Sunday, January 31, 2016

The Evolution of Figuring Out My Name

So I don't have a post.  I intended to sit down tonight work on "The Bite" but it didn't happen.  It's there tinkering but alas I didn't write it.  I might write it after this but seeing as I have one more load of laundry to fold and put away I might not. 

The weekend might not have been productive on the writing front unfortunately it was productive in that:
- Finally did the "Learner's Session" at the skating rink Saturday with my niece
- Followed by bowling
- Followed by cleaning the inside of the car
- Then grocery shopping
- Saturday din din
... Saturday was quite productive and today was filled with
- about 7-8 loads of laundry
- Sunday din din
- Washing the salt crud from the car (went through the car wash, first time I've done that in YEARS, not since I was a kid myself)
- Cleaning/vacuuming
- Organizing the office

Which is what leads me to my pic.  I still have a lot to organize/arrange but I intentionally kept the books I've written on the bookshelf near me as a reminder of sorts.  However in looking at them I sort of laughed at the evolution of my name-

Not pictured is my bound collection of short stories.  Also I never printed a copy of Book 2 of OTTM and still revising MD. 

Okay off to dry the whites and stare at MD ^_^

Thursday, January 28, 2016

On... Off... On... and No

Well the other day after I realized I missed the deadline for the aspiring writers' workshop I sent over an email to inquire to see if there would be a waiting list.  Turns out there was another workshop coming up in Feb with one slot open.  So I went ahead filled out an application, sent over my sample pages and today got an email informing me I'd gotten said slot.  Now the workshop isn't cheap but based on the nature of it, it felt like a good fit for me to bring MD to...

Well... my life is different from when it was just me and if I wanted to travel I could just get up and go.  So it is times like these which make it frustrating.  I've always wanted to attend a workshop but early on I felt like I never was ready (with having material) and then the funds (because they aren't cheap).  And now I've arrived to a place where I can afford it and have a project I'd like to review but can't :(

So I'm just sort of wallowing and I kept telling myself earlier 'don't get too excited, don't make it official yet until you know for sure...' and yeah.  Just a bit down by the fact that I can't.  And maybe it's for the best.  Probably should focus the money on paying off another credit card instead or whatever.  Still doesn't stop me from having a moment of 'when it was just me I could...'  At any rate I'm going to continue to pretend that I'm going because when I thought I was it really lit a fire of 'MUST FINISH SECOND DRAFT NOWWWW!' 

Part of me still hopes that I might be able to make it work but given how quick the date is coming up and such I'm not feeling confident about it but I'm going to work on trying to go. 

At any rate heading off to bed to do some late night plotting and bridge the gap in MD.  Right now I'm working in the middle of P2 of the book, I've put in P3 and trying to bring it together.  I'll probably post another chapter tomorrow too. 

The Sweet Feeling of a Productive Day

Yesterday I posted a chapter of MD forgetting that I actually did have a sort of post.  So I'm going to talk about getting things done (yesterday) very briefly.

Last year I was made aware of something I think I might've been semi-conscious of but had never quite verbalized it.  Sure I'd gave gestures to it during interviews and my previous manager had pointed it out but I'm very results-focused.  But what I learned last year that I hadn't really noted was that I attach a lot of emotion to it.  Meaning if I don't feel like I've been productive it's a sure way of bringing me down.  Which is why I like making list and checking things off or setting deadlines for myself and meeting them.  I like working toward something.  I like knowing I completed it even more.  And who doesn't, really? 

But the difference with me (and I'm sure there are others) is the emotional factor and just how much power it wields over me.  So if I said I had a productive day best believe I might be on cloud nine because I've probably gotten all the laundry done, finished a chapter, got in some exercise, etc etc.

So yesterday I had this feeling because:
- I talked to my manager regarding  job posting
- I updated my resume and submitted for said posting
- Whipped through a lot of task
- Finished the last two loads of laundry and got them put away
- Cleaned the microwave
- Swept & mopped the kitchen floor
- Did a brief walk with the niece around the neighborhood
- Cooked dinner and was done at a decent time (yay for leaving early)
- Got my brows threaded and they're looking quite clean again
- Lastly I didn't add much to MD (which would've been icing on the cake!) but I did sift through it a bit

And now I shall be off.  To hopefully have more productive days this week ^_^  namely in regards to writing. 

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Montgomery's Diary - Prologue


I remembered my first lie.

That’s important. Write it down.

It wasn’t one I told; instead it had been given to me by my mother. I don’t know what that said about her as a mother and what that meant for me as her daughter. The lie found me the same night Daddy and Mama had got into an argument about “She” and “Her”.
She’s done this to me!”“This is her fault!” ….

Mama’s voice broke often. They were downstairs and their voices, more of Mama’s, came drifting under the door into my bedroom. The hall was still lit.  Its tiny yellow light peaked under my door.

I wasn’t sleep but I’d been sent to bed at my usual time. There were nights I stayed up watching the talk shows with Daddy. Mama hadn’t known. This was our secret. Daddy hadn’t said that but I knew. I never got the late night jokes. I just laughed when Daddy did.

Tonight wasn’t made for laughs.

The covers were pulled up to my chin. My toes tickled the edges of the quilt mostly to find the warmth and also because I liked the sound it made. I was pretty ashe. Mama had forgotten the cream after I got out the bath. I wanted to remind her but her mind didn’t seem to be in the room.

She ain’t right,” Mama yelled. It was quiet. Daddy, I thought. I hadn’t heard him.

I looked out my window trying to forget. The clouds had dropped to the ground. White fluffy clouds misted us, blessing us here down below; it came down from the sky to cushion the moon. I told Daddy my theory once about when clouds came down and he laughed, “It’s just fog baby girl.”

“Okay,” I said. I let Daddy believe what he liked. He lifted a brow to me but smiled instead of pursuing it. We picked our battles.

“Don’t you dare Earl! Don’t you even,” Mama said, “I don’t want it in here. S’pose it goes off?! No, get it OUT!”

I still hadn’t heard Daddy. The floorboards creaked and there was silence. I wished I was sleep. At least I wouldn’t have heard them.

My mind wandered back to the lie my mama had told me years earlier. “An angel touched your lips here,” she said.

I touched the dip in my top lip and wondered about the sort of angel that had laid their finger on me. Was the same angel somewhere around the world opening the door to a sleeping child? Or did they go into hospitals and hang out in the nursery? Was that the angel’s job in life? I was thinking of all the questions I’d wondered long ago that Mama hadn’t answered. I was going to ask her first thing in the morning when a door slammed and the steps thundered.

“You’ve done this to me!” Mama said and the light outside my door disappeared. “She’s…” I heard Mama’s voice stop as if she were choking.

“Just give me…” Daddy started and paused.


My window opened and the fog crept in.

You ready?

“I’m not… I’m not…” Mama repeated and her voice inched closer, the sound was in my room. I heard the door handle turn and light poured in.

You ready?

Daddy said something. Mama cried. The trees rustled. The mist whispered and then an explosion shattered the air. And another. Then there was silence.

There was quiet. The clouds misted my eye. They cushioned nothing.


“You okay?”

“Al, wake up, it’s just a dream. Alicia,” Two bodies hovered above me, horror etched in one face and death in the other.

I felt like I needed to be asking that question. “Just a nightmare,” I croaked, my throat was incredibly dry. “Sorry.”

“You were screaming ‘it hurts’,” Ty said, his face looked the most severe. Mika was in her robe and silk head wrap. Her body was faced toward me but her eyes registered CLOSED ‘TIL 8.

I shook my head and smiled, “I’m okay. You guys can go back to sleep. First night jitters,” I said. Mika accepted it without any argument, waved, walked out the door, and wandered back like a zombie to her room. Her bug eyes never made an appearance.

Ty was still perched on the side of me, staring harder than usual as if my face might reveal some double meaning. He got up and walked to my door. He stood near it for some time. I waited, his eyes focused on me and finally he blinked. Whatever he’d considered saying landed on saying nothing at all. Decided on nothing was a Joe trait. I almost called Ty on it but before I could he nodded, left the room, and closed the door.

I touched my face. I was sweaty. I tossed the sheet to the side and walked to the balcony. I opened the balcony doors and let the breeze cool my moist skin. The moon was high in the sky, there wasn’t a cloud in sight. The sounds of the ocean waves at night swayed me. I leaned against the door and stared out into the night and felt everything settle around me.

“There’s my island,” I said aloud. We’d become friends earlier in the day. Of course it was completely one sided- for now. It seemed closer, more accessible. I thought for a brief second of going out to it but a chilling wind and an onslaught of goose bumps said ‘think again’. I left the balcony door open and returned to my empty bed.

I started to let my mind wander to what Joe might be doing but I stopped. I wasn’t going to let this be a lonely night. I wasn’t going to think about how he wasn’t here. How he might not ever be here.

As I closed my eyes a breeze drifted across the silken drapes. A light touch pressed against my lips, sleep found me.


You’re ready.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Tiny Update

As it's getting late here and I intended to pass out a lot earlier just felt the need to jot down the following:

- Survived the contingency planning meeting last week
- Learned of a couple position
- Changed the deadlines for MD, B2S, and OTTM today
- Still haven't started the short story that's been bubbling in my head for a couple weeks now
- Went to see "The Peanuts Movie" yesterday and the family seemed to enjoy it
- Unfortunately missed the deadline for this >>>

Okay fingers crossed I hit my extended deadline for MD.  Really can't mess around with being late since it's throwing everything else off. 

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Another MD Snippet

I was going to do a late combined 5 things for both the 12th and 13th (which is still today in my head but really it's the 14th now).  However I probably should be heading to bed soon to try to be up by 6.  Had a bit of drama the last couple days and just stress from both the work end as well as family.  So just doing my best. 

At any rate some good things that did come out the last couple days was getting my car insurance squared away with help of my rep, routine exercises with my grandma, tried out a new dish today (one pan bake) and it came out GREAT!  Also I haven't really spent any money this week with the leftovers and such.  It's been nice just eating my home cooked food and saving money.

At any rate played powerball tonight *fingers crossed* and I'm still stewing on the short story which I'm "The Bite" for now. 

MD Snippet #2

                “It’s okay, we remember for you so you don’t have to.”

                “But I want to, for myself I mean.”

                “May I have the mag-”


                “Thank you.  I received a call earlier in the week.  Seems like you’ve been under a bit more stress lately, is it because of the anniversary?”


                “You shouldn’t be so hard on yourself.”

                “I know.”

                “But you have done something terrible and sometimes in cases like yours it’s hard to bear so we give ourselves allowances.  You see our minds are powerful things.  Once you’ve fabricated a truth you’ve rewritten the memory. Our memory, unfortunately, can be like a Wikipedia page.  You can access and edit the info there.  But so can others.  Before long what’s on that page will be conceived as an absolute truth to a memory that will no longer be wholly yours nor accurate.”

“The history doesn’t get lost though, right?  It’s still there.  A version control, I think, I’ve heard that from somewhere.”

“Aw, but you see, even a rapist can convince themselves that their innocent and the victim asked for it.  They will remain free of guilt even as they recall slipping something into their victim’s drink.  History is irrelevant in this regard.  We rewrite things all the time I’m afraid.  Even monsters have their brand of fairytales.”

Monday, January 11, 2016

5 Things - Jan 11th

So RIP David Bowie.  I can't say I was an uber fan but I was familiar with some of his songs and what I'll remember about was my childhood crush on him from Labryinth and how amazed I was of him and Iman as a couple.  I was fascinated by interracial couples at a young age.  At any rate I spent a lot of today reading articles and listening to song faves showing on my timeline.

Anywho five things I'm grateful for-

1.  This TEDtalk - Living a life of purpose
2.  David Bowie - More than an artist, actor, gendor bending theatrical persona there was the outspoken person to & the time he challenged MTV
3.  Completing a chapter of revision early in the morning ^_^
4.  Random 10 minute simple exercises/stretches with the niece and grandma / also playing with a toy slingshot as part of her therapy (my ingenious way of getting her to exercise that right arm)
5.  Leftovers ^_^ (nice to be able to come home, no detours AND have food that just requires reheating versus staring at the fridge trying to make something)
6.  Going to add one more and say it's nice to have some form of a writing community, even if it's online its nice to have a base set of writer friends to bounce ideas off of and just commiserate over various writing hiccups. 

Okay so hopefully tomorrow I'll get to work on the new short story or possibly post another snippet of MD. 

5 Things - Jan 10th

So despite wanting to use all my anger to have a productive writing weekend it didn't happen.  I got other stuff done but not nearly as much as I would have liked.  Still need to get a short story in and meet my extended deadline.  Thus I'm still awake.

Anywho five things I'm grateful for :)

1.  The Dishwasher, it really is a time saver
2.  "It's Nice" the compliment from my grandfather when I asked about the chilli tonight.  Normally when I ask how the food is I get an "It's okay" or "It's aight".  I know I did well if I get something outside of those two.  Last year I got "It's pretty good" twice.  Hoping to beat that this year.
3.  Crockpot Dump Cake
4.  Random Hugs & Smiles (Niece/Grandma)
5.  Organization - finally got the dresser drawers from out of the garage and got stuff properly put away with the help of my niece

Thursday, January 7, 2016

MD Snippet

Aye, it's another late evening and tonight was the extended target to finish MD revisions.  It's not happening.  I'm going to update MWC and push it to this weekend.  *Fingers Crossed*

In the meantime figured I'd include a snippet of MD since I also don't have a short story to post yet either.  This is the first journal entry you encounter when reading MD-

March 6
Sometimes all you could do was watch. It was safer that way. But safe didn’t always protect you. Sometimes being safe was actually worse. Sometimes watching just made it that much harder to bear. Sometimes instead of finding peace, you sought the darkness just to know you were alive. Sometimes you needed to feel that you were. Sometimes that darkness took you quicker. Sometimes that feeling never came. Sometimes… Sometimes there was nothing to grasp.

So every time we let go.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

5 Things - Jan 6th

Okay I'm definitely going to attempt to work on 1 of my new short stories by the weekend and have an actual post. 

But seeing as today was another rough day work wise and really it's my mental mostly I'm going to just reflect on 5 good things once again ^_^

1.  This video gave me a necessary boost.  I watched it twice and will probably watch it again before I pass out -

2.  Morning discussion with my niece regarding tornado and her educational share with me prior to arriving to school

3.  Received some really good feedback for my niece from her after school teacher and apparently other teachers shared the same sentiment regarding how well she's been doing. 

4.  Starbucks treat!  Niece loved her drink and I also go a free drink due to an error with the order so I passed it off to the grandparents.

5.  Got lunch prepped for tomorrow and two dishes for lunch/dinner so I shouldn't have to cook tomorrow evening. 

5 Things - Jan 5th

1.  Lan's critique ^_^ (that could easily count for all 5 slots but that might be cheating... slightly)
2.  Having a go to writer's group... For me that is a positive thing I reflected on today
3.  Treating the family to Sweetie Pies (including myself) for the first time as dinner since it was too late for me to cook... again
4.  GA smiling
5. Conversations about leftovers & baking (powder puffs and soda spreads)

Monday, January 4, 2016

5 Things - Jan 4th

1.  Discount at Aroma
2. Stepping onto one of my fave food trucks - 2 Girls 4 Wheels to get warm / caught up with the owner (and first time ever being inside one)
3. Niece in bed on time despite taking a nap
4. Random plotting of a coworkers story since it was nice and slow today ^_^
5. Messing w/ grandma whose constantly nodding off - I was about to stand her up and I was pretty sure she'd heard me get the gait belt but she was still just rocking sloooowly back and forth so I was about to mess with her nose when she leaned back and laughed at me. 

Simple moments.  With that said I've gone back and forth today mostly think it's due to shark week but I've laughed to the point of tears today to actually being brought to tears in a bathroom meltdown once I got home since it seemed like everyone was coming at me for something -_- 

Tis swift.

At any rate off to do some writing/revising  ^_^

Sunday, January 3, 2016

5 Things - Jan 3rd

So one of things I'd like to do whenever I remember to is take a moment and reflect on five good things from the day.

1.   Got my niece's hair done
2.  Hit 41-2k with MD revisions, nearly done after doing some work in the office today
3. Took the niece skating
4. Realized the learn something new might involve learning to skate (was informed there's morning classes on Saturdays for kids and adults)
5. Had two soy vanilla steamers from Starbucks today... sooo good

That's it.  Off to do some more revising. 

Saturday, January 2, 2016

The Official 2016 Resolution Post

It goes without saying, or maybe it needs to be said, I will be trying to get back to blogging daily (going for 80% blog rate for the year).  I'm not sure how well I'll be at it but it'll be a resolution to update this more.

As I did with 2015 for 2016 going to keep things simple. 

Here's what I'm tracking for resolutions/goals with 2016:

1. Complete the revision for another novel (TYW or OTTM/TMO)
2. Complete the first draft for an open project (i.e. the revenge deity story, faux immortality story, porch story, or mistress for hire)
3. Aim for 10 - 15k / per month (daily goal will be 500)
4. Pay off 2 additional debts (most likely two credit cards)
5. Self publish a work
6. Write 15 short stories
7. Visit/travel to a new place
8. Learn something new (tap class, 10 Mandarin character/per mth, or ...)
9. Read 40 books
10. Watch 10 new movies (half while still in theaters)

Okay.  Short post.  Off to do some writing. 

Friday, January 1, 2016

2015 ... Ze End

Dear 2015,

I'm not sad to see you go.  Much like your sibling 2014 you sort of sucked too.  But not completely.  I thought 2014 was the year that rattled me but no, I now realize or have rather confirmed that 2014 was the calm before the storm. 

See 2015 you started off pretty decently.  New year, new you, really and in January I was on target with my short stories, my blogging and life was still pretty decent even though I did have my niece.  But I was adjusting, after all I think she'd been with me since 11/2014 or right around her break.

February was much of the same.  Still blogging daily and attempting to catch up with the short stories but something else happened this month.  I officially became a WF associate, no longer a temp/contractor, woo hoo. 

What better way to celebrate turning 30 and having actual PTO for the first time in my life by taking an epic road trip/"just turned 30" tour.  Instead most of March is spent in a hospital visiting my grandma who had two strokes in the span of a week. 

In April when she released and comes to live in my two bedroom apartment with me, my mom, and niece... well so starts the epic (continuing) saga of me adjusting what my 'new normal' is.  There's bathing to be done, prescriptions to fill, PT exercises to be done, school functions to attend, dr appointment be made, etc etc ec and through the mist of it I'm working from home tackling one of two major field facing projects on my plate at work.  Fun times. 

I don't remember May.  Not much of June (other than part one of my big project rolled out and I was nominated for employee of the month).  Nor July other than the fact I returned back to work.

I'm sure 2015, that during these months that the following occurred:
- House hunting
- Frustration from House Hunting
- Second guessing from House Hunting
- Crying from house hunting and life in general
- Lots of manga reading / book reading / escaping reality
- Short story surge in July

Apparently I lost weight.  Despite all the stress eating and drinking of Cranberry Ginger Ale my body saw fit to lose about 10 lbs that I hadn't observed but others did when I returned. 

But in August, finally, I thought I'd found the one.  The house that would accommodate everyone and had plenty of space.  I booked a trip to Beantown,  Arranged for care for my grandma and my niece and just had to wait on closing toward the end of the month.  Except fate didn't see fit that this house was the one.  So back to shopping, back to frustration, back to fantasizing about simpler times. 

So you can't blame me for being a bit hesitant 2015.  When in September I had another closing from having found another house that seemed like a good fit.  In fact I'd noticed this particular house before and remembered thinking 'this is the one' but for whatever reason hadn't pursued it but here it was and so was I.  No sooner had I returned from Boston was I preparing for a closing that actually happened. 

October was stress, stress packing, packing, stress, and more stress but we got moved in.  There's still much to do but 2015 you did bring this, after years of on again/ off again searching I'd finally committed.  You also saw fit to make work become extra crazy when the second of my two large projects suddenly got really important and had some high ups involved.  But I weathered the storm and made it out.  Though the efforts for it wouldn't slow down until early December.  Celebrated birthdays and tried constantly to work back toward that inner peace / the piece of me I felt that had wandered elsewhere. 

November = Nano.  A successful one since I did start something new, didn't complete it, but its still on the radar and something I intend to see all way through. 

And December, after months of mental gestation I found my way back to MD.  I found my way back to a lot of places.  Every day is  a struggle for that calm 2015 but I feel it trying to stay, I feel like it's trying to be consistent and I think it's because my 'new normal' is slowly just settling itself into being what is.

2016 - Here's to hoping to continue to grow!