Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Wednesday Scramble

Tomorrow's Guest

I'm very excited that Arlee Bird will be here tomorrow to talk about blogging, getting more followers to your blog, and the great 2011 A to Z April Blog Challenge. Lee, who blogs at tossing it out, is a perfect example of what can happen when you think outside the box, come up with a great idea, and run with it. If you have a blog, you won't want to miss tomorrow's post.

Finalists and Honorable Mentions for the 4th Sort-of-Annual Stupendously Ultimate First Paragraph Challenge

Last week at Chiseled in Rock blog I mentioned Nathan Bransford's The 4th Sort-of-Annual Stupendously Ultimate First Paragraph Challenge, which I entered and encouraged others to do the same. I did not get an honorable mention, nor did I become a finalist.

BUT GUESS WHAT? One of my wonderful blogger friends, Ann Best who blogs at Long Journey Home, was one of 1,500+ entrants who did receive honorable mention. That's awesome! Congratulations to Ann.

The six finalists are posted, and you can read their entries and vote for your favorite until the deadline on Wednesday.

Super Duper Blog Post of the Week

April Moore, a member of our Raintree Writers critique group, is writing a nonfiction book about Folsom's 93, the ninety-three men executed by hanging at Folsom Prison between 1835 and 1937. The information she's accumulating for this book is fascinating.

She recently spent two weeks in California doing more research, which included a tour of Folsom Prison. This week she posted all about her trip (with photos) at her dedicated blog, Folsom's 93. "My Time in Prison" is a great post about the thrill of researching from original materials, why she toured the prison, and how much work she has to do now that she's back home. April has a wonderful sense of humor, so the post is not all dry and boring. I highly recommend it.

April also blogs at Epicurean Vegan where she posts yummy recipes. I don't think April ever eats anything without taking a picture of it first, which makes even her restaurant reviews a visual treat.

Arctic Freeze

The temperature yesterday when I wrote this post was zero F with a wind chill of -13 F. The overnight low was forecast at -19 F (Lord knows what the wind chill forecast was). Needless to say, my office, which is on the second floor in the northeast corner of the house, was so cold I couldn't keep my hands warm even with numerous cups of warm tea. Even Katrina Katie Kitten rejected the room and found a sunny spot on the stairs for her afternoon nap.

I eventually gave up and found a warmer place in the house. I chose the kitchen, where I heated up the oven and baked that apple custard crisp variation on apple custard pie that I fantasized about on Facebook yesterday. Then I found a spot in the sun, just like Katie Kitten, and went blog hopping and status updating and tweeting with my little laptop.

I'm not really complaining, because I know other parts of the country are experiencing ice storms and blizzards. But no matter the weather where you are, you can't go wrong with a warm blanket (or five), a cup of hot whatever (even if you have to fire up the grill on the patio to get hot water), and a good book.

Stay warm!


Margot Kinberg said...

Patricia - I'm glad you were able to stay warm and cozy. It sounds really, really wintry outside!

Congratulations to Ann (folks, if you haven't, do visit her great blog!), too. That's wonderful!

And I look forward to Arlee's guest appearance!

Jan Morrison said...

It is wintery here today - we're expecting over 45 centimetres of snow to dump on the 15 we got yesterday. I've cancelled my clients and am hunkering down with the family (Ron, our student Felix and the dog - the step-dot is at her ma's this week) Ron's going to make a serious borcht - yay. I'm going to work on my submission to Debut Dagger and catch-up on my blog visiting. Yay!

welcome to my world of poetry said...

I look forward to Arlee Bird as a guest, you have a great many things going,

There's a little something at my site for you.


Anonymous said...

Thank you, Pat, for the congrats! I'm now going to go over to Nathan's place and find your entry. There were certainly a lot, and many of them as good or better than mine, and I never expected to "win." Well, it is subjective in the long run, but I'm pleased since the paragraph might finally get me going on my second memoir.

Oh, the storms. We are so fortunate here in Harrisonburg, Virginia. The biggies have all gone around us, except for one last week that did cause grief (all of my children had trouble that day getting home from work and it was scary). Today will be 51 here and maybe some rain. Glad you're toasty warm with all the blankets and hot drinks. Stay safe! and happy reading.
Ann Best, Author

Patricia Stoltey said...

Hi Margot -- Are you going to try the A to Z Challenge this year?

Jan -- there's one good thing about a big winter storm...staying home!

Yvonne -- I'm on my way over...

Good morning, Ann -- I think my entry was at the 300 mark. It's one short sentence of dialogue.

April Moore said...

Thanks, Pat! I appreciate the kudos!

I'm sick of these frigid days and looking forward to a warm up on Friday!

Patricia Stoltey said...

April -- I know. There's cold and then there's REALLY COLD! I have to go out briefly today and plan to wear many layers...

Arlee Bird said...

You can have your cold weather. I don't do well with cold weather anymore. The southern California weather has me spoiled I guess. I was very cold this morning and it was in the mid-60s.

Looking forward to my visit tomorrow.

Tossing It Out and the Blogging From A to Z April Challenge 2011

Patricia Stoltey said...

Hi Arlee -- I'll be up bright and early to make sure your post publishes on time. Blogger has been very good to me lately, but I always hold my breath on guest days.

The Old Silly said...

Yeah, I'm hunkered down with a warm blanket and a hot cup of Joe right now, staring out at the STILL pouring down 14+ inches of snow here in Michigan!

Looking forward to Arlee Bird's visit - great blogger, with I can imagine lots of great tips!

Patricia Stoltey said...

Greetings, Marvin. Sounds like a good day to stay inside.

I have family down in central Illinois who experienced an ice storm first and then got hit with the snow. Sure glad we retired to Northern Colorado... :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Looking forward to Lee's guest spot! And sorry, it's sevnty degrees here right now.

Patricia Stoltey said...

Alex -- Hubby and I retired to Northern Colorado from South Florida to escape heat, humidity, and bugs...not to mention hurricanes. I have no business complaining about a little cold weather. :)

Clarissa Draper said...

Cool stuff ahead.

Just wanted to let you know that I'm reading your book. It's really cool. I feel like I'm there.

Jemi Fraser said...

I hadn't heard about Ann's honourable mention - that's awesome!! :)

Looking forward to Lee's post tomorrow!

Patricia Stoltey said...

Clarissa -- well, if you're reading the one that takes place in Illinois, that's not a good place to be right now. My brother tells me they had an ice storm right before the snows hit, so it's a mess.

Hi Jemi -- Ann's should be pretty darned happy about now. That was quite a honor.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Patricia .. thank you for telling us about Ann - that's fantastic .. I must pop over and congratulate her.

The snow storms seem awful .. I just hope ours isn't coming back .. glad you found a good way to forget the weather and enjoy life a la maison .. cheers Hilary