Wednesday, March 30, 2011

If Cows Were Clouds

I believe I have a very discerning son. For example, the other day I turned on music and began dancing around the kitchen. He asked me to stop. And the thing is, I can't dance. I'm horrible. So his taste is pretty spot on. (But maybe I really just scared him.)

Recently my husband asked me about my picture book (said it was really good), and whatever happened to that? Then my son, my very discerning son, started quoting the text from my picture book. And well, my husband's words alone were very encouraging, but the fact that my son liked my book enough to remember the words fueled the flame.

So I told my husband that I wouldn't stop until I queried 25 agents. I'd only queried five since I wrote it (received three no-replies, one form rejection, and one nice rejection that liked the book and invited me to query my YA book when I was ready). Five, that's it. (And this is since September.) So I started querying again.

I haven't shared much about my book other than that I wrote it, so here is my wee-little pitch...

Pudding instead of rain? Cheese instead of snow? Just what would happen if cows started grazing in our atmosphere? (Warning: This book is not for the lactose intolerant.)

By the way, I haven't been much of a blogger lately (that goes for visiting blogs, too) so if you are reading this you are a good friend. On the flip side I have been writing more. For many reasons. One which I will share with you soon.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Mothering Madness

When we moved into our last place, I noticed a rag slung over my neighbor's fence, primarily because whenever I went to do my dishes I'd have nothing to look at through the window but my neighbor's fabulous above-ground-pool and the rag. ("Fabulous" is me being sarcastic because above-ground-pools are not fabulous. They are ugly. Unless you are sitting in one on a hot summer's day. Then I suppose it may feel a little fabulous.) I lived in that house for eighteen months. The rag was never moved, but it was beaten by one of the worst Kansas winters I've ever known and bleached by the sun in an equally intense summer.

I've thought of that little rag these last two weeks because I am that rag. Motherhood has rung me out, hung me out to dry, and blasted me with all its extreme elements. My son did beautifully during the first month of our move, but I suppose something clicked and he realized that...

This isn't a vacation! This is FOR REAL!!

And well...hmmmm. My naughty, naughty little boy. There were times I was sure that one of us was insane. And of course, I questioned all I ever knew or learned about mothering because suddenly I was clueless. I spent a lot of time on the phone with my mother who is wise, and I wish I can take the mothering parts of her brain because her kids are grown and she's not really using those parts right now. It's only fair.

However, whenever I'd put my son to sleep (and then he'd get up and then he'd get up again and maybe he'd get up a third or fourth or fifth time) the FIRST thing I wanted to do was lose myself in my own little Pieces of Moon world. All this stress really fueled my desire to write. (It also fueled my desire for chocolate chip cookie dough.) I've been writing again, more than before, and really, really enjoying it. So I suppose there is a silver lining, but I'd prefer something other than mothering madness to get me there.

The storm may be over now. The last couple of days I've watched it blow off with only a little residual lightning. My son is doing much better. For example, he is no longer waking up and yelling, "Mommy won't look at my face!" (That from my attempt of ignoring naughty behavior the day before.) (Isn't that sad? After he did that, I lay down next to him and looked at his face.) And the best part mom flies in tomorrow morning. Enough said.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

In an Eggshell

The other day as I was doing my laundry, I heard a sound that you should never hear inside your house. I heard a creature. Inside my dryer hose. My first thought was, "Mice! My life is over. We are moving BACK to Kansas." (There are mice in Kansas, but who things rationally when a creature is heard inside of one's dryer hose?)

When I calmed down, I went outside and looked up toward my second-floor laundry room. (The whole looking up thing should have been my first clue it wasn't a mouse since mice can't fly. I don't think.) There was a twig sticking out of my dryer vent. Birds are not nearly disturbing as mice and so I was at peace.

That night, my husband and I (with a very interested little boy standing by) unhooked the dryer hose and pulled out a nest. (And a lot of combustible lint backed up behind it, so we are lucky our bird didn't smoke.) I also pulled out one little speckled egg. I even did the flashlight test on the one little speckled egg and found...nothing.(Of course this meant I had no pressure to incubate the egg and raise the hatchling on ground worms. Phew.)

It made me think of writing...

Well, not really. I have no metaphor. I just wanted to share my bird-nest-in-a-dryer story because I think it's cool.