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Fiction Friday!

  • August 27, 2010

I know, I missed last Friday. It’s been crazy around here. The offspring have been busy guilting me into taking them swimming and to the mall and out for fancy lunches and to the place where we painted our own pottery and the zoo and the bookstore and a whole bunch of other places because, “Mom, school starts soon and we haven’t done ANYTHING ALL SUMMER! Which, hello? I totally beg to differ because all I’ve done this summer is drive them all over town bleeding money and don’t forget the trip to Disney World that jump started their summer vacation.

Ungrateful little mess-makers.

Seriously, the idea of hiring a nanny next summer and paying her to drive them all over town while I work has crossed my mind.

But! School started two days ago and I.Am.In.Heaven. You know I love the offspring with all my heart but my tolerance for their knock-down-drag-out fighting and whining and yelling is at an all-time low and frankly I’m surprised I didn’t start swilling wine as soon as the school bus pulled away from the curb on Wednesday.

I didn’t, yanno, in case you were nodding your head and thinking, “Yeah, that totally sounds like something Tracey might do.”

I wrote instead. Approximately 2,500 words.

Frankly, I had been a little worried about my WIP. I found it hard to write the last couple weeks of summer vacation. I was tired of snatching two minutes of writing time here, or fifteen minutes there and having my train of thought constantly interrupted. I started to question everything about my novel because I was so used to it pinging around in my head constantly that when it wasn’t, I worried I’d lost my focus and might not have what it takes to finish and I’ve got way too much invested in it to quit now.

Luckily, the one thing I needed to pick up steam again turned out to be SILENCE and I’m thankful for my (now) quiet house. And I’m back in the groove so my head is all crowded again but that’s fine with me.

I am still working steadily toward the completion of the second draft. I have about 10-15k words left to write (give or take) and I’ll be done with it. Then the real fun starts – revision. I’m actually looking forward to this step because I’ll have the major creation of drafts 1 and 2 behind me and will move on to the editing and the tweaking and the polishing. Then my readers will get a copy and then I can start final edits.

I’m in a good place. The three days I’ve had to write this week have done so much for my confidence and reminded me why I started this project in the first place.

Because I just love to write.

Have a great weekend everyone!!


Fiction Friday

  • August 13, 2010

Happy Friday the thirteenth everyone!

Hey, you know what sucks?


Yeah, it’s really hard and I’ve hit a rough patch. You know how I was all “Oh, I’m just gonna write to the end of the first draft and then start the second?”

Yeah, well, there was a lot of writing left to do. There’s a big difference between knowing what’s going to happen and actually writing it.

As I mentioned last week, I’ve been getting up at the ungodly hour of 6:00 AM to write before the offspring saunter into the family room demanding that I turn on SpongeBob. The problem is that I’m in such a groove when they come down that I wish I didn’t have to stop. And sometimes I don’t. I’m amazed at how much writing I can do with so much background noise.

I have no intention of stopping as I’m certain I will reach my goal of finishing a novel and querying agents. I’m just not sure of my timelines anymore. And that’s okay because there’s nothing worse than an undercooked novel.

But it’s kicking my ass right now. I won’t lie.

I think the best remedy is a two-day hiatus from writing, a big glass (or two) of Sauvignon Blanc, and reading a novel.

I just started Girl with The Dragon Tattoo. Something better happen soon.

Just sayin’.

Also, Suzanne Collins’ Mockingjay comes out August 24th and the offspring go back to school August 25th. Don’t call me that day. Don’t text me, or tweet me, or e-mail me. Don’t ring my doorbell. I’ll be on my patio reading to see who Katniss chooses.

*crossing fingers* Please be Gale!

Have a great weekend everyone!!


Fiction Friday

  • August 6, 2010

Happy Friday peeps!

I don’t have a lot to report on from the fiction front other than to say I’m still plugging away on my second draft. I’ve been waking up around 6 AM most days to get in a few hours of writing before the offspring come downstairs and turn on SpongeBob SquarePants and as long as I don’t get lured away by the shiny Internet, I can usually meet whatever word count goal I’ve set.

I read something on Absolute Write that really resonated with me this week. Someone posted about not putting too much stock in critiques of your work done by other fiction writers. Writers all have a personal style and a favorite genre and if your chapter or novel doesn’t match up well with either of those things, the critique can leave you feeling dejected and suddenly doubting any word you’ve ever written. The post pointed out that it’s often readers that give the best critiques because they are able to see the story and not get hung up on technique. That’s not to say that writers don’t give great crits, it’s simply a reminder to have a mix of both.

My sister Trish is the only one who has read anything from my novel. I chose her because she has no tact whatsoever will be honest with me and not pull any punches. It was her enthusiasm about my first chapters and my premise that helped motivate me to continue writing and I was very appreciative of her feedback. Trish will probably always be my first reader. Cowboy Dave also fields his share of questions regarding my male main character and whatever he can’t answer, my pal Google does. If you pulled up my search history right now you’d be all, seriously, wtf?

Hopefully I’ll have something for Trish and my other readers to read by the end of September but if it takes longer than that, well, that’s okay. If there’s one thing I know it’s not to rush the process.

That’s all I’ve got today – Have a great weekend everyone!

Hey guess what? Someone asked me to be a guest blogger again!

  • August 5, 2010

Hey everyone,

My friend Penne over at Little Girl Big Glasses is on vacation this week and I’m not. She asked me if I would guest blog in her absence and I said, “Sure!”

I recycled my I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant Post because I can hardly get new posts written for my own blog and Penne said I could.

Penne is my best friend that I’ve never met but that’s only because we are limited by geographical constraints. She is a fabulous writer and she’s hilarious (she doesn’t rely on f-bombs to be funny like I do.) She has also graciously offered to be one of my beta readers when my book is done.

So please head over to Penne’s blog and check her out and start following her so you don’t miss any of her awesome posts.

And thanks again to Penne, my sista from anotha mista!


Because who doesn’t like posts about twins and mud?

  • August 3, 2010

About a month ago, my twin sister Trish called me up all excited because she won tickets to the Big Country Bash and wanted me to go with her. It was an all day thing and she told me we’d have a blast, listening to country music and drinking beer in the sun.

“But I haven’t listened to country music since Garth Brooks was popular,” I told her. “Like, since 1991.”

“Oh that doesn’t matter,” Trish said. “Besides, Trailer Choir is going to be there. You like Trailer Choir, right?”

“No, Trish, I’ve never heard of them, because I haven’t listened to country music since 1991.”

She then proceeded to ask me if I knew forty-two more country songs, by bands that would be at the Big Country Bash. I answered no, no, no, still no, quit asking me, what part of this are you not getting, no, no, that sounds like a stupid song, no, no, wtf, no, no, Jesus, no, seriously that title is dumb, no, still no, I’ll take no for $600 Alex, no, shut up, no, holy hell, never heard of it, etc…..

But, as I think I’ve already mentioned, they were serving beer so on the day of the Big Country Bash, Dave dropped me off at the concert grounds at noon to meet Trish.

I wore the super-cool cowboy hat I bought at Target. Probably the real country fans don’t buy their ten-gallon hats at Target but whatever, mine was cute and cheap.

It had rained in Des Moines the night before the Big Country Bash. A lot. I mean like flash flood watches and stuff. Which I ignore, much like tornado warnings.

Dave warned me it would be muddy but Trish and I didn’t realize how muddy until we got to the entrance of the Big Country Bash, henceforth known as the Big Country Mud Bash.

We had to cross a moat made of mud that encircled the grounds. Seriously. Either you go through the mud, or you aren’t getting in.

Now I’m pretty sure that one of us is gonna land ass-first in the mud moat and I’m really hoping it’s Trish and not me. She’s got a bad leg and her back bothers her so my money’s on her and once we start making our way across the mud moat it’s every twin for herself. I scaled a particularly perilous section and looked over my shoulder at Trish and damn if she’s not holding her own. Have I mentioned we’re also carrying our chairs and beach bags and we’re wearing flip flops?

We made our way closer to the person taking tickets. Not only have I not fallen, My feet aren’t even dirty. Then I step in a squishy puddle which completely covers THREE of my toes in mud.

I was horrified, partly because sometimes I act like a total princess and partly because, hello? mud.covered.three.toes. I haven’t even gotten in the joint and I’m a mess.

I had two bottles of water in my bag. I snuck them in so that I wouldn’t get too hammered dehydrated but I decided to pour one of them all over my foot so it would be clean again. Is genius plan.

Until we get past the ticket taker dude. Then things really got muddy. Trish and I were trying to figure out the whole ID/Wristband/Beer thing and with each step, I struggled to pull my flip-flop clad foot out of the mud. Also, with each step, those flip-flops are spraying the back of my shirt with mud. A helpful man tapped me on my shoulder, pointed at my shoes, and said, “You’re gonna wanna take those off.”

So now I’m carrying my chair, my bag, and my mud-covered shoes. We still haven’t figured out the whole ID/Wristband/Beer thing and I’m blaming Trish and Garth Brooks and the Grand ‘Ole Opry for getting me into this fiasco.

We persevered though, and finally sat down in our chairs with a couple beers.

The guy behind us slept through half of the Big Country Mud Bash.

I threw my shoes away when I got home.

I especially like the juxtaposition of my Real Housewife of Dallas County fake fingernails with muddy hands.

Trish has muddy hands too but her fingernails are real (she would want me to tell you that).

I was doing okay until I had to stand in line to get us something to eat. I have no words to describe this other than ewwwwwwww. Kinda makes those three mud-covered toes not seem so bad.

It was shortly after this picture was taken that I had to visit the port-a-potty for the first time. The floor was so slick with mud I was convinced I would slip, my foot would hit the door while my pants were around my ankles, the door would fly open, and I’d give everyone at the Big Country Mud Bash the ultimate money shot. Didn’t happen though!

Trish is nice to everyone.

It’s going to rain any minute.

The sky cleared, the sun came out, and Trish made me sit in a garbage bag in her car on the way home.

We’re totally going next year.

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