Mailbox In Snow Stock Photo – 7586 | BIGSTOCK

Mailbox In Snow Stock Photo – 7586 | BIGSTOCK.

Sold a copy of this snowy mailbox image on BigStock today. I guess I’m not the only one who’s having trouble inserting pictures into posts here on WordPress. It just started recently. Sorry about the inconvenience of having to click on the link to see what I’m talking about here. I hope they fix the problem, or at least explain soon.

It’s still relatively warm today, and we will probably go for a walk before the football games and cooking begin. We don’t have cable, and we don’t get FOX up here. The local signal is too weak, so poor Alden will miss the morning game. As for the cooking, it isn’t much. I will put our turkey breast in its oven bag this afternoon and we’ll enjoy the scent upstairs as I write.

I would be discouraged by my paltry progress on my novel, but it has been a good month. I have the whole thing plotted out. I know what it’s about, so I know where to begin. That means I will have to redo the first chapter, but I know how to do that. The characters are shaping up and the conflict has defined itself and expanded. I’m hoping to make more progress today. The book is up to a little more than 21,000 words now. I plan to have it finished by the end of December. Okay, I’m not going to “win” NaNoWriMo, but on Thanksgiving, I am giving thanks for this wonderful month of community and support.

Yesterday, I signed up for the January conference in New York. I’m looking forward to attending with my daughter. We had so much fun last year. You can see some of the pictures I took of Manhattan in the snow on Zazzle. I changed most of them to black and white and added a little grain. I took them with a point and shoot I can carry in my pocket. The advantage was great, walking around in Midtown, tourist that I am, without my big SLRs. The disadvantage was color noise and fringing. I really love the way the black and white worked, anyway. It captured the feel of the winter city.

 

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Planning Day

Today I wrote more than 1400 words on my novel, which is more than it seems, because I planned several of the next chapters, scene by scene, and should be able to rip right through them next week. I do need to take some time tomorrow to lay out more of the book. I had a vague idea where it was going before. This was much more specific. I finally watched a DVD I bought a while back called “How to Write Your Book in 14 Days.” The guy has some great ideas. One of them that I’m sure will help me is to write in 5 minute bursts without stopping. Today, I worked out how to do that with my yWriter5 software and a free timer on my Google toolbar. I am going to stop guilt-tripping myself about wasting so much of this challenge. I now have almost 20,000 words. I’m not counting the first 17,000 for NaNoWriMo, because they are from the challenge last year, but I sure am counting them as progress on my novel! My first draft is almost half finished, and it’s structured, too, so I’m feeling good.

For Art or Money

Here’s my Day 9 poem for the Poem a Day Challenge. Tonight, I went to a seminar and heard a wonderful artist speak. He has been enlarging works for famous sculptors for the last 7 years, but now is moving on to do works of his own. It is hard, but exciting, to take that direction. It is hard to work on this book of mine.

The upper slopes of Mount Everest. The Southea...

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For Art or Money

Words for the service
of another’s need
line up challenges
like passages on
a high country trail,
a slippery creek bed
here, a narrow track
across scree where
every step sends
gravel skittering
down half a thousand
feet, and at the end,
a still green
meadow with triumph
exhaustion, and
and long view of
new territory conquered,
and yet, on the far horizon,
a snowy peak stands,
stubborn, that work
like merciless Everest,
pointedly perhaps pointless
but irresistible, nonetheless.

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Inspiration!

Poet's Calendar 2010 by bluerabbit
Design a custom monthly calendar online at Zazzle
Here is a calendar I put together a couple of years ago. Each month has a simple poetry challenge. Flip through the virtual pages to find something you like. Think of this as a call from your muse.

Rime in Spring

Black Cattle in Snow Icy fog at base of Colorado National Monument

Rime on leaves after a freezing fog

Hoarfrost

Today at lunch, Alden and I took a drive across the base of the Colorado National Monument on the old highway (340). We are between late winter storms and some of the snow that has been hanging around since before Christmas is starting to melt. Freezing fog clung to the banks of the Colorado River, creating a magical scene that transformed itself into a more ordinary one with the first rays of the sun.

Rime in Early Spring

Fog hovers,
silent as a veil
over the coy face
of a virgin,
skimming bare limbs
tenderly,
Glittering them
with fragile
diamonds of ice.
Then, all at once,
the sun.
Everywhere
the rice-like grains
shower down!

Copyright, Linda J.Armstrong
January 30, 2010

Seeing Success at the Scribbler’s Retreat

I wrote this post before my visit to the Scribbler’s Retreat Writer’s Conference. Click here for an update with pictures of my trip and a copy of my handout.

This Friday I will be speaking at a conference for writers at the Sea Palms Resort on historic St. Simons Island, Georgia.

Through a series of written and shared exercises, I will help participants
+ visualize their finished work in magazines or bookstores
+ feel the satisfaction of achieving their goals
+ create plans to bring their projects to fruition.