Momma Said There’d Be Days Like This

Ever want to do something–just a simple something–and it morphs into this complicated something?

Yeah, I’m having that kind of day. And it’s not even lunch yet.

It started with a package that’s being delivered. After 20 minutes of signing up, logging in, tracking down, and practically promising my first-born Junior Hall, I still only know that the package will arrive by 8 PM.

And then I just wanted to show you my latest Darakwon book. And I found a swell picture of the book on a Korean website (a book site, I think. I mean, I don’t speak Korean but there was a price in big bold numbers. Funny, isn’t it? Price tags are recognizable in any language.) But the website wouldn’t allow me to copy or download the picture of the book. So then I had to track down the book around here, and of course my camera battery was dead, so I had to track down my cell phone to take the picture. And that’s a whole new adventure, y’all. Just to show you this:

IMG_20170728_100046

Yeah, I’m going extra-large. Because it’s been that kind of day.

(I’m taking my car to be serviced next. Wish me luck.)

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I Have Another Book!

Um…I just realized that saying I have another book is like saying that I have another hat. You’d think a writer could say what she means…

Which is I have another published book. And it’s from Darakwon. And the cover looks like this:

W&W 3-9

 

And it’s all about a third grader who’s a bit shy, but he decides to run against the most popular girl in his class in the school elections. So I learned a lot about the election process (and yes, I know about elections, of course I do because I always vote, but when you have to write about a subject you might be surprised to learn what you didn’t learn way back when you were supposed to learn it). And I researched campaign slogans (Bet the first one that came into your head was “Tippecanoe and Tyler, too.” But did you know that Lincoln’s slogan was “Vote yourself a farm”? It’s a wonder the man won…).

I probably shouldn’t have favorites but I really love this story; I hope the kids in Korea like it, too. And one day, I might find a publisher here in the US who might like this election story. I mean, it’s not just another book, y’all. I came up with a campaign slogan that’s a sure winner! (So if you’re ever running for president, let me know and I’ll pass it along!)

January Wrap Up

file00025755561I don’t have a lot of accountability these days.

My original and hard-working critique group broke up, my second critique group didn’t work for my schedule, writer friends moved away…even Mister Man, who, if we’re being perfectly honest refused to read any of my writing but would listen to me talk about it as long as there was food involved, up and left me. And so it’s pretty much up to me, what (or if)  I write.

Then I thought about you, dear writer friends. You can be my accountability! And then you can say, “Oh, yes, Cathy, that sounds fabulous!” Or, “Really, Cathy, you can do lots better than that.” Maybe even, “Sounds good to me, pass the garlic rolls.”

And so here I go:

I finished 30 ideas with Storystorm! It’s a list of the good, the bad, and the ugly, but I did it.

I made a goal over at Goodreads to read 50 books this year, and for January, I read four books. (I didn’t make my reading goal last year but whee! It’s January and I’m on track. So far.)

I talked to my Lovely Agent about 2017 and the direction we could go. I have Stuff To Do; I haven’t quite started on that stuff yet.

I wrote up…let me count that again…yes, um…one, er, one story and sent it out into the world. It seemed like a big deal at the time, y’all.

I had an SCBWI writer’s workshop–awesome author Heather L. Montgomery presented–and it was well-attended and lots of fun! (P.S. She was here doing quite a few school visits and kids LOVE her, so if you want a science geek author for your school, contact Heather!) The first of the year is busy in my position at SCBWI; lots of organizing, lots of emails, lots of planning, but I got it all done. That’s probably why I didn’t get much writing done. Yeah, that’s it. That’s the ticket.

Oh! I finally finished my latest Darakwon book! Whew! I had started it back in the spring, I think, so yeah, it was beginning to be like The Song That Never Ends.

You know, I wasn’t feeling very accomplished twenty minutes ago, but I feel a bit better, now that I see my January Wrap Up. All things considered, right?

So how about you? How’s your January started? Brag a little, whine a little, and pass the garlic rolls. You’re with friends here!

 

Synchronicity and Writing Connections

I’m always excited when synchronicity comes along in my life. So you can imagine how I laughed out loud when I received a Darakwon book in the mail this week, authored by my friend, Suzanne.

Um…hold on a tic. You’re going to need the backstory. So here’s what happened: I just finished the first draft of my latest Darakwon book. But when I received my editor’s notes, she requested a different format (more of a report than story format). Which would require a major revision.

Now, I don’t get too worked up about revisions; it’s part of the writing process. But I sometimes am challenged by my friends at Darakwon, mostly because we communicate a little differently. I did not want to end up doing three or four revisions until we were, quite literally, on the same page with this book. So I asked the editor to send me a sample chapter of the report format and she immediately agreed to send me an entire book.

Perfect! And here’s the book she sent to help me with my revision:

suzanne-book

 

Can you see the author’s name on the bottom? Take my word for it, it’s my friend, Suzanne. But if you want to know how synchronicity comes into this story, you’ll need to zip over and read “Writing Connections: You Never Know” over at The Muffin.

And then you can laugh out loud, too. (And P.S. Thanks, Suzanne! Again.)

 

Yep, It’s ANOTHER Book!

You know those people who release a book and then you turn around, and they’re releasing ANOTHER book, and you just want to yell, “HOLD ON A TIC! Didn’t you JUST release a book?” But then you remember that “Comparison is the thief of joy” so you smile and say, “Good on you.”

Get ready to smile, friends, ’cause here is book two:

around-the-world-cover

I’m not sure why that poor little girl seems to be frightened out of her wits by the Russian nesting doll…and the boy on the far end looks as if the little girl has just released the Bell Witch into the classroom.

Anyway, there is nothing at all scary about this book. It’s lots of fun and full of information about five different countries. I hope the Korean children will like reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.

(And I really hope I don’t find that Korea decides to ban Matryoshka dolls because of Cathy C. Hall’s latest release, Around the World in a Single Day!)