Monthly Archives: April 2012


I’d never given much thought to cliché phrases, even when my editor suggested I delete a line in my book for being too cliché.  I don’t remember the phrase because I promptly deleted it.  The last thing I wanted to be was an old cliché writer.  But in the past few months, I’ve come to realize, I like these phrases, so much so, that I say them without thinking.

One night, while playing cards with “the girls”, my daughter overheard our conversation.  Lucky for me, the subject had not yet turned naughty. It went something like this:

“I don’t know about you, but my hand is awful,” the diva said, frowning as she glanced at my cards.

The game had not made it to the bluffing stage yet so I responded, “Yeah.  Mine’s not anything to write home about.”

“Mom, you say the weirdest things,” my daughter snickered from the other room.  “What does that even mean?”

A week later, when my son came stumbling into the family room, tripping on the rug, and bumping into the sofa table, I said, “Gosh, Ben, you’re like a bull in a china shop!”

Disregarding the pictures he’d just knocked over, he looked at me and said, “Did you just make that up?”

He prides himself on his ability to be witty and he seemed pretty impressed that his mother could come up with such a quip.  I was tempted to let him believe it was true but curiosity got the best of me and I just had to ask, “You’ve never heard that phrase before?”

“I’ve never heard a lot of things you say before,” he said.

I was surprised.

Hence, the ongoing cliché phrase battle began.  Texting cliché phrases with my older sister for two days straight proved to be entertaining, and my daughter now looks for them in all the books she reads.  I even poke fun at myself now when I catch myself saying one.

Which prompted me to ponder this question:  If I write for a generation
(the young adults) that has never heard some of these phrases, how can they be cliché?  The very definition is a phrase or word that has lost its original effectiveness or power from overuse.  As far as my kids are concerned, as well as a few of my friends, I am quite original when I say, “This isn’t the first time I’ve jumped into the deep end of the pool without a life vest.”

What do you think? Should we bring back some of those nearly forgotten phrases and take credit for being so creative?  Maybe you know a phrase I don’t. I would love to hear it!

Categories: author YA fiction | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

I’ll try anything at least once.

Okay, let’s keep it real here.  I’m not talking about climbing Mt. Everest, or swimming with sharks (though dolphins would be fun), or even jumping out of a perfectly good airplane. I’m talking about a new skill, hobby, or career.  Something that gets you out of bed in the morning, besides the alarm… or the sharp claws of your cat kneading biscuits on your chest.

When my husband and I bought our first house, we decided to remodel ourselves.  My skill level went about as far as picture hanging but that didn’t stop me.  Oh, no!  I painted, tiled, re-painted, built an elevated platform in the floor for the media room (a fancy word for the nightmare of cords and video game systems in the basement), tore it down a year later, re-painted, did some fancy wood work down the hall, replaced the treads on the staircase… you get the point.

I have always been able to crochet.  I’ve made scarves, hats, blankets, rugs, and pillows.  This winter, I decided to take my skills to a whole new level.  So naturally, I taught myself to knit.  When my daughter’s best friend asked for a pair of ballet shorts, I eagerly accepted the challenge.  That’s when I found out I suck at knitting. Needless to say, she’s still waiting for those!

So, when my book reader of a daughter was twelve and “reading” me out of house and home (Kindle hadn’t been born yet), I decided to write her a story, which brings me to my favorite attempt at trying something new.  Wait for it… I wrote a novel!  What is the name of it?  I thought you’d never ask.  The title of my first novel is Magestic Dreams.  Did you catch that?  I said first. **giggles** Of course I couldn’t stop there.  I was having so much fun creating this fictional world of characters that when I finished the first book, I was sad.  I became so attached to these characters, they were like family members and I had to know what happened next so…Trilogy!

For those of you out there waiting for the second book, * cue the cricket sounds* — well, anyway, I’m more than halfway there.  And for those of you who know me on a more personal level, when I said “family members” a second ago, I didn’t mean you.  No, you are not a character in my books.

Getting back to the topic of this blog, you know, about trying something new, don’t be afraid to.  You just might find something you’re good at doing.  At the very least, you’ll have a story to tell.

Categories: author YA fiction | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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