Saturday, May 26, 2012


The always lovely Laurel Garver tagged me with the Lucky 7 meme that's been floating around. Thanks Laurel :)

The rules are:
1. Go to page seventy-seven of your manuscript.
2. Go down seven lines.
3. Post the next seven lines, sentences, or paragraphs on your blog for all to enjoy/laugh at/whatever.
4. Tag seven new writers.
So, here we go...

Some people ate comfort food, she sang comfort songs. Dolly Parton, Shania Twain, the Eagles. Because she’d been thinking of her dad, she also played Willie Nelson and good old Johnny Cash.
            The clock showed four o'clock when she decided she might be able to sleep. Besides, her numb fingers and aching shoulder needed a break. She reached for a light, hesitated, then left them all on.
            Curled into the comfortable chair, she kept her eye on the door.

I didn't even cheat - that's the right page and everything! I won't tag anyone specifically (that would be following one too many rules for me!), but I'll leave it open. If you'd like to play along, consider yourself IT!

So, what comfort songs do you have?

Monday, May 21, 2012


I'm over at From the Write Angle today talking about the Online Writer's Toolbox tab we have over there. I have one site I use to help me during the 'slash and burn' editing phase. Can you guess what it is? Pop on over and let me know what sites you use to help you out when you're editing or researching or writing or...

In other news, I won a lovely leather journal from Sharon Mayhew over at Random Thoughts. Sharon had a random giveaway to support Angela & Becca's RAOK too. The awesomeness just keeps spreading!

So, instead of 1 critique, I'm going to offer my thoughts to 2 of the people who commented on my last post. Winners are Linda at LD Masterson and Miss Jack Lewis Baillot over at However Improbable. If you lovely ladies would like to send me either your query or first 10 pages, I'd love to have a look and give you my thoughts!

Hope to see over at From the Write Angle!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012


The nicest thing happened to me on Monday morning. Lovely Lisa Gail Green over at Paranormal Point of View offered me a Random Act of Kindness in honour of Angela and Becca over at The Bookshelf Muse. These 2 wonderful ladies celebrated the release of their book The Emotion Thesaurus with an amazing Random Act of Kindness Blitz. All over the bloggy-verse, people performed amazing acts of kindness. Incredible stuff! AND the ladies are offering up a gift or two to everyone at their blog!

Anyway, Lisa offered me a critique - I'm thrilled with such a great opportunity! And now I'm going to pay it forward twofold. :)

First, I'd like to do a shoutout to my two critique buddies. They are amazing ladies who are incredibly bright and have eagle eyes when it comes to critiquing! They're also kind, generous and fun! I joined Agent Query Connect as a total newbie and lucked into a crit group with these two. They've taught me so much! Here's a little more about them:

Jean Oram writes chick lit and contemporary romance. She's also working on a chapter book for kids that has a fabulous premise. She's got an agent for a nonfiction project that revolves around her It's All Kids' Play website and blog. There are about a bazillion ideas for parents on this site - you'll love it!

Calista Taylor has published steampunk romances (Virdis and Devil on a Sparrow's Wing) and a grim reaper romance (JACK). She also has the Steampunk Your Wardrobe craft book coming out with Fox Chapel Publishing in the fall. In addition, Cali creates fabulous book covers!

Both Jean and Calista are also part of the From the Write Angle Blog team. Please visit these 2 lovely ladies and say Hi! :)

Second, I'd like to offer up my own critique for someone who comments. Please know I have absolutely NO credibility other than my own experiences (and putting out the offer is making me extremely nervous)! I'm not sure how valuable my input might be, but, sometimes an extra set of eyes is welcome. I have more experience critiquing queries, but I'm willing to look at the first 5 or 10 pages instead. Whichever the winner chooses...if anyone is willing to take a risk on me! Let me know in the comments if you are interested and I'll select a random winner on my next post. Because I don't blog on a schedule, I don't know when that will be - but probably in a couple of days! :)

Thanks again to Lisa, Angela and Becca!

What's one of your favourite random acts of kindness?

Monday, May 14, 2012

First Loves Blogfest

Alex J Cavanaugh is at it again! Another great blogfest. If you haven't met Alex yet (is that possible???), hop on over to his blog to say hi and grab the list for other participants!

First Movie Love
It has to be The Wizard of Oz. My older sister hated it - especially the flying monkeys! - but I fell in love from the first scene. The evil lady trying to hurt Toto, the caravan, the pig pen and the guys! Then, when the movie changed to colour, it was pure magic! The Scarecrow is, of course, my favourite character! Can't watch it without singing along! :)

First Band Love
(So glad you didn't say singer, Alex - that's a little embarrassing!) I listened to solo artists for the most part, and mostly pop music, but the first band I fell in love with was Queen. Bohemian Rhapsody was my favourite. I learned to play (most of) it on the piano. Pretty much wore out that album!

First Book Love
The first book I remember really getting to my heart was Little Women. I was pretty young. As soon as I finished it, I started reading again - hoping THIS time, Beth wouldn't die. When it happened the 2nd time, I was heart broken. Again.

First Person Love
I'm one of the lucky ones - I'm still married to the first guy I fell in love with. Crushes now? Different story. :) There was a guy named John (or Jim?) in grade 6 who had the best hair! Can't remember much about John himself, but I can still picture that hair! Sixth graders aren't known for the depths of their feelings after all!

How about you? Any first loves you'd like to share?

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Non-Mom Moms

I'm one of the lucky ones. I grew up in a family with lots of love. I still have my mom and we still spend a lot of time together. Not everyone's so lucky.

Mother's Day always makes me think of the kids I've worked with over the years who don't have moms who live with them (or don't have them at all). Thankfully, most of them have someone in their life who takes on that role to help them through.

You don't have to be a mom to be a mom ... if you know what I mean. :)

Some of my favourite non-mom moms from my favourite stories are:

  •  Matthew & Marilla from Anne of Green Gables - they pulled off a great tag-team mom for the lonley little girl and showed her how to love and be strong
  • Gandalf in LotR - he really takes care of Bilbo and makes him a stronger, better person
  • The Receiver of Memory in The Giver - Jonas has never experienced love. It's an un-used emotion in the dystopian community. The Receiver gives Jonas memories and strength and courage and hope .. and love
  • Mrs. Beale in Maniac Magee - she takes in this runaway kid from the other side of the town and treats him like her own. She ignores the customs of her town and not only loves him, she gives him the thing he wants/needs more than anything else in the world - an address.
Moms make you better, stronger, happier people. They give you the skills required to be an adult. They give you unconditional love and a kick in the pants when you need it. Thanks Mom!

How about you? Who are some of your favourite non-mom moms?

Monday, May 7, 2012

Reflecting on A to Z

It's May and we have survived the A to Z challenge! Yay!!!! Today is Reflection Day. Here are my thoughts...

  • I didn't get to visit as many people as I hoped. I thought I'd find 2 or 3 new bloggers each day. But keeping up with the comments on my own blog and visiting my non-AtoZ friends was enough for me to handle
  • I didn't write as much as I hoped
  • I am pooped! :)
  • I met a LOT of new bloggy friends with fabulous blogs I will continue to enjoy!
  • I gained followers - I'm really not good at paying attention to numbers, but I gained at least 20 new friends
  • it was a TON of fun! There were so many interesting themes and posts. Loved seeing a different side of my bloggy friends.
  • I love completing a challenge :)
  • I don't use blog badges and banners, but I really liked the ones that someone created - they were fun and fresh
  • I liked the widget-thingy I found on Matt's blog (and a few more I can't remember) that popped me to a surprise blog. Found lots of fun people that way
  • I'm SO impressed by the co-hosts and how many posts I saw them visit. WOW!!! Kudos all!
Next Year???
  • a definite maybe! :) (I do have a spreadsheet started with possible topics for the letters...)
So, do you like challenges? If you did this challenge, what was the very best part?

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Word Hunt

"Any word you have to hunt for in a thesaurus is the wrong word. There are no exceptions to this rule." ~ Stephen King

Love this quote. Probably because I'm not a big fan of using the thesaurus myself. :)

To be fair, I do use the thesaurus now and again. When I was writing that steampunk story, I used it a lot. I created tons of new devices and words in that story, and I used the thesaurus a lot to help me create names for the tinkerings. Lots of fun.

But when I'm revising and editing, I don't use the thesaurus much. When I find myself repeating a word (which sadly happens too often - but that's a subject for another post...), I tend to scrap the sentence or the paragraph and rewrite it to avoid the word. It doesn't always work, but it helps.

I know lots of writers who use the thesaurus a lot. I've often felt somehow less because I don't. So when I first saw that King quote, it made my day!

Knowing more now, I realize we all have our different styles and ways of doing things. Not only is this okay, it's what makes us all unique and interesting. If we all wrote the same way, I'm sure our stories would be similar too - and no one wants that!

So, how about you, are you a word hunter?