Life

Better Late Than Never…

> …or so they say.

Look at that — a little over a year since I last posted. Where does the time go?

What in the hell have I been doing? Thanks for asking.

Working. Writing. And everything else that falls in between–eating, sleeping, cleaning, parenting…you know the drill.

Most recently, I’ve been working on revamping the website with updated graphics and fresh content. (Purely a procrastination technique.)

I’m submitting my most recently completed and revised manuscript, FACING THE FIRE, to agents at the moment and really should have a decent, current site up and running in case someone decides to look at it. (Hahahahahah… eh-hem…)

As I was saying… Yeah, the site, and I’m also going to work on a little consistency keeping my blog dialogue going–more for myself than anyone, because I doubt more than two other people read this.

For those two of you — I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

>Better Late Than Never…

> …or so they say.

Look at that — a little over a year since I last posted. Where does the time go?

What in the hell have I been doing? Thanks for asking.

Working. Writing. And everything else that falls in between–eating, sleeping, cleaning, parenting…you know the drill.

Most recently, I’ve been working on revamping the website with updated graphics and fresh content. (Purely a procrastination technique.)

I’m submitting my most recently completed and revised manuscript, FACING THE FIRE, to agents at the moment and really should have a decent, current site up and running in case someone decides to look at it. (Hahahahahah… eh-hem…)

As I was saying… Yeah, the site, and I’m also going to work on a little consistency keeping my blog dialogue going–more for myself than anyone, because I doubt more than two other people read this.

For those two of you — I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

>Funny

>On Saturday I went to Walmart to exchange our propane tank so we could barbecue.

I put the empty tank in a basket and walked through the door and straight to the counter in the garden area which was about ten feet away.

The greeter, a man in his seventies with a long buzz cut that reminded me of Gomer Pyle’s Sergeant, jumped up. “Oh, no, no, no. Wait right there. We can’t have that in here.”

I didn’t get it. Have what in where? But I didn’t get a chance to ask before he pulled the cart from my hands and wheeled it out the door. “No propane tanks in the store.”

“But it’s empty. I’m just exchanging it,” I call to him on the way out.

“Doesn’t matter.”

He wasn’t rude, just diligent. And I have to admit, his diligence was executed in a relatively polite way.

So I paid for my refill and went outside where the Sergeant is standing by the propane cage grinning a little sheepishly. “Sorry, ’bout that. But the Fire Marshall goes up a wall when he sees these inside the store.”

I almost laughed. And I almost…almost said, “Actually, the Fire Marshall is sitting on his ass in front of the television developing remote-induced carpal tunnel, and I do about a dozen other things that would drive him up a wall before this propane incident.”

(My husband is the county Fire Marshall)

But I didn’t. I just thanked him, told him I understood and came home to tell my husband, who got a good laugh.

Funny

>On Saturday I went to Walmart to exchange our propane tank so we could barbecue.

I put the empty tank in a basket and walked through the door and straight to the counter in the garden area which was about ten feet away.

The greeter, a man in his seventies with a long buzz cut that reminded me of Gomer Pyle’s Sergeant, jumped up. “Oh, no, no, no. Wait right there. We can’t have that in here.”

I didn’t get it. Have what in where? But I didn’t get a chance to ask before he pulled the cart from my hands and wheeled it out the door. “No propane tanks in the store.”

“But it’s empty. I’m just exchanging it,” I call to him on the way out.

“Doesn’t matter.”

He wasn’t rude, just diligent. And I have to admit, his diligence was executed in a relatively polite way.

So I paid for my refill and went outside where the Sergeant is standing by the propane cage grinning a little sheepishly. “Sorry, ’bout that. But the Fire Marshall goes up a wall when he sees these inside the store.”

I almost laughed. And I almost…almost said, “Actually, the Fire Marshall is sitting on his ass in front of the television developing remote-induced carpal tunnel, and I do about a dozen other things that would drive him up a wall before this propane incident.”

(My husband is the county Fire Marshall)

But I didn’t. I just thanked him, told him I understood and came home to tell my husband, who got a good laugh.

People

>I love the tag line the television channel USA uses: Characters Welcome.

We all have our idiosyncrasies. I have more than a few, which my best friend and my husband like to remind me of…often. But I’ve discovered there are idiosyncrasies and there are … well … idiosyncrasies.

The people I meet in my work at the radiology clinic make me wonder — seriously wonder — how they get through the day. I have to have seen hundreds of personality disorders. Some people are chronically anxious, some are hypochondriacs, some think they’re allergic to everything.

Some are sure I don’t know how to do my job and proceed to tell me just how, some tell me I’m studying the wrong area of their body–regardless of what their doctor ordered or how I explain what I’m looking for and why, some want me to do several scans that their doctor didn’t order.

Some people complain endlessly, no matter what you do, you can’t do right by them. Some people feel they’re entitled to be seen the moment the walk in the door–to hell with the other patients, to hell with the fact that they came at the wrong time or on the wrong day, dammit, they want to be seen!

Some people can’t even take directions as simple as, undress from the waist up and put on this gown. Seriously.

It makes me wonder how they deal with an erroneous late fee on their cable statement or a long line at the grocery store. More than once a day I find myself shaking my head wondering, “How the hell do their friends and family live with them?”

Neat way to form some quirky characters for fiction, but man am I glad I don’t have to deal with them on a daily basis. Talk about stress…

Do you know people with personality issues that go beyond idiosyncrasies? How do they get by? What problems do they encounter? How do their loved ones cope?

>People

>I love the tag line the television channel USA uses: Characters Welcome.

We all have our idiosyncrasies. I have more than a few, which my best friend and my husband like to remind me of…often. But I’ve discovered there are idiosyncrasies and there are … well … idiosyncrasies.

The people I meet in my work at the radiology clinic make me wonder — seriously wonder — how they get through the day. I have to have seen hundreds of personality disorders. Some people are chronically anxious, some are hypochondriacs, some think they’re allergic to everything.

Some are sure I don’t know how to do my job and proceed to tell me just how, some tell me I’m studying the wrong area of their body–regardless of what their doctor ordered or how I explain what I’m looking for and why, some want me to do several scans that their doctor didn’t order.

Some people complain endlessly, no matter what you do, you can’t do right by them. Some people feel they’re entitled to be seen the moment the walk in the door–to hell with the other patients, to hell with the fact that they came at the wrong time or on the wrong day, dammit, they want to be seen!

Some people can’t even take directions as simple as, undress from the waist up and put on this gown. Seriously.

It makes me wonder how they deal with an erroneous late fee on their cable statement or a long line at the grocery store. More than once a day I find myself shaking my head wondering, “How the hell do their friends and family live with them?”

Neat way to form some quirky characters for fiction, but man am I glad I don’t have to deal with them on a daily basis. Talk about stress…

Do you know people with personality issues that go beyond idiosyncrasies? How do they get by? What problems do they encounter? How do their loved ones cope?

I Need A Life Makeover

>

You know those shows that give you a fashion makeover or a home makeover or a landscaping makeover or even a car makeover?
I need them all — I need a life makeover.
I’ll keep my husband (I’ve invested years in training), keep the kids (they’ll be taking care of me in my old age)…but everything else needs a face lift–including me!

Ignore my grumbling…I get like this when I’ve switched to overwhelmed mode.

Let’s see–news:
  • I finalled in the Daphne du Maurier for Single Title Romantic Suspense. Very exciting. I polished my entry and submitted it for final round judging by Kimberly Whalen and Charlotte Herscher. Very, very exciting.
  • I actually started on my revisions to Safe. After brainstorming ideas and discussing them with my agent, then collecting more information to support those changes, I got through chapter one today. Whoo-pee! Only 21 chapters more to go. (Someone shoot me now.)
  • The response to my RWA chapter on the central coast of Ca hasn’t been what I’d hoped. I sent out reminder postcards, and I’ve submitted a blurb to our local writers association to see if I could garner more interest, but it’s not lookin‘ good. The RWA’s truckload of rules, regulations and bylaws make it burdensome to start a chapter…and for a dozen people? I think not. Not sure what’s going to come of that.
  • A portion of our tax return went toward the purchase of new computers for our daughters. Only six months after the purchase of my own new laptop my 11 and 15 yo are getting better, faster computers for less than mine cost. (I was going to hand-me-down mine to one of them and take a new one, but since I don’t need a stellar video card to use Microsoft Word or the Internet I decided it wasn’t worth the grief I’d have to take.)
  • I lost my iPod about a month ago, which has hampered my walking efforts. ( I CAN’T walk without my iPod or my walking buddy). Hence, my weight loss has stagnated. So, I bought myself the combo mother’s day-birthday gift of a new iPod and have spent as much time loading my music onto it as it would have taken me to edit two more chapters of Safe. (Priorities, priorities.)
  • I spent the weekend painting our cabin, getting ready to sell it. Therefore, my house is, once again, neglected and in disarray.

Enough about my exciting (HA!) life…what’s up with you?

>I Need A Life Makeover

>

You know those shows that give you a fashion makeover or a home makeover or a landscaping makeover or even a car makeover?
I need them all — I need a life makeover.
I’ll keep my husband (I’ve invested years in training), keep the kids (they’ll be taking care of me in my old age)…but everything else needs a face lift–including me!

Ignore my grumbling…I get like this when I’ve switched to overwhelmed mode.

Let’s see–news:
  • I finalled in the Daphne du Maurier for Single Title Romantic Suspense. Very exciting. I polished my entry and submitted it for final round judging by Kimberly Whalen and Charlotte Herscher. Very, very exciting.
  • I actually started on my revisions to Safe. After brainstorming ideas and discussing them with my agent, then collecting more information to support those changes, I got through chapter one today. Whoo-pee! Only 21 chapters more to go. (Someone shoot me now.)
  • The response to my RWA chapter on the central coast of Ca hasn’t been what I’d hoped. I sent out reminder postcards, and I’ve submitted a blurb to our local writers association to see if I could garner more interest, but it’s not lookin‘ good. The RWA’s truckload of rules, regulations and bylaws make it burdensome to start a chapter…and for a dozen people? I think not. Not sure what’s going to come of that.
  • A portion of our tax return went toward the purchase of new computers for our daughters. Only six months after the purchase of my own new laptop my 11 and 15 yo are getting better, faster computers for less than mine cost. (I was going to hand-me-down mine to one of them and take a new one, but since I don’t need a stellar video card to use Microsoft Word or the Internet I decided it wasn’t worth the grief I’d have to take.)
  • I lost my iPod about a month ago, which has hampered my walking efforts. ( I CAN’T walk without my iPod or my walking buddy). Hence, my weight loss has stagnated. So, I bought myself the combo mother’s day-birthday gift of a new iPod and have spent as much time loading my music onto it as it would have taken me to edit two more chapters of Safe. (Priorities, priorities.)
  • I spent the weekend painting our cabin, getting ready to sell it. Therefore, my house is, once again, neglected and in disarray.

Enough about my exciting (HA!) life…what’s up with you?

Emerging From Deep In The Woods

> The redwoods to be exact.

I went to a scrapbooking retreat in the Santa Cruz mountains this weekend.

Wow. Great setting, great food, great people. No kids, no husbands, no troubles. Does it get better?
Probably, but I’d rather not hear about things I can’t afford, like Bermuda or Jamaica. Thanks anyway.

You’re not going to believe it, but not only didn’t I write, I didn’t even bring my computer. No, that’s not a typo. No computer. Okay, okay, I have to admit, I got that tweaky pinch in my stomach when I walked out without it–no email, no Internet, no IM, no brainstorming on my current WIP or the revisions I have to do. But I’ve been to one of these weekends before, and I also knew there would be no time.

After I got over the separation anxiety, I was okay. The creativity involved in scrapbooking, the warm fuzzies I get from reliving those sweet memories, are like a natural upper. As far as how it benefits my writing, I sure get to see a lot of quirky personalities. And the setting was rich with sensory details. Awesome location for a suspense mystery. Actually reminded me of Elisabeth’s Science of Silence setting.

It was healthy for me to force myself out of my writing mind. And I don’t do it unless I’m forced–by myself or by outside influences. It slipped back in now and then. We took a hike through the woods on the camp’s property (isolated property) and my friends and I started talking about scary movies and creepy stuff, which segued into possibilities for my books — like bodies found spiked to redwood trees in the desolate wilderness. I told them I should really sell something before I start plotting new books. But I tucked it away for later.

What kind of hobbies do you love? Do you make room for them on a regular basis or does life get in the way? What do you think your hobbies add to your everyday life? Your writing life?

>Emerging From Deep In The Woods

> The redwoods to be exact.

I went to a scrapbooking retreat in the Santa Cruz mountains this weekend.

Wow. Great setting, great food, great people. No kids, no husbands, no troubles. Does it get better?
Probably, but I’d rather not hear about things I can’t afford, like Bermuda or Jamaica. Thanks anyway.

You’re not going to believe it, but not only didn’t I write, I didn’t even bring my computer. No, that’s not a typo. No computer. Okay, okay, I have to admit, I got that tweaky pinch in my stomach when I walked out without it–no email, no Internet, no IM, no brainstorming on my current WIP or the revisions I have to do. But I’ve been to one of these weekends before, and I also knew there would be no time.

After I got over the separation anxiety, I was okay. The creativity involved in scrapbooking, the warm fuzzies I get from reliving those sweet memories, are like a natural upper. As far as how it benefits my writing, I sure get to see a lot of quirky personalities. And the setting was rich with sensory details. Awesome location for a suspense mystery. Actually reminded me of Elisabeth’s Science of Silence setting.

It was healthy for me to force myself out of my writing mind. And I don’t do it unless I’m forced–by myself or by outside influences. It slipped back in now and then. We took a hike through the woods on the camp’s property (isolated property) and my friends and I started talking about scary movies and creepy stuff, which segued into possibilities for my books — like bodies found spiked to redwood trees in the desolate wilderness. I told them I should really sell something before I start plotting new books. But I tucked it away for later.

What kind of hobbies do you love? Do you make room for them on a regular basis or does life get in the way? What do you think your hobbies add to your everyday life? Your writing life?