Uncategorized,  Week in Review

Weekend Review: August 28, 2016

School in full swing – stormy weather all week – September on the horizon. I’d say fall is in the air, and I am more than ready!
Reading:
Another good reading week.

So far the idea of keeping a mystery on the nightstand and going to bed before I’m too sleepy is a good recipe for maintaining an active reading schedule. 

I finished the second Booktown mystery, Bookmarked for Death, and enjoyed it as much as the first. I still like the tense relationship between the protagonist, a mystery bookstore owner, and her sister; I like the fictional town that appeals to all bibliophiles (real and imagined); and I enjoy the suspense of the murder mystery.

I will probably refrain from reading more in the series until October or November. Too many other things to preoccupy my time…

I also started a new Middle Grade mystery, Absolutely Truly, by Heather Vogel Frederick. I didn’t plan to have two fictional books going at the same time, but this library book is due in less than a week, and I wanted to give it a shot.

I’m SO glad I did. I really love the author’s writing style. This is the first time in a long while that I’ve been able to escape into the story and ignore the writing: that is the sign of a gifted author! Truly is a relatable character and her family is a lovable, dysfunctional mess.

They have recently moved to Pumpkin Falls, New Hampshire and once again, I am in love with an old-fashioned, quaint, fictional town. I love the general store, the local bookshop, and the covered bridge. And while the small k-8th grade school is not perfect, most students get along and respect their teachers.

I’m about halfway through the book and plan to finish by the end of the weekend. I was thrilled to learn that the second book in the series will be available in January, 2017. I will be the first in line to pick up a copy.

I also added several new titles to my Kindle Unlimited wishlist this week. I plan to breeze through several of these over the next month (see reason why below…)


Writing:

I wrote another chapter of Ellie’s Paris Adventure. This time I pushed myself and managed to write 2,300 words in about three hours. Up to this point, my average was 500 words/ hour.

I have now completed ten chapters out of fourteen. The plan is to write a chapter a week and complete the draft by the end of September. I feel confident I will achieve that goal.

I registered for the SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) Middle of the Map conference here in Kansas. The conference is scheduled for Saturday, November 5th – with an optional 10-minute meeting with an agent the Friday before. I took a step of faith and registered for an agent meeting. EEEK!!

I need to have the first ten pages of the manuscript polished prior to September 30th. I will send those to her at that time, and then on November 4th she will give me her critique. This is SO FAR OUT OF MY COMFORT ZONE… I can’t even tell you. But I am determined to see this project through to completion – whatever that may look like.


Blogging:
This week’s blogging topics included:

Today is National ___________ Day:
This week on Stepping Stones Publications I highlighted and provided writing prompts for:
  • Monday, August 22: Ray Bradbury’s Birthday
  • Tuesday, August 23: Buttered Corn
  • Wednesday, August 24: Strange Music
  • Thursday, August 25: Second-Hand Wardrobe
  • Friday, August 26: Forgive a Foe (and Mother Teresa’s Birthday)
  • Saturday, August 27: Just Because 
  • Sunday, August 28: Red Wine
Other Activities:
I am so excited I could just pop!
I’ve had an inkling this might happen for a couple of months, but now it is official: I leave this Friday for a 24 day trip to Boston!
If you read my Travel Bucket List post several weeks ago, then you know Boston is near the top of that list. While I lived on the East Coast for nearly two decades, I somehow never visited this historic city.
But… my son and daughter-in-law have business in the city, and they have asked me to be the grand-dog nanny while they are there. 
While I will have official duties, like walking the adorable black lab and making sure she is properly fed, watered and loved… I will also have plenty of free time to explore the city and take lots of photos. 
Right now I’m trying to get my head around the fact that I will be there for nearly a month. I mean… what do I pack? The first part of the trip will be summer weather, but Boston mid-September could be cool. I don’t want to take more than one suitcase (I’m not sure my one-arm status can handle even that)… but I don’t want to be without proper clothing while there.
And I need to learn how to pace myself. 
My typical travel routine is to do as much as I can in a single day. But if I’m there for a full month, I can afford a more leisurely schedule.
For my East Coast blogging friends (and those who have travelled there) … do you have any recommendations for places to see or restaurants to visit while I’m there? I am wide open to suggestions!

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