Friday, December 23, 2005

Wow. Not quite as bad as I thought

Well, I don't have quite as many review books as I thought. I counted and came up with 453. And I think I'm going to go through and pull out the latest kid books from Scholastic (I've officially emailed them to please, please, send the kid's books to one of my kid's book reviewers) and some of the really, really old ones and put them in the Prize Bucket.

But it is still quite a few.

Especially since I usually only manage between 4 - 10 books a month. Hmmm, let's see... 453 / 12 = 37.75. Nope, I'm not going to manage to review that many a month. And that would only work if the number stayed static, but lately I've been receiveing upwards of 20 or 30 new books a month. Sometimes more.

Sigh. So many books. So little time.

Up Late...and I ain't no Taco Bell

I've always been a night person. It's like my brain switches on sometime around midnight and doesn't want to shut up. "Go to sleep," I tell it. "We have to get up in the morning, for heaven's sake. And where've you been all day, anyway?" And my brain doesn't just sit down and shut up and go to sleep like a nice brain. Noooo, it has to think about everything from quantum mechanics, to things I need to update on the site, to wondering how bread was discovered, to...well, you get the idea.

Sleep, sleep, damn brain! Perchance to dream.

I'm mixing my Shakespeare there, but what the hey.

If I wasn't married, I'd probably stay up all night and sleep all morning. I'm always sleepy in the morning, even right after I wake up. Part of that is the medication, but part of it is just because my brain wants to sleep in the A.M.

Bright light! Must. close. eyes. Oh! Blessed Sleep!

Sigh. I should just work on something, but I don't want to actually encourage my blasted mind to stay awake. I did update the website some -- added additional info to the YABC Teen Reviewer application page. I'm not sure if it is a good idea or not, but I thought it would be fun. I mean, how crazy could they be? Heh. Don't answer that.

No, really, I have a lot of fun with the kids who frequent the site. So hopefully this will work out. And it's a kind of sneaky way to dip into my to-be-reviewed stack. This year has been an explosion of books. Everyone is sending them and I really can't keep up. I think there are over 500 on my to-review shelves.

You know what, I'm going to count and see. Maybe that will be brain numbing enough for me to go to sleep.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

La, La, La, La

I got quite a bit done today. Erin came over and did the hard stuff (mopping, etc.) and I washed clothes, swept up stuff, cleaned out the fridge, cleaned the oven (really, it cleaned itself, but I did push the little button), did some computer stuff, and all kinds of little piddley household tasks. Got one drawer of my filing cabinet done and I'm about to tackle the rest now.

I'm not handy.

But, if I get it done, I can actually file things again! Yippeee!

I really shouldn't be so excited about getting filing done, eh?

Got a box of books from Scholastic and various other sources. I need to find a contact at Scholastic that will listen to me...they keep sending kid's books and I don't have time to review them. They do send some YA, but mostly kid's stuff. And then I either have to re-mail it to Kim P. or Terry. It's a pain. I have 2 entire shelves of Scholastic books for review. And 3 from all the various imprints of Random House. I'm getting buried. I have been reviewing more, and I've got a stack right now I need to post reviews on, but I can't keep up with all the ones I get. Not sure what to do. Esp. with all the new ones I'm getting from SCBWI authors. Maybe I'll have to add another YA reviewer. Dunno. I'd need them to be local though. Postage is breaking me! At least I can deduct it as a business expense, but still.

Anyway, in writing news...hooked up with a TN writer to do a manuscript swap. I want to go through another round of revisions. Thought of some other things I want to add to the book. That'll be January. Then off to more agents and start work on another book.

I did hear back from Rosemary S. She gave me a very nice rejection -- said it has a great comic voice, but she's more of the dark, gothicy vampire tale lover. My book is definitely not that. Haven't heard anything from the other two yet -- at least, I don't think so. My cell phone has been acting bi-polar.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Running late

I'm running out of time. Too many things to do! I've got so much on my list, I'm not sure what to tackle first. But tomorrow is cleaning day (Erin is coming), so at least I know what I'm doing tomorrow. Today I think I need to find something else for Steve and Ryan. And that's it. I think. Not even close. *sigh*

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Doh!

Well, Serious McElvoy keeps visiting me at night until I have to get up and jot some words down. I keep planning to work on my chick-lit romance (it's funny, trust me -- we're talking deep Southern fried and the opportunity to use the line "You keep your hands offa my daddy's bras!"), but Serious keeps popping up. First it was just his name. And then, that he was dead. Squashed. Now, he wants to go and have conversations with God.

That sounds all Christian fiction-y, but it isn't. Which is my one worry. I'm really not a religous person, but I'm also not one to make fun of someone's beliefs. Would Serious come across as sketchy? Hopefully not. He's going to be an angel, fifth class. Or maybe something more like tenth class. Not sure yet how many classes there are.

Anyway, it's stuff like this:
“Interesting choice,” said God.

“What choice?” asked Serious, not even considering that God might consider this to be his One Question (but don't worry, he didn’t. After all, he is God. He knows better).

God pointed to himself. “Everyone sees God differently. To some people, I appear as just a bright white light. To others, I am an old man in white robes with a flowing beard. Still others see me as a young woman, dressed all in green. But, no matter what, to most people I appear as quite an impressive sight.”

Serious took a closer look. It seemed that his vision of God looked a lot like his Grandfather Jackson.

And I'm not going to be making any kind of philosophical pronouncements or anything like that. It'll probably be more like Serious "earning his wings" (too cliched, but something along those lines). Maybe discovering that bullies have their own problems. Or that being a super-genius doesn't mean much when you're dead. I dunno. Something funny.

By the way, that up above is VERY draft. But don't steal it. I'll hunt you down and force you to eat your own eyeballs. Well, ok, maybe I'll just poke you in the eye. But still. I mean it. Not that I think you could do much with a little snippet like that. But it's the thought. The danger of the Internet. I'm always advising people to not post their unpublished work anywhere, but here I go, posting something in my own blog. But it isn't the whole thing, just a couple of sentences. Urk, whatever. I'm sharing.

Anyway.

So, if the tone is like that, do you think I'll have issues? Or do I care? I'm a writer, dammit! Who cares what the public thinks! (heh. What was it Mark Twain said? Or shoot, Heinlein.)

Alright, I've got Serious out of my head for now (I hope), so I'm going back to bed.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Yep.

The laptop, of course, is still behaving spotlessly after a week of fuzzy purpleness. Argh.

What craziness. And the desktop, which has been having no issues at all, has slowed to a crawl since I installed Norton Utilities on it. It's enough to make a girl scream.

I need to wrap a bunch of stuff and get things ready to mail. Lots of prize books to get out too. This giveaway-a-day thing is fun, but I'm glad I don't do it every month. Lots of work. I need to update and announce yesterday's winners too, but between computer issues and a guy here to clean the furnace, I haven't had a chance yet.

I guess I'll go do that now. And tomorrow will be a big trip to the post office to mail stuff.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Grrrrrr

So, hm. My laptop has been acting up (purple screen, fuzziness, etc.) and I've been going back and forth with Gateway via e-mail on what to do. It's my first incident with Gateway support and I'm not that happy with it.

A) the rep can barely type English. I have no idea how she sounds, but she sure can't use correct grammar, B) her first response was basically: "Oh, you let your laptop get too cold, so your warranty is voided" (I had e-mailed asking if cold from a window could affect it -- we went back and forth over this until I got her to understand that I wasn't using the laptop IN a window, but near one -- in fact, over a foot and a half away. I even had to take a picture and send it to her to prove that I hadn't "willfully damaged the computer" -- just as a customer service thing, I don't think that the first response to any question should be "you've voided your warranty", not if they ever want me to buy another Gateway) and C) half the time, she can't seem to answer the actual question that I ask, but instead produces some garbled half-answer that doesn't make sense. It's very annoying.

And then, to make it even more annoying, I have to shell out $44 to buy a box from them to ship the computer back to them in, even though it is all under warranty (I've only had the thing for 6 months). Shouldn't they have to pay for that?

And then....to really frost the cake...today, it's acting just fine. No fuzziness. No purple. After I've spent an entire morning moving all e-mail and backing up everything to my old desktop computer.

Grrrrrr. Sometimes, I think computers are sentient and they are out to get us. They aren't to Terminator levels yet, but they're trying, damn the little buggers.

In good news, Tony is home from Toronto and L.A., none the worse for wear, though a bit tired. And I sent off two additional agent queries (Rebecca S. and Nadia C.). Wish me luck. Or heck, e-mail them and tell them how awesome I am (Kidding. Really.)

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Shopping...

I guess I'm not much of a girl. I'm about shopped out. I was out for about, what? maybe 3 or 4 hours. And I got to the point of I just need to go home now...

I did get a fair amount done though. Never enough though.

Now I'm doing Christmas cards. My tongue tastes like envelopes. You'd think they'd have come up with a way to make those taste better by now. Or that I'd get up offa my lazy butt and go get a sponge to use, but noooo. Almost done.

I was going to start knitting tonight (2 purses), but, eh, I don't think so. It's almost 10 now. I think I was up until after 1. Maybe even 2 AM yesterday. I have a horrible time sleeping when Tony is gone. Mostly, I just don't. Part of it is (I guess) leftover from whenever I was a teenager. I don't think I slept more than 3 hours a night between the ages of 13 and 18, especially if I was home alone (which was pretty often). Maybe that's my payback taking all these sleep-inducing pills. I'm catching up on all that time.

Anyway, going to finish these cards up. I'm missing some addresses, but I'll have to track them down another day.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

67 emails

There are currently 67 emails in my inbox that I need to do something with/for/to. That's down from 80 some, where it was at the start of the day. And that, of course, isn't counting the stuff I have automatically moved to a classification folder (that I'm going to steadfastly ignore until I can no longer do so).

Grrr.

I'd really like to get through all of them this week and have a nice clean slate to start off with. And pledges of never letting it get this bad again and so on and so forth. Sigh.

Maybe it will happen.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Crossing Fingers, crossing toes

Lara gave me an agent recommendation (Rosemary S.) and I sent off a query into the ether the other night (see previous post). Not that you should do stuff like that at 2 AM, but there you go. Anyway, I heard back today and she wants to see the MS. Yay! Now, hopefully she'll like it.

I'm printing it now and then off to the Post Office with dreams in my head and a scarf around my throat -- it's cold out there, man!

Sunday, December 04, 2005

On my own

So, Tony is off to Toronto and then on to L.A. I'll be kicking around this big old house by myself for a week. I've got lots of things on my list to do while he's gone. Hopefully I don't just sleep away the days. ;-)
  • Christmas shopping
  • Making Christmas presents (I've knitted 3 scarves so far, want to make some quilted hangy-things, two knitted purses, and a pillow, maybe some other stuff)
  • Reading/reviewing books
  • Querying agents (have two more I want to send to)
  • Working on the site (all the programming stuff I've been meaning to do for ages and ages)
  • Put filing cabinet together
  • Get the "junk" room cleaned up so it's a real room that we can use

Probably more stuff, but that's definitely enough to keep me busy for now.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Silly Me

I'm not sure why I can't seem to sleep tonight. Before dinner I could barely keep my eyes open and now I just can't seem to sleep.

So I did what I always do....go to the computer. Mess around. Sent a query to an agent. Probably NOT the thing to do at 2 AM, but oh well, there you go. We'll see what happens.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Whew

I've got the December Giveaway-A-Day posted up now. That took some typing. And I'm going to try and add more prizes too...and make sure the Prize Bucket is up to date...and do some additional reviews...and read some books to review...and go shopping for Christmas...and on and on and on. I'm even planning on making some gifts (got 3 scarves done so far), so I better be getting a move on.

It's that time of year. Holiday season. Or Holiday Hell, depending upon your attitude.

I'm in a pretty good mood/attitude, actually. It's our first Christmas in this house and I'm so psyched to be decorating an old Victorian for Christmas. It's just perfect. We even have a real tree this year, as opposed to an artificial one and it's the first time in my entire life that I've had a real tree. We even got all new ornaments so it's more designer-y than home-y (though I think I'll probably put up the old artificial tree on the 2nd floor with all the homemade stuff on it -- besides, Harley loves to chew on that tree and goodness knows he needs to get his yearly flossing in).

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Home Sweet Shower

There's just no shower like your own shower. :-) Actually, we just have a great old shower head with lots of water pressure. I have no idea how old the thing is (it's attached to the claw foot tub and it looks like it has been there for a while), but it is just great. I missed it. Between traveling to Phoenix and then the great Thanksgiving trip (Louisville to Charlotte to Gainesville to Tampa and back to Louey-town), I feel like we've hardly been home. It's good to be back.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Thanksgiving already?

I can't believe it's Thanksgiving tomorrow. Where has this year gone? The older I get, the faster the time seems to go by. I wish I didn't have to sleep sometimes...then maybe I could get something done...or maybe not.

I haven't been writing much lately, but there just doesn't seem to be any time. What's the Rocky Horror thing? Time is fleeting...

Anyway, more later...

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Yeesh & Yetis

Yikes, I have so much to do today. But it is all my own fault. I tend to leave things to the last minute. I admit it. Right now I'm waiting for furniture to be delivered (the stuff we got refinished, not new stuff) and then I have to go to the pharmacy and to the Post Office. Then...I need to write at least 3 reviews, post 2 interviews, make some site changes, launch a new contest, get stuff ready, take care of mail and bills, go shopping with Rich (optional, but my fun thing of the day), update blogs, clean, do laundry...there's bunches more, but I suppose you're getting the drift.

In writing news, I finished my revisions. Right now, Daniel Ehrenhaft and Lara Zeises are looking at it for me (wonderful people), but I don't expect to hear back from them until after Thanksgiving. And then...the great agent search. At least Dan (Knuckles) says that he's liked what he's read so far. That makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. I love his books, especially his latest one that will come out next year (March or May, one of the M months, can't remember which one). Great fun.

So I'm in a bit of limbo, which I guess is good for the holidays. I didn't even pretend to try to do NaNoWriMo this year. Sigh. We went to Phoenix for about a week and with other stuff going on, I just knew there was no way. I still think they should change which month they do that. November is about the worst month (next to December) to try to write 50K words in.

I did write out some notes for another book, Serious McElvoy. The name came to me about a year or two ago and about two weeks ago, a bunch of bits came to me and I wrote some of them down. More of a middle grade novel. I also fleshed out just a bit the next two This Bites books (This Bites: France Sucks [or This Bites: Voulez Vous Vampire if the first title is too politically incorrect] and This Bites: Vampire U). Here's hoping I get a chance to write them!

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Tony's birthday

Today is Tony's birthday. If I can get him to come home from work :-) we're going out for dinner at Le Relais.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Well then

I hate to just talk about my leg/back issue all the time, but it is definitely on my mind. This last round of trigger point injections was really tough and the pain hasn't been subsiding like it normally does. In fact, I've got spots on my leg that, if you touch them, I go numb and tingly to my toes. Sigh.

Other than that, have made some more progress with some troublesome scenes. Got completely rid of the strange-o cat woman to be replaced with a more normal human strange person.

Waiting to hear back some thoughts from Knuckles...other than that...I'm planning on sending out to agent(s) next week. Whew.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Dunno

Dunno what's wrong with me today. I hurt (the leg -- actually numb and tingly but painful all at the same time) and I just feel like an abject failure. Look, I got to use an SAT word! I honestly did not wake up until noon too...and I've got this sinking feeling that I really just should have stayed right there in bed.

Buck up, little camper!

On a side note, I went to my regular doctor today to get a normal shot (i.e. not one of the incredibly painful trigger point injections, just a normal shot in the arm) and I gave two nurses a thrill -- I was shorter than one and the same height as another. Short people always love to see shorter people.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Yowee

Another shot day today. This time, whole leg went numb and I couldn't walk without help. Lucky Rich was available to drive me. I did learn one thing -- don't wear Flip Flops when getting shots! I got in the back door and somehow got the flip flop and the rug all mixed up and fell down. About freaked poor Rich out. Lucky I didn't break anything. I made it from there up to the second floor holding onto the railing and had Armando (he was painting the ceiling in the bathroom) help me into the office. I'm not moving again until I'm less numb. Even the tongue is a bit gone. I could fall asleep right here, that's for sure.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Another sleepy, sleepy day

Very sleepy again today, but at least I have a reason. Tony didn't get out of all his work-related stuff until after midnight and I went to pick him up and didn't get to sleep until 1. Put pills on top of that...and waking up at 8:30 (though dozing until nine when Keith got here to put up some lights). I'm sleepy.

Been cleaning the house up a bit in case Tony brings any people over. Got a bit more to do and then I think I'm gonna crash for a while.

Have made some significant progress with the book. Hopefully I'll be awake enough later to do some more work today. Right now I don't dare. I've fixed probably 10 typos so far in the little bit I've written in here. Too sleepy. Can't think.

And tomorrow I have more of my roman shade class at Baer. I need to measure the window tonight too. I think that's all I have to do though.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Geez, what's my horoscope today?

Well, the day started with great promise. Planned items:
  • Tom coming by with his nephew to do some electrical work and get the heat thingy running in the basement (check),
  • guy coming to do fireplace inspection (check, albeit a bit late, but at least he had some good news),
  • guy coming to pick up furniture for repair (uncheck, have to reschedule for tomorrow 'cause they were too busy today after all),
  • vet coming to see to Harley and Grace (uncheck, they had it down as an office visit somehow),
  • meeting at Old Louisville Information Center at 7 PM about Historic Tax Credit (still scheduled, just hoping I'll be awake, I'm dead tired),
  • work on novel (check, made some progress),
  • work on stuff for Leapfrog (big uncheck, now one of the guys wants to write the copy himself. Sigh.),
  • pain pills (uncheck, not working real well today).

And so on. I shoulda just stayed in bed today. Oh, and forgot another one:

  • Making new curtain (check, but hold on, wait for it...)
  • Attaching fringe to curtain (uncheck, instead I had bobbin vomit)

And then there's the various issues with the various electrical projects. I won't even go into detail on those. I need a nap.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Do-Be-Do-Be-Do-Do-Da

Listening: Louis Armstrong, I'm Crazy 'Bout My Baby
Reading: Peter Inson, Dunno & Gail Carson Levine, The Two Princesses of Bamarre

When the Fall weather falls on the sunny, crisp side of things, it's just wonderful. That's not what it is today. Today it's really quite cold and grey, but I still like the look of the leaves on the sidewalk. Leaves are beautiful individual pieces of art.

So far today I've sent out my niece's birthday card, washed some clothes, called the furniture restoration guy to set up an appointment, written one review, updated the family blog, and...and I think that's it. Want to finish a curtain for the dining room too and I have a meeting at 2 PM with the Leapfrog people. Hopefully they'll let me do it by phone 'cause my leg is screaming a bit today. It's up and down and mostly down with the weather is cold.

I'm about half way through my revisions and I'm definitely going to finish them this week. That's the other thing I want to work on today. Well, back to it.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

I am the walrus

Listening: Squeeze, Take Me, I'm Yours

So, let's see. I've got a new project for Leapfrog. This time they want my copywriting help for their own site and brochure. Should be a fun project. I like working with smaller companies. A lot looser and more fun than dealing with AT&T. Shoot, you have to like a place that has a pool table in the reception area.

Other than that, I've mostly been working on the house. I need to get back on top of my book; hopefully today or tomorrow. I've been very fuzzy from the medication lately. Sometimes I just postpone taking them so I can think for a while. Doesn't seem to affect my writing though, just my motivation. As in, hmmmm, wouldn't this be a nice time for a nap?

Listening: James Bignon, Use Me (I like Bill Wither's version better)

I sent off a couple of poems to a magazine. We'll see what happens. I don't think I write mainstream enough to get any poetry published.

Oh! And Serious McElvoy has come back. His name hit me ages ago and stuck and now he's back. He wants to be written about. So maybe he'll be my NaNoWriMo project. But I have to finish my revisions first. I can do it. I can do it. I can do it. Think positive.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Yawwwwn

I'm so tired today. I mean really, really, really tired. Can barely keep my eyes open. Meds hitting hard today.

Yesterday I found some great material for curtains for the dining room. Yay! And some other fabric (with elephants) to make new outdoor cushions with. There's more, but I'm so sleepy I can't even think of it.

Maybe more later.

Urk

Listening: To the sorority girls partying next door
Feeling: Annoyed and tired

If the @#$#% girls would just keep their partying indoors late at night, they wouldn't be so annoying. Or if they didn't invite over beer-soaked, testosterone-high lunkheads who stand around outside going "Effing-this" and "Effing-that." Grrrr. All at the top of their lungs. Since I guess the people over on the NEXT BLOCK can't hear them. And it's Thursday, for heaven's sake.

The bad thing about living in the city. Actually, not the city. Next to a University.

Anyway.

I was evil mommy today. I snuck a bath in on Gracie before she knew what was happening. She was absolutely flabbergasted. I wish I had a picture of her face. She forgave me after I fed her, but boy was she upset. You'd think the world had ended by the look on her furry little face.

I'm going to go try and sleep again.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

A plantin' away

Listening: XTC, Dear God
Reading: Dunno by Peter Inson

Wow, I've actually had a pretty productive day today. Whoo-Hoo! That's two in a row! Maybe it's the start of something new.

I planted the spring bulbs in the front yard today. Hopefully they come up. It's an assortment of yellow crocuses and something-or-other else. All yellow. Grace gave me a scare while I was planting them. When I went to get the watering can, she disappeared back behind the building next door and, snarky thing that she is, wouldn't answer when I called for her. Just as I was thinking to myself "Geez, how can you lose a cat that big??" she wandered back around. Oh, were you looking for me?

Then I got some e-mailing done, notified the winners of the Chris Crutcher contest, and made two curtains for the kitchen. Now I just need to make the top cafe curtains and the kitchen will be done. They came out pretty good. I tried something new -- used a ribbon as the rod holder. Maybe I'll take a picture after the top half is done (we've got really big windows).

I've forgotten half of what I did yesterday, but I do remember that I worked on my revisions, cleaned out the fridge, and washed all the bedclothes. There was something else, I think, but heck if I know what it was.

I'm now happy with chapters one and two. Three I'm still mixing and matching.

Listening: Paula Cole, Hush, Hush, Hush

Tomorrow -- Post Office and lunch with Tony. Other than that, I don't know. Maybe the rest of the kitchen curtains. Maybe a coffeehouse trip. Maybe I'll finish knitting that scarf....maybe I'll just sleep.

Monday, October 10, 2005

And Obie came to the realization...

Listening: Portishead, A Tribute to Monk & Canatella
Reading: Rush Hour: Sin

Mondays are filled with expectations. Things to do, places to go, people to see. I feel all poetic and writerly, but oh so tired. I can't seem to hold on to the scraps of poetry my brain produces. I think I'll write more later. When the first round of pills has worked their way through. Tomorrow I think I need to go to the coffee house and ramp up on caffeine and work on my revisions. It's the 10th of October already. Time. Once it was just a frail concept, now it is running away from me, laughing.

I dare not blink
all my balance
lives in my eyes

Friday, October 07, 2005

And then it was Friday

Listening: some radio station, some song going "Na, na, na, na"
Feeling: like someone beat the tar out of me and not finding any tar, decided to go for broke

So poor Tony had to sit through the Dr. sticking me with the 6 inch needle. And, in this case, I have employed no writerly exaggeration to the facts -- he can testify to it. It is, quite simply, the biggest darn needle I have ever seen. Lucky for me, I've only seen it hovering menacingly near me. Tony had to see him use it (while I was squeezing his hand to a pulp). I'm glad I can't see it after Tony explained what was going on. While my eyes are crossing in pain and sweat is literally popping out on my forehead (I'd always read that in books but didn't really understand it until now), the Dr. takes the monster needle, sticks it in and then...MOVES it around. Up and down, back and forth. Like stirring. Except there's no soup to stir, there's just me.

That explains the bruises, eh?

So, anywho, that also explains my absence from the blog since Wednesday. I've been in bed. Mostly 'cause we've got a house of stairs and when you can't really bend your knee, you're kind of stuck. And he also changed my pain pill to hydrocodone from tramadol (or whatever it was). Which makes me sleepier.

I'm so far behind on everything, but today, eh, whatever. I don't care. Or maybe that's the hydrocodone talking. Today I could at least somewhat bend my right leg, so I made it down to the 1st floor. Heh. After noon. Since I slept until then. *Sigh*

I took down two books with me to review, so I hope I get to them. I really need to. I have a stack of about 10 books that have been read but not reviewed. I just can't think sometimes.

At least the cats are happy. They are getting a ton of cuddle time. Look, mommy can't move! I call shotgun! Purr, Purr! Oh, wait, who's going to feed us?

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Back to the Blues

Listening: John Lee Hooker, Roll N' Roll

Lawd, lawd, lawd...you gotta love a good Blues song. John Lee Hooker is the best too. He's my kind of blues.

Today's shot day again. I'm going to pick Tony up from work so he can drive me back (and also have his hand squeezed to a pulp whilst I'm actually being all shot up). I wonder if he'll blanch at the 6 inch needle? I know I do. If I got any paler, people'd think my freckles were coming alive.

That made no sense.

Listening: Randy Newman, Lonely at the Top

Anyway. I'm going to deposit the checks RIGHT NOW before I lose them again. And I have a new goal (besides not losing checks anymore) -- all revisions finished before the end of August. Because November is NaNoWriMo month...and what's a goal if it isn't crazy?

Oh. And eating more poptarts.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Blech

Listening: Led Zeppelin, Achilles Last Stand

Through sheer dumb luck, I found the check right before I was going to search through the garbage. That's something, at least. Sigh.

Laugh or cry?

So. I just found all the checks that I had to call to get re-issued. And now I can't find the check from the stock I just cashed out that I just got this past weekend. I just don't know what to do with myself. I give up. Stick a fork in me, I'm obviously done. Done for. Done with. Wiped out. Tired.

I am the bone
grey with age, cracked,
the marrow long ago
sucked out of me

I just feel like I can't do anything right anymore. Nothing quite works out.

Listening: Janis Joplin, Summertime

Monday, October 03, 2005

It's Monday again

Listening: Nine Inch Nails, Head Like a Hole
Feeling: ambivalent

Another day with lots of big plans and a late start. But I'm on a roll now. Yeah.

Going to mail out a bunch of books today and my sister's birthday present (Happy Birthday [Almost] Pam). I got it at the art show this past weekend.

There was a new secret on PostSecret today that could have been sent by me. It's always kind of a weird thrill to see that.

So, I'm off to the store now. And then home...and clean, clean, clean. Clean out the mind, clean the house, clean up my act. I'm inviting Mr. Clean over for dinner. Maybe he'll stay for a while.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Crisp Air

Listening: The Eels, Grace Kelly Blues

I just love the Eels. They're odd. You ever notice how 'Eels' looks really strange with the E capitalized? It only looks right lowercase: eels. I don't know why.

I'm annoyed with myself just a little bit. I somehow managed to misplace three checks for deposit. No idea where. I'll probably find them a year from now. So I had to ask the three places to re-issue the checks. Urgh.

You ever notice that every kind of food comes on a stick at a fair? Even things that normally wouldn't be caught anywhere near a stick.

I'm going through right now and just reading my book. Trying not to edit in my head for a minute and just read it as if it were someone else's book.

Listening: Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Judy Blue Eyes

Looking forward to the art show this weekend. Tonight we're going shopping in case we can't get out of the house all weekend. We've heard that over 350,000 people descend on the neighborhood. It's hard to imagine. Good thing I like art shows.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Ding Dong

Listening: Edie Brickell and the New Bohemians, Nothing

Finished up all the copy for LeapFrog (yay!). Hopefully it will all work for them. There's a few parts that could really use some more detail, but I plain just don't have it.

There's nothing I hate more than nothing
Nothing keeps me up at night
I toss and turn over nothing
Nothing can cause a great big fight

Love that song. Always have. What I Am was their big hit and that one is fun too.

I have a lot to do today. Or rather, a lot of things I want to do. Not sure how much will actually get done.

Need to....
  • Paint bookshelves
  • Deposit Checks
  • Get hair cut (in desperate need - I've got a huge poofy thing going on and this ain't the eighties anymore)
  • Work on revisions
  • Swiffer all floors
  • Get all boxes to the basement (this sounds easy, but I'm talking a lot of boxes and a lot of them up on the third floor)

All kinds of other things, but if I get those things done, I'll be happy. Okay, if I get some of those things done, I'll be happy. If I actually get out of my nightgown, I'll be happy.

Keeping expectations manageable...

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Fall has...fallen

I was going to say Fall has sprung, but that's more for Spring. It is just absolutely gorgeous out. Somewhere around 64 degrees. Tomorrow it is supposed to drop to a low of 42, but only for the day. The air is just perfect, the sun is dappling the ground, leaves are starting to fall (from just a tree or two). I'm out on the porch with Grace. I feel like I've been waiting for this weather for months. I know you shouldn't wish your life away, but I do so much love fall-ish weather. Summer is just too hot for me. We went to Tony's company picnic this past weekend at Huber farm and it was just awesome to see all the pumpkins and other accoutrements of fall.

I'm sure I spelled that wrong.

Anyway, we got the ladder I ordered today, so Tony now has no excuse not to hang up my tapestry.

I'm working on the copy for LeapFrog today. I need to have it completely complete by noon tomorrow, but I'm hoping to just finish it up today. I'd like to get it out the door so I can concentrate on my revisions.

I'm tempted to skip a dose or two of pills so I can stay awake long enough to do it.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Banned Books Week

In celebration of this year's Banned Books week, Chris Crutcher has donated two prize packages (including a signed copy of The Sledding Hill) to me to give away on Young Adult Books Central. His books have come under a lot of challenges this year, along with other authors as varied as Robert Cormier, Dav Pilkey, Sonya Sones, and Walter Dean Myers.

I understand that some parents may want to restrict their children from reading certain books. That's their perogative. But I absolutely draw the line at banning a book (or anything, really) for all. That's just wrong. The few should NEVER control what the many should have access to. I'd be a little more eloquent if I weren't on all this medicine, but I hope the sentiment comes through. Censorship is wrong. Censorship is never the answer.

I'm tempted to order this year's ALA shirt for Banned Books Week. I love the quote on it.

Censorship is telling a man he can't have a steak because a baby can't chew it. --Mark Twain

Friday, September 23, 2005

It's a Festival

Listening: To the passersby on the street and Grace tearing into a cat toy
Waiting: for a teleconference with LeapFrog
Eating: Pop Tarts

I've only yet taken my first dose of pills today. I'm waiting on the next until after the call, so I'll have some semblance of awakeness. Then I'm going to work on my book and some reviews for the site. And then maybe a piece of leftover cake...it really did come out pretty good this time. The triple chocolate refers to chocolate cake + Godiva liqeuer + chocolate chips + chocolate pudding. But it's the caramel that gets me.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

I think this is funny...

I just got the strangest spam I have ever gotten. I've thought that a lot, actually. Usually with one of the ones where they've randomly inserted bits of poetry and F. Scott Fitzgerald or Vanity Fair or something like that. But this, this is a beast of an entirely different color. I don't think I can even say anything that will add to the humor. One thing I do want to know -- what the heck kind of spam lists am I on???? So here it is:

Hi
This is a legitimate appeal for ladies only. If you are interested or if you want to unsuscribe email me at pal555@mail.win.it I'm an Italian guy, I live in Italy and my name is Maurizio. I live in Roma.

I'm sending this message to the people because I'm bored to live in Italy, I'm looking for a lady what could invite me in usa. I seek a millionaires american lady who desires a young guy for marriage.

I would love to find a wealthy lady who lives in one of the following places in usa or nearby:
1) "The treasure coast",I mean north east Broward County or east Palm
Beach county(FLORIDA)
2)Honolulu (Hawaii)
3)Reno(Nevada)
4)Las Vegas(nevada)
5)Atlanta(georgia)
6)Jupiter,Stuart,Coral Springs,Jensen Beach,Boynton each,Deepwater,Hutchinson Island or Miami(Florida)

Considering that I like the mature women, I'd love to find a lady of 45-60yo age range. I'd love to find a gentle long haired lady who lives in a swimming pool house near the sea (as I like to swim) . I seek a lady without young or old children,a no smoker lady who could be widowed, separated, single , divorced. I would need a sugarmamma figure at the beginning .

I seek a bisexual woman that figures out of the years, looks young and feels young : it's not a problem if she's not beautiful because she should be beautiful inside and most of all ,she should desire a younger soulmate.(She could be overweight too) The thing I desire is to fix a serious stable relationship with a lady who gives me the opportunity to have a better life.

ABOUT ME:
I have long black hair,my weight is 65 kilos (145 lbs) and my height is about 1.80 metres(5.11)... I'm no smoker /drinker and I'm good looking.

If you could be the kind of woman I'm looking for, write me soon please!!!!!!

Thank you very much for reading my letter . I think there must be a woman for me out there.

Cheers


MAURIZIO PAOLI -Italy -(sent from me766@rediffmail.com)

Head like a hole...leg like a snausage

Listening: Imani Coppola, La Da Da
Reading: Libba Bray, Rebel Angels

Wow, doubling up on the muscle relaxers really...really makes me dopey. I exist in a fog. A foul-tasting one, as the muscle relaxers have a tendency to start dissolving as soon as you stick them in your mouth and they taste absolutely foul. Mouthwash, O my friend.

As Dr. Pain predicted, I am once again sore. He says that we'll need to do the shots every two weeks (!). I ask, "How long?" A reasonable question, eh? His answer..."Until you don't hurt any more." Ouch. Out, out, damn ligament.

It's always so strange to me that you have to cause yourself more pain to make other pain go away. Does that make sense? Who knows? I'm fuzzzzzzy. I've already had to go back and fix 3 spelling errors and who knows if I've let some creep in unknowing.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Where am I again?

Listening: Louis Armstrong, Cabaret

Got more shots today in my leg. Ow. Bled all over his table. But at least it seems like I can bend my knee this time. He wants me to double up on the muscle relaxers too, so I get the feeling I'll be sleeping a lot very, very soon. Right now I feel kinda woozy from all the whatchacallit. Anasthesia. Whatever. But I did manage to drive myself home, a true hazard on the road. I can't ask my neighbor to drive me every two weeks. That's stretching the bounds of familiarity. Or something like that. I don't want to be a burden.

Last night I made a triple chocolate caramel and toffee cake. It came out pretty good. Maybe I'll have a piece for lunch. If I'm awake.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Running out of titles

Listening: Maurice Chevalier, Sweeping the Clouds Away

Yesterday I actually got a good start on things and I'm hoping to continue that trend today. On the list: hem shower curtains, clean the bathroom, organize all review books (!), answer e-mail, clean up paperwork, work on T paperwork. There's more, but I don't want to be too ambitious. Goodness knows that always bites me back.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Yeah, Yeah, Yeah

Listening: Etta James, Ooh Poo Pah Doo
Sneaking: Oreos before dinner

Whoo-hoo! I finally got up offa my lazy butt and nailed the backs of the bookcases on. I did determine, however, that I'm much more crafty than handy. I'm terrible with a hammer. I've emptied a bunch more boxes and got stuff all stacked up -- of course, I still need to go through and trash a bunch of it. I have a lot of junk. I come from a long line of pack rats.

I need to dig my sewing machine out so I can make some curtains. Then we'll be a-rockin' along. And this coming week I'm going to start on the revisions. Tony's had some good comments too -- I've got some pruning to do.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Failure, thou name is mine

Listening: Market, Grand Prix 73

Argh. Or *sigh* I didn't do very well today with my goals. I did manage to get all the rebates mailed out (new linksys wireless G router [which had 3] and Kitchen Aid mixer) and talk to a guy about putting a security door on the basement and some other piddly stuff (like installing and re-installing Norton until the damn thing worked again, probably just because it was tired of all the fuss). But my desk is still kinda messy and my books are still unorganized.

Oh, and I did find a toaster that's all retro looking so I can retire my old one. And I dusted and fiddled around with the knick-knacks on the fireplace mantle in the office. Of course, that's only one fireplace out of 7, so I dunno that it counts as much. Like I said, sigh.

I may be living in sin
but I could never give in

That's from the Market song I'm listening to. I wasn't just fessing up to anything or whatnot.

Listening: Jazz Dub Crackers, Everybody Rock

This weekend we're going to try and hit at least some of the following: the Bourbon Festival in Bardstown, the Original "Real" Turtle Soup Festival in Highlands, The Ursuline Art Fair, and the Gaslight Festival. They sincerely believe in festivals up here. So, next time I post I might be snockered on bourbon or reeling from turtle soup. Who knows what they do to you at a gaslight festival.

Friday, September 16, 2005

Is it really Friday?

Reading: Dustin Grubbs, One Man Show
Listening: Run with the Pack by Bad Company

How'd Friday get here so soon? How is it I got so little done this week? Urgh. At least I have pop tarts. Today, however, I am going to get something done. I'm going to get all the review books organized AND my desk cleaned off.

Cross your fingers for me. I feel buried under an avalanche of books and paper.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Aaaaargh.

Reading: Nothing. Need to pick out new book(s)
Listening: The Buggles, Video Killed the Radio Star

I hate it when software doesn't work like it is supposed to. I'm fighting with Norton on my laptop right now. I renewed yesterday and it keeps telling me I'm still expired. Grr.

So...last night. Browsed Ebay and blogs. Then read until about 2:45 AM (Zipped, finished it). Went to bed. Lay there until 3:33 AM, got up and took an extra muscle relaxer and pain pill (due to pain in neck, haha, no joke). I think I finally got to sleep around 4. Woke up at 7:30 AM this morning. Why? I have no idea. Tried to go back to sleep (no go). Imagined hearing knocks on the door. Figured I'd muck around with the computer. Mistake.

Listening: Sting, This Cowboy Song

Plan for the day: do some rearranging upstairs, wash some clothes, go to the Butchertown Market (going out of business sale), go to Baer fabrics (curtain fabric search that I didn't get around to yesterday), return shower curtain to Linens N Things. Not sure what else. Maybe work a bit on the site (really need to, just haven't been in the mood). Possibly start revising, rather than just making notes about revising. Definitely brush my teeth. Definitely eat a pop tart. Hmmm. Maybe right now. First one, then the other.

Listening: Heavy D & the Boyz, Don't Curse

Butane in my veins

Reading: Zipped
Listening: Nothing. I'm trying to be quiet.
Channeling: Beck

I'm up. I don't know why. I'm sleepy, but I just can't get to sleep. The keyboard sounds incredibly loud here in the dark, but hopefully the doors being closed to the office will be enough not to wake Tony up. I need to get one of those soft key types or something. I'd turn on my laptop, but I don't know how to turn off the sound ahead of time...and hearing the very stirring Windows theme song would be sure to wake anyone. So old desktop and noisy keyboard it is.

Note to self: never go shopping with Tony again. He's just not good at it. It's like that saying about leading a horse to water...or maybe it's the one about trying to teach a dog to fish. Whichever, it ends up being a waste of time and annoying someone. In this case, both of us.

I wish I could turn my brain off. I've been just laying there in bed thinking about all of the things I'd like to get done tomorrow. How do guys do it? How do you just shut down as soon as you hit a pillow?

Addendum... 1:18 AM

I just took the Archie McPhee Nerd Test. Oh man. I score higher than Bill Gates and Steve Jobs. The only one listed that I scored less than is Dilbert. I don't think that can be right. I'm not a Trekkie. Or Trekker or whatever.

Your score is: 549

Your rating is: 117.56%

Additional Scoring Information: Sorry, you lost 1 point because you are using a Windows machine.

Prairie Girl


Heheheh, can't help myself. Here's another picture of Pam. I just found a little stash on my PC. There are pictures out there of me in this ridiculous bonnet, but none committed to digital format that I know of.

Alien Baby


I thought I'd post a picture of my sister since some of her buds stop here every now and then. It's my favorite. I call it the Alien Baby picture. Behind her ears used to smell like peaches. And didn't she just have the troll hair? Notice the very lovely couch in the background. They should shoot whoever first came up with that design idea.

I'm happy to say that she can't retaliate, since I don't think she has any baby pictures of me at all. She's got recent ones that I'm sure are mighty embarassing, but it's just not the same thing as a good naked butt baby picture. Hmmm. I'm bound to have one of those of her somewhere...

Monday, September 12, 2005

In the time of chimpanzees I was a monkey

I was very peeved the other day and I keep debating about whether I need to write about it or not. I don't have much to write about in here about my writing life -- still letting the novel sit while some people read it over for me, still waiting on the research for the freelance project, unwilling to start on something else (though I could finish up a short story or two), so maybe I will.

I'm fairly easy-going. But, like my character Mina, I don't like it when people are rude or stupid. Last Wednesday, B came over. Tony was on a conference call with people he works with as they were setting up this year's fantasy football league. They do it every year. He was having a great time chatting back and forth with them. B didn't like this because a) it meant no one was paying attention to him and b) he wanted Tony's attention so he could get some letters of recommendation.

I told him it would be a while, who knows how long, but he was welcome to some wine or whatever. He fidgets for a while and then stage whispers, out of the blue, "I just can't understand it. How can someone be spending all this time on fantasy football when there are people dying in New Orleans?" He's got a little mou-face on when he says it. Tony didn't hear him and I didn't say anything because of the call. But it really annoyed me. After awhile, he left.


  1. He just insulted the people who's house he's sitting in, the same people who have been feeding him dinner somewhere between 3-5 days a week.
  2. Of all the gall...just the day before he'd been regaling us with tales of his weekend out on the town clubbing. I suppose clubbing is okay, but not fantasy football?
  3. Life goes on. If we stopped doing everything every time a disaster happened, we wouldn't be living at all.
  4. He has no idea what we have or have not done for the people in New Orleans. And I know he hasn't done anything. We have -- and I'm sending out another box of stuff today.

Anyway. Breathe.

Sorry. I had to vent somewhere. I haven't actually seen B since then (a rarity), and I'm glad I haven't. I might say something I regret.

I need to find someone local to hang out with. I'm not really good at friend relationships, in person anyway. Tony is my best friend. Even back in school (pre-college), I'd have friendships with girls, but they'd just end when they moved on (they were usually older than me, so bye-bye when they graduated). Most girls annoy me. I'm more guy-ish, but they're horrible for shopping (unless they're gay -- but clothes shopping still doesn't work out. Rich next door is great for antiquing though). My interests are kind of varied (quirky, at best) and don't generally seem to fall within the realm of girlish endeavors. But it can be hard to be best friends with a guy when you're married. Or not married.

Anyway, blah-de-blah-de-blah. My leg is somewhat better, so I'm going to go do some shopping by my little lonesome. Cat food, material, and pop tarts. Quite the list.

Friday, September 09, 2005

I need pop tarts

I ran out of pop tarts yesterday and I still can't drive due to the shots (lovely collection of bruises, however) so I am pop tart-less. Wah. I'm really jonesing for a pop tart.

I'm out on the porch today (tried rearranging the wicker too, so I could keep a better eye on Grace) because the weather is so awesome. I just need to figure out a way to get an extension cord out here (if I want to play a game, ahem, I can't stick in the extra battery since I need the CD Rom drive).

A few packages are supposed to arrive today, so I'm looking forward to that. Oh the Wells Fargo Wagon is a-comin' down the street, oh please let it be for me!

I feel all goofy from the meds and perhaps some left over anesthesia. Did I spell that right? Do I care? Nah. I'm just trying not to fall asleep.

I really, really want a pop tart.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Last one of these today, I swear...

Strangely enough, I act my age. I can't believe it.





You Are 32 Years Old



32





Under 12: You are a kid at heart. You still have an optimistic life view - and you look at the world with awe.

13-19: You are a teenager at heart. You question authority and are still trying to find your place in this world.

20-29: You are a twentysomething at heart. You feel excited about what's to come... love, work, and new experiences.

30-39: You are a thirtysomething at heart. You've had a taste of success and true love, but you want more!

40+: You are a mature adult. You've been through most of the ups and downs of life already. Now you get to sit back and relax.


The Year I Was Born

In 1973 (the year you were born)

Richard Nixon is president of the US

Supreme Court rules in Roe vs. Wade that states may not prevent a woman from having an abortion during the first trimester

US announces the end of the military draft

Spiro T. Agnew resigns after pleading no contest to charges of tax evasion while governor of Maryland

Gerald R. Ford becomes the first appointed vice president under the 25th Amendment

A total ban on oil exports to the US for six months is imposed by Arab nations after the outbreak of an Arab-Israeli war

President Richard Nixon announces that a peace accord has been reached in Vietnam

Drea de Matteo, Tori Spelling, Carson Daly, Monica Lewinsky, and Kate Beckinsale are born

Oakland Athletics win the World Series

Miami Dolphins win Superbowl VII

Montreal Canadiens win the Stanley Cup

The Exorcist and American Graffiti are top grossing films

Elvis Presley's Aloha From Hawaii television special is seen around the world by more than 1 billion viewers

KISS performs their first concert, at the Coventary Club in Queens

"The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" by Roberta Flack wins a Grammy for song of the year
Schoolhouse Rock premieres


What Happened the Year You Were Born?


More cool things for your blog at
Blogthings

Death comes calling

I look like death. Not even warmed over. Pale, pasty-faced, wild-haired, blurry-eyed and with purple bruises mushrooming all over my right leg from the shots. The worst one was around my knee. I'm still having trouble bending it. The doctor said "You'll be sore tomorrow" and he wasn't lying. No, not at all.

Sigh.

I imagine I'll wind up working on the site today, since all the housework-y things on my list would have me going up and down stairs...something that takes me about 5 minutes to do right now, with both hands clutching either the rail or the wall while I yell at the cats to please, please, stop twining about my legs because they are going to kill their mommy and then they'll be sorry with no one to feed them.

Or I might just sleep.

Except that I keep having the most outrageously weird dreams. I always have strange dreams, but last night was particularly odd. Really, really odd. It's like my normal weird dreams have gone to the carnival, stayed up too late riding the rides, and then thought they'd have a go at the biggest roller coaster in the place after taking some absynthe to get them in the mood. That kind of strange.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Yowch

Went to the dr. Got the shots. About 8 or 9. Very big owie. Kind of lightheaded. Can't quite focus my eyes. Can't quite bend my knee when walking. Going to sleep. Laundry be damned.

Not quite midnight

It's not quite midnight, but I had poetry stuck in my head again, so here it is.

Warmth

My husband
says mysterious things at night,
asleep, nested in my arms
"where you are, I am,"
he proclaims.

when questioned further, he only
burrows deeper into my skin
until all I can taste is the warm smell of him.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Death to Spammers

Unrelated to personal or professional life note: I'm changing the blog so that you have to do the word verification thingy because I'm being attacked by cowardly spammers.

I thought I should also give my writing update...

As for Ze Book: Got some great feedback back from Saundra. Made some notes myself on what revisions I need to make. Tony is reading the novel now and has already made some good catches and Dave is liking it so far, even though he doesn't normally read this type of thing, bless him.

Starting work on the freelance web writing piece. I need a lot more information before I can get much done though. So I'm going to send off a list of demands...er, questions.

Oh, and got a somewhat unusual request in email to quote how much I would charge to re-write package instructions for a new flossing device. So looking at that as well (which reminds me, I really should floss more).

If I were an Oscar Meyer Wiener

Today I have pretty much one plan. Clean the house. Things are a little out of control. Problem? I'm completely sleepy. The shake/shiver/sweat from the blasted pill (that's now my official name for it) lasted until 10:30 today. A shower, wash some clothes, feed the cats...and here I am. Lots of stuff to do. And all I really want to do is take a nap. But I guess I'll tackle one room at a time and see how that goes.

Tomorrow I go back to the Dr. He said to bring a driver this time -- if I haven't significantly improved (which I haven't) -- so we can go to the 'next level.' That means shots to basically deaden the nerve endings for a while in my leg so that hopefully the ligament can heal. Not sure how I feel about it. I just know that I've hit a plateau in improvement. So tomorrow I may not be able to walk after noon for a while. Hmmm.

Which is another reason to get house cleaning stuff done today.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Beautiful weather

Today is the kind of day you wish you had every day. There's a slight breeze, sunlight dappling the lawn, no clouds in the sky...not too hot, not too cold...just right. We're sitting out on the porch, both of us with our laptops. Tony has a bit of work to do (his job is keeping him busy) and I'm kind of lazing around at the moment.

I had some figs for breakfast and we watched people biking and Gracie trying to become one with nature (we ran her back to the porch once she started terrorizing the squirrels). She's settled down to cleaning herself now and is hanging out on the settee with me. I could take a nap out here.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Sleep, perchance to dream

Had a horrible time sleeping last night. I kept tossing and turning between thoughts of New Orleans and what I need to do to fix my novel up. I've been to the Big Easy at least 5 or 6 times. I'd even been thinking about spending some vacation time this year there. It's hard to imagine what has happened to it.

New Orleans is where I went to compete in a National Oratory competition after winning state. It's the one city I actually snuck off to once with friends (we lived close by -- don't tell mom). It's one of the first places Tony and I visited together. I've attended conferences there. Had a hurricane from Pat O'Brien's. Ate at two of Emeril's restaurants. Held my nose at the literal stink of Bourbon Street. Got beads from the same street performer years apart. Covered myself in powdered sugar while eating beigneits. Smelled the heavenly scent of pralines being made.

I had to stop looking at the pictures of the devestation. I just can't look anymore.

I have an ugly baby

Sigh. I'm always getting ahead of myself. Look at me talking about what my next book is going to be when I've got a lot of revising on this one to do! And I feel like I should apologize to anyone who offered to read this draft for me. Properly, I should have called this my 'brain dump' draft and not even have dignified it with the title 'first draft.' I haven't even done a punctuation or grammar check yet (and it definitely needs to be done). Saundra was also kind enough to point out how one bit came out sounding rather horribly bigoted on an issue that I'm most decidely for! Urk. Wet noodle lashes for me. Or dry noodles. Or, worse yet, noodles coated in terriyaki sauce.

Friday, September 02, 2005

And the next up is...

I had to take my car in for another checkup. The check engine light had come on again. This time it was some air flow meter thing, happily covered by the warranty. Last time, I wasn't prepared for how long I had to wait (4 hours), so this time I took my laptop and some books to review. I only had to wait a bit over 2 hours this time, but I got 4 reviews done and even made some notes on another book.

I'm not sure what the best approach is here -- do I work next on a sequel to the book I just finished (Mina goes to France on an exchange program, but has mucho difficulty 'cause she doesn't actually speak French...) or do I start something new?

I've been thinking lately about something I'd started a ways back. It's more of an adult chick-lit type of piece with a Southern tilt to it. Kind of fun. Another first person, but not in present tense. Not sure how that works -- different genres -- do you use one agent or more? I guess I'll have to see....and of course, first I have to actually find an agent.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Oh man

Well, of course I couldn't resist sneaking a peek at the copy of my book that Tony printed out for himself. So far I've noticed that the name of Mina's high school changes between chapter 1 and chapter 3 (McAdam to Palm Ridge). Erg.

Note to self on things I want to add:
  • When Uncle Mortie gives the scoop on his turning, add a bit about how the whole family went on the lam
  • Vampire lesson after the weirdo werecreature - no Aubrey. Raven demands to know where he is and 'what Mina did to him'
  • Add more between Nathan and Mina
  • Make sure that the not driving a car thing matches throughout the book
  • Fix the high school references
  • Decide on George's eye color. Brown in the 3rd chapter...later?
  • Remove some brand references
  • Find a gay actor to use as a reference that's younger than Rupert Evertt (this is the hard thing -- I barely watch 'adult' movies, so I know hardly any actors that would appeal to a teenager)

That's all I can think of at the moment. But I'm sure there's lots and lots more. I really do need to not look at it for a week or so. And I need to call my soon-to-be 13 year-old niece to see if she would read it for me. She'd be part of my target audience so hopefully I can get some good feedback that way.

Hmmmmm....strange

It feels strange to wake up and not have to think about working on the novel. Not that it doesn't still need some work, but I want to not look at it at all for about a week to let things cool off (and give some people time to read it). Then I'll tackle revision.

In the meantime, I'll work on the new freelance project and all the other little things I've let pile up while I was scrambling to get the novel done. Yeehah! And do some laundry so Tony can go to work tomorrow wearing long pants...

I feel very excited, but also kind of drained.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

And that's all she wrote

Well, I'm done. I have finished my first book. 56,080 words. Of course, I've already thought of 2 scenes I want to add in during revision...and who knows what I'll find once I actually read back over the thing. Some of it I haven't looked at in ages.

But it is done. Whoo-hoo! Dance of Joy! So, anyone that wanted to help be a reader, drop me your email at kim@yabookscentral.com . And I seriously do want your honest thoughts. If you think it sucks rocks, then tell me. If you hate the heroine, tell me. If you hate me, well, you can just darn well keep that to yourself.

Wow.

New Orleans is essentially gone. I can't even imagine what it must be like there right now, the proud houses buried in water and debris. It makes any little problems I have seem trivial, eh? I don't want to even think about the potential death toll. When did we start using the phrase 'death toll' anyway? That's almost up there with collateral damage.

Anyway. I got a bit more in last night: 53,849. Essentially one chapter left to go. I'm working on that now, sitting out on the porch. After yesterday's rain, it is absolutely beautiful today. Glorious.

We were talking last night at dinner about what people value and how different each list must be. We each had to pick 20 things. I wish I'd written them down as I'd said them, because today's list is bound to be different. And I have a challenge for all of you -- Muhammed, Dave (ha, maybe I'll make you start a blog), Pam, Saundra, Kim...anyone else reading. What are your 20 things?

  1. art
  2. creativity
  3. kindness
  4. harmony
  5. beauty
  6. intelligence
  7. a willingness to learn
  8. love
  9. truth
  10. originality
  11. conviction
  12. taking a stand/not standing by
  13. justice
  14. honesty
  15. desire for new experiences
  16. knowledge
  17. joy
  18. comfort
  19. acceptance
  20. quirkiness

So, that's my list. At least today. I know it's different from yesterday's.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Grumble Grumble

I'm at 53,391, but I'm going to write more tonight. But right now, I'm going to go collapse on the bed. I dunno if it was the curry soup I had for lunch or something else, but my stomach is protesting and spinning around like a whirling dervish. So's my head.

I do feel a little better about my icky reaction to the 'blasted pill' though...I went to the chiropractor today and Dr. B asked me how many milligrams he was giving me of the nastiness. I said 150mg and she was totally shocked. She said she couldn't handle 100mg when she had to take the same thing and she couldn't believe he was giving me that much, given my size (we're close to the same height, but she weighs a bit more than me). So at least I have an excuse for my bad reactions.

Highland's Coffee Shop

Tony forgot his wallet today, so I met him for lunch at Highland's Coffee Shop on 4th Street and now I'm hanging out waiting for my 2 PM Chiropractor appointment. Yep, doing the whole coffee shop writer thing. They even have one chair with a massage pad thingy, so I'm sitting at that. It's okay. Not as good as the real thing.

I've tied some pieces together and I'm about to work on one of the big scenes (George turns and finds out his parents are still alive...well, dead, kind of, since they are vampires. But not gone.).

The entire Sahara desert has taken up residence inside my mouth. This isn't just normal dry mouth. If my feet caught on fire and I was dancing around in flames, I don't think I could work up enough saliva to even spit on it to save myself.

Still Monday...

Currently at 52,059 and still going. It's coming along pretty well. I still wonder if I have enough conflict in there. Am I ending on too weak a note? I dunno. It's a lot easier to critique other people's stuff.

Which, incidentally, I am now offering to do on Ebay. I don't know if I'll get any bids or not, but I thought it might be a way to raise some money for the site. We'll see. I might not get any interest. I'm actually pretty good at critiquing. Not the best, I imagine, but pretty good.

If I could just get rid of this blasted headache, I'd be doing okay. Ach, forget that. I am okay. I just happen to have a blasted headache.

Thinking positive. It takes practice.

I will finish my book by the end of August....

Monday, August 29, 2005

3 Days to Go!!

I will finish this darn thing before the end of August. Yeppers. I've added a bit more, but not so much as to call for another word count. I need to do some laundry, go to the store and the Post Office, and then I'll settle down to write.

Also possibly have a new freelance project with a relatively short deadline (9/12), but I'm not sure when I'll be getting the content guidelines. Woot! Some income!

Saw this in Yahoo News today...I like the quote from the cop.

WELLINGTON (Reuters) - Three men trying to steal fuel from a New Zealand farm Monday ended up setting fire to their own car.

Police said the trio had siphoned diesel into a petrol-driven vehicle. When their car would not start, they examined the fuel pipe using a cigarette lighter.


One click, a boom and the car burst into flames.

"It wasn't a major whodunnit," senior sergeant Ross Gilbert told Reuters, from the small North Island town of Waipukurau, about 140 miles northeast of Wellington.

"Fortunately for them, there is no criminal charge for stupidity."

The men, aged 18 to 19, escaped injury but were charged with theft.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

GOAL!

I'm at 50,998. Through the part where Mina has a breakdown and tells her best friend what's up. Either 4 or 5 more 'scenes' to go. I will finish this darn thing by the end of August.

Anyone want to be a reader for me? You just have to promise to be honest. And like YA. I'm making my husband read it, but if he totally hates it, I'm sure he'd have a hard time saying it. And his normal reading are books about Chess and Chess Openings and How to Do Something-or-Other in Chess better. I don't think he's read a YA book maybe ever. Even when he was young he read non-fiction stuff.

Anyway, mom-in-law about to arrive. Gotta go.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Movin' on up

So I only stayed out on the porch until the afternoon sun took over. But it was nice. Grace was doing okay until - at the same time - two semi's went down the street and a huge plane flew over head. I thought she was going to jump out of her skin. She got over it though and went back to presiding over the porch like the queen she is (as in the Queen Latifah sense).

I took it to the parlor afterwards, helped Brian on his resume, and then went back to writing. Another good day: up to 49,503. Only 500 words from my original goal!! Whoo-hoo!

Of course, I still have about 7 or 8 scenes (not necessarily chapters, but probably) to go. So it might be I wind up around 57,000-ish. Not sure. I'm not very good at judging length yet.

I really do need to do some work on the site tomorrow. I've been ignoring it a little bit this week, but I need to get the newsletter out, do some maintenance and other stuff. I just really want to get this book finished up.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

A new afternoon

I'd say a new day, but the morning was a bad one (all maudlin), so I'll just stick with afternoon. I know I talk about it too much, but when you feel like something is taking over your life, it's hard not too. I really can't wait to get off these pills. Mornings are so awful. It's hard to even describe.

The listed side effects for the blasted pill are...

  • Dizziness (uh, yeah)

  • Nausea (off and on)

  • Sleepiness (yep, but that's also from the other two pills I have to take)

  • Abnormal ejaculation (er, not so much)

  • Sweating (yes! in the mornings. This is DISGUSTING.)

  • Dry mouth (incredible dry mouth)

  • Gas (no, thank goodness)

  • Abnormal vision (I don't think so, but my eyes do go all wonky sometimes)

  • Nervousness (yep, but pretty much just in the mornings)

  • Insomnia (sometimes, fighting it out with the sleepiness)

  • Loss of appetite (yeah, but I don't actually mind this one...I'm currently down 11 pounds)

  • Constipation (no comment.)

  • Confusion/agitation (yes, again, in the mornings)

  • Tremor (ditto)

  • Yawning (er, how much yawning do they mean? I've always yawned...)

  • Palpitation (every now and again)

Tell your doctor right away if you have:

Increases in heart rate

Extreme confusion or seizures, which may indicate very low levels of sodium in the blood (how extreme is extreme? Like I've said, mornings SUCK. What, should I start eating salt?)

Abnormal bleeding or bruising (hmmmm, I have noticed even more bruises than normal. Every time I run into something even just a little bit, I bruise.)

Sudden, unexpected eye pain, eye redness, or changes in vision, which may indicate increased eye pressure

Symptoms of mania or hypomania, such as persistently elevated or irritable mood, a decreased need for sleep, racing thoughts, hyperactivity, and rapid, excessive speech (MORNINGS!! Except for that decreased need for sleep bit.)

It may cause an increase in your cholesterol. Your doctor may want to do blood tests to check your serum cholesterol periodically. (Great. I just finally got my cholesterol down to normal levels.)

Anywho. It basically sucks rotten eggs. But I'm going to put all of that aside and work on my novel today and a bit on the site and hang out on my nice old porch in my comfy wicker furniture with my big fat cat and just be.

Unsettled

I wrote a bit more tonight, so I'm up to 47,800. Not sure how I wound up exactly even like that. I don't think I could have done it if I'd tried. I'm guessing now that I'm going to end up around 55,000 based on what I have left. Then there's revision...

I feel kind of unsettled tonight. I don't know why. Can't really put my finger on it. Just feel...odd.

I'm going to go pet a cat and then I'm going to eat dessert.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Jeremiah was a bullfrog

The morning was a waste, but I had a pretty good writing afternoon. I'm at 47,370 words. Through the part where she's trying to hook up Nathan and Serena and now I'm at the point where Lorelai is hooking up Mina and George for the Prom without consulting with Mina. So the good stuff, basically.

Very excited about getting my built in bookcase in. The quote wasn't too bad and since the Leapfrog people contacted me to do another project, it should cover the price. Whoo-hoo! I don't think this project will be as fun as the last one (nothing serious about tequila after all...well, actually...) but it'll pay and that's what counts. Repeat to myself: I can write anything.

Monday, August 22, 2005

As I suspected

Well, as I suspected, setting up the new router is a pain. I got the Internet connection up and running fairly quickly, but it won't let me change any of the admin settings, so I haven't been able to change any of the defaults or set up encryption. Grrrrr. Trying out an online chat with Linksys representative 'SabariD (55060)' now, but they've sat there for a good five minutes not saying anything.

It's a stupid, stupid thing...the router just won't recognize any password, including the default one. Sometimes I'm not sure if technology is good for us or not...

Sunday, August 21, 2005

The ickies

Having trouble losing the ickiness in my stomach today, even after the blasted pill. Maybe it's a Sunday blah kind of thing. I have no motivation. If I could stay in bed all day, I would. If you've sent me an email and have received no response...that's why. I'm so far behind I despair in ever catching up. That's a project for next week.

On my short list of to-do's:
  • empty all bookshelves so Tony can install reinforcing brackets
  • figure out a way to clean the third floor...floor.
  • install new wireless router without losing all Internet access. try not to curse when something inevitably goes wrong
  • write. then write some more. must-finish-novel-before-end-of-August
  • figure out what filing cabinet I want and order it
  • write some reviews
  • move guest bed back upstairs, all the better to take anonymous naps on
  • organize books
  • get quotes for built in bookcase. pray they aren't too expensive
  • try to wake up
  • make an appointment with Dr. B
  • call Cici, but first prepare a list of questions
  • buy more pop tarts

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Happy Birthday, Dad

Today was my dad's birthday. He would have been 72. I played a game of chess with Tony as a way of remembering him. He was an avid chess player. Dad, that is. As is Tony. I'm just a dabbler. I wish I remembered all the 'tricks' that Dad taught me when I was young. Perhaps I'd be formidable instead of merely rusty.

Amazingly, I beat Tony. I actually played a good game (I'll chalk it up to Dad watching over my shoulder). Two really good moves that Tony wasn't expecting. I hate to admit it, but I like beating him at his own game. He practically lives and breathes chess. It is his consuming passion and hobby.

I'm not a bad chess player, but I'm not a great one. I can see usually up to 3-4 moves in the future. Sometimes up to 5. But I'll often miss obvious moves and I'll never get chess notation. I just don't think that logically. That's usually the only way I beat Tony. I play a move that he would never expect with his straightforward, logical style. It's the creative trickster in me.

I miss my dad sometimes. He died when I was, what, 14 or 15? I don't feel like I really got to know him and Pam definitely never really got to, since she's 7 years younger than me. It's the little things more than the big things that I remember. So, in honor of his birthday (or dishonor, if it turns out rotten), here's a poem to dad. Again, I'm just typing this out right here, right now (Jesus Jones song, probably his only good one), so if you don't like it....tough. This is really about the only way that I write poetry, actually. If I don't finish something and leave it for revising...it never gets finished. I've got a fair amount of pieces of poems. Maybe I should just lump them all in together and see what happens. Heh. I'm just not a dedicated poet. Well, I'm not that great at it either. I'll leave it to the experts. My poetry is primarily for me.

For My Father

My dad had dandruff
thin white snowfall on stooped shoulders
grey at nineteen,
he always seemed old
but maybe that was the cancer
that ate away at his insides
for years and years until the gnawing teeth
finally broke through.

He could click his heels,
but only once,
and with a running start --
a big grin on his face that he could still do it
after all those years.
And toss a football or catch a pitch
with the joy of youth shining in his face.
I think he wanted a boy,
but I would do,
punting and kicking and sweating,
learning the rules of the game.

He always said how he loved to read
but I almost never caught him with a book.
those days were behind him
and in front,
stretched across time,
was an endless procession of flickering televised
football games (Go Niners!), Dallas, and Knot's Landing.
Hard to believe a former merchant marine
would fall prey to such stuff.

He played chess with religion
Queen's gambit, accepted, declined.
So proud when I won my first game
against an adult.
I was only five,
but triumphant, elated, stunned,
my father's daughter.

Friday, August 19, 2005

With a bow on top

I'm up to 45,786 now. Got through some important bits. Next up, Mina frantically trying to find George before he asks Serena to the Prom (because she told him to) and Nathan so he can re-ask Serena before he winds up going with some other girl just because she's got big....personality. Or something like that. She's found out that Nathan doesn't like her and she thinks it sucks, but she'd rather he liked Serena than anyone else.

So I'm happy to be through with those bits. Maybe I'll even write some more later today. At the moment, the couch is calling my name.

This is a public service announcement...with guitars!

I wonder what it is about the Clash and writers. I recently interviewed Libba Bray and she's a big fan of theirs (as am I) and I was just reading a bio of Daniel Ehrenhaft and he's also a Clash lover. I wonder how many other writers out there are Clash fans. I always thought that Monty Python was one of the big shared experiences for creative people, but maybe it's really the Clash.

I wish I could play guitar.

However, I look ridiculous with one. They are nearly as big as I am. Well, height-wise. I'm sure I weigh more. And I stink at reading music. A triangle or something of that nature is probably my best bet. The last instrument I 'played' was a recorder. If I never hear Mary Had a Little Lamb again it'll be too soon.

Anyway, I'm off to Rock the Casbah.

There ya go

I got to 43,499 today. Not too bad. Now I'm at a 'delicate' scene where Mina gets the second shocker. I'm a little worried that there isn't enough conflict in the book, so hopefully I make this convincing enough. I feel like I'm kind of rushing through these bits, but it's okay, I can always go back later and add some more stuff in. Hopefully tomorrow will also be a good writing day. Maybe I'll do the porch thing again.

This weekend I hope to get the third floor organized so I can move my old desk up there and start looking for a new 'nice' desk for the second floor. I need a filing cabinet so bad I'm practially ready to scream. Not that I'm the most organized person in the world, but I've literally got boxes full of paper and it is driving me crazy.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Porch Sitting

I'm at 42,560 and still going. Hanging out on the porch today with fat Gracie. She's been very good -- staying on the porch and not wandering off all over the place. A periodic airplane overhead and a large truck or two passing by seem to have cowed her into submission. Works for me. Every now and then she'll roll over so I can rub her jiggly tummy.

I'm now on to the wrapping up the story bits. I'd really like to get a couple thousand words in today. I've still got some time - it's only 3:21. I did also write a review and post it and do a little bit of site work. Oh, and cleaned the bathroom. And did some laundry. I wish I had a cleaning fairy. Or a brownie. That would be perfect.

And I also talked to Lisa on the phone, which took up at least a good hour or so. I got the scoop on all the kids, how school is going for them, what the Orlando trip was like (with the surprise from Kevin & Co.), and all of that.

I wound up with two copies of Eldest, the latest in the Inheritance Trilogy, so I'll be sending them a copy of that tomorrow. That'll make Ryan happy. I'm still reading the other one, but I'm not allowed to post a review of it until at least August 23rd, the release date. An unusual move by the publisher (Random House). The only other book I've dealt with that had that stipulation is Harry Potter and they won't even send the book out to you until after the release date. I didn't even request a review copy of HP this year. Too big a pain.

Anyway, back to writing.

All shot up

Well, I finally figured out who/where my doctor was after digging through mounds of paperwork for the letter they sent me to tell me that my cholesterol level was (finally!) within normal range. It turns out I was right -- it was Annette Davis that I saw. So at least my brain isn't total mush. Of course, I got lost on the way there...

As for writing, I'm at 42,032. Not as far as I'd like, mostly because I just can't get out of bed. Seriously. It's like concrete blocks laying on my chest. I just lay there and feel miserable until around noon. Then I force myself to get up because if I don't, my bladder will explode. I'm hoping tomorrow will be better.

Here's a poem that my dad wrote. Bridey Murphy, according to the Skeptic's Dictionary, was a 19th century woman that Virginia Teghe claimed to have been in a past life. She kicked off the whole reincarnation fad for a while.

Bridey Murphy

From womb to tomb
and then return,
to me is most confusing.
I'd always thought
that haunting houses
would be much more amusing.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Hmmm. Where is my doctor?

This is going to sound really retarded (and no offense meant to any handicapped persons or anything, but there's no other word that fits this situation), but I need to go to the doctor for a shot (my 'woman' doctor) and I have no idea where they are or what their name is. I went a few months ago for my checkup and I had a card that I did something with, but now I can't find it. I can't remember their name, having been there only once. I don't remember where it was, since it was an area of Louisville I've only been to that once. I have no idea where to go.

This is just ridiculous.

I vaguely remember the last name of 'Davis' but I could be completely wrong on that. I'm searching through Aetna's doctor listing in the hope that something with stand out. I feel like a total idiot.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Sputter...sputter....vvvaaavaavooommm!

Trying to get organized and motivated and just .... going! So far I've managed to go through all my snail mail and bills, clean out my Yahoo inbox and now I'm working on my regular inbox. I feel buried under mail. But I'm slowly climbing out of the quicksand.

I really need to mail two books out, but I think it will have to wait until tomorrow. I wish the post office were a tad bit closer so I could walk to it. It's about 2 miles, which isn't actually that bad...it's just that it's in an iffier neighborhood that I don't really want to walk through. I'll at least get them ready today and hopefully I'll get in gear early enough tomorrow to get them out.

Cutting back on the pills is good/bad. I'm aching, but a bit more awake. Bleck.

I'm still at 41,480 words. I want to get at least a 1,000 written today. I can do it. I can do it. I will do it.

And then I'll have some ice cream.

Photo: Leaves in Boston


No writing done this weekend -- we spent too much time watching (and playing, in Tony's case) cricket (if you're interested, check The Pauley's Go to Louisville blog for this week). Tomorrow I definitely need to get back in the swing of things. I've been cheating a bit on the pills -- cutting down on them some. A bit of pain is sometimes better than a fuzzy brain.

Anyway, this picture I took in Boston in October 2003. We were there to see Eddie Izzard and eat at some restaurants (Radius was AWESOME). We were walking through a park when I took this one. I love how it came out and how the colors look. I actually have a picture that I bought at an art show that is very similar to this one. Guess I could have saved myself the $60 bucks, eh?

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Randomous-ness

Here it is after midnight and I find myself awake. Amazing. A used-to-be common occurrence is now a strange and wonderous thing.

I was in bed having random thoughts swirling around, so I thought I'd just write them down so I could actually sleep. Often, my random post-bedtime musings are poetry-ish, but since I generally never send those out for possible publication (am I chicken, or a bad poet? Who knows.), might as well post it here. Feel free to skip.

Firstly, I was thinking that if you took a cocktail wienie and put a toothpick in it longways, then dipped it in batter and quick fried it, you'd have teeny weeny corn dogs.

Then, inexplicably, I was thinking about this guy that was in my old writing group. He's the kind of poet that I just detest: pompous and in love with his words. Not that we aren't all in love with our words, but there was something about the sameness of all his poems, all read out loud in this ridiculous ponderous cadence (the kind that brings to mind a metronome...or Chinese water torture) that was like fingernails against the chalkboard of my brain.

So that's the inspiration behind tonight's poem (not edited even remotely and just being typed out as I think it, so if you don't like it, tough noogies). There's certainly a place for all kinds of poetry. Just not in my particular brain.

Stultifying

I like my poetry
simple and honest --
no sonorous suckling sniveling excuses for sympathy,
no words-that-aren't-words,
no rhymes forcibly raped of meaning, nor
fashionably late punctuation, out for a late night driveby--
the kind of poetry that screams out
"na-nee-na-nee-boo-boo, I know more words than you do!"

I don't have the patience
to wade through trollops and dollops
of rhythmic self-flattery, or words so
twisted and torn they have lost
all self-respect and meaning --
save for you, the torturer, the poet.

I say leave the words alone and
let them work with you, for you.
You will never be able to trap those fleeting thoughts,
those glimpses of immortality --
no words will ever be enough,
their simple lives cannot be flayed
into the shape you see in your mind

You can only ask that they
settle long enough
to let someone see,
for just a moment,
into your life.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Photo....Chicago in a Mirror


I thought I'd periodically post some of my favorite pictures that I've taken when I don't have a whole lot else to talk about. Or my brain is full. I'm kind of an amatuer camera buff, which I got from my dad. I'm not even close to his level though -- he actually had his own dark room and all kinds of stuff. Me, I just take my digital camera around with me when I remember it. Every now and then I get a good shot. Someday I'd like to get a camera with a supernatural zoom and a great Zeiss lens. Digital, though. Who wants to wait around for film anymore? Instant gratification, baby.

This picture is from a trip to Chicago we took in 2004. They have this giant mirror ball art piece doohickey (yes, yes, I'm sure it has some official important sounding name, but that's essentially what it is) at one of the parks. You can see me taking the picture (I'm in red) with Tony standing next to me. I just thought it came out kind of cool. Not my absolute favorite picture, but kind of a fun one.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Mostly alive

I made it through yesterday. My head did not explode. Amazingly. I've never had a headache so bad that my teeth ached before. I could barely move.

In a word, it sucked.

The head ache is finally gone, but I'm left feeling a bit like a wrung-out washcloth. An old one, with holes in it and that mysterious stain you have no idea where it came from. You want to throw it away and start over, but you just can't quite bear to part with it, since you had it when you were three and used to make barbie tents with it.

Er, whatever.

I did think of some new bits for the book, which I need to get down.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

head......going.....to.....explode

The new pill is evil. My brain is being slowly squished to death by a vise. If I turn my head too fast to look for the culprit, I nearly fall over.

Woozy.

Can feel my blood sluggishly pulsing through my veins.

Going to bed.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

And we have air!

The third floor has air now! It's still 92 right now, but it's on the way down. Yippee! I can't wait for tonight. Actually, tomorrow - to see what difference it makes on the second floor as it trickles down the stairs.

So, I went to the Dr. and he didn't take me off any pills. In fact, he's actually given me one more to take. This one is a high blood pressure pill (though my blood pressure is perfectly fine) that's supposed to stop the morning shake, sweat, and shiver. But if it wasn't bad enough that all the pills already have a "may cause dizziness" warning - he warned me to "try not to stand up too fast" with this new one, since my blood pressure is already on the low side. Great. How about I just stay in bed all day and never get up at all?

Except I know what he'd say to that -- "That would be great!"

And I'm officially to not attempt to clean house or do any bending, lifting, scrubbing, etc. And if I don't feel better in a month, we're going to shots.

Sigh.

Got the teeniest bit of writing done today. 41,480. Hopefully will do some more tonight. Kind of feeling icky -- the pharmacist was out of my muscle relaxers (until tomorrow) and I haven't had one since bright and early this AM. Pills, pills, pills. Blech.

What's wrong with my desk?

I can't seem to get any writing done when I'm actually at my desk. I sit here and sit here and no words come -- but go to a too-warm coffee shop or camp out on the couch, and there I go. Sigh. At any rate, I'm at 41,253 words today. My last scene turned out completely different than I had planned because the character that was passing through just insisted on being odd beyond words. I think it worked out okay though. And I got a laugh at Aubrey's expense.

I've got a Dr. appt. in a few minutes. Hopefully he'll tell me I can get off these darn pills.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Channeling Jim Croce

For some unknown reason, I woke up this morning with a Jim Croce song running through my head.

I've got those steadily depressing,
low-down mind-messing,
working at the car wash blues

No idea why. I haven't heard a Jim Croce song in ages. I wonder what I was dreaming about.

No writing yesterday, since I spent all day shopping and cleaning. But definitely some today - I've got to stick around the house while they are putting the air conditioning in the third floor. Yay!!!!

So I tried to take a picture of myself so I could update my portrait on blogger. Heh. A wholly unsuccessful venture. Would you like blurry me, wrong angle me, double-chin me, or flash bulb me? One came out kind of funny (see #2 below - at least it captured my sense of humor). And one came out almost decent (me next to my giant frog), but I don't think I have a winner yet.


Monday, August 08, 2005

Chanting: My book will be done by August...

I got in enough writing yesterday to hit the 40K mark: 40,138. It's a silly thing we humans have - marking things off in increments. But it always feels good to hit another mark. I've still got a fair amount of scenes to go, so I'm thinking it might go a bit over 50K, but we'll see.

Today I've got a lot of shopping planned. And cleaning and rearranging. Since the air conditioning guys will be here tomorrow to put air up on the 3rd floor, I need to move some books around so they can actually walk around up there. It's so hot that I've just been putting it off, but I can't put it off any longer. Eeep.

Hopefully I'll also get some writing in. :-) I must, I must, I must increase my word count...

Hmmm. Doesn't have quite the same ring to it as the original, does it?

Sunday, August 07, 2005

My favorite picture books

I keep meaning to send this note to One Caffeinated Mom, but I somehow never get around to it. So, since she reads this thing, I figured I might as well post it here and kill two birds with one stone.

I'm picky about picture books. I don't have very many that I truly love, love, love.

#1: Tuesday by David Weisner. Almost completely devoid of text, the story is instead told through beatifully delightful and quirky illustrations. I love everything about this book. Great for the imagination.

#2: Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst. I'm not sure why this is one of my favorites. It's a good little story that anyone can identify with -- the day where just nothing seems to go your way, no matter what you do. Illustrations aren't the best, but they convey the message well enough.

#3: Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak. This was one of the books that we studied in class. The coolest thing about it is what Sendak does with the illustrations. At the start of the book, the illustration takes up just a fraction of the page. As Max's imagination takes over, so do the illustrations, hogging more and more of the page until there's nothing but the picture at all: at the climax, when Max and the Wild Things are partying away. Then, as Max gets sleepy and 'comes back to earth' slowly, the illustrations again begin shrinking down until they are once again just a fraction of the page and Max is home. That's a cool thing I've never noticed another author do.

#4: The Cinder-Eyed Cats by Eric Rohmann. Another beautifully illustrated book. The images are evocative and imaginative. It's like stepping into a poem. I passed my review copy of this one onto my older sister and it's one of her favorites to read to her kids. Just a really beautiful book.

There are others that I like, but none as much as these (at least, not coming to me at the moment). I had some favorites when I was a little 'un myself: Robert the Rose Horse, The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins, Marvin K. Mooney Will You Please Go Home, and The Story About Ping. I still enjoy those as well. Everyone needs some Seuss in their life.

As for today...no writing yet, but I've only got 500 words to get to 40,000, so I've GOT to get at least that much in today. Right now...a nap. I had 2 biscuits AND a pancake for breakfast and I'm in a carb-induced coma.