Friday, April 27, 2007

Thursday Thirteen things about moving...

Okay...I'm definitely not a rookie. I've moved a few times. But this time my hubby isn't here to help and I am feeling a little overwhelmed. I know, I know...but you say it's Friday. I'm moving. I don't know what day or time it is. At least I got the oldest to school every day this week. So here is a list of a few things I've discovered this week...

1....Blue and black are pretty colors next to pink toenail polish. I've dropped umpteen things on my poor feet this week. Ouch.

2....There was an entire colony of toys who were living in a little world behind the living room furniture. Makes me think of the movie Toy Story.

3....I found a new bug species living at the bottom of the babes toy to his corndog from lunch two weeks ago. I wonder if I'll get the credit for naming it? The bug, not the corndog.

4....Remember the Bowflex I just bought and put together? Two days before we decided to move? I wonder how many screws I can lose?

5....Food has an expiration date?

6....Does cereal? Does it count if you don't remember buying it?

7....I love my children. Maybe if I can say it enough I won't freak out this week.

8....I'm good. Well, you guys knew that but, I hooked up the 18 foot trailer yesterday and hauled a load over. I even took it back home and was able to back it back in between two duplexes in a space big enough for a vehicle.

9....I suck. Well, you guys knew that but, I got mad at my oldest and hurt his feelings. I was so stressed and he wasn't helping and took off riding bikes with the youngest. When I yelled at him he said he thought he was helping, he was keeping the little one busy and out of the way. My heart hurts.

10....My back, arms and butt hurt too. I found out I have muscles God didn't even know he gave us.

11....I found strength I never knew I had.

12....I love my kids. Gotta keep saying it. Didn't realize how spoiled they really were until I started moving their belongings.

13....I found out how blessed I am. I love yous guys. Thank you for the support and encouragement.

Have a wonderful and laid back weekend!!!

Monday, April 23, 2007

Landlords Suck

Guess what I get to do this week?? myself. Hubby is upset and ready to come home but hey...I'm a woman. I can do this. Right? What's so hard about it? Besides...I've done it before by myself. At least my mom can help with the baby and my 13 yo can help when he gets out of school. I wonder if it would be an excused abscence if I kept him out? They used to do it for farmers during harvest...I'm raising children.

We have had nothing but problems with our stupid house. The kitchen floods everytime that it rains because the backyard slopes up. I haven't had an overhead kitchen light in 6 months and the A.C. almost went out last year and we had 2 inches of water in our hall for several days before we threatened to move. has frozen up. And I'm tired of noe response from landlord. The owner is trying to sell and refuses to put any money into them. Our neighbor has a 3 foot crack in her bedroom ceiling and the same landlord keeps putting her off on fixing it. When it rains...she has buckets. Usually hubby takes care of it.

No problem. I can do this right?! At least I know how to hook up and pull my hubby's 18 foot utility trailer. Now backing it back into where he's got it...that's another story. Please pray for the Suburban this week. No dents, dings or scratches.

Hope all of you had a wonderful weekend!


Thursday, April 19, 2007

Thursday Thirteen

Thirteen Movies that make me cry...

Okay Mrs. Jen ~ Jennifer Shirk thanks for helping me remember the day. I loved your list and it gave me a great idea...not sure if I can come up with thirteen though. Here I go, yo.

1... Steel Magnolias!
2... Fried Green Tomatoes
3... Schindler's List
4... Titanic
5... Under the Tuscan Sun
6... Ladder 49 (the hero through-out movie dies! rude)
7... Gladiator (Russell Crowe crying when he touched his son's foot)
8... Eight Below (couldn't believe they left sled dogs behind...)
9... Sense and Sensibilty
10...50 First Dates (Does it count when I was laughing at the same time?)
11...Terms of Endearment (Another No Brainer)
12...Finding Neverland
13...Passion of Christ (Had to turn the DVD off...)

Whew, that was easier than I thought it would be!

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
1. (leave your link in comments, I’ll add you here!)

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Monday, April 16, 2007


We've talked about our writing styles and what motivates us to sit and spend time honing our craft, but what got you going? Most of the writers I know are pursuing a publishing dream and unless it's a paying gig...the checks aren't consistent enough to support a family yet. YET. Sorry, just a little Susie Cheerleader to get us motivated for a Monday!

I'll make this short and sweet. Have to get the oldest to school.

What was it that made you put your foot down and commit to your writing?

Have a calm and unchaotic Monday...a girl can dream.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Dialogue ~ Make or break ya?

When I pick up a book and begin reading, I usually give the author the first chapter before I decide to put it down. If the hook or dialogue doesn't click with me I give the book to my mom. She loves to read as much as I do and has more tolerance when it comes to putting the time in getting to know the characters. I don't have much personal time so I refuse to waste it.

The same goes for television/movies. I love when good shows tend to be clustered together. Great writers make a big difference. For me, it used to be NBC when they had Friends on Thursday nights and ER. But ABC has been my go to channel lately on that particular night due to Greys Anatomy. Brothers & Sisters and October Road are a couple of shows I try watch on the same network. I really enjoy Sunday evening because of Desperate Housewives. My tv time is as restricted as my reading and I would almost rather do housework than read or watch something I'm not really getting into.

But last night I caught the premiere of a new show because the previews really caught my interest. Notes From the Underbelly hit a funny-bone with me. Sometimes shows come out strong and then slack off...but a large variety of demographics are targeted in this one. I had a perma-grin throughout most of the show. I could relate on multiple levels. They seem to be hitting all levels of the motherhood/parental issues, from a young single to parents with children living the daily issues.

I laughed when the husband tried to convince his wife it was time to have babies with pros and cons, she cited a con reason of big underwear. I could so understand when he ditched her emotionally when he found out the real cons could include wrestling baby gear, no sleep and baby boobs. He was pretty upset when he learned he had to lose the air hockey game table to make room in the nursery ~ for the baby.

I enjoyed the related issues but mostly because the dialogue was fast-paced and humorous. It was familiar. It was my life and extreme issues I've heard my friends and family go through. It was believable and more held my attention. I would run during commercial breaks to take care of house and kids so I wouldn't miss anything.

It's my kind of writing. It's what I want to do when I grow up.

My friend Chicki Brown listed a great link recently for Deirdre Savoy. Her profile says it all to me:

'My goal is to leave you with a smile on your face
and a few new thoughts to mull over.
If you like the blog, please tell your friends.
If not, tell your enemies.'

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Thursday Thirteen

It usually takes me awhile to come up with 13 things...about the same thing. I've thought and argued with myself for days as to what I would write about. I was driving my oldest to school and POW... it hit me. Or almost did anyways.

Thirteen Things that irritate me.

1....Drivers who completely ignore stop signs and then cuss you/flip me off because they almost cause an accident.

2....Driving my son 25 minutes to school.

3....and dealing with the idiots who somehow passed their drivers license. They should make everyone retest every 5 years. Maybe not...I can't parallel park...much less spell the damn word.

4....My son has been going to the same little rural school for 7 years, and we're still considered new.

5....I HATE cliques. Especially when people (women) can be so catty and rude.

6....I get irritated with people who make snarky comments because they think they're "cool" and feel you can like 'em or leave 'em. They don't care.

7....What's worse are the people that laugh and encourage snarky's that clique - need to fit in thingy I'm not so good at.

8....Intolerant people. If I can bite my tongue and deal...why can't you.

9....People who blame bad behavior on PMS.

10...Dogs who bark at anytime.

11...People who don't take care of their homes or CHILDREN and blame it on them being poor.

12...People who use their celebrity status or job to demoralize or criticize others. Then use the term...Free Speech.

13...Politicians who use their power to hurt our troops because they want to pass bills with billions of dollars of pork barrel money attached and blame it on the President veto because of the timeline demand. I don't want our military deaths anymore than anyone else but we can't just say we'll pull everyone out by December 1, 2007...or whenever...and expect the Iraqi situation to just resolve itself. I don't agree with the war or the way it's going...but. I'm NOT INFORMED enough to be willing to debate. I believe that in order to debate the situation I want to be fully informed...not just what the press and democratic politicians want to debate. There are so many factors involved and it is complicated. I have loved ones...not just hubby overseas so yes...I care. But I don't have constituents that want their pork barrel projects funded so I'll vote for any bill to be passed as long as my projects get the money I want.

Sorry. Yes, I'm having a difficult morning and little things are pissing me off today. But my child told me his heart loves me, so it's getting much better. I had someone who wanted to debate the war funding bill. I don't care what political affiliation he is, he was unaware of WHY the President was going to veto. I vote for what I believe in. It pisses me off that our government is arguing over money for our troops and have attached a shitload of pork barrel project money just to get people to vote for a timeline for the war to end. Our men/women/ military NEED that money to survive. They are using SILLY STRING...a childs look for trip wires attached to bombs...because they aren't receiving the equipment they need to fight the war. They don't have the flack jackets, body/truck armour to protect them. In the meantime these politicians are skiing for the holidays with lobbyists and heads of corporations and eating 3 course gourmet meals while our soldiers are eating dust MRE's and...sorry. Flying first-class on tax payer money to...I'm ranting again.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Anthony Hopkins

Do you watch scary movies? Have you watched Silence of the Lambs? When I was younger and less aware of how scary the world could really be, I would watch any gory movie I could get my hands on. I even enjoyed watching older ones because it required more acting (if you want to consider running, screaming & crying acting) than technology. At this point in my life I can't and won't sit through a movie where the main goal is guts & gore (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre). What I really enjoy is a psychological thriller.

Silence of the Lambs

Primal Fear is also a great example. Richard Gere plays a defense attorney who thrives on highly publicized cases. He watches a foot chase on television where a young altar boy (covered in blood) has been accused of a violent, grisly murder of a popular Chicago Archbishop. Gere is a an opportunistic attorney who is excited about representing someone where the case is assumed to be open and shut because of the press coverage he can get. Although the evidence is obvious, as the case unfolds, Gere's character begins to believe his clients innocence as he is diagnosed with multiple personality disorder. Evidence against the archbishop is uncovered in corrupt land deals and pedophilia behaviour where he has been molesting young parishioners. The cynical attorney begins to believe in his job and what it means to actually defend someone who may be guilty but was pushed in a corner to defend himself. gotta watch it. The shocking twist at the end will make you cuss your Gramma.

Ohhhh. It gets good. Real good. Edward Norton is wonderful in the role of the mentally unstable defendant. The twists and turns kept my attention. It is one of the few movies I can actually sit and watch again. Hubby and I love to have a lazy weekend afternoon to cookout and sit down to relax and watch a great movie. Most of the time we would rent an older thriller where you had to play along with the twists.

Anthony Hopkins. SIR Anthony. He is an actor who can scare the hell out of me with his facial expressions. I love, LOVE to watch and listen to the man. I can watch guts & gore (I close my eyes in the worst parts) if he is doing the twists and turns. He is the ultimate psycho. The smile and turn of his head. The silent insinuations. He has an incredible emotional range as an actor and a LONG, LONG list of successful movies. He is a very convincing, calculating, manipulative and conniving in Silence of the Lambs, Hannibal and Red Dragon. His latest thriller is Fractured.

The tagline for the movie IS my idea of an Anthony Hopkins movie. The plot description...An assistant DA (Ryan Gosling) is caught up in a game of cat-and-mouse with a man (Anthony Hopkins) who tried to murder his wife and is set free on a series of technicalities .

If you look close enough, you'll find everyone has a weak spot.

But...He is to me an incredible actor. Because when I look at him I see Hannibal Lector. He is calm, cool and manipulative. But I also loved Legends of the Fall, Mask of Zorro and How the Grinch Stole Christmas (He was the narrators voice). I was watching The Tonight Show on NBC with Jay Leno interviewing him last night. I laughed out loud. While I absolutely love Sir Anthony Hopkins, I am not a stalker type. I do not systematically rent/buy/see movies strictly because an actor is in it. If I do not like the movie trailer or blurb, I won't waste my time. But...the Anthony Hopkins I envision was not being interviewed last night.

The man sat down and immediately you could tell he had a hyper nature. He always seems so calm and cool in the movies I have seen him in. He stuck his feet up in the air to show off his striped socks. He admitted to having ADD and fidgeted during the entire segment. He somehow got into a story about how he loves Donald Trump and The Apprentice. He kept saying "You're fired!" and had the attention span of my 4 yo. Then he started doing impressions of a dog barking and said how he enjoyed going out onto his balcony and barking so the entire neighborhood dog population would start up.

He is an INCREDIBLE actor. What kind of movies do you enjoy and why? Do you have a favorite actor?

Friday, April 06, 2007

Thursday Thirteen...on Friday! (Oops)

I got so busy yesterday and totally forgot to post. Actually I was pretty stressed as to what I would post...guess my mind hid the day from me. LOL.

So. What are you guys doing this weekend? Just kidding. Not really but I think I will quit procrastinating...

Hopefully I will meet some new friends out of this and widen my circle. So I decided to post about things you may not know about me. Please don't snore.

Thirteen Things about me:

1. .....I am married to my own personal cowboy. They say you should write about what you know, so...there's just something about a manly-man on horseback. Watching his tan, back-muscles flex when he's working outside...

2. .....We have two boys. 13 & 4 yo. A teenager and a pre-K hellion dare-devil...just like his Daddy. He wants to be a cowboy too and ride bulls.

3. .....As I mentioned in #1 ~ I am a writer. There I said it. I admit it. I like to write those smut & slut books. (Don't get me started on what SOME people say about writing romance)Actually...mine are more sweet contemporary. But I have eclectic tastes.

Tongue Out 1

(Especially with hubby thousands of miles...)

4. .....I would like to venture into writing romantic-mystery. I have been told I have a vivid imagination. Hah...I wonder if that was a compliment, or...

5. .....I was almost an Occupational Therapist. I only have 17 hours left to complete my degree and decided I wanted to stay home with my kids until they were both in school. And can because hubby works his butt off.

6. .....It's been in the 80's here in windy Oklahoma so I planted all of my herbs and flowers. Today it is snowing and raining ice pellets. Oh well...I wonder if an electric blanket will catch fire if it gets wet?

7. .....Did I mention I was blonde?

8. .....Did I mention that I was up late the other night...and bought a BowFlex exercise machine? It came in 7! *#%$@ boxes. I'm still on step 6 out of...30?

9. .....I'm putting off my exercise/weight loss program until I get the BowFlex together.

10. .....I played percussion in junior/high school. Yes...not only was I a band geek, but I played the drums. (just for my mom-yes, we had issues)

11. .....I dated a Nascar race car driver for a couple of months. He actually won a race while we were dating. Yes it was in my skinny days, pre-kids, and he was considerably older. Hehehe. I loved dating older men.

12. .....I married a man 9 years younger.

13. .....Ummm. How do I follow that one up? I make handmade soaps & lotions. I had a website but didn't have time to maintain it. Most of my sales are local so I'm going to make a brochure until I can get another website going. Right now I want to focus on my writing.

Which reminds me, I need to get back to work. But I hope you guys have a great weekend.

Here are some other Thursday 13's..

1. Debora Dennis-Mills

2. Crystal Jordan

3. Bella McFarland

4. Add your link if you want to have some fun! Visit the other 13's and share a post.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

PR ~ Marketing

Several of my crit partners have recently discussed the importance of marketing their work. They are published but through different methods. With the growth of online communities and e-book publishing, marketing has opened up for aspiring authors. With a click you can visit various blogs and leave a post. I've met some incredibly talented and interesting people this way. But it also opens up a new avenue for my books...when I become a published author.

Which brings up various publishing opportunities. Harlequin has a very large and supportive online community where you can chat with published/non published authors, readers and editors. They have sections dedicated to encourage learning more about our craft. They are also gearing up to include e-book sales. They have offered workshops, contests and hints/tips on submissions. It's a win situation for all because they are searching for new talent and will profit from it. Just my opinion though. It's also very hard to get published because of the amount of submissions they receive.

E-book sales have exploded and offer instant gratification for readers without having to trudge around looking for a particular author/title. Several friends have ventured that way and succeeded. It seems that the length of time from sale to release is about the same.

But back to the main focus (not my strength) toward marketing. Through various friends I have widened my circle through blogs. I also post and chat through various online communities and author sites. How strong are those connections? Would you be willing to submit your book to a popular online reviewer and risk a bad review? What about if you were almost guaranteed a bad review ...but... it caused people to buy/read it because it got a bad review?

Marketing can be about how far you are willing to push yourself. A friend recently shared that normally she was a very introverted home-body. She poured her heart and soul into a manuscript and after many rejections and revisions...she got THE CALL! But her sales were slow after the release. A mentor suggested she start building her presence online. She who was technology challenged. Oh, she knew how to log on and check her e-mail. She had even been so adventurous to fumble online and do research for her book. How hard can it be? She learned how to blog and chat. She made a fortune in friends. Interesting, creative people who shared a common dream. She began to feel her confidence grow stronger and so did her sales. She had a friend who helped her set up a website. Her sales continued to climb. She participated in a local writers group and was asked to speak in a conference. She got brave. She approached a bookstore manager and set up a book signing. She/friends/family told everyone they knew and asked them to pass the word. The signing was a success and the manager asked her to come back again. Her sales grew.

But...her kids and hubby got cranky. They grew tired...tired of being hungry and unclothed. She realized although she had expanded her reader base and sales figures, she had left them to fend for themselves. So the family discussed it and she organized certain days and times for "her job" and family time. The husband agreed to step it up a notch and she promised to grit her teeth and not gripe about the method he used to "help". A happy medium. She says they stick to the idea as often as they can. But they still have crazy, chaotic moments.

But when Mom is happy, they'll be happy. When they're happy, Mom is at peace.

What methods are you willing to try? How far can you go? Mentally, physically or financially? (OK I'll stop with the -ly words, geesh) Hmmmmm. I'd probably go as far as I can push the limits, without hurting my family. I have a 13 & 4 yo. A teenager and a toddler. Enough said.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Addicted to Love?

There was a great question being debated this morning on the Today morning show on NBC. Can you become addicted to love? So often as writers targeting romance, we focus on the love aspect in relationships between two main characters. The dynamics of nuclear relationships are often included to cause conflicts or to explain why a character is who they are.

The guy "expert" has a problem calling it a love addiction...he believes people who think they are...don't know what love is. It can be a sick obsession. (addiction to love maybe?) But he feels there is a 'no me' complex...the total focus is on another person. He thinks people should take responsibility for their actions. I agree, but...

The woman "expert" said she wished it were that simple. People with addictions need help overcoming their physical, emotional/mental symptoms. She says they need to be in 12 step programs. Addictions cause physical symptoms and depression could be a major factor. They feel extreme pain ~ nausea and being anxious. It is a real addiction.

The guy says they should recognize when you cross the line. Is it that simple?

I personally can't imagine having to go to a 12 step program to get over someone. I've had rocky relationships and tried to fix what was wrong before I gave up. But I walked away when I felt like the love and respect was gone. I didn't have to have a restraining order to tell me it's over. It's even more scary now because I have a teenager starting to play the game. He is 13 yo and his girlfriend is saying she loves him already! Whoa...slow your roll kids. I don't want to be a granny yet...much less raise another baby!

On a lighter note ~

Who's the Boss?

A young couple on their wedding night were in their honeymoon suite.
As they were undressing for bed, the husband, a big burly man, tossed his trousers to his new bride. He said, "Here, put these on."
She put them on and the waist was twice the size of her body.
"I can't wear your trousers." she said.
"That's right,'' said the husband, "and don't you ever forget it. I'm the man who wears the pants in this family."

With that she flipped him her panties and said, "Try these on."
He tried them on and found he could only get them on as far as his kneecaps.
"Hell," he said. ''I can't get into your panties!"
She replied, "That's right...and that's the way it is going to stay until your attitude changes."

* Sorry...couldn't resist! *