Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Most Powerful/Popular TV Show

This week three major TV shows wrapped up - one for the season, two forever.

They are of course:



and American Idol.

Now I'm not a big TV person. I can list my favorite shows on one hand - Firefly, Doctor Who, Gilmore Girls, Veronica Mars and Pushing Daisies. (That's not counting any of the X-Men shows, of course).

However I have a family that watches TV (which means I've seen parts of "24" and "American Idol"), and friends who post about their favorite shows on Facebook (LOST LOST LOST). Plus of course I keep my eye on the headlines of entertainment and pop culture. Over the past decade all three of these shows have come up again... and again... and again.

So I'm curious. Which of these three shows has had the most impact on YOUR life? It could be that you're a diehard fan who faithfully watched every single episode of "24." Or maybe you went out for an "American Idol" audition. Or perhaps you've just heard about LOST so much that you're determined never to watch anything so popular.

However it's affected your life, I'd like to know which one affected you the most. You can see I have a lovely little poll on the side of the screen and I'd be delighted if you'd drop a vote.

You can also, of course, leave a comment and let me know any particulars of how one of these shows has crossed paths with you.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

"Ink and Fairydust" Website...

The "Ink and Fairydust" website will launch on June 1st!

All sorts of information about past and present issues, staff, contests, how to write for us, and more!

Stay tuned...

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Cover for June's "Ink and Fairydust"

Getting better and better at meeting these deadlines... thanks to our early photoshoot, I have the cover all ready for you to drool over. A week and a half until this issue is released! :)

A Magical Moment

Since we are finally having some sun instead of neverending rain, I took my computer out to the porch today to do some work on my novel. As I was sitting on the swing, pondering some character motivations, a great gust of wind swept through the yard, sending thousands of maple seed "helicoptors" spinning through the air, like winged inhabitants of faerieland.

It was magical.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

In Honor...

I write this post in honor of my Great-Grandmother, Lillian, who passed away two nights ago. She is now safe in the arms of her Lord and Savior and I rejoice to know that she is in a place where her mind and body are once more whole and strong. I can only imagine how wonderful it is, and how happy she must be.

As for me, I suppose I can honestly say that the news hasn't fully sunk in yet. I expect everything to get harder later this week when we go out for the wake and funeral.

Great-Grandma was a wonderful, Godly woman who shared 75 years of marriage with her husband Floyd. Together they started a family, a successful business, and a ministry of music that she participated in even when failing health brought her to the very nursing home to which they had ministered.

They raised six wonderful children up to know the Lord, provide for their families, and become wonderful grandparents to all of their grandchildren - of which I am one.

I feel so blessed to share in this legacy and I thank God for letting me be descended from this beautiful woman.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Looking for a T-Shirt printer

I am looking at having some t-shirts printed with SOTB pictures to use as a fundraiser for the film. However there are so many websites out there offering printing services, I have no idea where to find the best deal, quality, or even which sites are really legit.

Have any of you worked with a company that you would be able to recommend?

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Why Revising and Adapting are twins

While I was out east, I had the wonderful opportunity to daily learn new writing tips, tricks and rules from Regina Doman. My favorite line is that I could learn more from Regina in a half-hour than I could from a semester of college classes.

One of the most valuable aids Regina gave me was her critique of the first chapter of my current novel. It is a chapter I have been struggling with ever since I first wrote it (which would have been back in the fall of 2008). Though I asked advice from many friends and family members, no one could give me concrete advice towards solving the problem.

Then, in about ten minutes, Regina calmly, graciously and brilliantly told me exactly what was wrong in the chapter and also exactly how I could fix it.

I love Regina.

First of all, I had to cut the chapter down by about a third. Regina's advice was to cut out anything that wasn't absolutely necessary, and to cut all the dialogue by half.

You see, the first three chapters in your novel are what you are going to show an agent. So it is those three chapters, plus your synopsis, that basically sell the book. If those chapters aren't tight, an agent is most likely not going to ask to see the rest of the manuscript.

Regina made me take every scene and ask "What is my heroine's goal?" With that question in mind, I had to restructure the chapter so that every paragraph was pushing towards that goal. This creates a drive that will keep a reader (and hopefully an agent!) reading.

As I was doing this, I realized that the mindset in revising a chapter (or a book) is very similar to what I've had to do in the past when I've adapted books for film. Writing a screenplay is a very similar process. You can't put anything on screen that doesn't have a point, and therefore every word of every line has to go under a magnifying glass. "Do I really need this? Does it advance the story? Does it tell us something? Could we convey the same information with a visual image?" These are all questions that writers of any kind should consider. I think they are easy to forget or ignore when writing a book because there is more space on a printed page than in a minute of film. And usually more pages in a book than minutes in a film! Also, a one second clip on film can convey what some writers seem to need a whole page to describe in their books.

Once I got myself into this mindset, editing became a much easier process. I had written the story, now I just had to revise it for an audience.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

The series that brought my family together - you'll be surprised.

This is a slightly surprising fact to me.

Last night we were settling in to watch "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" and I realized that, apart from the Bible and some select childrens books, there is no book that all five members of my immediate family have read.

And there is no series that even four of us have read.

Four of us have read "The Robe" and four of us have read/listened to "The Chronicles of Narnia", but four of us have not actually read a series (my brother only ever listened to Narnia).

Well, that is about to change. As soon as my Dad gets through 1 and 2/3rds more volumes, four of us will have read ever single book in the Harry Potter series.

Considering that three years ago we were pretty anti-Harry, I find it crazy and vastly amusing as well as pretty cool. My brother rarely reads (even though he's now an adult) and he read all seven of them in record time during his first semester of college. My father never reads fantasy or even childrens books on his own and he is now up to book six and starting to crack jokes about "Pensieves" and the like. And he will do the adult version of "lalala-not-listening" if we even hint that we're going to mention a spoiler from a later book.

And this is no new trend. I've known other families in which Harry has been read and loved by all or most of the family members. This is not something I see with other books. Movies, yes, but not books.

Jo Rowlings has gotten a lot of credit for improving literacy among children. But I think she now deserves kudos for creating something that has such a powerful effect on drawing families closer together.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Are YOU Regina Doman's biggest fan?

It's time to prove it!

Promote Regina's books, and you could win some cool stuff - and have fun doing it!

You have the entire summer to chalk up all sorts of points doing things like writing reviews, wearing FTN T-Shirts and asking your library to carry the books!

Find out all the rules and differant ways you can earn points here:

There are also some pretty cool prizes, including signed copies of "Alex O'Donnell and the Forty-Cyberthieves" and the film of "The Shadow of the Bear" when it is released!

Not only is this your chance to show how much you love Blanche, Bear, Fish, Rose and the other FTN Characters, but this publicity will also really help get the word out about the amazingness of Regina Doman!

Also, please help us spread the news about this contest by reposting this information to your own blog!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Thrift Store Rescue

I found a cute three tiered white skirt at Goodwill the other week. Unfortunately, it was a little too short to be modest. However I had also picked up an adorable white remnant at JoAnn Fabrics, and thought "What if I just added another tier..."
So, voila!
I just snipped the bottom two tiers away from the top one, measured out how big the new level would need to be and stiched it all together!

I also like that it's not as poofy as it was before... the wind can blow but this skirt will be hard pressed to go blowing in the wrong direction! (At least compared to the danger it was in before)

Here is a close up on the added fabric...

Isn't it beautiful? I'm delighted I found a use for it!

So the dream house isn't entirely a dream...

Remember the drawing of my dream that I posted the other week? Apparently I was actually telepathically peeking in on this house/building project in Wales.

I think I'm in love. This is amazing and exactly what I'd love to do, providing my future husband is up for it.

I was raised by a mother and grandfather who love the out of doors and living organically. So though I may have once thought I was a city girl, I now know that even the suburbs would feel incredibly claustaphobic to me. I hope and pray that God will give me the chance to live out in the country, raise animals, and perhaps even build a house like this.

You may think I'm an elf, but sometimes I do have surprisingly hobbitish tendancies...

Sunday, May 2, 2010

POV - Edward vs. Bella.

This is a good post about the differance between reading Bella's POV in "Twilight" and Edward's POV in "Midnight Sun." I would agree that I liked Edward and Bella both better in "Midnight Sun" than in "Twilight."

This is also a good post to read as a writer, because it talks about how one should pick which character's POV to write behind.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

May's "Ink and Fairydust"

With articles on Modesty, Mary, and the Rosary, as well as some exciting new columns you won't want to miss!