New Year News…

New Year, New Ways to Procrastinate!

Yeah, I’m talking about myself.
After starting the new novel, The Rocker’s Mrs., for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), I’ve stayed in my cozy house and haven’t been writing.

 It’s been great! But now I’m back writing and teaching.

For those of you in the beautiful Flathead Valley, check out these classes… (mine and some wonderful fellow writers…)

Flathead Valley Community College:

Introduction to Screenwriting (4 weeks)

Do you have an idea for a movie but aren’t sure where to begin? This course covers the fundamentals from ideas to scenes to understanding the basic structure of a screenplay. When you break it down, it’s easy to start your screenplay today!

Tuesdays   Jan. 28 – Feb. 18   6-9 p.m.   $69  ENGL 1091A AT Building Room 202

To register:

The Screenwriting Challenge (5 weeks)

Take the international screenwriting challenge, Script Frenzy, and complete a 100 page screenplay in the 30 days of April. At the first class meeting in March, we will get ready for a productive month of writing. During the weekly classes in April, we will discuss the craft of screenwriting and the many ways to keep the words flowing. Celebrate at the last class after you have reached your goal. A basic screenwriting course or equivalent experience is recommended. Class will not meet on March 31.

Mondays   Mar. 24 – Apr. 28   6-9 p.m.  $84  ENGL 1109A   AT Bldg. Rm 206

To register:

Additional writing classes at FVCC:

Writing the  First Novel with Dennis Foley

Scrivener with Dennis Foley

Break Into Magazine Writing with Becky Lomax

And in book news…

Hollywood Beginnings will soon be an audiobook available on Audible!

The Do-Over will be coming out in German with the international imprint AmazonCrossing !

And Today and tomorrow, The Do-Over is on sale with a Kindle Countdown Deal…

2014-01-19 12.16.21

(click on the cover and download on Amazon in seconds!)

Happy Reading & Happy New Year!



Kindle Countdown Deal!

Today Plan On It is featured as a Kindle Countdown Deal, 99 cents today only…

Kindle countdown


Buy now on Amazon

Happy Keeping Warm with a Book!


Day 29 – Black Friday!

My Black Friday does not consist of standing in a freezing parking lot around a dumpster fire and waiting for a store to open so I can get a TV bigger than my house for $19.99.

I’m not immune to the stampede.

I did once stand outside a Best Buy for several hours in the pre-dawn cold to buy a camera. It was more fun than it sounds. I felt, in fact, like I’d taken down some wild game and brought it back to feed the family. Really, it was a sense of hunting victory.

But mostly what I like to do on Black Friday, is run around with my girls. Sometimes the girls include my sisters, nieces, and daughters. Mostly, though, it’s my daughters and their friends. Since most moms don’t volunteer the van for early morning shopping with kids, my daughters have plenty of friends who have never shopped the day after Thanksgiving before.

So, to make it festive, we have a couple of traditions:

1. My husband makes a Christmas mix CD that is waiting for us in the car the morning of the 29th.

Christmas CD 2013

This is no ordinary mix. He’s got the tastes of a 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 + year old. You never know what he’s going to throw in there. A classic will be quickly followed by something heard only on a college radio station. (I’ll give you the list in December).

2. Big expensive coffee drinks are allowed.

I’m pretty frugal. I’m also a less is more kind of gal when it comes to consumption (except office supplies). My girls are used to travel mugs with caffeine from home and the occasional purchased latte that can never exceed 12 ounces because “nobody needs more than 12 ounces of sugar.” Black Friday? 16 ounces, baby!

3. Nobody needs to buy anything.

If you have something you absolutely need or you can’t go on, the whole outing feels stressful. Wander with the crowds, enjoy the long lines. You can get in them or not. It’s all good.

4. Stop for breakfast.

Again, there are no limits on carbohydrates.

5. Nap. (See the note about all the carbohydrates).

6. Get back out there if you want to or call it a day and watch “White Christmas.”

Happy Holiday Shopping!



Day 28: Thanks Giving

Today I’m giving thanks, not for my whole life, (which I am very, very grateful for) but for my life as a reader.

Yes, I am thankful to be a reader because:

1. I’ve gotten to travel the world without leaving home.

2. I’ve met and lived vicariously through a thousand interesting characters.

3. I’ve learned things about life from experiencing the life of stories.

4. In countless books, I’ve laughed and cried and been delightfully surprised bycharacters, plots, and the writing itself.

book stacks

5. At times when I’ve needed escape (a little bit every day!) I’ve had a passport to somewhere else.

6. When I needed company, a book was right there beside me, waiting to be opened.

7. Books have fed my hamster wheel brain, and kept me learning and growing.

8. Some of my sweetest childhood memories involve sitting with a beloved grown-up and a book.

9. Learning to read was a stellar event, one I do not take for granted and wish for everyone.

10. I have found a home in books and made myself at home writing them.

Happily grateful and wishing you the very best season of giving thanks!



Day 26: What The Artist’s Way Class has taught me…

In addition to leading a group of writers at Flathead Valley Community College through National Novel Writing Month, I’ve also just finished a 12 week course based on The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron.

the ARtists Way

It was a wonderful group of women interested in all sorts of creative pursuits. These are a few of the many things I took away from the experience:

1. We are all too hard on ourselves, but we need others to point that out to us.

2. When you give yourself permission to do something you want to do, you’ll be glad you did.

3. Don’t underestimate the little joys. Sometimes they end up being the big ones too.

4. We’re more alike than we are different.

5. There’s no shame in wanting some encouragement. We all need an “atta girl” sometimes.

6. We are often our own worst enemy. The good news? We can change that.

7. If you want to meet a dozen interesting, funny, creative women, meet a dozen women.

Happy creating,


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