Wednesday, February 25, 2015

What's Up Wednesday


The lovely ladies, Jaime Morrow and Erin L. Funk, sponsor this weekly hop to help us writerly/readerly folk touch base with each other. If you want to join in, head on over to either (better both) of their blogs and sign up on the linky.

Thanks, Jaime and Erin!


The last few weeks, I've been struggling to do much here on the blog-o-sphere (mostly thanks to those lovely snowstorms and 6....yes, 6!...snow days off for the kids). Needless to say, my kids thought we should cancel the rest of the school year and simply slide right on into summer vacation. Sorry, guys!




What I've Been Reading. . .

I've been hitting the books fairly hard lately, but seem to have been picking up things which just don't work for me. I read TEACHER BEWARE by Charlotte Raine, a suspense romance, and it was okay. I thought the author did a great job building the tension between the heroine and the killer, and she balanced 3 first person POVS rather well, but there were too many back flashes for my taste. I'd list the next 3 books, but it's not worth it. I stopped reading all of them by the fourth chapter. Maybe the next one I pick up will be better.


What I've Been Writing. . .

Two chapters done in four days! I'm still editing, but finally, I'm getting somewhere. I had a major....I'm talking extreme...plot change and ended up cutting 7-8 various chapters. I printed out the MS and literally took them out. Now, I'm patching and reweaving the story a bit, and really feel great about it - lighter and fresher.


What Works for Me. . .

Fingerless gloves. Ha! Bet you didn't expect that one. I'm one of those many female souls who suffers from cold hands. In my piano playing years, I'd stop and sit on them or put a space heater next to the piano. But when writing, I tend to carry my laptop everywhere (and who wants to tote a space heater too?) So I snipped off the tips of one of those cheap $1 stretchy gloves, and Tadah! Warm fingers for faster typing....or so I hope.


What Else I've Been Up To. . .

Trying to keep the kids' snow boots, gloves, hats, coats, pants and what nots half-way dry so that they can play outside over and over and over again. Oh, and the endless mopping of the mudroom - I LOVE the mudroom! (Seriously, if that stuff all got in the house *phew*)

Then we've had some problems with freezing water pipes. That's one of the lovely bonuses of living on a farm with a well. At first, we thought we'd simply failed to keep the pump house warm enough, but it appears that somewhere there's a pipe too close to the ground surface on the way to the house. . .which means we get to dig things up and try to find it this Spring! (Yay?????) Anyway, the water by the barn is on a different system, so I ended up carrying buckets and buckets of water to the house. Oh, and of course, the ponds froze over, which meant the cows got buckets and buckets too...and the goats....and the chickens. Let's just say that me and my bucket know each other well.

But most importantly, we've been making snow angels, and sled runs, and ice sliding races and all those wonderful things.



And what about you? Did you get buried under all that white stuff? Get to sun on the beach? Did you read a good book and love it? How's your writing going? In other words, what's up?


34 comments:

  1. Sorry about having to dig up the pipe. Make the kids do it - that will keep them busy.
    Glad you had a breakthrough with your story even if it involved cutting so many chapters.

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    1. You made me snort my tea with the kids idea ;)

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  2. Ah, it sucks when you're stuck in a bit of a reading rut. I hope something catches your interest soon!

    Sounds like you're making great progress with your WIP - sometimes those big changes just need to be made, and the end product is all the better for it. :D

    Have a great week, I hope it's a bit warmer for you soon!

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    1. Honestly, I probably should be writing more than reading now, so it might be a good thing.

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  3. Wow, sounds like the winter hit you hard! Hope the weather warms up soon :)

    Glad to hear pulling the chapters out is working well for you.

    Have a great week!

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    1. The winter here is nothing compared to the ones I grew up with in Denver, but the people here don't know how to handle it (aren't used to it). Since 70% of the school lives out on dirt roads, the buses can't run...and no school! Yippee!

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  4. Congratulations on all the writing you got done! And what a clever solution to your freezing finger problem. I really hope you can get off a first-name basis with your bucket soon.

    It has been way too cold here for NJ's liking, and I can't wait until spring. I just read REPLAY by Sharon Creech--you'd love her, if you don't already. My big news is that I'm almost done with MAGES II, and as soon as I revise it, you can read it! Okay, maybe that isn't good news for you, but I feel great about it! :-D

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    1. My bucket's name is George. Not very original. I know. But YAYAYAYAY! to Mages. I can't wait to get my fingers on that thing :)

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  5. No snow or mittens for us, but we will be moving to a colder climate this year and I'm already trying to mentally prepare myself -- brrr! Awesome job on your editing progress, Tonja, and have a fantastic week!

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    1. Lol! Maybe many mild years are on their way.

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  6. There have been a number of days off school here lately, too, but not from snow...just because it's so cold! It's always fun for the kids, though...snow days are magical, aren't they?

    Oh my goodness, that's such a fun idea about the gloves. Writing definitely causes cold hands, but I've never thought about using gloves to keep warm!

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    1. I got the idea of the gloves from playing the organ. Back in Germany the churches aren't well heated, and those fingers freeze. Brrr!

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  7. Hope things warm up soon! Frozen pipes don't sound like fun.

    Congratulations on all the words and best of luck patching that draft back together! :)

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  8. Extreme plot changes can be super stressful, but also super exciting. I'm glad it seems to be teetering more towards the latter for you. Hey, if it helps get the story on track, it's great, right? Hope it's smooth sailing from here on in. :-) I have some pretty awesome fingerless gloves too. My hands tend toward chilly and it's hard to write that way. Hope you have an all-around awesome week, Tonja! :D

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  9. Oh Tonja - some of this is a nightmare! It sounds exciting, finding a new direction for your book. Best of luck with the reweave.
    I keep a bonnet type hair dryer to pop gloves and hats into. It works quickly and those dryers can run for a long time.
    I think the snow days have passed us. Spring is still not close, but at least I'm outside more.
    Have a wonderful week (smile).

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    1. That's a great idea with the hair dryer. I've been placing them around the fireplace, but without a decent way to hang them up, it doesn't go as fast as hoped...I wonder if it could go as fast as the kids hope.

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  10. Oh my word. Think about how great your arms are going to look by the spring from hauling all those buckets! Haha! Hope everything gets sorted out and that we have NO MORE SNOW DAYS!

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    1. Lol! I hadn't thought of it that way. Ready muscles for gardening season ;)

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  11. Wow, sounds like you're catching up quickly on everything you cut! Two chapters in four days is awesome! Hope the rewriting continues to go well, and I hope the snow lets up soon. We've gotten dumped on a ton here too, and I just want it to be spring already. Wishful thinking in Canada though lol. Have a great week!

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    1. I'd say my luck on warm weather is a little bit better than yours, but I'll blow in your direction when it comes my way. The cut got rid of so much unnecessary stuff (even 3 characters). Usually, that would be a battle, but this is one feels like a huge blessing.

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  12. No snow or frozen pipes out here in Vancouver, thankfully. There isn't even any snow on the local ski mountains. Water shortages / restrictions are being predicted for the summer. They're predicted and restrictions are imposed for every summer; it's the only time of year our grass isn't green. (I refuse to waste water on keeping grass green.)

    Good luck with stitching your story back together after that multichapterectomy! The tighter story will be worth the work.

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    1. So sorry to hear about the drought. And LOVE the word "multichapterectomy"!

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  13. Ouch to the pipes. I had the six snow days off too but as the teacher with no kids, it left me time to write :-). Good luck with the big plot change.

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  14. Aw, we didn't get enough snow to play in, but things did ice over a couple of times pretty bad. But really, that is SO awesome you have a mud room! What?!

    Congrats on serious editing job! I printed a story out once, felt overwhelmed, and shoved it in the very bottom drawer of an unused desk. At least I think it's in there...

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    1. Ice is nasty! Lol! Made you should take a peek in that drawer ;)

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  15. I have a pair of fingerless gloves for writing, too. :)

    It's been a cold winter for us. No snow here in Georgia, but we have had temps below freezing. This is problematic because they don't even sell winter gear here. Lots of blankets and layers and I need to restock my sweaters.

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    1. Ah! So that's why every time I've flown through Georgia in winter nobody has a coat on. Stay warm!

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  16. Two chapters in four days is EPIC! Congrats :) Keep warm and have a lovely week!

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  17. "me and my bucket know each other well" Hah! We're on a well too and I feel your pipe woes. I live in Florida though, so our pipe woes are of a different variety. But when you do get a chance to dig up your pipe, they have these PVC slip-fittings that don't require glue. You simply slide them on over the break and twist them tight. Saved us bocoodles of $ and time, so I had to share that little tidbit.

    Though snow angels and sledding sound waaay more fun. :) Good luck with all the editing and stay warm!

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    1. Those PVC fittings sound great - thanks for the tip! With all my bucket carrying maybe I'll be able to heave things like you soon (probably not :) )

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I'd love to hear your valuable Tidbits -