Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Another Quiz

I found another cool quiz, so I thought I'd share my results as well as the link. Have fun with it and let me know your results.


You have Raven
Positive Traits: Intellectual,
Wise, Experienced, Honest,
Negative Traits: Pompous,
Condescending, Withdrawn, Pessimistic,

Your eyes are the windows to your soul. What type of eyes do you have?
brought to you by Quizilla

Friday, November 04, 2005

A New Time Waster

I admit that I spend a lot of time at the computer and not always doing something with a purpose. Well, wouldn't you know that someone would have to invent another time wasting device to keep me at my computer even longer. I'm talking about blogs. Sure, I can fool myself into thinking that I'm searching out resources and hoping to make some new contacts, but the truth is that I kind of enjoy hearing about other people's problems, successes, and day to day lives.

Of course, when I explain the amount of time spent reading other people's blogs to my husband, I say that it's all for research. Reading from other people's points of view is a great way to help develop characters in my novels. Conflict, motivation, goals, soul-searching, it's all there. Makes sense to me and I think I've got him fooled.

I'm off to search out some new and interesting blogs.


Tuesday, November 01, 2005


I opened my e-mail, and there it was--the dreaded reply from an agent who had asked to see my manuscript. No need to read the message, because as soon as I saw her name as the sender, I knew. But it's okay. I was asked for a full manuscript. That doesn't happen often and it means I'm one step closer to my goal. So, I keep submitting both my manuscripts and keep my fingers crossed that the day will come sooner rather than later. You know, the day when someone sees my potential and takes me on as a client. In the meantime, I keep writing.

Have a good one,

Sunday, October 23, 2005

How to stay motivated?

Yes, amidst the constant stream of rejections that would be enough to cause most people to give up, I have a way to stay motivated. To give you an example:

I woke up this morning and checked my e-mail, which is usually the first thing I do every day, and I found an e-mail from someone who'd just finished reading my book, Sword Across Time. He told me how much he enjoyed it, that it was the perfect blend of adventure and romance, and he had goosebumps reading the final battle that takes place between Morganna and the other characters.

A great way to start the day, but I'm not finished yet.

Later in the day, I returned a movie my husband and I watched last night and rented another (Unleashed-last night's movie/The Interpreter-tonight's movie) and the woman who works there came over to talk with me. She bought my book a year ago and has never said a word to me about it. I figured she hadn't enjoyed it and I didn't want to bring the subject up and put her on the spot, so I said nothing. Well, it seems that she only just got around to reading the book, and, guess what, she enjoyed it immensely and has passed it on to her father who she says will love reading it.

So, what do I spend the day doing? Writing, of course. Now that I'm so pumped from praise, I'm even more determined to finish my manuscript (my fifth) and finally get an agent to take a chance on me.

The moral is that if you are a reader and you love a book by an author--Tell them! It has made all the difference to me on my uphill battle to make it in a tough business. I've been fortunate enough to have one book published, albeit with a small, independent publisher, but I'm not finished yet. No way. I'm going all the way.

Good luck to all you aspiring authors. Have a great day.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

It was bound to happen

Yep. With all the books available it's near impossible to write a book that is 100% unique. Familiar plots are reworked, similar names and recognizable terminology used among particular genres. A writer is bound to have some duplication in any book they write. Well, recently I discovered an author I hadn't read before, and, besides an irritating habit of overusing the term began, I'm loving his writing. So, there I was reading away, tuning out the world, ignoring my dog, who was pestering me for attention as usual, when I came across a certain term that shook me from my reading haze.

The Ones Who Came Before.

A simple term with a self-explanatory meaning. Great. And also the exact term I used in my book, Sword Across Time to describe the people of Atlantis. My book was published a year and a half ago, and I'm only now reading this Robert Newcombe book, so there's no way I could have read it and picked up the term to use later. I know it was an original thought on my part.

Now, the question is:
A.) Great minds thinking alike
B.) Coincidence
C.) The result of a Universal consciousness at work re-creating a common memory

I know what I think, but then I write fantasy, so I tend to lean toward the unexplained and esoteric. What do you think.


Saturday, October 15, 2005

Good news and some kinda cool news

Yes, I've been able to attain the painfully worked for, battered ego, heartfelt desire, golden request for a full manuscript. After being summarily rejected by this agent, I immediately e-mailed her back (at my husband's suggestion) querying whether she'd be interested in another manuscript I just happened to have sitting here. Her response was not only immediate, but it was a request for the full manuscript. I had been expecting a request for a partial, not the full, so, needless to say, I was ecstatic.

That was three weeks ago and according to her website, she usually responds in four to six weeks. Whew, you can imagine I'm jumping from my seat every time the phone rings, but, *sigh*, I'm also afraid to see her name every time I open my e-mail. Please, oh, please, don't let her e-mail me. A phone call would be great.

What I need to do is let her talk to this person I met today at the Applefest. I happened to have a table set up there and was selling copies of my book. She came looking for me specifically because she'd bought my book last year and was hoping I had another published in the meantime. She raved about how Sword Across Time was the one of the best books she'd ever read and she couldn't put it down. How ego pumping is that? She wanted to know when my next one would be available. Oh, how I wish I had an answer for her.

Maybe, just maybe, it won't be too long. In the meantime, I'm sitting here with eyes, fingers, and toes crossed. I'll let you know.


Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Word on the Street

An annual event in Canada that takes place on the same day in five or six cities all across Canada. With publishers, editors, booksellers, authors, literacy organizations and over 200,000 people in attendance, it was a great day.

Myself, a couple of other authors, and our publicist, rented a table for the event and set up shop to sell our books for the day. The morning was rainy and discouraging, but it cleared up somewhat by noon and although rain threatened, it mercifully stayed away for the rest of the day.

I sold fewer books than last year, but made some great contacts and bought some books from Harlequin that I'd been looking forward to reading. Gena Showalter's "The Stone Prince", being one of the books.

You'd wouldn't believe the people who come to this event with suitcases, on wheels no less, and backpacks that by the end of the day are stuffed with booksmarks, handouts, and books.

I think we'll make it an annual event. Of course, we have to keep up the tradition of renting the hotel room the night before and having a girl's night out. :-)


My husband's colour chart results

Or, rather, the results based on answers I gave from my point of view of his character. It will be interesting to see what he comes up with when he takes the test for himself. :-)

you are orange

Your dominant hues are red and yellow... most of what you do is motivated by your need to change things and have a good time, but you've been known to settle down and think out a situation, too. You tend to surprise people just when they're starting to feel like they've got you down.

Your saturation level is very high - you are all about getting things done. The world may think you work too hard but you have a lot to show for it, and it keeps you going. You shouldn't be afraid to lead people, because if you're doing it, it'll be done right.

Your outlook on life is very bright. You are sunny and optimistic about life and others find it very encouraging, but remember to tone it down if you sense irritation.
the html color quiz

Personality colour chart

I found this link on Diana Peterfreund's site and thought I'd give it a try. This is how the computer, with all its cyber-wisdom, labelled me.

you are mediumorchid

Your dominant hues are red and blue. You're confident and like showing people new ideas. You play well with others and can be very influential if you want to be.

Your saturation level is medium - You're not the most decisive go-getter, but you can get a job done when it's required of you. You probably don't think the world can change for you and don't want to spend too much effort trying to force it.

Your outlook on life is brighter than most people's. You like the idea of influencing things for the better and find hope in situations where others might give up. You're not exactly a bouncy sunshine but things in your world generally look up.
the html color quiz

all content © 2005

Monday, August 08, 2005

Moving right along

I know I haven't posted anything about my husband's progess since his heart surgery, so just a quick blurb here. He's doing amazing! As terrible of a thing that it was for him, it needed to happen so that he could start to live a healthier life again. Heck, dying for 18 minutes and being lucky enough to have two doctors become your heart and lungs for that time, then coming back to consciousness and having no damage to brain or heart, is a miracle. We both thank the fates that be for keeping him alive and strong.

Now, on to business. My fantasy, Beyond the Faerie Realm, is garnering some interest with a couple of agents. My fingers are crossed that one of them will like the partial enough to ask for the full manuscript. Just having them ask for a partial blows my mind. You know, like the Academy Awards, "It was just an honour to be nominated."

Seriously, I have no doubt I'll get an agent and publisher one day. It's like when I met my husband. It was a sure thing, 100% guaranteed that we were meant to be together, and here we are...together. I have no doubt where my career will go, it's just a matter of having the patience. Curses, it's what I was put on this earth to learn this lifetime around, I'm sure. PATIENCE. (gritting teeth and digging fingernails in palms)

In the meantime, things are moving right along (hence the title of this post). I keep writing, promoting the one book I do have published, and trying to find a home for my other two manuscripts.

Have a great summer

Saturday, July 09, 2005


Hi. Just testing the new blogger image program. Sorry, I thought I'd use my face to scare everyone with. "Say cheese."

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Book Expo and other contacts

Hey there. One of these days I'm positive I'll have time to spare, but in the meantime, this is my usual late update. Great news, though. The Canadian Book Expo was amazing. I wasn't sure whether to go or not, but I decided to take the time (and spend the money), and went armed with queries and other information on both my manuscripts. I figured, what the heck? Besides feeding off the energy of so many like-minded people, and loading my backpack with free books from great authors--autographed, no less, I made some contacts with publishers and am hoping something will come of my time.

Even better, when I got home that night, there was an e-mail from an agent I queried the previous week, and he was interested in seeing a partial on my romance. Later that week another agent replied to a query on my fantasy and said she was interested in seeing a partial as well. And I just found out yesterday that one of my short stories has been accepted for publication in a magazine titled, Tales of the Talisman.

Jeesh, how great can a week get? Well, I guess it could get better if someone actually decided to represent me. :-) But my time is coming. I have no doubt. In the meantime, I've started my next story and I have to say, it's turning out to be my favourite one. I'm calling it Earthsong.

Have a great week.


Friday, May 27, 2005

Useful information for the beginning writer looking for an agent

Just some helpful, interesting sites for you the check out.

Horrific month

Hi. Yes, it's been over a month since my last post, but I have an excuse. My husband, Fred, went out to Kelowna, B.C. for a three day conference, ended up having a cardiac arrest, and then on to the hospital for a double by-pass.

That's the short version.

He actually died on the dance floor (I told him that's what he gets for dancing with another woman), and needed 18 minutes of CPR before the fire crew arrived with their defibrillator to shock his heart. Thank the fates that be that there were two doctors there who quite literally became his heart and lungs for those 18 minutes. They did the most amazing job of keeping blood and oxygen flowing so that when Fred finally gained consciousness in the hospital, there was NO brain or heart damage.

Dr. McLeod did his breathing for him, and guess what...Dr. McLeod plays the bagpipes for a hobby. Talk about having the lung ability for a job like that.

Dr. White learned how to do proper chest compressions while at Oxford in England. He made sure to touch the sternum to the backbone every time in order to keep the heart pumping. When the medics arrived, one of them spelled off the poor exhausted guy, but Fred's face took on a blueish hue, so Dr. White kicked him off and started in again.

Anytime, anywhere else and Fred wouldn't have lived, or he would have survived with a lot of damage. Whew.

What followed was three weeks of twiddling our thumbs in the hospital in Kelowna, a medivac flight to Victoria, and finally surgery. I have a sneaky suspicion that Dr. White may have pulled a few strings to get Fred to Victoria because every one else who came and went in Kelowna were transferred to Vancouver. Once there, we found out that our surgeon, cardiologist and anasthesiologist were the best of the best. A dream team.

As you can tell by my cheery, flip comments, Fred is fine and recovering quite well from his surgery. As he has been having chest pains for a number of years, he'll be a new man when fully recovered. And, yes, he did check into his chest pains about four years ago. He was given all the tests and told that there was nothing wrong with his heart, it was probably acid reflux. So, all this time, he's been treating his chest pains with pepcid AC.

So running around strange cities on the other side of the country and worrying about my husband has prevented me from posting to my blog. Hopefully it won't happen again.

To your health,

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

My dream for today

I have simple tastes...really. I don't need to have obscene amounts of money, or drive around in an amazing car like a BMW Z8 convertible, Viper ACR coupe, Jaguar XKR, or a...ooops, sorry I got carried away for a moment. Okay, maybe I'd like the car, but what I need, and what I've wanted since I was a child old enough to actually remember anything, is my house in the country with a horse, jersey cow, goats, and dogs. Pretty much any animal that needs a home.

I yearn for the whisper of the wind rustling the trees, the freshness of clean air, and even the woody smell of decaying leaves and trees. I live for the day I can wake up to nothing more than the birds singing outside my window instead of the noise from trucks, cars, blasting radios, sirens, lawnmowers and various other electric machines that make too much noise.

How I curse people who think it's cool to have a motorcycle that I swear rivals the blast from an exploding nuclear bomb. Haven't they heard of noise pollution? How do they figure it's okay to intrude on our peace and quiet by revving their way through our neighbourhood. Like we want to have ours ears blasted and meditation interrupted. Jeesh!

So, with visions of a log cabin nestled amidst the calming balm of nature and my phantom animals prancing about my mind, I bid you goodnight.


Sunday, April 17, 2005

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Like getting root canal

Remember that lost manuscript that wasn't really lost and was sitting on John Morgan's desk all the while? Well, I received a phone call from the post office yesterday and it turns out they were still looking for my manuscript. My fault, I neglected to let them know I'd been in contact with John Morgan. Anyway, this woman told me she had called his office and found out that John Morgan was no longer with ROC books.

WHAT!!! News to me.

Any calls to his office were being directed to Anne Sowards. The post office woman had no idea the name of my manuscript and wasn't even aware she was inquiring about a parcel by using my married name rather than my maiden name, so I took it upon myself to place a phone call--just to make sure my manuscript really was bouncing around the offices somewhere.

Surprisingly, I made contact directly with Anne Sowards and let her know the situation. She was very approachable and helpful and told me that John Morgan's work had been split between herself and another editor (or two). She checked her pile while I waited on the phone (a very nice thing to do) and when she didn't find my manuscript said she'd inquire right away and let me know.

So, I waited. Only a day though. She was true to her word and e-mailed me the next day to let me know that another editor most assuredly had my manuscript. Thank goodness.

With a sigh of relief and an impatient demeanour, I now sit back, cross my fingers, say a silent prayer, and wait...and wait...

Friday, April 01, 2005

Lost manuscript???

Hi and sorry. You'd think that five minutes a few times a week would be easy to find. Well, guess again. My intentions are to keep my blog updated, but, yikes, life gets in the way.

My latest news about my manuscript, Beyond the Faerie Realm, is that it got lost on the way to John Morgan's office. At least I thought it was lost. Wanting to ensure it arrived quickly and safely (ha!) I sent my manuscript express post. I then proceeded to track the package. One, two...six days later and it still hadn't been delivered. After checking with the post office and finding out that they had no idea what had become of my package, I took a deep breath and made a phone call. I needed to know if my manuscript had arrived. If not, I needed to print another and send it out.

I called John Morgan's office, fully expecting to talk with an assistant, after all, it's a big company, why should he answer his own phones, but I ended up leaving a message on his personal answering machine (service...whatever). I left a brief message asking if he could have someone check into whether my manuscript had arrived (or not), and let me know. Now, when I hung up the phone, I started thinking what a dunce I was to ask him to make a long-distance phone call. I should have said I'd call his office back the next day to see if they'd managed to find out anything. Oh, well, it was too late by that time.

Anyway, within no more than an hour or so, he called me back personally and let me know that my manuscript was right in front of him. I was struck with relief it had arrived and then nervousness at talking person to person with the editor I was trying to impress. But he was really nice. He even told me it might take a while to get to my manuscript and if I was wondering what was going on, I should feel free to call and bug him about it.

Right. Is this the planet earth? Don't these editors have assistants to screen pesky authors? Maybe it's a test. Maybe he wants to see if I will call and bother him. No way. I'm doing nothing to give him any reason to reject me. The rejection I'm sure to get will be because of my work, not anything I've done to tick off the guy in charge.

In the meantime, fingers, toes, and eyes are crossed.

Talk to you soon

Monday, March 21, 2005

Sword Across Time update

Thank goodness I have a publicist who didn't give up on my book. After a few disheartening setbacks beyond my control, I figured that Sword Across Time would flounder and become lost in the shadows of what might have been. I went on to write two other manuscripts and have been spending time trying to find a home for them, but my publicist, LeeAnn Lessard, kept plugging away promoting my one published novel. Now, finally, about time, Sword Across Time is available to order on-line and instore at Barnes and Noble, and some of the stores are actually ordering copies. Wow. We're working on Borders next, as they've assigned a catalogue number to my book so stores are able to order them.

Now if I can only convince to carry some in stock and stop making people wait two or three months. Jeesh! How can a person make any kind of sales that way?

For those who don't know, Sword Across Time is a mythical fantasy with an Arthurian theme. Although King Arthur is not the main focus, he is touched on briefly. If you enjoy Avalon, Merlin, the Lady of the Lake, the Sword Excalibur and enjoy a story that moves between the past and the present, why not pick up a copy of Sword Across Time? For an autographed copy My publisher's website

Bouncing back from rejection

Yes, I know, more about rejection. But this is good news...kind of. That same rejection letter I talked about in my previous post frustrated me enough to say, "Okay, what have I got to lose?" So, I sent a letter back to John Morgan of ROC books to thank him for his quick response and helpful advice. Both of which I really did appreciate. I then asked if he'd have a second look at my work if I edited it based on his advice and trimmed it down to one book rather than the two I had been planning? Low and behold, (I know, cliche, but it works here,) he wrote me back and said he'd be happy to have another look at my work.

AHHHHH. His reply was hand-written on an index card obviously from his desk because his name was stamped at the top. Talk about shaking hands. I was getting a second chance. Don't count on those alot or you'll be disappointed. Anyway, I worked furiously over the next few weeks--the main reason I haven't posted anything on my blog--and mailed the revised manuscript to him a few days ago.

It's in his hands now and I know chances are very good that Beyond the Faerie Realm will still get rejected, but there is an upside. My writing showed enough promise to get me that one step closer to a publisher, and I also have a better manuscript because of his helpful advice. So, even if Mr. Morgan rejects my manuscript, I have a publishable product that someone, somewhere, someday, will be interested in publishing.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005


Yup, it's all part of the game and unless you're that one in a million, you'll have to learn to deal with rejection. I've handled it pretty well over the years.

I've progressed from my first book, which was NOT ready to be published, to my fourth one, which IS ready for publication. My second book, Sword Across Time, was published by a small press called Treble Heart Books, but with my next two manuscripts, I'm holding out for a larger publisher. This stubborness on my part also means more rejections.

The upside of the whole process is this: My rejections have graduated from the words Not interested sprawled across the top of my query to Dear Author form letters, then on to what I consider gold--personally addressed letters signed by the editor or agent I actually mailed the query to and offerings of advice and reasons why they rejected my work. These words of advice are taken to heart and considered seriously by me before I send my work out again. I don't agree with everything said, but I don't discard it outright either. It's kind of like getting free critiques by experts in the field. By being as objective as possible (hard to do) about my writing, I can improve it by those very same rejections that make my throat close and hands shake.

A rejection, yes, but done in a way that lets me know my work has improved to the point where a little bit of respect is shown. What a nice feeling. What an affirmation. Yes, another rejection, but I'm on the uphill climb and I'm going to make it to the top in spite of all obstacles.

That's all for today. I haven't written much over the last 10 days. Mainly due to one of those rejections that brought me down low. Hey, I didn't say they didn't affect me, just that I go on in spite of them. :-) Sometimes it takes a little longer than other times.


Tuesday, February 22, 2005


My husband Fred and myself Posted by Hello