Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Wanderlust, Bookness, IWSG, and an Editing Giveaway

What's on your bucket list?

The last five months have flown by. I had a baby, celebrated half our family birthdays, survived the holidays, had surgery (yuck), took a 2.5 week road trip across the country, and FINALLY got the kids back on a routine that includes school.

Do you know what the best part of all that was? The 8 days spent in the car.

You laugh, but it's true. For 8 days I had no choice but to take it easy and talk with my family. For eight days I couldn't stress about cleaning the house, online obligations, holiday prep, school, or making meals.

Those were 8 days of heaven.

More than that, the views out the window were amazing and constantly changing. They reawakened a desire to get out and see the world, to get out and live. (I'm told this enhances your prowess as a writer anyway, so why not?)

That's about as much "Valentines" as you'll get out of me this month. ;)
One of my bucket list locations is Ireland. Have you ever wanted to see Ireland? Been to Ireland? After my relaxing trip, it was seriously tempting to schedule another getaway. It's not quite a reality with a 4 month old baby and toddler in the house, but one day soon. What could make a trip even better? If it was a WRITING RETREAT!

And guess what?

Ta da!

One of my editor buddies, Bethany Kaczmarek, will be teaching and editing at this July conference. (July 8-15) That would be reason enough for me to go...if I could get away from the babies. It's definitely an experience not to be missed. Registration is open, but will close as soon as the spots are filled. (And what better timing with tax returns coming in the door? I mean, is there a better investment for expanding your craft, AND having an AMAZING adventure?)

On a related note, how about the IWSG question for the month: What do you love about the genre you write in most often?

So, so many things, but mostly the ability to go somewhere completely unique without going anywhere. I'm totally an escapist through my reading/writing.

Huge thanks for hosting
Alex Cavanaugh
Stephen Tremp, Pat Garcia, 
Angela Wooldridge, Victoria Marie Lees, 
and Madeline Mora-Summonte!

Last month, S.A. Larsen shared MARKED BEAUTY along with two truths and one lie. Anyone who guessed was entered to win an AWESOME prize pack.

The game:

1. My nose has been broken twice.
2. I've been to Greece.
3. I've ridden on an elephant.

The lie: #2. 

She has the same problem I do: wanderlust.

And the winner is:


Congrats, Dawn!

And now, because she's epic like that, Bethany kindly offered to give away a small editing package to promote the Ireland tour for one lucky reader. Meet Bethany:

Bethany Kaczmarek is the author of the contemporary romance novel, STRAINS OF SILENCE, as well as a fairy-tale/mythology mashup currently enticing publishers. A professional editor, Bethany is the founder of A Little Red Ink Editing Services, which she and her sister have run for four years. As an editor, she’s worked with best-selling and award-winning authors as well as beginners, and her clients have bestowed this title upon her: "The first chapter wizard." She is one of three ACFW Editor of the Year finalists, and is also Conference Awards Director for Realm Makers, where she reviews many of the best-loved speculative fiction novels each year. 

At heart, Bethany considers herself a sojourner. So far, she’s just explored Earth, but her love for adventure and old stories makes her yearn for a chance to wander in other realms. Which is why she’s stoked about wandering through a faerie forest in Ireland with other imaginative types.

Bethany moved to Wisconsin this summer, and she thought cheese would be the death of her in one of two ways: Either she'd eat it until her dairy allergy killed her, or she'd die from sorrow, watching her family eat all the cheese they wanted. But hope prevailed. She's allergic to the cow PROTEIN--the whey. And guess what everyone eats up there? Cheese CURDS. They are amazing, regular or deep fried, and her cheese-lovery is alive again. She is a happy girl.

Bethany. gave me two truths and one lie to test your "lie detector" skills. If you guess the lie, right or wrong, you will be entered to win full first chapter edit, up to 12 double-spaced, industry standard pages. (Open internationally.) DON'T HAVE A BLOGGER ACCOUNT WITH AN EMAIL ON THE PROFILE? No problem. LEAVE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS IN THE COMMENTS OR EMAIL IT TO WITH YOUR SCREEN ALIAS.

You have until Tuesday, March 6th at 2 p.m. EDT to guess. Be sure to come back for the answer on March 7th, 8 a.m. EDT.

1. I have a significant fear of waxed mustaches. As in, I close my eyes and back away rather than deal with them.
2. I write best when I'm in a room that's between 45 and 55 degrees Fahrenheit.
3. I once put my sister's contact in her eye for her--with my spit.

So sleuths, which is the lie? Have you met Bethany? What's on your bucket list? If you could go on a tour/retreat anywhere in the world, where would you go?