Saturday, December 17, 2011

I've tried every which way to add paragraphing to this post, but no luck so please bear with me! I'll bold the first word of each paragraph because this drives me crazy. One week to Christmas Eve. When our daughters were young, we would pile into the front seat of Ted's truck and drive past Stittsville to a tree farm. We brought along sleds and the girls played on the little hill while Ted and I tromped through the little wood looking for the perfect tree. We were careful not to find the perfect tree too soon because part of the tradition was a half hour of debate over who picked the best one. After the tree farm owner handed out candy canes to the kids, we drove to a little teashop on the way home and ordered hot chocolate and desserts. The last time we drove to the farm, the tree selection was sparse because of some bad planting seasons and we had to buy a tree in the city. It was the end of our tradition, but not the memories. This afternoon, Ted and I drove to the Parkdale Market and purchased our tree - a plump seven footer that will hold all the ornaments, including all the homemade ones the girls made so many years ago and all the ones we've been given. Pulling out the ornament box is another trip down memory lane. Allister sent the final formatted book for Second Chances to me on Friday. I have one last chance to find errors or to make minor changes. The cover design is appealing, I think, and I'm quite excited to have this one released. It's 262 pages long and for older teens, but I think adults will like it too. I had two people critique it in earlier versions and both told me they cried . . . and one of them was a man. You gotta love that :-) So what next? I've taken a bit of a break from writing but plan to get back into a project in January. I have a second Rapid Reads that needs revision and should give that a go. I'd also like to start a sequel to the adult manuscript I just finished, but I want to make sure the publisher accepts the first one. Hopefully, I will know within a few months. We had a great Capital Crime Writers' Christmas dinner on Wednesday evening, and I'm not just saying that because I organized it (with the help of my friend Wynn Quon and the rest of the executive). We met as KS on the Keys and had a room to ourselves. The food was good, the service excellent, and Howard Shrier a most interesting special guest speaker. He talked about the ups and downs getting his first book to print and was funny as well as motivational. We'll be following this up in January with a writers' panel of C.B. Forrest, Nadine Doolittle and moi, speaking about our writing processes. Should be fun and hopefully enlightening.  Well, it's time to get ready for another Christmas party this evening. It's the best time meeting up with friends and people we don't see once winter sets in. I hope you are also having a wonderful holiday season.

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