Sunday, June 27, 2010

Sunday Report Card Or Can We Try Again Next Week?

funny pictures of cats with captions

Last week's goals seemed so simple...

1) Revise!
2) Resubmit!

Well... Most of this week was a serious washout. Or a pain in the ass. Or some combination of both...

I did a home sleep study test on Monday night hoping for answers to my inability to sleep more than an hour at a time. Forked over $350 for the test because it's cheaper than the overnight lab study. The doctor received the results on Wednesday. Yes, I have sleep apnea. Yes, I need a CPAP machine. Hey, I'll try anything at this point. The doctor's office said someone will call me about the machine.

Wednesday afternoon, I get a call but the little girl on the other end of the line seems to be talking at cross odds with me. Finally, I realize she's trying to set me up with another sleep study and not just an appointment for a CPAP machine. For another $500. Uh, no. Already took the test at home. But she keeps insisting this is the only way they can get the pressure readings needed for the machine. Uh, still no. Already did that.

I called my doctor--by now it's already five o'clock--and left a message. The nurse calls back at 7:45 the next morning. Her answer was the same as mine. Uh, no, already took the test. She gives the the number to a medical supply place. She'll fax an order in to them. Great! Finally getting somewhere.

But then when I get in touch with them, they try to tell me a CPAP machine will be $1600. Again, that would be a no. I don't have $1600 to lay out especially when I know where I can get them cheaper.The girl on the other end seems stunned at my "just say no" attitude. Get real, chickie. You're talking to a menopausal woman who hasn't had a good night's sleep in at least six months. You people are lucky I don't lunge through the phone and take a pound of flesh from your ass!

She insisted on trying to see what they could do but she'd have to talk to her supervisor. And she'd call me back. Famous last words. That was Thursday morning. No call back.

Tomorrow, I'm calling my doctor. I want a prescription for a CPAP machine and a copy of the test results. I'll find my own damn machine. I also want a prescription for sleeping pills in the meantime. I should get what I want. He, of all people, understand how cranky I am. And how hormonal.

Oh, and instead of working three days last week, I had to work four. And I wrapped up Friday with a deer trying to hit me. I outran it but it banged against the back of my car. Thank goodness, no visible damage.

Oh, and the revise and resubmit. I'm still working on it, however, I received unofficial but very reliable word that the editor who requested it is no longer with that publisher. ARGH!!!!

So you see why I want to try again?

The good parts to last week? Yes, there were some...

I came up with a great way to strengthen the story I'm revising. And I will continue to revise even though I'm not sure what to do about the resubmitting. Now that the ideas are in my head, I need to incorporate them into the story. I added 2100 words, mostly on Tuesday and today. Although I spent a lot of today napping. I have to play catchup at some point in my sleep or I'm liable to snap. I'm off tomorrow and Tuesday. Hopefully I can wrap up the changes by then.

My writing buddy, Brandi Evans, has my 4th Tennessee cop story for critique. Hopefully, I'll get the revisions back before she gets finished with the crit. I still need a title as well as blurb/synopsis for the submission packet.

Saturday, Delilah Devlin, her daughter and granddaughter plus Brandi Evans and I went to the Arkansas Arts Center exhibit, World of the Pharaohs. Fabulous exhibit. I wrote for a little while at Starbucks while I waited on them. We all went to lunch then the exhibit. Afterward, Brandi and I had coffee at Starbucks and talked through a story idea of hers. Sounds great and I can't wait to read it.

While most of the week sucked, the weekend made up for some of it.

I I'm doing the 50k words-in-a-month challenge of JulNoWriMo-a play on the November Novel Writing Month. I need something to force me to focus. I plan to write two novellas--Angel Moon 3 and Tn Cop #5. I have both plotted. I just need to get past the revisions so I can move on to something new and shiny!

So the goals for this week:

1) Finish revising.
2) Figure out what to do about the resubmitting... *le sigh*
3) Start Angel Moon 3.

Hope ya'll have a fantastic week!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

iTunes/iPod Shuffle

Snatched from Barbara Caridad Ferrer on LiveJournal.

What happens when I put my iPod on shuffle. First twenty songs. Weird mix for a weird person? LOL

1) When She's Gone by Mary Chapin Carpenter
2) Ruins by Melissa Etheridge
3) Tender When I Want To Be By Mary Chapin Carpenter
4) Tears and Laughter by Tall Tree 6ft Man
5) Truth Is by Sister Hazel
6) Paradise by the Dashboard Lights by Meatloaf
7) One Less Bell to Answer/A House Is Not a Home by Glee Cast
8) Banana Pancakes by Jack Johnson
9) You Win Again by Mary Chapin Carpenter
10) Let Me Play With Your Poodle by Marcia Ball
11) I Want To Be In Love by Melissa Etheridge
12) Everybody Hurts by R.E.M.
13) Private Dancer by Tina Turner
14) Home Again by Carole King
15) One Man Guy by Rufus Wainwright
16) Survivor by Destiny's Child
17) No Envy No Fear by Joshua Radin
18) Everything Else Disappears by Sister Hazel
19) Nights In White Satin by the Moody Blues
20) Crash This Train by Joshua James

Headed out to write in Little Rock before I meet Delilah Devlin and her family to go to the World of Pharaohs at the Arkansas Arts Center. Last days of the exhibit! Check it out if you're in the area before July 5th closing.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Okay... This should prove interesting...

So I picked up the home sleep study thingy this afternoon. Doesn't look too bad. A thingy across the forehead with a headband. Not happy about the cannula thingy. Allergies have my nose itching already, thank you very much. But I'm desperate. I rarely sleep more than an hour and a half at a time.

When I was working only a few days a month, it wasn't so bad. I could take a nap during the day if I got too sleepy. Now, driving at least three days a week, unable to stay awake is really not good!

Back to the thingy... The instructions seem fairly simple. Put on the headband with the device over the forehead. Put the cannula tips inside the nostrils, tighten. Then turn the thing on. And turn everything else off.

Off? Fans? TV? OFF??? Oh, shit. I haven't slept without a fan going in years. Plus, the temperature 100F here. My A/C is struggling to keep up. I'll be lucky if the house is down to 75F by bedtime.

But the stupid device has a recording device to listen for snoring, breathing, stopping breathing... Damn. This should prove interesting.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Sunday Report Card--To revise or not to revise!

funny pictures of cats with captions

Plus a kitty update. DC is doing much better. I found the stinkiest canned cat food ever--9 Lives Super Supper--and DC loves it! Even with the pink stuff in it so medicating is much easier! LOL

Well, ye old goals for last week were:

1) Self-edits
2) Synopsis/Blurb
3) Title
4) Live life to the fullest!

What I managed to get done... Self-edits! And the living life stuff. *cackle*

Yes, I finished self-edits for the latest Tn Cop story. Still don't have a blurb/synopsis or title. As with life, writing goals must be fluid. In other words, shit happens. *grins* Plus my critique partner is out of pocket until this week so I haven't had it critiqued yet. So the plan was to start on something new. Not...

Tuesday night, I received a revise and resubmit from a publisher with whom I'd like to become better acquainted. I wasn't particularly sure how to make the requested adjustments. She didn't give me more than general comments. However, she offered to look at again so I was determined to figure out how to make it work!

To revise or not to revise! A lot of authors ask themselves--and others--that question. I've seen some people, especially new authors, claim they won't change anything. It goes against their "artistic integrity". Well, I'm a pragmatist as well as an artist. My "artistic integrity" doesn't pay the mortgage. A book contract does.

Granted, I submitted a short story of 15k words. Had I written a 100k word novel and the editor wanted me to change major points, rewrite massive parts of the plot, I might think twice. Or I might negotiate a contract before I made the changes. However, my little short story shouldn't be that difficult to adjust. No major plot points are at issue. The editor wants me to strengthen the goals, motivation and conflict between the two main characters.

But how to do? I haven't read the story since I submitted it. I have a strict policy of not thinking about a story once it's submitted. I don't even open the file. All my documents are filed in a submissions folder under the publisher's name and forgotten. If I make a sale, I might never open that folder again. The editor will send me a copy of my story with her comments. I don't need the other files.

When I received the R&R, I moved the folder back into my WIP folder on my flash drive. Friday, after a doctor appointment in Little Rock, I went to Starbucks and read through the story for the first time in months. Not a bad story if I do say so myself. *cackle* But I could see the editor's point so I didn't get my hackles up. A few ideas wormed their way into my brain but sudden inspiration didn't strike so I needed to think about it some more.

Saturday while driving to my Diamond State Romance Authors meeting, lightning lit the way! All of a sudden, ideas began rolling. With voice recorder in hand, I worked through some more backstory on my characters. Backstory can help push conflict and conflict is usually centered around individual character's goals that don't meld.

Since I was very early--insomnia issues--I was the first to reach the library. For about an hour, I transcribed my notes and expanded on them. When Delilah Devlin showed up, I ran the ideas by her. She's fabulous at brainstorming. She thinks it'll work. I think it'll work. Now to implement the revisions.

Except today I woke up with a back ache. I managed about 800 words of additional material off and on during the day. Mostly off. I took a muscle relaxer and caught up on my sleep.

I have evil day job three days this week but I hope to finish the revisions by the end of next weekend. Saturday will be a wash because Delilah and I are going to see the World of the Pharaoh's at the Arkansas Arts Center. The exhibit is closing in July and we've almost waited too long! Procrastination is my middle name. *cackle*

Oh, and the doctor appointment was to address my insomnia issues. I'm doing a sleep study Monday night to see if I have sleep apnea. It's a take home test, which is good because I never sleep well in a strange bed. Especially if I know people were watching! LOL Maybe I'll have some good news this week. I'd kill to be able to sleep for two hours straight! Not to mention, sleep would probably help my concentration and memory.

So goals for this week:

1) Revise!
2) Resubmit!

Have a fabulous week!

Thursday, June 17, 2010


Why is it as soon as you manage to get a few bucks ahead of the game, critters get hurt or sick. *headdesk*

Early Tuesday morning I went outside to mow before the heat hit. DC has taken to sleeping in my wheelbarrow. I keep it up on its front end to keep rain from sitting in it. She sleeps on the front end. Nothing unusual. But if you look real close at the left side of her face, you can see the swelling.

Lovely. Trip to the vet on the horizon.

By nine, I had her at the Cat Vet. They ended up keeping her so they could surgically lance and drain the abscess. I know she was confused about staying overnight away from home but so was I.

I'm a terrible insomniac. I don't have trouble going to sleep but I wake up several times a night. It's not unusual for me to see every hour on the clock as the night passes slowly into dawn. And each time I wake, I check on the critters. Count heads actually. LOL Several times Tuesday night, I forgot DC was at the vet and was scared when I couldn't find her.

Since the evil day job beckoned yesterday, I left my mother DC's carrier and a check. She picked her up yesterday morning and dropped her off at the house before I arrived home.

She also dropped off the "pink stuff". Amoxicillin. A thick pink liquid antibiotic that my cats hate. Every last one of them. No matter how sick, how injured, how much pain, will fight me to the death to avoid a dose of the "pink stuff". Joy, joy. So far, two doses later, I have had pink stuff all over the bathroom, all over me, in my hair, all over DC.

And I'm terrified I'll hurt her neck if I try to hold her too hard while I squirt the meds in her mouth. The next few days will be fun but we'll get it done. Have to. She's one of my babies.

Oh, and I'm being paranoid and calling the vet when they open. Her neck looks a little swollen. We may have another vet visit in the near future...

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Sunday Report Card!

Princess found a new toy. At least she can't drag this one in through the pet door like she did a dead chipmunk the other day.

My cats are crazy. And distracting. But they weren't the reason for my lack of words this week.

Once again, I spent the entire week at the evil day job. I'm officially up to 30 hours a week except when I'm needed for more. This week I was needed more. *shrugs* But I'll average it out so I'll probably have some extra days off at the end of the month.

My official goals for the week were:

1) Finish TnC#4.
2) Come up with a title for TnC#4.
3) Write synopsis/blurb for TnC#4.

And I did finish! Yay! But today. All my writing this week was accomplished yesterday and today. So there's no synopsis/blurb yet. No title either. I wanted to start self-edits this afternoon but yard work has once again worn me out. My EDJ schedule this week is Monday, Wednesday and Thursday. Hopefully, I'll get through a couple of passes on self-edits Tuesday. Right after I mow the yard.

I cut low hanging tree limbs and ones too close to the roof, planted my big flowerbed in front and watered this weekend but just didn't get around to mowing.

I need more plants in the flowerbed. I'll have to see what's on sale this week.

Lots of sad stuff happened this week. Not to me personally, but a flash flood killed 19 people camping in Arkansas. Most people around here are in a state of shock. There but for the grace of God...

Also associate editor Alyssa Smith of Hearst Books lost her beloved birds and her home to a devastating fire on Tuesday. The writing community has come together rendering aid and comfort where they can. Every little bit adds up. More information on the fire and what people can do to help is located here: Once again, there but for the grace...

We never know when or where tragedy will strike. All we can do is live each day as if it were our last and make sure it was a truly great day!

My goals for this week:

1) Self-edits
2) Synopsis/Blurb
3) Title
4) Live life to the fullest!

Have a great week, folks! And remember, life is a journey not a destination!


Monday, June 7, 2010


Can we say "awkward"!? This commercial cracks me up every time!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Sunday Report Card!


Too bad my kitties can't be trained for yard work...

I've been a bad girl. My only goal this week was to finish TnCop#4 and...*hangs head in shame*...I'm not finished. Busy week and a serious case of WADD (Writers Attention Deficit Disorder) derailed my best laid plans.

Monday started out pretty good. I finished the yard work I'd started on Sunday evening. I even wrote 2300 words on TnC#4. Close to the end but not there. And I knew the rest of the week was a waste.

The evil day job had me in its clutches Tuesday through Friday. Seriously in its clutches. I put in 40 hours in 4 days. Plus I have a two hour commute. Definitely no writing when I got home. It was all I could do to eat dinner and fall into bed. But that's okay. My boss was out of town and we managed to hold down the fort admirably. Didn't burn down anything, or blow up anything. I also have concrete proof that my boss is Superwoman in disguise. I always knew the EDJ revolved around her but now the evidence is in. And she's not allowed to leave for a whole week ever again! *cackle*

By the time Friday rolled around, I had a number of notes on my voice recorder. The long commute is actually good for something. However, due to the previously mentioned WADD, most of my notes were on the new story my Lil Sis helped me cook up last weekend. Great ideas! Plot developing nicely. But I need to finish the other story first!

Early Saturday morning (aka the buttcrack of dawn), I thought I'd get some writing in before I picked up Momma to go to Little Rock. Lil Sis was meeting us for a Girls' Day Out. Instead of working on TnC#4, the new story demanded I write some of the synopsis.

So after a brief outline of the prologue and the first chapter, I managed to tear myself away to go get Momma. By the time we returned home, I was too tired. I decided I'd just get up early on Sunday and work on TnC#4.

But I'm old. And I distract easily. My morning went like this...


*zombie walk to kitchen* Mmmm, need coffee.
*looks around kitchen while coffee brews* Oh, pets need water.
*pouring water in bowl* Rats, I forgot to water flowers out front.
*pouring water in pots* Wow! The little trees sprouting in my front flower bed are getting out of control.
*sawing trees down* Wow! My jasmine bush is getting unruly.
*pruning back bush* Wow! The grass in the front yard is getting high!
*mowing yard* Wow! Those tree limbs are awfully low! Keeps whacking me in the head!
*cutting tree limbs* That dead jasmine on the end of the house looks awful.
*pulling down dead vines* I might as well take down the old aerial antenna while I'm over here.
*pulls down antenna* Damn, the back yard needs mowing too!
*mows back yard* Hungry. Ugh, coffee is old and cold.
*makes lunch and fresh pot of coffee*


I think I need a nap... I'll work on TnC#4 later.

So let's just call Sunday a day of rest...well, from writing, anyway. I don't know how many days I'll work for the EDJ this week. I'm going to be working regular hours for a while. Hopefully for a long while. Guaranteed positive cash flow is always good! *cackle* At 30 hours a week, I can also go back on benefits and that's a wonderful thing! However, I'm hoping I'll have a couple of free days this week so I can finish TnC#4. And maybe work on the synopsis for the new idea.

Plus I had another plot bunny about a couple of guys dealing with the fallout of an ex's stupidity. *cackle* More on that another time!

So this week's goal is the same as last week's.

1) Finish TnC#4.
2) Come up with a title for TnC#4.
3) Write synopsis/blurb for TnC#4.

Hope you had and will have a productive week!