Saturday, January 30, 2010

Check Me Out!

I have a writing job on the side. I'm now the Austin Cultural Travel Examiner for an online news source. I get to write articles about all the places I've been and all the places I still have yet to go. This is PERFECT for me! It's not much of a job, I mean I can't quit the day job or anything like that, but it's me writing about places I love and who knows what opportunities it might lead to?

If you have some free time, feel free to check out my page, leave a comment, or subscribe so that all my articles go straight to your inbox. My first article is about a pub in Ireland. My next one (to post sometime this week) will be about the London Eye. I'm aiming for 2-3 articles a week.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Is It Me?

Am I the only one who sits in the bank to open a new account and imagines what would happen if the place got robbed????

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

I get to stay up late tonight and sleep in tomorrow! I have an appointment that will get me to work just in time for lunch!

AT 12:56 A.M. WED: Yeah, I didn't actually plan to be up this late!

Monday, January 25, 2010


Enough said.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Someone Was Watching Me

Yesterday I was supposed to have lunch with my sister-in-law and the kids. I got in the car and started my 15-minute drive to the restaurant. While on the highway, I noticed the car shaking a bit and the faint noise reminded me of helicopter blades whoop-whooping. I figured I should probably take the car in to get it checked out soon, although no lights were on and I just had it inspected about a month ago. Then the shaking got worse as I increased my speed. Huh. So I slowed down. But the shaking continued, got worse. The steering wheel started jerking out of my hands. My heart began to pound faster. Harder. I flipped on my blinker and prayed the jerk in my way would hurry up. I slid off the highway and came to a stop light. No noise, no lights. I drove under 40 miles an hour to the restaurant. Inside, my hands didn't stop shaking for 10 minutes. I think my heart was still thumping fast too! I asked my s-i-l to follow me to the shop and then drop me at home after lunch. We didn't get far. The shaking had morphed into thumping and loud, obnoxious noises. Turned out one of the front tires was flat. But it wasn't just flat. When the AAA guy took it off to put the donut tire on he said I was lucky I didn't lose control of the car on the highway. After studying the SLICED tire, I figured I was lucky it hadn't blown completely on the highway. With my donut, I went to the tire shop and got 2 new front tires (the other one was looking pretty weak too). So, $$$ in the hole, but so happy to be safe!

This morning, where am I? Saying a prayer to thank my guardian angel.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

I Made a Decision!

I'll be spending a month before RWA Nationals in Cuernavaca, Mexico! I just registered for an immersion program at Instituto Chac Mool. In the end, it had many things I wanted and it gave me information I hadn't even thought to research on the other schools' websites. Plus, they have a session for educators where they'll tell you the bad words in Spanish so that you can catch your students! (I think that might have sold it for me!) If you have time this weekend, check out my future school!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Thursday...For Less Than A Half Hour

Busy, busy. School stuff mostly. Tonight I decided to "bite the bullet" and narrow down my choices for the Spanish immersion program. I whacked off 3, but now I'm still stuck with 3! I'm pretty sure I'll drop fact, I should probably drop it now. With the other 2, I'm really having a hard time choosing one. UGH!

Oh! I finished critiquing/judging my Golden Heart entries for RWA. I wanted to finish them early so that I don't have to worry about them later when I'm studying Spanish.

Oh, and I had a conference for work today so on my breaks I created a rough outline of my goals from now until I go to Mexico. 1st goal? Choose a school and register by the end of January. I better hurry. Time's runnin' out!

What are you up to? What's up for your weekend? I'm having lunch with my niece and sister-in-law on Saturday and then Sunday I'll be babysitting my niece and nephew for a few hours. I'll also be grading papers, preparing paperwork for an ESL meeting, working on lesson plans, thinking about cleaning the house. Oh yeah, and learning some more Spanish vocabulary. What about you?

Monday, January 18, 2010

So Sad

I don't wanna go back to work! You can't make me!

Oh, wait. I do want to eat. And I'd like to keep my house. And the car will need gas. I guess I don't have a choice...for 17 1/2 more weeks.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

And The Winner Is....

First, thanks to all of you who played my game. And now for the winner...

Well, she got way more detailed than I expected and some of the details don't fit, but Shellee's answer is correct! (Although, I can guarantee there will be some Negro Modelos!!!) I'm researching Spanish Immersion Programs. I'm planning to participate for about a month before RWA Nationals. I'll take classes in the morning, and depending on the program I pick, I'll have one-on-one classes, escorted tours or conversation classes in the afternoon. I'll also have activities and field trips to special places in and around the city I choose. I'll stay with a Mexican family too!

I decided this would be the right decision for me and both my careers. I'm eager to find a new position that will allow me to work with or for English Language Learners here in TX. (Yes, I love Austin so I do want to stay.) I also want a job that allows me to leave most of the work so I can spend more of my "free time" taking care of myself physically and emotionally. Part of taking care of myself emotionally is writing. That has always been and will never change. This way too I'll be able to put more focus on my push to get published. (It won't happen if I can't work on the writing!) I'm hoping that being able to communicate in Spanish will open new doors for me in both education and other careers. I've been teaching at the same school for nine years. It's time for a drastic change.

From the writing side, imagine all the story possibilities I'll come up with! Plus, I'll be able to blog about my experience as a student in a foreign country. Once I choose a school and city, I'll post a link so you can see where I'm going. And then, with a different position when I get back to Austin, I'll have the time and energy I've been missing to put into my writing. As my life starts to change course this spring, I'll be sure to share it all with you.

Now, I'm off to do a bit of writing. I actually got inspired to work on my suspense...or my short contemp...or maybe the suspense...or....

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Lexi's Excellent Adventure

Wanna guess what my next adventure will be? Leave a comment between now and midnight Friday and maybe you'll win a prize! (If no one guesses correctly, then I'll pick a random winner.)

Monday, January 11, 2010

Of Course...

If a lovely editor called and said the company wanted to buy Fractured Paradise or Her Reluctant Protector, I'd totally be willing to revamp my "Less Writing Now" plans and work on revisions. Just sayin'...

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Less Writing Now, More Writing Later

December was a very difficult month for me emotionally. I haven't been that depressed without a clearcut reason since I was a teenager. I'm doing well with my house, my finances, and my writing. I have a job and I have good people in my life. So what was the problem?

Lots of things. My work, my writing, my push toward 40. I asked myself if I were to die tomorrow would I have any regrets. The answer was YES! So I decided it was time to re-evaluate.

I chose to let go of all the control and misery of December. In doing that, I was able to take a step back and analyze my "situation." Now things are so much clearer to me and I thought it time to share what I've learned.

Bottom line is I want to be published but I still need a day job to pay the bills, put food on the table and put cash in my pocket for Nationals. My current job gives me those things, but it sucks the life out of me in payment. So I'm putting a plan in motion to change that this year:

I'm taking the next couple of months off from serious, heavy duty writing so I can get my other career sorted out. I will still write and revise, but I won't stress over it if I don't make my self-imposed deadlines. (I'll just change them!) If I put the time and effort into my day career now, come the summer and fall I'll be able to go like gangbusters on the writing. So, less time to write right now will give me more time to write later...and forever.

This decision, influenced by my NaNo success, took a great weight off my shoulders and my heart. I know this is the right decision for me and my career goals-both writing and day job.

Now, there is another piece to this, but I want to work a couple more details out before I share that piece. So stay tuned. In another day or two I'll be unveiling my next big adventure (which will also feed my muse, I'm sure)!

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Are Ya Wonderin' How Work's Goin'?

One of my kids told me I needed a makeover. One of my fifth graders. A boy.

Where'd I put that gun?

Monday, January 04, 2010

As I Head Back To Work, There Are...

19 1/2 school weeks left in the current school year
100 teacher work days (with kids and staff development)
97 days with the kids

I think I'm ready.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

A Sad Day In The Publishing World

Historical romance author Kathleen Givens apparently died yesterday. I just read the news. I haven't heard anything more. Such a tremendous loss to the writing community. I loved her Scottish historicals and even bowed down to her the first time I met her. She always seemed so friendly and happy. She will be missed.

Saturday, January 02, 2010


See it. Learn from it. "I am the master of my fate. I am the captain of my soul."

Friday, January 01, 2010

Out With The Old, In With The New

In 2009, I:
Lost my grandfather
Lost 20lbs
Visited England and Edinburgh twice
Visited Berlin
Met my online writing friend Cat
Became a HUGE Leverage fan
Attended RWA Nationals
Met my Celtic Hearts President, Eliza Knight, in person
Had lunch with Dianne Emley
Saw an old friend and her family I've missed for a while
Met my cousin's first baby for the first time a week after she was born
Attended my 20-year high school reunion and reconnected with some old friends
Moved into my own house
Gained 20lbs
Won NaNoWriMo
Got a laptop
Got an iPod
Thought seriously about getting a cell phone (planning to do it soon!)

In 2010, I will:
Be more outgoing
Be more adventurous
Be more patient
Get healthy (again)
Exercise my body and my brain regularly
Make new friends (and keep some of the old)

In writing in 2010, I will:
Finish at least 2 manuscripts
Serve my Celtic Hearts and Kiss of Death chapters well
Take a more assertive stance toward making my writing goal a reality.
Critique for 2 contests
Enter only contests that will truly help advance my career
Hunt for an agent

In the month of January, I will:
Write a 1st chapter for both my next suspense and my next Scottish short contemporary
Perhaps toy with synopses for both stories too
Figure out which one I will concentrate on this spring

In 2010, I would love to:
Find an agent
Get "The Call"
Write 3 good manuscripts and a partial of a 4th
(I realize 2 of these are not completely in my control, however I vow to do my part to make them a reality!)