Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Because I don't worry enough....

I've decided to worry about my blog. I know. I'm a nut.

Really, I wonder how I can make it more interesting. I look at other blogs and they have all kinds of fun and interesting stuff going on. I just can't figure out how to be that fun and interesting. I mean, I could talk about my jello shooter incident, and i could tell you how I write with two doggie beds (filled with dogs) at my feet. But is that more interesting than anything else I do? I don't think so.

I will tell you about a great author I just discovered. I read my first Beatrice Small book recently. I can't believe she's been writing since the 70s and I never heard of her. Sometimes I feel like I've been living in a cave. Anyway, I read her latest release and really enjoyed it. If you've been living somewhere dark too, you might want to give her a read.

Speaking of reading, my dear friend Mackenzie McKade just told me that her steamy hot novel (co written with Cheyenne McCray) is an ecataromance reviewers choice winner. Yay! Mackenzie and Cheyenne!
all for now. Back to my boring life.,

Sunday, February 25, 2007

What's going on in Erin's World?

Hey, if I knew, I'd tell you. Normally my life is in overdrive, but the past few months it's hit supersonic speeds. Last month was the SDSU Writers Conference which is so much work--a labor of love, but a lot of work. This month it's trying to get my proposal ready AND my anthology story written. I got the proposal finalized and in the mail on Wednesday and now back to the story. I'm almost done with the first draft and then the polishing and tweaking begins. I've never written short like this before and I'm learning a lot about the process by seeing it condensed. I think I'd like to do more of these if my first efforts are received well. Oh, and school has been sucking up a lot of time in there. I'm used to the schedule of U of P where there are 5 weeks of class and intense assignments and then 5 weeks off. But now I'm at ASU where it's a whole semester and I'm really feeling the wear and tear of it. Is it summer yet?

I'm on the last of 5 RITA books. Last year I did Golden Heart and RITA and my GH submissions were amazing, RITA not so much. This year I didn't have such great GHs, but I had three really great RITAs.

What else? This week is going to be a little nuts. Tuesday I have school and then our Desert Rose meeting. Wednesday I'll be prepping for my turn to host the Bunco group (which comes Friday night). And then on Saturday my girlfriend from Denver and her family are coming for a visit. It will be the first time she's been to my house in Arizona and the first time I've seen her in 5 years. We went to High School together, were in each other's weddings and have a long, long history. Looking forward to that.

And then it's into March! Crazy year so far!

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Good morning!

And what makes it such a good morning, you might ask? First, it's Saturday of a three day weekend. (Yay!) Second, I got my proposal off for my ST. (Double Yay!) Third, my husband came home from a long week out of town. Four, see one, two and three.

It's been a very stressful week--too many deadlines and too few hours. Last night I had this weird dream--I was trying to get home (on foot) with my daughter, two pairs of scooba diving flippers (and no, I don't dive) two dogs and an unknown baby in a an unknown stroller. We start off and are suddenly in rush hour like traffic and I'm dodging all these cars coming right after me--while managing the kids, the dogs and the flippers. I'd look ahead and see traffic flowing in a normal pattern and I could see that I was in the right lane to go with traffic but at the place I stood, everything was on coming. I finally make it past this busy intersection but when I looked around, I'd lost my daughter. I started calling for her, and inside I knew I'd find her, but there were thousands of people trying to get through the intersection and my daughter is little.

That's when I woke up in with a gasp.

So I've been analyzing it all morning because it felt so very symbolic.

Traffic--where I want to go, of course. If I could just get through this freakin' knot I'm stuck in, I know I can get there.

Daughter--everything I love and the sacrifices I have to make to get where I want to be. I've lost sight of what I value, but now I am getting my priorities straight--thus the feeling that I would find her but I had to look harder

Unknown baby and stroller--all the responsibilities that keep getting heaped on me until I feel like I'm responsible for everything

Dogs--what I will always have and accept me unconditionally

Flippers--well what's a dream without flippers?

Today, no writing. Gardening as the sun is bright, the temps are predicted to be in the 80s and I need to work through my "knot."

Hope you all have a good morning as well.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Early to rise...

I am up at at'em this morning, determined to crank out some pages. I'm not far from being through them and I feel like I'm hitting the right note. I hope, I hope...

Tonight my husband is taking me out for a fancy schmancy dinner date. I really love that guy.

Later, my friends.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Loss of a friend

It was a rough week for many reasons, but the hardest part was losing a dear friend. Her name was Nicole and I met her 7 years ago when I started working at Intel. We became friends right away. Nicole was very smart, had a sarcastic sense of humor that I loved, and she was giving. Her one big fault--she didn't take care of herself.

A few months before we met, Nicole had an irregular pap smear and she ignored it. At the time, she was unemployed and probably didn't have insurance and so she just pretended the test was wrong and went on. Then about 2 1/2 years ago she started having pains and went to the doctor where it was discovered that she had cervical cancer. It had already spread to the point where she couldn't have surgery to remove it and her only choice was radiation. She went through excruciating months of procedures, but the cancer continued to spread and no treatment would stop it. At 36, she was robust, volunteering at animal shelters, fostering orphaned pets and taking care of others to a whithered and frail woman who could no longer care for herself at 38.

During the years I knew Nicole, she was the first one to volunteer to help anytime someone asked. She gave her time freely and worked with rescue places to save animals that had been abandoned or unloved. She was a beautiful person and my heart is heavy and sick with the loss of her life.

She died this morning at 10 am. The world is a much colder place without her.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Monday, Monday

Goals for the week:
  1. finish the proposal for my new book. It was finished, but then I made a major change to the beginning which is pretty much my MO. I never know where I want to start when I start. The more writers I talk to, the more I learn this isn't so uncommon. It's still vexing though. I'm loving this book, though, and wish I could turn off the editor and keep my creator going to the end. It's frustrating editing and polishing words that I know will be changed before it's all said and done. Ah well, the trials and tribulations. :-)
  2. Get back to In the Chill of the Night anthology. I'm 12k into my 20k, but had to step away to go back to ST. It's probably a good thing because distance always helps. This story is really coming together and I'm excited to see where it ends up. It's my first anthology and I think I'm liking it. :-)
  3. Finish my paper for my class at ASU. It's a bear, but it has to be done.
  4. Finish the paper I'm writing for work. This has been a MAJOR challenge. I think I finally have it close.
  5. At some point before next Monday, I want a nap.
  6. Figure out what the hell happened to all my links. I lost them when I switched over to the new template. If I linked to you before and you happen to stop by, will you leave me URL? Hey, if I didn't link to you before and you want me to, leave it URL too. :-0

Friday, February 02, 2007

February Report

Ok, there's hope of me having a life again. Maybe. I'm still going a thousand miles an hour, but the writers conference is over and that is a relief. It was an incredible conference this year on many levels. First, I had good friends who came so there was a social time that was very much fun. There have been years when I've worked and then gone straight to my room without ever talking or meeting anyone.

Second, I took my daughter with me this year. She's 15 and has already written a YA novel. Yes, I am serious, no, I didn't help her with it, yes, she's amazing. Even more amazing (although I wasn't surprised at all by it) was the reaction she got in her meetings with editors and agents. Two of the editors who had read her first chapter before coming to the conference gave her their top award and asked to see it. And the agents were all over her. It was incredible. Now she's getting it polished up to send off and we'll see what happens from there. I'll keep you posted.

Then I met with Valerie Gray of Mira Books and had one of those incredible meetings that I never imagined would happen. She read the first chapter of my new book and said, "I love this. I really love this." I almost passed out. Very exciting. I'm getting my pages polished for her too.

Came home to a horrible cold and exhaustion. I started school again a couple of weeks ago so that's keeping me busy. But the writing is going great and I really can't complain too much.

Well I could...but what would be the point?

BTW, I know we're not supposed to talk about them in detail, but I have to say this year the batch of books I got to judge for the RITA are terrific. I'm only on #2, but I've loved both. It's a beautiful thing.

Until the next post, which will hopefully be sooner rather than later... Erin