Friday, October 30, 2009

Got Questions?

These days we can connect with anyone virtually. Facebook, Twitter, blogs, etc. People all over the world can be found and connected with others through a few clicks of the mouse. Folks give updates on anything and everything that happens in their life (or someone else's.) Their thoughts, questions, ponderings, and such, are out there for all the world to see.

It has me wondering, does anyone really care what others have to say? Or do we just enjoy seeing ourselves and our words out there in the universe?

I've met some wonderful friends through blogging. My writing group has become so near and dear to me that I'm not sure what I'd do without those three gals in my life. I've reconnected with old friends on Facebook. I've learned personal tidbits of info on people via Twitter (some I find funny or fascinating--others not so much.)I really enjoyed reading the comments on my last post. I enjoyed getting to know more about all my blogging buddies. I want to know more!

Many times I find myself wanting to ask semi-famous people questions, but I refuse to feel like one of those stalker types, so I only lurk in the shadows of their social networking sites. I am by no means semi-famous, but I do wonder if any of my blog readers have questions they'd like to ask me. Does anyone really give a hoot about me or my life except for the minuscule parts I blog about? Probably not. But maybe. I think it's a fun social experiment to find out.

Usually I hold my cards close to my chest with strangers, but most of you don't feel like strangers to me anymore. So, if you have something you'd like to ask, I'm making myself an open book for a couple days. Ask away. I will answer all questions in my next post. There's only one catch. You have to post a random or interesting fact about yourself. Yup, this is a give and take relationship.

Monday, October 26, 2009

The Men of our Dreams

My mother suggested I read The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. I started it and she’s right—as always—I love it. Some of the thoughts and quotes in this novel are timeless, but one in particular almost made me drop the book in a moment of self-realization.
“I sometimes think I prefer suitors in books rather than right in front of me. How awful, backward, cowardly, and mentally warped that will be if it turns out to be true.”

Oh boy. Juliet summed up my dating dilemmas in two sentences. What if I’m turning away perfectly good suitors because they don’t live up to the high standards my fictitious crushes have set? My passion for great love stories will result in me never having my own. What a twisted trick of fate that would be.

The 3 dream men of my life are amazing. They set a very high bar.

1.) REID ROSENTHAL (From The Bachelorette) – He takes the number one spot because he makes me laugh. He’s got a sense of humor that I adore, and a smile that’s contagious. His soulful eyes, family values, and playful (yet kind of shy) demeanor makes me melt. I could list 88 other reasons why I find him gorgeous (inside and out) but then we start crossing into the stalker realm. I’m sure he has enough of those.
2.) MICHAEL BUBLE (Singer)- Another real life guy (kind of). I don’t follow tabloid gossip, so don’t tell me if he’s not as perfect and old-fashionably romantic as I imagine him to be. We have a starry-eyed love affair through his songs (he writes all of them for me you know). I’m sure we’d dance around to Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald music while agreeing that no matter how fast-paced and lacking-in-morals the world is, we will always make time for, and stay true to each other, until the end of time.
3.) SETH MORGAN- Okay, he’s a character in the novel Wicked Lovely, but who cares? He’s a smart, sexy, readaholic who is just the right balance of sensitive and bad ass. He’s faithfully devoted to his girl (which of course is me—not Aislinn) and he stays and fights for love even when times get tough, dangerous, and seemingly impossible. His pet snake freaks me out a bit, but I am willing to accept a few quirks and flaws. That comes with any relationship.

Everyone is flawed. I’m okay with that. I certainly have flaws. My characters are flawed. Boringly perfect is, well, boring. I don’t want perfect. I want perfect for me. The problem is, perfect for me has become a delicate blend of Reid, Michael, and Seth.

Now here’s the problem with my crushes (besides the obvious never-gonna-happen part). They are only perfect in my mind. Reid and Michael may exist in real life BUT their fame has probably inflated their ego to a size so astronomic it would never fit in my quaint little universe. I don’t like cocky, and with that many fans, I’m sure it’s next to impossible to not be cocky. Plus, who knows if Reid was being Real Reid while cameras followed him around 24-7. And Michael is used to red carpets and sold out shows. Would he ever be happy with movie nights on the couch eating ice cream together? Um, no, probably not.

Watching my crushes on TV, listening to them on my Ipod, or reading about them in a book is not helping me achieve my dream of finding my soul mate. It’s not like Seth is going to cross a magical portal and spring to life from the pages of my books.

(I just had flashbacks of that 80’s A-ha video for Take On Me. I LOVED that video as a kid. Wow, maybe my fictitious crush issues run deeper than I thought.)

Anywho, how can three men I've never met leave me all warm and tingly? And why can’t the men I go on dates with ever make me feel that way?

I don’t know how the Guernsey story ends yet. I’m hoping it’s something like... the pen pal letters from Dawsey evolve into love letters, Juliet goes to Gurnsey to meet him in person, their worlds collide; resulting in fireworks, magical kisses, late nights, comfortable silence, lots of laughter, and a happily ever after. Wait. What a coincidence, that’s how I want MY story to unfold too. (Seriously, I’m placing the blame for my fairytale syndrome on A-ha. That’s gotta be where all this stems from.)

Please tell me I’m not alone. Who are your fictitious or never-gonna-happen crushes? And why do you love them so much?

Friday, October 16, 2009

Storytellers of the World

Storytellers. Where would the world be without them?
No, seriously. In the rush to speed read through blogs today, take ten seconds to contemplate that question.
Where would the world be without storytellers?

Sad thought isn't it?

Now, if you have a couple more minutes, watch this video. I figured I'd watch one or two minutes then click away. But like any great storyteller, she made me stay until the end. She left me touched, moved, in awe, and teary-eyed. An amazing, hauntingly beautiful story being told in a very unique way.

Her name is Ksenya Simonova. She was on Ukraine's Got Talent. Her canvas is a pane of glass. She used volcanic and sea sand to create a masterpiece tale of those effected by the Great Patriotic War. Love, loss, hope, despair, and how those emotions change us and our lives. You may have recognized some of the music. The voice sound clips were from war news footage.

Proof that in any language, or time period, the beauty and fragility of the human soul is universal.

Here's to the storytellers. Thank you for sharing your gift with the world.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

This Is Not For You

This is not for you.

This is not for family, or friends, or writers.
These words are not advice, or wisdom, or to be critiqued in any way.
This is not proper punctuation, or grammar, or sentence structure.
This is expression, emotion, and raw reverie.

This is for an eighteen-year-old man,
driving too fast from a story he knows every side of.
Wishing tonight she’d finally choose love instead of lies.
With eyes like stars and a heart bigger than the moon,
who had no idea his midnight ride would be his last.

This is for a seventeen-year-old girl,
sitting beside a wrecked car on a dark winding road,
whispering I love you and promising it will all be okay.
With no idea she is holding a last chance in her arms,
who thirteen years later, is still waiting to say I’m sorry.

This is for a night that loops repeatedly through my mind.
With his mother’s tears forever falling upon the hospital floor,
while his big brother’s scream eternally echoes down a hallway.
Where thirteen years later, a part of my soul still stands in that ER,
begging him not to go.

This is because it is 10-14.
Every year on this day, I yearn to bake a birthday cake, find the perfect gift,
and attach it to 888 balloons,
so it will float up into Heaven,
and show him that I haven’t forgotten.
That I will never forget.

This is for him. And for me. And for them.

This is for anyone who knows this feeling.
Who is haunted by a number, a date, a song,
or a place and time you can’t reach.
Who incorrectly assumed there would always be tomorrow.
For those who talk to the stars, and pray an angel is listening.

This is for everyone who has ever loved, or lost.
Who has experienced the beauty of this world, or the ugliness.
Who understands the meaning of tragedy,
but hopes to be spared from it, again.
For those who brave the path of healing,
even when it seems an impossible journey.

This is for anyone living their story.
To anyone who believes in happily ever after, or fears a nevermore.

We are countless characters, with infinite backstories,
creating never-ending plots in this book called life.
We are the sum of our parts, our people, and our experiences.
Moments hidden away in almost forgotten pages,
and memories that never leave us,
fluttering like angel wings as the chapters of our life rapidly flip by.

This is not for you, or for him, or for me.
This is for each and every soul who has ever felt sorry, guilty, lost, afraid, abandoned, insecure, unsure, self-doubting, self-loathing, self-sacrificing, misguided, misunderstood, unknown, unseen, unheard, unkind, loved, hated, hurt, confused, or alone.

We are all in this together.
We all have a him, her, them, me, or us.
We all live with a mistake, a regret, a burden, a broken promise, or a shattered heart.
We are all living this life one page at a time,
and we all have a story to share.
This is for the stars, the moon, and the angels.

This is for all of us.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Change of FireHeart

Debbie Ohi aka InkyGirl (or on Twitter InkyElbows)always has great tweets. She tweets links to literary news and happenings, writing advice, etc. Today she tweeted a link to a blog post by Alegra Clarke on Editor Unleashed about NaNoWriMo.

Dang it.

I've been trying not to get sucked in the November madness. November is jam packed with my trip home to Baltimore, NFL football games, fall frolicking at the beach when the weather cools down, possible moving, Thanksgiving, my annual early xmas trip to Disney World with my family. The list goes on and on.

I can't write a 50k word novel in November!
I mean sure I wrote a 150k word novel in a little over two months last winter, but I was insane and out of touch with most of reality for those two months. I don't want to go through that again.

Oh wait. Yes I do.

That "creative state of crazy" was one of the best times of my life. The thought of writing a first draft of a whole new novel in one month excites me. I get to conjure up new people in a new world with new adventures, problems, character flaws, and of course (since it's me writing the story) there will be a whole lot of magic and fantasy.

So, Alegra and Debbie, you have twisted my arm. I have caved. NaNoWriMo here I come.

My username is FireHeart. (My acupuncturist told me I was a "FireHeart" during our last session. Since I was a child I've wondered what my name would be if I was a CareBear, so now I know. FireHeart. I like it. Now I need a cool picture for my belly.)

Are you up for the NaNoWriMo challenege? Have you already registered? If so let me know what your username is so we can all cheer each other on. Ya know like, "CareBear Stare!!!" Sorry, can you tell I loved the CareBears?

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Karmic Kraziness

If you're a tweeter (aka member of Twitter), you probably follow group chats. I usually lurk on #KidLitChat and #YALitChat. Mostly I just take it all in and keep my opinions to myself, but this past week I read something that sent my karma radar beeping off the charts.

The discussion of the evening was EBooks. That is one giant soapbox that I won't scrub or dub around in right now. However, an agent said this...
e reader ARC hopefully would mean they wouldn't end up on ebay any more #kidlitchat


First off, just in case anyone doesn't know, an ARC is an Advanced Reader Copy of a book. Meaning someone was lucky enough to get a copy before it was released to the public. Meaning said lucky person got it for free. Usually as part of it's promotional campaign. As in, please read this and if you like it, help promote the book and the author. NOT and I repeat, NOT SELL IT ON EBAY.

I mean, seriously. What kind of person does this? I was so grateful when I received my first ARC. I am always grateful when I win a book in a contest or giveaway. My way to show my gratitude is to help spread the word so the author, agent, publisher, etc. can continue earning a living by legitimately selling copies of their books. As if the business isn't tough enough these days, now we've got people taking advantage of the ARC system?

The karma gods will be laying a major smackdown on the people who are selling or have sold ARCs on Ebay. I know it. Karma gods are always watching, and they take their jobs very seriously. If any of you readers have committed this greedy crime, feel free to remove yourself as one of my blog supporters. I don't want any bad karma due to the guilty by association rule.

For the rest of you, who are like me, and assume people have more common sense and morals than to do such a thing, can I get a "WTH?"

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

It's All Subjective

My last post on adverbs might have been interpreted as me being picky (or judgmental). Writing and reading is subjective, so I understand the varying reactions to my post. However, it actually was my attempt at a bit of literary humor. (See, I do use adverbs. I'm quite fond of them ACTUALLY.) I'm going to quote a pro and see if he does better than me.

"Great Rules of Writing"
Do not put statements in the negative form.
And don't start sentences with a conjunction.
If you reread your work, you will find on rereading that a
great deal of repetition can be avoided by rereading and editing.
Never use a long word when a diminutive one will do.
Unqualified superlatives are the worst of all.
De-accession euphemisms.
If any word is improper at the end of a sentence, a linking verb is.
Avoid trendy locutions that sound flaky.
Last, but not least, avoid cliches like the plague.
~William Safire

Come on. One of those had to make you giggle.

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