Monday, June 28, 2010

Proof of Life (or, HELP, I'm getting FAT!)

Hi Friends!

I only have a second to throw this mini-post up....I promise some better photos and a proper post soon, but here are a couple pictures of dinner last night at Federal Jacks brew pub in Kennebunkport (pix taken w/ my iphone, therefore grainy):

First up, this is Husband's summer brew sampler:

Next up, my dinner:

He was tasty! 

I, sadly, have not had a single minute to write or read...but I have taken some gorgeous photos, which I will share when I have time.

Also, I have done some mad shopping, and I believe my Contest Prize has been purchased and of questionable taste!

I hope this finds you all well, writing and enjoying life!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Changes in Latitude...


Before I do or say anything else...

Shannon Whitney Messenger is having yet another awesome CONTEST! 

Shannon Whitney Messenger: Lisa Mantchev Swag Giveaway!

Okay, now that I've got that out of my system I can get back to my regularly scheduled program:

I'm on vacation! 

By the time you read this I'll be in Maine in a house on the beach for the next few weeks. I'm hoping to finish the revisions on my current WiP* while there. 

I definitely will be hiking, kayaking, biking, eating mad amounts of lobster and chowdah, visiting haunted places, drinking cocktails from lobster shaped cups, (maybe surfing, but the ocean temp is COLD)... and getting some much needed R & R. 

While I am away, I will try to pop in with a post of two, maybe even with some photos of my Maine frolicking. 

I will also be shopping for something(s) very unique to give away for my upcoming CONTEST**! 
(**this time, sadly, my contest will not involve Alan or Stu or even Carlos, but will be supremely entertaining nonetheless.)

 Is this Lola the Lobster? Clawson?

Details of my reasonably insane contest coming soon. 

But everyone that leaves a comment to this post gets an extra entry!


*I generally write literary fiction, however my current WiP is thriller/suspense commercial fiction .  It has nothing to do with lobsters nor is the setting in Maine.

PS- Obviously you won't be seeing me around the blogosphere much  for the next few weeks. I promise to catch up with everyone when I return. I will be checking my email a few times/week therefore I will read your comments on my blog. Lola loves you.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day!

Many of you know that my childhood was less than ideal, and I never had a 'daddy' it hasn't always been a holiday I could relate to. However, my husband has been the best father I've ever seen, and I'd be jealous of our daughter, except he spoils me too. (he made us breakfast this morning, like always) Watching him with her makes me love him even more.

So, to all the wonderful fathers out there that participate lovingly in your children's lives:

(I love you, Husband. The Child told me to tell you that SHE LOVES YOU too.)

Thursday, June 17, 2010

They're Real...and They're Spectacular!

I was thinking today about how my blog friends are REAL friends too.  We use this modern technological way to find each other and come together from all over this planet because of our shared love of writing and reading. We share pieces of ourselves with each other, we cheer each other on, we make each other laugh and think and cry. This writer's community we have here is spectacular. Thanks for allowing me to be part of it. 

Speaking of spectacular friends...

My dear friends Jon Paul from Where Sky Meets Ground and Tara from Feel Of Something New  both gifted me with the JOURNEY AWARD recently:


Thank you JP and Tara. You are both truly friends, real and spectacular.

This is award is to be passed on to those who are helping me along on my writing journey.

Honestly, each of you help me along, in your unique way, so feel free to grab it and pass it along. 

But since I'm told I must pass this along, I shall pass it on to those friends who make a point to reach out to me, who in some unique way inspire me, who truly do help me along this writing journey (in no order):

Portia at Portia Sisco
Carolina at Carol's Prints
Laurel at Laurel's Leaves
Elliot Grace at  So close, but...

And, honestly, every single one of YOU. 

(I can't link all 300+ of you or my fingers will fall off and I'll never get to pee or bathe... so consider yourself tagged!)

Sweet Janet at Janet Sumner Johnson kindly awarded me with the Sunshine Award:

Thank you Janet!
I'd like to pass this award on to the FUNNY Fran at Being Me

These two delightful ladies, j.leigh.bailey at Stories of the Drakon  and Tessa at Tessas Blurb both gave me the Versatile Blogger Award:

Thank You ladies! I'm grateful.

The rules of this award are: share seven things about yourself and pass it on to fifteen Versatile Bloggers that you follow. 

But you know I'm a bit of a rule breaker (and you can scroll down to the post below and find out all kinds of things about me you never wanted to know) so I won't waste your time here. This post isn't about's about YOU, my spectacular friends!

Because this one isn't overly 'girlie' (girly?) and I'm being lazy versatile, I pass this one on to all my DUDE Friends. So if you're a male, I bestow this green award upon you, kind sirs.

Moving on...

Man oh man are there some INCREDIBLE CONTESTS (Nicole's Viva La France Contest for example!) out there right now with spectacular prizes!

See my CONTEST Sidebar------> 
GO click on each of them and enter! 
Not only might you win free swag, but more importantly, you may make a new friend!

Guinevere - 200 follower contest! AWESOME Prize Packs, get over there now!!

Vicarious Reader has a chance to win the ARC of DELIRIUM by Lauren Oliver (BEFORE I FALL)!!

Shannon Whitney Messenger is giving away two $25.00 gift cards to help promote WriteOnCon--check out all the contest details here 
(I won her Body Finders contest! Thank you Shannon!)

Hooked on YA Books is having her Sweet 16 Birthday Bash...there are SO many books you can win!!! Please stop by and wish her happy birthday.

Laura Fitzgerald 

of Ink In All Forms is giving away LOTS of Books and Arcs! Go now!

(*I can't stop the damn underlining!*)

I hope you will go visit all these links and all the links on my contest sidebar and the links in my blogroll. 

Monday, June 14, 2010


Maybe I do my best writing in bed.

Maybe I read too much 'serious' literature when I should be writing.

Maybe I read too many mysteries, urban fantasies, and thrillers when I should be reading more serious literature.

Maybe I love the smell of puppy breath and crayola crayons and fresh rain on hot pavement.

Maybe I love punk rock AND classical. And pop. And blues. And...

Maybe I'm a literary and musical omnivore.

Maybe I never iron my clothes. Maybe I never will.

Maybe I think it's weird that some people iron their jeans. (Why??)

Maybe I hate socks.

Maybe I am high heels or flip flops or barefoot and rarely anything in between.

(these are the shoes from my avatar, on top of the books)

Maybe I wish I was prettier, skinnier, smarter, nicer, more patient.

Maybe I don't shave my legs or blow-out my hair and do my make-up every single day.

Maybe I love briny ocean air and sand.

Maybe I eat Cocoa Puffs for breakfast every morning.

Maybe coffee with an obscene amount of sugar and half & half makes me happy and functioning. Maybe I love SB's carmel frappes.

Maybe I love big cities and country farms.

Maybe I'm girlie and love Jane Austen, poetry, period/romantic movies, babies, the color pink, sparkly things, animals.

Maybe I can be moved to tears by a commercial. (SPCA/Sarah McLachlan anyone?)

Maybe I'm girlie and love violent action movies, crass, raunchy humor, NFL, science fiction, driving fast cars, fast boats, playing sports, fishing, killing zombies, and other badass things I wont mention here.

Maybe I like to sing What Do Tigers Dream Of in the shower.

Maybe I can shuck an oyster and suck it down faster than any man I've ever met.

Maybe I love spicy food and margaritas.

Maybe I know every line to every Gilmore Girls episode. 

Maybe a Movie By Kirk is genius.

Maybe I've been legally on my own since I was 15.

Maybe I come from a background of Broken People.

Maybe I am secretly proud to know they couldn't Break me.

Maybe I know I am strong and decent and loving in spite of my childhood.

Maybe I turned out successful and have a loving, healthy marriage.

Maybe I am shallow enough to love spending money on pretty things.

Maybe I spend a LOT of money on books...and shoes...and music...and flowers...and traveling.

Maybe I only stay in nice hotels and like pool boys to bring me $15 dollar drinks.

Maybe I donate a lot of money.

Maybe I love digging in the soil and playing with plants and flowers; watching things grow.

Maybe afterwards I get manicures.

Maybe I'm super social and will talk to anyone, and maybe I'm also comfortable being by myself.

Maybe I am beyond blessed and so very grateful that I know what real love is.

Maybe I am beyond blessed that my daughter is healthy, happy, gorgeous and smart.

Maybe watching my daughter dance en pointe gives me goosebumps.

Maybe my husband is the funniest, smartest, hottest man I've ever known.

Maybe, just maybe, somehow I'll learn how to be worthy of my blessings.

Maybe I'm shocked to have checked in here this morning and found I have gone past 300 followers/wolves in our wolf pack! 

Maybe I feel like celebrating.

Maybe I'll have to have another CONTEST.

(Should I?)

How was your weekend frolicking, my fellow wolves?


Thursday, June 10, 2010

Swag...and 25 Rules for Writing


Shannon Whitney Messenger is giving away an autographed copy of The Body Finder AND some cool swag here! Check it, yo. 

GO FOLLOW Karsten Knight's blog...let's make him shake his money maker! 

a checklist for professional writing skillz
1. Don’t abbrev.
2. Check to see if you any words out.
3. Be carefully to use adjectives and adverbs correct.
4. About sentence fragments.
5. When dangling, don’t use participles.
6. Don’t use no double negatives.
7. Each pronoun agrees with their antecedent.
8. Just between you and I, case is important.
9. Join clauses good, like a conjunction should.
10. Don’t use commas, that aren’t necessary.
11. Its important to use apostrophe’s right.
12. It’s better not to unnecessarily split an infinitive.
13. Never leave a transitive verb just lay there without an object.
14. Only Proper Nouns should be capitalized. also a sentence should
begin with a capital letter and end with a full stop
15. Use hyphens in compound-words, not just in any two-word phrase.
16. In letters compositions reports and things like that we use commas
to keep a string of items apart.
17. Watch out for irregular verbs that have creeped into our language.
18. Verbs has to agree with their subjects.
19. Avoid unnecessary redundancy.
20. A writer mustn’t shift your point of view.
21. Don’t write a run-on sentence you’ve got to punctuate it.
22. A preposition isn’t a good thing to end a sentence with.
23. Avoid cliches like the plague.
24. 1 final thing is to never start a sentence with a number.
25. Always check your work for accuracy and completeness.

A cheeky little list, yes?

Also, I think this is badass :

And this :

Happy Thursday!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Technique Tuesday: Nonverbal Communication (and why your characters need it)

Every time the phone rang yesterday (well, everyday for months) I knew I was going to be manipulated, lied to, and scammed by a bunch of people I've never met. It rang a lot. You see, several months ago someone in my biological background (that I've never met or even knew existed) died and I alone am left to clean up the mess. From 3,000 miles away.

And it's a BIG gnarly mess.

A landfill sized mess of smelly, rotting trash.

Every day more vile people come out of the woodwork. What began as Shock and Awe (or Truth is Indeed Stranger Than Fiction) has morphed into a festering pile of slimy, greedy people holding their hands out, wanting, demanding, lying. So much selfishness and greed cloaked only for a few minutes in pretty words. Sometimes they're good liars, and I believe them. I mean it's a phone call, I can't SEE their face, or their hands, and I'm missing their nonverbal clues as to their real intentions. (Not to worry, they're so vile, they can't keep the verbal/tonal act up for very long. And since they cannot see me, they don't know that I'm taking notes. Even the 'good' ones trip up and by the next time they call me, their stories change, their lies revealed.)

Yeah, so all this is my personal crap (and I promise I'm coming to a writerly point...), and it kicked my ass the point of tears and sarcastic laughter and finally turning off the ringer.

I was so flattened by it all, that my to-do list was delegated or blown off as I flopped on the couch last night and turned on the mindless TV (which I rarely do...though, beginning Sunday nights, you will find me in front of the tube again! ;). The telly came awake to the Fox channel. We have a million channels (we have a sat. dish and ALL the movie channels and sport pkgs.), and it came on to Fox...and some show called Lie To Me was just starting. I had planned to check out the movie channels or the TiVo'd list, but somehow I started watching this Lie To Me (which I'd never heard of). It's weird how these things happen, yes?
Here's the Fox blurb on the series Lie To Me:

LIE TO ME is the compelling drama series inspired by the scientific discoveries of a real-life psychologist who can read clues embedded in the human face, body and voice to expose the truth and lies in criminal investigations.

DR. Cal Lightman (Tim Roth) is the world's leading deception expert. If you lie to Lightman, he'll see it in your face and your posture, or hear it in your voice. If you shrug your shoulder, rotate your hand, or even just slightly raise your lower lip, Lightman will spot the lie. But as he well knows, his scientific ability is both a blessing and a curse in his personal life, where family and friends deceive each other as readily as criminals and strangers do.
I watched it. It wasn't awful, in fact, at times it was damn intriguing. (It is based on a real DR. Lightman, and he, I've learned, has a blog that I found fascinating.) I don't know if I'd watch it again, but the point last night was the irony (that I don't have these clues available to me dealing with the scummy people I'm dealing with from 3,000 miles away) and the lesson.

And, naturally, it all led to writerly thoughts.

As writers often do, I was thinking how I could use this insanity in my life right now in my fiction. The truth is, most of it is SO crazy, the characters so cliched, the story so over the top, it wouldn't ring true in fiction (such is my life). BUT, I did take-away this:

Using Nonverbal Communication in our writing.  Our characters, and what they DO (and what you SHOW -- not tell) is important and each movement tells us something about them, how they're really feeling.
Think about real life, most of us don't realize we are doing it, but every day we make judgements and conclusions, interactions and understandings about and with people by their nonverbal communication.

The way someone: moves or holds their shoulder(s), raises an eyebrow or both, lowers their eyebrows, lowers their eyes, or makes direct eye contact, looks up, shifts eyes side to side, closes their eyes, taps their foot, how they sit, cross their legs, leans, rubs their face, wrings their hands, cracks their knuckles, clenches their fists, how they walk (shuffle, stomp, stumble, bounce?), stands/stance, posture, holds their head, shakes his head, hangs her head,jerks their head, stands or leans close, touches your arm (or leg), stands at a distance, leans away, jerks or pulls away...the list goes on and on, with subtle micro-expressions making all the difference...and I didn't even mention the mouth/tongue/lips.

These nuances are invaluable to our real life and we act on body language and nonverbal cues by instinct every single day.
And so should our characters (and our readers).

"I'm wanted for murder," he said and crossed his arms over his chest, looking me straight in the eye.

"I'm wanted for murder." He'd put the frozen peas back in the freezer and was now looking in the cupboards. "You know how to make pancakes?"

"I'm wanted for murder." He leaned in close and smiled.

"I'm wanted for murder!" Arms flapping, eyes wide, he began pacing and sweating.

 All very different, yes? What if he glanced away after saying he's wanted for murder? I know these aren't great examples...I just whipped 'em out. But you get the idea.

I like to take a notebook and pen out to public places and watch people, observe, take notes, increase my awareness of nonverbal cues and communication. I like the cafe at B&N, and sitting on a park bench, fairs and festivals, a bar, parties...anywhere I can watch people interact. Good stuff, listening with your eyes! 

I hope you are having a wonderful week thus far!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Ain't No Rest For the Wicked...or TGIF!

So, it's 8:32 Friday that too early to have a cocktail? What if I make it a bloody mary...or a mimosa? I'm only half joking. 
You see, try as I might, I cannot catch up. The to-do list is long, the time is finite, and it's stressing me out. I haven't opened my WiP in weeks, I am behind on critiquing my CP's chapters, and my hair needs cut and colored in the worst way. 

And I'm PISSED (and terribly sad, brokenhearted) about the oil gushing in the gulf. 

My life is good, I'm blessed. But I could use a drink.

Tell me, how is YOUR Friday feeling? How is YOUR WiP doing? Anyone want to join me for a Friday morning cocktail?

Happy Weekend!

Edited to add---GO FLYERS!

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.
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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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