Life · Writing & Publishing

Why You’re Not Getting A Christmas Gift From Me!

It was another crazy week at our house, but what else is new? That said, you won’t be hearing much from me this weekend. I have a literary agent asking for the first 50 pages of Literary Crazy. (EEEEK!) I will be spending my weekend working on polishing this and taking care of Diesel….which brings me to “Why you’re not getting a Christmas gift from me….”

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This is Diesel. He is a chocolate Labrador and will be 18 next month. YES! 18 years old! That’s OLD for a dog, especially a large breed like a Lab.

While Diesel will be fine in a few weeks, the cast on his arm came in at the tune of $978.00.

Diesel and Baker, our mutt, have been fighting for Alpha Dog position since Bill and I merged our packs. Ultimately Diesel won (not without a few stitches and one drain to the face for Baker) but as Diesel gets older, we think Baker senses Diesel getting weaker and wants to now finally move up to numero uno.

I don’t know what provoked the fight. I was inside while all the dogs were out in the HUGE yard (they had plenty of room to not bother each other). I heard the fight and ran out side to find Baker had Diesel pinned to the ground. In the dark, I had to step in-between two fighting dogs and pull Baker off Diesel. Of course Bill wasn’t home, but after I called for about the tenth time, he answered and came home to take Diesel to the Emergency Vet. I’m pretty sure we will be paying rent on our file soon enough.

Bill and I aren’t into making Christmas commercial anyway, not to mention we are trying to buy a house…oh, and did I mention Diesel’s vet bill was almost one grand???

So if there was any doubt about getting a gift from me this holiday season, you can rest assured I’m only shopping for the kids this year!

I hope everyone has a great weekend. Do you have any plans? While I’ll be working on Literary Crazy all weekend, I am still on track for Monday Book Club. (It’s a short book this week!) Let’s meet back here on Monday!

Military Spouse Life

Moving On Up…To Illinois

It’s really happening. We started packing recently and while it seems like I’ve spent enough time to pack an entire house on just packing one room, it’s ALL books and I’m not done with that one room!

This said, I hesitated several times when I was packing books on or by some of my favorite authors to be included in the book I am working on, Literary Crazy. If I find an agent to work with and can move forward on writing the rest of the book, I’ll need those materials. Knowing I have several other projects I can be working on, not to mention school, a newborn, a toddler, and the zoo of animals I live with, I packed all the books.

THEN BOOM!

Twitter hosted a pitching party where you use certain hashtags used by agents to find potential authors to work with. I found out about it last minute and sent my tweet anyway. Two tweets later, I had four interested agents!!!!!!!

I was beyond excited by which agents had requested more material, but now I must sit and wait. When I told Bill, he said I had better dig the books I packed back out because we rented a trailer to take the packed stuff back to Illinois over Thanksgiving! Now I’m not a superstitious person (well except for hockey…..and I’m pretty sure the Cubbies won the World Series because of my rituals…..in fact, I should call Theo Epstein and see where my ring is!) but I’m afraid to dig out the books/materials because if I do, the agents might not get back to me with good news. I know, I know……you’re rolling your eyes, I’m sure.

Instead of working on unpacking and repacking the mass amount of books to find what I need, I’m just working on other projects needing my attention. This consists mostly of article writing and trying to catch sleep when the kids let me!

I’m sure I will wait until the last minute (when Bill is loading the trailer to go to Illinois) to decide to pull out the books….which will be how the fight starts (just kidding).

Meanwhile, if you don’t hear from me, have a happy and safe Thanksgiving! As I mentioned, we are headed to Illinois so little man can meet the family and we can start house hunting! Sadly, I don’t  care much about the house we buy, as long as it has a room for my writing and a space for my soap making. I’ll leave you with some pictures of what I’ve been working on in that department!

Writing & Publishing

To Intern, or Not To Intern

Before we get into any deep philosophical debate on internships, lets look at dogs…

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This is Tremor. He was given a clean bill of health at the vet today, but does need to go back next week for a dental cleaning. He’s wearing a “Thunder Shirt” because he came from a severe abuse case and thunder scares him to the point he “tremors.” He does much better with this on though!

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Diesel is 17.5 HUMAN years old. He was going to be drowned as a puppy because he was the runt. Bill insisted on paying full price and took him home. He also got a clean bill of health today and then came home and crashed in the playroom.

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From left to right, we have Hunter (abandoned at a gas station), Baker (I got him from the animal society), and Oak. Oak was listed on Craigslist because at 6 months old, the couple who had him decided he was too big. (Insert angry face here).

Charleston, SC, as usual is getting pummeled with a thunder storm, so they are all stuck inside. At least they are all letting me get work done!

Anyway, the pressing question…..

It occurred to me there may be jobs in publishing available which would help me in my pursuit to publish. Google was helpful in bringing me to a website, www.BookJobs.com where I found an array of internships I could apply for. Though unpaid, I could probably work on one the rest of the summer and be almost finished by the time school starts.

I found a few agents/agencies I really like and can work for remotely. I’m thinking it may help me gain a better understanding of publishing and how it all works. It might help me gain contacts and information I can use later as I publish my own works.

The only downside is the obvious….they are all unpaid. This basically means I am working for free, which most people don’t do! On the other hand, there is the experience and possible connections. It would also look great on my website. This said, there really is not a down side, other than not being able to go to the grocery store with experience, however one day it may literally pay off!

Have you ever worked an internship for experience? Was it in the literary world? I would love to hear about it in the comments!

Military Spouse Life

It’s A…….

With all the crappy news this week, we have something exciting to announce…

We had our 20 week ultrasound this morning and….

It’s a…..

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Tiny little….

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Baby…

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BOY! Because what mama doesn’t want to introduce their baby by showing off his junk to the world!!!!!!

We are naming him Liam Amos. Then his last name is a hyphenated mix of mine and Bill’s last name. Liam is short for William…or Bill, and the Amos is for the Amos family. Bill spent most of his childhood as a foster kid. He finally ended up with the Amos family when he was in his teens. Though he was never legally adopted, that is family! You can’t ever repay someone for opening their home up the way they did, or for treating us like blood, so this is a small way of showing appreciation for everything the whole family does!

The rest of the day I’m working on sending queries to agents for the proposal for Literary Crazy. Cross your fingers for me!

Military Spouse Life

The Mad Twitter Dash

Who gets the flu in the summer? Me….and Bill….and sweet little Talia. It’s been two weeks of passing the same flu all around. Add in the fact I can’t take most medications because of pregnancy, and you have the perfect sick storm. At one point, two of the cats were even sick. They were both sneezing with watery eyes and were just miserable. The good news is we are all finally able function again. I still sound horrible, and I can’t always breathe through my nose, but I’m getting there.

As I tried to get through and recover from illness, I realized an important deadline was approaching. Literary agents on Twitter participate in something called #PitMad which stands for pitch madness. Basically you have a designated day, a few times each year, where you can pitch your book and potential agents use hashtags to find new material.

For some reason, I had it in my head there was not another one until September. Then something popped up in my news-feed telling me it was going to be this Thursday (tomorrow).

That is when the panic set in. When Bill was not in school, and I was well enough to work, I set out to my local Starbucks and pounded out the rest of my book proposal for Literary Crazy. Finally, on Monday, I finished. I sent it to Staples to print off a copy near my mother, who picked it up and edited the entire proposal, then called me on the phone so I could make corrections. With the exception of a cover letter, I am ready to go tomorrow.

Even if there is not any interest in the book on Twitter, I can still send it the old fashioned way to literary agents. The only thing I’m waiting on is my professor from college has a copy and I really want to see what he has to say, though I’m more concerned with him looking over the final first draft.

With all that said, I do need to craft three very purposeful tweets to be sent out tomorrow. Hopefully I’ll be back on Friday to tell you about the hundreds of copies of proposals being requested by agents!