Monday, April 21, 2014

Blog Tour - My Writing Process

My friend Lindsey over at Chaotically Yours asked if I wanted to participate in a blog tour.

To participate I need to answer a few questions.

1) What am I working on? I am working on writing a novel called Pain By Proxy which is based on a screenplay I've already written. The premise is that hidden in our society are people with the ability to manipulate and absorb the pain and pleasure of others. The protagonist is a young woman who discovers her unexplainable pain is her ability to absorb other people's pain. The doctor she thinks is helping to find an end to her pain is really hunting people like her to turn over to a casino owner who can no longer absorb enough of other people's pleasure to cover his own pain. 

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre? I think the story straddles two genres, bringing a fresh look to both. It brings the dramatic core of self-sacrifice from a superhero origin story and the elements I like from vampire tale where the antagonists drain pleasure over blood.  

3) Why do I write what I do? I was so intrigued by the idea that pain feels different to everyone. Pain has value if you can figure out how to deal with it. I was also drawn to the idea that we are all responsible for the energy we put into the world, our pain or joy alters the lives of the people around us.

4) How does my writing process work? I typically have an idea of the emotional journey of a character I want to portray first. I like the element of surprise when I write, for myself and my readers, so I don't plan out everything before I start. I love that moment when the character's story comes alive for me and I realize their secrets. 

Now I'm supposed to pick three writers to be next but how about if you want me to tag you for next week let me know in comments and I'll alter this very post with your very own blog!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Word Play

I did a writing challenge with my Niece and I thought I would share - if anyone is there anymore. :-)

I recall the citrus trees of my youth, with welcoming branches and a deep well formed at the joining of thick wide limbs. Yet it was a little too high for me to reach, so instead I only yearned for its embrace.

I loved it when the delicate flowers opened to the California sun releasing the cloying sweet scent of orange blossoms. A riot of waxy, impossibly white petals cast against the darkness. Too soon they were ready to change, and embrace the brightly hued destiny already set for them.

On the low branches the squirrels would eat the pulp, leaving behind nothing but a bright orange hull. A shell of what could have been – still clinging to the branch, trying to pretend it was not empty inside.

On the higher branches laid the promise of rich and juicy flesh - dense and ripe. Waiting for the brave to risk everything to reach it, or to drop to the earth and take its chances.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Signing Off

After further reflection I decided to call it a day on this blog earlier than I planned. So this is the last post over here. I think all of you know my other blog as the kitties Housecat Confidential, so please join me over there. I will post at the H.C. every now and then as a human.

Naturally I will announce any exciting news over there. I am really hoping to find some exciting news to report. Selling my screenplay would be great! Writing another book would be swell!

I feel poised and ready to take on the next new thing, even if I am not sure yet what that thing is going to be.

I wanted to thank you again for being here to help me get through it all. I'd be a bit sadder - but it isn't the end - it's just a beginning. Plus let's face it, I doubt I'll really keep my mouth shut. You definitely haven't heard the last of me - just in this format - on this blog.

Signing off!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014


I had such a great talk with my sister Monday. The conversation was all about thinking about things differently. Both of us tend to come up with a goal and plan the steps to get there. No problem with that - until the plans derail.

I was telling her that she can achieve the her goal in different ways. It occurred to me that I needed the same speech. I need to look at what is working in my life and change the things that aren't.

There are so many ways to be a writer these days. I think I've decided that blogging as a human isn't as fun as blogging as cats.

I don't mind speaking in my own voice, I just think I'd be happier doing it in another way. The first writing class I took was on creating 800 word stories. I realized how much I missed that format. It was just enough words to tell a story, but you have to be careful about the words you select.

Those 800 word stories may become a book, maybe I'll work on a new kitty book, or maybe turn my screenplay into a novel? Not sure yet.

Lots of choices, and I can't do everything. So it is with mixed emotions that I say I am going to close up this blog in a month. I will still keep the kitty blog at Housecat Confidential, I am not ready to give that up! I may  make a human appearance over there now and then.

I want to thank all of you for your support through a really hard time for me. After losing my grannycat Fin I wasn't sure I would have the strength to keep blogging but you all pulled me through, and for that I am very grateful! I hope you stick around for whatever comes next. :-)

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Holy Cod - It Got Me

I don't know if I reported it, but I've had a few episodes with painful varicose veins since I started walking. Nothing too serious to look at, but it was hurting off and on. I was a little freaked out by the pain cause I thought it might be a blood clot (I had one in my ankle once). My insurance finally gave the go ahead to get it fixed. Part of the "Getting it fixed" process involves wearing thigh-high compression stockings for a month.

I was nervous about this for a few reasons:
  1. I get hives when something presses against my skin. I hoped the fact that the pressure was spread over a large area would keep me hive-free.
  2. I have a big scar right at the bend in my ankle. The scar is still very sensitive and I feared the stockings creasing into it. 
  3. My thighs are more cone-shaped than I'd like to admit. What would keep the stockings from just rolling on down the leg? 
Despite my reservations, I decided to trust it would all be okay. I ordered a black pair - I imagined they might even look pretty. Okay in my wildest moments of optimism - I thought they might even look kinda sexy. My hopes were high.

The lady at the store demonstrated, on her arm, how to get them on - so easy. I watched a few videos on YouTube - piece of cake. Simply use the gloves (with little rubber nubs) to gently wiggle it up your leg - no pulling or tugging required.

I won't go into all the details - I don't know what those other people had - but they were not what I had. I had to pull with all my might to move them even an inch up my leg. A part of it bunched up, and I've had more comfortable tourniquets. Did I mention I get hives from pressure?

I started to have a full on panic attack. I couldn't get them up and I couldn't bear giving up at this point. My husband came running to my cries of panic and said it looked like a black anaconda was eating me alive. He was forced to wrestle it off like a snake charmer. I bet you wish I'd made a how to video for YouTube!

Eventually even I found it funny - after hitting the bottle of expired Xanax. So I guess I am going to have to talk to the Doctor's office tomorrow and call the whole thing off.  What a bummer.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Embarrassed to Report

Do you have any television guilty pleasures? I admit I do.

I am an avid watcher of The Bachelor dating show. It's the perfect blend of an emotional train wreck, a travel show, and a romantic comedy of errors. The fact that it rarely ends in a lasting relationship barely dims my enthusiasm. 

I watch all the Real Housewives of (Fill in the blank) shows. So much drama! I used to watch pretty much any show on the Bravo network... until recently. A few have failed to grab me - I'd think I was maturing except for this next selection... Reign.

The fact that Reign is shown on the network known for tween programming should deter me. I feel fairly confident that any resemblance to the actual life of Mary Queen of Scots is iffy. Appropriate accents or period clothing - who needs it? Not when the costumes are so pretty and - dare I say modern. I'd watch just for the dresses alone; all the pretty faces don't hurt either. History be damned.

What are you ashamed to watch?

Monday, December 23, 2013

Christmas Memories

I can't believe Christmas is almost here.

Christmas was always such a happy time of year for me as a child. We would leave our home in sunny California and travel to see our grandparents in Illinois. My grandmother loved Christmas and would try in every way to make it special.

One year my grandmother tied green velvet bows on the stems of all the apples in a beautiful dish. The next year, to out do herself, she tied red velvet ribbons on the necks of the snow white pet pigeons they had. I can only imagine what went into that feat behind the scenes.

My sister and I were always put in charge of tree decorating. My grandmother had so many ornaments (all carefully wrapped) that we had to unwrap and put up. My mom was a bit of a tree-fanatic which tended to suck the joy out of it. You couldn't see any of the lighting cords - there was a pre-ornament inspection. She would then question many of our placement decisions. Each piece of tinsel had to be placed individually - no clumping allowed. The end result was lovely but it sure was a production.

Wrapping presents was also a production. You couldn't just slap a bow on a bag and call it done. There had to be at least three different papers (all coordinated) with matching ribbons and bows. I remember wrapping packages upstairs one year and then throwing them downstairs for the recipients to open seconds later. Really at that point, it seems like too much... but not for my grandmother and mom.

Although I loved the results of all the hard work - I must say I have gone another way as an adult. I am a casual Christmaser for sure. There hasn't been a gift bag I have not embraced - I don't even slap a bow on it. I shun tinsel and my tree is pre-lit. I am happy to go my own way.

Whatever your holiday style I hope you have a very happy one friends!