Wednesday, May 29, 2013

So if you're like me you love, love, love books. I have them all over my house. In the living room, in the family room, in the dining room and in my bedroom. I've even been known to hide books under my bed.

Books are knowledge and adventure all rolled up in one. And for me the best books are those that teach me something new while entertaining me. They make me think of ordinary things in a different way, or they take me places I've never been before.

Right now, I'm nearly finished reading Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy by Eric Metaxas.  I've learned so much about a hero to many during World War II. (I'm hopeful to post a review of the book next week). I have loved reading about this time in history and the brave people who sacrificed everything for what they believed. This book has everything: danger, mystery, suspense, and romance. 

If I could I'd give all of my followers copies of books that I loved so we could talk about them. Sadly I can't do that. But I can do the next best thing, offer free, hard copies of my new novel. Wanted is not part of history, but it does have fictional heroes, suspense, mystery, danger, and--of course--romance.

Here's the scoop:

Starting on June 1st you can go to this link
on goodreads and sign up to win a free copy of Wanted.

And here's what's really sweet, there will be five lucky winners!!!

I'm going to also post this on the sidebar for the month of June.

What book or books are you reading this summer?
What's your favorite novel? And why did you like it so much?


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

How Bathing the Dog is Like Editing

I have to bath my Lizzie-Bear at least once a week. It's not something either of us enjoys, but it's something that has to be done. When she was younger,  I would just take her in the shower with me. As you can see she is just a little thing.

But now that she's getting older (13 which is like eighty in dog years) she's not up and about when I take my morning shower. I usually have to wake her up and pull her out of her little cave.

As you can see from the picture, she doesn't like to wake up early. She usually stumbles out around noon. But today is bath day, so I woke her up.

She's usually a little grumpy about the ordeal, so I have to be prepared and stay on task to get the job done. But in the end we're both glad it's over.

Preparing for her bath, I thought how giving her a bath is sort of like editing, it's not my favorite thing, but once it's over all is well.

Preparing . . .
Before a bath I get Lizzie's brush, towel, and shampoo ready.

To prepare to edit I always print out my work.

Seriously, I've tried to just edit on the computer but whenever I do I miss things.

Printing it out gives me distance from my work and a fresh look at it.

I also use a red pen to do edits. Red ink is easier to see.

Wet dog . . .
The wet dog stage of editing is the process.

First, I read through my pages looking for gaps in character and plot logic. For instance, would my main character really react to something the way I have shown him/her? Should something else take place in the plot? And how's the timeline?

Second, I look at my sentences and paragraphs. Does each sentence flow into the next? Are my paragraphs correct and most importantly are they pleasing to the eye? Good strategic paragraphing can help pull the reader into the story.

Third, I look for misspelling and grammar errors. Because most word processors catch spelling errors I really need to be on my toes to find them, but a computer doesn't know if "their" should be "they're."

Drying process . . .

I couldn't take a picture of drying the dog. My hands were full with the blow dryer and the brush. And Lizzie doesn't make it easy.

The drying process in editing is taking my corrections and applying them to my word document. It's not fun. But necessary.

From the picture you can tell Lizzie's not sure if she likes me. That's kind of how it is with the editing changes in my story. I read it over and over (blow drying and brushing) and I think it looks all right, but I'm never quite sure that I like it until I take it to my writers group and let them take a look at what I've done. If they think it looks all right I'm happy and can continue with the story.

So that is how bathing the dog is like editing for me.

How about you?
What do you do when you edit? Do you edit as you write? Do you write a chapter and then go back and edit? Or do you do something else?


Thursday, May 16, 2013

Reduced Price on Wanted and Magical Moments

Do I have a deal for you!!! 

For a limited time my publisher is offering the ebook version of Wanted at a reduced price. Check it out here.

This week has flown by and already it's Thursday. Last weekend was so busy with the LDStorymakers Conference on Friday, my book signing on Saturday, and Mother's Day on Sunday. What a wonderful time.

The LDStorymakers Conference was so much fun. I love seeing friends I haven't for a while and catching up with them. This year I even sat in on some lectures. And a very dear friend of mine, Nikki Trionfo, won the Grand Prize for her first chapter. You rock, Nikki!

My signing was magical. Really. Here I am in the picture below. Do you notice the "Wanted" poster at the side there? Everyone seemed to enjoy having their pictures taken in it.

I was signing with my friend Gale Sears. 

So you're probably wondering what was magical. I can give you two magical moments (though seeing my friends coming to support me is magic in and of itself. They will never know how truly grateful I am to see them.).

1) Someone asked Gale what book she was working on next. She writes historical fiction that has a true story as the basis. She told them she was researching a story about some people in Northern Italy whom Lorenzo R. Snow helped to convert to the Church. A chill flashed over my skin. You see, those people are part of my family history. My great, great, great, great grandparents were among the people converted. I told this to Gale. She was excited to know that I have a book that has much of the research she will need. I'm so happy that I can help her tell this inspiring story.

2) I tend to worry and fret over my signings. I'm always concerned that no one will come. Friday night I had a dream that my brother and his wife, who live in Idaho, came and not only that but they brought Mom and Dad with them. Because my brother lives so far away and my parents have been dead for many years this seemed impossible. The next morning I thought of the dream and it made me feel as though everything would work out. So I went to the signing and was there a couple of hours when out of the corner of my eye I saw my brother and his wife. I could hardly believe my eyes. When my brother gave me a hug I couldn't help but tear up. I told him that I dreamed he came and brought Mom and Dad. He said, "Well, they're probably with me."

See . . . magical.

And Mother's Day. Oh my stars. I won't go into details, but my family rocks!!! I love receiving heartfelt thank yous for doing something I love, being a mother.

I truly feel incredibly grateful.

How was your week?
Did you have some magical moments?


Saturday, May 11, 2013

A Peek at the First Chapter of Wanted

While attendingt the LDStorymakers Conference yesterday, I received this fun news. My publisher has posted the first chapter of Wanted on their web site for a while. They don't do this very often, so click here and check it out. It's free.

Now I need to hurry and get ready for my signing. So much to do, so little time . . .


Tuesday, May 7, 2013

The Book Arrived!!!

Wanted finally escaped and has arrived!!! 

Those cuffs gave him a bit of a struggle, but with the help of the tin star he's well on his way to recovery.

AND just in time too.

This Saturday is Wanted's launch.

If you haven't received an invitation through Facebook or in the mail I meant to invite you. Truly I did. You wouldn't believe the obstacles that have tried to trip me this week. So if I somehow missed you, please forgive me. You are certainly invited to come join the fun. I'm serving brownie bites (yummo) and I'm doing something a little different this time.

See this? You can have your face on a "Wanted" poster. Hubby will take your picture, get your email, and send a digital copy to you. Sweet!!!

So now you're asking where and what time is the launch. Here's the details:

Saturday, May 11th
11:00 to 2:00
Deseret Book in Fort Union (1110 Fort Union BLVD)
Midvale, Utah


I'm going to the LDStorymakers conference this Friday. Wanted will be there as well. I'll only be there Friday because--I have a signing on Saturday--but I'd love to see you. Please if you see me come say hello. Seriously.

So because this is an ubber busy week, this will be my only post.

Sometimes it just happens.

But I'll be back next week.


Thursday, May 2, 2013

Waiting for the Pot to Boil...

Alfred William Strutt [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

I know you've heard the saying, "A watched pot never boils." Well, I'm beginning to think the same applies to the arrival of spring. This is what was on my deck Wednesday morning. Snow! And you can't tell by the picture, but it was still snowing.

 Don't get me wrong. I love snow. When October rolls around I'm always looking forward to that first snowfall. I'm a little like Lorelai Gilmore. The first snow fall is magical. 

And yes, I can sometimes smell snow. 

But come on already. 

It's May. 

May . . . when flowers bloom. 

May . . . when it's supposed to be warm. 

May . . . when my new book, Wanted, is supposed to be released.

And in case you were wondering, yes, I'm watching the stores like the little gal in the picture waiting for the pot to boil or rather for my beautiful, shiny new book to appear.

It won't be long now. Maybe I need to fine tune the snow smelling to sniffing out a new novel. :) I know it's out there . . . somewhere . . . lost in the mail . . . or stuck on a truck.

Can you smell snow before it falls? Do you get antsy waiting for spring? Or for your novel to come out? Or for your WIP to be finished? 



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