Saturday, October 31, 2009

Revved up and Rarin' to Go

Am I really here? My internet service hasn't been working all week and did I ever miss it! The tech adivsed us it may go down again however because our modem needs to be updated. Terrific.

Since Thursday was my day to post at Prairie Chicks Write Romance, I went into the local library Wed afternoon and used their computer to submit my post.

It's the last day of October which means National Novel Writing Month starts tomorrow. In the coming month, you'll see me refer to it as NaNoWriMo or even NaNo.

I've signed up as a Nano participant at eHarlequin so I'll be reporting my progress there as well as here. Plus, I've been invited to report my progress on Michelle Levigne's blog Living Proof.

So, my Thurs Prairie Chick post was Nanowrimo Tips and it's all those things I've found and used for getting the most writing out of Nanowrimo.

I've spent October working on Emma's Outlaw and it will be my Nano project this year. My goal is to have Emma's Outlaw complete and submissions started to my critique partners by the end of Nov.

My writing cave is still in the converted garage we call the rec centre. After I switch the furnace on in the morning, it only takes 15 mins and the whole room is heated nicely. It's so peaceful out there, with my Wyoming maps pinned to the drywall beside me, and it's fired me up. I've made so much progress on Emma's story and am excited that it's my Nano project this year.

I thought I was over the lung infection which burdened me for the last month but I'm stuffed up with a sore throat again. I bought some licorice herbal tea when Nelson and I went shopping in the city last week so I'll be sipping that today. Licorice is an excellent expectorant. I do not want to get sick again. It's such a waste of time!

In case you're wondering, there has been NO progress on my living room/bathroom wall. *sigh. I don't want to start nagging the contractor because at least we still have the bathtub and toilet which they'd originally wanted to take out. And since the insurance company will have to dish out over $7,000 for our new 'makeover' I'm willing to wait. Oh no, just had a thought...what if they want to come in Nov while I'm doing Nano? Yikes!

Over at Inkwell Inspirations this month we'll be talking about our alter egos or personas. These are females, either real or fictional, which we feel an affinity toward or can really relate. Mine is Annie Oakley and I'll be posting about her in a couple weeks. Check out the Inkwell for the fascinating variety of personas from both the Inkies and guest authors.

And what have you been up to this month?

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Visit Kate Bridges, Win a book

Kate Bridges, a Harlequin Historical author and winner of numerous awards, is guest blogging at Prairie Chicks Write Romance today. She usually uses Alaska or the Yukon for her settings.

Kate is also a screenwriter and her post shows how this technique can enchance your novel writing.

If you have time to go over and post a comment or question today, you may win a copy of Kate's upcoming November release - Alaskan Renegade.

Kate's questions are: Have you ever tried screenwriting? Do you prefer seeing a movie or novel open chronologically in time, or does it matter?

Here's a blurb on Alaskan Renegade: When the Skagway town nurse, Victoria Windhaven, sets off on a dangerous medical journey across the Alaskan wilderness, she’s forced to ride with a man from her past - bodyguard Brant MacQuaid. Five years ago in St. Louis, Brant left her sister standing at the altar and Victoria has never forgiven him. They’re accompanied on the trip by a young medical student who has a crush on Victoria, which further complicates the arrangements.

If you could get over to Prairie Chicks today it would really help me out. My internet service is unreliable this weekend due to a technical glitch and the technician won't be out until Monday.

Also, most of the other Chicks are in BC for a writer's conference and I'm worried our guest will think the lack of participation is due to her. So if you have time, please drop in even if it's just to say hi.

Gotta go before I lose my connection.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Blogging About My Rocks

I'm blogging over at Inkwell Inspirations today about my rocks. It was supposed to be a travel piece about somewhere I've been and every time I sat down to think about it, I kept coming back to the Souris Rock Pit and all the treasures I've found there.

I asked hubby to read my rock post when he came home for lunch. He was eating with one hand and holding Lynnette Eason's latest Love Inspired Suspense, A Silent Fury, in the other. He looked up and asked, 'Do I hafta?'

'It's got lots of pictures,' I told him. I even brought my mini over and put it down on the table in front on him. Then I sat down to eat my own lunch. And no, I didn't feel bad that I was able to read Margaret Daley's Love Inspired Suspense Poisoned Secrets while making him read my blog. Heh.

But a funny thing happened while he was reading it. He started chewing slower until finally, he put his sandwich down and kept reading the blog. I was so astonished I had to remember to breathe! And when he finished, he smiled and said, 'That's really good, honey.'

So, if I can catch his attention . . . LOL

You could say today's post is a continuation of one on agates I wrote about here last year.

I was late getting my post up last night because I decided to check in with my doctor in the city yesterday. This cough of mine has been going on for 10 days now and that's too long for me. Being sick is such a waste of time and I've got things to do. Like write Emma's story without interruption, even by a coughing spell.

The doctor said I have an infection in my lungs and gave me some meds. One to get rid of the inflamation and an anti-biotic. The pharmacist said the anti-inflamatory might keep me awake at night. I said that was good because I'm a writer. But here it is in the middle of the day and I feel lethargic and dopey. *sigh

Anyway, anyone who comments on my rock/travel post over at the Inkwell blog until midnight Oct 22nd will get their name in my hat for a free Janet Dean Love Inspired Historical, Courting Miss Adelaide, as well as a small piece of petrified wood and a small agate.

We have a great discussion going on at the Inkwell based on todays blog questions:

- Are there any other rock hounds out there?

- Do you have a favourite hobby you need to get out of your system once in awhile?

- Do you collect something which gives you a reason to travel?

Thanks for visiting here today.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

What a Week!

It's a brilliant sunny, Saturday outside and I'm inside coughing away. Can't even say 6 words without hacking. Of course the little guy doesn't mind 'cause I can't yell at him to clean his room. My cough has come back with a vengeance and I believe it's because of working in the cold on Thursday afternoon.

Seekerville's BIAW ended on Sunday :( and I haven't worked on Emma's story now since Tues. I miss it. I like the accountability that BIAW and Nanowrimo offers.

Here's what I've been doing:

Wed - writing Prairie Chick Writes Romance (PC) blogpost

- blogging at Prairie Chicks (answering comments)
- drafting post for Sat's PC guest blogger
- emailing/scheduling PC guest bloggers for Nov/Dec
- writing Tues 'Travel' blogpost for Inkwell Inspirations

And then at noon on Thurs, the furnace started squealing! What a racket! Hubby was in the house eating lunch so I called him over and he said the motor was shot and he'd try to fix it later. He gave me a small baseboard heater to use. By 4 pm, I realized the little heater wasn't doing it's job and I was just wasting electricity so I moved back into the house.


- Susanne won my book giveaway at Prairie Chicks

- Furnace in rec centre still wasn't working so I stayed in the house. I don't like working on the dining room table because there's nowhere to plug in my cord. So, I worked on battery power for a couple hours until it ran out then I did something else while it recharged. I'll be so thankful when the livingroom wall is fixed and I can bring my writing armoire back in the house.

- right after school, the boys and I headed to the city. We dropped off the teen enroute as the youth group had something planned and he was going to sleep over. The little guy and I rushed to the city to get the latest issue of Olympic coins but the bank closed just as we got there. Sob. (The Olympic coins are only distributed through the RBC) But we had a good evening together at the Regina Coin Club mtg.

- hubby texted Friday night that he'd fixed the furnace in the rec centre so I can go back to my cave and work whenever I want. Yay!


- The little guy just came and told me it's 12c / 54F outside. Wow! Since he's by himself today and quietly playing on the computer, I'm hesitating leaving him alone and going to my cave.

- I'm hosting New York Times bestselling author Mary Balogh on Prairie Chicks Write Romance. We're having a lively discussion about whether a person needs a crit partner or can she send her ms straight to the editor. Mary is also giving away a hard cover copy of one of her books. To get in on her draw, go to Prairie Chicks Write Romance and leave a comment.

- I'm trying to get the church blog caught up to date

- I still need to work on Tues' post at the Inkwell

- I'm waiting to see if I'm a finalist in the Finally a Bride contest

- I need to work on Emma's story

- and I want to play Wii with the little guy (Heh)

And that's been my week.

So, what have you been up to?

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Win a Book on Prairie Chicks Write Romance Today

What? I haven't blogged for a week? Ah - it's because I've been working on Emma's story.

I've also been sick with a sore throat and hacking cough. For a couple days there it felt like my head would split every time I coughed. Not conducive to quality writing.

Now that it's too cold to work in the sunroom I've had to move my cave into the renovated garage we've christened the rec centre. Here's a photo of my new cave in the back corner behind the furnace (on the right) but it's only temporary until we can get the carpet down. Then I'll move to the other side of the room and set up shop. I shut the furnace off at night and put it back on the next day. Because it's all one big room, it heats up in about 15 mins flat. But that's with the temps hovering around freezing. I suppose it'll take longer as the temp drops.

Since today is Thursday, I'm blogging over at Prairie Chicks Write Romance. My post today is my agent appt in Denver.

And, I'm giving away a free book to anyone who goes over and comments on my Prairie Chick post today. I'm sorry, but for the purpose of this giveaway, you have to actually go and leave a comment over there if you want a shot at winning Anna Meets Her Match by Arlene James.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Prairie Chick and Trade-Offs

Today I'm blogging at Prairie Chicks Write Romance about negotiating with your family to give you more time to write during what Prairie Chick Helena calls 'writing binges'.

For me, these writing binges come in the form of Book in a Week (BIAW) and National Novel Writing Month (Nanowrimo) which is only 3 wks away.

I find I write best when I'm accountable for my writing and that's what these 'binges' give me - accountability. Instead of just talking about it, I'm forced to actually do it. I say yay! to writing binges.

Who will care for your family while you're ignoring them? That's where the trade-offs come in.

The questions I've asked the Prairie Chicks today are these:
- Do you use trade-offs during intensive writing periods?
- Are there any trade-offs you’ve thought up but haven’t tried and why not?
- What's stopping you?

Monday, October 5, 2009

Seekerville BIAW Starts Today

I've signed on for the Seekerville edition of Book In a Week (BIAW). If you follow my blog, you know I do BIAW every January with the Sask Romance Writers, but this is a new one for me.

I won't be starting a brand new book but using this week to add the 20,000 words I need to Emma's Outlaw.

That means I'll be hunkering down in my writing cave this week. I may put out more blog posts here with my progress, but I won't be appearing on many blogs around the net except for the Seekervile one which is encouraging us on.

And in case you're wondering, yes, it's now too cold to work in the sunroom so I've had to move my cave into the rec centre. We've got the furnace fired up and I've set up an old comuter desk on one side of the room where I've been working the past couple days. I'd love to set it up permanently but the cement is cold under my shoes. We'll be putting the old living room carpet out there but have to wait for the crews to come and take it out of the livingroom first.

No, the wall/renovations aren't finished in the living room/bathroom. Actually, they haven't started yet. We have everything ready to go and the insurance company has picked their company of choice but it's a matter of scheduling now. And whenever they do want to start, we won't be stopping them.

Now, on Emma's story: She's been kidnapped by outlaws and is riding across Wyoming...

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Prairie Chick Picks One

I'm blogging today over at Prairie Chicks Write Romance about how I finally chose the genre I'm going to concentrate my writing on these next few years.

I wanted to show you a current farm image so I opened my door and took a few pics. Imagine my surprise when I loaded them and discovered I hadn't downloaded the photos I took of Montana on my last day of travel. Now these photos are special because I was finally - just hours from home - able to capture the elusive hoodoo on film. I tried to describe a hoodoo to my crit partner/roomie Gwen at the conference but I didn't do it justice. So hopefully she'll get an idea from these.

This photo was taken looking up a hill on the north side of Culbertson in the northeast corner of Montana just 65 mls/104 kms south of the Can/US border.

Now, it doesn't look like much, right? But my fingers started tingling. I got back on the road and headed north, up past the hoodoos, turned around and parked close to them. Here's a closer look:

And still closer:

Isn't it amazing what a bit of wind erosion and the right soil/limestone can do, eh?

And in case you don't live near the 49th parallel and have wondered what the Can/US border really looks like, here it is:

That small white obelisk on the left side is the actual 49th parallel marker. Doesn't look like much standing between the 2 countries, does it?

Anyway, back to the Prairie Chicks, the questions today have to do with series books:

- How many books do you think should make up a series and why?

- What type of series do you like: Siblings? Friends? Co-workers? Same community but unknown to each other? Same family but different generations?

And in case you can't get over the Prairie Chicks and are wondering what I picked to concentrate my writing on, it's: Inspirational Historical Romance.