Showing posts from August, 2006

Updates and Book Fun

First, a few updates on previous posts:

1) I’m still weird.
Today I found myself pulling out my poisons book to research snake bites. Which is worse—that I already own that book and have it underlined and highlighted, or that I’m rereading portions for a scene involving a nine-year-old girl who gets bitten by a rattlesnake?

I must be weird and sadistic.

2) The soccer season is improving.
The game following the Yellow Jackets fiasco was a world apart. We lost again, but this time everyone was able to leave the field with their dignity intact.

Even better, my daughters have been expressing how glad they are that they have friends who don’t care about things like clothes and hair, because "those things don’t matter."

My seven-year-old even rolled her eyes at the idea of only being friends with someone if they’re wearing cute clothes. "That’s just dumb, Mom. Clothes don’t make a good friend."

Maybe we should make a banner out of that and hang it at the high school.

3) Writing …

Dead Horse Pulp

I am probably the biggest proponent of writing critique groups I know of. From personal experience, I know how valuable good feedback is. After years of writing, reading, conferences, and rejections, my first book was accepted—not even close to coincidentally—after it went through the critique process. My writing has improved by light years since I began attending this same group six and a half years ago. I have no intention of quitting; I don’t dare.

The group has morphed over the years as members have moved and we’ve gotten new people; I think it’s stronger and better than ever. Counting, me, three of the original members are still around, and we’ve gotten several others over the years, maxing out currently at eight. (Although it’s a rare week we manage to have more than five of us.) Among our number are three other LDS authors, Jeffrey S. Savage, H.B. (Heather) Moore, and James Dashner.

I am a firm believer that a writer—no matter how talented—needs outside feedback. One simply canno…

Life's Yellow Jackets

My family isn’t particularly new to community sports. We’ve been involved ever since my oldest was in kindergarten soccer. This is our seventh season of soccer (fifteen soccer teams between the kids). We also dabbled in T-ball and coach pitch until we realized we hated it (making another six or so teams).

Sure, I had heard the horror stories of unsportsmanlike behavior. Maybe we lived a charmed existence, because aside from an occasional obnoxious father thinking his kid is the next Olympian, we’ve never had a problem. Rob and I have even dabbled at coaching. Our kids love playing team sports, and it’s been a great experience.

Until now.

This week my second oldest, age nine, had her first soccer game of the season with a brand new team. They played their little hearts out—my girl running and kicking and doing her absolute best until her face was beat red and she was ready to collapse.

Sadly, the other team slaughtered them 10 to 0.

But that wasn’t the problem. All our kids have been beaten…

Me and My "Twin"

Since it’s been happening for twenty-eight years, you’d think I’d be used to it now, or at least I’d be able to figure out the why it’s happening. But no.

When I was four it made some sense for people to mistake Sheryl and me for sisters, twins, or each other. It doesn’t take much for two chubby-cheeked, strawberry blond little girls with pig tails to look alike. Have them play together a lot, and they’ll naturally end up acting and talking like one another.

But when our baby fat melted away and my hair lost any trace of strawberry (Sheryl kept hers) and mine was a plain old dishwater blond, people still thought we looked alike. Maybe it was the pigtails. We still wore those.

The worst case of the identity mixup was around second grade when I took dance lessons. The studio picked you up for class in a van and dropped you off afterward. I had gone to my first dance class the day before, and now my sister had hers. The van pulled up just as Sheryl crossed my lawn to come play. The driver a…