LOST IN SPACE


Organization is essential in most businesses, as a writer it’s imperative.  Sadly, it’s an area in which I am undisciplined. In previous jobs, I have received awards for organizational ability, so I know its possible.  The hubs once commented “You don’t have to leave that at work you know”.  Profound statement.

I spent the better part of two days searching my computer for ten chapters I had completed for Faere Guardian, one of two current WIPs. I started this particular book over three years ago.  The original manuscript was boring and dull.  Seriously, if I found it boring and dull as the writer, who would want to read it?  I gutted it.  The characters stood by and watched as I destroyed my created world, a cardboard Peyton Place.  I noticed Kyle, the brooding Scot stood with arms crossed a smug look of satisfaction on his face as he watched.

I rewrote it, more to my liking.  What was originally going to be an Inspirational Romance, is now a paranormal romance.  The characters seem much happier.  I had a prereader read the first few chapters of the original version and their response was “Oh, that’s nice.”  After the rewrite the comment changed to “Oh my gosh! It’s action, action, action. When do they get to catch their breath?”  I think that’s a much better response.

I’ve been working diligently, plugging away on the ABC principle.  Applying my Butt to the Chair, and writing.  It doesn’t write itself!  At times it’s a mad brain gush, trying to get things out of my head before I lose it.  Then there are dry moments when I’m undecided about a particular point.  I like to have my details worked out, knowing the long-term result of that butterfly flapping its wings off the coast of Hawaii on the eventual outcome that will play an important part of the meteorological conditions when my characters have to duke it out on a stormy hill in Scotland.

I want to know all the background information of how a certain cure was discovered, developed, and what side effects will there be.  I want to know that the action which seems out of character for Alexis, is actually very in character as she discovers things about herself throughout the story.  The reader may not see it yet, but they will by the end.

I have a folder for all this background information that never gets written in the story.  It will be hinted at or  background information, or maybe expounded on later in an interrogation by the police.  After one of these background story sessions, I had written ten chapters that moved their relationship forward, revealed who the protagonist is if you pay close attention, revealed the dark elements that Kyle the Guardian is dealing with, and the Light Court Fae that Kyle is in alignment with.

For anyone who is a fan of Celtic legends about the Tuatha’ de Danaan, there are certain characteristics of this “superior immortal race”.  Well, they think they are superior which is a key of their characters.  Fae have been described as fickle, manipulative, and have been compared to Greek and Roman gods.   Arrogance is an understatement for my Fae.

I was compiling the edited chapters into my writing software, and reached the point to add the ten chapters that I was proud of.  The faint of heart among you need not read because I tend to be descriptive to a fault.  A different prereader friend said the battle scene had left her nauseous.  Did I really need to show detailed graphic illustrations of the hacking off of limbs?  In order to portray the brutality, the strength required and the emotional impact of the value of life, yes.  I noticed the same person was enthusiastically reading the detailed love scenes and not complaining.  Eros, Pathos, and Thanatos! What is one without the others?

I’ve searched the files and apparently I saved them in a special place with a special name.  I’ve resigned to the fact that I will have to rewrite, because as is the way with most of my special places, they are lost in space.  One day I will find all my special places and I will hit the jackpot!  I’ve put things in special places and never found them.  Apparently they are code name for “black hole ” in the universe. things go in and never come out.

I spent the weekend lamenting over my mess, angry because I have to rewrite. A very nice gentleman has been encouraging me that I can rewrite them better, and maybe this was for a reason.  Maybe, but there’s that Type A part of me that is enthusiastic about efficiency of time.  Rewriting due to disorganization is not efficient.  Why reinvent the wheel when you already have one somewhere?

Alas, they have not surfaced and I will have to buckle down again.  I have a feeling the dark creatures  in chapter 15 are going to pay for my wrath. Mwahahaha!  Maybe, he was right. I can harness the power and use it for good, wreaking vengeance on the world of chaos I’ve created.  Don’t think for a moment that I ‘m not well aware of the fact that as soon as I get them rewritten, I’ll find my missing chapters.

That’s ok! Now that I’ve accepted the mission  of rewriting, I can compare and see what has been improved and what hasn’t.  I can combine the two to make the best option.  If I don’t find them, I’ll go with the new ones.  It becomes simple when options are removed.

Someday however, I will find the black hole of special places and the showers of long-lost treasures will spill forth upon me.  I will then have myself a gleeful giggle fit!  Until then, my text has been lost in space.

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HAPPY (CHINESE) NEW YEAR!


The year of the dragon!  This year celebrates the water dragon.  I was born in the year of the dragon, and the motto is “I reign!” Well, this year of the dragon IS my year to reign.  I’ve taken back the reigns, taken control and no longer am letting life just happen.  I don’t like where it’s led me, therefore I’ve set some goals.

I gave up making New Year’s Resolutions years ago. Why? Because by this time, I’ve either blown the diet; not made any action towards the goal or in some other fashion, given up.

I make goals, SMART goals to be exact.  SMART goals are:

  • specific
  • measurable
  • action oriented
  • realistic
  • targeted time

For example, every year I would say “This year I am going to lose weight.”  That’s pretty vague.  Technically if I lose 1 pound I succeed, but unfortunately I need to lose more than 1 pound.  However, when I make the goal as :This year I am going to lose 25 pounds by December 31.  I’m specific (25 pounds), it’s measurable – I have 12 months to achieve this which breaks down to 2 pound every month.  That’s doable!!  Very reasonable, and nothing prevents me from being more aggressive if I choose to do so.  Action oriented: I made a plan of action that includes dietary changes, calorie guidelines; and a regular workout schedule.  Realistic:  25 is realistic, weighing 115 is not, and it’s not such an overwhelming goal that I give up.  Targeted time I’ve allowed the entire year.  I have a deadline.

This is just one example, I’ve made 48 goals for the year.  Each one has a SMART plan to achieve it.  I haven’t made much progress on some of those yet, but I’ve been developing my plans.  Thank goodness, for Chinese New Year.  I don’t feel so bad for getting a late start to my year. I haven’t been slacking off, I’ve been making a plan.  If you don’t have a plan you are destined to fail.  Failing to plan is planning to fail.

Some could look at it as procrastination, but I’ve seriously put thought into these past weeks, thinking through how I’m going to achieve my 48 goals. Not every one is life changing, some are just for fun.  I like to have fun!  All work and no play makes Ellie a very unhappy person!

The first step to making any plan is writing it down. I wrote my list, tweaked it to make them smart goals and got out my calendar to set milestone markers.  Most of my goals don’t matter to anyone but me, but they are all things I want to do, feel I should do, or desire to do.

Therefore. . . today is a Mulligan.  A do over!  A fresh start.  It’s also national pie day.   By the way, one of my goals is to try 48 new recipes this yer.  Hmm, maybe I should make a pie to celebrate.  One slice is equal to approx 2 hours of Zumba, or running 5 miles.  Is it worth it?

Which brings up another interesting point to the goal achieving; know the cost.  If I decide to indulge in pie, I will do it knowing full well I have to either delay my progress or increase my calorie expenditure.  Everything we do today has an effect on our tomorrow.  If you just let life happen, trust me, you won’t like where it takes you.

THAT’S SPICY!


Sometimes you just need to spice things up a bit.  It can pertain to your sex life, your wardrobe, your daily routine, and your diet.

I threw the comment out the other day to be met with a grunt.  I was talking about our diet as I was in the process of menu planning. I don’t think it even registered, as a playoff game was on.

Yesterday, the hubs got to experience the spiced up menu.  Instead of the usual boring old sandwiches I felt change was in order. I bought Wasabi spread.  It’s a mayo – strong horseradish spread.  I made him a ham and swiss on whole wheat with the spread.  I was proud of myself for changing things up.  Really, it’s the little things in life that get me excited.

He texted me after lunch and said  “next time warn me!”.  He bit in and couldn’t breathe. Eyes burning and nose burning, he dared not swallow or breathe until he almost passed out.  It was not my intention that he should “endure torture” for his lunch.  He joked that his coworkers  had to revive him between bites. I didn’t put THAT much on the sandwich, but when you’re used to regular mayo, well I suppose it was a shock! It did spice things up!

I like spicy things.  I like jalapeno, hot sauce, chipotle, hot chili, and those little peppers in Chinese food. Bland foods are rarely on the menu.  Even typical bland foods such as chicken and dumplings tend to have pepper in it.  There’s never a dull moment in our kitchen or household!

Here’s a message for you guys out there that tune your wife or girlfriend out: DON’T!  You may miss something important like “I think we need to spice things up a bit!”.

If he’d been paying attention, I may have been questioned about what I had in mind, alluded to intimacywith one single raised brow. That could have led into so many interesting things.  Guess that should have been my first clue, or maybe second to the grunt.  If he’d taken notice that I was planning the menu and grocery list, all of this could have been avoided.

All is well and he didn’t actually choke or die.  Now he’s more cautious about taking big bites, without seeing what he’s eating. I’m making sugar cookies today.  I have a sweet tooth and well, thought maybe it might make up for the harrowing experience I’ve put him through.  I considered adding red pepper  then decided against it.  Not sure he could handle too much spice at one time.

Hesitating at the moment to mention other ways I’ve decided to spice things up.  It’s apparently a shocking thing for a white bread person to live with an ‘anything but white’ person.  I’ve tried to tone it down and find that I get bored.  I like to change it up, keep it fluid.  I hate routine because routine leads to ruts.

On the other hand the hubs hates the fact that I’m running behind him filling in his ruts, so that he has to blaze a fresh path every day.  Come on, it’s not like I moved the door to the bathroom! Hmmmm, maybe I should text him that I added pepperjack cheese to his sandwich today.

Embrace change!  It’s the only thing that is constant in our world.