***currently under construction***games postponed until VERY SOON***

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Three Was A Charm (as chronicled by Tina)

They say three’s a charm and I could have no more evidence of its charmingness, than our third and final practice run of WIBIJ in all it's fledgling beauty! The day dawned bright and beautiful over the virtual big top, perfect for a hunt. This one, designed for us by Trapeze Artist and Stunt Man Extraordinaire, Jon, was promising to be exciting. Heather and I were ready, fingers poised and raring to go. And the gun sounded. We were off.

First clue cited Heather’s blog. Who? Heather, who? Thankfully, rarely for me is their another Heather so close to my mind and heart. And what Heather does Jon always talk about? THE Heather, our dazzling, daring and all around organized and professional Ring Leader. I went straight to her blog, right to the Friday Feature Alumni and picked the most likely. Just a hunch. I felt it in my gut: Casey McCormick, and I googled her name and flash fiction. Found Flashy Fiction. Only now, as I write this, do I realize that the post I found was a writing prompt and the comment was to be creatively inspired by the Alice in Wonderland quote! Needless to say, I didn't read the 411. Looking through I found picture inspiration and word salads. Fun to try later!

On to clue two. Found our way quickly to InkyGirl. Where the lovely Inky was reviewing a writerly app for her iPhone called Manuscript from Black Mana Studios. (My visit upon writing this recap revealed: 1. Black Mana studios has an update to the app that fixed Inky’s concerns and 2. According to WIBIJ rules, I MUST BE DISQUALIFIED DUE TO A LACK OF COMMENT). Whops, in the comotion that followed because, J had pulled a T and mistakenly left a clue comment on a blog with comment moderation, I neglected to leave a comment at InkyGirl. Second note to selves: remind participating blogs to disable comment moderation before the hunt!

We moved on to clue three which led us to Frankie Writes. We had stumbled into the middle of a blog war! Luckily there were no casualties. And luckily there was an opportunity for me to show my ninja skills and use Jon's comment to refer back to my own post of the day. ChatRoulette! Too bad I did not know I was DISQUALIFIED by my lack of commenting at InkyGirl.

Finally, clue three! The funny thing was at this moment Heather and I were clinging tooth and nail to the edges of our respective keyboards, the adrenaline rushing through our veins. We were trying to read the fastest, come up with the wittiest comment, and beat the other to submission (and not the querying kind either). Usually we're supportive and kind to the other but this game had brought out the UGLY and, to add insult to injury, Heather’s four-year-old lost her pony doll. Heather’s fingers are flying as fast as she can make them, her eyes are running across the words quicker than our pet Lion, Leo, can bite J’s head off, and she is yelling FIND THE BABY! But the blog world has no idea of her actual plight, the fates of babies’ babies are not a virtual concern, the game raged on. Leaving the baby as a casualty in its wake, we headed directly to Plot Whisperer for Writers and Readers. Where Martha Alderson completes her series on emotion and plot. Just the kind of help I needed. Especially with the announcement that Heather typed in the phrase WHIP IT, WiP IT GOOD, and Jonathon announced that she won the race!!! Which actually happened much earlier in the game as I was DISQUALIFIED*, just as well.

And there you have it, another round of WIBIJ bites the dust.

*Ring Master's note: The circus leaders conferred and with their infinite wisdom, decided that since Tina's comment misfire happened on a blog with comment moderation (which was accidentally used), the disqualification cancelled out.  Two wrongs, you know, make a right.  Tina Laurel Lee is still officially in the running for W.I.B.I.J. hardware.

Thanks, Tina, for the thoroughly thorough recap!

Heather was indeed the first place finisher (even if Tina had submitted her phrase first, she would have pulled a me and submitted the incorrect answer, just like I did in the first practice round. Tina and I accidentally live vicariously through each other). Anyway, Heather submitted Whip it, WiP it good! and thereby became the winner of my practice run.

To the honorable and quick Heather goes the 1st Place Winner medal:
And now, for the equally prestigious (if not more so, shh, don't tell anybody I said that) Best Comment Award. Tina wins this medal of honor for her comment at Frankie Writes:

Award Podium:
Let's welcome out two winners to the award podium, and hear what they have to say.  Shhh.  Here come Heather and Tina up to the mic.

I can't believe I won! I have to thank my kids, for looking for the baby pony themselves, and trying to help mommy when she was doing such Serious work on the computer. I also have to thank my parents for giving me the genes to notice seemingly unimportant details (like the WiP in wip it good). I have to thank my brothers for showing me time and time again how to recover from seemingly un-recoverable boneheaded acts (not recognizing a reference to MY OWN BLOG). I have to thank Jon and Tina for giving me several pushes and much support, without which I never would have won. Last, but never least, I have to thank my husband. Years of watching the Amazing Race with you have finally, finally paid off. I am truly humbled by my silver WIBIJ medal. I will love it for all of my blogging days.

First of all I'd like to thank the academy and by the academy I mean Heather and Jon. You were really integral to the perfect storm of events that had to occur in order to make my comment possible. But first I must thank Danah Boyd at Apoprophenia for posting about ChatRoulet in the first place. For, without her, I would know nothing. And I have to thank Jon for being such a faithful commenter that he came back a second time to leave his fateful webcam comment. And only he (and time stamping) knows which webcam comment came first, mine or the one at Frankie Writes, but one clearly sparked the other, and then my own. But the thanks can't stop there, as much as you might want them too, I must thank Frankie for warring with vlog dares. And for vlog dares I must thank John Green and his brother Hank for making vlogging AND daring so darned popular and funny. And perhaps they helped with that spark in Jon's mind too. And last but never least, I have to thank Heather Kelly for her Burrito Post. Because if I had not read that this acceptance speech would not exist. Because that sparked the idea of what a perfect storm it takes to write a perfect comment.

Congrats to the winners!  Please check out their blogs and give 'em some love! 

Monday, February 22, 2010

Practice Number Three: Practicing

Welcome, welcome, step right up!
Pull a topic from this cup.
Take your topic, write a scene.
Mine may seem somewhat obscene.

Rest assured, you'll see it's point
This'll take an effort that's joint
It's all about community
We're here to promote unity!

That's the theme for today
Others sharing their favorite way
Now it's time to be understood
So, _ _ _ _ _ _ _ , WiP _ _ _ _ _ _ _!
Whip it, WiP it Good!

Clue #1 @ 3:30 EST
These flashy writers make up a team of seven crafty fiction writing challenge creators. Say that five times fast! 1/7 of the group is an alumnus of Heather's Feature Friday. Another 1/7 celebrated a 'birthday' on 2-04-2010.

Clue #2 @ 3:40
Her weekly word count challenge intimidates me, but her daily diversions for writers inspire me to be inky!

Clue#3 @ 3:50
A member of the first novels club, this aspiring author entertains and inspires with parodies of the CW's Wampire Diaries and teaches with her recently started Psychology for Writers segments.

Clue #4 @ 4:00
4. Playing telephone while sitting on used carpet squares, a girl whispers into my ear, "More on emotion and plot." I turn and whisper to the boy on my right, "S'mores and marshmallow plop."

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Test Round Two (again chronicled by Tina)

Whew, Round Two was a whirl of a wind. My minimalist approach to writing clues gave this round a difficulty rating of ten. Heather came on board with little to work with, but as Jon is wont to use the ever-clever cheat sheet technique (if you go strictly by the wibij rules, it is not cheating), he had a tool at his disposal. Remembering the rumors I had spread, he pulled up The Tenners site, a group of debut novelists that have bonded together to prove there is power in numbers, especially if you have written publishing-worthy books.

So, the first stop saw Jon visiting in a heartbeat. Too easy, I thought. It turns out that the luck was all Jon's  The Dark Days of Hamburger Halpin was on Jon’s to-read list and Josh Berk’s site was no big leap. (Go watch the fun video.) Heather on the other hand, had hit on hard times, thrown to the lions by me and left in the dust of Jon’s reading tastes, lagging behind as I published the flawed second clue.

Can I go back a second here and tell you of my day? The day had dawned bright and beautiful here in Minnesota and my husband and I had returned from a cross country Valentine’s ski date. When it gets to be February the sun is so strong here in the Northland and only intensified by the brilliant white snow. It addled my brain. Also my husband is insanely athletic. He had me skiing my heart out about 20 feet behind him for two hours. I was a sweaty shaking mess by the time I had sat down to lead the game. AND I hadn’t left comments around yet. So after racing through Hyland Ski Area, I crisscrossed the blogosphere just 20 key strokes ahead of my buddies, leaving capitalized words in my wake. The day had a nice symmetry, if my game many mistakes. And clue two was one of many casualties, in translation from draft to post, the second clue lost its italics, and I was too rushed to notice. The words ESCAPING THE TIGER, no longer stood out, which was the googlable title of Laura Manivong’s new book. Was this to be the death knell to Heather’s run for the illusive glitter?

Miracle of miracles, they both got it and we were off to 3. But, clues be foiled again, somehow Jon skipped ahead and found 4 through a secret loophole. What the heck? But Heather was quick on her fingers and found Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich lovely blog about fabric crafts. But this clue was a tricky one, and had a second clue embedded in the first, intended to point my peeps to agent-friend’s The Rejectionist where Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich was featured about her new book, 8th Grade Super Zero. After the quick detour, Heather found the post, commented on it and moved on. The gifted Jonathon was behind and ahead at the same time!! How was it possible? (Check this loophole.)

The two visited Margie Gelbwasser’s post discussing the  cover for her new book Inconvenient. The race neck and neck. The final clue posing no problem until… WA! Wait, where is your clue and comment, Tina? The blog of Lindsay Eland had comment moderation and in her silly hurry, Tina (me) didn’t see the fine print stating comment waiting moderation. The comment right there in front of her, but not in front of everybody yet. So close and yet so far away. Note to my game master self, check more closely next time and make sure site has unmoderated commenting. Well, as Jon was refreshing the page, trusting that his fearless leader’s comment would soon appear, his computer crashed and Heather rushed through the finish line.

Our glitter broadcaster had left the coliseum, meanwhile Heather the intrepid sneaked in and stole the gold, typing with finesse and agility the words I had spread around, SO YOU SAY IT'S YOUR BIRTHDAY!

There you have it, Practice Run # 2, over and done with and no injuries to speak of.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Practice Number Two

The Year 2010 is here and…

Clue Number One:
Have a Hamburger and watch Release Day: The Musical. 2/9/2010. Look for comment # 2. And leave your own(You don't really have to watch it now, but come back later. It is great.).

Clue Number Two:
Did you know 2010 is the year of the Tiger? Well, escaping the tiger IS cause for many and varied celebrations.

Clue Number Three:
Find my comment on this very familiar blog! Unconventional, true. Gollem-likesesss you say, also true, but this Author-friend Jamaican-Nigerian-New Yorker-superhero has a Superzero of a story and no book-blog of her own.

Clue Number Four:
Toilet training and drafting: Margie says child rearing and book writing can be perfect together. Inconvenient? Not for Flux Books.

Clue Number Five:
Lindsay and Jane both have books with sensibility in their titles, but Jane’s was published in 1811.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

The Test Run (as cronicled by Tina)

Heather did the footwork to get us set and Jonathon and I were ready. The game was posted on Thursday February 4th at 1:00pm and we were at our computers waiting.

So this was how it was to work, Heather was the one to make a lovely rhyme and spread her brilliant commentary all over the web, while Jonathon and I waited at the starting gate to begin the race. The object is to gather (let us call it) the glitter scattered in the form of capitalized words at blogs, clues for which are hidden artfully in the prose of the post. This game, being the brain child of the nose-to-the-grindstone Heather, Jonathon and I didn’t know what to expect, but waiting there for the game to post was the first clue that some of the elements may need tweaking. Because, although we like to imagine it, how often are our blogging friends ready and waiting for our gun to go off (so to speak)? Ideas of how to change this race are already in the works. (Can you think of it more like a marathon as in it is not really about winning but more about finishing?)

But, intrepid game masters that we are, we pushed on.

Jonathan was up and running and I had a small panic attack. Focus on the detail, focus on the details,focus on the details was my mantra as I read the rhyme upon the screen. Heather’s rhyme aimed us to Agent and Editor’s websites, figuring that our test run would be least disruptive at these famous blogs. And the first one was a no brainer. I began by googling Rachelle. Jon, the smarter of the two of us, went and pulled up Heather’s blogroll. Luckily we were all connected by Gchat and Heather chimed in to remind us to post our comment setting our game in motion and announcing to the authorities that be(us) that we were playing. Um, we probably already knew but in the spirit of a true test, we followed the rules to a T.

So when I got to hee haw, I spent a long time googling variations of that and found a lot of interesting blogs, under followed blogs and book sites but alas no hee haw of an agent. Jonathon at the blogroll figured it out more quickly and moved on, commenting at EditorialASS and then proceeding to the next site, the mighty Nathan (you know who I’m talking about). Which was our next glitch as Heather’s comment was buried in some 400 or so others. I probably saw your comment there too. I  got tired of paging through and moved to the next clue (Heather was nice enough to chat what page it was on). Jon was having trouble with the Forest For the Trees and chatting it up. I totally beat him there and commented first, which ensured I missed his couch cabbage remark left especially for me (I went back later to appreciate it), hopefully Betsy Lerner enjoyed it as well. Then there was The Rejectionist. A blog that I love, anybody that cops to booze swillin’ in this day an age is my cup of tea. And Gollem as a muse doesn’t suck either. In the end, I never got the Hee Haw clue, Heather had to give it to me and I went there and commented while Jonathon resubmitted his phrase a couple of times. Only with cheating and a surprising dexterity at ridiculous thing such as word order, did  I manage to type in ONLY WHEN THE MOON IS FULL before Jonathon.

And there you have it, synopsis with links, of the very first ever round of WIBIJ. Read it (or I guess if you are already here, you have) and weep.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Practice Number One, Or, READY? GET SET? GOOOO!!!

Welcome, to the very first, practice edition of Where In the Blogosphere Is Jon?! For an extra treat, and just to keep you guessing, today, it is Heather who is littering the blogosphere with her uncanny wit and secret phrase. Please take note of the rules at the right.

*sound of running feet, door slamming*

And, Heather's off! Here are some clues so you can follow her to Agent/Editor Blogs (note--I picked these blogs so as to be less intrusive) And, in the spirit of connections, please make a note to go back and visit those blogs which you enjoyed seeing today.

Clue for stop #1: Rachelle, my belle, these are words which go together well, my Rachelle!

Clue for stop #2: Heehaw, heehaw.

Clue for stop #3: This Agent Assistant does not have eight arms, but describes herself as "underpaid and whiskey swilling."

Clue for stop #4: Heather might get waylayed (although not the urban dictionary definition) at this next blog--she might be laughing to hard to see the forest for the trees.

Clue for stop #5: Was it possible for Jacob Wonderbar to increase traffic at this blog? No, but the forum certainly did! Who needs almost 3,000 followers, anyway?

Clue for stop #6: Mary, Mary Quite Contrary, how does your book deal grow? With fantastic authors and publishers' auctions and Andrea Brown in the know.

*sound of starter gun* Sign in, and get moving! Go find Heather's comments. Remember to comment on the blogs in a respectful manner, and then head back here and enter your unscrambled phrase!