Friday, December 15, 2006


An archer, half-man and half-horse, symbolizes the ninth sign of the zodiac, Sagittarius. According to astrologers, Sagittarians, born between November 22 and December 21, enjoy versatile physical and intellectual powers. Associated with the element of fire, Sagittarians exhibit a burning enthusiasm that helps them reach their potentials...

I've always thought that was sort of a lot to live up to, but... anyway, yeah. I’m old today. ‘Nuff said.

Got one of those “really nice” rejections yesterday for One Night in Boston, a novel that I had been shopping to agents in the fall. I’ve put it away for the time being, seeing that it must need some work as a bunch of agents requested partials but then went no further.

Anyway, this one was from Michelle Wolfson, not a big name agent, so I wasn’t devastated. She did, however, take the time to make some very personal comments and questions about why the first 3 chapters didn’t hook her. I was grateful…though at the same time, one of her comments left me scratching my head. “Cut all scenes that don’t advance the plot” (then she gave an example). But the example she gave leads directly to the reader’s discovery of a really important characteristic of the heroine - that she can’t have children. So wouldn’t that be considered a scene, or knowledge, that advances the plot? Maybe she meant I should get that information across in another way.

Food for thought, at the very least. And she ended by inviting me to send any other works that I had. We’ll see. I have to figure out where I’m heading with my writing in 2007. Just not today.

Happy weekend!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Free Stuff

“Love cannot endure indifference. It needs to be wanted. Like a lamp, it needs to be fed out of the oil of another's heart, or its flame burns low.”
~ by Henry Ward Beecher ~

OK, so check out this Christmas link…it’s adorable (turn the volume on your computer WAYYYYYY up)!

I discovered Vista Print yesterday - quite a handy little site for authors (or anyone) trying to do some self-promotion while keeping one eye on the wallet (which is looking oh so empty these December days). Anyway, they offer free business cards - they print, and you pay the shipping. For 250 cards, it’s not a bad deal. They also have a few other freebies, as well as what looks like some other reasonably priced products and printing options.

Check it out!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

The (Wo)Man Behind the Curtain

"And the Grinch, with his grinch-feet ice-cold in the snow, stood puzzling and puzzling: "How could it be so? "It came without ribbons! It came without tags! It came without packages, boxes or bags!" And he puzzled and puzzed, till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn't thought of before! "Maybe Christmas," he thought, "doesn't come from a store. "Maybe Christmas...perhaps...means a little bit more!"

~Dr. Seuss

Watched “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” last night as I was wrapping gifts. I don’t think it’s possible to get tired of that holiday special. I mean, I’ve watched it about every year since I was a kid, and it still has the power to make me stop what I’m doing and stare at the television screen. And laugh. And sniffle a tear away.

But then the network followed it up with some kind of “how the movie was really made” TV commentary, which I promptly turned off because, really, that’s not where the magic is. I don’t want to know how the drawing went from 2-D, black-and-white to 3-D and animated. I don’t want to see the man behind the curtain. I just want to enjoy.

I guess that where the true talent lies, when it comes to authors as well, huh? The really good ones make us forget we are reading words on a page. They transport us to somewhere else entirely. They make us fall in love with characters and miss them when the story’s done. They rarely remind us of all the sweat that goes into the effort of making that experience so easy for the reader.

Darn it. I knew this stuff wasn’t easy…

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

That D*@!^$ Holiday Newsletter

“Christmas is doing a little something extra for someone.”
~Charles Schulz

Your Christmas is Most Like: A Charlie Brown Christmas

Each year, you really get into the spirit of Christmas.
Which is much more important to you than nifty presents.


Anyone else do a holiday newsletter? I did one for the first time, last year, when I decided I just didn’t have time to write 50+ cards individually (and I guess for me, being a writer at heart means actually writing a few personal sentences on each card).

I love sending holiday cards, I really do. I think it’s mostly because I have so many friends from my college and graduate school days that live all over the place, and it’s one of the only times I get to say hi and find out what they’re up to.

So anyway, last year I did a newsletter…and got such rave reviews from my husband’s side of the family (pretty much all non-writers) that I thought I’d give it a go again in 2006.

Holiday letters are tricky, though, you know. You want to make them newsy and fun, but while you’re sharing all the high points of your year (because who really wants to hear about that mad dash to the Emergency Room with your nephew back in the summer, or the way the hot water heater burst in the middle of the night after you‘d just returned from the plane ride from hell?), you also want to try for a good dollop of humility.

So after much deliberation, I did decide to share my news about Virtual Tales picking up my novel. I figure most of my family and friends will be happy for me, and if any of them grumble behind my back that it's just shameless self-promotion, then too bad!

We’ll see. The newsletter is done, but the picture that’s supposed to go along with it, well…is still waiting to be picked up at Walmart. Hubby has 4 choices and then they MUST be printed and sent out by Friday. That’s my goal, anyway.

Well, maybe by Saturday. Friday’s my birthday, after all, and a girl’s gotta do a little celebrating, right?

Monday, December 11, 2006

Oh, the Holidays...

“People shop for a bathing suit with more care than they do a husband or wife. The rules are the same. Look for something you'll feel comfortable wearing. Allow for room to grow.”
~ Erma Bombeck

Had a lovely time over the weekend celebrating an early Christmas with my side of the family…although we drove into snow and suffered through 20-degree days the whole time we were there. Brrrrrr!!

I liked the post on yesterday’s Romancing the Blog, especially since today I looked at the things looming on my To Do list for the next two weeks and wonder writing is supposed to fit into it all!

Well, I have determined that I will attempt to do small tasks: finish up a book review I’m submitting to a writing ezine, draft one (very rough) chapter of my latest WIP, plan my writing goals for 2007 (nope, haven’t done that yet).

Some coffee to start off my Monday morning, and we’ll go from there…