Sunday, February 27, 2011

Sadomasochistic stockbrokers and bunny slippers

I won't be in blogosphere range this week. I'll be playing out the dos and don'ts of my horoscope (courtesy of Free Will Astrology).
Do play soccer in bunny slippers at dawn in a supermarket parking lot with a gang of sadomasochistic stockbrokers who've promised to teach you the Balinese monkey chant. 
Don't lie on a floor surrounded by wine-stained poetry books, crumpled Matisse prints, abandoned underwear, and half-eaten bowls of corn flakes as you stare up at the ceiling with a mad gaze, muttering gibberish and waving your hands as if swatting away demons. 
Not so much ... I will be doing a guest blog post over at Jenna Quentin's blog. Jenna is one of my SCBWI buddies and her blog is for readers and writers. It explores life as a backdrop for wonderful stories, viewing people as amazing characters. 

She'll be posting my guest blog post on Thursday France time (not to be confused with daylight savings time or dinner time).  

The post is about stealing other people's lives and putting it into your fiction how to weave your life experiences into your story - or as I like to say: how killing my childhood friend's frog led me to write Dead Frog on the Porch. 

While you're cruising the blogosphere check out the Tiny Canadian's blog (she lives 20 miles north of freezing and 32 miles south of Nobody Cares, just off the coast of freezing cold Canada) where she rants about complaining (not the same as complaining about ranting) and Barbie Kong's blog where creativity meets heavy metal and she comes to the realization that she's getting old (relative to everyone younger than her).

We'll whether you're ranting, complaining, too old, too young or just too good looking, we can all get inspiration from this video of Ginger Rogers at 92 dancing the salsa with her great grandson. P.S. Just googled it and Ginger Rogers died at 83 ... so whomever it is, the dancing it's pretty impressive.   

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Adventures in Publishing

My adventures in publishing continue as my publisher, Gumboot Books, will be going out of business March 1, 2011. 

While this was unexpected and hugely disappointing, it is not an unusual occurrence for a writer to experience. Many thanks to the talented and hardworking Crystal Stranaghan and Jared Hunt for their energy and dedication over the last few years publishing the first two books in the Megabyte Mystery series: DeadFrog on the Porch and Dead Bird through the Cat Door.

While I am pursuing a few avenues to keep the characters and stories alive, the books will go out of print.   

So, if there was ever a time you thought about buying a copy of either (or both) of my books now would be the time. The books will be available on Amazon worldwide for a few more weeks (publisher is not sure when Amazon will take them off).  I will continue to be available for school visits and will have a number of copies available for purchase at future school visits. 

While this puts a hitch in my literary giddy up, I will continue with my plans for world domination one manuscript at a time, and hope that my bloggowers will be with me on that journey.   

To leave everyone on a high note, here’s a video clip I’ve used before and it seems appropriate to use it again. Defying Gravity from the hit broadway musical Wicked. We, as writers continually defy gravity to create and have our work live outside of our sasquatch writing caves. 

And, since I get accused of being all about the 80s, another video comes to mind.  When I was traveling in Africa (alternately insert Thailand, India, Ecuador or any other country with jungle) I inevitably would find myself hiking through the jungle knee deep in mud. The words from the Talking Head’s song 'Once in a Lifetime' would come to mind: “And you may ask yourself, well … how did I get here?” I’m going to find out the answer to David Byrne’s question: “Where does that highway go to?”

I’m off to dip my quill in ink and start working on my next novel …

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Jocosa of the Earrings Society Manifesto

It started when I received a mysterious package in the mail and opened it to discover the most amazing, fabulous earrings. Every time I look at them I discover a new aspect of their fabulousness. 

Little did I know that it wasn't just a gift from my generous friend Jocosa - it was my induction into the Jocosa of the Earrings Society.

Being a tad bit like Jane - one half of the twin protagonists in my middle grade Megabyte Mystery series - I wanted to know the rules of the society - the maifesto if you will. 

So I pressed Jocosa into coming up with one. And it goes something like this:   

You must believe that:

10-Wild Women never get the blues

9-Everyone Loves James Brown

8-There’s always room for ice cream

7-Life can only be taken seriously for 5 seconds

6-Magic Wands do exist

5-When in doubt of #6 play The Beatles

4-The psychedelic colors and clothes of the sixties are always in style 

3-Your accessories reflect your karma

2-When it comes to jewelry Less is NEVER More

1-You might forget your clothes, shoes or make-up, but never you earrings

Here are a couple of pic of me with my new cool earrings.

close up of the earrings minus the tip of my nose

Jocosa Wade has launched her website, and a blog called I'm not John Irving which will explore the place where acting meets writing - a unique concept that I haven't come across in the blogosphere. Check it out! 

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Ping ya later ... or Isn't the Internet Awesome!

The first cell phone
Think of all the awesomeness that is the Internet. Not only has it created a new lexicon, but we have all those uber cute icons. I don't need to list the things we all use the Internet for because you're probably doing at least a few of them now as you read this blog post. So let's thank those aliens from outer space, geeks, really smart people who invented the Internet.

Without the Internet I wouldn't be able to say: "thanks for blurbing me on your blog." Followed, of course, by the ubiquitous smiley face icon.

I wouldn't be able to ping or poke you, or flip you an email.

Crazy cat videos would be all but non-existent.

I wouldn't be able to say, sarcastically or not, isn't there an app for that?

You'd have to be happy with your once a year Christmas letter that's all about me rather than constant  blog, Face Book, and Twitter updates that are all about me.

The terms upload and download would have no meaning - there would only be unload the groceries from the car or the dishes from the dishwasher.

I wouldn't be able to video chat with my writer buddy Jocosa of the Earrings in the comfort of my sasquatch writing cave wearing my sweat pants. Back in the olden days (aka the 80s) 'they' said that video conferencing would never catch on because women wouldn't want to be seen in the morning without their hair done and make up on. Really, the wheels of industry would grind to a halt because I wouldn't want to be seen with curlers in my hair? But I digress.

Here's a clip of the Today Show from the early 90s where they get into a deep philosophical discussion about the @ sign and then move on to the more important paradigm shifting question of 'what is the Internet anyway'?

Get a hold of how big Jerry's home phone is in this clip from the 90s.


Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The reviews are in at Cindy's Love of Books

Well it truly was a Jan-a-palooza the last few days over at Cindy's Love of Books review blog.

Cindy did a review of Dead Frog on the Porch and Dead Bird through the Cat Door

She also interviewed moi and I revealed interesting, and yet, unrevealed things about raw fish, sisters and my characters' theme song. You can check out the interview here.  

Check out the rest of her blog while you are there. She reviews middle grade books, participates in reading challenges and interviews authors. Her blog is a good resource to keep up with what's out there in terms of middle grade novels and she's super friendly.

Here's a hint about Cyd and Jane's theme song (if they had one);