Wednesday, November 24, 2010

It's a happy day

Today has been special. I went to a Write-In for the first time ever with some very fun, wonderful, writer friends. I loved that. And it was at Borders. I love being there! And while writing NaNo novels, with friends I haven't seen for a while, exchanging funny sentences from our stories? It could not be more blissful!

Then it started to snow. Thicker and faster it came. I love snow.

And my college-student brother is home for a few days! It's so nice to have him back. Today, he took me out to Burger King for lunch, just because he's nice. I love him.

Then some other friends we hadn't seen for a good amount of time unexpectedly dropped in for tea! It was a very nice impromptu visit.

Then I did a bit of enjoyable school (algebra), taking a break to write down a piece from random story idea that has been in my head for a few days. Loved that! I am thinking that it has to do with Italy...

Then I made spaghetti for dinner while singing along to my parent's choir's CD. Fun!

Then I blogged, something I haven't done in a long-ish time. I realized this: when I tell you that I won't be posting for a while, I get this sudden onslaught of post ideas and go right back to it. But when I give myself to freedom to do it, I simply don't feel like it. Funny how that works.... But I still love reading all y'all's blogs. You guys are the best. :)

Now I am going to have movie night with my family. A vintage one from 1939 and Robin Hood are on the itinerary! And of course, movies mean knitting. :)

And tomorrow is Thanksgiving! My family is heading to grandparents house for the feast. What are your plans for the big day?

And then on Friday, it will be..... Black Friday! I can't wait for the insane shopping and people watching. :)

So tonight, I am very, simply, happy. Thank you, God, for giving me happiness!

The Lord is good to all, and His mercy is over all that he has made. ~Psalm 145:9

And for your viewing pleasure, here is a picture I took last November. :)

What are you happy for today?

Monday, November 15, 2010

First Impressions

When I peruse the shelves at the library, the first thing that draws me to a book is its title. Then I look at the cover. That is when the decision of whether or not I want to read the book really begins. If the cover features art or a photo that does not appeal to me, maybe I will scan the description to see if there's a possibility that it's a good book, but most of the time, I just put it back.

In many ways, the book's cover decides its fate with every different prospective reader. I have been playing around with cover designs for my NaNo novel lately, which started me thinking about all of the covers I have come across in my life, and which ones have stuck with me. Here are some of them:

My Antonia by W
illa Cather
Whoa. Isn't this the most beautiful picture ever? It is s
o perfect for this lovely story about Nebraska . I also am loving the font and layout.
Peace like a River by Leif Enger
This is one of my top favorites of any cover an
ywhere! I would sit down, intending to read the book, but would often end up simply gazing at its cover. It ties in perfectly with the title; don't you just feel instant peace when you look at it?
The Thief Lord by Cornelia Funke
This is one of my absolute favorite books! And the cover is amazing, too! I love its magical, mysterious feel.
A Charmed Life b
y Liza Campbell
I have not read all of this book, which is a memoir
about a girl who grew up in a European castle, but I do know that the cover is darling! Don't you love how sweet and innocent she looks on her drawbridge? Sorry that the image isn't bigger!

Wildwood Dancing by Juliet Mariller
This is another one I haven't read yet, but intend to sometime soon-ish. I love the details of the gorgeous painting; everything is so brilliantly vibrant. And don't you love that fish? What is it doing out of water? I think that I need to read the book and find out . . . :)

The Two Princesses of Bamarre by Gail Carson Levine
This is one of my favorite books from a few years ago. What I like about this cover is how regal the princesses look. Meryl is brave and adventurous and Addie is humble and timid, and they look perfect in the painting.
Tell me about your favorite book covers!

Monday, November 8, 2010


I said I was not going to post for a while, didn't I? But my brain is feeling a bit fried right now and I need a bit of "purposeful" screen time that does not include the words 'word' and 'count' bouncing around in my head. NaNo is super amazing and I could write a gushy post that would take all night for you read. But I won't. :)

And now, for some accumulated tags. (Sorry, guys, that I did not post them until now!)

From El'rania:

1. What was the first word you've ever said?
I do not remember. It was probably something exciting like 'da'. ;)

2. Would you rather only be able to eat fruits, or vegetables the rest of your life?
Hmm... fruit, I think. That would satisfy my insane sweet tooth. :)

3. Do you plan to move or stay where you are when you grow up?
Wherever God leads. I wouldn't mind moving farther north, though.

4. Going into battle, do you choose a longbow or a crossbow?
Longbow. Crossbow's are too... technical.

5. Have you ever passed out? If so, when and why.
Nope. I quote my doctor: "You are disgustingly healthy!" He's a really cool doctor. :)

6. What was your most memorable Halloween costume?
When I was a toddler, I wore a huge yellow turtleneck in an effort to be a piece of cheese. (Not my idea!) One of my brothers was a mouse. From what I am told, we were a huge hit at the party. :)

7. If someone told you that you won the lottery of $1,000,000,000 what would your reaction be?
"Snap, you must have the wrong girl! I don't but tickets and besides, I am underage. But if the real winner doesn't want it, you know where I live..." :)

8. If you could change your name, what would you change it to?
Ooh, hard question. But I think I would do something like Jane Doe, then give myself a really snazzy middle name!
From Lily:

1. If you could marry any male book character, who would it be?
I am not telling. ;)

2. What book character is the closest to your personality?
Hmm. . . I am not sure. Someone who is mostly shy. Any ideas?

3. What is your favorite Disney movie?
Ahh! I love Disney! Beauty and the Beast is probably my very favorite, but Mulan and Pocahontas are close behind.

4. Are you a spender or a saver?
A saver, probably because I so rarely go on true shopping trips, though. But I could easily go nuts in any Macy's, American Outfitter's, or J. Crew.

5. If you had a $10,000 shopping spree to any store, which would you choose?
Toast!!!!That would mean I would have to go to the UK to claim my prize. Fine with me! :) Or is there such thing as a Nikon store....?

6. Who is your favorite Disney princess?
Belle. Wait, Pocahontas. No. . . it's Belle. :)

7. Describe your favorite piece of jewelry (or show a picture!)
Do you remember the ring in this post? I feel like someone fresh out of any kind of amazing novel when I put that beauty on. :)

8. If you were a color, which would you be?
Green. It's so peaceful. I am big fan of peace. (Middle child characteristic!)
From Ellyn:
I share seven likes, eight hates, and one love. Here we go!

Music in a minor key
Blogging (Apparently! I couldn't stay away from it!)
Bridal magazines
Hello Kitty
Beautiful photography

Hates: (Hmm, this is a strong word)
Politics with seemingly no possibly good outcome
Turmoil with friends
Slow computers
Rampantly immodest clothes in any juniors section at any store
Writer's Block
Broken piano keys
All those millions of ridiculous fan pages on Facebook (Sorry that this is mundane, but they bother me.)

One love:
What? Just one? Okay, fine.

My loving, forgiving, wonderful God and Savior
I also love writing.

I am going to tag anyone who:
a) Loves someone
b) Thinks this looks fun and wants to do it.

Signed with a flourish,
Margaret Rowena

Thursday, November 4, 2010

October and a note

These are some photos I took over October. The tenth month of the year has got to be one of the best for photography--I love the dynamics of the light and color. :)




Perhaps you noticed something on these photos? A watermark, maybe? I am a lonnng way from being a professional, but it's nicely satisfying to see a name that bel
ongs to you your photos! :) Vivant la paix is French for "living the peace". The kind of peace I am thinking about for the name is the kind the comes from God.
And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your mind in Christ Jesus. ~Philippians 4:7

You maybe were expecting this. I am going to be taking a Blogger break for a week or three while I write my novel, keep up with school, begin Thanksgiving prep (Can't wait!), and start reading 'fun' novels again (I haven't touched Les Miserables for days, and then there's The Book Thief, which I have yet to get into....). Basically, I will posting far less frequently, unless something amazingly relevant comes up. But before I go, here's a funny conversation that took place the other night:

{Setting: It was quite late and I had turned off my light after a catch-up writing session. Now I was trying to fall asleep, but my little brother Daniel pokes his head into my room, disturbing my efforts.}
Daniel: Margaret? Are you done writing?
Me: Yup, for tonight.
Daniel: What's your book called?
Me: Cadish the White, for now.
Daniel: What's it about?
Me: It's a fantasy. [My usual reply to such a question]
Daniel: No, what's it really about?
Me: *gives itty-bitty nutshell synopsis*
Daniel: Sounds weird. *pauses* I can't wait to read it.

Wasn't that nice of him to say? NaNo has really loosened up my hesitations to talk about my writing, even to my family! But if they asked me anything about The Pace { my pet story}, I will remain tight lipped. :)

Now I leave you with a picture of what my beautiful cottonwood tree looks like right now in the autumn sunlight:

Au revoir, my friends!


Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Wow. Last night was magnificent.

It all started at 5:50 PM, when I began to prepare for my very first NaNoWriMo writing session. My room was perfectly organized, as I spent all day Sunday making the War to End All Wars in there. I love having a perfectly clean place to write in. :) So I moved around my room, turning on Enya, praying, and booting up my computer.

Then I began to write. "The Memory of Trees", one of Enya's best songs, was simply perfect as I typed that first paragraph. I felt like I was embarking on an incredible journey. After ten minutes, my mom came in and gave me a nice little pep talk before. I checked the word count at that point. Under 200. I was a bit a miffed, but then remembered that this is Day 1. Hint: Never check your WC often. Wait a page or so before doing it. And then I kept plugging along.

An hour or so later, my older brother James popped in to ask what I was doing. He doesn't read my blog and I have never talked about NaNo in his presence, so I gave him the nutshell description. He was full of *helpful* questions like, "What's the point?" "To write a novel." I said. "Yes, but what's the main idea of it? What is the thesis?" He is such a student! I was nearly frustrated and said, "I am writing a novel! That is point enough!" Then he relented and left me alone. {After reading that, you may doubt my love for my brother. Don't worry, he just likes making me think and I appreciate that in him. And he's teaching me self defense, and that's really fun. :)}

So then I pecked away for another hour, until I exceeded my daily goal and decided I had better eat something for dinner. It was nearly 9:00, and I gleefully pranced around the kitchen making toast. Then James gave my sister Ruth and I an impromptu karate lesson in my, uh, less than large enough room, which was great. :)

What really made last night special is that I started out with my main character and her friend, but by the time I finished, Cadish had a mother and sisters, all of whom had the makings of personalities. It's amazing where a single character will take you.

Yeah, last night was wonderful. :)

Have any of you read Chris Baty's book?

I snagged a copy last week and read it in a day. It was just what I needed, full of advice and comfort for a newbie like me. This is how I looked after reading an especially fabulous page:

I was thrilled. I still am thrilled! NaNoWriMo is just. . . altogether thrilling! I am so happy I signed up. And if you haven't yet, there is are still 29 days in November! You can do it! You seriously do not need a plot in mind. A few characters will give you a plot in return for their lives.
Well, I need to go finish up the mundane daily tasks so that I can start writing again! How are your NaNo projects going?

Have a lovely day, everyone!


Monday, November 1, 2010


Hi folks! Well, I made some major changes around here. The header was made with the help of Carlotta's extremely useful tutorial. (Picasa users rejoice!) But I have a question for you: does this new design remind you very too strongly of another blog you have seen? Are there any annoyances you see? Don't be afraid to tell me your true opinion. :) One thing that annoys me is that I can't get
the gadget titles to not be capitalized. Any advice on how to alter that? And do you like the double sidebar, or should I go back to the single?

Whenever I am clothes shopping and I find a shirt that I like and my mom doesn't, she says, "It may be your clothing, but we are the ones that will see you wear it!" :) That's why I am very open to your thoughts, lovely readers.

News flash: it's November 1...... I haven't written anything yet. Yet.

Thank you for responding!
~Margaret Rowena