Posts Tagged ‘running’




Things on my To-Wacko-Do-List!

Filed under: Check-it-out, Dancing, Drafting, Family, Pondering, Reading, Running, SCBWI, Writing, Writing Style, YA Books, Young Adult (YA)

It’s been awhile since I’ve been late posting my blog. But here I am, keeping it real. LOL! What is making me late today? In a nutshell, there are a mess of things on my To-Wacko-Do-List.



In not particular order…

*The hubby had a small surgery last Tuesday. He’s recovering nicely, but when he’s home I have the worst time keeping track of time.

*Switching over to fall/winter gear is time consuming. Where did I put the hats? No, you can’t wear shorts to school anymore!  And of course anything that no longer fits the 8 year old goes into the “For the Cousins Pile.” STUFF EVERYWHERE!!!!

*And I know I’ve been saying this forever, but we’re still moving. It’s not the house we’d originally planned on, that deal fell through, but we’ve found a wonderful new house and *crosses fingers and toes* we should be moving in some time before I die. I swear. This whole moving thing feels like an Indiana Jones movie. There are hurdles and traps around every corner. (But no snakes please) Moving is not easy, I didn’t expect it to be, but it’s harder than I thought it would be also. I can’t wait to get to the part where I can simply settle in and be excited. In the mean time, I’m in purge mode. It’s like fall clean up on steroids. I’m trying to do a little bit every day to make the process easier. I am FIGHTING my procrastinating nature and like I said, I want to get to the fun part of this adventure asap!  Anyway, more to come about the move craziness as it gets closer.

*And running–I want to be running as much as possible in this weather because it’s perfect. No further explanation needed, but I will say one thing. Crunchy leaves. <3

*And dancing–it’s recital time. Extra rehearsals. Costumes. Trying to remember my dances eek! Always so much fun.

*Prepping for NaNoWriMo and my next WIP. This is a funny little book that’s coming together in my mind. *breathes a sigh of relief because it IS finally coming together* It’s just weird because it’s doing everything differently than my other books. It doesn’t give two figs about a playlist. Really? And it clearly has it’s own agenda. I may kick-off NaNo in the middle-ish of the book. Or maybe not. But I could. I still might. THIS BOOK!  And this WIP has weird demands about how it should be written stylistically. I don’t even know what it means, but I know I’m excited about it and I can’t wait to get started. In fact, if it wasn’t for NaNoWriMo kicking off, I’d be typing like mad right now. But I need a timeline for this crazy manuscript. *head thunk*  Yup, I’ve never done that before either.  I guess I’ll plan, the way this book demands I should, until Nov. 1st!!!

*Oh, and Halloween. Because if you have three kids, Halloween takes up a huge chunk of your existence–for weeks. LOL!

*And don’t forget all the time I spent checking out the new SCBWI website!!!!! You must go check it out and while you’re over there, don’t forget to sign up for the NY SCBWI Conference in February. It is so much fun and we can hang out!!!!

*And reading!!!! Oh, I am reading like a fool. I’m reading for information and inspiration for the WIP. I’m reading Veronica Roth’s ALLEGIANT. I’ve followed the series and I’m hearing all kinds of rumblings and unrest about the ending. So curious!!!! I want to find out what the heck is going on. (Before someone hits me with a spoiler) I’m also reading WONDERBOOK an illustrated guide on creating imaginative fiction. I’m fascinated by this book and it’s speaking directly to me about what I’m about to attempt to write. I love perfect timing. I love it so much I’m carrying it everywhere with me. Plus I’m reading a bunch of other great books in addition to having a heavy line-up of books in the wings begging for my attention. I love books. <3

Alright, you get the point, I’ve been busy and it’s with mostly good stuff so I’m not complaining, just explaining. But now it’s time to hear what you’ve been doing. What’s on your To-Wacko-Do-List? What are you reading? What are you cleaning? Are you prepping for NaNoWriMo? Fill me in…

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I Can’t Believe People Do That for Fun? Riding the Wave

Filed under: Drafting, Pondering, Running, Wolfson Literary, Writing, Writing Style

This week, my agent Michelle Wolfson, accidentally went for a jog. LOL! Her littlest decided to scoot to school and Michelle had to run to keep up with her. This tweet followed…



I had to smile because I’m one of those nuts that *enjoys it* (Most of the time.) Like anything else, it can have it’s moments. *pant, gasp, fall over* But yeah, I do it voluntarily and usually with a smile on my face.

I’ve been running a lot since the weather’s gotten nice, but that’s not the only thing I’ve been doing. This week in particular, I’ve wanted to do nothing more than write. I’ve been hit by a tsunami of writingness. I love/hate when this happens. It’s great because I’m doing something I’m so into. Even if I’m not super productive by a word count standard (I am ME after all) I’m still making all kinds of break throughs and I AM getting new words, better words, on the page. And I don’t want to mess with the flow of the universe, because it’s smiling on me and raining creativity. But it’s bad because I don’t want to do any of the other important things in my life and honestly I’ve got tons, heaping tons on my to-do list. So how have I been handling it? Of course I’ve been writing–riding the wave. LOL!

You know my motto–BUY MORE CLEAN UNDERWEAR!!!!


But, being “in the zone” with my writing has gotten me thinking about Michelle’s examination about running. There are certain things in are lives that can be very challenging, but when we are riding their wave, they’re amazing. We are drawn to them like a thirsty desert dweller to an oasis. But the things that fulfill us are different for everyone. There are people out there that would rather do anything else than run and/or write. There are folks who would run a marathon before writing a sentence, of a tome before heading out around the block. There are also people who like to do crafts and cook for fun. Now those people are like a foreign species to me! You made cupcakes for fun? Hello! I EAT cupcakes for fun. And that helps explain why  I run. Full circle. ROTFL!

So, tell me. Do you get hit with writing tsunamis? What activity do you love that other people might like to poke their eyes out before doing? Does it pay to ride the wave when it come your way? Or is it really just avoidance of less fun things?

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A Lot of Running Going On

Filed under: Family, Running

Lots of running going on in the Sabatini house. The boys woke up to giant allergy flair-ups–noses running and stuffed–an always unpleasant combination. Also headaches, puffy eyes and a general sense of bleh. I spent the morning playing with a combination of allergy medicine, alternative treatments and TLC. They are all off to school, so we shall see if they make it through the day ok.

On Friday I took my 12yo running with me for the first time. He’d recently run his first 5k at school and did very well and expressed and interest in hitting the road with me on a day off from school. I mentally prepared myself to run at a slower, more even pace to get him through the four miles and he proceeded to kick my ass. LOL! I was irrationally proud. I did cross the finish line first, think the tortoise and the hare, but he dominated. Now he needs to learn how to pace himself a little better. But that is almost always a skill that comes with experience.

Additionally, spring cleaning has me running up and down the stairs and all over the place trying to clean up my crap. The annual switching of the clothes and cleaning of the winter mess. Soon I’ll be running around with bags of mulch. I’ve also noticed quite a few runs in my dance tights, but with all this dashing around, who has time to buy new ones LOL!

And finally, now that the nice weather is finally here, but before the baking heat arrives, I am running more. In fact, I’m on my way out the door right now…

While I’m gone–tell me if you’ve got any running going on?


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I’ve Joined the Bookanistas!!!!

Filed under: Book Reviews, Bookanistas, Reading, Running, YA Books, Young Adult (YA)



I’m off and running–literally. I’m taking my 12yo for his first run. SQUEE! He came in 2nd place at a 5k at his school the other day and now he wants to run with me. So much fun!!!!! But I thought I’d pop in and let you know that I was invited to join the Bookanistas. I’m so excited…

Who are the Bookanistas?

Who We Are

We are a group of writers in various stages of the publishing process who have banded together to recommend/review the special books of our peers.

Combined, we reach over 10,000 followers

We recommend and review all kinds of children’s books, but focus mainly on YA, middle grade and now, picture books. (yes picture books too! Shocker!). As fellow writers, we have decided to only recommend books we absolutely LOVE, therefore, we do not post anything negative!

Yes, that’s right! We give nothing but love! There’s enough negativity in the world.

We post every Thursday covering a variety various book topics– upcoming ARCs, books we love, diamonds in the rough, classics, and even dish out some cover love from time to time.

Come join us on Thursdays and you can be be fashionable, too.

Because The Bookanistas think books are the new black!

You can check out my warm welcome to the Bookanistas and our prayers going out to Boston HERE. And I’ll be posting my first Bookanistas Review on 4/25. Okey dokey…NOW I’m off and running LOL! Have a great weekend.

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Post Turkey Trot

Filed under: Running

Coming out of turkey coma…gone running. See you on Monday. 

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My Second Runniversary

Filed under: Check-it-out, Contests, Running, Wolf Pack, Wolfson Literary

Today is officially my 2nd Runniversary!!!! I have been a runner for two years now and I’m very proud of that. Running was never an activity that I enjoyed, but if you know me personally or read my blog you now that it has come to be many things to me, including a personal, physical challenge and a creative outlet. I’ll be honest, one of the things that brought me to running was the technology. I’m a bit of a feedback freak and Nike’s gadgets for tracking information, allowed me to run outside and still get the info that I craved. It truly won me over. So, to celebrate my competitive nature, here are my stats…

In two years I have gone on 122 runs for a grand total of 94 hours and 40 minutes.  I have run 585.25  miles and burned  57,859 calories. Woo hoo!!!!

What’s your favorite form of exercise? Are you a runner? What do you love and have about hitting the pavement? Have I convinced you to start running????

Also, we have a winner for the ARC of IN A FIX by Linda Grimes!!!! Drum roll please…

Congrats to Abigail from All Things Urban Fantasy!!!!!!!!

*COMING SOON* Watch my blog for a chance to win an ARC of Trish Doller’s SOMETHING LIKE NORMAL. 

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Running Releases More Than Just Sweat

Filed under: Chasing Adaptation, Running, The Opposite of Gravity, Writing

Due to a wicked bout of the flu PLAGUE that hit the whole family, I went running on Monday for the first time in weeks. I knew my first run back would be a little on the slow side, but I was just anxious to get out there. Why? Because running releases more than just sweat. I love this picture because it’s actually how I visualize what’s happening to me when I run. Except, there is another component that I see in my mind’s eye. It isn’t always just what I leave out on the road that’s important–it’s also about what I find along the way.

On Monday I also finished the first draft of my second novel, THE OPPOSITE OF GRAVITY. *happy dance*  For me, drafting is a long and painful process. I can not adequately express the joy I feel right now to have a very functional draft to work off of. I LOVE revision and now I’m finally there–sort of. Because for me, writing has it’s own kind of heartbeat. It’s own rhythm. When one thing ends–another begins. The closer I draw to the end of one book, the more the next book starts to move, stretch and grow inside my head. So, as I run, I do this thing that I sort of think of as “unhinging my mind.” When I’m running, I turn off the logic setting and I let my mind travel at random. I allow it to move from one thought to another in the hopes that my subconscious will be the compass–leading me to my own truth.


The plot thread, that was missing from book #3 CHASING ADAPTATION, just appeared in my head along a number of other cool and interesting possibilities. And as my feet pounded the pavement, I had this insane feeling that as I was actually running through the collective conscious, with my mind open like a butterfly net, collecting ideas at the same rate as I was dropping “garbage” behind me. And it felt amazing.

Where do you look to find clarity and inspiration for your writing or your life? What sends your internal compass in the right direction?

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I Grow Slow

Filed under: Pondering, The Opposite of Gravity, Writing, Writing Style, YA Books, Young Adult (YA)

Last Thursday I went for a run–a seven mile run to be exact. If you’re not a runner you’re probably wondering why the heck I would do such a thing. (I used to look at runners and roll my eyes too) But that changed. Now I like to pound the pavement for a lot of reasons–it allows me to eat lots of chocolate and still fit into my pants. I like the feeling of being physically spent after a workout. I enjoy the head space and the way my mind just wanders and explores things.  It’s also a big stress relief. Now, I’ll be the first to tell you that I mostly have fake stress. No one is dying in my family right now, my debut novel is being published in October, my kids are healthy and happy. I’m good. Real stress is the fear of losing your home, the inability to put food on the table, illness or death knocking on your door. I do not have that in my life right now–so I am not complaining.

But there is a certain reality that we all live in. We view the world through our own daily filters. So, while I try very hard to keep my life in perspective, there are days when the laundry piling up or a car needing to be serviced can just turn me into a hump head. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t growl when they purchase something new, only to get home and find it broken in the box. It is the reality of the life we live in–some days go better than others. Some moments have more stress. Lately I’ve had two things that tend to upset my apple cart. The one I’m going to talk about now is my work in progress. Writing the second book is hard. So I run.


In general, I run and “write.” I’m not a note taker or an outliner by nature. I’m a runner–a mental plotter. As move my feet–I manipulate the story in my head. I twist it and bend it. I ask it questions. I wonder what my characters are saying to me. I listen to music and marvel at the deep thoughts that other artists have presented to the world through their lyrics. I take all the individual ingredients that I use to make up a story and I simmer them and try to make good soup.

I also run because I’m afraid of how slow I grow. I try to outrun my nerves.

I write books in a way that is very organic to me. I actually like my process, now that I’ve grown to understand it and appreciate it. But my way of doing things takes time. I don’t just “write” a book for readers. I create what I need to grow my own soul–to navigate the landscape of my life. Some days it feels less like building something new and more like unraveling a giant, knotted ball of string. It’s me trying to make sense of something that might choke me if it’s left in that chaotic condition. To me, writing a book is a beautiful journey. But the catch is that I’m not just an observer to this process, I’m pulling all the same threads that my characters are tugging at too. I’m growing and changing right along with them. It has saved my life, but some days it is a slower process than I would like. It’s hard to admit that I grow slow.

Thursday I was running because my agent was reading part of my manuscript and I didn’t know if she would find me between the words. I wasn’t sure if their were more questions than answers entangled in the lines.  I believe in my stories. I know the OPPOSITE OF GRAVITY is what I need to be writing and it will be beautiful when it’s finished–but I worry that I grow too slow. Some days I think that the world might be willing to wait for what I have to say–if I take the time to get it right. Other days I think that’s hubris. Until I know for sure–I’ll have to keep running.

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Filed under: Uncategorized

I’m not going to lie.  I’ve always hated running.  Even when I played soccer, running was simply a necessary evil.  Something that had to be done to be good at the game. Even thinking about running made me feel like this…

All that changed a year ago.  Tomorrow May 21st is my 1 year Runniversary.  How did it happen?Several good friends of mine took up running and raved about it.  I kept tabs on them.  I was curious, but I couldn’t imagine the appeal.  I’d pounded out “grueling” runs on the treadmill and that usually prevented a repeat performance for at least 6 months.  Back on the Stair Master I’d go. But they kept talking about it.

It was a beautiful spring day and I decided to go for a walk to get some exercise.  I needed to be outside. Then the strangest thing happened, my feet just decided they wanted to run, the way a kid does when they’re in a hurry to go nowhere, but get there very fast.  OK-that’s sort of a lie.  Yes, I was inspired by the weather and the feeling of the wind in my face.  I liked how my lungs stretched–my whole body felt used up–like I’d done something epic.  But if I’m going to be honest–I’m just freakin’ competitive sometimes.  My friends were doing it.  Why couldn’t I?

I ran 3 miles that day and it was hard in a good way.  But I think what kept me coming back in the beginning (besides my inner competitive monster) was technology.  I could run outside where it was beautiful, with all the feedback of being inside–where it wasn’t.  It was the best of both worlds for me. I’m a feedback girl. Using my Nike tracker, I kept a record of my distance and time and logged it into my Nike web page.  I also listened to music while I ran and as a dancer–that just worked for me.

During this first year of running,  I converted to Vibrams (a minimalist platypus looking shoe) and I LOVE it.  I don’t want to run any other way.  The shoes are awfully funny looking, but the feel of it makes running any other way feel wrong.  Besides, how I look wearing finger shoes doesn’t matter anyway.  I’m pretty sure that no matter what is on my feet,  to the casual observer I look like this…

But it doesn’t matter because when I run, I feel like this…

And that is a beautiful thing.  So while some days running is still a slog, no matter how much I improve.  And some days I can’t sneak a run in no matter how much I desperately would love to. The truth is that I won’t be giving this up any time soon.

I’m proud to announce that I ran a grand total of 370.96 miles!!!!!! this year.

Come this fall, all three of my boys will be in school full-time for the first time.  Woot!!! Don’t give me the “Bad Mother Glare.”  Of course I’ll miss having the littlest one home, but he’s bored and I’m not going to miss my life in 2 and a half hour increments.  In fact, I’m pretty excited for what it means for my writing, my laundry, my need for hermit time and of course my running.  Did I mention that I’m a little bit competitive? *wink* Of course I’m planning to run more–further and faster.  Why?  Because I can…






Barefoot Writing

Filed under: Writing

I write barefoot or in socks all the time.  I know, its no great feat.  *snort and giggle at the word play*  But that isn’t exactly what I’m talking about.  I’ve recently taken up running and after reading BORN TO RUN by Christopher McDougall I started minimalist running. First, I was hard core and went completely barefoot…

I immediately LOVED it!  The only problem was that I was getting lots of blisters, I didn’t like running only at the track and it was getting cold. So, I decided that I would use my limited barefoot experience and try the not so attractive, wow I look like a platypus, Vibram Five Fingers.  See…total platypus!

But heck, I don’t run expecting to look attractive.  I’m hoping that’s a side effect, but I have no illusions about the whole smelly, drippy sweaty process.  Keep your distance.  Instead, I run to be free.  I run to discover who I am and what makes me tick.  I run to tap into my own head, heart and soul….WAIT!  Wasn’t that the reason I started writing???  Yes it was!  And now that I’m thinking about it, there are a lot more similarities between barefoot running and writing….First of all, there’s a learning curve.  

I would be an idiot to believe that I could run right out and do a marathon without training or write a bestseller without practice and knowledge about the craft of writing.  Its a process and the journey is one to be enjoyed if your smart.  The last run I took was at sunset as the sky moved to twilight over the Hudson River.  Getting to the end of the run was not my only reward.  Likewise, almost four years spent writing, revising and learning has given me a manuscript that has potential.  Getting there was not the only reward…discovering what I have inside, who I am and what I’m made of has given me my own kind of inner light.  Sometimes when you’re bare you can see past the usual things that clutter up your life.

Balance is also an important component of both activities and I don’t mean trying not to fall off the curb while leaping over a drainage grate or rushing to a critique group.  After I run, I need to sit…to recover.  Between the writing and the sitting…I need to move.  Balance is good.  I enjoy my running when I’m planning and plotting story lines and characters in my head.  Equally, I love sitting down to write when the stress has been blown off me and my body feels deserving of the break.  When I can feel the ground beneath my feet, I avoid heel strikes and hard pounding.  I can feel when I need to self-correct.  When I write with my heart exposed, I lead with voice instead of structure.  I know when it doesn’t ring true and I can fix it.  Sometimes being bare means leaving enough of the crap behind to be able to feel your way.

When running barefoot, you need to have a little bit of a thick skin…on your feet and emotionally.  People think you’re just strange for doing something so darn peculiar.  Why must you always buck the current norm?  Nikes not good enough for ya?  They ask about the funny shoes. They inquire about the technique. They question whether you’re damaging your knees in a flight of stupidity.  What do I tell them?  Yes, it might seem strange to you, but it just feels right to me.  And no, my knees feel better now…running barefoot.  When you’re an aspiring author you need a little bit of a thick skin too. People think you’re just strange for doing something where you work so hard, get rejected constantly and end up spending more money than you actually make…which is zero.  Damn those really fun conferences.  They remind you that what you’re writing just doesn’t seem to be a "fit."  So, what do I tell them?  Yes, it might seem strange to you, but it just feels right to me.  And I know its tough, and I may not fit everywhere…but I fit somewhere and at the end of the day, I feel really good when I’m writing barefoot.



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