Tag Archives: travel

Fantasy on the Bayou

New Orleans is less than three weeks away:

  • Membership – check
  • Reservations – check
  • Roomies – check
  • Pitch Appointment Request – check
  • Volunteer Request – check
  • Business Cards – check
  • Promo Brochure – check

Still to do:

  • Make pitch cards
  • Design wardrobe matrix
  • Buy smaller suitcase

I’ve also loaded up my iPod up with podcasts to listen to during the drive up and back. One of my besties recently turned me onto NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour. I also have back episodes of Film Sack, NASAcast, ESApod, WDW Today, The Instance, and Car Talk. The question of the hour: What am I forgetting?

Travel Update

My travel plans for the year are starting to take shape. It’s been over a decade since I last ate a beignet at the Cafe du Monde, so I’m really looking forward to “Fantasy on the Bayou” in New Orleans. I’m glad that the FF&P chapter has built in time for a walking tour, but I also hope to squeeze in time for either the Audubon Zoo or the The National WWII Museum.

RWA Nationals in Anaheim is a bit more complicated. It’s going to require a change of rooms, if not hotels, after the conference. Theme park junkie that I am, I’ll be heading to Disneyland for a couple of days. I absolutely want to see World of Color before I leave. I’m also looking into the Getty Center and the Natural History Museum. I wish I had time to visit the San Diego Zoo, but that will probably have to wait for a future trip.

I had planned to go to RWA Nationals this year, but when the FF&P chapter decide to host it’s first conference practically in (the far distant corner of) my backyard, I knew I had add that to my itinerary. It’ll be fun and I hope to generate momentum behind Starcatcher and Dream of My Soul. If I get positive responses to those two manuscripts, I’ll be in a better position to pitch Bloodsurfer later this year in California.

Sun, Fun, & Research

I recently spent a lovely afternoon at the magnificent Castillo de San Marcos National Monument to do some research for Dream of My Soul. If you’ve never visited, I highly recommend it:


My first impression of the Castillo was how small it was. The Castillo isn’t tiny by any means, but it didn’t quite reach the towering heights I had imagined from looking at pictures and drawings online. I tromped around the dry moat (which, due to recent rain, wasn’t as dry as I would have liked – my poor sneakers!) taking snapshots of the coquina walls covered in moss. The shot furnace is still there, but the flood gates are covered in concrete.

After a half hour or so in the dry moat, I joined the crowd for the live-fire cannon demonstration. Ouch! Need to bring earplugs next time.

One of the volunteers gave me an up close and personal demonstration of a 1752 fusil flintlock with paper cartridges and a .65 caliber ball. He also let me handle several different types of cannonballs including a glass shot, star shot, and chain shot.

Another volunteer asked me if I was a plumber because of my intense curiosity about the floodgates and pipes the Spanish used clean the dry moat (where animals were slaughtered) and la necessaria (the latrines). When I confessed that I was writing a novel, he asked if the Castillo would be invaded? Of course, I replied. He then asked, are there zombies involved? Naturally, I said. He thought that was funniest thing and insisted on giving me his name and email in case I had more questions. National Park volunteers absolutely rock!

Death by Big Wheel

The rumors are true: I was run over by a Big Wheel this weekend. Here’s the proof:


Hee! My friend took this while we were staying at Pop Century this weekend. We spent the rest of the day at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival eating and drinking our way around the world. My favs: the lamb slider with tomato chutney at New Zealand, the Belgium waffle, the beef empanada in Argentina,  pumpkin mousse at Hops & Barley, and Xante Sunshine in Scandinavia.