"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." —J. R. R. Tolkien

Sunday, September 30, 2007

So tomorrow it's back to work

Eight weeks off. So nice. But reality has hit, and tomorrow it's back to the 9 to 5.

Happy October 1st!

Friday, September 28, 2007

Given that it's Friday ...

... I was thinking about this. Born in 1970, this hit when I was 11 (1981 for those who don't want to do the math).
Who didn't love the song "Everybody's Working for the Weekend"?

And it got me thinking, what was your favorite album cover?

Here's my top ten (or at least 10 I can think of now):

1) Loverboy Get Lucky
2) Led Zeppelin In Through the Out Door
3) Beatles Sergeant Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band
4) Prince 1999
5) Pink Floyd Dark Side of the Moon
6) Journey Escape
7) Rush Moving Pictures
8) Grateful Dead Skeletons From the Closet
9) Led Zeppelin IV
10) Scorpions Love at First Sting

What about you? Do you have you own list? If so post it on your blog and let me know!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Chapter One - ?

Why are chapter names so hard? I don't think this is just me either. The book is rare that I pick up and think - "Wow, look at those chapter names!" But when they are creative, they are great.

In my WIP, I've realized that I need to start thinking some up. The realization came when I submitted to my critique group and got more than one :) that all my chapters were named "Something".

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

All consumed

I tend to get all consumed in a project when I start it. I think about it when I wake up. When I exercise. I sneak away to work on it (just three minutes here and there can really add up). When I fall asleep, it's what I think about right before bed.
But aside from door and window hinges which are on special order, here is my finished project!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The difference a letter makes

So my 6-year old (1st grader) was doing his homework yesterday afternoon. First grade homework is far from challenging. The goal is to get them in the habit of doing it. The assignment of the day:
Write five words from the "at" family.

So he starts writing.
He then asks if he can write ratattat. I say sure, though I'm unsure of the spelling.
Fourth we have Cat.
He then asks if he can write "fat" even though we call this a bad word (the last thing I want is for him to get in the habit of referring to people this way.) But I say sure - it is a valid "at" word and perfectly fine for the assignment. And so he asks,
"Does it start with an "f" or a "ph"?"

After I stopped laughing, I attempted to explain the difference between fat and phat to my 6-year old. But then we looked online and found that indeed phat is in the Merriam-Webster dictionary. He chose to got with fat as the fifth word.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Finding humor in strange places

I don't regularly take pictures in public bathrooms. Not even private ones either for that matter. But once I locked the door and saw this ...

Friday, September 14, 2007

So what's your day job?

After six weeks away from mine, I can hardly remember. And as of yet, I have not written another book on my sabbatical. I have worked on revisions, but not during the day as I'd planned. Still writing only in the evenings. To me, it just feels like the right time.

Do you have a particular time of day you like to write? I get 9:00 - 11:00 pm. The kids get to bed by 8. Talk with hubby. Check email. Check blogs. That brings me to 9. But then I can focus. Sometimes I spend the whole 2 hours. Sometimes less. Rarely more (except maybe during a first draft stage).

And when you don't write, do you have to do something else to pay the bills?
I design chips. Not potato chips. The kind that go into cell phones (smart phones they call them). I like referring to them as Smart Phones because ... well, it just makes me feel smart!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Attention to Detail

So after D.C., I headed for a week long vacation to the Bahamas with my 2 kids and my mom. Have you been? Seen the Atlantis resort? Well that's where we stayed.
The resort was amazing. There was more marine life (sharks, manta rays, stingrays, etc.) than I've ever seen in my life. It was clean. Service was good. The pools were awesome. Slides were scary and fun. But the thing that struck me the most was the attention to detail.

The whole resort was designed around the theme that the lost city of Atlantis had been discovered in ruins underwater. And entire mythology had been developed. Who the inhabitants were. How it sank. How they tried to save it. How they communicated. How they told time. There were maps handed out detailed the city and where each chamber discovered was. The archaeologist work area was preserved.
As if this weren't enough, everywhere I looked, everything fit into the plan. The tunnels had drawings on the walls. The bathrooms had ancient alphabets written on them. The radios were hidden inside rocks along the walkways. The kid's pool even had an Atlantis themed playscape.

Thinking about it, designing a resort like this really doesn't differ much from writing a book. Actually any major project can be equated. Planning is important, but it's the attention to all the small details that will really make it stand out.