This year has been something else. We are trying to survive but it's not been easy. Haven't done a lot of writing or submitting. I can't believe I haven't even posted on LiveJournal It's been over ten months since my last entry. Wow! I really enjoy LJ even though I rarely use it.

Tomorrow is a big day. We have church in the morning and then we go to the nursing home for our weekly worship there. We've been doing that as part of our local church planting work for about three years now. The residents are so thankful each and every week that we're there. My son has learned to be a servant there. If it's not pushing someone back to their room, it's hugging a woman who loves children. my son has learned to be of service even if it means hugging someone back, that's mighty remarkable.

Then, tomorrow night, it's back to a different church we attend and then for a small group of for our ministry which is called Zach's House. Tomorrow, we might meet our friend Pete's new girlfriend. Pete is a man I counseled last year twice a week as part of his parole. He was actually in prison for murder but only received a seven year sentence. He was active with one of our small groups for a while, drifted away and a couple weeks ago called us up and said he missed us and wanted to get back together again. God is great.

Now if only I could get back on track with my picture book writing and find a way to get back our health insurance and continue the good works God has placed in our path, the rest of 2011 will be a winner.

By the way, if any of you know any picture buyers for magazines who may need some stock photos, please send them to my photo research site. All monies from there go toward our ministry, St. Jude's and the Mayo Clinic. Thanks.
  • Current Music

PiBoMo or whatever it's called

Is anyone out there participating in the writing month experiment that has us writing an extreme amount of picture book ideas?

I personally try to write 40 picture books each year. I do this with the understanding that most of what I write will never leave my computer files, never to be seen by a human being. Mostly, this writing is therapeutic but on occasion, some pieces of gold (my humble opinion) will be written. I usually have to force myself to write a bunch in December. It's worked out well that I was unemployed a couple the past Decembers. My forced writing exercise has had me scour fairy tales to write retellings and one year I was led to write some historical picture books. I'm not sure what this year will bring. As for December, I now have 29 more to go. The other day I wrote two titles, one has potential and the other, none.

Along with my book of future picture book titles, some which will see existence come their way this month, I now have a great idea for a story. It has a great title (clever & witty) and I think the story has quite a bit of hilarity. I told my wife about it and she said, "You better take time with that one. You don't want another editor to tell you, 'I love your title with the white hot heat of a thousand suns,' and then have them ask I send en entirely different story to match the title."

She's right about that one.

I hope to start this new book really soon. First, I'd like to clean my desk so I can type without knocking pieces of paper to the floor.

Fragile Friday

Friday morning I was taking the trash out of the kitchen. I turned around and knocked a tall 16oz glass bottle of Sprite down to the ground. It was the loudest crash I'd heard in a while. Thank God it was empty.

Two hours later, my son had my set of keys. He had returned to the car to retrieve a comic or something. On his way back to the house, he said, "Catch." They sailed right over my head and into the porch window. Crack.

Two hours after that, I bumped a beautiful blue glass off my desk and it splintered into many pieces. I still don't think I've found them all. That glass used to be part of a six piece set. I think we only have three left now.

It sure was a fragile day Friday. It is hard for me to believe there was no yelling, no anger or anything of the sort after all that glass breaking. I tend to get angry very easily, but lately, I have seen things changing for the better.
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    chipper chipper

Stomach Virus

My son has a stomach virus and is vomiting an has a high fever. Hopefully he'll get over the worst of it tonight. Until then, it's Leave it to Beaver on Netflix until he falls asleep.

I'd appreciate any prayers on his behalf. Thanks, Brian
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    gloomy gloomy


Do Any LJ folks tweet? If you do, does it cut into your LJ time? I've never been avid at posting here but do love the LJ friends I have. If you have a Twitter account and I've never tweeted you, please let me know your Twitter name and I'll follow you.
  • Current Music
    Talk Radio

(no subject)

Trying to get a bunch done lately. Wrote my first picture books this year. These are just rough drafts and only one was critiqable. The other two were just for fun or therapy as I sometimes call writing.

Sent out a revision to Whitman finally. Thanks to Alisha Gabriel and Ruth Spiro for taking a final look at it before I sent it out. A big thanks to Rachelle Burk who gave it a super critique. I hope this revision is what the editor is looking for.

Received two form rejects in the mail today, one from Farrar and the other from Sterling. At least the editor from Sterling scribbled a note thanking me for sending in more of my work.

Hope to send out some more well-targeted subs this week. Remember how buddy cop movies were the rage in the 80s? Do buddy space creature picture books sell today? I just re-read mine after a couple years and I think it might work. Anyone willing to take a look in exchange for my critiquing one of yours? 

Now, back to cleaning the house.

So many critiques

I have three critiques to do for my group today. I have another from a friend who has helped me over the years. Need to get busy. But instead, I logged onto LJ. Need to get off now or not finish anything.
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    awake awake

(no subject)

Car broke down and can't fix it. Knee broke down and can't get to the doctor. Laptop breaking down and better be able to replace it or I'll scream.

I sure hope tomorrow is better.
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    aggravated aggravated

Advice needed!!!!

I just read a story I wrote a couple years ago. I absolutely love it. I want to submit it somewhere, but not sure where it might fit. I wrote it as a long picture book with a word count of 1245 words. It even has a short introduction. It's a book about an 8 or 9 year old girl who has a mother with bi-polar disorder. The story is mature in nature but I know kids at 6, 7 or 8 have to deal with this every day and might understand only a little of what is going on.

I want to submit this story but I don't know where to send it.  I need help.

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    tired tired

It's so hot!

I like winter. I can always curl up with a nice book next to the fire and stay warm (does that sound girly?). My point is that in winter we can cover up. We can burn a fire. We can put on more clothes, coats, anything. We can get warm so much easier than we can cool off.

I can't wait for October when it will be back in the 80s here in Texas. It should be around 100 here tomorrow. Egads!!!!
  • Current Music
    Public Enemy (Rebel Without a Pause)