(title shamelessly borrowed from Sue Grafton at Crimebake 2009)
A Protective Checklist, and what to do about it:
1) You’re over-using “and,” especially as a sentence connector. Remove it and your work will sound much more dramatic.
2) It’s “Fred said,” not “said Fred.” “Said Michael,” “said Jane,” will make your writing sound sing-songy and biblical. Stop it!
3) You’re confusing “its” and “it’s,” and, no, it’s not alright just because they’re confusing. They’re NOT: “It’s” is short for “it is”; “its” is a personal pronoun, as in “the bicycle, down to its hupcaps…”
4) You’re using “parent’s” as a possessive plural, when it’s singular. Instead, use “parents’” as in “my parents’ house.”
5) You’re confusing “lies” and “lays” and, no, it’s not alright to say, “She was laying with him on the bed.” See Fowler’s Modern Usage, and fix it!
6) You’re allowed ONE adverb per hundred pages. Search and destroy the others.
7) Remember to SHOW us what’s happening in your story, not TELL us about it.
8) Your dialogue is NOT action, moving the story forward. Root out every piece of dialogue that doesn’t contribute to the forward motion of your story.
9) You overuse certain words—you know what they are. Become aware of them, and don’t allow yourself to use them more than once in 30 pages.
10) Your story doesn’t start until page x. Remove the pages before x.
By SUE MANNING, Associated Press
LOS ANGELES - For several years, Jude Stringfellow and her Lab-chow mix have toured the country with a simple message: Faith walks.
Born without front legs to a junkyard dog around Christmas 2002, Faith the puppy was rejected and abused by her mother. She was rescued by Reuben Stringfellow, now an Army E-4 specialist, who had been asked to bury other puppies in the litter.
"Can we fix her? Stringfellow, then 17, asked his mom. "No, but maybe we can help her," she said.
So Reuben turned Faith over to his mother, English professor Jude Stringfellow. At first the family had to carry Faith to keep her off her chest and chin. But with peanut butter and practice, Faith learned to walk on her two hind legs.
Today Faith is a brisk, upright walker. When she runs, every so often she adds a hop or skip to her step, but she stumbles less often than most humans. She takes vitamins and joint supplements, and vets have declared her very healthy, Stringfellow said.
Since her first step on March 22, 2003, Faith has done the talk show circuit, gone on tour with Ozzy Osbourne and been named an honorary Army sergeant. Jude Stringfellow has become a motivational speaker and written two books. Next year, the two are moving from Ardmore, Okla., to Chicago where they plan to write a third called "Faith Walks."
They get more than 200 letters and e-mails a day, run a Web site and make dozens of appearances every year, including stops at veterans' hospitals across the country to cheer injured soldiers.
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That mission is special for Stringfellow, whose son left Iraq in September and is stationed at Fort Wainwright in Alaska. He is scheduled to get out of the Army and head home on Jan. 1.
For many, Faith brings a powerful message about overcoming adversity. "Faith has shown me that different is beautiful, that it is not the body you are in but the soul that you have," Jill Salomon of Montreal, Canada, wrote on Faith's Web site.
Stringfellow will never forget a woman from New York who happened to see Faith on a street corner. She was depressed and had lost both legs to diabetes.
"She was in her wheelchair and saw us. She was crying. She had seen Faith on television. She just held her and said she wished she had that kind of courage." Stringfellow said. "She told us: 'I was on my way to pick up the gun.' She handed the pawn ticket to a police officer and said she didn't need it anymore."
That sense of hope is especially important for Faith's visits to Army bases. Last weekend she headed to Washington state, where she met with as many as 5,000 soldiers at McChord Air Force Base and Fort Lewis. Some of the soldiers were headed to war, some were coming back.
"She just walks around barking and laughing and excited to see them all," Jude Stringfellow said. "There is a lot of crying, pointing and surprise. From those who have lost friends or limbs, there can be silence. Some will shake my hand and thank me, some will pat her on the head. There is a lot of quiet, heartfelt, really deep emotion."
Faith never fails to bring a smile to a soldier's face, said Patrick Mcghee, general manager at Fort Lewis.
"To see the children interact with Faith is simply priceless," he said.
But Faith's most emotional reunion -- with Reuben Stringfellow, who rescued her 7 years ago this Christmas -- will have to wait for January. He's already gotten Faith a birthday present: a peanut butter cookie with her name on it.
YOUR Autographed Copies Are Ready...Please Act Fast>>>!
To All My New Amazing Friends!!!
It was not easy to put together a worthy response to
the massive outpouring of emotion, friendship, joy and
tears that came my way throughout this past week.
Again, I deeply thank you.
I wanted to respond in kind with something so special
that you would instantly feel how much your support
meant to me. After racking my brain and heart, here's
what I came up with:
RIDGELY'S GIFTS TO YOU!
Because of limited supply, please do act quickly. I don't
want you to miss the chance at something very special.
And please, do send me your comments after reading the
whole book...I look forward to connecting again very soon.
With much warmth and great humility,
P.S. An autographed book makes a fantastic gift
for friends and loved ones--who is on your list who
might like one?
RIDGELY'S GIFTS TO YOU!
“At last, here is a practical book for helping women and men address their problems by getting at the root causes—prehistoric events that led to male insecurity and the subordination of women, transmitted to us over the ages by religious views of a male God and inferior, submissive women. What Dr. Singer terms “spiritual abuse” is a major contributor to the problems between the sexes, and she provides a guide to help couples to escape from it.”
Read his comments on the Huffington Post:
Robert S. McElvaine: Feminomics: Hell Hath No Fury Like a Man Devalued
The Nominees for the 67th annual Golden Globe Awards were announced Tuesday. CRAZY HEART received two nominations:
ACTOR - DRAMA
Jeff Bridges, "Crazy Heart"
BEST ORIGINAL SONG
"The Weary Kind" from "Crazy Heart"
Hollywood’s second biggest film honors after the Academy Awards, the The Golden Globes are a key ceremony that sort out the prospects leading up to the Oscar nominations Feb. 2.
The 67th annual Globes will be handed out Jan. 17, six days before nomination voting closes for the Oscars.
The Globes are presented by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, a group of about 85 critics and reporters for overseas outlets.
SAG Nominating Committee CRAZY HEART Screening & Q&A with Jeff Bridges, Maggie G and director Scott Cooper, moderated by Peter (Crosby Street Hotel, NYC)
"Bridges now stands as one of Hollywood's great old pros, incapable of making a false move."
Read Full VARIETY Review Here
"A performance by Jeff Bridges which could be his best...Bridges is sensational as Bad Blake."
Read Full Review Here
"Make no mistake: Bridges more than delivers the goods for Oscar eligibility. He is the mesmerizing, dangerous, unpredictable heart of "Crazy Heart."" Kirk Honeycutt (Hollywood Reporter)
Read Full HOLLYWOOD REPORTER Review Here
CH has been nominated for two 2009 Satellite Awards, Jeff for best actor and T Bone for best song ("The Weary Kind"). The International Press Academy hands out the Satellite Awards. The key in all of this is "Press Academy," meaning this may look similar to some Oscar nominees, but it's not at all the same groups of voters.
Then the world comes to an end.
It starts with Agent X, a plague that turns women into raving, demonic predators--Xombies--who then hunt down and infect anyone they can catch. Guns are useless; armies are helpless.
With civilization collapsing all around her, Lulu hitches a ride with a crew of wary male refugees, and together they flee for the last place on Earth rumored to be safe. But what they find is as unexpected, and as terrifying, as the hell they've left behind.
Order From Amazon
Check out Ryan Bingham singing the theme to Crazy Heart!
Jeff Bridges singing "I Don't Know." Interviews with Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jeff Bridges, Robert Duvall, T Bone Burnett, Producer Judy Cairo, Director Scott Cooper, and more. Watch behind the scenes and additional film clips from Crazy Heart
'Heart' to Heart with Jeff Bridges About Oscar Buzz at The Insider
Watch Video of Nominations on Spirit Awards Website