Sunday, April 17, 2016

Sunday Salon: April 17, 2016

We have enjoyed a gorgeous weekend: sunny skies, light breeze, high in the 70s. Some much needed rain is heading our way, though, and it should be a pretty dreary start to the week. Oh well, April showers are going to bring beautiful May flowers, right?


This was the week of slow and steady in all areas.

I continue to listen to Gone Girl and I now have only 2.5 discs to go. I am still riveted by the story line and at this point have my theory how the book might end. I need to make up places to go this week so I can spend more time in the car and finally finish this novel.

I'm hoping to catch up on writing this week so I can spend next Saturday participating in the Dewey 24 hour Read-athon. I haven't officially registered because I'm not convinced I will have the time, but I'm keeping fingers crossed.

At this point I have a couple of non-fiction books selected, mostly about the craft of writing, as well as a few Middle Grade adventure stories.

How many of you are planning to participate in this reading event?


Painting for Chapter 1:
Monet's Japanese Bridge
I wrote almost 2,500 words to complete the first chapter of this revised MG novel. I took it to my writing coach for a critique, and she liked it! Of course she had some ideas for improvement (all of them wonderful, spot-on suggestions), but she liked it. Whew....

One suggestion is to rewrite the chapter in first person, just to see how I like it - a valid point and one I often encourage my own students to try. Interestingly, when I tried it in first person, I automatically changed the verb tense from past to present.

The next step is to take it to critique group this week and read a bit of both versions to solicit their opinion. And then... on to chapter two. I'm exited to see where the story takes me.


While I enjoy this challenge of blogging every day - and I do feel more like a serious writer than a hobbyist - it is starting to take its toll. I feel compelled to write a week's worth of posts today so I don't fall behind, and I just don't seem to visit other blogs as often as I had hoped. It is most definitely a "challenge"

At this point I am just past the half-way point, so I refuse to give up.


photo credit:
April's focus on writing leaves little free time to investigate other avenues of fun. However, I am planning for the future.

I chatted with my eldest this week, one thing led to another, and... I'm going to Walt Disney World May 10-14!! I have always wanted to experience the "happiest place on earth" as an adult, but plans never worked out.

Megan is going to be there on business and had a private room booked at the Port Orleans French Quarter resort. She didn't mind company, and surprisingly, I had nothing on the calendar. So for the first time in my life I made a spontaneous decision and booked a flight. I am SO excited!

Top on the activity list is to walk the resort and savor the beauty of Florida in springtime. I plan to take my camera everywhere, especially Epcot's International Flower and Garden Festival and Animal Kingdom's Kilimanjaro Safari.

For those of you who may be more familiar with visiting WDW as an adult, do you have any suggestions for places to see or things to do? I am open to any and all ideas.


  1. I would love to visit Disney as an adult -- I don't have any tips to offer, but I'm sure you'll have a wonderful time!

  2. I have suggestions! I traveled to Disney World as an adult and solo several times in my 30s when it became clear that I wasn't going to have children to take with me.

    The boat ride from Port Orleans to Downtown Disney is relaxing and fun. How cool that you're staying in Port Orleans while writing a French-themed book.

    Of course, you'll want to spend some time soaking the atmosphere in the France pavilion at EPCOT. Take note of how they express "France" in a small space -- it will be inspiring!

    Practice standing before you go. Knees slightly bent and pelvis tucked under. I always ended up with a backache after a couple of days at Disney until I learned to stand properly from a yoga instructor. I'd love to go down there now that I wear a FitBit -- lots of steps in a day!

    Take advantage of Extra Magic hours that are available to resort guests. I especially liked early entry because the crowds are low and the light is nice for photos.

    Take breaks! Sit on a bench and watch the world go by. I often went back to my room for a late lunch and switched to a different park for the afternoon/evening. The food courts at the hotels are nearly empty at lunch time so it makes a nice leisurely break from crowds.

    Let me know if you have questions!

    1. LOVE ALL THESE SUGGESTIONS! Thanks so much, Joy!

      I plan to do some pre-trip research over the next couple of weeks. I will probably contact you before I leave. Thank you for that offer :)

  3. I thought I had Gone Girl figured out a couple of times but the ending surprised me. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

    1. I've read numerous reviews where they hated the ending... so my guess is probably off. Glad you liked it though!

  4. I may be the only person left who hasn't read Gone Girl... you've just about convinced me to give the audio a try!

    A trip to Disney sounds wonderful! It's been more than a decade since I've been there, so don't have any tips. Epcot was a lot of fun and I'm sure you'll have a great time.

    1. You listen to far more audiobooks than I do, JoAnn... but this one has kept me engaged the entire 13 discs (so far)

  5. Oh, I do hope you can do at least a little readathon-ing! Sign up and you'll feel committed....

    Here's my Sunday Salon!

    1. I should register, you are right. I need a little bit of accountability :)

  6. I'll be hosting a mini challenge at midnight!

    1. I don't remember the last time I saw midnight, but if you are hosting a challenge, I just might try to stay awake :)

  7. Oh Enjoy your vacation!! I've been meaning to go back to Disney for a long time. And definitely stay on the premises this time! I can't wait to see all your photos!

    And, I know how you feel about falling behind on your blogging. I was over doing it for a while and not enjoying it as much. I felt more obligated than motivated. But taking it back a few notches helped.

    Enjoy your week!

    1. I plan to take LOTS of photos, Suzanne. You may get tired of seeing them :)

      This blogging frenzy is only for a short time period. The challenge ends April 30th and then I will return to a more manageable routine (I hope...)

  8. I'm not participating in the readathon this time around. For me, it comes down to checking my calendar for family activities each time -- one of these days I'm going to have so little going on that I will participate again (maybe when my kids are out of high school?). :) I hope you have a fabulous time on your vacation!

    1. Yes... when kids are out of high school :) But enjoy these days while they last!


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