Photoshop Friday

Or will it be just a link? *evil laugh*

But before you boo me off the stage, let me tell you that this link leads to my good friend Natalie Whipple‘s blog. Now you’re all cheering. Because Natalie rocks. And given the HUGE amount of followers she has to her blog, you probably already know and love her.

Anyway, Natalie has this awesome weekly feature called Happy Writer’s Society, and she asked me to guest post. So I did, with a Photoshop Friday. Yes, I do love hitting two birds with one stone.

Actually . . . I’d never hit a bird with a stone. That’s just mean.

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Twin Talk Tuesday

Today we thought about discussing some important topics in writing. Something powerful. Meaningful. Something that people would always remember.

And then we decided that was too much pressure, so instead we’re going to talk about something fun.

So without further ado, I present to you our topic of the week. Character Pet Peeves. Or rather, characters that encapsulate our pet peeves.

Diana: So, the other day I watched this movie ( Which will remain unnamed lest it is your fave flix) Anyways, one of the characters totally bugged me. She was a super hot, Butt Kicking™ computer genius . . .working for the Pentagon of course!

Renee: She’s Super Woman.

Diana: I was like, Really? Can’t she just be smart and work for the Pentagon? Isn’t that cool enough?

Renee: That bugs me too. Where are the slacker chicks?

Diana: And its not enough that she is smart and awesome. She also has to be HOT— perfect hair, perfect bod, sassy stilettos.

Renee: And BTW, she’s not just “smart,” she has a genius IQ.

Diana: Natch.

Renee: But she’s also quick with the hilarious and sassy one liners! She’s no nerd!

Diana: Sidenote: If my husband reads this he’ll think I’m being catty :)

Renee: HA. Men. But you see, it’s not necessarily the character we’re mad at. It’s the writer!

Diana: True.

Renee: Speaking of sassy one liners, my pet peeve is the precocious, but adorable, and Infinitely Wise kid brother/sister. The kind of character that makes me wonder if the writer has ever met actual children.

Diana: Seriously.

Renee: There’s also the opposite, which bothers me as well. The child as an obnoxious terror—there to read the MC’s diary, embarrass them in front of the Love Interest, or run away in the last act of the book, and cause everyone to evaluate their motivations

Diana: I don’t know . . . I can relate to the whole “pesky sibling” problem.

Renee: *glares*

Diana: I kid because I love!

To be fair, those characters can be good and interesting as long as they are believable—

Renee: No-no-no. This post isn’t about being fair. I just want to talk trash.

Diana: Oh I can talk trash.

Renee: Bring it.

Diana: Okay. Here’s pet peeve number two: The meathead jock. Recognizable in the letterman’s jacket, the Meathead can be found: throwing scrawny kids against lockers, strutting down the halls surrounded by several other nameless jocks, and pulling crazy pranks

Renee: Yep. And he’s always getting drunk at parties. And sleeping with the drunk cheerleaders.

Diana: Yes, yes How could I forget?

Renee: This one is similar to my other pet peeve: The Lovable Lothario.

I know I’m going to annoy a lot of people, but I didn’t like Iron Man. Why? Tony Stark. He’s the “endearingly” cocky bad boy, who beds women left and right, but never remembers their names. He recklessly spends his gobs of cash, and drives a motorcycle or flashy car. He’s full of himself, but ya can’t hate him, cuz he’s witty and OH-SO-COOL. He’s got “swagger” as Ke$ha would say.

Diana: Never doubt the wisdom of Ke$sha.

Renee: *nods obediently*

Diana: Remember Ren, “Boys will be boys!” 😉

Renee: Ha! That’s exactly why men like the Lovable Lothario. Because they wish they WERE him. And women, well they fantasize about being The One to Tame Him.

Diana: *envisions herself taming Robert Downey Jr….*

Renee: You see?!! You’re as bad as the rest. I’m disappointed in you, sis.

Diana: *hangs head in shame*

Renee: haha. Ah, this has been fun.

Diana: Nothing like starting the day with some good old fashioned trash talk…

Renee: MM-hm

Diana: Though, I think we need a picture of Care Bears hugging or something. In case we offended anyone..:)

Renee: Done. And remember, one person’s pet peeve is another persons favorite, yadda yadda yadda.

What about you? What kind of character gets under your skin?

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Settings….

Hello all! Diana here. As you may know I am just in the very very early stages of writing a novel, (well, if you don’t count Rosaline *clears throat uncomfortably*)

It has all been very fun, but you know, to me, one of the most exciting parts about beginning a new story is thinking of the setting. I have to have an image in my mind of where this story will take place, or at least begin, before I write a word. There is something almost magical about describing a new place in my writing.

Is it that way with you? What are some of your favorite settings that you have either written or read about?


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Sappy Romance

Okay, I SWEAR this is not turning into the romance blog. Pinkie promise.

. . . but I do have another post today on love (or lurve, which ever you prefer.)

First, watch this very short commercial. COME ON, just watch it.

*wipes tears* *blows nose in hankie* . . . What? You didn’t get choked up? Be honest! (Minor side note: Kate Winslet is a FABULOUS actress. I basically have a lady crush on her.)

Anyway, back to love. Here’s the funny thing about love, it’s like egg omelets. Everyone likes theirs differently. When you talk about love, especially the love we read about, the opinions vary on the best way to portray it.

Some people like sweet, funny love.

Some people want slow building, realistic love.

Others want tempestuous, we-fight-and-then-make-up-in-a-hubba-hubba-big-way love.

And some, (gonna include myself here,) enjoy big, sweeping, swoony, running-to-meet-each-other-on-a-bridge-in-Paris love.

I’m not going to lie. I have a soft spot for sappy romance. You may not think it’s realistic. (Well, you clearly haven’t met my husband and I . . .) But the fact is, it’s FUN. It makes you feel good. It makes you cry. It makes you cheer. I love when the romance in a book or movie can do that. THAT’S what I want to make people do. That commercial. I want to capture that feeling in a novel.

How about you? What’s your favorite type of love (or lurve?)

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Photoshop Friday

For Photoshop Friday (or Monday, but whatever . . .) we’re going to keep with the romance theme we had going in Triple T. With all the talk about predicable love triangles, and useless love interests, Diana and I decided to have a little fun and try to mix things up. So without further ado, I present:

Literary Love Mashups

Our first couple is a dangerous one, because it encroaches on one of the most beloved romances of literature. The one in Pride and Prejudice. But we simply want to put Elizabeth Bennett’s talents to best use. Come on now, was Mr. Darcy really all that bad? Sure, sure, he was kind of stand offish, and he didn’t want to dance at the party. *YAWN* Give Lizzy a challenge! And who better than Sherlock Holmes? Can you imagine these two going at it? Now THAT’s entertainment.

Girl, please. You KNOW she could take him.

Next we delve into the inner workings of heroine from another famous love story. Bella Swan. She was called Danger Magnet by Stephenie Meyer herself. She likes the bad boys. And all she gets is an emo, sparkly guy who clings to his Victorian morality?! PLEASE. She wants danger. We’ll give her danger.

Team Darth all the way, baby.

Finally, we present a couple that—frankly—were made for each other. They’re both ambitious. Natural leaders. Charismatic. They both have pesky kids getting in their way. And they both have a disturbingly pale skin hue. But you know, isn’t it time these two get their chance at love?

Because even bad guys deserve a little happiness.

And there you have it. Love is always more fun when it’s unpredictable.

How about you? Have any Literary Love Mashups you’d love to see? (I’m thinking we’ll do some more next week.) Share in the comments section!

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Twin Talk Tuesday

Today I am excited to announce the first installment of Midnight Meditation’s new weekly feature: Twin Talk Tuesday.

For Twin Talk Tuesday, (or Triple T,) Diana and I will debate and discuss topics that are on our minds. Or should I say MIND, because, ya know, we’re telepathic and all. (Be afraid. Be very afraid.)

Today’s topic is the ever present LOVE triangle. Love it? Or leave it?

Renee:Personally, I’m a fan, and I’ll tell you why.

1. Love triangles add TENSION
2. Love triangles are FUN
3. I kind of have a thing for tragic love, and with a LT, there can only be one winner. Therefore one person is all tragic and sad.
And I like that.

Diana: Ok * cracks knuckles* Why do I take issue with LTs?

1. Love triangles are cliche
2. Love triangles …..Ok I’m not going to try the three point approach. I guess my biggest problem with them is that they is rarely a surprise in them. We always know who she is going to choose. Think about it, name me one LT where you were surprised by the girl or boy’s choice.

Renee:***MOCKINGJAY SPOILERS***
Um . . . Well, I was going to say Peeta, because he went all tracker jacker crazy, which I bet NO ONE saw coming. But I guess we all kinda knew she’d end up with him in the very end.

***End spoiler***

Diana: How about Pride and Prejudice? Elizabeth-Darcy-Wickham. Who should poor Elizabeth choose? Rich handsome Darcy? or soldier boy Wickham? Obviously, she’ll pick Darcy.

Renee: Ah, but you see, Elizabeth doesn’t like Darcy at first. And Wickham doesn’t really like Elizabeth. I’d argue that P&P is not a true love triangle.

Diana: Ok, what about Arthur-Guenivere-Lancelot?

Renee: A love triangle, indeed. And we all love it. (Boo-ya)

Diana: Ok…. we all do love it….

Renee: I rest my case.

Diana: Maybe I am changing my point. There ARE classic LT’s that work. Maybe they work so well that everyone tried to copy them . . . and most failed.

Renee: I can agree with that.

Diana: For example..The Notebook.

Renee: Don’t diss Old People Love!

Diana: Oh I am not dissing old people love! (You are talking to the girl with the movie Lovely, Still on my queue)

Renee: HA. Actually, I know YOU wouldn’t diss old people love. (Little Known Fact: Diana has a crush on Peter Coyote.)

Diana: No comment. :) Seriously though, I’m dissing the fact that the Allie-Lon-Noah triangle is poorly constructed. The Allie-Noah love gets tons of attention [(at least in the movie) I have not read the book have you??] and they devote ten seconds to her love with Lon and when the moment of choice comes we are supposed to believe that she would actually choose Lon over her EPIC love with Noah?? please…

Diana: Or the Ross-Rachel-Joey triangle from TV. I mean . . . JOEY?? Don’t get me wrong, he was a semi lovable character, but that was a bit of a stretch

Renee: True, true. Oh, I have one! OMGDawson’s Creek?! Though in that one Joey and Dawson did NOT end up together. Unexpected, at least. Made up for a bit of the melodrama

Diana: Didn’t see it.

Renee: Now THAT’s tragic

Diana: hmmm, I’ll have to look it up.

Renee: No really. Don’t.

Anyway, you do have a point. I get annoyed when the other guy feels arbitrarily added on for Tension™. But you have to admit that when they get things right, it’s AWESOME.

Diana: Well . . . yes.

Renee: Like Arthur-Guenivere-Lancelot.

Diana. True. OR Scarlett-Rhett-Ashley (yowsa!)

Renee: YES!!

Diana: Anna-Vronsky-Kitty (SIGH)

Renee: Oh H-yes :)

Diana: I guess my point is, love triangles can be a guilty pleasure, but it is a bit like making bbq ribs. It takes a lot of time (you can’t rush good ribs), it takes just the right seasonings, and then it has to be grilled just enough, otherwise forget it.

Renee: Now I’m all hungry . . . (For ribs, or a good love triangle? Or BOTH at the same time? *ponders the awesomeness*)

Renee: Well, it looks like this first ever twin debate may just have a warm, fuzzy ending.

Diana: Aww

Renee: PRECIOUS!

So what do YOU think? Love Triangles, love or loathe? Name your favorite love triangle in the comment’s section! Unless of course you only loathe. In which case, share why you do!

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Meet Diana!

Hello All, Diana here. Since this is my first post, I figured I would give you a little background.

I was born on a drizzly spring morning in April…well, maybe not that much background…I’ll start by telling you about when I started writing.

Every summer when I was growing up, my family would take a vacation in our motor home. Renee and I spent countless hours on our bunk beds writing, reading, and drawing. Now let’s have this understood from the beginning; Renee was always a few steps ahead. For example, the summer I read The Baby-sitters Club Super Special #7 She polished off the entire works of Shakespeare. And although Renee threatened that if I gushed about her she would just go in and delete it, I must say that she truly is a naturally exceptional writer and always has been. But we both loved to create.

My first attempt at a novel was Rosaline a fairly shameless copy of Gone with the Wind, only set in England. After that dismal failure, I turned my focus to painting and theatre. After finishing college, getting married, and having two absolutely adorable kids, I cautiously returned to writing. Right now I am working on a fantasy novel, but I am also very interested in writing screenplays and plays for the stage. I have a million ideas and characters in my head, but I just need to commit to sticking with one idea. Every time I start to write, I either get a new “better” idea or I begin to loathe the idea I am working on. Any tips on getting past this stage?

Well now that I have bored you all to tears, I will throw in a cute picture of my kids and hope to win you all over with that.

Cute, eh? Well, I look forward to sharing my writing journey with you!

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Hello

I must admit, before I begin, the great
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New Year, New Blog

Blogging and I have had a real on again, off again relationship. In many ways, I love it. I love the sense of community. I love meeting other writers. I love celebrating and commiserating with a huge group of people just like me.

What I don’t love? Actually, you know, writing blog posts.

I’m kind of kidding, but the truth is this:

1. I’m BUSY, and as I’m sure many of you noticed, blogging takes time.

2. I don’t feel like it’s my place to dole out writing advice yet.

3. Sometimes I think that everything to say about writing has already been said.

Believe me, I’ve stared at that “Delete Blog” button many times. (MANY times.)

However, instead of deleting this blog, I’ve decided to takes the reigns and make it FUN. (For myself, at the very least.) So it is with great pleasure that I announce a total makeover to Midnight Meditations!

This blog will now chronicle the writing journeys of not one, but TWO writers. And we’re twins! (Aww, precious!) You guys get TWO writer blogs for the price of one! It is, in fact, your lucky day.

I am thrilled to welcome my twin sister, Diana to my blog!!!

She’s cool, guys. Cooler than me, in fact. And fun. And funny. My best friend in the world. She’s a new writer just starting out. Diana and I love to talk, and laugh, and debate relevant issues (like ABC’s choice of Brad Womack as the new Bachelor.) Or the Eternal Question: Edward v. Jacob.

Look for a new weekly feature in which we will discuss and debate a certain topic (which we will try to keep somewhat writing related.) Coming soon! Also, Diana will be posting on her individual journey as well as me blogging about mine. (And we WILL start up Photoshop Friday’s again. I haven’t forgotten my promise.)

In the end, I’m doing this for me, because I just want another way to have fun with my sis. (She lives very far away from me. #sad) But I’m willing to share her with you. So come on into the comments section and welcome my awesome twin sis! I promise, you’re going to love her. :)

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