Thursday, February 24, 2011

The License Plate Game - Or The Mind of a Crazy Woman!

Some people play the license plate game when they travel – meaning they look for all 50 states. I play my version every single day. I try to come up with a word or phrase using the 3 letters of a license plate. I do this mainly with our own cars, but have been known to do it to others, too.

We had the letters HEF on the tags of two of our vehicles when we first moved to Ohio. I called them Heffer1 and Heffer2.

We replaced one of the Heffers (donated to teenager) and got a van with the tag ANN (real easy there!).

When the first Heffer died, the second Heffer was donated to same teenager who killed the first (he was brutal with our cars – not so much with his own, though). My husband bought a Grand Am with the tag BHW. Seeing those letters, you’d think I wouldn’t get anything good out of them, but the first thing that popped into my head was “Big Hairy Woman”. Don’t know why, but it stuck (the first ones always do). And BHWs were all over our town as well as BHRs (Big Hairy Rabbit) and BHMs (Big Hairy Men). If it started with BH, it was Big and Hairy. Am I sick, or what?

We no longer needed a van, and I would have loved to have kept the ANN plate (it was just too easy), but I bought a replacement before selling the van, so I had to get a new tag. These tags were different. Bicentennial plates with two letters followed by two numbers followed by two letters. I was sure I’d get something unusable and dreaded getting plates. And when I did get the plates, I cringed when I saw DK WZ, because the first words that popped into my head were “Dick Wiz” (and yes, it stuck). It could have been worse. I could have had DK WD. I’ll let you guess what that one is!

We also have a Ford (you know - Found of Road Dead) with the tag DOA (I kid you not!!).

So, now that you know how totally nuts I am – you still gonna hang around? (I hope so!) Or do you do some equally crazy thing?

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Continue or Wait?

I have a dilemma regarding my first book, THE UNCOMMON ONE. While it’s currently with an agent (who requested the full back on Dec 27), I’m wondering if I should continue to query the book. I don’t want to give up on it. Not yet. But I don’t want to burn all my bridges, either.

The rejects are making me doubt myself. If I keep getting rejects, is it because the story isn’t unique or is it because I haven’t found the right agent/editor? If it’s the first and I query everyone, then I’ve lost my chance. If it’s the second, I don’t want to change the book if nothing’s wrong with it. It’s these kinds of decisions that drive me nuts.

So… I entered it into another contest. The finalists will be notified on April 11th. I think I will wait until I hear back from that and see what kind of comments I get.

If I final, then forget it – I’ll go back to querying! If I don’t, then I will rethink the story. I won’t give up on this book (and the sequel). I love it too much to do that.

You got anything driving you nuts? Please share so I don’t feel alone!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Happy Birthday, Sweetie!

Today is my husband’s birthday. He doesn’t read my blog, either (I think my daughter is the only family member who does), but I still have to wish him a Happy Birthday here.

We’ve been married 31 years (after dating for a year), so I’ve known him more than half his life. Kind of strange when I think about it that way.

He’s the best thing that ever happened to me, though. Without his humor, my day would be dull. Without his love, my life would be lonely. Without him, I wouldn’t have the two greatest kids ever!

And without his encouragement, I never would have attempted to write a book. He’s the one who pushed me to try.

He’s my best friend and I love him to death!!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Conventions

Last April I went to my first convention. The Romantic Times (RT) Convention was held in Columbus and lured me in due to the close proximity (and the fact I have a friend who lives in Columbus). It was an eye-opening experience for me and I ended up making new friends and having fun (as nervous as I was).

This April the RT Convention is in Los Angeles. And while I’d love to go back to California for a week, it’s not really feasible. I’d like to take some vacation with my husband (shocker – I know) and I had already decided to go to New York City this June for the Romance Writers of America (RWA) Nationals.

Both of those conventions are pricey - RT over $400, RWA over $500 (the main reason I’m only going to one), and that’s just for registration (with a couple of meals). While RT is geared toward writers, readers, and booksellers, RWA is only for members. Small potatoes compared to the other convention I decided to attend - again.

Dragon*Con is a monster, geared toward the SciFi fan, and held every year in Atlanta during the Labor Day weekend. 40,000 people attended last year. Registration is under $100, but they don’t have any meals. Just lots and lots of panels and workshops (even for writers). And lots of people who like to dress up. Even if only ½ dressed up (and I think it was more than that) – that’s still 20,000 people in costumes!

When I decided to try my hand at writing, I really had no idea what I’d gotten myself into. I have enough problems talking to strangers and now I’m putting myself in the middle of thousands of them! Who said you can’t change as you grow older?

Have you ever been to a convention? Is there one you love to go to year after year (as my daughter does for Dragon*Con)? What makes you go back?

Friday, February 11, 2011

DL's Whodunnit Game

In case you were wondering what DL’s Whodunnit Clue was all about (located on the top of my sidebar) and if you like mysteries and want to play the game, hop on over to DL Hammons’ blog Cruising Altitude. To celebrate having 600 followers, he’s put together a contest that requires doing some investigative work.

Frankly, I can't imagine having that many followers. Although, I am extremely happy with the 32 I have so far!!

If you play along - happy hunting!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Super Bowl Aftermath

What happens when you’re an obnoxious fan for the team that LOST in the Super Bowl? My husband found out.

He had to go away on travel on Monday, and I guess some enterprising people (his boss?) decided to play a joke on him. The pictures show what he came back to work on Tuesday to find.

At first, he wasn’t sure if the people liked him or hated him. But when I pointed out people don’t do that to people they DON’T like, he had to agree. He enjoyed the joke (knew he deserved it), and played along. Mainly because he’s done much worse to his co-workers!

Yes, I married a nut. A nut who makes me laugh. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Monday, February 7, 2011

How Do You Keep Track of Time?

It used to be easy to determine when something happened during my life. I’d think about where I was living at the time and could narrow down the year from that. But not any longer. We have had three different addresses since “retiring” in the Dayton area, but with the last fourteen years in the same house (I think it’s a record for both of us!), time kind of blurs.

My life by location:

California (Santa Monica, Wilmington, & Santa Barbara) – 18½ years
Alabama (Ft. McClellan/Anniston) – 2 months
South Carolina (Ft. Jackson/Columbia) – 1 month
Washington (Ft. Lewis/Tacoma) – 1½ years
Alaska (Ft. Greely/Delta Junction) – 1 year
Arizona (Ft. Huachuca/Sierra Vista) – 1½ years
Alaska (Ft. Wainwright/Fairbanks) – 2½ years
West Virginia (Beech Bottom) – 1 month
New Jersey (Ft. Monmonth/Eatontown) – 4½ years
California (Santa Barbara) – 1 year
Alabama (Ft. Rucker/Daleville) – 3½ years
Ohio (Dayton) – 19½ years (and counting)

So, what about you? If you’ve lived in the same place your whole life, how do you remember what happened when? Or maybe it doesn’t really matter!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Happy Birthday, Son!

My son doesn't read my blog. At least, I don't think he does. But I just gotta wish him a Happy Birthday. The day wouldn't be complete without me saying it.

To think, 29 years ago today, I was in an Alaskan hospital (actually, Ft. Wainwright) giving birth. I think it was warmer on that day than it is today, here in Dayton!

Where or where does the time fly?

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Happy Ground Hog's Day!

Yay! Punxsutawney Phil did not see his shadow. Neither did Buckeye Chuck. That means spring is around the corner. Of course, if you look outside my house today, it sure doesn’t look it.

We’ve been iced in! At least, that’s what it feels like to me. I’d take some pictures, but that would mean I’d have to go back out in that crap, and I’m not about to do that.

I don’t know what I was thinking when I went down to the mailbox to get today’s paper and yesterday’s mail. Neither were down there. I was surprised I was able to open my mailbox at all, and that I didn’t fall walking down there (but came pretty darn close).

Yesterday I did fall. Not very graceful, and my wrist is feeling it today, but at least I did it without anyone watching! And I was being SO CAREFUL. I don’t think there is such a thing when it comes to ice.

One good thing today – work is closed. So I don’t have to go out driving in this mess (because I had so much fun sliding all over the road on my way home yesterday).

With an empty day ahead of me, I can only hope I get lots of writing done. But being stuck on a scene, I’ve realized I made a wrong turn somewhere and will need to re-think my story. I hope it comes to me soon, because I’d hate to waste such an opportunity. I don’t get many days like this.

So, what do you like to do on an unexpected day off, when it’s impractical to go outside?