Friday, June 20, 2008

Picture Books? Now I'm Rethinking the Whole Thing

Yesterday was a doozie, dear reader, so please stick with me (please don't get bored, please don't get bored) as I take you through another synopsis of sorts from the writing conference. And my day. Because a lot more happened than just the conference stuff...a lot more...

First off, I got my haircut! Yep. Took off a good chunk, too, and got quite a few highlights. I hope this picture helps to show it, even though it's a cruddy picture and I look all fake and stuff. Today my hair will probably be all curly, because I don't have time (or the talent, or the desire) to do the dry-brushing thing. My neighbor, Sue, who cuts my hair, is a genius. With color, cut, style, and everything about hair, she is a genius. I love it when she does my hair. I love it even more that she's my neighbor!

My hair appt. lasted almost 3 hours (she put three highlight colors in my hair and weaved my entire head), and so by the time I was finished and made my kids' lunch (okay, my mom mostly made them lunch), I was off to the conference. The writing contest for the day was to write an entire Young Adult novel in 12 words or fewer. Here was my entry:

I ran away. I found trouble. I found love. I bungee jumped.

Of course, I didn't win. Nor did I win the letter one (see yesterday's post) --and it's a good thing, too. The entries that did win were hilarious. Hilarious. So hilarious, I was crying, and at the same time thinking: "These people are brilliant. I don't stand a chance!"

The conference sessions I attended yesterday were:
"Going Undercover with a Not-So-Secret Agent" by Stephen Fraser, Literary Agent.
"Point of View: Make it Your Best Friend, or It Will Be Your Worst Enemy" by Janette Rallison.

The next two hours were for Book Signing! Hooray! I got my nine books signed, and it was fabulous to get a chance to visit with the authors. And guess who showed up during the middle of the book signing?
Shannon Hale.
Yep! With her two kids; she came to see her fellow writer friends. I was so tempted to race back to the house and grab all of my Shannon Hale books (I own all of her books, you know) and get her to sign them, but I decided against it. I mean, she wasn't there to sign, it would have been rude, but mostly I was just too lazy.

After the book signing, my college friend (who you may remember from my previous posts about the conference) and I walked around, talked, killed time, etc. I wrote a little, chatted with some friends, etc. [Oh! And met your sister, cheryl (as in rick and cheryl)! She found me! That was cool. Really cool.]
Around 6PM, Brandon showed up (hooray!) and we attended the informal (but very, very delicious) banquet. It went longer than it was supposed to, but we stayed for the Keynote Speaker anyway. It was "My Life as a Logophile, with Ample Examples of the Damage Done to Family and Friends" by Rick Walton.
I'm so glad we stayed! Rick is absolutely the quirkiest, funniest, and most interesting person I've ever met, and his presentation was a delight. We had a great time! But by the time it was finished, it was 8:30PM.
Why should that matter, you may ask?
Two reasons:
1. My mother had taken my children up to my sister's place in SLC, and to keep the story short, we still had to drive up there to get the children and give my mother her car.
2. Our good friends from CA had just arrived into town, and so before we could drive to SLC, we needed to make sure they were settled and comfortable in the house, as most hosts are want to do when receiving guests into their home.

So...more long story short, here...our friends met us in the parking lot near the Marriott Center just as we finished the Banquet, followed us to the house, we got them settled, we drove to SLC, we picked up our children (by now it was 10:15PM), we came home, a young man in Brandon's Priest's Quorum (and his girlfriend) stopped by to pick something up via an earlier agreement and stayed for a while, everyone got to bed, the lights were off, people were sleeping (around midnight) and #4 decided to wake up coughing. I mothered him with the necessary skills of mothering, and finally --finally! --everyone slept soundly around 1AM.

Of course, I go walking at 6AM, know...I'm kind of tired right now.

Good day, though. Nothing to complain about, except for my lack of blogging/emailing. That was mostly due to the fact that my laptop was broken. The "m", "k", and "i" buttons wouldn't work. Do you know how frustrating that is?! ARGH! Luckily, I'm married to a freakin' genius when it comes to computers, and he took it apart this morning before he left for work and fixed it. Thus my ability to amaze you with this eloquent post.

Yeah, it's not that great. I'm tired, remember?

Anyway, that's about it. In closing I'll leave you with the profound and intense thoughts I had during the conference yesterday:
1. Good books always have a main character, conflict of some kind, and then resolution (i.e. the main character overcoming the conflict).
2. The children's picture books I've submitted to three publishers have amazing characters!
3. The children's picture books I've submitted to three publishers have no conflict.
4. The children's picture books I've submitted to three publishers are basically crap.
5. No wonder they aren't being accepted!
6. I think I want to do Young Adult/Teen Novels (1st person) instead.
7. I really think I'm supposed to do YA novels instead.
8. This is gonna take a lot of time, writing YA novels.
9. I really like my new haircut.

That is all.

P.S. Hey, thanks for coming by and leaving me your amazing, witty, charming, and sobering comments (yes, some are sobering for me). I appreciate your loyalty! I wish I could do the same for you, dear reader, but it will have to wait a while, what with my crazy schedule and all...but you already knew now...but loving you! (chuckle, chuckle)


Desi said...

I LOVE your hair. I want to move in and be your neighbor, not only so I can hang out with your and all your wittiness (is that a word?) but also so I can have your hair lady be my neighbor too.

I've come to the realization that I like YA novels, yes I do know I'm an adult, but whatever. So I think you should write YA novels and I can say I knew you when.

Julie said...

Absolutely perfect haircut for you, my friend! Perfect! You look ready for your book jacket!

The only problem that I can see with you becoming a successful writer is that your blog is going to become crazy popular and your loyals might get lost in the shuffle. Sigh, I suppose we knew you when! :)

Jumbo Shrimp said...

I LOVE your hair! It's looks great on you! Good luck writing YA novels. I sometimes like those better too. Sounds like you got your work cut out for ya! :)

Desi said...

I hesitate to share this, only because of your already dope writing skills coupled with your newly developed writing skills from your conference, and I want to win the new phone and a day of my dreams, but I have to share the love...go to this website ( and describe your perfect day in 50 words or less and you could win a Samsung Glyde and have your perfect day become a reality.

Two comments on one post might be excessive, but I thought you might have fun with this since you are in the writing spirit right now. If you win you just have to give me props for sharing the love :)

Janelle said...

Cheryl you look like a new woman! I love your neighbor. I love getting my hair cut. Also, I would remind you that 6 months ago I suggested you be a YA romance writer. Shannon Hale! So fun.

Cheryl - let's review this year.
1. Made Goal weight
2. Moved to CA, then back to UT
3. Decided to be a writer.
4. Wrote a book for Nano Wrimo or whatever that was called.
5. Wrote several children's books and submitted them.
6. Had a baby.
7. Contitnued to keep up on other talents like music and callings.
8. Did some temple work. And a host of other things we don't know about.

Cheryl is driven! At this pace, you'll be the most accomplished woman I know.

Anonymous said...

I've already told you the hair is great, so I'm not going to bother complimenting you on the awesome hair again.

I think you would be a great YA novel writer!

Glad you had such a great time this week!

Mindy Sue O'Bryant said...

I love the hair, highlights look so good on you. Good luck with all the writing stuff... before we know it you'll be published (and not just in the blog sense).

The Motherboard said...

Wowza! is right! You look HOT!

I like YA novels too. a lot.

I'm still jealous of the whole writing conference thinger! And, reading one of the previous comments about everything you've done this year... well. I need a nap now.

Cheryl said...

AH! You are right! I do remember you telling me to write back when we read the Shannon Hale books. I do. See, I should have listened to you in the first place! :)

And golly, stop it! I haven't done that much, you know. Just what everyone else has to do, you their lives, I guess. And now I'm feeling guilt because I haven't been to the Temple this month! Ahh! But Janelle, that means a lot. Because you are my hero.

Thank you for the head's up! (and you can comment more than once! I mean, 12 times might be excessive, but not twice. :) )

Jumbo Shrimp-
Thank you!

Really? Yeah, I guess it does fit me. You're right. :) And Julie, you will never get lost in any kind of shuffle. I mean that. :)

I already said thank you so I'm not going to bother thanking you again. :) Or something.

Hey! Thanks. I'm not sure how soon the publishing thing will happen, but I hope it will someday!

The Motherboard-
Hot, eh? Okay, I'll go with that. :)
Don't be jealous. Sign up for next year! And Janelle made me look all great, but I'm really not an overacheiver. Man, I can't even sew! Or garden, or scrapbook, or do laundry, or can,, nevermind. You can all think I'm accomplished. I'm okay with that. :)

Anonymous said...

Love your hair!

Also love your thoughts during writing conference. They sound a lot like thoughts I would have. Except I don't write children's books, and my hair is not as awesome as yours.

I want to go to a writer's conference and have awesome hair! You're living the dream, Cheryl!

Summer said...

You look gorgeous! The cut frames your face perfectly!

FluffyChicky said...

Love the hair!
I love YA novels...they are my guilty pleasure. So, write away Cheryl! :)

Grandma Rozla said...

Love love love the hair! Good luck on the book - I still want the first copy!!!!

Amanda D said...

I just did a post (yesterday) about why I like YA novels lately. You go girl! I get a first copy.

Love the hair. It looks great. I think I'm gonna get mine chopped nexy week, too.

m&m said...

Your hair is darling, and I have enjoyed your recaps and thoughts about the writing conference.

brenbot said...

Your haircut is so cute. Yay!

Arlene said...

Love you haircut. Looking forward to seeing it in person next week.

Sara said...

cute hair! love it! :)

Heather said...

You know, I've never once had a haircut that I've liked. I wonder what that feels like? Maybe I should come to Provo and have her do my hair sometime too. :)

You look totally cute, congrats!

Mother of the Wild Boys said...

Cheryl, Your hair totally rocketh. It looks amazing, YOU look amazing. What a crazy-fun-busy week you've had, huh? Thanks for taking the time for the updates...I seriously have withdrawals when I don't get my daily dose of Cheryl-isms. ;)

rick & cheryl said...

Cute hair!! And I'm glad Heather found you. Sounds like both of you really enjoyed the workshop. I'm still jealous.