Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Book That Must Be Named

WANTED: One Title

The agent (I can't call her my agent yet...still waiting for that phone call *sigh*) wants me to think about a new title for Pearl Edda.

I agree wholeheartedly.

Pearl Edda worked at one time, but now with all the changes, it doesn't make sense anymore.

Here's my thought on the matter:

Titling is hard.

(Think Russell in the movie UP and his thoughts on tents...)

I've come up with a list of about thirty possibilities. None of which seem to work.


The Gods Must Be Crazy
Giants of the Earth
Eat, Pray, Love
Midsummer's Night Dream

...are all taken.

Right now, my top choice is Edda. I don't know if it will be acceptable or not.

Let me know if you have any good titles just laying around.

Collecting dust.

Needing a good home.

Earthquakes, Volcanoes, and Norse Gods

Yellowstone National Park

Most of you know that Pearl (or The Book Whose Name Must Be Changed - more on that later) is set in Montana near Yellowstone.

A premise in the book is that Loki (the evil trickster god in Norse Mythology who is responsible for earthquakes on Earth) is setting up to explode Yellowstone and consequently wreak havoc on the world.

Yellowstone has thousands of mini earthquakes every year, and it also sits on top of a caldera (an active volcano). Which is why we get all the super cool geothermal features there.

Geysers. Fumaroles. Mud pots. Hot springs.

You get the picture.

Scientists are debating when the caldera will erupt next, and here's a little National Geographic video that talks about it:

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


So, a friend wanted me to send her a message from my blog.

To do that, Blogger Blogspot...made me follow my own blog.

Seems a bit...

what's the word...

I don't know...


to follow your own blog.

But, there's my mug amidst the followers.


Quick, ask your friends to join, so my picture isn't so blatantly obvious. :)

Friday, March 25, 2011

Hate List and Bitter End

Okay, so I finished Hate List last night.

And I cried several times.

Jennifer Brown tackled the tough issue of a school shooting with sensitivity. But really, the book isn't about the incident, it's about what led up to it and what happened afterward.

The main characters are outcasts at their school. Bullied. Rejected. Losers (in their minds, and in the minds of the other kids).

But in reality, as we all know, or should know, or need to know, they were just two kids looking for acceptance, love, life.

What everybody wants.

What everybody deserves.

Unfortunately, the bullying went too far and the main boy character, Nick, snaps.

The girl, Valerie, is left to pick up the pieces of her life. Her family doesn't trust her. Her friends disappear. Nick, her boyfriend is dead and she feels guilty for still loving him.

What happens throughout the story is a poignant tale of forgiveness, acceptance, and above all a lesson in what bullying can do.


Here's the trailer:

Bravo, Ms. Brown!

I encourage each of you to pick up Hate List.

On another note...

Jennifer's second book, Bitter End, is coming out soon, and I won a copy of the ARC (Advanced Reader Copy)! I am super, super excited! In it, she is tackling relationship abuse. Another sensitive topic and again, I say, "Bravo!"

Look for it on shelves soon!

And finally...

No news from the agent on the MS yet.

I'm kicking around a new title while I wait. But, I'm so not good at waiting -- I was the kid who opened the presents under the tree waayyyy before Christmas and learned how to re-wrap really well.

I know patience is a virtue and fruit of the spirit, but, crap, it is so hard!

*big sigh*

I'll find something to do.

I'm sure....

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Shout Outs

This is going to be one of those meandering blog posts, so hold on to your hats...

I think the revisions (at least for this stage) are done. TS Ferguson (editor extraordinaire) did such a great job with his edits and I feel like the book is stronger than ever right now. What I really feel good about is that he seemed to connect with the characters and the story. Gave me hope that maybe, just maybe, this could actually get published.

Yea, TS! Thank you!

I'm just waiting to hear back from him on a couple points and then it's off to the agent. Hopefully she will like it and sign it. Fingers crossed and prayers going up.

Hate List & Bitter End

When I started the editing step, the agent gave me three names of potential editors. TS seemed to be the one from the very beginning, but it was an easy choice after receiving a glowing recommendation by one of his authors, Jennifer Brown.

Last night I started the book that she wrote and TS edited, Hate List. It's about a school shooting, but told by the perspective of the shooter's girlfriend. The story begins five months after the shooting when she returns to school. Fascinating stuff (and well written and edited, I might add).

I stayed up way too late reading last night. Seems to be a pattern for me. :)

Anyway, her next book, Bitter End, comes out in about a month and I just wanted to give a shout out here.

She's giving away an ARC this Friday, and by blogging about it here, I've just entered the contest for it. I would love to win it, but quite honestly, I'm also just really happy for her. And grateful that she emailed me about TS.

Thanks, Jennifer!

If you, my wonderful readers, get a chance, grab Hate List and read it! It will really make you think about another side of high school. And then support Jennifer by grabbing Bitter End when it comes out too!

Okay, that's it for now. Maybe it wasn't so meandering after all. Hope you all have a lovely day.

It's definitely Spring here!

Sunday, March 13, 2011


I've just finished reading (for the second time) Flirting in Spanish by Susan McKinney de Ortega. This soon-to-be-published book is a beautiful and true love story that transcends cultures, age, and economic stations.

At thirty-three, Ortega runs from a life of affluence, fame, and tragedy to find herself in Mexico. She struggles to make ends meet while working odd jobs, and eventually becomes an English teacher at a high school.

There she meets Carlos, an extremely poor nineteen-year-old student, who captures her heart and brings her out of a deep pain that she has hidden for years. Together, they find how love has no boundaries.

I wish every woman had a Carlos. Every woman deserves to have a man like him.

Seriously, I cannot wait until Flirting... is on the shelves in bookstores everywhere (and until I can buy it for my friends).

And to answer your question...Yes, I do have my own "Carlos" aka the love of my life, Mark (to whom I've been married for almost twenty years).


On another note...

The edited version of Pearl should be back in my hands tonight.


I'm so excited, I can barely stand it!

Questions whirl in my head...

What has been changed? Have any characters been axed out? Is it tighter? Polished? Ready to go?

How will I ever get anything done at work today?


Maybe I will have to blog again tomorrow.

UPDATE: Okay, so I started this blog last night, and don't know how to change the date on it. Really the MS will be in my virtual hands tonight, Monday. Blame this all on Daylight Savings Time. :)

Monday, March 7, 2011


These last few weeks have been weird for me as far as writing goes. Well, maybe in other ways too, but that's for another day....

For the first time in two years, I really don't have the freedom to work on Pearl, since I want to see what TS has to say first. He should be done next Monday, and I am super excited about getting the MS back.

It's like Christmas March.

So, instead of working on Pearl, I've been dabbling with the another work in progress. A piece that is shaping up nicely. It's still YA, but not fantasy, and it has lots of interesting characters who are showing their many facets. More on that later.

On another note, the Drama Queen and I took a small roadtrip on Friday. She, of course, sat in the back seat totally immersed in a movie. We hooked her DVD player to the car speakers, so I could listen to the movie too.

I must admit it was kind of a bummer to just listen, especially since she was watching Inkheart. If you haven't seen the movie, it has a great premise: People who are called Silvertongues make stories come alive when they read aloud.

Imagine the possibilities and problems associated with that!

There are several characters that I would love to get to know personally - Jo from Little Women is the first that comes to mind.

And there are several who should never come alive - He Who Must Not Be Named, for instance. However, part of me would just poke him in the nose and tell him to be gone.

And then there is Aslan - who doesn't want to meet Aslan? Besides the White Witch...

My conclusion is that we all have characters we love and hate. And good stories have both. Otherwise the tales become one dimensional.



I'm off to make sure my stories have dimension.

What character would you like to read out of a story and invite to dinner?