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Showing posts from January, 2011

Snow Overdose

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After storm #2. I live in New England. We're famous for "If you don't like the weather, wait five minutes." We're also notorious for complaining about said weather. Since Boxing Day, we've had about a storm a week that will dump anywhere between 6 and 12 inches of snow. While I'll admit that it's pretty when it first hits and clings to the trees, it takes about five minutes before it turns into a murky pile of ugh. This pile of grossness takes over the entire town. I live in what some of my relatives like to call "the city*" which means not a whole lot of room to stick things. Like four feet of snow. The piles that bookend our driveway are taller than me. We're getting three more storms this week. What does that mean? G3 buried during storm #2 A few things. Everyone and their mom will freak out and raid Stop and Shop for milk. Why milk is such a necessity when threatened with a foot of snow, I'm not sure. I'd be

The 99th Page

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Finally, the day has arrived for the... When reading this page and all the others, you should focus and answer the following three questions: 1. Would you turn to page 100? 2. Why or why not? 3. Based on what you read, how likely would you buy the book? In true Page 99 test fashion, I'm giving you anything about the story except the genre. Oh and I'll give the title as well. Phoenix Rising Urban Fantasy "Eating dinner." Walker tore into another portion. He felt barbecue sauce smear across his chin and with sick amusement bet it looked like blood. "You should be out finding that girl." Walker could now hear the irritation in his voice. Good. "The redhead? She's in my seminar." "That's some of the best news of the day. Tell me: have you conversed with her yet?" Walker didn't answer; he was too busy worrying a stubborn piece of meat off the tendon. Ianos cuffed him off the back of the head. Walker let a small

Repo! the Genetic Opera

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Zombie Thur sdays is a weekly feature with guest blogger, Miranda. You can read more about her here . Today I am hijacking my own guest spot to write a totally different blog that isn't about zombies! But don't worry, the zombies will be back at their regularly scheduled time next Thursday. Besides zombies, I do have a few other interests in my life. One of those interests is a film called Repo! the Genetic Opera . Never heard of Repo? Don't feel bad, most people haven't heard of it. Begun as a stage play in Los Angeles, Repo! started off as a ten minute goth-rock opera called The Necromerchant's Debt . The story revolved around a Graverobber who is being stalked by an organ Repo Man trying to collect on a debt the necromerchant owed. After many evolutions and revisions, the play turned into a full length performance that eventually made it's Off-off-Broadway debut in New York to highly positive reviews. The very first director of this full length

Reminder: 99th Page Blogfest Happening TOMORROW

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Sorry for the horrible graphic. Please send a better one. That's right, tomorrow I'm co-hosting a blogfest with Erinn , Holly , Pam, and Quita . You can read the initial post here . If you didn't bother to click, the gist is to post page 99 of one of your writing projects and then visit everyone else who signed up. (As of 8.30 AM Thursday, we have 19 people*.) Several people have asked what the rules are for tomorrow's blogfest. When visiting everyone else's page, you should focus and answer the following three questions: 1. Would you turn to page 100? 2. Why or why not? 3. Based on what you read, how likely would you buy the book? So simple. So fun. Please remember, when critting to be polite. Don't write anything you wouldn't say to the person's face. You know us writer types are a sensitive bunch. And since it's Thursday, Miranda will be at the controls later today, so definitely come back! * 19 is such a meaningful number. Steph

Trapped in a Book

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Every Wednesday, YA Highway asks their readership a simple question to answer on your blog. Once you answer, you link your blog in the comments for other readers to hop on board. This is Road Trip Wednesday. Today's question : If you could live within the universe of one book, which would you choose? I panicked about this a little last night. I mean, there are so many to choose from. I finally narrowed it down to three. The Dark Tower. Well, the part before it all went to pot. I'd like to live in Mejis for the country feel or Gilead for the pomp. Of course, I'd have to pull an Aline so I could do the gunslinger thing if I was in Gilead. The Anitaverse. Vampires, lyncanthropes, zombies and more. All at your fingertips and not in hiding. It would make life very interesting. But the number one pick for me? The Mortal Instruments . Shadowhunters. Demons. Jace. Stop by YA Highway and see what the others are saying. Also, tell me what

Ten of My Favorite Songs

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You all know by now that music sorta permeates my life. I can't play an instrument or nor did I marry a musical genius, but the obsession is there just the same. If you've lurked for a while you know how I like to force my fangirl crushes on you and my closest friends--Hubby included--are forced to listen to me blather about this band, that band, andohmigodTHISBAND. The CD collection is out of control and I'm trying very hard NOT to succumb to the siren song of the iTunes store. You get the picture. So distilling thousands--and I do mean thousands--of songs to the ten favorite of all time? Heh, it would be easier to not eat mint chocolate chip ice cream*. Without any more bull and in no particular order, I give you ALICIA'S TOP 10 SONGS OF ALL TIME** The Song: Full Circle by Aerosmith The Why: Whenever I hear this song, I'm immediately transported back to the Holiday Inn in Glen Ellyn, IL in 2000 where I met one of my best friends (plus others) in real lif

Squirrel Appreciation Day Redux

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Sometimes I think the world likes to mess with me. Like having these enormous hips and no about 2 inches of torso* or when I want milk, all cartons are frozen blocks of white. No matter, I can accept it. I really can't accept there's a day dedicated to squirrels. You can read my reasoning on it here . Today I'll play devil's advocate for the furry front. Reasons We Should Appreciate Squirrels Credit They sometimes eat insects and other rodents. The nuts they hide in the winter a lot of the time just become seedlings. They have incredibly fluffy tails. That's all I got. My squirrel paranoia is too strong. Now if this was Chicken Apprecation Day**... If you're an avid squirrel lover, read what the NWF says about how to celebrate Squirrel Appreciation Day. Then, you can go to What On Earth and buy some squirrel merchandise . * This might be a slight exaggeration on my part. ** May 4th. _______ Last.fm hit of the day : The Exile by Vernian Proces

Would You Want a Pet Zombie?

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Zombie Thur sdays is a weekly feature with guest blogger, Miranda. You can read more about her here . First off, I have to begin today's Zombie Thursday with a very special HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ALICIA! That's right, today is the birthday of the woman who is the brains behind the whole 'Pie' operation! So in her honor, I would like to share this with everyone (found on the "MonkeyMinion" Etsy shop, available for purchase)-- Yay! Happy Birthday! As soon as I discover where a post office is in Chicago (no, I really haven't figured this one out yet), her real birthday present will be in the mail! I still remember one birthday involving a hotel pool and an inflatable sheep... but I'll let her tell that story someday. I have been watching a lot of movies lately. I'm not sure why, but I've just been in a horror movie watching kick. Good, bad, funny, horribly awful-- I've been watching them all. I've even had time to squeeze in some zombi

Blurb On!

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Every Wednesday, YA Highway asks their readership a simple question to answer on your blog. Once you answer, you link your blog in the comments for other readers to hop on board. This is Road Trip Wednesday. Today's topic : Give a blurb for your favorite book or one of your own! I've never been good at that "concise" thing. Back in school, book reports were hard. How was I supposed to sumamrize a 200-page book in one handwritten page?* Now that I'm working on finding representation, I'm expected to even be more concise: synopsis**, elevator pitch, and YA Highway wants me to blurb!? I think the girls over there want to kill me. For those not in the know... Some people also say the blurb is the teaser synopsis on the back of the book. Either way, it's hard***. So hard in fact, I'm going to make shit up based off what I've read about it on the internet. The Blah Story by Nigel Tomm **** Fans of the nonsensical

The 99th Page Blogfest

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Happy Monday Tuesday, Lurkdom! For something different, we're experiencing weather (read: snow) in New England and I have a truncated work week. What does that mean for you? Real fast blog entries! Credit On January 28th, Erinn , Holly , Pam, Quita , and I will host the first ever 99th page blogfest*. This was inspired by page99test.com . If you're too lazy to click the link**, the skinny is to have some read your 99th page and see if they would continue on. Neat concept, right? Right. So, we thought it would be great to do this on our blogs. All you need to do is sign up using the linky below. Please spread the word! * If you've already ran one of these, sorry. I was lazy on the internet search today. ** I don't blame you. It is Monday. _______ Last.fm hit of the day : Hey Man Nice Shot by Filter

The List Starting with the Letter "I"

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With 59 minutes left until the long weekend starts, I'm flat out. The Tuesday/ Wednesday blizzard didn't deter my work effort, but the day after did. I didn't get to my desk until this time yesterday*. Today was only a drop better. My brain's buzzing with stuff*. Next week will be better I promise. Because of this full-brain syndrome, I thought I'd share a few random thoughts with you. I can't handle long blog posts. I start to lose focus halfway through. I also can't handle most prog rock. That's a case of "too many notes." It's difficult to edit your WIP when you stupidly forget your marked up pages in your office "to do" pile*. If you could lose weight by eating pasta only, I'd now be a size 2.  I finally found someone in this office who listens to industrial metal. What random thing would you like to share? * It's kinda hard to do work when you're not at your desk. * That I can't articulate

Dead Alive! The Goriest Zombie Film Ever?

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Zombie Thur sdays is a weekly feature with guest blogger, Miranda. You can read more about her here . Very recently I re-watched a great zombie film, one that I had kind of forgotten about. Peter Jackson's 1992 film Dead Alive (as it was released in America, or Braindead in its home country of New Zealand) is often called the goriest film ever made! Even if you're not a fan of horror films or zombie movies, most reader's will know Peter Jackson as the mastermind behind the Lord of the Rings films. And knowing Jackson as the man who brought Tolkien to the screen, it is hard to imagine that he is also the creator of something like Dead Alive. That's not to say Dead Alive is a bad film, by any means. Low budget by today's standards (made for three million), it's very much a "90's film." I remember being young and going to the video store (when people still went to video stores) and although my parents would never actually let me rent one,

Best Lines

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Every Wednesday, YA Highway asks their readership a simple question to answer on your blog. Once you answer, you link your blog in the comments for other readers to hop on board. This is Road Trip Wednesday. Today's topic : What is your favorite line from your WIP? If you're in the Northeast, I hope you're surviving this blizzard safely and full of hot chocolate . I have about 50% of that down and the day job has been dogging me all day. Now onto business. Disclaimer: I always get twitchy about sharing excerpts on the blog. No one has told me why, but there you go*. So with my sharing paranoia shoved deep down, I out FALLING TO NORMAL** to find one of my favorite bits.  The corner of his mouth twitched up into a smile of sorts and had my stomach drop to my toes. I didn’t have a clear concept of what “sexy” was, but I thought Luke’s half-smile fell into that category. Because of his face, he was what some of the girls would call a “p

3 Best Hot Chocolates

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Nothing is more awesome than a cup of good hot chocolate. I'm not talking about Swiss Miss, but the kind that comes with actual chocolate bits. Right now I'm enjoying some dark chocolate peppermint stick hot chocolate. The only way it would be better was if it wasn't an hour old and if the office had milk for me to use instead of water*. Granted, I wasn't always a hot chocolate snob. When I didn't have any knowledge of the great beyond, I loved Swiss Miss instant hot chocolate. I didn't even think about the connotations of "instant" and that mean there was a "non-instant" version out there. I smartened up. So, as the work day winds down and my to do list ratchets up, I present you with the four best hot chocolates I've had in the Boston area. 3. Dark Hot Chocolate , Burdick's . It's very chocolatey and extremely rich. This is concrete proof that chocolate can be a meal. 2. Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate , Starbucks. Mayb

Movie Shame

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Last Tuesday , I talked about guilty pleasure music. If you haven't read it and are too lazy to click the link , I'll recap what defines a "guilty pleasure." A guilty pleasure has to be something that you're reluctant to admit to. It's that thing you get all excited about even though you know you shouldn't. For a movie, this isn't the hipster movie you like though you know you shouldn't because of it's awful acting, plot, writing, etc. If you like The Room, that's not a guilty pleasure. If you Google it, you'll find a lot of people who admit to liking it too. I'm a little less hesitant to share my movie guilty pleasures because it's not as big of a secret. I own the DVDs, but I still get all red when Hubby teases me. And you know what? I'm not even going to defend them*. I'll just show you movie posters. Lurkdom, help me out here. WHAT ARE YOUR MOVIE GUILTY PLEASURES? * Well, maybe I'll defend What a

Four For Friday

We've survived the first week of 2011, Lurkdom. *throws confetti and high fives all around* I'm slightly distractable today, not to mention that work has kicked my keister. That the 9-5 job has decided to do this on a Friday is awful because I can't keep my head on those projects when it's buzzing with these writing projects: Four For Friday: Literary Irons in the Fire Edition 1. Falling to Normal Current status: out for critique. I sent my contemporary YA out for another beta read, and, quite honestly, I hope this is the last time I need to. There's things that need fixing and I trust that someone who's kick ass and loves cookies can help. 2. Phoenix Rising Current status : revising My current WIP is an urban fantasy that came from my first NaNoWriMo attempt in 2009. My goal is to have this out to beta readers by April. To do that, I should invest in more caffeine. 3. Untitled YA Project Current status: taking notes What was originally going to

Zombie Sex-tacular! presents "Zombie Sex for the Kiddies"

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Zombie Thur sdays is a weekly feature with guest blogger, Miranda. You can read more about her here . That's right! It's time for another addition of Zombie Sex-tacular! But don't worry, today's blog is rated PG for the kids... kind of... I think... Recently, Alicia was displeased that my blog entry about "Haeckel's Tale" was the top read entry on the blog. I argued it was because people had an interest in Clive Barker or the Masters of Horror series. But Alicia thinks it's because people are freaks and just like the zombies getting it on. "Haeckel's Tale" is most assuredly rated R, and although I'm sure that entry was read by some minors, I thought, "shouldn't I write about something for the kids?" And because Alicia's blog focuses a lot on young adult novels, I found a series of books that are not only about sex and zombies... but also young adults! Generation Dead is the first novel in a series of books

The 5 Best of 2010

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Every Wednesday, YA Highway asks their readership a simple question to answer on your blog. Once you answer, you link your blog in the comments for other readers to hop on board. This is Road Trip Wednesday. Today's question: What are the best five books you've read in 2010? There was an alternate question about summing up your year in a title, but if you know me, you know I can't title worth shit so I'm going the easy route. It turns out I read a lot more than I thought I did last year* by reading 52 books. That's an average of one per week, even though I didn't really pick up anything to read until March. I didn't think it was possible given how lazy I've been but I did it. Go me! *shakes pom poms* You should know that my choices are based on how much I still think of them. If I said something was awesome, but it didn't make this list, that doesn't mean I don't like it anymore. As it is, I had to cheat on my t

Pop Music Shame

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For some half-cracked reason that I yet to understand, I joined a book club that focuses on reading music-related nonfiction. The book club started up this month by reading Rock and Roll Will Save Your Life by Steve Almond , which I talked about here and then fangirled some more here . It's a great way to kick off a book club devoted only to music, since Steve Almond gives clear examples of what he calls "drooling fanaticism" -- that thing we do when our music tastes must become everyone else's, or when we want to become BFFs with the musician in THAT band because the music is OMG SOOOOO AWESOME!!, or when we love an album so much we spoon it in bed*. I married a DF, I'm a quasi-DF, I know a few others, so this book hits a lot of points, even though I don't know more than half of the musicians mentioned. Alicia, what the hell are you getting at? Well, with the book club, there's a website and blog. Over the weekend, they asked the following questio

Back in the Swing of Things

So this is what 2011 looks like: the Boxing Day blizzard melted away and the clack of keyboards everywhere. I'm trying to stay positive since it's only January 3rd. Everyone is talking about their resolutions and their goals. Since I've already done that , I want to talk about what you can look for here on The Pie* in the coming months. Zombies. Of course there'd be zombies. Miranda can talk more about what we can expect on Thursdays. Movies and the Writing Journey. I had so much fun with the Follow That Bird blog that I plan to have movies and writing a regular feature. Contests. I'm nearing 75 lurkers, not to mention the hopeful 100. There should be contests for this. Blog Spotlights. Book Reviews. I can guarantee that there will be at least 12 of these. Of course, I'm always open up to suggestions on content. Tell me what you'd like to see over here. * Yes, I've given the blog a nickname. ________ Last.fm hit of the day: Horror Movie Ba