Sunday, June 27, 2010

Sunday's Six

1. Fire.
Thank you all for your well wishes about our recent fire. This has been the worst fire Flagstaff has ever known and I’m sad to say that the whole half of the mountain that faces me has almost all burned, most of it old growth Ponderosa Pine. I knew that this kind of fire was inevitable and in normal circumstances healthy for the ecosystem, but I’m sad it’s at this moment in my life time—so many places I love exploring. All because some careless person didn’t put out their campfire. On the upside, the fire is 55% contained and the wonderful fire crews on the job have managed to save some really unique areas. So far it’s taken about 16,000 acres.
This video is heartbreaking...

2. I haven’t heard from agents.
The publishing business definitely has a hurry up and wait system, as many of you know, and I’m being patient. I’d love to hear something, but I’m going to hold off from asking for a status update for at least a couple more weeks.

In the meantime…

3. I’m in the middle of writing the climax for my Jedda Hitler book!
So very fun. It’s invigorating to know I’ve now created a third full novel. Granted, it’s a skeleton of book. And it’s ribs are all out of place, but at least it’s something tangible to beef up.

4. Dragon Books.
My oldest daughter is crazy about dragons and books about dragons. She loves Shelley’s Happy Birthday, Good Knight and reads it over and over again along with her other Good Knight books. She also loves the How to Train You Dragon series. But I’m kind of running out of lively dragon books like these ones. Does anyone have book recommendations? She prefers early readers with a couple paragraphs and a picture every page.

5. Sugar Free Month (aka June 2010) has been hard!
All month I’ve only allowed myself honey and fruit. It wasn’t even a challenge for Steve (a.k.a. The Husband). He’s not even looking forward to its end in a couple of days. I can see where this challenge has been beneficial for me in some respects. I still crave sweets, but not to the extent I was before. On the downside, it did not improve my energy like I hoped and I only lost a few pounds. Then again, I’ve never dieted or cut back before so I might have had too high of expectations for what would happen.

And as the perfect ending to the no sugar month…

6. I won Jessie @ Louder than Noise’s recent drawing!
I’ll soon be rid of the challenge on a high note, eating all the Gourmet Oreos I want and reading debut books purchased with my lovely gift card. Thank you, Jessie! You are so generous! :o)

But enough about me. What about you all? How was your weekend? And for those of you in the US, any big plans for Independence Day Weekend?

Here’s what I’ll be doing… hanging out in Silverton, Colorado. It’s one of my favorite places ever and fortunately we have a cabin there. Here’s a picture of our hundred year old mining bunkhouse we’ve renovated. Yeah, that really is an avalanche shute above the roof. And yeah, I’ve seen it work.
Uh… sorry. I did say enough about me didn’t I? Well, you can take it from here. I promise.


  1. I am so sad about the loss of the old-growth pine and the beautiful places that will take so long to regrow. Even though we know these places will restore themselves, the loss of huge, old trees is heartbreaking.
    Your post is so full of news, I hardly no where to begin. Hang tough through the waiting game and huge kudos on finishing another novel. That's impressive!

  2. All because of someone's camp fire? That makes me angry.

    I haven't heard from any agents in over a week now. I'm wondering if it's the time of year. But I know exactly how you feel.

  3. we drive by there often enough that it's hard to watch, even tho we don't live there. sorry for the loss of your hiking spots, your beautiful view, and very old pine trees.

  4. Forest fires are tough to get over. Years ago when Yellowstone was burning out of control, I lived not far from there. It took years for the forest to recover. BUT it is looking pretty good now. So, hang on. The forest will come back, and hopefully better than ever.

  5. Oh dear! I think forest fires when it occurs naturally are good for the ecosystem but only the forest knows when it's time not some silly careless person!

    But I'm glad you are ok! I hope the mountain and forest recover soon.

    Good luck with your Jedda Hitler climax writing!! Sounds so brilliant and very exciting!!!

    CONGRATULATIONS!! first with your no-sugar month - WOW!! and for winning the competition. Yay!

    Your mining bunkhouse is amazing - how many people have mining bunkhouses as holiday homes - wow! I hope you enjoy stay there!

    Take care

  6. Forest fires are devastating. I always think of the poor animals.

  7. What a sad video. I'm glad you shared it though, it makes us all more appreciative of what we have around us.

  8. Jackee, I'm sorry about the fire but glad it wasn't worse.

    Congratulations on your Oreos.

    I'm glad you're writing. The waiting is so hard, it's painful.

    For the fourth, we always go to the Charles River and watch the fireworks display while they pipe the Boston Pops over on the Cambridge side. We make a picnic of it.

  9. Heartbreaking is the right word. So sad. Careless campers drive me batty. It doesn't take much time to be perfectly safe.

  10. I thought it was a natural fire, but when I read that it was because of a camp fire, I'm rather upset -- all the beauty gone to waste! :(

    Go you for doing a sugar-free month! I don't think I would've been able to manage it. And good luck on your querying journey!

  11. That video was powerful and heartbreaking, Jackee - so sad.

    Have you tried The Dragon Slayer's Academy series with your daughter. My son went through a MAJOR dragon faze. Also, the Dragonbreath books by Ursula Vernon are pretty cute. :-)

  12. That's awful about the fire! And, the waiting game is tough. It's good that you are keeping yourself busy by writing.

  13. Ohhh, your cabin is so cool! I hope you have an awesome time. We are planning a trip to CO later in the summer. :)

    Forest fires and oil spills...we have to learn to take care of our environment!

    Congratulations on your book's so fun to get blog gifts in the mail (smile).

    I'm proud of you for making it the whole month without sugar. I couldn't do it. I've been eating licorise every day for the past week and a half. I ate ice-cream one day too...

  14. Dragon books: The Lily Quench series, by Natalie Prior and the Dragon Slayer's Academy (that Shannon already mentioned) are easy to read, funny, and have great illustrations. Igraine the Brave, by Cornelia Funke, is another great one, but the dragon doesn't play a very big part. However, she also wrote Dragon Rider (which is probably still be too hard), one of the best children's dragon books ever written.

    I'm sorry about your forest.

    But hurray for Jedda Hitler! Writing the climax is so much fun. Congrats on getting through the draft.

  15. Yay for a third novel!! That's what you have to do while waiting for agents, write and write and write. :)

    I don't think I could ever go sugar free. I don't want to ever go sugar free.