Monday, January 31, 2011

New Year's Resolution: Update 1 of 12

My brain's on a fiscal calendar of sorts. The weekend before the first day of the month, I usually change my calendars and transition. It's weird, but have you read some of my posts? I'm a weird kinda gal.

Anyway, here's my first New Year's Resolution update:

1. Start a blog...
    Done! By the way, thank you all for following this blog. It means a heckuva lot.
2. Read three books per month...
    I got through four in January (see list at end of post)
3. Polish my manuscript and query...
    My novel is on the query block. I'm doing the 'send 10 and wait' strategy. So far, I've gotten four, polite rejections. If I don't get any requests for pages, I'll assume my query letter needs help, revise, and send ten more. In the meantime, I'm 2,000 words into book two (yay!).
4. See at least one movie a month...
    This has not and won't be an issue. I'm a movie-a-holic.
5. Fitness goals...
    This has also not been an issue. I started week five of TurboFire this morning and still enjoy it. I don't have to threaten the scale before I step on it anymore. :) Major improvement there.

So, remember that resolution to read 3+ books per month? Well, here's January.

1/8/11 - The Elements of Style by Strunk and White
Boy, this was a heart breaker. Every page thumped me on the noggin and said 'Yeah, you! Go fix your manuscript.' I was relieved, however, that I've been right about 'serial' commas all along. For some reason, the second comma in lists has been lost since I took English in grade, middle, (right there!) and high school. Page 2, people! A short read filled with excellent advice. This book has won a place on my desk.

1/15/11 - Truly, Madly by Heather Webber
What a quick read! Lucy Valentine is smart, sexy, a bit of a psychic, and reminds me of Sookie Stackhouse (I LOVE Sookie, new book in May 2011 if you haven't heard). But Lucy wasn't my favorite character in this first book in a series of (so far) three. It was Raphael. He practically raised Lucy and has an adorable father/friend/sweet uncle vibe with her. I loved it! Then there's Sean, the love interest. Flirty, sarcastic, and damaged goods. Yeah, I fell hard along with Lucy. Good book.

1/20/11 - Personal Demons by Lisa Desrochers
This is one of those books that make me feel old and creepy. I'm only twenty eight, sure, but the love interests in Personal Demons are super hot seventeen year olds. As usual, I fell (hard) for Luc, the demon sent to tag Frannie's soul for Hell. Franny's the heroine, by the way, and a very realistic one. The sexy (and, did I mention, super hot) Luc finds redemption in Frannie's love. It's a pretty good read. There's a sequel coming out in 2011 called Original Sin.

1/29/11 - A Brush of Darkness by Allison Pang
This is a very sexy book. Sexy heroine, super sexy love interest, and a good bit of sex. The story's deep, a little overwhelming for me as I had no expectations (except about Brystion, previously mentioned super sexy love interest), but it was a quick read. I enjoy sarcastic heroines, and Abby is certainly that. She has natural and supernatural issues that are weaved together very well by Pang. I'm glad I read it, but I probably wouldn't read a sequel if Ion's not coming back. Super sexy Ion...mmmm.

Plan for February:
1. I have The Hunger Games on my Kindle
2. Eat, Pray, Love is on its way from Kate at My Life in Fiction. Thanks again for the contest goodies!
3. I've started three Jane Austen/Austen-related books recently and will (yes, WILL) get through one of them in February.
4. At least one more, but I'm determined to get a first draft of my book 2 (Kat of Nine Tales series) written as well. We'll see what happens.

What February reading plans do you have? Did you check out the FLY TO 500 Contest?


Sunday, January 30, 2011

A great post

Check out this great post. There are several others documenting this year's Writer's Digest Conference, but this was my favorite.


Saturday, January 29, 2011

FLY TO 500! Contest Opens Today!


Good to have. Awesome to achieve. Everyone should have at least one goal, no matter how big or small.

I have a goal, and it is huge! Five hundred followers by March 1, 2011, to make friends, learn more about the (crazy) world of publishing, and network, network, network.

FLY TO 500 details:

You must (aka Rules):
1. Follow this blog (by 'follow,' I mean click the Follow button to the right of the screen).
2. Post a 100 (or fewer) word book, movie, TV show, or music/artist review (updated 2/5/11) in a comment to this post. Make me laugh, cry, read, watch, but do it in less than 100 words.
3. Have a valid email address (though you don't have to post it in your comment). Once you see the prizes, you'll understand why this is necessary.
4. Link to this contest on your blog, Twitter, Facebook, etc., and post that link in your comment. I mean, you should be able to network too, right? Right!

The Prizes!:
1. 20 random number generator-selected comments will receive a $10 Amazon e-gift card. Posts will be numbered in the time/date order they were received, so one entry/comment per person. No do-overs, sorry.
2. 5 Favorites will be selected by me, and the Followers (mwahaha) will vote on the hands-down winner from March 1 to March 10. Top prize is a $50 Amazon e-gift card. The four runners-up will each get a $25 Amazon e-gift card. All prizes will be distributed by March 31, 2011.

Bonus! I'm pledging $1 for each follower to the Exotic Feline Rescue Center in Centerpoint, Indiana up to a maximum $1,000 to be paid over the rest of 2011. Check them out. They're well worth it. Follower count will be taken on March 1, 2011 to determine the donation. :)

I'm also going to visit as many blogs as possible to introduce myself and spread the word.

If you cringe at self-promotion, take a look at Lisa Desrochers's post here. You've heard me talk about her debut Personal Demons, which is very good and you should Kindle the jeepers out of it soon (or buy the book, of course). You've also probably seen Contest City happening across the Blogosphere, so if you promote this contest, I appreciate it and you.

Just for the record, I'm in no way associated with Amazon. I buy my books, movies, you-name-its through Amazon and thought it the most universal for an online contest (plus, you get to choose your own goodies. Neat, huh?).

I am also not affiliated with the EFRC. I just like what the organization's doing and love to support it.

FLY TO 500! Annnnnnnd GO! :)


Friday, January 28, 2011

The Fighter - Review in 100 Words

Hello All!

Thanks to everyone who visited and posted for my Page 99 Blogfest entry. It's been so great stopping by all the blogs. BUT I did see The Fighter last night and wanted to post my 100 words before I fell asleep.

Here we go!

Meet Dicky and Micky (Bale and Wahlberg), the only boys of nine kids. Dicky’s a crack addict, and Micky wants to do something with his boxing and normal life. Their mother is an overbearing crazy (my opinion), and Melissa Leo deserves an Oscar. Speaking of, Christian Bale was Russell-Crowe-in-A-Beautiful-Mind amazing! He looks awful, I mean horrendous, but every expression, outburst, F-word, make for an unforgettable performance.
Leo throws a mean frying pan, Marky Mark (feel it, feel it) demanded my respect, and did I mention Christian Bale? I felt every punch, but was thoroughly inspired. See it right now!
That's it! Did you see it? What did you think of Bale? How does he go from there to growly, muscular Batman?


The 99th Page Blogfest

The lovely ladies at Slice of the Blog Pie are hosting a 99th Page Blogfest. Here's my page 99 for your review. 1. Would you turn to page 100? 2. Why or why not? 3. Based on what you read, how likely would you be to buy the book?
For your critiques...Outta the Bag, Page 99:

I found the puffiest grass and flopped on my back. My playlist must’ve picked up on my good mood, because Freddie Mercury’s velvety voice swam between my ears when I pressed shuffle. I gave the sky an open-mouthed smile and hummed along, feeling the silky caress of sleep against my mind.
I didn’t make it to the chorus.
Through the sea of onlookers, I watched the mousy woman bite her thumbnail. Her forehead and cheeks were dashed with long scars, but looking closer, I realized they were just the weathered lines of age. A round man in an expensive suit approached and offered her a glass of water. She released her bleeding thumb and accepted the cup with a quaking hand, only taking a sip before the glass slipped. The crash resonated in the courtroom like a sonic boom. Every eye fell on the expanding puddle.
My glance alone followed the confident blonde as she stepped from the last row. She wore a crimson skirt suit like a second skin, and her long, creamy legs should have garnered the attention of every man in the county. But the gentlemen present were silent, as were the ladies, all focused on that broken glass and the shuddering mess of a woman on the stand. Doc’s red heels click-clacked to the front of the room. She stood before the accused with her arms crossed and a finger pressed to her cheek. I took that opportunity to glance at the judge, the jurors, and the others in attendance. They were frozen, eyes blank and unseeing.
I slipped from my seat and walked to the front of the room. Doc’s normally arched brows were drawn into a straight line, leaving creases over the smooth skin of her forehead. She didn’t seem to notice me at first. She did a double take and grinned, but it slid away when she looked back at the crying woman.
“I find it very strange how the mind works.” Doc tipped her head forward, “This woman died in her sleep. When they find her, they’ll call it ‘old age.’ They won’t care that her only son died in Afghanistan last month, and they’ll never know she fought with him the last time they spoke. She chose to wait here and put herself on trial for it. Taking the blame for a stray bullet because she told him to join. He didn’t have a lot of options, and he resented her for it.” Doc turned her face away from me, but for a second, I saw tears sparkling in her eyes. “I remember exactly how she feels.”
It was a while before she turned back, but when she did, her tears were gone. She wore the teasing smirk I knew so well. I had a slew of new questions to add to my Doc file, and she knew it. She snapped her fingers once, and the woman and the courtroom around us vanished. I fell, arms flailing, onto a plaid couch. Doc sat across the room in a navy recliner and gestured to a tray of cookies on the table between us. Her hair was no longer pinned into its tight bun, but pushed back by a scarlet ribbon. It flowed down her back in sparkling yellows and golds. A lime sundress replaced her suit. I took a cookie to be polite, and she rewarded me with a smile that crinkled her eyes and washed away ten years.
“Is this your house, Doc?”
She munched on a chocolate square of some sort. “One of them. It was my favorite.”
We were in a sunroom, and I could see a small kitchen through the doorway beside Doc’s chair. There was a long window behind me, and the heat and light beating through it had faded the tops of the

That's it! Yikes! You get zero backstory or explanation, but any feedback/constructive criticism about my writing in general is welcome. Also, if you have time, pop around to the other page 99's from Slice of the Blog Pie and give them feedback (follow the link at the top of the post). Every, single comment helps.

I saw The Fighter last night, and you won't want to miss my 100 word review later today.

Thanks for reading!


Thursday, January 27, 2011

Forget the Cowbell; I need more Draco Malfoy! Part 1

I've always been a nerd.

I need glasses, joined the marching band, won spelling bees, was unanimously voted Most Studious by my senior class, and so on. But, I didn't (don't) mind being a nerd or a dork. Especially after watching Sidney White and the brought-a-tear-to-my-eye scene at the end where even the jocks proudly proclaim that they're dorks.

Have I discussed how much I love Amanda Bynes? No? Well, that's a random, crazy person post for another day.

Today, I want to discuss fan fiction, something that gets the nerd and/or dork label pretty quickly. But, let's break down the purpose of fan fiction (my opinions, of course). There will be a couple parts to this conversation, but please, give me your thoughts.

Point #1: Exploring supporting characters

I love supporting characters. Main characters are great, but usually it's the supporting cast that make the hero or heroine hit home. So, for me, fan fiction is about digging deeper into the hero's best friend or the Big Bad, exploring their motivations, asking what made them the way they are, and working on your writing at the same time.

Haven't you ever wanted Stephanie Meyer to write the story in the background of Breaking Dawn where Alice and Jasper go to find the other human/vamp hybrid? Well, I'm sure someone has, and if you read enough fan fiction you may come across a rare jewel of a story. What about how Lupin and Tonks came together? They never struck me as complimentary, but I'm not J.K. Rowling.

What other stories would you like to see? Do you read/write fan fiction? If so, what do you get out of it?

Are you a dork? :)
More to come...


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

To the Moon and back (and beyond)

Through books, we can go anywhere, do anything, be whoever we want to be. We explore new worlds, travel to exotic places, and step away from our normal/average/unexciting lives.

So, where has your own book taken you? Are you building a new world, delving into the secrets of history, or branching out of 'normal life' one step at a time. In Outta the Bag, my debut and as-of-yet unpublished manuscript, my heroine Kat Wake is peer-pressured into taking a leap of faith...literally. She, Nick, and Tate (I haven't introduced any of these main and most-loved characters, but I promise it's coming) go skydiving.

Thing is, I didn't know much about skydiving, so I did it. Yes, you read that right. I, the biggest wuss ever, jumped out of a plane, and words can't describe how it felt. But that's not true at all, because the week after my jump, I pulled out my rough draft and rewrote the skydiving scene. It's now one of my favorites!

I'm thinking book three will be set in Brazil...maybe I should start saving now. :)

Where has your book taken you? Did you step out of your comfort zone to get a scene just right? Tell us about it.


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Remembering Jack LaLanne

You've heard of Jack LaLanne if from nothing more than a juicer infomercial.

He died today at 96. Ninety Six! I bought his juicer last year. It works great, the juice is yummy, and I feel a lot better having a glass of Lime Carrot Cucumber juice before my dinner (not as gross as it sounds). But if you get a chance to watch the infomercial or find it on Youtube, take a minute to watch the man. He's ninety years old, looks between 60 and 70, and cuddles with his wife. He was an amazing guy and will be missed.

On a lighter note, Angelica Jackson's having a contest here.

Also, check out her website here. Click on mammals and oooh and aaah over Scent of a Leopardess. What an action shot!

My Fly to 500 Contest is coming! Details on Saturday. Pass it on!


Monday, January 24, 2011

Contest! Sweettarts ARE involved!

Afternoon, all my loverly followers (mwahaha!).

Holly Dodson has a unique and excellent contest going on at Super Mom Writes to celebrate reaching 100 followers. Check it out.

That reminds, what was I going to tell you...OH YEAH! I have the outrageous notion to reach 500 followers by March 1, 2011. And what better way than a CONTEST! But you'll have to wait until Saturday (yes, I'm moving it up! Can't wait, can't wait!!!).

I know I've been a bit all-caps heavy and the exclamation points are out of control, but I'm sending out my first (ever) query tonight to my #1 agent pick. After that, I'll wait and wait and wait and HOPE that if it's a rejection, she gives me some tips, a sentence, two words, anything really. I'm choosing to be optimistic, of course, and I'll send other queries to other agents who are probably very awesome as well.

I'm also outlining book two, GOT YOUR TONGUE. Why would I outline book two before I know if book one will ever make it off my tiny, silver flash drive? It's simple.

There's more to Kat's story, and I can't wait to see what happens!


Sunday, January 23, 2011

Movie Review in, you guessed it, 100 words

I saw The Dilemma yesterday. Here are my thoughts in 100 words or less.

First off, it's not a comedy. Two parts I remember being funny: the tattooed/delicious Channing Tatum pouting, and Vaughn and James rolling around a hockey rink at the end. Ronny (Vaughn), a recovering gambling addict, sees his friend's wife with another man. Hear me, funny men! Be FUNNY! Make us laugh until we pee, please! Vaughn cries on a bench at one point. It was believable but awkward.

Queen Latifa made me uncomfortable, Winona Ryder pulled off evil/vindictive, but Vaughn needs to pitch Wedding Crashers 2 or Dodgeball: Rise of Cobra, because this one didn't do it for me.

That's it! What did you think of the movie? How about comedians doing serious roles? Ace Ventura 3, anyone? :)


Saturday, January 22, 2011

Cat News! Had to post this...

No one escapes jury duty!

What's your sign, baby?

I've always been a Capricorn. A quick google search says a Capricorn is/has:

Good organizational skills
Neat & tidy
Strong work ethic

Materialistic tendencies
Respects authority
Cruel taskmaster
Excessive perfectionism

All of which I'll give a 'yup, that says it all.' I especially like cruel taskmaster. Mwahaha!

But times are a'changin (Bull Mountain, don't go changin'! Google away, I'll wait).

Zodiac Change?

According to the article, the Zodiac's screwed up. I'm now apparently a Sagittarius. Whaaaa? My arch nemesis (read as older sister) is a Sagittarius, or rather she was. Here's a bit about a Sagittarius.

Fears responsibility
Peter Pan syndrome
Tendency to gamble

So, now I'm in a huge Dilemma.

Tangent! I'm seeing the movie The Dilemma tonight. I'll post a review tomorrow (100 words or less, pinky swear). 

Anyway...Impatient? Self-indulgent? Peter Pan syndrome? Maybe the first two and a lot of the others (optimist, um hello!), but let's talk about the third. As you all know, I *heart* Pan. I fist my hands on my hips, give the sky a cocky grin, and doodle-doo every chance I get (and the Cheetah flies!), but I don't know about being socially immature and having a huge dependence on my mom. Although, mom is pretty awesome...

Tendency to gamble? Well, I do want to be an author. :)

So, what's your NEW sign, baby? Does it make sense? Do your crow in public for no reason?


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Fairy dust and happy thoughts

If you've ever seen/read/heard of Peter Pan, you know that flying calls for two things: fairy dust and happy thoughts. Some versions of Barrie's tale require one, others ask for both. Keep that in mind. I'll come back to it.

So, when I set about naming my blog, the first thing I thought of was a cat. I like cats. Their general snobbery and my-way-no-highway-option (thank you, Vin Diesel) attitude are right up my alley. But, the main reason I thought of a cat was probably because one of my feline darlings was stomping all over my keyboard and murrowing to high heaven. Of all the big cats, I chose the cheetah, the fastest animal on land.

Knowing that, let's go back to Peter Pan. I (Marie) have bazillions of happy thoughts, but no fairy dust. I blame that on my inability to fly. The cheetah doesn't need fairy dust, though. She has little wings on her shoulder blades, but they're just for show. She flies at top speed to swoop down on fully suspecting bush pigs, antelopes, or other unfortunate creatures (circle of life, buddy).

That, my thirteen wonderful followers, is the haphazard thought process behind my blog's name.

And the end to this terribly random post!


Monday, January 17, 2011

The Roomie and the Peacekeeper

Miss Leslie Wagner is Kat's roommate. Here's a bit about Les from OUT OF THE BAG:

Leslie was all tucked in when I climbed into bed. The plastic star she insisted putting above me glowed a bright white. In her honey-coated drawl, she’d said, ‘Kat, darlin’, everyone needs a little light to guide their way.’ I’d snorted then and found myself doing the same at the memory.

She mothers out of habit. I always assumed it came from being the oldest of seven kids, but she may be playing on her looks. Tall (six foot, I think) and pudgy around the middle, she wears petal pink lipstick and carries a gigantic handbag.

If everyone had a Leslie, the world would be a brighter place. :) Leslie is the 'it'll be all right, sugar' and 'you'll figure it all out, hun' of Kat's group of friends.

So, if Leslie's the mom, we need a dad, right? Right?

Here he is:

I turned puppy eyes to Aaron, our resident peacekeeper. He's runner skinny and vampire pale with a tall forehead that eventyally touches wispy, reddish-brown hair. We think he's losing it from wearing ball caps ninety percent of the time. Tonight, he wore a green one with PEACE in white, bubble letters. How appropriate.


Aaron Darling (seriously, a real darling) is headed to Brazil at the beginning of this book, but from the snippets we get, he is laid back and loving. At one point, I'd written 'too good for me to date' from Kat's perspective, but don't think I kept it. There's no romance, but Aaron wants to see Kat happy, so when she finally finds someone, he is understanding and encouraging. I realize that might not make sense. Go and reread my 'Before my characters' post (the one that looks like a query). 

Like Leslie, if everyone had an Aaron, there would be no war, no hate, no disease (okay, well, there would probably still be disease), but you get the drift.

I've gone long with this post, I know, so I'll stop here. Let me know!


Somebody is awesome!

Check out Lisa's blog here

She is super awesome for giving The Flying Cheetah this groovy award. I love smiles (that's why I rarely watch the news) and hope I give each of you, my eleven (*squeal*) followers, something to smile about.

Here's my first try of the day:

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Personal Demons Giveaway!

Check out this Fire and Ice giveaway:

This book sounds very interesting. I read (and thoroughly enjoyed) Hush Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick, so if this is similar, I'm sure I'll like it. You know, if high school boys were like the ones in Hush Hush, I would've had a lot more fun. ;)

I decided to start a Twitter account in preparation for the AWESOME contest I'm announcing on January 31, 2011. Seriously, tell your friends. I'm going for 500, my three (3! Hiya Erinn. Love the cougar!) followers! More to come on this.


Friday, January 14, 2011

Lil and Margie make the top three!

Hot Dog! My pair of vengeful grannies made the top three in THE Janet Reid's recent writing contest.

There will be Snoopy dances for all! Yay!


Movie Review in 100 Words

It's movie time, people! I can (happily) no longer say 'my nonexistent followers.' Jess, Kate, you're the best!

I saw Easy A yesterday and want to spew my thoughts all over you in 100 words or less.

Boy, that sounded pretty gross. Anyway...

Emma Stone plays Olive, a snarky teen who lies about losing her virginity. Someone hears, and the rumor mutates. Eventually Olive ‘takes jobs’ to start other rumors that help the down-trodden. There’s a fake sex scene that's beyond hysterical.
Meanwhile, an over-the-top Christian group calls for Olive’s expulsion. She confesses via webcam and gets a kiss from Woodchuck Todd. The (happy) End.
Stone’s scrunched brows, pursed lips, and sideways glances create a lovely character. Olive’s parents are delightful, and the jokes and references are perfectly placed (the Quiznos guy).
This movie felt ‘high school real.’ I’ll be buying it soon.

Yikes! 100 words is easier when I don't enjoy the movie. :) Your thoughts on Easy A?


Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Penny for your thoughts


Every professor knows Penny Link’s name and GPA (when it starts with a four, it’s tough to forget), but they never recognize her plain face in the halls. She wears sweater sets and plaid skirts, keeps her limp, brown hair tucked into a ponytail, and rarely shows her teeth when she smiles. She’s so skinny we joke she must have an eating disorder.
It’s funny because she doesn’t. If she did, we would be awful human beings. There’s a difference.

Penny is the girl next door with a temper. She met Kat during their freshman year, and both are business majors. If you've ever met (or are) someone who corrects people's grammar, tsk's them about studying, and likes things the way they're 'supposed to be,' you'll love Penny. And, by the way, there's nothing wrong with any of that. It takes all kinds to make this lovely world go round.

What's my favorite thing about Penny? She never backs down. Sure, she may take a breather and come back another day, but she is fierce in her beliefs. When she thinks Kat's wrong, she lets her know, come what may (raise your hand if you just heard Ewan McGregor's voice, yeah).

I tried to keep this short, as I know there's a ton of other blogs you (my nonexistent followers!) need to read. So, what's your first impression of Penny?


Before my characters

Hey, All!

Before I talk about characters you know nothing about, I'd like to give you an overview of OUT OF THE BAG.

Kat Wake is drowning in the sea of heartbreak and peer pressure known as college, but she’s determined to change that this year. She just has to A) date fewer losers and B) open her mind to, well, everything. And, oh yeah, C) figure out why a smirking blond and her delicious friend keep popping up in her dreams. A serious car crash throws her into a doctor’s waiting room with them, but this time, Kat isn’t dreaming. She’s dying.
She stands in the doorway of the afterlife where all souls wait between one life and the next. The dream woman and gatekeeper, Doc, offers Kat a choice: trade in her ho-hum life for a walk into the unknown, or return to it with the secrets she’s learned...on one condition. She must steal the memories of a man who wants to talk about this place. That’s apparently against the rules, but Doc won’t say who makes them. With more questions than answers, Kat agrees, refusing to wash her hands of her life.
She returns to find Tate, Doc’s assistant and the man from (and of) Kat’s dreams, waiting to guide her. He’s in a different body, though, a woman’s body, and Kat fights her friends’ disapproval and her own doubts to accept her new feelings. At the same time, she learns the man she’s hunting is after her for more of Doc’s secrets, and he’s not the only one. Kat must dig deep for the courage to hold up her end of the deal or risk losing her own memories or, worse, the life she just got back.

Sounds a bit like a query letter, doesn't it? :)



Good morning, my nonexistent followers.

On a somber note:

Janet Reid is poignant and powerful. She hits the nail on the head.


Monday, January 10, 2011

Contact Me!

Leave your comment below to get in touch with me. I'll reply directly to your email address if it's tied to your blog account or you include it in your comment.



Saturday, January 8, 2011

Free Book Contest!

Who doesn't LOVE free books!?

Check out Coffee. Tea. And Literary's new contest:

Historical fiction held my heart before high school. Harry (more like Draco) stole it after that, but did you read these?

The Witch of Blackbird Pond
Sarah Bishop
The Island of the Blue Dolphins

Okay, I know that last one isn't exactly historical fiction, but it's phenomenal.

Did you like historical fiction when you were younger? How about now?


Movie Review in 100 Words

I love movies.

Not one movie, not some movies, but just movies. The idea of them. The look and feel of them. Everything.

To clarify, I don't watch every movie that comes out. I don't watch even a handful of them. Horror's a no-go as I'm an enormous wuss, and war movies or other guns/shooting/killing/etc., dramas usually get the pass as well. I have actors and actresses who I like, but I normally won't see all their movies. Natalie Portman is my favorite right now, but it was Keira Knightley last year (or maybe it was Sandra Bullock...). Point is, I jump around. On the flip, I'm not a big Matt Damon fan, but The Adjustment Bureau looks pretty interesting.

I now present THE POINT of my yammering. I'm going to try for a 100 word or fewer review of any movies I see in theaters in 2011. My writing is wordy, very wordy, so I need practice, practice, practice on being concise.

Today's (or rather yesterday's) movie: Season of the Witch

Nicolas Cage and Ron Perlman (his buddy/sidekick) are knights. They, along with some unimportant people and a priest, take the ‘witch’ (Claire Foy was good) to her trial to stop a plague. A wannabe knight joins them at some point. Blah, blah, blah. Good triumphs. Was it awesome? Ummm… The sword fights were boring, wolves ate a guy, and the effects…yeah, but I'm a sucker for questioning the expected (here, killing in the name of God).

If you want an epic adventure, watch Lord of the Rings. If you need an okay movie when you’re bored, netflix this one later.

100 words exactly. :)

Did you see Season of the Witch? What did you think? And let's talk about Foy. Creepy good, or is it just me?


Thursday, January 6, 2011

The Naked Hero

I went to one writing workshop last year (my first ever) and had the privilege of sitting in Heather Webber's Query Critique class. I emailed her a query draft in November, and she proofed it. What a saint!

She writes the Lucy Valentine books and others, of course. I haven't read any yet, but TRULY, MADLY is on my Kindle list (once it gets here -scowl-). Anyway...she also writes for a blog called The Naked Hero, and it's really fun.

Here's the address:

Check it out. She's stripping down Lord Farquaad (of Shrek fame) today, and it's a hoot.


Finished the 'Red Pen' Edit

I printed draft six last week and gave it the 'red pen' edit. Literally, I put red ink to paper and ripped it to shreds. Is it perfect? No, but it is closer to polished than it was two weeks ago. That's what matters to me. Forward progress.

Another example of that. I've decided to start character biographies from my Kat of Nine Tales series. Yes, that's what I'm calling it. If/when book one makes it to a publisher, they can decide if A) it's a good series name and B) it can produce eight (yes, EIGHT) sequels to wrap up the story. Are they written? I think you know the answer. Do I have ideas? Who doesn't, but I know where Kat needs to go and who needs to make it to the end with her.

So, with much moxy and ado...

Katherine (Kat) Wake
Nick Trimmer
Tate Sinclair
Doctor Megan Caste
Leslie Wagner
Penny Link
Aaron Darling
Banner Lambert

Followers (mwahaha) are still a no-go, so I can't poll who will be first.

Let me see. My golden cheetah eyes search the savannah for the

How about Penny? Coming next week!


Saturday, January 1, 2011

May I introduce...

The Flying Cheetah.

Today is a good day for resolutions, so here are mine.

1. Start a blog, and find some followers. Boy, that sounds rule-the-worldish, doesn't it? *wink*
2. Read three books per month (MINIMUM). Shoot for six+.
3. Polish my manuscript and query in the first quarter of 2011. My dream agent is Suzie Townsend, and I'll be attending the Antioch Writer's Workshop in Yellow Springs, Ohio, this July. She'll be there. Can we say nervous?!
4. See at least one movie a month and not my norm. Be open to new ideas (Inception was the beginning!)
5. Fitness goals (because every year has to have them): Start TurboFire on 1/3 and stick with it. Every meal, every workout, no exceptions.
6. Look at resolutions quarterly, adjust/update/revise as necessary.

I am an as-of-now unpublished author. I have a manuscript, my first, on its sixth draft and still in need of polishing. This is a new world for me, and I'm doing everything I can, reading anything I can get my hands on, watching all the blogs I'm able, to jump into it. To fly into it!