Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Where in the World is Abbi?

First, I can't believe I'm almost a double-digit midget! August is almost here. Wooo Hoooo!

I'm moving, in more ways than one. In June, I move 500 miles from where I live now.

My blog is moving to my website: It's still under construction, but my time will be spent between my website, my writing and an endeavor that I can't let go of.

When you get a chance, pop over to

I hope to see some of you at my new blog which should be ready next week. I will post here again when it is.

I hope everyone is thriving and happy.

Abbi :-)

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Women's Fiction Event

When I'm not writing, working or caring for my family, I volunteer for RWA. For the past two years, I've been treasurer for the Romantic Women's Fiction Chapter of RWA (RWA-WF).

This year RWA-WF is hosting its first Women's Fiction Conference in NYC in conjunction with Nationals. Here's the details:

The RWA-WF Board is thrilled to announce on Tuesday, June 28th, RWA-Womens Fiction Online Chapter will hold the First Annual RWA-Womens Fiction Day.

Our line up begins at 1 pm with a two hour presentation by the fantastic Michael Hauge. Michael is considered a genius with story structure. A highly sought after speaker he travels the globe educating both authors and screenplay writers on three act structure. Michael has created a unique presentation for RWA-WF.

At 3:15 we will also host a panel of Womens Fiction Editors and Agents. This diverse and talented group of publishing professional will discuss Womens Fiction in the marketplace as well as answer questions with regards to this exciting genre in which we write. Confirmed members for this panel are Kristin Nelson founder of Nelson Literary Agency and the author of Pub Rants, Meg Ruley at Jane Rotrosen Agency, Andrea Cirillo at Jane Rotrosen Agency, and Shauna Summers Senior Editor at Random House.

Then at 4:15 we will have a panel of Authors dedicated to Womens Fiction. From Newbies to Veterans our pubbed authors will speak on Womens Fiction. They will answer questions about the genre as well as their personal experiences with writing. Our panel will include Megan Crane, Jane Porter, Barbara O'Neal, Therese Walsh, and Marilyn Brant.

After our break for the RWA Literacy Signing we will reconvene at 8 pm for the RWA-WF annual meeting.

Our guest speaker for the evening event will be internationally best-selling Juliet Marillier. We are thrilled that Ms Marillier will speak with our group while visiting the US. She is truly a remarkable writer.

We will conclude the day with a cocktail reception.

The cost for this amazing day will be 55.00 for RWA-WF members and 80.00 for non-members.

Payable in advance via paypal on the RWA-WF website here. Please include your name when you register. The space for this amazing day is limited so please register asap! This event will take place at the New York Marriott Marquis in the Duffy/Columbia Room.

Megan Crane and Jane Porter write women's fiction and Harlequin Presents. It looks to be an exciting event!

Abbi :-)

Monday, March 14, 2011

How to Destroy Your Computer in Three Easy Steps

AKA Total Laptop Destruction, The Abbi Way v1.0

Step 1: Add two competing anti-virus programs to your computer after virus destroys all of your e-mail.

Step 2: Ignore the two competing programs when they tell you they aren’t happy cohabiting together on the computer’s hard drive.

Step 3: Ignore every time your computer freezes and you have to reboot your computer by using the power button.

The blue screen of death appears when your computer can’t take it anymore. At least, that’s what mine did.

Yep, that’s where I had been from Thursday to Late Sunday. Rebuilding my computer. Fortunately, my husband managed to salvage all of my work.

Hope someone learns from this.

Abbi :-)

Friday, March 4, 2011

Rewriting and Revelations

I'm learning that I don't like rewriting. I want the stories to be perfect the first time. Now, editing, that's a different story for me. I can do that. (As a matter of fact, that's what I used to do for a living.) I can move words around, make the story functionally better.

But to rewrite means I have to change the story. Rewriting means I can't just change a few words, I have to recreate new words, paragraphs, and scenes.

There is an upside to rewriting: The story gets better. Even though I don't like doing it, my story is improved from the rework. I had to rewrite the beginning of A Wedding for Ainsley because it just didn't flow right for me. Plus, the motivations were all wrong.

I know I'm going to have to do the same with my underwear story.

A downside to rewriting: You can lose words. I lost 4K in my rewrite. :-( But, I've gained most of it back already.

Amyone enjoy rewriting as much as I do?

Now here's the revelation: My story for Tessa Radley's eharlequin competition was Baby Boon. Thanks to everyone for the comments. Much appreciated.

Abbi :-)

Friday, February 18, 2011

A Month of Focus

I've decided to try something I've never done before: take a month to focus on one story. Eat, sleep and write characters for one story only. It's always about the characters, so I'm wondering how a story will develop if I just focus.

Feb 19th-Mar 20th. 30 days. One story.

Let's see what happens when my characters have nothing to do but hang around in my brain. Scary thought, huh?

Abbi :-)

Friday, February 11, 2011

Not My Baby, No Way -- Part Four

Continuing with my ongoing efforts to put my work out there, I have two posts up this week. The first was a 250 word challenge by author Janet Tronstad on the e-harlequin blog. The short short is titled Dr. Millam's Valentine.

The second should be posted on Valentine's Day as part of a competition to win a mentor for a month. I will post an exact link when it is up.

My next Not My Baby event: subbing.

I hope everyone is healthy and happy.

Abbi :-) 191 days

Friday, February 4, 2011

Decisions . . .

It's decision time again for me. And it's not something as simple as which line do I want to write for.

If you haven't seen it, there's been some exciting news in my household this week. My husband has been selected to be a Vice President with Michigan State University.

It was an easy decision. Mark's worked hard to get to this point. But, in life, love and marriage, something's gotta give, right?

Do you give up time with your two beautiful boys? Do you give up time with your husband when he's hardly ever home?

This isn't about the craft of writing but writing is a balancing game. Your first book isn't going to let you leave the day job. Maybe not even the second, third or fourth.

When I'm moving around on the floors of the ICU, the choices are hard, what's less important gets moved to the bottom. Sometimes, that's your meal for the shift.

My question is: Are your dreams worth putting at the bottom of the list? What if you aren't sure you know what direction you want to take that dream?

No answers. Just alot of hope and faith on this end.

No, I'm not going to quit writing, but I may have to cut down on eating for awhile. :-)


Saturday, January 29, 2011

How SHORT Can You Go?

I think synopses are one of the single most hated entities in writing. I’m not a fan of them even though I tend to write better short. It's hard for me to decide what to keep in a synopsis – especially when a publisher asks for a 1-2 page synopsis. *Gulp!*

This time as I work on two stories, I decided to up the challenge. I decided to summarize each story in ONE SENTENCE. Yes, I’m crazy.

But, you really need to have that sentence if you want to have the question in to story up front right? You have to create your story so that the reader will be asking themselves this question within the first couple of chapters.

I'm hoping this will also help me craft pitches to keep them focused on the romance of the story.

Here’s my question for Ty and Ainsley:

Can Winston Memorial’s most eligible bachelor who’s lost at love find HEA with his best friend’s spunky little sister who doesn’t believe in HEA?

Now I could’ve excluded the character descriptions but those are to help me.
Whittling the story down to one sentence is also an attempt to help me focus. Focus on the story and the characters.

Can you whittle your story down to one sentence?

Abbi :-)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Another Sale!

Well, I had another post ready to go, but I'm going to use today to congratulate another on-line friend who has sold to the M&B Medical Line.

Pop on over and congratulate Susan Wilson!

Congratulations, Susan!

Friday, January 7, 2011

What I Learned in 2010

Can you believe how fast 2010 zoomed by? And now we're over a week into 2011. Before June hits, I thought I'd share a few things I learned from ole' 2010.

Openings Aren't Really Meant to Be Melodramatic

Yes, it's good to have a dramatic opening. But, mine tend to be melodramatic or over-dramatic. Time to tone it down.

Have Faith

Faith in yourself and what you're doing is important, bottom line. If you don't have it, you can't get to where you want to be.

Choose a Path and Stick With It

This is a hard one for me because I am an idea person. I have ideas for everything. But, they all can't be done at once. Truth be told, I'll probably only accomplish one or two of my original ideas in my lifetime. Writing is about branding yourself and you can't brand in seven different directions.

Be Positive No Matter What

I tend to be an upbeat person. I'm happy with life. I'm happy no matter who wins. And many times people don't appreciate or they question my perkiness. It used to bother me. I felt like an outcast. No more.

We Need Another Star Trek or Stargate spin-off

I hesitate to say this because I really didn't like Stargate: Universe. But, there is nothing on TV and I'm starting to become amused by some of the shows on Nickelodeon. Yes, that scares me.

Which leads to my next lesson . . .

June 29, 2012 is Still TOO FAR AWAY

Don't know what happens on this day? I'll give you a hint. A certain sequel hits the theaters.

I Have an Awesome Critique Group

I don't know where I'd be if I wasn't with the Sassy Sisters.

What did you learn in 2010?