Friday, May 28, 2010

Aliens, Time Travel and Trilogies

So, I let my readers in on my beliefs about aliens and time travel this week and then I thought about how it all ties back into my writing.

I could say that having a wide open mind helps with my fiction (it does), or that writing is writing and anytime I'm writing I'm also learning about my craft (I am), but mostly my last two posts, and especially Let's Rectify Stuff Together, ties back to what I'm doing with my writing in a different way.

I didn't really sit down at the beginning of this year and outline my idea of the perfect story, mainly because I was afraid that I would lose the story that was already building in my head if I dissected it even for a second. The most outlining I did was with how I wanted to seperate my story into three books. (Outlining is very important. I do outline. I just didn't spend a lot of time formalizing it before I started hammering out the first book.)

If I had stepped back and thought about it, I might have written a stand alone novel first. But I wrote a trilogy first and that's okay too. Besides the fact that it might be really challenging to get my trilogy published over a stand alone novel, I have other writing challenges with writing three interlinking books.

After I wrote the first one, I immediately started writing the second one (I say, as long as the story is there, let it flow). That's when I realized just how difficult it was going to be to write these three books without having a final draft of the first one. As the first was being professionally edited, problems came up that were easy to change in the first book, but more difficult to change in the second book, but I managed.

I am done with the second book and working on the third book. Now that I have eyes on the second book, I am concerned about what kind of changes I have to make from the edits that won't screw with the outcome of all the books.

This week on my blog, I used my life as an example of how going back in time to make changes to the details could have devastating effects in the outcome of the end goal. That's the overall challenge I'm having now with my WIP. That might be why I should have gone with a stand alone first. But I wouldn't go back in time to change it.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Let's Rectify Stuff Together

Since I admitted that I believe time travel exists and is being used by the government, let's go back in time for a minute. It would be difficult for the government to implement technology without ramifications, but I'm sticking with it; I believe it's been done. Let's see if I can be as successful as the government.

I could lie and say there's nothing in my life I would change, because if I did change something then I wouldn't have my loving husband, my three beautiful children, my beautiful home and wonderful neighbors; but I know there must be something I can change that will be impactful without destroying my current life. So, I'm just going to have to be careful and cognizant of what I choose to change.

I'm kind of a bold individual so I'm not going to go at this genie-in-a-bottle style; there are no three chances to get it right, I offer endless possibilities. I say, move things around in your mind like a rubik's cube, just no cheating; you can't take the stickers off and put them back in the right spots. It has to happen naturally.

It's difficult to plan a voyage back in time knowing what it is that I don't want to change. I'm off to a good start though. Knowing what I don't want to change is important, it keeps me alive; if I know what I want to keep in my life then I might not accidentally off myself or anyone I love in my travels (hopefully everyone stays breathing, even if I don't love them).

Now I can start mapping out my journey and pinpointing my destination. Before I get in the machine, I have to keep in mind that my goal here is not to change my husband, my children, or where I live.

By not changing my goal, I almost need to stay completely away from my path of ex-boyfriends. If I hadn't met guy #1, and broken it off at the precise time I originally chose, then I wouldn't have met guy #2, who was so aweful that I had to completely alter the course of my life; a survival instinct. Thank God I changed my path, because that's how I met my husband.

(I'm rubbing my hands together out of excitement and deep thought) This is a lot more difficult than I originally imagined. It's okay, I'm not giving up.

What if I tackled my shyness earlier than when I met my husband? Would that alter my path to my husband? Let's see. I've always been a bit introverted and a little bit shy, but the acting classes helped conquer that fear (helped is the operative word here). I could start out with small stuff; I wished that I had had the courage to ask Ryan Seacrest for his signature when he was a host on Click in 1997 and I was a production assistant.

So, one of my stops will be to 1997 at The Production Group on Vine Street in Hollywood. I will have just finished going out to the store to buy Ryan a set of forest green hand towels for his dressing room. I will casually ask him for one of the headshots he was handing out to contestants with his signature, and he will say yes. I will have more confidence in my life going forward as a result of this change. But does that change my path to my husband? Unfortunately, it does. Confidence leads directly into the ex-boyfriend path; a little confidence would've help me avoid guy #2 but I needed guy #2 to meet my husband. I will just have to live without Ryan's signature.

I know! I will go back to 1986 and I won't push my sister while she is jumping on my dad's jogging trampoline in the basement. That way she won't fall off and bang her head on the concrete of the unfinished floor. She wouldn't have to tell me I was an evil witch who always had it out to kill her (I was only 8. I don't remember having any plans to off her). But then, I might not have been so open to my World Religions class in high school, which would have ultimately prevented me from meeting by best friend, Nicole. Sorry Sis, I can't give up Nicole and enlightenment for a bump on your head.

Is there anything, anything at all that I could change about myself that would have prevented me from sending out queries before I read Query Shark's blog? Perhaps I could go back to January of this year, and start my research before I started writing my books. Nothing about my recent writing would alter my current life. Is that cheating? Even if it is, I couldn't go back and do the research before the writing because then I would have psyched myself out and may not have written the books.

I could go back and stick to focusing on my writing. Let me roll this around in my head for a minute. I couldn't go far enough back to change my college major; doing that would alter my path to my husband. However, I could have finished that creative writing course, and continued writing short stories and children's books. I couldn't have written the books I've recenlty written back then, because I didn't have a good enough perspective on life to write YA fiction very well. But I could have kept writing something other than my journal entries. That's it! I will go back to 1998. That's the year I got my first polite rejection from a publisher. I will not shelve the project this time; I will send it out again and I will start elaborating on another story I shelved around that time. That way I still have my family, my house and my neighbors and nobody has to die in my journey.

I found a way to go back in the past and change something that would positively impact my life today without sacrificing my family and my living situation. It was hard.

So, how is the government doing it? I say, thankfully I'm not part of the government's time travel program because I think their ramifications are vast and the amount of lives that might have been sacrificed to bring us our blogging rights, only forty one years after we landed on the moon and only eighteen years after the Internet was released by CERN, might be astonishing. (This was an excercise to challenge myself to make impactful changes without devastating consequences, not an excercise to change my beliefs about the government time traveling in order to advance technology and society. I encourage differing beliefs though, do you have one?)

How did you fare in your time travels? Did you make it out alive? Were you able to advance yourself without changing the most important aspects of your current life?

Monday, May 24, 2010

Is It Too Late To Be Abducted By Aliens?

I haven't pulled from my journals in awhile so I thought why not?

October 12, 2009
Would I be completely dillusional if I truly believed in time travel? What if I occasionally felt as though I must be from some other time?

Honestly, sometimes I believe that I am looking for a way back home. I read, I watch, I listen, I am crazy about this idea.

While I'm already out here on the ledge, I am not afraid to admit that I believe Einstein completed his research for time travel, worm holes, supermassive black holes, etc. And that we've been time traveling for quite some time now.

UFO's are likely not coming from a far off place in outer space, driven by googely-eyed, green-skinned aliens waiting to beam us up like Scotty. UFO's are probably just time travelers. There is probably a whole secret society of time travelers controlled and used by the government to rapidly advance technology.

It rarely occurs to most people the sudden advancements we've experienced through time. Seriously, we not only put a man on the moon but we were able to successfully film him and show it live in a day in age when televisions in the average living room was still relatively new. And, I still can't get reception on my cell phone when I drive on the toll road (I'm shaking my head right now).

Remember the influx of UFO sightings, and reports of alien abductions in the '80's? Whatever happened to sightings of little green people with big heads, little bodies, and narrow eyes?

Now when I watch those UFO Sighting shows on the Discovery Channel, they never focus on aliens, just spacecraft. How am I ever going to find my time traveling alien family this way?

All well, I might have lost all hope in ever getting a chance at being abducted by aliens, but I haven't lost hope in finding my way back to whatever time I came from.

Am I alone in this? What do you think? Are there aliens out there or just time travelers from Earth? Have you ever been beamed up?

Thursday, May 20, 2010

All the World's a Stage

...and everyone in it, a critic.

The "Let's Talk" Blogfest was fun. I'm glad I caught it in time to participate. I was able to go over to the blogfest and read a lot of the entries and I must say, there are a lot of great up and coming authors.

The most interesting part of the contest, for me, was reading the criticisms left on each entry. Some of the criticism was quite useful, even in my own entry, and I am thankful for that. Some of those criticisms however, do I say this...darts. That's the only way I can explain them.

It's important to be able to learn from others in your craft. Before I decided to expand my journal entries into books, I was a theater geek. Theater kids spend a lot of time watching each other perform. While we watch others (wishing we were the ones up there performing) we are actually honing many types of skills, including that of the critic.

It's so hard to watch from the sidelines when we know that we are capable, or have the talent, or are sitting on complete manuscripts. In theater, sitting and watching is a test of patience.

In writing, there is a lot of sitting and waiting and now with the world of blogging we get to sit, wait, and watch others succeed. But we are never really sitting on the sidelines because we can sit down and pound out another idea whenever we want. We don't have to wait for an audition to test out our skills, we don't have to audition at all if we don't want to, and we don't have to wait for a chance to be creative. We can close our browsers, not put out a query today, and just write. It's beautiful.

But we are entertainers, which means we desire an audience, so we put ourselves out there on a constant basis. And sometimes, what we get in return, is harsh and jarring criticism.

It's so easy to find the flaws in others so we don't have to focus on our own flaws. But thank God for the critics. They might not always have the best of intentions and they might not be experts in the field of criticism (or in their own craft) but they are there (for free most of the time) to make the rest of us better artists (or people; critics are not just prone to the entertainment industry, they lurk around every corner).

Writing, singing, theater arts, painting...all of these are part of the entertainment industry. Therefore those of us in it are cut from the same cloth, so to speak.

We seek to entertain. In doing so, we have found a way to be comfortable with our underlying nakedness. This underlying nakedness can be cold and lonely, therefore at times I feel the need to wrap myself up in shrouds of insecurity (probably the same cloth the storks sent me down in).

It's okay for entertainers to retreat to our shrouds of insecurity from time to time, so long as we know just when to disrobe.

Those of you who got some harsh criticism during the blogfest, I thank you for bearing it all and I hope that you've disrobed by now.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


Yay! Some of my dialogue gets to see the light of day, thank you *Fiction Groupie*!

Sign up and join *Fiction Groupie's* Blogfest; a contest for awesome dialogue scenes.

Here is my entry into the contest from, ENTANGLED

At the end of the day, Sam wasn’t surprised when Brock went out of his way to catch up with her on her way to Career Study.

“That was a great writing assignment Mr. Peck gave in English, don’t you think?” Brock asked.

“It’s not my favorite topic,” Sam replied.

“It’s funny though,” Brock said.

“What’s funny about road kill?” Sam asked.

“You could go so many different directions with that topic,” Brock said.

“What would your angle be?” Sam asked.

“I think I’m going to take a psychological approach. I read once that road kill is not so much an accident as it is animal suicide,” said Brock.

“That’s absurd. Where do you get your information from, Hot Rod magazine?” Sam asked.

“Think about it. Why are the animals on the road in the first place?” Brock asked.

“Has it occurred to you that we built our highways along their pathways to water?” Sam stated more than asked.

“That makes sense, although cars have been around for more than one hundred years so you would think the animals would have found a different route by now,” Brock said.

“I can’t believe we’re having this discussion. The animals would go extinct if they avoided crossing the road,” Sam said.

“You sound like an animal rights activist right now. Since you seem to know so much about animals, then answer me this, aren’t animals supposed to have superior senses? Wouldn’t these superior senses allow them to hear the patterns in traffic, see the approaching vehicles quite a distance away, and possibly judge distance and speed before crossing the path of their enemies?” Brock retorted.

“You’ve got me there. Let’s say you’re onto something, what would lead the animals to such drastic measures?” Sam asked.

“Female animals,” Brock said matter-of-factly.

“Oh my god, we’re not continuing this discussion any further. You’re amazing,” Sam responded.

“What’s going on, guys?” Dusty met up with them before they walked into the classroom.

“Brock's trying to convince me animals not only commit suicide but it’s the female animals driving the male animals to do it,” Sam said.

“Oh yeah, I’ve heard something like this before. That’s an interesting way to look at it though,” Dusty said.

“Don’t tell me you’re taking his side,” Sam said to Dusty.

“It’s not really a side. There was a study done on suicide deaths in America a long time ago. The study noted feminization as one of the leading causes of the escalation in male suicides,” Dusty explained.

Sam rolled her eyes and shook her head as she walked into the classroom ahead of Dusty and Brock. She could still hear them going on about feminization and suicides as she took her seat in the class.

“Today, all of you will take a test on the first section you learned yesterday that covers all the HIPAA laws. Those of you who learned about first aid yesterday will move onto CPR today, and those of you in Dr. Wells’s section who learned about the hospital will take a test and then begin studying the rules of the hospital,” Mrs. McAlister announced.

Sam bounced her pencil on her thumb as she read through the first page of the test. The test was relatively easy for her, but she couldn’t think about anything except the research she would rather be doing.

“They’re coming for you, too,” the voice said.

Sam recognized the voice as the voice she had been hearing in her head, but she looked around the room to ensure it wasn’t coming from anyone near her. As she glanced around, she caught Brock looking at her. She quickly looked away. Ignoring the voice, Sam focused on the test in front of her.

Monday, May 17, 2010

What's Being Written (and what isn't)

I'm going out on a limb for this particular posting. I don't have mounds of research to back up my suspicions and I'm not looking for a fight, but I have a sneaking suspicion some writers have shelved their uber creative works of potential art instead of marketing them.

Why? That's absurd isn't it?

Here's my idea of what the writing stages are (I'm literally standing on a fragile limb here):

For me, my first stage was proving to myself that I could actually write out a story idea into a book. This stage flew by. I pounded out my first story in six weeks and then spent one week editing myself. Then, I hired an editor to guide me through two drafts in which I increased the book by 9,000 words and learned a lot about myself as a writer. This was a huge investment and totally worth it.

I should have been happy with the completed book. The editor liked it (but I was paying her), my sister loved it (but she's family), my husband really liked it (at least that's what he says) and everyone I know is eager to read it; that meant I had to move on to the second stage.

The second stage is trying to get published. This is entirely possible, and it's an open market so why not? First, I tried to come up with a really good way to turn my book into a short story; this is the query/synopsis stage. Then, I started the literary agent research. Some of the submission guidelines were simple and to the point while others wanted me to go and research books that I could compare my book against. Yikes! I just spent several weeks coming up with a truly unique story. How am I supposed to compare it?

Having to compare my book to other books for similarties and differences and so forth, is where I started thinking about what is and isn't being written.

(Warning! I'm about to get opinionated)

Book in hand, I thought I could storm the castle, but maybe not without proven armor and weaponry. I will try anyway because I've just started my journey; other writer's may not be trying to break in with their uber creative stories anymore or maybe it's just that agents aren't even glancing at them.

Gone might be the days of sitting in a dimly lit closet-like room, pounding out a completely new idea. Today, it seems like writers have to get on the band wagon just to get in the door. I've thought about riding the vampire wagon, but why? To ensure publication? Maybe that's a brilliant idea and I'm too daft to follow the right leaders. (I'm not down on the vampires, I love them. I would love my own personal Edward, but what I read and what I write don't necessarily go hand in hand.)

If I'm right, and writers are just Band Wagon Writing just to please the publisher's and pigeon-hole the readers, then we writers may as well start up the Edward Stratemeyer Syndicate again and start pumping out more Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew stories and hunker down as a band of ghost writers.

I'm all for giving the readers what they want, but to what extent? I want to eat chocolate and potato chips all day long, but I know it's better in moderation. (Lessons I've learned in my life include: anything in excess will kill)

My characters are smart and edgy, they have giant attitudes and strong opinions and the perspective of their lives are no different than the vampire characters except that they don't suck blood. There are days where I haven't heard back about my queries and I wish all my characters sucked blood and in a completely new and exciting way, but they just don't.

Stage three: Calling thyself a writer/author even without publishing because publishing won't make me any more or any less of a writer (publishing is a reward but not the okay for writing). Then it's time to shelve the unique story and write a familiar one with a twist and then start stage two all over again.

I'm not at stage three yet, but it's always there in the back of my head.

This week I will be posting my query. It's about time I mention what I am trying to get out there.

Friday, May 14, 2010

"What Writers Read": Books, Books, Books

"What Writers Read": Books, Books, Books

This link takes you to a great blog.

I love to read and that's one of the main reasons I write. Books talk to me and so I talk back.

When I'm sitting in a restaurant, or walking down the street, I sometimes wonder what kind of books people are reading.

I have a couple of friends I enjoy reading with. There's nothing quite like getting a book handed over the fence from a neighbor, or getting a book as a present.

Getting a book from a friend, or as a present is an interesting way to find out what kind of person people think I am. So far, I have no complaints, no unpleasant surprises.

I might not have stumbled upon Hunger Games if my neighbor hadn't handed it over the fence last year. The Twilight Saga might have escaped me as well if the whole neighborhood hadn't been reading it and suggested it to me.

There are so many books in the local B&N that are just as good if not better than some of the ones who have a lot of hoopla around them and so I am drawn to those, knowing I can always find my way back to the well branded books if need be.

This isn't to say that I don't want to have a lot of hoopla around a book I write; on the contrary, I would love that kind of success and attention and I'm proud of those writers who have achieved that status. I just know there a lot of jems on the shelves.

The true adventure, for me, in a book store is spending time finding a great story amongst thousands. Fortune cookie style book finding; that's what I do. I believe I am drawn to specific stories for a reason. But then again, I also open books to random pages to find personal messages or fortunes that I use in my daily life.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Intell Inside

I sometimes go back and look at things I've written just to see how I've grown as a writer. In 1998 I signed up for a creative writing class at a distance. This was my first real experience working with an editor.

I am Generation 'X' personified. I'm surprised I wasn't born with Intell Inside. I grew up playing the Atari, moved up to the Nintendo, and eventually wrapped three quarters of my life up in computers. I to, even at my young age, have lived through the recreation of nearly every golden era; swing dance, recession, the value of a dollar, poetry and beatniks, drugs, sex, rock and roll, tattoos and body piercing. More importantly I belong to the Millennium madness. Everyone has their causes and concerns, mine is about the American dream.

I am twenty-one years old. Don't let my age fool you, I look like I'm twelve, feel like I'm seventeen, act like I''m thirty-five and wish I was ten again. Why ten? It was 1988, boys still wanted to be the President when they grew up and girls wanted to be wives, mothers and career women all in a single lifetime. The goals of women were never to have children while they were still children, drop out of high school, or be married and divorced before their five-year high school reunions. In 1988 it was still important to be book smart rather than computer literate. Latchkey kids were out numbered by housewives with after school snacks, and getting a college education was still in our price range. Ah, what it was like growing up in the good ol' days.

I had an American dream by the time I was six years old. My dream was to become a wife, mother, and doctor to a boy that I was particularily fond of in the first grade who's career choice happened to be a football player. It only made sense to choose a career that would compliment my future husband.

When the early 1990's created a wave of divorce fad, my father's mid-life crisis came and left with a younger woman leaving behind only memories of what I thought life should be like when I got older. My bubble of American dreams not only burst it only reflected true American nightmares after my dad left. I belonged to a new generation...the temporary one.

Will we ever remember that we used to go to car races instead of staying home to watch car chases? That our role models should include a President worthy of respect and emulation along with young soldiers and war veterans, police and firemen, teachers and scientists; our heroes shouldn't be infamous like Monica Lewinsky and OJ Simpson. When our children make a list of what they want to be when they grow up, will they ever list President of the United States of America again? Will we suddenly remember that technology was supposed to teach our children not raise our children?

Does anyone even remember their American dream anymore?

I had to shorten this story because it was actually over 1,000 words long. However, my first run of it was more vague. I used 'it', 'this' and 'that' a lot. Aside from my vagueness, I guess I upset the editor when I originally wrote, "Our role models should be the President..." At the time, President Clinton was in office. Here is the editor's comment:

"I'm rather confused with your slant. Are you saying that we should have Bill Clinton, the hedonistic womanizer, as our role model? I don't understand this at all. Your argument really falls apart here and needs to be revamped. If, on the other hand, you're trying to say that a president should be worthy of respect and emulation (unlike Bill), then make this point clear. Other than this, the article makes good sense."

I plugged along for a few more months in this class before the editor's opinions, rather than constructive citicism started to negatively affect my ability to write with a clear mind. I'm not sure if I made the right decision though, by quitting the class just because I clashed with the editor. I was only twenty-one years old though, and I didn't have a good enough perspective on life to form well thought through slants and I didn't have the patience to handle differences of opinion in regards to my writing. I think now that I'm older, I am able to step back and look for the constructive criticism from editors with strong opinions. Hopefully, anyway.

Monday, May 10, 2010


Before I started blogging, I would get up and write for seven hours a day and dream all night about my characters. But then with two out of three books in my trilogy completed, it was time for me to start becoming part of the writing world. Last week was a tough week, I had to realize that I couldn't possibly write for seven hours a day and keep a blog, research literary agents, read other writer's blog, participate in random writing contests in the hopes of getting myself out there in the world, and all without exhausting myself.

I had to sit back and take my life into perspective; I cannot write for seven hours a day without walling myself in, my blog is important but I don't need to write on it every single day, I don't have to spend all day reading other writer's blogs if it is just going to make me wish I was spending that time writing out my own ideas, and not every contest is for me.

In just a short time I've learned a lot about the publishing industry as it is today and not like I remembered it from 1998. Back in 1998 I would put together a children's book idea and then I would mail the whole thing to a publisher with a self addressed stamped envelope and they would kindly reply to me a couple of months later with a note, "thank you but your work doesn't match our interests at this time." And then I would feel fine; I never felt rejected, like I do now.

Back in 1998 I wrote just for the fun of it and mostly because I was inspired to do so. I never really took the process seriously, therefore, I didn't feel rejected by the industry. Now, eleven years later, the publishing industry has changed. The industry seems to be more overwhelmed with new writers. The agents seem to be celebrities in their own right with their hip, informative and seemingly caring blogs and publishers seem to want to get your work from these trendy agents.

Blogs! This is a whole new concept to me. I didn't realize a blog is practically essential for a new author. I always thought blogs were for mom's to post pictures and updates of their children. Now, I can spend all of my first four hours of the day reading different blogs all linked to one blog I found in the morning.

In 1998, I was perfectly happy not being able to compare my queries, my blogs, and my manuscripts to other unpublished or recently published authors. Lately, I have found myself comparing success and rejection stories, queries, ideas, short stories, flash-fiction, and whatever else I can think up to compare myself to with the whole world. This is unhealthy.

I have resolved to get back to the place that makes me the happiest. Writing. I will blog every other day or so, and I will read other blogs when I can, but I think I'm going to stick to what makes me happy; writing and submitting without comparison.

I'm in it through thick and thin. If the story I've just written doesn't interest an agent, no problem, because I've got plenty of ideas and a bit of time to write them out in.

God love the story tellers of the world!

Friday, May 7, 2010


As I reach my birthday in a couple of days, I can't help but admit that I hear a clock ticking off in the distance. We must all have them; clocks ticking in the background of our lives.

At first the clock was there inside the relationship I wanted to take to the next level, and then the clock was there again when I heard my unborn children calling to me.

What I didn't expect was to hear the clock ticking now, this far into my life. It must be trying to remind me of my unfinished goals; those little promises I made to myself long before the children came, even before the relationship peaked. But there were so many goals back then, how can I be certain of what the clock wants from me?

The clock is tricky, it won't just come out and tell me what it's really ticking for; it will only just tick. Is the ticking for my writing? Does it tick for a vacation? Have I've missed something on one of my to-do lists? Maybe the clock is pointing out that my to-do list is filled with stuff I have to do for others and hardly about what I need to do for me. I must need a change. Perhaps I need to regroup and remember that I'm no longer just a vessel; I'm also a person. No problem, I can be a person again, as long as I can remember who I once was and who I want to be. Is it too late for that?

SHHHHHH! I can hear it if I stay quiet long's getting louder...there, it's more clear than ever...tick, tick, tick...wait! I'm wrong. It's not a ticking's a thumping sound...thump, thump,'s my own heart beating. All this time I thought I was racing an imaginary clock when I was really just being reminded that I'm still alive...and so long as I am, I have time for any type of goal I might imagine for myself today. Whew! On with the writing!

Nicole, this one's for you, because today you are my favorite ;)
October 5, 2003
Well, I know that I'm a mother for the rest of my life and I am a wife for as long as time can stand us. I am a daughter and a sister. I have distant friends and friends at a distance therefore I have no time for anything but my spiritual friendships at a distance.

I have traveled back in time to gain the perspective of those past friendships that I might have touched. What has been seen in me? Perhaps there was something I revealed that could be useful to me now in my quest to discover myself; but what is it? Maybe I found too many of my life's answers all at one time. Might my ability to continuously grow and learn be only vicariously through others?

Einstein said, "The fairest thing that we can experience is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science. He who knows it not and can no longer wonder, no longer feel amazement, is as good as dead, a snuffed out candle."

I never supposed that I would come to a point in which I would have to define myself or have to admit that I might be pre-defined.

On and off in my life I used my journal to write down all the unanswered questions I have about myself. I go back over these questions every couple of years to see if I ever answered or at least gained some insight on those questions. When I look back over this particular entry I still think there has to be more to my life than the obvious, but then again I thrive on the mysterious; do I really want the answers? Also, I'm not sure if I'm pre-defined but if I am then the journey to the destination has got to be completely unique and unplanned otherwise my life would be out of balance; I can accept that I might be predetermined so long as I get to choose the path.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Yes I Did - eBook Part 2

Yes, I did write a short story about a world with no paper books because it occured to me the other day that my dream of getting published in print may never happen, and not because what I have to offer is subpar, but because eBooks seem to be the wave of the future.

Is it almost too late to dream about getting to see my writing in print; bound and sitting on a shelf for purchase? I hope not.

Will I walk into B&N one day and see less books and more stations for uploading eBooks? And if so, will I already have an eBook device and want to upload a book or will I be shocked and feel awkward?

And finally, my hope: If I do get a chance at being published and it's only for eBook, may it not be a reflection of the type of writer I am but of the times we are living in.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

A Real Page Tapper

“Mom, I don’t know what to get for Grandma’s birthday this year,” Sophie said.

“I don’t know either. I tried finding her a good book but you know how she is about eBooks and we can’t afford a paperback book this year,” Madeline said.
“Has she even tried reading an eBook? I don’t know what the big deal is,” Sophie said.

Madeline hated to think back to the year she bought her mom the iPad 2050. She should have listened to her dad when he warned her not to waste her money on eBook devices for her mom. Madeline thought her dad was just worried about the cost; she didn’t realize her mom was anti-eBook.

The memory was still so fresh in Madeline’s mind that it was like it happened yesterday. Madeline had the most financially successful year of her life and her savings account was calling to her. She finally had enough money to purchase the latest Hybrid Ground to Air Audi. She could have afforded one the year before but she didn’t have enough money to afford the jet fuel for it; but with the success she was having as a partner in her law firm she didn’t need to worry about money any more.

Madeline couldn’t wait to give her mom the iPad 2050. She even preloaded it with five thousand of her mom’s favorite books and included a gift card for another five thousand eBook titles. After dinner, Madeline handed her mom the gift, confident that it was going to be superior to whatever her brothers managed to scrounge together for her. Madeline’s smile quickly left her face when she saw the look of distaste on her mom’s face.

“It’s a new iPad 2050 mom. You’re going to love reading your favorite eBooks on it. I included your favorite books and look, there’s a gift card so you can go online and get the latest eBooks. There are some real page tappers out there now,” Madeline said.

“Page tappers? What does that mean?” her mom asked.

Madeline looked around at her brothers who were stifling their laughter and at her dad who was shaking his head.

“You know that saying, ‘it’s a real page tapper.’ Forget it. I just meant that you can go online and find some really great books,” Madeline said.

“I prefer to read actual books that have binding and paper pages,” her mom said.

“I just thought that since those kinds of books are becoming scarce, you might want to start reading eBooks,” Madeline said.

“Take it to the store and get your money back. I will never use this thing. I can’t read a story unless it’s in a real book,” her mom said.

Madeline felt dejected. She didn’t want to return the iPad 2050 so she gave it to her daughter and paid over one hundred dollars for a paperback book at the local B&N Antiquities for her mom.
The next year wasn’t as prosperous for Madeline’s law firm. The price of jet fuel had gone up so high that Madeline was forced to turn in her Hybrid Ground to Air Audi and purchase an annual Air Taxi pass just to get to work every day.

After Madeline sold all of her paperback books earlier this year, she was back on her feet financially but she knew she still couldn’t afford to buy a real book for her mom’s birthday. Real books were only for the underground traders and the extremely wealthy buyers. Even though she saved all year, she still didn’t have a thousand dollars to spend on a paperback book for her mom’s birthday.

“How much money do you have?” Madeline asked her daughter.
“I have one hundred and fifty dollars,” Sophie said.

“I have five hundred and twenty dollars. If we put our money together I think we can afford to buy Grandma a nice box of chocolate. What do you think?” Madeline asked.

“That’s a great idea. Let’s go over to Target and see what kind of chocolates are on sale,” Sophie said.

Monday, May 3, 2010

How To Meet Boys

Okay, due to increasing pressure from my husband and my sister I am posting How To Meet Boys; the instructions my sister suggested I follow to find a boyfriend when I was twelve.

Tips On How to Get Boys
by: Regina and Patty Timms
June 1990

1 - Don't talk about ex's.
2 - Don't talk like a baby.
3 - Go with the flow if he holds your hand.
4 - Don't put yourself down EVER.
5 - Talk about interesting things that he won't get bored of.
6 - Talk with him; flirt, don't be shy.
7 - Don't hang all over him.
8 - When you are in a group with him don't only talk to him, talk to everyone.
9 - Don't want too much from him.
10 - Find someone who cares and isn't always with someone else.

One might think I would've stopped making lists after my mom found this one, but no, I have books of lists. It's a compulsion. Not as extreme as it has been over the years but definitely an essential part of my life.

I once made a list of things to say in the event a boy ever called me on the phone. The thought of awkward silences concerned me. Unfortunately, the list didn't really help when that first boy called. I went through the list like a machine gun firing rounds and then the boy didn't know what to say after that so he just never called again.