Sunday, November 30, 2008

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Let's Thank The Troops

As we head into the holiday season, let's take a moment to remember all of the brave men and women serving in our armed forces. Many of them won't be able to share this time with their families, so let's try to brighten their days--even if it's just a little bit. Take a moment to say thanks.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I Heart Josh Groban

Going through my CD's tonight, I stumbled across this little number. It made me cry the first time I heard it. I didn't have any clue what he was singing about, but it made me cry. The violins, the emotion in his made my chest seize and the tears flow. I dare you to keep your cool.

If you don't have this CD, go, now. Get it.

Monday, November 24, 2008

I Feel It...

That tightening in my stomach and that piercing pain at my temple.

My family...they're incoming.

I love them, I really do... but I really just want to hole up with my computer all weekend and write. Not possible. I'll spend a good chunk of the weekend in a food coma. Guarantee it.

Of course, I know this is my future...perhaps I can divert it some. Wish me luck.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

My TBR "Pile" Is Out Of Control!

My room is beginning to look like the bargain bin at the local bookstore. Books everywhere. I have piles on top of my piles. I keep buying, though. It's past the point of ridiculous. :)

Anyway, I decided to make a list of the books I haven't read. I'm fairly certain the ones I HAVE read outnumber the ones I haven't, but that's only a guess. LOL. OH...and these are only the books I can see right now. I have bins under my bed and boxes in the basement. These, I'm a bit ashamed/happy to admit, are books I've purchased in the last 3-4 years. (heh)

The italics = the books I've started and didn't finish for one reason or another. Usually school or life interrupted and I was lost when I tried to get back to it. Sometimes I realized I just wasn't in the mood for that particular book and gave up to return another time. There are probably only 1 or 2 that I doubt I'll ever pick up again because they weren't my cuppa tea.

The bolds = the books I've read before but bought so I could relive it all over again. :)

4th of July by James Patterson
Angels & Demons by Dan Brown
Angel Seeker by Sharon Shinn
Atonement by Ian McEwan
Bitten by Kelley Armstrong
Bleed by Laurie Faria Stolarz
The Blood Books, Vol 2 by Tanya Huff
The Blood Books, Vol 3 by Tanya Huff
Blue Bloods by Melissa De La Cruz
Blue Noon by Scott Westerfeld
The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons
Candy Apple Red by Nancy Bush
The Clique (first 6 books)
The Corset Diaries by Katie MacAlister
Cost of Freedom by Carol Spradling
Cross My Heart and Hope To Spy by Ally Carter
Dark Assassin by Anne Perry
Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay
Dead Witch Walking by Kim Harrison
Delicious by Sherry Thomas
Dracula by Bram Stoker
East of Eden by John Steinbeck
Everything’s Eventual by Stephen King
Falling by Christopher Pike
Fire Me Up by Katie MacAlister
The Game of Kings by Dorothy Dunnett
A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin
Gilead by Marilynne Robinson
The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman
A Great Deliverance by Elizabeth George
Guilty Pleasures by Laurell K. Hamilton
The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova
Holy Smokes by Katie MacAlister
How to Ditch Your Fairy by Justine Larbalestier
The Immortal Highlander by Karen Marie Moning
Insomnia by Stephen King
Jack Absolute by C.C. Humphreys
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
Jovah’s Angel by Sharon Shinn
The King of Torts by John Grisham
Knots & Crosses by Ian Rankin
Lady of Sherwood by Jennifer Roberson
The Last Days by Scott Westerfeld
Left Behind by Lahaye Jenkins
A Letter of Mary by Laurie R. King
Let It Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle
Light My Fire by Katie MacAlister
Lonesome Dove by Karry McMurtry
Lord John & The Brotherhood of the Blade by Diana Gabaldon
The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien
The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley
Monster by Frank Peretti
Moonrise by Anne Stuart
The Moor by Laurie R. King
Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife by Linda Berdoll
Ms. Zephyr’s Notebook by kc Dyer
My Lord and Spymaster by Joanna Bourne
The Other Boelyn Girl by Philippa Gregory
Paper Towns by John Green
Persuasion by Jane Austen
The Poet of Lochness by Brian Jay Corrigan
Portraits of Guilty by Jeanne Boylan
The Princes of Ireland by Edward Rutherford
Princess Academy by Shannon Hale
Private Arrangements by Sherry Thomas
The Rebels of Ireland by Edward Rutherford
Red is for Remembrance by Laurie Faria Stolarz
Repossessed by A.M. Jenkins
Rogue by Rachel Vincent
The Secret Circle, V 1 by L.J. Smith
Silver is for Secrets by Laurie Faria Stolarz
Skinny Dip by Carl Hiassen
The Skystone by Jack Whyte
So Yesterday by Scott Westerfeld
The Spiderwick Chronicles (Last 3)
Suite Scarlett by Maureen Johnson
The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong
A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
That Summer by Sarah Dessen
The Thirteenth House by Sharon Shinn
The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
The Touch of Twilight by Vicki Pettersson
Transgressions by Sarah Dunant
Trickster’s Choice by Tamora Pierce
Twisted by Laurie Halse Anderson
Vanishing Act by Thomas Perry
The War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells
A Whisper in the Dark by Louisa May Alcott
Wicked by Gregory Maguire
Wicked by Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie

Friday, November 21, 2008


It was all right. :)

Didn't love it, didn't hate it.

There were some really great moments. There were some really cheesy moments.

The acting was good at times, and mega-melodramatic at others.

Overall, it was pretty dang entertaining. I laughed a lot. Not sure whether they intended to evoke that exact reaction, but there it is. (g)

Can't wait to hear what y'all think!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


Meet Ty, aka Evandro Soldati

I knew he was Ty as soon as I laid eyes on this guy. I do picture Ty being a little broader through the shoulders, and he would probably need to pack on 10-20 pounds of muscle to be juuuuust right...but those eyes. I'm sold. :)

And hellloooooooo, Pocahontas!

Trying to give a better glimpse at his eyes.

*Checks Watch*

Yup -- I was right on schedule for a freak out session.

Thanks to Jenna for talking me down from the ledge--yet again. Seriously, if you don't answer me the next time I beep you on IM, I will completely understand. I have surpassed my crazy quotient for the year. For several years. And lets be honest -- the bar is set pretty high for me. (g)

I'm feeling _better_. I'm still not sure how I'm going to tie all of these wayward threads together--in a coherent fashion that is believable--but at least I got to vent about it all. I think I know what I need to I just have to do it.

One day at a time... breathe...

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

I Found Makenna!

Willa Holland

Her hair color is a bit off, but look at those eyes!

I have NO idea who would play Ty...or Caleb. For Ty, I'm thinking someone like a young Josh Hartnett.. Caleb, some bad boy...Hmm, I'll have to think on it.

Move Over, Tweens!

I've purchased my tickets for TWILIGHT -- this Thursday, midnight showing.


Gah, I'm so ridiculously, fan-girl excited that I'm making myself sick. (g)

Can you imagine what it would be like to go see the movie version of YOUR book? It makes me dream big. Good on you, Stephenie Meyers!

In celebration, let's discuss our dream casts. :)

I worked on FI along time ago -- one night when I was being really silly with some online friends.

Maddy -- Rachel McAdams

Drew -- Hugh Jackman (I think I've since revised this to perhaps Christian Bale -- younger and oh so cute)

Gabe -- Gerald Butler (Younger version...hmmm...I dunno if there is one. His image is ingrained on my mind)

I think I'll have to get back with my casting ideas for BTPM. I've never given it much thought.

Anyone else wanna play? :)

Monday, November 17, 2008

I’m Buggin’

So, I provided that great link to Courtney Summer's post, in which she debunked several myths about writing YA. The comments have taken an interesting turn, and I really just need to vent for a moment.

When I first started BTPM, I have to admit that I was a little…rusty when it came to young adult novels. Mostly, I moved forward by following my gut and relying on what dim recollections I had of the YA's I read as a teen. It probably wasn't until 3-4 months later that I really started diving into reading many, many YA's. (I have to say, I became a bit hooked! LOL. I probably buy YA's 2 to 1 over adult novels. The stacks I have waiting to be read are out of control.)

Along the way, I discovered tons of great authors, many of whom really push the boundaries of what some people perceive as "acceptable" reading material for teens. They cover a great range of topics—from incest, sexual/physical abuse, rape, sex in general, cutting, eating disorders, to racism and peer pressure—the list goes on. And I have to tell you, they didn't cut corners. If their stories called for harsh language or explicit details, they went for it. They didn't bow down to "convention" that says you can't use the word Fuck in a young adult novel, and they didn't shy away from writing about topics that a lot of freaked out parents would like to sweep under the carpet.

Psst! *waves you over* Did you know that if you don't write about sex, teens won't have it?! I'm totally serious.

I mean…COME ON, PEOPLE. Pull your heads out of the sand.

And whatever some people might think, I am NOT endorsing going hog wild and writing the next hardcore porn for teens. What I am endorsing are books that provide teenagers with a realistic view of the world. If you're going to go there, let your story dictate what devices you need to employ in order to tell it. The reality of life is this: teenagers have sex. They use drugs, they deal with tough issues that come along and smack them in the faces. It isn't all rainbows and unicorns. (And no, I'm in no way trying to discount stories that involve a touch of fairy dust and magic. I write about werewolves for pete's sake.) All I'm saying is that teens are a lot sharper than we give them credit for. And in this world, the more knowledge they have, the better prepared they will be to make the right choices for themselves when—NOT IF—they face one of the aforementioned situations.

Since I wrote BTPM, the YA projects I've contemplated and/or started have gotten darker. The latest, STOLEN is extremely dark, and I just can't shy away from writing it. I think it's an important book. I really hope others see the merit in it, even if it includes things none of us really want to think about.

Books do not endorse a way of life. They portray one. And unless we want to completely do a disservice to teens around the world, we have to trust that they're more than just mere automatons that become what they read.

Good grief.

*steps off her soapbox*

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Go, Courtney!

A great post by Courtney Summers about Four Myths of Writing YA.

Glad someone said it aloud. :)

Friday, November 14, 2008

It's Official!

BTPM has to wait.

I don't have enough time/energy/brain power -- mojo -- whatever you want to call it -- to focus on two books at once. I totally got sidetracked with it earlier this week, which means I basically wasted 2 days that could've been spent racking up the page count on FI.

Must focus. There's plenty of time to work on BTPM when FI is finished.


I mean it.


Ty and Mac can wait!


I don't want to have to tell you two again!


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Can You Feel My Smile?

I read through the first 6 chapters of BTPM last night. I'm shocked...stunned...overwhelmed and surprised by how well it read. I literally haven't touched that wip for probably close to a year. I expected to find all kinds of problems, clunky sentences, wordy passages (my real forte), but it was GOOD. Solid good -- Ready to go to agent good. Eee. What to do now??

I have no idea. I can't send it FIRST, before the book D.A. signed up for.


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Year Of The Werewolf!

Could it be? Am I dreaming? Or did Kristin Nelson and Little, Brown Children's Editors* really declare the werewolf the new vampire??

Squeeee. Must finish FI and get my final revisions on BTPM in to D.A. Hot damn. (g)

Ty just might get his moment yet. :)

*For those of you who don't know, Little, Brown publishes the uber-fabulous and extremely popular TWILIGHT series.


I spent the morning filling out an online student loan consolidation application. (Say THAT ten times, fast!)

Meh. Seriously. There has to be a better way to do this. I remember the good old days (like it was that long ago) when consolidation companies called you on the phone. When they would *click click click* figure out where your loans came from, what your current balances were, and what your expected payment would be. Today it's all online gadgets where you have to find the numbers and hope you have the right ones -- to get an "estimated" payment amount that is probably wrong because you jacked something up somewhere along the line.

By time I'm finished, my payments will probably be double my unconsolidated amount.

I hate technology sometimes. I want to talk to a real person, if only for a firm handholding as my financial failings are laid before me in such HUGE numbers.

But there's a rainbow in sight! I have that law degree! Erm, that I'm not planning to use...CHEERS! :)

Oh Boy!

The good news is that I made it through 20 pages tonight. YAY.

The bad news is that I read through the rest of it--stuff from the original MS and it simply WILL NOT work with the new version. Not the overall scenes, etc...but the dialogue is simply too...BLAH. I need to ramp everything up. It all makes me very much glad that I got through so much tonight. It may take me the remaining 6 days to plow through the rest of this crap. (g)

That said, I'm super happy with the twenty pages. :)

Even better news is that I'm off tomorrow -- for Veteran's Day. YAY. Lots o' time to write.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Fighting The Cold

It's that time of year--out here in Nebraska, it's cold, it's wet, and all I want to do is snuggle under the covers, a cup of tea at my elbow, and a good book to help while away the hours. It's absolute tortute to sit in front of my computer because I'm COLD. It should be illegal for someone's fingertips to be this icy while indoors. Seriously. Granted, part of that has to do with the location of my room -- it sort of juts off from the main house and is always the coldest room. And part of it is that my fam REALLY seems to enjoy sleeping with the house at a nice, cool (COLD -- ANTARTIC cold) 62 degrees.


That in mind, I made my favorite spiced tea tonight. I'm about to bundle up in sweats and a long sleeved shirt...two pairs of socks...heck, I may even throw an electric blanket over my lap. All in the name of getting some work done on the ole' wip.

My goal this week is to pull the next 50 MS pages together -- filling in all gaps and transitions. It's most likely doable, but I'm a bit worried that I may be underestimating the amount of work involved. We shall see. If I can get more than that accomplished, well, that would of course be wonderful. :) It would also mean that I'm closing in on that end SFD. OMG, I at last feel it's within my grasp. Whoot.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Doing My Part

I just placed an order with Amazon -- three books. Enough for this week, I think. (g)

It all goes to help out publishing. And hey, it's beneficial to me, too. :)

The take:

PAPER TOWNS by John Green

LET IT SNOW -- a YA Christmas anthology (how cool is THAT!) featuring John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle. Never read anything by Lauren, but the other two are totally awesome, so she has to be pretty cool by association.

And last but certainly not least...

COST OF FREEDOM!!!!!! by Carol Spradling. Yup, it's in paperback...finally!! You can buy it HERE.

Brilliant. Simply Brilliant.


I've had a break-through with a part of FI that has given me mucho trouble. In the very worst kind of way. I knew _something_ had to go there, but I couldn't figure out what. And seriously, I've been brainstorming for weeks, months maybe. I worried it might be the sticking point that would make this book fail. After all, if I couldn't get past this bump -- about 1/3rd of the way through the book -- what the heck would I do?? (Hilarious (in a sick way) when you consider that most of the book is already written. Ah, chunkwriting. How I do love/hate you sometimes.)

But alas, during those morning moments when I was awake, but not _really_ awake, I made myself concentrate on the scene and then PING! It hit me. Whether or not it works in the end, at least _something_ will be there. It's done wonders for my confidence already.

So yeah, I don't know why but early mornings/late nights are my ephiphany hours. Perhaps it's because Mr. Sandman has been busy whispering ideas in my ear. Perhaps my subconcious is just closer to the surface and sub-Jen has it all figured out for me.

Whatever. I'll take it. (g) Off to write. YAY.

Friday, November 7, 2008


I love Def Leppard.

I love Taylor Swift.

But who the heck came up with the idea to have them sing together on Crossroads? Hearing the lead singer of DL singing one of Taylor Swifts teenage angst songs is just...wrong. So wrong.

I want to turn away, but I can't. It's just so wrong...I'm riveted.


It's snowing here.

B-b-b-b-utt I'm not ready for snow! I had plans to lay out and finally get some color into this pasty-never-go-outside-and-actually-see-the-sun skin. I meant to spend the day tomorrow--outdoors, writing under my favorite tree. I meant to take my dogs for a walk so we could frolic in the leaves!!!!


It's only flurries. But still. I want more fall.

Erm, I was kidding about the laying out. I've accepted the fact that I'm the palest girl in America. I can deal with it.

And once REAL snow falls, my tune will change. I know this for certain.

This Is Like Preaching To The Choir, But...

Go out and buy a book today. Buy several. Buy books for your family--for birthdays, Christmas, or just because you love them.

Moonrat did an excellent post on why you should:

C[r]ash Flow (Or What Went Wrong in October in Book Publishing)

Thursday, November 6, 2008

It's Official

I'm sick of hearing about the election. (g)

Honestly, there's nothing we can do now but wait and see what Obama will do. I'm hopeful and cautiously optimistic.

And no matter who won, I respect both Obama and McCain. And yeah, I still respect Bush. They all have their hearts in the right places and are far from infallible. Oh, if we ruled the world everything would be perfect! (insert eye roll)

In other news, I'm running an exercise on query letters at compu. Stop by and join in the fun! :) (It should be posted some time tonight.)

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Rock The Vote, Peeps!


I just finished voting. I'm a bit amazed by my final choice. I have to say I was literally undecided until this morning, and in the end, I voted against my party.

I'm so excited about it. :) Can't wait to see how this one turns out!

If you haven't voted yet, HURRY...there's still time!

**Picture courtesy of