'Fess Up Friday: Falling Short

I hope my 'Fess Up Friday (see May 4 post) isn't going to be a series of lame and somewhat masochistic reports of inactivity. But Week 2 is certainly no poster child for Successful Authorship.

1. Last Sat. I met a friend at a mystery bookstore for a signing and reading of two local writers I'm very interested in. The event, however, was cancelled. I did manage to find a lovely collection of James Cain novels and an Inspector Maigret paperback. But not meeting one writer in particular, Domenic Stanberry, was very disappointing.

2. I managed to open my draft of my novel. It was like a vampire hunter opening Dracula's crypt -- the light burned my eyes. Had to back away.

Here is a writing tip for everyone else who can maybe actually benefit from it. Courtesy of BlogLily's Writing Stats, which is fabulously inspirational:

Remember, it is no sign of weakness or defeat that your manuscript ends up in need of major surgery. This is a common occurrence in all writing, and among the best writers.

Oh, and I'm adding this from Yogamum. There are some FABULOUS'Fess Up posts out there, everyone. I'm so glad...they are really going to help me, for one.

Today’s exercise is this: in five minutes, write as many beginnings as you can that have to do with food. Write one, two, eleven, whatever you can do. Again, by a “beginning” I mean anything from a sentence fragment to three full sentences, but no more than that per beginning.


6 Literary Quirks

Thanks to Snacky Wombat, I've been tagged for this meme. 6 Boring Quirks About Me.

Now, you don't REALLY want to hear BORING quirks about me, do you? If I were you, I'd want to hear JUICY SCINTILLATING quirks. However, I'm not going to give you either. I'm going to change up the rules just a touch and go with 6 Literary Quirks About Me. Just so it's all in the family.

1. I'm an education junky. If I could go to school for the rest of my life, I would. I would earn more MAs 'cos they are more fun than BAs or PhDs.

2. I can't seem to finish a Faulkner novel all the way through. Think I finished As I Lay Dying maybe in high school. But I tend to start and stop. I get all lost, as if I'm sleepwalking or something. Love his short stories, though.

3. I can't get into chick lit. I'm a chick, I like lit. But can't seem to stand the combo between book covers. I think it has something to do with the cover design: hot pink titles with excessive curlicue typefaces and cute graphic drawings of cartoon chicks running around frantically shopping or solving murders or clubbing their boyfriends into submission or whatnot. What would they have done with Jane Eyre, do you think?

4. I do most of my reading in bed, before going to sleep. I don't think it helps my insomnia. But I have gotten through two volumes of Proust that way.

5. I have trouble marking pages. Maybe it's a leftover from my Catholic schoolgirl days, but I feel as if I'm vandalizing a book if I mark in ink or highlighter or even pencil. No, no: Desecration is more like it.

6. But I love reading notes from previous readers. Margin notes, dedications, anything marked up by previous owners or readers of the book make me happy. I like feeling a literary link with someone I don't even know.

Here are the rules for this meme:

Tell about six unspectacular quirks of yours (literary, if you so choose)
Link the person who tagged you - that'd be Snacky, and by all means visit minus the spine and lurk.
Mention the rules in your blog
Tag six following bloggers by linking them
Leave a comment on each of the tagged blogger’s blogs letting them know they’ve been tagged

Uh, I am tagging the first six people who see this. You know who you are.



I don't know about you, but accumulation is a major problem of mine. I am not even the type of person who measures life by material goods. Who cares what kind of car you drive or how many designer purses you have? Tell me how many stories you've written or animals you've cared for or places you've traveled or people you've helped, and I'm in.

Nevertheless, I find myself gathering weight around me like a bedroom floor gathers dust bunnies. From literal weight in fleshy pounds to hundreds of books to gew-gaws and knick-knacks, I'm a human flea market.

My life has reached a tipping point of late in the clutter department. I am having trouble focusing on reading and writing because I am so distracted by junk. So, I've been working on decluttering.

All of which points to my sharing this newly found resource with you: Freecyle.

Here's a description of what Freecyle is: The Freecycle Network™ is made up of 4,355 groups with 5,062,000 members across the globe. It's a grassroots and entirely nonprofit movement of people who are giving (& getting) stuff for free in their own towns. It's all about reuse and keeping good stuff out of landfills. Each local group is moderated by a local volunteer (them's good people). Membership is free.

Isn't that cool?

Share your tips on how to declutter! The best tip will get a FREE book!!!! (Hey, I think I'm starting to get the hang of this decluttering thing!)


Green versus new

President George Bush gave a high school commencement speech in a town devastated a year ago by a tornado. He said of Greensburg, Kansas: "This community is dedicated to putting the 'green' in Greensburg."

Too bad Bush wasn't as interested in putting the 'new' back in New Orleans.