Thursday, August 29, 2013

In Which I'm Still A Kid At Heart...

First, apologies. Since this is the last week in August, this should be a Sweet Reads post. But, alas, work has gotten in the way of me making delicious things. =( So instead, this will be a post about me playing with toys. Like the one below:
Isn't it cool? I'm sort of infatuated with it. I bought it on a whim for my kidlet(who from playing with his older cousin will aim his finger at you and go 'skhew, skhew') but, uh... I've sorta been aiming it at things myself. Though without the sound effects, I promise! It's just been alot of fun. Why, you ask? Because my main character, Amity, wears a pistol belt and in my mind, shoots something alot like this toy gun. Except, perhaps a little less piratey(that's what the box said they were--Pirate Pistols).
This also takes me back to the Revolutionary reenactment I'd attended this spring. One of the booths was selling swords-- a cutlass type and a broadsword. I wanted one so bad! I thought about buying one and telling my husband it was for research. That's not weird is it? I mean, I'd wait until it was dark so the neighbors couldn't see me charging about the backyard wildly waving a sword around...
Has there been anyone else who likes to do 'research' for your novels? Or keep their inner child alive? =0) 

Friday, August 23, 2013

See-saws and Brick Walls

I finally finished the third revision of my historical fantasy. Finally! Now I'm just going through and polishing. I taking things that were fine and making them not-so-fine? Yugh. In the past few weeks I've worked myself into a state of nerves; I've definitely been playing on the see-saws at the playground lately.

 When I'm up I think-- this is it. I've wrote the best story I've ever written, with a premise that is unique and hopefully with catch an agent's eye. When it's my turn to go dooown I think-- But it's still just not good enough. I know it. This isn't going to happen, you're never going to see your name on a book sitting in a bookstore or a library. You're wasting your time, and all your hard work(three years spent on this story) is for nothing. Big. Fat. Nothing. Where's the chocolate?
Any of this sound familiar? I know it does, because if you're a writer(or anyone who cares deeply about something-- gymnastics, spelling bees, clam farming...) and you're reading this, I'd bet a dozen Baby Ruths that you've taken your turn on the see-saws at the playground too. But it's okay. It happens and it's natural. It's just part of dreaming, realizing and dealing with the obstacles that can come between you and what you so desperately want.
One of the reasons I like quotes so much is that they can help pull you up out of the doldrums, and oh yummy chocolate kisses, did I ever find a good one the other day, when I was reading this article:
I made sure to copy and paste the quote so that I can reread it often. Here 'tis:
“The brick walls are there for a reason. The brick walls are not there to
keep us out. The brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how
badly we want something. Because the brick walls are there to stop the
people who don’t want it badly enough. They’re there to stop the other people.”
― Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Picturesque Libraries

I snapped the above pic the other day while I was sitting at the stop sign. After I got married and moved to Edinburgh, one of the things that impressed me most about my new town was its library(Edinburgh Wright-Hageman Public Library). It surprised me with its charm, the reading garden w/a cute little fountain w/rubber duckies in the summer, and the Christmas trees they line the front windows with in December. And oh, yeah, the books! ;)
I've Googled a few other libraries, and found some that I'm sure the town's inhabitants are proud to call their own.
Mirror Lake Library, St. Petersburg, FL. I really want them to have a pet alligator for some reason!
 E.C. Weber Fraser Public Library, Fraser, MI. I want to sit at that table in the garden while reading a historical romance- pretty!

 And in the fairness of picturesque library diversity, this stunner is in Milan, the Biblioteca Sormani. And, huh, what can I say? It looks magical... *strives to tamp down library lust... fails.* 

Saturday, August 10, 2013

And The Winner Is...

As always, I used super tech to pick the winner: scraps of paper, numbered 1-4. =) And that winner turned out to be... Kimberly! Congrats!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Today is Book Lovers Day!!!

Which means, in celebration, a giveaway! Yay! To win the magnet pictured, all you have to do is comment(and if you're so inclined, following me by email would be great, too... ;)). May your Book Lovers Day be filled w/good books and tall glasses of your favorite beverage. And why isn't work closed for this very important day...?

Anyhoo, you've got all day Friday to comment, and I will select a random winner come Saturday morning. Good luck and Happy Book Lovers Day!

Friday, August 2, 2013

My Achilles' Heel

I love dashes. Not this sort: 
But this sort:

I liberally pepper my work w/them. While editing my manuscript, I've realized that I have a dash on every page. Every single page has anywhere from one to ten dashes. I don't know if that's a deal breaker as far as having a grammatically flawless ms(ha, ha...), but I definitely thought it showed a lack of variety. Some of those dashes could be semi-colons, or even plain ol' periods(so boring, sigh).
So I've been going through and deciding what dashes are absolutely necessary, and not just a product of my dash-feen. See! Geez, I can't get away from it! ;)
What about you all? Anything that you find yourself doing over and over again in your writing? I'd be interested to hear it!