Wednesday, December 22, 2010

12 mighty orphans

Even If you think you don't like football, You WILL Now!
This book tells the true story of the Fort Worth Masonic Home boys and the winning spirit of a bunch of kids who were too poor to afford even a ball to start with.  In the dusty streets of depression era  Fort Worth, Texas a bespeckled quiet man takes a position at an orphanage.  The boys were smaller than most of the opponents.  The uniforms they wore were mismatched but the spirit they brought to the game was unmatched.  They had no chance of winning in a place where football was a religion, but win they did.  This is the true account of what took place.  Jim Dent has worked his magic and made this tale live. 
*********    (9)

Monday, December 6, 2010


Finn doesn't belong in prison, at least he thinks he doesn't.  The prison lives.  The warden's daughter is unaware of life within, she knows a world of stiff gowns and an unhappy future, to be married of to someone she hates. 
This novel is written in a clipped dark voice that adds tension to every page.  My daughter, its target audience, is obsessively in adoration of this wild world.  This is her new favorite author and she can't say enough to praise this book.  If you want a fun read full of intrigue and hair raising, thought provoking characters, this book is for you.  I highly recommend it to anyone looking for different.  There are no cookie cutter characters here and enough questions and crazy twists to keep you turning the pages.  I also can't wait to pick up Corbinic, another book from this fine author, which is, of course, a grail story told in a modern setting. 
On a scale of 1 - 10 buys....I set this book at 8.5  ********%

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Baking Basics and Beyond, Learn These Simple Techniques and Bake Like a Pro

Baking Basics and Beyond, Learn These Simple Techniques and Bake Like a Pro: "In October 2007, Baking Basics and Beyond won the “Baking Cookbook Award,” given by the Cordon d’ Or-Gold Ribbon International Annual Cookbooks and Culinary Arts 2007 Awards Program. The Awards Program is open to Culinary Professionals worldwide. It is listed in Writers Market annual publications, from Australia and New Zealand to the European Continent, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Canada and the United States."

Honestly I bake alot, but this book is on my Gift list for many.  Pat explains things in a way that seems logical to anyone, even if they have never THOUGHT they could bake.  The recipes work and are not full of items that you must live in Japan to obtain.  It is very basic, simple and satisfying.  Buy this book......cause in the spring she is going to have a new book.....Scandinavian Baking..............WOW I just can't wait!
I am going to make a chipped beef dip on her web blog....check her out.....What a great no brainer gift for the holidays for anyone from a new bride to a niece or nephew you don't know what to get!  Everyone wants to bake for the holidays....its perfect!         (remember i am the hate to shop girl.....this rocks)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

the moment....

I am curious about people.  I love to lurk among authors and agents blogs.  I love to analyse the life changing moments of people, especially those who are unaware of those moments.  I am looking at things they may not know, yet i can single them out and say, there it is.

For some authors, that moment is rejection.  I may be at odds with this, but I feel sad when I see people fall over something they have randomly assigned themselves as a measure of failure.  I see on many blogs a count.  It is interesting, but means nothing, unless they allow it to swallow them.  Some events are not controllable.  Death and illness strike without choice, but other things are gathered by the victim.  Rejection letters are one of those things that I don't care about.

I have lurked for some time on a few peoples blog.  I am just learning to blog myself, so had little to give them back, until now.  One story that I find sweetly disarming is that of a young writer who is now on the bestseller legend list.  She was so discouraged from time to time.  Yet the moment that her life changed was almost without fanfare.  She had a friend who kindly put a copy of her book on the desk of a huge agent.  Her comment was.. Whatever.  She commented on her dozens of rejections at length, but this was almost a non-event to her mind.  That moment would change everything, but she didn't expect it, so she didn't have the trauma of imagined loss.  (congrats again on the birth of Gwen if you should ever wander over here)

I find her moment so inspiring.  Yes, she ended up noticed because she had a friend.  She would have ended up noticed anyway.  She gave her very best and over 100 times it was not good enough.  She was not insane with self defeat, yet it did bother her.  Her moment had already been put in motion, yet she allowed herself the trauma of being told no deal.  It was not a bad thing that she did that.  It made her tougher.  It made her better.

Another story is of an agent who has to hand carry (in high heels rubbing blisters) a novel she liked to publishers for her very first sale.  She had been told no, but believed.  It was the wrong sort of book. It was trash. It was beneath dignity.

It  sold.  It made lots of money.  Her genius was to become legend.  I think of the scared person who probably doesn't tell the whole story.  As I watch her walk the New York streets that day in my mind, I see the strength it took to stomp on those tears and blisters.  I see someone who lasted just long enough to make that successful call. That is the moment, not the yes.  The moment of inside glory, that changed it all, is what I like.

I guess I don't do it right.  Someday, someone may ask me MY number.  I will have to tell the truth.  I don't know.  I don't keep a scrapbook of my blisters.  I read them, and discard them.  I know some have been about my errors.  Some of them have been timing, or just bad guesses.  I don't need them.  Accept, then move on.  Do it again.  Accept and move on until Legend or Death.  Don't count the blisters.  Count the moments that count.

Squirt the bird....

I am living with a feathered demon named Ember.  He is in his twenties and I just squirted him with a water bottle.  He is an African Grey Parrot and if you have never lived with one, then you have no concept of what hell sounds like.  When they don't get exactly what they desire with great urgency, they make a certain noise.  It is called the Grey Growl, and it follows the path from your ears to a place of pain on your spine and below.  I have no description for this delightful music other than to mention that it flows about my house frequently.  He is a great bird and a most entertaining little fellow, until his demands remain ignored.

I wish I could get people to cater to me upon threat of a simple noise.  I know I have been bested by a little featherbrain.  He wins.  He always wins.  He is my teacher.  Never give up.  Hide from the squirt bottle, but keep up the goal of reaching your desire, no matter who wished you would do something else.

On a sad note, they killed demon Crowley on Supernatural last night.  The angel burned his bones.  The show is over.  I only keep TV from this day forward in the hopes he can pop back into existence as easily as the human characters do.  I loved that snarky, pompous little fellow as much as my own personal king of hell.  Charm is an underrated source of power. 

Friday, December 3, 2010

chapter 11

Book 3, called INCINERATE for the moment.  11 Chapters since Saturday.

     My characters are off again messing up all my plans, much like real life.   I have no idea what they are up to now.  We just had a revelation about a possible reason why Natalie has her trouble with wishes.  It was foreshadowed in the first book with a mystery childhood illness that leaves her a year older than her classmates, something I have not been happy about until now.  Book two had solved the issue of her two boyfriends so perfectly, and she did the unexpected.  Book three is flying, but it would be nice if they gave me a flight plan.

    Oh well, I learned in the first 20 or so books I tried to write, that if I write, the plot falls apart from force of my demands.  I have learned to sit back and watch, typing as fast as I can and let them live, rather than suffer over character development and conflict for conflicts sake.  My innocent little teen has changed all on her own and is a very different person from the timid watcher of the first book.  She told me yesterday a term I had never heard.  She laughed and ask for a SHEWHO.   That's what i said.  A what?
Natalie gets described as She who has .....blah blah blah.  She liked what Sauriel had teased her about to make her feel better and ask if that could be one of her Shewhos.
She who scares the toenails off Lucifer, is now on her list.

     I know what she is, Seth whispered it to me.  He didn't want Set or even Malcolm to know.  Natalie won't take this well and I am not looking forward to her finding out.  Seth is being a pill in general, constantly depressing or judgemental.  He's not speaking right now, which I hate beings he's my favorite character.  His brother Set shed some light on all that is really bothering him, so I am trying to let him be, to deal with it all in his own time.  Natalie always blames herself for him being upset.  I hope Greylyn can fix Seth soon.  I miss him.

     I need to send out query letters, yes they are already written to my two first picks, but its hard to leave the story or it lurches forward and I have to catch up.  How exactly do yo get writers block?  Do your characters sit in pause mode for a bit?  I could use a couple days of it.  It would help if i could type on a laptop, that way I could move around from my cave dwelling a bit.  For me, I am sitting with the family, someone is speaking and I start getting that zoned out look.  Zombie mother returns....and another chapter pops.  Thank you family, for feeding me sometimes.

Ignite, Inferno now Incinerate.....grrr.  don't like kitchy titles......thank goodness Seth told me the next one Will not be an I word.  Told them if they say inflame or inblaze I was going to have an (I)mbolism and they could find a new typer.  See, conflict with characters....hehehe....what do you mean it's supposed to be On the page!!!
Natalie has learned to float the gears on her GTO!  Jimmy taught her.  A cheerleader with a haunted car.  I thought Jimmy would be gone by now, but he is happy and still hauntingly sweet.  The car will never be the same if he is not in the back seat, singing off key, and calming little miss "no fear" down from her three boyfriend conflict.  I tried to get her to date a human for once, but she told me to mind my own business and type.  I really thought she should at least try a real boy.  So much for my opinion. Yes Malcolm, I know your on the internet...I am heading back to my cave now.....

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Well, I am still here so i might as well....

   Talk to myself for a while longer.  Yes Ma'am I would like to share funny stories with the class.  Perhaps you would like to refill your coffee?

    I wanted to write in 8th grade.  In seventh grade I had Steve Smallwood for English.  He taught us about theater, because he was the one stuck with my classes English overflow students.  What I learned there was much more valuable in life than a regular English teacher would have taught.  My mother had insisted I speak in complete sentences and dissecting them to find out why they were complete was of no interest to me.  I had skittered by without anyone who felt I needed to evaluate a gerund crossing my path. 
In 8th grade two things happened.  First I had the good luck to be assigned a quirky (even for the seventies) reading teacher named Mrs. Duncan.  She wore butterflies on her shoulder and some people said she was a Kook.  I was not a good reader.  She taught her off beat method of reading that was not considered correct at that time.  She taught us to remember each word as a picture and kick up the speed.  I was hooked.  I memorized the dictionary. 
     Also, My all time favorite English teacher, Cindy Tomlinson, insisted that we read Flowers for Algernon and Shakespeare and (Ugggh!) Write?  She was the first person who told me I should.  She ripped apart my words with her red pen, yet made me want to try again.
     I began to write in secret.  I was into Soap opera's that year, All My Children specifically.  I named characters after friends.  It was full of back stabbing. pregnancy scares, odd parental revelations and basically exactly the things I saw on TV.  It was horrible, thoughtless, twisted and my first try.
     My mother cleaned my room.  She thought it was a diary.  No amount of reason, logic or laughing would convince her that I and every friend in our zip code were not Monsters.
She bought a Stephen King book called The Stand.  I read it.  It was the first adult novel I ever read.  I didn't read another kids book until I read them to my own.  She bought a gift for her sister.  It was titled "Interview with a vampire".  I read it in one day.  She was furious that I had read it because she could not send her sister a used gift.  To this day, I don't understand her secret power to know if i have snuck around and read her "gift" books.....but she hides them better these days.
    I would like to get a book published I can prove to my mother it was a Soap Opera and I am a writer.
Even if i never get an agent to give me the time of day.  I wrote IGNITE for the two most important readers in the universe.  Ashlynn and Greylyn adore it.  It is successful.  That is all I need.  If it is meant to be published, it will be.  If not it is a two reader blockbuster.
I am afraid of no editor, I survive Greylyn.
Mom, you need to have a World War One German war ship in your book.
Honey the book is set in present day, in the middle of the country.  Seth and Natalie are not near an ocean.
I know, but it still needs to be there.
The Markgraf appeared with Herr Schumann, It's captain.
You also need an angel.  Ok....see what I can do.
I want to be in the book too.   Yes, Grey.
I will need some cool weapons.    Greylyn....your character is 11.
When you get to that part, let me know and I will tell you the weapons I like best.  Yes dear.
Ok Mom, what about the Cheerleader?  My cheerleader asks.  She's there Ash.
And I like Seth, but he needs to be a little monster too I like bad boys.....and it really can't be a Great book without at least one vampire.   Sigh...Ok.....vampire.

Seriously ....editor causing tears.....bring it on Bwwwaaa haahahaa.

I have no qualifications to write.  I am interested in everything and spent about 9 years in College with about 9 majors ....til they kicked me out with a Business degree.  Once I decided to be a writer, I have really not had a job since.  I have paycheck activities sometimes but I am a writer whether i make a living at it or not. I drove a truck, sucking the life out of every location i landed in.  I have loved and lost love.  I have learned that i am a tough guy even with a gun pointed at me. (I fall apart later....but I am a cool cucumber for the party)  I know love does not stop if it's true, even for death.  That's all I have to bring to the table.

Mom, My friends want to read the book, you need to get it published.    Sigh....yes dear.

So what does all this have to do with anything?  Where is the blue apple in this?

I write books.  They now have endings.  I never plot.  I never plan.  The characters do all the work.  The 25 novels written into corners, written to death and written stupid are no longer my best effort.  Seth, Natalie, and Malcolm Live, that was the important part.  The important part is knowing what the Important part is. That is the blue apple.

Today I shop.......

     Some things are just wrong......  For me shopping is just wrong.  I love pink, but classic cars should not come in that color.  If you want to wander about for six hours and insist on dragging me along, please be advised that I will sit in the man chair and hold the purses.  If you want someone who hobby shops, take Thumper. (my husband)  He likes to search for things we don't need. I like to walk, don't get me wrong, but i prefer to do it at a much faster pace than mall speed.  I like auctions, junk stores, book stores and hardware stores.......Big Box Marts, cookie cutter chains and anything that sells breakable knicky knaks....pass.  My Mom is here, so we are off to shop.  I only have to do this about twice a year, so i will survive.....I do need paper, envelopes, highlighter pens,  and a couple cases of Excedrin MYaGrain Pills....otherwise known as HowLynn vitamins.
     Beings I have a goal in mind (query letters and ripping  40 pages out of IGNITE) I am almost zen in my willingness to flash my special ID badge so they will allow me the privy-ledge of browsing the isles of Riches.  I shall smile and nod humming in my head "In camelot"  
     Has anyone noticed that on Supernatural...Sam's soul is gone?  Just sittin here in Carthage Missouri.....getting ready to go

Pink Mustangs...............they do exist.     Have a magical day!!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Blue Apples....

    I love blue apples.  Crisp, juicy snap as you bite into the world of what can be.  Blue apples represent my world.  Never think all is exactly what you see.  Never believe there is not more than you can understand.  Never forget that a blue apple may shock your taste buds, allowing you to change and grow.
    My son got in trouble at school years ago.  He painted a blue apple and the teacher told him there was no such thing.  She was angered that he had not taken the assignment at face value.  He should have painted one that looked like the other children's apples.  I smiled and told him his teacher did not see well.  Some things were bigger than box dwellers could understand.  I hung the blue apple on the wall and sent a note to her explaining that in our family, blue apples are very real.
   I had never told him of my blue apples before.  He knew them anyway.  He painted them for me without needing them explained.  That Is a blue apple.

Do I really need more to do?

This is my first Blog.  I have no idea why I need one, but I don't need a phone either as far as I am concerned.  I now have both.  I sometimes wonder why people confess to random strangers, things they won't tell friends and family.  This feels much like that.  Nobody cares what I have to say because I am the longest winded typer in the universe.  I am a writer.  LOL, no I am not going to be famous.  Fame would take away from suffering, or cause more, but writers must suffer. 

I should be cleaning house.  My dear Mother will soon be here, and I am sitting here learning to blog instead of attending to her comfort.  I am a horrible child of 4t-ish.  Shhhhh. I am pretending, and if I do it too loud, my son will give me an exact figure.  He is a math whiz.  Lets just say I am older than rocks.....which is older than dirt.  Lava would be my age.

So my house will be trashed for Thanksgiving.  My son is not a whiz at cleaning, the opposite actually.  Now my company is here. Have a nice day.......