Friday, March 24, 2017

Flashback Friday: Officially Online!

March 2007:
Remember back in Aug 2006, when I'd worked up the nerve to join the local writer's group, met TD, but two months later had to move?  In late Feb/early March, after things settled down, we had DSL internet installed.  It was wonderful!  After only knowing dial-up, and AOL being my homepage, it was interesting to get used to Yahoo and Google.  One slight hitch:  When my older son set up the email, he put it in 'my' name, but because his dad's name was on the account, I was suddenly getting emails in D's name....unless people already knew it was me!

I still kept my AOL mail, and one day an email from TD popped up, inviting me to join the Indiana Writer's Connection, a chat loop.  I admit, I was leery at first, since I'd seen my 1st chat loop back in 1993, and wondered how people could keep up with the conversation!  But I agreed to give it a try....and suddenly I discovered a whole new world out there.....a world where writers could connect with one another and share information, commiserate, or simply be supportive.  

One of the most valuable pieces of information was how to make a website.  We'd just gotten our tax money, so on the advice of none other than Ms Kelly Kirch, I paid for an entire year's subscription for mollydaniels.citymax.com, and started building my website.

I chatted with published authors, writers who were trying to be published, and writers who simply liked to write, but had no desire to publish.  Once in a while we'd have 'word wars', where we'd all write for an hour, then report back on our progress.

I was in heaven, since no one around here at the time cared about my desire to put words on a page.  I was also thrilled that the pace was slower than what I'd seen in 1993!  Being so small in numbers, you could chat at your own pace.

Next Month:  WriteStuffWrite Conference and Reconnecting!

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Present Day:
Update on NCAA 2017:
The 1st and 2nd rounds were kind to me!
Round 1:  Called 13/16 and 15/16
Round 2:  Called 5/8 and 6/8.
Purdue and Butler both advanced, but Villanova (defending champs) were knocked off.  There's still hope for Gonzaga:)

I finally finished the new short story for 'Family Secrets'!  I added another 1400 words and successfully wrapped it up in a believable manner, and everyone who's read it has FINALLY been satisfied.  One of my beta readers is still not happy with certain details left out, but she's over-ruled by two others and myself, who believe it's unnecessary, since those characters are not the focus of the story.  I got it written twelve hours under deadline, and I was so thrilled, I took off Wednesday to simply relax and READ!

Ant Invasion:
We've been invaded by a small army of unwelcome guests.  At first, it was simply a stray ant here or there, when someone would spill Kool Aid or sugar.  But now they're running all over the counter top more frequently, and I'm finding them on the table, in the dogs' food bowls, and yesterday I had 3 floating in my coffee cup (eeeuuuuu!).  Time to get rid of them and mix up a little something to take back to their queen, so they will permanently leave us alone.  *rubs hands in glee*

Spring Break:
My youngest has had a relaxing Break, sleeping in until 10am and playing video games with his cousins.  He's also spent time at the Pet Port, and wants to start walking dogs or playing with the cats.  The only problem is, since he's only 13, a parent has to accompany him.  I was too busy working on Secrets, and his dad didn't feel well, so he's been a little frustrated the past few days.

A and J are here for the next week also; they had 2 weeks off for Break.  A spends most of her time on the phone, and J has been playing video games with W.  It's been pretty peaceful:)

The spouse's 63rd birthday was Monday, and the older kids bought him a new gas grill.  We grilled pork chops and enjoyed the warmer weather.  On Tuesday, we spent the afternoon working on the front yard, and raking up leaves and pine needles.  I went into 'destruct-mode' and tore off most of the vines on the brown house's porch.  It was cold on Wednesday, but finished up yesterday.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Friday, March 17, 2017

Flashback Friday: Signing The Papers!

March 1997:
The weather improved; our application for a new home had been approved, so we met with N American Housing to sign the papers and make the down payment on our new home.  Mom and Dad loaned us $5K, and even came down to watch the kids while we did this.  To celebrate, we all went out to dinner.

There was one slight hitch:  After we sat through the the long, boring explanation of EVERYTHING (I was ready to scream; surely a child could even understand all the terms?), and D haggling over the issue of dirt being trucked in (as an operator, he knew there would be enough dirt in the hole dug for the foundation to spread around and back-fill; none would be needed to be trucked in!), we reached the final page when Carol realized she'd used the wrong form.  In front of us, she ripped up all but the final page, where we'd signed, and told us she'd redo it, and there was no need for us to return to initial/sign all over again.  We naively believed her.

Fast-forward several months when our contract arrived; the order for three trucks of dirt was back in the contract, and there was nothing we could do about it.

Next Month:  Another Fight

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Present Day:
NCAA Basketball is in full swing!

I'll also be at the Eagles Craft Show tomorrow, and have already sold two of Kenzie's new book! Plus, my submissions for the Crossroads Antho have been approved, so one less thing to stress over.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Flashback Friday: 806 Woody Hall

March 1987:
I moved into my new dorm room on the BSU campus, and was slightly dismayed at the news I'd have to take the elevator to the 6th floor of Woody/Shales, then walk up two more flights of stairs.  Fortunately, since I was moving in, I could use the service elevator to move my belongings.

My new room was painted in rainbow colors, with lacy pink curtains at the window.  I was to have the bed by the door, and my new roomie had gone home for the weekend.  I later learned her previous roommate had committed suicide over the break between quarters, by overdosing on pain medication while in the bathtub.  Most of the students had already departed; she simply swallowed her meds, took a bath, and went to sleep.  I don't know if she eventually drowned, or if the tub was even full of water.  All I know is a maintenance worker found her the next day.

When Valerie Martin walked in, we instantly clicked.  We were both quiet, and shared a love of the same TV shows.  She already had a television, so I'd sent mine back with my parents.  My friend Carole was living down the road at the Baptist House, and invited me to join the choir.  I also met Shawna, Shawn, and I'm blanking on Shawna's roommate's name.  She had been Homecoming Queen at her HS.  Anyway, I'd gone to the Back To School Dance with them, and when slow dances began, the four of us sat down.  Instantly, four boys came over and snapped the others up, with the fourth one approaching me, but made a detour at the last minute, the expression on his face clearly saying, "Whoa, I don't know you!" 

I didn't take offense; I simply enjoyed being around others and dancing again.

Classes began, and I enjoyed all of them.

Next Month:  Meeting Bob....

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Present Day:
Mom's had back pain this entire week, and finally went to the doctor on Wednesday.  We've gone through the two chests and weeded out what she wanted to get rid of, plus went through two stacks of papers.  Hopefully today, I'll be making a trip to the post office to mail some packages for her:)  I'll be heading home tomorrow, arriving in time to sing at church, and go to karaoke tomorrow night.

Writing-wise, I've spent this entire week working on a new submission to the Crossroads Antho, as well as cleaning up a previously-unfinished one, to be titled Family Secrets, and replace the other one which was deemed 'too dark and disturbing' a week ago.  Who knew I'd write a story in which a person *might* need a security blanket before reading it?  Sigh.......guess they'd better never read Koontz, King, Andrews, or even Irving!

Spring Forward begins this weekend, so on Monday, I'll be sleep-deprived again.  Fun, fun.  Plus, Mother Nature continues her bi-polarism....the weather's been in the 60s all week, but today it drops into the 30s, with snow expected in my town and southward tomorrow.  Boo....hiss!

Have a great weekend and stay warm!

Friday, March 3, 2017

Flashback Friday: Day Trip With Dad!

March 1977:
Mom was still studying hard for her Master's degree in Health Education, so one day Dad announced he had a special treat in mind for my sister and I.  We would drive to Chicago and spend the day at the Science and Industry Museum.

I remember being fascinated by the Doll House, and longed to spend more time listening to the description, but since we had a lot to do and see, I had to be content with listening to one of the 'phones', then accompanying Dad to other exhibits.

I THINK the submarine was a new attraction; it wasn't in its current 'home'; I remember having to go outside to go through it.  I do remember the joke about the drunk coming out of the bar and being stuck in traffic while the submarine was being moved!

Ten years would go by until my sister made a return trip, bringing me a wax mold of that doll house..."I remember how much you loved it!", and it wouldn't be until 2015 until I returned with my youngest, along with my sister and her two kids, to tour the museum again.  We saw the Doll House (now I know it's actually called the Fairy Castle!), the submarine, the coal mine, and ended the day with a trip to Giordano's Pizza:)

Next Month:  The Circus!

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Present Day:
I've been hard at work the past week, to reformat all my AU books with page numbers and headers, as well as updating the copyright page.  Finished #7 yesterday, which means today, I get to turn my attention to Kenzie's three books (Wild At Heart, Heart's Last Chance, and NiKoh's Chosen), so they all match the interior of Kira's Slice of Pizza:)

I'm also hoping to send off the check for the booth rental at the Eagles Craft Show on the 18th.  Local author NE Riggs (fantasy genre) may join me, which will give her an idea of what to expect next month when we're at Karen's Book Barn in La Grange, KY:)

This weekend, I'm off to Mom and Dad's again.  Mom wants to go through a couple of chests, as well as finish the jewelry inventory.  I was supposed to leave tomorrow, but just discovered my Teen (he turned 13 on Wednesday!) has a band concert on Sunday.  So can't leave until then, sigh!

Going to the church's Fish Fry tonight, then off to the Open Gallery for the kick-off of the First Fridays again.

Weather this week has still been good, in the 50s and 60s, and we had rain on Wednesday.

What words set your teeth on edge?  Kenzie's blogging about that today.

Have a safe and happy weekend!

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

March Reading List

Apparently, I had a productive February!  Edited and released Kenzie's new book, Kira's Slice of Pizza, in both e-format and print, plus accomplished most of what I set out to do:
-Finish cover request and send partial payment  Check:)  It's beautiful!!!!
-Finish Ghost Story  I've added at leat 600 words to it:)
-Add words to Heart Song  Nope
-Buy copies of Hotel Stories Nope
-Get more decorations up on walls still working on it:)
-Finish watching Downton Abbey Check:)
-Finish Kira edits and start early promo  1st round finished, plus cover art shared:)  2/23:  Book Released!  Now working on print version.
-Lose 5 pounds Won't know until March
-File taxes  Check:) Got them back a week later!!!

Health:  Finally got my voice back!  I was getting aggravated with my limited range.

Books Read:  4
           Print:  2
        E-book:  2
            DNF:  1

Songs Added To Good List:  8, even though I had no voice for most of the month!

So What About March's Goals?
-Buy copies of Hotel, Orion, and Kira (check!)
-Do well at Eagles Craft Fair  Bleh....sold 0.  Hardly anyone showed up.
-Finish Ghost Story
-Buy copies of Crossroads Antho (releasing March 15th!) Not arriving until April 3rd now.
-Start gathering promo for April signing  Check:)
-Lose 5 pounds
-Finish formatting previously released books (already did 1-4 of AU:)  AU 5-7, check:)  KM's Chosen, check:); WAH, check:)
-Pay cover artist(s)
-Watch King's Speech and Le Mis, plus classic TV DVDs

March Reading List:
Print:
A Kings Christmas-Jean Joachim  DRR!  Loved this!
History Lessons-Dana Lindaman and Kyle Ward
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Tomb of the Moon-NE Riggs
Shogun-James Clavell  Enjoyed certain parts....maybe need to watch mini-series again?

E-Book:
To Live Again-VI Edwards  LOVED It:)  DRR!
Christmas Valentine-Jamie Carie  DRR!  Loved it:)
Just Another Rainy Day-Amber Skyze  Very good:)
It's Always Something-Nikki Lynn Barrett  DRR!!!  LOVED THIS!
After Ten-Michele Shriver

Karaoke Songs:
Thurs:
We Don't Need Another Hero-Tina Turner Did moderately well:)
Friends and Lovers-Gloria LoringlCarl Anderson  LOL....think I did better on Carl Anderson's part!
Hard To Say I'm Sorry-Chicago  Nailed it:)  Was disappointed Get Away wasn't included.  I wanted to do the dance that our color guard performed our senior year, lol!
We Don't Talk Anymore-Cliff Richards  Not too bad.
We Got The Beat-Go-Gos  Nailed it!
Hard To Say It's Over-Sheena Easton  DNH
Left in the Dark-Barbra Streisand  DNH

We Just Disagree-Dave Mason
Lifeline-Papa Roach
We May Never Pass This Way Again-Seals and Crofts

We're Not Gonna Take It-Twisted Sister



Sat:
Lyin' Eyes-Eagles Bleh....don't think I was on the right note.
MacArthur Park-Donna Summer Abridged version and did well!
Mad About You-Belinda Carlisle  Nailed it:)
Magic-Olivia Newton-John  Nailed it, plus people sang along!
Magic Carpet Ride-Steppinwolf  Wasn't too bad; just had never practiced 2nd verse!
Magic Man-Heart  Did well on this one; bar patrons cheered and even had one guy looking enthusiastic!
Magnet and Steel-Walter Egan  Did okay on it.
Magical Mystery Tour-Beatles DNH
Make Me Lose Control-Eric Carmen  DNH
Makin' It-David Naughton Did fairly well...
Making Love Out Of Nothing At All-Air Supply  Elaine took the low part; I took the high, and we knocked it out of the park:)
Mama-Genesis  DNH
Mama He's Crazy-Judds  Did fairly well:)
Mama's Broken Heart-Miranda Lambert Wasn't too bad; flubbed a line on the 2nd verse though...
Disney Mambo #5:  Rocked it:)