i'm not dead pink

I can start this entry off with more promises of blogging more frequently, but I know I’m lying. I love the idea of having a blog, I love the way it looks, and sometimes, great things happen and I want to blog. I just don’t. It’s like lying on the couch with a bag of snacks staring at your treadmill, thinking: I want to use that thing. But do you? Nah. Requires you to stop doing nothing and be productive, lol. We can’t have that, can we?

Ironic that this post is actually about how productive I’ve been these past few months :). Here are some accomplishments:
1. Had my annual review at work– Got a gold star.
2. My novel was 127,000 words– edited it down to 99,000 words.
3. Started my own weekly writers group through Meet-up– It’s been 6 months and still going strong, and sometimes is Wait-list only.
4. Went to the San Francisco Writers Conference 2015 and rubbed elbows with agents– Four out of five agents said send me that novel (or some of it).
5. After weeks of being a perfectionist (editing like crazy, again)– I sent my manuscript off last night (bye, bye Mommy’s baby, have a good first day of school… **sob**)

So, after Number 5, I wait for responses. I opened up my dusty, agent submission log (started in 2011 and not used since then) where I enter in the queries and manuscripts I send out to agents, looked at my long list of submissions (2 agents) and see that one of the agents I’m sending to this time around is the same agent who gave me my first rejection letter.  It was a nice standard issue form letter that came within a few hours of my submission. I told myself (to make me feel better) that I must have committed a formatting treason and got an auto-reject. The agent couldn’t possibly have read my work that fast and hated it, right?  Haha. Well, years later, I find out that it WAS an auto-reject! (Not that she might not have rejected it anyway, but still… HAHA, I was right!).  Anyways, at the conference, when the agent gave me her card, she said: Make sure you put my super secret code in the subject line or else you’ll get an auto-reject. I don’t read unsolicited manuscripts from new authors unless I meet them at a conference.  I swear I heard the “Patty Mayonnaise” music Doug heard whenever puffy-headed Patty entered the room, when I made the connection. (Oh yeah, I revealed my age right there in that comment. Nick-toons were the best in the 90s.)

So, I’ve got 10 pages in the hand of one agent, and an entire manuscript in the hands of another.  I’m excited, nervous and relieved at the same time.  Excited, because I’m finally submitting, for real.  I’m ready for my 100 rejection letters! Nervous, because “Oh no, it’s baby’s first day at school, what if someone is mean to him or steals his lunch money?”  Relieved, because I did it.  The manuscript is out there.  When people ask if I sent it off yet, I can say “Yes!”  So, now I have to keep myself from checking my e-mail every hour, like a mama checking the nanny-cam.  My logical brain knows that I’m not going to hear anything for weeks, and that if I do hear anything back this soon, it’ll be “BWHAHAHAHA, how dare you send us this crap?”  But knowing all that doesn’t stop me from constantly checking.  I’m even annoying myself with it.

To take my mind off of it, I could do something productive, like write something new. Hey, I could work on revising the sequel to the manuscript I sent off.  That’s a great idea… or I can lie on the couch with a bag of snacks staring at my exercise machine or laptop and think: Man, I should be using that thing.  Couch and snacks sound good, but nah.  Been there, done that.  Maybe I should research some more agents that I haven’t met and get some more submissions sent out.  But my question is, should I wait to hear back from the agents I just sent to?  If they don’t like the manuscript, maybe they might offer some good feedback as to why and I might get some useful edits made according to it.  But then again, what if the things they hated about the book another agent loves?  At times like these, I wish I had Jean Grey’s powers to not just to read a mind, but to change a mind: My baby is the cutest, smartest, most awesome baby in the world. You like him.  You want him.  Lol.  About 50 submissions from now, I’ll be laughing at this entry.  I’m such a newbie, but ah well.  Gotta start sometime, and I’m way past due.

Okay, so I just wanted to get an entry in here and let WordPress know I’m not dead… “just floating”, being lazy, procrastinating, so don’t cancel my subscription–especially since you already took my money for it. I can’t promise when I’ll do another one of these. I always enjoy writing blog entries when I finally get around to doing them, it’s just the “getting around to them” part that’s so hard.

Until next time–and hey, maybe by then I’ll have some interesting news, or good news, or a new place to live, or a new man, or…  Ah, whatever.  Take care!

 

“I’m not dead… just floating”–Pink, I’m Not Dead.
Mann, B. and Pink. (2006). I’m Not Dead. [Recorded by Pink]. I’m Not Dead [CD]. London, England: Zomba Music Group.

2014-09-07 18.37.44

Hahaha! Okay, yes, I am not dead. Just incredibly, incredibly lazy! But oh-so-much has happened in my life as well. So, I’m no longer in Florida. After a year and a half, I accepted a new position in California. I always told myself I was going to be a California girl, and now it’s happened. It’s hard to believe sometimes, but hey, I’m here and I love it.

I love my new job, I love my new place, my car loves driving through the hills and mountain routes. I’m still trying to make myself a niche here. Finding writing groups nearby is a little difficult, and the things I like to do with groups I’d love to join are often far away. But hey, I try. It’s not exactly torture making a two hour drive to do something fun when your end destination is San Francisco ;). Beautiful city.

So, here’s the story for last weekend. So, I joined a Harry Potter community that had a Start-of-the-Year Feast in Golden Gate Park on Sunday. Members were encouraged to dress up and bring a potluck dish in the tradition of Harry Potter. (I brought healthy cucumber sandwiches because it looked like everyone else was bringing sweets–which were delish btw!) So anyway, I did some impromptu karaoke, wandered some nature trails, saw some sights, met some new people… and got my car locked underground in a parking garage.

Yeah, you read that right. I parked my car in a garage that said it closed at 7:00 pm. No problem, the picnic would be over by six. So, anyway, picnic ends early, My friend and I, plus a new guy we met at the picnic, goof off in the park for a while. Then my friend and I make our way back to the parking garage only discover villainy. The entrance to the parking garage must have closed behind us, because… WHERE IS IT? We wander around, retracing our steps for almost 30 minutes. By the time we figure out how to get back into the garage, the doors are locked and the gate is barred. We sit outside the gate, staring at my beautiful red car through the metal rungs. What to do? There are no phone numbers to call. My genius friend Googled (gotta love Google) the parking garage and we get the number for management. A guy with a thick accent who sounds like he’s singing Italian opera while he talks answers and says he’ll be there to let us in, in a minute.

The man pulls up in a sedan, lets us in, we jump in the car and follow him out to pay the garage toll and head home. As we pay, he then tells us: “Good thing you called when you did! We charge people 450 dollars to park here after seven. Hahahahaha!”

“Hahahaha” my foot, but I kinda think he was making that up :D.

So anyways, that’s what’s been going on life-wise. Writing-wise, hey. I finished yet another novel draft and am making good headway on a sequel to that novel. In a month or so, I’m going to go back and do a full body edit to the draft and have a group proofread it.  Then, it’s back to querying. I would love to attend another writers conference and personally meet with some more agents. So, I’m always on the lookout for conventions in the Bay Area. (Hah, I’m Bay Area now :D.)

So, yeah, I’m back, better than ever… and hopefully, it won’t take another almost two years for me to blog again!  Take care!

So… April 10th has come and gone…

I celebrated a happy ___ birthday (Whoo hoo!) I got a shiny, new car as a gift to myself, but today I’m going to have to part with my old one. I’m really kinda sad about it. My old, green car is the first car I bought myself. He’s seen me through ALL of college (hoo boy), ALL my first jobs (ha!), and through multiple states (Texas, Oklahoma, Mississippi, Lousiana, Alabama, Georgia, Florida). He’s even been to Disney World (well, close enough to it, we went to Universal Studios 😛 ).

So, today I say, “Goodbye J’son II.” (J’son I was my R-13 clarinet I sold my senior year of high school). I’m taking him to Carmax where he will be appraised and maybe even put on the market. May he find a terrific second owner. But is it wrong of me to hope he breaks down and can’t be driven anymore? I hate to think about a stranger driving MY baby. If I was still in Texas, I would have given him to a family member. If I had a house, he would have been the car that chills in the garage.

Siiiigh… Okay, after all that car talk, let’s get on to the writing business and why this post is called Epic Fail, lol.

Back to my opening statement, April 10th has come and past and I didn’t complete the Stephen King Challenge. I have come to the decision that while I do think Stephen King is wonderful and a novel can be finished in a month… that plan usually works best for people who don’t work full time at jobs that require overtime. If I was still doing a part-time gig, or teaching and had my summer off, I think I could have done it :).

BUT… and this is why the Fail is not Epic, I do have a good start to the novel. I’ve got 70 pages, and over 16,000 words. I’m still excited about the material and moving forward. I still want to challenge myself and set a time period for completion, but a more realistic one. I have a good writing buddy who suggested a book to me called: The 90 Day Novel. Well, I have done the first 30 days, right? So, I’m giving myself 60 more, starting today!

THE NEW CHALLENGE: FINISH FIRST DRAFT BY JUNE 12, 2013.

What is great about that is June 12, 2013 is also the kick-off of the library’s summer reading program, and I’m going to be extremely busy after that date. So, it’s on! I’m ready, and hey, this time, I think I can do it!

And now, the moment you’ve been waiting for, I said if I failed the Stephen King Challenge you all would get to throw bananas at me. So… let ’em fly. (Oh, but not at face… or the hair… let’s just avoid the head, okay?… um… okay? …crap.)

watch out for flying bananas

Hey!  I want to thank all the folks out there who have wished me luck.  I think I’m gonna need it.  Last week was insane.  I do not think I have ever been so busy or tired at and after work before.  I’m a youth librarian, and we just had the grand opening for our new teen room on Wednesday.  There was so much last minute work to do, and then there was the party to host.  At the end of the day, the event was a success and the kids like their new space.  (And we like their new space, too, because when we shut the door to their new space, we can’t hear them :D)

So, how much writing did I do last week?  Needless to say, I have a grand total of 5 new pages.  I need to kick my butt into high gear.  What I really need are some days where I don’t have to do anything else but write.  I have a few coming up and I hope to get a lot done then.  I’m still excited, and still think I can beat this challenge.

In fact, I want to extend the challenge to other authors out there.  Let’s race.  Send me a line and let me know if you want to do it!

race