Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Cleaning house

A new post? Shocking, I know...I've been spending so much time crafting the perfect Facebook status updates that I have been neglecting my blog! Seriously, though, I've just been busy writing a first draft of a new and very different novel so any additional writing time had to be parsed out in dribs and drabs like posts on Facebook. This has really shown me where I need to cut back on my various media involvement.

I'm cleaning house.

About a year ago, I vowed to get rid of half my stuff. And I did. Clothes, books, shoes, etc. Gone. I also cleaned my workspace so I no longer write in my kitchen. I have a desk in a quiet part of my bedroom with no internet access and the kitchen stays nice and clean. We recently cleaned out the entire kitchen too, all the cupboards and drawers, donating or throwing out everything that we didn't need or hadn't used in a decade of living in LA.

And now I'm expanding that to media. I'm not going to use my MySpace anymore, sticking just to Facebook and my blog. I have my Amazon page, my GoodReads page and my blog all linked so everything gets cross-posted when I do write something.

Also, I'm dumping a lot of the television I used to watch. First of all, I don't have time- I rarely watch anything on broadcast because I teach almost every night. Everything we watch is on hulu or Netflix instant play. We tape nothing.

And second, I just don't like a lot of the shows on television, even things I used to enjoy are no longer fun. I didn't see the premiere of "Desperate Housewives" or "Medium." I watch only 2 comedies "30 Rock" and "The Office" which we get on hulu, plus whatever reality show Gordon Ramsay has at the time, also from hulu. And only 1 drama, "Fringe." Otherwise, we'll turn on Netflix instant play and dig on some Mythbusters or a documentary or movie.

But I'm not replacing any shows either. Nothing can replace LOST.

And in my car, I listen to just 2 things: whatever music I am choreographing to or...silence. I need the space and time to sort things through and I can't do that at home with the tempting interwebs.

Cleaning house. Simplifying life from the outside in. Getting rid of the stuff that tangles my home and car and workspace. And hopefully that will help me untangle my brain too.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

What to do at the West Hollywood Book Fair?

This Sunday is the 9th Annual West Hollywood Book Fair! Whoo-hoo! I have attended every year since it began and have become more and more involved in it each year. It's hard not to! There are so many terrific authors and panels and stage events, plus booths galore and lots of fun kid activities. Oh yeah, and food trucks too!

Many of you are probably wondering, how can I navigate so many great things in one place? Simple. Plan ahead! Don't want to do it yourself? Then follow me! This is where I will be at the fair from open to close (10AM -6PM):

@10:45, I'll be checking out LAYA Allison Burnett on a panel at the Open Book Pavilion called "When Gays Write Straight and Vice Versa"
@10:50, I'll watch my friend Rachel Olivier moderate a panel at the Sci Fi/Fantasy Pavilion called "Other Worlds, Other Realms" with authors Frank Beddor, PJ Haarsma, and Francesca Lia Block
@11:15, YA book blogger Ashley Thompson will interview Jay Asher on the Teen Stage so I'll introduce them
@11:50, Le Studio's Ballet Company will perform Alice in Wonderland on the Kids Stage so of course I'll be there
@12:45, Ashley will interview LAYA Alexa Young on the Teen Stage and I'll be introducing them too
@1:25, I'll host a LAYA event - live book trailers for contemporary authors Amy Koss, Jonathan Bernstein, Allen Zadoff and Lauren Strasnick on the Teen Stage
@3, LAYA Mark Williams will be on a panel in the Current Events Pavilion called "Books, Blogs and Beyond" about e-publishing
@3:45, I'll introduce Ashley again as she interviews Allison Burnett on the Teen Stage
@4:05, we'll have a second LAYA book trailer event on the Teen Stage, featuring authors Carolyn Cohagan, Michael Reisman and Tracy Trivas

In between I'll be at the LAYA booth - be sure to swing by and vote for your school's library to win a basket of amazing YA books from Los Angeles authors - where we'll also have these terrific writers hanging around and giving out candy (it's okay - you can take candy from them!) :

Susan Casey, Amy Koss, Alexa Young, Katie Alender, Ben Esch, Tracy Trivas, Carolyn Cohagan, Carol Tanzman, Allison Burnett, Michael Reisman, Allen Zadoff, Anna Hays, Andrew Smith, Jonathan Bernstein, Cherry Cheva, Lauren Strasnick, Mark Williams, James Mihaley, and Carol Snow and Sally Nemeth, who will also be selling our books.

Whew! What a day! See you there~

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Murder Weather

I wrote this short story about a year or so ago when the weather was super hot and everything made me want to scream. Combined with my previous short, I Brake For Whales, I am definitely headed in a non-YA, non-chicklit way with my shorter work. It's easier to maintain that creepy feeling with short work, I find, perhaps because I usually get into humorous terrain when I start to write a longer story. The story I am working on now, however, is neither short nor humorous nor light. Hmmmm...

Murder Weather on Scribd