Fiction, My Books, Novel, Writing

One step closer to Illusion

Last night, I delivered An Illusion of Trust to my betas. Yay! I can definitely say this book is in better shape going to beta than The Brevity of Roses was, so I don’t think I’ll have too much more work ahead of me. While I wait for their feedback, I’ll work on other book-related things.

I guess it’s time to compose my first edition of Linda’s Letter, my newsletter. Maybe I’ll even include the first chapter as a teaser. And I should probably start an ARC sign-up sheet. Of course the cover design is on my mind a lot. I think I’ve found the perfect cover image … at least I hope so. Sending a mondo indecisive person like me to a stock photo site is akin to torture.

The image above is a Wordle created from the 150 most used words in An Illusion of Trust. You can see how important Jalal is to Renee. By default, Wordle doesn’t count common words, so “I” is the word that would appear even larger than Jalal because this novel is written in first person. Tea was a word that showed up in the Wordle for Brevity, which made sense with Jalal as the main character, but in this one it’s the word wine that shows up. And no, Renee’s problem is not that she’s become alcoholic.

Though I have more work to do for this book, I’ve started looking beyond it to the next. I have three possibilities for my next project. Well … four, actually, if I want to take a stab at the short story collection again. I give them each a few minutes thought from time to time, as I wait for one to shout louder than the others.

However, November waits in the wings. No, I’m not going to try to write my next novel in 30 days. We observe NaHoCleMo around here. And believe me, after more than a year of steady work on An Illusion of Trust, I should have no trouble reaching my cleaning goal. More on that later.

Believe it or not, my next post will not be all about me. I’ve been reading a bit and want to talk about some writer friends. So, stay tuned. Have a great weekend.

Blog Stuff, Publish, Social Media, Writing

A pinch of this and drop of that

I’m taking a short break from blogging about the publishing dilemma, but since I’m in for a penny I might as well spend the whole pound, so I’ll return to that topic in my next post. Today’s post is just a potpourri of little bits floating around my mind.

NaHoCleMo: In case you hadn’t noticed, today is the first day of December. For some of you that’s the end of NaNoWriMo, but for me and a few, it’s the end of NaHoCleMo. I’m declaring myself a winner even though I only made it to 92%. I was sick with a cold for over a week, and though I tried valiantly to catch up, I barely limped along after mid-month. But for a virus, I would have made it.

I don’t know if Barbara ever tackled those bookcases. Kasie seemed to have given up toward the end … or maybe she had a cold too. Kayla did the ultimate cleaning, by packing everything into boxes and calling a moving truck. For those of you who were on a mad dash to write 50,000 words, how did you fare?

Facebook: In my sidebar (temporarily at the top) you’ll see a new widget. I now have a Facebook author page … well, actually, only a writer page, but as soon as I publish, it will be an author page. If you click the widget, it will take you there. If you want to keep up on my exciting life as a writer, click again on the LIKE button at the top. My wee little writer’s page is pretty bare now, but it’s been live for less than 24 hours. Give me some time, and I’m sure I’ll amaze and enthrall you. 🙂

Claustrophobia: Occasionally, I’m a bit claustrophobic. Sometimes it takes a weird form, like when I broke my hand and freaked out the first night with the cast—my hand was being smothered! Lately, I’m feeling that way when I view my blog; it feels too crowded in here. I’m giving you a heads up. If you come here one day and notice sections have disappeared from my sidebar, look to the top of this blog and you’ll see they’ve only moved to a new page.

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Life, Real Life, Writing

Change is good, right?

November is turning out to be a month of many changes. One of the good ones you already know about. I’m doing housework. For real. It’s not likely to become a habit, though. This is only to honor NAtional HOuse CLEaning MOnth (see new page.)

My second good change will be to set off on a plan to get my body back in shape. I can even maximize the power of NaHoCleMo to help. Obviously, if I’m moving about to clean, I won’t be sitting as much to write—I’ll be burning calories. Yay! It’s sad to admit, but in the two years I spent writing my last novel, I’ve gained twenty pounds. Yes, I’m a cow. And I dare not keep up this obsessive pace of sedentary writing or I’ll be elevated to elephant status.

So, barring any injuries to impede my accident prone body, I will embark on a daily walk. You read that right. I’ll be leaving the house and everything. But—and this is the best part—I’ll also be journaling what I see, hear, think, or whatever, during these walks. That may be the only writing I accomplish during November, but I believe it might be valuable.  And maybe this change will become a habit.

Do you have any changes on the horizon for you this month?

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Blog Stuff, Dream, Poetry, Real Life, Writing

Out with the old, in with …

As you can see, this old pig blog is wearing a new dress. The font is smaller than on my old theme, but it’s hard to find a newer WordPress theme that isn’t hard on my eyes. Never fear. I use the Firefox add-on called NoSquint, which lets me enlarge the font on any webpage. I think I got all the kinks out, but let me know if you see any problems.

Don’t forget! November is a special month for us writers—no not that—it’s National House Cleaning Month! That zany 30 days designated for us obsessed writers to step away from the keyboard and rediscover the vacuum cleaner, the bottom of the laundry basket, and exactly what lies beneath that pile on the dining room table. If you’re joining me, let me know and get your counter set up, so I can keep an eye on the competition. I’ll also add your name and a link to your blog on the NaHoCleMo page I’ll add on Monday. Watch my counter in my sidebar —>

Things I afflict you with. I haven’t talked about any dreams, nor have I inflicted one of my dreadful poems on you lately. Guess what? Your luck has run out.


I wrote something fabulous
in a dream.

I read,
heart racing.


I woke,
deep sighing.

I wrote something fabulous,
in a dream.

So there you have my Weekend Whoop-de-doo. I wish you a Happy Halloween, Samhain, or whatever your weekend holds.

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Blog Stuff, Fiction, Novel, Writing

Brain dead, pressed, interviewed, and cleaning up … it’s all here, folks!

I have suddenly gone brain dead. I’m blaming it on allergies. I should have put a new post up yesterday, but I couldn’t think of anything to say, so I played about a thousand games of Peggle instead. And, obviously, my brain is not functioning any better today because I’ve just written over fifty words of nothing. That’s no way to get a blog post selected for Freshly Pressed, now is it?

For those of you unfortunate enough to have a Blogspot blog, you may not know that when a blog post is Freshly Pressed it means WordPress highlights your blog on their front page for a day. You get hundreds of visitors. I have not yet been honored, but some of my friends have. Christi Craig hit the jackpot twice this month. Twice! Do you think if I talked her into doing a guest post here, I would get Pressed too?

A.M. Kuska has created a writers blog directory at The Written Connection. She’s included my blog and also interviewed me—scary thought, huh? You can read it here, if you’re interested. Check the directory for your favorite writing blog. If it’s not there, nominate it.

It’s almost that time of year again! No. I don’t mean National Novel Writing Month. November is NaHoCleMo—National House Cleaning Month for those of us whose housekeeping suffers because we’re writing junkies. You can read all the whys and wherefores here. And, if you’d like to clean along, you can get a counter, like the one to the right of this post here, for your blog or website. In 2009, I set my goal far too high. Seriously, you can’t go from 0 to 5,000 in one month without hurting someone, so this year I’m setting my goal at 2,700 minutes. I think I can reach that and still make progress on my new novel.

One last thing: I’ve giving you fair warning. There’s a theme change coming as soon as I can find the time to make sure things don’t go wonky. So don’t freak if you come here one day soon and nothing looks familiar. It will be the same pig, just in a new dress.

Have a lovely weekend.

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