New Beginnings
LA-Blue
sarameade
I have been contemplating my New Year's Resolutions. I have a lot of them. They are mostly about becoming better at this or that. A better mother, a better wife, a better writer, ...christian, friend, blogger, person in general. More of an organizer, less of a procrastinator. Blah, blah, blah. *Insert Charlie Brown's teacher's voice here* And of course the obligatory...get in shape and eat right.




Now you might say, why can't you just be happy with yourself? Are any of us? I think most of it is fear of failure or is it fear of success? I can't be sure. So this year, 2012, I am not going to get down on myself because I'm not where 'I think' I should be. I am just going to do the best I can in all of these areas and pray that it makes a difference for myself and the others in my life. Maybe we can learn to trust that we are enough with all our imperfections. May this year bring you all the goodness that you can handle!

I read this blog post 25 things writers should stop doing thanks to newport2newport and loved it! I think he hits home with a lot of my doubts and shortcomings in my writing. Happy New Beginnings.

Oregon Coast
LA-Blue
sarameade
I am very excited that I will be going to a Children's Book Workshop in Oregon in July. I will be flying in a little early to do some sightseeing along the coast. Does anyone have any suggestions of what is a must-see? Any tips are appreciated. :)
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From Books to Movies
LA-Blue
sarameade
With the movie Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows coming out this weekend, and my family watching Avatar: The Last Airbender on DVD last night, I wondered what your favorite movie made from a book was.

Here's the ones I can think of in random order.

-Harry Potter
-The Last Airbender
-Lord of the Rings
-Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief
-Pride and Prejudice
-Because of Winn Dixie
-The Princess Bride
-The Lovely Bones
-Memoirs of a Geisha
-The Notebook
-Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
-The Polar Express
-The Jungle Book

I'm sure there are many more that I can't remember right now. What ones do you like?

Thankfulness
LA-Blue
sarameade
With Thanksgiving right around the corner I have been thinking of all the things I'm thankful for.

I'm thankful everyday that I have God in my life.
I'm thankful I am healthy when I see many who aren't.
I'm thankful that I have a beautiful family that loves me (even when I'm grouchy).
I'm thankful for my job which a lot of people don't have.
I'm thankful that I can write words on a page and feel a calmness come over me.
I'm thankful for wonderful, supportive friends.
I'm thankful for great books and good movies.
I'm thankful for the soldiers who have and do protect me and my family (especially my dad and brother-in-law).
I'm thankful for my hardships because they make me stronger.
I'm so thankful for my life...
It gets better and better with every passing year.

How about you?
Happy early Thanksgiving!

7 Quirky Things about Me
LA-Blue
sarameade
7 Quirky things about me


1. I cannot tell jokes! I screw up the punch line every time.

2. When I was in 1st grade, I had to see a counselor because I was sooooo shy I hardly talked. (For those of you who know me, the counseling obviously worked.)

3. If I go to bed with my hair wet I will wake up with an afro in the morning.

4. I love romantic movies and if I really like it I'll watch the same scenes over and over with obsession.


5. I have an extra hole inside my ear from where a cyst burst when I was a baby (yes, I have a hole in my head)


6. When I get excited my voice goes up higher and higher in octave.


7. Gross scientific stuff like watching brain surgery fascinates me. (I'm in the medical field) It doesn't bother me to talk about it while I'm eating either. :)


***If you have any to add, go ahead. Just don't make it too embarrassing. Please?

Writing what you want to know
LA-Blue
sarameade
I've been neglecting my blog terribly. I have lots of excuses, most of them good, as I'm sure most of us do. So I'll try to do better.

The other morning I was thinking in the shower (What? Isn't that where you get your best ideas?) I've been to many, many conferences and the one thing I hear over and over is... write what you know. You hear this from editors. You hear this from agents. You hear this from authors. But what I want to say is--how boring is that? Yes, you do need to add some things in there that you have learned along the way, but wouldn't you like to pursue new things, too? There will always be a bit of yourself in your work. Your morals, emotions, things that have happened to you. It's scary to think about learning something different and beyond your comfort level, but I think it makes your connection even stronger when you've had to do research, interview people, get to know personally what it may have been like for another person even if this certain thing has happened to you.

So instead of writing what you know----Write what you've been curious about, write what you want to know about, write what doesn't come naturally but what comes honestly from the heart. You'll be glad you did and so will your readers.

Hope
LA-Blue
sarameade
Hope is... never giving up on your dreams even if they are many moons away.
Keep stretching and growing and living your life in a way where your children are proud you're their parent.


This past week was a difficult one for me and my husband. Our son was in the hospital for 4 days with a severe case of pyelonephritis (kidney infection). He is doing much better now, but we still have check-ups and follow-up tests. But I am thankful! Sometimes you lose sight of what is really important. On the way to the ER he told me that he was going to die. I said, "You are absolutely not going to die. If you died, then I would have to die." He responded, "You can't die, what about S (his sister)." He, of course, was right. But still...

Last night, my daughter then told me she felt like we didn't love her anymore (she wasn't in the car when my son and I had the conversation). Which made me feel horrible! I had to reassure her that we loved her with everything we had and that would never, ever change. She was very worried about her brother but tried not to show it.

I honestly don't know who I would be without my children. They are the most honest people I know. They teach me humility. They show me bravery. They give me strength when I don't feel it and I thank God for them every day.

Book Reviews
LA-Blue
sarameade
I'm catching up on my book reviews. These are just a few of the ones I loved.

Graceling by Kristin Cashore
Katsa has been able to kill a man with her bare hands since she was eight-- she's a Graceling, one of the rare people in her land born with an extreme skill. As niece of the king, she should be able to live a life of privilege, but Graced as she is with killing, she is forced to work as the king's thug.

She never expects to fall in love with beautiful Prince Po.

She never expects to learn the truth behind her Grace--or the terrible secret that lies hidden far away... a secret that could destroy all seven kingdoms with words alone.

I don't know what I expected from this book but it outweighed my expectations. I'm always a sucker for a good romance and for a strong character who clearly knows who she is and what she wants. Don't get me wrong, she did change throughout and was even stronger at the end. This is a great read. Now, Santa can you bring me her next book...Fire?


Prophecy of the Sisters by Michelle Zink
Twin sisters Lia and Alice Milthorpe have just become orphans. They have also become enemies. As they discover their roles in a prophecy that has turned generations of sisters against each other, the girls find themselves entangled in a mystery that involves a tattoo-like mark, their parents' deaths, a boy, a book, and a lifetime of secrets.

Lia and Alice don't know whom they can trust.

They just know they can't trust each other.

I picked this book up at the library having never heard of it. From the very beginning it intrigued me and pulled me in. It had secrets all throughout that kept me guessing. The ending was quite the cliffhanger which always makes me want to pull my hair out! But in a good way. There are 2 more books forthcoming to make this a trilogy set. I can't wait to read them.

If I Stay by Gayle Forman

In a single moment everything changes. Seventeen-year-old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall riding along the snow-wet Oregon road with her family. Then, in a blink, she finds herself watching as her own damaged body is taken from the wreck...

This book is written so beautifully. The way Gayle Forman intertwined back story throughout is absolutely amazing. I don't know if it's because I'm in the medical field, but this book made me boo-hoo through most of it and spoke to my heart. The characters were jumping out of the pages. This has been one of my favorite books...okay, yes I'll say it....Ever. Praise to Ms. Forman for writing this book. Loved this book!!!



Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has won the annual Hunger Games with fellow district tribute Peeta Mellark. But it was a victory won by defiance of the Capitol and their harsh rules. Katniss and Peeta should be happy. After all, they have just won for themselves and their families a life of safety and plenty. But there are rumors of rebellion among the subjects, and Katniss and Peeta, to their horror, are the faces of that rebellion. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge.


This is the second book in the Hunger Games triology and it did not disappoint. It was a page turner which kept me up all night reading. It made me talk out loud to the book as I read. "Gale. No wait, Peeta. Umm..okay, choose Gale." I was as confused as Katniss on who to love more. Sorry if that was a little spoiler. These books are so different and compelling. Of course I wished I'd thought of something like this. Can't wait for the last book to come out 2010!
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A little goes a long way
LA-Blue
sarameade


Last weekend a friend of mine and I went to Quartz Mountain to do some much needed writing.

See all that I got done!!! (Yeah, okay 2 scenes are blank but still... at least it's colorful)

We had a wonderful time and did some sightseeing as well. It was nice to get away from the noise of the city (and of my children) ~smile...but mostly just to get better acquainted with my characters and their story.

It is quite beautiful there.


You didn't know we had such diversity of landscape in Oklahoma, did you?




This little guy posed and everything.


And she did, too.





This sunset was absolutely breathtaking.


Now back to writing! Cheers.
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Something amazing, I guess
LA-Blue
sarameade
I love the movie, The Incredibles. Especially the little neighbor boy who rides his tricycle around blowing bubblegum bubbles.



It seems I have been waiting around for something amazing to happen with my writing without putting the effort in. I don't put BIC like I should. I write in spurts and always give myself big goals that are often unrealistic. Then I get downhearted when I can't live up to those goals and want to give up. And I have this little problem of needing everything to be perfect --well at least in my writing.

Yet, with all of that, I do believe in myself--that someday I will be published. And maybe, just maybe, something amazing will happen if I lay out my heart and piece together all the ordinaries and make them extraordinary.

So...I have tucked away some time for this passion I have called writing. Booked in a place that will empty the cobwebs and wash away my worries. Yay!

And hopefully I'll come home with something amazing (or the start of something amazing after 12 revisions, of course). Or even better, when I get that phone call from an agent they will yell....




What? A girl can dream, can't she? :)

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