Wednesday, April 29, 2009

WiP Wednesdays

This is going to have to be a super quick post. I spent an hour on the phone with a friend, which was so great! She's living in this area until July and it was so good to talk to her again. It's been so long, but needless to say, I have so much to do and I can't spend a lot of time blogging. Onto my WiP... Can I just say how ecstatic I am about it right now? I just want to sit and write ALL the time because I know where I'm going now and I'm so in love with my characters. Being the mom of two very active little boys doesn't lend itself to that, which is good because I wouldn't want to get obsessed or anything... (If my husband were to read this, he'd be laughing hysterically at this point.) I am just a third of the way into the book, but I feel like I'm running at full speed. If I'm finding it exciting, that has to be a good sign right? If I want to go back and read it and if my husband enjoyed listening to me read it aloud, those all point to me doing something right, but most of all, I'm enjoying it! I feel like it's a release, from reality to a point, but mostly just from stress. And can I just say that Nakine rocks!! She's my female MC and will get her own book in the series eventually. This one is primarily about Ithon, my male MC. Question: When you see Ithon, how are you pronouncing it? I love the name, but I don't want it to get confused with Ethan, especially since I have a son named Ethan who is absolutely NOTHING like my character! Okay, I've rambled enough. I have to go check a few things off my to-do list.

My WiP is really moving along this week! Cheers to the motivation that is throwdown!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

WiP Wednesdays - Rushing

This week has been a pretty successful one for me, but last night I hit a dead end. Life is funny though. I have to admit, rather, give credit where credit is due. I didn't want to be stuck. (Who does?) I'm a pretty spiritual person for those who don't know me and when I realized I had no idea where to go next, I literally prayed for help. It's amazing how some prayers take awhile to get answered while others don't get answered at all. This prayer doesn't fall into either of these categories. I got my answer last night in a dream of all places. (Now I just sound crazy, I know. I accept that.) I'm so happy that I can continue on. I was really wondering what in the world I was going to do. Of course, all the details won't come until I sit down and write it out. I'm at the point in the book where the MC is going to be put through a series of tests to become a part of an elite group of, well, Watchers. They look after all things in my little country of Vismour. Anyway, I didn't want these tests to be easy or cliche and I got a few great hints last night as to where I need to be taking him.

Before I do, I have one question. The beginning of this chapter has already been written, but it's rushed. I was just reading Kate's WiP post about how she was rushing the plot forward and needed to go back and slow it down for her characters, but what if your character is feeling rushed? Do you let time fly by in those moments to heighten that sense? Do you blur details? I did, but once the trials begin, I had intended to slow down time and become more detailed. Is this appropriate? What do you think? Feel free to share your thoughts on the matter. What can I say? I'm insatiably curious.

And I have to cheer for myself because I'm so dang proud. I got that little link to work! Maybe there's hope for my computer skills yet.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Strengths Finder

This is not a stellar book review. I've never had a love for book reports, but I felt this book deserved a mention. My husband and I have been going over it for hours and it has been so much fun!

StrengthsFinder 2.0: A New and Upgraded Edition of the Online Test from Gallup's Now, Discover Your Strengths StrengthsFinder 2.0: A New and Upgraded Edition of the Online Test from Gallup's Now, Discover Your Strengths by Tom Rath

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
This book is amazing and if you wonder what your talents are, this book will help you find them. It is so cool!

View all my reviews.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Inspired Reading

I've been reading through a fun blog chain lately and their topic was books that had inspired them whether as authors or in their personal lives. This is a topic that automatically draws in anyone who loves to read and I couldn't help just throwing in my two cents or, in this case, my stack of books.

I'd always loved to read, but in third grade, I discovered my first fantasy series. It was The Book of Three by Lloyd Alexander and I haven't stopped reading Fantasy since. A few of my favorite authors in this genre include Steven Lawhead, Terry Brooks, Anne McCaffrey, R.A. Salvatore, Tracy Hickman and Margaret Weis, Mercedes Lackey, Robert Jordan and more recently Jim Butcher, Brandon Mull, Obert Skye, J.K. Rowling and my favorite by far Tamora Pierce. I'm sure there are many more I'm missing, but here's the short list. They have all influenced my desire to write fantasy novels as well.

In high school, I discovered two things about myself. I loved classics and I loved history. This led to a love for all books by Jane Austen, the Bronte sisters, Hardy, Doyle, Carroll, Tolkein, Faulkner, Orwell, Steinbeck, Twain, Shakespeare, Hugo, Gaston Leroux etc. I haven't listed specific books because, frankly, these people wrote too many! Some of my very favorites include Pride and Prejudice (and every other book she wrote), The Phantom of the Opera, Tess of the D'Ubervilles, Heart of Darkness, Jane Eyre, 1984, and Wuthering Heights.

Those were just the classics! I also fell in love with historical fiction. My first taste came from Jean Plaidy/Victoria Holt(and all her many other pen names!) and Michael Shaara's Killer Angels was next, but I must admit I also devoured the non-fictional (okay, maybe partially fictional... haha!)text books of my history classes. If you enjoy historical fiction and have other authors to suggest, please do! I have been pretty single minded in the fantsy genre for a long time and I would love some recommendations in this category! Lately, I've read, New Deal or Raw Deal by Burton Folsom Jr, Meltdown by Thomas E Woods Jr and A Slobbering Love Affair by Bernard Goldberg, all very good!

Along the years, I stumbled across C.S. Lewis' The Screwtape Letters and had to read everything he wrote as well.

I read a book by Cynthia Voigt when I was in Jr high called Jackaroo and it is still one of my most favorite books. I haven't read anything else by her. I probably should!

Finally, I LOVE Mary Higgins Clark! She and Tamora Pierce are the only authors where I find myself rushing to the bookstore as soon as they have a new one out. I love them! I do enjoy Carol Higgins Clarks books as well.

Other favorites include Timothy Zahn, Orson Scott Card, L.E. Modesitt Jr (His wife was my vocal teacher in college. I wonder what he'd say about my trying to become an author...), John Grisham, Neal A. Maxwell, Bruce R. McConkie, Gordon B. Hinkley etc.

I'm sure I've missed a lot! This was harder than I thought it would be!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Throwdown Thursdays

Okay, I missed WiP Wednesdays so I thought I'd just be progressive. ;) Speaking of, I actually have made some this week. I've gotten quite a bit done on "Power's Touch" and I'm getting very excited about both my novels. I've set a goal with a group of other writers in a Rally Storm forum to write 500 words a day and so far so good! Plus I spent a good amount of time editing my first story, which I keep re-titling... Currently, it's "The Grip of Dreams". We'll see if this one sticks. There's still so much to do though and at times it seems a bit daunting. This week, I think it's time to find someone who would be willing to critique so that I know I'm on the right track. I know I have a problem with telling vs showing and I've tried to get better at that but sometimes you can't see the forest for the trees. (There's another darn expression. I just can't help myself! They slide off my tongue. Err... fingers!) Anyway, off to google search I go...

Wednesday, April 8, 2009


Progress? What? I'm supposed to be progressing? I think someone forgot to put that word into the dictionary embedded into my brain. Okay, humor aside, this week and last week have been a bit... not unproductive, but certainly not progressive where my stories are concerned. I wrote some lyrics and have spent a good amount of time composing music for some friends, but my novels have been set on the back burner. I hope to get to them once my husband isn't traveling and training, once my kids and I are no longer sick, once the heat comes back into my fingertips because it's super cold here and once I can sit down at the computer and not feel guilty about writing when I should be doing the other things I'm supposed to be doing. On the bright side, it has been a very productive week as far as prepping for the move has gone and spending time with my kids, exercising and spiritually renewing myself... Once the weekend hits, I should be able to put some time into my story, as long as everyone's healthy, happy and no hypothetical disasters shake the world to pieces.