Thursday, December 20, 2007

A Challenge

I know everyone's busy with the holidays and feeling like writing is the last thing you have time for. But here's a multiple-choice Evil Editor themed challenge to get you writing for a little bit at least.

Pick one (or more if you're feeling ambitious):

1) Submit a query letter to Evil Editor.
2) Submit the first part of something you've written to Evil Editor for a continuation.
3) Do one of the following current Writing Exercises (word limit 250) and submit to Mr. Evil:

a) Evil Editor is visited by the Ghost of Christmas Past, who helps him revisit the crucial event that led to his evilness.
b) You find the list of your three 2007 New Year's resolutions. So far you've accomplished none of them. But there are still two hours till 2008. Better move fast.
c) We all know what happened when the little "Who" discovered the Grinch taking all the presnts; she bought his lies and went back to bed. Write a scene in which one of the following characters discovers the Grinch stealing Christmas: Columbo; Rambo; Chief Wiggum.
d) An ice storm has had your electricity of for four days. You can't cook, watch television or use your blender. Worst of all, you can't get online. Write a scene describing the lengths you go to to find out what's happening on Evil Editor's blog.
e) Stranded on a frozen tundra, you look up to see a vast herd of reindeer stampeding toward you. It could be time to use your time travel device, but there's no telling where and when it'll deposit you.

Have fun.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


I'm Feeling Better

I wrote that with a Monty Python accent, not sure if it comes through.

I really am feeling better. I sent the packages that had to go out of town on Friday, cleaned the house and finished decorating the tree on Saturday then had tea with the USOC ladies on Sunday.

Today, I finished my Christmas shopping at lunch. Thanks, Barnes & Noble! And manager Dave, who recognized me and came to my aid. A hot non-fiction book only displayed at the back of the fiction section. Silly me for not looking there. Anyway, that's done. Huge sigh of relief at the register and much bantering with the gal at the checkout. Love B&N employees. One in particular, but almost all of them chat about what you're buying and such.

My for-no-reason-in-particular vacation day also worked wonders. I finally watched Pan's Labyrinth. What a beautiful and horrible movie. I understand now what everyone was talking about. My nephew had said that it was the most violent movie he'd ever seen. This is the guy who grew up on what he calls slash and hack films. I'm not sure I could have taken the brutality without the fairy tale element intertwined. Of course, most fairy tales are brutal. But when it's called fantasy, it seems easier to deal with.

Then last night I watched a fluffy little bit of fun called The Holiday. I knew exactly how it would turn out after the first five minutes, but it was still fun. Surprisingly, there was no real chemistry between Cameron Diaz and Jude Law. There was, however, a spark between Jack Black and Kate Winslet. Half the scenes they're in together, she looks like she's trying desperately not to laugh. As an aside, Alex O'Loughlin, who plays the sexy vampire on Moonlight, has a cameo in the beginning of the movie as Kissing Guy.

I also made some tasty but somewhat healthy cookies to bring in for snacks so I don't go for the chocolate and preservatives. Key word there is "tasty".

So just a general day of putting a drop or two back in the old well. Not quite a refilling [see Jenny's blog for an explanation if you're not familiar with Julia Cameron], but a start. Even with so little, I had a dream that may be a plot for another novel. I'll have to let it stew a while. And it's given me a taste for a fuller refill. There's an exhibit of Impressionist and Modern art at the Fine Art Center that I'm taking myself to see--possibly next weekend. There are a few movies out in the theater that I want to see. I have a wine date with a friend. I have Jenny's FJR to read, plus a couple other books I've been wanting to dip into. And I have a pattern and yarn for a new sweater.

So right now all I'm worrying about writing is Morning Pages. Another Julia Cameron thing. Writing three pages a day off the top of your head. A way to get out the gunk and get the juices flowing. I mentioned in my goal update for the week that I'm writing every day but cheating. Actually, what I'm doing is making up for days I don't write. So if I miss Saturday and Sunday--which happens a lot for some reason--then on Monday I may put a heading of 12/17/07 Monday for Saturday. I'll write the three pages. If I have three more in my, I'll head the next one 12/17/07 Monday for Sunday. And so on until I'm writing for whatever day it is. I did this one other time and, after getting four days behind for some reason and making myself catch up, I didn't skip any days for well over a month.

Amazing how just a few little things can turn a mood around.