Thursday, February 9, 2012

Mickey Mouse, Whitneys, and Revisions

Last week, we had a deeply awesome trip to Disneyland with my sister and her family. This was a special occasion and a last-chance hurrah: my sister's husband has been called to serve as a mission president, and they'll be leaving this summer for three years. They decided to go to Disneyland this winter (a much-needed break for the family) and we tagged along. It's crazy to think how old our kids will be by the time my sister's family returns. Already, my two oldest girls are off at college. My sister's oldest daughter graduates from high school this year. Our older sons are taller than we are. Aww, man . . . everyone is growing up. What's up with that? Where's a Time Turner when you need one? You know how when your kids are little, it feels like they'll be little forever? And then one of them gets old enough for kindergarten, and they're so grown up, and it's a new world? And then one of them gets old enough to babysit  the younger kids and it's a WHOLE NEW WORLD (such a momentous event requires all caps)? And then somebody enters high school, and then you get distracted for a moment trying to find a shoe and an overdue library book, and when you look again, your kids are adults? Weird how that works.

In other news, I'm thrilled to report that Rearview Mirror was chosen as a 2011 Whitney Award finalist. It's a tremendous honor to be in the Mystery/Suspense category with Traci Abramson, Jennie Hansen, Gregg Luke, and Anne Perry. A huge thank you to the Whitney committee and to the category judges who put in countless hours of work.

I'm doing my Whitney reading (if you are an author or writing industry professional and are not part of the voting academy but would like to be, click here for more information). Last year, I read all thirty-five finalists--whew!--which made me eligible to vote for Best Novel of the Year. That was fun, but this year--to my husband's relief--I'm not planning to attempt all thirty-five. At this point, I'm not sure how many categories I'll vote in. I know I want to vote in Speculative and YA Speculative; beyond that, we'll see how many categories I finish (I've currently read nine of the thirty-five books).

I'm still aiming to wear that red dress at the Whitney gala, but my weight loss seems to have plateaued. Sigh. It's frustrating, feeling like, "This used to work! Why isn't it working anymore?" I'm hoping I can get things moving forward again, preferably without a lot of self-deprivation and struggle, because, oddly enough, I like brownies better than self-deprivation. Especially those marshmallow peanut butter Rice Krispie brownies.

I'm about 2/3 of the way through the revisions in the current draft of my manuscript, as I incorporate feedback from test readers and revise and edit and polish. My goal is to submit it at the end of the month.

I suppose I'd better quit blogging and go exercise . . .


  1. Congratulations on being a finalist! I loved rearview mirror! :)

  2. So, by now, you must be wondering whether anyone can even hope to compete with you in the Mystery/Suspense category or whether the awards committee will decide to give it to someone else just so that it doesn't LOOK like it's some sort of favoritism. I mean, what do you do if you really are the best, consistently?

    (I mean no offense to the other finalists in the category. I haven't read any of them, I'm just sure Stephanie's is the best. I will readily admit my own bias, but I am not on awards panel, so I am entitled to my own opinion, so there.)

    Regarding your weight-loss plateau, my trainer said that when you hit a plateau, you have to change things up. She said that you can't keep doing the same exercises and expect the same rate. So, she had me doing aerobic exercise, interspersed with weight training. And every day it'd be a different routine. I can say that it did work for me while I was dedicated to it. I could use her help now. =( And, uh, the time to work out, and some more sleep, and maybe some aversion therapy to M&M's, and ...

  3. Thank you so much, Megan!

    Jon, don't read any of the other finalists, okay? That way my books can still be your favorites! :) Great plan, huh? I mean, come on, did you SEE what I'm up against? Talk about fierce competition! Let's just say that winning was fun while it lasted, but all good things must come to an end, and I'll be thrilled to shake the hand of whoever takes the trophy this year (I haven't finished reading the finalists yet, so I don't have a solid prediction).

    Thanks for the weight-loss tip! I'll try to mix it up more.

  4. Congratulations on your nomination and on all your past wins. Your books are wonderful! And it sounds like I need the recipe to those marshmallow peanut butter Rice Krispie brownies. I never knew such a thing existed!

    1. Thank you so much, Julie!

      Here's the link to the brownie recipe:,1610,152168-236205,00.html

      These brownies are great--they taste like something super fancy and elegant but they are SO easy to make.

    2. Thanks! I'm totally going to make these tomorrow for FHE! Yum! Hopefully I won't be tempted to eat the whole batch myself...

    3. Well, I made the brownies and they were delicious! And they nearly killed me. They were so good I couldn't stop eating them, and so rich I thought my sugar rush would never go away. :) Thanks.

    4. :) Glad you enjoyed them. Yeah, they're super hard to leave alone. Something about the texture and all that dense, rich chocolaty goodness.

  5. Congrats on your nomination! I'm just starting to read the Whitney finalists. I can hardly wait to get to yours.