Sunday, November 30, 2008

Houses with Character

I miss the pantry in my old house. My old house was a falling down 100 year old farm house (maybe older) and had been built by addition after addition over the years rather than in one fell (solid) swoop. It was old and used but it had a great deal of character. The pantry that was bigger than a walk-in closet was one of those little bits of character. It was also a source of insect trouble in the summers and even in the winter with moths. I'd love a house with a big pantry again. A house I am considering at the moment has a massive pantry that is as big as a regular room and even has a sink in it... I'm not sure what that is for really, but I like it. I am definately going to protect it with methods of bug control like pantry moth trap devices, although this house is not old, not delapidated and I'm not sure how the bug situation in California is anyway. Better safe than sorry.

Beautiful Blood Suckers

Vampire books are still one of the most popular types of fiction. I don't know how something that started out as such a gruesome character (the original Dracula was pretty gory and nasty) and turned into such a sexy immortal being. You rarely see vampires portrayed as ugly, twisted, ghoulish creatures now. Zombies and demons remain largely un-glamourized (well for the most part, I had a sexy 'sweet' demon in one of my novels). What was it that made a blood-sucking character like the vampire so 'beautiful' in our minds? I wonder about that a lot even though some of my favorite fictional characters past and present are vampire characters.

Flesh and Blood

Why is it that our characters in fiction really do not ever deal with the hum drum things in life such as affordable term life insurance quotes? I mean wouldn't that make them more human? Avoid the cardboard character syndrome? Maybe not. Some things might be left to the background of every day life but really I think some of the hallmarks of really great character building is to make put them in situations that occassionally require them to at least glance at over due bills, or a desk full of un-reconciled bank statments. Answering the phone and having it be a sales call, doesn't that happen to all of us at least a hundred times a day? Maybe that's just my life and I need a new phone number.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Distraction alert

Working at home has many benefits. It has many pitfalls too. Most people end up being unsuccessful working from home for one reason--they can't handle the distractions. It is so easy to get side-tracked. TV, chores, friends, even family who can't seem to understand that just because you are home does not mean you are available to run errands, talk on the phone, or have coffee all work hard to interrupt your work time.

Well, I'm pretty good at handling distractions and have never had any qualms about telling friends and family to 'beat it' because I'm working. However, I have a new distraction. His name is Simon.

No he's not a boyfriend, lol, he's a bird. He's so cuddly he is very distracting.

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Our next vacation is going to be completely enjoyable. No more trying to juggle flights, hotels, and sightseeing, we can let Consolodated Resorts plan our vacation and actually have fun for a change instead of needing a vacation from our vacation.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Don't Tell

This truly is a helpful video. Telling is one of my biggest peeves and it is such a common trap. Sometimes even for very experienced writers.

Tired of Writing?

When I have bad days working at home, or writer's block I begin to think about my alternatives should I get really tired of the hassles. What would I be doing if I weren't doing this? I'd probably look for jobs in retail since that is where my former experience is. It usually helps to get rid of writer's block in a hurry, and makes any hassles associated with working from home go away fast. It is great to know that finding jobs now is easier thanks to the Internet though. Someday I just might do it.

That Easy?

Don't you wish it really was this easy?

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Reality Bites

As a writer I hate thinking of the humdrum things like paying bills, home insurance, paying taxes and the like. I'd rather think about my next plot line, opinion piece, or how to piece. It's more fun but unfortunately all those little nagging things keep interrupting my train of thought. Those are the things that can really kill the mood at times. Okay, sometimes that's an excuse and the real block is over-thinking, but there are a lot of times when I'm on a real roll and someone plops the mail on my desk. I just want to cringe because my mind wants to continue on its path and I know I have to pay attention to 'reality'. Reality bites sometimes.

A Whale of a Time

You know how they always say artists are never famous until after they're dead--that includes writers too and it's sure not a new concept. I guess those lucky few who are famous now don't know how lucky they are.

Zen State of Mind

I think I'm going to plant some Pomegranate trees next spring. Okay, I bet you're asking what that has to do with writing. Everything. I actually get a lot of my thoughts together, and my inspiration when I'm digging in the dirt outside. When I get blocked, I go out and work the garden, prune trees, even muck stalls... everything comes undone at those times. Maybe it's the relaxing, maybe it's the fact that I'm not thinking about writing, or in most cases just not thinking about anything. It's sort of a zen state of mind, and when that happens everything just comes into focus. Since I can't really do too much in the garden at this time of year, and there really are only so many stalls to muck, when I get blocked sometimes I just sit back and let my mind wander about what I want to do next year... besides my birds just love pomegranate so it's a win-win.