Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Writing Breakthroughs, Hummingbirds, and Critique Group

Critique group meets tomorrow. After E's most recent illness (she was sick the weekend before last and part of last week), I'm looking forward to adult time, the chance to spy the last hummingbirds of the season in J's garden, and, of course, feedback on my most recent KM chapters.

I've been a writing maniac lately, racing through this current rewrite in record personal speed. Some of the contributing factors:

1. I've written and rewritten this puppy so many times from so many points of view that it was just plain time.

2. I've been told there's something about the well water we drink in town.

3. And, on a more serious note, I'm convinced the myriad puzzle pieces of this project finally came together after taking Dennis Foley's Plotting the Novel class.

Whatever the reason, I bless it and raise a cyber glass of wine (one I've been chilling for the time I finally pulled KM out of this proverbial rut).

Here's to the process and my muse. (It's bloody well time!)

Monday, September 24, 2007

Explore the Forest

Gacked from Big A little a's blog:

The September issue of The Edge of the Forest is now live. We have many exciting features for you, as well as interviews, reviews, and much, much more. In short, here's what's in store this month:

*An interview with Phil Bildner, by Camille Powell.
*An appreciation of Patrick McDowell's picture books, by Adrienne Furness.
*I discuss Anglo-American versions of Baba Yaga tales in Baba Yaga Heads West
*Liz Burns reviews Barry Lyga's Fanboy and Boy Toy.
*Kim Winters talks being on retreat in A Day in the Life
*Betsy Bird (A Fuse #8 Production) tells us What's in their Backpacks?
*Robin Brande is this month's Blogging Writer
*Sounds from the Forest talks with Mary Anne Hoberman and Deborah Freedman (Brought to you by Just One More Book!!)
*Reviews in all categories—from Picture book to Young Adult.

Don't forget to subscribe to The Edge of the Forest with our Subscribe feature. Just enter your name and e-mail address and you'll receive notification when each new issue is published.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Jewel at School Update

A number of people have asked how E and her service dog Jewel are doing in high school this year. Thanks to the new school's enlightened approach to special education, they're doing fabulous. One example of the many notable differences between the two districts: instead of asking "what do we have to do?" the new school asks "what can we do?" It's a proactive approach this writer mom and her muse wholeheartedly endorse!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Wands, Werewolves, and Another Vampire

It felt like my birthday when I came home Saturday to a box of books on the doorstep. Inside the box:

1. Reading Like a Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and for Those Who Want to Write Them by Francine Prose.

2. The Wand in the Word: Conversations with Writers of Fantasy edited by Leonard S. Marcus. Follow the link to read an interview with editor Marcus by Cynthia Leitich Smith on Cynsations.

3. Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer. Follow the link to read an excerpt.

Current read: Eclipse with brief yet insightful forays into the Wand in the Word.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Vampires, Kisses, and Thanks to a Fellow Writer

On a roll lately with midnight reads. The latest: The Silver Kiss by Annette Curtis Klause. The story's a must for vampire fans. Thanks to fellow writer Mindy Hardwick for recommending it. (I should have read it sooner!)

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Midnight Read 2

Finished Wendy Maas' Sleeping Beauty: The One Who Took the Really Long Nap last night. This book is a quick quirky read with a snappy he-said she-said format, likeable characters, and a heroine whose strong voice, and first line upon waking: "...who the heck are you?" kept me turning the page.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Critique Group Today

Jumping for joy. Critique group meets today which is good timing because I seriously need an afternoon with adults. On tap: discussions re J's and A's works-in-progress as they're both in exciting places--J in the inspirational phase of a new novel, A in the wrap-up stages. As for my hour of the meeting, I'm looking for input on the detailed scene outlines I submitted for the opening of KM based on the plotting work I did with Dennis Foley. By next time, I plan to have my middle completely detailed, and perhaps even my ending. Then it's onto another write through. Cool thing about all the hard work I did with Dennis, I'm in love with KM again.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Midnight Read

Read Crispin, The Cross of Lead by Avi yesterday. Intrigued by the spare eloquence of this story and the lasting impression its characters have made. No wonder it won the Newbery.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Plot is Not a Dirty Word

This week is my last with Dennis Foley of Plotting the Novel. What an awesome journey he's led us on over the last eight weeks. Thanks to our weekly assignments, I'm much more confident about how plotting fits into my creative process, and convinced that plot is no longer a dirty word. Not only is it a necessary foundation for any story, it's the road map my characters need as they drive their way through KM.