What I plan to do in December (besides celebrating the holidays)

Now that I've done an initial submission of my manuscript to four editors and an agent, I am making plans for some serious R&R in December.

My critique group won't be critiquing the manuscript until January, and so I'm happy for a short writing break. I'm thinking about what project to do next, but I'm also just plain having fun in my newly reorganized scrapbooking room.

A year ago, I separated what'd been a combined writing and scrapbooking room, moving all scrapbooking materials to a vacant bedroom in the basement. Except for making ONE scrapbook during 2011, I haven't used the room, and that was making me seriously sad! I'd left it in a state of relative unpack, though I hadn't unpacked it enough to remember where I'd put everything. I now know.

 This table had been empty, but I bought a new laptop recently, and so I was able to move the old laptop, printer and scanner to this table. Below the table are some of my rubber stamps. A clipboard on the wall features my adult children and their spouses and a couple of grandkids.

I don't want to clutter the walls with too much, as I feel it's necessary to keep a room such as this as free of distractions as possible.
 To the right is my major layout area with a clean table top and about a dozen boxes of ribbons to the right. The information on the cork board all pertains to color, which is one of my life's passions. I mean that seriously. I am huge into Feng Shui and energy and all the implications of color energy.

To the left are my 36 drawers filled with cardstock and patterned papers in 24 hues plus black, white, blue-grays, green-grays, purple-grays and yellow-to-red beiges-to-browns.

All hues, all values and all intensities of everything. Yummy!

There are also a dozen crates filled with papers and memorabilia of that many subject themes. Because I am so into color, I have separate boxes for spring; high summer; Indian Summer; high autumn, and winter.

Another view of my color drawers. Under my work table, there are also two boxes of drawers on casters. The drawers contain a variety of embellishments in ... you guessed it ... 15 different colors.
 Here's another view of my work table with chair.
 Here's a view of the cutting, painting, inking, glittering, sewing and etc work area.

I can't wait to get started. What do you plan to do in December, besides all of the wonderful holiday fun?


Wither by Lauren deStefano: Young Adult Book Review

Wither by Lauren DeStefano

In the first book of DeStefano’s Chemical Garden trilogy, sixteen-year-old Rhine lives in a world where it was thought that genetic engineering would abolish death. For the first genetically engineered generation, it was true. But then offspring began to live for shorter and shorter timespans. Now, women are dying when they’re 20 and men, 25. The world has become a barbaric place.

Girls now live in brothels or polygamous marriages for breeding purposes. Kidnapped to be one of wealthy Linden Ashby’s brides, Rhine evades consummation of the marriage throughout the book, although her two sister-wives do not.  

Though she lives in Florida, and surrounded by wealth and comfort, Rhine is essentially enslaved. More, she’s afraid Linden’s father is performing hideous science experiments on young women who have died and, indeed, might be hastening the deaths in order to find a cure for the virus that's killing everyone at such a young age.

All through the book, Rhine wants is to return to her twin brother in Manhattan. When she and servant Gabriel fall in love with each other, they devise a dangerous plan to escape their imprisonment.

This book was so beautifully written that I am in awe of Ms. deStefano's talent. I am also intensely curious as to how she plans to develop books two and three. Book 2, Fever, will be released on February 21, 2012. I cannot wait ...
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