Wednesday, November 26, 2008

An Unforseen Glitch

Tonight, I learned I cannot write sex scenes when Timber is in the room. Time to set up my office.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

No DesireTo Gloat

An interesting thing happened this past week. Out of the clear blue, Crow Mother got an email from the SGM. After checking with me, she wrote him back and they have been in that sporadic, tentative communication that we tend to go through with people we were once very close to and aren't any longer.

She and I wondered and speculated. He must be on deployment. There would be no way he would be contacting her if he were at home and Wifey would know. We
knew he was miserable. gloatgloatgloat What would she tell him if/when he asks about me? What could she tell him if/when he asks about me? gloatgloatgloat

Sure enough, the email we were expecting arrived yesterday. He is "in a marriage that never should have happened to a person who doesn't respect (him) at all..."

Now, for those of you who don't know or who don't divorce from the SGM was not good. Very few divorces are. But we had been making it work, managing to stay friends. Until this woman came along. For a while, I tried to blame her entirely. Finally, though, I had to admit that he was an adult and capable of making decisions on his own. His choice to behave in these ways, agree to these demands and take these steps. She may have been the one to put the ideas in his head, she may have been the one pushing him to do them ~ he was the one who finally, at the end of the day, had to decide
Yes, I will do this, say this, behave this way. And the choices he made were vile. One of the last things I ever said to him was "SGM, God help your soul" because what he was doing was so completely contrary to the man I thought I knew him to be.

He contributed to a schism in my biofamily that, well, created the necessity for the word biofamily. And while that relationship has healed, it can never be what it once was (and I'm not saying different=worse. Different=different. I'm also not going to elaborate hugely here because it's not the focus of this post so just trust and go with me. Thanks.) Crow Mother and my mom made choices around the divorce that have lingering effects to this day (different=different.) And then he made choices around his new relationship that made Crow and my mother's choices obsolete ~ and the three of us were left holding the remnants of a family, wondering what the hell had happened.
And now, he was back.

Crow Mother and I waited for the email we knew would come.
I'm in a marriage that never should have happened to a person who doesn't respect me at all... Crow wrote me and said "I have no desire to gloat (but I understand yours!!!!!) but no sympathy, either. He did, indeed, bring it on himself."

I read those words over and over and over again.
I'm in a marriage that never should have happened to a person who doesn't respect me at all... I read those words and I looked down at my hands and there was my beautiful ring. I looked over and there was my beautiful man. I looked around and there was my beautiful life. And I realized ~ I have no desire to gloat, either. The SGM's unhappiness doesn't make me happy. Doesn't bring me pleasure. Like Crow Mother, I have no real sympathy. And yet...the gloating, superior, neener-neener-neerer feeling that I expected isn't there.

So I kiss on my dear Lithus. I joke with Timber and snuggle Lionel and write my three pages per day and plan to go visit the grandkid and light a fire to hold off the rainy day and and and...And when the SGM crosses my mind, I'll think it's a shame that he let his life become what it is. And then I'll go back to my life.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Writer's Block

I think those may be the two scariest words in any author's vocabulary. They are right up there with "stage fright" for performers and whatever the equivalent is for visual artists. It is my greatest relief to announce that mine is past.

Here's my secret ~ I hadn't written a word of fiction in about three months. For the 6 to 8 weeks prior to that, I had been struggling. My words were coming harder, more stilted, less regularly. And then they ... dried up.

The nonfiction was still flowing strongly. My latest book was completed and has been edited within an inch of its life and more times than I care to count in record time. Every single article I owed my little indie paper got written beautifully and well. And while I haven't necessarily been as prolific as I may have been in the past, Pobble Thoughts got regular updates. But my fiction? Gone. Novels? Nope. Short stories? Nothing. A clever email to a friend to make her smile? Not even that.

I won't say I've never been more frightened in my life. I have been. Bottom line is, this is only work. However, it is not an overstatement to say I have never been more frightened in my professional life. And this is coming from a woman who once had a knife pulled on her while she was working single coverage at a shelter.

First, I am very end-game oriented. While I have a verbal agreement to publish the next two novels and have submitted proposals with a date, I have no signed contract. Where it stands right now is more along the lines of "Yeah, when you get it finished, let us know and we'll go from there." Well...guess what? Apparently, I don't work well with that kind of vague timeline. I thought that I did. I would've told you that I did. When I have deadlines, I work consistently and calmly toward them. I do not procrastinate. I do not wait until the last minute. I do not do better under stress (I don't do worse, mind you, I just don't do better, either). So...why would a deadline be important? I didn't think it was. It is. Who knew.

Second, the book that comes out in February didn't need editing. Oh, it needed punctuation and typo help. There were a couple sentences that got reworked. But it didn't need editing. As my editor put it, "I can make this book different; I can't make it better. Don't change anything." Which was amazingly, indescribably, earth-shatteringly, mind-blowingly flattering. Until now. Now, it's really tough to be the brand new author who is so good she can write a publishable first draft. I found myself agonizing over every phrase, every segue, every character choice. This is not conducive to getting words on paper or computer screen.

TTG, I have resolved both of these issues. I unofficially took on NaNoWriMo and the goal of 2000 words per day. That rate wouldn't have completed this novel (it's longer than NaNoWriMo suggests/requests/demands/challenges) but it gave me a deadline. Even if it was a self-imposed one, it was still external in a weird way that you either understand or you don't because I can't explain it. While I haven't met that 2000 words per day goal, I have written again. Almost every day. I have officially announced two, more realistic deadlines to my trade organization. This is scary ~ in that good way. So, deadlines handled. Lithus came up with the other solution: Pretend you're someone else. I thought about it. This other writer is still only on her second novel. Edits are desirable and anticipated and expected. Hell, to think this other person could write a novel without needing editing is foolish and unrealistic on anyone's part. And amazingly enough, this person doesn't have writer's block, either.


So, as I continue NaNoWriMo, my posts may (or may not) be a little sporadic. Just know I'm here. I'm well. And I'm writing. :)

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Not Really Back But...

I'm still wicked busy so am not officially posting right now but I had to brag about a friend. Go check this out: (no, it's not a live link goddammit. Cut and paste please. Stoopid computer...) And be sure to note the Kermit avatar 'cause that's so what I'm doing over this news!

Those are Pobble Thoughts (sorta). That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

The Thing to Remember

For those who supported Barack Obama and are now basking in the glow of his election, it would be easy to forget that there are people who have woken this morning angry, afraid and more ostracized than ever. For those who supported John McCain and are now dealing with his electorial loss, it would be easy to believe that the enemy won.

What I would ask us all to remember is that we all share a common goal. We all want the United States of America to be stronger, healthier, safer and more stable. We want this country to be everything it can be. Gloating will do us no good. Pouting will do us no good.

Yes, I speak from the winning side of the table. I have, however, more often than not, spoken from the other side of the table and have tried to always speak these same words, hold this same attitude. We are all Americans. No one is more real than anyone else. No one is more loyal or patriotic than anyone else. No one's feelings are any more ~ or less ~ valid than anyone else's. We do not have to agree. We do not have to like. We must find a way to come together now, as a country, as a people, and reach our common goal.

Personally, I think the men who can help us do this is won last night. You don't have to agree with me. If I am right, though, or if you are, these are the men we have. And we are what we have. Male-Female. Rich-Poor-and Everything In Between. Black-White-Asian-Latino-and Everything Else. Gay-Straight-Bi-Transgendered. Christian-non Christian. City Mice-Country Mice-Suburban Mice. Plumbers-CEOs. Wage Earners-Salaried. We are America. We are Americans. None of us is going anywhere. All of us have a right to be here. We must work and live and come together.

The word "hope" has been and continues to be bandied about. Here is my hope: that we can become a unified nation again. That we can disagree and agree and fight and argue and hug and respect and understand as a single people, a single nation. Maybe I hope too much. But I don't think so.

To quote from one of my favorites: These men, no matter how much we may disagree with them, they are not ribbon clerks to be ordered about - they are proud, accomplished men, the cream of their colonies. And whether you like them or not, they and the people they represent will be part of this new nation that YOU hope to create. Now, either learn how to live with them, or pack up and go home! In any case, stop acting like a Boston fishwife.

Take a few days. Bask in the glow. Wallow in the anger. But then... well, then it's time we all stopped acting like Boston fishwives. And that's the thing to remember.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008


...And thankful.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you your country back.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Happy Thoughts

Those of you who have been long-time readers may (or may not) remember several years ago, I fell up the stairs at the Divine M's house and broke one of the little bones in my left foot. My doctor told me to wrap it, ice it and stay off of it for 3-5 days. The FE brought over dinner and wine one night and, amazingly enough, my foot didn't hurt much. She also coined the phrase One Footed Pobble Hop for the dance I do when I'm excited. It has since become simply the Pobble Hop but it is still her creation.

I am now 3000 miles away from the FE. Luckily, I live in the same house with Lithus. Because I have, once again, broken one of the little bones in the top of my foot. This time, it's the right foot rather than the left and I didn't fall up stairs (I whacked it on a poorly placed rack at a department store, in case you're wondering) but the result and cure are the same. Wrap, ice, off it.

Which has given me a lot of time to think, as I am only in day two of my three day cure, and I have been thinking about things that make me happy.

* Playing Clue with my family. It's my favorite board game. I own it ~ a Christmas present the last year my dad was alive. But it's in storage in Worcester and, given the fact that it was a gift when it was a gift, I haven't played it in a while. Lithus bought it for me the other day and he, Timber and I played several rounds. You know what? It's still a great game.

* Writing. As I've mentioned here, I've been blocked. I've been really, really blocked. It's probably been 6-8 weeks since I've written anything fictional and another 4 before that since I've written anything good. But the Universe gives us what we need and, apparently, I needed a broken foot. Because I have been writing today. Incredibly, incredibly productive. I am superstitious enough that I won't proclaim my block gone. It's been one day after nearly 3 months. And I wrote today. Which is a huge something.

* The Orleans Candle Company. They are down in Portland, which is further than I would like it to be but not nearly as far as Salem, MA. And they sell supplies the way I am used to stores selling supplies.

* French manicure forms. These are little strips that you can use to give yourself a French manicure and have them have clean lines and look nice.

* Halloween/Samhain. While there were too many people to honor this year, that's the way it happens sometimes. But it was good to release the crap that I let go of and plant the seeds I planted. It's working already. And we got trick-or-treaters. Not many but enough. My favorite was a teenager dressed as a stock broker. He had a suit with the tie loosened and jacket askew, he'd done makeup to give himself heavy 5 o'clock shadow and had a bottle in a brown paper sack tucked in his pocket. We carved pumpkins into Jack o'lanterns, which I love. Timber and Lithus used patterns for the first time. I used a pattern and free-formed one (yes, I got two because mine were little.) I have never seen white pumpkins before but got one this year and carved ghosts into it. Oh yeah ~ happiness.

* NaNoMo. Which stands for National Novel Month, in case you don't know. The goal is to write a 50,000 word novel in the month of November. I have never participated before. I'm not officially participating this month. And, I'm unofficially borrowing it in hopes that it helps break the block. So far, it's working. I also love the knowledge that other authors are out there, working, creating, churning away. The world needs books and stories. It's nice to know they're coming along.

* My new jacket. It's actually a top, not a jacket. So it's a jacket but it's not outerwear. Yes, that's probably the better way of describing it. It's fitted burgundy velvet with lace around the sleeves and collar and corset lacing up the back. And it's bee-yoo-tee-ful.

* My shoes from the Lovely Cats. These were my birthday present from her this year. Actually, she got me a Target gift card. But still. They're from her.

So yes, lots of happiness these days. And lots of gratitude for the happiness.

Those are Pobble Thoughts. That and a buck fifty will get you coffee.