January 11, 2009
Ahhh, so little time so much life to live. I don't make New Year's resolution, as a rule. But, I am promising myself to do a better job of blogging in 2009. For one thing, it helps me keep my writing as a top priority in my life. I'm home from California and while I had a great holiday with the family, I'm a firm advocate of Dorothy's sentiment - "There's no place like home!"
Let's see, what have I been doing since my last post. In early December, I attended Shakespeare's 'A Midsummers Night's Dream' as presented by my friend Cindie's students at Parker High School. It was a darling presentation. Her students put their heart and soul into the scenery, music and acting. Cindie did a wonderful job bringing everything together for the standing room only audience the play drew.
My book club had its annual Christmas story meeting. I brought a book on Ireland that told of their traditions between Christmas Eve and January 6th. It also contained a how-to for decorations and a lovely Irish fairy tale about a poor Irish lass who appears only on Christmas Eve, each year, to feed the poor and homeless. It was an interesting book. I gave it to my daughter for her book collection.
Had my crit meeting for my 'The Woman Between' with Dave. He is pointing out ways to improve the story/writing, but I'm really pleased about is that he is liking the three main characters, which is what I'm trying to accomplish. He said some nice things about my creating scenes that bring the reader into the moment and asked if I 'live' the scene. And, I do.
Had our Havasu writer's meeting where my 'Not Accused, Found Guilty' was critted. Lots of good feedback. It's not one of my favorite stories, but the feedback has me reevaluating it and I may send it out to a couple of places.
Our Lake Havasu City Writers Group ( havasuwriters.com ) had its annual Christmas party on Dce. 20th. What a fun party. Veronica outdid herself in opening her gaily decorated home to the group. Lots of good food, lots of good desserts, lots of good wine and a fun filled gift exchange. I came home with a talking Christmas tree!
I drove to Calif. on Dec. 22 and stayed there until Jan. 5th. Had a wonderful Christmas with the kids and grandkids. Oh, there was some excitement. My dog Twinkle bit my niece. It was a small nip, so I hope it won't leave any scaring. But, despite the fact that the dog had all her shots, I had to keep her quarantined at my daughter's house for ten days. Grrrrr. Why do we have to get the dog shots?????
Had our Four Goddesses writer's meeting at Denny's on the 8th. It was great getting back with Cindie, JOan and Lois. They critted my story, 'Old Friends and Revelations'. Good feed back from one, but lots of upgrades from another. I love it when readers see, or miss, different aspects of my stories.
Dave and I met again on the 9th for more feedback on 'The Woman Between'. He is still liking it, but while he still likes all three characters, he is getting a little frustrated with Stephen. As to where I'm leading the story, I think his observation is right on. He is only submitting poetry to me to crit. I'm not sure I'm helping him much, because poetry is just the opposite from novel writing. In poetry, one word must often convey paragraphs, while novels need depth through the weaving of facts from chapter to chapter. Totally different techniques and I'm no poet.
On Jan. 10th, the book club discussed the books of Jacqueline Sussan. Surprisingly, many of the club members had trouble finding one of her books. Our local bookstore doesn't carry her books and the used book store doesn't buy her books because they don't sell. Wow! In the sixties, she was one of the hot sellers. While many of the group said they'd read another one her books, we all felt that she did a lot of 'biography' writing of famous people, just changing the names and places to be able to claim that it is fiction. All did agree that she did know how to tell a story and was great at characterization.
Saw lots of movies over the holidays - Grand Torino, best picture of 2008! - ...Benjamin Bottoms, boring and disturbing in some scenes. - Seven Pounds, disoriented despite Will's Smith great performance - Australia, beautiful scenery, but just a very long western. - Day the Earth Stood Still, I'd say horrible, but that's being too nice - Transporter 3, a fun, fast paced action flick and good eye candy with Jason Stratham.
It's good to be home! So today I'll leave you with this lovely thought - "Reading makes immigrants of us all. It takes us away from home, but more important, it finds homes for us everywhere." Hazel Rochman