Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Dog or Dog?

When I left for my Authorpalooza book signing last night, my teen was babysitting a neighbor's kids, when I returned she was babysitting a neighbor's potential puppy (if the dad says yes).

It cracks me up that we call both of these animals dogs:

The Yorkie pup who weighs only ounces loves my 120 pound Bernese Mountain Dog, Jack. And would love to snuggle up with him. Jack isn't so sure.

And when I asked him to babysit for me while I write, he politely refused.

Monday, December 14, 2009


Enter to win the last bag of 2009 Debutante treats (click below):

Find Out What's In The Bag And Win It Today

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


Here's what I've been doing while letting my manuscript rest, aside from, you know, taking a dorky picture of the story tucked into bed:

10. I cleaned my desk & found a whole bunch of things I should've done--oh, about six weeks ago.

9. I cleared away dangerous towers of clutter hovering on various surfaces around the house. I found more stuff I should've done, oh, about six weeks ago. I also found a book I've been wanting to read, but had lost amidst the clutter.

8. I made celebratory fudge. Twice. The first batch didn't turn out quite as creamy as it could have so I made another one the next day. That batch turned out so well that I really should make another...

7. I got back into my exercise routine. A necessary part of the fudge-for-breakfast diet.

6. I did some holiday shopping in a real mall, instead of going online to buy gifts every time I hit a tricky spot in the middle of chapter twenty-three. I realized that I prefer shopping online.

5. I finally wrote up comments for a manuscript from a promising new writer I met during a conference critique. I felt so guilty about making her wait for, oh, about six weeks.

4. I'm reading like crazy--novels, nonfiction, all kinds of stuff!

3. I'm finally cleaning my house--because I'm hosting the 4th grade book club. That's pretty much what it takes: company. And my 4th grader will be disappointed if I don't spread a bit more holiday cheer around the house before her friends arrive. So, I'll be decorating.

2. I tried to be really supportive about my mother's very color-coordinated holiday decorating. She's sorely disappointed and possibly perplexed about the fact that I don't care about that kind of thing. I just want her to read my manuscript. But I've promised myself not to nag her until this weekend. And her house does look great.

1. I've been working on a synopsis for the next story I want to write. For me, it's always about the next story.

What I haven't done: folded the laundry. I'm hoping that this will finally be the week that my family decides that the Great Matching Sock Hunt is actually a fun, challenging way to begin the day.

I plan to start revising tomorrow... because my manuscript hogs the covers!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Work-In-Progress: Finished!!!

Weighing in at 245 pages, 68,399 words--a completed YA novel manuscript. Yay!!! You can see this week's vlog at (if you happen to be reading this elsewhere):

Now I'm itching to revise.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

In My Mailbox (12)

The most exciting thing I got in my mailbox: my Swoon At Your Own Risk ARCS! And I'm sending them on tour.

If you're a blogger/reviewer, you can sign up to read a copy at 1 ARC Tours.

Here are the other books I received in the mail (I also read them this week):

Haven by Beverly Patt
A story about an unlikely friendship between a girl in a group home and a boy desperate for an ATV.

Why I'm excited:
Our last Class of 2k9 book has hit the shelves! I loved the authentic boy voice in this novel & I learned a lot about how the foster care system used to work (very sad!).

Shadow by Jenny Moss
A girl assigned to "shadow" her queen to protect her, finds herself on quite a journey in this story full of romance, mystery, and palace intrigue.

Why I'm excited:
I have to admit that I don't read many princess books, so I reluctantly picked this one up, having really enjoyed Jenny's first novel Winnie's War. And I just got swept away! I loved all the romance and the twists and turns in the plot.

Much thanks to The Story Siren and Alea The Pop Culture Junkie for the this weekly feature.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Guest Nose Jon Skovron

I'm married to an indie music-lover & last summer my daughter spent her babysitting money on an electric guitar, so it's my pleasure to welcome Jon Skovron, debut author of Struts & Frets this week. I can't wait to read this book!

Here's what Jon says about how appearances factor into his story:

One of the main characters in the story is a guy named Joe who puts forth that extra special effort to let you know that he is super bad ass. Piercings, tattoos, chains, spikes, steel-toed boots. He wants it make it absolutely clear that he is HARD CORE!

Another character is Rick. He is dead set on disproving every fashion stereotype about gay men. He is the shabbiest, scruffiest, and sometimes the smelliest dude in his group of friends.

A third character, Jen5, enjoys creating a sense of what she thinks of as label dissonance. She takes aspects of different looks or labels, like "skater chick" or "art chick", or "geek chick", and mashes them all together.

Teens experiment with identity so much and clothing is a huge part of that. It isn't shallow. What you wear really does change how you behave. Ask any actor.

About Struts & Frets
More than anything, Sammy wants to play guitar in a famous indie rock band. The problem is that his front man is a jerk who can't sing, his bassist is a burn-out who can't remember the songs, and his drummer is just out to lunch. But Sammy needs this band because it's the only good thing he's got going. His father skipped out before he was born, his mother is an overworked therapist with a drinking problem, his grandfather is slowly losing his mind to Alzheimer's, and the girl of his dreams is dating his jerk lead singer.

Now that jerk lead singer has entered them in a Battle of the Bands contest to win free studio time and guaranteed radio play. Sammy has two weeks to get them to sound like a real band, or face public humiliation in front of the entire local indie music scene. Buy the book on Amazon or Indiebound.

About Jon Skovron
Jon Skovron is an insatiable music geek who can play eight instruments, but none of them well. He was born in Columbus, Ohio, has lived all over the US, and now resides with his wife and two sons in Washington, DC. His short stories and reviews have appeared in publications like Jim Baen's Universe and Internet Review of Science Fiction. Struts and Frets is his first novel. To read more about Jon:

Wednesday, December 2, 2009