The Rosie Project

…And here is what I decided to read next:

The Rosie Project: A Novel
by Graeme Simsion

I began this book yesterday evening (February 27).  By page two I was already laughing!  This one probably won’t take me very long at all to read – looking forward to it!

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Currently Reading…

I lost track of when I started reading these books, but I am presently in the middle of the second book of the Magicians Trilogy, by Lev Grossman:

  1. The Magicians
  2. The Magician King
  3. The Magician’s Land

These books are really good!  Very different from your “typical” fantasy.  Here is what amazon.com says:

Quentin Coldwater is brilliant but miserable. A high school math genius, he’s secretly fascinated with a series of children’s fantasy novels set in a magical land called Fillory, and real life is disappointing by comparison. When Quentin is unexpectedly admitted to an elite, secret college of magic, it looks like his wildest dreams may have come true. But his newfound powers lead him down a rabbit hole of hedonism and disillusionment, and ultimately to the dark secret behind the story of Fillory. The land of his childhood fantasies turns out to be much darker and more dangerous than he ever could have imagined . . .

The Magicians is one of the most daring and inventive works of literary fantasy in years. No one who has escaped into the worlds of Narnia and Harry Potter should miss this breathtaking return to the landscape of the imagination.

Fun, fun!  🙂

UPDATE:  I finished the 3rd and final book of this series on Feb. 26.  It was a very enjoyable ride!

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Sixteen

Today my son is 16 years old.  How can that be?  Time just goes by so swiftly…

And he’s been having some struggles for the last couple or so years.  School.  It is not working.  So I have enlisted some help to try and get him in the right situation.  It has not been easy and it isn’t over yet.

But I am proud of my young man, nonetheless.  He has my heart and soul.  And I know his future will be brighter.

I did not do a drawing for this birthday card I made for him, but I did write the poem inside:

Dalton16thDalton16th (2)

Happy Sixteenth, my darling son!

 

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31-Point-Plans

My long-time therapist/mentor/friend (and ADHD specialist), Molly Bloom, is also the facilitator of the local CHADD group here in Petaluma and runs meetings once a month.  She is the one who came up with the “31 Point Program” as a way to take charge of your life, find balance, and make sure you do the things on a daily basis that are important to you.

I struggled with this concept for a few years but then found myself illustrating a new one every month and really making use of them.  I have found my life much benefited and enriched by the process.

Recently, Molly has suggested that I make my illustrated plans available to others.  So I went through and edited them all to make them blank so that others can fill in whatever they want on them.  And I have now sold a couple of them.

I offer three versions of each month and a set of twelve months is available for $25.  Here are my plans as examples, and I have included an Order Form which can be printed out and sent to me to order the blank versions of these: Order Form

2013 Plans

2014 Plans

2015 Plans

And here is 2016 – unfortunately I only did a couple of these this year:

Jan2016


UPDATE – It is now 2017 and here is my first one:

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Book Passage Conference

Children’s Picture Book Writers & Illustrators Conference

Sat., Jan. 23 • 9:00 am – 7:00 pm & Sun., Jan. 24 • 9:00 am – 4:30 pm

I have wanted to attend this conference for years.  But it’s a bit pricey and it wasn’t until this year that I decided that I could actually do it.  And I am very glad I did!

Open to new, established and aspiring writers and illustrators, the conference takes place in beautiful Marin County, just across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco and adjacent to Northern California’s wine country.  When participants are not writing and critiquing their work, they will participate in panels and discussions about a variety of key topics for authors. The topics will include:
• How to find an agent       
• Query letters and pitches
• Trends in the Picture Book market  
• Working with an editor
• Creativity and inspiration        
• Working with a writing group    
• Developing empathetic characters
In addition to these structured sessions, participants will have plenty of time to network and interact. The Weekend Workshop will include lunch on both days and a dinner on Saturday, during which the faculty and participants are encouraged to mingle.

I enjoyed this immensely.  It was highly motivational, interesting, educational and inspiring.  I learned more at this conference than I have anywhere else.  And, most important to me, I learned when I met with an agent in consultation about my work, that my art and writing is, in fact, pretty darn good.  And all that remains is for me to get it in ship-shape form and get it out there.  And this I intend to do.  Edit, edit, edit!

 

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January 2016 (catching up…)

It’s 2016 – and that happened amazingly quick!  I’ve not had time to do much of any of the things I usually do at the end of a year.  I didn’t even manage to get my 2015 Christmas Card done – just didn’t have enough time.  But I have 6 years of them now (Christmas Cards) – perhaps I can take a break.

Jan2016And here is the first of my 2016 “31-Point-Plans.”

I have also gotten very behind on keeping up this BLOG.  So here are some posts that I have written and only now published:

I am hoping soon to have my New Year’s Goals up here, and there are still lots of things I am needing to get done – such as the art classes I signed up for on Craftsy.com.  I also need to work on my Etsy store, which I put up recently.  And too many other things to even think of at the moment.

But – HAPPY NEW YEAR!  I’m hoping it will be a very good one.

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December Books

Beginning on or around December 1st, after finishing The Alchemist, I started reading this:

Uprooted, by Naomi Novik

“A very enjoyable fantasy with the air of a modern classic . . . Naomi Novik skillfully takes the fairy-tale-turned-bildungsroman structure of her premise . . . and builds enough flesh on those bones to make a very different animal. . . . The vivid characters around her also echo their fairy-tale forebears, but are grounded in real-world ambivalence that makes this book feel quietly mature, its world lived-in.”The New York Times Book Review.

I really liked this book!  I finished it very quickly and turned to another fantasy, one that my sister loaned to me to read:

The Golem and the Jinni, by Helene Wecker

In The Golem and the Jinni, a chance meeting between mythical beings takes readers on a dazzling journey through cultures in turn-of-the-century New York. Marvelous and compulsively readable, Helene Wecker’s debut novel The Golem and the Jinni weaves strands of Yiddish and Middle Eastern literature, historical fiction and magical fable, into a wondrously inventive and unforgettable tale.   ~Amazon.com

I liked this book also and now on to the next book in my fantasy series:

Haunting Bombay, by Shilpa Agarwal

“[An] intriguing debut novel…Agarwal seeks to give voice to the dispossessed through the supernatural.”—USA Today

I really enjoyed this book as well – this time the tale concerned a ghost and family secrets.  Very interesting – and I also enjoyed getting a glimpse of another culture.

I finished this third and last December book at the start of the New Year.  Happy Reading!

 

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