Wednesday, February 29, 2012

writing inspiration - editing

A year and a half ago I wrote a book.

Three months ago, I re-wrote the same book.

A month ago, I revised the re-written book.

Now, I'm editing the revision of the re-written book.

And I'm starting to feel like my life is made up of Coke Zero and this:

Tips to stay sane and accomplish quality editing while you're in the throws of editing:

1. Take breaks. The longer you stare at the screen and re-read the same paragraph will only make you crazy. Sometimes a fresh look on a later day will help you see how to clearly clean up your sentences.

2. Don't delete. If you're not using track changes, then make sure you save each edit, so your earlier versions aren't destroyed. Sometimes you'll go back and find you liked your original better.

3. Share it. When you get stumped, pass it onto a friend or a beta-reader to flush out the issues.

4. Read. When you're boggled, pick up a good book. Sometimes reading someone's edited work helps you see where you're work lacks the finesse it needs.

Do you have any editing tips to share?  

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The reason I didn't post yesterday...

I was busy all day creating a list, an order of sorts, that will help me figure out who I'll eliminate first down to the last after a world war turns our nation into a blood-thirsty dictatorship in which I'm then forced to kill you to bring food to my pathetic family and hovel of a home. 
These things are important to have thought out. You never know what's going to happen. 

My list would be something like this:
1. Girl from high school that called me Mcfatty-pants. (I'm still having a hard time getting over that one.)
2-1000. FB friends that aren't real-life friends.
1001. Then my writing buddies: Peggy, David, Rob, and Jason. (Sorry guys. I gotta eliminate the competition.)

Anyone you'd take out first? Last? 

Friday, February 24, 2012

Friday Five: motivation.

Five Things I do to Motivate Myself

I love shoes like I love my hubby, 
Without them I might be a bit more tubby.
When I'm lacking motivation to exercise.
I get moving as soon as new shoes are my prize.

Cadbury Mini Eggs
You know those little chocolate, candy-shelled eggs.
They're the devil because they fatten my legs. 
So when I'm trying to write, but facebook lures me in,
I give myself one egg for each paragraph I fin---ish. (ok, so not the perfect rhyme. No judging.)

Sometimes I feel like I'm stuck in a rut, 
I have no motivation to get off my butt. 
Whether exercising, shooting, or trying to write, 
If I blast my iTunes, it gives me a boost in the night...or day. (again, no judging on the rhymes here)

If it were up to me I would read all day long, 
I love books like a photographer loves a Fong. (Uh, it's a tupperware looking flash filter-random, I know.)
If I have something to do that's horrid and no fun, 
I promise myself reading time as soon as I'm done.
Now You
If you're reading my poems, you'll see this is the end, 
But I've only written four instead of five, my friend. 
That's because I want to know what you like to do
when you're lacking motivation and you feel like poo!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

I have a friend who is always on time.

I have a friend that is always on-time or ten minutes early wherever he has to go. Ridiculous, right? Who does that?
Not me. No, not by a long shot. I was born with late genes. Something about my make-up has a love hate relationship with PROCRASTINATION.

In December I set a goal to finish my WIP by the end of February. This is kind of how that's going:

So, in other words, I'm not sure if I'm going to meet that deadline.

As Joey from friends would say, "How you doin?"

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

writing inspiration - M-I-C-K-E-Y MOUSE

I watched the Mickey Mouse Club, my parents took me to Disneyland, I've seen nearly all Disney movies ever made, and for me the ultimate vacation involves a day in one of the Disney parks.

It's no wonder that I think Walt Disney is a genius. If it weren't for the man's tenacity, creativity, and daring, my childhood would've been a sad state of kid affairs.

Disneyland may or may not be your ideal destination get-a-way, but I think we can all agree that the man created a legacy.

Walt believed, and said on many occasions, "All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them."

I believe this, but sometimes it's easy to forget.

I hope you have a great Tuesday. PURSUE AWAY!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Secret 22 of 100

I'm the cat lady.

Well, I'm not actually the cat lady.
 (I'm not talking about the woman that had all that plastic surgery to look like a cat. I'm talking about the crazy lady that lives in your town and rescues a thousand flea-infested cats a year). 

My secret is I have a tendency to be an animal-rescue, cat-hording operation type of gal. I like to blame it on my bleeding heart, which to be honest, doesn't really bleed that much because I could give a rat's butt cheek about reptiles, amphibians, fish, talking birds, and bad drivers. But, I do have a soft spot in my heart for dogs and cats and other nice furry animals. When I was younger I wanted to be a Zoo Keeper because then I could have as many animals as I wanted. (That dream lasted until the day I saw an elephant poop. Do I still want to be a Zoo Keeper? Nah, not so much.)

Confession: Every time I drive past the animal shelter, I have an internal battle on whether I should stop or not.
If I could, I would alway stop. But then for sure I would be the cat lady with 1001 cats. That didn't work out so well for the last lady in my town that went that route, so I temper my desire to help out the less fortunate fur-friends and I've settle furbsession with my two dogs and one cat.

Are you an animal lover too?

Friday, February 17, 2012

Friday Five: Writers

It started with a bang, my Friday Five.
But then winter hit and it took a dive.
I stopped rhyming and my life turned gray.
It's clear now I need to spout lyrics every day. 

This Friday's post is about Writers I like. 
I'll start with Tehereh Mafi, who wrote about a psych....o
Her main character was in a mental institution, 
But when she met hottie-o-soldier, she found restitution. (No judging, it's a good rhyme.)

Then there's Marissa, who wrote the book Cinder, 
A fractured fairytale about a girl who never carries tinder, 
But instead works as a mechanic on robots and junk,
She's smart, and pretty, but her foot is a piece of clunk. 

I'm excited about Unearthly author, Cynthia Hand.
She finally wrote the sequel, Hallowed, and it's on my bed stand. 

Then there's an veteran, Mrs. Lois Lowry
Author of The Giver, her writing is clean and not flowery.

Last I love a newbie, who'll be publishing next year,
Peggy Eddleman is her name, go give her a cheer!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Reading update - Cinderella and Cyborgs?

Cinder by Marissa Meyer

My Take: 
This is the book I wanted to write, I should've wrote, but didn't write. And you know what, I'm glad. I'm estatic, in fact, because Marissa Meyer did it way better than I ever could. Her imagination must keep her up at night. 
Cinder's plot twists and hooks kept me reading from start to finish. I couldn't put the book down, and now I'm drooling for more. It's a fantastic twisted fairytale with a Sci-Fi depth that has me wanting to dig into the next installment. 

What They Said: Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth's fate hinges on one girl... Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She's a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister's illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai's, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world's future. (

You Shouldn't read this if: 
You're absolutely intolerant of anyone with a prosthetic. 
You can't handle the awesomeness of a writer that would combine a fairytale with futuristic Sci-Fi-ness, Cyborgs, Mind control, and creepy, beautiful women.
You're illiterate. For obvious reasons.  

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

I have a friend who is a florist.

I have a friend who works part-time as a florist except for the first couple weeks in February. During that time she's full-time or over-time.
When I asked her what she thought boys should buy their sweethearts on Valentine's Day, her response was, "Absolutely nothing."
Her reasoning being that everything is too over-priced. If someone knows you love them, then they'll know you love them the next day when you buy the same bouquet of flowers or box of chocolates for half price.

And if you're asking me, I would want the boy who went with the latter. It shows he's smart, frugal, and still cares. 

Do you agree?

If you don't, that's cool (...or not...whatever, I'm not judging). But I think we can take something more from this. If you disagree with me, than it's safe to say that what some people see as cheap or uncaring, others see as smart, well-planned and reasonable. 

I recently read a novel where the main male character did not hold my interest. I thought he was boring, action-less, and a little too flowery. My friend, however, loved the main character. 

When I first started writing I was too concerned at making my character likable by all readers. But what I've found is that's impossible. If we want to create characters as real as our own friends, than it's safe to assume there are going to be personality conflicts with some readers. Hopefully not all (wink).

What characteristics do you like to see in a main character?

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Writing Inspiration - I LOVE James A. Owen

First off, Happy Valentine's Day. May it be filled with chocolate and love.

Today I'm in a LOVEY mood so I'm going to lay on you something that inspired me.
This last weekend I attended LTUE, a symposium for writers, held at Utah Valley University. The keynote speaker was James A. Owen, an American comic book writer, illustrator, and author.  He was brilliant and I absolutely LOVED all that he shared. He spoke about his struggles in life and career, sharing stories that put my small trials to shameful silence. I sat in awe as this man spoke. He was insightful and truly inspiring.

I've found that writing can be a war, complete with battles that leave me feeling tattered and deficient. But hearing James speak about the process of achieving goals made me remember that anything is possible and anything can be attainable.

I walked away from James's lecture with a little more armor to wear during those writing battles. Here's my two favorite pieces of inspiration armor:

  1. "If you really, really want to do something, no one can stop you. If you really don’t want to do something then no one can help you.
  2. "Never sacrifice what you want the most for what you want the most at that moment." 
Thanks James for the word up! You've inspired me to keep on writing. 

Have you had ups and downs on your road to success? 
How do you fight those battles?

Monday, February 13, 2012

Secret 21 of 100

I have seasonal BLUES. 

I bet you thought I was going to say something funny. Well, I'm not. 
Why? Because I've lost my juice. Some time after Christmas, when Santa went back to the North Pole, he took my happy with him. And lately I'm as useful as a salted slug. (You know what happens to them, right? They shrivel up and die.) I kind of feel like I'm going through a slow shriveling process. But maybe I'm just confusing that with bedsores. If there weren't four little reasons and one big one, I would be content to spend the day in bed, watching shows, and buying ridiculous pieces of costume jewelry from the Home Shopping Network.

Basically, I don't like the winter. The cold makes me cringe and I pray every day could be 60 or warmer. 
I'm not entirely sure if it's the cold or the shorter days, but I know that when we lived in Hawaii I felt like a normal Erin all year round. Now I feel like 1/8 Erin and in the summer I'm 100% Erin. 

This secret is the reason I haven't posted. I'm down. I'm blue. And my dog died. 


I've decided those days are over. Yes, it's time for a comeback. I was rejuvenated at a recent writer's conference where I met tons of other writers. So I'm back, ya'll. I'm ready to beat those winter blues. 

 Question of the Day: Do you get the winter blues? And if so, how do you beat the crap out of them? 

Pictures Credit:,,

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Lets get together. Yeah, Yeah, Yeah.

I may have been MIA, but that doesn't mean that I haven't been a silent lurker out there on your blog. And the one thing that's got me uber excited is the fact that lots of you are going to LTUE! (Woot Woot...yeah, I'm a geek.)

If you don't know what LTUE is then listen up. It is a supa-awesome writing conference that is held at UVU in Utah County. There's authors and a few traditional presentations, but mostly a lot of panels and some editors. I heard on the down-low that there would be some there. The best part is the conference is crazy cheap. 
(Go to for more info.)

Anyway, since I creepily-stalk you all online, I figured it was about time to kick it with you in person...of course, in a non creepy way. Peggy Eddleman and I are going to have lunch in the food court, and would love to have everyone come join us! It'll be a party (except for we won't be doing anything least, that's what we'll tell anyone asking. I'm teasing.) 
Mostly I want to see if you look like your picture, or if like me, you support Adobe' by Fotoshop. 

Basically, all the cool people are going. If you don't come you'll regret it for the rest of your life. 

Let me know if you'll be there!

Friday, February 9 at Noon in the food court (on the first floor, but we may eat upstairs).
Saturday, February 10 at Noon (same place).

And I've stolen their map and added a big arrow, for your directional enjoyment.

NOTE: I will be wearing something super cute. That's how you'll recognize me. Oh, and I'm brown because I'm part-Hawaiian.