Monday, November 28, 2011

secret 17 of 100 . . . and updates

I'm a sneak. 
(That's the secret.)  

(But there's a little more to it.)
When I really want to write a lot, I have to get out of my house. My favorite haunt is the back-right corner of the local library beside the YA section where the chairs are soft and the windows have a picturesque view. Seriously, it's perfect. Just writing this makes me want to head for the stacks. But no worries, I'm a finisher. So let's get this thing done.

So the thing is when I'm writing, there's something else I have to have--and not just want, but really, truly, honest-to-Betsy need! 

A Coke Zero. (I'm a huge DC fan, but when it comes to writing there's something in the ZERO that get's my writing juices flowing. And when I say flowing I mean like 11K words a day.)

So the problem? 
No food or drink is allowed in the library. 

Thus the secret: I'm a sneak. 

UPDATE: I took last week off to gorge my body on food. Yeah, yeah, you probably already figured that out. Hope you had a great Thanksgiving too . . . that is, if you celebrate the holiday. But if you're like Iain from England, I hope you just had another great week of regular week stuff. 

QUESTIONS: I'm curious, where do you write best? Also, we're all sneaks sometimes, right? When are you super sneaky? And if you're really not sneaky, what did you do last week


Monday, November 21, 2011

secret 16 of 100.

My secret is all about my friend today.
I have this unbelievable, amazing friend who's funny and caring and smart and determined. And I can't imagine how my life would be without her. Three years ago we decided to start out on a trek together in writing. We took a class together, we started a writer's group, we attended conferences . . . and we wrote and wrote and wrote . . .

And I knew this day was coming. She trusted me not to say a thing even though it was bursting out of me in every way. But I did it, I kept my lips sealed until the day I could finally say:

My secret is: my FRIEND is going to be published. 

(Click the link to find out who I'm talking about!)

Friday, November 18, 2011

friday five.

There once was a writer who forgot how to laugh--
Too many hours by the computer and none in the bath.
While she edited on her own her heart felt pierced,
for she missed times with friends because she stank something fierce.

Of course, this poem isn't about me--I smell just fine, 
It's just I got to thinking, how I write all the time,
And days by my laptop mean there are five things I miss,
Just like the other lonely-girl-writer with the terrible pits.

Friday Five: Things Writers (or Hermits) Miss
When you think of old friends, does your throat form a lump?
It's probably 'cause you've gone too long without a chest bump.

Or maybe like "Putty" from Seinfeld you crave,
A high-five from something other than your cat, Dave.

Stuck in a scene can make you feel down on writing luck,
It's time to call a friend and see a movie that may or may not suck,

If that's not your thing, then a night out to dinner is what you need,  
There's no place like the Olive Garden because there you're like family.
If you're lonely, maybe stinky, and feeling at your wit's end,
What you're probably missing most is a game of Words With Friends!

My question to you is what do you miss?
If you had three extra hours a day what would be on your list?

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Famous. Or something like it.

He he! Today is the coolest day in the world. Chantele Sedgwick interviewed me on her very cool blog. Please head over and check it out:

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

writing inspiration - quotes

I was reading a blog the other day where the author mentioned she liked to find quotes that summarized her main character. (Please forgive me for forgetting which one. Nano has taken my brain and mashed it and then thrown it in the garbage disposal.) Ingenious, right? 

So I set out to find one for mine, Costa. She's strong. She's a spy. So I thought this worked perfectly:

Then I started thinking, what quote would describe me best. Considering this month, and the writing frustrations I keep slamming into, this quote seemed perfect:

It seems the more I write and stress, the more problems I create. Do you do that too? Are you an over writer or an under writer?
So when I was about to pull out my hair, I came across this quote:

Frankly 50K words in one month is practically impossible. But maybe not. 

Are you doing nano? If so, how's that going for you?
If not, what type of writer are you? 

Monday, November 14, 2011

secret 15 of 100

My secret is when I was fifteen I acquired the nickname "Whiskers" for about a year.

Back then, I sometimes felt like this applied to me:

One particular morning, after a late night hanging with friends, I had the hardest time waking up. Shocking, I know. When I managed to get up and walk into the bathroom, I looked like DEATH. Kind of like my example pic.
No time to shower, I hurried and washed my face, put on some makeup . . . and when that didn't help the look much, I curled my hair.

While curling my bangs, the iron slipped from tired fingers and landed on my cheek. Basically, curling iron plus tired me, meant complete and total humiliation. I went to school that day with a 1 inch curling iron barrel roll across my right cheek. Nothing I did with my hair hid that hideous purple-brown mark.

My snarky history teacher had to say something. "Erin, whoever you've been making out with needs to shave, because that's a nasty whisker burn."

People laughed. I wanted to die.

Hence, the nickname whiskers.

Friday, November 11, 2011


In light of 11-11-11, I'll not be entertaining you with Friday's five fantastically fabulous poems.

Instead, I'm aiming to write 11,1111 words today. So in respect of 11-11-11, here's a different type of post for the day.

11 things I'm grateful for:
1. Mark. He's a wonderfully, kind and loving hubby and friend.
2. Kiddos. Mostly when they're not wrecking the house. But regardless, I love them.
3. Ma and Pa. The best parents ever. Even when I'm not the best daughter.
4. Friends. Walls that I lean on probably too much.
5. Music. I-tunes junkie. Anyone check out Kaskade's new album yet? Seriously addicted.
6. Movies. Preferably at the dollar theater in PG.
7. Books. They are my crack and the PG Library is my supplier.
8. Shoes. Imelda ain't got nothing on me.
9. Cameras. I hope to one day capture a scene so inspiring it leaves me breathless.
10. Jesus. Because he's everything.

11. You...(Yes, if you came to my blog earlier, you can see I just added this. I guess that would mean I'm grateful that I have friends that let me know of my mistakes. And I'm grateful that my brain works 10 out of 11 times).

What are you grateful for today?

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Opinions needed: first impressions

At first, I was like, that's a weird looking loaf of raisin bread.
I'll come back to the freaky bread in a minute. It ties in to my point for the day.

For me, one of the greatest payoffs for investing time in a novel or series is when there's a discovery in character. Like when you find out Mr. Rogers isn't just a nice old man in a cardigan (Ok, maybe he is . . .bad example). But, think of Snape. Not such a bad guy. Or Noah (The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer. If you haven't read this yet, drop what you're doing and get to it.)
Of course this isn't something new. Writers have been doing it for ages, creating red herrings to lead the MC (and the reader) astray.

Now back to the bread. If you haven't stared at the picture long enough to figure out why it looks freaky, try again. What do you see now?

It's not a loaf of raisin bread at all. It's a pug (dog).

The point is, first impressions can and sometimes should give false impressions. (Like the bread dog).
As a writer, I do this often. I lead my main character astray by allowing her to believe other characters follow hard and fast rules. When really they don't.

Question of the Day: How often do you use red-herrings. Or characters that are like the bread-dog? When do you reveal their true identity?

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Writing Inspiration - quotes

I love a good quote. Sometimes it's just the inspiration I need to push myself forward, or it gives me something to think about concerning the character I'm writing. Inspiration towards writing can come from many forms. Whenever I'm out stalking blogs or spending hours on fb, I make a point of writing down any quote that stands out to me. 

So for Tuesday's inspiration I thought I'd share one of my favorites:

My attitude is that if you push me towards something that you think is a weakness, then I will turn that perceived weakness into a strength.

I love his endurance and drive to be more. To fight whatever is holding him back and turn the tables on whoever is bringing him down. My main character has this same sort of determination, and today this quote is exactly what I needed.

Do you have any favorite quotes? Please share! Or at least tell me what inspires you this week?

Monday, November 07, 2011

secret 14 of 100

Sometimes the crap hits the fan. (Not the secret, just fact of life.)

For me, this happened last week. My awesome hubby got laid off. (Also not the secret, at least not mine.)

That's part of why I was MIA for days. Frankly, that stress plus a few of my own insecurities led me into a bit of a downward spiral. It took quite a few nudges from some great writing buddies to see the bright side of things.
It was during a conversation with Jessie from B-Word that I remembered an old motto of mine.
When I was eleven, I was pudgy, kids made fun of me, and I lived on an Air Force Base in California. Back then, each home had a plaque with the resident's name and rank posted on an exterior wall.
After a bad day at school, I needed some escape. I went on a bike ride with my sister and friend. I loved to read last names. Two blocks from my home, a name plaque made me stop in my tracks.


Yep, that's right. The last name of the unfortunate family was Crap. Right then and there I adopted a new motto. Life could be worse, I could be a Crap.
That motto got me through a particularly sucky year of middle school. My sister and I came up with lots of Crap jokes, and just passing by the house left me gasping in laughter. Now that I think about it, it's kind of horrible for me to make fun of people as unfortunate as the Craps.
So I suppose you could say my secret is: I sometimes lift myself by poking fun of others.
Or on a more positive note, my secret could be: I'm doing great this week because at least I'm not a Crap!

Friday, November 04, 2011

friday five - distractions

I had one of those weeks that passed in a flash,
not much accomplished but I'm bent that won't last
Distractions, good and bad, snagged me everyday,
And my poor NANO goals slipped far away

First, I shot my girl because she turned three.
What an extravaganza that turned out to be.
One hour stretched into many to draw out her smile,
No NANO that day because I was shooting for awhile.

When I had a chance to sit down and write,
blasted halloween candy called with all it's might.
The devil chocolate calls, rendering me a useless hack.
It's a relentless draw until I snack, snack, snack. 

And when I'm not shoving my face full of candy,
I've twiddled hours away doing nothing dandy. 
(That's a lame-butt rhyme, lamer than lame,
But so is hours on facebook stalking random names.)

Serenity Now! I need a break from facebook.
Instead of writing, I read Colleen Hueck's latest book. 
I should've been typing but I couldn't resist,
a story of two hottie boys and girl like a princess.

It all boils down to a load of stress.
Little distractions that kept me doing so much less.
Less than I wanted, but I now vow that will end,
NANO if it kills me, 50,000 words will be my friend.

How was your first week of Nano? Good or Bad?
Are you taking part in all the insanity to be had?
If not, how was your week and what did you do?
Please tell me you ate candy, so I don't feel like a big poo.