Friday ‘Fess Up + Four = Friday Five #5

(What is this? A combination of two Friday memes: the literate kitten’s invitation to ‘fess up to our crimes and misdemeanors against our writing efforts and a “friday five,” in which we list five random things about our week…)

1. ‘Fessing up: Considering the bad news about my manuscript (previous post), I did all right this week. Wrote 26 pages, and here’s the thing: I’m galvanized. I’m eager to finish this puppy, maybe even this weekend. There’s plenty going on in this head of mine, and I’m eager to set the first draft aside for a cooling-off period and work on other projects in the meanwhile. Nothing like bummer news to clear my head.

2. Fourth of July already? A writing buddy and I got together, she to give me reader feedback. We made plans to meet again in about two weeks (per usual) and she said, July 17th. Talk about dizzy and disoriented; I couldn’t get my head around the date: July 17th? Yes, she said, today is July 1st. July 1st? How did I not realize that I was two weeks behind the rest of the world? How does that happen?

3. Starbucks confession: I’m an anti-Starbucks kind of girl. Only a desperation move on behalf of the writing would get me to linger in that place. This week, oddly hot weather forced me out of my apartment. I rejected my favorite locally owned spot because I could tell I was on the verge of not writing at all — too much comfort would have sunk me into a sweaty, lethargic blob. So, off I drove to the nearest Starbucks because the place irks me so much I knew I’d lay down the pages pronto, the sooner to beat a vaguely shamefaced retreat. Perverse, right? But it worked.

4. Firefly, not the bug, the television show: Anyone out there seen “Firefly,” the Joss-Whedon-of-Buffy-the-Vampire-Slayer-fame creation? I borrowed the DVDs from a friend, and I’m digging it. It’s about wild-west cowboy marauders with hearts of gold — in space. It’s rather brilliant, but maybe you’ve got to be eccentric to like it. Unfortunately, it got pulled after only 14 episodes; the good news is that the movie “Serendity” ties up the dangling plotlines.

5. Photo of the week: Quick snapshot lest someone took me for a stalker. This dog-training obstacle course and pasture, corral, stable (not visible) exists a mere block from my place. In seven years, I’d never noticed this backyard Eden in the midst of urban suburbia — and how many thousands of times had I driven past? I finally noticed the pastoral scene because I’m now a dogwalker. There’s a lesson here, something about slowing down, sniffing flowers, petting horses…

Friday ‘Fess Up + Four = Friday Five #4

(What is this? A combination of two Friday memes: the literate kitten’s invitation to ‘fess up to our crimes and misdemeanors against our writing efforts and a “friday five,” in which we list five random things about our week…)

1. ‘Fessing up: Not a stellar week, but I accept my distractibility because I’m a first-time dog owner. Monday and Tuesday were all doggy vigilance because I was told Luna was housetrained, and then the first thing she did when I introduced her to her new home was poop on the carpet. Go figure.

Sooo, the first part of the week was all about taking her out every time she appeared restless or looked at me funny (which, come to find out, is just how she looks).

Wednesday, I relaxed, and I’ve since discovered that Luna can hold her stuff for 12 hours — now, of course, I worry that she’s holding it in for too long. Won’t she get a bladder or urinary tract infection?

However, her bladder of steel means that I can stumble to my computer as usual. Luna is content to stare at me for awhile and then curl up in the cat bed to further snooze the morning away. I wrote 15 pages. I’ll get another five in this weekend so I can call it 20 for the week.

2. But what about my cat, Trio, you ask? He’s fine, except for an uncharacteristic need to sleep against my thigh, under my covers. He’s not a cuddler by nature, and, frankly, I need space when I sleep. It’s been the week of little sleep and afternoon naps, but I’ll allow him his neediness for a few weeks.

3. Random crush of the week: Half-watching television the other night, I caught a commercial for a new fall show called “Eleventh Hour.” It caught my eye because it stars yet another film actor making the move to the small screen: Rufus Sewell. Rufus! I’ve liked this actor since forever; dare I say I’m a “fan”? I won’t go that far, but I’m a sucker for an underrated (on our side of the pond) British actor with one sexy, droopy eyelid.

4. This week I realized that I’m reading more historical novels than usual. I love the historical notes many novelists include as postscripts. Not only do they confirm that the authors did their research, but I also learn a little something I probably should have learned in school. The older I get, the more history interests me — and if I can get a dose through fiction, all the better! I’m currently reading The Mercy Seller by Brenda Rickman Vantrease.

 5. Photo of the week: In Vancouver, B.C., a few years back — a company team-building trip. That’s my manuscript on the hotel’s desk. I worked on it, eh-hem, when I probably should have been communing with my colleagues…


Friday ‘Fess Up + Four = Friday Five #2

(What is this? A combination of two Friday memes: the literate kitten’s invitation to ‘fess up to our crimes and misdemeanors against our writing efforts and a “friday five,” in which we list five random things about our week…)


1. ‘Fessing up: I had an excellent writing day, and now I deserve to play in the long-awaited warmth and sunshine.

Yesterday I wrote six pages; today also. But yesterday was only a good writing day relative to today’s excellent writing day. What makes the difference? Flow. Just flow. Today the words fell out relatively easily (it’s only a little after noon!), whereas yesteday I spent a semi-tortured day at my desk. I didn’t complete my pages until 3:30 p.m. 

Today was fun for the writing because I have a character, Malcolm, who is such a wad. I love writing his scenes. I managed 21 new pages this week.

2. Follow-up on yesterday’s mood: An excellent writing day always helps, doesn’t it? Plus, getting out of the house with friends last night. Plus, the kind comments I received. Plus, a new day. I can still hear the low-grade muttering as I write this — no doubting that — but the sun is also shining.

Besides laying down sentences, I’m still wondering what else I can do to help myself, something concrete that will give me a sense that I’m moving forward…

3. About forgetfulness: This week I was in a pretty good fictional space, and as a result I kept forgetting to buy a new stick of deoderant. No, I’m not stinky; what I am, is a woman hand-rubbing deoderant crumbs against her skin. Never fails, I realize I’ve reached the end of my deoderant when the last bit falls out of the tube and breaks into pieces on the counter. Usually, I’m quicker to buy a new stick, however.

4. Something that maddened me: Overheard at a cafe, a women mourning the fact that her parents, who worked long and hard to retire early, were forced back to work (in their early 60s!) because they could no longer afford their health insurance premiums. ‘Nuff said.

5. Photo of the week: I suppose I am doing something concrete besides the writing itself. That’s my bulletin board and that’s my repository for all self-promotion, publicity, and marketing ideas I come across. Ready for when the time comes (there she is, my inner cheerleader)!

Speaking of self-promotion, DeAnna Cameron’s latest how-did-you-find-your-audience interview mentioned something especially interesting. Dora Levy Mossanen, the interviewee, started connecting with booksellers and freelance publicity folks before her first novel sold. My inquiring mind wants to know: How do you approach booksellers under those circumstances? I’m thinking she might have some natural networking skills…