Writer on a Horse
And a Dog
The world looks better from the back of a horse and the roads of life are easier with a good dog beside you.
And a Dog
The world looks better from the back of a horse and the roads of life are easier with a good dog beside you.
Sunday, January 31, 2010
One of the biggest fears beginner writers have is not starting their novels in the right place. Take it from someone that finished a novel, revised by adding four chapters to beginning and three to end, then revised again and added two more chapters to the beginning. Well, in truth the two new ones are in progress but happening. Just start, because you can't write a novel if you never start a novel.
I tell everyone that I'm writing my novel backward.
Word for today: origin -- beginning, or derivation from a source; the point at which something begins or rises or from which it derives; something that creates, causes, or gives rise to another
The origin of any novel is the first word.
ps the origin of our nation started with the Revolutionary War. This is a picture from my trip to Williamburg. Those are the drummers for George Washington's troops.
Saturday, January 30, 2010
Lexie is out in the sleet and snow, throwing her ball (herself) and running to catch it. I know it's a sad scene, but I'm not going out in the cold, wet, slick yard to throw the ball. I guess it's a good thing I taught her to entertain herself. :)
I am the mother of a 40 year old child today. Happy Birthday Melissa Anne or as her husband calls her Missy Mean... she takes after her father that is way she has that nickname.
I've been working on a short story about a dog I lost about 18 months ago. She was a special one and was only 15 months old when she died. Acute pancreatitis is what the vet said. Nothing I could do... a blood clot broke loose and hit her heart. I still miss her but Lexie has craved a place in my heart. Different personalities but special in different ways. This picture is a picture of Jazz just a few weeks before she died. My oldest granddaugther took the picture... Cool don't you think.
Word for today: release -- to set free from restraint, confinement, or servitude; to let go' dismiss' to relieve from something that confines, burdens, or oppresses
I didn't want a new puppy but when I saw her my heart release the pain from losing my old dog and made room for Lexie.
Friday, January 29, 2010
My two life friends and I got together last night for a evening of good eating, laughing and catching up. It's so good to be with people who know all your secrets, faults, and they still love ya. It's rare that you can be yourself and not be afraid of judgement or anger... lots of disagreement but also lots of support.
I will admit... it's hard to be my friend. I say what I think and mean what I say. I'm not hurtful or mean to bash dreamsbut don't ask me what I think if you don't want to hear what I think. I won't lie to you.
I have no problem swimming against the flow or being different than everyone else... I had a few aunts that loved to hurt my mother by asking, "Why ain't Patty Jean like everyone else?" (forget that I wrote that nick name because I do not answer to that anymore)
Now I ask you who would want to be so common and gray in personality that you'ld blended into everyone around you???
My kids call us the Ya-Ya friends. No we have not become blood sisters but one (Pam) is distant kin to me.
Did you miss me yesterday? It's sleeting and cold outside, so I put a spring event picture up for ya'll to enjoy. Do you think my granddaughter did more ball playing or more dirt playing.
Word for today: different -- partly or totally unlike in nature, not the same
Don't run with the pack, be different and hunt your own trails.
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Like this picture, writing isn't always brown and white. Just because your eyes look, doesn't mean that you see everything present. I see four horses and a colt... what do you see?
Writing is a creative act and for me doing an outline is not something I can do and keep the creative juices flowing. If I outline, it's like the story is in stone and I have to write it that way. I have to play with ideas and write them, rewrite them and sometimes chunk them. I've read all the articles about how it will keep you focused but I can't to it. Now, I do clustering where I take a scene and branch off different ideas. That might be redneck outlining and if that is so... I guess I outline. :)
What are your thoughts on outlines?
Word for today: notorious -- generally known and talked of; widely and unfavorably known
Book reviewers are notoriously known for tears and heartache.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
I will finish all quarterly and year end forms tomorrow... yes, I made it without killing anyone. I'm rewarding myself by getting my hair cut and touched up so the gray doesn't show... after another year end it's a wonder I have hair. I know my middle granddaugther is going to kill me but as I've said many times... a picture speaks volumes. She was about three there but this year will be teenager. Sorry, baby but it's just such a cute picture.
Word for today: wane --decrease, decline
Creative ideas were on the wane during the early part of January but I see brighter skies in February.
Monday, January 25, 2010
W-2, W-3, 1099, oh my
I wonder if I'm still in Kansas??? and where is Toto (or is that Lexie)
I love the blurb on this book by Terri Hall, release date 03-04 -- see what you think!
An invisible, uncrossable physical barrier encloses the Unified States. The Line is the part of the border that lopped off part of the country, dooming the inhabitants to an unknown fate when the enemy used a banned weapon. It’s said that bizarre creatures and super humans live on the other side, in Away. Nobody except tough old Ms. Moore would ever live next to the Line.
Nobody but Rachel and her mother, who went to live there after Rachel’s dad died in the last war. It’s a safe, quiet life. Until Rachel finds a mysterious recorded message that can only have come from Away. The voice is asking for help.
Who sent the message? Why is her mother so protective? And to what lengths is Rachel willing to go in order to do what she thinks is right?
Sunday, January 24, 2010
I also met Lindsey and if her book is half as funny as Lindsey is in person... you won't be able to stop laughing. Here is the blurb for the book. Happy Reading in March.
When an immaculately dressed woman steps out of an iridescent bubble and asks you if you'd like to become a substitute princess, do you
c) say Yes!
For Desi Bascomb, who's been longing for a bit of glamour in her Idaho life, the choice is a definite C--that is, once she can stop pinching herself. As her new agent Meredith explains, Desi has a rare magical ability: when she applies the ancient Egyptian formula "Royal Rouge," she can transform temporarily into the exact lookalike of any princess who needs her subbing services. Dream come true, right?
Well, Desi soon discovers that subbing involves a lot more than wearing a tiara and waving at cameras. Like, what do you do when a bullying older sister puts you on a heinous crash diet? Or when the tribal villagers gather to watch you perform a ceremonial dance you don't know? Or when a princess's conflicted sweetheart shows up to break things off--and you know she would want you to change his mind?
In this hilarious, winning debut, one girl's dream of glamour transforms into something bigger: the desire to make a positive impact. And an impact Desi makes, one royal fiasco at a time.
Lindsey Leavitt March 16. 2010
Word for today: hilarious -- extremely funny
I love books that have a hilarious story thread and you can't help smiling every time the main character speaks. A feel good book when you finish.
Saturday, January 23, 2010
Hex Hall March 2, 2010 I've met Rachel Hawkins and heard the synopsis of this book. Can't wait to read it. Rachel is funny, smart and a wonderful writer. Here is a blurb about her book:
Three years ago, Sophie Mercer discovered that she was a witch. It's gotten her into a few scrapes. Her non-gifted mother has been as supportive as possible, consulting Sophie's estranged father--an elusive European warlock--only when necessary. But when Sophie attracts too much human attention for a prom-night spell gone horribly wrong, it's her dad who decides her punishment: exile to Hex Hall, an isolated reform school for wayward Prodigium, a.k.a. witches, faeries, and shapeshifters.
By the end of her first day among fellow freak-teens, Sophie has quite a scorecard: three powerful enemies who look like supermodels, a futile crush on a gorgeous warlock, a creepy tagalong ghost, and a new roommate who happens to be the most hated person and only vampire on campus. Worse, Sophie soon learns that a mysterious predator has been attacking students, and her only friend is the number-one suspect.
As a series of blood-curdling mysteries starts to converge, Sophie prepares for the biggest threat of all: an ancient secret society determined to destroy all Prodigium, especially her.
Friday, January 22, 2010
Both of my kids and all four of my grandbabies are coming for my semi-famous chicken fingers, cream potatoes, english peas, green beans, corn, yeast rolls I do different vegetables because everyone likes something different.
Word for today: quality -- The condition of being distinguished from others; Special or temporary character; profession; occupation; assumed or asserted rank, part, or position.
Quality time with your family will always be cherished memories.
Thursday, January 21, 2010
I love, love, love this picture that Irene Latham's brother took at her book party in Birmingham last weekend. I'm kneeling on the how-to-books with my pen raised to the writing gods and this picture in my mind... one day, one day...
Word for today: desire -- to hope, to wish
I desire the ability to achieve my dream and a chance for someone to take a picture of Burning Bridges being signed by me.
Did I mention I love this picture.
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Don't you just hate getting up and it's raining... I mean a toad strangler down pour. Now if I could snuggle and go back to sleep, no problem but work awaits. Today is Wednesday and my two brothers and I eat breakfast with my Dad and Brenda, my stepmom, every Wednesday. It keeps us in touch with each other. We were close when my Mom was alive but when she died the family drifted apart... everyone busy and nobody saw it. I'm going to post a small part of the slice of life I wrote when my Mom was diagnose with cancer.
ONE WORD CAN CHANGE YOUR LIFE
Malignant, was the word that changed my life. This death word nearly killed my family’s closeness by stealing the essence of our family.
I remember the day my mother’s hell began.
“The tumor is malignant,” the doctor said and my world crashed. I struggled to breathe as he talked treatment and time frame. My mother sat listening, her face showing no emotion. My eyes silently pleaded for her to fix this, she always fixed things that affected my brothers and me in a negative way.
I plunged deeper into my private hell when mother asked, “Then the tumor is inoperable.”
“That is correct,” the doctor answered. “An oat cell tumor only spreads if it’s disturbed.”
“But..,” I croaked then stopped and tried to clear the lump that choked me. “You have to give her some hope. We need hope. There has to be some kind of treatment that will help her.”
“I’m sorry, I wish I could say there was, but there isn’t. Radiation will be for pain control only, it’s not a cure.”
Mother reached for my hand and gave me a weak smile. Staring into my eyes, she asked, “When do I need to start the radiation?”
As soon as possible, tomorrow if we can set it up.”
At twenty-seven years old, I understood what the doctor words. My mother was dying. My mind understood this, but my heart could not. Mother gone, impossible!
Two years later standing at her graveside, unable to shed a single tear, I realized that my life changed from the moment I heard the word malignant. At first, I prayed for her to live, but as the cancer grew, the pain became unbearable. That’s when I prayed for her to die, so the pain would stop.
Word for Today: murky -- dark, obscure
My days were murky for the first year after my mother's death.
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
I'm making a list of the books I want to read that will be release in the first part of 2010. I want everyone to post add-ons of any you've heard are good. I'm going to keep a list starting this year of books I've read. Look for the list sometime this week.
Word for today: tabulate -- to put into tabular form; to count, record, or list systematically
My list will tabulate the books I want to read.
Number one on my list, can't wait to read is Michael Grant's Lie May 04, 2010
Michael Grant made a comment on Ab's review of Lies (Gone, #3)
Michael wrote: "6 books total. After LIES we'll have PLAGUE, DARKNESS and LIGHT
Monday, January 18, 2010
Not really a happy writer today.. I hate being unsure and I'm very unsure of my revised Chapter One of Burning Bridges. I like it but..... well anyway, I've turned it over to my critiquing buddies and they will help me reach the point were I keep it or trash it.
Word for today: wince -- draw back, flinch
I wince at the thought of revision.
The picture is on the Gadsden Confederate Memorial and is Emma Sansom and Gen.Nathan B. Forrest
Sunday, January 17, 2010
Irene's book presentation for "Leaving Gee's Bend, was wonderful and enlightening. I need to learn PowerPoint. I came home and thought about how those visual aides made her talk informative and inspiring. From the pictures, you know the setting, the theme and the character. Good job Irene.
So much fun seeing Lindsey Levvitt in all her new momma glow. I will comment about her debut novel, Princess for Hire, next week.
Word for the Today: revere -- honor, respect, admire
I sat revered at Irene Latham's presentation.
The picture of the mules are nothing like the mule in Irene's book... these are fancy mules but I wanted to show what beautiful creatures they are.
Saturday, January 16, 2010
If I could only get the first chapter right I know it would click and I would have it ready to send out. I don't know if I'm being too hard on chapter or just don't want to finish. I'm going to state it here. I'm going to get chapter one really for critique group by next session. This book has been finished twice but lacked a little something each time... I've add chapters to beginning and end per writing buddies and a sixth grade class that wrote me a book report on my story... they were hard and hit all the parts I was a little unsure about. Enough whining, have a great Saturday. I'm riding down with Jana to Birmingham to attend Irene's book launch.
Word for today: introspective -- looking into one's own feelings
Pat has introspect why Burning Bridges isn't finished.
Friday, January 15, 2010
I know I have but as humans most of the time we express or unhappiness orally. This picture speaks for it self. Let me give you some back ground history. This is Dixie, my granddaugther's horse. Dixie is a lesson horse and anyone can ride or groom her. They have this riding camp every year at our barn, usually six to seven 6 to 12 year old kids. On the last day they get to do something silly and fun. Last year they decided they wanted to paint a horse... I mean PAINT a horse. I thought Dixie looks great, but I don't think she appreciated the hard work the kids did to get just the right look. What do you think? I promise we washed her off right after the kids went home... but Dixie stayed mad for the few days.
You probably can't read what is on the halter but it says "I love my horse" I think Dixie is saying "Liar"
Word for today: neurotic -- suffering from a nervous disorder
Dixie wondered if all humans had neurotic personalities.
Thursday, January 14, 2010
I posted yesterday's blog on my lunch break looking out the window at the trees. Came home and the trees were still in the yard looking very sad but soooo cool, Ronnie had someone come and chew up the stumps.
Lexie, my dog, was very upset with strange things in her yard but I figure once she gets over the fact that something is out of place... she will enjoy chewing up small limbs. She's really a beaver in dog clothes.
Think about it, 50 years ago a man would spend hours trying to remove a stump from a field or yard and 100 years ago he would have spent days. Now it takes less than thirty minutes.
The picture I'm posting today is of my mother, father and uncle in 1949. long before I was even a twinkle in my fathers eyes (old saying my grandmother said) It's hard to imagination my parents as teenagers (good lord it's hard for me the remember me as a teenager.
Word for today: modify -- to change
If we do not modify as we age we will not enjoy the ride on life's highway.
The last few years have been so hard on the trees. I've had several in my front yard die last year. Yes they are ugly but I've lived here 41 years and they have always greeted me when I walked out my front door. I know they need cutting... but my heart didn't realize how vacant area's of my front yard was going to be when they were cut. Stupid thoughts I know but if you knew me you would know that I built my house at an angle to save a dogwood tree :) which died anyway three years after we moved in the house. They really are fragile trees. Now I don't want y'all to think I'm treeless far from it, about 28 let in front yard and of course the 100 acres of woods around my yard but I these three trees are like friends, and I wanted to say "You shade kept me cool, your acorns fed the squirrels and deer, and now you will keep me warm as I use you for firewood.
Pic is grandbabies and dogs in leaves in front yard.
Word for today: flamboyant -- showy, colorful
Fall will be less flamboyant with three less trees.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Driving home yesterday, I pasted a pasture and three calves were standing by the fence looking at the cars passing. They couldn't have been more than week old. Black except for white faces. The way they were standing the barbwire fence cut the view of their face in half. You could see each prong of the barb. They stood looking at the world they could not reach. It got me to thinking. How many of us look at the world from behind a barbwire fence? Wishing for what we can not reach. Take a minute and think about what barbs are keeping you from the world, keeping you in your boring pasture.
Now barbwire can't hold me. I crawl under, jump over or squeeze through. Nothing stops me from seeing what is just beyond the horizon.
Word for today: explore -- to investigate, study, or analyze; to become familiar with by testing or experimenting; to travel over (new territory) for adventure or discovery
The world is our playground, lets explore it.
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Or not! I got up to a balmy 28 degrees this morning and felt excited not to need a heavy coat to feed the dogs. Have you ever notice how weather affects our mood. If it's rainy, we're a little grumpy and frown more but if the sun is shining we smile and all is right with the world. When the temp is freezing our instinct to be den animals get stronger and we huddle in one place.
A interesting tidbit, someone on the Mid-South listserv asked if anyone knew who said “I could tell you, but then I’d have to kill you.”
Tom Cruise in the movie Top Gun
In the movie Dr. No they said "we could tell you, but then we'd have to kill you" and a CIA character on M*A*S*H said something close to this quote. Hummmm who said it first.
"I see NOTHING! I know NOTHING!" is one of my favorite. Schultz on Hogan Heroes always said that
Monday, January 11, 2010
I'm thinking that I might go to college??!! I know I'm 58 and all but I would like to learn new things. The bad part is I can't go part time and get financial aid so I will need to go full time and get a grant. Would this be bad??
will this take away from a young person getting a grant?? do I care because odds are they'll only waste it... OMG did I say that!!! bad Pat, bad
Another thing, all my close friends say I'm aadd or something like that... I don't really pay attention because they're forever saying I'm something or other.. and I think it has something to do with attention and focusing will that affect me doing school work, sure is a big step to apply and then go.
Word for today: dilettante -- one who has great interest but little knowledge
Being a dilettante when it comes to applying for college doesn't mean I lack courage.
Sunday, January 10, 2010
I've been home since Wednesday afternoon. No outside contact... well not really true :) grandkids and children but no people that don't call me Momma or Granny until today. We're in a heatwave, it out up to 31.
I discovered an interesting fact about myself, I'm not productive when I have lots of time. My house is not clean, the ironing isn't done, and the next chapter of Bridges is not finished... sigh
Word for today: incongruous -- inappropriate
My actions the last four days were inappropriate and unproductive.
Saturday, January 9, 2010
A few years ago I was sitting in a creative writing class and the instructor put an old washboard on the table in front of the class. "Write a poem using this washboard as the theme."
Okay, I'm not good at poetry. What is feet and meter? And is that even how you spell them??
Soooo, I raised my hand and stated, "Give me fiction or give me death!" The instructor asked was a writer or a comedian.
I wrote the poem.
Here it is and you know I enjoyed writing it. This class taught me much about writing but it taught me more about me... I can write anything... maybe not well but I CAN DO!
A washboard sits in the corner
A symbol of days gone by
When mother scrubbed our clothes
And hung them up to dry
Washing clothes was hard work
And took most of the day
Tired and worn she sat down to supper
And bowed her head to pray
She asked forgiveness for any wrong
Done to friend, foe or each other
For guidance in heaven’s way
Teaching us to love one another
She thanked him for our many blessings
For each healthy child sitting at the table
Then grinning at daddy she would say
“Lord, if you’re not too busy and if you’re able
If asking for an earthly thing is not too big a sin
Could you send a wringer washer?
Word for today: coterie -- small group having something in common.
A coterie of writers form a critique group called Souther Slang.
Friday, January 8, 2010
Sounds like heaven to me. I miss my grandbabies and they want to come to granny's house sooooo guess who has to get in his big ole truck and go get them... you got it Ronnie. Ain't it nice to play the helpless southern woman... You're so big and strong and you have such a big truck that little ole me wouldn't think of trying to drive those semi-icy roads with someone like you in the basement. :)
My Hero! hahahahaahhasnort
Well it's going to get my babies here.
I was plotting today on Bridges decided to take a break and check on Sara's blog. There was a interview with Irene and a video clip. As Irene read a part of her book, I realized that the south has bred tough, independent females since Columbus came to America. Do you suppose the Indians that were here first had women like the ones through history? If I had to guess, I would say yes.
The Husband is the circle of the family unit but the mother is the glue that keeps everyone attached to the circle.
Live like tomorrow will never come, love like you want to be loved and tell your mother you love her. You never know when she might not be there for you to say the words.
Word for today: lucrative -- profitable
Live each day and make your life lucrative in joy, happiness and love.
Thursday, January 7, 2010
ROLL TIDE ROLL
I can't take the stress. What a game, but I really hate that the Texas quarterback was hurt.
Word for today: perseverance -- steady persistence in a course of action, a purpose in spite of difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement
Show the world perseverance and you will reach your goals.
Irene Latham's dedut novel,
Leaving Gee's Bend
hit the selves of bookstores today!
Here are a few of the reviews:
First Draft Magazine
"Ludelphia Bennett reaffirms the human spirit and defines survival in this beautifully stitched quilt of a novel."
- Richard Peck, A SEASONS OF GIFTS
"LEAVING GEE'S BEND is beautifully written and Ms. Latham's use of the Southern vernacular of the era is flawless. The story is compelling and the strong-willed heroine, Ludelphia, stole my heart. Though dirt-poor, the residents of this smaller than small Alabama town are drenched in dignity and faith. I couldn't put it down."
- Brenda Woods,
Coretta Scott King Honor-winning RED ROSE BOX
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
I'm a true blue Alabama fan since I was at my Daddy's knee. I once had dreams of being the first girl quarterback-fullback-linebacker-kicker for Alabama. Of course I lived through the Bear years, and remember him coaching. Today is Mark Ingram Day in the state of Alabama... I say it is the team of Alabama day with Mark being one of many chapions on that team
Mark Ingram of the University of Alabama was selected as the 75th winner of the Heisman Memorial Trophy as the Most Outstanding College Football Player in the United States for 2009. Ingram won the award over Toby Gerhart of Stanford by only 28 points in the closest finish in the 75 year history of the Heisman. Previously, the closest race was in 1985 when Bo Jackson defeated Chuck Long by just 45 points.
and this link will take you to the new fan fight song
Word for today: : champion -- warrior, fighter; advocate or defender;a winner of first prize or first place in competition; who shows marked superiority
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
I'm going to post a small portion of a slice of life' story I wrote many years ago titled Adults don't like Snow
It was New Year’s Eve 1963. I stood at the picture window, my eleven-year-old heart pounding with excitement, and watched snow float silently to the ground. My brother and I whispered about all the great things we were going to do come morning. Things we had only read about or our northern-bred mother had told us about. Sledding, snow angels and snowball fights were first on our list. Little did we know that tomorrow we would discover a shocking aspect to adult behavior.
Northwest Alabama woke up to the amazing sight of 18 inches of snow covering the ground. As my brother and I squealed with delight at the new adventure before us, our parents looked out the window frowning.
*********** After reading that *****
Let your inner child free and enjoy whatever the Lord sends your way. Look at the beauty and sheer "adventure trigger" aspect.
Don't forget to give your dogs and cats water several times a day. If you just put out water in the morning or evening, that water is frozen solid in a matter of a few minutes and they can't drink it.
Feed them extra food because they are using energy to stay warm.
Word for today: adventure -- the encountering of risks; an exciting or remarkable experience
The snow covered world open doors to adventures the children had only read about in books.
Monday, January 4, 2010
I'm reading Faith, Hope, and Ivy June by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor ... I didn't know until this weekend that she also wrote Shiloh... why didn't someone tell me!!
So far I've enjoyed this book and would recommend it. This is my day book
My night book is Bull Rider and I sort of like it but ehhhhh I'll let you know. I'm baby sitting the pup and Levi for granddaughters and I don't like puppies, yes they are cute and playful and have puppy breath but they also poop in your van. So much for one of my goals.
Roll Tide Roll... just had to type that... did you hear me Irene... Roll Tide Roll
Today's word: freeze -- : to harden into ice; to convert from a liquid to a solid by cold; to cause to become fixed, immovable, unavailable, or unalterable; to render motionless
Today's temperatures would freeze water in seconds. Be sure to take water to your dogs a couple of times a day this week. They can't drink frozen water.
Sunday, January 3, 2010
Went to see "The Blind Side" today with Sheila ... good movie
Came home and didn't write anything, bad Pat.
Played Phase 10 with the grandkids and won one out three games. It was fun to spend time with them and Ronnie played with us and only peeked at the tv a little.
Word for today: nebulous -- unclear, vague
It's nebulous to me why anyone would use the word nebulous.
Saturday, January 2, 2010
I feel like my dogs look in the picture. We are at Butler Creek on a hot summer day.
For the last month my list of things needing doing never got smaller than half a page. No list today! I'm going to watch Lakelynn play basketball at 8am then I'm going to do what I want the rest of the day. Oh wait, found that list and I do have one thing to get done today... do the critiques for my group. I started Bull Rider last night, to soon to say anything ... will let you know.
Word for today: voluminous-- bulky, large
Pat has voluminous time on her hands today and tomorrow. Hopefully, she will gear it toward constructive writing.
Friday, January 1, 2010
Okay, I forgot the word for the last day of 2009 so you get two today. Played dominoes with the neighbors until just a few minutes ago. The girls won three out of three games... WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS... good way to start the new year... a winner!
Word for yesterday: resolution (as in New Year) -- a decision to do something or to behave in a certain manner
I don't make resolutions because that is like saying you will for sure do it and then I would have to do it... I make goals... smart don't you think. You can always say "Well I did make it to that goal."
Word for the first day of 2010: begin -- to come into existence; to have a starting point
Today begins a new year and anything is possible.