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Showing posts from 2002
Merry Christmas!

It's Christmas Eve and the gifts are not only purchased, they're wrapped! Unbelievable. I'm usually up until the wee hours of the night wrapping and wrapping and wrapping...not this Christmas Eve, though! Ken and I sat down yesterday and finished the immensely irritating job. Of course, the annoyance I felt no doubt stemmed more from the nausea and cramping--compliments of my son's flu bug--than the actual wrapping.

While I'm at work today Ken and the boys are going to make sugar cookies. What an awesome dad. Sometimes the man just leaves me breathless. After all, how many grown men would stoop to rolling cookie dough and using whimsically shaped cutters in order to bring a smile to a four-year-old's face? Not many. But mine will. How cool is that?

After I get home (and sample one of those yummy cookies), we have to go to my Mom and Dad's place for their gift exchange. After the gift exchange some of my Dad's family will sho…
Writing

Last Thursday I finished Chapter One of A Secret Well Kept . It works. More than that, I think it works well. I've introduced one of the driving conflicts in the story--chattel slavery of the Lainir in its infancy. My MC is not only horrified by the inhumanity of it, she realizes intuitively these slaves will never meekly accept this new lot in life. She's off to convince her father to ban them from sale in their city.

The next chapter, which I hope to start during the holiday break, will focus on that confrontation, an unpleasant discovery, and an unexpected visitor. Can't wait!

Holidays

-Got most of my shopping done. Just a few more things to pick up for the hubby.

-Going to make cookies with the kids this weekend. Okay, so they're not going to be from scratch. I'm using frozen cookies and letting them decorate. Yep, it's cheating. Yep, I don't care.

-The interior of the house is adorable. Lights, scented candles, decorations galore. …
Surprise!
I actually managed to pass my last quiz! Unbelievably I got 19 out of 20. Don't know how....but I'm grateful. And I promise to study my tooshie off for the final next week.

Writing
Started Chapter Two of Heart of a Dragon. This one is from Kade's POV as I want to distinguish him as the hero. He's just about ready to confront Adara with his suspicions. This should be fun!

As for A Secret Well Kept, I don't know how major others (mainly Holly and my classmates) would consider this change I've made but, boy, oh boy, have I veered from the scene list. In fact, the first scene I wrote has been deleted. For some reason the story wasn't working for me and I couldn't get past the first chapter. Isn't that sad? How long have we had to work on this story and here I am still laboring over Chapter One. Talk about anal. But there it is....I'm very anal about first chapters. After that I tend to fall into the flow of the story but not u…
Wow! It's been a loooong time since I've posted to my blog. A whole month! For shame, for shame.

The Holiday Season has officially started. Hope everyone had a yummy Thanksgiving. I know I did! We cooked a turkey in the deep fryer and I made pumpkin cheesecake. Yum, yum, yum.

We also had a birthday party for my baby. Hard to believe the little guy just turned two. Soon he'll be five and off to school. (Better believe I'll be home with a box of kleenex when that day comes!)

Writing:

I'm working on two novels: A Secret Well Kept and Heart of a Dragon.

Secret has been bothering me. I know the beginning isn't right. I'm going to rework it a bit and see if that helps. Developing Davne's father in more detail and bringing the crux of their difficulties into full light. I want to make him just as three-dimensional as Davne. Maybe that will help....

Heart of a Dragon is fun. I'm not allowing myself to work on it exclusively, though.



What a weekend.
While KC got better, Gage's cold got worse. Having a whiny two-year-old (well, almost) attached to you every waking moment is bit taxing. Unfortunately, Ken was gone most of the weekend so by Sunday afternoon I was ready for the Looney Bin. I couldn't wait for naptime when I might stand a chance of getting something done...like laundry. Of course, once the little guy was down for a nap, I found I was so mentally exhausted, all I wanted to do was sit down and veg.

Writing
What's that?

Homework
Had no time for homework this weekend. I emailed the teacher this morning asking for a small extension on a paper we have due. I think I can get it done tonight, maybe.
Went trick-or-treating last night with one sick child....woke up this morning to two fevered little foreheads. Oh, the joy of the winter season. Yes, winter. It's been snowing on and off all day here, which means, in my book, winter has arrived. Besides, doesn't 29 degrees sound pretty dern cold? That's what I thought. I told you winter had arrived.

So, where was I? Oh, that's right. Sick kids.

I was home yesterday with the boys because KC had developed a fever in daycare. While I couldn't get much done when the boys were awake, I was actually able to turn on the laptop and write yesterday! Amazing, isn't it? I opened up A Secret Well Kept and revamped the first few paragraphs. Boy, oh, boy were they in need of some TLC. Not that I'm surprised. When I start a novel cold, it's always rough. And, despite all the preparation that went into this book, I still consider the first chapter to be "cold". I haven't found my voice i…
Ok, so I didn't write anything last night. Not the next vampire scene, not a single word on A Secret Well Kept (new title for BN project, what do ya think?), and not another sentence on the romance. We had company. They arrived about a half hour after I walked in the door last night. I had time to change my clothes and eat dinner. But I enjoyed myself and I'm glad they stopped in. I don't get to see my baby sister very often now that she lives in Florida. We played cards, talked, laughed, looked at my photo albums, and made a date for tonight.

So, guess what? No writing tonight either.

Although, on an up note, my sister wants to read Dragonborn: The Beginning. She just needs to get it away from Mom, who still hasn't read the darn thing. (Likely because it's not a romance and that's about all Mom reads.)

So, until next week.....be safe and have fun!
It's a wonderful day! The sun is shining, my major pain-in-the-tooshy project at work is out of my hands and into the printers, I got a 103 points out of 101 (extra credit is great!) on my mid-term, and I'm writing again.

I haven't worked on my BN project but I will. First I want to focus on the short vampire story. I haven't written anything dark in a long time. It feels good in a sinister sort of way. I'm being mean and getting away with it! I intend on writing the next scene tonight. I expect some blood....

I also started a fantasy romance. Pure romance in a fantasy setting. It's fun! Of course, right now I'm doing this one the old-fashioned way: by the seat of my pants. I intend to change this. Once I get the initial scene down, I'm going to go back and apply the BN class homework to the story. I expect the characters, plot, theme, and symbolisms will improve dramatically once I've had a chance to think things through. I just did…
Well, I took my mid-term exam today. I think I did pretty well. I'm certain I didn't flunk. :-)

I'm writing a short story about ghosts and vampires. Halloween inspiration, I suppose. It's turning out better than I expected and I'm finding it very entertaining to write. I just need to get it finished, proofed, rewritten, and out by October 30th. A week and a half goal. I can do this. Really. I can.

I'm also going to do two chapters on my BN project this week. Rough only. I'm not going to worry about proofing or editing. Just write. Write and write and write.
My comments aren't working. Wonder why.....don't have time to look into it right now...maybe later.
Me again. Taking a couple of minutes to blog, then it's back to work for me. (Dratted day jobs. They take so much effort!)

Someone at Forward Motion started a thread on working full-time and trying to write. Since that pretty much describes me, I composed a hasty answer.

No wonder I haven't been able to get anything done lately!
October 1st! Can you believe it? I can't. Next thing you know...it's Halloween and I have to take the kids trick-or-treating. Of course, this is something I love to do! I love getting the little munchkins all dressed up and taking them out into the night. Since we always take them to the same small town I trick-or-treated in as a child, the activity invariably brings little bits of nastalgia my way. (insert sappy grin)

I have been a bad student and I mean that in more ways than one. First, there's my BN class. I have hardly touched my story. I got scene two done--I think. That leaves one more scene for Chapter One. Maybe I'll get something done tonight. It just depends on the kids, the hubby, and the housework.

The other class I'm taking - you know, the official this-shows-up-on-your-college-transcript kind - is very interesting. When I'm in class, I'm enjoying myself. When I'm home, I hardly have time to crack a book. I know this won…
LOL....thanks to Rob for the Jedi quiz.

Image
What a day!
It's been crazy today. I can't even count how many room changes I made...and that was before noon. The afternoon has been little better. I'm in a current lull but I don't expect it to last. They never do, not at the beginning of a semester.

I think I might have gotten my baby sister to look at Forward Motion. She emailed me earlier saying she had found the site. Now it's up to her to venture out into the arena.

I thought I'd have time to write my half-page assignment today but, nope, didn't happen. Dern phone. Miserable, ringing contraption. I wish I could turn it off for oh, say a week? LOL



Daredevil...who me?
I'm going to be brave. I know I'm taking a big chance here but I can't help myself. I want to write! I worked on my BN homework--Building Theme Exercise--until 10:30 last night. I so wanted to finish it right then but my eyes refused to remain focused. So, off to bed I went. And now, I'm at work, trying to keep my head above water as room change requests pour in, and all I can think about is finishing the scene! So, I'm going to. I'll just open up the document and work on it whenever I get a chance....

Exciting News
I've been asked to become a Moderator at Forward Motion! What an honor. Of course I accepted. Now I just have to learn the ropes....

Going Back to School
Started class yesterday. COM 301 - Ethics in Communication. I love it when you walk away from a class and you know you're going to enjoy yourself this semester. The instructor has a great sense of humor, the course covers some very intense ethicial topics, and…
Work is crazy. I don't know if I'm coming or going half the time. Every time my phone rings, I cringe. Every time my email chimes, I cringe. This job is going to give me an ulcer.

Oh, and if you're wondering what happened to Forward Motion...it's down for the day. Go here: Forward Motion Backup Chat
Half hour and I'm outta here! Got myself a nice three day weekend ahead of me and I plan on enjoying it. My sister and nephew are flying home and there's a smashing party planned Saturday night. Throw in some ice cream, late night gossip sessions with my sis, finishing up a few household chores that have been driving me nuts, spending time with my hubby and playing with my two favorite little boys...there, life is perfect.

Writing? Well, I did late night research last night. I'm really enjoying myself with it, too! I have several pages of notes, which will be put into the computer (maybe with weekend) and organized into coherent titles and subtitles. My worldbuilding is coming along nicely. The ideas are churning once again...

And, since we're still on the subject of writing (yes, we are!), I guess I should mention the BN class. I think I found a symbol. Makeup. Not only did Ancient Egyptian women wear makeup and stunning wigs, so, too, did the men. Makeup p…
I'm trying to add comments to this crazy thing. I'm using Netcomments. Keeping fingers and toes crossed....
Two days in a row! Yay for me!

Work:
The semester nears and my "to do" pile grows. I've nearly made it through the catalog update and I've been processing email after email of classroom requests and course changes. And I know it's only going to get worse. Lucky me.

Writing:
The BN project is consuming me. I haven't opened up Dragonborn: The Beginning in forever. This may be a good, though. Distance will give me a chance to look at the rough with fresh eyes. Of course, this prospect terrifies me. What if I wrote dismal trash?

Guess I'm having a rather bleak writing day. I'm worried my newest (and hopefully best!) idea isn't quite up to muster. I know it has made it pass Holly and my fellow classmates but...still, I worry. How can I make it better? More gripping? I want to tear someone's heart out, make them nod their head in complete understanding, and crow in delight as my heroine triumphs over others and her own self-defeating f…
Wow...it's been a couple of weeks since I've posted. Shame on me.

~I'll try not to ramble too much as I bring you up to speed.~

Family Vacation

We took the boys camping and we actually left the state to do it! Mind you, we didn't go too far. Ohio isn't exactly light years away. I believe it took us nearly 8 hours to get from our driveway to the cabin we rented...so quaint! It was right on a lake and there were these ducks....

This is the first family vacation we've had--weekends away from home do not count. We packed up the van, loaded our bikes on our nifty new bike carrier, and set off down the road. We stopped at Cabella's...hubby's dream hunting/fishing store...and managed not to spend all our vacation money. Since I failed to bring the camera in with me, we also stopped at the store on the way home so I could get a few pics of the boys ogling the mounts. Besides, I really want to scrapbook the awkward moment when KC, my darling 4 year old…
So, have you heard? We're going to die!

Seriously, there's this asteroid circling the sun and there's a remote chance it could orbit right into Earth. Here's a quote from CNN regarding the 1.2 mile wide rock, "NASA's Near Earth Object program gives the asteroid a rating of "0" on the Torino impact hazard scale — within a range of "events meriting careful monitoring," but not concern. "


Now here's how this Torino scale works....
A risk-assessment scale, similar to the Richter scale used for earthquakes, will assign values to celestial objects moving near Earth. The scale will run from zero to 10. An object with a value of zero or one will have virtually no chance of causing damage on Earth; a 10 means a certain global climatic catastrophe. (Taken from NASA's Neo Program Website)

So, while it might be bit worrisome, I wouldn't panic just yet.





Well, my trip to the library was a raging success! I had a list of 23 titles and I didn't even make it all the way through the database system. Of those 23 titles, I checked out ten books. I could have checked out more--there's no limit on what faculty or staff can borrow--but I'm a weakling really and couldn't have carried any more books. Maybe I should do some bodybuilding excercises so next time I can take as many as I need.

I started taking notes on ancient Egypt last night. Don't know if I'll use any of it for my BN novel but it may spark something in my imagination and lead me to new and exciting places.

Had my yearly review at work today. It went well. I still have a job and that's good. Now I just need to get a raise and all will be well in my world.

Tonight's going to be incredibly busy. Work until 5:00, go to my mom's for dinner, attend "Totally Tags"--a scrapbook class--, and then come home and try to get logged o…
Good morning! I can't believe how long it has been since my last post. For shame, for shame. I'm so bad.

I need to get to the library today. Told myself I was going yesterday but, for some reason, my body refused to listen to my mind and I never made it. Figures. I'm so lazy.

Ancient Egypt is the flavor of the day. I don't really care too much about their politics. I want the daily life sort of stuff. Considering I have access to the University's Library (one of the perks for working here), I should be able to find something to fit my needs. I should do a database search before I leave my office. That should make finding the books and checking them out much quicker.





Rewrite of Dragonborn is progressing slowly. I have two chapters down. Only a couple dozen more to go. :-)

My BN novel, currently entitled Through a Dragon's Eye, which I'm not real happy with, is still in its developmental stages. I've posted my premise and I've gotten a couple of responses. The general consensus is the worldbuilding is a bit thin. It's abysmal actually. I haven't done much of anything in this realm besides name cat-people, dragons, humans, and elementals. I've not even established in my own mind what kind of religions, customs, or governmental hierarchies exist. I'm waiting because this is one of the upcoming exercises in the class and I don't want to get ahead. But, boy, oh boy, is it killing me!

Writing

I haven't really been writing much since I last posted. But I have been working on some new ideas for my BN class.

BN class? What am I talking about, you ask?
Holly (Forward Motion) has graciously offered her Breakout Novel class again this year. I was brave enough to apply and lucky enough to get accepted! I am in fine company, too, I'll have you know. My fellow classmates are June, Catherine, Matt, Cheryl, and Robert. If their ideas are any indication, I am seriously going to enjoy taking this class with them!

Our first class is this Thursday night. I pray my connection doesn't boot me off like it did last night. I have back-up dial-in capabilities but I don't want to use them because they aren't all that great.





Testing, testing, testing....

Just changed the template. Wonder how this is going to look....
Writing:
I've gotten back one reader review on Dragonborn.  As I feared, the ending did not satisfy the reader.  Luckily, she knew why and the problem can be easily addressed and fixed!  Otherwise, she seemed to like it.  A big thanks to Mary (aka BarGnat)! 
Now I'm just waiting on Lola & Bob's thoughts....Once they've had their say, the serious rewrite begins in earnest.  I can't believe I'm looking forward to it.  Then again, I can't believe I'm missing the characters or their story...I thought I'd be sick of it by now!
Oh, Happy Day!
I found my missing journal!  I was cleaning (yes, cleaning) my scrapbooking area, which is also where I've been keeping all my books since the move into the new house, and I found the journal in the bottom of a box.  I would have found the thing earlier if I had enough bookshelves to hold all my books.  Ah, well.  At least I found the journal. 
Bookshelves will have to wait.
Writing:
I love Zette's gym. These little warm-ups really get the ole juices flowing.  What starts out as a glimmer of an idea can sprout wings and soar into mutating plotlines, characters, or a new world to explore.  My growing attachment to these exercises surprises me.  
Here's a bit of Wednesday's results:
Panting, her breath plumed in the cold autumn air, she once again pushed her sodden hair out of her face and narrowed her eyes. After a moment’s strain she could see through the rain. Trees as far as she could see. Nothing even remotely familiar.


She was lost.


And hunted by Muthgars.


Fighting down panic, Sarryn drew in a shaky breath and swallowed around the lump in her throat. Standing here, soaked through and through, served no good purpose. For every second she delayed, the Muthgars drew nearer and their probing mental fingers tore away more and more of her meager mental sheild. The oily darkness of their thoughts had grown stronger and more gruesome…
Dragonborn Update:
It's done!!!! Ok, well, the rough draft is done. Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to finish my happy dance.
So what's next, you ask? Well, I need to give it to a couple of readers. This should give me a nice break from the story so when I have to begin the rewrite I'll be fresh and ready.
Trying something different today...hopefully this won't look too funny.
Update:
Dragonborn
Finished a couple more necessary chapters to tie together some loose strings. I think they work. Won't really know, I guess, until I do the rewrite. In my mind I have two possibly three more chapters to write. Then I'll be done with Book 1 of the Dragonborn Series.
~doing a happy dance~
Personal Crap:
Had a wonderful vacation. It was great seeing my sisters and my nephew. It should be against the law for siblings to move out of state. When they have babies we miss so much of their lives and it's just not fair.
Ok, done whining.
Distressing News:
I think my video camera has died a final, sad death. Unfortunately, I didn't get a chance to move the scenes with Keagan (rarely seen nephew) or KC playing soccer to a tape, which means I likely lost it for good. So bummed. Wanted to cry. Haven't yet. Guess there's still hope until the hubby says otherwise.
Dragonborn Update:

I've been struggling with this chapter all day! Uggg. The words just don't want to come. I know what needs to happen. I can even see it happening, ever so slowly!

I've also discovered how I can draw Danken and Ghislaine together. It's going to take a bit of rewriting but not as much as it could have...

Now...I just have to get back to Ryalla and Laralei, Rance and Gwenydln. All in one chapter I think. I just have to decide whose POV to write.

Other News (Non-Writing):

Last day of work for the week! And it's only Wednesday! I love vacations, no matter how mini they may be. Five days of relaxation, fun, and good company.

I've been praying for a safe trip. I'm always nervous about leaving the boys, no matter how good the hands are they're left in.

Dragonborn Update:

The end is soooo close! I can see it. Truly, I can. It's hovering just over there, almost within reach. And I will be able to reach it so very soon!

Let's see...yesterday I killed the Prime Mage, set up the fall of the Hall of Magic. And Ghislaine is keeping the baby.

So, what to do on the story today? Send Pit and Nik after Edric...and if I get that scene done, move on to Luke's rescue.

And I think I know exactly where I'm ending this book, which is always nice to know.



Dragonborn Update:
Things are progressing. I've gotten quite a bit done. Danken, Ghislaine, and Sahara have been successfully reunited. The Hall of Magic is under attack by the wizards and nongifted armies. Now I just need to update the reader on Ryalla, Laralei, Gwyendln and Rance.

The relationship between Danken and Ghislaine isn't developing as I had expected. If I rush them into falling in love, I think the reader is going to feel cheated. So, I don't think this is a true love story, after all. I still think it's a damn good story, though. The survival theme is still going strong, which is really the key.

Unfortunate News:
I forgot the ZIP disk at home. That means I won't be working on the story today.

Highway Robbery:
I was going to order a couple of Holly Lisle's books off Amazon. The prices were great right up until I got to shipping. Blah! I cancelled the order and decided a trip to Border's was a much better option. I just hope th…
Holy cow...I have no motivation. I need to get writing. Now. Today. Yesterday. That self-inflicted deadline is fast approaching and I'm going to be irritated as hell with myself when it arrives and I'm still working on this story.

So? What to do? Well, stop browsing the net would be a good place to start. I need to ban myself from Holly's Lisle's Forward Motion and the chat room. I can talk to everyone later...after I've finished this first draft.

Ok...so today's goal: 1500 in less than an hour. It's 4:06 pm and I leave at 5:00. Wish me luck!
Been a couple of days since I've posted...

I've given myself a new deadline. I want the first draft of Dragonborn: The Beginning done by May 22nd. That gives me roughly two and a half weeks to get this done! Ouch.

Guess I should get busy and write something. Bye!
Not going to write very much this morning. I have a meeting and then lunch.

Perhaps this afternoon I'll get back to work on the story...
Ok, so my first post was a bit melodramatic. But I didn't know that!

Those errors I was fretting over...I think they're fixed now and it wasn't nearly as bad as I had expected it to be! Thank God.

Well, my writing is done and over with for today. I managed to get a few words (570) down after the fixer-ups. That brings the grand total on Dragonborn: The Beginning to (drumroll, please!)...87,863.

Good night!
A rather disappointing discovery...

I've been working on Dragonborn: The Beginning for nearly two years now. It's had several false starts, mostly because I simply wasn't ready to begin working on it. Yet, I'm nearly 90K into the story now--the end is in sight--and I discover I've got some major errors to fix. Damn it.

I know these errors can be fixed and the story will be fine. It's just annoying. And it makes me want to run screaming in the opposite direction!

Well that's all for now!