December 31, 2010

2011. Fear Not.

So many bloggers are posting lists to say goodbye to 2010. I knew I wanted to do something to celebrate and mark the new year, and I found a list I really liked. I borrowed it from Michael Hyatt.

2011. Fear not.

  1. If the last year were a movie of your life, what would the genre be? Drama, romance, adventure, comedy, tragedy, or a combination?
    • A comedic drama. Too many weird, unbelievable things happened alongside the really cool things. We were struggling and then laughing. I'm grateful for the laughter. It was like M.A.S.H.
  2. What were the two or three major themes that kept recurring? These can be single words or phrases.
    • Discovering potential. This seemed to touch each one of our family members this year.
    • Time, the spending and passing of it.
    • Overcoming lost innocence. That sounds a little mellow-dramatic, but where I used to think most people tried to see the best of everyone, I now know differently. I'm still going to try seeing the best. I'll just be more wary.
  3. What did you accomplish this past year that you are the most proud of? These can be in any area of your life—spiritual, relational, vocational, physical, etc. Be as specific as possible.
    • My second book was accepted by Covenant Communications. Woohoo!
    • I drove to Provo, UT for a writers conference and navigated around all by myself.
    • I submitted one more book and have another just about ready to go.
    • My kids all seem to be in a pretty good place. Praying we continue in that somewhat steady course.
  4. What disappointments or regrets did you experience this past year?
    • I had to turn down attending the Storymakers writing conference AND presenting at the Whitney Awards Gala. But it was for a really great reason!
    • The release date on my first novel was pushed back, possibly to 2012. That wasn't very fun.
  5. What was missing from last year as you look back? Look at each major area of your life. Don’t focus now on having to do anything about it.
    • More organization in my daily routine. Writing, homemaking, family, personal study.
    • More time spent with my youngest, teaching and developing her sense of self.
    • Date night with my husband. It's just not going to happen regularly while he is both school principal AND our ward bishop.
    • NEW writing! It was all revision and editing.
  6. What were the major life-lessons you learned this past year? Boil this down to a few short, pithy statements.
    • Fear not. Isaiah 41:10, 13
    • "The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand, nor the kindly smile, nor the joy of companionship; it is the spiritual inspiration that comes to one when he discovers that someone else believes in him and is willing to trust him." -Ralph Waldo Emerson
    • Dare to dream. Then work.
As I sorted through my thoughts in answering these questions, I came to the conclusion that although 2010 was a trying year, it was also one of tremendous blessings and growth. It is done. I did my best. And honestly, I can't wait to see what this next year will bring. Welcome with open arms, 2011.

What did 2010 teach you?

December 30, 2010

Reading Again. You? Thursday Authorial

After so much editing, activities, and the holidays, it has been wonderful to snuggle into the sofa and READ. I've come across a few gems and thought I'd give them a shout out. I'm not done with my "to read" pile at all, and that is just fine with me. I find as I read, the desire to write awakens and develops like yeast in warm sugar water.

Yes, I know it's a bacterial process. I've been baking a lot. The end product is delicious.

Now, for the reviews:

Fantasy, All ages.
The Thorn is a beautiful fantasy story of hope, faith, and miracles set in an earth-like world with two suns and three moons, and an ancient messianic prophesy. The characters drew me in and I wanted to know more. There were a few times when I wished the story to move along and that Jonathan had a bit more to do, but I appreciated Fraley's world-building and practiced my patience. I loved Pekah. These are characters and a land worth cheering for.

Fairytale, YA
This was a delightful read! Everything you could want in an original fairy tale. Adventure, magic, romance, a really quirky bad guy. Well done, Cheri Chesley!

Fantasy Adventure Romance, YA
I really enjoyed the unfolding of this story and the depth of the characters. The science drew me in and I wanted to know more about the mechanics of things and how they affected the main characters. I laughed when I found myself relieved there were no vampires involved. The romance was well written, enough tension and suspense to keep me turning pages and hoping. I can't wait to read The Golden Spiral!

December 20, 2010

100 Years In a Moment

My fifteen year old son made this video for his Lyrical Analysis project in his English class. He was allowed to use 30 seconds of the music video, within copyright laws. You can also watch it here with full-screen capabilities. It may be blocked if you are in about 50 other countries.

I was totally blown away. I hope you are, too. Enjoy.

100 Years, by Five For Fighting. You may purchase music here.

December 7, 2010

Just Offstage

After revisions, Grace & Chocolate is out to readers. Again. I've completed the author forms required for submission to my publisher. So, after feedback and the necessary improvements (one hopes they are improvements), I will submit G&C to my editor and then . . . wait. Again.
It is strange to have two books waiting in the wings, approved, anticipating makeup and costume. They know their lines and have the potential to deliver their parts with emotion, timing, and humor.
But it's not their turn yet, and here I send another player in for auditions before the others have been proven. They keep glancing back at me as they watch the performance of other stories, and I have to put my hands up and settle them. Just wait, I whisper. Just wait.

December 2, 2010

Popping In

 Happy Holidays! I can't believe they're here already.

Update: The reading went pretty well and though my voice lowered a bit, I breathed and brought it back up again. It felt so good to sit back down! So many ladies were enthusiastic afterward and it was reassuring. I won't be so scared next time. What a pansy.

I know the posts have been a bit sparse lately, and I think it may continue to be that way until after the 15th, when my to-do list will be drastically reduced. But I did notice that I am nearing 100 FOLLOWERS! So I am thinking some sort of celebration is in order. But I'll have to get back to you. I have tunics to sew and a baby shower to go to.

Oh! Congratulations to all of you who met your NANOWRIMO goals, and to those of you who even made them in the first place! I'm making it a goal to join in next year. You guys sounded like you were having too much fun.
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