Monday, September 22, 2014

Playing While The Cat's Away!!!!! Join Me, Stay at Home Mice!!!!!

PEEPS!!!!!! A RARE RUTHY MONDAY-SIGHTING!!!! PAM HILLMAN NEEDED TO SWITCH THINGS UP FOR CONFERENCE WORK, AND WE KNOW I'M STAYIN' HOME, TENDIN' THE KIDS AND CHICKENS AND WRITIN' SUHWEEEET BOOKS, SO HERE I AM! HERE WE ARE!!! PARTY!!!!!

They're gone for most of the week! Oh, yeah, they're lingerin' today for the most part, but this week:

Oh mylanta, oh my stars, oh sweet saints be praised, it's PARTY TIME in SEEKERVILLE!!!!

(Runs, grabs hats, streamers, party favors, noisemakers, all the fun stuff needed to party like the monsters in "Where the Wild Things Are" by Maurice Sendak, one of the Blodgett boys favorite books!)  If you have a boy or know a boy or love a boy, run and buy this book and read it OFTEN.
You'll understand once you read it. Promise.

So while we party today, let's plan our strategy for this week. And if you whine, cry, moan, bemoan, fuss or bother me about being home, I'll smack ya'.

I'm SO NOT KIDDING!!!!

We are in the best of times while so much of the world is in the worst of times, so the absolute honor to stay home and be productive???? Oh gracious sakes to Betsy, there are folks round the world who would do anything to change places with us so for this week: NO WHINING. NONE. NADA. ZIP. ZILCH.

Because God has made us a wondrous world and most of the people reading this are thick in the middle of enjoying just that!

So:

Monday:  Read Ruthy's blog, take her advice and PLAN YOUR WEEK! Leave a comment to win something cool because Ruthy has the KEYS to the prize vault... Get the jump on others, and take the dive, swim with the big fish, put your butt in a chair, write 1,000 words and SAVE MONEY.

Tuesday:  Implement the first step of your plan which should start with (but not be limited to) writing 1,000 words/day. Four pages. One thousand stinkin', measly words. Go for it, make it your NEXT GOOD HABIT as an author.

Wednesday:  Write your 1K/day. Think about what you can give up to gain time out of your busy schedule. Television and facebook games should be the FIRST TO GO. There is no brain involvement in either, there is no valued family interaction in either, be big and brave and bold and sing the song from "FROZEN" and "Let it Go!!!!"  (Yes, this is a live link to "Let it Go!!!" I love that song!!!! And the movie!)


Thursday: Pray. Pray unceasingly for the plights of the world and thank God you're here, you're American and you live in a land of plenty and then write 1,000 words. And then no matter what else you do on Thursday, you'll be 4,000 words AHEAD for the week.

And now time for a commercial announcement!!!!

SEEKER NOVELLAS ARE COMING SOON TO A KINDLE NEAR YOU!!! AVAILABLE NOVEMBER 10TH,  AVAILABLE FOR PREORDER ON AMAZON ON OCTOBER 10TH!!!

Here is our historical collection:


And here is the contemporary collection!!!!!


How stinkin' cute are they????? Happy dancing in upstate to be part of this amazingly fun, beautiful collection of stories!!!! GRIN!!!!! Available for pre-order by October 10th, RELEASE DATE: November 10, 2014, $2.99 on Amazon!

YAYAYAYAYAY!

We now return you to our regularly scheduled program, still in progress...

Friday:  Don't pat yourself on the back, don't take the day off, don't turn the blasted TV on, don't reward yourself YET.... because it's not a habit yet. It's a beginning and a great one, but it's NOT A HABIT YET.  Like any trend, it's only habitual if it becomes ingrained as part of your existence with little or no thought.... and that's what that 1K/day should be. AUTOMATIC. EN FUEGO. GET 'ER DONE.

Saturday and Sunday: For the full time or part time workers, this could be the day to DOUBLE the word count. I count Saturday and Sunday as 2K days.... because I get up early and get my normal work hour in, and then I come back a few hours later and hit the keyboard again. 

And just like that, fairly painless, is 9K/week.  I go to church, I spend most of Sunday with family around or working in the yard (that's my reward!!!!) and I know I've met my goals.

Don't scoff.

Steven Covey's #1 point in the "7 Habits of Highly Successful People" is to take responsibility for your choices and ACTIONS. That's clutch in any business model, and just as important for a writer in their singular "NO ONE SEES HOW LITTLE I DO" existence.

Don't be the statistic, go above and beyond the norm. The norm (or as Missy put it so perfectly two weeks ago) being average is NOT THE BAR you want ....

Raise your bar. Raise your standards. Increase your output.

Wait, I promised myself I wasn't going to boss you around, that we'd just party hearty like the wild rumpus in "Where the Wild Things Are"!!!!

I messed up. But, honestly, if I didn't love youse, I wouldn't yell at youse!  :)

Believe in God, believe in yourself, believe in your worth and increase your effort. There is no secret road to success, it is simply building the platform of a solid work ethic and then delivering the goods. With so many open avenues to publishing these days, what on earth are you waiting for????

Go get 'em!!!!

Coffee's inside, there's tea, too and I've got a wonderful breakfast lined up for you! Danish and muffins and breakfast sandwiches on tender croissants.... come on in, leave a comment and I'm tossin' your name in the cat dish for something wonderful.... (scratches head, thinks, can't decide....)

And then pulls a $25 AMAZON GIFT CARD out of the vault!!!!!! 

Who the heck put that there?????

Okay, leave those comments, don't stop writing, don't make me hurt you..... but go leave a comment and let's have a little Monday fun for stay-at-homes or still-at-homes! Let's do this!



150 comments :

  1. I made my packing list tonight. May or may not be complete.

    A big week coming up. So I'm lining up coffee pots and setting the timers so there's brew each night while I hang out a couple hours up the road!!!

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  2. Literally squealed at the novella collection announcements! Especially Mary Connealy's Sophie's Other Daughter! My sisters and I keep discussing how she needed to have her own story and it's finally happening!

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  3. Ruthy! No whining or complaining here! You don't have to hurt me. I got a chapter written today. And will be working hard instead of sulking I'm not in St. Louis
    And looking forward to the Seeker Christmas collection. You do remember it was YOU that converted me to like Christmas stories, right? =)

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  4. Those collections look lovely.

    Hmmm, I wrote some complaining whiney thing in this comment box, but I erased it because you'd yell at me.

    So, um, Feliz dias de escribiendo a todos!

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  5. Would it be wrong to pray for a friend
    to win a Carol?

    And while God’s not a judge, couldn’t He just
    give one a nudge?

    Just a point or two would probably do
    to win a Carol!

    Now before you get excited by what I’m saying
    the Bible says we should always be praying*.

    And what if the others have fans praying for them?

    Wouldn’t not praying be like saying ‘Amen’?

    Now if praying for a Carol still seems slightly offending…
    then just think of it as ‘heaven's friending'.


    *1 Thessalonians 5:17

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  6. Hi Ruthy! I read your post tonight at 11 Central Time and promptly wrote a 1,000 words! So I am already ahead for the week as I will write another 1,000 and more tomorrow! Yay!

    Also, may I bring Go Dogs Go? Because I like party hats and my boy never read the book you suggest, but we definitely have dog parties here...real ones and read ones! Although now we read it to my son's two little folks.

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  7. Honestly, Ruthy, you are... unique? hilarious? infuriating? Maybe all three. I always giggle at your enthusiasm and energy, but you got me all excited about partying and then WHAM, you're talking about 1000 words a day. That's working, not partying.

    I can tell this is going to be a productive week around here with you cracking the whip. Good thing Helen has lots of coffee for us.

    Love the look of the collections. I'll be giving myself a pre-Christmas treat as soon as they are released. Of course, I might not have a lot of time left over to read them SINCE I'LL BE WRITING MY 1000 WORDS EVERY DAY! (Just kidding. I write every day, really I do ... I just don't always manage 1000 words, so it's going to be a stretch.)

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  8. Sounds like a good day to accept a challenge!

    I have been fighting with myself over this draft. I could use 9k words as much to get a word count as to overcome my own dumb fears about it.

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  9. I'm still in denial that I'm not going to St. Louis but I'm sure at some point this week it will click.

    No complaining here though since I get to hang out with my sweet little seven-month-old mini-muse and catch up on my TBR pile :)

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  10. wondering if you missed any clichés ;)
    Looks like I have a couple of books to preorder. (last weeks gift voucher will be put to good use). This week the sun will be out and I plan to do a little gardening. While I cant do a lot at a time I can do a little. (my 1k a day).
    please enter me.

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  11. Good morning Ruthy! What a great motivating post this morning. I have to trudge off to work today but with my new computer, I should be able to beging my 1000 words a day journey with no problems. My other computer...well, I'm not going to complain because it died and has been replaced.

    Everyone have a wonderful productive day!

    Smiles & Blessings,
    Cindy W.

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  12. Woohoo, I was a bit bleary-eyed this morning but now I'm bright-eyed and bushy-tailed after all the cheerin' and hollerin'. Thanks for the wakeup call, Ruthy! I'm excited to be a stay-at-home mouse. Planning on getting lots done and still getting glimpses of the conference. How fun will that be?

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  13. Helen, I love that you've set the coffee up on timers, thank you! Bless you! And remember, Seekers have cute little stickers to go on your nametags so you can IDENTIFY each other at conference!!!! Have so much fun and I know Julie will be hanging in the lobby, working and chatting and I expect you'll find others there as well!

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  14. Abbi Hart, I agree! I'm excited about Mary's story, too!!!!!

    I can't get enough of those romantic and clueless cowboys of the old West!!!! #lovethem!!!!

    :)

    Nancy Kimball, aren't they beautiful???? The Killion Group did a great job, and we've had so stinkin' much fun working together on these projects. Honestly, you could not ask for a better group of ladies to work with.... and it's our FIRST PROJECT TOGETHER!!!!!

    And I'm so proud of how hard you're working! No one hands us anything in this biz, and I know that full time jobs.... and writing... and lives (what are those????) :) make for some strange times, but oh... I gotta say I love it!

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  15. And a happy day of writing to you, too, Melissa!!!! :)

    Good girl on giving the whine the ax. I've got the whine sensors EMBEDDED in the algorhythms and if my beeper goes off??? Oh, there is yellin' goin' on!

    I've always taken conference weeks as a challenge to work harder and longer and I'm delighted to pull the lot o' youse along with me!!!

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  16. VINCE!!!! Oh, that's stinkin' sweet! Love it, my friend!

    And I don't think God's ever offended by prayer....even for writers! Go get 'em, tiger!

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  17. Yippee! So excited to begin my week as an AUTHOR...so blessed. I set my alarm for 4 a.m. and woke up to be affirmed that I was doing the right thing.

    And those collections look su-weet!

    Thanks for the inspiration, Ruthy!

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  18. Lyndee!!!! You bring "Go Dogs, Go" and I'll bring "Puppies, Puppies, Puppies!!!"

    Perfect! And look at you, jumpin right in for that word count!!! I'm huggin' you, girlfriend, because there is nothing standing in the way of our success except inaction! Go girl!

    Happy dancing in upstate for you and lovin' the dogs!

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  19. Beautiful Carol Garvin, I have faith in you!!!! And honestly, if I boss you about writing 1K/day and you do 500/day, that's still 160,000 words/year!!! 2.5 Love Inspireds. 2 Single Titles.

    That's a lot of words, my friend!

    It's that habit we need to form (of course if your habit is 200/day I might MOCK YOU. But 500, I'll respect!)

    I'm such a mean person....

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  20. Michelle, I've been there! I talk loud but I know exactly what you mean. Sometimes it means a re-write, sometimes it means my conflict needs to be deeper because I'm solving it too quick and sometimes it means I need to adopt Connealy's plan and shoot folks.

    Or start a fire.

    Putting people in peril creates MULTIPLE REACTIONS!!!!

    And then those reactions spawn other reactions. SWEET.

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  21. A very inspiring post, Ruthy!! Thank you.

    Does editing three chapters and and teaching an art class today make up for not writing 1k? I gotta do this editing!!

    And I have to say I'm SOOOO happy to be home this week! But I'm also happy for the girls at conference and hope they all come home with a blue ribbon prize!

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  22. I feel like canceling ACFW and staying home with you, Ruthy!

    You've got me jazzed up and ready to write.

    Question for Ruthy, the Whiz Writer: So you can write a clean and ready-for-the-editor 1,000 words in one hour? Clean? That's great speed. Good for you.

    Pouring a cup of coffee!

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  23. Love your comment, Vince!

    I'm lifting up my favorite Carol finalist and asking the Lord to bless her in every way.

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  24. Okay Ruthy, I was all ready to party and then you have this long list of WORK. Oh my. Well you always do give good advice and trust me, I don't want another one of your smacks. (yes, I've received my share-smile)

    So I'll get busy. And I won't whine because I'm not at ACFW.

    I am happily writing away.

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  25. This is just the post I needed this morning. After I met two tight deadlines, I gave myself a week vacation from my writing and as of today the vacation is over and I need to get back into my writing routine!

    I'm not going to conference this year. I'll miss the people, but with an agent, editor and contracts, I decided to save the money and vacation time at the day job.

    So I'll be around all week to bug you, Ruthy. Is that a threat or a warning, you decide!

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  26. I'm heading to St. Louis and will miss all of you.

    Ruthy, I like your plan of attack and may use it another week.

    Have a great day everybody!

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  27. Uh, oh, look who's running the place! Hope she didn't find the keys to the secret chocolate stash.

    Vince, love your poem! In more ways than one, too.

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  28. I'm not an author but I have a lot of cleaning to do this week. So Ruthy, about how long would it take to write 1000 words? I'll try to do the equivalent time cleaning. Love the motivation! Thanks for inviting everyone (not just authors) to visit you in Seekerville.

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  29. RUTHY,
    You have a great attitude.
    KB

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  30. I can't go either, it will be a couple of years before I can clear my schedule/finances, but God is in control.
    I haven't set daily goals because my schedule is too crazy even for that, but I've set them in "chunks," with a deadline in mind. For example, I need to finish the current draft of "Town" by November so I can do a novella in NANO (well, that alliterates nicely), so I'm working steadily with a focus on that. Then I've planned another rewrite of another story for December through February, after which I tackle a project for Speedbo. I also revise during these "chunking" times with a specific goal. For example, I'm rewriting "Town" along the lines of my plot consultation with Cathy Yardley.
    Ruthy, I appreciate the wise words. (You are Always Right.) I need to lay off the TV. Right now I'm fixated on three oldies channels and am reliving my youth with "The Beverly Hillbillies." Did you see the one where Jethro goes to the psychiatrist? Probably not, because you're being a good girl and WORKING. Sigh. TV, I love you, but it's over.
    KB

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  31. RUTH,
    I agree with you about working in the yard. Gardening refreshes me. Also baking. I've been making Pumpkin Pie Muffins to give as gifts. So relaxing. I look for hobbies that will take me away from writing (except of course for reading(, and then I can come back refreshed. Theoretically.
    The Christmas collection is only available electronically, right? Might be worth catapulting myself into the 21st century...
    Kathy B.

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  32. Ruthy!
    YOU are a blast to hang out with! Writing is a lot harder than reading so instead of the 1K word a day challenge, I read 100 pages a day, at the least. So all that writing everyone is doing is definitely being read.

    Mary posted the historicals on fb yesterday, but seeing both collections has me looking forward to Oct/Nov. What a writing POWERHOUSE of talent to look forward to. Seejerville is a force to be reckoned with. CAN'T WAIT!

    I'm praying for Tina to win this week, don't know how much they're needed though, her book is so good she probably already has it in the bag. The suspense is killing me:)

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  33. About HOPE FOR THE HOLIDAYS, that's 10 books in all coming out Nov. 10th. I was just making my list of books I wanted to read before the end of the year. These 2 collections are now bumping a few other books, but I'm glad to know when we will finally have them!

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  34. Glad to hang out at home with you this week, Ruthy!. And I love this way of looking at the word count breakdown. It's doable, but like Debby wants to know, is it ready for the editor? Any more fall pastries hanging around for when fall comes in later today? (Not for Jenny though, it's springtime for her).

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  35. Forgot to say how over the moon excited I am about the Seeker novellas coming out. Bouncing up and down excited!!! Woohoo!!!!

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  36. Ruthy, thanks for the encouragement boost. I will accept the challenge.

    I so want to read the novella collections. Thanks for sharing. I was wondering when they were coming out and where I could get them.

    Have a great week! You are such an encouragement!

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  37. I always love a party time if it's online! Got acres of grain (canola) to harvest this week, so will be checking in on the party periodically. I LOVE Those boxed sets coming up. Can hardly wait!!!
    Have a great week, guys, wether you are partying at home or elsewhere

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  38. Kara!!!! Love the mini-muse, LOL!!!!

    I treat conferences the way I treat any aspect of my business. Return on investment... and nurturing friendships. But I honestly prefer out-of-the-way retreats (WE SHOULD DO A SEEKERVILLE RETREAT!!!!!!) with not crazy costs and a chance to hang for a few days working.

    I like people, but I tend to be a loner and frugal. I love that independent publishing helps me build my readership while doing what I love most, writing sweet books! But I do wish I could have broken away from day job and hobnobbed with my VILLAGE PEOPLE!!!!

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  39. Jenny Blake, I think I got my share of cliches in, sweet thing! Hey, girlfriend, I like your version of 1K!!! Getting back in the swing of things is step by step. I'm so proud of how you've hung in there. We're all different, Jenny. God's fault!!!

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  40. KAVALICIOUS!!!!! Yes, this can be your turning point work week, the jump on the horse and revise, write, whatever you need to do! We keep on keepin' on!

    And I brought some of those fresh fried pies in cider glaze, so you and me can pack on a few pounds.... and write to our heart's content. When the work day is done, LOL!

    (Okay, I'm really eating broccoli slaw but I'm wishing for fried pies!!!)

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  41. Sergeant Ruthy, you are mustering the troops for a productive week here in Seekerville!

    I feel like a slacker going to ACFW. Anyone else?

    Love the novella collection covers!! Cannot wait to read these Christmas stories!!

    Janet

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  42. DANA!!!!! Who'd a thunk when we were chatting in class last February, and passing things back and forth, that now you and Mary Curry would be CONTRACTED!!!!!! I'm so psyched by this whole thing, it's what Seekerville is all about, loving others, offering help, kicking butt.... Okay that last might not be in the mission statement, but I'm a "tough love" kind of gal.

    My children lament that, still.

    Isn't this AMAZING??????? Happy dancing for youse guys and I know we'll have more to come, there are so many villagers who are THIS CLOSE.... I can feel it when I read their stuff... and then there's Piper who went Indie and I'm so psyched by that because I believed from the beginning she had what it takes to captivate readers... and now she is! Go us! Thank you, God!!!

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  43. Vince, love your poem and I'm pulling for a certain author to win too. Thing is the decision is made by now. But, whatever the outcome, a Carol finalist is never a loser!!

    Janet

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  44. My daughter Beth is running the daycare crew today while I'm writing and playing with youse, and she just brought me a chocolate coffee.... One of my moms who DOESN'T YET REALIZE that I'm a mean person sent me Godiva chocolate truffle coffee when she heard I wouldn't spend the money on it for myself.... I couldn't do it in good conscience!!!! But she sent it to me and oh my stars, I've been LOVING IT!!!! Thank you, Jen Matthews!!!!

    #anotheronefooled

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  45. Jenny, I'm smiling that you'll be working in the garden. Hope the work helps restore some of your energy.

    Hugs, Janet

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  46. Ruthy,

    You are one smart, inspirational lady. I admit I've been in a slump all September. I should be over half way through my new wip and don't even have 100 pages yet. I can easily do 1K per day. I can do 2K per day. I think I can.

    Are the Christmas novellas $2.99 each? Surely not the whole collection for $2.99!!! There're all on my TBR list, but I don't read any Christmas book before Thanksgiving.

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  47. Praying for all the travelers to St Louis. Have fun and send pictures.

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  48. Hey Ruthy!! Love your post! I need more party lol. I had surgery 5 weeks ago and thought I would be farther along the road to recovery than I am right now. I go back to work next week, so healing better be getting a move on! 1000 words a day: Do you plot out what you are going to write each day? Do you plan your book ahead of time? What's your strategy for writing a book? I start with a general idea, but then I'm like, now what? I'm thinking I need to rethink how I write. How long does it take to write 1000 words? I like how you added save money. We are doing Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University through our church. Save $1000 is the first step. And lots of prayer! You can do anything with prayer. I haven't read Where the Wild Things Are or watched Frozen. I'll have to check them out! Love the name of your story A Town Called Christmas. Can't wait to read it! Love your books and love that there are so many more to read!

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  49. Lol...Thanks for the encouragement. :) No whining for me this week! And I am seriously going to make it a goal to write as much as possible.

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  50. When our kids (now almost-31 and almost-28) were little, we had THREE copies of "Where the Wild Things Are" in our house--they each had one in their room and we had one downstairs for whenever the mood would strike for Mom (AKA me) to read it and do her voices and gestures. Fond memories. Resurrected the voices and gestures a short while ago to read the book to the 3yo grandson. :)

    I have so many projects looming... One is a long overdue synopsis, and then then are a couple series I have lots of ideas for (1 is at least 5 books, and the other is at least 3 books).

    How DO you keep all those characters at bay when they all want their stories written RIGHT NOW??? And then up pops another idea or character or scene totally unrelated to any of the other projects...

    Please, please, please toss my name into the cat dish! :D And those Seekerville collections look absolutely wonderful! Love Christmas books and am trying to save all my TBR Christmas books for November and December. :)

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  51. PSYCHE!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Seekerville Christmas novellas!!!!!!!!!
    I was wrong: DOUBLE PSYCHE!!!!!!!

    Ruthy kickin' butt and takin' names @ Seekerville. Triple psyche! (laying off the exclamation points now...)

    Thanks for the edifying and encouraging kick in the ol' keister Ruthy. I need it. I need to work on the MAJOR revisions on my KV entry to make it palatable for the LIS Editors (at least they love my premise, the execution? not so much)

    This week, I'm going to try to focus on finishing the Seeker charicatures I promised way too long ago in time for October though. This past year (since I offered) has thrown a few roadblocks in the way of getting them done. I need to crack down on myself and get 'em done.

    Also breaking out the Sendak book. Forgot I had it (whole shelf of pre-married kids books I got with dream of finding a man and having loads of children - looks like I'll be blessed with only one though). The Gupster will probably enjoy it. He already loves Go, Dog, Go and several other "classics" when he sits with mommy and reads. (he's just started pre-school and is loving it...yay).

    oh, please put my name in the ol' cat dish. I'm always in for receiving blessings from Seekerville (well, bonus blessings - the daily posts are blessings in and of themselves)

    will be peeking back occasionally since I'm supposed to be working right now *break time's over sigh*

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  52. oh... and I know I can do the 1K per day thing. that is one thing I've learned via the SPEEDBO exercise this year. I just have to give myself permission to be a writer (instead of just wife and mommy).

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  53. Ruth your posts make me crack up! What a nice way to start the morning :) I'm so excited to read the Christmas novellas! I'm definitely a novella junkie- they are the perfect way to chill after a long day. Please include me in your giveaway! :)

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  54. Hi Janet:

    You wrote:

    “Vince, love your poem and I'm pulling for a certain author to win too. Thing is the decision is made by now.”

    But God is not ‘in’ time and that is why in God all things are possible. God knew back then who would be praying today. What you pray for today can change what ‘will be’ done yesterday! Of course, this is from God’s POV.

    And while it may be too late
    to make a novena,
    it’s not too late to pray
    for you know who I meana.
    :)

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  55. Oh, yikes, I'm in trouble. This will be the first ACFW conference I've missed since the first one I attended in Houston years and years ago--and now I have to deal with RUTHY's pants-kicking!!!!

    Well, I don't know about the 1K/day thing since right now I'm working on some revisions, but you can bet I'll be putting the hours in!

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  56. These look WONDERFUL, can hardly wait for them!

    wfnren(at)aol(dot)com

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  57. Hi Ruth:

    You made that ‘Godiva chocolate truffle coffee’ sound so wonderful, I checked it out on Amazon and found it is an affordable luxury.

    Now if you could just describe the taste as if it were a ‘character-worthy’ setting, I’d know whether to order a twin-pack as a reward for difficult writing! (I have to write six 10-page one-hour real estate distant learning courses in just a few days.)

    Vince

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  58. Wild rumpus party and motivation from Ruthy! Thanks!

    The Seekerville collection is beautiful....and perfect timing for pre-Christmas gifts! Are my eyes correct.....Mary and Ruthy wrote TWO? That is inspiration!

    Happy writing, reading, or conferencing to all!

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  59. Hi Ruthy, thank you for making staying at home a positive and fun option!

    The Seekerville novellas sound terrific, congratulations to all involved in writing them and creating them.

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  60. Vince I loved that poem. =)

    RUTHY: I almost choked laughing so hard at "whine sensors embedded in the algorithms!"

    And your pat on the back means SO much to me. Thank you so much for that. You know, what today has shown me reading through the comments today (and the WE yesterday) was how much I missed Seekerville. Really missed it but didn't know how much till I got back here. Kind of like church sometimes when I've been away for a few weeks. So many familiar faces and friends, lots of whom are rolling along this author journey as blessed as I am, even if doesn't always feel that way.

    Grateful to you for your tough love, Ruthy. =)

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  61. Mary Hicks, yes, yes, yes!!! :) I give time off for editing because editing is so important!!!

    I'm looking forward to this week too. I'm finishing up a couple of current projects in the next three weeks and I've reached that TURNING POINT in them where I know I've got smoother sailing ahead... Happy endings!!!! Like a Friendly's sundae! :)

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  62. Deb Giusti, GREAT QUESTION!!!!

    Don't scroll back, I'll repeat it here!

    Deb wanted to know if I could write a ready for the editor 1K in one hour...

    Naw, of course not! I took my lessons from Margaret Daley and I do what she does every day. I read what I wrote the previous day... and I edit it as I go. Then I go into that day's writing... and aim for a thousand. Or so, depending on my time... So I'm actually self-editing a thousand... and then writing a thousand. But the writing is the "one hour" the self editing to read through yesterday's isn't part of that... and I do that every single day. So figure 90 minutes to produce a fairly good, tight 1K.

    But even if folks use that method to produce 500 words/day, that's still several LI's/year, right? And that's two pages/day.

    I think Dee Henderson uses that method, too. I bet it's not uncommon, Deb, but I remembered it from Margaret a slew of years ago, and I tried it because she was working full time, I was working full time and I wanted to know how she produced steady, beautiful books while being a special education teacher... and she told me! I'm copying the best!!!!

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  63. Sandra, LOL!!!! I loved one of Sandra's more recent notes to me...

    "I forgot how mean you really are. I'm getting back to work!"

    LOL!!!!!!

    I'm still laughing over that because Sandra and I worked together for years and had so much fun.

    I love writing. I love working with people. But I'm a hard-nosed New Yorker and really, a pain in the tush, so if youse are just so annoyed with me right now, I get it.

    My family gets it. (they're nodding wisely right now)

    But I know God wants us to do our best with what he's given us, and that's never a bad thing, is it?

    Naw.

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  64. Nancy Kimball.... I'm embarrassed. I just this minute realized that I promised to read your beautiful book LAST YEAR and you sent it to me and it went into a file and I completely forgot, even when it was published.

    Oh my stars, forgive me. It's like when I open an e-mail when I don't have time to answer it and it's not dark or highlighted any more and I forget that I didn't answer and it goes into cyber space black hole-ness.

    Forgive me. Seriously. I'm totally taken aback that I did that because I really don't like to disappoint my friends.

    I am hanging my head. I am a DORK.

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  65. Rose, I just cleared the dirty towels off a kitchen chair for you!!!! Perfect!!!! You sit right here and work, darling, and we'll make time and progress on these sweet works!

    I do that too. I push to get things done ahead of time, and then treat myself to something fun. This weekend Mia Ross, Mandy and Beth and I are going to the grape festival in Naples. I'm setting a series in the Finger Lakes and I've never been to Naples! Or the festival! So this week we're going and that's my reward for getting lots done ahead of time.

    It's not St.Louis and my Village friends, but it will be fun!

    And I'll be on target for these books and that makes me happy.

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  66. SECRET CHOCOLATE STASH????

    (looks around... sniffs.... DISCOVERS IT!!!!!!)

    OH MY STARS, THERE IS A SECRET CHOCOLATE STASH!!!! PRIZE #2 FOR PUSHING YOUR WORD COUNT THIS WEEK WILL BE A BOX OF CHOCOLATE SENT TO YOUR DOOR! KEEP US INFORMED OF YOUR WORD COUNTS AND THAT YOU'RE DOING YOUR BEST, AND YOU'RE IN!!!! LET ME KNOW BY FRIDAY IF YOU'RE DEVELOPING THE BEST WRITERS' HABIT: WRITING!

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  67. Tina!!! I'm so glad you caved on the chocolate!!!! Now if I could only get TEEEEEENSTER to cough up her mother's Italian chocolate spiced cookie recipe!!!!

    But, sadly??? No.

    She's a tough one, that Tina.

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  68. Jackie, have fun!!!!

    Chickie, listen, this is the beauty of this kind of challenge: it's good anytime, there is no expiration date and we're better in the end. And I stop yelling at people!!!

    Win/win/win/win!!!!

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  69. Hey, Ruthy! I'm staying home too! No conference for me, because I have a really tightline to meet. And I'm not sad. I'd be really overwhelmed right now if I was going! Happy to stay home this year and write my heart onto the page. :-)
    I've already gotten my 1,000 words today. But my goal is 2,000 words per day, at least, until I get this book finished, so I have another 1,000 to go. :-) Feeling cozy in my American home drinking my hot tea and spinning my yarn, Medieval fairy tale style. Oh yeah. Life is good.

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  70. Dawn Leonard, where would authors be without readers? Oh my stars, I'm pushing Rose off the kitchen chair and making her stand because readers are why we do this!!! Come in, sit down, set a spell!!!

    :)

    Hey, figure 90 minutes/day, Dawn. And then let me know how it went! You don't have to be an author to win as you know, and if you do a good cleaning job, just think how much easier Thanksgiving will be! (Yes, if I clean NOW I consider it done for 2 months... this should scare you. It's quite true.)

    I love goals. Goals keep me focused.

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  71. Forgive you? Pshhht. Nothing to forgive, Ruthy. =) Believe me when I say I find time and time again with that story that the Lord generally has a specific time HE wants a reader to take it up to do what He's going to do in their life with it. It is incredibly humbling to have been allowed to be part of that. No worries, lady!

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  72. KB Yes.

    Toss the remote. Stop living vicariously through Ellie Mae's cute figure and Jed's wisdom.

    I LOVE GRANNY!!!! AND MISS JANE!!!

    But yeah, TV and Internet and games can suck time from lives that just don't need them. So I will reward myself by DVRing "Castle", "NCIS", "Major Crimes" (in November) "Downton Abbey" and then I can skip the commercials. (gain of 20 minutes/show!!! SWEET!)

    Remember the Erma Bombeck saying? "I want to stand before God at the end of my days and say "Yes. I used everything you gave me."

    That's my goal. That saying sits on my window ledge above my very busy kitchen sink and reminds me of why we do what we do...

    God's gifts! Shared! Yes!!!!!

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  73. Tracey Hagwood, first: I love you.

    Second: Thank you for your kind words and reading, reading, reading!!!! YES!!! Come sit right here by Dawn (remember we kind of shoved Rose out of the seat???? She didn't care a bit, though, she was happy to do it!)

    Anyway, yes, November 10th and can I say again what a wonderful, fun and delightful project this has been????

    We've had a ball, it's our first time working as a team, and we hope to do more (whoever is available) as time goes on, because we love to write.

    And penning sweet, shorter stories to share at crazy reasonable prices is a wonderful thing!

    I just go and STARE at those covers, they're so nice.

    I'm grinning as I write this! Thank you, Tracey!!!!

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  74. PIPER!!!!! MY BEAUTIFUL BUDDY!!!!

    Check my answer to Deb a few spots up and let me add this:

    Once I've written the first 100 pages or so... I print it out (OLD SCHOOL!!!!) and I read it and do my 2nd edit on it. This shows me where I need to add a thread or deepen a thread. So I add those things in and make those basic corrections (timing, word use, anything I find) and then I charge forth again.

    That helps me to avoid BIG MISTAKES that take a long time to fix, accidents of timelines, losing characters, etc.

    That helps the final copy of the first write-through (with those mini edits and then the 100 page editing time) be pretty darn clean in the end.

    Does that make sense?

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  75. KAV!!!! WE CAN BOUNCE TOGETHER, ME TOO!!!!!

    Now that it's close to being complete, I'm just delighted.

    And these gals are true professionals when it comes to this stuff, so that's the frosting on the cake...

    Mmm...cake.

    Does anybody have cake??? #hungry

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  76. Wilani, thank you!!! Yes, muster on! You've been doing great this year, I'm so glad you found us and jumped in the writer's sandbox to play!

    That rocks!!!!

    AND MARYANNE! Canola harvest! Oh my word, that's a busy time. Does canola grow like soybeans, and does it dry on the vine for gathering?

    A lot of our soybeans here suffered water damage, days of rain leached too much good stuff out of the soil, drowning roots. Go harvest, keep us informed!!!

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  77. Lots of encouragement here! Thank you, Ruthy.
    I have to admit I've been bummed about missing ACFW, but hey, that's a lot of money still in my bank account and a lot of time to write. :) Haha!

    I'm bringing Chick-fil-a chocolate chunk cookies to the party. Because they are incredibly yummy.
    Please enter me for the Amazon card!

    Oh, and can't wait for the Seeker Christmas novellas. They look gorgeous.

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  78. Janet, you'll have so much fun there! You know me, I'm not classroom material, so I'd be sittin' downstairs yakkin' it up with folks and while I love that.... I had to stay home with my pre-schoolers this year! I'm looking at RWA in NYC next year. I love going to Manhattan and I can see my beautiful sons... and they'll feed me and laugh at how country I am!!!

    You gals have fun in St. Louis! We'll miss you, but we've got plenty to keep us busy right here...

    Dawn, here, darling, have some apple Danish. So good!!!! :)

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  79. Elaine, jump in the writing sandbox of bossy Ruthy takes no prisoners!!!

    You know that happens to all of us, and the best thing to do is:

    A. shoot someone. Fictionally is better, but whatever works

    B. Push yourself to re-charge and re-start. Reading the previous day's work is a huge help to me, showing me where I need today's pages to go.

    C. Start a second project. When I get stymied by a book/work I jump to another project to clear my brain. Tina says she can do the same thing with a NAP, lol!!! I like having two things going at once, but then when I'm coming to the end, I focus on one or the other... and that helps!

    Here, have a fried apple pie and we'll nail this together!

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  80. Sally Shupe, I love Dave Ramsey! He is so smart, and so sensible and he gives us permission to say 'no' when we should be tucking money away!!! LOVE IT!!!

    I can usually do 1,000 words in 50-75 minutes. I pre-plan a book mentally... I have to go into it with a synopsis, but I often build out from the basic synopsis that sells the book. People and animals appear out of nowhere.

    But they appear organically, as if that's what would happen in the given situation.

    So I plan lightly... and then build by using action/reaction.

    To every action, there will be a reaction and then you've got emotions and visuals... and it builds from there.

    But I keep it simple. Action, reaction to what happened previously.

    I'm so stinkin' glad you're here, your enthusiasm is contagious!!!

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  81. Jennifer, you're in, darling, and yes! Go for it. Don't hold back, and don't make yourself crazy, but hold yourself accountable...

    It's too easy in our business to APPEAR busy when doing little or nothing. But we know the truth within, and it feels good to just get those words down on paper.

    #FUN

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  82. Elaine, I forgot to say that if the slump tries to take hold again, come chat about it!

    I'll be glad to provide words of wisdom... :) OR KICKS!!!!

    as needed!

    Your friend,

    Ruthy

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  83. DEB!!!!!

    I know you can do the 1K/1Hr thing too! You rocked the contest writing, and don't feel bummed about the execution. Take it step by step and pretend you're an onlooker and how would you see this crime and the actions/reactions to that go down???? Your writing is marvelous, and I'm so proud of how far you made it in the contest!!!! Words of wisdom:

    Just keep writing. Even when nothing sells, just keep writing. Practice shines the art!

    And Guppy will love Where the Wild Things Are....

    I grin just thinking about it!

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  84. Heidi, isn't it so exciting?????

    I honestly think life is exciting, the ups, the downs, the whole roller coaster effect. We are so blessed to be who we are, where we are, and to have this chance to write??? ROCK ON! I hope you love the collections! Yes, Mary and I wrote for each one, we're sorry!!!!

    :)

    Naw, it just looked like a fun time to rock out with Seekers... and to deliver a nice, affordable Christmas present to our friends!

    #love

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  85. Melanie, you're in!!! I'm not surprised that a wonderful reader/writer/book lover like you had multiple copies!

    I've got you down, and I hope life clears up enough for you at some point to get back to that keyboard. What a lovely talent you have!

    Ruthy

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  86. 1000 complete for the day.

    I also worked through the character issues with a variety of exercises. I think I had two main problems. One was that you are right, I needed more conflict to jumpstart the character's reactions. The other is that I had a fairly well-known author read my work, and basically hate my character's voice. But this character has been in two books already, and my readers love him. By far, he's the character my readers request more than any other. So I decided just to forget that writer and write the character's voice the way I always have.

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  87. Vince, I agree! God knoweth beforeth the final tally-eth!!!!

    But whatever the outcome, we're so proud of Tina!!!!

    And that was such a beautiful book, a wonderful story. Loved it. Love her!!!

    But who's going to do the WE this weekend if Tina's in St. Louis????

    EEEEEGGGAAADDDSSSSS~!!!!!

    I vote Myra. :)

    Myra, revisions count as work time, darling! I have a few of those to do myself (lest any of you think Ruthy doesn't get revision letters, let me say this:

    hahahahahahahahahahah!

    So I'll be revising next weekend. And then Naples.

    And cheering for our returning village people!!!!

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  88. Wendy, I love Raggedy Ann and Andy. They're so stinkin' cute!

    Thank you! I'm putting your name in the cat dish and I love that the novella collections are delighting people!

    That makes it even more perfect!!!!

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  89. VINCE. GO BIG OR STAY HOME. DOUBLE PACK, ABSOLUTELY.

    I first got this coffee in a Christmas gift last year, a little, cute, 4-cup pouch of it. TO DIE FOR.

    I've never had a chocolate coffee taste so smooth and still be coffee, you know? This is perfect.

    When I drink it I think of frost-filled nights, chilled, crisp winds, straight from the north, chugging over Lake Ontario, driving wind and then rain into the lake plains of upstate New York, but despite the storm, life is calm... sweet. Good. Because I'm tucked in the corner of a chair, writing God-given love stories and letting the smooth, truffled taste of silked coffee ease the rumples of the day away.

    Vince, you made me THINK and then write PURPLE PROSE.

    Thank you, that was fun!!!

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  90. Sherida, hey!!!! You'll love the collection.

    It's stinkin' fun, that's what it is, and a labor of love!!!

    I've got some wild rumpus stuff to be taking care of.... nap time here, not for me, but for a couple of my wee friends!!!

    They're even cuter when they're sleeping!

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  91. Thanks, Ruthy! I'm adopting your strategy for daily word count...and I'm rooming with Tina! Wonder if she'll bring chocolate?

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  93. Just finished cleaning the kitchen so I think that's about the same as a word count for the day isn't it?????? I hope so! I'm a reader so I have to have an equivalent to word count each day :)

    I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE those novellas coming out!!!! They look fabulous and can't wait to read them. The holidays are my favorite time of the year anyway and to add BOOKS about them - perfection!!!! YAY!!!!! Thanks writers for putting this together so you can add this to my holidays!

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  94. Hi! I love all the enthusiasm here. I have not actually started a book, but am still in the planning stages. My ideas are there, they just haven't found their way to paper.
    This may seem like a silly question, but what word program works well for writing novels?

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  95. Ah, I'm convicted ... I should work on my school assignments. =) Also, Mary Connealy's writing a contemporary novella??? This I have to see!

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  96. I'm so with you Ruthy on the investment/return on the conference. Since it will be in Dallas next year, I plan to attend then.

    Today is my day to start revising/completing an older ms. I don't know how I will come out on the word count, but I'm mapping out my calendar right now so that I will have the book ready to submit by the new year. Today is a timed worked session of at least an hour (not counting the calendar planning) of the opening of my book.

    Thanks for the kick in the pants!!!

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  97. Rebecca, I'm sure that was a question for Ruthy, but I use Scrivner. ($40 but if you successfully complete a NaNoWriMo you can get it for $20)
    I didn't always. I used Microsoft Word in the beginning (and still do for editing) but once I learned Scrivner, oh my gosh do I love it for early stages when I can organize character charts and rearrange scenes so easy.

    And Artist Librarian, I saw on the Weekend Edition you're looking forward to the audiobook post on Wednesday. I hope my narrator and I meet or exceed your expectations with our article. ;-)

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  98. Ruthy, thanks for this post. I really need to be more diligent each day than I have been. I have to get a story in the mail this week and have another story that I keep putting off writing, so I will make that my goal this week.

    I have a question on what daily goals you set when just in the process of starting a novel. You probably always have something to write your 1000 words a day for, but I am not yet at the stage where I can begin writing so I am uncertain what my daily goals should be.

    I am excited for all the Seeker Christmas novellas. But I already have a kindle full of Christmas stories. I start reading Christmas right after Halloween, so will see how many I can read.

    PLEASE enter me into the drawing! With all these new Christmas books, I could definitely use an Amazon card!

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  99. Safe travels to all those attending the conference!
    Thanks, Ruthy, for a cheerful Monday post! Count me for the A card, please!!

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  100. IF it helps Sandy Smith, I did a post on training yourself to write regularly.

    Endurance to Cross Your Own Finish Line

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  101. Good afternoon, Ruthy and Seekerville. Such a busy day so I didn't have a chance to comment yet.

    Good news to start the day - surgeon doesn't think my dog needs surgery. Phew. Time will tell, but so far we're going with meds.

    Ruthy knows I'm a died in the wool 1k1hr fan. In fact, I owe my sale to that commitment. Last December I was tired of too many years of not reaching my goal so Jan 1st I vowed not to go to bed until I had at least 1k a day. The great part of sticking to it was that by the time the LIS editors announced the Killer Voices contest mid-February, I was totally in the groove. I don't think I could have finished the book (much less sold it) without that commitment.

    I'm doing revisions rather than a new 1k1hr work this week, but I'll be working right along with you.

    Love your poem, Vince!

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  102. I'll be with those who are home this week, too!

    I ACCEPT YOUR CHALLENGE!!!

    I'm so darn excited to see our covers up there!! :) :)

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  103. Nancy Kimball, thank you, I'll look that up. It was a question I have wanting to ask for a while now.

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  104. LOL, Carol G!! That is working, isn't it? :) But it's a good kind of work!

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  105. Missy, seeing you just reminded me. Your book was on the shelf at B&N this week. I took a picture of you, Tina and Virginia all together. I'll go post it on FB.

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  106. Thanks, Tina. I will check that out.

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  107. Deb, let me know if it works out for you! It made sense when Margaret was talking about it years ago, so I jumped on it.

    And you and the Teenster together will be awesome! You'll have so much fun!

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  108. Ruth Ann, I love when you pop in from across the great sea!!! Lovely to see you!

    I see both sides of conferences. I see the good of networking, and the joy of friendships, but if there isn't a real value in spending that kind of money for your career, then is there a better spot to put your funds? So this year we made sure we could go visit our out of town kids (Manhattan 2X and North Carolina 2X) and I'm doing a retreat next spring, but we're both still working full time and vacation time is scant.

    Maybe different when we get to retirement age?

    But for now, I love hanging with youse virtually! And writing!

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  109. Sherri Shackelford, did you bring food???? Come on, cupcake, a dish to pass or something????? Or punch, perhaps???? Time to rock and roll!

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  110. DICKERSON!!!!!! STAYING HOME WITH ME, WORKING, DEADLINES, GAINFUL EMPLOYMENT, DON'T YOU LOVE, LOVE, LOVE IT??????

    Melanie, I love that we're doing this together! We're rockin' the "let's look at the good side of everything" boat!

    Go you! Go us!!!! Hey, did someone just fire up the grill??? THEY DID!!!!

    Porterhouse steaks for all, conference goers and stay-at-homes, a last hurrah PARTY!!!! Make mine medium rare!

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  111. Aw, Valri, that's so stinkin' nice of you! You're welcome, and I hope you love 'em, darlin'!!!!!

    I know we had fun planning, writing, and figuring out cover details.

    I'm passing the plate of fudge that Sylvie Stillwell from "A Town Called Christmas" made for their Christmas celebration... It's from Miranda Stillwell's English recipe, do tell me if you love it!!!

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  112. Rebecca, let's see what answers folks give but I work in Word 2013. It's easy for me, it works well with editorial programs and I don't have to think about using it, because I'm already thinking. Too much of that is bothersome!

    I know there are other faves out there, but I'm a Word-Girl. And this is a great place to hang out while you're getting ready to dip your toes in the water. I invite folks here all the time and we love helping newbies!

    Jump in! The water's fine!

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  113. My little artist buddy who combines two fun loves into one budding career, I'm so glad you're here!

    Do you know that Mary has a CACHE of unpublished contemporaries????

    I LOVE THEM. I loved them more than the historicals back in the day, so maybe you'll see them in the future, but she's crazy-talented and SNARKY in her contemps.

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  114. Great inspiration, but I just hit send last night. The editor now has the latest WIP.

    I need a breath before starting the next one. However, 1k a day certainly sounds like a reasonable goal, especially if it's dialogue!
    b

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  115. Connie Queen, good for you on both counts!!!!

    It's good to use the money wisely, and next year will be here before you know it! AND.... I love that you've got those goals set. That's awesome! I pre-plan like that all the time.

    People josh me because of my "numbers" talk, but honestly, most things come back to math.

    Numbers are not subjective. So if I'm projecting what I can accomplish based on word count, I go into each year knowing what I can handle... and what I have to say no to.

    And that's a huge part of not getting caught in a pickle! So each year is plotted time-wise long before the New Year approaches. I know what I'm going to be working on each quarter of 2015 and part of 2016.... and by plotting out my word count, I can see where I can say yes to novellas, indies, etc. because the numbers don't lie.

    Sure, sometimes I have to work extra if there are revisions, but we all do that at any job.

    Planning ahead (especially for us pantsers!) is a good strategy.

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  116. Nancy Kimball, I'm glad you answered about Scrivner

    I don't use it but I know lots of folks who do and love it, so it's good to hear the plus side chiming in!

    And programs are different on Macs, too, so I expect we'll get a Mac-lover chattin'.

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  117. Sandy Smith, great question!!!

    DON'T HATE ME.

    When I first start a novel, I might double or triple my word count because those opening pages are so fun!!!! It's the initial encounter, the first glimpse of forever, the fun of the snarky reparte or the muttered prayer for rescue, or whatever, but they're fun!!!!

    But then things slow down as I build the more painstaking middle of the story. And sometimes I have to throw out chapter one (too much backstory) and start at chapter two, but it does help me to get to know my characters!

    So if I get off to a running start, I generally back off the speedometer in chapter 4.... and then put on the cruise control.

    I always picture the opening scenes in my head before I start, and then it's not a problem to put the words down because I can envision what's happening... I just need to then say it on paper.

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  118. Jackie Smith, you're welcome!!!!

    Here, honey, have some of Tina's Italian Chocolate Spice cookies....

    PRETEND, Jackie. It's the only way you'll get them!!!!! :)

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  119. Tina, thanks for the link!!!!! You rock.

    WITH OR WITHOUT COOKIES.

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  120. Mary Curry, I CELEBRATED when I saw you popping into 1K1HR (a facebook group, holler if you want to join us!!! No pressure, just more fun free support).

    I knew you'd turned a corner and after sitting and chatting with you in NYC last summer, I made you a priority on the prayer list because that beautiful talent of yours needed to be unfurled! So happy for you!!!!

    We shall have coffee and pastries at Financier again soon!!!!

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  121. I love that Missy is hangin' with the homies this week!!!!

    Missy, it's a great challenge, right? AND CHOCOLATE AND AN AMAZON CARD WOULD MAKE ME DO ANYTHING!!!!!

    You know you don't have to "go for the gold" to succeed... you just have to keep on going!

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  122. I love that B&N is starting to carry Love Inspireds!!! Thank you, Barnes and Noble!!!!

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  123. BECKE!!!! Congratulations! Go, you!

    I love sending things off.... and sometimes they love them just as much, sometimes not, but in the end if it's a beautiful book, that's what counts!

    You know I don't often take major breaks between projects and that's more my mental make-up than any sense of DO THIS NOW.... It's because I'm mentally writing a new project while working on the current one. So that's a quirk.... but a handy one for an author!

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  124. LOL! I love writing with you too, Ruthy!!! So fun. :-) And I got my 2,000 words before my kids got home from school. Booyah!!! ;-)

    I have to say, I am so impressed with you Seeker gals being motivated to write these novella collections! Wow! You guys are totally awesome. Now I just have to figure out how to write more than three books a year so I can self-pub something. ;-) (That sounded like I was bragging that I have contracts for three books per year. But really, I'm not! But it is pretty awesome, now that I mention it.)

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  125. Dear Ruthy, Thanks for your post.

    I have two sons but only one copy of Where The Wild Things Are. I love that book.

    I'm in the plotting stages. Yesterday was GMC charts, character sketches. Today was plotting first three chapters with whose POV, etc. So this is an exciting week figuring out more about plotting so I can start the book next week.
    Thanks for the tips about 1K/day and 2K/weekend days. It does add up very fast.

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  126. Sounds great, Ruthy! I'm not going to conference, (sniff, sniff) but I am taking a vacation of sorts. I'm sending off my final manuscript to the publisher tomorrow, then on Thursday my family is heading to Branson to attend some church meetings, a view of the Sight and Sound Theater production Jonah, and a day at Silver Dollar City. The last few weeks have been stressful, getting one book ready for final submission, and working on another short story and another novella, plus marketing and on and on, so I'm giving myself a weekend off. I'll get back to hard work on Monday.

    Also looking forward to the At-Home conference!

    Party it up, ya'll!

    Amber Schamel
    Bringing HIStory to Life

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  127. Melanie, well done!!!

    And isn't the idea of these novellas just Fifty Shades of FUN????? I love the whole thing, but mostly working together. How fun, right?

    And hey, chattin' it up about 3 books/year isn't bragging... it's something to celebrate! I know I'm so stinkin' happy for you! Happy dancing in upstate while I'm knee-deep in revisions and putting some finishing touches on the last few cowboy chapters.

    Aren't we just amazingly blessed?!

    Hey, did you bring dessert? I don't have to get fancied up next weekend, so I think I can have dessert!

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  128. Tanya, hey! It does add up, it's amazing, really and when I look at a week and see 9K or so done, I'm just thrilled.

    And I only have one copy of Where the Wild Things Are too, but I make sure my grandsons and daughters all have one at home! "The night Max wore his wolf suit and made mischief of one kind... or another... His mother called him "WILD THING!" .... " Oh my stars, I can still recite the whole book!!!!

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  129. My beautiful friend Amber!!!!
    Oh my stars, girlfriend, your schedule always makes me look like a stinkin' slacker and nothing makes me look like a slacker, Amber.... until I see how you spin those plates!

    That's awesome, young lady! Your devotion to God, to your family, to your work and your writing should inspire all of us!

    I'm tossing your name in the cat dish, she won't need it for a little while, she just delivered five of the sweetest little farm kittens you've ever seen! I'll be taking care of more sweet babies this week!

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  130. BUSY, BUSY DAY, so I apologize for getting here SO late, Ruthy-kins, but WOW, what an energy booster this post is, girl!!

    I plopped down on the sofa after a run-run kind of day, EXHAUSTED, and then I read your post, and I'm read to write 1,000 words!!! I won't ... but I'm ready too ... ;) Tomorrow, I promise!

    Hugs,
    Julie

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  131. Hi Ruthy,
    Reporting in with another 1,000 for a daily total of 2,000. And since 'da Bears are winning, I'm shooting for more. Twenty-five hundred has a nice ring to it.

    Thanks for the encouragement! Here we go...

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  132. My teenager loved Where the Wild Things Are when he was a little boy. I used to read it to him every day.

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  133. Julie, I love me some busy days!!!! Welcome aboard!

    You jump in tomorrow and have fun with it. I honestly think if we turn back the clock to when writing was SO STINKIN' FUN we'd all double our productivity.

    Fear and TV and Facebook: BANNED IN SEEKERVILLE!!!!!

    (Moderate use is, of course, allowed... but watch for my embedded sensor alerts!!!!)

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  134. Mary Preston, you've come to the right place, then! Hidey ho there, good neighbor!

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  135. LYNDEE!!!!!!!

    Oh my stars, way to put former Western New York peeps on the production map! You're rockin' this!!!! The Bears and the Yankees both won, so you and I can be happy together! :)

    I'm so proud of you!!!!!

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  136. Walt Mussell, I hear you! My oldest boy Matt was captivated by the book, and I'm so glad a friend recommended it to me because when we read that book to Matt, suddenly he didn't feel like a head case next to his very perfect, well-behaved older sister.

    It's amazing how early kids' self-awareness becomes an issue, and how grown-up reactions to a child's behavior form their self-image... and then Max comes along in his wolf-suit, brandishing a fork as he chases the dog and all of a sudden kids see a new normal.

    And isn't that what we all try to do in our books? Show folks that the range of emotions and actions and reactions are normal... and can get better with time and faith and hope and love?

    For Max it was realizing that life with the other Wild Things wasn't as cush and cozy and the grass wasn't really greener and he missed his mom.

    And food.

    I just love that story to death and it's a great guideline for a hero's struggle. I might not read Michael Hauge and I shrug off writing books faster than folks can produce them, but I can see the model of a perfect story in Max and his adventures... and then apply it in my writing.

    Great, great story.

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  137. I'm in the midst of a multi-generational family. I have my son and his family living with us. I also have to go over and take care of my elderly parents needs weekly. Making time to do a daily word count is always a challenge. I make my plans and family happens. However, I can get alot done when the grandkids are watching PBS. I am grateful to God if I get two days of consistent writing done. Ddid I mention I also have a part-time job. So there are weeks that are more productive than others. Thanks for remindng me to keep pressing forward.
    Cindy Huff

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  138. A fantastic book.
    Your pictures are fun too!
    Jan

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  139. Good Morning…
    After!


    Well I’m catching up on all the posts and I can see the mice really did play…but then when the mice play, Mary tends to stay away. : (

    Ruth: loved your comment: “God knoweth beforeth the final tally-eth!!!!” I wonder if we had the same nuns!

    BTW if your prose was purple it was the purple of the ancient world where purple dye cost more per once than gold! I think you could have had a career in advertising.

    Vince

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  140. Hi Ruthy,
    Thanks for the kick in the rear! I took a break from writing after editing two books in August and now I've got to get back in the groove. Trying how to divide my time between reading my research books and writing my historical fiction book. Okay, raising the bar now. Ready, one, two, three...I'm off!

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  141. addendum:
    Read little Guppy our copy of Where the Wild Things Are as well as Harold and the Purple Crayon.

    um, Harold won. The Gupster had me read that story two more times and was a little "meh..." about Wild Things.

    I think the artist in me has rubbed off on the little guy if he's preferring crayon worlds over wild things.

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  142. Those historical collections are so cute!

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  143. All been said by now since I'm soooo late.
    Thanks for the kick in the patooootie. :)

    AND, the exclamation marks! WAHOOO!!!!

    The Seekers are out with collections. YAY! Very exciting. Do you have a Seekerville logo? I'll have to look closely at the sets to see. Might be an idea if not. Oh happy day, when the cat's away.

    Thanks for who you are.

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  144. I'll take your kind of yelling any day, Ruthy! Thanks for the push.

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  145. I could use some coffee and I'd love to win the gift card. I've been up since about 6:30, but at least I got enough sleep.

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  146. The collections are pretty & inviting!
    Jan

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