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1. Artist of the Day: David Rosel

Today we look at the work of David Rosel, Cartoon Brew's Artist of the Day!

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2. Registration Open for Spring 2015 NYU Editing Class

I'm delighted to say that I'll again be teaching a Book Editing Manuscript Workshop in Editing Children's and YA Novels at the NYU School of Continuing and Professional Studies, starting in mid-February 2015. I had a ton of fun putting the course together and working with my students this past year, and I'm looking forward to getting to know a new group of aspiring editors next spring.

(And I should say this course is very much intended for publishing professionals who want to know what goes into editorial work or get ideas for developing their own editorial work -- editorial assistants or aspiring assistants, agents, fellow practicing editors. Writers might get something out of it, but the focus is entirely on on how to be an effective editor for others, not on how to improve your own novelistic craft.)

Here's the course description in full:

Calibrating a characterization. Structuring a plot. Developing a theme. Polishing the prose. And bringing all of these elements into perfect balance to help a book become what it should be. In this eight-week course, we’ll learn how to practice these editorial skills, with special attention to the particular requirements of the child and young-adult audiences, and discuss the creation of the right public image for a book through its flap copy, cover, and editorial presentations.
If you're interested, you can see more details and register here, and I'd be happy to answer any questions in the comments. Thank you!

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3. Me and my Bookie...!!


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4. This Book Just Ate My Dog! by Richard Byrne




This is a clever little picture book where the gutter of the book "eats" various items starting with Bella's dog. Soon the gutter starts swallowing the fire truck,  dog rescue truck and Bella also. The girl tosses a note out of the gutter asking the reader to help by shaking the book. Finally, the entire crew of helpers, the girl and and her dog fall out of the gutter. The book's premise sounds scary for little ones, but the drawings are whimsical and with the reader's help it becomes a funny, interactive story.

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5. Reasons for Rejection

If your book is rejected, it doesn't necessarily mean it's poorly written. 

http://annerallen.blogspot.com/2011/05/what-it-really-means-when-your-book.html

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6. Week in Review: November 16-22

Bo at Ballard Creek. Kirkpatrick Hill. Illustrated by LeUyen Pham. 2013. Henry Holt. 288 pages.
[Source: Library]
Black Beauty. Anna Sewell. 1877. 245 pages. [Source: Bought]
A Time to Dance. Padma Venkatraman. 2014.  Nancy Paulsen Books. 320 pages. [Source: Library]
Ghosts of Tupelo Landing. Sheila Turnage. 2014. Penguin. 368 pages. [Source: Library]
Stand There! She Shouted: The Invincible Photographer Julia Margaret Cameron. 2014. Candlewick. 80 pages. [Source: Review copy]
Is He Popenjoy? Anthony Trollope. 1878/1993. Penguin. 632 pages. [Source: Bought]
Living a Prayerful Life. Andrew Murray. 160 pages. [Source: Bought]
Praying Backwards: Transform Your Prayer Life By Beginning IN Jesus' Name. Bryan Chapell. 2005. Baker Publishing. 208 pages. [Source: Bought]
The Christmas Quilt. Patricia Davids. 2011. Love Inspired. 215 pages. [Source: Bought]
The Christmas Cat. Melody Carlson. 2014. Revell. 169 pages. [Source: Review copy]

This week's favorite:

I'm torn between two books this week. I love Black Beauty. I love Bo at Ballard Creek. Black Beauty is a reread. It's a book that completely surprised me the first time around. I don't read horse books. I don't. So falling in love with a horse book surprised me. My love for the book only grew upon rereading it. And it's so quotable.

Bo at Ballard Creek is a great read. It is illustrated by LeUyen Pham. It's set in Alaska in the 1920s, I believe. It very much has a "Little House in the Big Woods" feel to it. I love the style it's written in. I loved many things about it. That being said, is it one I see myself rereading again and again and again? I'm not sure. I definitely would recommend it. So which book do I choose?!

I often choose the book that is more quotable and the book I'm most likely to reread in the future. It was a hard decision though.

© 2014 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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7. FREE Ruff Christmas Book Promotion

Hi Everyone

Bella and Max here from Ruff Life. Do you like our bellasome Christmas Sleigh?

Christmas is just around the corner, so they say, and we have a bellatastic FREE book promotion for you to enter.

We are giving away one signed copy of our crazy, new Christmas book - Ruff Christmas.  It's a full on action packed, comedy extravaganza that will have the whole family in stiches.

Below is the link for you to enter to win. It will make a great Christmas gift or stocking filler.



Goodreads Book Giveaway

Ruff Christmas by B.R. Tracey

Ruff Christmas

by B.R. Tracey

Giveaway ends December 09, 2014.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win

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8. Uplift: The Infinite Possibilities of Imagination

Hi, folks! This month I'm calling the series Uplift. The idea of uplift is to improve socially, culturally, morally, spiritually, etc.  We are all hungry, our hearts beating, struggling for contentment and a sweet spot to thrive. This part of my journey for uplift. 

Short and sweet, this week, folks. I  have to say that my imagination is my biggest gift.  It bubbles around inside me. It is the best part of myself. I had a fun conversation with an imaginary friend this week, and bonus it was not my imaginary friend but Sam Garton's imaginary friend.  Sam is the otter keeper of Otter. You might want to check out this blog: I am Otter

I followed Otter this week.  You can too: 

Here is our conversation.




 I have to say, my conversation with otter was one of my favorite things this week. 

Here's the deal. My capacity for play has never diminished. I still have my favorite doll from childhood. I still color and draw almost every day. I never stop making up stories.  I love to imagine the possibilities. Even in my darkest days, the angel of my imagination stirs within me. 

There are journeys ahead, friends. Trust the infinite possibilities of your imagination. 

I hope that your are jazzed this week!  Please consider letting your imagination run wild. Let it take you beyond the possibilities to the impossible. Open a new door. Turn a new corner. 

I will be back next week with the last in the series. 

A doodle from me: Twos.



When you have exhausted all the possibilities: remember this. You haven't.  Thomas Edison

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9. Spotlight and Giveaway: Twice Tempted by Eileen Dreyer

I am in the middle of Twice Tempted, and my project for the rest of the day is to finish reading it.  Check back soon for a review!

About TWICE TEMPTED:

Fiona Ferguson’s troubles began with a kiss . . . 

It feels like a lifetime ago that Alex Knight saved Fiona from certain doom . . . and stole a soul-shattering kiss for good measure. Wanting nothing more than to keep her safe, he left her in the care of her grandfather, the Marquess of Dourne. But Fiona was hardly safe. As soon as he could, the marquess cast her and her sister out on the streets with only her wits to keep them alive. Alex has never forgotten that long-ago kiss. Now the dashing spy is desperate to make up for failing his duty once before. This time he will protect Fiona once and for all, from a deadly foe bent on taking revenge on the Ferguson line-and anyone who stands in the way . . .

About Eileen Dreyer:

New York Times best-selling author Eileen Dreyer has won five RITA Awards from the Romance Writers of America, which secures her  fourth place in the Romance Writers of America prestigious Hall of Fame. Eileen is an addicted traveler, having sung in some of the best Irish pubs in the world.  Eileen also writes as Kathleen Korbel and has over three million books in print worldwide. Born and raised in Missouri, she lives in St. Louis County with her husband Rick and her two children.

Eileen’s social media:

@EileenDreyer

http://www.EileenDreyer.com

http://facebook.com/EileenDreyer

Buy links:

Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/1FasQzq

Books-A-Million: http://bit.ly/1ukNFH7

IndieBound: http://bit.ly/1xon12i

Amazon: http://amzn.to/11MnbDz

Excerpt:

He arched an eyebrow. “Lord Whitmore again? Please, Fiona. Don’t do that to me. When I hear Lord Whitmore, I think of my uncle, who had six fingers and thought bathing was a trick of the devil.”

She giggled. “I can understand your wanting to maintain the distinction.”

“Every time you call me Lord Whitmore, I will call you Eloise.”

She glared at him, the curtains clutched to her chest like bedclothes, as if she were a maiden in threat of seduction. “You wouldn’t.”

He shrugged. “It is your name. Lady Eloise Fiona Ferguson Hawes.”

“No one knows,” she hissed.

He leaned in very close. “I do.”

She reared back and almost tipping the ladder again. “That is patently unfair.”

He shrugged and reached up for the curtains. “All is fair in love and safety.”

She refused to budge. “I do not believe that is precisely the quote.”

Grinning, he put his foot on the second rung, just beneath her. “Close enough.”

And then he made the mistake of looking into her eyes. Her blue, blue eyes that were suddenly black with arousal. He heard the sharp intake of her breath and saw the erratic pulse beating at the base of her long white throat.

His own body reacted just as it had every time he’d gotten close to her. He focused in on her, his grip on her tightening. Still she didn’t move, caught in the circle of his free arm, her hip pressed against his chest, her mouth just above his. All he had to do was climb another rung, and he could satisfy a four-year-old craving.

His heart was galloping suddenly, and he could feel a bead of sweat roll down his back. He could see a glow on her forehead, her upper lip. Her eyes widened, as if she could read his thoughts, and he could scent something new. Arousal. Need. Hunger. His own body was shaking with it. He swore his cock had taken on a life of its own, and his brain simply shut down.

He leaned a bit closer, his foot still on the step beneath her and paused, giving her a chance to escape, to clout him in the head if necessary. She didn’t. She watched him the way prey might a raptor, unsure and wary. He didn’t blame her. He wasn’t certain how much control he had over himself. It had been so long since he’d had a woman. So much longer since he’d really liked the one he had.

Slowly, so he didn’t startle her into tipping the ladder, he rose up and set his other foot on the rung. She was frozen in place, one hand fisted around the blood-deep velvet, the other clenched against the ladder, as if she was still uncertain whether to use it.

She didn’t. She inhaled, her mouth opening just a bit, as if there wasn’t enough air. As if she were struggling to stay afloat.

Sink, Alex wanted to say as he lifted himself face-to-face with her, mouth-to-mouth. Sink into me.

“I knew it!” a voice screeched behind him, shattering the moment. “What did I tell you about lettin’ them jackanapes in here?”

Fiona reared back, as if he’d attacked her, again throwing the ladder off balance. Alex instinctively pulled back to stabilize them. He pulled back too far and the ladder tipped.

There was a lot of yelling and a couple of muffled thuds as Alex landed on his back, cushioning Fiona’s fall. He wasn’t so lucky.

“Are you all right?” Fiona asked immediately, leaning over him.

“Serves him right,” the housekeeper snapped from the doorway.

He had hit his head so hard he was seeing stars. But he was smelling cinnamon and Fiona, so he really couldn’t complain

“That is enough, Mrs. Quick,” he heard. “Alex? Your eyes are open. Can you hear me?”

Rather than admit that he was too distracted by the plump pressure of her breast against his chest to answer, he simply closed his eyes and groaned. The act would have been unworthy of him if his head weren’t pounding and his arse aching from hard contact with the floor

“Mrs. Quick,” she was saying, her hand on his cheek. “See if Mr. Clemson is outside. Send him for the doctor.”

He knew his injuries didn’t merit such concern. “No doctor.” He blinked a couple of times until the multiple Fionas resolved into one. “I’ll live. My head is a bit bruised is all.”

In retaliation, she took away both her hand and breast, which almost set Alex to groaning again. She actually smacked him on the arm. “Then don’t frighten me like that….again.”

“Don’t know why you let him in here at all,” came the grumble from the doorway.

Untangling them both from the curtains, Fiona sat up. “Thank you, Mrs. Quick. I think we’re all right now.”

“Ya think that, do ya?”
Fiona gave her the kind of glare that betrayed her aristocratic heritage. The housekeeper, still grumbling, clasped her hands in a parody of good servile behavior and stalked off down the hall.

Fiona looked back down to where Alex lay, and he could see the cost of the last tumble on her face. He should have been outraged. He was lying in a nest of curtains with a fresh headache and the humiliation of his fall, and she was…laughing.

She tried so hard not to. She held her hand to her mouth. She shook her head. He could see her shoulders heave. He would have chastised her, except the minute he opened his mouth, he burst out laughing, too.

“You are not very beneficial to my amour propre,” he wheezed up at her.

She couldn’t stop laughing, full-throated, full-bellied, as if too much suppressed laughter had simply spilled over. “I…I….didn’t…”

“Mean it,” he managed, making it up as far as sitting beside her. “Yes, I know.”

She frantically shook her head. “Think anything could be so…funny!” She was gasping, bent over her hands at her waist. “The look on your face!”

He had meant to get up, to reassert his mastery of the situation. He refused to sacrifice this perfect moment with her on the floor. Wrapping an arm around her shoulder, he wiped at the tears that coursed down her cheeks.

“It’s not that funny,” he groused.

She started laughing again. “Oh, yes it is. You can have no idea of how long it’s been since I had the chance to laugh. Since I last saw your sister, I think.”

He had to grin. “Well, yes. Pip would set anybody to laughing. She’s a ridiculous little thing.”

For that he got a resounding smack on his chest. “Do not dare speak ill of my best friend.” She hiccuped, her eyes widening a bit. “My only friend, actually. Except for Sarah and Lizzie. And now that Sarah is married to my brother, I have no idea at all how we will meet again.”

There was the faintest plaintive note in her voice that made Alex want to curl her completely into his arms and shield her from hurt. Dear God, how lonely she must have been. “I promise,” he said instead. “I fully respect my sister’s loyalty. It’s her good sense I frequently question.”

Her breathing was evening out. She nodded. “Pip does have a knack for acting before thinking.”

“She’s like a whirlwind.”

“She needs to finally capture her Beau,” Fiona said with a definite nod. “That would settle her down.”

Alex snorted. “Poor Beau. He’d never have another moment’s peace.”

And for a long moment, they just sat there in a pool of sunlight and velvet, his arm around her and her head on his shoulder. It felt so good. So whole.

It couldn’t last. If he didn’t move, he’d damn well take her here on the floor. He opened his mouth to tell her, and then made the mistake of meeting her gaze again.

Her lips were still parted, but she wasn’t laughing anymore. He could see the pulse jumping at her throat, and her hands were clenched again, as if she were trying hard to keep them to herself.

He didn’t know why. Lifting his own hand, he cupped her cheek. Again he gave her the chance to pull away. Again she didn’t. His own heart started to skip around. He was rock hard. There was no longer a question. He had to kiss her.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Spotlight and Giveaway: Twice Tempted by Eileen Dreyer appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

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10. First Five Pages December Workshop Opens November 29

The First Five Pages November Workshop has come to an end.  This group worked so hard on their revisions, and it showed! A huge thanks to our guest mentor, J.R. Johansson (I can’t wait to read CUT ME FREE!), to Pam Glauber, my editor for The Exceptionals, and now a free lance editor, and of course to all of our fabulous permanent mentors! You can check out the final revisions here: First Five Pages November Workshop

Our December workshop will open for entries at noon on Saturday November 29, 2014. We'll take the first five Middle Grade, Young Adult, or New Adult entries that meet all guidelines and formatting requirements. In addition to our wonderful permanent mentors, we have the talented PETER SALOMON, author of HENRY FRANKS and ALL THOSE BROKEN ANGELS, and agent GINGER CLARK!  

So get those pages ready – First Five Pages December Workshop opens in one week. Click here to get the rules!

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11. ANGRY.

Dilettantes and cons.

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12. Art Journal Pages

 These are the art journal pages I did in Clermont-Ferrand last weekend:
The flight took about 1.5 hour, so I had a nice pocket of time to draw my surroundings. I felt the guy next to me eying the pages curiously, but he didn't dare saying anything. I wonder if he would have, if I had also added colour, pulling out waterbrush and mini watercolor kit... The flight was a bit bumpy at some points, so here and there the lines are a bit wobbly, which, in my eyes, adds character to this drawing.
Haven't worn any other shoes since buying these - I totally love them!


What a treasure, this small tea shop around the corner of the Cathedral! I came back the next day again to warm up after spending several hours outside, and chatted with the owner and her daughter. I Showed them my sketchbook and talked about the event 'Rendez-vous du carnet de Voyage', which I was there for.
Stopped for a quick coffee here and drew the people. When I left, I discovered the bar was called 'Bar Des Beaux Arts': Bar Of Fine Arts. Perfect for this weekend full of inspiration and art.

A quick drawing I did while waiting for my lunch. I used one of those multicoloured pencils, I found at a museum shop when I was in Madrid this spring.


I just had to stop to draw this cute cafe in the middle of Jardin Lecoq from the 1930s. There were so many bright reds there, that contrasted wonderfully with the green window frames. I limited myself to a red, green and blue pencil.


I hardly ever do this: take a photo of a building, view or street, and then draw from that for reference. But now I did. I had a lovely walk around town and took some pictures on my way. Then it started to get dark and wanted to enjoy a relaxed last evening in my hotel room. There, I used the photos for reference, and really enjoyed the different way of looking at shapes and shadows, then when drawing 'live'. I added the drawing of the door the next morning, in the train. Again, it was a bit of a bumpy flight, and it came out way wobblier than I intended.
...and a drawing on the flight back home to Amsterdam on Monday morning, where a pile of work was waiting for me!

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13. Prapples to Flashpoint in 5 Seconds or Less

These days, I'm really just aiming for one post a month.  That way I will (hopefully) never fail!

Jared

I haz discovered a new favorite fruit.  They are called Asian pears, apple pears (or maybe it's pear apples...) Japanese pears, Chinese pears and a plethora of things in between, but I call them Prapples.  They are a combo of the best part of the two fruits.  They are crispy like apples, but have the taste of pear.

Cook's Thesaurus
They are AMAZING in salad, with some fab apple cider vinegar!  True story!!  (The gif below does NOT reveal my true feelings about prapples - I simply found it while browsing da Google, cracked up, and felt compelled to share it with all you all.  Prapples are GOOD!  :-)
 
Castle
 I have been very busy making things these day.  It's LOVELY making things.

https://www.etsy.com/listing/210728988/tardis-ordinary-adventures-in-time-and?

https://www.etsy.com/listing/208780647/the-dark-flight?
 

https://www.etsy.com/listing/207133257/play-ball?ref=related-3


https://www.etsy.com/listing/207118638/butterfly-kisses?ref=related-4

Some of the "new" stuff in my shoppe.  It's nice having new stuff.  For a long time it was sort of just languishing with old stuff, but I have been a bit craftier and doubled my inventory.  HooRAH! :-)

J2 Dancing
 
Since I apparently cannot live my life without delving into new (for me) TV shows, I would like to introduce you, yet again, to a new TV show!

Flashpoint

This one is really good.  It's about a police team, Team One of the SRU (Strategic Response Unit) who tends to answer the "hot calls" of a crime gone wrong or going wrong.

Greg Parker


First, there's Sergeant Greg Parker.  He's the "Boss" and the team's lead negotiator.  During a situation he's the one to make contact and try to "talk" the subject down so they can resolve the situation peacefully and non-lethally.




Ed Lane



Then there's Ed Lane.  He's the team leader, tactical operator and a crack sniper.  He is often the person in charge of taking down the subject if the situation escalates and there is no other option other than lethal.





Spike


Michelangelo "Spike" Scarlatti is demolitions and tactical.  He is often to be found in the van doing fabulous things with a computer, figuring out info on both subjects and victims for the Team to use to de-escalate a subject.





Wordy



Kevin "Wordy" Wordsworth specializes in entry and hand-to-hand.  He is the "family man" on the show and an overall sweetheart.






Sam



Sam Braddock is ex-military.  He tends to take over as team leader and tactical whenever Ed can't, and is usually lead sniper.






Jules


Julianna "Jules" Callaghan is the team's only female member, and she is awesome sauce.  She tends to be the one to do negotiating if Greg can't, and she is also often called upon to be the sniper.





Lew



Lewis "Lou" Young is the less lethal weapons specialist on Team One, often backing up Spike when it comes to bombs and research.






This show is crazy, because not only is it a GREAT show, but all the team members are like a family.  They have each others' backs all the time, and their one goal is to "keep the peace."  It also does backstory on the members, so you grow fonder and fonder of them as the seasons go.  I tend to shed a lot of tears at the end of each episode.  They do a great job of finishing up the story and having this song playing in the background that totally depicts the whole episode perfectly.

At the moment I've just started Season Four, and I have a TERRIBLE feeling about one of my favourite members on the team.  I'm not going to say anything, in case I end up being right, and if I am I'll probably cry even harder.  :-)

Okay, my life is boring.  I'll leave you and love you and post again sometime in December.  Probably just in time for Christmas.

Happy Thanksgiving, Happy Advent, Happy St. Nicholas Day in case I don't pop on long enough to commemorate those holidays with their own special posts.

God bless!!

Cat

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14. The First Thanksgiving!

The_First_Thanksgiving_cph.3g04961

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15. Piece by Piece

I have been absent from the blog for ages.... major life changes kept me away.

It's been a tough year, but piece by piece 



  I have been putting my life back together.

My family and friends have been amazingly supportive. 
 

  I am so so grateful.



Quilt for my daughter's new apartment in Brooklyn.

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16. gods and goddess

Question: I was wondering if I were to write a book with gods and goddesses that are already in mythology if it was better to recreate/add my own version/ideas

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17. Natalie Dormer Adresses Captain Marvel Rumours (Sort Of) ...and that Aint MY Typo!

We're going to read a lot about "who is playing Captain Marvel" so brace yourselves!

Natalie Dormer Adresses Captain Marvel Rumours (Sort Of)



'Game of Thrones' and 'The Hunger Games' actress Natalie Dormer has addressed speculation (albeit indirectly) that she may be a contender for the title role in 'Captain Marvel.'

The 32-year old actress from Reading already has a Marvel movie on her CV, following a small role in ‘Captain America: the First Avenger’ - but this hasn’t kept her name from cropping up frequently on fan-casting lists for the role of USAF officer turned cosmic superheroine Carol Danvers.

Dormer’s roles in ‘Game of Thrones’ and ‘The Hunger Games’ films have seen her gain an enthusiastic fan following, leaving many to suggest she’s overdue a prominent leading role in a Marvel or DC movie.

Asked about this by Collider, Dormer’s response was diplomatic - and, cannily, did not mention any specific roles.

"I’m not going to comment about potential jobs in the future because that’s a rabbit hole to go down and get caught up in, but all I’ll say is I’ll go where the good scripts are. For me, ‘Catching Fire,’ ‘Game of Thrones,’ all my other work, I’ll just go where the good scripts are. 

"I love being part of huge mega blockbusters and I love being a part of small independent films and small stage. I’m just looking at the material. I want to know the character and I want to know the text, and then the decision I make from there."
image


Still, should Dormer find herself in contention for any future blockbusters, she certainly wouldn’t be the first ‘Game of Thrones’ star to do so, with Lena Heady (‘300’) and Kit Harington (‘Pompeii’) having enjoyed big screen success. Richard Madden and Emilia Clarke are set to do likewise in ‘Cinderella’ and ‘Terminator: Genisys’ respectively.


On the superhero movie front, ‘Game of Thrones’ alumni Jason Momoa is lined to play DC’s ‘Aquaman,’ whilst 2013’s ‘Thor: the Dark World’ was directed by frequent ‘Game of Thrones’ director Alan Taylor.

Picture Credit: Lionsgate, HBO

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18. How my characters speak as compared to the narrative

Question: I am writing a book that takes place in the medieval period, swords, bows, knights, kings that type of thing. I have done research on how they

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19. BilBOlbul Newsletter


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20. Cast Shadow in the Foreground


I painted a watercolor demo during a daylong visit to Favilli Studio, a multidisciplinary design group in South Pasadena. 

I walked down to the Arroyo with a group of designers and chose this view toward the York Avenue Bridge. I wanted to paint the forms—arch bridge, trees, and embankment—as realistically as I could.


But the light was overcast the whole time, so I decided to invent some light and shadow effects. 

I figured that I could make the planes of the retaining wall much more clear if I cast a foliage shadow across it, with the dappled spots of light following the vertical, horizontal, and diagonal planes.


The cast shadow serves two purposes. It invites the viewer to move from the dappled foreground shadow, where they seem to be standing, into the brightly lit middle ground, where Jeanette is standing.

The foliage shadow also helps to define the plane changes as the ground slants up and over the embankment wall.

Shadows can be a powerful tool for expressing plane changes, as Arthur Guptill demonstrates in this plate from Color in Sketching and Rendering (1935).
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Previous posts:
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Learn more methods in my video  Watercolor in the Wild

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21. ‘Dumb Run’ by Caleb Wood

A collection of ideas too half-baked to stand alone, amassed towards no pinnacle of expression.

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22. Yay or nay

By now you either have given up on NaNoWriMo or know you stand a good chance of “winning” ten days from now.

If you’re in he first camp, I understand, I’ve been there before. For a number of reasons - lack of time, other commitments, stalling of story, loss of confidence, seemingly insurmountable odds of completing it - the wind has been taken out of your sails. You started November enthused and with a killer story idea, but the thing beat you down. That is the nature of this beast. 

However, one not need feel like a failure. Take solace in knowing you’ve got the start of something great. Maybe not the complete first draft, ready to be fine-tuned, you had hoped for, but a beginning. That spark of an idea that once held such promise, though now stalled, still has potential. It had potential then, it holds it now. Give yourself a little time away from it, allow it to stew in the subconscious, then come back to it in January and try again. 

If you’re in the second group, I’m pleased to finally be among you. At least I will have 50K words by then. It doesn’t feel like the story will have been completed. As this is different territory for me, I’m not sure what is required to receive that treasured prize of being allowed to print my own “I Did It” certificate, or a new car, or free trip to Disneyland, or whatever it is they do to reward winners. Again, I’m new here and am not sure the procedure for officially completing the marathon. Something from the NaNoWriMo site tells how to validate and “win.” I personally have promised myself a massage once “the end” is reached. 

There still is a week and a weekend to go, so keep writing. And if NaNo got the best of you, go get your massage anyway. You’ve earned it, too.


(This article also posted at http://writetimeluck.blogspot.com)

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23. November 23 Meme


Okay, here are some things that make November 23 special(and if you're in the Northern hemisphere you will be reading this on November 22. Too bad! I'm lying in bed on Sunday morning posting this to the world)

Events


534 BCE Thespis of Icaria becomes the word's first actor to portray a character other than himself. In other words, the world's first actor! He did some other things to get plays going. His very name is used as a term for an actor, "thespian". And it all began On This Day! If interested, check out this blog post about the origins of Showbiz! 



1644  The poet John Milton publishes Aeropagitica, a pamphlet against censorship, due to a recent "licensing" system produced by Parliament -  not that he had anything against book-burning of "bad" books, he was a terribly grumpy man, but he says at least publish the things first, then argue against them(and you can always burn them afterwards). Hmm, sounds familiar. Like certain Aussie politicians who recently argued about "freedom of speech" for horrible people because we can always argue with them... Still. He wrote lots of fabulous poetry, crotchety man or not.

A quote from this: "A good book is the precious lifeblood of a master spirit, embalmed and treasured up on purpose to a life beyond life" is up in the New York Public Library.
1963  The first episode of Dr Who, "An Unearthly Child" is broadcast. Unfortunately it had to compete with the news of President Kennedy's assassination, but after fifty years it's still going strong. And in the last season, we returned to Coal Hill School, where the latest companion was working as a teacher. Yes, Coal Hill was also in Remembrance Of The Daleks, but it was only one story and it was set just after the first Doctor and his companions had left.

Birthdays

1892 Erte, that amazing illustrator and designer who did all those wonderful Art Deco pictures. Kerry Greenwood's heroine Phryne Fisher wears his designer clothes. He also did stuff for Hollywood silent movies, including Ben-Hur.  


1909 Nigel Tranter, author of a whole lot of historical fiction, mostly about Scotland. I've read some of his books, which are good stuff. 

1923 Gloria Whelan, a prolific US author of children's and YA novels. I'm embarrassed to say I haven't read any of her 50-odd books as yet, but I thought anyone with that much of a track record deserves a mention here. 

Holidays and observances

* This is the feast day of Alexander Nevsky, the Russian hero who has been made a saint in the Russian Orthodox Church and inspired a lot of film and music stuff.

* It's Rudolph Maister Day in Slovenia. He was a military officer who also wrote poetry.

* On a truly frivolous note, it's the earliest day on which Black Friday can happen - strictly a  US thing, coming just after Thanksgiving and the opening of Christmas shopping. Amazing they leave it that long!

I got all these from Wikipedia, a very useful source for such stuff. All images are Creative Commons.

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24. Black Friday Sale Coupons


Sharing Black Friday Sale Coupons for DontTouchBaby.com and our Etsy shop! These codes are good through Sunday, November 30th, on most of our books, bookmarks, baby signs and other baby shower gifts!

Note that the DontTouchBaby.com Bonus Coupon can be used in addition to our Thanksgiving coupon, now through 11/30 only.


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TOP SELLERS this week:

Life with Jesse Daniels

Brown Boot Don't Touch the Baby Sign
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As a reminder, you can always view our sales and DAILY DEAL and reach our site through these other websites as well:

WashYourHandsSigns.comPremieSigns.comCHDSigns.com and CarSeatSigns.com!

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25. Happy Birthday, Terry Gilliam!

A collection of animation work by Terry Gilliam on the occasion of his 74th birthday.

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