Thursday, December 31, 2009

New page

Every once in a while, when life paves over your path, you must learn to drive the new road. This new road has no street signs because I haven't made them yet.
This new road has no obvious markings because I haven't painted them yet.
This new road has no rules, therefore, no limitations.
I don't have to stay in the lines, or on the road as a matter of fact.
I can turn around and change my direction at any point.
I can create a turn, scenic outlook, highway or byway.
I can choose to get lost and choose to get found.

Now, I need to decide how I am going to get down my new road.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Superhero alien abduction midlife crisis MG novel

Well I guess I can't have a 1700 word picture book dealing with complex characters and subplots, either. Here is a blog for reference by Laura Backes.

Interesting though, a new catagory is emerging for ages 10-14 who are not ready for the themes in YA books.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Yipee! I'm the master of the universe!

Last week I entered a writing contest on author, Meschell Foglesong's, blog.
The contest was to create a funny 50 word passage, to use the words gorganzola, crabapple, slipper and indefinable, and have it having to do with cleaning out a refrigerator.

Here is the link to her blog where you can see my award winning announcement!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Words of wisdom

"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind" Dr. Seuss

NESCBWI and the Rogue Red Pen

Recently, I received an e-mail from Nescbwi inviting me to join an online picture book critique group. So, I decided to try it out. Shazaamm, first book, critiqued. Although now I am not sure how much critiquing is acceptable. I tore through it like a teacher with an inspired red pen and e-mailed it to her as an attachment. Having a little red pen guilt I decided to read the other comments posted in the discussion section and gain perspective. OMG. The trend is three paragraphs, each containing an abstract point flanked with comments about how great it is.

My choices

A. RUN, fast, don't tell them where to find me.

B. Be proud that I am not part of the pact and stand strong in my independence.

C. Prepare an apology note saturated with kindness and loving support.

D. Pretend I AM a teacher with a rogue red pen.

For those of you who ask "How bad can it be?"

I answer, "Red, Really Red"

I come from the standpoint that I would want someone to do it for me. I want somebody to be really hard on me. I want the criticism. I want to look at my work with different eyes. I want to be challenged. Yes, it can hurt my feelings. Who is going to win in the end?

I would like to get some feedback about other online etiquette that I should know about.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


Okay, now the mermaids are just plain tourmenting me. I want them to do one thing, but they keep doing another. Maybe the whale will listen.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Query contest!

Here is a great opportunity I just cant say no to. is having a query contest;

"Once I have all entries, I will pick the most compelling query, dissect what makes it so awesome on the site AND award you the fabulous prize:
A critique of the first 30 pages of your manuscript!"

Kidlit Contest


Tuesday, October 13, 2009

A Mirror Image

Mermaid / Mermaid
It looks like the same word, but each is totally different. The first word expresses the fairy tale, Disney-like, happy happy, fall in love type. The second is a pesky, obnoxious, conniving, manipulative yet oblivious type. In a similar spirit of monsters, there are many types of mermaids. Just the word doesn't reflect a common understanding of them.
Throughout the summer I have done a substantial amount of research on them. I have taken my children to the Cahoon Museam, Heritage Museam and Gardens, Shawme Pond, The great wide open Ocean, Cape Cod bay, We have looked online at mermaid figureheads and explored legends. The absolute best part about writing for children is sharing with my children. They are given an opportunity to explore and dig and find and ask questions and answer questions and imagine and uncover and see the world in a totally different light.
Now my challenge is to actually complete one of the few mermaid books I have begun. Which approach is the best, most successful and concise?
Here is a poll question for my followers and other readers.
Include pirates; yes or no

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Was that really a rewrite?

Okay, so I am working on the mermaid book and at my last critique, I was told to separate it or create one novel. Dilligently I created a new file and started to cut and paste the first part. Great, you would think. No, says I. Now a month later I have essentially created the same piece of work as before. I read the more concise version to Jackie and she insists that the pirates MUST have a part in the story. AHHH! Seriously?
"Can't I save the pirates for another book?"
"No", she says "If your going to mention them here, then you need to have them there,"
who made her boss of the book editing, anyway?
"Fine, I'll see whatI can do,"

Jackie is going to formally bring her company, My Two Cents, public anyday.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Thomas Crowne Affair

Alright, I love this movie. The music is amazing.

see the trailer here:

I admire how the Bowler Hat is threaded throughout the film. It is a beautiful example of the seemingly plain as complex.

The most valuable theme of the film is that 'its always been there'. What you are looking for has always been right in front of you, its up to you to take the chance to see it, to find it, to expose it. Sometimes in life you are finally able to see what you have been missing when a pencil gets stuck in the track, disaster follows and you stop to look.

So the Harmony, I am not sure where it would be in this film. You and I both know that they are going to go around in circles for the next fifty years until one of them bends. I think I'll watch Real Housewives of Atlanta, I'm sure they will illustrate harmony

Back to writing, the complexity in this film is exactly where I want to go with my writing. I just have to find a way to get there.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Wish I had brought home the wedding cupcakes

Okay, Back from a whirlwind of a wedding and settling down to the reality of fifteen loads of laundry and two dogs back home. My goal this week is to construct a post that will hit all the notes of love, intrigue, stress, chaos, and back to harmony. Check back later.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

summer inspiration

It has been published in the Washington Post on December the 31st 1995. It's sad to say it, but Watterson retired... But the last strip is full of optimism and let a possibility to restart the cartoon...

I am sad summer is over. I am glad the kids are returning and starting school. I am reminded of the last Calvin and Hobbs comic. It was published a few years ago now but it still follows me through my life.
The script reads;
C: Wow It really snowed last night! Isn't it wonderful?
H: Everything familiar has disappeared! The world looks brand new!
C: A new year, A fresh clean start!
H: It's like having a big white sheet of paper to draw on!
C: A day full of possibilities!
C: It's a magical world, Hobbes o'l buddy...
C: ...Lets go exploring!
They are starting fresh, I am starting fresh, I am happy we have a new beginning

Friday, September 4, 2009

Separting the Twins

I have just been informed that my mermaid book is A. Two or three children's picture books B. A single chapter book.

Prevention is a pound of ...???
How does this happen to you, you ask? Its like conceiving a child. Initially, you know what your am doing to yourself, your family and your independence. Then the news comes. TWINS. Possibly TRIPLETS. AHHHHH! Beware of dangling loose ends that you may feel the need to tie.

I didn't mean to do that! At this point I hardly remember the hot acts that led to conception. Now your telling me they are multipling! more work! more time! more things to clean up! More things to love, develop, mold and play with. Hmmm, maybe this won't be so bad.

I must have missed that 'After school special'

Friday, August 28, 2009

Critique group

I have had the best luck with my critique group. So many times I have heard stories about finding the right fit and trying different ones, but I must have struck it rich. Our group has older people, younger people, married and not, with and without kids, illustrators and those of us challenged by art and enticed by words.

I find the information that they share about the work I am creating the most meaningful and important. My point of view has begun to be defined and I feel that I am writing tighter. I know that their goals are in line with mine and combined we can support our dreams.

Together we are going to launch a website to highlight our accomplishments as we achieve them. More information on this later as I get it.

What I really want to say is I find it crucial that I listen to these people that have a valued interest in me. They see me differently than I see me, differently than my family and friends see me. They see the potential of what I am trying to do and have learned a few things along the way to help me. So thank you, to my group for all your understanding, I look forward to being a cheerleader on your sideline too!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

This is my Pre-publication pre-post, Post

"This is how its supposed to be", Jack Johnson


My book got picked up today! I sent my son down to check the mail box and he came back with the normal selection of bills, solicitations and fliers. Sticking out of the end was a strangish envelope, one that had some weight to it and marked Publishing Company. Paul handed the pile to me saying "Did your book come, mommy? When is that coming anyway?"

I calmly walked up the driveway into the house, my heart pounded with every step while contemplating the changes in my life that are about to occur. Off to the side of the counter top I neatly dropped everything but the strange envelope. Deep breath. Sliding my hand across the glue to try to keep the envelope and its existence in tact I pulled the letter from within out and a flurry of pamphlets describing the company poured out on the countertop. Blah blah blah, what does the letter say?! "Monsters.... love it.... marketing.... call us..... something.... something else...." Fall to the ground with tears.

I am an author.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

On to Mermaids

I love worlds of fantasy.

As a child, I knew in my heart that my baby dolls were real. They were just being really still because if an adult saw them move they would want to put them into a real adopted home.

I know, still to this day, that monsters live under the stairs. I know that when the timing is right that they will reach out and grab my ankles and pull me under. What happens next is a mystery.

I want very much to believe that mermaids existed. I wonder if they are just an extinct species and find it odd that so many sailors say they have seen them. I find it hard to believe that a seasoned sailor would mistake one for a whale, porpuss, or manatee. I wonder if they were hunted like the witches of Salem. I wonder if they did have legs or just flippers and fins. My goal now is to create a modern mermaid tale that appeals to boys and girls.

Some sources of inspiration for this project are;
Ralph Cahoon, Cape Cod folk artist
The Narrow Lands
Long John and the Mermaid
Pirate vocabulary

Saturday, August 8, 2009

when to blow the horn

A few years ago, I went to a bachelorette party for a dear friend of mine in Boston. We found this really great bar with dueling piano men. Oh cool, So, we rocked it out for a while dumped a bunch of money at the bar on juiced down drinks. Collectively we decided to ask a piano man to play a song inline with the stupid but wicked fun game we were playing. So armed with my best intentions I drop the request in the basket ontop of the piano with the game card attached. He looks at me oddly and continues to play. At this moment I realize best intentions are not good enough. He is playing for money. Thats all he cares about. Not the twenty-five women buying drinks at the bar or the general happiness of the audience. He never plays the song but scores $65 to STOP playing the yankees baseball song.
Okay, So whats the point of this you ask?
Did I send out my manuscript with the best intentions and really didn't know I needed to 'tip' the editor, assitant, editor, INTERN? Is there a part of this industry I just don't know? Is the tip supposed to be kickass brownies or high end swag? I know the point of the industry is to produce income, but WHO DO I NEED TO BRIBE?

Friday, July 24, 2009

The sweetest rejection!

I recieved my fifth rejection yesterday. I compare the rejections to a long awaited relationship.

I had another one that said "we love you but we can't date you, right now"
Much better than the 'Nope, I don't know why you called me anyway' or the
'We have a hotter girl on my arm right now, sorry, Better luck next year'

This one was sweet "we like you, but know how wonderful you are and how well suited you will be for somebody else, keep your chin up" Okay, I will, I loved the possiblity of you too, but I understand. Lets go and rock the world!

I know the right publisher is looking at the book. I know they will see the huge potential I have created.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Time in a bottle

I watched the documentry titled 'a year in the life of JK Rowlings'. They captured a series of events happeing over a year including her finishing her last potter book, the release party, aa visit to where it all began and explored her childhood and family. I found it really interesting how she never thought this was her life. She nevr thought her ending would be happy. She is uber successful and uber interesting but finds herself on the verge of tears, alot. I love the grin she had completeing the last book and following it up with a reality check that it is not what the fans want but what the story needs. She is quite grounded in that she cannot please everyone all the time.
How does this all apply to my process, you ask? I wonder what my story will be in ten years. I wonder if this blog, with no followers at this point, will be reviewed. I wonder if my seamingly small life will make the slightest impact on children, worldwide. I wonder if I'll return to my 1428 sqft house and shed tears.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Waiting for the train to come in...

Yup still waiting, In the time I have been browsing other bloggers. The intern spills is probably my favorite. She has told me exactly where my manuscript is right now. This is something no other has been able to do. It is on a desk in a few different publishing houses covered with broken crackers and toenail clippings. I wonder if I sent each publisher nail polish would they remember about thier nail clipping pile and brush them off in to the trash, uncovering my monster book?

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

My Plan

I love my Monster book, This is the first time ever that I really loved something I created, other than my children, I can't help thinking about the monster stereotypes there are and how they paralell people stereotypes. I would like to address some.
A. Don't all monsters have long fingers and nails?
A1. Why do ALL monsters have to have long fingers, monsters come in all shapes and sizes just like people.
B. Don't ALL monsters snore?
B1. I don't think all monsters have nasal problems, in fact do all monsters have to have a nose.
C. Don't All monsters live under beds?
C1. No, Some Monsters like to sleep in closets, some behind curtains, some in dirty sneakers. Monsters, like people sleep where they are most comfortable
D. Don't all monsters scare children?
D1. Some may scare children but the primary reason is their lack of understanding on what the monster motivations are. Maybe the monster is just trying to get thier attention and is unable to communicate effectivly.

lets just say, like all people, all monsters are not created the same. the havee quirks and weirdness and love and personalities and needs.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

No news, is good news?

Okay its been a few weeks, my totals remain the same. 2 responses, 2 rejections. Not too bad. My imagination is now running my reality.
The insecure ME lives in a world where the publishing house is going to include it in a book called What Not To Submitt, like the show. Clinton Kelly is going to hold my book far from himself, between his index finger and thumb and say, "Seriously! You can do better, we need to explore other options here. The extent of your creativity must not end with THIS!" The Stacy London jumps in and says, "torn souls of little boys is not flattering, You must choose characters that better empasize your waist," I wake from my day dream, in a cold sweat, wondering if the book is too-- Fill in the blank----
The confident ME lives in a world where I am just waiting for the contract to come in the mail and how am I going to handle the bidding war. Its more like the Bachelorette, The Authorette. "So many choices, I just don't know which one I'll choose. Oh, I'll date this one and that one, They are only worthy of a group date until proven otherwise! I really can't wait to get to know this one! This one is just not right for me, Give me back my rose!" I then wake to realize My contract still hasn't arrived and limbo is better than I thought.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

the mailbox

I have wondered over the past week, in New age philosophy, if you want something to come does it just continue to want to come or do you need to project that it has already arrived?
I like 'The Secret' It offers a level of unconditional, unwavering hope. or in SECRET terms consistancy and hope, nothing un- about it.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Wedding bells~

My cousin announced she is getting married in 100 days. I am blessed to be the matron of honor! I get to help her plan everything and prepare for her wedding day. I can't help but think about the childrens books that are based on relationships. 'the missing piece meets the big o' is possibly my favorite. There are so many books dealing with ending relationships, how many really deal with building them? Im going to investigate.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Okay, round two

Rejection still sucks. I know this to be true; It only takes one yes, The right publisher is looking at it, It wouldn't have been the right professional arrangement, I would rather have an editor whom loves my work rather than think it is just 'okay', The right editor will think the world of my monsters.
I feel like Im dating again. This one yes, maybe, Ummm, NO! Maybe I should write my 'list' for dating in the publishing world.
Dark hair, blue eyes, exquisite taste for monsters. This could really work!

Monday, June 15, 2009


I would like to know why the USPS doesn't deliver on Sundays. Everything else is open. When I was little grocery stores were closed. You may find the random gas station open after church but before noon. Now, yesterday, We can buy wine on sunday and cant understand why a store wouldn't be open. Why doesn't the mail come? Don't they know I am waiting on important life altering mail? I still get my e-mail, I still get phone calls from telemarketers, I can even do banking in some stores and online. I think we pay too much for a stamp to not have delivery on Sunday.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Blah blah letters

I knew submitting to publishing houses would be difficult, emotionally. Why do they have to send the same rejection letter to everybody? Dear Author/ Illustrator, after careful consideration... Best of luck... Can't they at least have a circle around (author) or a check mark next to it? Why can't they make it look like they actually took careful consideration by putting a mark on the corner of each page OR a small note saying 'we like', 'WHY ON EARTH WOULD YOU DO THAT!'
It would be even funnier if they put the notes in to texting form for example LOL or WTF. This way they could save on ink.
I guess something is better than nothing. I did hear a story about a submission that came back unopened marked in red marker 'Not interested'

Thursday, June 11, 2009


I have always had an attraction to monsters, really the childish act of imagining. The ideas and characters and thier experiences facinate me. I never had an imaginary friend. Looking back I wish I did. I was never alone, but somehow felt empty. If I had an imaginary friend as an adult, I would be sure that he/she/it cleaned the house more often and did the laundry. Somebody needs to do the chores I dont. My children have vivid imaginations. My daughter sold her 'bad puppy' imaginary friend at a yard sale for one dollar. Unfortunatley, 'bad puppy' came back. He walked right down the hill and up the driveway much to our dismay. 'bad puppy' was just that, anything bad that happened like flowers being stepped on or apples being left on the coffee table were his fault. He was famous for making lots of noise at bed time, banging the wall and tossing toys on the floor. 'Bad puppy' had a counter part, however, 'good kitty' was a source of kindness and play. she did everything good, wonder and kind like comming up with the idea to pick dandelions for me or making jackies bed. These creatures, friends, people, furry things, birds or anything else are amazing companions to children. they encourage a creative mind and alternative world. I love monsters!


Okay there are 12 submissions
04 responses
04 rejections
0 acceptance

I only need one YES!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

My virginity

This is my first blog, ever. My blogging virginity now gone forever! My goals of this are to reach out to fellow writers, published or almost. I plan on having a very positive tone with hope, promise, things learned and good energy. Today, I learned that a mermaid in a realistic story cannot speak. For my commonsense, She just can't. She may use body and fin language but not speak. Is there a legend of mermen? How else would they reproduce?