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Hello-It's been forever since I updated

Hello all. It has been over a year since I updated this blog. My apologies. Life has been busy with both personal and professional happenings and something had to give. This was one of them. Right now I want to provide a quick update as to what we have been doing.

First off, Greg has started making murrini for sale. He started in September of last year and has built up quite the inventory of both 104 and 90 COE. See it here.

Last year we had an intern come and stay with us for the months of January and February. The lovely Ms. Ali VandeGrift was here lampworking. She did some studio work for us and I introduced her to the wonders of running your own business.  While she was here she procured a scientific glass  internship at Oak Ridge Lab in Knoxville. She is now happily a full-time employee and making beads in her spare time. Be sure to check out her etsy store.

In addition, last year we did three more shows after The Best Bead show in Tuscon. In March we had fun at Marble Crazy in Kansas City. Then I met up with Susan Sheehan in Milwaukee, where we shared a table at Bead and Button. We will be attending again this year, with each of us having a full eight foot table. To round off the show season Greg and I once again attended the Houston Bead Society show in November. It is rapidly becoming our favorite show.  It’s a small show, but comfortable and one of the best as far as promoters go. Plus it is an easy drive from here. We will be returning again this year.

Right now I am busy building inventory for this years Bead and Button show in June. Also, I am spending a lot of time writing. If you’ve been here before you know I wrote a paranormal romance that was completed early last year. So far it’s not published, but I am considering self-publishing it later this year. In the mean time I have been working on an Urban Fantasy involving a fairy, a witch and a vampire. More on that later. It is about half done and very rough being it is still the first draft.

In order to keep me motivated I am joining the 1000 words a day challenge and will be keeping a log here as to how I do. I’m hoping it keeps me motivated. Accountability is one of my great motivators, so wish me luck.

Just checkin in...

I loved watching the Olympics, but man am I glad they are over.  They took over my life for the last two weeks.  I stayed up late practically every night, got up late the next day, crammed in some lampworking and some writing and then was back glued to the television.  I cheered on the swimmers, gymnasts, volleyball players, rowers, divers, BMX racers, and track stars.  I even watched handball, which I had never seen before.  I must admit the Beach Volleyball was my favorite event.  Men and women.  Of course I have a weakness for the sport, having spent much of my youth on a volleyeball court.  But man!  It’s exciting.  Hubby even watched all the matches we found televised.  I am sure he was sick of me explaining the game to him every 5 minutes.

So I’ve been a little MIA, but I am still working and still writing.  55,000 words down on page, or computer screen.  I’m getting there.

Thought provoking...

One of the many blogs I read is Mr Nathan Bransford. This week he posted a hypothetical question. I am paraphrasing here, basically the question is “Would you still write if you absolutely knew you wouldn’t get published (at least by a “real” publishing house and not self publish) and be successful.

I find this interesting on many levels. For one, if writing is a passion and something a person gets enjoyment from what difference does it make if said person gets published or not? Oh I know all about the validation and the joy of so called success, but what I really mean is, if you love to do something, won’t you do it even if fame and fortune doesn’t come along with it? Maybe said person won’t work as hard to get a manuscript extra, extra polished, or maybe they will. Certainly they could spare all that wasted time trying to find an agent and/or publisher, but if it is passion, won’t you just write because you like it?

Second, as with anything practice makes for a better crafts person. Does practice make perfect? I highly doubt it. But a person certainly will get better at what they do, if they keep practicing and learning along the way.

Third, if an artist or crafts person is only doing what they do for the potential money, they are not likely to be successful anyway. Maybe people who say they would quit writing if they didn’t get published, just don’t realize most writers do not become rich and famous. In fact a great many of them cannot afford to write as their full time job. With this in mind, why would a person choose to only write for the money?

Forth it is certainly okay to love to do something, even when a person knows they may not be naturally gifted in an artist sense. Writing is an art, just as glass working is. It can also be a craft. Or maybe both to the same person.

To me writing is a skill, just as lampworking is a skill. When I was first learning glasswork, I was certain I would never make anything good enough to sell, and was even more certain I wouldn’t ever make a living at it. I was pretty sure I didn’t even want to try that. But here we are 4 and a half years later and lampworking is my full time job and I love it. If I found I could no longer sell my work, I am certain I would still melt glass, it just may take a different turn. I would play and experiment a lot more. Certainly I wouldn’t make nearly the amount of production I do now, but I would still be found out there melting glass.

So, would I stop writing if I knew I didn’t have the chops to get published. Heck no! Right now I am doing it because I like it. Really like it. When I am done writing the novel, I will reread and rework it and probably will try to shop it. I mean really, why not? Doesn’t hurt to try. I highly doubt I will stop writing if it goes nowhere, which is highly likely. Right now writing is in the “This is what I like to do” column. If the joy of writing goes away, then I will put the pen down. Not when the agents or publishers tell me NO.

Last Day for 20% off! and a little sampling....

Don’t forget, today is the last day for 20% off in my ETSY store and WEBSITE!  Wholesale pricing with no minimum purchases.

Okay now that I have that our of the way, on to more fun stuff.

I have a title for my book:  Dead Sexy.

and a little sampling:

“So, you are saying Mrs. Keltons dead Golden Retriever, followed you home?”  Kat asked.   I watched while she pulled left over potato salad out of the refrigerator and dished it into two bowls. Handing me one, she cocked an eyebrow.

“Not exactly.” I said, eyeing Duke, the ghost dog, staking out a place on the couch.

“Not exactly?  So what, you dog napped him?”  The incredulous look on her face suggested she thought  I was joking.

“No, he jumped in the car and I drove him here.  He followed us up the stairs,” I said.

“Are you even allowed pets?” she asked, laughing.

“Oh haha…very funny.” Frowning, I grabbed a beer and slammed the fridge door.

“Oh come on, it was  a little funny,” she said.  “Do I get one of those?”  She tilted her head toward my Guinness.

I shrugged and  stepped out onto my balcony.

Jade, Dead Sexy (c) 2008

On Writing

Remember back in November when I told you all I was taking the NANO, write a book in a month challenge? Well, I tried and failed. I got about 10,000 words on the pages, then crashed and burned. I stopped writing all together for about three months. I then started working on another idea, got about 12,000 words written, then was stuck. So what did I do? I went back to that first novel on my hard drive and pretty much started it over. A lot of the original words are still there, but I moved them around and changed a bunch of things. I now have about 24,000 words down.

However, as of last night I still didn’t have a complete plot. Oh there are ideas and threads of one, but not a complete one. Its hard to know where to go from here without one. So this morning, I just decided to talk it out. I was talking to Greg, but really I was the only one talking. I suspected he was just being polite. Then, he said some off the cuff remark, not unusual for him, and a lot of things clicked in place. I do believe I now have an actually working plot. Of course now all I want to do is write, cause my brain is turned ON. That is not going to happen right now though, as it is our day off and that means we do something together. I doubt Greg is going to think me writing while he listens to the sound of typing is his idea of a fun day.

While, I am not going to tell you a lot of what it is about, I will tell you it is set in New Orleans, the protag ends up bartending at a strip club, and she sees ghosts. No title yet. It is alluding me. Maybe once I flesh out the plot, it’ll come to me. You’ll be the first to know. Well probably the second, since I am pretty sure I’ll tell Greg whether he wants to know or not.

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