Wednesday, February 29, 2012


I've never done a Road Trip Wednesday before, but I'm slowly running out of ideas for posts so I thought I should start. I enjoy reading other blogs that participate in this weekly 'blog carnival' sponsored by YA Highway. This week's question- What was the best book you read in February?

I read five books this month, filling my quota, mainly thanks to that vacation I took with the husband. I also had time to go to the library thanks to my mother-in-law being in town. Usually I only go once every other month because I can never browse books for myself. Out of those five, there wasn't one that absolutely LOVED. Sad to say, but it happens. But the question asks what the best book was, not what book I loved reading in February. And with my confession I have to say that the best book was Abandon by Meg Cabot. Here's the description from Amazon:

Though she tries returning to the life she knew before the accident, Pierce can't help but feel at once a part of this world, and apart from it. Yet she's never alone . . . because someone is always watching her. Escape from the realm of the dead is impossible when someone there wants you back.

But now she's moved to a new town. Maybe at her new school, she can start fresh. Maybe she can stop feeling so afraid.

Only she can't. Because even here, he finds her. That's how desperately he wants her back. She knows he's no guardian angel, and his dark world isn't exactly heaven, yet she can't stay away . . . especially since he always appears when she least expects it, but exactly when she needs him most.

But if she lets herself fall any further, she may just find herself back in the one place she most fears: the Underworld.

I loved the Mediator series by Meg Cabot. I thought it was sweet, romantic, and unique. What can I say, I'm a sucker for good old fashioned romance. I think Meg Cabot is a very talented writer. The Princess Diaries is an incredibly popular series, and for good reason. She has a great way of blending humor with drama. I think the reason I didn't love Abandon was because I wanted a little bit more information. We're left hanging with a lot of unfinished business by the end of the book. Certain plotlines wareere left by the wayside and  I want answers. There is next to no action in the story, which doesn't bother me all that much, but I kind of wanted a show down of some sort. Pierce also tends to be a wee bit annoying. With that said, I did enjoy the overall experience of reading Abandon. It made me laugh, feel a little flutter with the romance, and it made me WANT answers. Sometimes you start a book in a new series and you find yourself not caring about what happens to any of the characters. I actually want to know how all of it is going to end. The next one in the series comes out this summer, and I'm looking forward to getting a more in depth look at the Underworld and the relationship between Pierce and John.

There it is, the best book I read in February. If you guys have any suggestions for books you've recently enjoyed, please let me know, I'm looking to add to my ridiculously long TBR pile.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Get Up Off Of That Thang! (And Get Writing)

I've heard it said that when do something for two weeks straight it becomes habit. Whether it's exercise, waking up earlier, writing, two weeks is the magic number.

In the past I've found this to be true. Earlier this year I made a goal of waking up a half hour earlier. And now I can't sleep in past 7:30. I'm a total sleep whore, so this is a miracle. And I'm proud that I wake up early enough to get things done around the house before the kids wake up. (Not that you can do much with a watermelon attached to what used to be your stomach.) This also worked really great when it came to my writing. I know many people say that you should write EVERY DAY, but that's just not feasible for me with three little ones and another on the way. Instead I made a goal of writing down two thousand words a week. This is perfect because then if I only get a couple hundred (and often times ZERO) down, I know that I can make up for it on days when I have more time. Things were going great, I was on a streak. My story was really going somewhere. Then I got sick. And I lost any and all brain functionality to the illness.

Now I'm finding it harder and harder to get back into the groove of things. Once your schedule is shook up in such a way, it's hard to get back into it. It's a lot like getting an injury when you're exercising. One day you're on that treadmill getting to your goal for the day, and then, next thing you know one of your kids throws a toy right at your feet and you end up twisting an ankle. (Yes my children like to do that, and no I have not YET received an injury from it, thankfully). You go to the doctor, you're told to rest. You can't do much of anything. Then, once you're healed, you have to strengthen your injured ankle before getting back to it. You can't just jump right back in and start running however many miles a day again. It takes time. And it's incredibly frustrating to lose all that hard work. That's where I'm at right now. I'm in the recovery stage. I'm strengthening my writing muscles before getting back on that treadmill and doing my weekly miles. At times I feel like I'm making no progress at all, but when you take into account that I wasn't writing at all a few weeks ago, I know I'm doing better.

If any of you are struggling, trying to get back into the writing groove, you're not alone. Keep working. It may be just a few hundred words this week (maybe less), but pretty soon you'll be back on the track you want to be on. Until then, I'll keep exercising my writing muscles.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Five for Friday

1. Wow, what a hectic week. Getting back into the groove of things was harder than I anticipated after my mini-vacay.

2. I finished reading Abandon by Meg Cabot last night and quite enjoyed it. I was worried because the reviews I'd read weren't very...enthusiastic. But it was my kind of story. The main complaint was the lack of action, but for me action isn't necessary to keep me interested. I definitely reccomend it.

3. I'm feeling a total slump in my writing. It's been WAY harder to pick up where I left off than I thought it would be. I think it's my lack of energy combined with the approach of D-Day (due date) that's set me in this funk.

4. I watched The Vow last week with the husband as part of our Valentine's Day date. It was sweet, but I was hoping for a little bit more. It did make me cry...a little, but it doesn't take much to make that happen nowadays.

5. Everyone I know keeps going on and on about Pinterest, but I can't seem to get into it. I think my online presence is already monopolized, and it's just one more thing that I consider a waste of time- no offence to ANYONE who does enjoy spending time on the site, it's just not for me.

Hope you guys have a great weekend! I'll be busy cleaning out our garage. How fun!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

First Campaign Challenge: Presley's Revenge

It's finally time! The rules are below;
Write a short story/flash fiction story in 200 words or less, excluding the title. It can be in any format, including a poem. Begin the story with the words, “Shadows crept across the wall”. These five words will be included in the word count.

If you want to give yourself an added challenge (optional), do one or more of these:
  • end the story with the words: "everything faded." (also included in the word count)
  • include the word "orange" in the story
  • write in the same genre you normally write
  • make your story 200 words exactly!
My story is exactly 200 words. I also included orange and 'everything faded'.

Presley's Revenge:

 Shadows crept across the wall. The hazy orange of daylight broke them into crisscrossing patterns along the rotting floorboards. Presley stepped quietly, her bare feet grazing against the splintering wood, quaking beneath her weight. The still silence quickened her heartbeat, making the sweat stick against her clothes.

It was sleeping. But she knew better. It was more than aware of her presence in the abandoned farmhouse. This was the moment she’d been waiting for- a chance to kill the thing that had destroyed her family, taking everything precious from her. Their blood curdling screams still woke her during the worst of nights, the darkness smothering her with memories.  

Just a few more steps and she would be there. Presley told herself to calm down. Over five years of training would help her to survive what awaited behind the door. But did she want to live after it was all over? Nothing would be left to keep her going. No revenge plan to push her in a life she no longer desired. Death would be a welcome friend.

The knob was within arm’s reach. The cold metal slipped a little against her wet palm. The door creaked open and everything faded.

If you liked it, go on over to Rachel Harrie's blog and vote. I'm entry 105.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Playing Tag- Campaign Style!

By a few of you! Tagging is taking place around the Campaign world, and it's my turn to answer some questions. Thus far I've been given the task of answering these questions by Julie Daines, Daniel Noyes, and Alyssa. Since I don't want to answer 33 questions about myself (I'm really boring) I'm taking a few I like from each these wonderful people.

1. What's your favorite holiday? Thanksgiving. Why? Food, food, and more food.

2. If you could choose one superpower what would it be? Teleportation, hands down. The idea of being able to travel anywhere in the world with the snap of my fingers is so freaking cool.

3. What comedy do you end up watching over and over again as the years go by? This one is tough, because there are quite a few that I I'm going to cheat a little on this one. When I want something with a bit of romance, The Proposal- This one is fairly new, but I can't get enough of Sandra Bullock in that scene in the woods. But something a little older (but still fairly recent to most) and a bit crass, The Hot Chick- just the idea of Rob Schneider switching bodies with the lovely Rachel Macadams gets me every time. For the holidays, Elf- I love Will Ferrel in this, he's so sweet and innocent, and completely hilarious. If you were to ask my husband this question he'd probably list every Adam Sandler movie known to man.

4. Do you think love can last forever? I'm a bit of a romantic, so yes, I think it can. But only if a couple is willing to WORK at it, because it's not all fun and games. You're going to get on each other's nerves, you'll fight about stupid things, you'll go to sleep angry at each other every now and then (whoever said you shouldn't do this obviously doesn't understand that sometimes couples need time to cool off and calm themselves). Love is made up of a combination of those bad things outweighed by the good. I think somethimes people give up too easily when it comes to a long lasting relationships. If you have realistic expectations of love, instead of some overromanticized notion, then you can do it.

5. What's your favorie climate? I would love to live in San Diego, I've heard that it's not only beautiful (and clean) but the weather is pretty much perfect. Although I would miss the snow every now and then.

6. If you could put yourself in any book, which would it be? Hmmm... another toughy. I guess I would go with a classic Pride and Prejudice. I would love meet to Elizabeth and Darcy in the flesh.

7. What's your favorite TV show? My favorite of all time would have to be Friends. Such a classic, and I can watch over and over again and still find myself laughing. Chandler is probably my favorite character on the show.

8. What is your favorite animal? A white tiger. They're so elegant and beautiful, and sadly on the endangered animal list.

9. What's your favorite food? On most days, chocolate. Other days it varies from pizza to a good old fashioned cheeseburger, to Butter chicken. But in all honesty, I don't discriminate when it comes to food. I like what I like, and a favorite can vary day from day.

10. If you could visit anywhere in world, where would it be? Italy, or Greece. I told my husband for our ten year anniversary we're definitely heading over to Italia.

11. Biggest Fear? A zombie apocolypse- no joke!

I'm going to choose a new follower to tag. Some of you have stopped by and said 'hi' and I'm having fun visiting everyone's blogs. So, I randomly chose...JULIA KING over at Writing Jewels. Thanks for reading my randomness, hope you found it entertaining!

And my questions are:

1. What's your favorite book?
2. What inspires your writing?
3. Where's your favorite place to write?
4. If you could plan ahead, what would want your last meal to be?
5. If you had to participate in one extreme sport, what would it be?
6. What's your biggest fear?
7. Vampire or werewolf?
8. Favorite writin snack?
9. What's your favorite scary movie?
10. Why did you start writing?
11. Your favorite day of the year?

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

A Word of Thanks

I just wanted to drop a line while I am out of town to say thanks for all the kind words you guys left on my Origins blog post. I truly believe that everyone has the ability to pursue their dreams, whether it's writing, or in another field all together.

Right now I'm sitting in a hotel, waiting for my husband to get off work.Yes, we're taking a vacay while he's working. He's only gone until 2 in afternoon and then we have the rest of the day to hang out. So I have half a day to relax, write, read, eat, whatever I want. This is also REALLY weird since I've never been away from my kids for more than five hours. It's a little scary, but much needed, especially with my due date only eight weeks away. I'll be back on Friday. Until then I hope to be able to stop by some of your blogs, and get some writing done.

And I hope you guys had an awesome Valentine's day, and if you didn't celebrate, an awesome Tuesday!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Origins Blogfest

DL Hammons, Alex J. Cavanaugh , Katie Mills, and Matthew MacNish should be thanked for hosting this blogfest! I love Origin stories in comic book series, but mine isn't nearly as exciting. But I love reading all of yours, so I thought maybe someone out there in the vast world of the Interwebz might be interested in mine.
Without further ado, The Origin of Prerna Pickett, Writing Extrodinare:

It all started on the day I was born...okay, maybe it was a little bit later than that. I spare you nitty gritty details. I've loved writing for as long as I can remember. Whether they were a mystery involving a classmate named Nevada, or cheesy love songs that made no sense. My mom is a poet. At one point she wanted to write a novel (she still wants to when she retires). So when I showed interest in the art of writing, she was more than encouraging. That's when I learned that you could write for a living. That making up stories was an actual profession! I went around telling my family and friends that I wanted to be an author when I grew up. It sounded magical.

Then as I got older I started thinking that it wasn't going to happen. I wasn't special enough to be an author. It seemed like a pipe dream. I continued to work on things, but never really took it seriously. Back in '04 I graduated HS and went away to college. My mom got me a brand new laptop and I felt quite fancy. One day I was sitting in my dorm room all alone, while my roommate was in class, and I decided to write down a story. It sucked. It sucked so hard  I immediately deleted it. And even though I only wrote a thousand words at most, I felt absolutely ridiculous for thinking I could actually do something that had been calling to me from an early age.Three years later I got pregnant with my second little guy. That's when this overwhelming need to write started to take over. I couldn't push it away anymore, shove it into some dark place where dreams go to die.

So, I sat down and started the story that had been gnawing at me since high school. The words flowed from my brain to my fingers with more ease than I thought imaginable. I reread the words. They weren't half bad. Then I thought 'hmmm...maybe I shouldn't have given up so easily the first time.' The days that followed were filled with more words, coming at me faster than I could keep pace. And I never looked back.

What can you learn from my story? Don't give up so easily. Don't think you're not special enought to pursue your dreams. There's a reason you have that feeling eating away at you. And you'll never know until you've tried if it's worth it.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Five for Friday

1. So I reached 100 followers this past week! It's a little surreal that there are that many people out there interested in reading my thoughts. And welcome to all you new faces! I wish I had some awesome giveaway or some kind of gift of appreciation, but I'm boring. I'll try to think of something. I want to have one sooner rather than later.

2. I'm going around and introducing myself to my fellow campaigners. I had  a positive experience last time, and met many of you through it. I know it'll be just as great this time around. I'm going to participate in as many of challenges as possible, but with due date fast (not fast enough!) approaching, I'm not sure how many I'll be able to do.

3. I only got few hundred words down this week. Better than last week(not hard to beat ZERO), but I'm still feeling a little wobbly in the head as I recover from this illness.

4. I've read three books in the last two weeks. Two were good, and one was...not so much. It had a great premise, and could have gone beyond my expectations, but it was kind of stale. I think the biggest reason I didn't enjoy it is because I didn't feel anything for the main characters. I didn't connect with them, and quite frankly, I didn't like them. Oh well, sometimes it happens.

5. I have to tell you guys that the best breakfast I've ever had was on my Honeymoon (we went to LA) at the Original Pancake House. I hate pancakes and this place converted me. I'm so freaking excited because they opened one here in town! Woohoo! So you all know what I'll be doing the weekend (stuffing my face).

Hope you guys have a fun weekend filled with yummy food!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012


It's that time of year again! I had a lot of fun the last time around I did Rachel Harrie's Campaign Challenge, so why not again? It gives me the opportunity to get to know more of my fellow writers, and to be involved in some great challenges. So, click here if you want to join the fun. Get to know more of your fellow writers. Get involved in the challenges. I look forward to seeing you all there!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Genuine Insecurities

Sometimes I think I talk too much. That I laugh way too loud at a joke. I worry that I'm one someone who likes to talk and not really listen people, that I enjoy the sound of my own voice. I can get loud in certain settings. Well, mainly when I'm around people I'm truly comfortable with. I enjoy swapping stories with people, but maybe I tend to overshare. Those are things that start to come to mind AFTER I leave a social setting. While I'm there I get so caught up in the moment I never stop to overanalyze something I said or something someone else said. These are insecurities that come to the surface after the storm has left a village ravaged (or in my case, after I've talked my head off and quite possibly hogged a conversation). But they're not enough to make me stop being me. I try to be more concious of what I say and do around others, but for the most part I shrug it off. I figure it's too late, what was said was said, what I did is done, and there's nothing more I can do about it. If I inadvertently hurt someone's feelings I'm more than happy to apologize.

When it comes to my writing all I seem to carry around with me are my insecurities. While I'm lost in the throes of a great scene these insecurities don't seem to plague me. It's after, much like with my social awkwardness fears, that they come to life. But unlike those, I can't seem to escape my writing insecurities. They keep me up at night. They make me doubt myself. They make me feel like less than I am.

Okay, I know I'm not a BAD writer, but does that mean I'm any good? There's no real way to overcome these insecurites. Even when someone compliments me on my writing, I tend to ignore it, instead focusing on all the things I'm NOT doing right. It's incredibly frustrating, but I think this is something that plagues all of us writers, for better or for worse. It's what drives us to be better. The truth is that you'll never get down things down on paper the way you view them in your head. It'll always be a little off. That's not necessarily a bad thing. Often what I put on paper molds itself into something I didn't even think possible. When I started Fire and Ice, I never imagined that I could create a world with so much magic to it. With Cursed I'm finding that sometimes the bad guy isn't really the bad guy. What we started with in our heads turns into something more meaningful. I think so, anyway. It's just a simple outline of a map that shapes into something more concrete as we go along.

So, with that said, I'm still insecure with my writing. I don't think I'll ever not be. But I love that I've come to accept my writing for what it is. It may be flawed, but those flaws add up to something I didn't even imagine could take place. And of course there's this thing called editing. If nothing else, you know if a scene isn't exactly where you want it to be you can go back and erase it. Very unlike the mistakes you make in life.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Five for Friday

1. The sickness has taken over our home. It makes me feel blech.

2. I have not been at all productive this week. No words written, no editing, nothing. My brain has refused to do much of anything. All it wants to do is sleep. I like that idea.

3. I went to the library (okay, I did ONE productive thing) and picked up about eight books. A few that were familiar, others I'd never heard of. I'll let you know which ones I like.

4. It's Super Bowl weekend!!! Even if you don't watch the sport the rest of the year, this one game brings out the fan out in all of us. Along with plenty of yummy food including wings, pizza, chips and dip, and so much more.

5. Hope everyone has a fun and SAFE weekend. Don't do anything too crazy. I hope to be better by next week. Plenty of rest and fluids are a must.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

A Blogfest

I've been absent this week, but in my defense I'm fighting a cold, have house guests, and am just plain old exhausted. I wanted to stop by and tell you about a blogfest taking place on February 13th hosted by DL Hammons, Katie Mills, Alex Cavanaugh , and Mattthew MacNish called Origins. The point is get on your blog on February 13th and share the story of your writing origins. Click here to sign up and for more details. I'm not sure if I'll be back tomorrow or not. I'll definitely try to be back on track next week...but we'll see. I hope you all are doing wonderful. I hope to stop by some of your blogs later.