Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Of Tea and Chocolate... Twitter, NaNo & an Award

Welcome to Of Tea and Chocolate...

It's time to sit around the table with a snack and something steamy hot to drink. I like this name a lot, even though I'm sippin' Seattle's Best light & crisp coffee this morning.

So far I have resisted gorging myself on Halloween candy. *takes a bow* Thank you, thank you... it is extraordinary, I know.

I've been craving fruity things. Gorging on grapes and oranges and baking apple deliciousnesses  sounds almost healthy this close to Halloween.

This beautiful (unhealthy) snack is a little fruity. Lol. Thx to The Spice Garden for this pic & recipe. I see her blog regularly on Saturdays for Saturday Snapshot.

Meanwhile... news is building up. If you have something exciting going on, do share!! Like... are you participating in NaNoWriMo?  Have you noticed all the prep posts going up?! Here's a fun one at Virtual Writer's World. They're poppin' up everywhere, though. Encouraging posts. It's time to write outlines and stuff.

I'm trying to be enthusiastic. I'm working on the same WIP I wrote last November. I made so much progress last year I won Epic Fail as a sympathy award for falling short. No joke. (Well, you can laugh. It is funny.) This year I'm trying to finish my first draft frantically so I can NaNoWriMo myself through a first rewrite. This is totally abusing what NaNo's for, I admit, but I actually want to be published and ditching my story when I'm so close to the end just makes me want to cry.

Especially after receiving this amazing news...

Are you ready?!


I know. I'm astonished myself. Wanna see the proof?  It's only 2nd place... but that isn't stopping me from dancing around in frightening fashion, scaring the children.

*1st Place - Cupcakes by Diane Maciejewski
*2nd Place - Shadow Horses by Laura Armstrong
*3rd Place - My Private Practice by Helen Keevert Crall

See?  That's my NAME in the middle!!!!  In red.

Here's the Newsletter with the announcement (that looks very like what I copied). And here's the LINK to read my totally awesome story. It's only 1,000 words long and not really about horses. It's about finding yourself even when you're the new kid in town. 

Did you go read it, yet?

Go ahead. I'll just get another cup of coffee.

*Sip*drums fingers* Finished? Cool story, huh?  Thanks!!

My other big thing this week... which can't compare with winning an award, 'cause that's the first ever of my illustrious writing career, is Twitter.

I am trying to figure out how to tame the beast. I actually wrote a tweet that was responded to... which was amazingly fun. The trick is figuring out how to keep track of other people who post cool tweets. I know my @BurgandyIce has been mostly promotional stuff: giveaways and posts. Definitely worth following!! But I want to figure out how to tweet messages.

I set up TweetDeck after reading these posts on how to do stuff. But there's tons of ways to narrow the abundance of Tweets down to topics of interest.

Here's a cool SEARCH & a TweetScan. Very handy things to keep track of.

The big surprise for me was HASHTAGS. They're handy. Some of 'em are useful for connecting with ongoing conversations about things... like #amwriting or #myWANA which I learned about from these posts aimed at encouraging authors to get out there and socialize. Others are fun, pure fun and weird names. I like that.

Tips for Introverts
InkyGirl's weekly twitter updates for writers

And here's a bunch of stuff about SLOW CHATS for writers.  Slow sounds appealing after watching my tickers fly by. I wanted to be friendly, you know, so I followed everyone I ran into. The result is a running string of tweets flying by that are hard to keep up with.

Here's some discussion questions...

Do you like Twitter? How do you use it? Do you follow any hashtags? Any other tips for me? 

Tweet me something and I'll add you to my keep-track-of twitter user list thingame so I can follow your tweets.

That's not meant as a threat. *cough*

And of course... Are you NaNoWriMo-ing this year?