Why write?

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This is a good question. And one that has a couple different answers.

First of all, I just AM a writer. It’s part of who I am, like my curly hair and my skinny feet.

Second of all, I write because there are always people in my head. Stories spinning out. I’ve always worked my way through stories when I was bored, and starting writing ‘romances’ (ha ha) when I was in seventh grade, after the discovery of a friend’s mom’s Harlequins.

(Mine were a teeny bit different from those as I had no idea what, say, romance really was.)

But it wasn’t until the night before my first ‘real’ job (that required the use of my shiny new Master’s degree) that I realized I could write for publication. Somehow I’d never made that connection. It took a bit, but I used my 2-hour one-way commute to plot and sort and plan stories. Eventually I got so I’d start to scribble notes at traffic jams (lots of those on the drag strip known as I-75 in the Detroit area). And finally, I got a computer (my mom gave me an old Mac Performa–yep, I’m dating myself, but let me say it was already old when I got it!) and started in.

I found writing groups. I found RWA. This was a revelation to me, that there were thousands of other romance writers out there! I joined it and my local chapter eventually as well. The internet opened up so many possibilities, too–writers, writers everywhere.

So I wrote that first story. I have it out now, am revising it. It amazes me how much I’ve grown as a writer since I started that first book almost ten years ago. I’d have to say I’m rewriting rather than revising, using the same characters and general plot, but with the benefit of what I’ve learned. It is a better book, for sure.

And I wrote it because there wasn’t really any other option. These people show up in my head, and they need their stories told. I don’t use a muse (I fired her along with my internal editor–thank you NaNoWriMo!) but I do use cool colored pens.

But most of all, I write because I love it. Because, even when it’s hard (and it can be mind-bendingly hard) it’s what I do. It’s who I am.

I am a writer.

Are you a writer or a reader?

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My Next Big Thing!

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Thank you, Loralee Lillibridge for the tag in The Next Big Thing! Here is the link to her blog: http://loraleelillibridge.blogspot.com/

My questions:

1.What is the working title of your book(s)? My very first published book is titled An Accidental Family!
2.Where did the idea come from for the book? I’d read a book awhile ago about a woman who owned a flower shop. That sparked it for me. The rest of the story just unfolded from there!
3. What genre does your book come under? It’s a category romance novel. The line is Harlequin Romance.
4. What actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?Hmm. That’s a good one. I guess I’d go with Bradley Cooper for my hero, Ben, and Reese Wirtherspoon for my heroine, Lainey.
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book? When life takes unexpected turns for Lainey Keeler and Ben Lawless, they find themselves reluctantly drawn together–but can they set aside thier pasts and forge a future together?
6. Is your book self-published, published by an independent publisher or represented by an agency? Published by Harlequin.
7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript? One month. It was a NaNoWriMo book!
8. What other book would you compare this story to within your genre? Well, it will stand up next to the others in the Harlequin Romance line.
9. Who or what inspired you to write this book? While I got the idea to set part of it in a flower shop elsewhere, I found Lainey’s character to be very compelling–she just needed her own HEA after all she’d been through!
10. What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest? It was a RWA Golden Heart® finalist in 2012 (Ubder the title Second-Chance Bride) and a Mills and Boon New Voices finalist in 2011. Plus, the hero is a sexy firefighter!

Where does time go?

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That’s the question, isn’t it?

Three weeks until the kids go back to school. I’m ready. Are they? Hee. Does it matter?

Then I will have FULL days. Well, sort of. My husband’s work schedule is a little wonky. But I should be able to find the time to go write at Biggby. Which is my office. Yay for coffee shops! Must finish 2 of 3 wips. Some combo of those 3 will be entered in the Golden Heart and all must be either subbed to agents or editors. Also there’s a contest at Harlequin for a holiday themed story for SSE! Guess who LOVES holiday stories? I’m working though the kinks, plan to have a synopsis and first chapter done to send off. Feels good to move forward.

On another note, I’ve got to learn how to cook. I, um, don’t cook. Oatmeal? Sure! Ramen? Let me at it! The occasional roast chicken or pot roast or beef stew? Yum! Anything else? (What’s the pizza delivery number again?) My hubby cooks. And he’s damn good at it. I am spoiled. (That should actually read Spoiled.)  So I’ve got to bite the bullet and get cooking. Not Julia Child, tho. Should probably start a little–lower.

I am a Warrior!

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Wow! I had a crazy day today. Spent it at the Warrior Dash in Mt. Morris, MI. For those of you not in the know, this is a 5K with some serious obstacles. Like water, mud, fire. The usual things.

This is me before. Let me say now, that shirt will nevah look like that again.

I should also mention this was my very first 5K. I’d started Couch-to-5K but hadn’t run in 2 weeks (or more) due to the intense heat. So I knew this was going to be a bit of a rough day.My husband promised he’d stick with me.

Our wave went off at 10:30 am. All 600 of us. (3000 people had already gone off before us!) We had to run a mile before we hit any obstacles. The hardest one for me was the rope climb up the wall. I really didn’t think I could do it–but I managed. We ended up walking a good chunk of it–by the time we got thru all the mud and due to the weird bumpy terrain, running got really hard near the end. I swear each shoe weighed 2 pounds.

But we hurdled the fire (we were soaked and covered in mud so not much danger of catching on fire) and threw ourselves in the mud pit to crawl under the barbed wire.  From there it was a short sprint (um, stagger) to the finish line, where we got our cool Warrior medals.

This is us after! We made it!

I’m a little sore, a lot tired but had a great time with my hubby and doing something I’d never done before. I do think my next 5K will be a road race. No mud. No climbing. And no fire.

Still, sign me up for the 2012 Warrior Dash!

Craziness continued

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Made it thorough DD’s recital and DS2’s b-day party! Now I face huge heaps of laundry and the writing I haven’t done.

I need to get back to it. This is a transition week–last day of school is Wednesday and I usually do my writing at Biggby. Can’t really leave the kiddos alone for an hour or so–or can I? They are 15, 11, 8 and 5 (almost 6). The 11-yr-old is as steady as they come. 15-yr-old has his moments. Maybe I can take some time a few hours a week and work. I need to. If I don’t get this party started, I’ll never get pubbed. Read a blog a couple days ago that you should have a finished ms for every year you’ve been writing seriously.

Guess who doesn’t?

Sure I have reasons. Some are actually good ones. But not good enough. This is my job–or will be–and I need to act like it. So, this is me rededicating myself to my career, right at the craziest time of year for me. (Why do things the easy way? Ever?) I’ll learn to write around the chaos, too. That’s why God made iPods. Oh, wait, that was Apple. Close enough.

So tonight, the laptop comes back out of its (super cute) bag. And I will reaquaint myself with the wip I left behind the day in March when I got THAT phone call.

The month goes on….

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Wow, this has been a busy couple of months! All the Golden Heart stuff (a heck of a ride, that) plus general life stuff (kids, sports, rinse, repeat) have made the time vaporize as opposed to just flying.

Now we are down to a couple weeks before Nationals and I’m–not ready.

Gak.

I’ve got a couple of pitches to write, clothes to shop for–tho I did find a dress for the awards ceremony (yay!) but the shoes I’d bought to go with another dress that didn’t pan out won’t work (boo!). Still. I can shoe shop with the best of them so it’s all good. But it’s the other clothes combined with the fact I’m losing weight that makes it tricky. I need to buy stuff that won’t fit me in a month. (Yay! Boo!) So I’m waiting last-minute on purpose. Well, that and I’m a world-class procrastinator, of course.

But I digress.

Somehow it will all get done because it always does. I may even be sane at the end of it all. For now, I’m trying to enjoy the moment and the prep and not drive my husband too nuts in the process.