Happy October 31st!!

I'm not a fan of Halloween. Please don't smack me.


I AM a fan of today. Because the prizes came! Even though I accidentally sent them to my old address in WV and was afraid they would stay there, because you know how you can send things to more than one address on your Amazon account, so why would they bother to forward it to our new address, because what if we were actually sending the books to our friends in WV, if indeed the new people in my old house were my friends?

But they found me!

They are some of my favorite books for many reasons, now including their ability to find their way home. Good boooooks, yes you are!! *pets books*

Today is also awesome because there is now exactly 11 days left to enter my Eleventy-First Follower Giveaway Extraordinasticganza! The odds are still pretty good that you'll win one of the 11 prizes (including two special books that will always find their way back to you *pets books*), so check it out!


My Eleventy-First Follower Giveaway Extraordinasticganza!!

First off, Bilbo would like to say a few words:

"I don't know half of you half as well as I should like..."
Now, now, Bilbo. Let's not get cheeky.

So! I've finally reached (and now sailed past) eleventy-one followers, which, seriously guys, makes me so happy. I've wanted to do a giveaway for a while and this feels like the perfect time.

I don't want to do anything complicated, so all you have to do is be a follower (or become a follower) and leave a comment to be entered. However! If you can tell me in your comment, in exactly 11 words, why you should or want to win, you will get another entry. Ditto if you Facebook, Tweet, or blog about the contest.


There are 11 prizes up for grabs:
  1. A copy of my favorite book when I was 11 years old, THE TRUE CONFESSIONS OF CHARLOTTE DOYLE.
  2. A copy of one of my favorite reads of 2011, I CAPTURE THE CASTLE.
  3. A copy of Anne Lamott's BIRD BY BIRD, which is an excellent writing resource.
  4. A package including some of my favorite writing treats and treasures, including this guy. (I tried to include a picture but it wouldn't let me.)
  5. A first chapter crit.
  6. An entire read through of your MS with feedback (and I'm a fast reader.)
  7. A query crit from Christine Tyler. (I know, guys. I KNOW.)
  8. An interview on my blog with 11 tailored-to-you questions.
  9. A picture, based on your hook, drawn by my 6-year-old, Halle. (And she's got skills, mind you.)
  10. A fanfiction, based on your hook, by my 8-year-old, Jenna. (Also awesome.)
  11. The opportunity to pick my husband's brain about any medical or fighting questions you might have. He's a Physician Assistant and an all-sorts-of-violence (except real life) buff, so he knows what he's talking about.
Winners of the books, crits, and the package of treats will be awarded randomly. Other prizes MAY be awarded to my favorite 11 word comments. So entertain me, minions wonderful followers.
    The contest will go until 11/11/11, which is three weeks from today.

    So, to sum up:

    Be a follower and leave a comment--1 point.
    Leave an 11 word comment--1 point
    Twitter, Facebook, or blog love-1 point each

    Please tally up your point total in your comment (point tally not included in 11 words) and please, be honest. Remember, even if you can't see Bilbo, he might be watching you. And he doesn't like cheaters.

    *side note for my sisters and other non-writer friends: Feel free to enter, too! If you win one of the writerly prizes, I'll be happy to negotiate alternatives. So...please enter?



      I've Been Writing. Just Not Here.

      When putting the new button for Julie's Oh, The Early Work blogfest/giveaway (now extended to October 28th!) on my sidebar, I noticed my blog archives, and the sorry amount of posts I've written for September and October. (Don't look. Seriously.)

      It's just that, after months of feeling like this:


      about my WIP, I suddenly feel more like this:

      Which is creepy, but exciting, right?

      So, with my newly sprouted mini-hands, I've been writing about this:

       and including some of this:

      set someplace like this:

      Not forgetting some of this:

      And for dessert, THIS:

      Because seriously. Good. Heavens. YES.


      On Friday, Bilbo and I have an announcement!

       Come back and find out more about my Eleventy-First Follower Giveaway Extraordinasticganza! It will be all sorts of awesome and preciousssss....

      Until then, I will be staring at that kissing picture WRITING!!


      We Are Us

      There are two common interests my dad and I share: music and books.

      There are two things my dad and I almost always disagree on: music and books.

      It's sad, really.

      I mean, we agree on common stuff, like the Beatles. And the Bible. That's about where our tastes diverge.

      We're both on an unofficial mission to convert each other to the "right" side now. I recommend books to him. He makes me listen to his music. Sometimes something sticks, and sometimes it doesn't.

      This isn't a bad thing, though. We have lively discussions. Chairs are thrown! Decorative pillows are ripped! Windows beg for mercy!

      Okay, no. But, we do enjoy the lively discussions.

      I was thinking about this in relation to writing. I would love to be the next amazing whoever, but the only thing I can be is myself. I'm the only one who can write like me and that's so awesome.

      Regina Spektor doesn't sing like Colbie Caillat. If she did, people would probably rip decorative pillows, because come on, that would sound weird. They're totally different.

      So, yo, Regina (or, you know, insert your name here), KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK. Because when you make your voice do that weird cool thing like only you can do, we know can write that character with a funny little quirk. Or the plotline that some people might think is too out there, but that we can pull off.

      Because WE ARE US, dang it!*

      *eloquent bits of wisdom brought to you by Jeigh. Keep being yourself.


      The Girl With The Pink Gun

      Just a quick post on this dreary Friday (it snowed yesterday! And stuck! Kids made snowmen! We drank hot chocolate! Cats and dogs, livin' together! Mass hysteria!).

      My friend, Eleisha, has a new blog where she reviews books! You can check it out here.

      What I like about Leish's blog is that she does straightforward, concise reviews, which is nice, and she reviews books that have been out for a while as well as more recent releases. She's already adding to my TBR pile.

      *pats TBR pile*

      *imaginary table groans under weight*

      So check it out! Because we all love books here, right? Right!


      Oh, The Early Work Blogfest

      *First off, if you feel so inclined, check out my post for the 2nd Campaign Challenge and throw me a vote! (I'm #171)Thanks!

      Today's post is brought to you by Juliemybird's Oh, The Early Work blogfest/giveaway. There will be prizes! And lots of funny stories, so go check it out.

      Also, dino love

      Since I've already written about my first, psychotic, puppy-mutilating attempt at an epic story, I'm going to tell you about a different, but just as embarrassing, early writing experience.

      There was a certain boy I pined for from third grade to eighth. He was, guys, SO cute. I can't describe him, or name names, because I'm still on speaking terms with his family and if he ever heard about this OHMYGOSHIWOULDDIE. Because I'm still twelve, apparently.

      Nevertheless, I liked him a lot.

      He inspired many a love-interest.

      We actually almost became friends. We were within the same circle, capable of almost-not-awkward interaction, and--for one glorious month and a half--racing buddies when the bell rang to come in from recess. He was the one for me, I was positive.

      And then, the worst thing possible happened: Junior High.

      He was cute, and cuteness gets you popularity in junior high. I was not cute. I didn't get popularity.

      Suddenly, my semi-friend-love couldn't bother himself to speak to me. No more racing. It was sad.

      I channeled all my anguish and angst into a story about a girl who really liked a boy, and how they used to be best friends (slight exaggeration) but now he wouldn't even talk to her. She knew they were meant to be, and one day, he finally came to his senses, swept her off her feet, and they lived happily ever after.

      I knew, I KNEW if he read it, he'd understand the pureness of my heart, that I wasn't just another spacey cheerleader after him for his rosy cheeks and curly dark hair. I saw to his soul.

      So, I wrote him a casual note: "Hey, how's it going? How do you like seventh grade? What's your favorite class? Oh, by the way, I wrote a story and I was wondering if you would like to proofread it for me. Okay, let me know." I slipped it into his locker.

      Lucky for me, he didn't answer. His avoidance of me became even more concentrated. And the bridge of our love was forever burned.

      It's for the best, though. That story was totally lame.

      What sort of gems did you write in your younger years? Link up at Julie's blog!