Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Random Thoughts

So Carolyn is celebrating finding the right anti-depressant and my pharmacy screwed up my order for mine so I've been out for a few days and won't have any for a few days more.

I so need them.

However, I was having some surprisingly random thoughts this morning in the shower and thought I'd write some of them down so Carolyn and I can discuss them later ad nauseum in one of those discuss everything including the kitchen sink phone marathons.

Starting with: the kitchen sink. Mine is broken. The faucett thingie is dislocating from it's mooring. It might be an easy fix but it fills me with dread.

So people are still insisting that Obama is a Muslim (*sigh*) and that makes them wacky but nobody seemed perturbed about the idea of a Mormon in the White House. I find that highly disturbing. I mean seriously... a mormon? Have you ever read about that religion? They make the rest of them look sane. Seriously. (And I insist the Angel Maroni was Italian and talked with his hands. Ha!)

Speaking of insane, I was also thinking about the separation of religion and politics and it occurred to me that the Catholic Church is just as political as Washington DC. Maybe we should first take the politics out of religion before we try taking religion out of politics.

Or not.

At work I was waxing poetic about holiday decorations and music (I'm such a Lifetime holiday movie kind of gal) and my boss said I was more Christian than Jewish. I chose not to be offended and instead agreed with a caveat: take Jesus out of Christianity and I'd be all over it.

That's the basic Jew in me. We agreed to one God and we just can't break that agreement. (You know, it's why we're the Chosen People and the rest of you are wanna-be's.) Again with a Ha!

And then I was thinking about how mouthy women or women with strength are disliked so intensely by other women. On a persona note, I'm obviously a mouthy woman and I'll stand up for myself. I always have done well with male bosses but women bosses hate me. And I'm so not adaptable to becoming less me.

I'm writing an erotic love story and currently my WIP looks something like this:

Yadda, yadda yadda... more yadda.
~~insert sex~~
Yadda yadda yadda on with the plot....

Seriously, there's little notes to insert sex throughout the WIP. I hate writing sex, it's so damned hard. But this romance kinda turns me on (emotionally) because the heroine thinks she understands her need for debasement but she has no real idea. It fascinates me.

Okay, those were my showering thoughts. Wait till I do a post about how my mind works during the morning commute to work. Oy vey.

Monday, November 26, 2012

A Small Miracle

For three or four years now I've been struggling against depression.

At first I refused to even consider I was depressed, no matter what friends said to me. Sleeping a lot was just a sign of old age, that's all. Changes in my routine and failing to keep up with my duties didn't faze me at all.

I quit writing. I mostly quit reading and everything else. I did manage to haul myself out of bed each week day and get myself to work, where I could still function although much slower.
Finally when my production had dropped to almost nil and I'd fallen asleep at my desk twice, I gave in and saw a doctor.

The problem with my depression is that the cause is still ongoing, and probably will be until I die. So I must get myself under control and thank God they've made medications to help.

One vitamin B12 shot later and a couple of months of Celexa, plus changing to Women's vitamins, and I'm a different person. I can stay awake, lol. I'm reading again and am more productive at work.

Don't be afraid to admit it could happen to you. It can happen to anybody, for any reason or even no reason at all. The main thing is to not be stubborn and get some help.

I hope to find the desire to write again real soon. I don't want to give up writing. I have so many unfinished projects and they nag at me, but I still don't have any strong urge to take them up again.

But I have faith now. I never would have believed the change in me. So someday, the good Lord willing, I will be writing again.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Holiday Mayhem

I am so not a Black Friday kind of girl. I don't do crowds if avoidable and I can't abide the idea of getting up at midnight to stand in lines for the hope of getting a deal.

Today is the day after Thanksgiving and it's a day to pull the holiday decorations out of the closet, to bake some cookies, work on Carolyn's holiday porn (hee) and just be thankful that we have a roof over our heads and heat and the ability to pay our bills.

I'm grateful that I have such an amazng friend and fabulous partner in crime and writing with Carolyn. We've been friends for eight (?) years but I feel like she's been in my life and heart for a lifetime. I don't know that I would ever have gotten published without her belief in me.

I'm also grateful for my mini-me, Lea. She goes along with my crazy ideas, she has more crazy ideas than mine and together we totally get each others obsessions (Pinterest, anybody?). We haven't known each other long but I think we might be estranged cousins or something, we're so similar.

I'm grateful for this blog. It's fun to share space with my bestie and we can write about books, about writing and about nonsense. I'm very grateful that others read us on occasion and even comment but truly, I love having this space with my friend and sending our voices out to the vast unknown.

So today we'll be putting up lights and hanging out. Nutcrackers will take over all available surfaces and we'll ho-ho-ho our way into the weekend.

Hope all the rest of you have joyful days.

Thursday, November 22, 2012


Now go buy our books and make us thankful.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Butt Officially Kicked and Happiness Ensues

I finally fell. Nano kicked my butt again (I've only completed it once) but this has been a wonderful experience and even though I'll never make the 50,000 word count, I'm still a part of nano and loving the experience.

I started a story called Three Pines a couple years ago and at the time it was a basic romance with a little magic realism tucked in. It quickly became unmanageable with too many storylines and way too much angst for me to handle.

I decided to rewrite it this nano. Pare it back, focus on one couple only.

Didn't work.

My story still has too many people with their own angst and too much shiz going on and it's making my head hurt. Plus I fell behind on my wordage with nano and I'm way too far behind to get caught up.

But... the story has bones. Good bones. What's written needs to be rewritten and I think I need to change the heroine's job again (too much cooking going on) but I see what it is now and where it can go.

I won't get 50,000 words this nano but this time I got a story that can work. So I win.

I heart nanowrimo.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Surviving Survivor

I don't usually write about my love for the TV show Survivor but I love it, I do. I've watched every season but one and although there have been some real snooze fests, it usually holds my interest in wonderful ways.

This season had the return of three players who had all played before but left the game for medical reasons.

This is Jonathan Penner.

Penner is possibly one of the best players to ever be in the game and he's worth watching.

Lisa. She might look familiar to you because she was a child star: Blair from The Facts of Life. Only two people have recognized her and that's Penner and Skupin, two of the returning players and older men. A few others in the same age group haven't and the younger players just think of her as the church lady.

I've been fascinated with this season because Penner is my favorite player, second only to Boston Rob. He's smart, conniving, athletic yet decent. He'll do whatever to stay alive except he hasn;t betrayed his word and he plays with dignity.

Lisa is also fascinating. She's in an alliance with one of the most banal players I've ever seen on the game: Abby She's loud, rude, insulting and thinks so highly of herself that it makes one afraid. Watching last night when things went bad for her, it was amazing to see her anger and petulance.

But last night had an amazing moment of Penner and Lisa talking (twice). The first time he was talking about her child stardom and he totally got in her head about her insecurities. I've never seen a man play a woman so well. That picture above is from that moment. He had Lisa in tears.

Later he asked her how in the story of this Survivor season how she wants to be remembered. A loyal person or a good player. She chose loyalty but thankfully her closest ally didn't (thank you Skupin for fucking over your alliance, they deserved it since they don't like you at all).

There are other players this season who are worth watching. Denise, a 41 year old sex therapist who's an amazing athlete and good at cutting through the bullshit. She's in tight with Malcolm who is the resident eye cansy as well as a super decent guy and good athlete.

Pete is a dark haired cutie who thinks he's the game mastermind but he's mostly hot air. I look forward to seeing him and Abby get voted off because quite frankly, they're mean and take up space. Abby is such a bad player that that in physical challenges the two other women, both twice her age make her look like an ass. I mean, they're ferocious. She sits on the sidelines and worries about her manicure.

In fact, they had to choose teams for a challenge and the two older women were chosen and Abby wasn't. Everybody knows a loser and she's a sterling example of one.

Anyway, I adore this show but this season has me breathless in anticipation for the next episode every week. I have a major love on the Penner, I really like Lisa and her game, I want to grow up and be Denise (or have some sex therapy with her)...

Just brilliant. Wednesday nights are my favorite night of the week for this reason alone.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Best Kid Ever

Tonight on Facebook, Carolyn's son messaged me to ask if I was talking to his mother because he was having phone issues and wanted to pass on a message.

The message was that he'd had a date the other night and encouraged her to buy all his mother's books for her Nook. Apparently the cost of a date with David is an investment in his mother's writing career.

I love this guy. I sure hope his date did too.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

A Story Within A Story

So nano is kicking my butt and I'm having a wonderful time. I fell behind on election day and I'm trying to make up the words I missed. It's going okay and I'm enjoying the pleasure of a deadline.

I'm working on a magic realism kind of thing and one of my characters tells stories. Well, more than one does but Maria tells many stories and they all have something to do with what's going on but they're couched in symbolism.

It's fun and interesting to try and write stories of another culture. I don't know Mexican folklore at all so I'm researching a little and trying to make it sound somewhat authentic.

I used to love reading Yiddish/Jewish folktales and now it occurs to me that I should write something involving those. Damn, why didn't I think of that before?

However, I love writing the make believe folk tales. Since magic realism is best known for its Latino authors, it's good to give a nod of the hat to their culture. I hope I'm doing it well.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Amazon is a Life Saver

I'm truly coming to rely on Amazon for just about everything.

I wanted something light but traditional for the Thanksgiving holiday dessert and I found a recipe for pumpkin pie that didn't involve baking and which did involve Jello instant pudding. I never knew they made pumpkin pudding, which proves you're never too old to learn something new.

I don't live in a big city, so my choices are limited. I ran to WalMart on my lunch hour today but struck out. My husband was going out for milk when I got home with the car, so I asked him to look at Winn Dixie. Hell, he doesn't even know where the pudding mixes are located, so I figured my chances were low to nil that he'd come home with  a couple of boxes.

And then - he became my hero! He said, and I quote, "Why don't you try Amazon?"

So, I did.

And it was there! Under Grocery and Gormet Foods!

Now I can try the recipe, which I found at Kraft Foods. You wanna see it?

Kraft Pumpin Pie

Triple-Layer Pumpkin Spice Pie

2 pkg Jell-o Pumpkin Spice Flavor Instant Pudding
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
2 cups cold milk
1 graham pie crust (6 oz)
1 8 oz tub of Cool Whip
1/2 cup pecan halves
1 tbsp honey

Beat pudding mixes, cinnamon and milk in medium bowl with whisk 2 minutes; spread 1 1/2 cups onto bottom of crust.

Stir 1 1/2 cups Cool Whip into remaining pudding; spread over pudding layer on crust. Top with remaining Cool Whip.

Refrigerate one hour. Meanwhile, cook nuts and honey in skillet on medium-low heat 2-4 minutes or until nuts are caramelized, stirring frequently. Spread onto waxed paper, separating larger clusters. Cool.

Sprinkle nuts over pie just before serving.

I've found lot of things at Amazon that I can't find in my town. It saves me money. Not only am I a Prime member, so there's no shipping fee on most things, but it saves the cost of gasoline. I no longer have to go to a larger town/city and fumble through stores I'm not familiar with. I fear the shopping bug was left out of my genes (unless it's books), something my friends just can't understand.

I'm experiencing a lot of things I never had the chance to in my younger years. The internet is a window into the big bad world, but there are enough good and enjoyable things to keep me coming back for more.

Hope you find all the things you need to make a fabulous Thanksgiving meal.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Elation, Election and Word Count

Okay, we have no fear of anything and are willing to talk politics and religion on ye olde blog so can I say, with the conviction of a woman who has enough chocolate stash: GOOD JOB MR. PRESIDENT, NOW GET TO WORK!!

Although my state was all mail in ballots and so they won't make final announcements yet, it looks like we passed same sex marriage and the legalization of marijuana. Woo-hoo! I'm gonna get stoned and marry Lea!

Kidding aside: I cared deeply about the same sex marriage and want to see it happen in every state. Our society is grown up. Let's stop finding people we can deny rights to and instead give equal rights and move on.

This is a bright morning indeed.

Unless you're looking at my WIP. I got my words written to get caught up for Monday but then didn't get anything written last night so now I'm 1,500 words behind. I'm not going to sweat it. I have a 4 day weekend and plan to nose to the grindstone to make it happen.

And the story is starting to make sense now so yay to that too!!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Well and Truly Fucked

and not in a good way.

300 words short of my nano goal for yesterday which means that today I need to write 2000 words and I have a problem... I don't have any idea what to write.

I am so fucked.

All my characters are introduced. What they mean, or are going to mean to each other, is spelled out. But... it's like I have a group of actors on stage and they're all looking at me for direction and I don't know what to tell them.

Someone needs to do something but what.... I don't know.

Why is writing so fucking hard??????

(And since its nano I might end up writing 2000 words of utter shit tonight. As long as it gets wrtten.)

Friday, November 2, 2012

Making the goal

It's very early on in nano land.

Day 2 was just completed and I made my word goal. It took all day but I did it.

My goal is to write the damned 1667 words daily. I'm not aiming for more, I can't accept less. It's been so hard to write recently and this is my kick-start to remember what I love about it.

Of course it's hard to get the story moving because I walked into it without an outline or plot decided. It was actually the night before nano started that I decided on what story to write.

But I'm happy. Lea and I are inspiring each other, her word count makes mine look sickly but it's so far, so good.

The nanwrimo moment

November is the month that writers sign on the dotted line and Satan has their souls for a month. Oh wait... wrong month. November is Nanowrimo -- national novel writing month. The idea is that 1667 words written every day in the month of November and you'll have a 50,000 word novel completed by the end of the month.

Does it work? It certainly does. Water for Elephants, The Night Circus and Sugar B's Back in Town were all written during nanowrimo. (Okay, that last one was mine.)

The point of nano is to write. To turn off the internal editor and just get those words written and the story told.

Lea is doing it this year with me and it's a pleasure to have someone you're close to having the same experience. There's a real high in meeting your daily goal. A real clench when you want to go back and make it better but there's no going back. Nano is about going forward.

There are lots of people who put down nano because there's a lot of bad or unedited writing that comes out of it. Well, who cares?

I do it because I need the stimulus to get the words on a page. I need my ass kicked and I need to be pushed.

This is only day 2 and I haven't met my goal yet. In fact, I'm going to take a nap and worry about it later. The book will get written. And nano gives me faith.