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The master list.

Once upon a time, I was reading a book written by Stephen King and happened upon a character named “Ace Merrill”. He lived in a little place of yore called Castle Rock, Maine. Well, that name/that location sent a smile to my face and memories into my brain. I knew this guy from that story that other time. Talk about being excited when I remembered little things that I loved about the town or couldn’t stand about Ace…It was like being in on a secret. I had to tell people, “Remember that guy from that place? Well, they’re back. No seriously. You have to read it.”

I blame Stephen King for this thing I have about linking my stories through characters, places, or just little hints. Even if no one else gets it, I know it’s there and am proud.

Lately, though, it feels like nothing is connecting. Not a story, a line, a name, or a title. I have a Tinkerbell journal full of notes for another Rom-Com in NYC I think I want to write for NaNoWriMo.

And if I do start writing on this, I will of course crossover locations or mention a person in passing–The Stephen King Effect. (The New York City thing for RomComs came from movies like The Secret of My Succe$s and What’s Your Number? {okay, so that’s Boston, but big city love story nonetheless} and even Something Borrowed.)

I like the idea of Sean and Gemma almost meeting at the same place that Kurt bought an apology latte…I like that Violet works with Sean while Charlie’s boss is Kurt. I like that this one hotspot is used for breakups and make-ups alike. What I don’t like is fishing through over 1000 pages of combined manuscripts to find that name or that place. That’s where the need for a master list of these tales comes into play.

I could just type a list on the computer. I have a few of those in OneNote and Word docs. But I like a solid journal with pages to flip through. I have images of places in my mind that I drew/draw that I like to reference in addition to photos. I like to keep the descriptions the same from story to story to make it more familiar…a home…like Castle Rock before it met its end.

There are three sections: The Stories which has either a book cover/promotional poster idea with a summary, characters, & locations. (The exact reason label makers were made.)

If Only in Our Dreams

Dreams can hold the best life has to offer. Who says they can’t come true?

Gemma has the worst luck with men. After this last date with the loser of her life, she’s ready to give up men. Her friends beg her for one more weekend–because they can choose a better guy for her–of blind dates. She agrees to one last weekend, though she’s regretting it already. Her friends will never find a guy like the one from her dreams. He’s hot and loving and the sex… Impossible.

Sean has the worst luck with women. After this last date with quite the drama queen, he’s ready to give up women. His friends beg him for one more weekend before doing anything drastic. After all, his friends can pick a woman better than the one from his dreams, right? Maybe not.

Life Imitating Art/Life Imitating Art

Every story has two sides, and Jana’s and Kurt’s are no exception. This duet of novels covers the same events, but are two entirely different tales. What he says is definitely not what she says about their lives from the moment they met.

Life Imitating Art: Jana Hampstead–pen name: JR Toscani–is a best selling romance authors of our time. After meeting her new editor Kurt, she realizes their story mimics the first story she’s ever written–Texas Violets, a fanfiction-turned-bestseller. Much like her characters, there’s ups and downs…and more downs…and he’s her editor, so that’s probably frowned upon around the editing firm. Oh definitely it is. Can Jana and Kurt put aside their differences and finish her new novel before their escapades can become office gossip?

Life Imitating Art: Kurt Werner–aspiring novelist and editor at top firm Eckhart & Bernstien–has been suffering a writer’s block the size of Jupiter. Every word he types ends with a delete. The story isn’t there. Then he meets his new client, JR Toscani–real name, Jana Hampstead. She envokes a rage…a passion within him. Next thing he knows, his job is on the line, but the words are flowing like a river flooding its banks. Can Kurt find a way to balance an editing job, Jana, and a new story that just won’t stop before it all comes crashing to a halt?


Take my hand. I’ll take yours. Together we’ll do this. Until we find love.

Told through two different points of view.

Charlie Everett plays wingman for his best friend, hoping to pay off an old debt. Violet Granger is trying to show “Daddy” that she can make it on her own. One night of wing services, they meet and their world couldn’t be sweeter. But, like always, real life and exes can break some wings. Can Charlie and Violet spread their wings so love can soar?

There are a few more stories not mentioned here. And I’m trying to decide where to put these stories–here, Wattpad, or e-pub them. Plus, this has been great for my story blocked mind. My hands are busy drawing, coloring, painting. My mind thinks as I do this…to the point of generating a new idea for a story that hasn’t been told in YA or adult books that I’ve been able to find. I’ve got a few opening lines to the story I’ve been wanting to type on. And have expanded my old notes on this NYC Rom-Com series, though I have yet to come up with a title.


all images are my own.
this post is filed under random blathering and writer’s block.

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Filed under art journal, author woes, book covers, keeping entertained, love story, NaNoWriMo, random blathering, romance can't be antiquated, romcoms are my peeps, screenplays, self publish, thinking out loud, wings, write, writer's block, writer's procrastination, writing wishlist

A Second Chance at a First Encounter.

This is the story/art journal I sent in for The Sketchbook Project’s Fiction Project.
The prompt was: A message from a past self.

The book has officially been digitized and is online now. Yay!
You can see it here: {A second chance at a first encounter.}

The message to myself: Quit avoiding life. Get out there and try something.

Because I do chicken out…of a lot of things. I blame shyness and being insecure…and my over-reactiveness to being shy and insecure. I stick my foot in my mouth often.  (Ask Jackson Rathbone…to this day, I swear I’m on a list.)

The images are reminiscent of the Wizard of Oz (the movie). Black and white indicate a blah life, but trying something new, meeting someone new, has brought a whole new spectrum to my world. But, it does take time to acclimate, which is why the colors are greyed and become clearer over time.  Putting myself out there would be something big, but my color my world in many splendiferous ways.  (Yes, I know that’s not a real word. I use it all the time, though.) The story is told through the email from the future (the typed parts) and the voices of what might be (the handwritten sayings in quotes). In my head, it would be a short film with a voice over narrating the current timeline, keeping the black-and-white-to-technicolor-theme. (The pizza place image I drew was totally influenced by the movie Before We Go. I’m telling you,that brilliant piece of art is going to stick with me for the rest of my life.)

Just wanted to share that it’s out there.

I’m posting my scanned images below the jump…in case you don’t feel like perusing the link.

Continue reading


Filed under a story, art journal, having fun, rêveur

I love some books to death.

What do I do with a book I really love?

I destroy it. In a sense.

Back when I was younger, I tried my dernedest to not bend the spines on my paperbacks. Pet Sematary and Misery were perfection when you looked at the spine, but to look at the covers…they were torn, barely surviving with the bends and so very loved. Back to the Future and Ferris Bueller books, too.

But then for a long while I just didn’t read but the random Stephen King book and some comics…mostly nerd into hero stuff. *sigh* But most stories just didn’t grab my attention.

Until I came upon a little movie I wanted to see. And this movie was a book before. But like I do, I wait until I see the movie before reading a book. Just because I know I’ll hate the movie…and I get character voices so I don’t have to listen to my own drone on and on as I read…The movie was Twilight. Yeah, yeah, I know. Everyone has such a love/hate thing for that movie/book series. I don’t care what people say; for me, it opened a world.

I read those four books in four days. And of the four, my favorite is…

Something about Eclipse spoke to me. I can’t explain it. I could read that book every day and never get tired of it. There’s all sorts of back stories…so much going on in the story itself…Jasper got to have a voice. It made me want to read…and note…and draw…

It’s the first one I’ve actually loved to the point it’s falling apart. You could probably ask what page what event happened, and I’d flip through and find it through all my notations…and if I couldn’t find it, I’d make sure to mark it.

And then I saw a book at Costco. The Night Circus. It could have been the black and white cover or the premise, but something told me to buy it. It was added to my book collection. And one day, I was bored and decided to read it. And fell in love with a story that is just so different…and unique. And because I refuse to destroy a hardcover, I found a paperback version and removed all the pages to get the thoughts and feelings I had for this book. It had to be something different. Just like that story.

I’ve done art journaling on some of the pages. Others I have used ribbons and clear letters to convey the illusions going on in the story. Then there are the dimensional aspects of making something 3D with the words of the pages, my favorite being the Wishing Tree… I took the pieces of art–keeping them all with the black, white and red theme of the story–and put them into the hardback so as you read the story, you experience it visually as well.

one side of the card…

the reverse side of the card

close-up of the Eiffel Tower standee

front side of the postcard

reverse side of the post card.

I was thinking that when The Night Circus art is all said and done, I’d leave it somewhere for someone to find…to read for themselves and experience it as something not done before. (Yes, I know about S by JJ Abrams now…should have worked quicker on this.)

And now it’s Divergent‘s turn. I don’t know what it is about the trilogy (Divergent, Insurgent, & Allegiant) that really just got into my head. I don’t know why I am so OBSESSED with Four/Tobias Eaton. I don’t know why I just adore everything he says. I do know, I love this book to pieces, although it doesn’t quite reflect that love yet. This is my art journal book. I’ve been underlining and doing notation like Eclipse, but I’ve also been drawing images and quotes like The Night Circus…And when it’s all said and done, I hope to have every page in color, the spine barely able to hold on, and the cover so loved and worn like a favorite sweater on a cold winter day.

choosing day – the bowls of the five factions.

There are many, many other books I have liked. Some I’ve loved. They’re even on my favorites list…but I only own one copy or they don’t evoke the need to notate, quote, image…And I can’t wait to meet the next one in this Bookish Love Life I’m living. What book will have me buying every format so I can keep one pristine, one read, and one über loved into pieces…being held together with rubber cement and rubber bands.

What books do you love beyond all others?

FOURGASM ALERT!!!— Next Tuesday…Four will be out! (Parts of the Divergent series told from Tobias’ POV!!!) I’m so dying. One week from today!

Eclipse – Stephenie Meyer
The Night Circus – Erin Morgenstern
Divergent – Veronica Roth

art journaling supplies:
Faber Castell water color pencils and color pencils
pens – G2, Sharpie
Stencils – Christy Tomlinson, Balzer Designs, Crafter’s Workshop
stamps – Graphic 45, Pink Paislee, CTMH, Making Memories
stamp ink – Staz On in black, red, & grey
paints – Claudine Hellmuth, Twinkling H2Os
Washi tapes – Michael’s


Filed under art journal, books that speak, having fun, inspiration, rêveur, read