Friday, July 13, 2007

Writer's Groups & Stuff

Not too much going on in my writing world this week. I got my story, bio and such off to The Chick Lit Review for my 'You Get What You Pay For' story that are going to run in their Sept/Oct issue.

Subbed 'Passin'' to the Flasher's Dozen writer's group. Only received one crit. That reader didn't get it. He also had some suggestions on when to start a new paragraph. I do it differently than he does, so I asked the members for their POV on the matter. So far, no answers.

I had sent half of my 'Young Coffee' to FlashXer last week and got some interesting feedback. Then Irv put out a prompt that called for a sequel, so I subbed the second have of 'Young Coffee'. Not too much feedback, but those that did read it, gave good comments and even said the big age difference worked. Yeah!

Today, Desk Drawer's prompt called for a story about someone who is not what they seem to be. I sent my 'The Deal' about a some bad cops. Got one feedback and for the most part, he liked it and said it was almost too believable. Nice comment, if you ask me.

Got some subs from Lucy and Anne that they wanted crits on. Lucy's was sweet and dealt with a funny issue between siblings. She liked my upgrades. Anne's was well written, as always. She wanted a crit, because she was submitting her piece to Woman's World. She reminded me that I should send one out. I edited 'Happy Faces' about a childless couple who want a baby in the worst way. They get some help from the husband's twin. Haven't heard back from Anne as yet.

I've been doing a lot of reading of subs on all my writer's groups. Feels good to be active with the groups again.

My granddaughter is writing a short story. She says she going to be a writer when she grows up. Who knows! I bought her a little clip board so she can stay organized as she jots down her story.

I talked to Dave again yesterday. He's ready to go back to Havasu, but Nancy wants to wait for cool weather. He's all jazzed to keep up with his writing. He says he misses our weekly meetings and I told him that I do, too. Also talked to Jerry. He and Betty are fine. I gave him the days I'll be back in Havasu. They don't leave until the first of Aug., so I'm sure we'll be able to get together. Got a letter and a newspaper clipping from Jack. His local paper ran one of his stories. Good for him!

When I arrived up here, Kim had bought Stephen King's book on writing for me. So far it's a drag. He seems like he thinks he's awfully clever. I've heard folks raving about it, so I hope it gets better. I got my copy of 'A Million Little Pieces' by James Frey back and can hardly wait to read it again.

My daughter's dog, Tiger, has been sick and not eating/drinking for days. They took him to the vet yesterday and had him put to sleep. The vet never could tell them what was wrong with the poor critter. He was only around 5 years old.

Another week in Calif. Another week of having fun with the grand kids. The weather
has cooled off and even the humidity is under control.

Can't think of anything else, so will sign off now until next time. Adieu!

Monday, July 09, 2007

Alaska and an Acceptance

I want to share my Alaska experience, but first let's talk writing. My short story 'You Get What You Pay For' was accepted by The Chic Lit Review ( for publication in their Sep/Oct issue. Yahoo! And they are actually paying me to run it.

Been doing a lot of critting on all my writer's group. Feels good to be back in the swing of things. My FlashXer group is having a discussion on the pros/cons in entering contests that request entry fees. Some folks absolutely won't, but most look at the opportunities on a case by case basis. That's how I look at contests. I entered that fake poetry one years ago and was suckered into buying their book. But, having said that it was a sucker deal, I do love that book and having my poem included in the hard bound book with its gold edged pages. Folks who look at it don't know it was a sucker deal and besides, I do love my poem that graces its pages. Also, it cost me $25 to enter the Ariz. Author's contest and my short story 'A Part of Him' took first place and earned me $100. For us starter outers, it's a case of seeing our stuff in print. Besides, many of the authors who say they won't pay money to enter a contest, give their stories away to ezines and such just to see them in print. I'm not judging anyone. I've done both. I just love to write! Oh, talked to my writing buddy Dave who is spending the summer with his wife in Oregon. He's working on his latest 'Popcorn Skies', a novel that follows a teenager from boy to man. He misses our Thurs. crit sessions and so do I.

Okay, now on to Alaska. Arrived in Anchorage on Thurs. 6/21 and picked up our RV. My daughter Kim, her husband Gary, granddaughter Hailey (9) and grandson Nick (7) and I headed out to explore the Kenai Peninsula. We spent the first night in Kenai with gale force winds rocking the RV back and forth. Had a beautiful view on the Augustine Volcano across Cook Inlet.

Friday, headed out to Homer Spit and saw a moose and her baby along the road on our way to Homer Spit. There was a terrible fire just outside the city of Ninilchik that clouded the sky and made the air reek of smoke. Found a great campground right on Katchemak Cove right on water's edge. Dave's daughter Linda, grandson Alex, son Mike, Mike's wife Adrienne and grandson Travis showed up late in the evening.

Visited the Homer Spit museum Saturday a.m., then we met at the shoreline in front of our RV and held a quiet ceremony for Dave. The four grandkids and I walked the brich bark urn out into the water and set Dave's ashes free among the halibut and salmon he so loved. For the rest of our time in Homer, bald eagles circled the area as if to guard Dave's ashes. It was lovely.

Sunday, we headed for Seward. Beautiful scenery along the way, but no wild life.

Monday, we took a dog sled ride and fell in love with the canine mushers. Nick got selected to help the driver and got to ride on the back of the sled. It was on wheels, due to no snow, but it was still a wild ride. Next it was off to Exit Glacier. It was a long uphill hike, but well worth it. We were only a few yards from it, but we couldn't quite touch it. Next it was off to the Seward Sea Life Museum. Saw lots of critter up close thru great windowed pools of water. Then, on our way to our campground we got to watch the local fish hatchery release 100,000 tiny salmon out into the bay. The birds had a feast, but I have a feeling that most of the little guys made it out to sea. It was an amazing sight. The kids met some kids in the campground. One little boy was from Fairbanks, Alaska. At one point, my grandson came in and wanted something to help make a squirel trap. They had some fish guts for bait. When we asked what they were going to do with the squirel if they caught one and were told that they were going to skin it and cook it for breakfast. I told my daughter, that the Fairbanks boy might not be kidding. Thank goodness, no squirels were caught.

Tuesday, we took a cruise out into Resurrection Bay. Saw a whale, lots of birds and had a tasty salmon bake lunch. Then it was a rush back to the campgroung so Gary and Hailey could take a 4 hour kayak tour out into the Bay. They had porpoises come to within feet of them as they paddled along. Then it was a 3 hour drive back to Anchorage where we arrived at 2 a.m. and spent the night in a McDonald's parking lot.

Wednesday, we returned the RV and flew home to San Francisco. All in all, despite the sobering realease of Dave's ashes, it was a wonderful trip.

But now I'm back to the computer, at least when I'm not worn out after a day with the grandkids. They are lively and so much fun to be with.

Back to the writing. I MUST get some submissions out there. I do love hearing from the editors, especially the ones that say 'YES!' :-)