Saturday, October 23, 2010

Why do I try to write a novel every November??

National Novel Writing Month is just a few days away. Every year at midnight on Halloween night thousands of writers sit down at their computers and start typing furiously as we try to complete a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. Every year I swear I'm not going to do it this year. And every year, sometime during this last week, I succumb to the excitement and anticipation in the air and on the net. I signed up again this year.

Why did I do that? I already have five unfinished novels from previous Novembers! It would make more sense to finish one of those, or get started on another non-fiction book (the kind I actually finish and publish.)

But isn't about making sense. It's about having fun, letting loose, turning on the creative juices and pumping it out as fast as you can! It's exhilarating!

I can hardly wait!

Last year the Fulton group had a kick off party at Pizza Hut. That's me in the middle of the back row.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Why do we wait for a holiday to visit family?

We spent July 4th with my husband's sister's family. It was a lovely long day of visiting, barbecue, and fireworks. What more could you ask? I took a few pictures.

Saturday, July 03, 2010

What does the Brainstormer do?

Check out The Brainstormer by Andrew Bosley. Is it art? Is it a tool for writers who need to brainstorm ideas or plot points? Is it both? It doesn't matter, frankly... I just think it's cool and will keep you all busy all weekend!

Friday, April 09, 2010

Why don't I write?

Here's a poem by Gregory K. over at GottaBook that explains it all.

Gregory K.

Cleaning up

In my
Coffee cup

Snail mail
Blogging, too


Phone calls
Fear of debt

Nap times

Batting cage

Empty page

Friday, April 02, 2010

Why don't we read poetry out loud to our kids any more?

Jacqueline Woodson, Walter Dean Myers, and Kathi Appelt are just some of the writers who’ll take part in 30 Poets/30 Days, a celebration of children's poetry during National Poetry Month.

Every day in April, author Gregory K. Pincus’s GottaBook blog and Twitter site will feature a previously unpublished poem by a different poet—and it’s completely free and open 24/7.

Pincus says last year’s inaugural 30 Poets/30 Days was such a huge success, with thousands of people reading poems and schools and education sites participating in the event. “I received wonderful e-mails from teachers and librarians who used the poems as a launching pad to teach poetry or feature different poets,” he says.

Other participants include Alan Katz, whose humorous rhyming books such as Oops (S & S 2008) are hugely entertaining for kids, and Charles R. Smith Jr, the photographer behind My People (Atheneum, 2009), the 2010 winner of the Coretta Scott King Award for Illustrations.

“Poetry to me is life, because words are life. The Tao Te Ching says that if we want to be pure of spirit, we must be pure of speech,” Smith says. “When I write poetry, I am looking to get to the truth through words. My mantra is ‘waste no words’ so I can honestly say that my career has been built one word at a time.”

All poems from last yea are available online, including “I Dreamt I Saw a Dinosaur,” submitted by Mary Ann Hoberman, the Poetry Foundation's current Children's Poet Laureate and a recipient of the NCTE Award for Excellence in Poetry for Children. )

National Poetry Month sponsored by the Academy of American Poets, which began the event in 1996. More activities can be found at

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Why do yellow flowers make me feel so good?

After a very sad day on Monday, I woke up Tuesday morning to find these lovely daffodils in my front yard. Today, I walked around my yard and found Spring everywhere.
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Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Why is Candlemas now called Groundhog's Day?

It's no accident that Groundhog Day and Candlemas are celebrated together, for both signify the triumph of light over darkness, spring over winter.

Candlemas was originally a Celtic festival marking the "cross-quarter day," or midpoint of the season. The Sun is halfway on its advance from the winter solstice to the spring equinox. Candlelit processions accompanied the feast day.

Since the traditional Candlemas celebration anticipated the planting of crops, a central focus of the festivities was the forecasting of either an early spring or a lingering winter. Sunshine on Candlemas was said to indicate the return of winter. Similarly, "When the wind’s in the east on Candlemas Day / There it will stick till the second of May."

A bear brought the forecast to the people of France and England, while those in Germany looked to a badger for a sign. In the 1800s, German immigrants to Pennsylvania brought their Candlemas legends with them. Finding no badgers but lots of groundhogs, or woodchucks, there, they adapted the New World species to fit the lore.