Friday, June 30, 2006

Lots of work ahead...

Looking forward to the holiday. I am taking the next four days and polishing up Frenemies. I won't be doing much else, but that's okay. I got the cover art for the book I will be editing starting next week. It's really pretty good. You never know about cover art, sometimes you have to wonder what they were thinking, but luckily this one is good. I talked to the author in Canada about some of the preliminary changes and she is a very agreeable sort. Which is great.

We booked a shore excursion for the cruise in September. The Apple Rum Estate tour in Jamaica. They give you a tour, feed you lunch and ply with all the rum you can drink. Then get you back to boat before it sails. What's not to love about that? We're still thinking about the submarine tour in Grand Caymen. I think we will be doing most of our shopping in Cozumel. Which would be great if I liked to shop, which I don't, but I kind of feel like I'm supposed to on this trip. I probably won't post again until next week, so have a very happy July 4th everyone!

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Pricker Update

For those of you who have been wondering, the baby cactus have had a growth explosion and now have been transplanted out to the alley to stand guard against the spray paint delinquents. I'll let you know how it goes.

On the writing front, it's been a pretty productive week. I've finalized the synopsis for Frenemies (which is a huge load off my mind) thanks to those who helped polish this up!! I am now looking forward to doing the final edits on the full manuscript over the holiday weekend. Jenny ( ) and Heather(grammar nazi) will be reading it next week so I want it as polished as possible. I'm sending out the partial to Tara Gavin at the end of this week so I'm crossing my fingers.

I also had another conference call with the publisher for the editing job. I gave them a quote and I can have it delivered by July 25 before I leave for the RWA conference so that works perfectly. I also sent a query to a slick that covers the Southeast Coast. Since I will be down there in a few weeks, I'd like to do a story for them.

They now have my blog linked to the Australian writers magazine, click on the Writer's Diary link and scroll down. I'm interested to see what kind of traffic flow I get from 'down under'.

The marketing booklet that I did in May for Dawson Publishing has been backed up a little. They are running behind. No biggie. A few months is a nano second in the publishing world. I will be working on the newsletter over the weekend as well. As soon as it's up, I'll send everyone a link.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Synopsis Hell

I can't believe it's been a whole week since I posted. I guess that should tell you that the writing has really picked up. Unfortunately there is never a steady flow of work. I'm either twiddling my thumbs or burning the candle at both ends. And obviously headed into the depths of cliche land. *sigh*

I did pull out the synopsis for Frenemies again and begged my friend Jennifer Archer ( for her masterful touch. I have several critique partners and each has their own strength, but Jenny's is definitely in the area of synopsis. Hopefully the next couple of days I will get it into shape and ready to send finally.

In other news, I had an interesting phone call this week with the editorial coordinator for the publisher that I ghost write and edit for. While we were talking, he made the suggestion that I should consider becoming an agent. I laughed, but then later I thought....hmmmm.... maybe a few years down the road when my career is more solidified, that might be an option. You never know, but it makes me even more aware of the contacts that I'm making in the publishing world right now. Speaking of which, the RWA Conference in Atlanta is only a few short weeks away. I'm formulating my strategy and figuring out which editors I need to contact or speak with again. I'm sure it will sneak up on me (like it does every year) and I will feel less than prepared.

Is it just me or does summer seem to go by in a blur?? Why is it that warm weather makes me feel like I have to spend every waking hour DOING something? I need to step back and just enjoy it. And I will. After I finish this next editing job, get my synopsis in shape, do at least another two chapters on the current book, finish the gift card article, get my freakin roses planted and blah blah blah blah......

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Making Your Way

Once again tonight( or is it morning now?) I am reminded that each writer travels their own path. While some are singularly fiction minded others snub their nose at that market and concentrate on 'what sells'. It frustrates me to no end that others' opinions might keep a new writer from pursuing their goals. For me I can say that nonfiction is something I write for money. Not that I don't enjoy it, but still.... Fiction I write for love. There's no other way to describe the process and differences between the two. I guess I find nonfiction easy, so I don't think about it terms of what it can do because in my mind it is a short lived piece of work. But fiction, on the other hand is very subjective. I find it immensely intriguing for that reason. How do you move one person, or a whole nation for that matter, to feel exactly what you feel as you type the words on the page? What is it that instinctively connects the writer with the reader? How can someone read mere words on a page and allow it to effect their whole life ...And their children's lives?

I can tell you it doesn't really happen like that in nonfiction. You are reporting or helping, but you aren't impacting the way that person sees their universe. I was told a while back that fiction is for fools, I should write what sells. I can only laugh at the shortsightedness of this person. How many people remember the works of nonfiction from the 19th century? Anyone?? I'll bet very few even from the 20th century. But how many of you read Uncle Tom's Cabin? The Scarlet Letter? Gone with the Wind? Shakespeare? What great quotes do you remember?

"Romeo, Romeo where for art thou?" Romeo & Juliet
"You had the power in you all the time." Glenda the Goodwitch-Wizard of Oz
"Frankly Scarlett, I don't give a damn!" Gone with the Wind

"Non Fiction may pay the bills, but fiction will change the world. " Dee Burks

And you can quote me on that one.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Another Great Writer....

Isn't it weird how writers just seem to connect to each other no matter their background or type of genre, we just seek out those who are traveling the same path. One really neat lady I met at the conference this weekend was Deborah LeBlanc from Lafayette. She writes thrillers for Leisure. What an entertaining speaker!! And a genuinely nice person. You can check out her website at . The conference went really well for most all of my students and Hillary Sares from Kensington asked for several things from them so I'm excited. I hope several of them get their books out in the next year. They are very talented people.

I'm getting back into the swing of things this morning, catching up on email, etc. There are several things on my to do list that have been on there for several weeks and I just keep not doing them. Like finishing my synopsis for Freniemies. I hate synopses, but then, who doesn't? Time to just do it.......Bummer........

Friday, June 09, 2006

Meet & Greet at the OK Corral

The first day of the FiW conference is in the bag. Though many of my students were incredibly nervous and hesitant about encountering a big time New York editor, they all handled it very well. And guess what...She didn't bite. In fact she asked for work from several of them so I'm trilled for them and crossing my fingers that the ones who are finalists in the contest tomorrow win win win!!!! I know I keep telling them that its enough to be nominated...and it truly is....But dang it, I so want them to WIN!!!

On another note, my good friend Jennifer Archer received the writer of the year award. And deservedly so. Its great to see someone that you know has worked her butt off, finally start getting the recognition she deserves.

I also ran into a friend I haven't seen or heard from in over 16 years, Tonya Tittle. When our kids were tiny, we used to get together and talk about how much we wanted to write and how great it would be to do that for real. So I turn around today and there she is.....Just exactly like I remember her. Only this is her first writing conference. It is so weird how people retain their dreams no matter what life throws at them. I hope she continues to chase that dream.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

The Prickers Have Arrived!!

For those of you who are unaware, we've been having an issue with the back wall that surrounds our yard getting tagged. We've lived in our house for 8 years and not had a problem, but this year they have spray painted our wall 3 times. No, its not gang related just kids with nothing better to do. This last time they painted big mushrooms and marijuana plants along 25 feet of wall. Artistic little delinquents. So I'm thoroughly sick of buying paint and me or some member of my family having to spend our weekends covering up their artwork. On top of that, it just plain hacks me off.

After entertaining several ideas about what to do(some legal, some not), a guy at work suggested we plant cactus in the alley along the wall to deter the worst of it. I LOVE this idea! Little prickers for the little pricks. Perfect. So of course I got on eBay and found what I needed right away. A variety of Prickley Pear similar to what you see out in the cattle pastures around here. But it grows really fast.

So yesterday the baby cactus arrived. A whole box full of misery awaiting our little artists. Hehehehehehe..... I'll let you know how it goes.

Monday, June 05, 2006

FiW Conference

The FiW Conference in Amarillo is this weekend. I'm a little concerned because I haven't gotten my confirmation yet, but so far neither has the other few people that I know are going so maybe they are really back logged. I know there is a lot more interest this year so hopefully that means many more people. I called to get the final info for the fall classes that I'm teaching at AC. I will be doing flyers to put in the bags of the conference goers. Since so many of my former students finaled this year, I'm hoping there will be a lot of interest.

Thanks to all of you who posted or sent me emails about the newsletter I am planning! The overwhelming majority of interest seems to be in the marketing and promotions area although information on how to get into freelancing ran a close second. I hope to have the first issue out in July and right now I'm thinking about doing it Bi-Monthly. I plan to have my wonderful little autobot send out emails when its ready so you can go to my website and pull it up. I thought this was better than sending an attachment with all the viruses out there these days. And back issues will be available with a click of the mouse!

I will be putting in little short tips and pieces of interest as well as notifying you of great books that will be coming out in the near future. I have yet to dream up a title for it, so if any of you have any ideas on that, let me know. Also, if any of you have a book coming out, or tips or comments that might be useful to other writers, email me and I'll include them as well.