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Saturday, November 29, 2008

It's DONE!

With help proofreading from family and because my dh brought meals to me, our vacation book is complete! (and submitted @ CherishBound before the deadline!) I don't want to post every layout here, so here's one of my favorites:
Now I have lots of new templates with room for story--can't wait to share!

PS. If you missed CherishBound's sale, remember the deadline to get books in time for Christmas is Dec 9th. That's only if the book is less than 71 pages. More and you need to allow another week.

If Christmas isn't your deadline, keep working. The Five Buck Friday (hard binding for $5 instead of $12) happens about once a month. And historically there is a sale near the end of January for Yearbooks. Problem is, once the sale is announced, there isn't enough time to complete an entire book--unless you are well on your way when it is announced. So get going!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Sample Story: from our recent vacation

Working feverishly on my vacation book to take advantage of CherishBound's Black Friday Sale! Here's a story from that book:

It looked scary. After the protected waters of Hanauma, the open ocean--even with some protection in Sharks’ Cove--was intimidating. On the shore of Hanauma you barely notice the waves roll in. In Sharks’ Cove the waves crash onto the rocky shoreline. I was afraid we’d either get caught in an undertow and carried out to sea OR the waves would throw us into the rocks where we would be smashed. But there were a few other people out in the bay, so with great apprehension we approached the water. On our way in, a gentleman assured us there were lots of fish and we didn’t have to go far to see them so we decided to try it. I buddied with Natalie because I figured since she was bigger there was less of a chance I’d have to rescue her and I wasn’t sure I could even rescue myself. We started out for the middle of the cove, but we were regularly knocked into the rocks by the force of the waves rolling in. Not smashed into the rocks, more like stuck hugging a rock. To add to our anxiety, I was shocked at how difficult it was to readjust to breathing though the snorkel. I thought after a few hours the day before, we would just snap back into it. Instead, I would hold my breath until I was ready to panic—and then remember I was wearing a snorkel, and I could just breathe. As we swam near the shore, there were fish, but both Natalie and I were unnerved by the force of the waves and trying to remember to breathe. Shortly we headed over to the safety of the calm waters in the tide pools.

A picture may be worth a thousand words, but I don't have a picture that captures the fear in my heart (unneccessary fear--but very real) as we began snorkeling in the open ocean. I don't even have a good picture of the waves crashing on the rocks. My photo looks like it was a big bathtub! Now I also have the story!

What's your story?

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

Enjoy your holiday! Relive some stories with those you are with! Sometimes when you talk about what you remember, others will remember additional details.

Winston Churchill said "History will be kind to me, for I intend to write it." No need to argue about what really happened. What you write will be your "version" of the events and there is nothing wrong with that.

Mmmmm! Pie!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Wre-vise, Wre-write, Wednesday: its vs. it's

I usually have to think twice about this one. "it's" may look like its friends: Mark's, Susan's, etc. However, "its" is the possessive one. "It's" is the contraction one--short for it is.

My sister recommended "Eats, Shoots, and Leaves" as entertaining reading. I'm 30 or 40 pages into it and I would get more entertainment from a book on number theory or calculus. I am noticing my punctuation more--so maybe it is good for something.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Template Tuesday

Wow a double pager today. Skipped the greyscale version. Tons of room for story on this one!

Download the PSD here

Monday, November 24, 2008

Cherish Bound's BLACK FRIDAY sale!

What I've been up to lately...

Cherishbound is having a BLACK FRIDAY sale. We already have my dd Trek book ready to go, but I am trying to get the vacation book ready to send to print. Here's the first few pages. I have a seven page story to accompany MANY photos. Can't wait to see the finished product!

Use your imagination, I haven't learned how to put the pages side by side...yet!

Memory Spark Monday: What was your relationship with your grandparents like?

Remember that you don't have to answer the question completely. If the spark reminds you of a specific story--all the better. Share the story in all the detail you can remember!
The vinyl on the seat of Grandma ’s Ford was hot to my bare legs as I climbed onto the front bench. The bagger put the groceries in the back seat of the car and Grandma fished through the bags for our treats before climbing in next to me. Grandma loved the taste of an orange creamsicle ice cream bar. My mouth would water as she peeled back the gold paper wrapper. She unwrapped one for me and one for herself. We licked and slurped all the way home as the warm air blew in our faces from the vent—there was no air conditioning. She patiently helped me lick to keep the melting treat from dripping all over my lap. It was a fun treat I remember sharing with Grandma more than once on the way home from “town”. It always seemed she was happy to have me around.

Today's spark courtesy of Jessica Sprague's Stories in Hand class. What's your story?

Friday, November 21, 2008

Sample Story: Describe Your Bedtime Routine -- Now

Barefoot I stepped out onto the cold hard concrete porch. A thin fog permeated the bathrobe fastened snuggly around me. I inhaled the musty, dusty odor of freshly plowed earth from the fields around me as I removed the cover and slipped quietly down into 104 (degrees) of relaxation. As the jets pulsated the tenseness out of my back and aching feet, I gazed up at the moonless, star-filled sky. I pondered the bounteous blessings I’ve received from a loving Father in Heaven. Fifteen minutes & twenty yawns later I dried off in front of a flickering fire before falling asleep counting my blessings.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Printing your stories

While there are several printing options, I believe hardbound custom printed is the best:
1. It’s cheaper than printing your own.
2. More permanent inks (with some companies)
3. Your books are saved on someone else’s system—not just yours.
4. Takes up less space on your shelf.
The drawbacks are:
1. No page protectors
2. You can’t change the order of the pages once it’s printed.
I choose to scrap my stories and print them through http://www.cherishbound.com/ . Their prices are reasonable. Not the cheapest, but close. I like their guarantees. I have had a problem with a couple of books and both were replaced. I’ve reordered “old” books. I LOVE their full bleed photo cover. So far I’ve been satisfied. Their system for designing a book is second to none—or you can use Photoshop and design your own.
I print enough books to meet my “minimum order”, so I’m not motivated to hold CB parties. I’m more than happy to help you get your publishing coupons and will be happy to offer you a “deal”.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Wre-vise, Wre-write, Wednesday: Junk unnecessary Words

This staple of Strunk and White’s ELEMENTS OF STYLE is, perhaps, the best piece of advice I have to share.
But how do you know which words are unnecessary?
A quick and dirty way is to look for all of the thats. You can jettison most of them.
Then take a look at the fluff. Strike any copy if it:
* Doesn’t add anything substantial.
* Won’t change the work’s meaning or tone.
Remember: You’re writing for others as much as — if not more than — you’re writing for yourself.
If you’d skip over something, you better believe someone else will, too.

Choose a story you've written and revise it using this tip. Sorry, I've deleted my older drafts--next time I'll remember so I can post an example :)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Template Tuesday

On Tuesdays I will share a template with room for the story.

Here's a layout using the template:

Download it here

Monday, November 17, 2008

Memory Spark Monday: Consider a technology you remember your family having?

Atari 2600’s were in high demand Christmas 1979, but Mom managed to locate one. We were thrilled when we opened the package. Unfortunately that one had a problem, so instead of beeping away Christmas Day, we had to wait a few weeks until a replacement shipment arrived. My favorite game was Defender:
The world has been attacked by aliens. Only a few humans are left. Your mission is to fly over the landscape destroying all alien ships and protecting the humans from being captured. You are armed with a beam-like weapon which can be fired rapidly in a long horizontal line ahead of the spaceship, and also a limited supply of smart bombs which destroy every enemy on the screen.

I remember Theresa and I trying to master another level before it was time to help Dad milk the cows. We were dressed in our chore clothes, ready to go, trying to use every last minute to destroy aliens. It is a single player game, but beyond the first level, we worked as a team. The “player” holding the joystick worked frantically to destroy whatever was in sight, while the “helper” monitored the radar screen above. Together we plotted the most strategic place to use the smart bombs. Whenever the little five note beep went off indicating a human had been picked up by an alien ship the helper scrambled to locate the abduction and direct the player to that spot so that the ship could be destroyed. If the ship was too high, after shooting it, the player had to catch the falling human and safely put it back on the ground. I remember lots of squealing and screaming and pounding the ground. When the clock struck 5:30 we’d shut it off and head for the barn, reliving our near misses and victories as we worked.

Today's spark courtesy of Jessica Sprague--Stories in Hand class materials. What's your story?