Monday, January 28, 2013

Lunar Lovin' Hop, Re-Introduce Myself Hop, and Express Yourself Meme


Hosted by the lovely Mina Lobo, from Some Dark Romantic. 

Instructions: take a picture of the moon on Jan. 27, then post the pic on the 28th. 

It rained last night so the clouds covered the moon. But I have two pics taken two hours apart. No moon, of course, but I thought they were pretty cool pics so I thought I'd share anyway. The second one shows raindrops, but to me they look like stars. 


Elise Fallson, Carolyn Brown, Stephen Tremp, and Mark Koopmans are the hosts of this blog hop.

Share something about yourself to your bloggers. It can be about anything you want to share. 

Hello! I'm Jackie, Jack, or Jax. I'm married to Leo, and we have 4 boys - 15, 12, 10, and 6. They keep us busy with school and sports, but I wouldn't change a thing.

Fun Facts! I figured I’d throw out some random things that most don't know about me.

*Writing... here and there in junior high, but heavily in high school, mostly dark and sad poetry as well as short stories. While some of my fellow classmates made fun of me for my topic choices, my creative writing teacher encouraged me and told me I had a gift. Of course, being a teen, I didn’t listen and put my writing on the back burner for awhile.

*Musical instruments... alto saxophone and piano. I was in varsity band and marching band. If I were to pick up the saxophone now, I don’t think I could play it, but the piano? It’s like riding a bike. My parents still have our family piano at their place, and playing it still calms my nerves, even though I'm not very good.

*Singing... I sang in the church choir and participated in concerts and musicals. I grew up on stage which is funny considering I’m still extremely shy. Before every performance, I’d either break out in hives or get dry heaves. LOL Oh, dear, my poor friends. They talked me through it every time to which I was extremely grateful. 
Hmm... I do the hives/dry heave thing when it comes to my writing, too.

*Bible Bowl. Every year, we’d study a book from the Bible until it was ingrained in us. Then, we’d travel and compete against other teams. I met some very cool people on this journey and made some awesome memories.


The Express Yourself question for this week from Dani and I is....

What movies do you watch over and over that you can practically quote them word for word?


Finding Nemo
The Notebook
The Ref
Long Gone

Monday, January 21, 2013

Express Yourself - Movies and a book for 2013

The Express Yourself topic of the week that Dani and I would like to discuss is...

Are there any books, movies, or music you're anticipating for in 2013?


Iron Man 3 with Robert Downey, Jr. - May 2013 - Stark goes up against his nemesis for this installment - The Mandarin. Love Downey's quick wit and one-liners!

World War Z with Brad Pitt - June 2013 - Lane tries to stop a zombie outbreak. And these zombies don't walk- they scurry like thousands of cockroaches going in for a last meal. *shivers*

The Wolverine with Hugh *sigh* Jackman - July 2013 - Logan goes to Japan to train with a samurai warrior.

Catching Fire with Jennifer Lawrence - November 2013 - Katniss gets put into the games again, this time for  the Quarter Quell.


Triangles by Kimberly Ann Miller - June 2013 - A cruise ship. A beautiful island. Two sexy guys. What could go wrong? In the Bermuda Triangle - a lot. 

Hoping to leave behind the reminders of her crappy life--her father's death years ago, her mother's medical problems, and the loser who’s practically stalking her--seventeen-year-old Autumn Taylor hops on a ship with her sister for a little distraction. 
When she wakes up in the Bermuda Triangle, she fears she's gone nuts for more than one reason: that loser’s suddenly claiming they're a happy couple... a hot guy is wrapping his arms around her and saying "Happy Anniversary"... and suddenly, she’s full of bruises, losing her hair, and getting IV medication. Autumn visits the ship's doctor, hoping for a pill or a shot to make the craziness go away. Instead, she's warned that these "alternate realities" could become permanent. 

She just has to ask herself one question—how the hell is she going to get out of this mess?

What books, movies, or music are you psyched about this year?

After brainstorming and talking to Carolyn BrownDani @Entertaining Interests and I have decided to use a linky that you only have to sign up for once. Yep, no more signing up every week. Just fill out the info in the below linky and then post every week. If you miss a week or two, don't fret. We're very understanding hosts. 

Monday, January 14, 2013

Express Yourself Meme - "writerly" books

The Express Yourself question of the week that Dani and I came up with is ...

Are there any writerly books or books in general you'd recommend to your fellow writers/readers?

The below books helped me learn about the craft, which is first and foremost, the key. I also learned what other writers have experienced on their writing journey as well as how to edit, which is a big plus. 

On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King - Between his own experiences in the writing world and his helpful advice, you're in good hands.
When I purchased the book a few years back, this is what welcomed me:
"This is a short book because most books about writing are filled with BS. Fiction writers, present company included, don't understand very much about what they do--not why it works when it's good, not why it doesn't when it's bad. I figured the shorter the book, the less the BS."
Trust me, King delivers with his candidness in his book. No BS.

Self-Editing for Fiction Writers: How to Edit Yourself into Print by Renni Browne & Dave King - This book breaks down writing for you, from a chapter on show and tell, to dialogue mechanics, to voice. You won't be disappointed. It's a book I still go back to for reference.

The Elements of Style by William Strunk & E.B. White - A must have if you're delving down the writing path. This book will help tighten your MS and keep you in check. Also, my two older sons refer to it for essays. It's a win - win. 

Writers Workshop of Horror edited by Michael Knost - A friend let me borrow this one. You don't need to write horror to read this book. It's stocked with valuable info from twenty-nine different authors.

Are there any books you'd like to recommend? 

Dani and I decided to forego using a linky for now. If you are participating in this week's meme, tell us in the blog comment so we, as well as others, can venture over to your blog! 
Thanks so much for visiting!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Express Yourself - goals, resolutions, yikes.

Express Yourself Meme has been on a little hiatus with the holidays and such, but we're back in full swing. 
EYM is a weekly meme created by Dani and me... or is it I? We wanted to get to know our fellow bloggers better and meet some new ones along the way.

The question for this week... What's your 2013 resolutions? And if you don't make them, then tell us something you're looking forward to in the year ahead?

I've never made New Years resolutions. I DO think I need to make some sort of goals. This makes me nervous because it means I have to stick to it!!! Yikes. So I will write them here and keep myself accountable. I want to accomplish this all by May. I hope I can do it.

-Outline, outline, outline 
-Plot, plot, plot
-Start on my new WIP
-Finish said WIP
-Pass it over to my critique partners
-Edit and revise

Something not writing related...

-Get family game night/movie night back on track. We used to do this every Friday, but once summer was over, it's been hit or miss. I'm determined to get this rolling again!

Do you have any resolutions or goals that you'd like to accomplish this year?
January's Express Yourself Gadget...

Sign up using the linky so we can read your answers on your blog!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

IWSG - Jan Post #10

It's IWSG time! Its purpose is to encourage each other and share things that we're dealing with in our writing ventures, whether they be joys or struggles.
Alex J. Cavanaughthe ninja host, states it best... IWSG is a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds. 
To join, click on the pic below for deets and post on your blog the first Wed of every month.

I've sent out my first batch of queries and entered a couple of contests. So far, I've received a rejection from one query and a full manuscript request from a contest entry. Yay! Fingers crossed for me, folks, please. I'm so nervous. I've been down this road before, and it's scary as hell, but a good kind of scary. Healthy, even.

In the meantime, I'm reading one of my CP's new stuff. (I'm diggin' your story, Laura! Amazing as usual!) 
And I'm, I mean, attempting to outline a new WIP. Outlining.... my nemesis. You see, I'm a panster/pantser who works with a small outline. For me, it worked before, but with this last MS, the small outline made things harder. 
So, for my current project, I've decided I need more structure, more direction, before I start to write this story that's brewing in my brain. I really, really want to work with a strong outline. It will save me loads of time in the future.
Do you have any advice on outlining that has helped or not helped you? I'd appreciate any input. 

Thanks in advance! Have a wonderful day!

~Happy writing!