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on the third day of christmas…


I was going to make a whole new blog post for the THIRD DAY OF CHRISTMAS with GIFS! HISTORICAL FACTS! AMAZING ALLUSIONS!

But then there was this party last night, and well, it’s raining.

And I had to get a haircut.

So you’ll have to make do with these fantastic additions to the swag bag:

  • Stupendous Stretchy Book Cover to keep nosey nancys out of your business on the subway.
  • Journal for your wild musings.
  • StickyMarkers to keep track of the Pithy Thoughts you want to go back to in the Creativity Shake-It-Up Pack.
  • Traveling Candle to light your fire, wherever you are.
  • Sculpty-moldy-bead stuff, to help free you mind.
  • And a plucked-chicken key chain that lays an egg. OF CREATIVITY.

Don’t forget the original cornucopia of Creative Goodness:


To enter my contest is super uncomplicated, as I only have so much space left in my brain:

  1. SUBSCRIBE TO MY BLOG–please leave a comment telling me so!
  2. FOLLOW ME ON THE TWITTERS–please @me, telling me so! Use #12DOC
  3. If you already subscribe and follow me, you’d think I’d be satisfied, but NO! I want more! Tweet about this contest or blog about it and let me know.

Be sure to enter all the other blogses contests. YOU WON’T BELIEVE THE FABULOUS PRIZES.


The prize awarding begins December 13th.





12 days of christmas giveaway and bloghop–enter soon, and often

I’m part of a 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway and Blog Hop, organized by the lurvly Sarah Belliston.


oh good lord. talk about the blind leading the blind, because THIS:

Lisha Cauthen

Good likeness, don’t you think?

Yes. Visit Sarah’s page and you will see that I am the proud representative of THREE FRENCH HENS.

TWELVE, COUNT ‘EM, TWELVE writers/bloggers/good eggs are giving away GIFTS UNTO YOU.

Just because we’re wonderful. And because Sarah Belliston organized us. So. Visit all 12 of us and read our blogs and love us and squeeze us and enter our little contests for a chance to win FAB SWAG.

You have from today until December 12th to enter on each blog, so go here for a list of partipants:


Then, beginning December 13th on up to Christmas, a prize a day will be given away. (I love it when I rhyme.)


The Creativity Shake-It-Up Pack

A. The perennial favorite, The Artist’s Way by Jill Cameron

B. The outside of the boxish, A Creative Companion by Sark

C. And the pick-and-choose, Inspired Creative Writing by Alexander Gordon Smith

Throw in assorted bookmarks and other sundry gee-gaws I will add by December 3rd. Yes, I am that kind of person–a moving target.

While I ponder my Frenchly, Chickenly post for December 3rd, you guys get busy and enter the contest. HERE’S HOW:

  1. SUBSCRIBE TO MY BLOG–please leave a comment telling me so!
  2. FOLLOW ME ON THE TWITTERS–please @me, telling me so! Use #12DOC
  3. If you already subscribe and follow me, geez. Let’s go steady! I mean, tweet about this contest or blog about it and let me know.

I love you all madly.

out of the loop

I have been home all week.

Usually I meet with my writerly buddies at the Sekrit Writing Location, but this week it just wasn’t possible.

I also usually attend my weekly morning critique group, but I had to skip that.

And then there’s the monthly evening critique group, but it’s not time yet.

Sometimes I go out with a friend for dinner. But that didn’t happen this week.

I’ve been home caretaking, doing errands and writing. In complete and utter isolation.


I feel like I did when I was stuck home with toddlers. I MEAN EXPERIENCING THE JOYS OF YOUNG MOTHERHOOD.

Find someone to do something creative with, even if it’s not writing–see a play, take an art class, join a book club.

Find things to drive your creativity engine.

a change of scenery

Quick Tip:


Then move.

Go to a new venue to write. Someplace completely new, where you’ve never been before. A coffee shop, library, friend’s house, mall, park, cabin, pool, car, mausoleum, hot air balloon…

You get the idea.

Sometimes you’ve got to shake up your creative marbles to get them rolling again. That gif going on up there ought to be a good start.

my summer writing office


It’s June 1st!

It’s summer!

And that means…

I love my summer office. Moving down from the Aerie to the front porch blows the cobwebs out of my cranium, stokes the creative flame burning in my breast, (YA author here, I can say “breast”), feeds my ever-hungry soul.

Well, with a little help.

Let me take you on a tour…

The view down my street, where I spy watch life go by:

The corner of dreams and mystery:

And my comfy, cozy writing spot.

Please note the handy-dandy strong verbs running along the molding, up top there.  Here’s a closer look:

And the fountain feature:

Which burbles sparkling dialogue in my ear.

Tell me. Is there really a better place to write on Earth?

a lack of imagination

This may sound like a dig, and I don’t mean it to be…

But how can you non-creative human beings bear to live?

As I drove to our Sekrit Writing Cave today, I thought about all those years I wasn’t writing.  Only I realize now–I was.

I wrote letters.  Corresponded on internet forums.  Took imaginative meeting notes and composed hilarious PTA announcements.

In addition, I quilted and cross-stitched, sewed adorable kid-clothes and costumes, Indian beaded on a loom and with the brick stitch and peyote stitch, stuffed sock monkeys, and gardened.  I cooked, cleaned, ran errands and changed diapers, volunteered and took care of three kids, a husband and an elderly mother.  But I always had some creative outlet, even if I could only spend 10 minutes a day on it.

If I didn’t, I was insane.

There are lots of people out there who don’t feel that way.  They go to work, come home and do something like watch sports.  Now, I like baseball.  I think it’s great if you coach your kid’s team.

But really?  Is that your only interest?  Nothing else?  Not art?  Music?  Literature?

Sock monkeys?

I confess, I wonder about people who don’t have anything to express.

Where are your souls?

The Time has Come, the Walrus Said…

…to jump into the blogging world.  Since I am among the tech-challenged, bear with me while I experiment and make lots and lots of mistakes.

I wonder how many people recognize where the title of this post comes from.  Does anyone read Alice in Wonderland and Alice Through the Looking-Glass anymore?  Perhaps the craziness of real life has squelched the desire for the absurd in literature. 

I am a children’s writer, primarily YA fantasy.  I live in the imaginal realm four to six hours a day.  It is a strangely familiar yet dangerous place, filled with our most profound fears and joy.  I am lucky to work where myth and legend, imagination and creativity, and monsters and saints live.   

I also drive carpools and bake cupcakes.     

       We don\'t need no stinkin\' badges. Oh, and dress up my dog.


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