Thursday, October 31, 2013

Funny Friday Photos - Cute Animals and Thor

Yay! Friday is here again! Between being very busy at work and coordinating pumpkin carving and Trick or Treating, this week zipped by at light speed. I even added some words to Adven 2. The next scene I'm writing is a big one between Hazel and Arden. I'm excited to get going, but nervous that I won't do the scene justice. 

Okay, but enough about that. You're here for the photos, so I guess we should get started. Last week's winner for funniest photo is - well, there wasn't a clear winner but the Mom, mom, mom got the most mentions as either first or second, so I went with it.

And here are this week's photos:

I've often wondered if dogs feel this way when they live with indoor cats.

Somebody needs to give that bear a hug.

I so relate.

Boat pose!
In honor of Thor 2 - The Dark World's upcoming release (November 8th, for those of you interested), the next few photos are Thor related. When my son was four, his birthday party was Thor, and he loved all the Thor toys. Aw, heck. I'll break my rule and show you the picture. It's too cute not to share. You can't really see him under the helmet, anyway. (My mom made the cape. Isn't it cool?)

So, we're obviously excited to see the movie. :)

Smiling cats and Tom Hiddleston. A killer cute-fest combination.
The pun this week may not be an actual pun, but it's Avengers related, so I figured why not.

There you go! I want to mention that I have a post about something that happened to me this week regarding the Sesame Street video Tom Hiddleston did with Cookie Monster saved up for Something Bizarre Happened. I think it's funny, so you might want to check back the second week of November to read about it.

My favorite photo this week is the twinkie puppy because I just get a chuckle, but the Thor/Tom Hiddleston ones are close behind.

What was your favorite photo this week?

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Cover Reveal: Ryder's Last Run by Rose Dewallvin and Bonnie Hardman

Today I get to share the cover for Ryder's Last run, the second book of the Dueling Dragons MC Series with you. I met Rose Dewallvin this summer through the Sizzling Summer Giveaway and I'm happy to support her and Bonnie Hardman on this exciting day.

Ryder thought this last run was going to be simple, but little did he know that what was about to happen would not only test him but test the whole Dueling Dragons MC.

Follow along with the MC and Ryder as they pinned brother against brother, leader against leader and lastly lover against lover. Will Ryder find his way out of this to get back to Faith? Or will he be left to ride alone again...

You can find the first book of the Dueling Dragons MC Series, The Lost Trucker, on Amazon.

To celebrate their cover reveal, Rose and Bonnie are hosting a Facebook party, which starts at 10am EST. There will be games and prizes, and at 4pm EST, Bonnie, Rose and cover model Jason will answer questions during a Q&A session.

Rose's Bio

Born & raised in the Pacific Northwest in the US. Only child but a product of a very big family! Writing came to me at a young age. I remember being in school and coming up with stories. Being an only child I played by myself a lot and came up with amazing stories. I was published for the first time at 14 after I wrote a poem about my cat for an animal magazine. I publish my first book The Lost Trucker in July 2013. I am currently working on the sequel Ryder’s Last Run due to release in November 2013.

Three things I can’t live without:
1. My husband
2. My fur-baby 
3. My family…. Like I said I have a BIG family!
Stocker Links:
Twitter: Rosie_Dew13

Bonnie’s Bio

San Francisco Bay Area native transplanted to Lexington, Kentucky in 2005. I am married almost 17 years to my wonderful husband Bob, affectionately known as O.F. and mom to 3 twenty-something sons.

I worked in the higher education administration field before becoming ill with kidney failure in late 2012. I no longer am able to work a 9-5 desk job due to my illness, and getting my feet wet in the writing world was an easy choice for me. I am currently on the kidney transplant list, and I am an advocate for living donation and organ donation.

I am embarking my journey in the indie writing world with my good friend and author Rose Dewallvin. We are currently co-writing Ryder's Last Run Book 2 in the Dueling Dragon's MC Series. Expected release date is November 20, 2013.

Bonnie’s author page link:


Thursday, October 24, 2013

Funny Friday Photos: Animals and Star Wars

I hope everyone had a good week! It's Friday, and we can all be happy about that, right? Unless you have to work this weekend, in which case I hope the photos will cheer you up.

It took me forever to find funny pictures for this post! I planned to update word count and chat a little, and now it's so late I have to post and run! While this was a leaner funny photo week, I still found some I thought were funny, and hopefully you will, too!

Last week's winner for funniest photo was:

And here's the new ones:

It makes me happy to see all mothers in the animal kingdom get this expression. Not just me.

Political correctness extends to the animal kingdom.

For some reason it's eyes look like pumpkin seeds to me.

So that's where Jabba the Hut lives.

My eldest used to sleep like that AT-AT.

You tell it, Yoda.

And our pun:

My favorite this week is the Target Locked. 
Was there any that you liked better than the others? 
Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

For the Writers: The Importance of Curiosity

There is a new writing how-to book out there, written by Jeff Vandermeer. Wonderbook is not your typical craft book, though. The sub-title is "The Illustrated Guide to Creating Imaginative Fiction." It is an awesome collection of pictures, essays, and craft advice organized in such a way that you never know from page to page just what you're going to find.

The other night I finished the Introduction right before I turned off
the light to go to bed. I lay in the dark and actually felt excited to read the book. It holds the promise of something different and unique. I expect to learn wonderful things in the pages ahead of me.

Why is that? What is it about this book that catches my imagination, already, within the first ten pages. Is it just because it has pictures? Is it only because it's organized differently? Perhaps, but I think it's because I'm curious. I don't know what is going to happen, what I'm going to see, and I want to find out.

I realized, as I was was contemplating the giddy excitement I was feeling at the thought of reading a writing craft book, that we have to create that same curiosity in our novels. We have to pose the story question early, and make sure it's interesting, so that we create the need in the reader to find out what happens next.

Then we have to build that curiosity throughout the book, on the chapter and scene level so reader's minds are engaged and curious about what is coming next. Now I understand why Jack Bickham's book Scene and Structure is so helpful. He teaches how to structure a scene so that curiosity is maximized and then move that curiosity into the next chapter. (If I tried to explain it all, I would be here all day, so I'll just highly recommend the book.)

As long as the story moves, the reader's curiosity to what will happen next should compel them to continue reading. And, at the end, you make sure the story question is answered, thereby satiating the reader's curiosity.

Curiosity is important to characterization, as well. Why do we not like cliches in stories? Because we know what they will do, how they will act. There is no mystery which drives our need to know about the character. It's the unpredictable character - like Loki - who grabs our attention. Loki is a compelling villain because we're just not sure what he's going to do. He can act on the behalf of good, or he can just as easily act on his own behalf, or for evil.

It's very basic, and I "knew" this before, but I'd never thought of crafting an interesting story as engaging a reader's curiosity. It isn't some crazy list of things I have to do. It's asking "what if" or "and then what?" It's something real and human and...simple.

What do you think? 
How do you maximize curiosity within your stories?

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Funny Friday Photos

The good news? Yes, yes it is. And there is no one happier than me. I even had Monday off, and I'm still ready for the weekend.

I'm excited to see if having Finding Meara featured in The Fussy Librarian's mailer works any magic. Hopefully, there will be a lot of people who say this:

Have you signed up yet? I've been getting the mailings all week long and they have some really great books and deals highlighted. Here is a link if you're interested in signing up.

Last week's funniest photo is:

And here is this week's photos!

This week we get a bunch of puns!

I think my favorite this week is the cat door. I love the cat's expression. 

Can you tell I'm tired? I'm sorry if this post seems rushed, but I fell asleep again while getting this post done. I'm starting to worry what I'm going to be like in another ten years. I won't be able to stay up past seven o'clock.

Do you have a favorite this week? Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

(Never) Again by Theresa Paolo Blog Hop

My writer's world has been filled to the brim with all kinds of happy. So many of the people I have been following have been experiencing writing success over the last year, whether it be from successful self-publishing, signing agents, and/or garnering fabulous book deals. 

Yesterday was another one of those happy days. Theresa Paolo's book, (Never) Again, released through Berkley (Penguin), had its book birthday!! Yay!!! Virtual confetti and streamers!!

Isn't this a beautiful cover?

When college freshman Liz Wagner hears her ex's voice for the first time since he moved clear across the freaking country, she does what any respectable girl would do: Dive into the girls' bathroom.

Zach Roberts—the Zach Roberts—is back. And he’s everywhere Liz looks—infiltrating her friend group, buddy-buddy with her brother. It’s enough to ruin college altogether. But what choice does she have but to put on a happy face and pretend he didn't leave her vulnerable and alone in a pile of emotional wreckage?

Pretending works, until tragedy strikes and the only person available for comfort is the one person she wants to stay away from. When Zach turns out not to be the jerk she convinced herself he was, but the
boy she used to love, Liz needs to decide whether to open her heart again to the boy who tore it out.

As part of the festivities, Theresa is having a blog hop, where we are supposed to tell what it is we have sworn to never do again, but end up doing anyway.

Thing is, I have a TON of things I say I won't do and end up doing, or swear to do that I don't do.

Probably the biggest is food related. I can be a binge eater - especially of cookies, cake, candy, bread, ice cream, potato chips, goldfish crackers... You know, those foods that taste really, really good. I'll easily down half a dozen or more cookies in the form of cookie dough. Eating a couple of candy bars when I'm stressed is common. I won't even get into my ice cream eating habits.

After I have been a total glutton, the self-recrimination starts. I lost the battle for self-control. I gave in. Again.

Cue the Charlie Brown football cry of anguish. "AAAAUUGH!"

I waddle out to my chair, ask my husband if he still loves me (he always does), get some hugs from my kids and grimly promise myself I'll never, ever eat that much again. And somewhere, in the corner of my mind, I know the truth. It's only a matter of time.

Cue the evil, cackling laughter.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Something Bizarre Happened

Well, this is the last Something Bizarre post, mostly because once I decided to add it to the editorial calendar, nothing bizarre happened. It's been tough to come up with anything people might actually want to read about. I'm going to replace the post with one titled "Lovely Links," where I'll post some of the links I liked the best from the last month. And if something bizarre actually happens, I'll still share, but I won't have the pressure to perform!

I do have a story for today, though. About six weeks ago I began eating more fruits and veggies in an attempt to get closer to a plant-based diet. I'm actually more of a vegetarian, though, than vegan. Anyway, I love grapes and on this particular day I brought a large bunch to school with me.

At lunchtime I noticed that there were some spider webs on the grapes, and so pulled them out and laid them on top of the plastic baggie I brought them in, so I could better see which grapes had webs or were squished and gross. I've encountered spider-webby grapes before, and had just thrown the webbed grapes away and all was good.

No, it wasn't this big, but in the moment,
it sure seemed to be!
Photo from
This day, all was not good. I turned away from my desk to get something and when I turned back to the grapes a huge (for Wyoming) spider was crawling away from the grapes on the top of my desk. It was black, fuzzy, and had white dots on it's hind end. It did not look like any spider I'd ever seen in Wyoming before. Most of the house spiders I've encountered are not hairy. Or that big.

I didn't know what to squish it with, but it was going down, so I grabbed a kleenex, covered it up and then smashed it with one of my therapy books. I proceeded to throw out the grapes. (In the trash can in the teacher's lounge - not in my trash can. What if there were more spiders!) And then I twitched in disgust for several more minutes.

So the lesson is: Really check your grapes closely for spiders, especially if they have some webs on them.

Did something bizarre happen to you last month?

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Funny Friday Photos

Happy Friday to all! I am going to make this brief, because heavy rain has already shut down my internet once tonight. I fretted (yes, I do fret) that I wouldn't be able to get the post up, so I'll give my best to get it up now.

One exciting thing (to me, at least.) Let me draw your attention to my word-counter. It has gone up. Yay! I've been writing and this week had three magic muse moments where I went "Ohhh. I get it." I LOVE those moments.

Last week's winner was:

And I want to apologize for not responding to comments last Friday. The weekend was hectic and when I got into the week, it was even worse. I love your comments and will do better, I promise.

Here's this week's photos:

Some Halloween humor and one majorly cool cat!

And our pun!

Okay, I'm out of here before the internet is! Have a lovely weekend! My favorite funny is the "come on guys" dog, but my favorite photo is the skeleton cat. That is amazing!

What is your favorite photo?

And the story ends...

Day TEN of the release tour for Briane Pagel's newest book, Temporary Anne, is up on PT Dilloway's blog today!  You read part 9 here the other day, so go see how the story ends!

And while you're at it, you can get the book, "Temporary Anne," FOR FREE today.  If you haven't already picked it up, check out this story of a woman too evil to stay out of Hell, but too evil to go there, either!  CLICK HERE TO GET IT FREE.

And find more writing from Briane Pagel here:

"If you never ask questions, it's easier to believe":  lit, a place for stories

"To those skeptics, I say: EAT HOT MOON ROCKS, LOSERS!":Thinking The Lions 

"Now, imagine that you are walking at 800 miles per hour" Me, Annotated

Monday, October 07, 2013

Temporary Anne Blog Tour and Day Nine of the Story "This Is How I..."

My turn has finally arrived! I am the second to last stop on the Temporary Anne Blog Tour, which means Briane Pagel has been busy on several different blogs writing a story at the whim of the readers! It's been a "Choose Your Own Adventure" blog tour style, and a lot of fun to see where the storyline goes each week.

Here are the links for part one, part two, part three, part four, part five, part six, part seven, and part eight, in case you have to get caught up or want to start at the beginning. And with that, here is Briane!

This is DAY NINE of my "Temporary Anne" Blog tour -- I've been writing a story as we go along based on YOUR suggestions, and here is the latest installment. But first, a plug for the book:

"Temporary Anne," is FREE today.  If you haven't already picked it up, check out this story of a woman too evil to stay out of Hell, but too evil to go there, either!  CLICK HERE TO GET IT FREE.

AND, if you read all the way to the end, I'm offering a SECOND BOOK free today! But first, read Part NINE of 

This Is How I...


I stare around at The Bearded Man, at Betty White holding a lightsaber, at the millions of rapidly-growing baby spiders and I begin to realize...

"There's no time for that," Betty White tells me.

KRZAEAEIAEIXCCCCH and her light saber slices down right at me, coming at my head, at my face, at me and I want to shout NO YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU'RE DOING but I can't, because I know that she knows exactly what she's doing.

After all: I created her.

The lightsaber slices right through me, and I am untouched.

"So you were right," The Bearded Man says.

"Of course I was right. Am right. Will always be right. Have you gotten any others?"
I start to answer but I realize that she's not talking to me.  The Bearded Man, too, doesn't answer -- he's fiddling with his Kindle and the bagpipes.

She's talking to the spiders.


Keeps echoing around us.

"I'll say this," The Bearded Man says.  "He's pretty smart."

"How so?" Betty asks.

"Who is?" I ask -- but I know and I mostly just want to confirm.

"Using the spiders that way? Everyone knows he hates spiders.  So it would never suspect."

"It's always possible to surprise someone by reversing course, throwing in some stupid twist, or sop to pop culture."  Betty snorts.

The Bearded Man just looks at her, flatly.

"You know what I mean," she says.


The spiders are chattering.

"Just one more?" Betty asks.  She looks at The Bearded Man.  "Will three be enough?"

The Bearded Man shrugs.  "Don't ask me. I don't even know why I'm here in the first place."


"Four other what," I say.  It's not really a question. I know what they found. I'd really, actually, just like someone to say that I'm wrong.

As I watch, though, another group of spiders appears, a rolling writhing, tumbling mass of too many legs and too many eyes and too many fangs, they burst into the dark bubble we inhabit, where I am still held by The Beast, its arms clutching me against its beaked mouth, and I shudder back away from it even though I know it's hopeless.  I feel the sharp beak of The Beast in my back, and The Bearded Man and Betty turn towards me.  The only glow is the lightsaber -- of COURSE it had to be a lightsaber, I'm such a sucker for Star Wars-- and while I make a token effort to avoid it I know that I can't and the spiders -- most of them still growing, most of them now half the size of a man -- break open their crawling ball of disgust and I see..., staring back at me, wide-eyed.


The man -- ME -- starts screaming now because he doesn't know and so to him he has been kidnapped by spiders and brought to a pit where strangers are holding a clone of himself tight by wrapping a Beast's tentacles around it.

I can see where that would be frightening.

Me? I'm just numb to it because I know.

And he is pressed forward and pressed into me and there is a sharp SMACK! of power binding and I feel my cells breaking and bending and pulling, and his too, and suddenly we are compressing into each other

He sees me getting the prize
I see him sitting on a beach
He sees me falling into the pit
I see him getting off an airplane
He sees me getting attacked by the spider
My god has your/my/our life been that short?
I see him getting on to a plane
He sees me falling through the webs
I see him splitting off from another me at the side of the road just outside an airport.
He sees me seeing him seeing me joining together.

And I am gasping, we are gasping, I am him now he is me The Beast lets me go, no it can't hold me, I'm becoming less substantial still.

"Here..." a voice, The Bearded Man, says, and something is being shoved at my face.  "While you still can, this will help," and I bite down...


I swallow.

"A Snickers?" I gasp.  I look up.  My eyes would fill with tears but they are ghost eyes now, almost, only the substance of fog.  I can feel the Snickers bar melting away into the real world even as I am becoming less substantial and pulling back from that same place.

I am a ghost now -- almost! I am vapor! I am three of me, but less than three of me: every person they have added has made me less substantial, LESS of this world.

"Is that enough?" The Bearded Man asks.

I should thank him for the Snickers.  I should thank him for that last taste of the real world -- the world I now know I no longer inhabit.

I am vapor.

The spiders swarm around me, over me, through me.  The Beast tries to pat me, consolingly, on the shoulder.  I don't feel it.

I am vapor.

I am a ghost.

I am... dead.

"Yes, you are," Betty White tells me.  "But that doesn't make you any less dangerous."


So... what should happen in the end? Leave your comments and help Lara choose, and then watch for the grand finale on PT Dilloway's blog later this week!


Get the book, "Temporary Anne," FOR FREE today.  If you haven't already picked it up, check out this story of a woman too evil to stay out of Hell, but too evil to go there, either!  CLICK HERE TO GET IT FREE.

PLUS a bonus free book!  Today only, get 

Up So Down:  Follow a brother and sister through a year in their lives, as Sarah's fiance drowns under mysterious circumstances, causing Sarah to pull back from life while her brother, Dylan, uses the experience as an excuse to broaden his horizons.  Beautiful, sad, uplifting, and engrossing, "Up So Down" is a book for everyone who knows someone.

While you're at it, check out my blogs:

"That's a lot of infinity!":

"I sometimes call him Pumpkin Pie.":

This has been a production of the Vince Lombardi fanfic group:


Thursday, October 03, 2013

Funny Friday Photos - Eclectic Version

Hello and happy Friday! Another week slipped by and here's the weekend. I swear it was just Monday. I'm not complaining, though.

The good news - I seem to be finally throwing off my lethargy for writing. I've been working on Adven 2, and adding to the word count over there in the right sidebar. It's actually closer to 12,000 words now. I may finally be ready to be a writer again, instead of a neurotic basket case. Okay, okay. I'll be a writing neurotic basket case... Kidding!

Last week's funniest photo was actually the funny dog video. If you want to see it, go here and scroll to the bottem.

This week there were surprisingly few animal pictures, so I trolled around all kinds of pictures and came up with the following. I think they're funny, so I hope you do to! Have a great weekend!

Once I climbed almost to the top of Independence Rock and then slid over halfway down the face to the bottom. This is exactly what I was thinking.

It's pug-loaf raisin bread.

Did I use this one already?

And deserve good lighting...

And the pun! It's a little humerus...

Have a wonderful weekend. My favorite this week is the glass cages one because... well... Loki. Which is your favorite?


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