Feb 27, 2011

Dancing with my WIP! WARNING: prepare to tap a toe!

I'm having a bit of a moment with my WIP ... I'm dancing one way and WIP is hip-hopping another.  Howeva' ... for one brief shinning little scene we danced together and this is what it looked like.
Oh, and that ninja-kick-boxing-triple-flip thingy ... I so can do that! LOL

Feb 25, 2011

Inspiration in my iPod

I live and will probably die with my iPod ear buds plugged into my head.

It's true.
I could be the poster child for iPod addiction. It’s a good thing I have shoulder length hair and partial hearing loss in one ear, otherwise my children would think I wasn’t paying attention to them. *blushes and turns down iPod music*
What the heck does this have to do with inspiration?
Here goes…
When I get the dreaded WB – no, not the predecessor of the CW Network— Writer’s Block, I can always cure it with a dustpan, a playlist and one hour.
My mother came over two weeks ago and looked around my house … it was clean … and then said, “I see you had a fit of WB.”
I swallowed a few teenage based remarks, saved my WIP and said, “Yep, how’d you guess.”
“Your floors are mopped. It must have been a bad one.”
If I didn’t both love the woman and fear her Italian temper, something a snarky retort would have produced, I could have found a few choice words myself. LOL
Instead, it got me thinking.

Am I really that predictable?
My WB (sorry no vampire slayer) could be cured?

I knew I used my iPod to get my day going, but if in the middle of the day, usually after lunch, could I cure the always present, post-carb fit of writer’s block.
The next few days I tested my theory and BAM, not only was the house clean, but I was logging in an average of 2000 after lunch words!
Thank you, Steve Jobs, iPod and the shuffle button on my nano!
Now, I just have to figure out a way to derail my husband’s epiphany that we DON’T need a housekeeper.

Feb 24, 2011

Christopher Walken explains my writing process!

In this week's Throwback Thursday I'm whacking two birds with two tap shoes and some swagger!

I was watching THE DEER HUNTER with my husband and I remembered a video of Christopher Walken sitting in a New York Hotel waiting for his room to be cleaned. I, of course, youtubed the thing and as I relived the Fatboy Slim's WEAPON OF CHOICE, it reminded me of my writing process.

Here goes:
Step1. Some random thought enters my mind. I don't know how, could be a billboard -one this morning sparked an idea-, could be a song, could be a stupid "what if" question.
Step 2. The plotting begins. The delights and decisions of which way the plot should go take place. I literally, "Can go with this" or "I can go with that".
Step 3. The fleshing out of all the ARC's, the secondary characters, the decisions of what should be revealed now vs later.
Step 4. I dive into the writing process. Oh my goodness it truly is like flying sometimes. The floating sensation of your imagination transforming into the written word. The amazing feeling of seeing your characters come to life!
Step 5. Revisions. The first draft flies out to the Beta readers and I tap my toes in anticipation
Step 6. Edits. Again, exhilarating and challenging all wrapped into one seamless fluid movement of my hands across a keyboard like feet across a well waxed floor.
Step 7. Submission. There is a reason why this word is used when you send out your work. You are submitting to the process which leads...
Step 8. I'll share step eight with you after the video: (double click)

Step 8. Waiting for my dance partner ... aka, an agent.

Feb 10, 2011

Throwback Thursday ... and I'm going way, way, way back!!!


Who doesn't still love Rick Springfield?
Don't roll your eyes! Trust me!
General Hospital, lovers... you know you wish they would reprise his role as Dr. Noah Drake! *que squealing girls* If you don't know Dr. Noah Drake, Google it, YouTube it, but good lord ... find it so you can join the rest of us Springfield fans.

So how does Rick Springfield play into Thursday Thowback and my current WIP? I'm channeling my inner bad boy. A bad boy you want to root for, because he's so darn charming! But, NO!  You know you shouldn't, well ... he's a bad boy. This character has to really walk the line of love an hate. My Main Character, Cassie, has to just hate this guy!  I mean loath, fear, despise and overall just wanna spit cheese fries at this guy ... that is until you read book 2! :)
So here he is, my bad boy:
Rick Springfield - JESSIE'S GIRL.

Feb 3, 2011

Book LaMaze...

I have a couple of friends that are pregnant with their first child. When the stick turned pink they didn't believe it, so they tinkled again ... and pink!
Now they're getting ready to enter their second trimester and all of these "what" questions are starting to surface:

What will the first kick feel like?
What will the baby be, boy or girl?
What will my stomach look like after?
What crib do I buy?
What does labor feel like?
Does it hurt?

I'm a mom of three boys, aka the mini-me's, and I remember asking ALL of these questions and more. Certain there was truth out there I consulted Web MD, What to Expect When You're Expecting, the chat boards and on, and on, and on. Everything and everyone provided completely contradicting information from flutters to pops for the first movement and tiny pinches to extreme pain for the first contraction. I wasn't sure what to expect or when to expect it. I was certain that I would miss the slow trickle and prayed for the major gush of water breaking. If I was drenched, then SOMEBODY would know what to do, because I sure as hell didn't!
When mini-me #1 was born, there was no trickle, there was no gush. The night before I was sick to my stomach, anxious, uncomfortable, crampy and then Crampy and then HOLY COW, OUCH ... CRAMPY!!!!
I guessed, maybe, it was time to go to the hospital?

I started feeling the same way about a year ago.
I wasn't pregnant, I was quitting my job to BE a writer.
Since I was a little girl, I have loved telling stories.
After thirty-something years of loving something my darling husband and I sat down and figured out it was now or never.

Time to stop talking and start typing.
I tinkled on the writer stick and it turned pink!
I had a story in my head that I was dying to share and I wanted to do it right.
I read and read and read.
I took classes and read.
I learned how to plot from the best! (thank you CJ Redwine)
I typed like a fiend.
I learned how to write a query letter! (again, thank you CJ)
I found friends and networked and found friends that became critique partners
I pushed through hard parts and cried occasionally when I knew the words S-uuuuu-cked.
I learned how to write a synopsis! (I think you know what goes here.)
Finally, I sent my work off to my critique partners.
And felt my first kick!

I wasn’t delusional to the think that my first draft would be BRILLIANT, but I also didn’t expect to see plot holes the size of the Grand Canyon.

One more thing -- and I’m really, really working on it – but I suck at punctuation.
I promise … I make daily visits to Grammar Girl.
And then, I bang my head against a wall while screaming, “WHY DIDN’T YOU PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR ENGLISH TEACHERS!!!!!”

The critiques were exactly what I needed, asked for and dreaded all at the same time. They were my contractions. I knew I couldn’t wait for the day they came. I know I need them to have a beautiful, bouncing, baby book.
 I just wished there was an epidural I could ask for right about now, but I guess you can’t ask for that until you’re in Active Book Labor; I’m told there are heaps, and mountains and truck loads of chocolate involved. :-D
I’m also sure, there are published authors out there saying, “If you think this is painful --you who are only in your third book trimester-- just wait till you get to the agent search, the publishing edits and then the actual release.” Then they go and snicker with their Snickers as they edit books 2, 3, 4 or MORE!  So jealous ... of both their books and their epidural of Snickers. ;-D

So here's to one day reaching Active Book Labor!
Whew, a girl can dream ... right?

Feb 1, 2011

What do you do in the dark?

Dirty! You all have dirty minds! It's okay ... so do I!

Besides sleeping and ... well, ugh ...

So, I'm a Young Adult writer, let me keep this at least PG-13 with hints of R.

What do you do in the dark?

If it's 8:00 P.M. I'm tucking in my three mini-me's. The "tucking in" consists of me on one of three beds reading something extrodianary. If they're lucky, I read them such awesomeness like Becca Fitzpatrick's CRESCENDO. We have huge Patch fans in the mini-me's. Another favorite is Elizabeth Isaac's THE LIGHT of ASTERIA.  If it's been a very, how do I say this?, trying night, my darling husband joins the three mini-me's and Bree Despain's THE DARK DIVINE OR THE LOST SAINT is re-read. My darling really has a thing for Grace. I actually had to bribe my husband with homemade cookies to get my copy of THE LOST SAINT back. Okay, the cookies weren't home made, but I did break them along the perforated edges and arrange them ever so neatly on the cookie tray.

Some nights, when the kids need to go to sleep quickly, I read them my current work in progress. They seem to fall asleep quickly when I'm doing read backs. I think its the melodic tone of my voice. Or maybe the pause, back space and re-types. Yes! I live in a land of delusion and dreams. LOL

Tonight, all of you are in the dark with me.

Hey, keep your hands in your lap, please!

Blogs and Tweets.

Facebook posts and mingling with my critique partners, aka the fairy godmothers.

All of these things take place in the dark.

By 9:30 P.M. I shuffle down the hall and climb into my bed and  wait for one, if not all, of the mini-me's to join us or the alarm to cue a heart attack at 4:30 in the morning. Yes, I said 4:30 in the morning.

So what do you do in the dark?
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