Here in California we have 2 hours and 37 minutes until the new year! The last day of December is always spent the same at my house-Taking down Christmas decorations and the tree.
Thought I’d share some of the holiday pics with all of you.
OUT WITH THE OLD
There were homemade goodies, decorations, and the stockings were hung. Christmas cheer for everyone! And even a jigsaw puzzle to do…
But alas, a new year has come. So out with the old and…
In with the new!
Have you ever noticed how plain and empty the house always seems after the decorations come down. Kinda sad, isn’t it?
But we are given a brand new year filled with hopes and dreams. A time to renew and start over again.
Happy 2014 everyone!
Here’s wishing you all a happy, healthy, productive, and prosperous New Year!
Some very thought provoking questions!
Originally posted on Granny Smith: Unleashed:
So, in spirit of the holiday season, I like to get nostalgic, think about what I really want out of life, etc. A few days ago, I stumbled across a list of thought-provoking questions that my friend posted on her facebook page.
I thought it would be cool to share them with all of you! Who knows, maybe you guys will find these questions as interesting as I do and use them as conversation starters at your next holiday gathering.
Hello, hello, hello!
Just checking in to see how everyone is doing. Are you doing NaNoWriMo? Me, Neither…Oh wait! Yes I am and I am flailing and failing. We are now 18 days in and my word count hasn’t budged! Don’t get me wrong. I have been writing, just not on my NaNo story. I have also been doing other things. Like
I have got the Christmas crafting bug going on and I will do a post on my other blog tomorrow about these two cute and easy decorations.
I have been writing some blog posts to share and they are all sitting in my draft file. One is about Social Platforms and then there is another (The second part to Content) about Context. And I have been reading, so I should have a couple of reviews going up soon. I’ve also agreed to take on a proofreading job in December, which I’m quite excited about.
I have got both computers set up and ready to go, but I think I’ll start the old fashioned way with one of my notebooks, so I’m off to write. Happy Monday everyone!
Everville: The Rise of Mallory written by Roy Huff
Expected release date, before Christmas 2013.
Owen had taken The Keeper’s advice to take a break, but it wasn’t easy. He had to force himself to relax after his victory. The events that occurred in The City of Worms were a constant distraction, but spending time with his mom helped keep him from thinking about what happened and so did the change in scenery. The holiday, however, was almost over, and Owen found it increasingly difficult to prevent his mind from wandering back to The Second Pillar of Truth and the destruction that he had initiated. Despite the difficulty, it was his last weekend home, and he was determined to do absolutely nothing of consequence.
Roy Huff is the author of Amazon’s #1 international bestselling epic fantasy novel, Everville: The First Pillar as well as the newly released Everville: The City of Worms. These are the first installments in the remarkable Everville series which combines elements of epic fantasy and young adult fiction in a form that nearly anyone will enjoy reading, young or old. He is a man of many interests including but not limited to science, traveling, movies, the outdoors, and of course writing teen and young adult fantasy fiction. He holds five degrees in four separate disciplines including liberal arts, history, secondary science education, and geoscience. Roy Huff’s background includes work in art, history, education, business, real-estate, economics, geoscience, and satellite meteorology. He was born on the East Coast but has spent more than half his life in Hawaii, where he currently resides and writes his epic fantasy sagas.
You can find Roy
And stop by and read Roy’s latest post; “The Greatest Generation”
I have been doing beta reads for the past two months for two different authors and have fallen way behind on my blog posts! Yikes! And I was supposed to publish this post on Sunday (Two Sundays ago), but sometimes personal life, i.e. my dad, takes precedence over professional life.
I have some goals set for today. Some personal, some professional.
Like; Clean my house, do laundry, and get the Halloween decorations put up (DONE!). I’m a big fan of Fall and Halloween.
On the professional side I need to;
Finish the first draft of one of my short stories, write this blog post, and edit, revise, and rewrite, The Good Dr. Grant.
I’ve been thinking I need to get some of my writing projects finished just in case I decide to do, NaNoWriMo, this year. And I found this great link in case I do. It’s called the, Pacemaker Writing Schedule and what you do is put in your target word count, target dates, and then select how you want to write/proceed;
Steadily : the same amount of words every day
Rising to the challenge : start small, take on more later
Biting the bullet : bite off large chunks at the beginning
Randomly : every day is a surprise
I went with Randomly.
Check it out and create a custom chart or calender for you. This might also work, if you are at a standstill with your writing. Think of it as a challenge.
Okay on we go.
I have been writing short stories to submit to magazines and to enter in contests and I had entered my short story, The Spy, a couple of months ago to Glimmertrain. Sadly to say, it didn’t win, but…I got an auto DM on twitter from another author. I check my DMs on a regular basis, but normally I dismiss the auto ones that say, “Thanks for the follow. Do you like romance? Buy my book here.” You know the ones. What I don’t get is; why send it as a direct message? Tweet it out to me so my followers can see it too, or is it, I’m the only one that you want to read it? Is it a secret? Frankly, if you send me one of those, I am not going to share it with my followers. If you tweet it to me, I’ll share. I’m all for helping to promote others. Anyway The DM I received was thanks for the follow, let’s be friends on facebook. So I clicked the link and on her facebook page she had shared a link for a short story writing contest. Needless to say, I jumped at the chance to once again enter, The Spy. To me it was fate or karma, or whatever word you want to use, that I had gotten that direct message and the invite to friend her on facebook. And I’m kicking myself.
Let’s talk about following directions. When my youngest son was in 5th grade, his teacher passed out a paper titled, “Can you follow directions?” (I would have failed too!) The paper consisted of a list of directions numbered 1 thru 25. And went something like this;
#1 Write your name in the top right corner of the page. Karen Einsel
#2 Write today’s date below that. 10/02/2013
Okay I am going to skip a few, because I don’t remember all of the directions, but let’s say we are now at number 19.
#19 Write your last name first, followed by a comma, and then your first name. Well shoot! Grabs eraser and changes how name is written.
#20 Write the date as follows October 2, 2013 and no abbreviations. Darn it! Same for date.
#21 Only fill this out in blue ink. UGH! Eraser comes back out and then you grab a blue ink pen!
#22 There should not be any eraser marks on paper.
Okay let’s skip to;
#25 Read through all directions first and then wait for the teacher to tell you to begin, before making any marks on this paper.
How many of you would have failed?
What does this have to do with my submitting stories and why am I kicking myself? Well, when I submitted my last story for a contest, I downloaded the PDF booklet of their submission guidelines and there were two categories you could enter. I was only entering the first category, so I read the rules for that one (at least 5 times) and when I came to the rules for category two, they didn’t apply to me and I didn’t read any further. So after I submitted my story, I came back and read through the rules for both and found additional rules under category two that I assume apply to both categories What can I say, i should have read the entire booklet before submitting. Hopefully they don’t deduct points for indenting paragraphs, which I did, and they say not to.
Moral of the story: Read through to the end, even if you don’t think you need to, before you begin!
Here are a few links of different writing contests going on now if you’d like to enter.
And as for context of a story, well…Next time
I don’t normally give reviews when people contact me asking me to review their books. The only times I give reviews, are for the books that I feature on my blog when I do a shout out for, “Show me your cover” and books that I have picked up on a whim that interest me and the other day I was reading different blogs that I follow and I came across Margaret’s and she was looking for reviewers for her novel, and it was the title that caught my eye.
Written by Mrs Margaret Lynette Sharp
A Taste of Life and Love in Australia has 28 short stories about love. Each one different and unique. I enjoyed them for the most part, but I would have liked to see her expand on them. Give them a little more depth and feeling. They are well written, she does slip into telling mode occasionally, but I only found 1 typo in the entire book. I was a little disappointed though. I jumped at the chance to read the book because I have many online friends that live in OZ and even though the title is ‘A Taste of Life and Love in Australia’, most of the stories could depict any part of the world. I would have liked to have gotten a more visual sense of Australia in the stories.
I’d recommend it. I give it 4 stars. It’s a great book to read when you only have a few minutes and you want to get a quick story fix.
I’m not sure if she has copies left or if she is still looking for reviewers, but check out her blog post here.
Her Amazon Page HERE
As you know, I have been interviewing some of the authors from the short story group, but did you know that all proceeds from the anthologies goes to charity? Yep, it’s true.
The authors gave their time and shared short stories to help raise money for various charities.
The proceeds from Love is in the Air goes to help Diabetes UK.
Have you or someone you know ever been diagnosed with diabetes? My mom and my brother had diabetes and one of my older sisters has it. I recently lost a dear internet friend to complications of this awful disease. He had lost circulation in his feet and had to have some toes amputated and the doctors were hopeful, but gangrene had spread so he was admitted back into the hospital, but before they could do more surgery he had a heart attack. I miss his daily emails. The funny pictures and dirty jokes always bringing smiles. We started out as car club buddies at the online Outlaws Car Club. RIP Jeaux You will always be in our hearts.
All proceeds from A Festive Feast goes to Cancer Research UK.
My oldest son was diagnosed with Leukemia as a child and if it wasn’t for all the breakthroughs they have had with cancer research he might not be here today. It’s been 26 years since he was diagnosed. So many people we know and love lose their lives to cancer. I lost my mom to colon cancer in 1999 and life for me has never been the same.
All proceeds from Out Of Darkness goes to the British Heart Foundation.
When my brother was diagnosed with diabetes, he was also diagnosed with congestive heart failure. I can remember the day my brother passed away as if it was yesterday. It was windy, and I mean howling windy. My car was broke down and I had kept my youngest son home from school because I didn’t want to walk the two and a half miles to get him to school. My brother lived with us and had gotten up at 6:30 to go to the bathroom and get a drink of water. He then told me he was going back to bed for awhile. A few minutes after nine, I heard noises coming from his room and I thought he was dreaming or talking in his sleep, so I knocked on the wall, but when he didn’t answer me I went in and found him having a seizure. I called my sister and she called 911. I was starting to panic and said to myself, “What would Bruce (my brother) do?” So I wrapped my arms around him and told him everything was going to be okay. Just as the paramedics walked in the door, my brother came out of the seizure and was confused as to why all these emergency medical people were there. They asked him all kinds of questions, which he answered and then one of the firemen (Yes, the firetruck came also) Turned to me, like I was crazy, and said, “He’s coherent.” and they weren’t going to take him in, but my brother started seizing again and they picked him up using the sheet from his bed and got him on the gurney and started doing heart compressions. When they got him in the ambulance they used the paddles to shock him, but they never got his heart started again. I remember the last thing my brother said, “I was sleeping good” is what he had told the paramedic, so I had, Now I‘m Sleeping Good, inscribed on his headstone. My brother was just 32 years old.
When I sent out a call to the Short Story Group, asking if they would like to be interviewed, I not only wanted my readers to meet and get to know all of these wonderful authors, I wanted to get the word out about the books and the charities that these short story collections help. When I began writing this post, it wasn’t my intention to tug at your heart strings, but I hope I have. Writing this post was very hard and emotional for me. Losing family and friends to these deadly diseases touch all of us in one way or another, and even though research has come a long way over the years, there is still more to be done. Buy one or all of the books. You get a collection of short stories to enjoy and all proceeds go to charity. It’s a win-win no matter how you look at it.
All of the links up there, are for the US. Here are the links to purchase the books in the UK
And if you have a story you would like to share, check out the Short Story Group’s submission guidelines here.