Saturday, April 30, 2011

Your MC and Zombie Mom

I've read a couple of books lately where I didn't like the MC.  I thought they were bratty, rude, and selfish.  It bugged me.  And then I realized  the new character I'm writing, the one in Parasites... is not so endearing herself.

Why do we do this?

I guess it's fun to make someone snarky, who'd say things you wouldn't, or maybe you taught eighth grade and are being realistic... 

But for whatever reason you have, is your MC boarding on too obnoxious?  Right now mine is.

So anyone got any ideas for making an annoying character more endearing??

I know this has been successfully done... an example:  See Kyle, in Beastly by Alex Flinn

The MC is a total jerk, he kind of does a nice thing and you think maybe he's not all bad, but then he's still a scuz bucket...  but throughout the book he'll take two steps forward one step back, he's a great example of transforming your character.

Now I just have to close the gap and figure out how to do this with my story.

Now for the letter Z:

My baby is due on the 10th... I've been totally Zombie Mom lately.  Really.  Like locking my keys in my car multiple times, leaving the oven on indefinitely, leaving hamburger meat out on the counter (for the record it was out to thaw, still wrapped and on a plate, but I kinda forgot I was going to make sloppy joes that night)--good thing my husband has been checking out the kitchen before he goes to bed... 

So I'm excited to get back to my completely irregular blogging schedule, because maybe with one less thing to think about I'll remember the important things... like turning off the oven.

Posting might be a little hit and miss for a while, so see ya when I see ya.

Thursday, April 28, 2011


For today's post, I consulted the urban dictionary...kind of a scary place to snoop around, but I eventually found an X word I liked and this is my favorite definition of Xander:

an alternative to the name alexander that is used when therre are too many people whos name is alex.
alex b.: hey alex s.
alex s.: hey alex b.
alex b.: hey alex B.
alex s.:hey alex q.
alex q.: dont call me alex anymore call me xander.

(Also one of the character's of Ally Condie's Matched is named Xander, it's an awesome book if you haven't read it... although be warned you will be dying to read Crossed afterward, and it hasn't come out yet...)

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Writing: in or out of order

Do you write in or out of order?

I've been writing my current WIP in order, as in okay I've finished this scene...consult outline...proceed to next scene.

But today I'm considering writing the scenes I just really want to write now and go back and fill the rest in later.

I remember someone ranting online about how they wrote their scenes out of order and how you should NEVER do it, because they never wanted to go back to those other scenes.  But I think it actually helps with my momentum...when you can copy and paste a HUGE scene into your WIP--it's so rewarding to see it added to the word count.

While editing my other work, sometimes I go write a random scene over in a notebook and then transfer it later...and this has worked wonderfully.  It actually really helps me brainstorm and focus on making that scene better.

So I'm going to start writing my fun scenes first, the ones I'm dying to write, because hopefully as the story develops I can make those transitional scenes into fun ones too...but I need the motivation to get to them.

Anyone else have a preference?  I want to know, in or out of order?

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

the next Vampire...?

I'm wondering what the next Vampire is... as in what's the next big trend.  There's a lot of dystopia going on... some steampunk... realistic fiction.

I think it's silly to follow trends when writing, because by the time your manuscript is written, polished, and ready to go...(most likely) the trend is dying.

The scary thing to me is what if you write a book and start seeing similar books being published.

This happened to me the other day.  I've been working on a project for over two years.  TWO YEARS.  That's ridiculous.  But I can't seem to get it right.  And then I had my query critiqued by someone who was like, whoa have you read...such and such book.

Nope.  I hadn't.  I got the book from the library and almost felt sick to my stomach reading the premise because I was like:  WHAT THE HECK THIS IS MY IDEA!

But then I started reading.  And yes there were some things that were creepily similar and details that bugged me.  BUT...I realized it was nothing like my book.  Similar themes coming from a completely different voice, different style, different perspective.

My book is unique because I am.

It made me think back to a writing class I took.  We'd write from prompts.  The SAME prompts.  But everyone had something different to say even if it was the same theme.

So I guess the moral of the story is... write what you want to write.  Write the story that needs to be told and don't worry about being part of the next big thing.  Chances are there will be a book out there with similarities but every story is different just like every person.

Monday, April 25, 2011


Scott Westerfeld is an awesome writer.

I really enjoyed the Uglies series.

I read those and then plowed into Leviathan and Behemoth, both excellent books.  I can't wait for Goliath to come out.  I just really enjoy his style.  His books are super creative and have excellent world building.

They are the kind of books I try to learn from but get so lost in the story I have a hard time figuring out how he made everything so intriguing because I'm so into the plot.

I highly recommend him if you like YA sci-fi or steam punk.

Happy reading.

Too much candy = Tantrums

My child woke up with an Easter candy hangover.

I was making my husband's lunch as he was pulling some things together for class, we were laughing about something and in marches our two-year-old yelling:  GO BACK TO BED.

It was 8:30.  She never sleeps in that late and I would have loved to go back to bed...

Friday, April 22, 2011


S posts. I've got nothing snappy to say today so I'm doing a summary of s posts.

I've seen a lot of S posts today, funny that some of them weren't from the blogging challenge but here are a few of my fav's:

Emerald City Stranger than Fiction, great movie
Ju Dimello Sinfully delicious
My Poetry and Prose Place S
Coming down the Mountain Showing v. Telling
Plain Jane Sitting in your car
Fit Mama Drama Seven Keys for Stress Relief
Elana Johnson Sacrifice
Carrie Harris Sleeping Beauty

Thursday, April 21, 2011

what have you Read lately?

So...what have you read lately???

I need some good books for these last few weeks of pregnancy--reading is my favorite escape and I'm finding myself needing to escape more and more each day.

I just read Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl and really enjoyed it.  I'm kind of a picky reader, so even if I pick up six books from the library I will probably put down three...unless I'm really desperate for something to read.  

Which means I need a plethora of, list away friends, list away. 

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


As I was brainstorming 'Q' topics for the day, I kept thinking of 'Q' words:  Queen, Quincy, Quack, Quimby...who the heck is Quimby?

And then my brain was like:  I think it's Mr. Quimby.

Oh right, Mr. Quimby.  But where/what/when is he from?

Thank you google.

Mr. Quimby is Ramona's dad out of Beverly Cleary's series... I personally liked the mouse and the motorcycle better than Ramona, but it amazed me that he (Mr. Quimby) randomly popped in my head after all these years.  That's staying power.

What books have stayed with you over the years?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


Okay so I've decided to start this new project (see last post :) ), and I'm really excited because it's helping distract me from the impending due date...

So basically I'm starting my own Prego-wrimo*... except I don't really have a month.  I've got three weeks... If that.  So I'm going to see how far I can get on this middle grade project before I pop.  It's kind of like playing Perfection, that game where you have to stick the shapes in their places before the timer goes off--I'm kind of excited.

My goal is 35,000 words.  We'll see how far I get.

Yesterday I spent my writing time outlining like crazy and today I have to finish my character sketches, hopefully I'll start writing tomorrow...and figure out how to put one of those little word counter thingys on my blog--if you know what I'm talking about and how to do it, let me know if you have any tips...

*For any non-writers, Nanowrimo is what I stole my Prego-wrimo idea from :)  Basically you have a month to write a novel, it's an annual thing that happens in November. 

M-aking new goals, moving O-n, and N-esting pics

I made the decision to move on.


I'm not very good at letting go, but I need a change of pace.

I made a new goal, and I'm rather excited about it.  I'm starting a new project, and shelving the old one--for now.  I can't let it go, but I need a break and I need the excitement of something new.  I need to get my writer juices flowing again before I can finish editing my WIP.

Details on my goal are coming  in my next post :)

But for now here's what I've been up to lately, minus the pictures of all the cupboards and closets I've gone through, and I'm sure you don't need a picture of the mopped/vacuum floors...

There was lots of paint, glue, mod-podge etc.  but now it's finally come together.

I love this dresser, Craig's list with some paint slapped on it.  Yay.  

Thursday, April 14, 2011


Okay I know I'm stuck on the pregnant thing...but it's kind of consuming my life right now (as well as my entire mid-section).

Here are some random quotes I've heard lately, some to me and some I'm not sure they meant for me to hear:

Labor is like looking forward to a car wreck.
Did my belly ever get THAT big?
I'm sure you'll go soon, you're just looking so ripe.
My dad was making fun of you.
I placed my bet on Tuesday, do you think you could arrange that?

And my favorite conversation:
Me:  When is this baby going to be born?
My toddler:  Sunday

I'm crossing my fingers for Sunday--I know it's ridiculous that I'm this antsy, my due date is a month away...but if you've ever been pregnant I'm sure you can relate.  (Plus if this whole false labor thing goes on for the next month, I might just go off the deep end.)

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Basically the best part of any YA book is the romantic subplot.

(I have to admit, even though that's my favorite part--I need more plot then just the love story)

I think it's difficult to write flirty scenes between my MC and her love interest--but it's also the most fun.  And if I go back later and read it and find myself grinning at how cute they are, I know I've done it.

It's the whole kissing thing that's practically impossible for me to write... because lets be honest--I mean you want to know they are kissing, but if you are too vague it comes off weird with no emotion  but at the same time, I don't need to know every detail of the make-out session... so I don't know it's just hard.

Does anyone else have this problem??

I did read a book that had a ton of kissing scenes, the fun part is they aren't exactly what the MC was looking for:

And here's some kissing scene inspiration:

okay and here's some angst:

Okay I'm done, couldn't help but get a little carried away....

Monday, April 11, 2011

I am number four

Has anyone seen this movie?

So I saw a preview for this a few months back, and to be honest I thought it looked kinda lame--like Twilight for guys or something.  I haven't seen it yet, so it could be good, I don't know.

And then I ran across somewhere that it was actually a book and I thought what the hey...I have nothing to read right now, so I requested it.

And I liked it.  It was a fun read and unrealistic enough to not stress me out, but relate-able enough to suck me in.  So moral of the story, don't judge a book by it's movie :) or the movie trailer I guess.


Saturday, April 9, 2011

How cool is that?

I know.  I know.  The whole a-z challenge has made my posts so random, but it's really fun.  So anyway...

I do singing time at church with kids ages 3-11.  This is my last Sunday (or at least that's the rumor,  I was supposed to be done a couple of weeks ago...long story).  So I had to come up with something cool to do, I googled up an idea (here) for teaching a mother's day song and I'm rather happy with my visual aide.

So here it is... my crying mother:

The better the kids sing the more she cries.  I'm rather excited because she has a pretty good range... and I might just happen to get the older gets a little wet.  It's way better than the little squirt gun I was going to use. :)  

I simplified what the other person did, mine cost me about $0.25.  I printed off the pic of June Cleaver, slapped it on some scrap book paper I had and then laminated it.  The little squirter thing I had in a kitchen drawer with other random medicinal things.  Who knows why I kept it, but it worked out perfectly.  

Can't wait for tomorrow.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Five bucks can Get you...

A muumuu.

I gave in.  I'm a pajama pants kind of person.

But it was five dollars.

This is pretty much what I look like, just insert my head where homer's is...I wish I could live in the thing, but I feel goofy enough wearing it at home, alone.  Hopefully I will ween myself off of it after I give birth...but its not looking good.  The thing is so freaking comfortable.

They should have probably carded me when I bought it, I'm pretty sure if you're under 85 you shouldn't be allowed to wear one.

p.s. this is so counting for letters 'F' and 'G'...

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

E is for Epidural! Yay!

Everyone keeps telling me epidural horror stories... I think it's because I already can't wait to get my epidural.  
Last time around, my water had broken but my contractions never showed up, so they started giving me pitocin.

Ay ay ay... it was bad. Seriously, I wanted to kiss the feet of the anesthesiologist.  The epidural was the best thing about being in labor, oh yeah then the whole I have a baby now thing :) .   It's a good thing they don't sell epidurals on the street or I might be a drug addict.  (okay not really, I don't even like taking Tylenol)  

I know there are so many hard core people who give birth with no pain killers... but I don't really want to be one of them.  Sometimes you don't have a choice, and if that happens I'll suck it up.  But for now I think I'll just shove my fingers in my ears and start humming the next time someone tells me how awful their epidural was...because labor sucks, and I'm cool with not feeling extreme amounts of pain.     

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

D... Don't Double the Sugar

Okay so this is why I hate cooking...

I made brownies yesterday with my kiddo.  I've been super tired and for some reason I grabbed the 1/2 cup instead of the 1/3 cup.

So I ended up putting 2 and 1/2 cups of sugar in the brownies instead of  1 and 2/3 cups... uh yeah.
I realized this after I had finished whipping the batter together.  My husband suggested to just add more of everything else.  I probably should have listened.  

Pretty much after eating two brownies my blood sugar was crazy...and then CRASH. I sat on the couch like a total zombie who kinda wanted to vomit... that's how much sugar was in those brownies.

I hate cooking because at least 1 out of 4 recipes I make totally crash and burn.  Yes, it's probably because of  lack of attention.  I like charring things a lot.  But still you put in all this work and for what??  Something that makes you totally want to puke.

I guess that's the problem, you screw up once and there is no forgiveness.  At least with writing I have a DELETE key and I know how to use it.

Monday, April 4, 2011

C-rap what's for dinner?

Since I'm a day off in my blogging challenge... this fits nicely--because I've had loads of ideas and have neglected to post them.

So here is my (Oh) Crap what's for dinner?

BBQ Chicken Quesadillas

I found this recipe on Iowa Girl Eats and it was amazing.  Generally I'm not a huge BBQ fan, but I loved these.  It isn't as easy and pita pizzas--because it requires a small amount of planning.  I know many of you might not think cooking up chicken is a big deal, but to me it means more work I don't want to do.  So I threw a big batch of chicken in my crock-pot and used it for a few meals.

Chicken ( I need to say that?  I hope not)
BBQ sauce
Caramelized Onions (if you're feeling energetic)

Slap it all together and throw it on the stove until its all melty and delicious.



Sunday, April 3, 2011

Berlin, Irving Berlin


Irving Berlin.

I love old movies, and so many have classic music written by Irving Berlin.  Anyway here's my tribute to Mr. Berlin for giving me writing inspiration.  

still a day behind...but I don't really care... 

Saturday, April 2, 2011

A is for April Fools...

Um yeah so I signed up to do the whole abc blog thingy this month... and so that was supposed to start yesterday--hahaha... happy April fools... I planned the whole thing, uh... jokes on you or me... or something.