Thursday, October 30, 2008

Halloween countdown, part 4

What I'm Reading: The Last Town on Earth by Thomas Mullen (just finishing it up)

What I'm Working On: Juggling writing and a really busy week at the bill-paying job. Also, trying to decide whether I should tackle Nanowrimo or not.

Since I want to finish up The Last Town on Earth by tomorrow, I'm going to make this a short post. Have a happy halloween tomorrow!

What kind of monster are you?

You Are an Alien
You're so strange, people occasionally wonder if you're from another world.
You don't try to be different, but you see most things from a very unique, very offbeat perspective.
Brilliant to the point of genius, you definitely have some advanced intelligence going on.
No matter what circles you travel in, you always feel like a stranger. And it's a feeling you've learned to like.

Your greatest power: Your superhuman brain

Your greatest weakness: Your lack of empathy - you just don't get humans

You play well with: Zombies

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Halloween countdown, part 3

What I'm Reading: The Last Town on Earth by Thomas Mullen

What I'm Working On: Juggling writing and a really busy week at the bill-paying job.

Yesterday I blogged on scary things. This is scary, too, especially considering we're in the midst of the college search experience with our junior. A guidance counselor recommended Middlebury the other day. Look below to see why I laughed (even though I felt like running from the room while screaming at the top of my lungs).

We have a year to convince the DD that Bright Futures and Florida College Prepaid make the most sense. Right now, she's in the I-want-to-go-out-of-state phase. Hope it ends soon.


25 Most Expensive Colleges For 2008-2009
Here are the 25 most expensive colleges for 2008-2009, based on total cost (tuition + room and board). Whooie, this is some pricey book-learnin'.

Highest Total Cost 2008-2009
College / Total Cost

1. Sarah Lawrence College $53,166
2. George Washington University $50,312
3. New York University $50,182
4. Georgetown University $49,689
5. Connecticut College $49,385
6. Bates College $49,350
7. Johns Hopkins University $49,278
8. Skidmore College $49,266
9. Scripps College $49,236
10. Middlebury College $49,210
11. Carnegie Mellon University $49,200
12. Boston College $49,020
13. Wesleyan University $49,000
14. Colgate University $48,900
15. Claremont McKenna College $48,755
16. Vassar College $48,675
17. Haverford College $48,625
18. University of Chicago $48,588
19. Union College (NY) $48,552
20. Colby College $48,520
21. Mount Holyoke College $48,500
22. Tufts University $48,470
23. Bard College at Simon's Rock $48,460
24. Franklin & Marshall College $48,450
25. Bard College $48,438

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Halloween countdown, part 2

What I'm Reading: The Last Town on Earth by Thomas Mullen

What I'm Working On: Getting to the second turning point. This 2nd quarter of the book is always hardest for me.

I decided to do a Tuesday Ten for the second day of Halloween countdown. What kind of Tuesday Ten?

Ten Scary Things......

1) The fact that my teenager is driving. OMG. She's been driving for awhile. It's still scary.

2) The Universal Studio's (theme park) Halloween Horror Nights billboards scattered around town. Click here. I would think those would really scare young children who can see these billboards from their carseats in their parents' minivans.

3) The current stock market. I'm so scared that I've been just tossing my unopened 401k statements in a folder and filing them away.

4) War. A parent at my favorite high school recently complained that part of the movie The Patriot was shown in her son's class. (It wasn't. She was misinformed.) Regardless, she complained about the graphic war scenes. However, I was still proud of the school official who addressed this concern. He said, "War is violence unrestrained, and a movie could never accurately depict war without portraying randomness and senselessness and unimaginable suffering. Perhaps the worse we depict war, the fewer old men will vote for war and the fewer young men will be eager to see the elephant, as the expression went during the War Between the States."

5) Florida's rising unemployment rate.

6) That some people think health care and insurance in the United States is a privilege rather than right. They've obviously never tried to get insurance with a pre-existing condition or been set back (or financially ruined) by huge copayments because their employer went with the cheapest, worst coverage imaginable. These are also people who've never worked two jobs -- neither full time (so the employer didn't have to pay benefits) -- in order to feed and cloth their kids, and then been faced with a life-threatening illness for one of their children. (Sarcasm coming up...... Right, absolutely, that innocent child should just die because health care is a privilege and he/she isn't among that elite privileged group.)

7) That there are Americans who won't vote. People died to give us that right. People die for it now in other countries. Stop taking it for granted.

8) That people actually believe Obama might be a socialist. Please.... Socialism is an economic policy, not a style of government. Many people think the U.S. is straight capitalism. It's not. We're more capitalist than socialist, but what we really have is a mixed economy. But I digress; the point is that Obama is not a socialist. If you're confused, I suggest you revisit your high school World and American history classes and your economics class. Pay special attention to the lectures on economic systems, Marxism, socialism, communism, and capitalism. Get educated.

9) That for one person I spoke to the deciding factor in who they vote for is the abortion issue. Really? Of all the things our country is facing, abortion is THE ONE for you?

10) That, when asked, my fairly well-off friend who is a die hard McCain supporter could give no better reason to vote for him than, "I only have one and it's completely selfish. I'm voting to keep more money in my pocket. I work hard. I don't want to give it (my money) to the people who don't work."

Monday, October 27, 2008

Halloween countdown, part 1

What I'm Reading: The Last Town on Earth by Thomas Mullen

What I'm Working On: Getting to the second turning point. This 2nd quarter of the book is always hardest for me.

I decided to have a little Halloween countdown. I'm a fan, but I have four dogs so the knocking on the door all night gets old. Knock, bark, knock, bark. Luckily, this year I'll be at a high school football game so I'll miss the festivities.

My Halloween personality is, admittedly, rather bah humbug. Let's see what the official test says.

What Your Halloween Habits Say About You
The scariest thing on Halloween is you! You definitely don't want any kids in costumes crossing your path - and you're willing to scare away any who do.

You definitely think of yourself as someone who has a dark side. And part of having that dark side means not showing it.

Your inner child is open minded, playful, and adventurous.

You truly fear the dark side of humanity. You are a true misanthrope.

You're logical, rational, and not easily effected. Not a lot scares you... especially when it comes to the paranormal.

You are picky and high maintenance. If you wear a Halloween costume, it's only when you really feel like it. And it has to be perfect.


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

I am NOT a Chihauhua

What I'm Reading: The Last Town on Earth by Thomas Mullen and The Radioactive Boy Scout by Ken Silverstein

What I'm Working On: I had been worried about a definitive first turning point in my rewrite, but OMG, it happened. It just happened. I set it up, and WHAM, there it is. Too, too cool.

I took a blogthings test to see "what breed of dog I am." Yes, it's lame, but I needed a quick and easy blog.

Before I show you my results, let me show you my real live pack.

This is Alice, my Hurricane Charlie refugee. She's a petite (60 pound) greyhound.

This is Maggie. She's part Chow (you can tell by the tongue) and who-knows-what else.

This is Rex. He's yellow lab and golden retriever with a few other spices.

Above is Cipy, my 88 pound greyhound, being snuggled by my neice.

Can you tell that I'm not a small dog person? That being said, check this out:

You Are a Chihauhua
You are very smart and very earnest. You take yourself quite seriously.
In fact, people are often amused by how seriously you take yourself.

Deep down, you are a very fragile person. Your friends and family know how breakable you are.
Because you are so fragile, you tend to be quite neurotic. You are suspicious of almost everyone and everything.

Who'd have thunk it?


PS. Am not.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Monday person, huh?

What I'm Reading: The Dew Breaker by Edwidge Danticat and The Last Town on Earth by Thomas Mullen

What I'm Working On: Momentum!! Finding it, getting it, keeping it! (Still...)

This is a blatent lie......

You Are Monday
Like this day of the week, you are ruled by the moon.
More than anything, you are flexible.

You are moody and impressionable. You are easily influenced by the world around you.
And while you can be temperamental, you eventually adjust.

While Mondays tend to be the hardest day for people, you don't mind getting back to regular life.
You're the one waking up early and making the coffee while everyone else complains.

I am not a Monday person.


Sunday, October 19, 2008

Powell Endorses Obama

What I'm Reading: The Dew Breaker by Edwidge Danticat and The Last Town on Earth by Thomas Mullen

What I'm Working On: Momentum!! Finding it, getting it, keeping it!

This is just a short post, but I knew there a reason I'd always liked and respected Colin Powell.

Check this out: Powell endorses Obama, chides McCain campaign tone
Read the article here:

And check this out:

Happy Sunday!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


What I'm Reading: Faefever by Karen Marie Moning, The Dew Breaker by Edwidge Danticat, and The Lost Duke of Wyndham by Julia Quinn

What I'm Working On: I'm writing the first "plot" turning point scene which will be followed closely by the first "romantic" turning point scene.

I've been a bad blogger lately. We're halfway through October and I've blogged once. (Well, twice now.)

Time is steamrolling by and I'm just spinning in dizzy circles. And that's too bad. I hate it when October races by. It used to be my favorite month -- when I lived in a place where we had true autumn.

I love autumn. It's my favorite season. In Florida, however, it's almost a little depressing. We still have green leaves and 87 degree thermometer readings. But still, it's overwhelmingly better than summer!

I found this little autumn test. I agree with everything it said about me -- except the change thing. I actually like change and do pretty well with it.

What are your results?


Your Autumn Test Results
You are a energetic, warm, optimistic person. You approach everything with a lot of enthusiasm.

When you're happiest, you are outgoing and expressive . You love celebrations, and you enjoy showing off a little.

You prefer change to come slowly. You need a long transition period when your life changes.

You find abundance to be the most comforting thing in the world. You love shopping and having nice things.

Your ideal day is active and full. You like to keep busy with your favorite things, and you appreciate a routine.

You tend to live in the moment. You enjoy whatever is going on, and you don't obsess over the past or future.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Thursday Thirteen

What I'm Reading: The Lost Duke of Wyndham by Julia Quinn

What I'm Working on: Slayer -- a completely new scene

The DH and I finally have an evening with no commitments and no kids and no work tomorrow morning. We got really excited. As those of you with kids and full time jobs know, such nights don’t happen very often.

We both wanted to see a movie, so we pull up our favorite online movie site, excitedly talking about the movies we’ve been wanting to see.

NONE of them are showing anymore – not even at the dollar theater. We’re in between in more ways than one. The movies we want to see have either come and gone, but not gone all the way to video yet, or they’ve yet to come out – for example, The Express comes out tomorrow. Not today.

Big sigh.

We resigned ourselves to Animal Planet for awhile and then watched a depressing special on Global Warming. (Actually, Sarah, I’d like to talk about the causes…..)

Since the Global Warming thing made me feel almost at good as the stock market losses today, I decided to blog about the books I’d most like to see made into movies so there’d be something to go and see when I had time.

Here goes…..

1) Brothers by Da Chen. I just finished this and it has to be one of the best books I’ve read in a long, long time. It has intrigue, revenge, love (lost and hoped for), and a great deal of interesting history. I can’t even begin to name potential actors since almost every character is Chinese, but if this ever gets made into a movie, I’ll be there opening day.

2) I’d Tell You I Love You, But Then I’d Have to Kill You by Ally Carter. I think this one has been optioned already, and it will likely be made and marketed for the Disney-esq teen, but I don’t care. I’ll still go see it.

3) The Gift of Rain by Tan Twan Eng. I loved the World War II intrigue and the extraordinary tale of the lengths we’ll go to when we love someone. This book would make a great movie.

4) The Charm School by Nelson DeMille. Classic cold war drama. Think Hunt for Red October, but better.

5) Autstenland by Shannon Hale. For sheer, romantic, fun comedy. (But I’d never get the DH out the door for this one.)

6) The Anita Blake novels by Laurel K. Hamilton. Let me be clear here. I’m talking the early ones – like the first 5. After that, it would be Skinamax – I mean Cinemax – all the way. I personally like the early ones best – you know, the ones with plot.

7) How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff. I just love the book so much, I’d like to see it portrayed.

8) Any Susan Elizabeth Phillips book would make great romantic comedy – maybe Natural Born Charmer.

9) The Trudeau Vector by Juris Jurjevics. Very good and sciencey science fiction.

10) A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray. Oh, that would be another opening night adventure (sans DH).

11) Ender’s Game. Ender’s Game. Ender’s Game. OSC, of course.

12) Tomorrow, When the War Began by John Marsden.

13) The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

If you're reading, this -- tag.