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Sunday, July 31, 2011

Terror Stricken

Okay… so by now, I'm thinking you guys are aware of my Goddamn Deadline to have Pendomus ready for queryable status come Sept 3rd. Right? Right. *shifts eyes back and forth*

I've been making sooper-cool progress via way of my >>MINI Goddamn Deadlines<< and I'm actually ahead of schedule. As of today, I am done with chapters 1-19 (of 32, I THINK). If I can continue along this trend, I should be done by mid-August. Well, assuming the ending UNDO doesn't kill me, first. Could happen.

If all that wasn't enough to leave me terror stricken… there's this new thing

Come the end of September, some of my CRITS gals are going to this conference thing called Moonlight & Magnolias down in Georgia. I absolutely thought nothing of it at first.

Good luck, have fun ladies. See ya when you get back. *waves*

It's a romance writer thing and I write science fiction. Sure, Pendomus has romantical-type elements, too…


Now, the CRIT gals have asked me to take a closer look at it.

Beyond the high comedy that would ensue upon meeting these ladies in person; it turns out some great agents, editors and speakers will be there.

Oh, gawd. 

Don't know why, but it scares the absolute bejeezus out of me.

Maybe it's where I am in my process? My inner perfectionist demon hasn't been satiated yet, so the idea of meeting agents in person is crazy-daunting. Maybe it's because I've never been to something like this before? Maybe it's just because I'm a big pansy. Yeah, that's probably it.

Then another part, the schizophrenic voice in the back of my head, tells me this is perfect timing. I'm going to be querying anyway. This could be an extension of it…

Plus, after years of travel drought, I've had the fortuitous timing of having gone to both Arizona and Colorado. Each one offering experiences I would need to attempt such a voyage on my own. *gulp*

Terror is a part of any great adventure, right? Things worth having don't come without a little fear…

So, here's where I am: 

What are your thoughts?

Should I stay home where things are safe and cozy?


Should I go and [quite probably] make a fool of myself being the sci-fi freak at a romance gathering? 

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Obnoxious Barenaked Ladies and Fancy Virgo Signs

As usual, the inspirational Lyn Midnight of Lyn Midnight Against the Odds has prodded me to blog.

It started as: "Hey, what's the best key word/phrase-a-ma-doodad people have used to find your blog?"

When I told her mine were lame, she didn't believe me.

Seriously, the best one I got is naked ladies and that's saying' something. *raises a sardonic eyebrow*

So, since they suck so bad they could turn into a super massive black hole, I've decided to try a different spin on her idea... Mwah!

Take a gander at the list-o-suckage: (Well, minus Joss Whedon... since he's freakin' awesome.)

joss whedon
barenaked ladies
fancy virgo signs
barenaked ladies cover
get to the finish line
naked ladies
inner stillness bestowal
josh whedon
loud wine label
quit before the finish line
want to know your soul

As you can see... I either need to become more risqué on my blog or something... 'cause these are BORING! HA!

So, it is in the frame of being creative with this lame-o words, that I am going to attempt to put them all together to make one kick ass paragraph. Though, I reserve the right to... um... tell you to ignore it all together and mind wipe you if I fail. Sound good?

Mmmmkay. Let's get started. :D

I was as obnoxious as I've ever been... but let's be honest, I don't want to know your soul. It's like a loud wine label, screaming for inner stillness bestowal, for godsake. Besides, I had to get to the finish line. I knew Joss Whedon was going to sing a Barenaked Ladies Cover and I had fancy virgo signs to get his attention. What? Don't judge. I could't scrounge up any real naked ladies. Not on this short notice. But that got blown out of the water. Next thing I knew, Ed from the real Barenaked Ladies caught wind of the event. He didn't like Dollhouse, so only some dude named Josh Whedon was allowed on stage. I didn't know what kind of fuckery this was, but I didn't like it. I mean, who names their kid Josh when it could be Joss? Nope, couldn't be trusted. Though I told myself I wouldn't do it, I quit before the finish line. TrueBlood was on anyway and that Alexander Skarsgård is hot. 

Vampirey barenaked goodness. Though, not at all a lady. 

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Ego Madness

You only need the courage to look. 
In a writer's world, our novels are like our babies... We love them dearly and we love them just as they are; warts and all. 

I've had the privilege of working with an amazingly diverse group of ladies in the critique process of PENDOMUS. 

To me, their differing perspectives have been invaluable. They offer insights into my novel that I am either not equipped for seeing or the ones I simply have blinders for. I know what I'm good at and what I'm... well, not.

I have no shame in that. 

Writing, to me, is a learning process. If you go in thinking your novel is the best thing EVAAARRR and it's never fallen upon another set of eyes, you are probably delusional. Even JK Rowling has done revisons.

My first experience with having PENDOMUS critiqued (I mean really critiqued) came from my Beta-Reader-Extraordinaire. I'll admit it, when I got her first detailed email about the things that weren't working, it stung a little. (I fancy myself Wonder Woman, remember?) 

Then I took a moment... took a step back and you know what? I'll be damned if she wasn't right!

From that moment on, I was able to detach myself from the critique and give in to the critical thinking process that goes along with polishing a novel. Sometimes critiques are spot on. Sometimes they aren't. But I feel that it's our obligation to really consider the feedback of others. Sometimes, our initial reactions are not the most logical ones. You know what I'm saying?

When something isn't working in a novel I'm critiquing, I'm honest. Generally speaking, I don't hold back because I feel it's a waste of my time and theirs if I don't give it my all. I also have the experience behind me with Beta-Reader-Extraordinaire and I know just how important that critical insight can be.

The thing I find fascinating about working with other authors, is the apologetic behavior... I even do it. If the person takes the advice poorly (and I'm not just talking about my group, here), I feel bad. A part of me wants to back peddle. 

But is that for the best? 

If my honest opinion wasn't what they wanted to hear, does that mean it was wrong? Or does it mean it's another perspective to consider? 

Does it mean it's the only right one? Absolutely not. 

What about you guys? 

When you've had your work critiqued, what kind of feedback do you look for? How do you respond to positive and negative feedback? Can you detach from the critique? Or is it difficult for you?

When you work with others, are you honest? Or do you gloss your opinion over?

I'm curious...

Monday, July 18, 2011

Pendomus' Undo Button

Undo the Redo
Bloody hell. I believe there is a *headdesk* in my future.

So, here's the latest...

I had a fun and productive lunch with Beta-reader-extraordinaire on Friday. However, it opened my eyes to a dilemma with the latest version of Pendomus.

Turns out, the ending of the first (uber first) worked better.


Why... oh, why....?

I think I had a momentary lapse of reason. Maybe it was one too many bumps on the noggin'. I don't know.

Now I gotta go and change it back. *gah*

Back in happy land... as far as edits go... things are AWESOME!

I've gone through the first ten chapters. (Hey, man, I'm 2 ahead of the game for my goddamn deadline!)
That's right, I've had my super editor hat on.

In addition to Beta-reader-extraordinare's advice, I've been following the words and experience of my awesome CRITS gals, Kara, Gina and Kendall. There are scenes that are getting chopped and put in the "deleted scenes" abyss. It's all good. The flow works better and I totally dig it. It's better write too much than not enough, right? ;)

Anyway... that's my update.

Making progress. Made a mess. Scrambling for the undo button.

I'll get there.

I hope.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Cursed Complacency

Those of you who follow my blog, know that I adore Jillian Michaels. Her philosophy on life is so in sync with mine that I wish we were friends in real life.

That better be organic veggies on your cardboard pizza
That said, I've fallen into complacency.

Health complacency, that is.

When I've had pizza for the fifth day in a row and I can't remember the last time I ate an actual vegetable... Well, we have a problem.

And I doubt I'm alone in this.

My life gets hectic. And so does yours.

There are never enough hours in the day. Ever. When I go into crazy writer mode, the first thing to suffer is my health. Which is stupid. It's the catalyst for my writing in the first place.

I feel very strongly that when our health is strong... when we eat right, exercise regularly (and vigorously), our minds flourish. We are more creative, more in tune. We all around function better. So why, then, is it such a pain in my ass?

Probably because it takes time. In order to eat right, you have to meal plan. There are recipes involved, the buying of actual food... then there's the prep and following said recipe; which involves work. Chopping, slicing, mixing and dashing (yes, dashing!). And it all takes time away from what I want to be doing------> (WRITING) To add insult to injury, there's the "I just made a meal for four, but produced enough dishes for twelve, cleanup." Gah!


The thing is, I know I have to get back on track. Even my workouts have slipped to three days a week and that makes me cranky. (Ask my kids.)

For all the sitting I do, I have to push myself in my workouts. Call me a glutton for punishment, but if I'm not doing mountain climbers and crow pushups, I don't feel like I've done my job properly.

So, here's where you come in...

I need to get myself back on track.

You probably do, too. Am I right?

Despite the obnoxious time it takes to meal plan (at least it's not folding laundry! YUCK!), I want to get that beast under control. I also want to recommit to my five days a week ass kickers. Uh, I mean workouts.

Who's with me? 

We can skip gleefully into a healthy future together. Or something like that.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Temporarily Vacated

This is just a quick reminder that I'll be lurking over at TS Welti's blog.

Come on over to check out her interview and say HI!

It goes live around 10am Pacific time! :D

Feel free to go over there and ask me questions about Pendomus.

I'll answer! (As best I can!) 

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

A Proclamation of Appreciation

So, this is a kick ass week for me.

Amazing author and friend, TS Welti will be posting a five question interview of me on her blog tomorrow (July 13th). I blabber about writing, with the focus on The Pendomus Chronicles. From what I gather, the interview should go live around 10am PDT. By the way-- her interview will also include an excerpt. ;)

How super cool is that? 

The point of this blog is two-fold. 


*jumps up and down like a kid*

Second: I want to thank Tania for her kindness and send a special shout out to her. 

So, it is in that spirit, that I want to mention: 

TS Welti has a fabulous new book that just came out, The Fifth Specter

Here's the excerpt:
Thirteen-year-old Parker Chance has suffered from hallucinations for most of his life. He has been ridiculed and expelled from public school on account of these hallucinations. When his adoptive father destroys a picture of his birth mother, Parker decides to run away from home. He soon finds himself whisked away to a village of superhumans where he discovers he is one of them. Parker’s new power puts him at the center of a deadly mystery and he soon proves he is much too curious for his own good. The Fifth Specter is a funny and enchanting fantasy that will stay with the reader long after the final page is turned.

Sounds awesome, right? 

I'm awaiting my hard copy as I type and look forward to reading this to my book obsessed son. (I don't know where he gets it. It's weird.)

(The Fifth Specter can be acquired in e-book form as well. FYI!) is also kind enough to have a blurb about the fabulous Ms. Welti:

About the Author

Ms. Welti
T.S. Welti is a single mother living in Southern California. She writes books for kids and teens for a living and bakes in her spare time. In 2005, she began writing THE FIFTH SPECTER while sitting in the shade of a weeping willow on a sweltering summer day. Five years later, she lost her job and the book was still not finished. After many sleepless nights spent slaving away at her keyboard, she was finally able to finish THE FIFTH SPECTER and has never looked back. You can find out more about T.S. Welti and the Parker Chance Series on her website at

The writing/reading community is one of vast support. I'd love it if you would swing by her blog tomorrow to check out my interview... and of course, frequent her blog in the future!

One last thing: For the love-- if you aren't following her on Twitter-- be sure to do so.

You guys ROCK! Thank you! :D

Monday, July 11, 2011

Can horoscopes be wrong?

Amazing Deviant Art

You are a pain in the ass. 
(It was at this point, in my lack of coffee, I did a double take.)

You regulate your breathing and color-coordinate the clothes in your closet. No Virgo in history has ever belched. (HA!) Virgos clean every square inch of everything they own twice daily with a toothbrush. Everything has its place, and yours is on the floor scrubbing with a magnifying glass, checking for germs. Obsessive-compulsive disorder? A nice euphemism for the word "Virgo". 
(Hey! I have no idea what they're... oh, wait. Yeah, okay. Maybe.)

Virgos use pointers and elaborate charts to describe philosophical concepts. You commit a lot of drive-by shootings. When you are questioned, you tell the police that it was because "the bastard had a filthy car". The police usually let you go because they are Virgos too. (ROTFL!)

It is easy to freak out a Virgo. Tell them they have something between their teeth. Then watch them scrub frantically at the imaginary thing. Virgos are a hell of a lot of fun for assholes like us. Hell for a Virgo is being locked up in an elevator for eternity with a naked Aquarius (Oh, GOD! MY husband is Aquarius!?). That is because in hell, Aquarians are allowed to bring beer, which they leave all over the floor (That's fact. I can attest). Virgos, however, have to surrender their brooms and squeegees to God. (Nooooooo!)

Virgos don't see the world in shades of black and white. They see it in shades of clean and dirty. Cat hair makes Virgos foam at the mouth. Virgos are cool because they will do your laundry for you. They'll separate everything by color and fabric until it consists of fourteen loads of three things apiece. Then they will put them in the washer in alphabetical order by name of manufacturer. (I have sooooo.... NOT done this. *shifts eyes back and forth*)

Virgos also have a hard time coping when they find out there's something under the fridge. But it's usually just a depressed Taurus. Virgos have read enough Hints from Heloise to know that the depressed Taurus can be coaxed out from under the fridge with a banana wine cooler. (Really? Mental note: Get Heloise book.)


Hmph. What am I to do with all this new found, truthful disheartening information?

Eh, I'll just fill you in on my progress. Then I need to go check my teeth.

Without further adieu... the first "official" week of mini-goddamn-deadlines is over and I'm heading face first into week 2.

I'm happy to say that the edits for the first four chapters are complete! 

Though, knowing my obnoxious, overly critical, want-to-make-it-perfect self (see above)... I'll probably end up going back into those first four again.

At some point.

Not now.

(HEY! They're the most important, right? They must be color coordinated and oh... Uh, nevermind.)

Whoa. Did something just move under my fridge?


Thursday, July 7, 2011

Generation Gap

Hey all you bloggery-reader-folken! 


I was poked by Lyn Midnight yesterday (come to think of it, she did it again today) to get my ass in gear and write another blog. It's been... like... a week. Or something. *gasp*


People who follow my blog already know I'm random. I blog when the fancy hits me. I don't have a schedule I adhere to. (Mostly, so no flogging occurs). Plus, I don't want to be boring.

But a random thought did occur to me today.

Well, okay. Maybe not so much random as it's been bugging me for days and I finally want to discuss it. ;)

Not so random thought ----> GENERATION GAPS

My Mom and I weren't seeing eye to eye for the past month. No worries. Things have been straightened out. Words exchanged. Hugs given. It's all good now. (I hope!)

Here's the thing; I love her dearly and I could not live the life I do without her amazing help. She watches my kids three days a week so I have time to work on web banner ads (for my other life... I mean, job) and so I can write.


Care for some quiche?
She and I have a different perception of what it means to be a mom.

Sometimes, I think her view is something more akin to ---------> 

Which I know is ridiculous. I grew up with her. She's an artist with a myriad of paintings under her belt. She's accomplished in her own right. And to be honest, between you and me... she doesn't cook. ;)*

(Gods, she gonna kill me... LOL!)
What the hell do you wanna eat?

<---------------My idea of being a parent is more akin to...

I like my space. I like my kids to have independence. They have their own interests, as I have mine. Sometimes they collide and that's freakin' awesome. I'm not gonna hover. But I'm not gonna let them blow up the house, either.
(Thanks, MythBusters!)

While they are clearly a substantial aspect in my life, I don't define myself as only a mom. Of course, my kids are important. OF COURSE I would do anything within my grasp to help them.

But one thing I will NOT do, is give up my sense of self for them.

Carl Jung once stated:

“Nothing effects children any more than the unlived lives of their parents.”

And I couldn't agree more. Kids learn my imitation. They watch how the adults in their lives handle their lives. I want my kids to know they can BE ANYTHING, DO ANYTHING that they choose. Sometimes that means work. Sometimes, it means sacrifice. Sometimes, it even means setting aside the laptop and running through the sprinkler with them. It's all about balance.

How do you open the world up for them like that? Leading by example. 

Which is why I'm so diligent. Why I bust my ass on everything I do. Transformation happens in the day to day activities. It is NOT a future event. I'm acutely aware of that in every single moment. 

In our conversation, though, my Mom brought up the A word. No, not that one... "aspiring". She still thinks I'm aspiring to be an author. That I need to treat it as such. Right now, my push is and has been Pendomus. I won't lie. But I still workout. I still bring my son to T-ball. My daughter still gets to play at the park. We still eat. 

However, I'm no longer aspiring. I've written a damn book. 

I'm a firm believer that we shape our reality. We mold our possibilities. If I allowed myself to slip into the mindset of "aspiring author", I'm no longer in the role. I'm in the role of "aspiring". See the difference?

Which is why I've said it once and I'll say it again-----> I am an author. 

What do my kids want to be? As far as I'm concerned, the sky is the limits. And I plan on being their example.

*ADDENDUM- My mother is, however, excellent at making lasagna. It's dripping with cheese to the point of lacking form. But it IS delicious. ;)