Thursday, April 28, 2011

Going out with a whimper

I sure hope April goes out with a whimper. The start had enough of a bang, thank you very much. And now, some of that bang has come back to haunt us. For a recap since I can finally do it without breaking down into a million pieces:

As everyone knows, my duaghter is in the hospital. She did get out of the ICU (again!) Tuesday and is currently undergoing therapy of different sorts. I'm a little muddled on what all kind she's getting.

April 3: in the hospital
April 5--8: catheter intervention for the HUGE blood clot, filters and stents put in.
April 9: Out of ICU
April 14: Emergency brain surgery on emotional lobe. Brain bleed, blood clot (stroke)
April 14-26: ICU waiting for all the STUFF to go right and get brain tube out.
April 26: Moved to recovery floor
April 27-Present: Begin therapy. Assessments done on her emotional, mental and physical state to determine if in hospital care, or nursing home.

In the midst of all this, came the other reasons I've mentioned that April can #effoffApril and those aren't counting the every day trials of kids, travel with one car and little money, and babysitting for the days husband worked and during her surgery.

I did manage a bit of writing throughout this mess. I think I'm around 7-8k. As my regulars know, I usually do that a few times a month and average about 3k a day, depending on how much of my time is spent editing and networking (or playing :)

But what all the problems have caused is a new one. Money. I'm going to be starting an etsy page to sell prints of my paintings and my paintings, including the dragon at the top of my blog. I'll keep people informed as I do this. My main concern is my writing, which, thankfully, is picking up!

So, I'm going to concentrate on the future. My up and coming writing career, the paintings, the love of my friends and family and I'm going to keep writing.

Thanks to all of you who've helped me through this. In the beginning, I started a list of people who helped and supported us with their thoughts, prayers and positive energy and there were so many of you, that I couldn't keep up from the hospital! Thank you so much to all of you. All of you have helped to make this past month bearable. I consider you my family. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU


PS One of the aforementioned problems was our Xbox360, our only movie player and most of the games and some movies getting stolen which turned out to be a major crisis for only about 24 hours. Someone gave us a DVD player @Witchywoman2118 and someone else gave us an older game player @mercedesmy which I lurv since it has old games like Qbert on it LOL and someone gave us 15 via pay pal @VampwriterGrrl to help start replacing the games!! Special thanks. My kids are back to working hard on getting school and chores done in a timely manner!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Books: Love Them or Hate them?

I love books. I've discovered that although my tastes have evolved over the years, for the most part, my favourites remain my favourites. In fact, It may be time to do a little Agatha Christie reading again.

There was an interesting blog recently that talked about what makes you throw a book. To my pleasure, she asked that people not name names. I'm so glad :D But something that really caught my eye is how subjective the quality of a book is. That's true in most things, but I think in art & literature the individual's life experience has as much to do with their belief in the quality of something as much as the actual quality atrributed by professionals in the arena.

Story telling, originally an oral art, is about the story. The craft only matters, really, in the words you choose, just like the oral days. However, the grammar, the title, the cover, can all affect the monetary success of a work. But those are small things that only matter as a part of the package. Readers with higher education may get more distracted or put off by "bad" grammar even if it is the way they talk in your area and you're simply being true to a character.

On the other hand, I've not been able to pick up a book because of the cover. I'm not a prude, or even a sissy, but there are a few bookcovers that disturb me at a primal level. I can't always put my finger on why.

The question on the aforementioned blog was what makes you throw a book. I heard that people will give a book 50 pages (I'm relieved because my first book, Rebellion on Piza 7, does a few beginner errors, but most of it's in first chapter :D) some 100, and heres the one that had me blinking: some READ THE ENDING!!! seriouslY? I have a book figured out within 10 pages sometimes it might even take me 20, but if I read the last pages first????? WOW. I don't know how anyone can even want to read a book if they know who did what before they really start. I can't even WRITE the damn book if I know the ending before it gets close. (In case you missed earlier posts: I'm a pantster!)

What are some things that make you really love a book. I mean cherish it, reread it until you have to buy a new copy. Think about it while driving, muse about the characters, think about the what ifs. What is it about a book that does that?

And what's on the other side of a coin? What will make you put a book down, even if you paid full price? Or, like some people, throw it and or burn it in disgust? This is such a highly subjective field.

Please, no name calling. You may show your reasons why you don't like a particular book, but don't say the title, even if it's a classic. You may not agree with someone else's reasons. If that's the case, disagree with respect :D I love heated discussions so feel free to have one or two in the comments lol

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Spring Ballad

Winter comes in, freezing the land.
On the surface, it all seems so grand.
Picture perfect, Christmas cards,
Kid's frolicking in the snow and school yards.

But underneath lurks the true power.
Beneath the dirt, the evergreen bower,
Lies power so great, nothing can withstand,
No matter how strong, be it earth or sand.

If it's the rock of a mountain or of a river,
It will succumb to the great power, as a fever.
For the smallest seed can lie in wait,
Waiting for its time, for its fate.

But lo, watch for the eruption to happen;
Watch for the strength of the new sap and
You will see something so glorious, so full of life,
Your heart will pause, for moment there won't be strife.

For within the seed, be it a poppy or a pine,
There is life. Forceful, unending, on earth it will dine.
Tendrils reaching out, sucking up every drop of water,
Devouring its mother's nutrients and pushing out her.

Ground must give way, lifting higher until it breaks.
Rocks give away a small piece, the roots like stakes.
Each crack being formed, being turned to earth,
Mawing, mashing, crushing, curling in its berth.

On land, beyond the salty seas and the wide oceans,
Plants grow, flow and quietly overtake what others shun.
Abandoned houses, roads, soon are plundered by nature.
Seeds float in the breeze, waiting for their chance at nurture.

The torrential rains wash away the last remnants of winter,
As the seeds of the plants and trees begin to splinter.
And through the earth it comes never stopping or done.
Over and over again, the cycle it grows with help from the sun.

Until the human eye can see the happy and wonder of its beauty.
Flowers, trees, plants of all sorts, some bushy, some climbing like ivy.
Some reedy and thin, some crawl along the ground.
Searching for a place to call home, a place to abound.

As you look at spring's gentle beauty, it's easy to miss,
The power which made it possible to enjoy such bliss.
But it's always there, lurking creeping, doing as it must.
To make sure that the colors of spring don't stay as dust.

The other ballad links:

Note: First two are darker, the last is a funny (as you can probably tell by the titles lol) :D

Ballad to Screwed Up Love

Death and the Red Parrot

Ode to Sinusitis

Sunday, April 24, 2011

so it happened again

Another wonderfully funny post down the tubes :( It was extremely funny, IMO, and a perfect light hearted foil to all the drama in the hospital. I swear I could write my own hospital drama from what's happened here.

So now, instead of the lighthearted post I was going to deliver with brilliance and savoir faire, I'm going to give you a not so happy updated and do a little woe is me. If you're not prepared with the cheese and grapes to accompanying my whine, I will wait while you properly prepare yourself.

I have decided the month of April sucks @$$ and I'm sorry if I offended anyone. I don't go off like this often, so bear with me and let it roll of your back like water of a duck.

ON April 3rd, my daughter was admitted to Yakima Regional Hospital. After much procrastination and drama, a surgeon finally looked at my presumed insurance-less daughter. She then proceeded to have four procedures and discovering she has may thurners syndrome and now has two stents in. When she's finally out of the ICU after getting out enough of the debillitating clots to get 95% of her physical proweress in the leg back, she has severe headaches. Well, five days later, she's had a stroke and is having brain surgery. During her recovery time, the anniversary of Grandpa's death passes us on the 19th. My brother's is the 25th.

My daughter's stuff (and please believe me when I tell you that the stuff listed here is the tip of the iceberg.) has subverted my stuff on my brother, but do you know what that means? That means that instead of spending my days releasing a little at a time, immersing myself in my writing, I've been inundated with more stress. Thankfully there has been some that has been happy stress as mentioned in previous post.

I have decided, as I announced on twitter that April is to be given the boot. Then, a good friend suggested I line up the bunnies for sacrificing and maybe April will get the point :D I'm seriously considering it. I'll add zombie bunnehs to the mix for my #zombiesurvivalcrew But something different has to happen.

So join me in trending #effoffApril in memory of my brother, grandpa and in hope for my daughter!

A true story

For my brother Timmy who would've laughed :D

Here follows a true story that we all are going to pretend happened to someone other than me, okay? :D

Once upon a time, a harassed, stressed out woman was driving. Her car has more than one color of doors, can't find third gear to save her life, and needs a new U-joint. Or maybe it's the Cv joint. Her leather coat needs the pockets fixed and has paint on it. She's a mother and an artist and she doesn't care about the above problems except when she has to fix them.

This woman, closer to forty than thirty, was driving along the highway where it splits. A sleek, silver, hot rod car whips around her. She shakes her head, thinking what a rash person it was to fly around people at high speeds where the free split. She was also wishing she had her mustang back so she could've given him a run. As they near an exit, he slows. She figures he probably has radar detector because everyone slows down there.

She passes him up this time and looks in the window, yes it's a him. A young, golden skinned him. She's in a pissed off mood due to family stuff that causes her to tightly clench her jaw and her hair's up in a pony tail and makeup hasn't seen her face in a month of Sundays. Oh joy.

She just shakes her head. A minute later, a white four door nothing whips past her in much the same way the sporty car had earlier. Really? Some old guy with his beard whipping in the wind out of the opened window is now passing her? She sighs then grins when she sees the silver car get into a pissing contest with the old geezer and lose.

Having laughed at him, she no longer pays attention until she ends up behind him on the off ramp. Then she passes him again as she comes up on the other lane as the light turns green. He grins like it's some sort of game. For about half mile to mile the game goes on. She just shakes her head and has a little ego inflation. Until the turn.

She's headed to McD's to pick up a quick burger on the way to the hospital. The little sporty car follows behind her. Her breath hitches. OMG the young guy thinks she wants his number! She whips into the drive-thru from the back area, the guy following her. No, wait, he goes around the drive thru down the side of the parking area.

After she orders, and pays, she sees the car. It's parked. Holy cow, is he waiting for her to leave. Dusk is dropping rapidly. What had seemed a harmless game is now fraught with worrisome possibilities. One too many CSI's seen in the last week.

She gets her food and cautiously peers into the car, looking for the driver. No one's there. She peers back into the window and sees him heading to the back. He works at McDonalds.

LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL cackling with laughter, she rolls her window back up, getting a funny look from the one who gave her the drink. It's okay, she tells herself. Your imagination is why you can write so well. And speeds off into the sunset...

Friday, April 22, 2011

I'm going to be busy

It looks like I'll be writing a serial with my critique partner :D It'll be for Splintered Lands :D go here to read some samples of what's been happening so far in this fantasy world :D

I have a short already with them and will be writing more. I'll keep everyone appraised as the results get in. *happy dance :D

Between that and my other works, I ought to keep busy :D

I'm also going to have a website soon! is the intended site addy, but will wait to see what the domain server comes back with :D soon, soon, my pretties...

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Did someone say Reality?

So, after my insightful, delightful post about returning to reality, we had another chapter in the book of Ashley's stay at the hospital. Turns out the nasty headaches were a brain clot squishing her brain and she had a stroke. Yep, I said it. Stroke. There's still swelling in the brain and some bleeding, although it's nowhere near as massive as it was. She had to have an emergency brain surgery and the docs said if they'd waited one more day she would've died before they could get her to the OR.

Lot of Drama and stress but her dad (my ex) and I aren't fighting and we've agreed on her care, after his initial reluctance to have a surgeon look at her, he now realizes it's always better to have second opinion if someone isn't sure.

I will someday soon post a long and short of it, probably in a series. But for now, thank you all on twitter who've really helped me through this long bitter road. I was telling my husband that if it wasn't for the modern miracle of medicine, I'd only have one child out of the five I had. I would have lost my daughter. Thanks for the support through this hard time.

And special thanks to @Mercedesmy and @VampWriterGrrl and @Witchywoman2118 for their awesome support when we found out our Xbox was stolen! that's right. As if this wasn't hard enough on my young children, some asshat came in and stole our xbox and a shoe box full of games movies!

Needless to say, this has been a horrible, aweful week for me and my family, mixed in with the blessing that she seems to be doing better. Keep praying for us!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Back to Reality

Have you ever noticed that when things are intense they take on a surreal feeling? How the most real things seem over the top? Like this past week and a half.

I could have lost my daughter.

If lack of insurance had kept her BF from taking her in, if he hadn't had the idea to check google again for signs and symptoms matching hers under circulation instead of leg pain and said let's go, if one of the clots had broke free and landed in her lungs or her brain, if any one of these things had happened, my daughter would not likely have survived.

This past week I had to bully to get my daughter the necessary care. The doctors didn't want to call in a specialist, I insisted even though everyone including my daughter rolled their eyes and thought I was over reacting. I yelled at the BF's grandma after she came in yelling at me. (I did try to hug her first, but... she was insistent that they were only doing surgery on my say so.) I made everyone listen to me. I don't usually get that insistent. But, I knew there was a better option for my daughter.

My ex has become completely in accord with me, even when we don't agree. Her BF has had an eye opener, and even my daughter is no longer angry with me. It's a lost cause on the grandma, but hey, it's a small price to pay to give my daughter a chance at having children. During this past week, all of this has been my only reality. My younger kids were being taken care of my MIL and even their care evolved around how to get her a chance to see my daughter. Everything in our life evolved around this event.

Now, she's still in hospital, playing a waiting game. She's looking a bit sickly from headache and nausea, but all in all she's much improved. Going back to "real life" I've realized how basic I really am. Yes, I'm a complicated individual. But in a lot of ways, I'm simple.

I'm a mother. I'm a wife. I'm an artist. I'm a writer. Each of things say pretty much everything about me if you want to get down to brass tacks. I am a mother. My daughter and I have had a fair share of the hard road together, but as I explained to the aforementioned grandma, I'm her mother and I will do what's best for her whether they like it or not.

See, I'm stubborn when it's important :D

As I'm dealing with the day to day things and I'm trying to get back to "real life" I have an odd feeling. As if I've been really living and now I'm going back to the rehearsal for the next show. And this past week is turning into something surreal as if it happened in a show.

Sometimes I think these intense times reveal who we really are. The "it's a stressful time" is an excuse. I yell too much at my kids. In my opinion. Maybe I don't yell enough in someone else's opinion. But our lives are very stressful and I'm intensely worried about all of them. And I realized that's who I am-I'm loud and everyone can love me or leave me for it, but there it is :D

As I'm looking at the intense situation my character is going through, I wonder if I've really helped the reader to see and feel the intenseness and leave the surreal feeling there as well. I want it there. To me, if I can incorporate this after math of surreal into the character, I'll have succeeded.

How many times in our writing do we forget to get down to brass tacks with our characters because we're so busy making things complicated? Sometimes, the most basic qualities can bring out the strongest conflicts. Do we as writers use this enough? It really is intense. The most intense moments I had were sprung out of a basic concept. I'm a mother. Think of your favorite books. Are your favorite characters simple making them complicated? Taking a very simple concept, you can complicate the heck out of things. Try it for an exercise with one of your characters if you're a writer. If you're a reader, look back at your favorite characters and pay attention to the next book you read. Wha't the character's basic motivation?

Monday, April 11, 2011

Me, I guess

It's been a long rough week. Most of you know why I disappeared, only posting medical updates on daughter with little in between on twitter. But here's a short synopsis of what's been happening.

MY MIL wakes me up Sunday morning. My ex and Ashley, my daughter, her boyfriend, has tried to call me. Ashley's in hospital. Severe blod clot. The ER doctor had admitted her and the plan was to keep her on cuemadin (god knows the correct spelling. I think I used about 100 different ones during my updates!) let the blood thin until it flows through the clot. She presented with a PURPLE LEG SWOLLEN FROM THE HIP DOWN. *breathe*

Pause for a bit of info dump here: My daughter is 19. The ER doc and the one that came in the next day in the afternoon(that was a bitch for us. Mamma grizzly was getting frayed along the edges.) were going to leave her with a huge clot with risk of stroke, yada yada, and just try to move a little blood. The hospitilist even said, the clot won't go away, the blood will just move through it. Let's just say by the time the hospitilist arrived, they had a consult request.

I asked the doctor about the results of the ultra sound and she was like I didn't see that part. I just smiled with a lot of teeth when she said she'd look again as she got ready to consult. See, I happen to have an uncle who's specialty is in vascular field. She was forced to consult. That evening she came back and said a surgeon would be in. He came about a half hour after her.

You could tell it was one doctor coming in as a favor for another at first. Although he never treated us like idiots. His questions seemed more, "If we do surgery, what are some of the risk factors," that kind of thing. Then he looked at her leg. The if became when (tomorrow, which was Tuesday) and he started going over stuff with us.

She had four surgeries (which are actually called procedures cuz they never used a "knife" lol but same difference to my daughter. They were doing stuff inside her body with things that didn't belong there...) and it turns out she has May Thurners (again with the spelling) and the thinning process they were originally using would not have helped her half as much and likely would have resulted in something bad happening and the inability to have children. After two days of ultra sound being used at the heart of the clot, they still had to use two stents to get clear through the clot part that wouldn't go away, even with thinnners.

The treatment as she ended up getting will give her a chance at having kids in the future, and resolved the problem as best as modern medicine is capable. She's recovering nicely to the point that she's back at arguing with her mom :D

Believe me when I say this is a quick synopsis. So much drama happened... Oh well. For now, there's the update LOL

Hopefully, I can get back to my writing.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

April's Featured Writers

Okay, for what seems to me to be obvious reasons, I chose not to run this on the first but on the second. Will be posting midnight my time tonight.

The first two authors aren't people I personally know but are for a friend of mine who represents The Zombie Press. Although I know him more for his fodder chasing as a zombie on twitter, he's a good guy *waves hi harry! and was kind enough to give me these two authors for this month:

1) "Dead Stay Dead" by Paul Jessup.

What do you get when you cross Buffy the Vampire Slayer with equal parts Shaun of the Dead? Well… we’re not sure, but Paul Jessup’s Dead Stay Dead does an admirable job of trying!

Natasha is a ghost whisperer. Her roommate is a gypsy able to explode heads Scanners style with her mind. And campus has been overrun by zombies. What’s a girl to do?

In Jessup’s fast-paced, gore-packed novella you’ll follow Natasha as she attempts to save her school (and humanity, she supposes) from an impending apocalypse. Funny, bizarre, and even a bit sad, fans of hardcore zombie fiction will find plenty to enjoy in Dead Stay Dead.

A little about Paul:

Paul Jessup is a critically acclaimed writer of fantastical fiction. He’s been published in many magazines, both offline and on, with two books published in 2009 (short novel, Open Your Eyes and the short story collection Glass Coffin Girls) and a third in 2010 (the illustrated book, Werewolves). You can visit Paul’s web home at

Links to eforms and trade paperback:

2) "Asylum" by Mark Allan Gunnells


Curtis, a young college student is dragged to his first gay club by his best friend Jimmy for a night of dancing, drinking and sex…at least until the dead start to rise and attack the club. Trapped inside the Asylum are a small band of survivors, including a drag queen, a male stripper, a Vietnam vet bartender, a pretentious gay couple, and an unstable DJ. Will this motley crew survive the hungry undead rattling the sealed-off doors? Will they survive each other? Will they survive their own personal demons? Asylum recalls George Romero’s classic Night of the Living Dead–except with more gore and a more current social message.


Mark Allan Gunnells is thirty-six years old and holds a degree in English and Psychology. He is the author of the chapbook A Laymon Kind of Night and the upcoming Whisonant and Tales from the Midnight Shift, Vol. I, all from Sideshow Press. His short story “Dancing in the Dark” was recently released through Darkside Digital. A small-town boy at heart, he still lives in his hometown of Gaffney, SC, with his partner of nine years.

Again the link is for eforms and the trade paperback from The Zombie Press

The Zombie Press is a neat small niche press that has unique stories and their site is a lot of fun! Go check them out!

And a reminder of the anthology I've contribute to, put together and edited by my friend the Peevish Penman printing under the Peevish Penman Press aka Carrie Bailey:

The Handbook of the Writer Secret Society

Amazon link:

Lulu Link: (psst it's on sale for $6 on this link as of right now :D)

Blog owners note: I've contributed to The Handbook of the Writer Secret Society. I'm a small contributor, but love this book. It has on old world feel like all secret society books should have!!

Enjoy your reading and please support our authors and small presses!!