Monday, October 25, 2010

More Random Bits, Lola-style

1) Hello lovely friends! 

It's almost Halloween! And Nano-time! *•♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸

2) Before you ask...yes. YES, I am still STILL waist deep in Revision Hell. This is because a] I don't outline and b] I am a perfectionist. 

But, I did have a breakthrough in the bathtub last night, which I *think* will solve my last little glitch. I don't know why, but...
 I feel a little less like I'm slogging with this dude...
Aw. I  kinda think Swamp Thing here is cute-ish smelling the flower.
And more like I'm  swimming in the muck with this guy...

Where do you suppose his 'package' is??
When I finish revisions on this WiP and hand it off to my CPs (#LoveMyCPs!) I'll be out of the murky depths of RH and imagining myself spending a little quality time with...

OMG (shallow Lola alert) Cam is looking tasty. (#omnomnom)

3) How about more Sausage Chickens, er, Savage Chickens humor this week...
4) I'm excited about the Rocky Horror Glee Show!... just a jump to the left, and a step to the right...

5) Most of you know I will be doing Nano again this year...

so I thought I might give you a few tips (I won't talk outlining, because we all know that's NOT my creative style). 

Lola's Nano Preparation Tips:

 a} Do a HUGE grocery shop this weekend. STOCK UP. (3 dozen eggs, check. 5 loaves of bread, check...) Stock up and utilize your freezer. If you are in charge of feeding a family, find some super easy crock pot recipes and stock up on those ingredients as well. 
        a2} Stock up on your writing beverage of choice. Buy WAY more than a month's supply. 

 b} Have the local pizza (etc.) delivery on speed dial. 

 c} Get spouse/family/friends on board. You will need their support. (My Husband knows how to shove food under my writing cave door.) If you're married with children, get spouse to bring home dinners and help extra with the kids. (if you have little ones home with you, buy some new little toys, movies, books, crayons, etc. and whip them out when you need some quiet time. Consider hiring a teen/senior helper to play with them outside.)

Friends and family need to know that unless their hair is on fire, to please cheer you on from a silent distance (aka leave you alone); chatty visits, phone calls/texts etc. will have to wait until December. You will be sequestered, MIA.
        c2} Spouse should be pre-warned that it is possible (likely) your personal hygiene and grooming will decline substantially during the month of November.  
(*sniff* do I reek? Yes? *rubs on more deodorant, shrugs, goes back to typing*) (where's that scrunchy that isn't all stretched out?) Get your hair cut/colored NOW, pre-Nov., or be prepared to wait until Dec. 1st.

  d} Preemptively CLEAN YOUR HOUSE (and do all laundry) like a mad person this weekend. Then every few days during Nov. try to zip through and whirl-wind clean the hot spots (kitchen, toilets, quick vacuum). If you live with someone, try to enlist their help to do more than their share and you'll make it up to them another month. DO NOT LET ANYONE OVER in November. The house will not be up to company standards. Which leads me to...

  e} DO NOT HAVE THANKSGIVING (for those living in the States) at your house this year!! Go to your parents/in-laws/siblings/friends/restaurant. The amount of time it takes to clean for company, plan your menu, shop for the menu, cook, entertain, and then clean afterwards is death to your goal... not an option.

  f } I make it my goal to write 2,000 words/day 6 days/week. The 7th day is for errands and spending time with loved ones...preferably outside, in the fresh air and sunlight. If I know I won't be making my goal (like Thanksgiving day, for instance), I 'bank' extra word count AHEAD of time. I will do 2,500-3,000/day for a few days before the day off. I try to do this a few times early in the month to have some 'savings in the bank' for a 'rainy day', in case I get sick or something unexpected comes up. I mean, if I get a last minute invite to front row at Incubus/Kings of Leon, etc., I'm not gonna say no. Duh. I'm gonna ditch that ms like 4 day old stanky fish. So bank as many extra words each day as you can. 

I'll try to do a few more Nano tips as we get closer. (if I have time. I'm still trying to get through these revisions.)
You can Buddy me at: the-sharp-pen

6) Some very generous and kind bloggers have recently given be awards.✩♡✩

Many of them are new to the blogging world, so please give them a visit and say hello

THANK YOU, sweet friends, for the many, varied awards. I'm honored.
In return, I award all of YOU with the above award. My awards are guilt-free, no pressure, no rules.

Because you know what I think of (most) rules?


7) Quinn this is for you, in homage to your Halloween costume:
*shudder* CREEPS me out.

8) And I leave you with...
please forgive any sloppy typos/lack of clarity. I have not read through this post, I'm tired, it's late, Blogger is being buggy and doing weird formatting things that it won't let me fix, and there were a lot of links.  


Are YOU doing Nano?
Do you have a Nano WiP Title yet? Nano-Playlist? Nano-tips?
If so, please share in the comments. 
(and, no, I don't have a title...but you know that. Remember your supreme jealousy over the sexy working title 'WiP 3' on my current WiP? Yeah. That's still the 'title'. *sigh* The perfect title will hit me eventually.)
How is your writing going?

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Author Interview with Alex J. Cavanaugh

Friends, today we get to talk writing with author Alex J. Cavanaugh and about how CassaStar came to be. Ready? Let's go!

It's great having you here, Alex. Tell us a little bit about yourself and your debut book, CassaStar.

I live on the east coast and work in website design, graphics, and courseware. I play several instruments, including guitar, and love music. I’m a total fanboy when it comes to movies, TV, science fiction, and fantasy! Yes, I kept the employees at NetFlix busy! I’m also happily married to an awesome wife. I always wonder about guys who can’t say that, too. Dude, you found a woman who’s agreed to be your date every night until you die - now that is awesome!

CassaStar is my very first book, a science fiction space opera that focuses on friendship:

To pilot the fleet’s finest ship…
Few options remain for Byron. A talented but stubborn young man with a troubled past and rebellious attitude, his cockpit skills are his only hope. Slated to train as a Cosbolt fighter pilot, Byron is determined to prove his worth and begin a new life as he sets off for the moon base of Guaard. 
Much to Byron’s chagrin the toughest instructor in the fleet takes notice of the young pilot. Haunted by a past tragedy, Bassa eventually sees through Byron's tough exterior and insolence. When a secret talent is revealed during training, Bassa feels compelled to help Byron achieve his full potential. 
As war brews on the edge of space, time is running short. Byron requires a navigator of exceptional quality to survive, and Bassa must make a decision that could well decide the fate of both men. Will their skills be enough as they embark on a mission that may stretch their abilities to the limit?

How did you come up with the idea for this book?

I was really into Star Wars and Battlestar Galactica, as well as anything fantasy. That spurred my desire to create a world far removed from earth and still include spaceships. I envisioned all sorts of adventures for Byron and Bassa. I even outlined a book and began writing some of the scenes. Of course, what we write when we’re younger, well it tends to suck when we read it as adults. Once I’d decided to tackle this first story again, I had to rewrite it. All of it! Very little survived the process, too. Just hope no one ever unearths that original concept. Unless I’m dead, and then I won’t care!

I love BG and SW. (And you better protect that early version!) When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
I guess I never thought about writing seriously until a few years ago. I like my current career and knew I wouldn’t feel crushed if I never wrote a book. But I started toying with writing again and soon returned to that first story. What if I actually did it?  What if it was good enough and someone wanted to publish it? It fueled the fire to try. (That and my Nike commercial wife - “Just do it!”)

(Aww, kudos to your wife.) Can you tell us about your journey to getting published?

While I was writing CassaStar, I kept reading that science fiction was dead. (Encouraging, huh?) Once I started seeking a publisher, heavy tech science fiction was becoming popular. Frustrated my angle wasn’t working, I tried another genre of science fiction - young adult. That approach eventually landed a publisher. Ironically, Dancing Lemur Press decided to classify it as adult science fiction instead. Hey, whatever works!

Outline or Wing-It? 

I’m such a perfectionist, I diagram and plan everything! I won’t even place a nail in the wall without measuring first. Yes, I work from an outline. Although if something new hits me, I’ll add it to the story.

What is your writing process like? (a day in the life of your writing)

I usually write in the evenings after I’ve had time to unwind with some guitar playing. I’m a slow and deliberate writer, so cranking out 10,000 words a week just isn’t going to happen for me. And since I’ve been focusing so much on promoting CassaStar, awkward though it may be, I’ve not enjoyed as much free time to write.

What can we expect from you next?

A slow fade into obscurity (Ha! I hope not!)… (Well, it could happen!) No, right now I’m working on a sequel to CassaStar. A new element, the introduction of a female character, has created challenges, but it’s opened up a whole new world of possibilities

I LOVE that you'll be adding a female character to the sequel. (I hope she's badass!) 
Thanks for stopping by, Alex. We enjoyed getting to know a little bit more about you and CassaStar. (*waves bye*)

You can buy CassaStar now at:
Alex's Author Bio:
Alex J. Cavanaugh has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and works in web design and graphics. He’s experienced in technical editing and worked with an adult literacy program for several years. A fan of all things science fiction, his interests range from books and movies to music and games. Currently he lives in the Carolinas with his wife.
You can visit Alex at

Okay friends, when did YOU know you wanted to be a writer?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Happy Birthday ♬ to...

Happy 11th Birthday, Lenny!!!
Everyone else used all the good raccoon, hamster-time!

Lenny, seeing your sunny avatar makes me instantly joyful. Thanks for spreading your sunshine. And for being YOU.
Happy Birthday, Lenny!

Please go visit Lenny's blog and wish him a happy 11th birthday. He's a very special little dude.

And Happy Writing to everyone else! 

(back down into my revision cave...send help/snacks/drinks)


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Release Date Celebration!...and Other Stuff

I'm popping my head out of my revision cave for a very special occasion...

It's Release Day for our friend Alex Cavanaugh's debut CassaStar!

It's getting great reviews! 
Go buy it (I did!):

  • Amazon

  • Barnes & Noble

  • Books-a-Million

  • Check out his slick, badass book trailer:

    I will be doing an interview with Alex here on Thursday (22nd)...find out about his writing process, how he found his publisher and so much more.

    Please go stop in at his blog and wish him a big happy release day! 
    CONGRATS ALEX!!! ✩♡✩

    In other news, the Halloween Party was a are a few photos:

    Dude, Frankie could dance! Not kidding. He worked that dance floor.

    That is one ugly Wednesday!
    Fester had a light bulb that worked...but somehow I didn't get a single shot with it. :(

    Okay, I have loads more pictures from the party, but won't bore you with more of them. I just chose these at random (actually, they were the first shots taken, early in the night, so the first downloaded), these weren't the best costumes by a long shot. There were SO many incredible costumes. Sadly, I didn't get a single shot of husband/faux Poe! *pouts* (but I think others did and hopefully will email them to me.)

    (also, I think I have somehow turned into the most parenthetical blogger on the planet. WTF?)

    Again, CONGRATS Alex!!! ✩♡✩


    Thursday, October 14, 2010

    I ♡ YOU and...

    Hello Friends,

    I know. I've been MIA. You know the drill: I'm STILL deep, DEEP in Revision Hell. 

    It's evil up in here, yo. 

    (eek. his forked tongue FREAKS me out! *shudder*) 

    (also, every time I see the Savage Chickens, I always think it says SAUSAGE chicken.)

    Speaking of sausage and evil, I'm stress eating my way around the plot holes.

    And maybe imbibing in a cocktail (or two).

    Truth be told, I miss you. 

    Before I crawl back in my writing hole I need to share a few things with you:

    1) Do yourself a favor, go read my (hilarious and brilliant) friend Kristen's blog post today, her Query Letter Manifesto (and tomorrow's part 2)'s genius and SO, SO damn funny. If you like it, and I KNOW you will (pinky promise), please leave her a comment and click her little follow button. (tell her *hello* for me)

    2) I know I am behind on all the generous and kind awards many of you have given me recently. I promise, I WILL get to them. I'm really trying to stay offline and finish these revisions, and all the linkage will take me some time. So, I promise I will get to them SOON. Thanks for understanding. 

    3) Here are a couple of pictures of my Halloween decorations, as promised (more to come next week...and I will also have pictures from the Halloween part we are attending this weekend.) I'm dorky and love to decorate for all the this is a VERY small bit of what I have going on in the house right now (no time to download more right now):

    this is on the top of our grand piano

    Yes, she's creepy. Husband is afraid of her and won't go near her.
    in a hallway corner
    3) My lovely friend Sara @ Babbling Flow is giving away LOTS of ARCs...go enter! (please tell her hello for me *waves*)

    4) Know that I read and LOVE every single comment and ♡ every single one of YOU. THANK YOU for visiting me and for being in the world.

     How is YOUR writing going? Read anything mind-blowing lately? What are YOU doing this weekend? 

    (my weekend frolicking will be the BIG halloween costume party on Saturday night, and having company on Sunday for football. Otherwise, I'll be revising.)

    Wednesday, October 6, 2010

    Random Bits

    1. October is one of my favorite months. (I even love the NFL going pink for breast cancer)

    2. Especially for writing. The weather is lovely and atmospheric...

    3. and maybe because of Halloween I can feel free to dive into my dark side, let my inner goth girl out to play. Angsty, atmospheric writing is FUN.

    4. I love to decorate the house all creeptastic (will post pictures of my Halloween decorations later this week) with faux body parts and ravens and such. (I enjoy decorating for every holiday and any theme/party/event) 

    5. And dressing up for Halloween! LOVE. This year Husband is going to be Poe (Faux Poe). We have a really tricked out party to attend on the 16th...I'll take pictures for you! 

    6. Husband, Kid and I have a 'game' where we come up with 10 adjectives that describe each other. They always tell me my #1 adjective is: FESTIVE. I love that they think that! 

    7. I'm STILL in Revision Hell on WiP #3. (Send help... or at least some snacks...cocktails.)

    8. I know a few of you have recently joined me in the RH (welcome to Satan's lair). This is the blistering pit of torture where killing all your characters seems the only way out. Where every semicolon and emdash gets analyzed to the point of hair-pulling, your whiteboard has diagrams that even Russell Crow can't figure out, your walls (and body) are covered in colored post-it notes and your coffee intake has led to disturbing eyelid twitches. 

    Your thoughtful spot has become an in-patient mental hospital.

     I also know a few of you LOVE revisions (Heavenly Revisions?) but don't care for the first draft writing. This boggles my mind. I love the freedom of the first draft; the falling in love with my characters and experiencing their journey. 

    9. Somewhere around the 3rd draft the Shiny has worn off. I'm tired of revisiting/rewriting that damn chapter 16 for the 21,364th time. I dislike searching for the ripple effects from every change made. I hate how I fester, fester, fester over EVERY single detail and word choice. 

    10. I love that we all have different approaches and processes. 

    11. Twitter has become my latest Procrastination Technique.

    12. And my only source of news.

    13. I'm excited to do Nano again this year. I get to play with a Shiny New Idea! 

    14. We are watching the Glee Season 1 DVDs in nightly marathons. So much FUN. This season is great too, thus far. Last week's Britney episode was the shizz. Grilled Cheesus last night was okay. It got a bit serious for my taste. I like the funny. 

      Guess what?!! On the 18th they're doing Rocky Horror Picture Show!!!! *jumps up and down*
    SO excited!!

    15. Bitty Kitty should be renamed TROUBLE. Her favorite thing to do is sharpen her claws on my 15 y.o. jade plant and scale up the curtains. My favorite thing to do is squirt her with our strategically placed squirt guns. She's a terror. I LOVES her.
    Who me?

    16. I miss True Blood. (Oh Eric, how I miss you!)

    17. Next week's Castle will be Steampunked!!!! With a tricked out DeLorean! 

    18. These are the two songs on repeat while I rewrote that rascally ch. 16:

    19. I miss you. Sorry I haven't been around much. I'm trying hard to finish these revisions so I can get it out of my face off to my CPs.

    20. I LOVE my CP's. 

    21. And, I love YOU. 

    22. I'll still be unplugged (mostly) for a while. MUST FINISH REVISIONS. I miss you so much. 

    23. In the words of Oingo Boingo (oh, and yeah, FDR might have mentioned it), there's nothing to fear but fear itself.

    Be fearless, friends!


    May your pen be mighty

    May your pen be mighty

    About Me

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    Lola Sharp
    My name is Lola. (I'm not a showgirl) Yes, L-O-L-A Lola. It's the least of my worries. Let's move on, shall we? This blog is mostly about my misadventures on the journey to publication and beyond. My passion for lush prose, quirky characters, art, music, literature, performing arts and anything creative will be a major theme here. This journey of mine will not always be pretty. Much like rubbernecking a train wreck, I know sometimes you just can't help but look at the carnage that is often my life. So strap on your neck brace, helmet and 5-point harness and come along for the ride! Licentia poetica.
    View my complete profile



    Create the MAGIC

    Create the MAGIC

    "Our imagination flies — we are its shadow on the earth."

    ~Vladimir Nabokov

    Pure Imagination

    Pure Imagination

    not all who wander are lost

    not all who wander are lost

    drink the wild air!

    drink the wild air!



    coffee & doodle art love

    coffee & doodle art love

    Real Beauty

    Real Beauty

    Badass Ms. Parker

    Badass Ms. Parker

    my zen

    my zen

    I write therefore I am

    I write therefore I am



    Nano '12 Winner

    Nano '12 Winner

    music inspires me

    music inspires me

    Depeche Mode Inspires

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