Thursday, December 29, 2011


The wrapping paper's been recycled. The turkey's long gone (although lots of soup is waiting in the freezer!). The baking's been gobbled up and the ornaments will soon be packed away.

So what's left?

Laughter, love, memories... and a few goofy gifts that make me laugh every time I see them. As well as a recharged battery.

I pulled up my pre-nano story and decided to read through it up until the revising point I was at before my nano story absorbed me. Of course, I can't just read through - I have to tweak and edit and rearrange bits and pieces. It's slow going, but I'm loving the story. It still needs some work (and that last chapter...), but it's not bad at all.

Nice feeling!

How's your writing going in these last days of 2011? Any other recharged batteries out there?

Friday, December 23, 2011


A bunch of us over at From the Write Angle are sharing our thoughts on what Christmas means to us. Pop on over and share some of your best memories - mine involves a favourite family recipe!

I'll be taking the next few days or more off to enjoy some time with my family and friends. I hope you're able to do the same! May your days be filled with joy, wonder, love and laughter!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Getting to Know You...

I'm over at From the Write Angle today talking about how writers get to know their characters. I hope you'll pop on over and share your secrets!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Deja Vu

The Deja-vu blogfest is here! Our lovely hosts are DL Hammons, Katie Mills, Lydia Kang, and Nicole Ducleroir. The idea is to search and find a blogpost you think deserves a second look. I like this one because, even though I wrote it about 2 years ago, I feel the same.

"The idea is to write so that people hear it and it slides through the brain and goes straight into the heart."

-- Maya Angelou

My thoughts turned to Maya Angelou after hearing of her health scare. From what I can gather, she is still in hospital, but doing well. Hopefully that continues.

Maya has written so many wonderful things, and she is very quotable. I love the quote at the top of the post. To me, good story telling does just that. It touches the heart. I hope one day to be a strong enough writer to touch the heart of my readers. What an accomplishment that would be!

Many authors over the years have touched my heart. I vividly remember reading the Anne of Green Gables series when I was a child. Anne Shirley is a character who has stayed with me for years. I've reread her stories, and passed those books on to my daughter and my students. Anne's gutsy, optimistic, fun-loving, dramatic attitude has had so many readers fall in love with her over the years. Lucy Maud Montgomery is definitely one of those authors whose writing has arrowed straight to my heart.

How about you? Who was the first author or character who really touched your heart?

Monday, December 12, 2011

Untraceable & SR Johannes

I'm thrilled to be hosting SR Johannes, talented author of Untraceable, here today. Shelli's agreed to answer some questions and give us some insights into the way things work for her!

What’s your favorite part of the writing process?
That moment when everything clicks and you can't type fast enough and the story is falling into place and you don’t want to stop because it feels so good that you had a breakthrough after months of writing crap. I love that.

Do you have your own writing spot in the house? What’s it like?
It’s my office. Jealous? Don’t be…

Because it also acts as a storage area for unread ARCS, a place for unfiled bills to stack, a place where kids want to play on the computer. The recycling room for all things paper. It’s also a place where Hubby can’t keep his side of the partner desk clean! Arg.

How do you feel about writing in public (coffee shop or library)?
I’m not good at it. I have ADHD so I get easily distracted.

In coffee shops - I have this bad habit of drinking coffee. Go figure. Then I get all wired up and can’t focus because heaven forbid if I ate because coffee is so much better for me than muffins. So I start listening to other people’s conversations and getting involved in their lives in my head.

In libraries, I can’t talk out loud to myself, which is what I do when I write. So librarians would hate me because I am “crazy lady who talks to herself” writer.

At least if I get distracted at home – it can be productive like laundry or cleaning or eating or Googling. :)

And a couple of quick questions just for fun:

Favourite beverage?
Morning - coffee with flavored cream
Mid-day - Sweet tea (I force myself to drink some water just to feel healthy)
Night (well not EVERY night) – wine or very dirty martini

Favourite season?
Fall. I love to be cozy in sweaters and jeans and UGGs. Then again, I wear jeans and UGGs all year long. And I wonder why Top Model hasn’t called. Hm.

Favourite animated character?
Oh gosh. I’m a mom so this is hard b/c THERE. ARE. SO. MANY. I think the characters in Despicable Me and Ice Age movies are hilarious. But overall, I always loved the Pink Panther. (Great choice!)

Favourite TV show?
Right now? Iron Chef and Chopped. I love reality shows that are competitions. I love Modern Family and Terra Nova. Overall I loved Ally McBeal and Friends (Am I showing my age yet?)

Great answers! :)
Thanks so much for visiting, Shelli! If you haven't picked up Untraceable yet, you should (paperback, Kindle, Smashwords)! It's a fabulous YA adventure story with all kinds of twists and turns. Check out my review here.

So, what's your answer to one of those quick questions?

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Leap of Faith

It doesn't take much. A look. A word. A non-response.

All your carefully built confidence comes crumbling down. That risk you took - that teeny tiny step towards the next level - suddenly seems like a ridiculous stretch. And the chasm is widening while you're in mid-leap.

You can't sprout wings to reach the other side. You can't go back.

So, you fall.

A long way.

The crash hurts. A lot.

You get up, pout about those bruises for a minute. Maybe two. Then you face a choice. Go backwards to safety. Or forwards to the unknown.

Not much of a choice really. You take a deep breath, put away the pout, and take that first step. Forward. Up the next ridge. Up into the future. To the next risk.

A little warily, but a little wiser too.

Building the strength to make the next leap of faith.

Alex J Cavanaugh hosts the Insecure Writer's Support Group the first Wednesday of the month. Check out his blog for a list of all the participants.

How do you recover from those falls?