Update on Overall Wellbeing


I want to check in here since I haven’t been around much lately,
but don’t want to completely fall out of the habit of blogging
while I’m hunkered down in the revision cave.

So here’s where I’m at in my collective health:

Emotionally speaking, I’m feeling good about the positive changes I’m
making via my revisions and choices for my career.  I feel in control
of those factors I can control.

Physically speaking, I’m doing very well.  Last Friday I graduated from
PT after seven weeks of no running.  I can now run again on a limited basis
as I work back to where I was before.  I’m also able to hoop again!!
My daily plank routine is going well, and I just finished a three-minute plank. 
(I’m telling you, if you haven’t tried them, they’re a great way to firm up your core;
you see results very quickly). 

Parentally speaking, in this exact moment I’m doing a better job of remembering
I already navigated my high school years and that it’s up to my boys to do the same.
(But, oh, it would be so nice to have a magic wand to keep away the hurt and angst).

Friendly speaking, I miss everyone here.  And while I have glimmers of guilt for not
keeping up, I know you all understand.  You get why it’s important to keep my head
down and push on through.  But please know I’m thinking of you and sending good
thoughts your way.

Highlight This!


Am hard at work in the revision cave,
but wanted to share a tip that might help others.

I had concerns about continuity within a relationship
between two characters,
so I went through my entire manuscript and used the Highlighting function
to color code everything having to do with that relationship.

I used one color for interior thoughts
and another for direct interaction between the characters.

The colors made it very easy to track the progression in the relationship,
and I’m now confident the ms isn’t suffering from emotional ping-pong.
(I thought I’d already eliminated that stuff but apparently my emotionalism dies hard).

There’s a good chance you all know about this computer highlighting trick
(I’ve done this before with hard copy but never within my document),
but I’m a big believer in putting info out there.
May this tip reach the right person at the right time…
I’m missing this community, but am sending good thoughts for all your writing and life projects!

Blogs or Revisions?


I’ve been scarce around here and am popping in to say
I’m thinking of everyone
but am putting my time/energy/focus into some revisions.

I don’t like neglecting my online community
but feel it’s best for my emotional/writerly health to keep forging ahead.
I’m making progress and that is good for my soul.

Know that I’m thinking of you and wishing happy stuff all the way around!

Here’s a Coco pic to make you smile:

Bonus points to anyone who can tell me what she’s thinking.



Thank you so much for having my back.
The comments and emails have made a huge difference to my emotional state.

In the midst of all that angst, I realized I was missing something:
my PREVAIL bracelet.
The cord had worn out and I’d gone without the bracelet for several weeks.
On Friday night, Zippy and I found new cord and he put PREVAIL back on my wrist,
alongside another Laura Hamor creation:


Now I wear them together and the lovely clinking sound they make
reminds me of the beautiful, powerful Laura, and the many other friends who have my back.

Thank you, thank you.
This community is truly a life-saver.

Waste Not Wednesday: Non-toxic Paint Remover


Because I’m still in limbo waiting for feedback on CLOSE TO HOME,
I’m tackling some long overdue household projects.
Yesterday I stripped the scary green paint from kitchen cabinet doors using
this great non-toxic, soy-based paint remover.

I’m environmentally sensitive, and can’t walk in the detergent
aisle in the grocery store because of all the nasty odors.
The soy-based remover was fine for me with adequate ventilation
(I worked in my garage), and I highly recommend it.
Why use conventional products and expose yourself to a soup of toxic chemicals
that may harm your respiratory system, skin, internal organs, brain and nervous system?

Not to mention the harm to the planet from producing the stuff?

And, because I need to stick with my Write No Matter What attitude,
here is a little home improvement haiku:

So long now, green paint.
Wish you’d come with a warning:
"Best if eyes are closed."


Ms. Brain, She Desperately Needs a Song


There are lots of contributing factors to my current State of Grumpy:

It’s incredibly windy right now
which means I can’t work in my garden
which means no exercise
since my hip is still messed up and I can’t do much of anything else
which also means I’m gaining weight.
And did I mention it’s Monday?
A really windy Monday?

But I also just realized I haven’t written much of anything in a week
as I’m still in CLOSE TO HOME limbo as I wait for readers’ responses.
I cannot work on BIRD BRAIN until I can give it my undivided attention
because I’ve started and stopped that project so many times I’m
afraid it’ll dwindle into nothing if I don’t give it the respect it’s due.

So there I was.
Crabby, crabby crabby.
Until I grabbed a book off my shelf, THE ELEVENTH DRAFT: Craft and the Writing Life from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop,
and opened it to Barry Hannah‘s piece, Mr. Brain, He Want a Song.
This is what I read:

". . . this is why I find working writers to be among the happiest folks in the world.  Among the unhappiest are those who are not working and have endless questions.  You do not want to get within a block of these people.  The Great Suck – big bottom lip, the sulk, the neurotic and despondent vortex.  But working writers are like unprosecuted felons."      

I’m off to my PT appointment but as soon as I’m home,
I’m going to write some flash fiction or a poem.
I cannot stand wallowing in The Great Suck.
However, I probably won’t go so far as to commit a felony
(unless you count writing really bad poetry as a crime).

Switching Gears


Last night I reached that point of delirium with my revisions.
You’re probably familiar with that point.
When your tweaking is possibly doing more damage than good?

So I said, "¡Bastante!"
and sent the ms off to Claudia (and another reader friend).
Then I cracked open a beer.

But today’s a whole new day, and without those revisions to shape my day I feel, well, shapeless.
What shall I do?!

I know!  I’ll dig out the file for BIRD BRAIN and reacquaint myself with that story.

(image from http://www.morguefile.com)

That creaking sound you hear?
Just my brain switching gears.