Sunday, February 26, 2012

Potter Pilgrimage

There's something magical about seeing a book you grew up reading by flash light under the blanket at night (because you just COULD NOT put it down) brought to life in front of your eyes. I am, without a doubt, a child of the Harry Potter generation! I crossed my fingers for my Hogwarts acceptance letter, pretended Jelly Bellies were Bertie Bots, flew my brook stick around my house like a Firebolt, and stood in lines for hours waiting for the next book and movie installments! Since they opened the HP world at Universal, I've literally been drooling for a chance to make my pilgrimage!

FIIIIIINALLY, Hubbs and I made it happen!!

Is it a cheap-o way for Warner Bros and Universal to get money from Potter addicted fans? Absolutely! Did I totally love it anyway? You bettchya! I was like a little kid in Honeydukes... hehee.

[big cheesy grin]

All aboard the Hogwarts Express!

Like I said... giddy as a little witch in Honeydukes!!

Um... seriously, though? FIFTEEN dollars for a freakin' chocolate frog??? Can anyone say "Harry Potter robbery??"

Hogwarts Castle... Eeeeeek!! SO cool!

Not alcoholic, I discovered, since they were--in fact--serving it to small children (who did not appear to be intoxicated). It was SOOOO good!

Owlery! Wish I could have sent my siblings their post card via owl... but apparently, owls don't really deliver messages. Who knew?

Hubbs has a flare for the dramatics... 

Dumbledore's Office


Funny story... the girl's bathroom in the Harry Potter world had a recording playing of...

... yes, Moaning Myrtle! *snort* SO funny!!

And before you all go and waste you time with the rest of Universal Studio park rides (pshaw!)... you should know that the best ride (BY FAR) in the whole park, is in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Am I a bit biased? Perhaps. But seriously, this ride? FANTASTIC!!! But I'm not lying when I say Hubbs and I LITTERALLY lost track of how many times we went on it...

And you don't have to take my word for it, but the Chinese Fireball totally kicked the Hungarian Horntail's you-know-what. Just sayin'. 

J.K. Rowling, I tip my hat to you.

P.s. Did I mention it was February 14th? Best. Valentine's. Day. EVER!!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Day Blog Hop!

Come on. Don't be a cynic. You know you love V-Day. Aaaaaadmit it!!!

Well I do! And in honor of this lovely, romantic holiday (the one my brother so fondly refers to as "Single Awareness Day"), I've joined the Valentine's Day blog hop, hosted by Hope and Cassie! The Rules are simple:

Share one of your favorite kissing scenes from a book you've read, from your own WiP, make one up, or write about one of your own memorable kisses. Then hop around to feel how sweet, romantic, or downright steamy other characters are getting smooched!

That being said, I had big plans to "WOW" you with a totally awesome schmoochy schmooch from my own WIP... HOWEVER... its not done. The version I have is crappy, unfinished and doesn't give me the warm fuzzies. And lets face it... I can't possibly post a first kiss excerpt without channeling warm fuzzies! I just can't. Plus I've been on vacay all week, which means I've been a slacker ALL week... excuses, excuses. I feel so lame for not posting something ORIGINAL. BUT, in honor of Hunger Games month (a.k.a. March, dubbed so by yours truly for the movie), I've decided to post K and P's first REAL steamy lip lock...

"Maybe I did it for myself, Peeta, did you ever think of that? Maybe you aren't the only one who . . . who worries about . . . what it would be like if . . ."

I fumble. I'm not as smooth with words as Peeta. And while I was talking, the idea of actually losing Peeta hit me again and I realized how much I don't want him to die. And its not about the sponsors. And it not about what will happen back home. And its not just that I don't want to be alone. Its him. I do not want to lose the boy with the bread. 

"If what, Katniss?" he says softly.

I wish I could pull the shutters closed, blocking out this moment from the prying eyes of Panem. Even if it means losing food. Whatever I'm feeling, its no ones' business but mine. 

"That's exactly the kind of topic Haymitch told me to steer clear of," I say evasively, although Haymitch never said anything of the kind. In fact, he's probably cursing me out right now for dropping the ball during such an emotionally charged moment. But Peeta somehow catches it. 

"Then I'll just have to fill in the blanks myself," he says, and moves in to me. 

This is the first kiss that we're both fully aware of. Neither of us hobbled by sickness or pain or simply unconscious. Our lips neither burning with fever or icy cold. This is the first kiss where I actually feel stirring inside my chest. Warm and curious. This is the first kiss that makes me want another. 

There are--admittedly--better kissing scenes out there (Katniss is such a pill about Peeta at first...), but oh how we love our Hunger Games heroes! (Even though, I admit, I'm totally a team Gale-er). So here's to cheesy Valentine cards, cheap heart shaped candy and loooooong steamy kisses! I love you, my lovely readers!!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Head in the Sand

Oh dear Insecure Writers Group... I've neglected you the past few months, haven't I? 


Alright, go ahead. Slap my wrist.

Consider me reprimanded. Now onward with my insecurities!

This month I foolishly allowed a few friends OUTSIDE my writing group to read a draft of my writing. 

I know, I know what you're thinking. And your'e right. This--by itself--isn't necessarily a bad thing. After all, beta readers are good. They give a different perspective that our writing-engourged critique partners often can't see. A "normal person's perspective," if you will. 

HOWEVER... I'm absolutely KICKING myself right now, because after I sent off this lovely draft to my lovely non-writing friends, I changed a WHOLE bunch of stuff that made the plot line--like--five thousand times better. (This, on the recommendation of a few agent reject letters I got. So you know, I guess they DO know what they're talking about every now and again...Haha!)

Anyway, my point is, is that I'm absolutely cringing right now, thinking about that "old" draft my friends read. That crapy, inconsistent, unfinished draft that has absolutely NO right seeing the light of day. What will they think of me??

Last week, one of the friends that I gave said crappy draft to actually sent back me back some comments. Aaaaand, I have to admit, I haven't even opened the email yet. 


If I never have to see it, then I never have to know how bad she thought it was, right? Ugh.

I'm a coward. I know. 

Has anyone else ever had this happen before? Sending out a draft to beta readers, then feeling absolutely miserable after hitting the send button, because you realize how dreadful that draft was? I feel like its easier with agents... they EXPECT crappy drafts sometimes, right? But with friends?? You only really get one shot to impress them... 

Your thoughts?