Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Time to get back to the routine.

Vacation time is over and it's time to get back into the routine. The boys go back to Leaves tomorrow and I go back to slugging away on the manuscript of the moment, "Cattle Rustler." Need to finish the dirty darned thing and be done with it all. It's dragged on forever and ever. Longer than any other project I've ever worked on.

The good news of the day is that I mailed my contest entry to the East Texas Writer's Guild. Also printed out a short story and will mail that this week. Need to buy more brown envelopes before I do that. There are also a couple of agents on my list that want snail mail proposals. I'm hoping to attack that chore during my friend, Patty's FEBO.

The boys and I were getting back into our school routine today. Didn't get much accomplished other than school work, some cleaning. I managed to unpack all the stuff I brought back from Kalahari. Also read some more in "Bird by Bird" by Anne Lamott. Some of her ideas are good. Some are ---hm---unusual?

My laptop is packed for tomorrow's working stint while the boys are at Leaves. I'll go to my regular library and plug in. The last time I was there, a nice librarian kept me in conversation for half an hour about writing. Her advice when I admitted to writing a book was, "Go for it." Ah, how easy non-writers think we have it.

Am trying to decide on a "next" project. I have a very short, chapter book mystery and a grown up mystery. I think by choice I'll be starting on "Snipped in the Bud" first. Somehow 10K sounds so much more appealing than 80K.

What can you do with some styrofoam? Jarrod made a whole warrior outfit above.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Home again, home again

I am too tired to go into details tonight but the Kalahari Resort is FANTASTIC! From the pull out clotheslines in the bathrooms to the fireplace in the sitting room of the suite, it was a super hotel. The waterpark was HUGE and the kids all loved it. They spent hours there each day. It was a bit surreal to look around and see people in swim suits, then look up at the windows to see snowflakes fluttering by. I imagine it's like those movies you see of the ski resorts at places like Lake Tahoe. Felt like Annette Funicello in a 60's movie! :) The only thing I didn't like was the overpowering scent of chlorine. It reeked. When I went to sleep at night, I could feel it burning my nose.

The waterpark area was humid and so warm, I swear they had the air conditioning on. The rest of the hotel was warm as the inside of a microwave. I kept shedding sweatshirts or sweaters.

Met some super new writing friends at the Writing Funshop on Wednesday night. I'm looking forward to many happy emails passing back and forth until we can get together at next year's UWWG. Unschoolers Winter Waterpark Gathering.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Time for FEBO! My friend, Patty, has decided to get back into the habit of writing. (Hooray!!) Since she didn't get to finish NANO, she came up with a neat solution---FEBO. Here is the link to get you started. http://febo-writenow.blogspot.com/

Patty's idea is to set writing goals for Feb. and to encourage one another to keep on track. The goals can be as easy or as hard as you like. I'm seriously thinking that mine will be to finish and fine tune "Cattle Rustler," enter the first Jenny book in THE SANDY contest and get out a short story. Those are my three main goals and I intend to post them at the FEBO site as soon as I finish this. If you think you need to get back on track with writing goals, join us!

We were delayed leaving for our mini-vacation by a day. Since my sister earns triple time for MLK day, it was too good an opportunity to miss a chance to work. My bil also got an extra day of work. Plus, it meant that the boys' cousin, Greg, could also come along on the trip AND it gave us time to help my friend, Maribeth, with some furniture moving.

I am all packed, except for my toothbrush and LYSOL. Have a bag of way too many books, but I never like to travel without a few in case I have time to read. Also packed my cross stitch supplies in hopes of working uninterrupted on a state fair sampler. To my absolute DISGUST, I found out that Walmart has discontinuted their embroidery thread kiosk. Since there is nowhere else in town to buy it, I'll have to wait until we arrive at Sandusky and see if I can't find a thread friendly store. Should have gone to Joann's Fabrics on Friday but thought I'd save it for another day. Next time, I'll know better.

I've had several emails from people coming to the midwinter gathering who like to write. We are hoping to get together to talk and share ideas. A funshop/discussion group is also planned for Wednesday night, right before the family dance in the GRAND Ballroom. Never having been in any kind of a ballroom--grand or otherwise--I'm looking forward to the experience.

I have books, paper, several first drafts printed up to take along so when I'm not talking, I'll have plenty to keep me busy! See you in a week or so.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Light at the end of the tunnel - - -

Well, it looks like I might be seeing a glimmer of hope where the ms. is concerned. I've got it whittled down to 59,000 words. This is good and bad. The good news is that it's only 10K over at this point. That's not horrible, although it might mean taking out some of my favorite scenes. The bad news is that I still have to write an ending chapter tying up all the loose ends AND add in a crucial scene or two. One will depend on the other.

My thoughts at this point are that I could go 60K and hope for the best. Many children's books are sailing past the 50K mark. But, I'm not sure how many of them are getting published. Will keep on whittling. I think I've pared the first ten chapters down as much as they can go. There are two iffy chapters that I could possibly cut whole. Another I can cut if I carve out some crucial information and put it into another chapter. Time will tell.

I had thought to take the laptop along on our midwinter vacation this week, but decided against it. There will be too many boys in the truck to insure its safety. Also, I will be out of the suite too much to guard it. Better to leave it safe at home and work on some printed projects. (As if I will get to do much writing! I always drag something along in great hopes.)

Supposidly, I'm supposed to be part of a writer's discussion/round table forum. Am trying to figure out what to take along. An editor from Home Education Magazine is going to make an appearance and it just so happens I have this article I wrote - - - GRIN!

As a nod to January and the fact that I should be organizing my goals for the year, I bought a planner. I'm going to take it along and list all my projects, finished work, work to be recycled and try to make a schedule to get some things sent out.

Finished the Scribes bulletin page today. This was a project for my writing group at church. We've been given permission to have a page on a semi-monthly basis. It looks good even though I know nothing about using a publishing program.

Also finished (a January girl) my short story, "Girl vs. Grump." Am planning to send that out by the end of January. After that, it's time for two contests! Need to get my entries ready.

If it doesn't snow, I'm joining a friend for lunch. After that, I need to do some shopping for the upcoming trip. We had to move our departure time to Tuesday and the S work is being whispered on the news. Sure hope we get out of here and the snow moves on to New England where it belongs! :)