Wednesday, August 31, 2011

I Missed the Ship to Historical Romanceville

Oh, dear! I think my
good intentions
were on that ship!
Let me set the scene for you:

There's fog. Lots of fog rolling off the ocean. The only light spills from a gas-fueled street lamp on a pier. I'm standing there, hand shielding my eyes as I stare into the gloom, traveling valise at my Steeple Victorian boots in antique saddle, my side pinching from the stitch caused by my constraining corset. The wind is blowing, which does nothing to relieve the pea-soup thick fog, catching my skirt and blowing the lace jabot into my face.

"Wait!" I call, waving a hand-embroidered hankie at the dim lights of the steam ship sailing off to Historical Romanceville. "Oh my stars and garters!" I hiss in frustration, shaking my head. And my steamer trunk was on there too!

Gentlemen in bowler hats and silk three-piece suits tuck their wives' elbows closer and hurry around me. My hair, so neatly secured in an elegant roll earlier, is starting to collapse thanks to the dampness in the air. Well. The ship's sailed and that's that. 

Okay, what am I rambling about today? Sorry for the plug about the boots in antique saddle. I wanted to be very specific because I like a good pair of sensible brown shoes. Who doesn't, right? Ahem, back to the point. Many, many moons ago when I was but a wee lass of thirteen I did something stupid and broke my arm during summer vacation. Freak accident, if you will. Shot from the womb with a mad desire to read, I started reading romance novels at a young age. Well, okay, about a year before I broke my arm. The library was my best friend. The circulation clerks at the library probably rolled their eyes every time they saw me come in. Which, not having a driver's license, was not nearly as frequently as I would've liked. I could devour ten novels in a week. Let's go back to the broken appendage. It was summer, my mom could drive, but didn't very often and my dad worked days. Knowing what a klutz I am, they forbade me to go very far from the house. I used to climb all over our hill, so this was a bummer. Not one to watch a lot of TV, I read constantly. The book pile dwindled and I was left eyeballing a stack of my dad's Louis L'Amour novels. Which, after a long debate with myself about how I didn't want to read westerns, I proceeded to devour them, just like the romance novels. 

There's something about primitive, lawlessness that I can totally relate to. Perhaps it's the romantic notions movies and books instilled in my brain that savagery is noble in its own way. That America was built on the sweaty brows of our fore bearers, who were the strong silent type of people filled with passionate love. 

Thus my love of westerns was born. And even ol' Louis wasn't abject to a good love story. Fast forward to that black blanket of despair where I didn't write for five years. The last thing I wrote was a historical romance. I'll be honest. It's not fit to wipe your butt with. You'd get a rash and try explaining to your doctor why you have a rash from... um, never mind. When I jumped back on the writing horse, I decided I wanted to write another historical romance. So I did. And then I wrote another, which I didn't finish, but that's not the point. Then I did something bizarre and so like me that it's a wonder it hasn't crashed and burned, because I am notorious for doing weird things and then moving on to the next weird thing in a blur.

Look away! Her knees are exposed!
I wrote a steampunk romance novel. About two people who are polar opposites (or so they believe at first), trying to find a magical jewel to save the lives of those near and dear to them. And I loved every second of it, effectively ruining my taste for historical facts as I pounded out words that created a new world full of airships and electromagnetic coil guns. Yes, they can figure out electromagnetics, but not electricity. And your point is...?

I did write another western-esque novella after the steampunk one. Except I decided to make it a romance/horror story and used some nasty creatures called boo hags to spice it up. They only tried to kill the heroine two or three times. That is as close to traditional historical romance as I've gotten in two years. I missed the boat. But I found a ride on a dirigible and I haven't looked back. 

A loss for the historical romance world? Maybe. A gain for the steampunk romance genre? Eh, who knows? But I'm happy with my chosen genre. It's silly and adventurous in a way that's not possible in historical romance. And as long as I'm happy, you're happy because if Mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy! So, how did you pick your genre? What elements call to you? Or is it the characters who make the genre ultimately? 

Monday, August 29, 2011

Stuff I Find While I'm Walking 4 - The Real Estate Edition

Huzzah! Another Monday has pulled us into its fold. What can that possible mean? That's it's time for Stuff I Find While I'm Walking. Today I have a special treat for you, my preciouses. That's not a word. So what?

I apologize in advance for the quality of the photos this week. It must've been too dark for my little ol' camera to take good photos. But fear not, you shall not have to grope your way blindly through this blog. On this fantabulous Monday afternoon I bring you SIFWIW the Real Estate Edition. What I did was carry a big stick and poke it into holes to see if I could discover what lived in said holes. Okay, actually I only poked it in one hole and nothing came out, which is probably a good thing. I can see me and Restless getting tangled up and snake bit if something had come out of a hole.

You'll never guess what lived in this. I bet you can guess what's supposed to live in it. Instead, it contained, of all things, not chirpy little birds, but a wasper nest. Run, Restless, run! We got the heck out of there.

We actually did things a bit different this time. Instead of following the trail at Hayes Spring Conservation Area like good little hikers, we trudged up the creek bed because I desire to see the mysterious headwaters of Dry Crane Creek. The are neither mysterious, nor dry. In fact there's one spot that was easily chest deep on me. No, I didn't go for a swim. It's so clear you can see the bottom and the goodly sized creek fish swimming around the bottom.

This is the cave where the bats live. I don't want to visit the bats and I didn't see any bats, so I'm cool with that. Speaking of cool, since the water pops right up out of the ground here, it was pretty cool. Almost like a blast of air conditioning. I walked out on the stone dam in front of this cave to snap this picture of some pretty orange flowers. I think it's monkey flower, but don't hold me to that.

Pretty, yes, but surrounded by icky little spiders making webs from the tall grass to the trees. And then there was Restless, thinking it would be a great idea for both of us to stand in the narrow rock bridge. Go, dog, go. Do not crowd me around spiders or slippery rocks. I did see a pretty little female hummingbird sipping from some flowers planted near a rock wall by the cave. Rock wall was obviously man made, unless the squirrel union got together and... never mind. It's an old College of the Ozarks landscaping thing about the squirrels wearing tiny Landscaping hoodies and collecting sweet gum balls. You don't want to know.

What lives in this hole? I don't know, but I bet it has many, many jagged teeth. Restless wanted to investigate, I didn't. I won by virtue of being bigger and having her on a leash.

I like this hole. I think a crawdad made it. I haven't been down to Hayes Spring in a while because of the heat and the water level had dropped off quite a bit, so I'm assuming some crawdad dug himself a nice little clay condo and was forced to move out once the water started drying up. I'd say the hole was probably two inches in diameter. You know, the eatin' size of crawdad. If you're into seafood, which I'm not.

This is one of my favorite photos. These toad stools (They're toad stools, right? Pfft. I don't know. I'm pretty sure you shouldn't eat them) have an excellent view of wooded creek-y area. And there were some ants or some kind of little bugs crawling on them, so they had a great view too.

I know, I'm a wealth of information. You learn so much by coming to this blog and letting me take a stab at guessing what these weird plants and holes are.

Whatever holes and plant life your cameras take you to, may you go without being bitten, stung or poisoned. Good health and happy writing, y'all.

Friday, August 26, 2011

The Friday Five

Everyone else is doing it, I think I'll jump on the wagon.

Aren't you in for a treat? Today I'll tell you a list of five things (do lists seem gimicky to you? I'm trying not to let it drive me crazy) that randomly popped into my brain. For the record, although I have no idea if this is true, I once learned that the human brain can think about seven things at once.

Moving on because your day isn't random enough without a couple of thoughts from me.

#1) Justin Beiber has perfume for women (and I wouldn't be caught dead buying it, much less sniffing it). I think I shall invent cologne for men. I will call it Splurge. It's motto will be 'because she's worth it'. Never mind that that's probably some other product's motto. That implies that he is splurging on cologne so he can smell nice for her, ergo doing them both a favor. Brilliant, no? Great, now someone is going to steal my idea.

#2) Why do they put half dust jackets on books? Too cheap to put one on that will fit? For starters it looks ridiculous and for enders, it's incredibly difficult to put plastic over if you're going to put it on a shelf in a library. I want to throw it away, but it has the blurb on it. Also, labels that are impossible to peel off the book jackets. That's just evil.

#3)  I'm highly interested in cryptozoology. One of my favorite fake creatures is the Florida skunk ape. My husband will tell you tales about the creature from Fouke, Arkansas near Texarkana that was the subject of the movie The Legend of Boggy Creek. Although his familial home is far from there, he swears he's seen cows ripped apart, strange foot prints and heard "things that just ain't right" and are probably the result of a little swig of 'shine. The WIP I'm dabbing at right now will involve an evil creature from ancient times. Thank you people who believe in things like this and publish it on the web. Here's a list of cryptids from Wikipedia. The image is the Jersey Devil, by the way, not the critter from Boggy Creek. He remains elusive, yet it would be unwise to approach him unarmed. He will reach through bathroom windows to terrorize you while you're on the pot. The Jersey Devil on the other hand will most likely eat you or something. Confusing the two could result in... well, nothing as neither truly exist. Or do they?

#4) A quote I wish I had thought of so I could use it in my own novels:

Operative: "Do you really believe that?"
Mal: "I do."
Operative: "You willing to die for that belief?"
Mal: "I am."
From Serenity. I could fancy that up a little bit and use it in THL, if it wasn't plagarism and all. 

#5) Last but not least the Civil War Story I wrote for the Missouri Literary Festival Civil War Short Story Challenge is up for voting. It's the one titled Best Laid Plans. I encourage you to vote for me because I have magic powers. And if you do not vote for me, I will sent green hairy monsters and flying monkeys into your nightmares. In these nightmares, they will weep and wail because you didn't vote for me. Trust me. You don't want crying monsters of any type in your dreams. (Disclaimer: I really don't have magic powers. Green hairy monsters and flying monkeys are not in my budget, therefore not at my bidding to enter the dreams of anyone. Also, a picture of real monsters and flying monkeys wasn't in the budget either. Due to time constraints, the management of this blog had to substitute a teddy bear for a monkey. All complaints may be issued to the Department of Nooneislisteningtoyourcomplaints.)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Day in the Life of a Muse

For your viewing pleasure, I bring you an artist's *cough, cough* rendition of my muse. It was entirely too good to keep to my FB account.

He's little bit like Hemingway in that he likes to drink and fish. Other than that, eh, not much resemblance. But he's hell on the internal menace known as Evil Editor, the voice of doubt that tells me I'm not a good writer.

I mean, look, that cow is wearing white shoes with a red dress. What was she thinking? And Lief shaved for the occassion. All the better to sneak up on evil.

After a long day, our boy Lief retires to his island home to fish and think of stories to tell me. Way to go, Lief.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Stuff I Find While I'm Walking Episode 3

It's that time again! I know you're super jazzed, especially because it's Monday morning! Pictures, pictures, pictures! Okay, enough chanting.

Saturday husband and I ordered pizza and ate at Wilson's Creek National Battlefield. We kept hearing this weird noise that sounded like gun fire and/or someone banging on a drum. We never figured out what it was. It was definitely something, but we don't know what. Here's our first photo.

This cannon sits in a spot known as Siegel's Final Position, where Col. Franz Siegel of the 3rd Missouri Infantry got whipped because he thought the troops coming his way were Union. Um, let's just say they weren't. His defeat helped seal the win for the Confederates in the first battle of the Civil War across the Mississippi.

The trail at WC marches up Old Wire Road, the main road from Arkansas to Springfield, Missouri way back when. Husband and I decided to jaunt along this road to see what this weird thing at the top of the hill was. I said it was fence posts. He didn't believe me. I was right. There's a little fenced off section made from twenty foot cattle panels with a sign that says no visitors beyond this point due to emergency conditions. I have no idea what it's talking about. On our way back down the hill, I was searching for fodder, er, photos for this blog. I found a spider.

A wolf spider, if I'm not mistaken, although I might be. Wolf spiders live in funnel webs, which is horrifying enough. But on a closer look. That hairy stuff on its back? It wasn't hair. It was baby spiders. I proceeded to be a girl, stand up shrieking and doing the Oh-God-that's-disgusting-get-it-away-from-me dance.

Are we done yet?
Yesterday, bored off my rocker because I haven't been walking much, I got my lazy carcass out of the chair and went to Old Wire Road Conservation Area with Restless. Here's Res, resting after about a mile when we paused to have a drink. It was probably in the upper eighties, low nineties, so we made sure to hydrate real well. Not that it stopped either of us, we marched from one end of the trail to the other at a pretty good clip. She lives up to her name and I was full of energy too after working hard on a new WIP all weekend.

It came a pretty good rain on Saturday evening, so when I went out Sunday afternoon, the mud was pretty thick. And stinky. I don't know what it is about the mud on Old Wire Road trail, but it smells like death. Ick. We didn't see any wildlife beyond bugs and butterflies, but I got this neat photo of raccoon tracks. I bet it had to go wash its hands after getting them dirty. If you've ever seen a tame coon washing its hands, you know how cute it is.
It ain't Hollywood, but hey.

We also found a fallen bird's nest. I hope mama and the babies were long gone before this took a tumble. There were no birdy bodies around so maybe they were safe. Not that I particularly like birds, especially after being attacked by one that flew out of a hanging basket I was trying to water a couple of years ago. I'm not really a screamer, but I almost had a fatal when that one flew out of its nest in my petunia basket.

Ah, nature. Happy walking and writing, brave Monday morning adventurers.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Imitation is the Sincerest Form of Flattery

It says Canine Agility Team,
but you get the point, right?
Unfounded accusations on the other hand, can scar you for life, but provide excellent blogging material.

Today's post is a story about something that happened to me in high school. HS was not my most favorite time ever. Think back to the late nineties and early double aughts. Fashion had reached new levels of ick, cars were just starting to get small and sleek again, and I was still wearing straight-leg jeans and sporting super-long hair with dorky bangs. Let's add some accusations about plagiarism to it.

The year: 2000
The place: High school English class
The players: Mr. S the English teacher and me

Cue wavy lines and piano music as we head into a flashback.

Mr. S: Congratulations on getting fourth place with your short story in the Mark Twain Creative Writing Contest.

Me: Thanks.

Mr. S: I wanted to tell you something, but don't get mad.

Me: (already mad because when someone tells you not to get mad, it happens instantly) Okay.

Mr. S: One of the judges thinks you plagiarized that story.

Me: (jaw on the floor) Who?

Mr. S: I'm not going to tell you that.

Me: (fuming) Why not?

Mr. S: Because I know you'll confront that person. You shouldn't be mad, you should be flattered.

Me: (dumbfounded and probably sporting one of my famous what-are-you-insane? looks)

Mr. S: It was so well-written that the judge thought you copied it from a book. That's how good it was. But I told that person I've read a lot of your writing and you'd never do anything like that.

Me: (mentally rifling through the judging sheets with initials on them, trying to think who could accuse me of something like that. I draw a blank) Thanks.

Then he launched into a long explanation about how no ideas are original anymore and everything has been done. I'm pretty sure I tuned out in order to find and confront this wrong-doer.

Wavy lines and piano music again.

Oh, I know you who you are, accuser. I can't remember your name and only have the vaguest recollection of what you look like, but I have your initials on that judging sheet. Student teacher. There's a very good possibility that this student teacher believed if you come from a podunk town surrounded by other podunk towns in a podunk corner of the podunk county at the bottom of a podunk state, you could barely read and write. This might even have been an accurate assumption based on some of the people I went to high school with. If you look at the majority, they were destined to work already working at Wal-Mart or fast food restaurants.

Apparently she didn't consider my work in her teaching class above standard, even considering the 'talent' I was surrounded by in there. But facts don't lie, lady. During the course of the Mark Twain Creative Writing Conference I won four awards. One in every category I entered. That's called consistency. It's in Webster's, look it up. I hear these days they're handing out money and plaques for awards. I got medals like in the Olympics, only made out of left-over metal that dents easily.

Maybe she was jealous of my talent. Maybe she was a hateful hag. Maybe she saw the spelling and punctuation errors and thought, these spelling and punctuation errors have each been individually placed and carefully chosen to distract from the profoundly poignant story telling hence making it seem as though this mere child is a brilliant writer when in fact, she copied it word for word from Louis L'Amour's vast collection of authentic western tales! Cheater! Plagiarist! Spawn of Satan!

Erm, whatever the case may be, it was entirely original. Except for the fact that it was about a dying man who wanted to spend his precious last minutes alone in the place where he'd been born. I mean, who hasn't written that story?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Why I'm in Love with Priest (spoiler alert)

And it's not just because he's Badass with a capital b. Well, that's mostly it, but that's not all.

Evil vampires. Cliche. Yawn. I'm kind of interested in good vampires. Like I'm interested in good aliens. Why are these creatures always bad? That gets so tired.

Frankly, the vampires reminded me of the aliens from Doom, Karl Urban's worst movie ever er, um, stellar hero movie. They were faceless, but had ginormous teeth. And bad attitudes. Okay, so there were some cliches. And a couple plot holes. I mean, really, uber-McNasty vamps on reservations? This is the Catholic Church we're talkin' about here. I'm not Catholic and my knowledge of Catholicism is at best almost nill, but they seem like the kind of folks who would merrily wreak havoc on the remaining vampire scourge. Who wouldn't if it's the difference between ending up as a midnight snack and living a peaceful life for the first time in centuries? Oh, wait. If the vamps are rounded up and put on reservations, the Church has a way to keep their grateful multitudes in line. Gosh, that sounds just like a government. Hmm.

Meet Priest. One of apparently several men and women taken from their homes as youths, or in his case, a little older, by the Church with a gift for fighting evil. In the war that followed Priest training, vamps were vanquished and sent to live on reservations. The Priests and Priestesses were disbanded because the Church feared their power. They became pariahs.

Priest, the character not the title, lives with the vivid memories of losing one of the Priests in a hive. He tries to console his fears via confessional, but the Monsignor tells him to remember his vows and not to go against the Church. He's clearly unhappy with this advice. The local sheriff (who is a hottie, but I'm not sure how he got his job because he seems a little young), Hicks, sneaks up on Priest and informs him that the outpost where Priest's brother, sister-in-law and niece live, has been attacked.

At first, Priest does nothing because he's been warned that breaking the Church's rules will cause him to be excommunicated. But, to his credit, he flips the proverbial and metaphorical bird to the Church and sets off to get to the outpost. His brother is still dying, but his sister-in-law is already dead and the girl is taken. When hottie brother makes a deathbed wish for Priest to kill the vamps, he teams up with Hicks to find Lucy. This, of course, ticks the Church off and they send other Priests, including Priestess, out to find the warrior and bring him back so they can undoubtedly make an example out of him.

Priestess splits from the other Priests and finds Priest. (Confused yet?) She doesn't want to kill him because she harbors unrequited love for him although he was in love with... dum-dum-dum, his brother's wife and Lucy is really his daughter. She teams up with the unlikely pair when they discover the vamp hive is back in business, yet strangely free of night-loving blood-suckers.

This would be a lot of slashing and killing of creatures that seem only to kill for the joy of killing and feasting, except for one other creature--Black Hat. (I probably could edit that sentence to take out some of the killing and creatures, but I want to impress upon you the amount of killing going on and how inhuman the vamps are.) Black Hat, is--you guessed it--the Priest who fell behind. He hearts him some revenge and he will have his revenge served up with some nice bloody Priest and a scoop of Lucy flesh. Black Hat is the first human vampire.

The vamps have been breeding and they are seriously hungry. On a train bound for the Cities where the Church harbors the human snacks, the vamps plan to win the war once and for all. Hicks and Priest infiltrate the train while Priestess rushes ahead to blow up the tracks (nice move!) Priest gets his butt handed to him when he refuses to become another human vampire. There's a glorious black moment when it looks like Priest is about to cark it, Hicks is thrown from the train and Priestess will not be able to blow up the tracks. There's the end where it looks like there might be a sequel (fingers crossed). But I won't give it away.

So after that long recap, why do I heart this movie?

#1) Unrequited love.
The line from Priestess: "When I heard about Shannon, I prayed for her salvation. And then I prayed for mine." Although sworn to celibacy due to her status as a warrior priestess, she carried a torch for Priest for years. He had this kick-butt dagger that he gave her and she kept it all that time. I could definitely go in for a little more back story on those two.

#2) Hotties.
This should be obvious. It was chock full of hotties. Karl Urban, while evil (and still not that great of an actor) is hot (plenty of guys in hats and dusters get my vote. Not all of them, but a lot of them). Cam Gigandet, vaguely Eric Close/Paul Walker-esque--hot. Paul Bettany as a tortured, sad and regretful Priest, hot.

#3) Stick to your guns, know it in your gut belief.
The theme of this movie was sacrifice. What the characters would do to save the day. Granted, all Hicks was thinking about was saving his purty little gal, but Priest sacrificed a life he would have preferred to kill vampires. Priestess knew Priest was in love with Shannon and had a daughter with her, but she loved him so much, she refused her orders to kill and/or bring him back to the Cities all while knowing she couldn't have him. The Church brainwashed the city people into believing they would be safe as long as they gave up sin and fun. Priest's brother Owen made his family live on the outskirts of the Cities and sacrifice their safety so he could try to plant crops. Above all, is Priest stepping away from the Church to save his what's left of his family, consequences be damned.

#4) Good vs. Evil
If you really want to give the good guys a run for their money, give them an enemy who can't be defeated. Take one of the good guys and take away his soul. Perfect!

Friday, August 12, 2011

You Can't Find Stuff If You Aren't Walking

I feel really bad about not finding stuff. Last week the heat was unbelievable. That's not true. It was hot in southwestern Missouri, but not hot like in Texas. Still, I dread seeing the electric bill next month. This week, as you know, I've been dealing with the computer issue. The new computer works great, provided you don't want to use Word. So I'm not. I did manage to get some research and some editing done. Yay! The word count isn't up much. Yet.

As you may or may not know, I'm undertaking the (backbreaking) task of converting The Treasure Hunter's Lady from one country to another. It's all about the detail. I don't know if you've ever attempted to edit two novels that are almost the same at once time, but I assure you, it's kind of a pain the butt. If I could hop in my trusty time travel machine, I would go back to April 2010, wake myself from a solid sleep with a hefty shake and say, "Hey, you dope, write about America."

Until future me invents a time machine and comes back to tell current me about it and lets me (who will actually be another version of future me, but a past me to her), I'm out of luck. So while the weather is nice, I haven't been walking. I'll have to stick you with old pictures of stuff I found while I was walking. Again.

This is what it looks like. Part of a child's toy truck. Washed up in the creek bed at Hayes Spring CA. I found it partially submerged and rescued it, although I left it there because I don't really have any use for toy trucks, whether they're broken or not. Among other such items washed up in the creek bed, you'll find old bricks, tires,  glass worn down smooth, but very little paper or plastic. That's nice. I once found a braided friendship bracelet by the spring mouth. I figure a bird carried it there and dropped it.

That lovely flower was in bloom in mid-July by the spring mouth. My camera made it look a bit pinker than that it was, but it's still pretty. Looks like phlox to me, but I can't actually say that's what it is.

This interesting little guy is a--you guessed it--genuine four-leaf clover. Shaped like... a butterfly. As if it isn't unique enough. Rumor has it four-leaf clovers are so rare only 1 in 10,000 clovers have four leaves. Um, then why do I find them all the time? Like this one, which was in the very same patch? I buy that there were 20,000 clover there, but I don't buy that they're so rare.

Also, this is my third straight year of blogging, even though it's not the same blog. You can find posts from way back when in the archives section. Birthday cake for everyone! Happy walking and writing!

Monday, August 8, 2011

The Value of Writing Prompts

My lack of enthusiasm for writing this week stems from computer issues. I wanted a new computer so bad I'd do anything to get my hands on one. Oh, I got it all right. Right along with a processing error straight out of the box. Swapped that one out for another of the same model. The Word program is giving me difficulty. I can't open any of the files from my flash drive on the new computer. Sure, I can open a new document and write a new file and those work just fine, but what good is that going to do when I need the stuff saved on the flash drive? For all this difficulty, I'm expecting giant, bountiful miracles somewhere else in my life.

All this leaves me with zero desire to turn on a computer. Which for a writer, is bad. I have a ker-jillion ideas floating around in my head to write down. But sometimes I need a break from those ideas. It's nice to put away something that I think about a lot during the day and look at something different. Someday I think I might like to try another contemporary. With a writing prompt, I can choose a scenario, write a scene and either think on it some more of file it away for the day I might really write a contemporary. Same with any genre.

It feels good to get immersed in something different. Historical fiction is my first love, followed closely by steampunk, which allows me to color outside the lines, but on occasion, I need something really close to home or something way to bizarre to even contemplate writing a novel. Maybe I have too much free time....

Whether you've found yourself in a slump and haven't a clue what to write next, or you need an idea to get the juices flowing on your WIP, try a prompt. These little ideas might lead to your next big scene, a great plot twist or a fantastic short story.

Writer's Digest Prompts

Charlotte Dillion's Writing Prompts

Seventh Sanctum

One of the random generators at Seventh Sanctum was actually part of the inspiration behind THL.

Monday, August 1, 2011

She Who Wears Many Hats

People are always saying that they never have enough time in the day. It's chock full of work and meetings, kids and PTA stuff, no time for relaxation. They wear many hats, to use a cliche. Oh, cliches, what fun! Well, I don't wear a lot of hats metaphorically. I work and I write and I play with my dogs and I try to be a good wife. I spend way too much time goofing off on Facebook and staying connected with my peeps over there, God bless them. They all probably wonder if I don't have anything better to do. But I do! I wear hats! I like to shop and shopping means finding hats. So I'm posting photos of me where I'm wearing hats. Enjoy!

 This is my favorite hat picture. It's one of those old-timey sorts, a newsboy, I think they're called. I found it at K-Mart last fall. It makes me think of Model A cars and goggles and saying, "Slow down, George, we're running 10 miles per hour, are you trying to kill us?"

Joe's Crab Shack, Dec. 2010. The last time we've eaten there because they overcharged me $8 and I never got it back. Well, at least I have this wacky photo of me wearing a crab hat. I had to wear the hat, I just had to. I mean, who could pass up the opportunity to wear a crab on their head?

My most recent hat experience-this cool looking hat from Bass Pro Shop. I didn't even bother to look at the price. I'm sure it was outrageous. I'm also sporting a nice sunburn on my face. Who knew if you sit out in the sun for hours without sunblock, you'd turn red. Should've been wearing a hat.

This is a great-looking sort of old man hat. I found it at PFI Western Wear, which is obviously a western store. I'm not sure what they were trying to promote with this hat. I've never seen a cowboy wear anything like it. They sell some English-type items, but I doubt any self-respecting fox hunter would wear this. Even on a cold day. I mean, a puff ball thing on your head, really?
So as you can see, I really like hats. I will scour the department stores and mall for new hats to update you on the totally awesome hat styles of the area. I know I'm not as cute as those great images of cats with the funny spellings, but it's still something to waste your valuable time on when you could be working or you're sitting through a PTA meeting. Think about it. You want to wear hats too.