For anyone who is interested, I have started up my blog again.  https://fromdreams.wordpress.com
I am determined to post at least once or twice a week.  This time I will include my travels, novel progress (Learning to Fly), as well as writing info and pics. 

I've been so busy with the novel, critiques, reading good novels, traveling, friends, my husband and cat, and now blogging,I don't have time to keep up with LiveJournal. 

Game of Thrones starts again tonight!

I thought I would have more time once I retired.

Writing as Journey

This traveling around makes it hard to get to the important stuff--like writing and keeping up with LiveJournal, Facebook, SheWrites, etc., etc. 

Does anyone remember Learning to Fly?  My first fic.  I am trying to turn it into a young adult novel, ages 14 and up.  It hurts when you have to start pulling paragraphs and whole chapters.  If it doesn't push the story forward or apply to the theme, it must go.  Be ruthless! 

I am submitting the third draft chapters weekly on Critique Circle and getting loads of help--and beginning another major rewrite.

Let's see, was it six or seven years ago, more, that I started this novel?  I was a different person then.  Not only did the writing change me, but I didn't have the many wonderful writer friends all the over the world that I have now.  I had no idea how close I could feel to people I had never seen or actually met.  Even though, like some close friends that I only see once or twice a year, we still remain friends--and support one another however we can.

Happy journeying

(no subject)

We're in Nevada in a place called Pahrump.  It's from the local Native American language and means something like water rock.  It's flat desert but snow-topped mountains rise in the east.

I've been thinking about things noticed in the past year of traveling.  Every little town seems to have its "Old Town" and a museum.  Sometimes the museum is in a one or two room building, an old store or school house, perhaps.  Usually there's lots of rusty machinery, dusty this and thats--an old turn-of-the century clothes iron--and black-and-white photographs.  To me, the photos are the most interesting.  In Shoshone the other day I saw one of a stern-looking young man being hugged by a laughing young woman with her leg thrust against his knee.  She was glimpsing at the camera out of the corner or her eye as if it were all a gleeful joke.  The caption said they were just married.  He was somebody who became famous in the area.  There was another of two smiling young women on burrows.  These were all taken around 1900.  The men always looked so serious, but these women were having fun.

Another thing.  Wherever there are fewer people, the drivers are more polite.  Where we were in Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Washington--people didn't ride your bumper, they let you in the line of traffic, they stop to offer help.  Then we hit California.  Good grief.  "Move out of the way!  Beep beep! Zoom, zoom."  Road rage.  Until we arrived in the desert, where everyone is relaxed and takes care of one another.  You might be the next one stuck out here in the middle of nowhere.

Better get back to my YA novel now.  Merry Holidays!

P.S.:  A help for the dark-days blues:  String those colorful holiday lights all over the inside of your house, not just the tree.  Leave them up until the days get longer.

Gone Again

We are heading for the desert, and I am not sure if we will have access to the internet, or even to cell service of any kind.  You may not hear from me again for a while.  Just when I am starting to get reconnected.  Argh.

First Joshua Tree then Slab City.  Slab City is an interesting place.  Google it and you will see what I mean . . . har.

See ya.


I am now an Escapee from the massive drudgery of life.  For the most part, anyway.  Still have to deal with bills and gas and all those little (sometimes big) things that go wrong and interrupt the fun.  We spent last winter in California and Arizona, then Utah, Colorado, back to Utah, and Idaho by the middle of June.  Wow, the big, rushing rivers!  On through Wyoming, Montana and Glacier National Park, which is amazing, then across the northern tip of Idaho to Washington.  Loved Northern Washington except for the cloudy days and rain, but the rain is what makes the forests so absolutely magical--expected fairies to fly up from the moss and mushrooms.

Investigated LaPush and Forks, but the vampires and werewolves remained hidden.  Lordy, but Twilight was everywhere:  restaurants, laundries, shops, you name it.

One thing I never missed in every town--searching out the bookstores, particularly the used ones.  The most amazing one?  In Quartzsite, Arizona.  The owner wears only a cod piece . . . sometimes less.  True.  I kid you not.  And he has the most amazing books.

Currently in Coarse Gold, CA, just south of the Southern entrance to Yosemite National Park.  Lovely here, but it's getting a bit cold, so we will likely head south in a day or two.

Oh, and Dickens loves the life.  Not riding in the truck so much, but checking out the views from every window when we stop--usually birds, squirrels and such.  Folks with little dogs.  When we are ready to move on I put his carry box on the floor and he gets right in, all set to go.

Strange People from the Past

I'm one of those Strange People, I think. 

I won't go into all the reasons why it's been over a year since I have written on LJ--there's too many.  Suffice to say I have become that gypsy and ever since, have had little time for lots of what I used to do, including writing.  Now we are slowing down a little and I am determined to catch up to where I left off.

For those here who may be interested, I am turning Learning to Fly into a Young Adult Sci Fi and will be posting the chapters on Critique Circle.

Curious to see how many of my old buds are still around.

Writer's Block: Pet central

Some animal rights activists are fighting to replace the term 'owner' with 'guardian' to convey a more balanced relationship between a person and her or his pet. Do you agree or disagree with the importance of this mission?

I love animals--and respect them--but with all the dire events in our world today, can't these people find something more useful to do with their energy?

Show and Tell

Finally posted on that blog, and the sun has melted enough that we can see our gas grill again!  If I want to find Dickens, check all the windows and there he'll be drooling at the birds and squirrels hopping and scampering across the snow.

A little tell and mostly show that spring is finally here and Dickens loves those creatures.  In his own way.

Remember Show and Tell from Elementary School?  It wasn’t Show versus Tell, or Show instead of Tell, it was Show and Tell.

Show, don’t Tell, is what the writer is continually told, and this is good advice . . . usually.  Do not tell us your character is afraid; show us his fear.

As P. Bradley Robb says, every rule has an exception.   Knowing when to show and when to tell is the sign of a writer who has learned her craft, of a writer who has found his voice.

For more, check From Dreams.


Spring or Not to Spring

Prairie dogs popping up and jays banging on our walls.  It must be spring!

No sooner said, than snow whirs past the window and blows one of those foolish birds down our chimney.  I have rescued three ash-covered chirpers and sent them fluttering off the back deck in the last three years. 

We took two loads to the dump yesterday.  Joy.  Anyone like to buy a home gym at a great price?

I cut down and combined two chapters into one of the novel - good going.  Book I, Arron's childhood, is complete on Critique Circle.  Now for the really fun part . . . hot romance!  He does need cheering up.

I Wanna Be a Gypsy

Oh my goodness.  Here is another lurker you may have thought passed on into that mysterious realm of the vaguely disappeared.  Vague because one can never be sure when someone might pop up a month or six months or a year later on these journals or blogs or whatever.  Some of us are that way, I'm afraid.  <Waves to Helen>  Type Bs, or lazy, or just too involved with all that other stuff to keep posting what we started.  Very bad form. 

I am very busy writing that novel and "critting" other stories on Critique Circle. 

Also, my hub and I are trying to go through all that junk in our closets and drawers and eliminate everything not absolutely necessary.  I get to do most of it, as he is not very good at doing things he doesn't enjoy.  This goes to the Thrift Store; this goes to our yard sale; this we keep.  If I get a round tuit, this will go on Ebay.  Have you ever gone through all those old photos in an effort to shrink albums down to something manageable?  Plus slides.  And they are all out of order!

Download CDs on iTunes, then the iPod, and give away the CDs afterward. 

Why all this grief?  Because we want to become gypsies and live in a fifth wheel, rent our house and roam about the country.  Somehow, I have to take everything necessary for writing with me, which includes all reference books and files.

The novel is moving along. I hope we get to travel to the part of Texas where the story begins.  I just finished a description of the protagonist's travel down the Brazos River to Port Hudson, across to Louisiana and up the Mississippi River to Jackson.  That was fun.

Also am reading a book entitled, The French Quarter, An Informal History of the New Orleans Underworld, for my research.  This history is much more amazing than anyone could make up; I could write novels from it for the rest of my life.  At my age, much longer. 

I better end this so Fred can have the internet card.