Friday, June 29, 2007

What's your rating?

Online Dating

Here's mine. Makes sense to me.
Click here and find out what yours is!

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Just another week...

The bad.

One trip out of town.
One blowout on the freeway.

One 110 degree day.
One broken house AC.

One day back home.
One dead car battery.

One home computer.
One Trojan virus.

One backyard tree.
One beehive.
5000 bees!

The good.

No crash.

Back-up cooler.

The car was in the shade.
(Remember it's 110 out!)

It was the family computer,
not mine!

No one was stung.
All the bees are gone.
OK, most of them. Some frantic scouts keep coming back, wondering where their queen went!

is what it looks like
when bees
from trees.
that's not rain,
just bees.

Somewhere in here I'm trying my best to get some packages off in the mail, but sometimes life gets in the way.

Monday, June 18, 2007

SCBWI Featured Artist

I just found out I was selected as the latest "Featured Artist" on SCBWI website. For those not in the biz, the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators is a professional guild for writers and illustrators. An international organization, it has more than 19,000 members worldwide, making it the largest children's writing organization in the world. And for those in the biz, you know! It's the freekin’* SCBWI!! And my work is on the welcome page! What perfect timing. I just sent out art samples to publishers and am preparing a mailing to agents. I'm on cloud nine!

*If my kids read this, sorry. I just couldn’t think of any word that said it better than this.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

They're in the Mail. Update!

I have to say sending art samples sure can get you answers quicker than sending manuscripts and dummy books. Yeah, I know it's a lot quicker process looking at art than reading over manuscripts. But still, it's nice to know where you stand so quickly! Four weeks after mailing samples to Art Directors, here's they tally.

Mailed 35 packages.

So far have received 15 response cards back.

5 checked: We like your work and will keep you on file for future projects. Or Please continue to send samples!

5 checked: Sorry, we are not interested at this time.

5 checked: Your work is not right for our house.

Pretty even split. I'm very pleased with getting almost half of the response cards back already. I'm also very pleased with the positive comments, even on rejections. And I'm thrilled with some AD's asking me to continue sending samples and considering my work for future projects. All in all, it's awfully fun getting these back in the mail!

Monday, June 11, 2007

Back Seat Driving

It sounds like Linda Acorn at Just Like the Nut is on similar journey as I am. She’s got a great post about what I like to call “life in the slow lane.” You writers out there, submitting your work, know what I’m talking about. It’s all the waiting we have to do in this business that we have no control over. But there’s help. Linda points out the things we need to concentrate on that we do have control over.

So I’m going to be a back seat driver here (in a good way!) and comment directly to each topic she brought up. She’s got some very good insight. You should read her post before you finish reading mine.

Here’s my take on the things she mentions that we can control:

Our writing. Learn, polish, and revise. Have your work critiqued by experts. Listen to those experts. Know that your work is the best it can be before you submit.

Our understanding of the craft and of the market. Research. Do your homework. Don’t waste time submitting to someone who isn’t just right for your work. No easy task I know, but there are many ways available to get to know publishers, editors and agents. Hang out in libraries and bookstores. Get to know as many books as you can and the work of as many authors and illustrators as you can. Order publisher catalogs. Go to conferences and ask questions. Read websites, messages boards, and blogs. You’ll be amazed at what you’ll learn.

Our professionalism. This is the easiest thing you can do. Learn the format. Learn the rules. Follow them. Present everything in a clean, neat, professional manner.

Our connections. This is the most fun thing you can do! Creative people are a fun bunch. At all of the connections Linda lists, I have met great people. Not only does one "never know where one of these connections might lead” but you never know who might be willing to help you out. Creative people also seem to be extremely generous.

My bottom line: Take control where you can and be patient.

Linda quotes British writer Rodney Collin. "One has to wait without impatience for what should come, and yet at the same time do everything within one's power as though one were impatient and as though one were solely responsible."

This reminds me of a fortune cookie saying I once heard. “The harder you work, the luckier you get.”

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Mermaids and Contests

Leave it to those Disco Mermaids! They sure know how run a contest. And since I tend to win things, I'm entering! How about you? In honor of the sale of Jay’s first book, Thirteen Reasons Why those Mermaids are going to pick up the tuition tab for one lucky winner to the SCBWI Summer Conference. Looking for a way to get to LA this summer? Here's your chance. That is unless I'm the winner.

Logo design by Don Tate II

Monday, June 4, 2007

Join the Tour!

Barbara Johansen over at Cats and Jammers Studio is doing great job with her sloppy studio and work space tour. It all started here. I hope I never get that bad, but they say there is a correlation between creativity and messiness.

If you're reading this you've probably already seen some of my sometimes messy and sometimes clean studio, but I am currently featured on Barbara's Studio tour so head over and see what's she's been up to. So far she also has featured, author Kim Norman, as well as illustrators, Elizabeth O. Dulemba , Don Tate II . Plus, there's more to come! So keep checking. I can't wait to see Barbara's studio. It better be messy!

Friday, June 1, 2007

8 Things About Me Meme

I was tagged by Elaine at Wild Rose Reader

Here are the rules
: Each player lists 8 facts/habits about themselves. The rules of the game are posted at the beginning before those facts/habits are listed. At the end of the post, the player then tags 8 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know that they have been tagged and asking them to read your blog.

. I have really bad luck. My family calls it the "Wilson Curse". But it's true. Things that don't just happen to anybody, seem to hang over us like a ominous black cloud. Okay, I'm not talking normal bad luck here, I'm talking about things like a plane crashing in our back yard! Yup. It really happened. But as horrific as it was, no one got hurt. Not even the pilot.

2. I tend to win things. Sweepstakes, door prizes, ironing boards, you name it! Although I'm still waiting for that big lottery win. So far to date, the biggest prize was from a Home and Garden Show. It was like Christmas at our house when the prizes were delivered. Only these were really big packages. They wouldn't even all fit in the living room! Twenty-six best of the best, home products. Ranging from a computer to a big screen TV to a washer and dryer. And lots of little things in between. I guess this makes up for the bad luck!

3. I'm very superstitious. I put a lot of credence in things like fortune cookies and horoscopes. In fact I still carry a "fortune" in my jacket pocket from the SCBWI LA conference last summer. It reminds me of why i went and how important it was. I have a brand new fortune I got after this Editor's Day that is now on the corner of my computer screen to keep me motivated.

4. I was at a Jackson Browne concert once where a sniper was in the crowd.
(I guess this goes back to the bad luck thing.) It was during the Running on Empty tour at outdoor venue at a place called Arcosanti . It was kind of a hippie, commune, village-type place. The guy was hiding in the big boulders that surrounded the natural amphitheater. They told everyone to get down on the ground. One of the back-up performers went to the mike and talked the guy down. Jackson Browne still came on and ended the set with “Stay.”

5. I hate cold weather. I live in Phoenix. Enough said.

6. I can’t stand to go more than one day without seeing the sun. I get very blue on gray days. It’s nice to have clouds or rain for a change, but after one day of it, I’m ready for sunshine. How do you guys in the Pacific Northwest do it?!

7. I was not “given” a middle name. Neither were my sisters. None of us. Now the government doesn’t like this oddity. (Of course my Mom did!) So once you start filing your income tax, they fill in the blank for you. Until I got married, my middle name became “None.”

8. I met my husband in a bar. He was taking country swing dance lessons. When he saw me he told his friends, “That’s the girl I’m going to marry.” He told me the same thing a week later. I said, “Yeah, right.” Two years later we got married.

I am tagging:

Sherry Rogers
Roz Fulcher
Grace Lin
Scott Franson
Karen Lee
Cheryl Klein
Bill Cochran

I know this has been going around, and I'm a little late getting to mine, so I hope none of you mind if I tag you. Join in if you want to, if you don't want to sorry for the tag!