Saturday, October 30, 2010

Magna cum Murder

Hello from Muncie, Indiana where I am attending the Magna cum Murder Writing Festival. In the picture on the left from L-R are myself, T. Lee Harris, and Marian Allen, my "partners in crime." We are having a great time and meeting so many wonderful authors and readers, both at the convention and at the hotel. We had breakfast with one of the guests of honor this morning, Caroline Todd.

If any of you are familiar with the "Voices in Mystery" PBS show in Indiana hosted by Nancy Carlson, it is taped at this conference. I met Ms. Carlson and she was so nice, but I forgot to tell her that someday I would be one of the authors that she will be interviewing on her show.

I've attended several sessions so far, but my favorite had to be Broken Bones, Ballistics, and Backdraft. It was hosted by author John Gilstrap. He was not only informative, but so entertaining. We saw a video of how different caliber ammo can do different levels of damage to the human body. He also showed a couple videos of snipers shooting someone from a mile away. I love guns and shooting, so this was right up my alley.

Tomorrow, I am looking forward to the session on technology in publishing. Then, we head home. It's been a great weekend and I am already looking forward to attending next year.

Carol

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Author interview

This week, I am featured on the Greater Fort Worth Writers' blog. I really liked this interview because they came up with some different questions than my other interviews. Please stop by and say hi.

Carol

Friday, October 15, 2010

New author interview

My interview on The Embraced: Scribal Love blog is up today. If you have a moment, please stop by and take a look. Thanks.

Carol

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Ahhh, country living

My husband and I live in the country. We have neighbors, but can't see their houses from our house. On a clear night with a full moon, we usually hear the coyotes howling on the edge of our woods. We've lost more than one of our dogs to them in the past. Even though we have our problems with country living, I love it and wouldn't want to live anywhere else.

What problems, you ask? Well, let's see. During the wind storm we had several years ago, actually Hurricane Ike, but we don't have hurricanes in Indiana, so many trees fell in our yard, we had to put my truck in 4-wheel drive and drive it over our elevated sidewalk and through the yard around all the downed trees in order to get out. We came home from vacation once and found that a neighbor's horse had eaten every stalk of corn in our garden.

In the winter, our roads are the last to get the snow cleared off of them by the county highway department. Usually, the neighbors get their tractors out and clear the snow first. The water pipes in our house tend to freeze when the temps get down in to the single digits. But, what I think is the worst is when our spring stops running and we have no water. That's the problem right now. We're in such a drought that our spring has stopped producing water. When that happens, we have to have a load of water hauled in. Sometimes it takes a few days for our delivery to get here. When we are out of water, we cannot flush the toilet. All I can say is thank goodness the previous owners had the sense to put an outhouse out back. Ours is not the traditional wooden outhouse with the moon cut in the door. Ours is a little more substantial. Hidden in the pine trees behind our house is actually a port-a-potty that is permanently set over a concrete hole in the ground.

When we moved in here, it wasn't my first experience with an outhouse. My father used to own an old gas station that was built before indoor plumbing was popular. It was also my mom and dad's home before I was born. They lived on one side of the building while the gas station/grocery store was on the other. The only bathroom was an outhouse behind the building.


That outhouse was a "two-holer," like the the photo above. I'm not sure why there were two holes. Would you really want to sit next to someone in the outhouse like that?

So, we'll be using our outhouse until our load of water shows up. It's totally private back there, well until the neighbors drive by on their driveway next to the pine trees, or until the dog sniffs his way out there and pokes his nose in through the door that won't close all of the way.

Ah yes, I still love country living. Really, I do.

Carol

Saturday, October 2, 2010

NaNoWriMo

Yes, I am doing it again. I'm a pure sucker for punishment, but I am going to participate in the NaNoWriMo again. I really must be crazy because with my new job, I don't even have time to write over lunch anymore, so I will be altering my writing schedule for at least a month and see what happens. At least this year, I have a laptop and that will help.

For those that don't know, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month and it runs throughout the whole month of November. Sign-ups start this month on the web site link above.

The concept is that you do your best to write the first draft of a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. This will be my sixth consecutive years as a participant. I'm sad to say that I have never completed the 50,000 word mark, but that's okay, I've been close. I use NaNoWriMo as a jump start to a new novel. My Love, Lies & Deceit novel that was published was my NaNoWriMo project for 2005, and the manuscript that I just finished writing was my project novel from 2006.

There's not many rules for NaNo. The main one is no writing on the manuscript before November 1. You can do all the plotting and character development you want, as long as you haven't started writing and that's what I have been doing for the past several weeks. I have my character charts filled out and have at least the first three to four chapters plotted. Once I start typing, it may or may not follow the plot I have outlined, but that's okay.

What happens when you make it to the 50,000 words? Well, you win! Not any money, or a prize, or a publishing contract, but you win the satisfaction of knowing that you did it. Then, the real work starts in December. You need to start editing that rough draft so you can get that book published.

Good luck to all of my NaNo buddies and for anyone that wants to add me as your buddy on there, I'm langleylady.

Carol