Thursday, September 25, 2008

The results are in...

...AND I PASSED!!! The ABR exam I took back in August, that is.

Whew, what a relief. It only took:

Just under 48 hours of studying, 6 24 oz. bottles of Diet Mountain Dew, 2 (or was that 3?) caffeine pills, and 1 all-nighter to pass 4 hours of exam on only 1 hour of sleep.


Next up - the oral boards in May. God have mercy on my soul...

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


It is done.

By fortuitous circumstance, I received my RWA confirmation e-mail this afternoon, and was able to access my online account.

As of about 10 minutes ago, my entry into the 2009 Golden Heart contest has been accepted in the category of Paranormal Romance.

I did pick a pen name, and I have registered the domain (.net, because the .com was freaking expensive, but lots of people use .net so I'm okay with it).  To be revealed soon, once I get a few more details ironed out.

Now...wish me luck!  I'm gonna need it, not least of which to get these revisions completed.  *gulp*

Decisions, decisions...

So, I was all set to enter the Golden Heart yesterday, as soon as it opened.  But when I printed the form, I realized it wanted a lot of info I thought I had time to decide.

They want a word count, which is still in flux, but I'm gonna estimate my end goal and give them that.  (I mean, they probably just want to make sure it's long enough but not TOO long, which will definitely be the case.)

They also want the pseudonym the work is written under.  That's the big thing.  "Rebecca Gabriel" is out, for a couple of reasons.  One being the real RG who popped by the blog, another being author Sarah Gabriel who also writes – of all things – Highland romances.

I'm thinking of still going with Rebecca and using a variant on my last name.  Gonna look into registering that domain before I lock in, though.

Would "J. Rebecca Somethingorother" sound too pretentious?

OH, and the entry fee.  $100 cheaper for RWA members than for non.  Well, I tried to fax in my membership app a few weeks ago to no avail, so I finally mailed it.  My membership is still pending.  I don't wanna wait for that to clear just to save the money in case the contest fills up.  But in case I DON'T get done by the deadline and forfeit my entry fee, that extra $100 would really chafe.  I wonder if they'll refund it once my membership processes…?

Anyway, I haven't actually entered yet.  Gotta think about these things and then hopefully by tomorrow or sometime this week.  That is, if it isn't full already.

Monday, September 15, 2008

To Dream the Impossible Dream

I've been so overwhelmed this summer with work and life and the book and the workshop, that I've come very close to saying "enough for a while" and deciding to put the book away once the workshop is over, live my life with free time in the evenings for a change, piddle with the story here and there, and then pick it back up next year sometime, after the new accelerator goes in and my next board exam (God willing and I passed the recent one), etc.

OTOH, even though most of the summer has been consumed with the workshop rather than actual revisions, I've learned a lot, and I have a good handle on what the story needs to go from (in my estimation) "good" to "awesome".  There is some inherent momentum.  And - though I have told myself this before, only to get caught up for a longer stretch than expected - I really think a few months of nose-to-the-grindstone work will result in a final, polished draft that I can either do something with, like query, or shelve for a while, knowing I at least finished the darn thing.

Nothing motivates me better than external deadline.

So...I've decided to go for broke and dream the impossible dream.  I've decided to enter the Golden Heart.

I think the book is up to it.  Or will be, with planned revisions.  I've read some Golden Heart-winning books in my category (paranormal, it would seem) and I think I've got a shot.

Contest entries open September 22nd, and remain open until November 17th, or they reach 1200 entries, whichever comes first.  (I suspect the latter.)

Assuming my entry is accepted, I would then have until December 2nd to submit my manuscript.


Wednesday, September 03, 2008


Me AND Little Boy, that is.

I spent the majority of my Labor Day weekend tending a toddler with the stomach flu, and the latter part sick with it myself.  I was back at work today, and I had the first real food I've eaten in about 48 hours.  On the upside, I've lost 5 pounds!

But though LB was well enough to go to preschool yesterday, today he was home again, and I just came in from spending the past hour scrubbing vaguely fruit-scented pink puke out of my van and his carseat.  The most frustrating part is that the harness straps took the brunt of it, and I can't throw those in the washer (public service announcement from my car seat tech alter-ego: NEVER submerge, soak, and especially never put car seat harnesss straps in the washing machine; it will weaken the webbing and the special strengthening/flame retardant chemicals they are coated in).

Looks like crits for the workshop will have to get done tomorrow.  *sigh*  Between my board exam and this darn virus, I'm almost 2 weeks behind...