Refilling The Creative Well

My creative well is feeling a bit shallow these days. I blame the dreaded January malaise. My work-in-progress is coming along. I’m about halfway done the first revision pass and the whole mess is sitting at about 87,000 words. But I’m at that point in my process where my imagination needs a little rejuvenating.

creative inspirationI love live theater! I don’t live in a huge city, we’re about 200,000 strong, but there are lots of arts and culture events to choose from if one is in the mood. Becky’s New Car is the latest offering by the Globe Theater. Done in the round, with minimal props, it’s all up to the actors. What a fabulous job they did. If you ever get a chance to see this play, I recommend it. So funny.

Becky’s feeling the effects of a humdrum, middle-aged life when she meets an beguiling millionaire. Stuck in middle management at her job, married forever, twenty-something son still living at home, trying to be everything for everybody, she inadvertently gives the wrong impression and finds herself at a fork in the road. With plenty of laughs along the way, it was the perfect way to fill my creative well.

“When a woman wants a new car, she really wants a new life.”

Becky's New Car

 

What’s you’re favorite way to rejuvenate your imagination?

 

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Our Gratitude Jar

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Last year we started a new tradition, a Gratitude Jar. Throughout the year we stuffed different bits and pieces inside the jar with the intention of opening it on New Year’s Eve. That didn’t happen. But we did open it one afternoon in early January.

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The idea was to remember all the good times we had shared the previous twelve months. It was a lot of fun to sit down together and go through it. Race bibs from the first ever 5km race my husband and son ran. The coaster my son’s alcoholic beverage sat on on his 19th birthday (legal drinking age here). My daughter’s campground maps. The receipt from my Donald Maass writing workshop. Etc, etc, etc.

New Fireplace 003Now it’s empty and sitting on the counter waiting to be filled with another year of memories.

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.  Melody Beattie

What was one of your favorite experiences from 2013?

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Keeping Warm: A New Fireplace!

We are having a new gas fireplace insert but in today. Yay. Our current one no longer works. So, while I”m waiting and before I phone to see where the installer is at I’ll tell you about my writing group’s January writing challenge. We used to do something called BIAW (Book In A Week) but this year we decided to have an all month challenge. I was feeling quite productive until my cold resurfaced, now I’ve slowed down to a crawl. Time to get back at it. This year I’ve set revising goals instead of first draft goals. I’m finding it a challenge to keep track of progress because there is a lot of backtracking and a bit of jumping around.

Right now I’m stalling over a sex scene. You’d think those would be terribly exciting to write. They aren’t. They’re complicated. It’s a plot pivot in the relationship between the main characters and it’s a very important scene which will set the tone for the second half of the middle, if that makes any sense.. Hopefully things are stirring around up there in my brain and it’s working on sorting out a couple of things.

Here is the old one, and I’m informed by the installer unsafe fireplace. Yikes. Good thing we haven’t used in a couple of years.

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Here’s the new fireplace, which is very attractive and modern looking even if you can’t tell from the picture!

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I love it! But it’s a bit smelly in here right now as we have to let it run for about five hours so it can season. Good thing it’s a nice day here (only -2 C) and we can open a window.

Have a lovely weekend! And remember to include a little romance in the weekend, like maybe a cuddle in front of the fireplace.

 

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The Book Club Slacker Fine

I have a confession: Tonight is book club and I’m not quite done the book. Because I’m a slacker that means I have to pay a ten dollar fine  That’s right, I’ll be paying my dues to the book club Night Out Fund. Even though I haven’t really been a slacker. I’ve been busy revising my second Aspen Lake story and spending time with Kate and Seth. Still, you do the crime, you pay the fine!

And this was one of those books–well it’s not fair to talk about a book you’ve yet to finish. I just say I’d rather be reading a different book. I will say this about A Light Between Oceans my ML Stedman. If you like Jodi Picoult you’ll like this author. I’m not a big Picoult fan, so that might explain things. Also, if you love lighthouses, enjoy wonderful description, post world war II stories, and tear jerking moral quandaries you should pick up this book and give it a read. If you enjoy tumblr and want to see my ode to A Light Between Oceans, pop on over here. Just because it wasn’t my favorite book doesn’t mean it won’t be yours! It really is worth checking out.

That be said I’ll be over here reading a Kristan Higgins book and giggling.

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<p>Book Review: The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman @ Pretty BooksRating: ★★★★Tom Sherbourne spent four years on the Western Front until the war ended and he moved back to Australia. Tom is continually haunted by his traumatic experience of war. Not happy to be alive; not proud to have served his country. But then he meets Isabel, who is bold, fun and free. They get married and move to solitary Janus Rock, half a day’s journey from the mainland, where Tom takes up a job as the lighthouse keeper. Years later, after two miscarriages and one stillbirth, a boat washes up onto the island carrying a dead man and a tiny screaming baby… Continue to the (spoiler-free) review.<br />

Have a wonderful weekend! Don’t forget to share what you’ll be reading!

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Off The Grid Postcards!

I love them! Thank you Elizabeth Lang for doing up these wonderful postcards!

Off the Grid postcard 1Off the Grid postcard 2Off the Grid postcard 3They’re so pretty I had to share. These are my favorite type of promotional items, along with bookmarks. A reader can always use more bookmarks, right? What do you think? Do like seeing postcards with quotes from books on Facebook, blogs, etc? Do they peak your interest? Tempt you to investigate further? Share your thoughts on promotional items?

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Cover Reveal For My New Romantic Suspense – Off The Grid

It’s official. Off The Grid, my next digital romantic suspense, will be available November 7, 2014. It will be available from Amazon with their Kindle Direct Program in late July or early August.

I am so excited to share this story. I’m so in love with these characters. From the hero and heroine to the villain to the secondary characters. I love the setting and thoroughly enjoyed researching the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver, infamous for being Canada’s poorest postal code. I miss Sophie and Caleb. I miss their sparring and their loving. I could have happily taken this couple and developed a series around them, pitting them against all kinds of adversaries. Ah well, I’ll have to settle for the next installment of the story, Christine and Zach. I wonder what kind of trouble will spill over and mess with a socialite and the private investigator who’s tasked with keeping her safe. Away from the slums of Vancouver to the troubles of the rich and richer.

But first – Off The Grid

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A committed doctor to Vancouver’s inner city, nothing fazes Sophie Monroe—until a pregnant teenager shows up at her clinic on Christmas Eve requesting sanctuary and claiming the baby’s father is one of the city’s most influential businessmen. Sophie is in over her head and thankful when aid shows up in the form of an attorney who’s a little too confident and a lot too sexy.

Family Law expert Caleb Quinn just wants a date, a chance to prove he isn’t the elitist jerk Sophie assumes. Helping deliver a baby is not what he has in mind. But before long protecting a traumatized teenager and her son become his first priority. Even if saving them pits him against the baby’s father, a childhood friend. A man who will do anything to keep his dark side private.

But justice never comes cheap. Will doing the right thing cost Sophie and Caleb their reputations? Or their lives?

So there you have it! The cover has been revealed. The date has been set. Now I wait.

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