Monthly Archives: June 2012

I Am A Writer!

I’ve been struggling with my roles in life since Christmastime.  When I first started this whole indie publishing journey, I thought my goals were very clear cut.  Write, publish, and hope that some readers would love my stuff (yes, ‘stuff’ is a weak weasel word, but when those moments of rebellion hit, you just kind of have to go with the flow).

It hit me in December that, for all intents and purposes, I’d ceased to be a writer.  Yes, it’s true.  But I just released Enza,  you might argue.  I did, didn’t I?  But Enza was seventy-five percent written four years ago.  All I did was finish it.  Finally.

The rest of my time I’ve spent blogging…and visiting blogs, marketing…and learning about marketing.  And while none of those activities are bad, I’ve been neglecting my first love.  Almost entirely.

I have two partially finished manuscripts, a third book I need to finish around the first of the year, a sequel to write…and a list of close to thirty other stories I’ve plotted out to some degree…all waiting for me to remember that I am a writer.  Waiting for me to give them some of my limited time.

So that’s exactly what I’m going to start doing.  I won’t give up the other things, but I am going to devote less time to them.  I love blogging, but will be cutting down to twice a week (most weeks).  It may get to the point where I cut back to once weekly.  I’m not sure yet.  I love visiting other blogs…and will continue to do that, too.  Everything else will be on an ‘as there is time for it’ basis.

I am a writer!

Therefore I will….write.  I will begin breathing life into the people and worlds that only exist in my head right now.  Thanks to Jeff Goins for reminding me of what it is I do.

I do not read Stephen King…he scares the heck out of me.  But there’s no denying that he’s a talented writer…and full of great writing advice.  But you wouldn’t know who Stephen King is had he spent all of his time marketing Carrie.

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What in the World is This?! (week 4)

Welcome to week four of What in the World is This?! Wednesday.  I’ve tried to come up with a clue, but have to say that this week I’m clueless.  Well, not exactly clueless…but I’m afraid anything I might say would be too much.  So I’ll save that for next week.  Good luck.  Just a reminder, if you guess correctly, I won’t confirm it until next week.

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Guest Posting Today

Hey…I just wanted to take a second to say that I’m guest-posting over at Sheila Deeth’s blog today.  If you have a minute, check it out.  🙂

 

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Mosquitoes on Steroids

Last summer I addressed the mosquito problem in another blog.  This year, while they’re not quite as abundant, Michigan’s state bird seems to have grown.  Dramatically.  As I was killing one of the little monsters last night, it actually scared me.  I was afraid there would be so much blood on my desk that it would look like a crime scene.

Okay, so I’m exaggerating about the crime scene thing…but not about the size.  It was huge!  I’m pretty sure if it had landed on me, I would have easily been relieved of a pint of plasma.

It’s making me wonder if the Red Cross hasn’t been doing some genetic engineering on them.  I mean, mobile, unmanned blood banks would certainly be more cost effective than locating volunteer sites, gassing up that big truck, and hiring a bunch of nurses .  They wouldn’t even have to depend on willing donors anymore.  Just send out the new army of bloodsuckers and there would never be a shortage again.

Be warned.  The guy swears once.  I don’t actually blame him though.

I want one of these.  Not for the reason this guy is using it.  Unless I take it to the pig roast my brothers have every August.  With all the beer consumed that night, I’m sure I could get some good footage for YouTube.

Yes!  I can buy a hand-held bug zapper on Amazon.  They’re not expensive either.  I’ll get two.  One for murdering mosquitoes…and one for entertainment purposes.  Guys, alcohol, and a bug zapper.  What better combination could you ever hope to find?

Oh man!  It would make for an interesting reunion game, too….

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What to Expect When You’re Expecting Was Better Than I Expected

I know I usually don’t do movie reviews…in fact, the only one I can remember being enthused enough to write about (in a comment) was We Bought a Zoo.  However, my daughter and I went to see What to Expect When You’re Expecting this week, and it deserves a mention.

It’s just been one of those weeks.  The weather has been miserably hot, I was bored…and popcorn sounded good.  Even though the ratings weren’t all that great. It’s a chick flick…they never get good ratings.  Except The Proposal, and that will always be, in my opinion, the best one ever.

Frankly I’m not a big Cameron Diaz fan, and her character didn’t add much to the story (in my opinion).  Jennifer Lopez did better, but I’ve seen that same character in most of her other movies.  Dennis Quaid was a bit obnoxious throughout most of the movie-so much so that I wished his son would slug him.  He did, however, redeem himself a little at the end.  His trophy wife (played by Brooklyn Decker) was good, though.  Anna Kendrick (she’s a better actress than Kristen Stewart…really enjoyed her in 50/50) and Chace Crawford needed more screen time.  All the guys in the Dudes Group?  They were great!

However…

The best scenes in the movie were any that included Ben Falcone, Elizabeth Banks, and Rebel Wilson.  OMGosh!  They were fantastic!  I laughed so hard and so long at one point, I had tears in my eyes, and my throat hurt.  It could have been embarrassing, except everyone in the theater was doing the same thing.  That woman did not enjoy being pregnant!

My daughter and I both left theater in complete agreement…we’re buying it when it comes out on DVD.

No, it won’t win an award of any kind.  There’s a whole list of movies that are  better than this one was…but I’m still glad I spent the time and money to go see it. Any time I walk out of a theater still smiling, it was worth it.

I have to say that, watching the trailer, What to Expect When You’re Expecting looks pretty boring.  It’s not.

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What in the World?! Wednesday (Week 3)-a Day Late

Okay.  Who stole the weekend?  It just hit me that today is Thursday…and not Tuesday.  And that means I forgot to share the answer from last week’s game.  Yup.  I lost some days this week.  Nope.  Not a drop of alcohol was involved.  It’s more to do with excessive heat and humidity.  When it comes to weather, my poor brain is unable to comprehend numbers higher than 79.  So when the first digit in the temperature starts with a 9, the zombie in me takes over.

What was that thing?  Does this picture make it more obvious?

It is…a firework (it just doesn’t look or sound right without the ‘s’).  Yup.  After downloading (uploading?) the contents of my camera from a spectacular display I saw on June 9th, I looked at this and laughed.  What in the world definitely fits this one!

There was actually only one person who guessed the correct answer, and that was a 12 year old cousin.  And now that I’ve had to add an extra post this week, I’ll share some of the prettier pictures.

Even with my camera set on ‘fireworks’ mode, they don’t come out exactly as we see them, but I still love the pictures.

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A Blessing and a Curse

I have never enjoyed most processed foods.  It’s just my humble opinion, but the high sodium content isn’t fit for human consumption.  At least as far as this human is concerned.  My children, on the other hand, love the stuff.  Especially an extremely salty cheeseburger macaroni concoction.  The only way I could gag it down was if I guzzled a gallon of water along with it.

So I’m used to looking for alternative foods for when they insist they need this type of garbage food.  But realizing that you have a gluten sensitivity, and being willing to cut it out of your diet, takes finding alternative foods to an entirely new level.

Early on, when days were so busy I’d just want something quick, I’d pick up a plain ground beef patty at Burger King, then make another stop at Wendy’s for a baked potato.  Let me tell you, do that a few times a month and it gets old in a hurry.  The food and waiting in line at two different ‘restaurants.’

I’m assuming this song is for kids because I got tired of it less than a third of the way in…

So I decided to keep some sour cream in my refrigerator, along with small packages of ground beef in the freezer.  When the kids need fast food, I come home, brown the ground beef, throw in a little bouillon, a little milk and sour cream, and have it over instant potatoes, with a smoothie (for actual nutrition).  I’m pretty sure it takes less time to throw that together than it did to stop at BK and Wendy’s.

But it’s kind of a pain, and I often opt to just not eat at all.   All I can think lately is that it would be great if I could just heat up a frozen dinner, or open a can of something.  Something that tastes good.  And tonight I thought I hit the jackpot.

I’ve been passing on everything that lists ‘modified food starch’ in the ingredient list, because I’d read something awhile ago that made me think it was made from wheat.  But tonight I discovered that there is a law in the USA that requires food manufacturers to list wheat if it’s in the product.

Yes!  After salivating for the ready-made dinners my daughter loves, I was ready to jump for joy.  I could have the chicken and rice casserole she’s been eating lately!  It smells so good.  And I was so excited…and so hungry…that I made a late night dash to the grocery store to get a couple…one to have as soon as I got home, and one to save for the next time they were craving McDonald’s.

The thing about having to make your food from scratch…for almost three months…is that you apparently become very aware of flavors.  I sat down, prepared to inhale this dinner…and had to stop after the fourth bite.

All I could taste were chemicals, or preservatives-maybe both.  It was just awful.  Very strong, kind of bitter.  My nose was in heaven, but my taste buds wanted to cry…it was that nasty.

You read about how bad processed foods are for you, but like most Americans, I pretty much ignored the warnings.  Processed foods might not be as good as my cooking, but in a pinch, they were better than nothing.  And they didn’t taste too bad.

With my newly retrained taste buds, I know I couldn’t have been more wrong.  Now I just have to figure out a way to convince my kids to stop eating these chemical-rich, sorry excuses for food.

I’m also going to have to figure out something I can freeze for when I want a quick meal.  Cause the ground beef over instant potatoes is getting old, too.

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