Archive for December, 2007

Happy New Year, Mamas!

Hope everyone has a wonderful New Year’s Eve.

We were joking that we wish we could watch the ball drop on NYC time…even though we’re on the west coast.

Then we could go to bed at our usual time.

In seven years of marriage, I don’t think we’ve ever even come close to being awake at midnight. 😉

But, hey, you never know. There’s a first time for everything.

I have a lot of resolutions to post in the New Year (tomorrow) as well as some professional goals, my “one word” for the year, and of course all the good stuff from the all-new The Writer Mama Zine.

Yahoo! 2008 is going to be a great year.

Wishing you as much health, wealth and wisdom as you can possibly handle.

Clink-clink!

A Little Vacation from Our Vacation, Perhaps?

Samantha SleepingUm, yeah. If you read my post from a couple days ago you might be able to guess what happened next.

Yes, that was me up all night on Christmas Eve and I wasn’t waiting for St. Nick.

Then my hubby went down on Xmas day.

Fortunately, Samantha bounced back in time for Christmas morning and sledding down a short, steep hill in the back yard with daddy and grandma.

On Wednesday, everyone was well enough to go see Beauty and the Beast and even eat the Christmas Roast Beast.

Thanks for letting us take some cookies home with us, Mom!

On the upside, the trip home went quite a bit smoother. A delay in Chicago but Samantha made some little friends at the airport while we were waiting.

We’d heard we’d be coming home to snow…but it turned out to be the usual rain instead. Hey, our plane wasn’t canceled. We’ll take it.

Today is all about unpacking and wrapping our gifts for each other that we will open in the morning. (!!!)

I’m going to lay low for a couple more days. My stomach is still not quite right…but come January 2nd, we’re going to have some excitement around here.

First, I’ll send out the tip markets to all the folks who have been sending in their Writer Mama receipts over the holidays. Good job, ladies!

Then, I’ll be posting and sending out the zine versions of Writers on the Rise and The Writer Mama. Yahoo!

I’ve got a few deadline myself before another month of intensive book writing recommences.

Hope everyone has a safe and fun New Year’s Eve. Above all, stay healthy! I’ll try to do the same.

Gold Star: Wonder Graffiti

This is way too cool not to share.

Have you heard of Wonderful Graffiti?

The company is owned by a former student’s daughter and son-in-law.

Actually, the former student and her husband both took my class when I taught in Bellingham, Washington. They would sometimes quibble in class, so I called them “The Bickersons.”

It usually got them to stop and laugh about it. Now they’ve been married for fifteen years.

I love what a fun idea this is and how successful the owners have been in a short time.

Wouldn’t it be cool to have wonderful graffiti on every wall? Fun!

Warm Winter Wishes

After almost missing our flight, running with all of our bags from the parking lot, making our first flight, only to be told that our second flight was canceled, I was wondering…why do we do all this again?

Did I mention that the first flight was a red-eye, so I was up all night? I didn’t think so.

So we opted to fly to another city, my parents drove extra hours to get us, we stayed at a hotel, and swung by the original destination airport to retrieve our luggage.

The good news: it was all there!

The bad news: my daughter spent the last leg of the trip throwing up.

That’s right—the stomach flu.

Tra-la-la.

Seems like the worst is over…about twelve hours later.

I’ll be mostly off line for the next few days. Hope yours are merry and bright!

Register Now for 2008 Writing-for-Publication Classes with Christina Katz

I’m very pleased to announce my (recently revised) class line-up for 2008. 🙂

I have a couple of “new additions” this year that I’m excited about:

Targeting Your Best Writing Markets (which is being offered in February, for those of you who have taken Writing and Publishing the Short Stuff and are looking for the next step)

&

Crafting the Nonfiction Book Proposal (which is being offered one time in June, please read the suggested prerequisites if you are interested)

I’ll be posting a flyer for the entire 2008 year soon. In the meantime, the 2008 schedule is posted on the classes page at Writers on the Rise and registration is now open.

Still Need a Holiday Gift?
If you’d like someone to give you a partial class payment as a holiday gift, feel free to have them contact me at writer mama @ earthlink dot net. They can always make an electronic payment towards your balance. (And they’ll probably notice that I have the best priced e-classes around.)

Here are the two classes being offered in February. Hope to “see” you in then!

Writing and Publishing The Short Stuff – Especially For Moms (Dads Welcome too)!
Finally, a writing workshop that fits into the busy lives of moms! You will learn how to create short, easy-to-write articles—a skill that will make it easier to move up to longer, more time-consuming articles when you’re ready. Try your pen at tips, fillers, short interviews, list articles, how-tos, and short personal essays—all within six weeks. Class begins February 13, 2008. Cost: $175.00. Register.

Targeting Your Best Writing Markets
Learning to sift through and analyze markets is one of the biggest challenges of launching a writing career. This class will help you tackle the markets head on while covering: idea management, how to discover your best audiences, how to allow those audiences to lead you to fresh ideas, how to break a magazine down into the key areas that matter most to freelancers, and how to start specializing right away so your career will achieve lift-off faster. Class begins February 13, 2008. Cost: $175.00. Register.

Gold Star Movie Recommendations for Over the Holidays

I have four movie recommendations to suit the following occasions:

You want something the whole family will enjoy in theaters
This would be Enchanted. J and I saw it today and wished we’d brought Samantha. We’ll have to prep her for the scary part though. But it’s not all that scary. Teenage boys might not go for it, especially in groups. But everyone else, especially the girls in the family, will love it. My husband even enjoyed it despite repeated efforts to talk me into seeing something else. View the trailer here or here.

You want to be inspired at the theater
If you are not a cynical person, you will love August Rush. If you lean to the cynical or even the intellectual side, you may need to suspend your disbelief…a lot. But I recommend it because it’s a really inspirational film that upholds the promise of my fourth movie recommendation. If you need help suspending your disbelief, watch recommendation four at home, then go to theaters and watch this. View the trailer here or here.

You want a chick flick you can view at home
I loved Waitress. We saw it on DVD when I wasn’t feeling well and it was thoroughly entertaining. For a movie that seems very lighthearted, it gave me a lot to think about. Especially because of the tragic death of the film’s director. Don’t miss it here or here.

You need a pep talk and you need it now
Apparently while the rest of the world was reading The Secret and watching the film, I was busy. And I’m still busy, which is perhaps why I welcome a positive message such as this film conveys. I am not sure it’s up to all the hype or that they’ve covered the topic very thoroughly, but I still enjoyed watching the film, especially over Thanksgiving right before seeing August Rush. We started a family vision board after seeing this film. I used to do this on my journal covers but I’d fallen out of the habit. Now I’m encouraging all of my friends to create vision boards too. Watch the trailer here or here.

Happy holiday R&R and happy movie watching!

Interview in Mom Writer’s Literary Magazine and a Riff on “Happy Holidays”

Mom Writer’s Literary Magazine, Winter 2007How interesting. Just when a post in Michael Stelzner’s blog, Writing White Papers, really tripped my trigger, my interview with Jackie Papandrew in the Mom Writer’s Literary Magazine appeared.

In my comment to Michael’s post, Merry Christmas, NOT Happy Holidays, I talk about the importance, for me, of diversity and following an inner, not an external, authority. And how that determines what I say to others, as opposed to what a study says:

I say “Happy Holidays” because I am part of an interfaith family. Sometimes I say “Happy Holy Days” to remind me that important traditions of the season we still practice today come from many (not just christian) faiths. I feel better about myself when I don’t make assumptions about others being one faith or another but remember that we are all the same regardless of what religion we choose or are raised in. At holiday time, I want to celebrate and acknowledge diversity because diversity is healthy and it’s the reality in which we live. I say Happy Holidays because I trust my gut, not a study when it comes to what I should say and to whom. Personally, I don’t find anything particularly American about Christmas. Nor do I associate being American to have anything to do with one religion or another. I am an advocate of people following their gut…and it will inform them of what to say when. Thanks for the discussion.

And then in the interview for Mom Writer’s Literary Magazine posted today, I elaborate on the same theme, which is be mindful of the rules but ultimately follow your gut.

You can read the interview here.

Coincidence? I think not.

Say “Happy Holidays” or “Merry Christmas,” mamas, whichever you prefer, but for goodness sakes, do it because that’s how you feel in your heart. That’s the reason for my riff today. If there is one thing I’ve learned as a mom who strives to communicate with all moms, it’s how incredibly diverse we all are. I celebrate that diversity because homogeneity is fine…but diversity is divine.

While I’m bringing everything full circle, I want to acknowledge that this blog wasn’t chosen as a top ten blog by Writing White Papers. I’ve been meaning to write about that, but I’ve been so darn busy with deadlines and holiday prep.

I knew we wouldn’t be chosen after we were nominated when I saw the criteria for the top ten. For a split second, I had the urge to conform to someone else’s idea of what makes a good blog. Then I remembered that this blog has received almost 50,000 visitors this year and I came back to my senses.

You can view the list of nominees here and the blogs that were chosen here. Check them out. They are great blogs.
It’s unlikely that I’ll adhere to someone else’s standards any time soon because my blog is the place where I let it rip, not where I follow someone else’s rules. I encourage all bloggers to do the same.

Happy Holidays, mamas!


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