Tuesday, August 28, 2007


The Superromance thread on eHarlequin.com is a favorite stop for me. The girls offer a huge range of topics that sometimes really make me think. Which isn't hard to do considering I'd rather not...it hurts. LOL. jk. Anyhoo...one of the subjects brought up lately was language. I can't quite remember what started the discussion but many chimed in with their opinions. Which was actually nice because some were very forthcoming with admitting to the fact that they have a potty mouth. Unfortunately I had to raise my hand. I really try hard not to because it's hard telling a 4 yo he can't say something at school or in public when he hears it spoken often at home. My 13 yo is at an age where they are trying them out at school...Grrr. Oh well. I can only pray and do my best.

But. I heard bad words growing up and my husband used to be really bad...he heard them quite often in his home growing up...hmmm a trend maybe? I wouldn't dare use them in public but I began to look through my manuscript. They were peppered occasionally throughout and only used in anger. One of the girls online is an author for the Harlequin Blaze line and says she uses them to heighten sexual tension. Hmmm...it's probably not as acceptable in many lines but what do you think? I had a few in my ms but began taking them out with the thought...I don't want to offend anyone. I know I will eventually, somehow ~ someway. I've read them in books and it never bothered me but we're bad about using them. Would they offend you? If used sparingly? What about if they dropped the "F" bomb?

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Technology Rocks

With the recent disaster I had, losing files when my laptop crashed, I learned a valuable lesson. That sucks but sometimes I need a knock on the head to wake me up. Several friends encouraged using flash drives and even my sweet, technology challenged hubby suggested the same because they use them at work. So I did it. I marched my rear end to Staples Office Supply. But I guess our local high school has a school to work program because the only employees were VERY young (or I'm getting VERY old) and were hanging out gossiping in front with a "customer". I tried to get their attention but got frustrated and left. I had no idea which size or brand to buy and hate to return stuff. Off to WalMart. The little guy there in electronics listened patiently (bless his heart) while I explained what I needed and why. He tried to talk me into buying a 4G flash drive at around $80. He didn't work on commission so I thought maybe he might be correct in his thinking...but man. I bought the cheap one because I thought it looked easy to use. And ok...I'm cheap.

I managed to get the stupid thing out of it's tightly wrapped package and only managed to cut myself once. Hey...that's an improvement for me! After I knew for sure my files had been loaded I double checked on the kids pc. Yeah for me. After saving 1/3 of my ms to the drive I've only used 6% of the memory. And it is only 1G for $20.

Technology is incredible. I thought maybe I might use one stick per manuscript and write the title on them with permanent ink. They are so little I can put them in our fireproof/waterproof safe. I also thought about our pictures and stuff we would copy and put on one as well.

Oh well...hope you guys are having a great weekend! We went to see Becoming Jane. It was wonderful if you like that era. I'll try to blog about it tomorrow or Monday because Jane Austin is a favorite for me.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007


Thank you so much guys for all the encouragement and support on my pitch with Harlequin editor Wanda Ottewell. It went really well and she has asked to read more. I'm working on expanding the synopsis a couple of more pages and will submit it along with a partial. I was so nervous and thought my computer would explode from the furious typing and sweat pouring from my hands.

Well...it did. Explode that is. I was so excited after she asked to read more, I went to pick the kiddos up from school and came back to a dead laptop. I wonder if it happened because I cheated with an ice cream celebration. Or maybe it's karma and I've said or done something totally stupid. Which wouldn't surprise me. Really, I've been trying to be a good girl. The tech from Dell said these things happen. I've heard horror stories about writers losing entire manuscripts...I lost several chapters but most importantly...several crits I'd been working on for my group. Sorry girls. As usual I will be slow returning the favors. Hopefully I can get caught up this weekend after my submission packet is off to Canada. Take my advice...that I didn't take myself...and BACK UP those files!!

The new hard drive came in this morning and we got all the software loaded and ready for use. Oh well...no more excuses. Back to work. I really miss you guys. Hope everyone is well and writing strong!

I just want to send a HUGE thank you and mucho appreciation out to my critique partners. You guys are so very talented and supportive. By allowing me to join the group, you've given me so much more than I can ever repay.


Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Back on track...

Okay...got an email and the pitch has been rescheduled for Monday the 20th. Nerves back and working great thank you. But at least we know what to expect and hopefully things will be a little easier next time thanks to the wonderful hosty's handling details.

The boys and I are having a grand time riding go-carts, bumper boats and all types of rides. We love Branson because it is so family oriented and fun activities for all ages. It began kind of rough but smoothed out pretty quick.

Thank you so much for all the well wishes and good vibes. It's a great feeling to finally have something go right and friends rally regardless...good or bad. But I got a funny email from someone and not quite sure how to handle it. I've read several articles about writers envy and even felt a twinge of jealousy when a writer friend is published. But it doesn't mean I would ever wish anything negative their way. My jealousy was geared more toward...I want that for myself. To me it was motivation.

I've read books before where I wondered how they broke through to get published. But someone sent me an email questioning the amount of time and dedication I have in my writing and didn't agree with the methods Harlequin was using to find new authors. I had thought of this person as a friend but realize now maybe she is just an acquaintance. Which she probably thought the same because I can't imagine wishing a friend to bomb at something. She went on to say she should write for HQ because my writing wasn't as seasoned or experienced as hers...does that mean I'm unworthy of my opportunity to pitch for an editor? Has she read my work? If she has and doesn't care for it...does it mean she thinks that I suck as a writer...or does she think she's a better writer? I haven't even had a request for my ms yet...and even if I did...I haven't signed a contract. If they put one in front of me...I will smile and grab a pen baby! Cause I am doing what I love. But right now I just want to put one foot in front of the other (or one word at a time). If nothing comes of this...back to work.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Pitch Rescheduled

Hey guys...due to a miscommunication, the editor had a different date on her books for the pitch so it will be rescheduled. It was nice though to get familiar with the set-up and procedure which will hopefully make it less terrifying next time. I know what to expect now and we have more time to prepare. Yay!

Soooo...I'm going to enjoy the rest of our vacation with the boys and see you guys next Monday!! Have a great week and weekend.


All set up...

We have had the vacation trip from hades. Mom almost got us lost trying to remember the way she went last time with my aunt...scary thought to see the two of them navigating a map and vehicle together...at the same time. We were in the mountains looking a little out of place and people kept staring at us driving through the little towns. I wanted to stop a few times to look at the cool shops but my 13 yo refused to get out. We got to the condo and realized it wasn't free WiFi for my internet connection...$10 a day or $30 for the week. I can handle it for a day cause...I wouldn't miss this chance at the pitch with the editor...duh! No brainer. Then we get checked in and they say..."Uh, sorry no pets." Ok. Let me just turn around and drive 6 hours and take them home. Another $30.00 a day for boarding. Oh...don't forget, we've never put them in a kennel so we haven't had the Bordello shots.

I'm ok. I have a huge day today and I'm not going to let the little problems freak me out. Except for any last minute internet problems...don't jinx myself...I can do this.

My pitch is at 3 pm EST and I will repost with the results. Thank you so much for the well-wishes and good vibes.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Holy Smoke!!

I received an email from the contest hostie at HQ and guys....I'm one of the finalists. I'm shaking so bad it's hard to type. But the biggie...I was able to tell hubby before he went to sleep. I hate that while we're having our days he's sleeping. I was afraid I would have to wait until he got up to tell him how it turned out. I didn't have a whole bunch of confidence but the fact that only 18 others participated and this was my first synopsis...and first manuscript.

My crit group is the best bunch of girls!! Excuse me...women! I love you guys for being so helpful and supportive. I couldn't have done it without yous guys.

Thank you!!!!!

Ok...now I have to edit and bribe someone for crits on 10 chapters by Monday. Ackkkkk! I was afraid something like this would happen.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

What would you do?

Have you ever had your heart touched where you just tear up and feel ready to just bawl. Ya know...the ugly cry? My dh asked me if I was ready to "start" because I was telling him about my day. I guess I'm just being a big old crybaby.

Mom, my 4 yo and I had lunch across the street at our favorite cool 50's style diner and this guy walks in. He's wet with sweat and smelled awful. My first instinct was I had lost my appetite. But guilt hit me almost immediately. That was so rude and hateful. This poor guy walked up, which meant he didn't have a car. I began to sweat just walking my big butt across the street. It was 100 degrees out there...you're gonna sweat. Then he had a cloth bag full of change. I couldn't help but overhear him ask the waitress if she could buy some of his change. She was a little loud about it but she's really a nice girl. He bought something to drink and she didn't bother to count out the change, which I thought was nice of her. I instantly wondered if he'd eaten recently. He looked thin but decently dressed. Would I offend him if I offered him a meal? He'd probably think I was a nut. So I tried to quietly pull the waitress aside and ask her if she'd seen him before. I didn't want to embarrass the guy and asked the waitress to "quietly" ask him if he was hungry. If he told her or acted like he didn't have the money maybe whisper it was on the house. We heard the entire conversation halfway across the room and he nervously looked around. She said the person buying didn't want to be known, he smiled and asked for a burger. She brought him a burger basket full of fries and he ate pretty quickly. I was embarrassed for the guy but hoped maybe it'll give him an urge to do something nice for someone else who might need it more. How often do we get this kind of opportunity? Have we really looked for them?

So this afternoon after working on my chapter...really...one of my favorite HQ Superromance writers Kay Stockham wrote a blog post at Pink Ladies Blog about mean, mean people that had me in tears. Please check it out. So this evening I went back to read the comments and noticed the blog post from Jules Bennett the day before. She was talking about how a customer at her salon touched her heart.

I got to really thinking about my day and reflecting with my best friend...my hubby, and I feel empowered. I've watched the movie Pay It forward (once was enough...can't watch now knowing what's going to happen) and it motivates me to want to be a better person. But if everyone would just stop and take a breath...especially before you try to tear someone down, and chill. Be patient. Be kind instead of hurtful. Say something positive instead of negative. Try to make it matter. The more you do it, the easier it gets. Yeah...drink a coke and the whole world can sing along. Seriously...what can it hurt. There is so much hate, hurt and devastation in this world. If only one person starts it...the domino effect could be outragious.

To top off my night ~ my 13 yo has been in his own little world for the last year...about when puberty kicked in and girls mattered. He's shown semi-interest in my writing and thought it was pretty cool to hear the story of our Chickasaw Ancestory. I told him about the documents signed before the Trail of Tears and how his 5 great grandfather was the last Chief before a government was formed. He seemed really excited and actually said he would enjoy going to the Historical Society in OKC. I thought it was just one of those nights when we clicked and he needed Mom time. A few minutes ago he came into the room at a slide and showed me a storyline he has created and was asking advice on how to outline and where to go after that. He's shown an interest in various artistic areas...he plays the drums (rather well I have to proudly add), he wanted to learn about photography and is showing a huge interest in history. It was really incredible to have that mature connection with him tonight and I realized how much he has really grown, how well-rounded he has become and how his personality has changed.

Friday, August 03, 2007

One of those days...

Have you ever had one of those days where you just wanted to go back to bed? I've had several...in a row. Welllllll ~ let me tell ya a story.

Remember how we just moved in May? Our rent house was flooding and of course we didn't know last year because we'd had droughts and massive wildfires. Every time we saw smoke even remotely close to the house we panicked because we lived in a rural, wooded area outside of town. And I might add - near a few idiots who thought they needed to burn trash on windy days. I must say I was impressed with our local fire department and kinda enjoyed the brush pumper truck and regular visits from the firemen.

The building my mom owns ~ has been sold. We've been on her to sell it since she got sick a couple of years ago but we'd just moved in recently and decided if we sold it, the houses could be built faster with the profits. Okay...I don't think any of us expected for it to happen within 3 weeks. I'm okay.

Which means we also have to finalize floor plans and find contractors...set-up utilities. Of course the fun stuff is picking out new cabinets and fixtures...doors and windows...maybe appliances if I whisper soft enough to my dh. But wow. I'm a little more overwhelmed than I was last time.

I was bone tired tonight. Just wanted to go to bed. One of the dogs peed in the floor. (They know somethings going on.) Youngest was being a monster and was throwing legos and army men everywhere. Oldest is begging to go back to public school and feels the time crunch because it starts on the 16th. Dh is so far away but acting like one of the kids when it comes to getting his way about something. Mom is still a little frail medically to do alot of her own packing...never mind moving. MIL called and I had to listen and defend for an hour. I think I'm still getting the blame for his job choice. But at least I warned her that FIL and girlfriend will be at BIL house this weekend so she won't accidentally visit at the same time. Not quite ready for that face-to-face yet...though it's been 7 years.

So I crawl in bed, and a couple of silly things are stuck in my head...so I needed to purge. Hopefully it'll motivate me to put more of it down on paper. I so need to finish editing this WIP. Hope everyone is happy writing and having a great weekend!!!!