Archive for February, 2008

Feb 26 2008

My Spiral-Bound Life

Published by under Random Musings

My Faithful Notebook

I love spiral notebooks. College ruled, please.

I’ve had this one for years. Mead Five Star, with pockets and a sturdy cover to keep it from falling apart. This is where many of my ideas have lived since I picked it up. The entire first section is dedicated to my Great Fantasy Novel. The rest of it is dedicated to my millions of story notes.

I finally had to move just plain ideas to another little notebook. It’s just a list of ideas, set-ups, concepts, titles, whatnot. A place to put quick notes. It is not my Great Big Notebook of Everything, where I have doodles, full outlines, partial outlines, character explorations, everything in the world that is worth writing down (and some things that aren’t).

I organize my thoughts with colored paper clips. This way, I know where there’s still space to write and outline, and I can flip to ideas quickly.

Today, my notebook filled up.

I was looking for space to outline my Christmas story submission for Cobblestone, and then I realized that there is no space. The only blank pages in the book are reserved to continue other outlines (for Kingbreaker and Miss Spelled), or are in the Great Fantasy Novel section. I have no more room to write.

This is, of course, cause for panic and mourning. My notebook is full! My faithful, trusty sidekick! It’s full! I have other notebooks, but I cheaped out on them. They’re skinny one-subject things. They’re not like my notebook with its clips and ratty pages and random notes on fishtank design.

Now I have to decide if I want to just use the cheap ones I have, or if I’m going to slink off to OfficeMax and buy myself a new, nice notebook to write in. I should use the ones I have. I really should. I shouldn’t give them to the kids to write in, then go buy myself another Great Big Notebook of Everything. I shouldn’t do that. Not at all.

I do not have a notebook addiction. I can stop anytime I want to.

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Feb 25 2008

Wind Down, Wind Up

Published by under Random Musings

One story, two guinea pigs, a submission and a notebook later…

I’ve been negligent of my duties here. For that, I am quite sorry! I’ve been really, really busy lately. It’s time now to wind down so that I can wind right back up again.

The last couple weeks have been consumed by my Vampire Oracle story. On Friday, I wrote the last words of the story. I’m rubbing myself wantonly up against my word limit, but it came in right where it needed to and looks great. It’s in the hands of my super-amazing crit group now, and will be submitted a week from today. Hooray!

My super-amazing crit group also finished with Taint of Shadow for me. I formatted it, polished it up in accordance with their feedback, and submitted it. So now, I have two stories out for consideration: Dominant Enigma is in Samhain’s pile, and Taint of Shadow is in Cobblestone’s. Fingers are crossed!

So currently, I am in my “wind down, wind up” cycle. After I finish one story, I try to take a few days just to breathe, do nothing, let my brain rest, and prepare for the next one. I do “maintenance” on my writing career, like making sure my website doesn’t need work, that I fix my organizational structure for writing, clean my desk, the things that don’t get done when I have story fever.

Part of that is deciding what to write next. I’m not sure what I want to do. I have a lot of ideas to choose from, and several are clamoring for attention. So I’m organizing my Great Big Notebook of Everything, making sure all the stuff that’s done is marked as such, putting all my story ideas into a new notebook, etc.

And in personal news, we’ve finally gotten our guinea pigs! Welcome new fuzzy overlords!

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Feb 22 2008

Cobblestone Release Day!

Published by under Random Musings

I love release days! They mean I get something new to read. And oh boy, do I have something awesome for today.

Look! L. Shannon’s Anom’tan 3: Walking at Sundown comes out today. I got addicted to L. Shannon’s writing with My Immortal, and she always turns out such great stuff. I can hardly wait to read through this one. Make sure you have a look!

Also out today is Love Defined by Celia Kyle. This story looks really, really cute. Have a look at that one while you’re at it!

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Feb 16 2008

Chairgasm

Published by under Random Musings

So. My husband Wins.

Last weekend, I think I pinched a nerve, and my back hasn’t really recovered. It highlighted the fact that my chair was too damn big for me. It was so tall, I couldn’t touch the floor with my feet. And it was so long that if my back was supported, my knees wouldn’t bend over the edge. It was made for Paul Bunyan or something.

(Note: it fits my husband fine. This says something.)

So when we were out looking for desks for him today, I stumbled across a Sealy Posturepedic office chair. It has memory foam in the seats. You can adjust every little aspect of it, from lumbar support to arm rests to back tilt to chair tilt. It’s short enough in the seat that I can put my butt on the back and still touch the floor. It rocks.

And the man actually bought it for me.

I have never had a more comfortable desk chair. Everything fits me just like I want it to. I can feel my back unwinding already. The two most important tools, at least for me, are my keyboard and my chair, and now, both are totally awesome. I have no excuse for not writing bestsellers now.

Crap.

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Feb 14 2008

Roses are Red…

Published by under Random Musings

And these books are hot!

I walked out this morning to find a small vase of roses on my desk, a card from my beloved husband, and a card from my beloved kids. I have Chinese food leftovers to eat for lunch. There are infinite possibilities after the kids go to bed. This is my kind of Valentine’s Day.

If you’re looking to spice your day up, how’s about a book? My own Meghan’s Submission is a Valentine story that’ll melt your heart. And for something new, how about Moira Reid’s Paid in Full? It’s part of Cobblestone Press‘ Valentine Monologue series.

Have a happy Valentine’s Day!

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Feb 12 2008

In Bed

Published by under Random Musings

I love Chinese food. It’s terribly yummy. I have a special fondness for pot stickers, black mushrooms with bean curd, and crab crowns, but I’ll eat nearly any of it. We’ve got a delivery place close by that’s fast and tasty.

And of course, there are always fortune cookies in the bottom. Fortune cookies are fun when you read the fortunes in the correct manner. Which is to say, you add “in bed” to all the sayings.

Here is Cass’ World According to the Cookie:

You are heading for a land of sunshine and relaxation…in bed.
Well, okay. If you insist.

You are always entertaining and delightful…in bed.
So I’m told. Nice to get confirmation, though.

You outdistance all competitors…in bed.
I know. I’m very awesome.

You will touch the hearts of many…in bed.
This either means I’ll be on the New York Times bestseller list, or that I’ll be a royal flop and end up in a brothel for spare cash.

My husband just handed me the fortune from his cookie. It says:

Happy events will take place shortly in your home…in bed.

I like where this is going. Time to sign off for the night, I think.

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Feb 08 2008

Processing Words

Published by under Random Musings

This is a sad day. A day where I wear black, and I mourn deeply. Today…I must change back to using Windows as my primary operating system.

I love Linux. It’s easy, it’s stable, it’s predictable. I can fix every aspect of the operating system if it breaks, unlike Windows, where half the time you can’t even see the files you need. But I need Microsoft Word.

Linux has several different choices for word processors. The most popular, and probably best of them, is Open Office, which is available for Windows, Linux, and I think even Mac. Open Office lets you type stuff in, save it, even save it as a PDF file. After that, though, it’s all bad. The formatting is uneven between saves, let alone saves into different formats. I never know if my page breaks are going to get stripped out, my margins changed, my line spacing messed up…

It has a very basic Track Changes function. It’s hard to see or act on any changes someone else has made, and making your own is very tweaky. It just doesn’t do everything I need it to.

I could run MSWord under emulation, but if it’s what I use the computer for most, why not run the operating system that does what I need? I already have to emulate all my Windows games, and my writing organizer. No, it’s time to admit that Linux is a fantastic operating system, and that I love it, but that for a writer, it’s not the best choice.

Maybe the people attached to the Open Office project will get it fixed up. It’s open source, and people are working on it. Someday, maybe they’ll get it right, and I can return to it. If I knew how to code, I would. But until that day, I have to go back to Windows.

Meh.

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Feb 05 2008

Vampire Oracle: New Life

Published by under Book Information,Publishing

I’m so excited. I got word this weekend that I’ve been picked to write the New Life Card story for the Vampire Oracle!

I’ve always had a thing for vampires. So it’s a real thrill to have the chance to revisit something I’ve always loved. I still have my “The Blood is the Life, the Life is Forever” sticker.

Time to saddle up with a dark, Gothy playlist and sink my teeth (haha!) into this story.

Make sure you visit the Vampire Oracle blog! This is such a terrific series, filled with stories by women that can really write. You have to check it out!

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