Friday, March 8, 2013
As this video was originally published in 2011, I'm shamefully late to this party, according to its five million plus viewers but I had to post it anyway. I'm a huge advocate of breast cancer awareness as well as shirtless, ripped dudes who dance around in their underwear. Anyone with the same likes will LOVE the Your Man Reminder campaign from Rethink Breast Cancer Awareness. Although the app isn't all its cracked up to be, the video is so worth it. For those who haven't seen it, you're welcome. To the little sister who introduced me to it over the weekend, thank you!
Monday, August 20, 2012
The third trimester is underway so I am becoming less and less mobile. This is good news for my TBR pile, great news for my WIP and not so awesome news for my exercise regime. The good news is that I have plenty to keep me occupied, including certain electronics….
|The hub standing in a little slice of lake heaven last week....|
Is it just me – or is the power cord on every laptop the first thing to go? Three out of my last five laptops have had problems with the power cord. This one is no exception. In fact, this is my second power cord for this computer. It’s lasted a year. The hub has done all he can to rig it so the computer is still getting a charge and thankfully the cord itself isn’t so misshapen that there’s a risk of frying the computer itself with a bad surge (that, too, I’ve experienced before). For a device that is supposed to be portable, though, it sure does seem to have a lot of issues.
This is me hopping off my box to tell a cautionary electronics tale. A little over a week ago before the hub and I took a trip to the family lakehouse, we were dozing very early one morning when a small thunderstorm passed over our area. The storm cell was a minor one; nothing near the crazy, wet weather we’ve experienced here throughout July and August on the Gulf Coast. So we’re dozing…we’re dozing…I hear thunder rumbling in the distance and think that if it gets closer I should get up and unplug my computer. No sooner had that thought left my head then KAPOW! Out of nowhere, a lightning bolt hit very close to our house. There was no delay between the blinding flash of white light and the unbelievable noise. Added to it, the fire alarms started to go off. The dogs started to go bonkers. The hub and I bolt out of bed. He says, “That hit something in the backyard.” It takes forever to get the fire alarms to cease. The ceilings in our house are pretty high. Even he, at six feet tall, had to have a stool to reach each one.
By this time, we realize that the lights in the garage don’t work. The garage is on the opposite side of the house as the backyard where we thought the bolt hit. I walk back toward the bedroom to grab a flashlight and start to smell something a little…well, off. I soon discover that none of the lights in the guest section of our house are working. Even worse, the strange smell was coming from the bedroom closest to ours. Anyone who has ever experienced a close lightning strike knows exactly what ozone smells like. The closest thing I know to compare it to is the offensive, rubbery smell of the white smoke that pours out a vacuum when the motor is caught and the belt keeps spinning. It’s pretty unsettling, particularly when it begins to permeate your entire house and won’t seem to go away. It’s at this point that the hub realizes that the lightning didn’t hit something in the backyard – it hit our house, right above the wall that separates the master bedroom and the guest bedroom where the worst of the ozone smell was coming from.
The rain is gone now. The lights are working throughout the house again. He’s starting to dress for work. At this point, it occurs to us to check the electronics throughout the house that were plugged in. The garage door was my main concern because my parents’ house had a similar experience years ago when I was still living at home and I remember the garage door having to be replaced…along with half of the electronics in the house. Thankfully, the garage door was working just fine as was most of the electronics that had been left plugged in overnight…but unfortunately the same couldn’t be said for the two devices plugged into the phone line on the side of the house closest to the strike – our DSL box in my office and the hub’s Xbox, which we use as a DVD player in the master bedroom. Ouch.
|The roof of our house the morning after the storm....|
Before the hub left for work, he took a stroll out back with the dogs to check to see that everything in the yard was okay…and this is when he discovered the gaping hole in the roof over our bedroom where the lightning hit the house. The bolt ripped through a whole patch of shingles and the plywood underneath, and there was officially no mistaking that it hit the house directly. Thankfully, the hub took off work to patch it up before another storm blew through.
I tell you this story, Cozies, because if you live in the stormy south like we do, it’s good to back-up your hard drive. My computer could have very easily been plugged into the DSL as it was an hour or so before we went to bed the night before the strike. I wouldn’t just have lost an expensive piece of office equipment; I would have lost months of work. So if you’re reading this, do me a favor. Take five minutes out of your schedule today and back up your hard drives. Also? A surge protector is a really good thing to invest in, but we couldn’t protect those items plugged into the phone line. The Xbox was covered by an extended warranty, but it’s interesting to note that when we did take it back to the store, neither the Xbox itself or its power cable worked. So the bolt came through the phone line, took out the DSL, traveled through the DSL cable, fried the Xbox and its power cable.
Another chilling side note? A mere week before this happened to us, a house in a neighborhood just down the road from ours was struck by lightning and burned to the ground within minutes. Lesson learned? Be mindful, Cozies. I’d hate for any of you to have a similar or worse experience this storm season….
Friday, August 3, 2012
I’ve been looking forward to telling this horse story at Sweethearts of the West for a month! Drop by tomorrow and read "A Modern-Day Horse Story" about everyday heroes and the animals who need them.
You might have noticed a few changes have taken place here at The Cozy Page. Due to the recent crackdown on web image copyrights on several other blogging sites, I have decided to take all pictures posted here at The Cozy Page that do not belong to me down. From here on out, I’ll only be posting my covers and photos from my personal collection. Guests are still welcome to bring images as long as they belong to or have been purchased by them from stock image sites. Clip-art like the one at left is also welcome. It was tough having to go through five years of blog posts and delete several images from my history here at the ol’ blog, but as an author it’s important to respect copyrights and do what’s necessary to stop piracy and stealing on the web. Thank you so much for your understanding, Cozies!
I finally finished the long contemporary revision early last week. I’ve been trying to find some downtime for me and my little, developing minion before it’s back to writing western romance and getting the nursery ready for the little one’s holiday arrival. I did promise a glimpse into how I build my characters. I have not forgotten. Stay tuned for that – as well as Monday’s post at The Roses of Prose!
Wednesday, June 20, 2012
So yesterday I received my 1st quarter numbers from The Wild Rose Press and I simply must give a shout-out to my readers because they were great, much better than any of my numbers from last year! I’m so grateful for your support – I hope those of you who have bought books from my backlist this year are enjoying them. This makes me want to work even harder to generate more titles for you to read!
THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!
THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!
Tuesday, June 19, 2012
Today I journey into the past with The Roses ofProse with stories from my family tree, some that date back to Germany, Ireland, and the American Civil War. Hope to see you there….
Tuesday, June 12, 2012
I’m back to work this month, Cozies! And with this new surge of second trimester energy comes a big desire to organize. The hub and I always seem to do our spring cleaning late…but better late than never, right? The final week of May, we donated a truck-full of household and yard items to the Salvation Army to make room for the baby things that will soon be spread around the nursery as well as much of the house. I was so eager to part with some of my clutter, I even went through my shelves and boxes of books and managed to part with two boxes full of paperbacks. It did hurt some, but I just love the possibility of free space.
And an office without clutter has turned out to be a fresh start for me and the muse. This week we hit the ground running on final revision. At this rate, it will be finished and mailed off to the agent by July, just in time for one last family vacation for the year. (I’ll be grounded here close to home base for much of the fall months as per doctor’s orders.) To make room for a bedside bassinet, my bookshelves have been moved into the office…where they look lovely. This opened the office space up, too, because the craft table that was on that wall previously is now in the garage. We also parted with the derelict desktop that has been collecting dust on the desk facing the window, my favorite spot. It feels like a much more productive environment. In fact, yesterday I revised three chapters before getting online. Today, I’ve completed one of the two character sketches I need to guide me through the middle of this manuscript.
I’m looking forward to the end of this last revision because I feel confident that it is the last. Revision has served me very well in the past. It’s a process I believe strongly in. Most editors do, too, so if you’re a writer and you avoid revision like the plague as I did when I began writing all those years ago, I strongly suggest a regime change. You can still stay true to the story’s original vision if you revise in a way that feels healthy to both you and the text. I know cutting material as we sometimes have to do doesn’t always feel healthy. In truth, it can be like parting with an important limb. But learning how to safely navigate the revision process inherently teaches you what material is necessary and what is not; what will make the writing tauter, the flow of the story smoother.
Enough on revision for now. I’m going to talk more openly soon about how character workshops have helped me create some of the most helpful character sketches and plotting from character. I just wanted to give you readers a little update on my housekeeping progress as well as my latest revision regime. It’s back to work now!
Tuesday, May 22, 2012
Something I’ve been doing a lot of lately is reading! I caught up on quite a bit of my TBR while I was out sick. I re-read a few of my favorite comfort reads – Nora Roberts’s second Irish trilogy. I also caught up on one of my favorite paranormal authors’ new series – Larissa Ione’s Lords of Deliverance. Immortal Rider was excellent! Limos and Arik kept my mind occupied through some of the worst days of April...and that’s saying a lot....Before the hub and I start Project Relax...I’ll be at Karen Michelle Nutt’s blog this Thursday, May 24 with a behind the scenes look at western romance Blackest Heart! Hope to see you there - and hugs for being patient with me through this new journey….