the journey from writing a novel to ... what were we talking about again?

Tag: book (page 1 of 7)

Insert Title here.

First of all, thank you, thank you, thank you to the people who have taken the time to write me a letter of encouragement. Your letters mean so much more than you ever know. Do you know that I print them off and tape them into an ‘encouragement’ book so I can look at it periodically? Thank you.

So. What’s new? Well, I’ve submitted my manuscript to a publisher (the YA dystopian one) and I am awaiting an answer on that. In the meantime, I’m working on the Amish one. Which isn’t ‘technically’ Amish because when you think of Amish books, you think of your typical ‘life in the community of’, but this is more with a twist. So I’ve been working on that. Slowly. And funny enough, the music that has been ‘musing’ me through, is the ‘Brother’s’ album by the ‘Black Keys’. Go figure. I’m at about 10,000 words and have many more to go. But I keep wondering outloud how things will tie together. Because tying is always important. Especially when wearing shoes.

And then I think about all the other ‘plots’ I want to write about. I’ve got this ‘Journal’ one that’s brewing in my heart (temporary title so it makes sense to hubby when I start spouting off things…) so I’ve made a very important decision. Depending on of course, what I am listening to and what moves me, I will be working on three novels. Which could be complicated, but I’m going to print them out and place them in three different stacks so that I can reread what I need to and get in the groove. Because honestly? I should be done by now!!!


Incidentally, I also posted two blogs on the International Christian Fiction Writers’ blog, and here they are. This one and this one.

happy spring to you!

My Tags

So apparently my webpage is found when someone googles, ‘weird body things’. Isn’t that fantastic? I’m a little excited by it.  My friend Suzanne told me it was because I tagged one of my posts those exact words.  When I was talking about allergic rhinitis.  So I think it’s time to write about other things.

You already know I”m high maintenance. Which I detest. I hate taking care of myself. I used to love soaking in the tub, doing my hair, removing hair off my toes, waxing my moustache (oh be quiet. everyone gets hair there.) Painting my toenails…

Now I find it way too time consuming. I could be doing other productive things like writing, or reading, or cleaning my house or playing with my dog. I could even clean all the gunk out of my bellybutton ring hole to keep the hole open even though I don’t wear a belly button ring anymore because it gets too infected.

So now let’s talk about my knee.

Three months ago (June?) we went to North Carolina for a holiday. I sat around a lot. I did do some running,  but mostly it was all on one night when I was mad at hubby for something ridiculous which I can’t remember right now, but was probably because he ate all the chocolate or something.  And when we got back, I was strawberry picking and then I felt an intensely sharp pain behind my right knee cap. Something dreadful and wouldn’t go away.  So after a few days of awfulness I dragged my butt to my poor doctor who usually hears from me once a week (actually that would be his lovely nurse receptionist who hears from me, but it’s not usually a problem with me, it could be with Dan or the gaffer but let’s just say we have a great relationship and I butter her up with hot chocolates and strawberry jam) who told me I stressed it and to put some weird anti-inflammatory cream on my knee four times a day. This cream was not cream but oily goo that was impossible to rub in.  Anyhoo, three months went by and I finally went to a physiolady. Guess who has no tissue behind her right knee cap?


So now I”m on physio exercises for my knee cap. And am still on physio for the same knee for something else I can’t remember but can’t do it because they contradict each other. And I still do physio for my left shoulder which I tore tree climbing.

I have decided I am slowly falling apart. And it’s very annoying… and I don’t have time for this.


So… coming to my book launch or what?

reading: um… Corsets and Clockworks or something.

listening to: hubby clean the tub. because I can’t kneel.

watching: the dog stare at me as she waits for me to play with her…

Writing Outlines…

Just because I have a book published and another on its way, doesn’t mean I have all the answers. Actually, it doesn’t mean I have any answers.

People can ask me if their writing is good and I don’t have answer. I can tell them if I like it, but I can’t tell them if anyone else will like it, or even if it’s good enough to be published. Because I have no idea. Really.

So now that I’ve changed genres (children’s fiction to adult) I can’t write the same.  I used to be able to put on some funky jazz, grab a chai latte and write. Be as ridiculous as possible without overdoing it and tie it together. That’s easy. Granted, I’d have issues with tying it together (ie: I have no plot), but that’s it.  Now? Oof.

But I was glancing through my facebook and happened upon a ‘facebook friend’, whose status said she was working on a chapter outline.

Of course!!! Why didn’t I think of that?

I know exactly what I want the book to be about, I know what steps will progress, what will happen to whom… but an outline! Brilliant!

So I jotted down the basic outline, chapter by chapter (with sub-chapters to be added later … maybe) and now it all makes sense! So now I can just pick my ‘sentence’ and write with it, beginning and ending that chapter so that each chapter achieves my little goal set for it.


Why didn’t anyone ever tell me about this???? I’ve always just … written the darn thing, from front to back. Huh.

Listening to: the dishwasher

Drinking: water. I’ve already had two teas. Actually, I’ve had one and a half. I put it down somewhere and I can’t find… oh there it is! But it’s way over there. And I’m tucked in. I’ll just drink my water.

Watching: am hoping to watch the first season of Glee.

Eating: am hoping to mowing on some chow mein from the Golden Palace tonight



I don’t think I blogged about Toronto, did I? Hmm, hmmm. Ok.

So after meeting the brilliant Melissa of HCC, we went to three Chapters’ stores and I signed stock. Then she showed me how to catch a cab (not as easy as you think) and I spent half an hour in the back of a cab driving down Young. Or maybe it was Bay. I have no idea. And he dropped me off, safe and sound. So then I went to the ‘Library’ pub and had a cobb salad which was amazing and read December’s Vanity Fair with Johnny Depp on the cover? Crazy article about Randy Quaid in there if you’re interested. Then I fell asleep watching ‘Best in Show’ which is definitely one of my all-time favourites.  Then I woke up at 6 and had a bubble bath (they have deep tubs at the Royal York!) and then went to the Metro Convention Centre. There I had a breakfast thingy and met: Lesley Livingston (of Wondrous Strange), Vicki Grant (of Not Suitable for Family Viewing), Tish Cohen (of Truth About Delilah Blue), Dan Vyleta (of the Quiet Man), and Rachna Gilmore (of The Trouble with Dilly).  It was super cool. (And I got free books!!) And then I went up to the HarperCollins table and signed EIGHTY books! I met all kinds of people. Some were super friendly and would love to have hot chocolate with them and some were like, ‘just give me the book’. Then I got to walk around and I met other people and then I left.  

The train ride home was very packed and I was very lucky to be sitting next to someone who wasn’t a seat hogger and didn’t smell bad. He was a very nice lawyer type smart guy and we talked about music and books. But it was interesting because we didn’t really have the same tastes. But it just goes to show you that you can still meet interesting people. I mean, he let me listen to his ipod for goodness sakes and he did have some pretty good music on there that I will have to check out. The only one coming to mind at the moment is Jeff Buckley. Who is of course, fabulous, but he’s not Leonard Cohen (sorry Ron!)

Then the boys picked me up at the train station (sadly, my little one had a fever of 102.5) and hugged me. I found out that the gaffer had come home from school on Thursday, played outside with Daddy then came into the house and promptly started crying. When asked what was wrong, he tearfully cried out: I miss Mommy! She’s supposed to be in the kitchen making supper!

I’m so proud.

Ok, so I have all of these books, plus another one from Lee Strobel called ‘The Ambition’  and I just received Catherine McKenzie’s ‘Arranged‘.

Wait. I have 7 books to read and a book to write.

Uh oh.

Reading: The Girl Who Could Fly

Watching: Fifth Element

Drinking: some kind of chai tea. I ran out of syrup.

I Love News…

First off? Let me say how excited I am that Target is coming to Canada. While my heart feels bad for Zellers, let’s face it, Target has its act together. And they sell great clothes at cheaper prices. Not…cheap clothes at cheap prices. And their linens! Don’t even get me started on their duvets!

I’ve got an agent. And I think I’m allowed to say who it is. Mr. Bill Jensen! I am super excited as we had a few phone calls and every single time I talk to him, I get that ‘sparkle’ in my eyes (has hubby puts it) because I honestly believe he is the one that will help me reach my potential. Yay! And you couldn’t ask for a sweeter guy. I like him. Sadly, he lives in Oregon.  But strangely coincidental (God-incidental: my word!) is that my lovely ex-editor Kathleen just moved to the exact same town he lives in! How crazy is that? No, I haven’t checked out flight tickets yet, but probably later today. First I have to take down my tree.

While I haven’t really heard anything from Zondervan about book 3 (as Bill kindly reminded me) the publishing business is crazy-slow. I can’t believe how slow it is. And I’m sitting here debating whether to start book 3, banking on, what I think are good sales, to expect a book 3, or if I should write the Amish Fiction.  My AGENT (oooh, I like that word!) told me to just write the A.F. as it has a strong plot. Oh, I wish I could share with you, but I really can’t. Except to say that the main character ends up in an Amish community. But the craziest part which is blowing my mind off the rails (ie. spent twenty minutes in the cooking section at Chapters staring off into space) is that I need to write 70,000 words.


That’s a lot of words.

I’ve written two books, one is 36,000 and the other is about 33,000. Which added up, would be the right amount. However, it took me 5 months to write the second and that’s only half an adult book.

And then there’s the daunting issue of aiming for the big leagues now. Which means bigger words, better descriptions and more character involvement.

I’m kinda excited.

I think I need to make a list of things I need to do beforehand (ie: study Amish Villages and find rockin’ soundtrack) and do some soul searching.  I’m so excited.

And I love how God gave me the most awesome idea for the book in a dream at 5:31am.  And I wish I could share it, but I can’t. Just know that it involves a mason jar. 🙂

Drinking: market spice tea from Teaopia. Ohmyword it’s gooood!

Watching: the soft snow coming down.

Listening to: the child build paper airplanes.

Reading: Vanity Fair (december issue with Cher on the cover) it’s fantastic! There’s this awesome vignette on a couple of military guys who were stranded in the ocean during WWII. Absolutely fascinating! And Cher gave a good interview too.

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