P e r s o n a l B l o g/T w i t t e r . : : . W r i t i n g B l o g/T w i t t e r

End of January 2010 Goals Check-In

It's like... January 19th and I'm already evaluating what I've done with this month! I'm crazy sometimes - have I mentioned that?  I believe to this list I've added the 52 blogs in a year, the write 1K a day, and the read 50 books in a year challenges. LOL!

And now it's the 31st and I have to edit what I'd updated already, LoL!  I'm happy with how I've done on a lot of these; I'm really making some progress in some areas and I'm thrilled.  Lets see if February does better!!!!

Random Goals

Eat more fresh produce - Eating a lot of apples!  Occasionally some berries, but mostly apples.

Do something daily - The Wii helps this, but I need to be more dedicated about it.  I've gotten far more regular about this later in the month and supposedly in the last week have lost almost a full pound.  Not sure I believe that.

Go to a parade - Not yet.

Get a family photograph - Hmmm, I didn't even think about this.

Organize and cull closet - Ug. I really want to do this. I think I'll pick a weekend in the spring and do it then as my 'Spring Cleaning'.

Spiritual Goals

Stay faithful to one church for a year, volunteering in some capacity - I stopped volunteering at the cafe; it was just too much.  Still helping with the youth group tho!

Do a devotional book either solo or with someone or a group - I think I'll be doing this in the summer.

Music Goals

Go to more concerts -  Um, didn't in January.

Listen to more Christian music - I think I forgot about this one....

Find new groups - Didn't even think to look....

Writing Goals

2010 NaNoWriMo - Wrong month... I think I know what my story will be about!!!

Finish Premonition - I have a lot of new ideas for it!

Edit Suspicion - I started this monster and at first, as I have chronicled, it was a nightmare and threatened to capsize the whole project, but after a good, long conversation with my friend Chris and some revising and eventual rewriting this is well under way.

Edit Premonition -Yeah, not there yet.

Research for another project - I'm making plans for this.

Outline for my Graphic Novel idea - Haven't yet, though I get ideas for this periodically that get written down.

Outline for Love Unexpected - Um, haven't worked on this, but I have done some research.

Write something I believe in - I wrote a kids story! And I have some ideas for something I'd like to work on to fit this.

Complete another draft of a story - any of my ideas or something else - I gotta finish this one first!

Write 52 blogs in a year - I think this very blog is proof I'm under way. I'll probably write many more than just 52, but I want to support the cause!

Write 1.K a day - I wanted to write 1K a day that was not rp related or blog related but realized I couldn't do that every day.  I have started to keep a daily account of what I write and where.  The numbers are very interesting and tell a lot about where I spend my time.  I might share this next month.

Reading Goals

Read at least two writing books - I'm working through Gail Carson Levine's Writing Magic and loving it! I bought Becky Levine's book, The Critique Group Survival Guide!

Read all the Robin McKinley books - So far I've read The Hero and the Crown as well as The Blue Sword and Chalice.  I have several others on my shelf to get through.

Read something in a genre I'm not accustomed to reading - I'm reading The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo now.  It's not in the general genre I read normally.  I am - however - liking it, not sure if I'll read the books that come after it.

Act on more book suggestions; at least four - I have several written down, but I haven't bought any of them - yet.

Read 50 books in a year - to date I've read 9, well, I don't know that I count Recorded Attacks, so 8.

Crafty Goals

Learn three new knitting things - Um, yeah, I should work on this.....

Have a successful patio garden - I think I'm already behind on the planning for this one!

Make Presents - Started strong! Made Courtney a birthday scarf!! Made a card, and working on another.

Money Related Goals

Pay off Express Credit Card - By the end of February, baby!!!!

Pay off Khols Credit Card - My sights are set on this one!!!

yea upcoming weekends!

OMG - I needed the relaxedness of last night so bad!  I got home and yes, I preped dishes for the dishwasher, and I did a few other things, but mostly I just did a little exercising time, watched a movie, some writing and I did my first ever card embroidery!

I talked about it a few days ago - but another opportunity to do it came up when someone close to me had to have a sudden surgery. I've made the card, but I still need to cover the stitching on the inside with something which requires glue... which I don't have.  UG!  But I'm really happy with my first card embroidery.  It's simple, but cute and made made.  I'll probably do one or two more like this and maybe change the dimensions so it'll fit in a normal envelope.  I tried an overly complicated design first, and then went for this simple text and daises.  If you do too much you start forgetting which line goes with which dot and then it's all messed up!

I'll be starting my next one probably this weekend and hopefully sending it out soon as well since it's for an upcoming event that I'm being all say-nothing about.  :P

This weekend should be a lot of fun. Despite the crazy weather, my friend and I will be going to the Stars game tonight.  I'm really excited!  Not only do I get to go to a hockey game, but I get to go with my best friend!  I'm going to take a lot of pictures this time, of us and the game and hopefully they do really well tonight!  But if not - we're going on Sunday too!  I'm hoping to get a lot of writing and revision done on Saturday, as well as a load of domestic things.  Maybe I'll even fix the darn vacuum cleaner.

I absolutely have to register for the Writer's Conference tonight or tomorrow! Must-Must-Must!  I'm excited because several people I know and adore are going so even though I'll probably be a wallflower, I'll still have fun!  It also puts some more pressure on me to finish my novel.

I'm looking at the big picture of writing The Barking Dog and I'm considering cutting a huge portion of the Premonition section at the beginning that's just yet more stuff, more stuff, more stuff. I'm thinking I may just cut to some big action and allow the reader to get backstory details through flash-backs or filler paragraphs. Not sure.  I still have several chapters to go before I get to that section and by then I think I'll have a lot more of an idea where I want to go - or at least I hope so!  I won't cut anything at the moment, I'm still fleshing out the beginning and working on that.  I'm altering some of the plot so that more of the major stuff comes in at the beginning instead of later on.  Really, I am very much excited about it all.  I like my story, I think there are probably some areas I could do better on, but I'm learning and I'm continually doing better!

I'm a Do'er, but do I need to Be something?

I realize that unless I start my week out rather organized, the rest of it won't go well.  You see, most Mondays have some activity and then Tuesdays and Wednesdays are a blur of activity so nothing around my apartment gets done.  The trash won't get taken out.  The dishes won't get done.  If I leave laundry in the dryer it won't move.  Sunday night I had better get the rest of my life in order!  LoL.  I did pretty well this week, however there are still dishes from Sunday and the trash is close to overflowing and well... the laundry was in there before Sunday so that's my own fault!

Today I am slightly frustrated with myself for completely controllable reasons.  I've been going to church, but not really attending it.  My responsibilities keep me there and my dedication to not miss out on those hold on to me - but sometimes I wonder if I'm really paying attention?  I'm not doing enough - and sometimes I'm not doing any - personal devotion time.  However when I do go to church I see right where the message is going and I have the uncanny habit to pick out how it's going to get there; I get the mentality I guess.  It's not a bad thing, but I like to be surprised, I like to be challenged intellectually - and I don't.  And it's not the church's fault - it's my own.  I should do more for pushing myself to learn more.  I have the idea to write some spiritual things in the future, and I'm wondering if I shouldn't start on the research, because giving my research the purpose could force me to develop the habit of researching.  Hope that makes sense, LoL.  I need a Saturday to go back to SAGU and spend in the library ferreting out the most useful books and making book lists or notes.

I don't know. I have a general frustrated feeling today.  I feel like today will be a good day, I'm just frusterated for the time being.  And I'm frustrated that I can't spell frusterated.  LoL.  I want to put an 'e' in there!!!!!!  I think I bring this on myself by having expectations for myself that are either high, or impossible.  No one can be perfect.  On author Don Miller's blog, he talked about how Denmark was one of the happiest countries in the world - because they have low expectations.  Now, I'm not saying I need to put aside all aspirations, but maybe I need to reevaluate some of them.  I know I went into college with the idea I would change the world, that I would make a difference, lead a revolution - and I can't do any of that it seems.  It's depressing, but it's also unrealistic.  I think I have this idea in my head that there's a job I was put on earth to do and I have to throw myself at everything until I figure it out - but what I might not have realized was that I was put on earth to be.  Just to Be.  Sure, in being here there are things that come with it, and I'm talking spiritually within the context of my own beliefs, and then the additional load of what I have to do because of the way we have developed in this world.

I'm not satisfied with this answer; I'm a Do'er.  I need to Do things.  I need to Be something.  But maybe I also need to slow down and realize there's more to life than Being or Doing something.  I'm not sure what I'm saying, but I'm saying I'm unhappy sometimes and I'm trying to muddle through the why's.  I feel like in saying all of this I'm failing someone; my parents? Society? They all tell us to go do something with our lives when we're younger.  If I pick out a path that makes me happier in my life, but also doesn't change the world, will that be okay? Am I failing myself? The world? I don't know!  I'm getting more frustrated writing this, but only with myself.  For some reason I can't seem to be happy with the idea of just doing stuff.  I'm dissatisfied and I don't know what to do about it.

So what do you do when you feel dissatisfied with yourself? Or life?


So I rarely finish a blog and publish it - mostly for this very reason.  I like blogs. I know I'll read a blog if it's in my blogroll because I only keep what I like there, and I like reading stuff.  I stumbled across this blog/website and while it's a simple scripture and paragraph - I think it's what I need to hear; keep it simple stupid.

The One Thing.

Write Your (you know what) Off Day!

Okay, in the spirit of getting more writing done, or maybe just being crazy, the EA blog is instigating a Write Your @ss Off Day.  I have decided to instigate a DFW event, so here we go!

February 6th

High Noon

Woodland Hills

We write for 8 hours, noon - 8pmish at which point I'll probably have movies to turn on for vegging pleasure.  I think most of the people who will be interested know where I live, and if we have too much interest we can move locations.  Just do me a favor and let me know here if possible if you're coming so I can account for table space and borrowing tables and chairs if needed.

so all my words went to my novel today.

I swear stuff costs more than it did two years ago when I moved out on my own for the first time.  A dollar doesn't buy what it used to - which sucks considering no one is making more than they used to.  I probably need to sit down and evaluate where I spend what and reign in some of my spending and redirect it better, or something.  It's frustrating and I have to do better.  I'm not broke, but neither am I saving as much as I wanted to.  I'm probably also my own worst enemy when it comes to spending and impulse buying.  I don't know if I know how to say no to me sometimes... This is probably a very dangerous thing.

Today was a really successful writing day.  I totally plowed through chapter 2 and came up with some stuff I really liked.  The critique group really helped me see an opening I missed for inserting more world info.  Tomorrow I'll work on editing that and get the whole bit over to my friend who is doing beta reading for me.  It's really exciting.  I just hope I can keep this up. 

So Paperback Writer suggested this interesting site today that makes up words. This could be very useful for when I need to make stuff up in writing and just need a quick word!

Now, I think I've mentioned this but I'm going to the DFW Writer's Conference.  Well, Inky Girl tweeted today this blog entry about Conference Tips from Jane Makuch.  I really need to finish my manuscript and work on a short this-is-what-my-book-is-about.

Anyways, short blogging day!


Finally got to see Gamer tonight. Okay, I knew when I saw the concept of it that it wasn't going to be a good movie.  That would be too much to ask.  But it has Michael Hall in it - who I adore from the tv show Dexter.  Also, the lead is Gerard Butler who is generally fun to watch and has a history of good performances or movies - okay, some of them have sucked but 'eh.  John Leguizamo is also in it, for a while; he has a place in my heart.  He was the lead in a movie called The Pest that my friends and I watched a lot in junior high.

But the movie...oh my.  It's rated R for a reason.  There is graphic violence and nudity; the first I was expecting, the second I was hoping to avoid and get just a good action movie - but at least it's not like the useless Crank movies which I got conned into watching. 

The characters were pretty good, though Michael Hall's character, Castle, I didn't find 100% solid.  He came across as a deep southern good 'ol boy - who somehow creates this digital empire.  Gerard Butler's character, Kable, was more believeable though I don't think the reveal as far as the main motivation to his plot and character was well done.

The setting - eh - didn't require much.

The plot.  Okay.  It's an action movie - so it's pointless to warn you about the obvious violence, right?  I hope so.  You do get interested in the whole idea that a person can control another real person.  I thought that the whole, have so many battles and win your freedom, thing, was too a la Death Race for my taste.  I know I didn't care for the whole sexual aspect of controlling a person, but I understand the implications it raises for the plot.

The whole musical number was a bit much I believe.  It was interesting but - weird.  I could say more but I need to go to bed....

naming things is hard

See, after last week I knew this weekend would be a lot of fun - and I was right!! I love it when that happens.  ^__^

Friday I went with a friend to see Legion.  Now I wanted this movie to be good.  I know, I know - it was doomed from the moment you put an angel on it and expected me to take it seriously.  However, the first 3/4's of the movie I thought were done really well and though not exactly believable, were good and entertaining and drew you into the story.  That last 1/4 with the angel-car-chase and weird moment-on-the-mountain were.... like from a completely different, cheesy movie.  I liked the characters, even if they were a bit predictable.  Jeep gets my favorite character award for simply being named Jeep!  I liked his character, even if I thought he was foolish at times.  For the most part, I really liked and thought the characters and setting worked.  The plot wasn't even that bad - the dialogue during the last bit, however, killed it.  When an audience laughs during what should be the most poignant moment of the film - well - you know something wasn't done well.  My biggest beef with the movie - the name.  Legion was the name of a demon and I was totally ready for some demon interaction - which I didn't get.  Hollywood should have done a little more research and given it a better, more fitting name.

Saturday I made cake-pops (I have pictures... I will probably do a follow-up cake-pop blog because I have 20 more pops to dip that we didn't do Sunday. I should have been more like, hey lets all do an activity! CAKE-POP TIME!) and cleaned and did shopping stuff.  I also went out with some friends to Trinity Hall, which is always an awesome experience! And I saw my first karaoke!  I remember vagely having really bad karaoke at SAGU, but I never hung around or participated in it.  This was an interesting experience though.  Small room, lined with couches, and a big tv that played random Korean tv with the lyrics to whatever songs they pulled up.  It was fun!!  (even if I was a wallflower....)

Sunday was mostly cleaning and reading Recorded Attacks until people came over around 2:30 and we started knitting and crocheting and watching movies.  I think we watched Dr Horible's Sing-a-Long Blog, Star Trek (the new one), Connie and Carla, and Howel's Moving Castle.  I did a big chunk on the scarf I've been working on, which is good since I'm getting bored of it!!  I don't know that I want to do another circularly knitted scarf again.

So I'm getting head aches, and I think it's due to my eyes.  I need new glasses/contacts and I haven't done anything about this issue yet. I have one more set of contacts to go through and then I'll get my eyes checked.... I'd better switch contacts soon and make my appointment.  This whole hard-to-focus-on-stuff is a pain.

I look back at the last week and I failed doing some things I had hoped to get done.  So this week I will be more proactive!  First, I'm sort of excited about this one, I'm going to try my hand at embroidering cards.  I got the idea from the What Katie Does blog, which if you're a fan of tshirt surgery, you probably know her website, Oh My Stars.  I went through a phase in college where all the shirts I wore were taken apart and put back together in interesting ways.  Some better than others!  Anyways, I must refrain from saying more on this project until it's reached the recipient since I think there's a slim chance that person might read this.... *waves*  I will, however, update with pictures later!

[edit] I'm actually going to see about making a get-well card tonight after writing if I can grab the materials.  My boss had an emergency surgery this weekend so I'll make a card. I printed off one design and punched it out during lunch and then looked at the pattern... and realized I couldn't make heads or tails of it! Need a simpler something I think!

This week I want to eat at home more.  Except for Tuesday because it's impossible.  I have more than enough food to feed myself this week and I don't need to go out and spend money on food that is more fattening and less healthy than what I have at my apartment.  And I bought blueberries! YUMMY! I have a tub of that plain, vanilla yogurt.  Vanilla yogurt + blueberries = YUMMIER!!!!

I also failed last week on editing on my 2nd chapter of The Barking Dog.  Granted it's a huge undertaking because the chapter was ginormous but it still needs to be done and I totally dropped the ball in favor of other things, so this week I will redouble my efforts to not only edit that but write some more and do some more chapters in the Writing Magic book.  Most of my writing numbers have been either in my blog or rp related things this week, which is not what I wanted, but it was a really stressful week so I will forgive myself a little.

Also, I didn't do anything this last week.  I stayed up too late and struggled to get out of bed and just get to work last week. I want to try to get in bed reasonably this week and get up in the morning and do the whole Wii thing.  It makes me feel more productive about my day, even if it is only a little bit of exercise.  I should do it!

Alright, I have successfully rambled through my lunch of leftover lasagna from yesterday and will now proceed to muddle through the red items in my email in-box....

Recorded Attachs by Max Brooks

Oh gee.  This was a fun breeze through read.  Not much of an overall story line, except it goes from cave man to Roman Invasion of Britian and European countrys exploring and everything else and where people encounter zombies.  It's funny, it's kinda gross, but if you like zombie stories it's worth a read, though if I hadn't gotten it for free at a buy 2 get the 3rd free sale at BandN I wouldn't have bought it - but it entertains me to have it.

Practical Demonkeeping by Christopher Moore

I think I have an issue getting through the first chapter in any Moore book, save Lamb.  I read the first chapter and almost gave the book up as a lost cause, but a stressful day had me reaching into my bag for it and I'm glad I finished it.  I like how Moore weaves together multiple characters and events, including sometimes silly, pointless side lines of things that happen as a result of the plot.  His characters are always diverse, interesting things, and often times display attributes true to people I've known.  I think what I like most about Moores' books is the plot; it's always quirky, well thought out and diverse.  The climax is simple and not all that complex but it is engaging and you know exactly what each character could loose or gain by the resolve.  Now, with that said it's also good to note that Moore often writes from the perspective of a pervy, lewd man sinking into her geriatrics unwillingly, so this isn't for someone who is easily offended by the thoughts I know all honest people probably have.  I laughed, I awe'd and I enjoyed, Practical Demonkeeping - but it's not a book for everyone.

Getting Ready to Get Crafty

Okay, so I'm hosting a crafty day on Sunday at my place and this weekend is going to be spent cleaning, making cake-pops, revising The Barking Dog and doing things with yarn.  I'm excited!  Yes, it's really domesticated like, but oh well!  Was mildly frusterated to not find the candy melt I needed at the other Wal-Mart, but I found GREEN candy melt! I found that entertaining and might play with it a bit...  Also bought some more sprinkle options which are more Easter like in the colors but it's all about variety!!!

And then.... I found yarn.  I know I should start buying really quality yarns - but I'm still learning a lot so I don't think buying expensive stuff is justified - yet.

Okay! Time to get a little more cleaning and reading done before crashing!!!!!

Forget Wednesday, Monday Hijacked my Week!

So if I dared to think that yesterday was a crazy mess of stuff - today was worse.  Because it's work stuff I'm not really going to explain it except that by noon I was considering how nice and isolated the space under my desk looked, but by 3pm I could see a promising light!

I even picked Practical Demonkeeping up again during lunch for some mindlessness and discovered - the second chapter and third were much better than the first! I'm starting to have the feeling that's how Fluke has to be - because I've heard such good things about it! ....but the first chapter...I can't finish it! I may just have to jump to the second.  I don't anticipate finishing it today as I have a nice little laundry list of things I would like to do.  Like dye my hair, put the frelling Christmas tree away, clean the bathroom and the sink area (maybe scrub the tub!), actually put laundry away (what a novel thought!), cook a freaking meal for the first time in a while, change out light-bulbs so I can see in my bedroom and do something about the pile of jewelry on my dresser and the shoes at the foot of the bed.

And something has to be done about the rabbit.  I swear all she does is DRINK and PEE, which makes things SMELL.  And now she is at my place indefinitely.  Oh my.  Well, something will have to happen because I need to de-smell my place for the Crafty Day on Sunday.  She might have to hang out on the patio on Sunday.  I swear I change her cage twice as much as I do my Chinchillas and it still smells.


The next day.....

This is sort of like two blogs in one since I - ah - forgot to finish this yesterday! I went home and promptly began a systematic method of being lazy and having bursts of energy and doing something.  My hair is dyed, the bedroom has light in it again, I cooked, the Christmas tree is disassembled and ready to be put in a box .... Now I just need some serious deodorizer for my place and to maybe, finally figure out what's wrong with the vacuum cleaner! I think it needs to be taken completely apart... I'm thinking I may need to take it to a vacuum repair place. Do they have those in the city?  I can't find anything on yelp.com and I've taken apart all the pieces I know how to take apart and it's still not working.  Ug!

At least today seems to be looking better than the rest of the week - as far as work goes.  Everyone is happy, things are going well and I'm so happy about that!  Tonight I'll go see either Legion or Book of Eli at the movies and bake cake for more cake-pops.  Saturday is National Pancake Day so I'm thinking about setting up shop at an IHOP and eating pancakes and doing some much needed revision.  Well, I say much needed because besides Monday I haven't had any time to work on it at all! So sad.  :(  And I'm at a funny part too!  I decided on some motivation for the FMC which will be better than her just doing stuff just because.

Oh, and sometime over the last week I wrote my 100th blog... And I didn't even realize it! I should have had a blog party or something, or made a nice little speech. Oh well!

Ug - I have a headache and it's lunchtime and I'm not eating.... what's wrong with me?

Chalice by Robin McKinley

I didn't even mean to start this book today.  I tossed it in my bag thinking - might as well keep a book with me! I actually did the reading during a few minutes during lunch and before and after church.  It's a very engaging story, and the difference between McKinley's writing int he 80's - like when The Hero and the Crown and The Blue Sword were written I believe, and her later work; I think Chalice came out between '05 and '08.  Again a story about a girl who does something about what's going on around her.  I sort of didn't much care for the MMC because he just sort of let her do all the work.  Now I know he did what he could but 'eh.  The story is engaging and fun and you really feel and want to know how everything happens and you feel for the characters and the land.  I really liked it, read it in a few hours and really, really, really liked it.

Monday Hijacked Wednesday

Okay, so I read the first chapter of Practical Demonkeeping and I'm not hooked and I'm eying other things on my shelf....  I bought more books Tuesday night before the critique group.  I bought a book by Alan Moore on writing for GN's and comics and two McKinley books - which fit in with two goals so I might be putting aside the Christopher Moore book.  This is bad since I keep doing the same thing to his other book, Fluke.  I really, really, really liked Lamb and You Suck was good - but I could never get beyond the first chapter of Fluke and the Practical Demonkeeping first chapter just kinda... didn't get me.  Struggling with the idea of pressing on or grabbing up Chalice or Dragonsbane by McKinley....

[edit] Okay, I'm cheating on my writing. Today I will be brain-dead and not mind.  I took Chalice with me to work today and managed to get through the first section of the first chapter and OMG I'm hooked already! Have I mentioned I really like Robin McKinley's books? I want to know more about the elemental fire Priest, the Master and what the heck the Chalice does!!!![/edit]

I was super excited with the comments I got back from the critique group; I got some great opinions and review and I'm actually looking forward to tackling the issues addressed.  I really feel like it's all coming alive.  I might need to rethink some of the names... I know why people are named like they are - but the reader won't for quite a while - if at all in this book.  I think that's a thing to tackle much, much later once I know where the book actually ends.

I had another one of my super weird, crazy dreams last night.  This time I think I can blame Avatar for a little of it, but not the dragons bit.  There were these floating islands or maybe they were really tall plateaus that looked like islands that were covered by jungles.  Anyways!  My dream followed a character who did some interesting things and dragons were involved in a non-stereotypical rawr-I-will-eat-you way.  I was able to jot down what I remembered of the dream and do a reasonable amount of brain storming on it.  I don't have a climax for it - which is the main problem I see.  I could, however, make it a very curious short story with the material I have right now for the quarterly Glimmer Train contest on writing a 12,000 or less word story.  There's a regular contest schedule set up there too!  I'm getting interested...  Jane Friedman clued me into that on her blog, There Are No Rules.  She has some really good stuff on there.  Like this blog she wrote about a book she wrote with someone else [BIG edit] the someone else is Becky Levine.[/BIG edit] called The Writing and Critique Group Survival Guide - and I want it. I've bought more books in the last week than I really should have, so I'm sticking this on the To-Buy-Eventually list - like, in a month or something when it looks like I'll read it sooner rather than later.  I'm really big on revision right now so I need stuff like this for tips and whatnot! ... Hmm, maybe I do really need this book now...

I'm watching the minutes tick by as I loose my lunch break.  *sigh*  Yesterday was crazy and today is worse; my job is not normally like this so I'm more surprised about all of this crazy stuff and more or less frustrated with myself for the inability to do everything perfectly the first time.  I don't talk about my work here much - I realize - mostly because I'm following my company's blogs and I don't see myself as a spokes-person or anywhere near equipped to talk about my company or what we do so I keep my trap shut.  I would never want to jeopardize my job here because I like it. I like the people I work with.  I don't always understand what we do, but I can do the job, I'm reasonably happy with it and in this economy and time those are things not everyone has.  I'm thankful for my job - but I'd be really happy if the last few days did not repeat themselves in the level of crazy that's been going on.  I think this afternoon, should everything not blow up, I'm going to tackle the mess that has become my desk!

I'm Behind and I Didn't Even Know It!

It occurred to me - I'm probably already behind on my patio gardening... I think I need to set aside some time for figuring out what I want to plant and start getting seeds and potting soil and harassing my planters into shape...  I'm sort of hoping I might be able to get some tulips this year...  I'd also like to do some vegetables, but I won't hold my breath.  I won't do anything crazy, but I'd really like to attempt something better than what I did before.  Everything I see says that February is the time for planting in Texas, so I'm toying around with the idea of getting some paints and painting up the old horse-buckets my dad gave me.  I need to try to drill some holes in the bottom so the water can run off, but they give me some nice, deep containers.  I'm tempted to try potatoes with these buckets.... How nifty would that be?  Currently I'm toying with the idea of, Chard, Peas, Tomatoes (maybe), some herbs - which ones I haven't decided, tulips and I wish I could remember the yellow flower I had on my patio forever; it just would not die and had great yellow blossoms.  I think I will go walk around the seeds at Wal-Mart and eye stuff to see what I think I want to try my hand at.  Suggestions are always welcome!

An Enjoyable Weekend - SURPRISE!

This has been an enjoyable weekend.  Origionally I was going to be volunteering for church and thus the entire weekend would have most likely been a blur of which I would only now be returning home to collapse into bed until tomorrow.  Instead, Friday I went with my friends to see Leap Year; a new romatic comedy about a girl who goes to Dublin, Ireland to propose to her boyfriend and meets an Irish man who - well - I'll let you play connect the obvious dots.  Cute, funny, but most of all I liked the question the Irish man posed to the girl.  If a fire happened and you had sixty seconds to grab whatever was most important to you - what would you grab?  And she learns the truth.

Saturday was a day of accomplishments! I got up and did stuff, I seem to recall washing some dishes and writing a bit before heading out to the mother-ship of Half Priced Books in Dallas where I quite literally walked around lost for about an hour before the rest of the year-round-writing-group showed up; by this point I had a stack of six books and was walking around rather wide-eyed.  They politely collected me and we seized some tables in the meeting room and set to - well - socializing.  I was a bad participant and spent half of the time talking to Suzan and Criss, found out about this program called SuperNoteCard..... I feel like my plotting life has just grown simpler by leaps and bounds!!!!! I even managed to finish rewriting all of chapter one!! I'm so excited about that - I feel like with chapter one done, I can go through the rest of it!  I even made a half-hearted attempt at starting chapter two, got a little ways into it and stalled - there were more books to go look at!!

I bought the following:

  • The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini - I've heard things about this book, seen it everywhere, might as well read it, right?
  • The Stupidest Angel by Chris Moore - yes, another Moore book for my shelf.  He's so funny!  I'm going to save this for after NaNo this year.
  • Grim Tuesday by Garth Nix - I bought the first book in this series and have yet to read it.  It was only $2.50 so I couldn't see why I shouldn't buy it.
  • Swords of Ice and Other Tales of Valdemar AND Crossroads and Other Tales of Valdemar both edited by Mercedes Lackey - Okay, I'm slightly addicted to the world of Valdemar, not going to lie, and I haven't even seen these anywhere else.  Figured it was worth it!
  • The Wish, Ella Enchanted and The Two Princesses of Bamarre by Gail Carson Levine - These will all be quick, easy reads, but really good I think.  She's such a good writer!
Gotta love HPB!

Today has been a lazy day.  I'm slowly cleaning with the goal of eventually going to Wal-Mart and getting something to store wrapping paper in and get the tree down finally.  I'm still working on the same scarf, taking it as I go.  I unfortunately realized Friday that my Netflix were all still on the coffee table - and have all been watched with the exception of one I'm really not interested in watching.  I thought I sent them off like Tuesday - but apparently I have failed myself!  *sigh* Whatever will I do!!  Maybe go see Book of Eli tonight.....

Knitting and Writing and Decisions!

I finished the birthday scarf! And I can show pictures off because, well, this friend doesn't know about my blog and even if she did I'd still be excited about actually finishing a project this year!  LoL!! See - I do stuff besides read and whine!!  It's red, not pink like the picture kinda makes it out to be.  It's silly how excited I was to stick the completed picture up on Ravelry and move the status bar to 100%.  This maybe the new motivator for finishing projects.....  I'm working up on the stripy scarf for my other friend who may or may not ever actually get it.  He asked me to make him one when I was in a really good mood and I found yarn I liked so I started.... I like the scarf, I'm knitting it on those round, circular needles and the yarn's nice and soft.  I'm not exactly motoring on ahead on that project, so I'm toying around with the idea of some others and looking forward to the 24th and the crafty day!!  I think I need new yarn..... And apparently I have a free weekend!!!!

I keep going to start revising and.... I don't.  I just don't revise at all.  I do nothing.  It's bad.  I need to do something about it but I'm not sure what.  I'm still sort of stuck on what I'm doing and without an identifiable goal, well, I'm a bit listless.  That was written this morning.  I had a long conversation with a friend of mine and he read what I'd revised, as well as what I'd rewritten and we decided that the rewritten was aimed in the better direction and was just more engaging so I believe I have a bit more direction now, though it's still a daunting task.  Since I suddenly have my weekend free I will see if I can't encourage someone to go to a  movie tonight and the rest of the weekend will be spent completing chapter 1.  I am more encouraged by this, but in the manner and style I'm writing now all three books will just be sections of the same book....if that makes any sense..... Oh well - hopefully it does and will and I can plow through this with grace and poise and come out with something decent on the other side!!!!

Accepting the Truth

Okay, so after the critique group I'm accepting that I really can't just fudge around some of the words to make it all work out - I need to actually rewrite most of it.  Keep the text open in one window and rewrite in another, like new yWriter project.  It's depressing - because it's a lot of work - but at least I know that now and I can prod myself into working on it more and more studious.  I had other people make up my mind for me!  Well, they didn't say anything about just needing to start over, that's not how the group is, but based on some of the feedback I think it would be more beneficial to revise the manuscript that way.  Follow the lead of what I originally wrote and write it all fresh, sparkly and new.  However, this will mean entire chunks of time I must disappear and rewrite the blasted thing.  I'm also struggling again with whether or not Suspicion has enough meat to stand on it's own frail little legs or if I need to cut out some fluff and smash all three back together and plow through it all.  I'm back to squirming over this and complaining to myself and I'm probably going to agonize over the whole mess a lot so please feel free to ignore all of this ramble because I still haven't eaten breakfast or taken anything.  (This was written Wednesday morning....)

Now, this bit is written Thursday afternoon....  I'm still nowhere near certain about what I should do about this problem.  I rewrote the bit I took to the critique group but I'm at a point where I'd like someone or someones to bounce ideas and worry off of but I don't know if I want to take it out on my poor critique group who has several of us who are agonizing over stuff as it is.  *sigh*  I need my own personal editor I can bemoan the what-if's to and force to read three different versions of the same scene. I will take applications after this blog.....

For some reason I thought that I could get up Wednesday morning and do a measly 20 minute exercise - nope.  Woke up and my pounding head said No Moving.  I'm not going to church tonight; my head is rebelling enough I wish I hadn't worn my contacts at all.  I think I will spend tonight shuffling around my apartment cleaning. Yes, cleaning.  The whole place is a dump and in need of serious cleaning, like scrubbing and cleaning.  I also need to do something about the dear little rabbit; I call it the dear little rabbit because I'm tempted to call it other not quite so nice things.  Thursday morning was a bit kinder to me so I'm hoping that Friday will be very nice to me indeed and let me do some exercise since I seem to be doing well.

I've managed to clean up my kitchen and fix my vacuum cleaner the best I know how.  It's still spitting out some stuff but it's by far much better than it was.  I apparently accidentally sucked up some of the rabbit bedding which did nothing more than clog up the hose and I had to unscrew all the little plates so I could get to this clog of recycled, puffy stuff.  Not sure what I'm going to do about this problem; it's rather perplexing.  Not sure if people plan on coming over tonight, but I do plan on cleaning more and actually cooking dinner.  I may have the weekend free after all, which would be super, as I want to clean, clean, clean and finish this scarf and work on some more revision. Did I mention I'm taking applications to be the confessor of all my revision nightmares??  At this point I'm really not kidding.

Some people are ridiculous and I want to start rambling about true Christianity but I think that Don Miller really does say it all best when he addresses what Pat Robertson said about Hati suffering it's just desserts.  You read that right.  Plus, I've just about decided that Don Miller has to be one sexy man if only for how he thinks about things because often times I feel the same way.  Would it be weird if I twittered at him and asked him on a date?  Yes, yes it would and I'll stop letting revision drive me crazy - in like a month or two.

Blogs, Books, Stuff.... Rick Rioden - you know the guy I've been talking about for a bit? Well the cover for his new series is up here.  I will be hungrily awaiting the paperback!  I think we all know that I have developed a taste for real-life drama, and I have to say I feel sorry for Moonrat after this blog where she recounts a conversation with one of her authors.

I think I'm done for the day on this blog. I'm sure I could talk about other things, like my twitter obsession, how much I've been reading or how the cold weather has given me nosebleeds, but it all comes back to trying to figure out my revision and how to tackle it....  *sigh*

The Blue Sword by Robin McKinley

Yes, I have a terrible habit of reading an entire book in one day.

I like The Hero and the Crown; I love The Blue Sword.  I don't know what it is about this story, but I have remembered bits and pieces of it for years.  I think it's possibly one of my favorite books of all times and for what reason I'm not entirely sure.  I like the idea of books that feature girls who get up and do stuff, and I also like books that have horses because it reminds me of where I come from.  Maybe it's just that in McKinley's writing I see something of what I wish I was or what I wish could be.  I want to be one of these unlikely heroes that fall into place in a world that's not quite sure what to do with them - but needs them.  I'm not sure what it is about this book but it has inspired me even when I'm not quite aware of it which is an alarming thing to realize. 

The Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley

I read this first in junior high and I don't think I ever reread it.  Such a shame.  I think this book does many things well.  It's intelligently written, and yet doesn't divulge into frivolous details.  That's something I could use a few lessons in.  I know this was written after The Blue Sword, so there is a good deal that draws on the lore established first in that book but changed to fit this setting.  It's a great story of a girl who does things.  I like the McKinley books for that reason.  The Setting is vivid, the Characters are alive in your mind, and the Plot isn't one-dimentional, it doesn't end with the slaying of a dragon or the self-realization of a character; there is far more there.  I sort of wish I knew what happened to Luthe, that wild, free side of Aerin's life.  Tor was everything that was familiar, everything she was supposed to be.  Parts of me wonder what would it have been like if Aerin was indeed the Hero, but chose a different end to the story.  I adore this book, I really do - even if I still don't get why some surka and the dragonheart were enough to kill her uncle....

Some Days I'm Just Stubborn

I think it's pure stubbornness I'm wearing my dress today.  I bought it before Christmas but it was just too cold and pointless for me to wear anything other than jeans to work.  It's a brown dress, which is even more pure novelty considering I don't particularily like brown or wearing it - but this one has a design of blue colored teardrop and semi-nike-swish things that go absurdly well with my blue cashmere sweater that - well - I kinda felt super compelled to buy it.  And thankfully the weather is copaerating and it's warm enough to wear it so today is a good day.  I'm also feeling much better!  I think that tomorrow I will push myself to get up and exercise.  I put it off on the weekend and yesterday for not feeling well at all, but I think tomorrow morning I will be pretty well off.

Last night I lay awake in bed and contemplated a new prologue for Suspicion and I penned out a few paragraphs I think I will have the critique group read.  I'm rather thrilled with the idea as well as expanding the novel to include various bits from other characters perspective other than the female main characters.  I think it will help the reader fully understand the complex plot that was just lost on the first draft.  Lots of nothing happened and then in a few thousand words everything happened and left even my head spinning for how in hades it all came to a point besides the fact that green is a very suitable color.

I was reading Brandon Sanderson's blog, oh my, yes - blogs, and the whole thing about his books being made into movies intreigued me.  I've sort of been forcing myself to ignore that he writes anything other than Wheel of Time but I do believe I will have to read his books, and at the current rate I am devouring printed pages of stuff I should easily be able to do that - later this year.  Heck, I started Robin McKinley's book The Hero and the Crown last night; I probably haven't read it since Jr High.  I can't believe I haven't read it between then and now - it's such a crime!  I will probably also finish it tonight or today or something impossible like that because I just could not sleep despite how exhausted I was so why not read?  (and of course between the time I wrote that line this morning and now after work, I finished the book.)

Perhapse I need to be interested in thicker books.  Then I would spend more than three days reading it.  It's a little exciting to move on from a book so quickly, but it's also a bit of a let down.  I wish they lasted me longer, but I am glad to have read them.  I'm going to force myself to hold off reading The Blue Sword until tomorrow.  I believe my current plan is very much to not go to church tomorrow because my fever has yet to leave me and the headache is still permanently wrapped around my head so that even after ingesting drugs to dull it - it's still just there outside of sight and hearing like.

So I leave work very soon and I'm going to go on to the Borders where we have critique group at instead and probably eat some soup at McAllisters and piddle around on the next scene of Suspicion and force myself to be yet more productive today.  Ug, and I must also get food for that little varmet the rabbit - and it needs fresh bedding.  I ached and hurt so bad last night I almost didn't clean the Chin cage, but I did.  I don't have the right bedding for the rabbit.  The rabbit gets expensive, absorbant stuff.  That's what happens when the animal actually sits in their bedding; they get the better stuff.  My Chins, who have a tray that slides out of the bottom of their cage, can have cheapy crushed corn stuff that absorbs and whatnot and so long as I am mindful of changing it every few days works rather well.  However, I'm starting to feel that their cage isn't getting really clean and I'd like nothing more than a chance to hose it down and scrub it - but where do I put the Chins while I do this?  I'm pondering over this question and browsing CraigsList.  People are bound to have cages they don't need anymore, what with small children learning the responsibility of an animal isn't all that glamerous.

Weekend Wonders

I cannot pretend the weekend started out well.  Um, okay, so at the beginning it was fun but stuff happens, eh?  Friday I got off work and went and read The Last Olympian at BandN before going home.  However, I couldn't leave BandN without Redeeming Love, the book club book actually having being bought and since it was on one of those so very temping Buy 2, Get the 3rd FREE tables, I also got Maus Book I and The Zombie Survival Guide. They did not have Lament, which someone got me interested in, but that is probably for the best.  I am convinced the BandN by my apartment isn't the best.

My friend was supposed to go to a movie with me but we both got finished with what we'd been doing so late it just wasn't practical so we mutually decided - some other time would be better.  I then get in a heated argument with one person - okay, it was heated on my side.  Things were being launched at me that were personal and I got angry and said something I shouldn't have. No, it wasn't profane, just inappropriate - I was just rather upset.  A friend enters the conversation and starts telling me to be nice. Me - when I was the one standing up for myself.  This isn't the first time this person has pointed fingers at me when things turn heated so naturally it only made the situation worse because yet again I was of course the bad guy here for standing up for myself.  I think me being a girl and getting stupidly emotional about stuff is much to blame.

Saturday - ug - I woke up at 7:30.  My body really wanted to be up, but I was still rather exhausted.  Oh well.  I got up and went to Wal-Mart where there were hardly any people before noon and the cashiers were even standing around without lines.  It was rather incredible!  I bought all of the things to make cake-pops and was startled by actually finding lollipop sticks and five different colors of melt.  I was very thrilled that for my first attempt I wouldn't have to go searching around.  Anyways, enough about cake-pops. I have a whole blog devoted to the endeavor after all!

The youth group volunteer meeting was good, and I sort of met some of the other people but mostly talked to Brandy who I met Wednesday night.  I didn't stay for church; just wasn't feeling real well and for some reason I started feeling really depressed.  Don't ask me why; I can only assume it's due to female chemistry and bits from last night.  I know I take things too personally - it maybe my biggest fault.  Being told some of those things - if irrational - stick to me and I'll just have to deal with it.  If I weren't the way I am I wouldn't be me so I'm sure I'll be fine, that night just sort of sucked.  Worked on the cake-pops some more before abandoning the idea of finishing them and instead started Redeeming Love. Right now, 100+ pages into it - I hate it.  I really want to just put it down and not go on.  There are other books on my shelf of to-reads that I know I'll love.  That are on my master list of very important things to read in 2010.  Oh well.

Sunday - woke up not feeling well but I have cake-pops to do so took some medicine, had a small sit down breakfast and got to work!  The cupcake pops get the most layers so I started those first with the brown.  Learned I probably made those all too bit but I salvaged many more than I lost so I guess it all works out.  Home Group was good - apparently I missed the big church wide fast thing as well as getting the book we're going to be working through.....oopse.

Started feeling more sickly Sunday night and today's not been a whole lot better.  The day sort of passed in a blur.  I at least finished The Dreaded Book.

Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers

Okay, so I've been complaining, kicking and screaming about reading this book so I figured I would go ahead and chronicle my reaction to the book.  If it wasn't for the fact that this is my book club book - I would never have made it through the prologue.  I do not find reading about child rape or prostitution entertaining.  I know that Redeeming Love is the retelling of the Prophet Hosea's struggles with his former prostitute and adulterous wife, Gomer.  However, Redeeming Love is difficult for me to get through.  It's hard for me to even want the main character, Angel/Sara/Mara/Amanda/Tizpora/whatever else the author wants to call her, to actually want to fall in love with Michael Hosea.  I mean I don't know about you, but I would be freaked out and rebellious about the idea of a man hauling me off into the mountains when I was sick and then semi-forcing me to be his wife.  Is it any surprise that she runs away?  I would have!  There is something very cultish about his behavior that would scare me.  If you've ever met people who are that fanatical about something, it can either be inspiring or terrifying.  I think Michael Hosea would be terrifying; I'd never drink any kool-aid he'd offer me!

And does Michael ever do anything but play with her hair and lean his hip against things?  I'm being cynical, I know, but I find it challenging to believe his character.  He's an ideal, many, sensitive, religious, person I could list tons of other things about and never encompass all that he is supposed to be - and yet he lacks some character that makes me really not believe him.  He is anything and everything that the author needs him to be.  He is always patient - except when it suited for the plot to have some conflict.  The man had no faults; he was too perfect.  I'm sure even the prophet Hosea had flaws.

At least Angel/Sara/Amanda/Mandy/Mara/whatever - at least her character is for the most cut defined though I wouldn't be surprised if she were diagnosed with bipolar something or other.  She held onto these ideals these things that were the bedrock of her person and you saw - at least for the most part - her change.  Okay, in three places she's all nope, no, noway - OKAY!

And I think it's rather funny, but Thanksgiving wasn't even really considered a holiday until 1863 and it wasn't a national holiday until later.  The book takes place in the span of 1850-1856ish I believe.

For me, the first few hundred pages were a war to read.  I read them because I had to.  There's nothing anyone could have done to have kept me in Angel/Sara/Amanda/Mandy/Mara's place with a man like that.  It's the last 100 pages that make the story.  I'll never read it again, I'm not actually even a fan of this book.  I think there are some things wrong with the characters and the narration of the story is wacky.  Rivers does have a way with painting the setting so beautifully that does pull you along and that's the spell that kept me reading.

It also made me think of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.  I kind of want to watch that now.


**Note - this will be picture heavy!**

Okay, so I've been sort of drooling over Bakerella's amazing cake-pops for a while now.  I know at least one other person who will be trying these at some point - but this weekend will be my first foray into this!  Since I'm not exactly sure what I'm going for, I snagged a all the candy melts they had.  Here is what I am equipped with.
  • 1 box red velvet cake mix
  • container of cream cheese icing
  • 3 packages of 50 count lollipop sticks
  • 3 packages of 50 count candy bags
  • 2 square cake boxes
  • 2 sheets of styrafoam
  • 1 glitter sprinkle canister
  • 2 Valentine seasonal sprinkle canisters
  • 1 huge multi-pack Christmas canister (probably just use the red or green plain sprinkles)
  • 5 different candy melts (white, red, rose/pink, dark chocolate, milk chocolate)
  • an ice cream scoop
  • oil
  • eggs
....and I think that's it.  I'll be following Bakerella's instructions, which you can find on her various kinds of cake-pop pages.  I think I'm going to make one small experimental batch and then try for cupcake pops because she says those are easiest.

 I mixed the cake batter in the sink after the last incident with red velvet cake left me scrubbing my stove for a week!  Really there is nothing special about baking the cake - just follow the instructions on the box!

So the cake cools and you crumble it.  And then.... you mix it up with cream cheese icing!!!!

Rolling it into balls for regular pops and then sort of cylindrical things for cupcakes.  Gets your hands real dirty!!

At this point you're supposed to put the sticks in them, using some candy melts but I had to go to church so mine got chilled and then I did all the melt work and sticks.

Now I'm chilling them again so everything's nice and solid.  And then - the decorating!!!  However, during all of this I think my microwave did something funny.  Sunday morning I got to work semi-early for me on a weekend.  I started with the cupcake pops since they get the most layers.  I really think that I made those all too big and the cake is too moist.  I think it should be more cakey.  At least I saved more than I lost!!  I bumbled and put some of the pictures on my camera's internal memory and I don't know yet how to get those off so I only have these few from the first foray into the dipping.


 Next... the pops!  I did the red and pink ones and took a break.  The pops are definatly easier to dip but I don't quite have the hang of getting them smooth.  I assume that comes with practice.

I tried showing off the candy melts in the cup but it just looks like blurry, red goo....  I like the cupcake-pops, they're super cute and are easier to decorate even if you have to dip them more often.

Blah.  I've been doing cleanup as I go - but there aren't any instructions for how to clean up candy-melt!!!! I have a feeling there will be a butter knife and scraping involved......

So the white ones were the most difficult to dip.  I did two layers of melt over them all before I was satisfied, however I think that given the Valentine's theme they look the best when decorated.
My favorite is by far the white cupcake-pops.  I think they're just freaking adorable.  If I do these next weekend - which with me doing church all weekend is super iffy - I will probably just do them all like this.

I'll do clean-up later.  For now - I have cake on sticks!!!!!!

The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan

True to my word, I went to BandN after work today and sat down to read the whole Last Olympian book. My eyes hate me, in case you are wondering. I had to speed read the last chapter and I'm sure I missed stuff but I'll reread it when the paperback comes out, alright?  Like the other books, I loved it. Riordan's world is so vivid, so wonderfully thought out and detailed you have to appreciate his ability to weave all five books together.  Yes, each are stand alone chronicles of the summers of these half-blood gods, but they intertwine and create a much larger story, one that you know isn't done yet (and not just because in a recent blog it was clearly stated Riordan was working on more books).  You realize that this is just a bit of their lives and things go on.  I'm rambling - but I really do like these books.  Buy them for your kids and then read them yourselves.

How did I ever get so busy?

Woohoo! Third morning in a row I've managed to get my arse up and out of bed and do a 20 minute work out!  I'm proud of myself. And I'm actually startled that I'm feeling it in my legs; it's a really light work out, I have no illusions about getting an awesome, toned body.  I do hope to drop a bit of the weight I gained ....wait, I almost said this... last year.  Yikes. Last year.  I still sort of forget the magnitude of an entire year passing; I'm sure it'll hit me later.  According to the Wii I've lost a little over half a pound in the last three days.  I don't believe it.  If in a week I'm still decreasing, well then I'll own up to loosing half a pound, but I seriously find any results this quick to be suspect.

Last night I started a master plot matrix for Suspicion and .... dare I say it? I'm getting excited about revision.  Excited - yes! I can't wait to rewrite that first scene because I know I can do it better; I know a better way to incorporate more details than I did last time, to introduce the reader to the world better, earlier on besides the first blunt detail...

I probably won't get to that until Saturday, if not Sunday - and perhaps not even until next week.  Tonight I'm going to get off work, run home and get my nice, warm hoody and go to BandN and read the Olympian book, and buy Redeeming Love, our book club book I thought I bought off of Amazon.  I've been waiting for it to be delivered and went online to go complain and found that as I had purchased the book, the seller was updating that they were out of them - so my purchase was refunded and supposedly I should have gotten an email.  I didn't. I now need to go buy the book and get to reading.  Ug!  Anyways, if all goes well I will also see some late movie with Amanda tonight.  Saturday I want to finish the Olympian book if I don't Friday.  Then there's a church meeting at 4pm for the youth group, my friend's going to church with me, and I know I'll be too distracted to get anything done if it doesn't happen before the meeting.

And OMG there are a lot of movies out that I want to see!  Alvin and the Chipmunks, Leap Year, The Princess and the Frog, Did You Hear About The Morgans, Nine, Invictus, and The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus which is strangely not playing in very many locations.  I think tonight it will be either Leap Year or Nine.

Plus I will need to start baking cake on Saturday night - because I want to have cake-pops ready for Home Group on Sunday!!  I'll need to decorate on Sunday morning/afternoon before Home Group.  And maybe I'll make another batch Sunday night if I don't go to my other friend's house.  Yes, busy weekends ahead.  Next week I will be taking advantage of every opportunity to relax because next weekend I'm volunteering my whole weekend to the church media team.  It's a good opportunity, but it's also a whole weekend when I'm starting to really try to get writing done.  I believe I will be selfishly taking Monday, Thursday and Friday to myself for writing, lounging and knitting purposes!  ....oh but I need to read....

Right - so I am still working my way through On Writing and loving it! Will read the Olympian book tonight and tomorrow at BandN, buy at least Redeeming Love for the book club and if I think I can read Isabel Allende's House of Spirit's before 2/1 when EA will be hosting the discussion on it, I'll pick that up.  Lastly, I believe I will be acting on my friend's suggestion and buy Maggie Stiefvater's book, Lament.  Not that I don't already have a hefty list of things to read already, LoL!

An update on my 1K a day.  I decided to go ahead and bite the bullet and created a spread sheet with all the stuff on it I need to track my progress.  I started on the 4th and have written as of the end of my lunch break, 6,007 words on various writing projects.  I expect this number to go up this afternoon, but I can honestly say I'm happy I'm doing this.  It's encouraging me to just write and go, go, go!

Blogs, blogs, blogs - have been a bit dry recently. Lots of recaps on last year or stuff about this year, whatever.  However, I just about keeled over when I read this entry from Rick Riordan's blog, Myth and Mystery talking about the new companion guide to the Percy Jackson series and - There Will Be More Camp Half Blood Books!!!!  Meaning he's not done with Percy Jackson's world! I'm very excited, in case you can't tell...

Writing Woes

So I'm trying some different ways of keeping track how much I write a day.  I'm not really sure what would work best.  I had a great widget during NaNo that measured my daily average, but I don't know what I could do now in place of that.  I'm avoiding using excel.  I have Chaos Manager and I'm trying out just inputting a daily activity that records how much I write but I get annoyed with the reminder.  If you have a suggestion - let me know!  Today I wrote about 700 words on a prompt, that I need to finish the little story and then I believe I'll be over the 1K challenge for a day number!!!

The crafty afternoon/night is catching on!  There are several people who are interested and I'm really excited.  I also want to go buy more yarn in case...well...I don't know in what case but I want more on hand!  LoL.

So I'm really struggling with rewriting Premonition.  I've forgotten some small details, things have grown fuzzy and I'm beginning to wonder if it wouldn't be better if I put Premonition aside and revised Suspicion.  It might give me better ideas for a more finished product on the second book.  I'm very torn here.  On one hand I just want it finished but on the other I'm trying to think about the most logical, and best use of my time.  It's either that or I need to go back and reread stuff to see what I might have forgotten.  Bah - so frustrating! Why couldn't I finish it in December like I'd planned?  I'm going to give it a go today and see how I do on plotting out the novel tonight and I might just start rewriting that opening scene.

It's cold.  It's really cold today.  I cranked up my heater last night and sort of over-did it, but I wasn't cold!  I even managed to crawl out of bed this morning and do a 20 minute exercise. I'm telling myself I'll do one tonight after I do some lazy news watching and plotting.  *sigh*  I'm going to save my eloquence for my writing  :P 

Happy New Years!

OMG - stop the presses - I just found out that Brandon Sanderson, the person who is completing Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series will be at Dragon*Con this coming year.  My friends have been trying to coerce me into going but I think this just won me over. Go to Dragon*Con, hear him speak, maybe see the other Writing Excuses guys?  HECK YES!  *strangles inner fan-girl*

I'm adding two more things to my 2010 Goals.  I can't recall if I blogged about this already and I'm too lazy to go back and look. I'm joining in the blogging adventure, Project 52.  The idea is that you write 52 blogs a year, once a week.  Now I know I can do this; I wrote close to 80 to close out 2009 and only started in like...September.  However, I think it's a good goal and I'm doing it.  The other goal is a bit more daunting; it means I have to be a bit more disciplined.  Inky Girl is challenging people to write 1000 Words a Day in 2010.  This means I'm already behind, having written a whopping 1500 words last night on Premonition.  Gee, I need to get something cranked out today. I'm hoping this motivates me some more this year to continue with my writing.  I'm even biting my teeth, really wanting to go to the DFW Writer's Conference in April, but I don't have the cash just quite yet.  I emailed my mother, thinking she'd talk me out of it because that much money right after Christmas is hard to come by - but instead she was very excited and is encouraging me to go.  *sigh*  We'll see what I can come up with in the next few weeks.

Okay, so I haven't blogged much because New Years sort of tirededed me out.....

I spent New Years at my friends place; we played some cards, some other odd games and then did a champagne toast at midnight where I discovered - I don't like champagne.  No big surprise, honestly.  Then someone had the great idea to go out on the balcony and light up sparklers and stand in a circle facing each other. Yeah - doesn't that sound like a great idea to you too? Not to me. I stood outside of the circle and was the only person to not get burned.  I was the first to leave, but I also had the furthest to drive and went home and I think I went to bed fairly early.

New Years Day my brother came over around noon and we hung out for a bit.  I introduced him to The Lightning Thief and I believe he's currently hooked.  We also went down to Chance Webb's Tattoo Emporium and got our tattoo finished - finally!  We're both really happy with how it turned out.  I'm entering that painfully itchy stage of healing that makes me want to go cross-eyed all the time, but soon enough it'll all be over!  I think I cooked us dinner and we watched some Four Star and then went to go see Avatar in 3D which wasn't all that much different from the normal one; I thought it looked a lot more unfocused and that it would have been just fine to see it without the 3D nonsense.

The next day my brother and I went to a Stars game.  It was super fun and I got a Dallas Stars SNUGGIE!  Don't be fooled by their strange looks, they rock. I really like mine, even if it's all covered in rabbit hair now; silly rabbit.  Brother left not long after the game to go back to Wyoming and I had a few hours to myself.   (Note - I waylaid the Ice Girls and informed him he was getting his picture with them.  He didn't protest.)

My friend Micah came over late (I'm talking either 9 or 10pm) that night.  It's probably the last time I'll see him for several years.  His parents are taking up a church in Vietnam and they'll probably stay over there for most of the next three years and he lives in Virginia Beach now doing his doctoral so though we talk on Skype a lot (during his classes sometimes - oopse!) we probably won't get to hang out.  I was super impressed when he gave me a bottle of home-made vanilla extract.  Like REAL vanilla extract! He MADE it.  Really - like it's real stuff and wow.  I'm just blown away by that. I think I'm going to try to make some myself.  How cool is that???

Eventually Micah had to scoot out and that left me going to bed a bit late - but because I made Sunday my Selfish-Day, well, it was okay.  Really I stayed home by myself and read The Titan's Curse and watched a movie and did some cleaning and played with my Chins and the rabbit and did laundry and went grocery shopping and had a great, stress-free day.  I think I'm going to start requiring more of these in my life; like once a week or something.  I knew going into this week that we were having a writing night Monday, Critique Group was Tuesday, The Mix where I volunteer with the youth is on Wednesday, people come over to my place on Thursday - the only other time I'd have to just veg would be FRIDAY!  So I didn't feel bad about taking Sunday to myself.

A little update on my challenge to write 1000 words a day.... I wrote a little over 1000 on Monday, and like 700 on Tuesday.  I'm a bit frusterated with those numbers, I'd like them to be higher, but oh well.  Now if I'm really going to this Writer's Conference I need to have a finished something to take with me.  This means I'm going to be putting a lot of effort into Premonition now and hopefully will finish it in January and start editing Suspicion in February and get the second draft done and start getting critiques and reads in March.  WHEW!

Bah! I checked my Amazon order and it's STILL not here! I ordered my bookclub book before Christmas and it's yet to show up.  I'm getting impatient. I think I shall read Gail Carson Levine's Writing Magic the rest of the week and camp out at BandN and read the last Olympian book because I just don't want to buy brand new hardcover.

[edit] After skimming through the first two chapters of Writing Magic, I realize I need to do as the book suggests and sit down and do the writing exercises.  I'll be doing this, but I think I might take it slower - maybe do one chapter a day or something and compile all of the writing exercises into a yWriter project.....

And one last interesting bit. I joined Ravelry this morning at the urging of another knitting friend.

And with that, lunch is over and I must go back to work....

About Me

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Grew up traveling to rodeos with my parents. I've gone across the world thanks to my gypsie feet. I feel sometimes like I've done everything & nothing. I've played roller derby, traveled parts of the world, have four degrees. I've done some things most people will never do in their lives & still I want to do more. I want to work with orphans & teenagers again. I'm a Christian. I have a lot of tattoos. I like art therefore I want to be art. I love people. I started writing years ago when I was a kid. I think at the time it was an outlet for me; I found escape in my word & the worlds I created. Eventually I just started to like creating stuff & that's when I started sharing it with other people. Now I think I write every day. I want to do NaNoWrMo this year. I'm also learning how to knit. I think I'm on my way to being an eccentric old woman who runs around the world doing silly cazy things and knitting while she does them. Be on your guard I have knitting needles!

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