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We have all hear people talking about ….waiting for their ship to come in…and maybe at times…we have wished that ours would come in as well.

Let’s think about it…a ship… is a large boat . ..that I for one… have never seen resting on a shore.

You may be thinking…but cruise ships come in to shore?  right?….Not really.  They come in to docks..(.not the shore)…. docks that have been specially built for them.

So I suppose that means …if you sit on shore and wait for it…you might be sitting there a very long time…unless there is a natural disaster that forces it to crash on the shore…

                                         thCA8U0Q15

thCAHURU6Z

Your ship  might come in but it will be damaged and broken …not exactly what you had in mind.

thCA0X8KDK

 

 

 

 

So I suppose.. if your ship doesn’t come in… swimming out to it would be in order…..Don’t know how to swim??…and the thought of learning to is frightening? ….you may have to just start building that long dock.

 

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So… if sitting and watching…doesn’t bring in your ship….and you can’t swim or build…

you might have to reconsider the ship idea…

and settle for something a little smaller.

Weird…that is a word I didn’t use much before Sam’s Weird Afternoon was born….however…since then it is a word I use daily…both in my speaking vocabulary and in my posts and sites. ..Like tonight….Tonight I have been searching for weird photos to add to my collections…and the more I looked the more I found….and yes…I will be sharing them with you in the future.

Canadian Thanksgiving will be here in a few days and that means it is time for turkey. I remember making turkey the old fashion way…thawing…stuffing and cooking for hours…but flash..flash….have you heard????….there is now the …from freezer to oven turkeys and it is the best thing since microwave ovens….Oh..and yes…mine is working again…just a small temp piece needed replacing and …voila!!!! …I am microwaving once again…and all is well with the world…well…my world anyway.

Wow..it is almost midnight…my dog is calling me…so I will go and spend a bit of quality time with her/them…so till next time …here is one more sand item….

 

 

 

Today I am going to chat a bit about the old…. publishing process. 

I am having difficulty  inserting photos today…sorry. 

At the present I am involved in listening to and making comment on my book…in audio!!!!… Very interesting part of the process.

Sean , my audio guy……is about to become the voice of Sam.  I wonder if he has any idea how important a position he is in. Do you think that who ever did the voice of Donald Duck for Disney…way back when…could ever had had any idea of what a household voice Donald would one day be??? …Now I am not trying to imply that Sam…my Sam…will ever grow to the magnitude of Donald Duck or that his voice would ever become a voice recognized by millions….however….I do believe that …just as a book cover is a vital part of any kid’s book……. now that audio books are becoming a normal part of it all… voices …are also a variable that can make a book stand out from the rest…or… make it …just another book.

So…yesterday….Sean sent me what he called a dry read. He has a very articulate, very clean clear voice…which is why I chose him.(yes..I had four voices to choose from..) However, in this first audio, Sean  had  little animation in his voice  which gave me reason for concern…I was now concerned…very concerned. Is this what my Sam was going to sound like???…No excitement????…No loud and soft voice…just constant and calm.   But Sam is not calm at all in my story…Surely I would have some say in the audio???…Surely there was room for some changes???

 I had always wanted Sam  to be a fun quirky kid who voiced lots of emotions…at least that is what I was expecting…..that is how I always read the story to the kid…..I wanted to hear more excitement, more concern, more confusion in Sam’s voice. So… how do you tell that to your audio book voice person?????….Well, I decided that instead of beating around the bush, I would just tell him. And so I did…but very nicely of course. I gave my comments and then I asked if he had ever listened to Robert Munsch..I thought he was a good example fo what I was talking about…having fun with your voice…and .he said no…but then he asked if I could email him something with Munsch’s reading voice.  And so I did..It took me 4 tries..but .I finally figured out how to get it to him.  Sean said he was…”wanting to learn and make my Sam the best he could for me.”

So I wait for tomorrow …hoping to get an email from Sean with another audio read of my book.  I look forward to what he will send.

Hopefully tomorrow  the problem with photos will be fixed..I don’t like writing without pictures at all !!!!!!!!!!
Sunday… and another week is gone…past…kaput…never to be seen again. .. And what exactly did I do with all that time????   Difficult to put a finger on it.  But yesterday , I do know what I did yesterday….I spent it at a writing workshop…and it was a wonderful time that was.

We talked and wrote and talked some more. the facilitator supplied  un with different triggers…triggers to hopefully spark us to write…and write we did.  Like my Wednesday quilt group…a bunch of women who are always so encouraging and supportive of each other’s work…quilted or not.  The writing group was much the same….very encouraging and supportive. We learned about each other and shared out writings….everyone a bit nervous at first…but the more we did it the easier it became.  I know I will take another writing course when I have the chance.

Today I had fun skiing with my husband. But before I say anymore…I must tell you…I am married to an avid athlete who takes pride in properly setting up and maintaining his equipment…keeping  it all  in tip-top shape, cleaning , oiling, waxing and so on..in order to get the best performance from each of  them.  And when he skis, runs, swims, bikes…he does it for as long and as hard as his body will allow.  

I on the other hand am much less active. My skiing is no more than a one  hour activity…a few times a month…and…my level of ability reflects that. I enjoy being outside..but I   find it to be a lot of work …it seems no matter how I try…I  just trudge along on the trails…not moving very fast and killing myself to get up… even the slightest inclines .  My husband and my conversation on the trails, consists mostly of …HI…as my husband usually whizzes by me.

I was thrilled when …this year, he agreed to do some recreational skiing with me and today was one of those days. He patiently skied behind me today…as I trudged along…on my 15-year-old equipment…trying as hard as I could to look like I had a technique.  Maybe I could surprise him with my ability???…. if only I could  remember what proper skiing technique actually was!!  Ok, who am I kidding…I am just happy if I stay upright and don’t slide backward on an incline. And at least one or two falls are usually a part of one hour experience.

And then, today…totally out of breath and stopping  to catch it…he, my husband,  very cautiously asked…like any  good husband should….”Would you mind if I  give you just a little tip on___??  ”  I tried hard to be gracious , listen , and accept his help… but …we both knew this could be disasterous!!…However….today…no disaster…It was a good tip and I actually allowed myself to try it…it worked !!  Then he noticed my poles and that after I had been using them for all those  years…that they were not set up properly.  How was I to know???  So  he worked …fixing them on the spot…and then he noted that maybe my skiswere not good for me anymore either. 

Hmmmm…. I wondered…maybe  that is what has been holding me back all this time????  Maybe I am  really a slick..fast … skier…maybe I have been just lacking the proper equipment??   Ok…Ok….Who am I trying to kid???     But I will admit that after a few adjustments and a few tips, the experience was much more enjoyable. 

 If only I hadn’t pulled that muscle earlier…. trying to get up the first incline today…I might even consider going out tomorrow !!  Well …maybe?

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My collection…..

dolce and gabanna

 

Life begets life. Energy creates energy. It is by spending oneself that one becomes rich…..Sarah Bernhardt

Friday, Friday once again. It has been an eventful week. Seems I have expended a good amount of energy…and all because of Sam!! Don’t take me wrong…I enjoyed the week  and it was exhilarating for sure.

I just sent in an email approving the VISUAL components of the book…like pink shoes change to red…and the word pop…must be larger. There have been moments that make me wonder…am I being way too particular? Would anyone else really notice? Am I trying to make it perfect? Is there really such a thing AS perfect?

This week reminded me of a watercolor quilt I made in my early quilting years. A watercolor quilt is made up of hundreds of different .. 2″, printed fabric squares and the colors, if put together properly fade from light to dark.

I remember working on that quilt for hours, moving the little squares around to get the right effect but each time I moved one, others were now out-of-place and had to be moved…and so on and so on. This process went on and on until my husband peaked into my sewing room one day and said “You know you have to stop..SOMETIME…or you’ll never get it put together.”

At that moment I stopped what I was doing. I realized there would never be an end to it until …unless I decided to stop!  So the next few days were spent sewing it all together. Was it perfect?  Who knows…. I loved it.

So…like the quilt…the book revisions could go on and on,  but today I decided to stop. Is it perfect?                                                                      Who knows…I love it and that is what matters the most.

They say that nobody is perfect. Then they tell you…practice makes perfect.                                                                                                  I wish they’d make up their minds…

Winston Churchill

Shoes, shoes….glorious shoes…..

 

~You may be deceived if you trust too much, but you will live in torment if you don’t trust enough. ~

 Frank Crane
 
Trust… What happens if we don’t trust and what is that makes  trusting at time so difficult?  Why are some people easier to trust than others and  are you someone who can be trusted on?  Can someone be trusted in one situation and not in another? And why would that be?  Is it easier to trust someone if you know them well? Should you trust a stranger? 
 
Lots of questions and today I found out the answer to a few..

Sam’s Weird Afternoon is coming along and Yesterday I received three options for a book cover from the design and layout staff person. I was excited and quickly opened up the email . The three options  staring  up at me turned my excitement to worry, I had concerns. The concerns were not about the cover layout, not about the cover concept, not about the cover colors used., in fact, I loved the covers and the concepts used….but I had concerns about Sam!!!

What happened to my Sam?  The Sam I was looking at in these illustrations was not MY Sam. He was older and taller and looked more like one of the illustrations I received before the illustrator worked with me to change and develop the finished character.. The changes that made Sam… were little tweaks…but the little tweaks that made me love the finalized character. Oh No!…was my first reaction and I became a bit concerned…in fact….very concerned!  But should I have been?

Being the end of the day I sent a quick email back explaining very nicely that  the wrong Sam illustration was on the cover…and I went on to clearly explain what was different about him. I was very upset and concerned but tried not to let that show in the email. And  then I realized…polka dot shoe laces.!!!! .

.Sam was to be wearing  the polka dot shoe laces, like the ones I bought for book signings, that were to be on his feet, on the cover!  But instead they had decided to put tall plaid boots on him.  this is not good I thought ..that is just not going to work.   So I tried once again, very nicely to explain my lace concerns as well …and  I began to wonder …what if changes were not possible?  It had all gone so smoothly up to now and the staff were very easy to work with…but this was big. I began to question and make Assumptions. Assumptions that things were about to go very wrong and that fixing this was not possible. I began not to trust the publishing staff.

When my husband came home….I had gotten myself all worked up . “It’s Sam” I said….”they have the wrong Sam!!”  After quietly listening to me , he said ” calm down and stop worrying…,  changes will be made, trust the publishing staff, they have been so very good so far”, he said, several times until I realized how true , all he was saying actually  was.

But I had to wonder …..How did I let this happen?  How did making a book go from enjoyable  to stressful? It was then I realized..emotions…my emotions.  I had allowed my emotions to interfere with the l goal and I had begun to assume the worst and not trust.

  Then my husband said …” Don’t assume they WON”T  make the changes”,  if you are going to assume anything, assume that  they ARE GOING TO make the changes . I suddenly became very happy that I stayed with the facts when contacting my illustrator and cover designer and kept my emotions at home.

Today after a few emails back and forth, the illustrator informed me…I was right about Sam and he would be making the changes for me. Not only that but …I asked the cover designer if we could make a few changes on one of the cover I liked and ..she agreed to try. How easy that was. I must remember this.

The Publishing process for my book is not yet over. There may be more issues to deal with. I am going to stay positive and trust. Trust that we are all on the same team , aiming for the same goal…a great book. After all, making books is their job.

Tonight I gave my husband a big hug and told him he was the most important person in my life.  He looked at me , smiled and said…”After Sam that is.”  And we both laughed.

How does a person come up with something hairy like this?? However...Double steletto heals. Now that might be a good idea.

 

Now, these would match with just about any outfit.

 

Here is a picture of the snow on our back deck.

The holidays were full of lots of good food and wonderful friends….and SNOW…lots of it as well.  Now we can all get back to our regularly scheduled lives and back to work for many. My work these days will be connected with Sam.

Have you ever read an article or even a book and found a spelling or grammatical error in it?  I have and when that has happened that word seemed to interfer in the story or piece I was reading.It makes one wonder about the editing process and how did those errors get missed??? 

Now I know…it can happen very easily. I find that with something I have written, the more I read it over the less likely I am to find an error. I just keep reading it over in my mind, missing the error again and again.

I happened to  pick up my story and reread Sam’s Weird Afternoon which I haven’t done in some time now.  A glaring grammatical error jumped out at me and I wondered if there was anything I could do about it..now…as I had signed off the story to be sent to the next phase. So as not to belabor over it I immediately sent and email off to Tate…to everyone at Tate that I had dealt with, explaining what I had found , asking if it could be changed. Today I received an email from my editor who assured me it would be fixed.

She also told me that once it went to design I would have one last chance to fix anything else. That was a relief! I was a bit concerned that if it was not fixed it would be one of these little niggling things that would make me less proud of my work. So this week I will go over it one last time and check my story well.

So remember…..you need to have others read your work before it is ever finalized…and the more people who read it the more perfected it will be. And of course you have to be open to asking for feedback and criticism.  I had six people read my small story and still I found a mistake…but I think… I did not really  ask for real feedback, the feedback that is difficult to hear but is necessary.

I just realized it is MONDAY….time for WORD FOR THE WEEK…..so here is one,

demitoilet
  A style of elaborate but not formal dress

 

for all of you wanna be writers out there…here is a site with some good info. I believe the more you read, on how to do it, the better you will become at doing it…writing that is. Of course you can’t spend all your time reading….especially if you are in the very process of writing. But we all have down times…and that is when to check sites like this out.  You might want to bookmark it for a rainy day. 

 

Zula and Sage still waiting for Michelle. Me too!

The Puzzle

I sat with my proofreader tonight and she was not able to find any gramatical or spelling problems…and so she signed the approval form and tomorrow I will email the book in and fax the form in to Tate. Ahhh…one more phase is now over and I can relax for a bit now until illustration dept contacts me.

I recieved an email today from a fellow writer who is being published by Tate Publishing. It was a bit worrisome as she recieved her book cover illustrations and is not happy with them. Now that is the one thing that I too am concerned about…you know…a picture says a thousand words…and I…like I am sure…every other writer …wants that picture to say exactly the RIGHT words.

I suppose writing a book is like putting together a puzzle…all the pieces have to fit together properly and they all have to be there.  During my years working with staff of preschool children, I don’t know how many times I would find a puzzle or two , missing a piece and I would have to ask the staff to take that puzzle off the shelf , and or,  toss it in the basket. After a few confused looks I would explain that a puzzle is a activity for the child to do, finish and enjoy. If one piece is missing they are not able to finish it and thus  cannot get that same feeling of success they would if they ended up with a whole, finished product. Children depend on adults to do something about the missng pieces in their puzzles.

A book is made up of many parts , like a puzzle..that when put together properly …and if all the parts are there … will give you a   good finished product. But when… events occur like the book cover not satisfactory, or, the editing not well done, just  like the puzzle with the missing piece, that should have been a positive experience, becomes instead, stressful and truely….. no fun at all. 

In some ways life does not really change as we age . In a lot of ways…we are just older and our toys are different , more expensive and more complex.  I sometimes have to wonder…how many puzzles with lost pieces have we been forced to contend with as a child…and do we need to keep  accepting puzzles with  missing pieces ..now in our adult years?

DO YOU HAVE A PUZZLE THAT IS MISSING A PIECE???

Sam’s Weird Afternoon, Editing…. so the editing began and before I could do too much, back to my editor I went with questions about backmatter and endorsements and word count. It was the endorsements that seemed to cause me the most angst.  Wow…where did that word come from? I have never actually used that word before on paper or in conversation.  Very weird.

 After much contemplation over endorsements come the questions… who do you ask? Who will write one? Will people say no? Will people make fun of you writing? will people pretend to like your work?  Will they write something nice? Do you ask people you know or just friends and family? How about other writers? Maybe they would help out?  How about people on-line? would anyone write a bad one,  endorsement that is? 

After belaboring over these and many more ????’s , I sallied ..(another word I don’t use) forth and exposed my story to the world in hopes of at least one nice endorsement I might use for my book. I sallied forth to a variety of people and was happily surprised with the response. Sending out a piece of your work  can be compared to being naked at a dinner party or…floating in the ocean hoping someone from the boat going by will toss you a rope.  It is a very vulnerable feeling and a strange place to decide to put yourself in.

So, following all of that emotional ride, I now come to a dilema…I recieved three wonderful endorsements but now my editor tells me they will only be able to use one of them !!  Does she not know about all the anguish I went through to get them?  Can she not somehow make at least one more fit in the book ?  After my initial emotions settled and I was able to think a bit more rationally…the cup of coffee helped … I sat down and decided to rewrite some of the …what is called …backmatter to try to make room for at least one more endorsement.

And so I began. If there was any redundancy in the info….slash…it was gone. If there was any unnecessary info….cut…it was gone.  When done ..my original back matter had gone from 95 word with one endorsement to 94 words with two endorsements.  It is looking pretty good , at least that’s how I see it. I have sent the changes off to Ashley my wonderful editor and can only hope she will like what I have done. If so…two of my endorsements and all of my mental anguish in acquiring them will have been well worth it. My apologies to my endorsers if they do not get in my book.

Good morning…here is your word Word For the Week                           Pulcritude  (pŭl’krĭ-tūd’, -tyūd’)

That quality of appearance which pleases the eye; beauty; comeliness; grace; loveliness.   Word for the Week

 Attractive moral excellence; moral beauty.

Appearance, Attractive, Beauty, Comeliness, Excellence, Eye, Grace, Loveliness, Moral, Of, Quality, That, The, Which,

Coffee is on my immediate agenda and then…editing and reviewing .

 

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