1:22 PM

Books Read in 2010 - December

So the year comes to a close and I've  documented and counted everything up. I'm 10 off from my goal, but 190 books read in a year is still pretty impressive, no?  March was my busiest month with 37 books read while October was the least busy with only 6.  I think it'll  keep it up next year as well, just to keep track of what I read. Maybe I'll rate them as well so if anyone follows this they can decide if they'd like to read them as well.

Here goes with December's list:



It’s Not About the Accent – Caridad Ferrer
When Stars Go Blue: A novel – Caridad Ferrer
Rosemary and Rue – Seanan McGuire (re-read)
A Local Habitation – Seanan McGuire
An Artificial Night – Seanan McGuire
Nevermore – Kelly Creagh
Reaper – Rachel Vincent
Switched – Amanda Hocking (re-read)
Torn – Amanda hocking
Falling from Grace – S.L. Naeole
Bird Song – S.L. Naeole
Black Halo – S.L. Naeole
My Christmas Wish – Ember Case
Lonestar Sanctuary – Colleen Coble
Hush Money – Susan Bischoff
Glimpse – Stacy Wallace Benefiel
Glimmer – Stacy Wallace Benefiel

3:34 PM

Books Read in 2010 - November

Even with Nanowrimo going on, I couldn't stop reading. Here's this month's list! 173 for the year. Can I make it to 200 before year's end!?


Ash – Malindo Lo
The Scorch Trials – James Dashner
Fallen – Lauren Kate (re-read)
Torment  - Lauren Kate
Hush Hush – Becca Fitzpatrick (re-read)
Crescendo – Becca Fitzpatrick
Spy Glass – Maria V. Snyder
Enemies and Playmates – Darcia Helle
Pack Challenge: Magnus Pack – Shelly Laurenston
Raised by Wolves – Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Bleeding Violet – Dia Reeves
Danger in the Shadows – Dee Henderson

2:11 PM

Where oh where can the beta readers be?

Now that I've finally finished a round of editing on novel number one. I need to get my hands on a person willing to be a beta reader.  I've had a couple of friends read it over for me, but we all know that friends tend to be nice and not 100% honest with their opinions in such matters.

I have tried to find a good crit group or someone I could swap beta reading duties with, but all prospects seem to fizzle out. I understand people are busy and most don't read as quickly as I do, but everyone seems to disappear on me. Is it my writing? Is it so bad that they figure it's easier to ignore me than to tell me the truth? I just don't know.

Finding a good beta reader or crit partner for that matter, is proving to be just as hard as finding a decent man. Someone who's honest and dedicated. Someone who enjoys some of the same things  I do and who has a passion for those things. Someone who will give me the time and attention needed for it to be a good partnership.  I'm more than willing to reciprocate!

*Sigh*

Who would have thought the two things would have so much in common?  Can anyone point me in the right direction to find what I need? If not the beta reader/crit partner, than perhaps a good man? I'd be eternally grateful either way!

6:25 PM

Nanowrimo 2010 - 1st week

I am slightly behind in the word count, but I hope to make it up this weekend!  Even though it's posted on my Nano profile, I figured I'd post my synopsis and prologue here for all to see (protected by creative copyright, yadda yadda don't steal my stuff :P )

Enjoy and feel free, as always, to post comments good and bad!



~~~~~~~~~

Power of the Stars

Ten would arrive
Young and spry
Power inherited by their stars
Will take them near and far
Betrayed by one
Yet sacrifice none
Forever their lives will change
Blood and tears will soak the land
When victory is at hand
Should they choose wrong
History will make a song
Of the day the Tenma died


    It was supposed to be a day escaping the summer heat; a day for two councilors and eight young campers to explore the caves of Jenny Jump State Park. No one expected the field trip to land them in the strange land of Tenma, where their arrival had been prophesied. Not only were they expected, but they learn that they possess powers based on their zodiac sign; powers that will be used to save or break the land.

PROLOGUE

     There was a hole in the sky. Not a literal hole, but a gaping stretch of the darkest black where no star shone. A head turned reluctantly, to look around. There were several other patches of inky blackness void of starlight. The sigh that escaped wizened lips was long and pregnant with unspoken knowledge. A sharp piercing whistle echoed in the silent night, followed by the soft sound of flapping wings. A small owl landed on an outstretched arm, head cocked and eyes bright. It preened itself while a small tube was attached to its leg. The bird gave an indignant hoot as the arm swiftly moved up to give the owl the sign to be on its way. Taking to the air, it crossed the dark sky heading east toward the sleeping city.
    “Master?” The old man sighed again when the younger voice questioned him.
    “What is it boy?”
    “I…I had a dream,” the boy said. “A lion fell from the sky. Followed by a ram and an archer and a scorpion. The sun went black and they began to fight. What does it mean?” A wrinkled hand rested heavily on the younger male’s shoulder. It squeezed him hard enough that there would surely be a bruise in the morning, but the boy didn’t flinch or whimper.
     “It means that they’re coming,” said the man, his voice queer with sadness.
     “Who’s coming?”
     “The children of the prophesy. The ones with the power to break or save the land. The children with the power of the stars.”

6:20 PM

Characters & Nano beginnings

Nano started at midnight and I'm slightly ahead of the game at the moment! In case you were wondering (if anyone actually ever reads this), I did get names for everyone. Some suggested by friends (THANKS!) and some I came up with on my own.

DISCLAIMER: If you share a name with one of my characters, please do not think I based them on your personality or how you think I see you. This is NOT the case! They are similar in name only.  Thank you.

5:00 PM

Books Read in 2010 - October

Slow reading month but that's because I finally finished editing one of my novels, made two costumes and a bunch of jewelry. Next month will probably be slow as well due to Nano, but that's OK! I did a count and I'm up to 161 books read this year! Maybe I can still make it to 200 by year end! We shall see.


A Clash of Kings – George R.R. Martin
A Storm of Swords – George R.R. Martin
Alpha – Rachel Vincent
Beautiful Darkness – Kimi Garcia & Margaret Stohl
The Lost Hero – Rick Riordan
Behemoth – Scott Westerfeld

6:20 PM

Help me name them!

November 1st is fast approaching! I have my Nano idea vaguely down. I'm going a whole new direction. After some thinking, I decided I wasn't ready to work on last year's sequel. I don't want to force that so I was relieved when another idea came to me on the verge of dreamland the other night.

This year I'll be writing a YA (possible MG depending on how...kid friendly I can keep it) novel I'm tentatively calling The Power of the Stars.

Short Nano synopsis: 


Eight campers and two councilors get lost while exploring caves at Jenny Jump National park.  They find themselves in a land called Tenma, where it's been prophesied that they have powers based on their zodiac signs and those powers will be used to save or break the land.


Ten characters are a lot, but I think I'm going to break it up by chapters, so we can get everyone's point of view. I have which signs/powers I'm going to use and what sex I want the characters to be but I only have three names picked out.  That's where you guys come in. While I can certainly ponder it some more and come up with names I like, I think it would be more fun to get input from others.  Then if it ever gets published you can say "HEY! I named that character!"  If your friends are in disbelief, you can point them to this blog.

Here's the information on the characters, including the three I have already named. Wren and Noah are the councilors so they will be 16 and 17 years old. The others will range in age from 9 or 10 to 14 or 15:


Name Sign Power Sex
Kevin Aries climb anything m

Taurus super human strength f
Wren Leo master of cats (fire sign sun ) f

Gemini twin mind reading m

Gemini twin mind reading f
Noah Virgo temp. hypnosis based on beauty/voice m

Sagittarius archer f

Aquarius water manipulation m

Pisces breath underwater f

Scorpio master with whip/poisons m


You can leave suggestions here in comments or on FB or Twitter. Please just state the sign and the name so I know what name goes with who. I'll post final selections here before the 1st. Thanks! I'm excited to see what you guys come up with!

11:05 AM

Nanowrimo 2010



So...It's almost November 1st. Almost time for that frantic 30 day writing expedition. I'm excited for it, yet I have no clue what I'm writing about this year! I was thinking perhaps to start the Red Dust sequel, but I'm not sure I'm feeling it yet. I'm hoping after a re-read of book 1, I'll be pumped to continue the story. I do miss my characters and want to see what's been going on with them.

Luckily, I've got some time off at the end of this month, so I'm planning to use that time to prepare and go into Nano with my head in a good place and a story on the tip of my tongue!

It looks like there will be a good group for write-ins this year, which always helps me. I'm hoping to find some good people for a crit group after Nano is over as well. We'll have to see if we mesh well.

Stay tuned for Nano updates!


2:07 PM

Books Read in 2010 - September

*Sigh* I'm such a slacker. I know, but better late than never? I have a good excuse! I've been editing editing editing! I'm almost done with the first pass at The Other Side. I'll make another post on that soon. Here's the book list for September!

Clockwork Angel
– Cassandra Clare
The Iron King – Julie Kagawa (re-read)
The Iron Daughter – Julie Kagawa
Return to Paradise – Simone Elkeles
Paranormalcy – Kiersten White
Winter Passage – Julie Kagawa
My Blood Approves – Amanda Hocking
Fate – Amanda Hocking
Flutter – Amanda Hocking
Wisdom – Amanda Hocking
Switched – Amanda Hockign
The DUFF – Kody Keplinger
Immortal – Gillian Shields
A Game of Thrones – George R.R. Martin

10:29 PM

Get to work!

I finally sucked it up and sat down to do some editing. Well, more like I'm sick and stuck in bed and bored out of my gourd so I might as well do something to feel accomplished today. Brushing my teeth just doesn't cut it.

I decided to revisit my first novel. I finished the rough draft around three years ago. The poor thing has just been sitting around collecting dust, wondering why I don't love it. It's not true novel! I *DO* love you! You are my first child. I love your story and I love your characters. I'm just lazy and those other pesky ideas in my head were fighting to get out. I didn't mean for you to feel abandoned and lonely. I promise to make it up to you!

I think I got a good start by editing the first chapter today. It's been a while since I read the story so it's nice to come back to it. I admit I am cringing at some of things I wrote, but that's the point of editing right? To fix that stuff.

Here's to hoping I can keep the momentum up.

2:47 PM

Editing. HELP!

So I've decided it's about time I stopped working on the new and started editing the old so I can push forward and hopefully shop it around. The problem? I DON'T KNOW WHERE TO START!

Do I take it page by page? Chapter by chapter? Do I make an outline? A timeline? A crime scene do not cross line? Do I plaster my walls with post its of varying color accompanied by a complicated key? I just don't know. 200+ pages is overwhelming. Help!!

What works for you? Got any tricks of the trade? Any suggestions? Can you point me towards a website that could help? Want to tell me just to shut up and figure it out on my own?* Any and all words are encouraged and welcomed!




*Do this if you must, but please remember my fragile psyche

2:34 PM

Books Read in 2010 - August

The list is short this month (work has kept me busy) but YAY MOCKINGJAY! I'm super sad it's over though :(

Lament – Maggie Stiefvater (re-read)
Ballad – Maggie Stiefvater (re-read)
Shift – Rachel Vincent
Will Grayson, Will Grayson – John Green & David Levithan (re-read)
Mockingjay – Suzanne Collins
My Soul to Lose – Rachel Vincent
The Lost Hero (Chapter Sneak Peek) – Rick Riordan

10:02 AM

Books Read in 2010 - July

I must note here, that last month I started reading the Anita Blake Vampire Hunter series, and I had really been enjoying it, until I got to a certain book, where it kind of went from being erotic to erotica/porn. While I certainly don't mind some hot and heavy sex scenes in books, I don't need to read two a chapter...

Bloody Bones – Laurell K. Hamilton
The Killing Dance – Laurell K. Hamilton
Burnt Offerings – Laurell K. Hamilton
Blue Moon – Laurell K. Hamilton
Narcissus in Chains – Laurell K. Hamilton
The Hunger Games – Suzanne Collins (re-read)
Catching Fire – Suzanne Collins (re-read)
On Writing – Stephen King
Linger – Maggie Stiefvater
Sea – Heidi Kling
Dark Flame – Alyson Noel

9:57 AM

Books Read in 2010 - June

Holy Cow have I been slacking! I guess that's what happens when you get a full time job again. Rest assured, I'm still writing. It's just not as often as I'd like, but ya know, bills have to be paid so you do what you've got to do. Here is June's book list and I'll follow this post with July's and hopefully we'll get back on track here!

The Reckoning – Kelley Armstrong
Red Pyramid – Rick Riodrian
Demon’s Covenant – Sarah Rees Brennan
Sisters Red – Jackson Pearce
Guilty Pleasures – Laurell K. Hamilton
The Laughing Corpse – Laurell K. Hamilton
Circus of the Damned – Laurell K. Hamilton
The Lunatic CafĂ© – Laurell K. Hamilton

8:12 PM

Books Read in 2010 - May

I've been slacking in about everything this month, but I'll continue to keep my reading list, so here goes!

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
– Sherman Alexie
How to Ruin a Summer Vacation – Simone Elkeles
How to Ruin My Teenage Life – Simone Elkeles
How to Ruin Your Boyfriend’s Reputation – Simone Elkeles
Eternal – Cynthia Leitich Smith
Dead in the Family – Charlaine Harris
Kitty and the Silver Bullet – Carrie Vaughn
Water for Elephants – Sara Gruen
Love is Hell – Marr, Westerfeld, Larbalestier, Zevin, Stolarz
Radiant Shadows – Melissa Marr
Rules of Attraction – Simone Elkeles
The Full Spectrum: A New Generation of Writing about Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Questioning and Other Identities – David Levithan & Billy Merrell
The Midnighters: The Secret Hour – Scott Westerfeld
The Midnighters: Touching Darkness – Scott Westerfeld

6:41 PM

Teaser Tuesday

Yikes it's Tuesday again already?! Here goes!


Seeing Mei-Li there reminded me I never read the note she had dropped on my desk at the end of English. I fished it out of my pocket and unfolded it.

“You should have seen it before I cut it!” she had written in regards to the question about her hair. She drew a little stick figure with hair wrapped around her legs and dragging on the ground. There were all sorts of things caught in it: a brush, a scooter, a cat. I laughed as I looked it over. She didn’t quite have the same artistic ability as her brother, but it was entertaining to look at.

“This is funny,” I told her. She gave me that shy smile while her brother silently fumed.

“Hey, you guys should come to the game Friday night!” Clay suddenly said, not wanting to be left out.

“Football?” Julian asked.

“Yeah. We’re pretty good too. Ian can sit with you guys and we can all hit the after party. It’ll give you a chance to get to know some more people and see what we do in this boring town for fun,” said Clay.

“I don’t know…,” Julian said looking to his sister.

“Could be fun,” she said.

“You hate sports,” he replied. She flushed.

“Only because our schools never had sports teams! I don’t know anything about them,” she argued.

“A school with no sports? What kind of school is that?” I wondered aloud.

“We have always gone to performing arts schools,” Mei-Li explained.

“Oh. That’s cool. You’re an artist too?” I asked.

“Musician,” she said. “Jules is the artist. He’s very good.” I nodded in agreement.

“From the little I’ve seen, I can see he’s got talent.” Julian ducked his head, as if the compliments bothered him.

“What do you say Jules? It’s not like we’ve got anything better to do,” she said to her brother.

“Well, I could think of worse ways to spend a Friday night then staring at tight ends,” Julian said to Clay with a wink. Clay looked momentarily taken aback. His teammates laughed it up and I watched Julian from the corner of my eye. Was he being serious? Was it possible that the new kid was more like me than I realized? Too bad he hates me...

My thoughts were interrupted when Clay nudged me.

“What?” I asked.

“You’re not eating,” he said pointing at my untouched food. Rolling my eyes I picked up the half of sandwich and shoved it in my mouth.

“Happy?” I snapped after I had successfully swallowed it without choking.

“Yes,” he replied with a smile as he handed me the apple. I grabbed it from his hand and bit into it. It made a loud satisfying crunch sound.

Mei-Li and Julian gave us identical weird looks.

“Ian doesn’t like to eat,” Clay explained.

“I like eating just fine,” I countered. “I just don’t like eating a lot.” The twins looked at each other, puzzled, before looking back at us.

“He has to stay in his weight class,” Clay said, “and he thought he could do that by starving himself.”

A red cloud of anger hovered in front of my eyes as I slammed my hand down on the table.

“Enough!” I said, embarrassed that Julian knew one of my secrets. Grabbing my bag I stood up to leave.

“Hey Ian, don’t go!” Clay said grabbing my bag. I gave him a withering look and he dropped my bag and his head.

“I’ve got to see the coach,” I said as an excuse before nodding to Mei-Li. I couldn’t meet Julian’s gaze.

I left the cafeteria behind and headed for a bathroom. After a quick check to make sure no one else was in there, I entered an empty stall where I performed my other dirty little secret. The one no one could ever find out about. The one that they made After School TV Specials about. The one that involved the second coming of my lunch.

7:36 AM

Books Read in 2010 - April

The end of the month brings the book list! It seems perhaps I slacked off a little this month in comparison to others, but I guess I've just been busy. Still, I averaged 1 book every 1.13something something days.

Exceptionally good reads this month including Going Bovine and Will Grayson, Will Grayson. I highly recommend the both of them. Here goes the list:

Tantalize – Cynthia Leitich Smith
Boy Meets Boy – David Levithan
Going Bovine – Libba Bray
Kitty and the Midnight Hour – Carrie Vaughn
Kitty Goes to Washington – Carrie Vaughn
Kitty Takes a Holiday – Carrie Vaughn
Kitty and the Dead Man’s Hand – Carrie Vaughn
Kitty Raises Hell – Carrie Vaughn
Boneshaker – Cherie Priest
Will Grayson, Will Grayson – John Green & David Levithan
Hunting Ground – Patricia Briggs
Hex Hall – Rachel Hawkins
Darklight – Lesley Livingston
Sandman Slim – Richard Kadrey
Evermore – Alyson Noel
Blue Moon – Alyson Noel
Leaving Paradise – Simone Elkeles
Perfect Chemistry – Simone Elkeles
Art Geeks and Prom Queens – Alyson Noel
Honey, Baby, Sweetheart – Deb Caletti
How to say Goodbye in Robot – Natalie Standiford
Silver Borne – Patricia Briggs
Are We There Yet? – David Levithan
Naomi & Ely’s No Kiss List – Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

11:31 PM

Teaser Tuesday

I know, I've been ignoring you folks lately. Just been busy, but I have been writing. Look! Here's the proof!

The classroom door opened to reveal our school guidance counselor, Ms. Laury.

“Can I speak with Ian please?” she asked the teacher. My stomach fell. The class snickered and people asked me what I did already as I stood. Clay grabbed the edge of my shirt. As I looked back, he gave me a reassuring smile which I couldn’t return. Our new friend Mei-Li kept her eyes down. At least she was pretending to mind her own business. I liked that.

“Let’s go Mr. Quinn,” my teacher hustled me along. Ms. Laury gave me a smile and held the door open for my exit. Closing the door behind me, she led me a little ways down the hall where people couldn’t watch us out their doors.

“What’s wrong?” I asked her.

“Now Ian, before I start I want to let you know that everything is going to be OK.” My stomach was no longer resting in my knees. It had fallen to the floor. It’s never good when someone starts out a conversation with words like that. I tried to swallow past the lump that sprouted in my throat.

“Just tell me what happened,” I said.

“There’s been a little accident.”

“What kind of accident?”

“…Your father hit a mailbox. He’s OK,” she stressed. “The car is a bit of a mess, but he’s OK. Your mother is at the hospital with him. She just didn’t want you to worry if you got home later and no one was there.”

It’s horrible to say this, but relief flooded through me as I heard it was my father and not my mother in the accident. I bet it had something to do with the copious amounts of JD I saw him pour in his coffee this morning. Asshole. I hate to say he deserved it, but he kind of did. I hoped it might wake him up a little to his…problem, but I doubt it.

“OK Ms. Laury. Thanks for letting me know.” She placed her hand on my arm.

“If you need to talk Ian, please don’t hesitate to come to me.” I felt kind of bad for her. There was never anyone in the guidance office. Not for a lack of issues around here, but no one would admit them to a school official, that’s for sure.
“Thanks Ms. Laury.” She patted my arm again before turning to head back to her office.

3:09 PM

Teaser Tuesday

Did you guys think I had forgotten you? Forsaken you even? I would never do that! I've just been busy busy busy! I wanted to be able to share a little more of the new WIP with you though, so here I am!

An excerpt from Heavyweight (I am SO digging on that title for many reasons). As always please feel free to comment!

The second bell peeled and we broke away with a hand in the air and an exchange of "see ya later". Bio class was half full already. A couple of teammates had taken up residence in the back corner. I loped over to an empty seat where the familiar sounds of my friends rating the girls in the class greeted me. So crass are teenaged boys. They tried to get me to play along, but I didn't take the bait.

We bullshitted about our summers while the teacher took attendance and handed out the fifty pound text book we'll be using. He explained we're going to be doing a lot of dissecting this year and the if anyone has a queasy stomach, they better get over it right now or opt for a lab partner who'll do all the cutting. My head jerked up at the mention of lab partners. A feverent wish came over me for the teacher to do the picking, but it's dashed when I hear him say we've got two minutes to pick someone. My teammates are already pairing up. My arm stretched out to tap one on the shoulder when I felt myself being pulled away by the other. Shit. This could not be happening. Eyes wide with panic, I glanced over my shoulder to see that Maggie was the one doing the pulling. My gaze swung back to the guys who were smirking and helplessly shrugging their shoulders. Traitors. Fucking traitors. Every last one of them.

"Maggie, this isn't a good idea," I sputtered. She pouted her shiny pink lips at me.

"Why not?"

"Uhh it'll be easier to study with the guys before and after practice." Please oh please let her see the logic in my statement.

"Our practices end around the same time. We can meet up after just as easily," she said. "We can go to your place to study."

"NO." No fucking way was she ever coming to my house. No one comes to my place. Not even Clay. Not anymore.

She looked shocked at my vehement refusal. Sighing I ran my hand through my messy titian colored hair.

"It's just not a good idea Mags." Anger stormed briefly in her dark blue eyes. She swung around and looked about the class. Turning back to face me, hands on her hips, she raised her eyebrows.

"Welp, looks like there's no one left, so you're stuck with me anyway." Shoulders sank in defeat as glancing around showed me she's right. Dammit. This will not make for a good year.

A deep breath helped calm me. Not much that can be done about it now. I'll just have to try and make the best of the situation. Head down, I trudged along behind Maggie as she lead us to the last empty lab table. We barely got settled when the bell went off.

"Got to jet," I said scooping up the new fifty pound paperweight before dashing out the door. Please God, don't let her be in any more of my classes.

11:28 PM

Will Grayson, Will Grayson

I don't write reviews. I find it hard to explain the story without giving away too much, but I couldn't not write something about this book.

Instead of writing what the book was about, I'd rather write about how it made me feel. Not as in the book made me: happy, sad, etc., but literally how it made me FEEL for the characters. How do you know great writing is great? When you feel that same pain in your stomach as the character is feeling, when you cry when the characters cry, when you feel sick to your stomach over the character's nerves.

I don't care if you don't know a single person of the gay persuasion or you grew up a hermit in a cave in northwest bumblefuck, everyone can find something to relate to in this story. I found enough to make me feel slightly uncomfortable even (did John Green find my secret diary?).

It's an outstanding tale and both Mr. Green & Mr. Levithan did an amazing job with their respective Will Graysons. Please be sure to put any prejudices behind you and pick up this book. You might be surprised at how much you have in common with some of these characters.

Finally I have to conclude with these words: My name is not Will Grayson, but I appreciate you Tiny Cooper.

1:59 AM

Sneak Peak Friday

So in case you didn't notice, there was no Teaser Tuesday this week. I wasn't feeling it, so I did a post on writing habits instead. Since I feel a little sad I didn't deliver earlier this week, I've deemed today Sneak Peak Friday! Why Sneak Peak? Welp, yesterday I finally finished the rough draft of Red Dust; my 105k+ word soft sci-fi monster I've been battling with. It's now sitting in the drawer, or technically on the hard drive, for a week or so before I start the editing process. My muse was so happy with the completion of that story that she jumped up and down and all around inspiring me to start work on another idea that has been brewing for a while. I did some research and made some decisions and the beginning just came to me. I don't think I've ever had an opening flow as smoothly as this one has. That's why I want to share it with you. Give you a sneak peak into the start of what I'm tentatively titling: Heavyweight.

This story will have a whole set of firsts for me: first time writing in first person, first time writing from a male POV, first time writing about a sport, first time writing about a gay relationship. I'm really excited to work on it and see what becomes of it. I hope this peek into it excites you guys into wanting to read more. Please let me know what you think!

Some might think that a locker room full of half naked teenaged athletes would be any gay boy’s dream but, I assure you, it’s not. It’s actually more of a nightmare. Especially when no one knows that you’re gay. While I’m not planning on outing myself anytime soon, you never know what’s going to happen. If word got out that I prefer guys over chicks…well, I could just hear it now:

“He slapped my ass in the locker room!”

“I swear he was checking me out at the urinals.”

“Dude, he got hard when we were changing into our singlets. “ “You looked?!” “Hard to miss it in those uniforms…”

Uhh yeah…that last one is true. What can I say? I’m a 17 year old guy with raging hormones, just like every other guy in my school. Sometimes I can’t help but peek. Luckily I can play it off by saying Big Willie has a mind of his own. Typically the guys just nod knowingly and then launch into their embarrassing boner stories. Crisis averted.

Anyway, I’m pretty shy by nature so I try to avert my eyes when guys are changing and I keep my hands to myself, except when I’m taking someone down on the mat. Hard to be a wrestler and not touch someone. The guys made jokes about my shyness for a while, but they’ve gotten used to it over the years. They even tell the new guys not to flash me, which is kind of them yet disappointing at the same time.

11:48 AM

Habits

Today's post is on habits. Now I'm not talking biting your nails or how you have to drink your morning OJ before brushing your teeth (the other way around is quite gross I assure you). I'm talking, of course, of your writing habits. I'm always interested to see how other writers work.

Do you need to have complete silence to write or do you work with a soundtrack?

Is morning the best time for your creative juices to flow or does the darkness of night inspire you?

Do you lock yourself away from the world in order to get into your story or do you take to the public areas for your background?

What about outlining before writing or do you just dive right in?

How about rituals? Sacrificing small animals to the God of Words or merely pleading with your muse to be more helpful for a change?

Maybe I need to adopt some more habits myself. I prefer to write in public but can also do so at home. Music is most welcome unless I'm having a particularly hard time with a scene. As for the time of day? It's more about when the ideas/inspiration hit me. I don't advocate the sacrificing of small animals, but my muse could stand to kick it up a notch.

What say you, fellow writers? How do you get through it? What are the habits, rituals and fail safes that keep you going? The world of aspiring authors want to know!

11:19 AM

Follow up...

Oops! Almost forgot to give answers to last week's creative writer award. Here goes!

1. The only two articles I ever wrote for my high school newspaper ended up in the yearbook. - TRUE I was never officially on the paper staff, but my senior year English teacher asked me to write a couple articles. How they ended up in the yearbook I'll never know.

2. I write Smurf erotica under a pen name. (It's hard when there's only one female smurf!!) - FALSE It would be hard though and I think you'd all understand why a pen name would be needed...

3. I spent the night in Amsterdam's Red Light district. - FALSE While I did visit in the evening, I did not spend the night there. It was a little creepy being a woman there when the alleyways are so narrow. Ew for horny guys rubbing up against you just to walk by.

4. I speak two other languages (conversationally) besides English. They are Spanish and Japanese. - TRUE This has to do with my undergrad degree in comp. lit & languages. I was one class short of a minor in Japanese. I can get by with either language if need be.

5. When I went to Vegas three years ago, I got married but had it annulled the following day. - FALSE Considering who I was dating three years ago, Thank God this is false.

6. I'm hard on cars. I've gone through six of them in the past four years. - FALSE I've had my current car for about 10 years now. It's been hit by many people/things, but it keeps on going! It's a trooper.

7. I climbed Mt. Fuji on a dare. - FALSE It is a dream of mine to climb it one day.

8. At the age of 27, I tried out for American Idol, but didn't make the cut. - FALSE I did have an ex who wanted me to try out though. I probably should have just to be able to say I did.

12:15 PM

Books Read in 2010 - March

I seem to have outdone myself this month with over 30 books. I'm a little concerned it may mean I need an intervention, but it's so worth it.
So without further ado, I give you my book list for the month of March:

Moon Called – Patricia Briggs
Blood Bound – Patricia Briggs
Iron Kissed – Patricia Briggs
Bone Crossed – Patricia Briggs
Mercy Thompson – Homecoming – Patricia Briggs
From Dead to Worse – Charlaine Harris (re-read)
Dead and Gone – Charlaine Harris (re-read)
Captivate – Carrie Jones
Storm Glass – Maria V. Snyder
Sea Glass – Maria V. Snyder
Some Girls Are – Courtney Summers
My Soul to Take – Rachel Vincent
My Soul to Save – Rachel Vincent
The Maze Runner – James Dashner
The Bermudez Triangle – Maureen Johnson
Girl at Sea – Maureen Johnson
13 Little Blue Envelopes – Maureen Johnson
Devilish – Maureen Johnson
Fire – Kristin Cashore
Leviathan – Scott Westerfeld
Chasing Brooklyn – Lisa Schroeder
Wake – Lisa McMann
Fade – Lisa McMann
Gone – Lisa McMann
Cry Wolf – Patricia Briggs
Stray – Rachel Vincent
Rogue – Rachel Vincent
Prey – Rachel Vincent
Pride – Rachel Vincent
Wondrous Strange – Lesley Livingston
The Faerie Path - Frewin Jones
Wicked Lovely – Melissa Marr (re-read)
Ink Exchange – Melissa Marr (re-read)
Fragile Eternity – Melissa Marr (re-read)
Shiver – Maggie Stiefvater
Scarlett Fever – Maureen Johnson
The Iron King – Julie Kagawa

2:00 PM

Another Award?

Mizzez Melly Mel, another aspiring author, blogger and twitter friend has kindly graced me with an award!
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

As an author, we have to be creative, yet keep things believable, no? So the rules to accept this award are as follows: I have to make eight statements about myself. Two of them will be truths while the other six will be...not so true, although they might be based on dreams and wishes! You get to guess which are true. I'll post which two are true later in the week.

1. The only two articles I ever wrote for my high school newspaper ended up in the yearbook.

2. I write Smurf erotica under a pen name. (It's hard when there's only one female smurf!!)

3. I spent the night in Amsterdam's Red Light district.

4. I speak two other languages (conversationally) besides English. They are Spanish and Japanese.

5. When I went to Vegas three years ago, I got married but had it annulled the following day.

6. I'm hard on cars. I've gone through six of them in the past four years.

7. I climbed Mt. Fuji on a dare.

8. At the age of 27, I tried out for American Idol, but didn't make the cut.

11:20 PM

Teaser Tuesday

Kirin glanced at Ryan’s profile and anger surged through him again. He abruptly stood up. Saven looked up questioningly at him. They exchanged a couple of words in their own language before Kirin left the home. Ryan looked at Saven inquisitively. The Felinian flushed and looked embarrassed.

“He uhh…he said he can’t stand to be in the same room with you and that he had to get out and do something to work off his anger.”

“I see,” commented Ryan. “Nice to know I made a new enemy today.”

“He’s not a bad person,” Saven explained to Ryan, “but he’s got a bit of an anger issue…not to mention a hero complex…” Again Ryan gave a quizzically look. Saven sighed.

“A hero complex is when one feels compelled to help others and make all right with the world. While it’s not an awful thing to be, it makes him put everyone else before himself, not caring if he gets hurt or killed in the process. Honestly, it’s amazing he’s still alive. He was always a reckless kitten and has had more broken bones and injuries than any other I know. Our mother must have rolled over in her grave a million times over his antics.”

“Your mother?” questioned Ryan. Saven nodded his head with a small smile.

“He is my younger brother,” Saven explained.

“You don’t really…” Ryan trailed off.

“Look alike?” Saven asked. Ryan nodded, feeling embarrassed, but the two really did not look similar. Saven was a ginger color with cream colored markings, almost like a tiger’s stripes. His eyes were a deep green color and he was on the short side, shorter than Ryan’s 5’10” anyhow. Kirin, on the other hand, was gray with black markings, if Ryan had to classify him as a type, he would call him a tabby. His eyes were a piercing bright yellow and he was tall and muscular. He had a very serious look about him. Ryan wondered if he always looked like that or if it was just because of the current situation.

“We have the same mother, but different fathers,” said Saven. “It’s not uncommon here as men tend to outnumber the women but in this case, my father was killed and my mother sought comfort from his best friend. They ended up marrying and he became Kirin’s father.”

“I’m sorry,” Ryan said knowing the pain of losing a parent. Saven gave him a sad smile.

“Thank you, but I was very young when he passed and I don’t remember him much. Kirin’s father Samus, has always treated me well and took me in as his own son. It was much harder when our mother passed away.”

“When was that?” asked Ryan. Saven sighed.

“Let’s see. I was 13 and Kirin was 11 so about 9 years ago. That was when Kirin’s hero complex kicked in.”

“Why is that?” questioned Ryan although he had an idea of the answer he was going to hear.

“As you can see, our valley here is very green and lush with vegetation. It’s due to the way the water collects here when it rains. There have been many occasions over the years where the river has flooded. Sometimes it comes up quickly, without much warning. The currents then are very strong…” Saven trailed off for a moment, lost in his thoughts. “Our mother and Kirin were down on the river bank. Kirin was fishing while our mother was cleaning some clothing. She was standing in the water, her dress hiked up and tied as to not get wet. She was beating the clothes against a large rock. The flood appeared in the blink of an eye and she was swept off her feet. Kirin dropped his pole and raced to save her. He waded in the water as far as he dared while holding onto a tree branch that hung over the river. He grabbed our mother’s hand and tried to hold onto her and bring her to the shore, but he was only 11. Just a child who’s strength was no match for that of an angry swollen river. She slipped from his grasp and continued down the river. She must have hit her head on a rock in the process and drown. Kirin has never forgiven himself.”

“But…he was just a child!” Ryan exclaimed.

“I know, but understand that this is just how he is. He will always carry the burden and guilt in his heart. Many of us have explained to him over the years that there was nothing more he could have done and that he was lucky to be alive, but he always says it should have been him and not her. Now he feels compelled to save everyone and everything. I guess he’s trying to make up for not being able to save our mother, but I’m afraid he’s going to get killed in the process.”