Saturday, April 30, 2011

The well runneth dry...

In the last 24 hours I have been lucky enough to receive two AWESOME awards from two equally AWESOME writers.

I intend to reply as instructed (i.e., send a dishtowel to the person on the bottom of the list and I add my name to the top of the list--before Christmas' arrival I will have received 1,042 dishtowels or something like that) but today, my creative well seems to be running dry.

As an appetizer to my bound-to-be-super-cool-main-course-blog-of-thanks next week, I thought I'd do something to acknowledge just how much I appreciate all my blogging buddies.

Considering my mother said she would disown me if I ever put a picture of one of my children on the Internet (because all 142 of my Facebook friends ARE, in fact, registered sex offenders) the very idea that I'm including a picture of me, ACTUAL ME, on this blog is pretty impressive. (My husband is in the picture, too. He's a complimentary accessory to the Rookie Riter package). But, here it is anyway.


THANK YOU, BLOGGING BUDDIES FOR YOUR FRIENDSHIP, ENCOURAGEMENT and MY AWESOME AWARDS!

xoxo
Bethany

Friday, April 29, 2011

GO AWAY, BIG GREEN MONSTER!

I've never been one to worry much about peoples' opinions of me. (There is significant photographic evidence of this, I assure you) But as easy as it's been for me to roll my eyes, flip a bird, or simply ignore the naysayers in my life, there is one I just can't shake.

It's this guy:





We've practically worn out the pages to this book at my house (Bravo! Ed Emberley--it's genius in its simplest form), but until last night it never occurred to me that THIS was the guy in my head. The guy who has been causing me so much grief.



You see, this Big GREEN Monster may appear sweet to the casual observer, with his face made of simple shapes that appears less and less threatening with each turn of the page, but to the Rookie Riter...this dude spells TROUBLE.


Most recently this evil-eyed freak has been polluting my mind with doozies like these:


"YOU'RE NOT LEGIT UNTIL YOU GET PUBLISHED!"



"NOONE IS GOING TO TAKE YOU SERIOUSLY!"



"THIS BOOK ISN'T CRAP. IT'S TWENTY DEGREES WORSE THAN CRAP!"



"THEY'RE JUST BEING NICE BECAUSE THEY'RE YOUR FRIENDS AND YOU GIVE THEM BEER. THEY ACTUALLY THINK IT SUCKS, TOO!"



And, last night he actually came up with this number:



"KINDERGARTENERS WRITE BETTER THAN YOU!" (This one was particularly painful because I've had a kindergartener...Ouch!)



So I beg this question of my underpaid fan club: How do you get YOUR Big GREEN Monster to shut up?!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Right where I left off...

Recently I've been inspired by some of my blogging buddies' playful posts. (Blogging buddies...that sounds sort of dirty) While I find it beyond encouraging to learn of other author's harrowing journeys to publication, or discover where the latest, eager agent is hiding out, I also find that wacky, nonsensical posts are a much needed distraction to this emotionally draining process.

That said, my creative cohorts, I'd like to challenge you to a little game. I'm going to start a story, then you're going to pick up right where I left off. Second blog responder will pick up where the first responder left off and so on...

So, lock the kids in the basement, tell your boss you're on a conference call, order pizza instead of making dinner. Whatever it takes to get your silly juices flowing, DO IT, because the game starts...NOW!

"2:52 a.m.... just like clockwork," Roger mumbled, refilling the Starbuck's mug Joyce had given him for Christmas. He'd never seen anything like it before. When it happened the second time he thought it was just a fluke, but it had been five nights in a row now. This chick was up to something.

He added a generous helping of sugar to his house blend before returning to his secured location behind the living room curtains. This was a show he did not want to miss.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

BUT I LIKE IT HERE!

I like my comfort zone. A LOT.

It's a safe, cozy place where each morning begins with a steaming bowl of Quaker Weight Control maple & brown sugar instant oatmeal (add sliced strawberries and a fistful of black or blueberries for good measure) topped off with a lightly-freckled banana to be eaten in hand-torn pieces, not ripped into like a caveman with a drumstick, and a glass of Cranberry/Blueberry Ocean Spray 100% juice on the side.

What my comfort zone is NOT, is a dormitory for a discontented seventeen-year-old angel trying to earn her wings.

And THAT, my blogging friends, is the problem. My current WIP is so far out of my comfort zone I can actually feel my pulse quicken the very moment I sit down at the computer. Don't get me wrong--I'm wickedly excited about this story, but how on earth do you venture from the safety of your contemporary comfort zone into the scary world of make believe?
I decided to ask a few of my favorite TV personalities how they would adapt to such a predicament. Here's what they had to say:


MONICA GELLER:

"Adapt? Pffffff. Well, that's a stupid question. Adapt? Adapt to what? I'm flexible. I don't need to adapt to anything. In fact...I'm so adaptable I'm down right breezy! All the time. Adapt. Adapt. That's me! No comfort zones here. I'm open to the world, baby! I'm...hang on...Dammit, Rachel! The dish towels won't fold themselves into 3x3" squares. God, woman were you raised by wolves?! I'm sorry...where were we?"


SHELDON COOPER: "That's doctor Sheldon Cooper, and your question is riddled with so many external variants, there's no way to hypothesize how one might respond. For example, if I were to ask you if in 1943 one Oswald Avery would have had the intellectual wherewithal to determine that destruction of deoxyribonucleic acid would hinder transformation of the virtulent pneumonia without the precursory work of the great Frederick Griffith...well, I think you can see where this is heading.



MARLEY & LINDSAY

Marley: "Why would you ask that?

Lindsay: "Yeah, why would you ask that? What the hell is wrong with you?"

Marley: "Did someone say I wasn't adaptable? Someone did. Who said it? Was it Christine?"

Lindsay: "I bet it was. It was Christine. I'll rip her head off and shove it in my bag."

Marley: "That's a cute bag."

Lindsay: "Thank you. The nanny picked it up."

Marley: "Cinco finger discount?"

Lindsay: "Shut up." (uncomfortable silence). "Yeah. She found a little Coach shop in Tijuana. Me gusta Lupe!"

Marley: "I'm sorry Rookie Riter, you asked me something but I was so distracted by your hideous sweater that I forgot what it was."

Lindsay: "Yeah. Your sweater is ugly."

Marley: "You have that sweater."

DRAT! It looks like the Rookie Riter still needs advice. Got any???
















Friday, April 15, 2011

TOP 10 LIST

10 THINGS THAT ARE SLIGHTLY MORE AWFUL THAN BEING REJECTED. AGAIN.

#10) Tofu

#9) Picking up dog poop

#8) Root canals (to be fair, nitrious and a TV on the ceiling help a lot)

#7) The scale moving in the wrong direction

#6) The cancellation of THE NEW ADVENTURES OF OLD CHRISTINE

#5) $4.29 a gallon

#4) Trying to get this damn blog to post in list form


#3) Mosquito bites

#2) Tampax commercials (seriously...horseback riding in white shorts?!)


And, wait for it...wait for it...


#1) Banging your head against the wall

Friday, April 8, 2011

Encouragement Rocks!

"Hello. My name is Bethany and I'm a reject."
"Hello Bethany."

As writers hoping to get published, and actually earn money with all the crack-pot ideas circulating through our brains, we all have those days when we're ready to call it quits. Throw in the towel. Kick it to the curb. Say, "Sayonara, Sweetheart." SO...WHY DON'T WE?

The answer is simple: ENCOURAGEMENT.

Without our mothers' reassurance that we've been talented since birth, or our QT friends reminding us that Stephen King's CARRIE was rejected 30 times before finally being published (That's true. I googled.) we'd just end up wandering through the creative Walmart of life. No direction. No hope. Just pent up frustration and the underlying fear that any day we'll be captured on camera, wearing an ill-fitting thong, while digging through the newest batch of must-have, roll-back items.

So here's to all the encouraging people in our lives: To the moms and dads, the sisters and co-workers. To Internet pals, the I.T. guy who fixed your computer, and the guy on the corner who smiled at just the right moment. To your husband, your kids, your second cousin, and Charlie Sheen (because he could probably use a shout out right now). We say THANK YOU! Thank you for encouraging us to keep going--it means the world! (I also hate Walmart and brutally mock and judge the people in those emails.)

This post was inspired by the note my brilliant and incredibly loving eight-year-old daughter left on edge of the bath tub last night. She knows I have a dream. She knows it's a big one. And she believes, wholeheartedly, it will come true! Thanks, Gracie.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

THE IDEA MACHINE


"My ideas usually come not at my desk but in the midst of living." -Anais Nin

I have a lot of hair. A LOT. It's blond, and curly, and really, really big. (If Julia Roberts in PRETTY WOMAN and Sammy Hagar had a baby--it'd be me)

Anyway, due to sheer follicle volume, I have developed a dangerously, co-dependent relationship with my hair dryer. The Revlon Ion Pro Stylist. (Available at Target for $20.99--5% discount with your red card!!) While a lot of women dread the mere thought of fifteen minutes of upside down, dry heat, arm-tiring activity at six o'clock in the morning, I actually look forward to it! It turns out I do my best thinking under 1875 watts of ear burning heat!

Don't get me wrong, some pretty crappy ideas are generated under the guidance of my hand-held electric god too, but all in all, I think I've discovered my personal idea machine.

So...what's yours?