Friday, December 28, 2012

Friday Five

Hey, y'all! How are you? I thought I'd do a quick Friday Five to share what's been going in in my life.

5. End-of Year School Craziness

With four boys in two different schools, we had holiday parties, teacher gifts (I baked M & M cookies for dozens of teachers... and made white chocolate trash for others), final projects, etc. The first few weeks of December were like a Disneyland ride on warp speed. Fun, but WILD.

4. Holidays

Um, yeah. I LOVE Christmas. I love the songs, the festive vibe, the family traditions we have... the whole thing. And I love decorating for the holidays. The house is decked out, with lights and garland inside and out. Step inside and we've got Nativity sets and Santas and all kinds of stuff EVERYWHERE. Some tacky, some not, and like the boys, I love every bit of it. :) But while I love decorating, and celebrating, it takes time, time sometimes I feel pressed to find, especially this year. And right this minute I don't even want to think about taking all the decorations down. The  holiday breakdown is a less fun time-suck on the other end, coming in a January when I seriously do not have one minute to spare. (More on that in a second).

3. Company

We had my hubby's brother, sister-in-law, and their kids, plus my mother-in law and my mom for Christmas. Then the day after Christmas, some of our best friends from Beijing came to visit for a day/night with their three girls...and two hours after they left my sister and her husband and their two boys rolled in. They'll be with us until the new year, which is AWESOME. My sister lives in Wisconsin, and I don't see her enough. We'll have had company for two weeks totally, which is awesome and crazy and crazy awesome. Normally I'd relax after but NOT THIS YEAR. (More on that in a second). And my kids aren't back in school until January 7th. *gulp*

2. All The Write Notes.

A cool music blog for writers is in the works. A group of us are pulling it together and I can't WAIT for you to check it out! Debuts in January... I'll keep you posted. :)

1. THIS:

Yup, NIL edits. :) Woohoo! Got 'em December 11th, chatted with my editor on the 13th, and my revisions are due mid-January. *panics* *wails* *breathes* :) The cool thing is that I finally see how it's coming together... it's really going to be a book. A published book, that people (and not just my friends and CP's LOL) can read. And *hopefully* will like.

But edits. Mid-holiday. Yeah, there's that. So I'm just doing the best I can. :) Aren't we all? :)

My next post will be a 2012 wrap-up, short & sweet. Then it's going to be a little NIL for the new year, with playlists, background, inspiration, and character shorts. I can't wait for you to meet Charley and Thad!

Anyway, I hope your holidays have been lovely, full of friends, family, love, and of course, cookies. (My favorite this year were ginger-chocolate chip bars. Delish!)

Let me know what's new with you, and if you have a favorite holiday cookie. :)

Monday, December 10, 2012

The Secret to Writing a Bestseller

I haven't a clue. :)

And I don't think there is one. There's no secret, no magic bullet. But I do think there's some basic ingredients to the bestseller recipe. Like . . .

Hard work.

Great writing.

Fresh storytelling.



Heaps of LUCK.

Mix all those up--and listen, I know the last three aren't really in your control--and you *might* have a bestseller. MIGHT. Because as y'all know, nothing is guaranteed, especially not in publishing.

But I believe there is something that will help improve your odds: write what you love.

Maybe it won't sell a bazillion copies, maybe it will. But if you're lucky, your book will touch a reader in a way no other book has. Because if you write what you love, your passion for your story and your characters gets infused in the pages themselves, and your readers will respond to it . . . they will feel it, and in the end, isn't that what you want? For your readers to feel? To be moved? To be transported to another place or time? To be scared? To want? To wonder? To fall in love? And if your novel touches enough people . . . voila! Now we're starting to talk bestseller. :)

So give yourself a gift this holiday season: permission to write what you love. Just write . . . without fear, without expectations. Without pressure. Write the story you're dying to write, because if you love it, chances are, another person will love it too. :) And maybe more than just one . . .

So what are you writing? And do you have any other ingredients to add to the bestseller mix?