Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Liebster Award

I’m so excited. I received a Liebster Award! Thank you, BJ Sheldon, for nominating me. Please check out BJ’s blog, she’s got some great posts to read.

Here’s how it works:

- I list 11 random facts about myself.

- I’ll answer the 11 questions asked of me by the person who nominated me.

- I will then nominate my 11 picks for the award, along with my 11 questions for them to answer when they post a response.

- If you’re nominated, your name/link will appear at the bottom of this post along with the questions I come up with.

- Follow the same format; paste the award badge to your blog, give us 11 random facts about yourself, answer my 11 questions, and choose your nominees…but you cannot nominate the blog who nominated you.

11 Random Facts About Me:

1. I love chocolate, in almost any form. Dark, milk, with or without nuts. You name it, I love it. Love it so much I've had a chocolate themed birthday party- oh, and a Christmas party, too.

2. I've been married to the same guy twice. The first time for just over three years. We celebrated our nineteenth anniversary for the second marriage in December 2012.

3. I've had fibromyalgia since I was twenty-five.

4. I'm five foot, seven inches tall.

5. I'm not the best housekeeper, or the worst. My wretched oven only gets scrubbed about once a year, but I cannot stand a dirty microwave. Not sure why the microwave being nasty bothers me so much, it just does.

6. I sleep wearing a Breath Right nasal strip almost every night, looking hilarious, but able to breathe.

7. I have two daughters. My eldest, Alexandria, was born in North Carolina at Seymour Johnson AFB, in June 1995, after I received an honorable discharge from USAF active duty that same year. Karina, my 'baby', was born in November 1997, in Kemerovo, Russia (we adopted her in November 2005). Fact: I now speak more Russian than Karina does... this isn't saying much, trust me.

8. I have the ability to become so immersed in a good book - or movie- it's difficult for the people around me to get my attention. This is something I think my dear husband would like to change, alas he has yet to accomplish this.

9. I pride myself on being the kind of friend who can be counted on to tell the truth, even when it may not be what my friend wants to hear, because that's the kind of friend I want to have. So if you want to ask someone if your ass looks big in those jeans, unless you want the honest truth, don't ask me.

10. I'm super sensitive to odors... especially bad ones. My daughter, Alex, says it's my super power.

11. My toy poodle, Penny, makes me smile every day. She's not even two years old and I'm already worried about how I'm going to make it when she grows old and passes away... this is sick, I know, but I just love her so much. I've NEVER loved an animal the way I love her, and I LURVE my animals.

BJ's Questions:

1. Who is your favorite author?

Oh, I have so many…can I only pick one? Okay, if I have to choose, right now, today, I have to say Tahere Mafi (Shatter Me series). Her style draws me in unlike any other author I’ve read.

2. What is your favorite classic novel and why?

At the risk of scandal, I admit I’ve not read a lot of ‘the classics.’ I should, I know. Maybe someday I will… But one that I have read and loved was The Great Gatsby, by F.S. Fitzgerald. The reason it’s my favorite may be because as a teen, when I read it, it represented some themes from my life… a longing for escape from reality and disappointment when illusions are lost. (That sounds like a load of bull crap, but it’s true.

3. If there was one person, either dead or alive, you could spend the day with, who would it be and why?

Man, tough question. There are so many famous people I'd love to spend a day with,. However, if I could pick just one person, I'm gonna say my brother, Anthony. He died when he was only seven weeks old from complications of kidney surgery. I'd love to get to know him as an adult, find out what type of person he'd have become, get to know his likes and dislikes, and see what he'd look like.

4. Book or eReader?

I read both, but prefer print books. The feel of them in my hands, turning pages, beautiful covers; they seem so much more real to me than eBooks.

5. If they turned your life into a big screen movie, who would play you?

Julia Roberts, of course… Best compliment I ever received: I was laughing out loud, mouth wide open, and someone said I looked like her. I don’t, but it was nice to be told that I did.

6. What was it that drew you to become a writer?

There have been stories swirling around in my brain since I was in third grade. I guess it was inevitable they’d get antsy and bust loose. Creating a world where all my dreams can come true, a place I can face my fears and overcome them, bringing forth characters I want to hang out with - some of them absolute hotties who’re realistic and yet better than real life, well, there’s the draw.

I have the ability to become so immersed in a good book - or movie- it's difficult for the people around me to get my attention. This is something I think my dear husband would like to change, alas he has yet to accomplish this.

7. What is your idea of the perfect day?

The perfect day involves a warm place, friends, music, good food, and no dishes to wash. It could happen at the beach or in the mountains in front of a fireplace, doesn’t really matter to me, as long as I’m with the people I love, who love me in return.

8. Dogs or cats?

Both. I love all cuddly animals, no matter the species. But, for a pet, I’d say dog, because I abhor changing the litter box. I actually have two dogs and four cats, only one house cat though.

9. What is the name of the person who inspired you the most growing up? How did they inspire you?

That’s hard to say, I can’t really put my finger on one single person. There were a lot of people around me doing things I didn’t want to do. In a way, they drove me the opposite direction. Someday, I’ll write that book, but not today. ;)

10. Who is your hero and why?

Okay, I’m just gonna say it…My hero is Jesus Christ. That may seem hokey, but He loves everyone, even the unlovable. He forgives everything, including the unforgivable. He accepted me, when I couldn’t accept myself. Most of all He chose me and gave up everything to die for me, that’s why He’s my hero.

This may offend some people; others may think I’m crazy. You could decide you don’t want to work with me, because of my beliefs, and that’s all right; I wish you the best. I don’t think my beliefs make me better than anyone else or that I’m righteous, because Heaven knows, I’m not. So, don't judge me and I'll do my best not to judge you. ;)

11. Where do you hope to be as a writer in ten years?

I always say, if you’re gonna dream, dream BIG. So in ten years, I hope to be a New York Times bestselling author, have at least five novels on the market, and one major motion picture released, with another in the works. Too much? Maybe. But, hey, why not? Stephanie Meyer wrote more than five books and had five major motion pictures within ten years of the time she began writing Twilight.

My Nominees:

Eleven. Wow, that's a lot.
Of course, I'm going to nominate all my CPs from TheOffBeats (numbers 1-6) and a few more of my favorite bloggers. This is not to say I don't have other faves, I do, but I could be here for days, so I've kept it at the suggested eleven. Remember, just because I've nominated them doesn't obligate them to participate. If they choose not to it's all right; I still love them all. Click their names to visit their blogs.
9. Summer Heacock

Nominees, here are your 11 questions:

1. Chocolate or vanilla?
2. What inspired your latest WIP?
3. How do you get your creative juices flowing?
4. Any OCD tendencies? If so, what?
5. Would your MC want hang out with you and vice versa? Why?
6. Do you believe in love at first sight? Why or why not?
7. What is one characteristic about yourself that you love?
8. What character quality do you wish you could trade in? What would you trade it for?
9. Is there music or television on while you write?
10. Finish this sentence: If I could live anywhere…
11. Why did you decide to write the genre(s) that you do?

Thursday, December 20, 2012

2012: On Its Way Out

Ah, Christmas... the year is coming to a close. 2012 has been a magical blur.

I started off my year convalescing from throat surgery. All is well, so don't worry. One magnificent thing about having surgery was it slowed me down enough that I had time to get back to my book. The book I'd abandoned sixteen months before, leaving it in the hard drive of my desktop, gathering all the proverbial dust.

So, as I sat my sickly ass in bed, I decided to see if I could hammer out a few more pages in my novel. Low and behold, here I am in December, ten pounds heavier and a full MS later, querying agents. Fan-freakin'-tastic!

The floors are a little dirty. Closets didn't get cleaned out - at all - this year. Plus, after a full year of neglect, my attic is a virtual hell hole - nothing can be found without large amounts of effort and two burly guys to move crap outta the way. So, even though 2012 was largely spent doing 'nothing' around my house, I am thrilled with how my year has turned out. Well, except those ten pounds... *note to self: get ass off chair long enough to walk a little each day.*

So this coming year I have some resolutions... yes, the dreaded, often abandoned resolutions...

Number One. I will lose the ten pounds I gained. No if, ands, or 'butts' about it.

Number Two. I will find my perfect agent... s/he will LOVE DEVASTATION as much as I do and will be thrilled at the prospect of pitching it to all the editors of all the presses.

I know, I should probably have a number three involving closets and attics, but... well... No. Just. No.

I'll keep you posted on how I'm doing with both of my resolutions as 2013 progresses.

Side Note: Another wonderful thing to come about this year was that I've met an amazing group of people through Twitter (if you're not on it, you should be). A few of us have come together to form a CP (critique partner) group call The Off Beats, not to be confused with The Beat Offs *side eyes at Lizzie*. This group of women authors have become my support group for all things, writing related or not. I'll be doing a post about The Off Beats soon, introducing each awesome member.

So, how was your year? Are you satisfied with the way things are wrapping up? Any resolutions for 2013? Remember, you're more likely to accomplish your goals when you tell people about them. Leave comments, share advice with other on how to reach their objectives, or tell us what your aspirations are (making them real and more attainable). I can't wait to hear from you and cheer you on!