Friday, February 29, 2008

Still Celebrating

Yesterday I went out to celebrate receiving my ARCs with Jan. She's been a wonderful friend and encourager since we met four years ago at a writers group she founded. The group folded, but our friendship thrived. She's not in the 2004 photo because she was taking it. I'm sitting on the right side.

We went to Starbucks (where else?), and took turns taking photos of each other. We were practically giddy. At one point, a lady at a nearby table suggested she take a photo of the two of us. In case you're wondering, I'm holding a bookmark. :)

Jan is one of those girls who will chat with anyone, so everyone within a 200 yard radius now knows about Searching for Spice.

If you’re curious about Jan's version of yesterday’s fun, go here.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Oh Happy Day!

I was delighted to find a box of ARCs (Advanced Reader Copies) of Searching for Spice waiting for me when I got home today.

Actually, I didn’t find them as much as I was surprised by them. My daughters opened the box, took one out and hid the box. When I sat in my usual seat to turn on my laptop, one of the girls asked, “What’s that book next to your chair?” When I turned to look—there it was!

I jumped up screaming, they screamed and the rest of the night was a happy blur. We even went out to buy a celebration pie for dessert.

My lovely Liz warmed my heart when she leafed through it, beaming her gorgeous smile.

Even our dog Belle decided to give it a read.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

The Countdown Begins!

My delightful friend Jan from Bold & Free made a countdown ticker for me, counting down the days until Searching for Spice releases. Isn’t she a dear?!

I embedded it on the left side of my blog, but it’s too cute not to put it into a post.

Thanks, Jan!

Saturday, February 23, 2008

The Sunny Side of the Street

Grab your coat and get your hat, leave your worry at the doorstep.

Just direct your feet to the sunny side of the street.

Can't you hear that pitter pat and that happy tune is your step.

Life can be so sweet on the sunny side of the street.

I’ve had this song running through my brain for days lately when I’ve driven down my street. You see, I live on the sunny side of the street. I often work on my laptop in the living room, and last week I heard the sound of my neighbor breaking up the ice on his driveway while ours was bone dry. That’s what you get for having a south-facing house in sunny Colorado.

My front lawn is on the right in the photo. The sunny side.

Of course there’s a downside. One year during the holidays I thought a live wreath would be lovely on the door. After about three days it was a pile of pine needles on my front porch.

Happy winter to you!

Friday, February 22, 2008

Where Do You Write?

Hi, friends. I'm sitting in my local Panera Bread, getting down to work. Of course, the first order of business (after this post!) is to get to my critique partner's work. Then on to my stuff.

I meet with a group of local writers on Friday mornings to write--no talking!! And most of the time that's the way it goes.

We had been meeting at a tea cafe, but we've decided to mix it up. Next week we're going to a funky coffee bar, and we plan on visiting the coffee shop of our local Christian store too.

I've found these weekly field trips to be great for my productivity. There's no dog to let in and out of the house, no laundry that's calling to me, no dishes to be done (they'll still be there when I get home), no nothing to think about except writing.

So, where do you go when you want a change of scene to write?

PS: What a treat I got today when I arrived at Panera this morning--my friend Kay was already there, writing away. She's not one of the writers in the group, so it was neat to meet up with her anyway. Write on, Kay!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Beautiful Blogger Award

The Beautiful Blogger AwardMy lovely friend Jan awarded me with this award. She is one of those wonderful friends who is always going out of her way to do something sweet.

Thanks, Jan.

So What Are You Reading?

Today I visited Ane Mulligan’s blog and decided to play a game that she’s playing over at her place.

The Rules:

1. Pick up the nearest book (of at least 123 pages), or whatever book you are currently reading.

2. Open the book to page 123.

3. Find the fifth sentence.

4. Post the next three sentences.

5. Tag five people.

Okay, here's mine from Bygones, by Kim Vogel Sawyer:

Might give her the wrong idea too.
She trudged up the stairs and went to the kitchen sink to wash the remnants of coal dust from her hands. Outside the kitchen window, the sky look bleak, like the color of an old iron washtub.

I'm curious about what Angie, Jan, Tonya, Heather and Marion are reading. Come girls, let's play!

Anyone else want to play? Leave a comment so we can hop over to your blog to see what you’re reading right now.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Tara Road

Last night we watched the movie Tara Road, based on the book by Maeve Binchy. She’s been one of my favorite authors for years. I’m certain I read the book a while back, and I plan to read it again.

The movie was a delight. Not a light-hearted flick, but one where you were able to cozy up to the characters and really to get love (or hate) them.

But the best part of the DVD was the interview with Ms. Binchy. I loved hearing what inspired the story, what her vision of the characters were and other insights she shared. I recommend both the movie and, of course, the book!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

We've Come a Long Way, Baby

I want to go here. It’s somewhere in Ireland, probably in Limerick.

The photo was taken in 1907, when my grandmother, her mother and sisters went to visit family. Isn't the little dog in the photo cute? No wonder I love terriers, it must be in my DNA.

My grandmother is standing, second from left and her mother is sitting in front of her on the left. Those women were born in 1880 and 1848. My great aunts are the two ladies standing on the right. What a different world they inhabited from the reality I experience today. My grandmother passed away a few months before I was born. I’ve often thought what it would be like if she could experience one day of the present time with me. Where would I even begin to explain the advances in culture and technology to her? Just an interesting thought I had.

Another thought—my great grandmother was only a little over six years older than I am now when that photo was taken. Yowsa. I hope I age better than great-granny!

I made a copy of this photo and sent it to my cousin Jeanne, who is into genealogy. Although we’ve never met in person, we’ve emailed and shared family history. Who knows, maybe all of the information Jeanne’s sharing will somehow, someday end up in a book.

PS: If you look to the far left side of the photo, you'll see the horses a** that my dad said he always knew was in the family.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

New Voices Ad Campaign

This is the advertisement that Tyndale created to promote new authors. Isn't it great?! (The color may be a bit funky because I printed the pdf and then scanned it to a jpg.) So far this ad's been in a library journal and some trade journals. Look for it in the March edition of Today's Christian Woman.

I'm so very grateful to be an author for such a wonderful organization. As one author friend told me, "Tyndale knows how to sell books."

(If you click on the image, it will open larger in your window.)

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Watching the Super Bowl?

Are you getting ready to watch the Super Bowl? Naah. Me neither. And to be honest, on the years that I've watched it—it’s only for the commercials.

Here’s a random thought. I went to a Pampered Chef party on Friday night, and I realized that I could never be a Pampered Chef representative. The woman who entertained us, informed us and whipped up a delicious dinner salad for us was wonderful. But here’s my point: She had to repeatedly say a few phrases that I could never spit out as gracefully as she did. “Hard-anodized aluminum,” and “tri-ply clad stainless steel.”

Nope. There’s no way I could say those tongue twisters with such ease. So I guess I’ll stick to being a writer.