Thursday, December 31, 2009

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

2009 - the List

Now that it's actually the end of the year, I'm compiling of list of "best of" and "worst of" and "most clueless" and so on. Feel free to disagree, chime in, ponder your own list...

Iranian protesters
Capt. Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger

Anyone comparing anyone to Hitler or Stalin
Richard Heene (Balloon boy dad)
Sarah Palin
Michael Bay
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
Bank CEOs. Yes, all of them.
Anti Vaccine scaremongers
Rod Blagojevich

Best Movies
The Hurt Locker
Fantastic Mr. Fox

Best TV Shows
True Blood
Friday Night Lights
Mad Men
Planet Earth

Fave Pop Culture Icon
Lady Gaga

Smartest User of the Internet
Amanda Palmer

Award Winning Book for Kids that Deserves It
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

Other terrific books for kids I read:
Story of a Girl by Sara Zarr
The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E Lockhart
Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld

Alexander Skarsgard

Deceased Celebrity I'll Miss the Most
Larry Gelbart

Best Personal Accomplishment
I wrote and wrote and wrote. In two years - two novels and a tv script. Goal for 2010 - get an agent, sell something.

Best Moment
First African-American President of the US is sworn in.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

The View From Paradise

(Above - the view from Dad's desk in Kaneohe.)

I've been enjoying near-daily trips to my favorite beach in the world (really, my favorite place in the world) and hanging with my parents, (my two favorite people in the world).

So I'm pretty lucky. I got five pages written on the plane ride over, but haven't done much since. Too busy eating and bodysurfing and seeing movies with Mom and Dad.

There are worse things.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Best Christmas Song

My favorite Christmas carol is "God Rest Ye, Merry Gentleman" for some reason. Probably because it's in a minor key.

But the best Christmas SONG? That's got to be "Fairytale of New York" by the Pogues. I've pasted a live version below to watch, so you'll get a taste of the lovely lead singer Shane McGowan (the woman, who actually is lovely is the late Kirsty MacColl) and his lack of teeth.

How can you not love a Christmas song with lyrics like:

It was Christmas Eve, babe
In the drunk tank
An old man said to me,
"Won't see another one."

Then, at the end of the song, the woman sings:

You took my dreams from me,
When I first found you.

The man replies:

I kept them with me, babe.
I put them with my own.
Can't make it all alone,
I've built my dreams around you.

Hope and love amidst tragedy and pain. That's the Pogues!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Best Writing Advice

Check out this post by Jennifer Blanchard at Procrastinating Writers for a list of the 43 most inspiring writing advice posts of the year. Excellent stuff lurks past every click.

My fave, which preaches to my choir, is this post from Larry Brooks at It gives you, on one page, the keys to making your story WORK.

Get inspired. Set yourself up to write the hell out of your book in 2010!

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Interesting bits, at least to me

I've been busy - work is nutty, the holidays are upon us, beloved friends visit, parties happen, free screenings are offered. I feel most fortunate!

But I haven't written or blogged much. Time to make up for that! Herewith a few dribs and drabs that have interested me in the past week or so. Many of these come from my Twitter feed. Love that Twitter!

I found inspiration in gazing at Charles Dicken's handwritten manuscript for "A Chistmas Carol" here. How reassuring to see such a great writer revising himself extensively!

These purses would make great Christmas gifts for the female reader in your life. I'm lusting after To Kill a Mockingbird, Alice in Wonderland, and a few dozen others.

My favorite soap opera, As the World Turns, got cancelled and will end next September. I haven't watched in years, but my grandmother introduced my mother to it when she was 12, so it almost feels like the end of a family tradition. You can learn a lot about how to prolong a storyline watching soaps!

I set up a Google Alert thanks to writer Greg Pincus's tutorial here.

I lusted after this ancient Egyptian magic wand, made of hippo tusk. Wanted to write a story incorporating it somehow.

With help from friends and their muscles, I threw away my very old, very loved couch (photo here) thanks to Los Angeles's bulky item pick up service. And my new couch arrived, confusing my Ancient Cat briefly. Then he curled up on it happily.

The holidays are nearly here! I hope to post a "best of 2009" list soon, but I like to wait until it's closer to the end of the year. Who knows what delights might pop up before New Years?