Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Versatile Blogger Award

It seems I've won an award! Huzzah!

The gallant Nick over at Scattergun Scribblings has awarded me the Versatile Blogger award! Let's see how many exclaimation points I can use!!!


Moving on...

Here are the rules:

1. In a post on your blog, nominate 15 fellow bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award (or however many you choose).
2. In the same post, add the Versatile Blogger Award.
3. In the same post, thank the blogger who nominated you in a post with a link back to their blog. 
4. In the same post, share 7 completely random pieces of information about yourself.
5. In the same post include this set of rules. 
6. Inform each nominated blogger of their nomination by posting a comment on each of their blogs.

So seven random things about me...I think I can do random no problem.

1. I have an obsession with Milky Way Midnights. I have a stash in my desk drawer and there's never less than two in there. 
2. I can't watch most horror movies. Not because I don't like them, but because when I do I have a hard time convincing myself afterwards that something isn't going to crawl out of my TV.
3. My twin brother and I had imaginary friends in the form of monsters that lived in the woods. It's okay, they were nice monsters.
4. I grew up on a ton of land in upstate New York. Some of the property was my aunt's dog breeding and boarding business. As such, I have witness many puppies being born. Somehow I suspect the birth of my son will be slightly different. For one, there's not going to be any ripped up newspaper... 
5. I had pica when I was little. My mom was on first name basis with Poison Control. Most memorable thing I ate? The earrings off my cousin's earring tree. All of them. Never had to get my stomach pumped though, unlike my little brother, who drank kerosine (he thought it was water because it was kept in a blue jug, like the water jugs we brought with us when we went camping).
6. I have long hair because I am lazy. Any time I get bangs I love them for about two days and then I get sick of having to style them.
7.  I love @emergencypuppy on Twitter. It's nothing but cute pictures of animals doing cute things. They don't spam your feed either.

This ice is otterly too cold.

Okay, so for the last part of this award, I shall return the love in no particular order:

Lena Hoppe

Elizabeth Davis

Charity Bradford

Joseph Selby

Rena Ford

Friday, January 20, 2012

Uppity Updates!

Just in case you were all wondering what's going on, here's some updates on life, the universe, and everything:

*I am overwhelmed by how awesome all of you are. You guys were nice and supportive about my last post, which only proves my point that you guys are awesome. Also, let's see how many times I can use the word "awesome". It's really awesome that you guys are so awesome. :D

*I wrote this sentence to prove that I have a larger vocabulary than a teenage girl. Actually, that's an unfair statement considering when I was a teenage girl I had a large vocabulary, as did most of the girls I knew. I apologize to teenage girls everywhere.

*I have finished the first draft of Zombie Road Trip. I did not celebrate this occurrence with a blog post, mostly because this draft wins the gold medal of crappiness. I seem to really embrace that whole "crappy first draft" rule. When I say crappy, I am not being modest or hard on myself. We're talking about plot holes the size of the moon, plot threads that went nowhere, a beginning that in no way shape or form matches the middle or the end, and that's just the major stuff. Last year I wrote several first drafts, all of which suck. It seems that this year will be the year of editing these drafts into some semblance of coherence. More on that later.

*I narrowly avoided death yesterday on my way to the OB. A woman was driving and putting make up on. Just, no. No ladies. You're beautiful. You don't have to apply make up while your vehicle is in motion. Really, you don't. At least wait until you get to the parking lot of your destination. And no, waiting at a red light doesn't count. 

*I am 36 1/2 weeks pregnant, and boy am I fat. I had my baby shower this past Saturday and I saw the pictures and wow. Just, wow. It looks like I am smuggling a watermelon under my shirt. Before you guys get all worried or mad at me for calling myself fat, I don't mean it in a "I must now starve myself to keep my girlish figure at 9 months pregnant" way. It's funny, especially since I've always been small. Just when I think my belly can't possibly get any bigger, it does. I am not starving myself; on the contrary, pass me another brownie. It's just that I've gained 30 pounds, and's hilarious. I waddle when I walk. I have a hard time getting off the couch. I out grew my maternity pants and had to buy the next size up. You see? Hilarious.

Fun baby shower game--guess the pregnant woman's belly size! My friend Janice actually guessed it perfectly. Jennifer, the woman in the picture, obviously over shot it by a lot. Thanks Jennifer.
 *Something something something, something something goes here but I forgot what it was.

*I am critiquing two novels and failing miserably. My brain is slush right now, and I can't concentrate for very long, so it's taking forever. I feel horrible, but figured giving the book back with a gigantic smiley face on it wasn't exactly what my crit partners were looking for.

*Holy crap babies make a lot of laundry! I mean, sweet Georgia Brown, he's not even out yet and I've already done two loads of laundry and have about three more to do. Blankets, burp clothes, wash clothes, bibs, clothing, socks (LOTS of teeny baby socks), you name it, I've washed it. 

*No, I am not nesting yet, why do you ask?

*Editing! Yes, it's that time. Last year I wrote a bunch of really, really awful first drafts. This year will be the year I edit them. There's a lot of rewriting in my future. Grid your loins for posts about editing, that's all I've got to say.

*I've downloaded a ton of books on my Kindle. Right now I am reading James Scott Bell's Writing Fiction for All Your Worth and loving it. Reading books on writing puts me in an editing frame of mind, which is great because I am going to need it. Bell has this awesome (there's another one!) makes me want to work on WIP, right away. When I start whining about editing, you guys can remind me I was excited way back when. 

So what are you all up to?

Monday, January 16, 2012

Mulling Things Over

I've had this post in mind for about two months now, but I didn't quite know what to say. If I should say anything. If it was over sharing or I would regret talking about super personal life things on my blog later on in life.

The more I think about it though, the more important it feels to say. To make sure you guys know. So here it goes.

I had an amazing holiday season. I truly did. But it was also one of the hardest ones I've had to endure because a person very close to me is suddenly not anymore. He's not sick or away, it's a personal choice he's made. 

A difficult choice for the rest of us. We had to change the way we celebrate Christmas and birthdays, and even then there was a gaping hole left behind. I don't fully understand his decisions and I don't think I am ever going to. Most of the time I'm fine, but some things remind me of his absence, how he's there but not there, and it's all I can do not to start bawling.

This sounds weird, but sometimes I wish I could control people around me. I know, it sounds terrible. But when your happiness is so entwined with someone else's, and they keep doing things to rip your heart out, you start fantasizing about ways to make it stop. Especially since this thing has been on and off for the last year. It was easier to ignore before the holidays cropped up. 

I had to let him go. 

It was the only thing I could do. I couldn't keep expecting him to be there, because when he wasn't it was like dying all over again. And these little constant deaths were somehow worse to deal with than if he was there, and then not. I don't think he knows how he's affecting the people around him. I think he believes he's just making his own choices. Being an adult and living his life. I honestly don't know if he regrets his decisions, or will someday.

But what all this has made me realize is I do have people in my life that are there for me. Some of them are family members, and others are the family I've made for myself. My friends, my husband, and even my little unborn boy. It really sucks when someone you love suddenly decides they don't want to be a big part of your life anymore, but it also forces you to realize there are other people still there.

Please, don't get me wrong. I am so very happy right now. I am 36 weeks pregnant; the baby will be making his appearance soon. I love my husband with all my heart, and I have true friends. My parents and in-laws have been awesome and supportive in general and especially through the pregnancy (seriously guys, this is the first grandchild on either side of the family, and they are LOSING THEIR MINDS with joy).

So I arrive at my point. I want those of you who read my blog to know that you make a difference too. I don't know most of you in person, but it doesn't matter. I do the same thing; I read a bunch of blogs and maybe comment on one or two. And I think it doesn't matter. I am just one follower out of so many. It doesn't matter to the author of the blog.

I want you to know that it does matter to me. Your comments, the people who follow me, and the people who simply stop by to read my ramblings once in awhile. I do notice it, and it does matter to me. There's a lot of other stuff you could be doing with your time. Your choice to spend some of that time with me is awesome. 

So from me to you, I want you to give yourself a hug. Don't feel lame; just do it. If there's someone in the room with you, you can always say some crazy girl on the Internet told you to hug yourself. I can take the blame, I don't mind.

I hope all of you are having not just a great day, but a great life. Just remember when you feel like everything is pointless and it doesn't matter, that it does. 

Monday, January 9, 2012

In Which I Squee Like a Fangirl

My son, Connor. The weird thing next to his face is his arm.
So I am now armed with pictures of the little parasite inside my uterus. He's still got some growing to do, mostly his lungs and brain, but in two weeks (I am 35 weeks today) he will be considered completely developed. Which mean the time he spends in the womb afterwards is him just straight up free loading (seriously, I know they are putting on more weight to prepare for life outside, etc, etc). I really can't blame him since he's got a good thing going on in there. I wish I could lay around all day and get feed via a tube. I mean, I do the first part a lot, but I have to get off the couch to get food. How unfair is that?

Moving on from my laziness!

Did you know that James Scott Bell came out with a new book on writing? I know! It's like a belated Christmas present! It's called "Conflict and Suspense". I have his other three books on writing, Plot and Structure, Revision and Self Editing, and the Art of War for Writers. I highly recommend all three books. My copies have tons of little scraps of paper bookmarks in them.

Ergo my agonized debate whether or not I should buy a ebook copy or a hard copy. On one hand, the ebook is a little cheaper and I would get it RIGHT NOW. Let me stress to you the importance of RIGHT NOW. I know it's bad in the digital age we don't want to wait for things, but seriously guys. James Scott Bell. New book on writing, coinciding with me revamping my writing process and analyzing what's working and what's not.

In the end, the little scraps of paper won out and I ordered a hard copy. I now have an estimated delivery date of this Wednesday, or January 17-24th. I have Amazon Prime, which is supossed to give me free two day shipping. But for some reason Amazon says this book doesn't release until the 12th of January, even though it also appears you can buy it right now (RIGHT NOW). So it's currently in limbo and I wait anxiously to see when it will arrive. I downloaded the sample chapters on my kindle, but that just left me wanting more.

While I am waiting, why don't you guys tell me what you prefer out of your reference books, ebook or hard copy? And why? Am I the only one who saw this as a huge dilemma?

Friday, January 6, 2012

Baby Shower!

It never ceases to amaze me how awesome and generous the blogging community is. 

But when Charity asked if she could throw me an Internet baby shower, I was floored. I mean, I feel like I know you guys just like I know my friends in real life, but for a lot of people there's still a huge difference between "person in real life" versus "person on the Internet". Charity's offer reminded me of how lucky I am to have friends, blogging or not. 

So at her suggestion, I send you to her blog for the details. I wish I could give you all cake, but I think it would get stale in the mail. ;) If an internet baby shower is just too weird for you, maybe you'd like to go to the comments section and give me some advice. Heaven knows I am going to need it. I am still amazed that in six weeks I will have a little baby to take home, and I will be expected to keep him alive. 

Especially since most days I don't even change out of my pajamas.

I hope you all have an excellent weekend and make lots of progress on your books! I am going to be laying on the couch, feeling like a beached whale, and trying to convince myself to get up to get a snack. 

I know, I know. It's an exciting life I lead. 

Wait, I forgot! I am doing something exciting! Tomorrow I am going for a 3D ultrasound. It's like a regular ultrasound, only there's color and stuff. I will bombard you with post pictures afterwards for your ogling pleasure.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Seeking All Guest Bloggers

In preparation of the impending baby, I thought a smart way to keep regular posts while allowing me a bit of a blogging maternity leave would be to seek out guest bloggers. 

That's where you come in!

I don't have anything to offer you if you want to guest blog, other than the fact that I have the best readers ever. You can blog about whatever you want, whether it's your cats or your current book. I don't have an exact time frame of when I will be going on maternity leave, obviously, but I am due February 13th. 

I wanted to give everyone plenty of time to think about it and decide you really need to do a guest post about that weird fungus growing on your toast (which totally looks like Howard Stern), or how you got to be a mega-bestseller and yet remained humble and awesome (Neil Gaiman, the answer is yes. You can write about whatever you want and I'll let you guest blog).

Email me at writer (dot) elizabethpoole (at) gmail (dot) com if you are interested. 

Monday, January 2, 2012

New Year's Resolutions (with Zombies!)

I know there are a million people posting their New Years Resolutions, but you should read mine because there are zombies involved. And then you should post your goals in the comments section! It could be like a little party of resolve!

Also, there's something about stating your goals in public for everyone to see. Guilt and shame are great motivators, let me tell you.

So here are my resolutions for 2012:

1. Finish my book and query agents
The whole she-bang. Finish the first draft, edit it into awesomeness, and then pester query agents for representation. Last year was sort of a growing year for me. I wrote two books, but I also broke what I wrote too. But you know, that's okay. I firmly believe that trying, failing, and trying again is an important part of this process. Both books I wrote, not to mention the complete rewrite, taught me a lot.

2. Start a new book
While I am waiting on queries, crits, and other assorted writing things, I want to get another book written.

3. Stretch more
Everyone has some variation of this on list, I am sure, but I prefer to be more specific. "Exercise more" never works out for me, so I am going with stretching. I like the activities you do while stretching (Pilates and Yoga, get your mind out of the gutter), so that's what I am going with.

4. Get my website together
Before I start querying, I'd like to have some semblance of a website up. Mostly I keep forgetting about it, but this year I will make sure it gets going. 

5. Fix up the blog
I don't really have any ideas yet, but it's been almost two years and it seems like it's time for a change. Anyone have any suggestions?

I was going to put something baby related on the resolution list, but I figured that would be cheating since I am already there. 

Without further ado, here's your zombies!

And while you're listening to the song, pop down in the comments section and tell me what your resolutions are.