Tuesday, May 31, 2011


My awesome best friend who happens to be my next door neighbor tagged me. I haven't been tagged for AGES, so though I'm a bit late in following up with this, I am finally doing so and excited to do it, despite the lateness of the hour. So, here goes!

Do you think you're hot?
Only when the temperature is over eighty, then I'm super, sweaty hot.

Upload a picture or wall paper you are using at the moment
It's my wallpaper today

When was the last time you ate chicken meat?
Is there another kind of chicken that isn't meat? I guess there's the living, walking around, kind, but I wouldn't eat those. Too many feathers. I think I ate chicken last week. I lose track of days.

The Song(s) you listened to recently?
"I Will Show You Love" by Kendall Payne
"Still Here" by Natasha Beddingfield
"Chinese" by Lily Allen
"Address in the Stars" by Caitlyn and Will
"I Miss You" by Miley Cyrus
"Daughters" by John Mayer
"I Miss You" by Austin Kyle

What were you thinking as you were doing this?
That it's nice to have friends who are sweet enough to include me in these things. :)

Do you have nicknames?
My little brother called me Stubs or Stubby, seeing as I'm short.
My kids call me Mom.
My friends call me Kay.

Tag eight Blogger friends
(You are it!)

Lara Taggart
Jessica Foster
Cheri Chesley

Who's listed as number one?
Lara Taggart, my soul sister. Love that gal more than I can say.

Say something about number 5.
She is inspiring. She works harder at most things, including being a writer, than most people I know, and she never gives up, no matter how hard things get. I admire the heck out of her.

How did you get to know number 3?
Through Sprint Writers Central. We once stayed up until five a.m. just talking online.

How about number 4?
I saw her at the LDStorymakers Conference a few years ago, and have followed her online for years, and we've talked online and through e-mail, but didn't meet in person until this year at the LDStorymakers Conference. She is AWESOME. Amazing writer, and a sweetheart of a gal.

Leave a message for number 6.
Hey, Paulette. I know things have been a bit tough as of late, but I know you'll make it through. You inspire me, and you are an amazing harpist! I love what you can do. :)

Leave a lovey-dovey message for number 2.
Oh, that could get bad, seeing as we shared a bed for the LDStorymaker Conference. lol All right, I'll give it a go. "Hi Jess! You are amazingly talented and I'm so grateful to call you friend. Love your guts! (and the rest of you too!)"

Do number 7 and number 8 have any similarities?
Yes. They are both published authors whom I love dearly.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Catch Up and My New Project

I've really got to start blogging more often. There should be some big changes in the future, as I'm going back to the scheduled type of writing. Themes for each day. One day for flash fiction, another for poetry (and you guys get to participate if you want), Book reviews, and more-and even some weekly prizes! It should make it more interesting for all of us, and then I don't have to think quite so hard about what to write.

The LDStorymakers Writing Conference was AMAZING! One of the best I've been to yet, which is saying a lot, since this is my favorite conference to attend and I've had a lot of awesome things happen there. Before I was published I placed in their first chapter contest four times in three years, the last year winning me the grand prize. It's a happy place for me, full of wonderful friends who have taught me how to write and I admire the heck out of. These are the people who taught me how to write and made me the writer I like to hope I am. It is always a joy to see them, but this year was different, in that I got to join them. Since the conference, I have become an official member of the LDStorymaker guild, but while there, I got to teach a class on How to Become an Idea Factory, and be a leader for an awesome table at Boot Camp. It's an intense, day long experience of reading each member of a small group's first fifteen pages and giving feedback on what works and what doesn't. It's where I learned the most when I was attending before I was published, and I still learned this year, even being the leader. There was not a single person at my table whose book I wouldn't have read. They were all absolutely fantastic and I would not be surprised if every one of them is published someday.

While at the conference we had a little party for the sister group to LDStorymakers, called Authors Incognito. We had a TON of people there--more than I've ever seen at a mix and mingle before. One of my friends had told me to bring a nerf gun because we were going to get one of the guys all at once. Well, it turned out he couldn't come to the conference and I was the only one who brought a gun, so I had a blast for the next two hours shooting my friends in the backside. It was the most fun I've had in years!

I am always sad to leave the conference. I said to somebody, I wished we could all just move in together. They feel like family and I miss them when it's over, but thus is life. We must go on.

On another front, I'm writing again, working on that grand prize winning chapter, and turning it into something more. I'm not sure where it's going yet, but I'm having a ball getting there. About a week ago, Tristi Pinkston had a twelve hour sprint writing thingamajig. She timed us for like fifty minutes, then we got a ten minute break to get up and stretch, before we were on to the next fifty minutes. It was amazing. I wrote a grand total of 10,424 words that day. More than I've written in ages. It was total free writing, what my friends call "pantsing" it, (because you're writing by the seat of your pants), but I found it to be a very successful method for me and could hardly wait to do it again, so I took matters into my own hands and created a place for writers to go and do sprint writing any time they want. It's called Sprint Writers Central. We have a moderator in place, most of the time, but there is a timer on the site, so even if it's three o'clock in the morning and a couple of people want to sprint, they can use the timer and go it alone.

One of my favorite aspects of Sprint Writers Central is what I call The Chatterbox. It's a chat box that has multiple purposes. One, to just visit with other writers. So many of us feel alone in this writing world and it's nice to connect and know that we aren't all by our lonesome. The other, and primary purpose, is while doing these sprint runs, if anyone has a question, be it about character names, or needing an alternate word for something, or a list of swear words (yes, these have all come across The Chatterbox), we can ask one another for help. It makes it a brainstorming tool for writers as well as a way to connect. It makes me feel like I'm in a cabin surrounded by writers such as myself and we're all pounding away at our own works, when somebody shouts out a question. I love it. Running this site, with the help of Miss Tristi Pinkston and a few others, has made me happier than I've been in I don't know how long, and believe me, I was in serious need of a dose of happiness. It feels awesome.

So, if you don't have a critique group, or don't want a critique group, but want the benefit of having other writers to write (or edit) with, come check out Sprint Writers Central and join us in the fun! You won't regret it. That I can promise.

Quote of the Day: "The most important thing for a Christian writer to do, in my opinion, is to keep the Lord their primary focus. Pray about your writing. Pray with an attitude of absolute surrender . . . no strings attached. Hard as it is, I still try not to focus on the publishing. The goal of life is to complete the work God gave me to do, whatever that may be, and of pleasing Him. We cannot know until it happens if we will ever see our books in print, just as we cannot know anything about our futures. Life isn’t about being published. It’s about obeying Jesus Christ."


Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Conference Time and Updates

Well, it's that time of year again. Tomorrow morning I'll be heading off to the LDStorymakers conference. The last two years have been very different than the previous four or five, in that I get to present as well as attend. This is the conference that taught me how to write, particularly their Boot Camp portion. Boot Camp is very intense. It's several hours of small group sessions sitting with a published author workshopping your writing and learning how to deal with critiques. It's challenging, I won't lie, but wow is it worth it!

I am very blessed in this year, for the first time ever, I get to be one of the instructors for Boot Camp. I get to give back some of what I've learned over the years and I can hardly wait! I won't know who is in my group until I get there Thursday, but I am sure it will be awesome. Friday and Saturday are the actual conference, where I get to teach a class on How to Become an Idea Factory. My friend Ted is going to record it for me and hopefully we can take portions of that and portions of my power point and put them on my new website in the near future.

Yes, that's right, I have a new website and it is FABULOUS! It's not live yet, but will be soon enough at karenehoover.com. Check out my web designers at thedesignauthor.com. If you're looking for someone to design your website, I would highly recommend them. They do very professional and beautiful work. They are easy to work with, and affordable. Check them out, and if you decide to use their services, tell them I sent you!

Now, for those of you waiting for book two of The Wolfchild Saga, The Armor of Light, I've got some bad news. Due to circumstances beyond anyone's control, my publisher is closing its doors and will not be able to publish the rest of the series. Yes, it's disappointing and frustrating, but I'm not going to let it stop me. There is another publisher who took on the series of a friend of mine mid-series, and they are currently looking at The Armor of Light. I am keeping my fingers crossed and praying my heart out that they will finish the series for me. I've heard very, very good things about them, so keep your fingers crossed with me, will you? One way or another, I'll get the book out, I will promise you that, and hopefully you won't have to wait beyond summer.

As a result copies of The Sapphire Flute in hardback are going for pretty cheap, so get your autographed copy with the original cover while you can. They make great gifts, for old and young, and in-between.

So I'm hoping to see many of you at LDStorymakers, and if I haven't had the pleasure of making your acquaintance in the past, please come and introduce yourself and visit with me for a while. I promise I dont' bite, and you never know--you might just make a new friend.

Quote of the Day: Some of us think holding on makes us strong; but sometimes it is letting go.
- Hermann Hesse