Tag Archive | FSOG

My 2014 New Year’s Resolutions and Other Tall Tales.

Many of us look at the New Year as a clean slate, a start over.  We make promises to ourselves regarding the way we are going to better our lives, whether it be through diet and exercise, work related or just trying to be a better person.

Here’s a list of My New Year’s Resolutions (or Tall Tales, as I like to call them)

1- Be more financially responsible.

One click shopping at Amazon has been my downfall. I also tend to let the bills pile up until they’re a nightmare to manage.  I rarely balance my checkbook.  I really should work on that… after all the after Christmas sales, of course.  Then again, isn’t January known for “White Sales’? I could always use more towels.

2- I’m going to eat healthy.

After I finish all the cookies, chips and candy in the house.    Don’t want to throw money in the trash, wouldn’t be ‘financially responsible’ (See Resolution #1).  I think there are a few microwave pizzas in the freezer too.  Can’t waste that… it wouldn’t be frugal. Besides, pizza covers all the major food groups, if you work the food group system. If I try hard enough, I’m betting I could maneuver cheesecake on to the healthy diet side too. I’m pretty sure I can manipulate any food to the healthy side…Resolution #2 may be moot.

3- I’m going to exercise six days a week.

 Hmmm…that could cut into my naptime on the weekends.  There’s no way in hell I’m giving that up. Okay, okay… I’ll only exercise on week days.  Then again, I should rest my muscles too.  I’ve read that’s very important.  Don’t want to injure myself.  Maybe I’ll exercise three days a week.  Two sounds even better.

4-I’ll be less cynical.

  Bwahhh… yeah, right.

5- I’m going to be more social.  Reconnect with old friends.

No I won’t.  There’s a reason why I stopped contact in the first place. Most of my ‘old friends’ annoyed the crap out of me.  Anyway it’s just more obligations, parties to attend, Girl Scout cookies to purchase, Christmas cards I’ll have to write out in December.  Scratch this idea.

6- I’m going to organize my life.

 The more likely scenario is I’ll buy more crap and add it to the pile, or hide stuff in the closets and create another junk draw.

7- I’m going to keep up with my gardening.  Weed a little bit every day.

Until the first mosquito bites me, then screw it, I’m done.

8- I’m going to drink less wine.

It’s okay, I’m laughing at that one too.

9- I’m going to stop wasting my valuable time on stupid facebook games.

As soon as I win Candy Crush…I swear.

~o0o~

Chances are these tall tale resolutions will fade into memory by January 15th.  But there are some truths I will carryover to 2014.

I will forgive myself…

 

For not being the perfect parent… but always loving my children with all my heart and soul and doing the best I can for them.

For not being the perfect wife… but loving my husband, who I don’t expect to be perfect in return. We are fiercely loyal to each other.  We laugh together.  We cry together.  When one is down, the other holds them up. We love each other. Simple. That’s really all we need.

For feeling like I failed… when at least I tried.

For not finishing my book this year. You can’t predict life’s bumps… but you can weather the storm and come out the other side.  My husband told me when I was eighteen I mentioned that I thought it would be interesting to write a book.  I don’t remember that conversation. He was the person who told me to write it.  He has so much faith in me, he gives me faith.  So I’ll open up that Word document and let the story flow again.

~o0o~

I wish you all a Happy and Healthy 2014.

Peace to All,

Annette

Evil Chapter Nine

I have a new arch nemesis.  Chapter Nine.  For three long weeks I have been writing this damn chapter.  It’s a bitch of a fighter.  This isn’t a case of writers block.  I know what I want to write.  I see it.  It’s all playing out in my head, clear as a sunny day.  I just can’t seem to get the words to leave my head and transfer onto the Word document.  Chapter Nine won’t allow it to happen.  I’ll pound a sentence out on my keyboard then… nothing.  Nada.  Zilch.  The big Zippo.  It’s frustrating the hell out of me.

I really don’t understand why it’s so hard.  It’s a fun chapter to write.  Honestly, all of the chapters have been fun to write…some more stubborn than others, but fun nonetheless. I like my characters, well most of them.  I like their friends.  I wish they were real so I could hang out and have a couple of drinks with them.

I tend to write the same sentence fifty different ways until I like the way it sounds.  I’m not a stickler for proper grammar if the dialogue sounds like normal people talking.  I like to play with words, flip them around and make it feel right.  Flip them one way…eh, maybe I’ll flip them another way and see how that flows…you get the idea.  Maybe I’m an over-flipper.

I’m at the point now where I feel like flipping off Evil Chapter Nine.

 Funny thing is, chapter ten, eleven and so on are written… they need editing, but they’re done for the most part. Hell, the ending is written. They’re patiently waiting on this chapter so they can get prettied up and move forward.

My goal is to finish Evil Chapter Nine today. Of course, I’m already procrastinating by writing this blog entry.  When my book is finally published (do you hear the angels singing?) and if you are so inclined to read it (of course you are)…take special notice of Evil Chapter Nine.

 The Chapter that tried to do me in.

 On a side note, some of you may be wondering what happened to Shelly…my Muse.  The one thing I could count on to inspire me and help me through these tough times.  Well, Shelly’s been sleeping on the job.  It ends up Shelly is a lazy little whore, living in a hedonistic threesome with another shell and a starfish.

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 I’m on my own once again.

The Great Pumpkin Patch

There are five kid’s birthdays in October in my immediate family.  Celebrating each one separately is an impossible feat. This is why we combine birthdays for the family… and they have their separate parties with their friends.

The past few years, we’ve embraced the Fall birthday season and go pumpkin picking followed by dinner and cake. We like to make it a full day and since the age range for the birthdays fall between six and seventeen so there’s a little bit of something for everyone.

It’s interesting to see how inventive of the local businesses are when latching on something that’s going to improve their bottom line and extend their season. More power to them, they got me through their door.

We went to a Food Market/Garden Center near my sister’s home.  Our group of a thousand (okay, twenty-three) met at the designated time.  My sister, otherwise know as the Martha Stewart of the family, came prepared with thermoses full of apple cider for the kids and perverted apple cider for the adults (you know, cider with a little extra fermentation… wink, wink).

Once our group assembles (that task in itself is a small miracle, we live within a hundred mile radius of each other so time coordination is essential) and we sip our magical cider we’re ready for the hayride.  There’s nothing like squeezing twenty three people on the back of a tractor pulling a wagon with bales of hay as the seats. After a “scenic” bumpy ride through a parking lot, past a few greenhouses full of other birthday parties, you go through a very small corn field on your way to the mythical pumpkin patch.

Charlie Brown gets the credit, but it’s really Linus Van Pelt who made me appreciate the magic of the pumpkin patch.  As you get closer and closer to the Pumpkin patch, your heart races.  Childhood dreams of picking the perfect pumpkin fresh off the vine dance in your mind.

You see yourself walking through long rows of vines, searching out the pumpkin that calls to you, will it be perfectly round?  Oval?  Misshapen and with a little personality? (Like Linus, I uphold the belief that pumpkins have personalities. Don’t judge me).  You know you’ll recognize the right pumpkin the moment you lay eyes on it.

You pass on the corn maze because you can’t wait to meet your special pumpkin (besides, the corn has only grown about 3 ft. tall, making more like a stroll through some corn than a maze).  Finally the tractor pulls up to the patch.  You take a deep breath, this is it. You feel it…the green of the vines, the crisp brown edges of the leaves as the vine dies away for the season.

Pumpkin Xanadu.

 Here’s what I always envision, pulling up to the Magical Pumpkin patch.

Here is the reality of our magical journey.  Stunning, isn’t it?

(Cue the booby prize music)

An open dirt field, with crushed pumpkins randomly scattered among the others.

Not exactly the dream.  But the kids were happy.  I own my special pumpkin grown just for me. And everyday until Halloween I will tell my husband “We really need to carve this into a jack-o-lantern” and never will.

Random Musings…

Lately I’m reading a lot about authors losing their muse…. the very thing that inspires them to write.  This had me thinking.  Do I even have a muse?  I look at writing as I either have it that day or I don’t. 

After giving this a little more thought, I realized that  way of thinking keeps the blame of an off-day on me.

 Screw that when I can blame my lost Muse.

I have enough crap to deal with in life; I don’t want my lack of inspiration to fall  squarely on my shoulders too.  I’ll blame the Muse. That’s when I decided that I need an actual Muse…   a something to pass the blame on to.

Talk about a perfect solutions.  All my shortcomings in a day will fall on the Muse’s watch, while I come out smelling like a rose.  No writing done today…blame the muse.  My house is filthy, blame the messy Muse.  Dinner not made… blame the lazy muse.

That’s right… My Muse is a little bitch.

First I needed something tangible.  A muse I could look in the eye, so to speak, when I shifted blame from my blank imagination to it.

We were blessed with unseasonably warm October weather last week, so I took my writing to the beach. I sat for hours a day, writing, writing and writing, in different colored gel pens.  The writing was going well, but I knew I needed to keep my Muse in my pocket when inspiration ran dry.

First I thought my Muse could be a Seagull that befriended me.  I quickly dismissed the idea when I realized he was only using me for the food I brought along and one of his friends christened me from the air with a giant bird crap bomb.  Besides, Look at this bird’s beady little eyes…clearly he had murder on his mind.

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Then I saw it, laying down right next to me. My Muse…Shelly. (Cue the angels singing). Fabulous isn’t she?

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So there you go…problem solved.  Whenever I lose my inspiration, I’ll blame it on my pocket sized Muse, Shelly,  until I get it back.

Choosing a Character’s Name…or Why I Wish I Were an Only Child

In the first book I’m writing I had to go through the inevitable process of choosing the characters names. It seemed easy enough.  Google baby names and chose one that fits the character.

Not quite.

First a little background about me.  I come from a very large family.  Seems my parents were very fond of each other.  Very.  As we grew into adults and had our own families, all the decent names in the baby books were taken.

My younger sister in particular stole all the good girl names.    I was really leaning toward Gabriella as the heroine’s name.  Pretty, European…you can say Gabby when you’re informal.   It could be sexy one minute, then playful the next. The perfect name.

Until you write a sex scene.

The feeling of ick overwhelmed me. I couldn’t write my sweet innocent niece’s name into a sex scene.  It was wrong.  It was so wrong…and not in a good way, wrong.  A total turn off for me.

I spent the rest of the day back to square one…googling girl’s names until I found one that had no direct relation to me.

It wasn’t any easier when choosing the lead male’s name.  I had to cross out my brother’s and brother in law’s names immediately.  Then move on to cousins.  Then to ex-boyfriends (I’m not giving any of them the satisfaction of making it into print in my book)

I finally chose two names that I’m fairly certain have no personal relationship with me.  At least I hope they don’t.

So my characters can happily have all the sex they want, if they chose…now that they’re strangers to me.

When I started this project, I thought the hard part was going to be the story itself, developing the characters, the plot, the conflict, a resolution…there’s a  million directions your thoughts are pulled when writing a story.

But it looks like I’m going obsess over every minute detail.   And that’s okay with me.