Archive for the ‘short stories’ Category

wattpad

Thursday, February 2nd, 2012

I’m going to try this wattpad thingie out for a bit. Come read me here.

tuesday’s gone

Tuesday, January 26th, 2010

well, not yet anyway.

51EQhdaOW-L._SL75_Here’s what went down at the local library I 1) picked up Paper Towns, then 2) looked and searched for and inquired after These Is My Words but 3) it was nowhere to be found. To assuage my melancholy regardingthis fact, I 4) picked up An Abundance of Katherines, (by John Green, author of Paper Towns). If you’ve read Paper Towns, you know what the numbered sentence is about. If you haven’t, what are you doing here?! Go get it (only I think I got the last one at the Southwest Regional branch of the Fort Worth Public Library–so don’t go there).

Another reason to get the book is that it was awarded the 2009 Edgar Award for best Young Adult novel. And it’s pretty good to boot.

outsidersIt was interesting reading from the 18-year-old boy point of view. Besides The Outsiders (written by a teen girl, S.E. Hinton) you don’t really get the male perspective in a lot of YA fiction. The nether region jokes were not so awesome for a 34 year old mom, but were in fact much more tame than what I remember boys talking about when I was a teen.

41CHjByyWmL._SL500_AA240_

Youngsters who enjoy this book might even want to voluntarily pick up Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman which is a public service that John Green has provided.

On to writing:

So, I wrote a pterodactyl sized (but feathered) bird into my short story yesterday. And I’m currently wondering where I may have gotten off track. Before you say, “oh, that’s not so bad” let it be known that the bird dropped off a little man wielding a sword before picking up my protag and flying off with her. Oh the humanity!

I’m thinking that this might be my story’s way of avenging itself after being left untouched for over a month.

pterodactylusNT

*In searching for a pterodactyl image I found out that pterodactyl is not the proper name for the flying lizard…in fact, pterodactylus is the correct name and they are much smaller than their brother, pteranodon who would actually be the creature I was talking about in my story.

monday monday

Monday, January 25th, 2010

clockface001

Now that I’ve got you humming…

My writing hiatus is officially over. Back on the blog, back on the Word doc. So do me a favor, comment!!! I love the feedback and it encourages me to write more of the stuff you’ve come to know and love, or at least tolerate.

I’ll also be heading back to the library to catch up on my reading. If you want to follow along, this is what I’ll be checking out:

Paper Towns by John Green

These is My Words by Nancy E. Turner

and if I can find it - Bloodroot by Amy Greene I’ve seen it prominently reviewed in two magazines in the last week. Which means I might have to purchase it.

I’ll also be checking out whatever catches my eye. I’ll let you know what that is when I find it.

Have a super plus plus happy Monday everyone!

picking up where i left off

Friday, December 4th, 2009
the inspiration for one setting in Sea Rose (Bishop's Palace, Galveston Island, TX)

the inspiration for one setting in Sea Rose (Bishop's Palace, Galveston Island, TX)

Picking up the figurative pen again is proving an enlightening experience. I forgot during the 1.5 months I took off from writing new material (so editing is not included)–the freeing and fabulous feeling associated with creation. Luckily I didn’t come into it with nothing to start with. I’d saved the beginning of a short story sometime in September and promptly forgot all about it. I opened the file a few days ago and fell in love with the story again.

Starting again was weird at first. The things I was writing were stilted and awkward…but with just a small amount of perseverance I’m moving smoothly again…like riding a bike! Even if I’m never published, the joy of writing from my imagination is such a wonderful thing–it almost makes editing worth it.

emerson said it best

Thursday, August 27th, 2009

CLOUDSDear to us are those who love us… but dearer are those who reject us as unworthy, for they add another life; they build a heaven before us whereof we had not dreamed, and thereby supply to us new powers out of the recesses of the spirit, and urge us to new and unattempted performances.
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

I’m not sure I find the people who send me rejection letters “dear” but I do think they make me want to try harder and be better.  Here’s an excerpt from my latest rejection regarding my short story:

Thank you for submitting “In Desert Found” to (name removed). It was well received here, but after some thought we have decided not to accept it for publication.

There is a lot of potential for emotional response from the reader in this story idea.

The beginning starts too slowly and lacks conflict to hold attention. Consequently I did not sympathize with Kaylee. Internal monologue would help understand her feelings.

I hope you’ll consider us again, and I wish you the best success in placing this story elsewhere.


I love it!  My very first non-form rejection!  Notice the change in font indicating the move from form to non-form, isn’t it bee-utiful?  Okay, okay it really sucks that they didn’t like the story and yes I am a little embarrassed to share my lack of skills–but it just felt like the thing to do.  And now that I’m done lamenting the rejection I’ve been urged to a new and unattempted performance…aka more editing!

fifteen for friday 8/7/09

Friday, August 7th, 2009

someonelikeyou-thumb1.  Finally found a crit partner (actually three).  Already found about five ways to improve my manuscript.

2.  Oh!  Good news!  I finally finished my short story!  To celebrate I lopped off about 1,500 words while editing.

3.  Anyone know any good places to send a short story that runs about 8,200 words?

4.  Read another Sarah Dessen, Someone Like You.  Surprise!  I liked it.

booneslick5.  Currently reading Boone’s Lick by Larry McMurtry.  It’s a nice change of pace from YA fiction.  I wonder if Mr. McMurtry hangs out at his bookstore every day (does that sound stalkery)?

6.  I think I’m getting used to Splenda Diet Coke.

7.  Just won AMIGOLAND by Oscar Casares from Little, Brown for twittering about it!  I love #freebiefriday!amigoland

8.  Lately I’ve been spending about 90% of my “free” time networking socially and only 10% writing (or reading).  Maybe it’s time for a priority check.

9.  Still getting a huge kick out of visiting Jackson’s site.  Check out her haiku…

10.  I don’t really get the bubbl thing…but if it can help someone else (planners in particular) I’m happy to pass the link along.

11.  17 days until school starts.  I’m looking forward to it and dreading it at the same time.  It will be nice to have quiet days to work…but then there’s homework and lunches and uniforms and supplies, oh and money for this, that and the other thing.

12. Crit Partner Match is a site that helps hook you up with a crit partner.  Not super user-friendly, but it does give you a small pool of people to choose from.

13.  Excited to check out Dollhouse.

14.  If your maiden name was Weadon would you write under that name hoping to receive some kind of noteriety from Joss Whedon’s success?  Would it be wrong, right or neither?

15. How Fail Went From Verb to Interjection http://bit.ly/HJ8VK

11 things not to do when starting a writing career

Thursday, August 6th, 2009
  1. For fiction, a good idea is gold.  So make sure you start querying any and every literary agent you can get your cursor over, even the ones that only work with non-fiction books…heck, go for it and query other types of agents too…you never know.  Whatever you do, don’t actually have anything written yet; you’ll just have to rewrite it all later anyway.
  2. Proper punctuation and spelling are for English teachers.  Those squiggly lines under your words on the computer?  They’re for decoration.
  3. Can’t type?  No prob.  Pencil written manuscripts are perfectly fine to send in.  That coffee stain?  Don’t worry about it.  You are an artiste; you have grander things to think about than neatness.
  4. Do not follow the query writing / submission guidelines.  Your way is MUCH better.
  5. Rejection letters are a personal assault on your sensibilities.  Any agent who turns you down is a drooling dope and everyone deserves to know it.  Call, email, blog, and twitter about the injustice that has been done to you and the unsavory traits of the person who offended you.
  6. As soon as you send a query, and especially if you’ve been asked to send a manuscript, call the agent DAILY to check up on the status.  When they start to get a little firm with you that just means you’ve got their attention!  When they threaten to call the police, only then is it time to stop calling.
  7. If you have the good fortune to attend a writer’s conference, zoom in on your dream agent and never leave her side.  Share personal stories, the more intimate the better.  Make her think you’ve been best friends for ages.
  8. Make sure you start a blog that thrashes the publishing industry completely.  Tweet your links to the nation and sit back while you single-handedly revolutionize every negative thing about it.  It may hurt now, but they will thank you later.  There might even be a statue in your future.
  9. On your shiny blog, don’t forget to list out the crappy authors who somehow, by some crazy twist of fate, became published before you.  Make sure to tell the reasons why their writing sucks too.  Everyone can use some constructive criticism.

10.  When you finally have an agent (this should take 1-2 months-tops) DO NOT BUDGE on anything.  Take all you can get, but give as little back as you can.  Rewrites, schmewrites.  Oh, and don’t forget, these are big city folk, they only respond to rudeness.

11.  Do not ever try to help any other writer on their road to publication.  They are the competition, never forget that.  If you have the opportunity to sabotage them -do it.

swoosh cats

Thursday, July 30th, 2009

butterfly

Keep reading–it’s not all about cats.

I am writing under extreme duress; surrounded by cats who want to eat my lunch.  Their bowl sits untouched, with some of the yummiest cat food on the market (I’m guessing–I really don’t know for a fact), but me and my food pose a much more attractive prospect…a challenge.  Cally is all up in my grill(e?), as close as he dares, and my, he sure does dare closely.  P.J. inches ever closer on my other side thinking that since she’s the favorite I will just give up my lunch to her fluffy softness.  She is wrong.  If I could find my spray bottle they both would get it in the side.  There is no favoritism when it comes to my food.  They really should know this by now…  I’m thinking there must be a little button in their cute little “brains” that gets pushed whenever they smell something appetizing that prevents them from ever learning their lesson.

Whew!  K, food and cats gone.  This is much better.

Cats, unlike myself, don’t ever worry about their master plan.  After decades of observation, I know this is true.  They just do it.  Huh, maybe they would make a good subject for a Nike commercial?  I can just see it now, four leather covered paws, four teeny tiny swooshes jumping, darting, trotting.  Cute! K, K, back to the subject.  Sure, there isn’t much intentional planning happening with a cat.  But I bet they know they are going to eat and they aren’t going to let all that much come between them and a full tummy (spray bottle excluded).  They aren’t too worried about the details or if they are making the right decision or if they should take another path completely.

What I’m beating around is the fact that I have lots o’ projects on the stove but the burners are only on Low.  Or, the non-metaphor way to put it is that I’ve got so much I want to do that I’m doing almost none of it.  I’m in the paralyzed state that happens when I get overwhelmed.  It’s been a full week since I’ve written a word on my short story (which was supposed to be quick and painless, ha!).  I’ve written a small portion of an outline for the idea that I had in the shower.  And I’ve blogged.  So this is what it feels like to multi-task…I don’t like it.  So I’m writing about this because in talking to others this seems to be an issue as well.  And I’m thinking that if I write it out I can come up with a coherent resolution since that’s worked for me in the past.

The verdict – be like a Nike cat and just do it!  No more straying (ha ha get it?).  I think I can handle a blog post every one to two days while I finish that danged short story (which I love, don’t get me wrong).  After which I will work on the outline some more.  There.  Easy peasy.

hodge podge

Tuesday, July 28th, 2009

I usually reserve my stream of consciousness posts for my fifteen for friday…but hey, it’s my blog I can break a rule every now and then.  Plus, there’s the fact that 3 boys, one of which I did not give birth to are shooting each other with Nerf guns all over the house.  It’s a good thing all our good stuff was broken long ago.  But still, it’s a little distracting for a deep meaningful post.  Yeah, yeah, I know I haven’t made a deep and meaningful post yet, but someday I will and I probably wont have suction cup-tipped bullets whizzing by my head when I do.

stopvoldeysign

...so, does that mean that he's the only one who has to stop at this intersection? Cool.

I have a memory like a sieve.  If it is to be remembered by me, it must be written, or at least repeated many many times.  I’ve always been loudly in awe of anyone who can spew meaningful quotes at any given moment.  Quote Shakespeare and I will follow you into the depths, well not really.  But it is a gift that I wish I had.  I mention this short coming because, like many people, my best ideas materialize out of thin air while I’m in the shower.  What is it about the shower?  Anyway, I find that in order to remember the grand ideas I have, I have to repeat them over and over and over until the time that I can dry off and write them down.  I wonder how many ideas I miss while I’m remembering the one?annie

So anyway, I have this grand idea for a book…boy, I’m fickle.  I haven’t even finished my short story (although it’s turning more and more into a long one) and here I am excited about the next thing…and I haven’t gotten an agent on my first manu. yet.  Yet, there is always hope.  Sea Rose will get representation and will be sold.  Someday!  K, everyone join in…Tomorrow, tomorrow, I love ya tomorrow, you’re only a day away!

My site may be changing a little bit.  I tell you this so that you will not think that you are losing your mind, because that’s where I would go if I saw small things changing little by little on a much frequented site.  And this is a much frequented site, right?  right?  There may be subtle changes, and there may be larger ones as well.  And it may take a while ’cause my trustworthy husband/IT department is wayyyyyyy too busy to assist.  So I get to venture into blog tweaking territory all on my own.

Crud, I gotta go.  I think the boys are trying to figure out how to waterboard each other.

fifteen for friday 7/24/09

Friday, July 24th, 2009

Vacation Edition

1.  Sis. asked me where I was earlier this week (referring to my blog) and I let her know that I was on vacation.  Sometimes I forget to let people know the biggest things going on in my life…or maybe my brain was also on vacation; that is a valid theory and less self-involved.

2.  Schlitterbahn (New Braunfels, TX) was soooo much fun.  I’m going to brag on hubby and myself for driving 460 miles and herding 3 kids around a water park all in 17 hours.

schlitterbahn 0073.  The kids loved the grounds of the park.  There were tons of trees, plants and castles.

schlitterbahn 005

that's a rainbow in case you can't tell

4.  All portents indicated a great day.  (See rainbow pic)

5.  I’ve written more on my short story during my vacay than the two weeks before it.  But that’s okay because at this point in my non-paid career, writing doesn’t feel like work.

6.  Jim Harrington left a comment on last week’s fifteen for friday post.  I checked out his blog and found out about a really cool 24 hour short story writing contest by Writer’s Weekly.  I must look into this…

7.  I had no idea what today’s date was when I logged on this afternoon.  That is totally rad.

8.  THANKS to Blair Hurley for her super kind words about my blog…I luv writers!  (And big thanks for calling me young too.)

200px-Hp6teaserposter9.  Oh!  I finally saw Half-Blood Prince and it was as good as I expected (and I expected it to be fairly fantastic).  Of course it wasn’t nearly as good as the book; but what is better than a book anyway?

10.  Read my second Sarah Dessen novel this week, The Truth About Forever.  It was a little slow getting into it at first, but she pulled me in by the middle of the book.  I really liked it.  Please remember, I am a YA fiction writer for a reason.  I love reading the genre as well as writing for it.

11.  Oy vey Joel Stein, you make it hard to love you…but you are so hilarious…why do you do this to me?  Oh, and the week before…ick.

12.  I like Mary Ricksen’s sense of humor.

13.  One thing I really need to do is listen to the latest installment of the House of Grey.  Can’t believe I’ve let it go this long!  No, they aren’t paying me for advertisement, I just really like these guys and the work they’ve done.

14.  We passed approximately 43 Cracker Barrel restaurants on our trip, so we HAD to stop and eat some. It was good…did you know that you can buy all of the decorations, even the stuff pinned to the walls?

15. One cool thing about Schlitterbahn is that they use the water from the Comal River in the park, untreated.  One uncool thing is not having all of the  walking areas covered so you don’t burn your feet.