11 Things.

“To dare every day to be irreverent and bold. To dare to preserve the randomness of mind which in children produces strange and wonderful new thoughts and forms. To continually scramble the familiar and bring the old into new juxtaposition.”
~Gordon Webber

After an adrenaline-filled writing week that included one especially frenzied day (flash of inspiration for a scene that doesn’t come into play for another two-hundred pages or so – I never, ever write out of order, but this was positively yelling at me to be told), two new chapters, and a scene yesterday that almost made me cry with happiness for my MC (and with sadness because it’s going to be brutal having to bring her world crashing down), the plan is to actually relax a little this weekend. And what better way than with the “11 Things” survey that’s going around the blogosphere? The lovely Hope and Sylvia both tagged me, and I’m looking forward to answering their questions.

But first, as per the rules, eleven random things about myself:

#1: I am a total early bird – my definition of “sleeping in” on a weekend is 8:30, but truthfully, I’m usually awake somewhere closer to 7:30. In the past fifteen years, there have been less than five times I’ve slept later than 10:00, and those were after events like weddings or concerts.

#2: My nails are always polished. ALWAYS.

#3: My first concert was the Spice Girls, back in 1997. It was before the days of buying tickets online – you had to go to an actual Ticketmaster outlet – so my mom and I camped out in Strawbridges’ parking lot for something like three hours to be at the front of the line. The show sold out in under twenty minutes, and our seats were way up on the second level and across the arena from the stage, but I was beyond excited to be there. And when the group had their reunion tour four years ago? I didn’t think twice about buying third row seats. It was one of the coolest experiences ever.

#4: I purposely set my novels in cities or towns where I’d love to visit or move. It’s such fun to live vicariously through the characters.

#5: There’s a permanent dent on my right shin from an accident five years ago. Being the epitome of grace, I somehow managed to slam right into the plastic sidebar of a suitcase. My skin turned about four different shades of purple, it took weeks before I could walk normally again, and even though the doctor disagreed, I swear it was fractured.

#6: Scarves are my favorite accessory, and my collection of them is a bit out of control.

#7: I never went to summer camp as a child – just wasn’t my cup of tea.

#8: My writing desk is seashore-themed. Along with framed pictures with people who inspire me (family, friends, and my two favorite authors), there’s a lamp with ocean waves and seahorses, a starfish-shaped decorative dish, and a plaque with a seashell and dream quote. Makes me feel like I’m working by the coastline every day.

#9: I have total baby fever and cannot wait to have a little one of my own someday.

#10: I have a phobia of flying and won’t set foot on an airplane. Cars and trains all the way!

#11: Red pandas and polar bears are my absolute favorite animals. The Philadelphia Zoo has a few of them, and they are seriously the cutest ever.

Now on to Hope’s questions:

#1: If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go and why? Airplane phobia notwithstanding, I would love, love, love to visit London. There’s something very compelling about it, and it’d be such fun to see all its famous sights and places. Now, if only a cruise company would offer trans-Atlantic trips…

#2: In 5 years you’ll be… 33. By then, I hope to be a published author, happily married, and a Mama. Nothing would make me happier.

#3: Coffee or tea? Gingerbread lattes all the way! I also need to try Starbucks’ White Chocolate Mocha, because it looks D-E-L-I-C-I-O-U-S!

#4: Celebrity crush? Gotta go with my GHers – Brandon Barash and Jason Thompson are the definition of adorable.

#5: Accomplishment you’re most proud of? Having written three novels in the past two years (working on my fourth now!). Writing is a part of my life that feels as natural as breathing, so it’s easy to take it for granted sometimes, but when I stop and think of where it’s taken me, I can’t help feeling a little proud. No matter where this journey goes or what path it takes, those book-babies have changed me for the better.

#6: Favorite food or restaurant? JoJo’s in Ventnor, NJ. So many special memories of family vacations at the shore include that place, and it’s always a treat to go back now.

#7: What is your guilty pleasure? Does it make me totally lame if I can’t think of any?

#8: Tell something you can find in your purse at any given moment. My wallet, car keys, tissue pack, antibacterial hand sanitizer, lipstick, and a mini writing journal.

#9: Favorite Disney movie? 101 Dalmatians. My mom took me when I was a little girl – it was the first movie I ever saw in a theater – and that will always make it special.

#10: Favorite meal of the day? Dinner.

#11: What language do you wish you spoke? I can speak a bit of Hebrew, but I’d love to be fluent in it.

And Sylvia’s:

#1: What was your first job? I was a consultant at Arcadia’s writing center for three and a half years and enjoyed every minute. If we’re talking post-college jobs, it would be a production assistant at WPVI-TV, Philadelphia’s ABC affiliate.

#2: What’s the best place you’ve traveled to? Atlanta! I spent almost a week there during the summer of 2009 and absolutely fell in love with the city. It has a charm and energy that’s indescribable. Fingers crossed for a return trip sometime soon.

#3: What’s your favorite color? Any shade of turquoise, but especially aquamarine.

#4: What’s your most prized possession? Oh boy, this is hard – not sure I can choose only one! All my pictures, an overflowing box of lunch notes that my mom wrote me every day when I was in school, a blanket Gram was making me before the horror of last year, and autographed books from my favorite authors … yep, definitely impossible to narrow it down.

#5: When’s the last time you danced? It’s probably telling that I have no idea, huh?

#6: What time do you wake up in the morning? 7:00-7:30 during the week and 7:30-8:30 on the weekends.

#7: PC or Mac? Currently a PC, but she’s on her last hurrah and I have my heart set on a Mac for the next laptop.

#8: Share your favorite recipe. I don’t have the recipe typed up, but it’s my Gram’s chicken soup. My mom carries on the tradition now, and it’s seriously my all-time favorite food. So good.

#9: What’s the last thing you bought? This! “Believe in magic” and “Tell stories” right next to each other? Could it be any more perfect?

#10: How did you come up with the name of your blog? I actually didn’t. My awesome friend Amanda created the blog for me as part of a Hanukkah gift a few years ago, and she’s the one who titled it that. I owe her a million, because this blog has become a treasured outlet over the years and has introduced me to some wonderful people. Truly, I can’t imagine not writing it now.

#11. What’s your first memory from childhood? Hmm, I don’t know if it was the first, but I remember my parents taking me to Sesame Place when I was three. I was really shy as a child and wouldn’t go up to Big Bird or Cookie Monster for a picture. My mom had to go with me!

Okay, your turn!

#1: What’s your favorite quote?

#2: Who’s your role model and/or mentor?

#3: How many places have you lived, and where is your favorite?

#4: Have you known for years what you want to name your children, or do you believe that you have to see the baby first before deciding?

#5: What’s your dream job?

#6: What’s your favorite book? Why?

#7: Would you ever consider adopting a child?

#8: Have you met any celebrities?

#9: Give me a tour of your ideal home – where is it, what does it look like, who lives there with you?

#10: Have you ever had an experience (or several) that’s truly defined who you are?

#11: If you had to describe yourself in one word, what would it be?

Tag, you’re it!

* Caitlin @ Bold Choices & Colossal Dreams

* Caryn @ Caryn Caldwell

* Megan @ here i go with all my thoughts

* Kate @ Kate’s Place

* Lauren @ Perfume and Promises

* Sara @ Travel & Tunes

* Erin @ Travel, Eat, Repeat

* Rachel @ Wordstream

* Kristan @ Writing Dreams Into Reality

* Kaitlin @ Creative Writing Major

* Katie @ Yearnings and Learnings

Okay, this may be the LONGEST BLOG POST EVER. It was super fun, though! Link me to your own 11 Things or leave an answer to some of the questions in the comments section!


6 thoughts on “11 Things.

  1. #3 on your first list makes me love you so, SO much. Spice Girls were my first concert too, and I went to see them in Chicago a couple years ago when they reunited. <3 them!!

    Hm, some random answers for me:

    – In 5 yrs I'd like to be in pretty much the same place as you (but I'll be 31).

    – Television is my guilty pleasure. I try to make it productive by analyzing story and characters and stuff, but really, I just like vegging out sometimes.

    – Tea. 1 cup of green tea every morning, to be specific. The only thing I like about coffee is the smell.

    – Mac, as you know. I'm not a PC hater, but I AM a Mac lover.

    – Typically wake up around 8, all week long.

    – Due to my heritage, I wish I spoke Mandarin, and I'm working on it. Slowly.

    – Last time I danced was 2 nights ago, jamming to my iPod in the bathroom before my shower. I used to do that a lot more often and I kind of miss it. Especially now that I spend 80% of my days sitting at my desk.

    – My ideal home has a big porch, lots of natural light, and plenty of yard.

  2. First of all, I am so proud of you for writing a scene OUT OF ORDER!!! Wonderful! I actually giggled when I read that, and may even have rubbed my hands together with glee. :-D

    As for the dancing, what about all these great concerts you go to? No dancing there?

    And your blog is a wonderful gift. So glad she did that for you, because we probably wouldn’t have ‘met’ otherwise!

    • How did I know you’d have something to say about the writing out of order? ;-) It felt a bit strange, but it was like the scene gave me no choice whatsoever. It had to be written right then and there. I’m sure I’ll end up adding to it when the time comes in the story, but for now I’m actually quite excited with how it turned out. I can see why you write that way!

      Good point about the concerts — I do end up dancing to some of the songs, though it certainly wouldn’t qualify as being any good!

      The blog is definitely a wonderful – and meaningful – gift. I’m not sure that I’d have thought to start one otherwise (at least, not at that point, anyway), and I’m so, so grateful to her for setting it up. And wow – it truly feels weird to imagine not knowing you. I’m so glad to have you as a friend! :)

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