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Beloved spouse and I took a quick jaunt to Las Vegas earlier this week. Here's a link to some fun pictures of Hoover Dam and the conservatory at Bellagio. I'm putting up a thumbnail of one pic here to tempt you.

conned out

Aug. 24th, 2008 09:23 pm
patinagle16: (aurora)
Back from Bubonicon, a fun weekend. Two cons almost back to back and I'm pretty pooped. At Bubonicon, I had drinks with Debbie Lynn Smith and her husband, Paul. She and I agreed that sf cons are an interesting phenomenon from the writer's point of view. Most writers (not all, but most) are introverts, but for a convention, a whole bunch of them come together and pretend to be extroverts for several days. By the end of it, we're pretty much fried and have to crawl back to our garrets and hide for a while.

That's about where I am at the moment. Good weekend, not enough sleep, and I need some alone time.
patinagle16: (Default)
The slow days of summer are here. Fellow writers are grumbling about the lack of activity in the mailbox. Editors and writers are attending conventions, and not much is going on between.

For me, it's been a busy year so far and I'm actually enjoying the chance to catch up a bit. I have notes from my editor on fantasy novel #2, so I'm not lacking for work. I'm starting to put together some promotional efforts in support of fantasy novel #1, which has been scheduled for release in March 2009, right around the equinox.

To get a break from the summer heat, my spouse and I drove up to Telluride recently. Wow, what an incredibly beautiful place! Everywhere you turn in this tiny mountain town there are spectacular views. This one is of Bridal Veil Falls, visible from pretty much anywhere in Telluride. Just stunning. I love the mountains and this was a nice shot of inspiration for me for the settings of my ælven fantasy world. (My characters are mountain folk. Fancy that.)

Another thing that's kept me busy this summer is work on the Novelists, Inc. website. I (foolishly) volunteered to help with redesigning and reorganizing the site. It's actually been a lot of fun, though also a lot of work. Not much of it can be seen yet as the webmaster currently is at work converting the site to the new design, but the new Ninc Blog is off to a great start. Check it out!

Tomorrow I'm off to Worldcon. If you're going to be there, stop by my signing Thursday afternoon and pick up an ælven bookmark.
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Visit Novelists, Inc.Last weekend I attended the Novelists, Inc. Conference in New York. I am still processing all the great ideas and information. What a fantastic conference, and well worth the time and money!

This was my fourth NINC conference, and the first one I've been able to get to in New York. All of the conferences I've attended have been great. I think this one beat the rest, though. They just keep getting better every time. For someone who intends to make a career out of writing novels, this is a terrific group. Not only do you get to meet lots of wonderful writers (like Mary Jo Putney, Rebecca York, and Laura Resnick), you also meet industry professionals who have great information to share.

I had the pleasure of meeting my editor, Liz Scheier, who is lovely and gracious. Six degrees of separation came into play when I discovered she already knew my travel buddy and roommate, Pari Noskin Taichert, from a Southwest Writers Workshop conference years ago.

Theresa Rebeck was our keynote speaker, delightfully entertaining. She talked about her own writing experiences, and boy could we relate! (There's a fun interview with her on the NINC website.)

Sessions included panels with agents, publishers, editors, and publicity professionals. Writer and publisher Lou Aronica gave a fantastic presentation to cap the conference. He brought some things into focus that I had been trying to understand for years. I'm still absorbing what he talked about, and I'm going to be making some changes here in the blog because of it.

This is not a conference for aspiring writers. It's for experienced writers, and that makes all the difference.
patinagle16: (headshot)

dayMy dear husband gave me fountains for our anniversary. Specifically, the fountains at the Bellagio in Las Vegas. We stayed in a room with a magnificent view of the fountains, which showed us rainbows by day and glorious splendor by night. We also dined at the Eiffel Tower Restaurant, and watched the fountains from that side (excellent restaurant, by the way - one of the best meals we've ever had). One of my favorite shows begins with a circle of mist and random flashes of light reminiscent of a lightning storm. We saw that from the Eiffel Tower. Never did figure out which music went to it, as the music can't be heard in the restaurant.

I'm fascinated by this city, which has a lot of motivations and qualities that I definitely dislike. What I do like about it is that it is a center of creativity. Many artists make their living here, not to mention designers, world class chefs, and so on.

In a city centered around money, the fountains at Bellagio are free for all to enjoy. I think that's wonderful, and also brilliant. The overall beauty of Bellagio raises it above the average in Las Vegas. In my opinion, Bellagio raised the bar and is still the standard of excellence in this ever-changing town.

nightI'm very fond of Cirque du Soleil and we saw my two favorite shows on this visit - Mystere, and O. Both wonderful. Mystere especially is magical. It's interesting to observe the progression from Mystere, which still has a "circus" atmosphere, to O, which is more sophisticated and complicated, to Ká, in which the technology almost outshines the performers.

Creativity has been on my mind lately because I'm reading The Rise of the Creative Class by Richard Florida. Lots of resonance here. Florida posits that creativity is now the driving force in our culture and economy. As a person who works in the arts, I naturally find this appealing.

Points in The Race:

22 for stories
32 for novels (Dean said I should take the points back until the books go into production)

54 total

2 pages written

May

May. 30th, 2007 02:54 pm
patinagle16: (Default)

Busy month!

Garden catch-up: the oaks finally leafed out about two weeks ago. Everything's awake now, and I've planted tomatoes. Planted nasturtiums, too - first time I've grown them. Boy, are they enthusiastic! Mama's redbud tree has a new set of leaves and looks very happy.

The black-headed grosbeaks have arrived, and so have the goldfinches. Many band-tailed pigeons also. They keep knocking down the window feeder.

Couple of days ago I saw a very large snake by the raised beds. The back half of a very large snake, that is. The front half was already down a burrow at the end of said raised beds. I think it was a bull snake - sorry I didn't get a picture, but it was impressive.

We spent the long weekend in Cloudcroft, a pretty little town in the Sacramento Mountains of southern New Mexico. Ponderosa forests, green everywhere. Amazing lightning and pouring rain. When the sun was out we hiked in some old railbeds that are now hiking trails, and saw a couple of old trestles that were built when the area was booming in the lumber industry. Here's a picture of a trestle that is, ahem, no longer serviceable.

Amazing how much work went into building these things. These timbers are huge, two feet thick at least. There were over 40 trestles on the run to Cloudcroft. All fallen into ruin less than 200 years later.

Points in The Race:

20 for stories (pile to send back out)
16 for novels

36 total

2 pages written (still a busy month)

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