Thanks, Galen for that informative post. The query process is daunting enough. Good to know there's help out there.
First – a Happy Anniversary to my parents, who celebrated their 65th anniversary on Monday. They've been a phenomenal role model, and I wish them another 65!
Connections are great. As most of you know, hubby and I are ensconced in a tiny rental while we hunt for a real home. That means a lot of togetherness and tolerance. Yesterday, I hooked up with a couple of Colorado writers for lunch. It was wonderful being able to talk to people who not only understand what it means to be breaking into the crazy business of publication, but are in it with you. The hubster understands, but he's heard it all.
So over an Olive Garden soup and salad lunch, we could blather on about getting agents, getting rejections, conferences, writing groups, what books we love, what books make us wonder how they got published, and on and on. (Hey, the soup and salad are unlimited refills! Plenty of time to gab.)
But being able to have those connections with people who "get it" helps get me centered and motivated. And it's something to consider when you're creating scenes for your books. Your characters should have some way to make connections, to be able to hang loose and have someone understand them.
For my cops, they've usually got partners to bounce things off of. For my upcoming release, Nowhere to Hide, my heroine is new to town (and I wrote this LONG before we'd even thought of moving). I had to create a connection for her, both to spare the reader from interminable passages of internal monologue, and to reveal some of her personal "secrets" that tend to surface in girl-talk. Especially over ice cream. And, one hopes, by the end of the scene the reader knows more about the character, and the character is able to move forward.
As for our life here:
The forecast says there could up to a foot or more snow by the time you're reading this. We went to the grocery store to fill in a few blanks—we tend to run out of salad very quickly, and with limited storage space, we haven't done any 'serious' shopping beyond the basics.
However, we did borrow a crock pot from our daughter and bought the ingredients for a family favorite: White Chili. It's very simple to prepare, and yummy. It was originally a stovetop/oven recipe, but since I did so little with the oven in Florida where there was no point in adding heat to the kitchen unless absolutely necessary (or on one of the 5 cold days of the year), I simply threw everything into the crock pot, and the results were fine.
I figured I'd share it today, so maybe some of you can enjoy the enticing aroma the way we'll be doing. In a space this small, there's no escape!
1 medium sized onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 t ground cumin
2 whole large chicken breasts, skinless, boneless, and cut into 1 inch
1 can (15-19 oz) white kidney beans (cannellini), drained
1 can (15 1/2 -19 oz) garbanzo beans, drained
1 12 oz can white corn, darined
2 4 oz cans chopped green chilis
1 1/2 - 2 cups chicken broth
Stick everything in the pot.
When chicken is tender, it's done. Adjust liquid to taste.
To serve, stir in some hot pepper sauce, to taste, if desired.
Add 1 c. shredded Monterey Jack cheese; garnish with parsley.
The crockpot I had at home had an "auto-shift" feature, so it would cook on high until things reached temperature, then kick down to low until you turned it off. I think this one is just "low" and "high" but it's not like we're going anywhere, so I should be able to handle that change.
And while the chili is cooking, I have some good reading material. For those of you who suggested a 'vacation' after Monday's post, this will be it.
What are your favorite "stuck in the house" pastimes?