Monday, May 27, 2013

Life of a Shiny New Idea (in pictures)

Once upon a time, a shiny new idea popped into my head, and I was like:
 

And to all my friends I was like, "Yeah, I got a shiny new idea.":


But then I had to think a lot:


And I was like, "I thought shiny new ideas came all assembled!":


But I wrote and I wrote until I was like:


And, "Squirrel!":


And "Oooh! Housecleaning!":


I was going to get back to it, but then I saw this book that looked MUCH more interesting than mine:


And wait, "Is that another squirrel?":


And then Darling Husband asked how my book was coming, and I'm like, "GET OFF MY BACK, I'll get to it!":


"I just really like housecleaning.":


And then I'm like, "What am I saying?":


"There are way better ways to waste my time!":


So how do ya'll stay on task?

Monday, May 20, 2013

Winner and Thoughts about "The Journey"

Finally! After all the debates and hullaballoo, we have a winner!! *throws confetti*

Amy gathered the names. Her daughter, very fairly, drew a name from a hat. And the winner is . . .


Congratulations!

You can email either me or Amy and let us know which prize you choose:

1) TWO 10-page critiques (1 from Amy & 1 from me)

OR

2) The SURPRISE package!!!

Thank you to everyone who entered our contest and passed along congratulations to our amazing friends. :)

So I've been thinking a lot about this whole writing journey lately. I remember when I first started writing with the idea of getting published. So much excitement! Every word on the page was magic, and everything I wrote was brilliant.

I didn't stop to consider the reality of the publishing world and all the hurdles I'd have to overcome to get my book in print. I just wrote. And I loved every minute of it! I subjected my (then new) husband to first drafts and he laughed in all the right places and told me he just knew I'd be published some day. (See why he's a keeper?!) :)

Good times, those.

But, of course, that doesn't last forever. The rejections came. I still remember my very first conference critique by a real live editor. "It sounds like you haven't found your voice," he said.

Oh, but that hurt.

And then my first critique group. My perfected chapters came back covered in ink.

That first rejection from that first query. I think it took a little under an hour to receive it in all it's "Dear Author" glory.

And the list goes on.

More often than I care to express, I wondered if all this effort was worth it? With all the rejection, why did I think I could ever reach that shiny goal of seeing my words in print, and my name on the cover?

Two things kept me going.

First, was remembering why I started writing in the first place. Remembering the sheer joy of bringing a world alive and watching others react to it. How could I give that up? WHY should I give that up just because I hadn't been published yet?

Second, was this quote:
"Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall."
 
Confucius
551 — 479 B.C
Success is not achieving something we can't control. Success is moving forward in the face of difficulties. It's not giving up just because something is hard.

And that my friends, is pretty awesome. Because we can control that.

I'd love to hear about your journey, and how you define success, too.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Too Close to Call

We tried.

You tried.

But the consensus? It was just too close to call.

We can't tell who ate more ice cream!

Besides, it's like Theresa Milstein said in her comment, "How can anyone lose in a game of ice cream?"

Which is GREAT news because now everyone who voted for either person will be entered in the drawing! Hurray! *throws confetti*

We'll announce the winner Monday, so be sure to come back to find out if it was you!

Monday, May 13, 2013

In Which We Eat Ice Cream

We did it.

We came.

We saw.
We got on Skype at the same time (even though Amy's mic was broken so I had to talk to her on the phone).

We even had the same kind of ice cream.

And our nine-year-old boys STUFFED OUR FACES. (Mine may have enjoyed it a little too much. If you listen closely, you can hear him cry with wicked glee, "This is the most amazing day of my life!" Uh huh.)

Here's my video evidence of the grand competition.

video

But we have a little problem. Amy and I are in grave disagreement about who won. Amy says I ate the most ice cream. I say she ate the most ice cream. We need your help.

Who ate the most? Watch Amy's video here to decide and leave a comment on one of our blogs. We'll add up the votes and make our decision on Wednesday. Then we'll announce the ULTIMATE WINNER of our blog competition next Monday (find out what the awesome prizes are here).

And one last congrats to all our friends! You KNOW we love you after seeing these videos, right? ;)

P.S. I sense questions coming over the little cutie trying to get in on the ice cream eating action. Her arm, you ask? Yup, it's newly broken. But it's just a hairline fracture, and she's a trooper. She's more upset by the splint than the break. She'll be back to good health before you can blink. :)

Monday, May 6, 2013

Ice-Cream Eating Celebration Contest!

Holy Cow, has it really been a MONTH since I posted?! Unbelievable. So I stayed busy doing this:


And this:

 
Not to mention THIS:

 

And while I didn't really think ya'll would be stagnant while I was gone, all kinds of good things happened:

One of our very own members of the HackySack Club, MelissaSarno, just SIGNED WITH AN AGENT!!, so head on over to her blog and read about it!

Note: New members to the Hacky Sack Club are always welcome and we DO seem to have some good mojo going. Just saying.

Also, my Hacky Sack Club partner in crime, Amy Sonnichsen's Fablulous CP, Krista VanDolzer [of Mother.Write. (Repeat.)] announced theBOOK DEAL she just signed!!

And JessieHumphries, from my NaNoRevMo group, announced herawesome TWO-BOOK DEAL with Amazon.

Anyhoo . . . so much good stuff going on for our friends that Amy and I couldn't just let it slide. We are holding a Celebration Contest!

And since all good celebrations need ice-cream, we are having an Ice-Cream Eating Celebration Contest! Woo hoo!

So here's how it works:

Amy and I are going to battle it out to see who can eat the most ice-cream in 20 seconds. Too easy, you say? Our 9-year olds are going to be the ones stuffing the ice-cream in. Still too easy? Another child will hold our hands behind our backs to keep us from cheating. 

And you'll get to see the whole thing on video!! How cool is that?!

BUT, it gets better. There will be PRIZES!!

All you have to do is guess who will win. Me? (uh, yeah). Or Amy?

Everyone who guesses right (on either blog) will be entered into a drawing for your choice of

a)       a 10-page critique from BOTH Amy and I,

OR

b)      Surprise Package D (gosh I love me a surprise package). Could be a book. Or two. Or a gift card. Or, who knows? Maybe even A BRAND NEW HACKY SACK! Heehee.

Just post your guess in a comment before Sunday, May 12, midnight EDT, and come back next Monday, May 13th, for the ice-cream eating event! Winners will be posted shortly thereafter.

So go on, take a guess! But just know . . . this is me, Toughest, Ice-cream eating-est, Brain-freezing-est contestant around! Just saying.