Friday, December 31, 2010

Writing Goals for 2011

Tomorrow a new year begins. 2010 has been a great year for me and I hope 2011 will be even better. I made a few goals last year. In particular, I sold my first book! I didn't read all the books I had wanted to read, but to read or write one has to be in the mood.

Next year I would like to become focused again. Especially since the holidays make it hard to write.

So, let's see how 2010 went:

My goals for 2010:
  1. I will write 4 manuscripts in 2010.
    I finished 2 manuscripts. Not bad.
  2. I will sell my first manuscript in 2010. (Optimism = Yay)
    Hoarding Your Howls sold to Del Rey!
  3. I will complete 3 novellas. (I have two unfinished ones. *sigh*)
    I finished 1 novella. Not the best, but one is better than none.
  4. I will harness and understand my process of writing. (Yes, it took me a year to figure out I'm not the write everyday type of gal. I need to live with it.)
    I didn't stress too much over the days I didn't write. Quite easy to do.
  5. I will break my previous record of 8,000 Words in one day and will knock out 10K in a day.
    I was pleased as punch when I got this one accomplished!
So, onward to 2011... What will be my goals?
  1. Finish 4 manuscripts in 2011.
  2. Develop a fun promotional tool for my upcoming book.
  3. I will read 50 books this year...not 25, but 50! (I can do eeet!) And one of those books will be in a genre I don't normally read. Maybe middle-grade or something inspirational.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Happy Holidays!

It's Christmas at my house! I just had a delicious dinner with turkey, ham, and all the fixings. Christmas Eve and Christmas have been a wonderful holiday for me--not only did I get a Sony Reader from my mother, but I got a fabulous letter from my agent. I got my signed contract from Random House. Woo hoo!

After all the work I've done, I've finally reached my goal of being a paid writer. Not a billionaire or anything, but at least I can contribute a few packs of gum or something.

Woo hoo! My signed contract. (Time to get to work...)

I've spent the holidays editing my manuscript. My super fast editor marked up my baby and now I'm adding in spices here and there to make the story spicier and tastier. A lot of fun with brainstorming and such.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Hoarding Expensive Christmas Ornaments

As the holidays approach I can't help but channel the heroine from my book whenever I visit the store. So many Christmas lights, the cinnamony scent of pine cones in a bag, various holiday do-dads and knickknacks... Pure happiness in the holiday aisles. Personally, I do all my ornament shopping after the holidays. Especially since there's nothing more beautiful than a 75% off sign.

Now if I had much more money I would go nuts for these beauties:

For thirty five bucks you can have a piece of this shiny satisfaction. :D

That ornament was a warm up. This next one is so beautiful, and so beyond what I could afford to pay:

That lovely Dreidel on White is available for $320.00.

I browsed the site a bit more since I was already oogling the designs. This ostrich egg is divine:

The Pink Floral on Ostrich Egg is $400 bones. Yep, you get that one ornament for four hundred dollars. For that kind of money I'm thinking the box needs to be covered in gold.

If you have $400 to drop on an ornament, why not spend $100 grand?

Hallmark Jewelers created this insanely expensive Christmas ornament:

Were you able to count the diamonds on that puppy? That shiny bauble is made of 18 carat white gold with 1,578 diamonds. It's surrounded by two rings made of 188 rubies! If you're pulling out your check book now I would stop unless you have about $130,000 for a rainy day.

If Natalya had the money to buy these, I think she'd choose the Ostrich Egg. An ornament as expensive as the Hallmark one is just asking to be stolen. Although I know she'd take great care of it.

Am I missing any other companies with luxurious Christmas goodies for me to drool over?

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Writing and Reading When Distracted

To say that I'm distracted right now would be an understatement. My daughter has been in the hospital since Sunday due to surgery. We hope to leave jail, I mean the hospital tomorrow. :D Over the past couple of days I've lived at the hospital and my brain has turned into a mush like material that doesn't resemble a brain. As a proactive writer who tries to write often and write a lot, this kind of distraction is a bit hard. I'm tired. I don't want to think deeply. Initially, I took my young adult WIP with me just in case the moment comes.

It hasn't.

Although, I have noticed that scenes and people from my stories do come to mind. It's rather neat to be sitting there wanting to resemble a petrified rock and have your characters come up to you to strike up a conversation. They tell me about their lives, what they ate for dinner, and other cool things I should remember to write down.

But I don't bother.

The book isn't going anywhere, and I have a weekend to recover once we get home. I have the holidays to listen to Christmas music and a pile of books to enjoy. I just finished Melody Carlson's FORGOTTEN in one night and now I'm enjoying James Dashner's THE SCORCH TRIALS. All in all, it okay to be distracted. The important thing is that I plan to write after everything is over.

My characters will most likely continue to haunt me, although I have a feeling that my weird character with creepy eyes, who's flipping me off by the way, might not be back for another interview.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Get Your Edit On

I've been busy with life, with at least a little writing in between. My manuscript is pretty much in edit mode right now with pieces hovering with my betas. I feel like the darn thing resembles Frankenstein. I ripped out the innards and now I have to sew the poor guy back together. I'm actually taking my one book and dividing it into two! (Yes, you read that right.) Not impossible. Just messy surgery. LOL.

I failed NANOWRIMO. I was so determined to do it this year! I practically fell off the horse, the horse kicked me while I was down, and then it proceeded to ride into the sunset without me. (I did wave though since that's the polite thing to do.)

In the meantime since I didn't make it, but so many friends made it (Congratulations!!!), I created a list of my favorite editing tip spots. Every time I finish my work, I do a sweep. This sweep includes checking stuff I often find on these pages.

Hope these help. I also have a similar list on my website, but having it more than one place never hurts. :D