Thursday, June 30, 2011

Blog Award - Tagged QnA Part Deux

Donna K. Weaver has awarded me The Irresistibly Sweet Blog Award. It is funny because I've seen this award splattered on other blogs but I've only glanced at the picture it comes with.

This is the first time I've realized that it is NOT a pepperoni pizza. So with that, and being tagged, I've got some questions to answer. Again.

This will probably be the last time I do this. While I do enjoy putting these lists together I really don't want this blog to turn into stuff about me. I use Facebook and Twitter for that purpose and I'm more than happy to friend and follow writers with common interests. I also love reading others when they do this, so I would encourage others to not follow in my path. I thank you for your understanding.

Rules of the The Irresistibly Sweet Blog Award (some rules varied but these were the most popular):
1. Copy and paste the award to your blog.

2. Thank and link to the person(s) who nominated you.
Thanks, Donna! (Now, done)

3. Share seven random facts about yourself.
Oh boy. This will probably be harder than finding 8 people to tag in my previous question/answer blog.

I love Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches. Not only are they easy to make, but they are delicious. I can eat them for any meal. In all seriousness, if you took the number of days I've been alive, doubled that number, you would probably have a good approximation of how many I've had in my lifetime.

It amazes me of how many people have memories of me and PBJs. I'm surprised I have not turned into one since you are what you eat.

In case you are wondering: wheat bread, Jiff Extra Crunchy Peanut Butter, and Seeded Red Raspberry Jelly. A glass of milk on the side to wash it down is a bonus.

Do I have you on the edge of your seat, yet?

I love to cook! Especially things with sugar or peanut butter in them.

I love movies!! And now that I'm writing I call it something else: research.

I'm a gadget maniac. If it is shiny, makes noises, and has an operating system I am 10000% more likely to buy it.

I'm going on vacation in a couple of days. I can't wait!

I have claustrophobia. I get uncomfortable in elevators. I get more uncomfortable if others are in it with me. Anything smaller than that and I'm not a happy camper. If I read about somebody in a confined area I need to go outside.

I don't have a lot of other fears. I used to be afraid of heights, but I outgrew that. I guess I have an irrational fear of being handcuffed to the bottom of a pool or being buried alive in a coffin but I think they both stem from the claustrophobia and watching too many movies.

I've had to re-write my seventh random fact four times. I think I'll just stick with this one.

Monday, June 27, 2011

I'm a Big, Fat Winner

Deanna Henderson from the Procrastination Station is having a daily contest and giving away some pretty nifty prizes, if I do say so myself. I happened to stumble across her blog post the day she was advertising Tyler Whitesides' book entitled Janitors. You can pre-order it here from my favorite bookstore.

This is great because I've been looking forward to the book's release since I met Tyler at LDS Story Makers. It is even on my Goodread's to-read list. Of course I met Tyler AFTER he handed out all of his free copies of the book, so I entered Deanna's contest hoping that I could get lucky.

And get lucky I did!! I WON!! I WON!!! I can't wait to read it!


Make sure you visit Deanna's blog, follow it, and see if you can win some of her other prizes from her ongoing contest. Right now she is giving away The Red Umbrella by Christina Diaz. Hurry, you could be a winner, too.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

I Entered a Poetry Contest

Acknowledging that poetry is not my genre (or my thing or my M.O.), I entered a poetry contest anyways. Just remember that you only get one vote, and I can't tell you which poem is mine so there are no hints for favoritism.

Check out the entries and place your vote here:

Karen Hoover's Poetry Challenge

Plus, the music that was the prompt behind the poems automatically plays. So, hey! Free music!

On a side note, I hope to participate more in the future especially during the weeks of the flash fiction. But I have to wait until next week before I can throw my hat in the ring since they alternate every week.

If you are interested in joining, follow Karen Hoover's blog:

Karen Hoover's Blog

Off-topic: I'm heading for Northern Utah next week to take a much-needed vacation. My hope is for a lot of time to relax, read, and write. Chances are it will be me battling two teenagers and acting as a taxi driver the entire time. My blog posting may be anywhere from sporadic to non-existent.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Nearly 50 Followers!

I'm getting close to the 50 follower mark. Rock on!! Look, everybody is getting excited!

I'm so close, in fact, I think I can safely announce my intentions of having a little contest when I get to 50. What are the contests you like to see on blogs? Guess a fact about me and win something? A little poetry contest? What tickles your fancy?

And what is a suitable prize for 50 followers? A book? A gift certificate at Amazon? (That's a personal favorite) Free piggy-back rides?

I'd love your feedback!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Weekly Lesson: Using i.e. and e.g. Correctly

A common mistake I see is interchanging i.e. and e.g.. I find it to be an easily forgivable mistake because most people can figure out what you meant from the context. You might even get away with it. But that doesn't mean you should do it.

The initials i.e. comes from the Latin phrase id est which literally means, "that is," but would best be presented as meaning, "in other words." This usually rephrases what was just written to help the reader better understand.

EXAMPLE: I sing best when the acoustics are good and I'm alone, i.e., in the shower.

In this example I described a place and then better spelled it out for the reader in case they didn't understand what I was hinting at. Note that I didn't list places because I was only trying to describe one place.

However, e.g. comes from the Latin phrase, exempli gratia which literally means, "for the sake of example." This is then followed by a non-exhaustive list of examples.

EXAMPLE: I like to eat breakfast foods for dinner, e.g., pancakes, waffles, and bacon.

In this example I am making a list of examples of breakfast foods. While I like the three breakfast foods listed, I didn't state how I also love oatmeal, sausage, french toast, and cereal for dinner as well. So don't list everything, you are only providing examples to help them better understand what you were trying to convey.

INCORRECT EXAMPLE: I like three girls in my class, e.g., Sarah, Natasha, and Megan.
CORRECTED EXAMPLE: I like three girls in my class: Sarah, Natasha, and Megan.

So all you have to do is brush up on your Latin and it all comes easy, right? Well... no. Here are three tricks I use to remember the difference.

Trick #1

Just think of the first of the two letters. If you can remember that the "i" in i.e. stands for "in other words" and the "e" in e.g. stands for "example" then you are on the road to remembering which one to use at the appropriate time.

Trick #2

If that doesn't do it, here is another trick. Pretend that i.e. stands for "in essence" and e.g. stands for "examples given."

Trick #3

One other tip I've heard is that e.g. sounds like (are you ready for this) "egg sample." Hey now, don't laugh, it is usually the silly tips I remember best!

Keep in Mind

Don't forget that a comma follows i.e. and e.g., and they are in small caps, i.e., little letters. They are abbreviations, so do not forget the periods after each letter. Do this properly and you can impress your friends and coworkers with your written communications, e.g., Email, manuscripts, and sticky notes.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Tag, I'm It!

I've been blog tagged twice with these questions, I think that is a sign I better buckle down and answer the seven questions. Unfortunately, I'm not interesting so message me if you make it all the way through and let me know how much coffee it took to accomplish that feat.

1) Do you think you're hot?

Yes! I can't help it; I blame my metabolism. Also, having a female roommate at work never helps, either, as she makes me feel guilty when she has to come to work in a sweater... in July.

If I could, I'd turn my office into a meat locker! I'm sweating here!! Somebody remind me why I live in the hot desert?

As a side note: dual-climate control in a car is the best invention EVER!

2) Okay, here is what I use at work:

I love it. Thrice I've had people do a double-take at my monitors because it actually looks like somebody put that sticky note on my screens.

3) When was the last time you ate chicken?

The week after the LDS Story Makers Conference, which is a shame because I love chicken. While visiting my brother-in-law during the conference he made some chicken strips and they were DELICIOUS!!! I asked him what they were and he was nice enough to go out of his way and post this picture to his Facebook wall:

I rushed out to the store and picked up a bag. Oddly, I haven't had any since but I just bought some yesterday while passing them in the frozen food isle. So I'll be having some again, soon.

This is all riveting stuff, isn't it?

4) The song(s) you listened to recently.

I just finished watching the first "Back to the Future", which had a bunch of music from Huey Lewis. As a side note, remember that scene when he is auditioning for the battle of the bands and he starts playing that song by Huey Lewis and the judge interrupts him and says, "I'm sorry, you are just too darn loud. Next please!" That is Huey Lewis!!

As for albums, I bought the new Owl City album "All Things Bright and Beautiful" because I loved their first album. The second album sounds a LOT like the first but I still loved it anyways. I have probably given it about ten listens already with more on the way.

To show off my geek a bit, I fully intend to buy "Weird Al" Yankovic's new album "Alpocalypse" on Tuesday.

5) What were you thinking as you were doing this?

It sure is hot in here!

6) Do you have nicknames? What are they?

My last name is Duckett. Because children might read this blog I won't go into any detail but it doesn't take much imagination to figure out most of my nicknames.

In pleasant, polite, and/or proper company, I go by James, Jim, and Duckett. As a teenager, I only went by Duckett and when people would ask for me at the door, "Is Duckett here?" my mother always thought the response, "Which one?" was funny. Well, it was funny, but I wasn't going to admit that as a teenager.

I think the oddest nickname I've ever been called was Jeeves. A girl who liked me called me that. I'll never know why.

Other ones: King James pops up now and then. Oh, and several people call me Doctor Duckett. That is a reflection on my handwriting, not my intelligence.

7) Tag 8 Blogger Friends

The first two are obvious. NOT only because they tagged me (I would have tagged them regardless), but turnabout is still fair play.

1) Small Town Shelly Brown - Because she is the funniest blogger I follow. Hands down. Also, she is nice enough to promote my blog from time to time. Did I mention she is hilarious? She is also pretty funny. Best of all, she is funny, too!

2) Brenda Sills - Because she is the NICEST person I've ever seen on the Internet. The Interwebs if full of trolls, jerks, dweebs, and flamers and it is nice to see somebody who does NOTHING but say nice things about everybody. How rare is that?

3) Tristi Pinkston - Who is a great writer and I owe her one for proofreading one of my earlier blogs. I value her input on the Authors Incognito email list a LOT.

4) Matthew Tandy - This buy blows my mind. He blogs. Daily! Now that is dedication. And it isn't quick, "just doing my daily blog" type of deal. He does interviews. He talks about writing and the challenges. I've noticed we both share the same time challenges yet he does a much better job than me working around them.

5) Jamie McHenry - This guy caught my attention while we were tweeting at LDS Story Makers. Oddly, we kept tweeting a table or two apart from each other. I've been following him ever since.

Side note: Congrats on 15 years of his marriage!

6) Donna K. Weaver - Donna writes very helpful blog on writing properly. I think everybody would benefit following her blog because I have found it VERY informative and educational. I could use help in grammar and she offers it regularly.

7) Rob and Amy Shupe - I'm going to cheat and go with family on this. She isn't a writer but Amy does a great (and regular) job of blogging on her adorable family, while keeping things fun and creative.

8) Ariell Larson - I've called her slacker because she doesn't blog enough, in my opinion. But you have GOT to see her kids, they are adorable. She has a lot of talents, and making cute children is definitely one of them. She is also a writer and has been a true friend through the ages.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Weekly Lesson: How to Properly Use a Semicolon

I have a confession to make... my two favorite punctuation marks are the ¡exclamation point! and the semicolon. I overly use the exclamation point because I'm used to having a loud voice and everything I say MUST be exciting, right? Right? (Just agree with me)

The semicolon is another story. Mostly it is because I see it misused far too often by others. Yet, when I use it, I want to mark the sentence with a highlighter and write in the margins, "See, that is how you use a semicolon. Like that! Excuse me while I thump my chest." I would, of course, use many more exclamation points, but I'm trying to use them sparingly in this blog.

It does have its uses, but too much of any good thing (e.g. exclamation points, chocolate) can lead to disastrous consequences.


So let's talk about the why first. All punctuation comes down to one thing: pacing. When you see a blank between two wordsb your mind instantly goes to the next word with a slight, micro-second pause between them. However, you stick a period in there and your mind pauses for a split second. If you did as I did in the first paragraph and put an ellipsis (...), or three of those blessed periods, you take a much longer pause. I love to use them for dramatic pauses, or they could represent a trailing off of thought.

The comma, which can both be under and over-utilized, is used to make a short pause. But sometimes a writer wants to have a pause that is longer than a comma, yet shorter than a period. Luckily a nice Italian guy named Aldus Pius Manutius invented the semicolon over 400 years ago which now serves that exact purpose.


Be careful, these should be used sparingly. In fact, some (including myself) would argue to NEVER use them in fiction as they tend to pull a reader out of the story. I know every time I see one I have to stop and think, "Wow, did I just see a semicolon? Did he or she use it correctly?" In nonfiction you can be more liberal. If you actually work it properly into an Email, you could become the envy of your friends and coworkers.


Primarily, you will see it used to join two independent, yet closely related, clauses. Whoa, there! That sounded English textbook-like. Sorry. Let's break that down into real English. An independent clause is a statement that can stand by itself. For instance, a young man can be described as followed:

Billy always wears a red cape.

That is an independent clause. When explaining things like this, you might add more information about Billy. Let's say that bulls always hate him (because bulls hate the color red -- I only know this because of my exhaustive research of Saturday morning cartoons). If you write two independent clauses to describe this, the relationship between the red cape and the source of all bulls' contempt might be missed.

Billy always wears a red cape. All bulls hate Billy.

If one is not familiar with the notion that bulls hate the color red, they might miss that these two independent clauses are related. However, if you replace that period with a semicolon, it changes to:

Billy always wears a red cape; all bulls hate Billy.

As a writer, you are now telling a reader that these two independent clauses are related to each other. There are other ways of doing this, like directly saying "because of this" instead of using the semicolon, but it might mess with the pacing you are trying to establish in a story or explanation.

Another How?

You can also use the semicolon as a comma on steroids, such as when you are listing items that have commas in them. Let's say you are sitting in a room and Bob, the psychologist, walks into the room. After that, Greg, the brick layer, walks in. And George, who everybody knows, follows shortly afterwards. You wish to convey this in one sentence. Without the semicolon, the following sentence looks like five people walk in and not three:

WRONG WAY: I watched as Bob, the psychologist, Greg, the brick layer, and George walked into the room.

The semicolon can help clear up the confusion.

RIGHT WAY: I watched as Bob, the psychologist; Greg, the brick layer; and George walked into the room.

Also, it helps when separating lists of cities and their states.

This summer I went to Las Vegas, Nevada; Salt Lake City, Utah; and Denver, Colorado.

Without those semicolons, people who are poor at geography might think you visited three cities and three states. (That phrase, "poor at geography," is a link, by the way)

Examples of Bad Usage

Do not use a semicolon when you have a conjunctions (and, but, or, so) between the two clauses. Use a comma instead because your conjunction is now performing the mental pause you were creating with the semicolon.

WRONG WAY: Billy always wears a red cape; therefore all bulls hate Billy.
RIGHT WAY: Billy always wears a red cape, therefore all bulls hate Billy.

Also, while you are technically joining two sentences together, this becomes one sentence; the second independent clause does NOT begin with a capitol letter. (See, that is how you use a semicolon. Like that! Excuse me while I thump my chest.)

Found This recently

I recently found this and had to share:

Ode to the Semicolon 

The simple thoughts of children need only simple punctuation.
A sentence with one verb, one noun, for every situation.
“I want a cookie.” “She hit me!” “When are we going to eat?”
These subject/object pairings up express these thoughts complete.

As we mature, our thoughts do too, become harder to express.
Complexity increases, stacked more and more, not less.
“Optic blasts are awesome, but adamantium claws are better.”
“Should I call up Mary Lou, or send an e.mail letter?”

Related concepts bloom within, so quickly they do roll on,
To show they’re separate (but connected), apply the semicolon.
The sentences could stand apart, but linking them together
Allows the thought to seamlessly express itself much better.

“We danced all night; it was divine.” describes one case in point.
The first and second halves of which each other do anoint.
“We danced all night. It was divine.” How choppy and how stilted!
Without the semicolon how the narrative gets wilted!

Conditional or adverse, it supports concept relations;
O semicolon praise we all, the best of all notations!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Unheeded Advice

Right before my son left for a scout camp in Moab last week I told him, "Oh, I've got the perfect song for you. Listen carefully, you need to hear this!" I then searched my music collection and found an old favorite: Baz Lurmann's Everybody's Free (To Wear Sunscreen). I've always agreed to the lyrics and the more I listen to them, the more I agree with everything said. So for five minutes my son listened to these words:

Ladies and Gentlemen of the class of ’99
If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be
it. The long term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by
scientists whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable
than my own meandering
experience…I will dispense this advice now.

Enjoy the power and beauty of your youth; oh nevermind; you will not
understand the power and beauty of your youth until they have faded.
But trust me, in 20 years you’ll look back at photos of yourself and
recall in a way you can’t grasp now how much possibility lay before
you and how fabulous you really looked….You’re not as fat as you

Don’t worry about the future; or worry, but know that worrying is as
effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing
bubblegum. The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that
never crossed your worried mind; the kind that blindside you at 4pm
on some idle Tuesday.

Do one thing everyday that scares you


Don’t be reckless with other people’s hearts, don’t put up with
people who are reckless with yours.


Don’t waste your time on jealousy; sometimes you’re ahead, sometimes
you’re behind…the race is long, and in the end, it’s only with

Remember the compliments you receive, forget the insults; if you
succeed in doing this, tell me how.

Keep your old love letters, throw away your old bank statements.


Don’t feel guilty if you don’t know what you want to do with your
life…the most interesting people I know didn’t know at 22 what they
wanted to do with their lives, some of the most interesting 40 year
olds I know still don’t.

Get plenty of calcium.

Be kind to your knees, you’ll miss them when they’re gone.

Maybe you’ll marry, maybe you won’t, maybe you’ll have children,maybe
you won’t, maybe you’ll divorce at 40, maybe you’ll dance the funky
chicken on your 75th wedding anniversary…what ever you do, don’t
congratulate yourself too much or berate yourself either – your
choices are half chance, so are everybody else’s. Enjoy your body,
use it every way you can…don’t be afraid of it, or what other people
think of it, it’s the greatest instrument you’ll ever

Dance…even if you have nowhere to do it but in your own living room.

Read the directions, even if you don’t follow them.

Do NOT read beauty magazines, they will only make you feel ugly.

Get to know your parents, you never know when they’ll be gone for

Be nice to your siblings; they are the best link to your past and the
people most likely to stick with you in the future.

Understand that friends come and go,but for the precious few you
should hold on. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and
lifestyle because the older you get, the more you need the people you
knew when you were young.

Live in New York City once, but leave before it makes you hard; live
in Northern California once, but leave before it makes you soft.


Accept certain inalienable truths, prices will rise, politicians will
philander, you too will get old, and when you do you’ll fantasize
that when you were young prices were reasonable, politicians were
noble and children respected their elders.

Respect your elders.

Don’t expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you have a trust fund,
maybe you have a wealthy spouse; but you never know when either one
might run out.

Don’t mess too much with your hair, or by the time you're 40, it will
look 85.

Be careful whose advice you buy, but, be patient with those who
supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia, dispensing it is a way of
fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the
ugly parts and recycling it for more than
it’s worth.

But trust me on the sunscreen…

After "singing" along to most of this song I turned to him and said, "Do you get it?"


"Do you get what I'm trying to say to you?"

Brow creases with deep thought. "No, I don't get the point of that."

"Argh!! Wear sunscreen! He said it like fifteen times in that song! You are going to Moab for crying out loud." Okay, in retrospect I'm sure he only says it twice but, come on, everybody calls it the "Sunscreen Song. "

And, of course, four days later he came home about three shades darker than when he left, with a hint of red. Did he wear sunscreen? No!

Some day I hope he understands the wisdom that I try to bestow upon him.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Coming Soon as a Blog Post Near You!!

I hope this is a rare occasion, but today I'm going to blog on what I'm going to blog on soon. I really don't want this to become a common occurrence, I would rather be doing something opposed to talking/typing about it.

Here is the thing, a week has gone by since my last blog post and I don't want that to happen. Ever. Again. So at least I'm writing something. But, fear not, there is something in it for you. You don't have to take that Valium or sleeping pill of choice tonight to get to sleep. This is not really that exciting, luckily I have nice, patient, understanding, and fantastic blog followers.

So this week expect at least two posts. The first will be on my good friend, the semi-colon. I LOVE the semi-colon but only when it is used properly and sparingly. I recently read something, a work of fiction, that was riddled with it. I just couldn't take it anymore!! So I thought I'd make that my weekly lesson. To be fair, the same proper and sparing rule should apply to exclamation points but I just can't hold myself back. Everything I say is exciting and exacerbating, isn't it?!?!!!!?!

But this weekend I've given a lot of thought to conflict in a story, so I'm going to mindlessly go off on it. Hopefully I can (unintentionally I'm sure) add something that you can benefit from reading.

I might even sneak in a mystery post just to keep things interesting. *evil grin*

Monday, June 6, 2011

Weekly Lessons

I'll be brief.

I would like to do a weekly "lesson." Topics will include grammar, writing technique, or anything on writing in general.

Why, do you ask? Well, I would be the first person to admit that I have a LOT to learn. And there is no better way to learn than to teach. Some topics I think I'll have a good grasp on, but I think most will be uncharted -- or unfamiliar -- territory for me. I'll let you try and figure out which is which. *evil grin*

So, I'm taking requests. What bothers you? What confuses you? Professor Duckett is open to suggestions.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

You Better Watch Your Back!

I really don't want this blog to turn into the chronicles of my stupid mistakes, so I hesitate sharing this but I guess I'll do it to put things into a little perspective.

A couple of years ago I was dead-lifting a 200 pound generator. Long story short, that turned out to be a not-brilliant ideas that landed me in the emergency room and left me unable to stand for two days. I thought for sure I was crippled for life! But with a few weeks of rest and numerous trips to a physical therapist it was something I thought I could put behind me (har har, see what I did there?).

Until Monday. My parents were coming into town and we were going to go golfing. While doing my morning stretches I must have pushed myself too hard while reaching for my toes when, pop!, my back went out again. I hit the ground, (literally) crawled into bed, and stayed there for two days.

It still hurts but I think I'll be back into the swing of things again sometime next week. I'm kicking myself for not spending all that time in bed writing. Or at least doing a lot more plotting or even reading books on writing better. I did spend a little time trying to think some things through but I really wanted to spend a major part of my day getting more of my thoughts on paper and it was just something I couldn't do while laying on my back and crying out in pain any time I shifted in bed.

So I'm still getting my plot onto paper and there are still a lot of loose ends I need to clear up before I start. Which is killing me because I really, REALLY want to start writing this story. But I've always been taught that you are making a promise to the reader on those first few pages and I want to make sure I am making the right promises when I do.

Oh, who am I kidding? The first chapter will be the one revised a hundred times more than any other chapter. I just know it.

I'm up to 28 followers! I see others having contests and I think I'd like to hold one sometime. Maybe when I get to 100 followers.

Some more inspirational finds in my blog reading adventures:

1) Joshua J. Perkey attended CONduit and did a nice blog on character. It is funny because I've been contemplating this the last week, in fact it was one of the things I had figured out while feeling sorry for myself from the excitement above. In ALL of the stories that I love, it is the characters that I love and remember and rarely the plot. I **HAVE TO** remember that when I write. I need to write characters that I can fall in love with in hopes that my readers will do the same. If I don't care for them, if I don't feel sorry for pushing them in front of the bus, if I don't shed a tear when I kill one of them off then why should you? If that is the case, I have not done my job as an author.

2) Shelly Brown is a real treat and I suggest you follow her blog if you want to laugh every time she types something. She posted something recently on original ideas. I'd link the story but for some reason I can't seem to find it again. Blogger failure again? Anyways, she reminds me that there are no truly original ideas and that it is okay. You can "breath life into it" and still make them fresh without creating a carbon-copy of the idea. And she is absolutely right. I dare you to find a story that is nothing like what is written before. It just reminds me that I shouldn't sweat things too much because it sounded a little bit like something I saw on TV a while ago. Just as long as it is a little like it but I've disguised the idea with enough clothing, a "Weird Al" mustache, and a great toupee! Plus, refer to number 1. It is the character that people fall in love with the most, not so much the plot of the story. This has been extremely helpful in that I keep thinking of the beginning of my story sounds too much like something else. In retrospect, I think it only sounds a little like that something else. Hopefully, a little enough.

Also, Shelly shares these hilarious video clips. Ever been Rich Rolled? (Not Rick Rolled) If not, visit her blog. Your life will never be the same again. I apologize in advanced.

3) Canda Mortensen wrote an excellent blog on setting up a perfect action scene. Basically, start with a scene of wonder and then hammer them over the head with the action. She shared a brilliant example from the movie Avatar that I had never considered before. Since I do intend to have a lot of action in my book, this is a tip I will need to remember.

Okay, until next time. Sorry I almost went a week without blogging; I think that is too long. Again, I blame my spine.