Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Hairless Dragon Bunnies, IWSG, and Writerly Wednesday

Here thar be dragons! Or the figurative variety. So I survived the A to Z Challenge, I think. I still have brain cells that may or may not recover. 

Have you ever been to the point where your brain completely burns out and you literally crash, mentally speaking? I'm not talking for a day or two, I'm talking months. The first time that happened to me was while living in NYC, with an infant, a 2 year old, and 6 year old home schooler, no family nearby, 850 square feet of living space, being in charge of a HUGE charitable undertaking for Christmas, and some pursuit of a musical and book career. 

After the holidays I completely crashed. It was like a dragon had trounced across my brain and charred everything that didn't get smashed. Yeah, think 6 months to get back to not feeling tired ALL the time, 2 months before I could really write again. I don't advise ever running yourself that far into the ground.

Source
NYC was when I really learned to say "no." I'm still not great at it, but we have to realize each of us has limits. They may not be the same as neighbor Bob (who appears to be the energizer bunny), but it's important to know where your limits are and not push beyond them. At the same time, it's good to stretch yourself, try new things, and take a chance.

This is why I say to anyone fostering a writing career, take your time. Don't rush to publication. Enjoy the early part of the journey because once you add "author" to your writing career, life can get pretty, erm, overwhelming. It's good, so good, but there's a reason the scientists locked in my basement are now working on harnessing the power of the sun so that I can feed it directly into my veins. 


Are you ready to meet a new author and enter to win an awesome book? 

Last week, the funny Heather Letto shared IMPERVIOUS with us, along with two truths and one lie. Those who guessed the lie correctly were entered into a random drawing for the chance to win a signed ARC of her awesome new book.

Heather's game:
1. Heather has abnormally large feet and is afraid to get pedicures because women will laugh at her in their native tongue.
2. As a preschooler, she was the self-appointed guard of their front yard. She yelled at the mailman to, "Get off my property!" He told on her. A lot. She got spanked. A lot.
3. Her cat's name is Charlie... 'cuz he bit her finger.

And the lie is: 

#1. Sorry, no large feet and fear of pedicures

Way to guess those of you who got it right! And the winner is:

...DRUM ROLL...

Elizabeth Seckman!

Congrats Elizabeth! 

And now to today's awesome feature:

Beautiful, confident Tabby Karim has plans for the winter: nab a role in her school’s dramatic production, make the new boy Michael hers, and keep bigoted Heather—with her relentless Ay-rab comments—at bay. When a teacher’s lie and her father’s hastiness rob her of her beautiful hair, her dreams are dashed. The fastest barber in Miami Beach has made her look practically bald. 

With all her pretty hair gone, Tabby doesn’t believe she fits the feminine role she’s auditioning for. Michael is still interested in her, but he’s playing it cool. Heather has taken to bullying her online, which is easier to do with Tabby’s ugly haircut. Tabby spearheads Operation Revenge, which proves satisfying until all of her problems deepen. After messing up, she sets to make things right.

Pick up your copy HERE.

Let me introduce you to the amazing author, one of my wonderful blogging friends who reviews Middle Grade books like a boss: 

Medeia Sharif is a Kurdish-American author who was born in New York City, who presently calls Miami home. She received a master’s degree in psychology from Florida Atlantic University. After becoming a voracious reader in high school and a relentless writer dabbling in many genres in college, she found her niche writing for young people. Today she's a MG and YA writer published through various presses. In addition to being a writer, she's a middle school English teacher. Her memberships include Mensa, ALAN, and SCBWI.

Medeia loves cheddar and can be found munching on the perfect avocado-cheddar-tomato sandwich at one of her favorite restaurants. 

She gave me two truths and one lie to test your "lie detector" skills. Those who figure out the lie will go into my magic hat for a chance to win a Kindle copy of SNIP, SNIP, REVENGEYou have until Tuesday, May 13, at 1 p.m. EDT to guess--and be sure to come back for the answer on May 14.

TRUTH OR LIE

1. Medeia used to be terrified of the Wicked Witch of the West. 
2. Her favorite number is eight and she counts everything in eights. 
3. Her first unfinished drawer manuscript was about a magical Rubik's cube. 


Which is the lie? Have you ever completely burned yourself out? Any tips for recovery? Doesn't SNIP, SNIP REVENGE sound awesome? How far have you gone for revenge? Met any dragons lately? 

178 comments:

  1. I'm taking the rest of this month off from blogging as I felt close to crashing during the challenge. I think you have a great point about taking our time, something I always need to remind myself as patience is not one of my virtues. :D

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    1. Great idea, Julie. I wanted to do that too, but it's not going to fit into the plan. Patience is a hard one.

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  2. :) Patience is a big word in writing, one I'm still trying to learn. But yeah, sometimes life gets overwhelming. It's better just to cut back even if it hurts.

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  3. Congrats to Heather and Medeia!
    Burnout is horrible to go through. Been there, done that. It's so hard to learn to say no, but vital. I'm still struggling with the concept. Three kids and a small living space? I'm surprised you still have hair...

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    1. Yeah...among other things. If I could live through that, I could live through anything. =)

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  4. A sincere congrats to both Heather and Medeia. Thanks as always for introducing us to amazing authors and also for introducing us to the heroes that you introduced us to during the A-Z challenge this year :)

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    1. I was glad to do it, Keith. Thanks for reading about them!

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  5. Congrats to Medeia!

    As for burnout, small children are exhausting. (Actually, so are older children, but in a different way. Can you say "teaching them to drive?") And learning to say "no" is so important, I struggle with it too.

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    1. It's one of the necessary skills we have to develop if we want to survive, eh?

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  6. Burn out is the worst thing ever, and people rarely realise just how much it takes to get fully back on your feet.

    Taking your time is excellent advice, because this writing thing is not easy!

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    1. So true! It's funny how people think you just scribble out a first draft and bam, you've got a book deal. =)

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  7. I know that burnt out feeling. Sometimes I feel on the edge of it and then I know to just relax. I'm no good to myself or others if I crash like that!

    As for the lie, hmm, #3. Though that could be a good idea for a story! :)

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    1. It definitely could, right? I think it would be epic.

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  8. Balance is so important. And your writing advice is too.

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  9. Don't think I've ever really been burned out. All it takes is a night's sleep and I'll forget all about it. Don't know. I guess it's my personality.

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    1. That, or you're a man. ;) (It makes a difference, trust me!)

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  10. I learned that when you say "no" to someone or something, you're often saying "yes" to yourself and your dreams and goals. It sort of makes saying no a little easier when I think of it like that. :)

    Madeline @ The Shellshank Redemption

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  11. Yes! My twins were infants when my daughter was three. I loved caring for my babies, but I don't EVER want to relive those years again. Gah! I was so sleep deprived, I don't know how I made it some days.

    Learning to say no isn't easy, but it's necessary. Good for you!

    IWSG #224 until Alex culls the list again.

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    1. LOL. Yeah, I know what you mean. My youngest didn't really sleep through the night until he was 2. Yup. Two years of not sleeping...

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  12. I've only just begun my writing career but when my boys were little, my brain was mush. They never stopped. It was crazy! That's why we waited almost a decade before having another one--my cutie pie little girl;-) I've learned to say no a lot more now that I'm a "serious" writer. (I'm laughing at that statement!)

    I'm going with no. 2 for the lie. Although I counted steps as a child and still do! Weird, I know.

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    1. I love that you counted steps as a child. That's super cool.

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  13. Recently, I've had moments where I've reached my limit and I recognized that and was able to step back before I completely exhausted myself. It was still tiring and I had to take time to catch my breath. I'm slowly getting back into writing... just in time for a move. Ugh. Life needs to stop throwing stuff at me.

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    1. LOL. Yeah... We're moving too, so I'm suffering right with you. Misery loves company, eh?

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  14. Yes! Brain pudding! I've been teetering on the edge since October of last year. My son is 7 months old, my daughter is 3. I relate to exhaustion. Not to mentioned the frazzled head.

    You amaze and inspire me with all you do.

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    1. Loni, you're too sweet. Brain pudding...that's awesome!

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  15. I think if you were to combine my post (try something new) with yours (don't bite off so much, take your time) you'd have a great balance!
    Tina @ Life is Good
    On the Open Road! @ Join us for the 4th Annual Post-Challenge Road Trip!

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  16. Great post, Crystal. I crashed last year after the challenge. My trouble was I didn't know how to deal with the wonderful blog awards which bloggers so generously bestow as an encouragement. I ended up just bowing out of blogging for several months. Hopefully this year I'll find a better balance. I think I will go with, # 2 the counting by 8's as the lie. Maria, Delight Directed Living

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    1. I completely understand. The awards are awesome, but they can become overwhelming. I like to save them up for 6 months to a year before passing them on--for my own sanity. =)

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  17. Ohhhhhh don't explode we'll all end up with cheese all over us, think what a mess that would be. I'm enough older, think I've gotten pretty good at saying no; but agree most people don't. They get dragged into doing things they don't want to do with people they don't like and then they complain about it and emotionally they're tired and not fun to be with. You can say no without being hurtful. Popping round to let folks know that everyone who visited more then a handful of times and left comments during the recent challenge have been added to my blog log...partially to share some linky love and partially to make visiting easier. You're one of them.

    Sandy at Traveling Suitcase

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    1. A cheesy mess... I could handle that. ;)

      Sandy, thanks for the love. It's always great when people make it easy to return a visit.

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  18. Haha im doing the opposite and getting into everything! Full speed ahead! Until sleep deprivation kicks in I guess.... ;)
    I wanna guess #3 just because the witch was scary and 8s are cool :)

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    1. You have to embrace the good seasons when everything is working out, eh?

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  19. I completely understand the burn-out. As someone who is officially at the way-past-breaking-point, I'm counting down the minutes until the end of this semester. Even if that means 800 pages worth of grading. UGH. Oh, and moving. Because I hate my life. Anyhow, YAY for Medeia :) She's awesome. And I'm going to go with #1 as the lie :)

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    1. Whew! 800 pages... Here's wishing you superman-like endurance and an excess of cheese.

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  20. Oh...I have been there too Crystal. That deep down exhaustion that comes from taking on to much is like tightrope walking across the Grand Canyon on a long piece of uncooked spaghetti...make that angel hair pasta.

    I'm glad you have learned to say no.

    Leanne Ross ( readfaced.wordpress.com & @LeanneRossRF )

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    1. I like angel hair pasta. --Great simile.

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  21. Oh, I've been there with taking on too much. It seems I'm simplify and then it creeps up on me again. But I need downtime to write and be creative--thanks for the reminder!

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    1. We adapt to our situations, but it's definitely better to have the downtime.

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  22. Oh yes, I had a crash for several month of no writing, no energy, no nothing! I felt terrible guilty about it too because I always feel like I should right something every single day. I think I need to learn to start saying no.

    Where did you find those scientists? I need some too! ;)

    I also want to thank you for such a thoughtful comment on my post. It help me to put things into perspective. :)

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    1. *hiding key to locked basement* What? Did someone say something about scientists? *shifty eyes*

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  23. I have to take a break from it ll too. That A-Z was enough for awhile LOL.

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    1. Good for you! We all need that break.

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  24. Congrats Medeia and I'll say #2 is the lie. Congrats on winning Liz. Sorry you got burnt out Crystal but glad you learned to say no when you have to.

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    1. Still working on it. It's so hard to say "no" when someone wants to promote your work, eh?

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  25. ah the simpler days pre-publication... i hear ya!
    congrats to Medeia! and i believe she wasnt afraid of the WWW =)

    and thanks for commenting on my cover reveal!

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    1. Yeah. Do you ever just look back and wish you could return to that happy place?

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  26. That's great advice, sometimes we try to rush through just to reach publication, without enjoying the journey first.

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    1. We're always reaching for something, rarely recognizing what we've got, eh?

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  27. Hi Crystal,
    Very timely one!
    Yes, I thin we all need a good break after the
    relentless activities at a to z side LOL
    Yes, Balancing is an important word
    Thanks for sharing this
    Best
    Phil

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    1. I think balance is the key to a happy life, and it takes a lifetime to really learn, right?

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  28. oh yeah i have burned out about things many times in my life--usually ends up with me withdrawing and sleeping and eating too much---boy that sandwich with the cheddar and avocado and tomato sounds amazing---i love dragons because of one of my granddaughter's fascination with them :)

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    1. Lynn, you've had enough awesome experiences (daughter's wedding included) I would expect you know WELL what burn out is like--but you're still kicking. That's inspiration enough for me.

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  29. Sometimes it's really hard to say, "no," but we have to do it once in a while, or we'll drive ourselves crazy trying to do it all.

    Thanks for the nice comments on my blog. I enjoy interacting with you, too!

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    1. =) Wait, crazy isn't a normal state of being? ... ... (What?!?!)

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  30. I'm going to guess #2 as the lie, just because the thought of counting by 8s makes my head hurt. ;D

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  31. I think it's natural to push your boundaries when you're young (under 40). But by trying your hardest and then realizing the energy and drama weren't worth the payoff, you learn to balance happiness and hard work. I wish more writers would take your tip about not publishing until they're really ready. (Putting out a book too early and then re-publishing several times just makes them seem un-professional. I know many authors who've done this...)

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    1. Yeah... I had several books on my kindle that were like that too. You only get one shot in a reader's mind.

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  32. I think the second one is the lie.
    Know when to say when! After the Challenge, I am feeling the burnout right now...

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    1. As you should. Man! How are you even still alive?

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  33. Ahh, harnessing the power of sunlight. That is why, if it's not too windy, I may drag myself to the beach tomorrow and get to some of that there editing I've been talking about so much on my blog. It would stink to drag it too the beach only to have it fly into the wind and into the ocean. Terrible.

    Elsie
    co-host IWSG


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    1. I hope you got in your sunlight, and a healthy dose of cheese.

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  34. I can't imagine Medeia being afraid of anything, so I'll say #1 is the lie.

    You're really right on about rushing to publication. It's afterward that you realize just what you're into. Yikes!

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  35. Yes, people have no idea what being published will bring. I see now why successful authors limit their public appearances to only one or two a year. Generally speaking, we just want to write!

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    1. And sleep, if our characters will let us. ;)

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  36. Hey, I live that far in the ground. ALL the time.

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  37. I have been there too Crystal... I burned myself out badly in my late 30's when I decided to work 2 jobs... and rarely slept... Which I made that choice, the good thing was that when I was tired... I slept... where now, I am exhausted and I don't sleep..

    Also definitely learn to say no and say it often without guilt... life is too short otherwise :)

    Thank you for your comment... I hope that there is someone for me... I want to believe that.. in the meantime, I won't accept less :-/

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    1. It's funny how life changes, and how seasons alter us, eh?

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  38. I have never been that burnt out, but then again, I don't push myself all that hard. I'm lazy that way.

    Lie... hmmm... #2

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    1. LOL. It's all that knitting--gives you a sufficient reprieve.

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  39. I haven't had that much on my plate, so I haven't had that kind of burn out. But I am tired right now and have no idea what to write about on my blog. But I will, as you said, take my time and something will pop up, it always does.

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    1. It's funny how if you put your fingers on the keyboard, they often know exactly what to type. =)

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  40. Brilliant advice, Crystal. You don't realize how much easier it is pre-publication until you land a book deal and have to face tight deadlines...and rewrite 1/3 of your book.

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    1. No kidding! We'd be wise to have our first 10 books ready to go before making the jump, eh?

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  41. Hi Crysta! I enjoyed your post. "Crash and Burn" is my middle name! I know exactly the kind of burned out you are describing. thanks for the great advice! Take care!

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    1. Your profile pic makes me think you're referring to surfing when you talk about crashing. Silly, right?

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  42. Burn out is scary. Very scary. Glad you're back to yourself - it can be a long road!
    I'm taking forever to get to the 'published line' and I'm glad. I want to be really ready when I land there

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  43. Good for you for learning to say no. I'm still working on that. I have totally driven myself into the ground before, so I'm glad you recovered!

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  44. Three kids that age at that time? Oy. I have 3 year old twins, the author to my name, and I don't remember what else because the kids are jumping on me. God bless you. lol. I have to practice saying more a bit more and, hey, I agree about not rushing to publication. Deadline or not, we need to be proud of what we share with the world.

    Hmm . . . Medeia . . . I guess #2 is the lie. :D

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    1. Hey, anyone who can survive twins is my hero.

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  45. Thank you for this message! I really needed to hear this! I'm at the point where I need to remember to enjoy the journey early on! :)

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    1. Indeed, because you can never go back.

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  46. I'm somewhat familiar with this thing you are describing... and enjoying each and every moment we have is definitely the key to overcoming the burnout or that feeling of being overwhelmed. And in your case, cheese can also help ;)

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  47. My brain melts at the end of every semester. It never fails. It's getting worse the further along I get in school, so it's a good thing I'm graduating soon!

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    1. Well, as long as it's a cheesy kind of melted rather than a gravy kind of melted...

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  48. I haven't experienced that level of burnout, but now I'm somewhat frightened. O_o Six months of recovery? Gah! Glad you made it back out and learned to say no, but GAH!

    On a different note, I'm extremely glad to see that the cover of Ms. Sharif's book didn't get, as they say, whitewashed. I've heard about that happening with books that feature characters who aren't white, and I'm deathly worried about having to fight against that if TAW ever gets published. Oi.

    Also guessing the lie is #2, because I'd like to read this book - I do like a good revenge story. ^_^

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    1. I'll keep my fingers crossed for you as well. Covers are such a touchy issue.

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  49. Good writerly advice, Crystal. I think writers have to look after themselves so they keep on a level keel--so many demands. Medeia's book sounds awesome. Best taken with a brie, I think.

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    1. LOL. A book with a side of brie. I'm not going to complain.

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  50. this is awesome great advice. thanks for stopping by

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  51. Congrats to Heather and Medeia. And I'm impressed by all you A-Zers and I imagine many of you are feeling the effects. Great job. Get some rest

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    1. I should, right? I should go back to bed. ;)

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  52. sorry about the burn out. Unfortunately it happens a lot in this field.

    I'm going to go with number one as the lie.

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    1. It does, which is why we have to be so vigilant.

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  53. I'll go with number 1. The Wicked Witch of the West gave me nightmares for many years after the very first time watching The Wizard of Oz at the age of seven. Parents, for the love of all that's good, do not let your children watch that movie until they are teenagers! lol

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    1. LOL! My kids didn't have a problem with it, but then again, my youngest has a fascination with zombies, so...

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  54. I have a hard time saying no, too, but I bought a book recommended on Gossip Girl's blog, and I think it will help me--if I ever get time to read it. :-0
    Book is titled, Getting in Touch with Your Inner Bitch. ;-)
    Deb@ http://debioneille.blogspot.com

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    1. LOL! The hardest part of being an author: finding time to read.

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  55. Oops, I forgot. Number one must be the lie.
    Deb@ http://debioneille.blogspot.com

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  56. I'm trying to enjoy being on the journey because I agree, being burned out is completely no fun. I burned myself out last fall and I just recently started feeling better.

    ooh, that books sounds like fun!
    So...I'm going Lie #2, it sounds the most normal. ^_^

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    1. Oh man! It definitely takes time to crawl back out of that hole, eh?

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  57. I am so lucky!!! Yay for winner me.

    Last summer, I had that sort of melt down. I still feel tired and my brain doesn't always stay steady and stable, so I know NOT to overwhelm it anymore.

    You are so right in your advice. I tell myself to enjoy each step of the process (then I get crazy over numbers and want to pull my hair out!) because it is the journey that is the best. Like the very wise Brinda Berry told me during my melt down, writing is a marathon, not a sprint. Pace yourself. I <3 Brinda.

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    1. You have to be a distance runner. Great thought.

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  58. Writing a book is on my bucket list but I think it might be a while before I start it. I enjoyed reading your post! Have a terrific day.

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  59. Hi, Crystal...

    I never got THAT burnt out, but, I did for a while. A couple of months of existing mindless... LOL.

    Congrats to Elizabeth!

    As for the lie.... I guess, number 2. Counting in eights can be almost impossible.

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  60. It's never hit me so bad that it lasted for months. At least you recovered and learned something from it.

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    1. Indeed! Otherwise I'd be in the morgue. ;)

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  61. Can't wait to read Snip, Snip Revenge. I'd say #2 is the lie.

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  62. I think I crashed after the A-Z, Just starting to tentatively make it back to posting.

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    1. Yeah, I hear you. That was me last year.

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  63. I've definitely become creatively burned out for months after putting in a period of intense prolonged effort. I tend to describe it as having emptied the well, and having to wait for it to refill.

    Also, I think the lie is that she was never afraid of the Wicked Witch of the West ;)

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    1. Yes, and the waiting is the hardest part.

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  64. Yes I've been burned out, but as a result I say no.

    Congrats to Elizabeth and thank you for featuring me and my book.

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  65. Hmm, I think number 2. What if she saw seven sheep? Then she couldn't count them because they're less than eight! :)

    Like you say it's good to take on different things, but not to the point of spreading yourself too thin and not doing anything to the point of satisfaction. Then it's like you're no further forward. You really have to home in on what's important.

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  66. Congrats to Elizabeth!

    Well done n the challenge!

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  67. Very smart. Slow and steady wins the race.

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  68. Excellent point! It's so easy to push ourselves to get to the 'next level.' Really, we don't know how good we have it now, and it's important to enjoy the journey.

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    1. One of the hardest lessons to learn, eh?

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  69. Hi Crystal, nominated you for awards and please click on
    http://vishalbheeroo.wordpress.com/2014/05/09/quintet-of-radiance-award/

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  70. I did revenge once, and I did it well. But I didn't like myself for it, nor feel better. And it certainly isn't a story for this format :)

    Snip Snip sounds great and I like the cover!

    Have a great weekend Crystal.

    http://iurl.no/4u35h

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    1. I think that's why I love The Count of Monte Cristo--goes to show that revenge never works out quite like we anticipated.

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  71. I'm guessing the lie is #2.

    I felt really burnt out near the end of my sophomore year of high school, thanks to an incompetent guidance counselor who forced me to take AP European History, Regents Chemistry, and Regents Course II (i.e., geometry) all in the same year. He refused my pleas to drop the chemistry for earth science and to take the Course II down to grade-level. Thanks to his insistence on that stupid Regents diploma, I failed chemistry and almost failed Course II, and also didn't do so hot in history for awhile. All that studying to save the year really wore me out. And as it turned out, I graduated high school in Massachusetts, so his precious Regents diploma didn't mean jack.

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    1. Oh man! What a pain! I was the one ordering my counselor around in high school, telling her what I would and would not take. Poor lady. I probably changed my schedule once a quarter.

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  72. I've crashed many times. I deal with autoimmune disorders that make it very unwise for me to push myself too far. This doesn't mean I don't do it; it just means that when I do, I don't recover as quickly or as neatly as others. Blerg...

    I guess you could say this IS my dragon: the constant fatigue and pain and having to measure my time and effort against how I'm feeling and my commitments. But, this dragon is also what drives me. I don't see it as an enemy but an ally. I certainly don't accept health issues as the "norm" or as a forever thing I'll have to deal with (who knows?) but having something that constantly hisses, "You can't" just makes me ever more determined to prove it wrong :)

    Cheers!
    Jen

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    1. I know what you mean! I don't have autoimmune disorder, but I've got a wicked case of allergies that had me in bed almost constantly for two years. Current treatments have been okay, but you really just have to gauge where you're at and what you can handle in the moment, eh?

      I love your attitude.

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  73. Hugs to you and your burnout! Hope you are resting up and healing your brain (and the rest of you) now. LOVE Medeia's cover, btw!

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    1. Thanks, Carol. Resting. Recovering. (And I totally agree about Medeia's cover.)

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  74. I hear you. I'm still recovering from April and all the volunteering and AtoZ challenge along with all the regular rigormoral that comes with mommying.

    I'm terrible at saying no. My mother told me last year when she heard all the volunteering and committees and other things I was doing, that no is a complete sentence. No other words are necessary. I'm still working on that.

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    1. I love that. "No" is a complete sentence, and it should be used regularly.

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  75. It is definitely important to try new things, but not burn ourselves out to the point where we can' t bounce back after a weekend of a vacation. :) I am sure the A-Z was mentally draining, but I am glad to hear you are still surviving. :)

    I am think that Medeia's Lie is #2. I had a hard time with this one- but counting everything in 8s seems hard- so I am going with it.

    ~Jess

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    1. Wait, is that a weekend vacation with or without kids? ;)

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  76. Awwww you are a true survivor! And it's so important to know and understand yourself first and foremost cos you can't really do much if you are unhappy! Yay! Have a lovely weekend! Huge congrats to Medeia and Heather! Take care
    x

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    1. It's true. If you want happiness, you have understand your limits.

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  77. LOVE Heather's book cover! And yay for Medeia! I'm gonna guess #3 is the lie. Although Rubik's cubes can be scary.

    I've had to learn to say no as well. Not easy, because we want to please others. But we can only do so much!

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    1. It's true. You've got a single plate and it can only carry so much stuff.

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  78. Great, great, great advice today. And timely! Man it's hard to say no...but you're right, i don't want to end up a hairless dragon bunny (and LOL on that, BTW).

    Congrats, Medeia! I think #1 is the lie.

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    1. Liz, I don't want you to end up a hairless dragon bunny either. ;)

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  79. Burnout stinks. I'm glad you didn't explode like that bunny. ;) My guess is #1.

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    1. Nah. I was the one shooting the bunny. ;)

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  80. I'm going to guess 2 is the lie. I recently got really good at saying no. Had a complete meltdown. Sigh. I hope I can stick with the nos.

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    1. I'm so sorry, Shannon. That's a hard place to be. I'm sending virtual cheese your direction and wishing you a strong recovery.

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  81. Hope you're feeling better now. WHn I burn out, I watch mindless soaps on TV, and sleep.

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    1. LOL. I read books and lay in bed, although I did watch a couple TV show episodes with the kids yesterday... That makes a first.

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  82. I think next year I might let myself take May off blogging. I am still finding it hard to drag myself back into blogging after the A to Z. Other people take months off here and there, so why can't I? :P

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    1. You can. You totally can, but you'd be missed.

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  83. I'm in need of a vacation - from my job, from blogging, from pretty much everything. The brain needs to rest.

    Congrats Medeia and Elizabeth!

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  84. I agree-take your time and don't stress out past a certain point. Wow, your NYC story is intense! Glad you recovered from that.

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    1. Me too!!! But hey, you know what the city is like.

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  85. Too many people think burn outs are just a bout of laziness. Not so. They're very real and need to be protected against.

    I'm going to say number 2 is the lie. No reason, just a guess.

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    1. It's true. If you've never experienced one, you can't really appreciate what it's like.

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  86. Yay! For Medeia! Congrats to Elizabeth!

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  87. That's so true about needing to know your limits and enforcing them. I'm very aware of what my limits are, but I still try to surpass them sometimes, I must admit. I burn out more easily than I feel I should and would like to accomplish a little bit more each day than I already do...

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    1. Yeah. We need those cartoons to keep coming, so don't kill yourself. ;)

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  88. I had a bit of a crash and burn at the end of last year and had about three months off to recover. When I got back into it I steadied the pace a bit more and take my time with it now. It was an awful place to be and I don't want to go there again.
    Knowing your limits is definitely the key.

    I reckon the lie is the unfinished manuscript about the Rubik's cube, although I really want it to be true!

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    1. Definitely. It's not a pretty place to be.

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  89. Yeah it's exactly the same with me. My publishing issues was a huge-ass dragon, so I'm still picking up pieces.

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    1. And we're cheering you along in that process.

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Hit me with your cheese!