Sunday, December 31, 2006

2006 Year in review!

Well only a few hours left of 2006. It's been really tough year personally but I have had a few good things in the writing part of my life.

The year started off well when my story "Papa's Little Angel" won second place for short fiction in the LCC division of the L.A.N.D. writing contest. And after talking about it for some time Jenni and I officially began writing "Behind the Naugahyde". I was also very excited when my short-short story "Sweaty Palms" was published in the September 2006 issue of Writer's Post Journal.
Not to mention that Jenni and I received three letters from agents requesting to see more of "Behind the Naugahyde" and was started.
I would have completed NaBloPoMo by posting everyday during the month of November but I missed one post and I also started a new, not yet titled, novel but did not finish NaNoWriMo or NaNoPloMo. And I received 89 rejection notices this year.

Last night I switched to the blogger beta version. I'm not sure how long it will take me to tag my post but I'll try to work on it.

Hope everyone has a safe and very happy New Year!

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Not quite done

Well the New Year is near here and I don't think I'll have my Nanowrimo/fimo book done. That's okay with me because the goal of Nanowrimo got me started on a project I might have put off and the same goals don't work for everyone. So I'll be okay. Sure it would have been nice to end the year with a finished book but you can't leave behind everything from the past year.
Besides just about every book I've read about writing a novel says that three months is the average time for completing a novel in which case I'm doing okay.

I hope to post a year-in-review kind of thing tomorrow but I'm not sure if I'll get a chance to. Once I'm done with this post I'm going to switch to the new and improved blogger version. Wish me luck!

It's a Wonderful Gift(s)!

Today a box full of wicked cool stuff arrived at my door step. It was a writer's dream come true. It included a cute little bin to organize my office with, tons of envelopes so I can stop whining that I couldn't send out submissions due to the lack of them(envelopes), as well as postage stamps to also prevent the same whining. I also got pens and a notebook for all of my bad ideas and white out to get rid of the evidence that proves I actually came up with an idea that awful. There was lots of other wonderful stuff in it to. I'll start the New Year off with no excuses as to why I'm getting nothing done so I guess I'll have to actually do something.
Although the best gift of all was really the thought put into each item. Obviously, the sender has been reading my constant griping about my lack of supplies and thought that would be something useful to give me. It also seems the gracious gift giver doesn't believe that sending me a ton of writing supplies is a waste, which makes me feel pretty good.
It could also be a hint that I need to finish my part of the next three chapters of Behind the Naugahyde!

Thanks again, Jenni!

Sometimes I think life isn't that great then wonderful people remind me of how lucky I am.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Weird dreams

I had two of the weirdest dreams last night. Actually they were both dreams that made perfect sense not like crazy dreams where you're you but you're not you because you look like your great aunt Mildred's dog and you're at your house but it's not your house because it looks like the inside of a T.V. They weren't anything weird like that. I guess I would qualify them as weird because they were perfectly clear but they were both so different.
In the first I was me and I had just gotten divorced (little weird there since I'm not married) and I was trying to learn how to swim.
The next I was a police officer who was assigned to patrol a haunted hotel and I was running from the paranormal activity after watching it kill everyone in the hotel.
I have no idea how I ended up having two dreams so completely different during the same night. The second dream about the hotel made me wake up and I wanted to go back to sleep. I couldn't though because I kept thinking I really needed to write these things down before I forget because I might need them for a story one day.

Nanofimo: 20460 + 29438 = 49898

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

It was a dark and stormy night

A while ago I got a book with advice from writers for writers. The main writer giving advice is a writer that has faced more rejection than I can count and has done it all with people reading about it daily. That writer is Snoopy. Often people read the Peanuts comic strips and read how he got yet another rejection notice or just watched as he sat atop his dog house typing away.
The book itself doesn't have anything about techniques or what to do or not to do. It's a just a book full of inspirational stories and a few words of advice that writers picked up on their long struggles through publication.
I love this book and I skim through it quite often when I feel like giving up. I try to use what ever piece of knowledge my random gaze happens upon to get through whatever writing problem I have at the time.
Sure it doesn't tell me how to write a best-selling novel but it's the best writing book I've read. It's stuff most writer's know, they just need to be reminded of now and again.

"Some nights were dark. Some nights were stormy. Some shots rang out. Some maids screamed. Some more editors sent rejection slips."
-Snoopy (from Snoopy's Guide to the Writing Life)

Nanofimo: 18770 +29438= 48208

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

If only

Well my plan was to send Jenni my part of the next three chapters of Behind the Naugahyde for her Christmas present. Unfortunately, three hours that could have been used for writing were spent with a DSL tech support person that asked me to restart my computer and modem about 500 times. Clearly 500 was the charm because I am back on-line.

I also could have spent the two hours that I was at the movie for writing but it was my vacation so give me a small break please.
I went to see Eragon. All I'm going to say is that I wasn't too impressed so please stop saying " move over Harry Potter."
I had read both Eragon and Eldest already. I won't say too much about what I thought because I hate to critique other writers. Although, I do get a little frustrated with these particular books sometimes. Not because they are poorly written, readers can judge that for themselves. It's just that the writer was 15 when he started writing the first one and 17 when he got published. An amazing accomplishment right? Well his parents own the publishing company. Maybe the book is worthy of all that it has achieved, I'm not one to judge.
I just think of all those writers that have struggled for years with novels that could have been some of the greatest literature the world has ever seen but they just never sent the right submission at the right time. Maybe they sent it to the wrong person, maybe it got thrown away by an assistant that doesn't know anything about literature, maybe it got thrown out because the format was against company guidelines, maybe they just caught the publisher on the wrong day, who knows?
You have to wonder what great writing the world is missing out on because the author's parents didn't own a publishing company.

Anyway enough crankiness. I'm continuing to make a dent in my novel but I'm not sure that any goals will be met before the end of this year. At least I was writing though.

Although I do have one goal to accomplish before the new year: clean my desk. I already lost the notebook that I wrote my character name list. It's a mess.

Nanofimo: 17710 + 29438= 47148

Sunday, December 24, 2006


I'm not sure if I'll get a chance to post tomorrow so I wanted to take this chance to wish everyone a Merry Christmas. Jenni and I also prepared a small gift for our loyal readers. There's a new Christmas Nauga Note posted on . Although everyone's probably out enjoying themselves and won't see this until after the holiday.
And as always, sorry for the pop-ups. Maybe if everyone's good and signs the guest book, Santa might spring for a pop-up free website next year!


Thursday, December 21, 2006

Christmas Vacation!

Today was the first day of my five-day holiday vacation. Yet somehow I ended up back at work to get my boss a Christmas gift and explain the inventory procedure. How does this happen?
I know that the next few days are going to be filled with holiday extravaganzas but I plan to get a lot of writing done. I think I'm already off to a good start having already done more writing today than I have the four previous days combined, maybe more.

I work in the field of shoes so I already think about them a lot and you can imagine how many characters I can come up with at work when I put the shoe project into affect. I also find myself thinking about other people's shoes. I saw a crossing guard helping children across the street in shoes that were nearly falling apart and I started thinking about how they got that way and why the man was wearing those particular shoes. Are his shoes worn out just from helping children across the street or does he have to walk everywhere? Are those just the pair of shoes he wears for the job because there really is no reason to wear nice shoes, did he step in a puddle with his good shoes and have to wear his old pair for the day or can he just not afford shoes and if so why not? It really gets the mind thinking.

I also had some really odd thought provoking questions about shoes and death but maybe I'll save that for another post.

I'm trying to get a Christmas present ready for my blog readers but no promises. And I'm also of thinking about finally switching over to blogger beta for the New Year. Is there really a better time for change?

Nanofimo:12570+ 29438=42008

Monday, December 18, 2006

In their shoes

Today's post I wanted to give a tribute to teachers. Teachers that don't just go by the book. They actually want to teach you about something. Teachers that go out of there way to do something that you'll never forget.
I know a teacher like this. I've never attended a class of hers but she has taught me quite a few things. And I have to say that she told me about an amazing project that she came up with for her students ( I don't want to give too many details since it's not mine to tell) and I truly believe that it will teach the students something about themselves and others.
When I heard the idea for this project it occurred to me that I should steal this project and use it for my writing. It's a great way to come up with characters. So once again that teacher has taught me something and I'm not even one of her students.

In honor of great teachers ( and I hope I don't give away too much of a project that's not mine) the next time you see a pair of shoes I want you to think about who's shoes they were, are or will be and imagine walking in them, imagine being that person. Maybe you're a writer like me and you'll get a new character from it. Maybe you're a high school freshman that will learn something about a person you would never have given a second thought about.

And if you learn anything from it your life has now been touched by an amazing teacher who dared to think outside the textbook.

Thanks Ms. Alto!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

The name game

Today was my day off and I probably should have written a whole section of my book today if I had stuck to my pace. I didn't though. If only I had nothing to do but write. I only wonder how much I would have written by now.

I did start my writer on another short story today but I came to a halt early on. When I was trying to name the characters I realized that I was naming one of them something I had already named a similar character. It occurred to me that I had started and written a lot of stories, which means I had used a lot of names. So I decided to make a list of character names. I'm not sure I got all of them though. Sure I could use the same name twice in an entirely different story but that might get boring. And if I have fear of being boring why don't I just make up crazy names for everyone? The answer to that is that some characters just need to have boring, plain names.

I will admit that I occasionally think of people I know when writing characters and sometimes it's the same person for more than one character. I often try to give the character a name that is similar to the person. I don't mean that Jenni is Jenna or Penny. What I mean is Meg isn't Esmeralda. I'm not sure if that made sense to anyone other than me but it sounded good in my head.

Eventually I did get over my name problem and write some of my novel. Not really impressive but there's always hope for tomorrow.

NaNoFiMo: 8053 + 29438 = 37491

Close enough

Yahoo! Avatars

The shirt's a little late but I just made this and since I rarely use yahoo, I thought I'd post it here.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

A new goal

Well as my word totals show, NaNoFiMo is going as well as NaNoWriMo and by well I mean not well at all. I'm thinking that I need to just sit down and write an entire section at a time, since each section is a short story that my main character is writing and her thoughts about writing it. I know I can write a whole short story in a day because that use to be the result of my procrastination during my creative writing classes. The writing 1,000 words a day system isn't working for me. My former creative writing teachers tried to encourage me to set similar daily goals for myself but they just never worked for me. Probably because I have no self discipline but I'm just going to say it's because I like to break the rules and be different.

And you can now find me at .Although I haven't really put much more than my name on their yet. I usually add to these things a little at a time.
Thanks to Ragnell for the name suggestion!

NaNoFiMo: 6760 + 29438 = 36198

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Comic space?

Quick post-

I just read about this thing ComicSpace. It's like mySpace but for comic creators and fans, and obviously much better. I want to sign up but I need a user name. Any creative suggestions or should I just use some variation of my real name?

Friday, December 08, 2006

What did I write?

I know I didn't post yesterday but you couldn't expect that habit to last forever.

I was trying to work on Behind the Naugahyde but my scribbled notes were unclear to me. Also I remember stuff that isn't written in my notes which means I didn't write it down because I figured I'd remember or I didn't write it down because we had decided not to put it in the novel. So now I'm waiting for Jenni to clarify. As if she needed more to do.

Since today was pay day I ordered a few books that I hadn't been able to find. They are books I am hoping will help inspire my writing. One of them is related to the novel I'm currently working on and the other is for the novel I hope to work on after I finish my NaNo novel.

Yesterday I managed to get a little work done on my non-fiction articles. I also managed to fill quite a few pages of my personal journal with a detailed description of all the things going on in my life.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Cover shot

When I had blog writer's block last month, I was given a few lists of suggestions for blog post. One of those suggestions that I was too lazy to get to right away was pictures of my writing. I had my camera out today and tried to take pictures of my writing. Obviously pictures of a computer screen don't really work so well. And my writing on paper just turned out looking like blank paper. So I decided to try something else, a picture of me writing. However, since I usually look not so great while writing, well I usually look that way all the time, it's just a picture of my Beauty and the Beast pen doing all the work.

It's not too exciting but I try to keep Jenni happy and it was her request. Not that Jenni's request was boring, it's just my picture taking ability that lacks excitement.

And yes, I do know I hold my pen funny. I don't know why that's just how I've always held it.

What else did I do with my day? I didn't waste it. Check out the word count below.

NaNoFiMo: 5731 + 29438 = 35169

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Getting into writing

Stranger Than Fiction was a $3.50 movie today and so I decided to splurge. I love Emma Thompson and Will Ferrell and it's about writing so I was very excited.
It was funny but also sad and insightful. I won't give anything away but I never really thought about writing the way that Emma Thompson's character is forced to. What if your character was a real person and you decided their fate? Would you just write happy stuff all the time or would you sacrifice real people's happiness, health and lives for the sake of great literature.
Also the writer in the movie really gets into visualizing and feeling the things she's writing. Her ways of doing so were intriguing and almost had me wanting to try it by locking myself in my trunk.
I didn't lock myself in my trunk because there was no one to let me out but the writer in my NaNo novel was able to finish her short story that being locked in a trunk would have helped. And who knows maybe I will jump in the trunk before editing that part. I know the writer in my Nano novel will.

Just saw: Stranger Than Fiction

NaNoFiMo: 3099+29438=32537

Monday, December 04, 2006

Not just NaNoWriMo

I participated in NaNoWriMo last year and I thought about doing NaNoEdMo, which is in March, this year but didn't get around to it. I did NaNoWriMo again and added NaBloPoMo and have now carried on with NaNoFiMo. Then I got to thinking how many more of these goal oriented months are there? Quite a few.
This is what I got in order of month.

JaNoWriMo- writing a novel in the month of January since November can be a little hectic for some.
NaNoArtMo- has a goal of ten art projects in a month for artist. It can be any kind of art from sculpting to cooking, it just has to be creative.
NaNoWriYe- write an entire novel, set your goal between 50,000 to 3,000,000 words and finish it in a year.

NaNoEdMo- editing your NaNoWriMo novel (I'm sure you could do any novel).

Script Frenzy- (odd name, huh?) and it's for writing a screenplay in a month.

JulNoWriMo- write a novel in July in place or in addition to November or January.
NaNoMango- is for artist to draw any kind of sequential art ( not just manga) and occurs again in November as well.

NaNoWriMo- write a 50,000 word novel.
NaBloPoMo- post on your blog everyday for a month
NaPlWriMo- write a play in a month
NaGraNoWriMo- write a 175 page graphic novel in a month
NaNoPubYe- start with your NaNoWriMo novel and then try to get it published with in a year.
NaNoMang- Draw sequential art, also takes place in July

NaNoFiMo-write 30,000 words to finish an unfinished novel, usually from NaNoWriMo

Various start dates:
Book in a week-starts every Monday of the first full week of the month, set your own goal the beginning of the week.
Mad Challenge-is every other month, starting February and they post a different challenge each time.

So there are a ton of good challenges. Many I would participate in if they didn't all seem to fall in the same few months. Of course it might just be more beneficial for me to take the goals of these groups but put them in realistic months for me. Maybe I'll have to make a schedule for myself.

Just watched: Heroes
Just read: Every issue of 52 for the last five weeks (I'm catching up slowly)

On my mind

It's after midnight so technically I missed a day of posting. I don't care all that much since NaBloPoMo is over and my faithful readers still get their daily dose of bad writing.

I've been thinking about a novel lately. No it's not Behind the Naugahyde or my NaNo novel, although I do think about these but that's not what I was thinking about today.
Anyway, I think I've mentioned a few things about this novel before. I've had the idea for a while but I never tried writing it because I'm scared to write it.
The subject matter is a serious issue and I think if done well this book could make a difference. Like with most of my writing, I try to have a message, something I hope that the reader takes with them and thinks about. It's the power of the message that has me scared. I think it's very important. I really do think it could make people think if it was written well, I'm just scared I can't write it well. But I've been thinking about it more and more lately. I can't stop thinking about it sometimes. Bits and pieces that I couldn't figure out before are starting to fly together and I'm starting to think that it may be time.
Obviously, I'd wait until I'm done with my NaNo novel and hopefully have a good chunk of Behind the Naugahyde done. Then I'd have two completed(but not so good) novels and a half a novel's worth of experience to put toward this book and time to write it.
Or maybe I'll just keep putting it off.

Since NaNoFiMo doesn't have a grand website like NaNoWriMo, I'll post my word count here which is actually better. Now no one has to go to another website just to find out I didn't write anything today.

NaNoFiMo: 1499 + 29348= 30847

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Tougher than fiction?

I almost considered not posting today but I figured why ruin a good thing.

Yesterday was the first day in thirty days that I hadn't forced myself to write fiction. I did write though. I tried to work on researching, writing and a query letter for a few non-fiction articles. I'm not really into non-fiction but I think these ideas are pretty good. I'd like to get them published in a decent magazine so I'm trying to make sure that I not only write well but check my facts since I can't just make things up like I usually do.
I used to think fiction was harder to write because with non-fiction you really just have to lay out the facts in an interesting way. But now I realize that non-fiction you have to be creative at how you use those facts to make the biggest impact and you can't change the facts to make the story more intriguing. You have to work with what you have. Now I think both are equally tough to write.

Today, I worked all day and finally decorated my Christmas tree. I also kept getting side tracked by holiday movies, so this blog post is all I got done today. Everyone needs a little break though.

Friday, December 01, 2006

World AIDS Day

December 1st is here. I know I'm posting a little late in the day but you can always make a difference so be sure to check out 5 things you can do for World AIDS Day.

Now that NaNoWriMo is over I'm attempting NaNoFiMo. It's the goal of writing 30,000 words in the month of December. Most people join because novels are generally longer than 50,000 words so some times you complete NaNoWriMo but you have an unfinished story. I, however, am using it in to finish my story and hopefully add 30,000 words to my 29,438. And yes I realize I am an idiot and said yesterday I needed to write 800 words to get to half way when I meant I needed to type the 800 words to get to 30,000 which is more than half way.
NaBloPoMo is over as well. I did miss a day due to a technical mishap but I posted twice the next day. I also posted the day before and now, the day after so I think I did pretty well.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Bye, bye November

The day and the month are almost over. I'm hoping to work on the novel once I'm done posting here. I'd like to at least make it to half way which is only about eight hundred words so it is possible.
I feel a bit better today. Well enough to go out to the world's largest Christmas store and now I can sit at my computer.
Lately, I've been having trouble with keeping a one track mind when it comes to writing. For instance, I'm trying to write my novel for NaNo, also Behind the Naugahyde, blog every day, write a few non-fiction articles, edit my comic book script and then today I got inspired with ideas about a novel I've wanted to start for a long time but honestly I'm scared to write it(more on that during another post). I know it's crazy to work on so many things at once but I'm a person who really writes better when I'm in the mood of what I'm writing. I try to create that atmosphere of what I want to write by surrounding myself with books, music and movies of the same feeling but sometimes inspiration for one thing strikes and I'm afraid to put it on hold. What if I'm about to write the best thing I've ever thought of but I don't because I put it on hold to finish something else first?
I think I need therapy for writing. I have a lot of paranoias about it.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

I feel uck!

I woke up today feeling horrible. I stayed in bed all day because I could barely move and I missed work. I'm feeling a little better now but it's very uncomfortable to sit in my computer chair. I guess there's no need to point out that I got much of nothing done today which sucks because including writing I had a ton to do.
I'm not really sure what's got me feeling not well. The past few weeks have been stressful and my eating habits have been horrible. Who knows?
Tomorrow's the last day of NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo. Since I'm hoping to go to the world's largest Christmas store as well as the decorating, shopping, mailing, donating and other running around I had planned for today, I don't think I'll find time to write over 20,000 words.
While I am bummed that I didn't finish or even do better than last year, I did find out that there is NaNoFiMo, National Novel Finishing Month, which is December. That's my new goal and I accomplished that one last year without even knowing about NaNoFiMo.
I'm going back to bed and hoping to feel better tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Another class?

Only two days left. I can't believe how fast the year has gone. I just realized that fall semester is almost over and that means winter semester is nearly here.
Right now I really want to go back to school next semester, I'm just not sure how I'd pay for it or if I'd have time for it.
I miss school, at least the good classes where I actually learned something. The last class I had I felt lost in. Not because it was hard but because all you had to do was show up. I didn't feel like I was getting anything from it and most of the time it seemed like the professor was just talking about her life rather than the class.
That class made me want to take a break but I think I might see what's offered next semester.
I'm thinking of taking another writing class but I'm kind of on the line. The first writing class I ever took taught me a lot about the basics which I never realized I had forgotten. I took another class that forced me to write so much and I liked a lot of what I got from it but the last one I hated. Not because I wasn't doing well but I just didn't fit in. It's hard to explain without telling the long tale, but maybe I will someday.
I guess I'll have to think about it.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Comic book notes and nothing else

I didn't have a ton to do today but I still didn't get much writing done. I had an electrician here trying to fix the half of my house that doesn't have power(and is preventing the illumination of my Christmas tree). He kept asking me questions and I had to have my computer turned off while he worked so nothing got done. Then there was work.

A few days ago I mentioned how I had been thinking about my comic book script a lot. Today while at work I came up with some good ideas that I think will make the story a lot better and hopefully more interesting to artists. I filled four pieces of notebook paper with notes so at least I did something productive, even if it didn't help with my NaNoWriMo goal.

Speaking of comic books I still have a stack of borrowed stuff to read. I am so far behind.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Holidays and writing

Only four days left of NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo. Aside from my one little technical problem, I've done okay with the blogging. I might even try to stay in the blogging everyday habit after November is over. As for my novel, well I'm not even to 30,000 words so I doubt I'll finish in time but I will finish eventually. Last year I was at 41,610 words by December and I was able to finish my NaNoWriMo novel by the end of the year. It was the last day of the year, in fact.
That was the first novel I've ever completed. I never really mention it. While it was quite exciting to complete a novel I will be the first to admit it was horrible. It wasn't really the kind of story I normally write. The characters were really complex and I was really not ready to write about them. Maybe one day I'll tear it apart and hope to make something of it but for now it's at rest and I'm okay with that.

I do have to say that I wish that NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo were in different months. I mean not November. I just felt so swamped with holiday things that I lost a lot of good writing time and you really just can't put the holidays on hold.

The Nutcracker was terrific. It put me quite in the holiday spirit. I've never really thought about it but maybe one day I should try writing a holiday inspired story. I just love the Christmas season wouldn't it be awesome to write something that people make a family tradition like the Nutcracker and so many other wonderful things.
In my family it's a tradition to watch National Lampoons Christmas Vacation because anyone who knows us knows that movie is pretty much our family.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

No work, no party, but there will be a map.

Surprise! I guess I'm so use to always getting the crappiest schedule possible that I just assume that my schedule at work is the crappiest possible, but surprise to me, I don't work tomorrow. YAY! So I managed to talk my sister into going to the Nutcracker with me tomorrow since she couldn't go tonight. Then I skipped out on a birthday party and stayed home to write.
I'd like to say that skipping the birthday party was because of my total devotion to writing but that was only a small factor. The party was a 21st birthday of a co-worker. I wouldn't have known anyone else there and the co-worker, who I'm sure would have been too surrounded in friends to talk to me for more than two minutes, is someone that I have a hard time talking to at work. I won't go into more detail because I really don't like saying negative things, but perhaps some of the stories will find there way into story lines for some of the fictional characters of Behind the Naugahyde. Let's just say that the fact that the co-worker has not taken a few minutes to stop by and sign the guest book at is just one of the many reasons I didn't go. Plus it's a Saturday night in a college city bar and they don't even have a band, just booze.

Speaking of characters in Behind the Naugahyde, one of the suggestions was more stuff about the book. Sometimes posting these things is hard because I like to get Jenni's okay on everything before I post too much info. One of the ideas is to give a layout of the mall that Sole Comfort is in. Well first Sole Comfort is in a plaza and second there will be a map in the book.(I'll see what I can do about getting an exclusive sneak peak here or on the A very detailed map. Why you ask? Because their may be a battle between stores. Everyone has to chose a side. I can't put anything in stone because we still have to finish, edit and maintain suspense but the battle may include breaking and enter, stupidity, trespassing, stealing, eighty year-old security guards, the police ( and we're not talking fashion police), garbage diving, partial nudity, falling off of buildings, auto theft, kidnapping and cheap, ugly shoes that make your bunions hurt.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Too much work, too little writing.

I know I should have been writing but yesterday, after posting, I managed to go see Happy Feet. It's the first movie I've seen in a while and it was adorable. There was also a wicked cool Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix preview. Although the loud, annoying teenagers made me realize why I hate night/holiday/weekend movies(aside from the price). I'm all for being excited and showing appreciation for things that you love but fighting with your boyfriend on your cell phone is just rude.

I didn't attempt to shop today because I had to work. Tomorrow I work some more and I'm hoping I can talk someone into going with me to see the Nutcracker tomorrow night. Then I have to work again on Sunday and hopefully get my house decorated.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that I'm pretty sure I'm not going to get a lot of writing done the next few days. Although, I have been thinking about my comic book script a lot lately. I really wanted it to have a sarcastic humor but I've been sending it to potential artist who never get back to me about it. Maybe the script needs a redo, maybe I'm not sending enough of the script for them to get it, maybe they just don't get it or appreciate it or maybe I just completely suck at writing. I guess I'll have to figure out what to do and add it to the to do list.

Thursday, November 23, 2006


Well I've been up since dawn. We eat early so that you can fit in another meal with someone else's family. I'm tired and I haven't written a thing today. I have to work this weekend and find time to decorate my house so I'm not sure how much writing I will get done. Don't worry I'll still post and tomorrow's post won't be such a snooze fest.
It was pretty mellow for this year. Although there were a few dramatic moments. I'll save that story for another time. I'll just say for now that they mostly had to do with my sister trying to learn how to cook.

I hope everyone had a Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Where did the day go?

I'm tired. I've spent the whole day at the doctor with my dad , at work and getting ready for Thanksgiving. I'm hosting for my family and doing all the cooking. No one else will or can do it.
I tried to fit in some writing while waiting for the doctor but my dad kept talking to me. Until very recently my father and I didn't really talk often so the conversations now sound like we just met. It's kind of weird. It makes me feel bad that I didn't make an effort to talk to him more.
Anyway, while I started to write my dad asked me what I was writing. I said a book. He told me I should write westerns, then maybe he'd read it. Then he went into a long story about how he loves Louis L'Amour novels and has read them all. In my life I've never seen my dad read anything other than the sports section of the newspaper and Nascar magazines. Even when I was little he would talk about books that he had read. I would check them out of the library for him to read but he never touched them.
Well since he'll be sitting in a lot of waiting rooms for a while I thought about buying him some Louis L'Amour books for Christmas. Then maybe I can get a few seconds to write while I'm waiting with him.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

A delay caused by a turkey tale

I'm running late once again. Looks like I have about twenty-three minutes. This time I was updating my live journal with the attempted turkey thievery that was a part of my Thanksgiving holiday a few years back. I didn't post it here because it's not about writing.

Well I'm done with everything from my suggestions except pictures of my writing, which I keep forgetting to take and obviously there isn't time for this post, and my thoughts on Civil War which I still haven't read and once again no time before I need to post tonight.

I feel bummed that I don't get as much writing done as I would like. I know everyone says that you have to make time. I really just can't figure out how. I know; watch less TV, go to less movies and all kinds of things. If you notice lately I hardly ever put a TV show or movie that I've just watched at the bottom of my post. That's because I don't even have time for those things. And believe me I'd love to give up my job so that I could write, but I gotta feed Kreeg.

Sorry this post lacks excitement. I'm horrible under pressure and I think I put all my energy into the turkey post.

Monday, November 20, 2006

November what?

Yikes! November is flying by. Along with it so is NaNoWriMo. I've actually written more this month than I have in a long time but it's still not enough. I knew it would be tough to take on NaNoWriMo along with everything else but I thought it was worth a shot.

Currently, my writer is working on another short story. She gets carried away in these crazy thoughts about how she came up with the idea and how the things going on her life help or hinder her writing. Sometimes when writing it I wander really far off of my outline. Now I know why Jenni hates outlines.

Meanwhile, I'm still posting everyday. I've also been working on my parts of Behind the Naugahyde. I've updated my live journal a few times and hope to at least do one more in the next day or two. I'd like to finally share the attempted turkey thievery that occurred a few Thanksgivings ago. There are also crazy long e-mails that I write to Jenni. They are filled with stories from work, life and about the book of course. And I also dabbled a little bit in the non-fiction, but I've put that on hold for now. Mostly I've filled the pages of my personal journal.
I like to hand write in it. The computer always seems to cold and impersonal for your deepest thoughts. Although I wish I did type it because I'm curios how many words I've written in it in the month of November.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

More like fiction.

Anyone who knows me well enough to hear the everyday tales of my life knows that my life could in fact be a work a fiction. Not to say that my life is full of action, excitement and adventure. My life is more chaotic, I guess. That's another one of the many reasons I like to write. My life really could make a decent book. Not because of me though, I'm not that intriguing.
Mostly what makes my life so fiction-like is the people. My family, friends and a lot of customers I've waited on have all been part of or are tales that some people don't even believe when I tell them.
Sometimes I wish I could just write everything I know about certain people. What a good story that would make. Yet I can't. Sure it would be a great story, but what about those people? I'll admit generally the people with the best stories are people I don't like so putting their stories out there and possibly making a profit off of it would be quite excellent. I'm just not that kind of person. So I have to take little bits and pieces of those people and put them here or there. No one will ever know the real story but no one will get hurt either. Also I tend to think that the people that make the best stories are also the kind of people to sue you as well.

I try to exaggerate situations and combine people so that they are in fact fiction, but I usually like the real version better and I wish I could share it. Especially when it comes to serious situations in my life. I wish I could write the truth because it's like therapy for me. There are some people I want the whole world to see for what they really are, but it would hurt others and I can't do it.

Now when people read Behind the Naugahyde or any of my writing, they can wonder whether that really happened or if that person truly existed. And I'll be happy and disappointed that I'm the only one that really knows for sure.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

What is behind the 'hyde'?

I've almost covered everything on my list of suggestions. I still have to take pictures of my writing but I'm a little to tired to do that tonight. I also managed to borrow a stack of comics from my friend Fred, so perhaps I'll finally get around to answering the Civil War question one day.

So I guess that leaves me to give details about Behind the Naugahyde. I guess I could first explain the title. Most of the novel takes place in shoe store, more importantly a shoe store where the employees have to get your shoes for you rather than the new trendy stores that just have them sitting on the sales floor in boxes. Apparently it is inappropriate for customers to be able to see in the stock room so strip curtains are hung up to keep the customers from seeing the staff as they make gestures that show appreciation for a customer who is "just looking" at two minutes to close. These lovely hunter green curtains, that compliment the pinkish colored carpet, are made out of none other than the material that was all the rage in the eighties, Naugahyde.
And in the book the reader will find out exactly what happens behind those lovely strips of Naugahyde.

As for my NaNoWriMo novel, well those watching my profile know that it's not going so well. I'm sure it's still possible that I could make it but not likely. I'm not giving up though, and I'll still write the novel no matter what.

Friday, November 17, 2006

The best shoes ever!

Oh my, I'm almost out of ideas from the suggestion box. That's okay though. I'll think of something but first let me do another suggestion.

I've been asked to describe the best shoes for writing the next great American novel. This is a tough question because I take shoes very seriously. To be honest I don't usually have shoes on when I'm writing in my office. Although writing is work and for work I prefer Dansko. I have grown a bit partial to Earth as well. But I have to say the ultimate creative shoe is the Converse All Star, Chuck Taylors, high tops of course. They come in so many colors and patterns that it's near impossible to not find one that fits the mood of your story. They also have a lot of history about them. They've been around for a rather long time, 1917 I believe. Originally a basketball shoe, they have been worn for many different things.
They've been featured in Save by the Bell, House, Back to the Future, Rocky, Grease, Fast and the Furious, Sky High, To Kill a Mockingbird (the movie), and Sin City( the comic and the movie) just to name a few. Also popular among rock bands, Kurt Cobain and even mentioned in a song by Snoop Dogg. Never really a shoe that is worn by the popular, fashion trendy crowd, yet it has stayed in demand for nearly ninety years.
It's got character, style and is loved by all. I think it is definitely a shoe that helps the imagination soar. And if I'm not writing at home it's most likely what I'm wearing. I currently have five pairs myself and my grandma has pink ones (pretty wicked huh?). Although by far the coolest I've ever seen, are ones I don't actually have (and another reason they are awesome shoes). This design was originally made in 1989 and just recently brought back in 2005.
You can design your own on their website so we might have to have some made for the crazy shoe, Behind the Naugahyde book tour!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Punks and favorite chapters

Okay another close call. I was posting on live journal first. Why? Because I wrote a punk story that I wanted to link to since it was on my blog suggestion list.
I have to say that I did not do that story justice. Jenni, my partner in writing and crime, did a fantastic job and probably could have told the story much better. She has a way with dramatic retellings.

Another suggestion from the box was about my favorite chapter in Behind the Naugahyde. Well we haven't finished it completely so it's hard to say. I can say my favorite chapter so far is six. Mostly because it's rather adventurous and crazy. Jackie, who I'm a bit partial to, really shows her kick-buttness. I do think the chapters we are working on right now seem pretty awesome. I am becoming particularly fond of chapter eight, (Jackie=bad ass! and the infamous shopping cart finally makes its debut) but I have a feeling that once Jenni is done with her part of chapter nine, I will probably love that as well since I am a bit partial to the holiday season, especially when it involves drunkenness. And I hope to like the last few chapters since they will most likely be full of scandal and debauchery. Who doesn't love that?

Well I better wrap it up since 12:00 fast approaches. Although I must leave with this thought, and I apologize because I believe this is really getting too much mention. I feel bad for writer's who work hard, truly struggle to put out good work and end up with nothing in the end, while O.J. Simpson gets rich off a book titled "If I Had Done It This Is How I Would Have Done It"(or something like that). I really hope no one picks that book up.

Just watched: The Office, 30 Rock

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Sad story :(

Another slightly early post for me. And a not so happy day for animals. It's the start of rifle deer hunting season. Also here in Lansing, 18 pit bulls that were bred as fighting dogs, were found in an abandoned house today. The owner can't be found and is believed to have gotten away with more dogs.

About a year and a half ago, a little pit bull wondered up to the door of my home. The right side of her face was hanging off and her neck was ripped open. She had no collar or tags. I really wanted to help her but I didn't have the money to take her to the vet so my only choice was animal control. The officer who picked her up said it was clear she was bred for fighting. When I gave her to them she was hot to the touch and it was obvious her wounds were infected. The shelter doesn't adopt pit bulls out because they're too aggressive. So even if they could have saved her, they wouldn't. I only had her for a day but I was heart broken by it.
The night they took her I wrote a story about her. I've just recently started my attempt to get it published. Getting this story published is important to me. It has a message that I want to share. Not just about abusing animals but about giving them up just because someone is tired of them. Even if I get one person thinking, it would be worth it.
That's one of the reasons I write. I have some crazy dream that it can make a difference.

Sorry about the seriousness. It's quite a change from the past few post. Don't worry, I'll be back to more suggestion topics tomorrow. And I think I might even post a crazy but true punk on my live journal(I'll be sure to post a link).

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Kreeg rules and jobs suck!

Another day of blogging and I still have several suggestions to tackle.

Quickly I'll cover a few things that Jenni just brought up. The name "grapenuts" is clearly just plain nuts and there is nothing else that can be said.
There are several reasons pants split. Maybe the pants shrunk while they were being worn. Maybe you sat on a nail. Maybe you were wearing Dansko's on ice and your feet slid in two different directions.
And to make split pea soup you have to split the peas. Duh!

Now on to previous suggestions.

Today I'll start with Kreeg. He is my best friend and biggest fan. He always sits with me while I'm writing and he never has any bad comments about anything I read to him. There are so many good things to say about him that it would take forever. One important thing about Kreeg is that he too is a writer. Although he is a dog of few words he does blog those few words on .

Now I guess I'll cover the jobs I've had to work while I struggle as a writer.
My first job was as a waitress in a pancake/burger style diner. I worked there for three years. I met some great people as far as customers were concerned and I got to work with all my friends. The only thing that sucked was my boss. He was a real strict, cheap ass. He would charge little old couples that could barely eat one fry a piece for an extra plate if they wanted to split a meal. He would tell the wait staff to ask people to leave if they stayed too long and were just drinking coffee, even if the whole place was empty. Once a woman found a hair in her food that was clearly from his balding, uncovered head and he wouldn't give her a refund. I saw him slap someone that worked there. He made his employees cry all the time and never apologized. He let his wife take all the tables and leave all her dishes to be bussed by the other waitresses, leaving them with no tips and a ton of work. He once fired a girl because he wouldn't let her take drinks to a table since it was his granddaughter(who worked there)'s turn for a table, and the girl told the customers why she couldn't bring them out when they were yelling at her for their drinks. He had a guy who was his manager for sixteen years and one day he told him "I'm cutting your pay and hours so my grandson can be manager". Once he told me that if I didn't like the way he treated me I could walk out the door. I quit in the middle of my Sunday morning shift and by the end of the week had convinced seven other people to leave with me. Damn the man!

I once worked for another diner with a creepy boss who wrote me a bunch of bad checks. It took the credit union three months to notice his account was closed and by that time I was over $2,500 negative.

I also worked on a dock of a department store. They kept promising to promote me to the sales floor but that never happened. They would ask me to skip class or call into my other job when they had extra large shipments. They gave me a five cent raise. I also got expired coupons to their store for my Christmas bonus.

I worked at a restaurant where I had to dress like a milkman and dance every half hour on the half hour. People get pissed when they have to wait for their ketchup because you're dancing.

I also worked at a bar where the owners were evil. No joke. They called me stupid because I once put the wrong drinks on the wrong bill and the manager had to take ten seconds to fix it. They charged me for a mistake order when a cook put sauce on something, that the menu didn't mention came with sauce, because I didn't specifically ask for "no sauce". They made people pay for an appetizer when it came out after they were done eating their dinner(you can imagine what that does for a server's tips). When I started I told them I was in a wedding and needed a weekend off three months in advance. The week of the wedding the schedule went up and I was scheduled; I went out to "lock my car doors" and never came back.

Those are just the highlights of the jobs. There were more awful moments and more awful jobs. I could write a novel and I'm sure I will. Now I sell shoes which isn't too bad.

My favorite job was working at KB toystores. I had no complaints except that they went out of business.

Oh what a wonderful dream of being able to write full time and not have to have crappy jobs. Although they have given me wonderful ideas for writing. I can think of at least one situation or person from each job that has given me a great idea for a story.

More from the suggestion box tomorrow.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Thanks for the suggestions!

Wow! I got so many super ideas for blog post that I don't even know which one to start with. Of course, I'm not sure that I could fill a whole blog on some of the topics, not because they are not good ideas but rather I'm just not that awesome.
So I'll talk about a few of them this time and then maybe a few more next time.

For starters when I am writing I like to snack on take 5 candy bars. This has just become a new addiction since I gave them out on Halloween and then got stuck with so many. I also like cool ranch doritos but only when I'm a using pen and paper rather than typing. This is because I can eat with my left hand and have no problems. The doritos often leave seasoning on my fingers that can be a nuisance if you're typing with both hands. I also like toast because you get like 20 servings for a dollar, peanut butter right from the jar and gummy bears.

On Oprah I will wear a nicely tailored black pant suit and make it my own by wearing a cool baby-tee that has a super hero or some crazy thing on it and also wear dress boots that are a bright color that is also in the shirt I'm wearing, perhaps red.
Jenni will wear a nice suit possibly green because it just looks fabulous on her and she will wear a crazy color, vegan friendly pair of shoes, because crazy shoes will be a must on our promotional tour. People will come from afar to see what crazy shoes we will wear next.

Llamas spit.

For To Kill a Mockingbird discussion topics of chapters 8 & 9: Why did Boo Radley decide to leave the security of his home just to put a blanket on Scout? Did Francis deserve to get punched in the teeth? These aren't good questions they were just the best I could come up with after skimming through the chapters rather quickly.

I'm not sure who the mysterious hero is in 52. The last time I read it (thanks to my brokeness) I think Lex said it was his son, but maybe I'm not remembering correctly.

My life is no longer without a car but when I was without it I felt completely useless.

As for the cold. I love it. I hate heat. I love dressing in layers. I love sweaters, mittens, scarves, boots and coats. I like snow falling. I like warm blankets and hot tea and hot chocolate. I like sledding and ice skating. I like not breaking into a sweat when I walk Kreeg. I like sitting in front of the furnace vent. So throw rocks at me if you want but I'm going to say it, "YAY! cold weather".

The rest of the suggestions will have to wait for another post. I don't want to use up all the good ones and some of them may even get their very own post. Stay tuned!

Sunday, November 12, 2006


It's a rather early post for me but I had the day off of work. I had planned to spend the whole day writing but I kept getting sidetracked. Now that I have time I feel unmotivated.
I have so much to be working on, so much that I want to be working on. I'm trying to force myself to do it but things just aren't coming to me. I'm stuck for ideas on everything. I keep thinking about other stuff. I couldn't even come up with a better blog post than this.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Comic books, I miss you.

Another close call but it should be expected of me.

As some people may know I'm not the wealthiest person in the world, I'm not the poorest either. Lately though I've had a little less luck in the money department. This has caused me to cut back on a lot to things and now I think I'm going through comic book withdrawal.

Comic books are expensive when you add up quite a few issues. I'm about four weeks behind and I want to know what's going on in the world of crime fighting. I don't think I've ever went this long without buying comics. I think my store might stop pulling my books for me and then I'll be in this struggle to find back issues or wait for trade paper backs.

Also, with all the novel writing and blogging I've been doing, I haven't really worked on or even thought about a comic book in a while.

Comic books are my true love when it comes to writing and reading. I guess I could always catch up on all the old comic books and trade paper backs that I've bought but never read. I'll still miss my new stuff.

Friday, November 10, 2006

A book by its cover

Once again I'm cutting it close. This time I have about an hour rather than twenty minutes but it's still pretty late in the day. It's not that I'm procrastinating, it's just that I'm a night person. I write at night. Night and early morning is when I write my best stuff.

Tonight I spent some time talking to my friend Fred about a story he is working on.
Fred is my neighbor and he works with my dad. Sometimes I babysit his kids for him and his wife. He's a really cool guy that is always trying to help everyone.
I have to admit when I first met him I was guilty of judging a book by its cover. He's a very large guy, he could easily be on a pro football team. He likes NASCAR, sports, and hunting. He's a mechanic.
When he and his family came over for my dad's birthday I thought, like most people he would find my toy and comic book collection to be a little ridiculous, but he thought it was cool. Then after a few years of knowing him I finally mentioned I wanted to be a writer. I don't tell a lot of people this because some people think that it's just a dumb idea, my family in particular, but when I told him he was very excited. Apparently he writes as well and now we talk about writing all the time. He lets me read his work, which is very good. I laugh sometimes thinking about how my dad thinks writing is completely stupid and he doesn't know that one of his best friends is a writer. Of course just like my dad and I, most people would never expect it but I think that makes it all the more cool that he does it.
Anyway, Fred is working on some short stories and a comic book script. When I get a few extra minutes I promised to get him started in the blogging world and that will be one link I'll be sure to pass along.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Just in time

Goodness, I almost didn't think I would get to post today, but there are about twenty-four minutes left in the day. If I type fast and keep it fairly short, I think I'll make it.

I've been trying to find some information on pen names or pseudonyms. After coming up with my non-fiction ideas, I've become rather excited about finding time for them. I did a little reading and there were a few suggestions that if someone chooses to do both fiction and non-fiction, using two different names can be beneficial. There were several reasons for this but the main one was that non-fiction is truthful and that what is written can alienate your fiction readers. Before they could believe anything a writer wrote wasn't necessarily what the writer believed but rather what the characters had to believe to make the story work. In non-fiction there is no hiding behind that and most people tend to write non-fiction to reflect their views. Even if it doesn't, it can be hard for some readers to believe otherwise.

This all makes perfect sense to me. A lot of the reason I don't discuss subjects such as politics, at least not in depth, here on my blog is because I don't want to scare potential readers away and it is easy for people to misunderstand and misjudge when facts are printed that lean in a certain direction.

I probably spent a little too much time today looking into using pen names and I didn't find much that was helpful. Do I have to register this name or does it depend on the circumstances of individual situations? And when I submit queries to a publisher which name do I use? And do I tell them what the other name is? And not to sound materialistic but what about getting paid, if that should ever happen?
Stop laughing, it could happen!

Well I guess I'll have to continue to research and hope to get something written as well.
I think I'm gonna make it in time and not ruin NaBloPoMo.

Just watched: The Office (I know I should have been working on my post but everyone needs a little break!)

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Time for non-fiction?

Wow! I was browsing through the NaBloPoMo randomizer and there really are a lot of people talking about dreams. What are the odds of that?

I've come up with a few ideas that would make good non-fiction pieces, at least I think so. I'm not really sure I want to dive into it though. I already have a ton of writing to do. There's Behind the Naugahyde, NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo. I also have my personal journal that gets filled pretty fast these days with all the chaos in my life. The last thing I need is more to write.
Also, I've never tried to get non-fiction published in a magazine before. It would require a bit of research like where to send it.
I guess I'll see if I get any extra time. Right now I'm falling behind on everything except my blogs. I've kept them up daily but there not very interesting. I was warned about trying to write a blog everyday and how I'd ending up posting just to post.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006


As I anxiously await the election results I decided to do my daily post.

I woke up in the middle of the night, as I often do because I really don't sleep well, and I could remember what I had just been dreaming. I usually remember when a dream was bad and I don't think this one was. I did sit up and think that with a little working of the details I could make a great story out of it. I've done this with a few dreams I've had or at least tried. So I play the story over and over in my head because I didn't want to get out of bed. And I just kept thinking about it hoping I would remember in the morning. Of course I don't remember and it's driving me mad. It's so far gone I can't even grasp it and if I ever do recall it, I doubt that I'll know that it was from that particular dream. Now I'll just torment myself forever for forgetting.
Who knows maybe there was no dream and I dreamed I had a cool idea or maybe the idea really wasn't that good. I guess I will never know, but I will have to start keeping a pencil by my bed.

I'm going to be stuck in Ann Arbor the next two days and I'm not sure how much writing I'll get done. I'll still post of course. Even though I have to be up super early I'm hoping to put a huge dent in my novel tonight. I'm starting to get behind what I should be and I don't want to not finish.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Please VOTE!

Okay tomorrow is election day. It may not be a presidential election but it is still very important. I've been posting on my live journal and on MySpace to remind people to vote. I'm a person who wants to make a difference no matter how small. ( I say this because I'm well aware that I only have two readers!)
That's really the reason I began writing. I had something to say. And when I was young, and even now, people never seemed to listen to me. I'm not good at speaking. So I write and I try, in everything I write, to have a message. Even if it's wrapped up in colorful characters and crazy plot twist, it's there.
That's also the reason I try to get my writing published. I won't lie and say that making enough money to write for a living would be a bad thing. But I want to people to see my message because it's important to me.
Well, it's nearly the end of the day and since I can't seem to make much sense about why you should vote I'm going to end my post and invite readers to stop by D.B.Echo's blog for an excellent post about why you should vote!

Currently listening to: Bad 80's and easy listening music while trying to win tickets to Happy Feet, the adorable dancing penguin movie that has a preview of the Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.(YAY! I love dancing, penguins and Harry Potter. I also have no money so I must win these tickets!)

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Nothing but writing

Jenni and I spent three hours on line last night working out the next three chapters of Behind the Naugahyde. I'm so excited to be working on it again. And we have so many funny, huge things happening that I just can't wait. I often thought that it would be hard to work with someone on a project especially something as big as a novel but Jenni and I seem to think almost a like. I can't tell you how many times we both push the send button at the same time and end up sending close to the exact same message. They saying that great minds think a like must really be true. I think that it's so awesome it works out that way, otherwise we might both dread writing it. Right now we both get so excited. I just hope that everyone else who reads it loves it just as much.

I know that I'm also working on a NaNoWriMo novel right now but I've figured out a solid plan to work on both. Don't worry there will be enough time because I will live, sleep and breath writing. I love it that much. I think it's discouraged to work on other stuff while doing NaNoWriMo but as long as I don't cheat my novel and I get it done I don't see anything wrong with it.
My plan is that Jenni and I break our novel up into pieces. This not only works well for the format of our novel but we can also break down the writing fairly so neither has too much or too little to write. So for the next three chapters I have nine pieces that I need to write. Some are bigger than others but I'm going to aim for writing half, one or two a day depending on their size. Once I'm done with that the rest of my writing time will be for my other novel and of course I'll throw in a blog post.
It's a lot of writing but I love to do it and I really don't do much else so here it goes.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

More bookmarks and novel writing

Another day of NaBloPoMo. I thought that I should try checking out the blogs of fellow participants. Of course, to check out all the blogs on the list I'd have to go through a letter a day and that's a lot. I'd probably never get anything written. I figure the bottom of the list probably gets the least amount of hits so I'm starting there. I've already added quite a few interesting blogs to my bookmarks and it's a nice change that they aren't all blogs about writing.

I'm still making a dent in my novel. I'd like to use my unplanned day off tomorrow to get ahead. I'm also hoping that tomorrow might bring a meeting with Jenni so that we can get some more work done on Behind the Naugahyde. I know it seems crazy to be working on two novels at once but we have breaks in Behind the Naugahyde when Jenni and I are trying to find time to work out the next chapter(s). Plus the novels are nothing a like so that helps.

Currently watching: The Wedding Singer

Friday, November 03, 2006

No car and no contest

I'm back with my second entry of the day. I really hope that the readers and fellow participants in NaBloPoMo don't think I just put my name on the site to get more readers and had no intention of blogging everyday. It was really circumstance beyond my control. I'll sum it up real fast so I don't dwell on it.
Couldn't pay bill, Internet shut-off. Borrowed sister's broken down laptop with slow dial-up, couldn't get a connection. Would have taken the time to drive or take bus to library but axle broke in car and had to find way to get the car towed out of the middle of the street.

Now that we have that out of the way, I hope people continue to read on.

A while back I decided to enter a short-short story in a contest. It was an odd little story about a bubble gum used to get revenge on a door to door salesman. The whole story came from an on the spot writing exercise in my creative writing class. It was by no means an idea I had been working on for a while. I probably would have never given it another thought if my professor hadn't suggested that I enter it in a contest. (It's entirely possible that she was just trying to be nice.)
Well, I did. At the time I didn't realize how tough the contest I was entering was and that it more focuses on literary fiction, which my story wouldn't qualify as, although they say they except everything. After looking around a few writer's forums I came to the conclusion that I had lost. Yet November rolled around and I decided to check just to be on the safe side. I wish this was the part where I said I won but no, I didn't.
I was nervous checking to see ( I couldn't check until today because of my Internet problems). I wasn't nervous that I was going to lose but rather that I didn't want to win. At the time I didn't see that my story was quite silly and that the magazine was rather well known. What if I had won and people remembered me for my stupid bubble gum story?
I often feel regret about my work once it's too late. I don't even like people reading my work in front of me. Is this normal or am I completely out of my mind?

I'm a bum

Wow! I feel like such a bum. I already missed a day of NaBloPoMo but my internet went down and it was out of my control. That's no excuse but I will post every day starting now. I spent all day yesterday trying to get on-line with my sisters computer but it just wouldn't connect. Now I have my DSL back and I'm not going to miss another post. In fact, I'll do two post today to make up for the one I missed.

NaNoWriMo is going well. That wasn't really messed up by my lack of internet. The only thing I couldn't do was update my word count.

Well I just got called into work so I'm cutting this post a bit short but I'll post again after work.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Happy NaNoWriMo & NaBloPoMo

YAY! NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo have officially started. I'm just now starting my daily blog post but I started my novel as soon as midnight rolled past. According to my word count I got around 1500 words.
I'm going to try to get over to the NaNoWriMo sight and figure out how to update my word count status. I can't remember how it worked last year but if I have to put the whole file into a word counter it will be a while before I can update since this laptop doesn't have a functioning disc drive. I've started writing my novel on my desktop that is currently lacking internet so there's no way to upload the file if that's what needs to be done. Oh what a crazy world.

Well everything is off to a good start except for the fact that I wrote this post once already and dial-up kicked me off before it published. I'll just hope for better luck this time.

BTW sorry I'm not risking spell check.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Halloween!

Oh blimey! Guess who managed to get her Internet shut off the day before the start of NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo? If you said me, you're right. The bright side is that this should leave me with less time procrastinating while on the Internet and more time to write my novel.

Speaking of writing novels, Jenni can you hear me? Are you out there somewhere?

I have managed to commandeer my sister's lap top which was once my old lap top. Not only does it have a horribly slow dial-up connection and a broken disc drive but it's missing several keys (the letters have been replaced with alt, ctrl and such) but it has been dropped on the ground no less than three times.
Hopefully, it will function well enough to get me through a few days of blog posts and NaNoWriMo page updates.
I'll just say sorry in advance that I will miss out on a lot of blog posting. I don't have enough time and patience for it to load every one's every day and I'm not sure that I know more than a few address without my favorites list. I'll do my best and hopefully this won't last long.

Before I go I'll mention that I can't wait for 12:00 to come. I have such an awesome plan for my novel in my head and I keep going over it. I've been thinking about my first line and I know I can't write it down yet but I feel I have so much built up that I could write the whole book in one sitting once that clock turns 12:00!

Hope everyone has a very fun and imagination filled night. Halloween is one of the best days. It encourages so much imagination and creativity. I just love it.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Trick-or-treat alternative

In the comments for my last post I was encouraged by D.B.Echo to tell the world what it is that I give out for Halloween. At least that's what I got from the comment so if I'm wrong sorry. It actually has something to do with writing so I guess I will share it with everyone.

When kids come trick-or-treating to my door I give them candy but I also give them comic books. I spend a few days going around town finding cheap, kid friendly comic books and even steal a few from my personal collection. (If you are considering doing this tell the store why you want the books. They help you find kid appropriate ones and may give you a better deal. One store gave me a great deal if I let them put the store sticker in the front cover).

I do this for a few reasons. Everyone gives candy so I like to give a little something different. Also I love comic books and if someone would have given me one instead of candy I would have loved it.
The bigger reason I give out comic books is to promote reading and art appreciation. Maybe it's not the finest literature or art you are going to find but for kids it's a start. More and more kids and adults rely on T.V. and videos games. I love these things too but I worry that eventually few people will care about reading because they can just watch it. Then they will miss the beauty of things like the inner monologue, the suspense that fills you when you just can't read fast enough and how much more grand things are when imagined rather than shoved in your face. And I worry that few people will ever stop to appreciate the time and effort it takes to draw images that look like they could reach out and touch you and maybe no one will realize that if you take the time to think about it one beautifully detailed scene says so much more than a movie can.
I know that most people don't see comic books that deeply but they can be a start for children. Obviously not just comics either. If you can find children's books or give out Play-Doh or crayons, anything that encourages a child to think and imagine, then hand those out.
I don't think I need to explain why we should encourage children to create and appreciate. I just thought I'd mention it in case anyone was looking for an alternative to candy this Halloween.
I've done this for the past three years and the kids seem to love it.

BTW: I updated my sidebar with my NaNoWriMo page and this time it's my own page not just the home page for the site(Oops!). I also added my MySpace page although I don't spend much time there so it's not that exciting.

Friday, October 27, 2006

NaBloPoMo too?

I've pretty much decided that I am going to give NANOWRIMO a shot even though I have a ton of other stuff going on including the writing of Behind the Naugahyde.
While I was checking out another writer's blog I stumbled upon NaBloPoMo, which is National Blog Posting Month. It's suppose to be for those who are too busy to participate in NaNoWriMo. In this case you just blog every day during the month of November.
I'm actually thinking of doing this as well. I know that's a big challenge for the month of November but I think it's something I need to do.
These past months have been hectic and I've used that as an excuse not to write but it should be an excuse to write. A release of emotion and a break from the reality that is my life. So I'm going to set these goals for November and I'll push myself to do it.

I'm going to attempt to put links to my NaNoWriMo page for anyone that wants to keep track. Maybe I'll finally add my mySpace page too.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Novel or not?

Recently I wrote about wanting to do NaNoWriMo but not wanting to start a new novel while Jenni and I are in the middle of one. Then I thought perhaps I would just set my own personal goal of writing 50,000 words of fiction whether it was part of the novel or a short story.
Well I know that while it is a good goal for myself it is not exactly the spirit of NaNoWriMo. I thought about just writing short stories but not an actual novel but if I don't think it's a novel, then according to NaNoWriMo it doesn't count.
Then I got this crazy idea. My idea for NaNoWriMo is to write a novel about a writer and what she's writing. That way I can still write my short stories and on my part of BTN but I will have to tie them together using the main character. I'll make a connecting story about where she's at, when she finds time, how she's inspired, breaking through writer's block.
I think it will be cool.
Maybe not everyone will consider it a novel but I will so that's what matters.
At least that's what I think I'll do, maybe not though. There's still a few more days to decided.
Can you believe I actually pushed my paranoia aside long enough to share an idea?

BTW: There is a new Nauga Note posted at

Saturday, October 21, 2006

I actually want my rejection notice! Please!

Not to rant, but... you know what really annoys the hell out of me? When a magazine's submission guidelines say please include a SASE(self addressed stamped envelope) for a reply to your submission and then when you send one and the only reply you get is a subscription order form. No rejection letter at all, not even one little generic line of thanks but no thanks. I paid 39 cents for a subscription form for a magazine that I wouldn't buy now because that is just rude. I didn't send the stamped envelope for that I sent it for the rejection notice.
I don't care if you throw in a subscription slip, occasionally I buy an issue if I have the money, but please put in the rejection note. I love those (not as much as acceptance letters), I collect them, I have a huge folder full of them. They remind me that I am trying and that I need to work harder. That's why I pay the 39 cents.
I'm sorry my complaining probably sounds stupid but it really annoyed me.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Writer's Blogs

Lately, I've been reading a lot of fellow writer's blogs. I have added my blog to a few list of writer's blogs and I thought it was only fair to read other blogs in hopes that they read mine. I'm pretty sure that just about the only people that read writer's blogs are fellow writer's.

Anyway, it's become overwhelming. There are so many good ones that I want to bookmark. My list is getting huge and I'm not even through the A's. I try to read one a day and if I like it and it's been updated recently then I'll add it to my list.
It's already taking a while to read through my list. My non-writing friends who have blogs on avereage, they update around once a month maybe once a week. Writer's seem to update every day or every few days. I might have to figure out a rotating or elimination system.

The other part of reading all these blogs that is frustrating, at least for me, is commenting. I want them to know I'm reading since I appreciate it when people comment here. I assume that others would like to know that someone is paying attention. My biggest problem is that I never say the right thing as I mentioned in my last post. I'm afraid I might seem creepy or generic. Possibly even critical. I don't know. I just know that I hate commenting, critiquing or reviewing other peoples writing. But I'll do it if I have to.

Just watched: 30 Rock

Monday, October 16, 2006

I can never say the right thing.

Finally, I have ink, and stamps. I'm running a little low on big envelopes but I can get out a few submissions and some query letters for now. Although I must say trying to decipher all my submission charts is starting to give me a headache. Maybe I need to go back to my old way of hundreds of scribbles in the margin of my Writer's Market, which reminds me I need the 2007 edition.

The other day I ran into a friend that I hadn't talk to in a while thanks to an awkward situation. I had thought in my head a hundred times of what I would say to this person if I bumped into them. Of course they totally caught me off guard and I bumbled out a bunch of stuff that was not what I planned to say, made no sense and made the situation potentially more awkward. I'm pretty sure I ruined what was left of the friendship.
What's any of this go to do with writing? Well I hate talking to people. The above situation is why. I don't seem to have the ability to think before I speak. I can't plan it out and edit it, no matter how hard I try. I always seem to mess it up. That's why I like writing. I can think it through, I can fix things. Maybe a well written letter can get the friendship back on course. I don't know.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Frustration and anonymous poetry

Today I heard back from the magazine that had given me a list of things they didn't like about my story. They offered me the chance to change them and send it back. I changed nearly everything they had suggested because most things made sense. I did keep a few things that I thought made the story what it is.
I opened the letter and found another set of comment sheets signed by the same people as last time. What did they say? Good story but here's what we don't like about it. As I read further I imagined they would say something about the part I didn't change but I was wrong. They didn't even mention it. They just made a whole new list of things, none of which were in the last letter. And to be honest they were very vague things like "a few paragraphs don't flow well".
It's really great that they give feedback because most people don't. I just think that sending someone a list of comments and saying "fix these and we'll reconsider" and by reconsider we mean giving you lame excuses and more things we dislike, is a little confusing. If they had wrote back and said they didn't think I changed enough or had mentioned the part I didn't change I would be okay but don't say "this part sucks and I, as an editor, didn't notice it before". I guess mostly I just don't understand. Well, actually, I do. It's a crazy business but it is still frustrating.
My complaining probably sounds ungrateful and unreasonable, if it makes sense at all. I'm just annoyed.

On the other hand I did something a little odd. I know several times I've mentioned poetry and how I don't get it. Mostly I don't understand the "techniques", but with all art I believe it is the message, not the skills and training, that matter more. And every now and then I have something to say that isn't a short story or comic book. I'm not sure what it is . I just write it and it kind of seems like poetry. Anyway, it's not my goal to get it published I just have something to say. So I joined one of those on-line poetry websites in hopes of getting some feedback. I'm not going to say my pen name or which site because I'm not brave enough to let people who know me read it. I know that sounds weird but that's me.
The only problem is that I feel to get feedback I should give some. I'm horrible at commenting and as I've mentioned many times before I don't know poetry. I guess I'll just have to comment on the message I get from the poetry. To me, that's the most important part anyway.

Just watched: 30 Rock (Tina Fey is one of my heroes!)

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

I need ink, stamps and to finish a story!

With all the madness that is my life, I haven't really been able to stay focused on writing anything. Last night I couldn't sleep so I decided to look up some agents for Behind the Naugahyde. I found three that accepted e-mail queries so I went ahead and sent them. (Sorry, I didn't ask first Jenni, but I didn't think you'd mind).
I just can't wait until I can afford new ink jets and stamps. I like doing submissions when I need something to do but I can't seem to focus or when I have writer's block.

With Friday the 13th and Halloween coming up its an excellent time to write a scary story. Perhaps finishing the vampire story that I continue to talk about but never finish. The mood is already set for it and the T.V. is just running non-stop with inspiration. Yet with everything that is going on with my family I can't seem to find the motivation for that story. I really have to try and push through that. If I can't finish something because crazy stuff is happening, then I'll never get anything finished.

One of my former professors came into the shoe store this weekend. And he said something like, "If I recall you did well in my class. You were a really good writer." I would have thought I heard him wrong but my co-worker mentioned that she heard him say it too. I'm sure he says that to all his former students he runs into but I'm just going to pretend I'm special. That will make me feel a little bit better.

Friday, October 06, 2006


With all the craziness this week I've been doing okay. On a restless night (or early morning, rather) I attempted to send out e-mail submissions (until I can afford new ink). Unfortunately I made some mistakes, like sending a cover letter mentioning one story, then sending a different story along with that letter, to a company that had already rejected the story that actually got sent. Other than that I haven't messed too much up.

I got an e-mail from NANOWRIMO, since the month of November is fast approaching. I had thought that I was set on not doing it. After all I didn't really want to start a new novel while Jenni and I are in the middle of writing Behind the Naugahyde. However, since NANOWRIMO is more about goals, I thought I could set a goal to write 50,000 fictional words in the month of November. It might motivate me to write on Behind the Naugahyde and some other short stories. I could keep track of it on NANOWRIMO and since you don't win anything for finishing, I'm not cheating. November is still a ways off so I've got time to decide.

tonight I sat down with the intention of writing some fiction but now I can barely keep my eyes open. Things won't get back to normal for a while but hopefully I'll have more time for writing

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Hospital madness

My dad's having some trouble and it's got him stuck in the hospital for a few days. I've been spending most of my time at the hospital and haven't gotten much else done. Although I have filled the pages of my journal with the craziness that happens to and is, my family. In fact my emotional writing of the last few days has 12 entries that cover 38 pages.
Aside from that I've been reading rather than getting any work done. I wanted to print out some of my work to edit but due to my stupidity I have an empty ink jet. So until pay day I'm out of luck. I thought about starting something new but I have so much unfinished work and fairly often I have to stop for one reason or another so I don't really feel like I can put out quality material. I'm sure the material in my journal is interesting but right now it's still too new and personal for me to share.
For now I'll be at the hospital most of the time so it might be a while before I get anything done including blog post.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Literary magaiznes>bad reality T.V.

I finally got my September 2006 issue of Writer's Post Journal! YAY! There was a small typo in my story but it was my fault so I'll just have to live with it. I suppose there could be more than one typo. Maybe I just didn't notice.
My story wasn't the only one with a typo so that made me feel slightly better. Not that I want to feel better from others misfortunes. Maybe the editor should of caught theses things but I'm not going to be picky because they published me and I know running an independent literary magazine is tough.
Lately I've been getting a lot of letters from companies I submitted to saying they are going out of business. While I am a little annoyed that my precious stamps were wasted I'm more sad than anything. It's hard for these literary magazines to keep running. Everyone wants their story published but no many are buying. I know a lot of writer's don't have the extra money. I try to buy as many different ones as I can but I can't really afford it either.
It just seems that in general the only people reading literary magazines are the writers. It's good to support others but I just want to live in a dream world where people chose to read over watching bad reality T.V. shows.
Sorry about the rant.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Vampire ballet and an unfinished story

I just got back from seeing the Royal Winnipeg Ballet Company performing Dracula. It was based on the original Bram Stoker novel.
The dancing was wonderful and they told the story very well. I had already read the book so I knew the story but they gave sufficient back ground information in the program, a narrator started the show by telling you what was going on and after intermission they did a hilarious quick dance that was the whole story but told in a very funny way. So if you didn't know the story already it was okay. The lighting and stage settings looked so creepy. I just loved it. It was a one time performance in Lansing but if you ever get the chance, check it out.

There were a few young guys that were probably sci-fi/fantasy geeks (not that there's anything wrong with that, I'm one of them). However, they complained about how it wasn't just like the book. It's a ballet, how can it be exactly like the book? And please stop complaining about the costumes. If you go to a ballet and expect guys not to be in tights that's your fault. They so reminded me of being at a first showing of a comic book movie.

Anyway, I know this seems more like an entry that I would put in my live journal because it really has nothing to do with writing. I wanted to keep my AIDS Walk entry up on my live journal (see previous blog entry) and I can actually tie my ballet story in with writing.

I haven't really written any short stories in a long time because I've been focused on writing Behind the Naugahyde and I've been a little obsessed with sending out submissions of my previous short stories. In fact I haven't written any new short stories since my last creative writing class. I actually have a half finished story from my last writing class. What's it about you ask? Vampires.
It's actually a story I had an idea for about the time I started blogging. I came up with it in hopes of getting a job writing a vampire comic. When that didn't turn out I kind of left it until I needed a story for class. Then I had a rough time with my last writing class, for a lot of different reasons, and I never ended up finishing that story.
Now that I've seen Dracula and realized that I haven't written any short stories in a while,
I guess I will set a goal of finishing it.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

One Step Toward A Solution

A quick but very important non-writing blog post:

On Sunday, October 1, I will be walking in AIDS Walk Michigan. The money raised goes to HIV/AIDS prevention, education and services.

If anyone would like to sponsor me by making a donation you can send a check payable to Lansing Are AIDS Network. (Please comment or e-mail for address). I know it's a lot of hassle to mail a check so if you would still like to help, LAAN accepts credit card donations on their website. Or you can also join me in the walk. Feel free to leave me a comment or send an e-mail if you have any questions regarding donations or joining the walk.

This cause is very important to me and I appreciate the support. I realize not every one has money to donate.

Please get tested, stay informed and pass on the message.

Thank you.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Is changing good?

In an earlier post I mentioned getting a rejection notice with critiques and the opportunity to resubmit. After re-reading the letter I started to think there was a slight chance that this wasn't something they did for everybody. That's when I decided I should get my butt in gear.
Once I read through the critiques and then back through my story, I became a little frustrated.
A lot of the suggestions were good and I immediately realized that they were valid points. I struggled with how to fix them but I think in the end I did okay.
There were a few things that I didn't understand. One of the things that I think makes the story truly unique is one of the things that they seemed to not like. I was really worried about what to do.
I didn't want to change it and not because I refuse to be wrong. The other suggestion were great suggestions and I went a long with them happily. I know that I'm not a great writer and even if I was, nothing is going to be flawless. Writing can always be improved on is some way. I know this.
My reason for not wanting to change it is that I really wanted the story to be funny and unusual. I think the character's ridiculous thoughts make the story unique but the critique mentioned focusing on a different train of thought.
I wanted to explain why I didn't change it in my cover letter but I also didn't want to seem defensive.
Getting published would be wonderful but I can't talk myself into changing what I love best about a story just to see it in print.
Who knows? Maybe I read way too much into the comment. Maybe they won't even notice that I didn't fix it. Maybe they send everyone these letters to make them feel special and I'm stressing over nothing as usual.
Oh well, I did the best I could and what I thought was best. And now if this story doesn't get published I can make a huge post about how I was robbed of being published because I didn't sell out to the man!

Just saw: Little Miss Sunshine
Just watched: Dancing with the Stars ( what did I tell you about me and cheesy dancing?)