a hankering for pickle juice.
~I've had over 40 jobs so far.
~My absolute favorite place to write is an airport.
~I have self-diagnosed A.D.D.


The 5 Lovelies I'm nominating the award to:

Have you seen this gal's smile??? Angela Orlowski-Peart has a lovely smile & blog! http://www.angelapeart.com/


You must check out Jen's Unedited blog. It's lovely and hollers personality! http://jennifer-daiker.blogspot.com/

Angela Brown's Blog is just as lovely as she is! She's one supportive blog buddy to follow. :)) Check out her Pursuit to Publishness...
                   http://publishness.blogspot.com/

If you haven't seen Jessica Therrien's Imagination To Publication, you must! Her heading is one of my favs!
                  http://jessica-therrien.blogspot.com/
Last, but certainly not least...Susanna Leonard Hill, a wonderful picture book author! Her blog is so lovely it makes me happy inside with its warm colors and kid-friendly images. 
                  http://susannahill.blogspot.com/

I had the privilege of attending the SCBWI Brazos Valley Connections & Craft 2011 conference this past Saturday. We had the opportunity to listen to some outstanding authors / illustrator; Kathi Appelt, Molly Blaisdell, Doris Fisher, and Brian Floca.

Agent / Editors consisted of; Claudia Gabel from Katherine Tegan books-Harper Collins Imprint, Elena Mechlin of Pippin Properties, Inc. and a special interview from Martha Mihalick of Greenwillow Books- Harper Collins Imprint.

A huge thank you goes out to Liz Mertz and everyone else who assisted with the preparations. It was a spectacular day of a workshop, presentations, and connecting!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Kick Em' While They're Up...Kick Em' While They're Down

Isn't it interesting how writers abuse and mistreat their main characters? We throw them curve balls, cause them to have accidents, put them in the middle of chaotic situations or worse, life or death scenarios. Why? Because we can. Because it makes an excellent story. Because readers desire to experience conflict with their favorite characters, as they cheer them on or cry on the sidelines. Readers want to feel. Experience. Relate.


This week's Warm & Fuzzies Blog Fest is all about exposing our malicious intents aimed at our main characters. 
Juliana Brandt writes:

There’s something spectacular about the trauma main characters go through and the way they manage to come out on the other side healed. Sometimes, I wish I could experience a complete character arch like that, but in reality, being an MC would be awful.
This week, take a moment to look at the trouble you get your MC into. How do you kick them while they’re down? Without revealing too many secrets about your WIP- take us through your MC’s arch.

This week, we will visit the other Warm & Fuzzy blogger's blogs and come up with nifty titles for their works in progress. 

My newest wip characters are still in the process of becoming who they are, so I'll use my YA historical fantasy I finished recently. It is currently title-less, so give me something great!!! The town's name is Vinegaroon, TX. There is also some element of fantasy for the time travel. Eerie is more like it...

What Title Would You Give Me...?



Seventeen-year-old, Josey Jones finds herself hurled into the past where she learns that life on the dusty pioneer trail is not only dangerous, but after she discovers she plays a vital role in an ancient family mystery, will she ever be able to find her way back home, and if she does, will she go?


  • College-bound Josey is ripped from the present and thrown into chaotic post Civil War Texas.
  • Outlaws, angered Natives, and starvation are not the only threats to trail life.
  • Abduction
  • Thirst
  • Venomous Reptiles
  • Brutal attacks
  • Near drownings
  • Temptation
  • And, then there would be the mysterious, creepy way she was catapulted through time...

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Kudos To My Writing Bestie

Swing! 

I'd like to dedicate this post to my favorite writing partner. We met three years ago as Library Assistants through the public school system. When we discovered that both of us were writers, we started meeting weekly. I have to admit, some days when we get together, writing is the last topic that comes into the conversation. 

Why? you may be asking yourselves. Writing partners should discuss writing things, right? This may be true, but Nisha is more than my writing partner, she's my friend. My writing confidant. My sounding board. My teammate. My cheerleader. And, I am hers. Some days, I don't know what I'd do without her. 


Yesterday, I gave a presentation to promote my soon-to-be-finished rose rustling book. I had the honor of presenting to a room full of rosarians at one of the largest old garden rose nurseries in Texas. Nisha was there, along with Liz and Jacqueline from our regional SCBWI group. It was wonderful to look out in the audience and see their smiling faces.


Especially, Nisha.


I arrived home after a successful afternoon to find the newest issue of the SCBWI bulletin in my mailbox. I fixed a cup of tea and settled down in my comfy chair to do my first of many read-thrus. To my pleasant surprise, Nisha's awaited article was there on page 23. She wrote Swing! this past summer. I was completely moved by the story when I first read it because not only do I know Nisha and the writer she is, but I also know the child she refers to in the story.


I know the writer, Nisha. The one who sometimes needs to be coaxed into taking that swing. The writer who sometimes hesitates to express herself through words. The writer, who like so many of us, allows fear to paralyze the pen.


But, page 23 proves that not only did she take that swing, but then she proceeded to sprint all three bases, and slide into home with style and grace. (We're talking SCBWI bulletin, Sista!)






Way to go, Nisha! I am so proud of my writing bestie.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

WNFIN Challenge

As if I need another challenge to complete by a particular date! Yep, I joined yet another writing challenge called Write Non-Fiction in November. My goal is to complete my Rose Rustling Non-Fiction book in 30 days. I started a blog about rose rustling and my writing project, and completed an outline last month. My Adventures in Rose Rustling can be found at http://texasroserustler.blogspot.com


I've set additional goals to edit during the month of December, and as a Christmas gift to myself have it professionally edited, and then proceed to self-publishing sometime in January. I know, big goals, but I KNOW I can do this!


I plan to market this book on Amazon, Twitter, my blog, and it will be sold after my rose presentations. The owner of The Antique Rose Emporium has also agreed to write a foreword for the book and sell it in his garden stores at two Texas locations.


If you have a non-fiction project you'd like to give a whirl, join me in the challenge. Wish me luck!