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Saturday, July 22, 2006

Murphy's law

I am seriously dealing with a tough case of it right now. And yet, the cool thing is that I definitely feel God's hand protecting us from it being worse. It's just really super irritating right now that just as I think things are on track, it gets ripped off. Do we need a reminder of my need for stability?

At the moment, we're on our annual summer retreat with friends, and they're off at a seminar I wanted to go to. However, I ended up with a really bad migraine, so I stayed at the condo, took my medicine, and slept. I woke up, and probably could have joined them, except that we only have one car, which they have, so I'd have had to call DH to pick me up, which he would not have minded, except that he'd have missed out on some of it, plus I'm not 100%, and since we're driving 12 hours to get home tomorrow, I probably need to rest so I don't get a rebound headache tomorrow. Still, it sucks, since we only see these guys every few months, and they're our best friends.

Anyway, the good part about being stuck here at the condo is we have wifi and cable. Which means I got to watch an old movie. Bringing up Baby with Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn. I adore this movie, it would make a really cool book if twisted into something modern. Plus, I am a total Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn fan.

And then, I'd just been thinking how I wished I had one of my yoga videos because I'm sure my headache is partially tension, partially stress, partially weather. And I thought if I could get some yoga in, it would help relieve things now, plus make life better on tomorrow's drive. Anyway, what did I find, but a yoga show on tv-apparently, there's a whole cable channel of just fitness programs. YAY! I only got half of it, but still, I feel much better. It'd almost be worth getting cable for that channel. :)

I'm beat, and I'm feeling the after effects of the headache now, so I think it'll be... huh... I completely forgot what I was going to say. I hate this. When I get headaches, I just totally lose my train of thought. Well, I do it anyway. But it's worse when I get heachaches.

Right then. Off to bed I go.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Because I can't blog about what I'm really annoyed with

Dumb Bumper Stickers.

Since we’re on the blowing up theme, I thought I’d share one of my favorite gripes. Bumper stickers that are pointless and make no sense.

Today’s bumper sticker: Love your children. Stop bombing theirs.

And this means what?

First off, is anyone who is actually bombing someone else’s children going to view this bumper sticker?

I thought not.

Second, if someone who is actually bombing someone else’s children actually views this sticker, will it change their mind? Wow. Two sentences. What a convincing argument. And to think, I don’t even know whose children are being bombed. Yes, I do believe that if I were bombing someone else’s children, I would stop. So that I could bomb yours. Because you’ve irritated me to the point of insanity and I can’t stop thinking about stupid bumper stickers.

However, because I am now obsessing about bumper stickers, I thought I’d point out some other idiotic things people stick on their cars.

Gore for President. Um, he lost. Like a long time ago. Although I do have a really funny observation about that-is it just in Colorado, or have any of you noticed that anyone driving a beat up Subaru has one of these bumper stickers? I have never seen a Bush bumper sticker on a Subaru. Is this some weird political conspiracy, that all Subaru drivers must be democrats?

Just as annoying, however, are the Bush for President bumper stickers. He won. So what? Are you trying to make the poor Subaru drivers feel bad? They don’t need your help, okay? They drive Subarus, for crying out loud. (And lest you think I’ve got something against Subarus, I’ll have you know that my best friend drives one.)

And then, there are the bumper stickers of people peeing on the competitor car brand. And this is funny, because? What I actually think is funnier is that the people driving those cars fit into one of two categories: the car is a rustbucket, and therefore, they need something like urine on someone else’s car to feel morally superior, OR the car is one of those super hopped up monsters with car payments that are so big they have to still live with their mom because they can’t afford a house. Yeah buddy. You guys are cool.

Finally, my rant would not be complete without discussing the “Jesus fish” phenomenon. There’s your basic Jesus fish, which, okay, fine. If you really need to let others know you have some cool symbol of Christianity, then go for it. But when you act like a jerk in traffic, you pretty much negate the whole message. Then of course, you have the smarty butts who think it’s funny to have some sort of anti Jesus fish. Again, why? To show how little respect you have for others. Wow. That certainly shows how you’ve evolved. To follow that up, you have the anti anti Jesus fish to show how Jesus is bigger than anything the anti Jesus fish can dish out. Nice. Again, what have you proven, exactly? Who has the biggest fish? Can you see it, in heaven, when the folks arrive? “Dude, how’d you get saved?” “Man, I saw a great big fish on the backside of some guy’s car.” I’m not discounting God here, because God can use just about anything to bring about salvation. I’m just not so sure that’s the point of driving around with a big fish.

People, this is what I think about when I’m driving and the muse is not speaking to me. I either think about whatever story is bugging me, or some weird obsession over something that irritates me.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Oh where is my subplot?

(To the tune of "Where is my hairbrush", the best veggie tale song on earth)

So I got a decent crit the other day, once again confirming what I already knew. Not about the chick lit. I still don't know what to do with that one, short of blowing it up. Do you think I could have some terrorists show up in the middle of it and still make it funny?

Picture with me...

"I just don't know what to do with my life."
"I know, it sucks."
"What was that?"
"Terrorists just blew up the entire western United States."
"Oh no! What do I do?"
"I don't know. Want to get jiggy?"
"I'm a good girl, I am."
"Well, we might as well get married then. We're going to need to rebuild the earth."

Doesn't that have the ring of "future bestseller"?

Yes, I know, the heat is getting to me.

So my other book... you know, the one I'm pitching in oh, a week? Well, first off, I got the "Hey, you should write Inspirational" comment. Sigh. Am I pitching this Inspirational? Of course not. I'm pitching to the same folks who think I have the right tone and voice, but haven't liked any of my stories. I'm close... and yet, if this is so inspirational, are they really going to want this one? Am I overthinking again?

It doesn't matter-I'm about 10-25K short on words. And so, the brilliant suggestion, which I agree with, because frankly, the main plot can't be elongated any more, is to bring in a subplot. I also have too much introspection. Me? Surely they jest. I should avenge myself by doing a book that's nothing but dialogue. Now that would be funny. NOT.

Can I think of a subplot that works with this story? No. Can I think of a subplot that mirrors my theme? No.

However, I have written three, count them, THREE different new beginnings to the story, because said critique also said I should start from HIS POV since it's his story, and frankly I agree. I originally DID start from his POV, but he sounded like a jerk, so I used her. So I'm back to his POV. Rather than sounding like a jerk, he sounds like a whiney woman.

Do you think it would get too trite if I continually used terrorist attacks as a device? For example, my current scene:
"Do you think you could set me up with a hot babe who doesn't want me for my money?"
"As long as you're not after my wife."
"Hey, look! It's a Hezbollah dude. He's got your wife."

Except if his wife is kidnapped by Hezbollah, he can't get her pregnant. Although... if she's already pregnant, they could kidnap her. But endangering unborn children isn't very sympathetic, is it? And okay, I admit, that having Hezbollah in the book just really isn't going to work with a hyper emotional story of having a miracle baby.

Do you see what I have to work with?

Let us not forget The Book, either. I started to work on it this afternoon, but decided I needed to dig into Scripture, and of course, that got me on a huge Bible study bunny trail, so I got nothing accomplished, other than my own personal journey/growth/whatever. I'm starting to get slightly bitter about this "You won't sell a book until you write this one" stuff. I'm TRYING already!! Okay, probably not as hard as I could be. I probably could be working a little harder on it, but truly, I have no idea what I'm doing. Yeah, that sounds really good to my future fans and would be editor who thinks I'm absolutely brilliant. Sadly, I'm not. That would be God. It's HIS book. Which is really the point, except that I'm being impatient.

So, until such time as God decides to say, "here's the next bit," I'm going to have to content myself with trying to find a subplot without going stark raving mad.

Monday, July 17, 2006

I don't have a funny title tonight

It's still hot here.

But I have good news. My husband is now employed!! The really good news is that he explained to the project manager our situation, and the guy remembered him from when he worked for the company a while back. The guy likes him, likes the work he does, and didn't want to lose him, so he offered DH a better job, which includes a company vehicle. He'll be working at least through the end of the year, so another happy thing. In this industry, to have a job for six months is a good thing.

The next good thing is that I have childcare for RWA. Bay got into the day camp-one kid cancelled, so they had one spot. My friend is going to take Kay, and also Bay when they don't have camp. Her son goes to the camp with Bay, and they're best buds.

I've been trying to get my house cleaned, which is just not fun. Not only is it killer hot outside, but with no A/C, it's really bad inside. But we're also dealing with the demonic two year old. If I pick up one thing, she pulls out two. Today, I got the kitchen cleaned and the floor mopped. I started washing our bedding, and then I realized that running the dryer would be disastrous. Well, I can't line dry my stuff, because #1, I don't have a clothesline, and #2, I'm so allergic to pollen, that I get really sick from line dried clothes.

Went to the bank, dealt with finances, got depressed, got some ice cream and took the girls to a park where we could eat it in the shade. It was much cooler than our house.

In other news, the spider carcass is still in the middle of the floor. I've decided that I'm not going to vaccuum because I want the reminder to the other spiders to be reminded of my wrath.

It's still hot, I'm thinking of filling my bathtub with ice cubes and sleeping there...

Sunday, July 16, 2006

What was the spider thinking?

I had an unfortunate incident with a spider this evening. I might as well confess-I don't like the things. And sure, I will also admit to a slight fear of a creature that is small enough to squish with my bare hands. As if *I* was dumb enough to touch one.

Last night, as we cleared out a weed bed, we deprived several enormous, menacing eight legged monsters of their homes. I was afraid that they might think that an invitation to relocate to the interior of MY home, so my beloved man killed them with his bare hands. Yes, he is such a hero stud. There is a reason why he got lucky last night. The Man killed for me. Several horrible beasts are now dead and will threaten my family no more.

However, one of their relatives decided to visit me this evening, perhaps to seek vengeance for ordering the execution of his people and destroying their home. He crept across the floor, trying to be stealthy, but I saw him. I looked for a weapon, but all I could find was the rolling chair. Everything else would have required me to get close enough to touch the fiend. And so, I began to chase the spider with the rolling chair.

Oh, he thought he was so smart. He thought he was going to escape. He'd skitter one direction, I'd follow. He tried to hide under the laundry basket. I moved it. Up and down, left and right, we danced, until finally, the roller on the bottom of the chair made contact and crushed his little spider bones. I ran over him a couple of times, just to be certain he wouldn't rise again. His body remains, in the middle of the family room floor, a reminder to any who dare trespass into my sacred space.

I wonder what he was thinking, in those final moments, when he realized that he'd miscalculated and was about to meet his doom. At what point of impact did he feel the weight of my chair crushing his little body? Do you think he's in heaven? If so, will I see him there? Will I have to kill him again? Or will the Lord, in all His mercy, put the spider and I in different places so that neither of us will encounter the other? Or will we have both somehow evolved to the point of accepting each other?

Yes, this is where my mind goes in the middle of the night. I'm blaming the heat. If this hundred degree weather does not let up soon, I'm going to be killing more than spiders.

There's a story idea in this...

I have GOT to write a book about this article: Woman asks 911 to send cutie pie deputy.

In other news, just dealing with the post conference crash the messy house that goes along with it.

Do keep us in your prayers, as we've hit a few life snags. DH got a job Friday, but before you cheer, it's not at all a good situation, thanks to the stupid union and its idiotic policies. I wonder, are they helping the "brothers" or are they just helping the fat cats get fatter? Sorry, couldn't resist. Anyway, just keep it in your prayers, because if it goes through, it'll make our financial situation worse, not better.

The other thing, due to some unfortunate family events that I'm not allowed to talk about, I have no one to watch my kids while I'm in Atlanta. Currently scrambling for sitters now, and worst case scenario, DH will stay home and watch them, so I will still go, but it's a huge mess. No matter what we do, we're screwed, and it's all because of one selfish person who made a stupid mistake and rather than owning up to it and dealing with it like an adult, the entire family's life is now thrown into chaos. Yeah, still bitter. And no, for those of you who know my dramatics, it is not who you think. Which is fun, because this person can show up as a dead body in my next book and no one will be the wiser...

See, this is why being a writer is so fun. I have a problem, I can't do anything about it, but I can release my anger in a constructive way that won't get me thrown in jail. I love my life.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Separating Quacks from the real deal

It was a quiet day, most of the fun people went home. :( Did not meet any celebrities or embarrass myself, so I suppose it was a good day.

I rescued my new friend and long lost cousin Chip from the clutches of evil and we did a turn about the floor for a few minutes. He asked me if I was "into" all this stuff. Truly, the conference was fun. Mostly because I got to hang with my old friends and make new ones. I found a lot of good books. But here is what I told Chip. There are a lot of quacks there, marketing spirituality as truth, when in reality, it's just garbage. BUT there are also some really good books out there, and what will take a lot of prayer, discernment, and time in Scripture, is figuring out which is which.

For example, I met a lady signing a book on a topic very near and dear to my heart-forgiveness. We sat and chatted about it for a while, and she gave me what I thought was a very good model. Well, tonight on the phone with a good friend, I told her about it, and she says, "Danica, that's not Biblical." Huh? So we went through some of it, dug in some Scripture, and well, before I make any decisions on the value of this book, I'm going to have to do some more digging. BUT, as I told her, the value may be in the time I take to figure it out, because I'll still be digging in truth.

See, I think sometimes, we fool ourselves into thinking we've got it all figured out. That these authors penning great works are on a pedastal of having things figured out. They don't. And if they say they do, they're morons and you need to run away as fast as you can.

Some quacks are obvious. Chip and I rather smugly (but in a very funny way) could pick out a few right off the bat. Others, though, hide their lies behind cool covers, great marketing, and catchy titles.

So take the time to figure it out. You won't have it all figured out, but in the figuring, you'll find answers to some of your questions, as well as questions you never had, and realize that there is so much more out there to learn. The fun of it, though, is figuring it out for yourself. I think here in America, despite the whole freedom and supposed independent thinking we have, we're all too content to let others do the thinking for us. Because you know, I don't have the market on truth. Maybe folks read what I have to say and think I'm a quack. That's fine. Just make sure it's because you've thought it through, dug into some Scripture, and know from whence you speak.

Going to step off the soapbox now so I can go to bed and do it all again tomorrow. Tomorrow will be fun, though-I'm going to the Captivating mini conference, and as some of you know, I read the book and rather enjoyed it. Camy has some interesting thoughts on the book. I'd link now, but I'm tired and lazy, so I'll do it tomorrow in my summary. If I remember to talk about Captivating and am not distracting by a funny, embarrassing, or otherwise notable event.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Kirk Cameron and letting go of other childish things

So there I am, completely awestruck by the whole conference, and I'm debating about getting in line for a signing. Being the random person I am, I stop, do a 180 and run into... Kirk Cameron. No, I am not kidding. I am dating myself here, but for those of you who don't know, he was on a tv show called Growing Pains. All my friends and I had a crush on him, and I do believe that we got into a number of fights as to which one of us would end up being Mrs. Kirk Cameron. Sadly, that did not happen.

However, imagine my shock as I nearly knock the man, who I have not thought about since I was a teenager, to the ground. Yes, I am so graceful. Fortunately, it was pretty much a non-event, and as I glanced at the once teen heartthrob, I thought, he's not so cute. He was there to promote a book his mom (maybe with him?) was doing. The line was so long, I didn't feel like standing in it to say hi or get a copy of the book. Besides, what do you say? "Dude, I know nothing about you, except I once thought you were hot, and now you're kinda old. But hey, congrats on the success and I hope the book does well." Yeah. Not.

Because there is something weird about running into a former crush/former flame that makes you realize what an utter idiot you were. Like, how could I have possibly imagined that I'd somehow meet Kirk Cameron, knock him off his feet (not quite, but go with me here), he'd look deep into my eyes and say, "Danica, you are the most amazing woman in the world. I'll die if you don't marry me." Pretty stupid, eh?

So why am I imagining that as I wander this conference, that I'll be there next year, big fat contract under my belt? That in Atlanta, I'll be wandering the halls, some editor is going to fall at his or her feet, and say, "Danica, I've been waiting my whole life for you-you're simply the most brilliant writer I've ever met."

Why do we indulge in such childish fantasies?

The truth is, it will never happen. Not unless I get my butt in the chair, pour some blood, sweat, and tears into my books, then knock some editor dead with a killer query, synopsis, manuscript, and marketing plan. I know, no one ever told me that I needed one before selling. But as I walk the floor at CBA/ICRS, I realized just how much work and effort goes into a single book. When I chatted with my beloved Camy regarding her book deal (mega publisher, super sweet deal), one of the things she said pushed her over the edge was that she knew her market. She'd done her research, and they could sell her. I also walked the floor with one of our editors, who picked up a book from an author at another house. She told me, "I really wish I could have bought this book. I tried to buy this book and make it fit, but I couldn't get it to fit within any of our market guidelines." Probably not an exact quote, but close enough.

As I look at my books, I have to ask, "have I done my homework?" The truth is, I could be doing it a lot better. I chatted with Paula briefly about The Book, and the person with her (sorry, I do not remember her name) gave me some advice that is absolutely priceless. One of the realizations about The Book I had at the conference, is that it's being done right now. The author said, "That's good. It's hot right now. You need to figure out what makes your take on it different, and write it, because that's what the market wants." She encouraged me to write it, because the window of it being "hot" is small-and if I want to do it, it has to be now.

As much as I think I'm doing all the work I need to do to sell a book, the truth is, I'm not even close. Even though I think I'm there, my publishing dream is a little like wanting to marry Kirk Cameron. I had no idea who he was, what he liked, if we were even compatible, and yet, I had the whole wedding planned.

Time to grow up, put away the pinup poster, get my butt in chair, hands on keyboard, and get 'er done.

Wish you were here...

I'd hoped to do something super cool for this, my 100th post on Blogger (which is deceiving since I have a lot more on Bravenet).

However, I am beat. We had such a good time tonight. I have some new best friends, and some fun stories to tell, which you have to remind me of AFTER the conference. Stories so far:

1. The Sisterhood of the Exploding Pants
2. Karaoke Night
3. All the fun new people I met
4. God blowing up my writing universe yet again
5. Being Camy's groupie/MaryLu's groupie
6. Um, I forget...

Sunday, July 09, 2006

How Great is Our God

I do love that song. I got to hear it tonight at the worship thing at CBA. Awesome evening. A lot of great performers, some I didn't care for, but mostly, very very enjoyable. And, on the way home, I got to hear the one and only Chris Tomlin sing it on the radio, so I was very happy. I love how everyone in the universe at every single worship thing I've been to lately sings this song, but man, Tomlin does it best. Although I've decided they should make it illegal to play this song on the radio. I got so busy and happy worshipping while driving, I almost crashed. I do that everytime that song comes on, too. Health hazard, I tell you.

Other fun events of my first CBA day. I got to see Camy and met her friend, MaryLu , who is a very sweet woman I got to spend the evening with while Camy hobnobbed. We scoped out the show floor, which does not open until tomorrow. Very exciting stuff. Had NO IDEA how huge this thing is. We also got to see MaryLu's first book on display, which was very exciting.

Are you getting the idea that this is very exciting?

Tomorrow, I get to see the rest of the SH crew. And for those of you who know of what I do for them, do stop by the anniversary party on the boards. I'm hoping to coordinate some of that stuff with seeing folks tomorrow, God and technology willing. I am so beside myself with excitement, because it was so cool to see Camy, even though we did not nearly have enough time, and tomorrow, I get to see even more folks. On the agenda- hugfest with my favorite friends, lunch with Ginny Aiken, signings (and YAY! some of the authors I haven't met yet), and I think my head is going to explode if I continue. :)

Plus, I gotta get to bed. It's gonna be an early morning and long day. :)

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Idiots and Happiness

I know, they really don't go together well, do they? Although I think idiots really must be happy with themselves, because they seem content to remain idiots. So maybe they do go together. *shrugs*

However, in my life, idiots are a great source of unhappiness.

I'll begin with waking up. I told That Man last night to please get me up in time to get Bay to school and Kay to the doctor's. Well, he woke me up at 8:30 (Bay has to be at school at 9) and says, "Aren't you going to get up?" (As though I was idiot for sleeping in) Yes, I am-as soon as you WAKE ME UP!!!

Now, for those of you who haven't had the pleasure of dealing with me in the morning, I suggest it be an experience you forgo. Particularly on mornings when I am running late. I am mean. I am homicidal. And the very worst transgression you can commit is getting in my way and/or talking to me. Guess who spent the morning following me around? Except for the fact that he's feeling slightly insecure over my regular death threats, I not only would have threatened to kill him, but I might have done it had I been given access to a decent weapon.

You have to wonder at the sanity of a guy who can smile at you, be all kissy face at you, and tell you he loves you while you've got a death grip on a butter knife. But hey, that's why I love him, so I suppose as long as remembers to keep me away from sharp objects when I'm in a mood, he's safe.

Got Bay to school, took my things to the dry cleaners so I can wear something other than sweats and PJs to the CBA thing. Because I am poor, yet thrifty, I chose to try a new drycleaners-one that had a coupon in the coupon thing you get in the mail. They had a map. Said cleaners does not exist. In fact, a cleaners DOES exist at that location, however, it's a different name, and they were pretty adamant about not putting out that coupon. Lady also could not get in her head that I wanted my clothes done by tomorrow. I think she sniffed too many cleaning chemicals. I caved and took my clothes to a place we usually use, and plunked down a small fortune to clean my clothes. Note to self: don't be an idiot and buy dry clean only stuff, even though it's cute.

Hit the Starbucks drive through. Ordered my usual-Venti Earl Grey Tea, Cambric with two honeys. It's really not hard. In fact, it's quite tasty. However, the idiot lady was so busy cooing at my baby that she forgot my honey. Which I did not realize until the tea had cooled enough to drink, ten minutes down the freeway. Now I can drink my tea with honey, I survived quite nicely for a number of years before I discovered this epicurean treat. However, once the palate becomes spoiled, and one is expecting a certain level of tea making prowess, to not have honey in my tea is unacceptable.

Got to the doctor's, and my doc is not in on Fridays, so we got to see the cute one. Which is really the plus side of my daughter's injuries. The paramedics, the ER doc, they were all really cute too. Cute Doc said she was just fine, and mostly spent his time reassuring me that I'm a good mommy. :) That was a very happy moment. Until we got ready to leave and idiot self spilled her Earl Grey tea all over the doctor's office. You know, once you see it seeping into the fabric of a chair, to be enjoyed by no one, the fact that your Earl Grey tea has no honey in it really doesn't matter. You just want your tea back.

Came home, worked on picking up the house, talked to my dad, blah blah blah, picked Bay up from school, went to Subway to get some lunch, ate lunch, talked to my my mom, picked up the house some more, blah blah blah.

Then, I went for my massage. *Doing big happy dance* My friend told me about this place that does $25 massages (Yes, for an HOUR) and they're really good. Super really good. I have an appointment for next week too. At $25 a pop, I can now afford weekly massage. Life is going to be really good. I am pleased to report that no idiots reared their heads during my massage.

Post massage, I went to the store to pick up some fried chicken and dessert-my friend was going to drop off her kiddos at my house so she and her hubster could have a night out. Idiot self forgot that MY kiddos don't like the sides I chose. Idiot self also forgot that friend's children eat nonstop. Needless to say, I spent the evening listening to choruses of, "I'm hungry. Do you have anything else to eat?" They're like locusts. They ate everything in my house. Fortunately, they did not find my M&M stash.

And then, because my FIL needs the steam cleaner, we picked up around the house so we could clean some spots first. This led to my deciding that I liked the cleanliness of things, and because of that idiot who could not allow me to be happy today, I ended up going Rambo cleaning, and cleared out a large portion of DSD's room. And so, all the wonderful relaxation done to my body today-completely undone. My back is killing me.

I had nothing to blog about, until That Man sent me an email. He'd asked me to write it for him, which I did, however, I had a couple of places where I said things like (insert blah blah blah here). He copied me on the final version. He did not insert blah blah blah here, in fact, he sent the exact copy I sent him. *shaking head*

I think there is something wrong with our water. Either that or idiot alien demons took over portions of our brains last night. I'm going to bed now, and hopefully, the idiot interfering with my happy place will be gone in the morning.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

My awful night

If the writing thing wasn't bad enough, I had another terrible thing happen last night. It actually was earlier in the evening, but I was too freaked out to talk about it.

We were all on the bed, watching TV, and Kay tumbled off the bed. She cried for a second, DH picked her up, and she stopped breathing. We couldn't get her to respond, so I called 911. Just as I got the operator on line, she started breathing again. Which was good, but since I actually dialed the number, they are required to send someone out. The paramedics arrived, checked her out, said she was fine, and asked if I wanted an ambulance to the hospital. Uh, no, she's fine. Well, because I got the paramedics involved, they have to either take her to the hospital or I have to agree to take her.

So we took her to the ER. She's obviously fine, the doctors agree she's fine, and while they did diagnose her with a mild concussion, they said that she probably didn't actually stop breathing-she was just holding her breath. HUH? They gave us some literature, and sure enough, it's something that some kids her age do when they're injured or upset. They hold their breath without realizing it (except some kids do learn to use it to manipulate their parents), giving everyone quite a scare.

Just as they're filling out the discharge papers, my beloved baby decides to climb the exam table, loses her footing, and yes, goes crashing down head first on to the tiled floor. Talk about embarrassing. I can only imagine what kind of bad parents these doctors thing we are. Fortunately, they also saw me having to chase the little monster down a couple of times when she escaped the exam room, so I'm thinking they realize she's not an ordinary two year old-she's super baby! But still... how embarrassing to bring a kid in to the ER for a concussion and have her knock herself silly right as the doctors are discharging her? Needless to say we had to stay in the ER a bit longer to make sure she didn't do further damage to herself with this fall.

I'm taking her back to the doctor tomorrow to make sure she's fine (another legal thing we're required to do, apparently). She's had a few of these falls where it took her a while to take a breath (this was just longer-too long, IMO), so I do want to be thorough. Even though they gave me information on how to deal with breath holding, there's still questions I want to ask. Like, the papers say do NOT give CPR, so how do you know when it's not just simple breath holding, and actually something serious that needs CPR. Which reminds me, I haven't had a CPR class since Bay was born, probably something I need to go take care of. I was so upset when Kay wasn't breathing, that I don't think I'd have remembered what to do. I was shaking so bad, I could barely call 911.

She's perfectly fine today, you'd never know she fell and hurt herself-honestly, there was no visible damage to her at all-just the fact that we had those terrifying few moments where she was not breathing. That Man says it was only about thirty seconds, but I think it was longer. I waited the normal few seconds while he tried to get her to respond, and then it took me a while to find the phone to call 911. She didn't start breathing until the operator was on the line. So it was just a short, scary time. It took a while to come down off the adrenaline.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Please, please, please, can I kill something?

Well, WTW, that blessed piece of literary achievement, is back on the drawingboard rather than winging its way to New York. *Insert your favorite obscenities* And since the CP I just got it from occasionally peeps in here, I'm going to give a great big huge disclaimer-it is NOT her fault. I am NOT mad at her. She is NOT on my death list.

Basically, the things she pointed out as being problematic are the exact same things pointed out as problematic years ago when I shelved the project. I THOUGHT I FIXED THEM. *sobs* And the thing is, I absolutely see where she's coming from. It would be so much easier if I could say that she's a crack smoking moron who needs a mental checkup. As I read her comments, I really couldn't find anything that I could say, "You're WRONG!"

So I don't know what to do. I've spent the past year trying to fix this book and make it into something sellable, something I wouldn't be ashamed to send in. Apparently, I've failed. Worse, I don't feel like I've learned anything, because I have not fixed it. I'd at least feel better if OTHER things were wrong. But no, it's the same stuff. In fact, I'd lost her by page FIVE. Five. As in, the five years I've been trying to sell a book. Must be my lucky number. :)

I'm not quitting, I'm not even thinking of it. I'm just wondering what I'm doing, continuing in this same rut. Is it worth wasting another year on? And how can I keep all the work from being wasted?

Do you think they'd buy a book where the heroine dies? I could have so much fun slaughtering her.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Meet Peter and Britta

This, my friends, is the friends to lovers story, a modern day marriage of convenience. I put on one of my favorite movies, Someone Like You, and I realized that Hugh and Ashley are the perfect Peter and Britta.

Can I just say there is no experience more joyful for me than sitting down and creating new stories? It's so funny, I've been stressing about process lately, and I hear about character worksheets and all that, and I have a really hard time with it. I finally realized that I'm a weird combo writer. I need about the first 50-75 pages to stretch my legs, figure out who these people are, what their deal is, and anything prior to that is a collosal waste of my time. How do I know what their favorite color is, their worst fears, their greatest hopes, without ever spending time with them? I need those first few chapters to really dig in. However, once I get them figured out, I need a synopsis to keep me grounded. Half pantser, half plotter. Gotta love it. So here I am, almost at page 50, and I'm finally starting to get a feel for these guys. Probably in about another twenty pages, I can write a decent synopsis, and then I'll be off...

Of course, I haven't exactly committed to this book, because right now, nothing feels quite right. But I'll get there. Until then, keep my folks happy, and if they tell you anything about their story, do share.

Off to discover some more about this crazy pair!

(Oh, and while they LOOK the characters in the movie, they act nothing like them. Peter is an uptight financial genius, and Britta is a free-spirited caterer. She is going to tear his universe apart. *rubbing hands evilly together*)

I just reminded myself of something. For all my threats to kill people off in my books, there is really a lack of dead bodies in my books. Since I'm not at synopsizing phase yet, when I am there, will someone remind me that I need to kill someone in this book?

Germany deserved to lose

Yeah, world cup soccer mania is still in our house. You know, the hubby and all... Sadly, because most Americans don't love soccer the way the rest of the world does, we have to watch the matches on the Spanish channel. It's really surreal, watching games in another language. I think I might be learning some Spanish. :)

So the game... Germany is such an awesome and skilled team. They truly dominated it. However. For as many scoring opportunities as they had, they blew them. They should have pulled Podolski and didn't. The guy missed at least a half a dozen easy goals. Yeah, I know, easy for me to say from my armchair. But frankly, if you're a professional player, there should just be shots that you should not miss. It's like my dad has always said about basketball. For a professional basketball player, there should be no excuse for missing free throws. If I were to ever own a basketball team, I would fine players for missing. Seriously. Going back to the soccer game, these were the sort of easy shots that Podolski just completely blew over the goal. And then... oh, this one was brilliant. One of his teammates had a perfect shot on goal that there was no way the keeper would have been able to get to in time. Podolski accidentally heads it out of the goal.


I hope the Italians send him flowers. They really didn't play all that well, but for the idocy of the Germans, they're headed to the finals. France and Portugal should be a good game, and I look for the winner of that one to slaughter the Italians. Of course, I'm always wrong in my sports predictions so the Italians will probably end up winning it all.

Finding forgiveness

I'm kind of in a weird mode right now-I originally did the whole My Space thing because I wanted to connect with a couple of folks, but never really got into it. And then more of my friends started joining and now it's a semi big thing, I suppose. Anyway, I finally bit the bullet in terms of leaving my hermit existence and added my high school and college. Which led me to reminiscing.

Now since I do have my college and high school on there, I'm not sure how much to put here, because I'd hate to have folks look me up and find me trashing them. But there's a point to it, I promise. Long story short, most of my college years involved my being a part of a VERY toxic situation that nearly destroyed me. I hate to give those folks the satisfaction of knowing that, but there ya go. See, that's the point of my forgiveness post.

As some of you know, I have HUGE issues with forgiveness. I've been really praying about it and talking to God about it, and the thing is, I just don't understand why I can't forgive. Tonight, as I was thinking about some of this and reliving some of the old wounds, I found a way to forgive.

One of the biggest wounds came from a person who was an advisor, and supposedly a trusted friend. Lesson number one that I should have seen coming, but didn't until it was too late, is that if a person bad mouths others behind their backs, but kisses their butt to their face, they're probably doing it to you too. I don't know why I thought I was immune, but I never saw the knife coming until it was too late.

I'd applied for a really big, prestigious fellowship (funny, I can't even remember the name) and pretty much had it all locked up, except for one letter of recommendation. I mentioned it to this person, and she got all excited, wanted to help me out, and assured me that she was going to write the perfect letter. What she never knew was that I ended up having the opportunity to read this letter. It was perfect, all right. Think of the meanest character assasination you could do on a person-it was all that and more. In a letter to a committee that was deciding my fate for my career. Yeah, not pretty. It devastated me. I wish I had a copy just so I could show how venomous this letter was. Though I'm glad I don't, because with all my issues, I'd probably use it as proof of what a horrible person I am.

I've never been able to forgive her for that. It literally destroyed my chances at some things I'd really wanted in my future. The other letters written on my behalf-were amazing. But the lies and venom in this one letter... I truly hated this woman for that.

I hurt, even now, thinking of it. What kind of person would do such a thing? She always did think I needed to be taken down a notch or two. And yes, I knew she was a miserably unhappy woman with absolutely no self esteem. But why me?

As I thought about it tonight, I realized that even though she thought she was getting me good, she actually did me a favor. Had I gotten this fellowship, my life would be vastly different. I'd be off in some career, and while I'd probably be very good at it, would I have the life I have? I wouldn't have my husband, who I met because I had to take some time off to re-evaluate my direction after this person's betrayal (among other things). Which means I wouldn't have my amazing kiddos. More importantly, all the things that have happened on this particular path are all things that brought me closer to God. They've made me a better person.

Back when I was a freshman in college, one of these toxic people informed me that they were going to break my spirit, that I needed to be taken down, and I needed to learn my place. And to an extent, they succeeded. They broke me in ways that I can't even explain. But see, God is bigger than that. And He is bigger than them. So He was able to take all that broken stuff and use it for His glory.

In this realization, I'm able to find peace. And yes, forgiveness. How can I remain angry when it was their treachery that brought me to the place I am at now? Because this is a much better place. I know why I love Genesis 50:20 so much-"You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives." These people did intend harm, and trust me when I say they did everything in their power to make sure of it. But all the good and blessings that have flowed into my life-despite their plans-it is truly a miracle of God.

So thank you, mean people that I have enough grace to not publicly name. I am so grateful for all the things you did to me, even though it really hurt. You have no idea how many miracles have been wrought from those acts. God is so good.

Wow. It's 5 am-I haven't gone to bed yet. Funny, many of my friends are just waking up and starting their day (thus sayeth the pings to my inbox) and I'm seriously looking at catching some z's. I wonder how long the kiddos will let me sleep.

Beez... beez... beez

Yet another public service announcement-but hey, I'm boring like that. :)

Some of you know of this really cool writing group called the Gonna-Beez. Which, sadly, is not as active as we once were. Well, dang it, I miss it! I miss hanging out all hours, chatting writing, spending time on the hot seat, making others squirm on the hot seat, etc.

Soooo, in the interests of stirring things up, we will be chatting Thursday night at 10 pm Eastern-gonna do the IM chat thing, since yahoo no longer has the chat feature for our group. :(

If you would like to be a part of this fun time, do let me know. I miss all my beez buddies, and since so many of them have sold and changed their names, I don't even remember who is who anymore.

You can IM me on MSN at dreamen1@hotmail.com or Yahoo at dreamenint. Not sure which venue we'll use, I guess it'll depend on which one more folks have. :) And hey, no freaks or perverts IMing me please. I'm really sick of those IMs telling me to check out your webcam. Please. You obviously have nothing worth seeing if you have to beg perfect strangers to look at it.

And if you aren't a Bee, why not? Some people... *shaking head* You can join here: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Gonna-beez/

Monday, July 03, 2006

A Public Service Announcement

Because I'm such a great friend, I like to do things to help out my friends... hahahaha... Seriously, when a friend says, "Hey Dreamy, can you advertise on your blog for me," I say, "why not?" I can post millions of posts for free if I want, so hey, if you need me to advertise for you, I'm your girl. It's like my favorite quote from Grease says, "if you can't be an athlete, be an athletic supporter."

Anywhoo... this is for my dear friend Camy, who I will hopefully be having the pleasure of hugging to death in less than a week. Let's make this last week of her life joyful, shall we? (Geez, get a sense of humor, will you?)

The Story Sensei Summer Sale - A writers' summer event!

From now until July 15th, I will be holding a fabulous contest for my Story Sensei critique service.

I will draw the names of TWO lucky winners! They will each receive:

A free synopsis critique – up to 10 pages single-spaced, a $40 value!


A coupon for 25% OFF any manuscript critique – whether full or partial manuscript, any number of words. For a 100,000 word manuscript, that's a savings of $250!

In addition, EVERYONE WHO ENTERS will receive a 10% OFF coupon for any service, whether synopsis, query letter, or manuscript critique (full or partial). For a 100,000 word manuscript, that's a savings of $100, just for entering.

Go to my Story Sensei blog and post a comment to enter the contest!

I know, I didn't blog yesterday...

I was on the phone all night.

The cool thing about cell phones is that if you have the right plan, you can call people in your network for free, and you can call anyone on evenings and weekends for free too. It makes it much easier to deal with this long distance friendship thing.

I don't really have a blog topic, I just realized I hadn't blogged because I was on the phone all night last night, and I thought I ought to at least say hello.

Maybe I'll blog about Heather's culvert...

Saturday, July 01, 2006


1. Go to Wikipedia.
2. In the Search box, type your birth month and day (but not year).
3. List three events that happened on your birthday.
4. List two important birthdays and one interesting death.
5. One holiday or observance (if any).
6. Tag 5 more people - if ya feel like it.


Three events:
1642 - Charles I calls the English Parliament traitors. Beginning of the English Civil War
1938 - Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers are on the cover of Life Magazine
1953 - The jail on Devil's Island is closed

Two important birthdays and one interesting death:
1862 - Claude Debussy, French composer (d. 1918)
1904 - Deng Xiaoping, leader of the People's Republic of China (d. 1997)
1991 - Colleen Dewhurst, Canadian actress (b. 1924)

One holiday or observance
RC feasts - Mary queen of angels

Anyone want to take a stab? How about I tag Tori , Eve , Jana , Loreth , Chrys .