Writing

Quiet afternoons with Emily

My last blog post (written THREE MONTHS ago, yikes) was about Emily Dickinson, and today--once again--it is Miss Emily who inspires me. A NEW BOOK: From the publisher: An engaging, intimate portrait of Emily Dickinson, one of America’s greatest and most-mythologized...

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Cozy distractions in the time of Corona

Even if you're healthy and safe at home, you may be losing your mind right about now. I've put together a list of things (in no particular order) that might brighten your mood during this surreal quarantine from the rest of humanity. -- First of all, complete your...

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A Horror Interlude for February

This past week I visited Dallas for the Highland Park Literary Festival. The festival volunteers always put on a great event, and the highlight for me was spending time with the HPHS students who signed up for my presentation, "How to Build a Horror Hero" (a companion...

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Creativity Boost

I'm always looking for ways to silence the critic in my head--that meanie who loves to tell me "Girl, you SUCK." (Does it talk to you, too?) I also love experimenting with different approaches to the writing process. The books in my featured image--The Artist's Way...

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Journaling goals for 2019

I have long wrestled with journal lust. I even wrote a blog post about it in 2014. Last year I decided to get serious about this problem and committed to buying fewer journals and writing more in the ones I have. In fact, I set the goal of journaling every single day....

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Celebrating new web design with a GIVEAWAY

This past fall I decided to update the look of my website. As always I wanted something Gothic and a bit creepy, but I also yearned for warmth and color. Again and again I came back to this image: It struck me as both bleak and beautiful. Moreover it reminded me of...

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Finding Community at the SCBWIOK Spring Conference

The 2018 Spring conference for SCBWI Oklahoma, "Striking at the Reader's Heart," will be held on April 6-7 at the OKC Embassy Suites on S. Meridian. If you write/illustrate for children and young adults, I highly recommend you check it out. You’ll certainly gain...

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Darkly Gothic Poems for Halloween

Welcome to my new Wordpress blog! My Blogger blog is now an archive, but you will find all my old posts dating back to 2010 here as well as there. As a reader, I find Wordpress blog posts so much easier to read and comment upon -- I hope you enjoy this new interface....

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The PAPER HEARTS blog tour: Some Marketing Advice

I am so excited to be a part of the Paper Hearts blog tour! And it's not only because Beth Revis is a friend and a wonderful human. She's also a NYT best selling author and a font of information about the business of publishing. A few months ago I read Beth's first...

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Setting in fiction

Recently I participated in my first Twitter chat! One of the questions I barely had time to answer properly was "Any tips for setting in a historical novel?" (Thanks, Abigail!)Well, I love to talk about setting, because all my stories start with place. As soon as I...

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Friday Favorites: Writing Retreats

A couple of days ago I returned from a seven night Kindling Words West retreat in Marble Falls, TX. The Retreat at Balcones Springs offered cozy cabins and beautiful scenery, and our workshop leaders Nancy Werlin and Karen Romano Young provided guidance on how to find...

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Friday Favorites: It started with a photograph

A couple of things to share today, and though it may seem like a stretch, they actually are related. Favorite thing #1. More than thirty years after first seeing it, I re-watched Michelangelo Antonioni's Blow-Up (1966), starring the late David Hemmings. I first saw...

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2015 — Reflecting on goals

So last year I set some goals for myself, and I thought it might be fun to check on my progress.1. Journal/blog more. I'm pretty sure I wrote in my paper journal more than I did in 2013, but a counting of blog posts reveals that I wrote fewer. However, when you take...

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GHOSTLIGHT release date, pre-order details, and COVER!

So . . . I have a release date for my next book: August 4, 2015And now I get to share the cover with you...Click photo to enlarge!What is Ghostlight about? Well, we don't have final flap copy yet, but my own "Hollywood Pitch" would be:Super 8 meets The Haunting. If...

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Journal Lust

I have a problem.Here's the scenario: over the summer, during one of my many visits to Blackwell's in Oxford, I somehow failed to avert my gaze when walking past the journals. Instead of getting the heck out of there, I headed straight for the rotating display and...

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