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Showing posts from October, 2013

Call to Arms

Today is the eve before the eve before NaNoWriMo. So, NaNonians, let me bend your ears.

Many days of battle loom ahead. Some of stunning victory so bright, our pens will drip with the ink of our fallen enemy, Time. Some so dark, we will struggle in the mire of unwritten words, wander in confusion as we struggle for the right phrasing, and bellow with sadness when our frustrations corner us.

Do not give up hope, NaNonians. Your month of struggle will make you a stronger Word Warrior. Your trials will build the muscle of determination. Time will neither beat you back nor down. We can control him and make him our servant. Use your words. Wield your pen. Fight on for the sake, nay, glory of the story. If your heart is pure, your intentions good, your need for writing strong, you will overcome the month of November.

May St. Francis de Sales deliver you from plot bunnies. Godspeed, NaNonians. Godspeed.


Stuff That Baffles Me - Pumpkin Season

Okay, to be honest, I have nothing to baffle you guys with today. Unless you want me to blow your mind with awesome, because I do have that. It's October, as you hopefully know. That means spooky stuff and pumpkins and candy galore. I love Halloween, I just wish it was at a different time of year. It would be better served in the spring, I think. Weird, I know.

Anyway, there's this:


This pumpkin that is so far beyond awesome!

I actually photographed this in a grocery store last year, but I forgot about it after I did all that hard work to cut out the apples or whatever it was surrounded by. I'm really glad I remembered it this year, because the store clerk who did this is brilliant. It looks like the Day of the Dead skull popping out of a pumpkin. Creepy and cool at the same time.


Well, there's not much happening in other news. I did get my flash drive back finally after losing it at my in-laws' house a couple of weeks ago. It lived outside in the wild overnight an…

The Friday Five - I'm So Weird

I was looking for a specific blog post yesterday about NaNoWriMo, because I couldn't remember participating in 2011. I did. And I won, but darned if I could remember it. So I found the post where I proclaimed myself Queen of the Universe, more or less, and there was some weird line in the post that made me laugh. So today, I offer you weird things that I write that make me laugh.

1) From a Facebook post in 2011: I got airmail from Australia yesterday. I never got airmail before. It was awesome. It's the romance trading cards I won on a blog. They're pretty cool. Anything free is cool, except diseases. You can keep those.

2) From my college days: I'm like a pretty zebra, only I'm not pretty and I'm not a zebra.

3) From a tweet in 2012: Holy smokey-smokersons (I just wanted to say something weird. Mission accomplished).

4) From a tweet in 2010: I'm all out of rose color and glasses #nothinglefttolose

5) From the blog in December 2010: Christmas is approaching…

Maze Daze

My husband was all, let's go on a hay ride! Like we're 14, are involved in a church that frowns on Halloween and calls their fall festival "harvest" related, or have kids or something. And I'm all, okay! Like I'm a kid and there won't be lots of other screaming kids. I find a place that has it all--Campbell Farm Maze Daze.
Except...there are screaming kids everywhere.  They cut in line. They dart in front of us without saying 'excuse me'. They annoy the adults who are watching them to the point of the adults threatening to feed them to the monsters in the haunted maze. The children were awful. Just awful. But the rest of Maze Daze? Pretty cool.
There's a sort of petting zoo and I got to feed a sheep some grass. I have zero experience with sheep, but this one was cute.

And there was a horse. He was not as friendly/hungry as the sheep.

And there was a lawnmower-train, because where else but in Missouri?!

Sorry the pictures are awful. I took them …

Stuff That Baffles Me - That Bottle Called Me Loser

Welcome back to Monday. What an exciting time in our lives...or, okay, yeah, that's not really working, is it? Yep. It's Monday. Blogger is giving me crap when I try to type a title, FB won't let me update my status from the Interwebz (I haven't tried from my phone yet), I got stung by a bee, and my car window won't roll up. Sixteen miles is a long way when it's 40 degrees outside, let me tell you.

Fortunately for you, I have STBM. At least there's that.



You guys watch The Big Bang Theory? This bottle of pear juice (?) reminded me of Barry Kripke. This could only have been better had the bottle said "Woosa!" This has been (a pretty lame) Stuff That Baffles Me. You can tell I'm not really putting a lot of effort out right now. It's winter. Time for hibernation. Okay, it's fall, but winter is coming, so I might as well entertain the notion of hibernating, just like I usually do. If only...

I've dabbled a bit with Wildwood Spring and …

The Friday Five - Where's PeeWee?

I've been down and out this week, for numerous reasons, but you know what almost never fails to cheer me up? A certain little furball dog named PeeWee Roo Chin. I've taken a photograph of him and badly superimposed it on some historical photographs that are courtesy of the Library of Congress's flickr account. It's a wealth of old timey goodness.

Where's PeeWee?

On tour with Teddy Roosevelt!
Where's PeeWee?

Getting ready for Christmas at Madison Square in NY!
Where's PeeWee?

Relaxing in a hotel room!
Where's PeeWee?

At the top of a pyramid!
Where's PeeWee?

Driving everyone loco!
You know the drill. Go. Be. Do.

Swamp Thang

My husband insisted on four-wheeler riding last weekend. You know. My big 3-day weekend. The one where I was supposed to be editing for So You Think You Can Write. My plan was to sit in my chair, listen to Anna the Talking Robot for a few hours on end, and get that stuff done. (I lost my flash drive, btw. My FIL found it later, but they still have it, so I have no idea if it works or not because it was outside overnight. Yeah, I had a back up of Wildwood Spring. No worries.) He dragged me out of the chair. Into nature. That place I've been mostly avoiding a large part of the year. Here's pictures. And a hilarious story for your entertainment.




This is exactly what it looks like. A four wheeler in a giant puddle. The farther out my husband's mom and dad went, the deeper they sank. It didn't look this deep.
The best part was: In the second to last picture there, my husband's dad is tying a rope to the four wheeler my husband is on. You know, so he could pull them out…

Stuff That Baffles Me - Commemorative Memorabilia

Happy Monday, kids! I'm not here, but I didn't forget you on this most glorious of holidays--the anniversary of the discovery of America. By some Spanish dude. Or what he Italian? Well, whatever. 1492, Columbus sailed the blah, blah, blah. I have more important things to worry about. Like Stuff That Baffles Me! Yay!


No, really. He was Italian. Who destroyed millions (yes, millions) of lives by spreading disease and slavery. So naturally, we celebrate this by issuing him a plate.


Okay, I know it says 1992, but you have to consider, I found it in a flea market. Happy Columbus Day, everybody (except those of us with reasons to really hate him and want to spear his flesh and roast him over a fire).

Dear God, I hope that's not like a portrait off of a portrait, because #1) he looks really young and B) dude's got a bad case of the fuglies.

See you Wednesday, kids!

The Friday Fail - Cop Out

Um...I forgot it's Friday. I've been off by an entire day for most of the week. It isn't that I wanted to relive Tuesday (I heartily dislike Tuesdays, because they're like extra Mondays, blocking you from more do-able Wednesday), it's just that I was really surprised to find out on the 9th that it was the 9th and not the 8th, so I've been messed up.

I failed you on this day of Frigg. My sincerest apologies. In my defense, I've done a ton of writing this week, trying to maintain some sort of deadline to finish Wildwood Spring. Well, I met my word count goal, which is something. I'm very close to the end and hopefully will finish today so I can spend the weekend editing. Today, I'd like to talk about the music that helped me get as far as I have in this novel. I know, it's a cop out. I promise to do better in the future.

1) Buying the Space Farm - composed by Michael Giachhino on the Star Trek Into Darkness score. Hopefully you've seen the mov…

Writing, Rambling, Rehashing

*Sigh* Dear sweet and fluffy lord, it's Wednesday, isn't it? I suppose that means you people want something from me. Like an update, since I've taken a temporary reprieve from hosting book features/author interviews. Well, okay then.

The WIP is coming along 1,000 words at a time. We're now at 46k and the end is nigh. I've run into a little plotting problem-o though. Uh, the hero lied about who he is and the heroine just goes along with it, but slowly starts to figure it out. When he told her the truth about something else, she very tiredly says she doesn't want to know anything else right then. The story progresses and he still doesn't tell her his real identity. Then he proposes and...bam! I forgot that he didn't tell her. So I need to go back and fix that so it's not like she's bizarrely marrying some dude whose last name she doesn't know (that she knows). Ugh. Stupid characters.

I'm really looking forward to saying bye-bye to writing …

Stuff That Baffles Me - Nightmare on Sesame Street

Why is it that weekends just aren't long enough? There's not enough time for all the sleep I want (I got up before 9 am both days), all the sleep I want, all the writing I should do, the other things that I should probably be doing, and sleeping. Last night I pretended that I didn't have to return to work this week. That I had all the free time in the world. It was nice, until I started doing laundry and planning what I'd wear today. Ugh, I know I have to work, I just don't know why I have to work five days a week. Who made up that dumb rule?

Anyway, while I wasn't sleeping, I wandered around Walmart and found your STBM photo for the week. I know you've missed it, because I've been busy recapping other things. So enjoy.


Most of us grew up with Sesame Street, no? Lovable muppets singing and dancing and teaching us how to become mature, responsible adults who don't sleep all the time and go to work. Or something. They're still highly popular today…

NaNaNaNa, NaNaNaNa, Hey, Hey, Hey, NaNo!

On October 2nd, the webmasters at Nanowrimo.org updated the site. It's real purty. I bounced over there right away to update my book for this year's upcoming battle. Holy cow! I'm so excited. Mind, this is the only thing about November that comes anywhere close to exciting me. I'd rather stab, hack, and slash that month right out of the calendar. By now, you must know, I hate November with a passion words can't even describe. Anyway...

Gearing up for NaNo means I get to talk about my soon-to-be WIP. You may have guessed that it's the second book in the Heckmasters series. Let's call it Eban, because he's the brother the book is centered on. As you may or may not know, Camp NaNoWriMo was dedicated to writing the first book. I hit 40,175 words in April, which took care of the biggest part of that novel.

Looking back on last year, I realized that I didn't even attempt Nano. It was the first year since '09 I hadn't participated (I wrote The Turn…

Anna Banna Fo Fanna Me Mie Mo Manna, Anna!

You've heard me talk about her. Mostly using hateful adjectives and animalistic growls. It's my dear friend, Anna! You know, the talking robot.
I hear you. You're saying, "What?" in a disbelieving voice. What good is a robot that only talks? You can talk to yourself. But this, my writer friends, this will be your saving grace (or the bane of your existence). I give to you very simple instructions for using Narrator in Windows.
Go to the Start menu. Type 'Narrator' in the search box.  Wait until 'Narrator' appears. Open the program.
Here's where things get tricky. It works best for me if I open Notepad, copy a chapter of my MS into it, then highlight the text and *poof* Anna (almost always) reads it. You can also set it up on Adobe Reader, but it works slower on my computer, so I just use Notepad. 
Sometimes she's a stubborn so-and-so and it takes her a little bit to get on the right track with me, but mostly she follows my orders and reads…