Captain’s Log, Stardate 5.9.19

This year has been nothing like I had planned so far. the past few months have been particularly stressful. I’m not making excuses, not going to give you the whole sad song and dance. I will be perfectly honest here, I’ve been struggling. Struggling to keep my head above water, struggling to get any words down, struggling to keep it together.

My planner vaguely resembles the Captain’s Log on Star Trek.


Date: (Stardate) March 19, 2019 (31919.1) Larry called, had to drive to Perryville to get him, his mom had a stroke. They took her up to St. John’s because Jefferson wasn’t equipped to handle a stroke. 

(31919.2) Same ICU unit that my mother was in –  kind of jarring.

(31919.3) Monitoring her for brain activity. 

(31919.4) We sat in on the doctor’s round table discussion. Looks grim. 

I  had found a layout for my bujo that worked well for me to track the things I needed, and make my daily to-do lists. All of that went out the window.

Captain’s Log, Stardate 3.28.19 – apparently chaos rules the universe. My family has gone off the deep end. My heart goes out to them and I will be praying. Sad situation!  They are transferring MIL to rehab center,  but it’s up near St. John’s. 

In planning my releases – yes plural releases – which is a huge step for me,  I had set April 23rd as my release date for Fury. The date came and went, I had other things on my mind, and occupying my time. to be honest, I’ve struggled to find words to put down on paper or virtual paper.  It’s difficult to make plans when things are up in the air so to speak, and your world is in turmoil.

To add to things, the stress that we’ve been under has manifested in aggression towards each other in arguments. Emotions are at a heightened state!

Captain’s Log Stardate 4.15.19 – I get the stressed out part from work and with family, but taking it out on me is not going to make things better. In fact, it made things much more difficult. We are about to come to blows. Shields up, set phasers to stun, prepare to be boarded!

I completely missed posting anything for A to Z in April, and I had some cool writing terms to share. Who knows, maybe I’ll still put it together down the road.

To add to all of this, I had a biopsy – benign, discovered a lump – also benign, had surgery and an allergic reaction to medications that felt like I was having a heart attack – I am not exaggerating either. All of this stirred together for a deadly concoction that left me feeling like an utter failure and worthless in life. Talk about dysfunction!

Captain’s Log Stardate 5.7.19 – What is wrong with me? I have so many books to write, and can’t muster myself to put pen to paper or get out my laptop for longer than a few minutes. It’s not for lack of want to, because I want to get all of my books out there! It’s not a lack of ideas –  I have thousands of ideas.  It’s not a lack of imagination,  I have imagination to spare! So what is the problem? 

I messaged my soul sister Misty and ironically, she’s experiencing a similar slump. You’d think we were twins separated at birth or something, it’s uncanny. We should be Gemini’s or have the same birthday or something! With Misty’s help, I’m taking some baby steps to get back in the game. My confidence has been shaken,  but she’s holding my hand.

Captain’s Log Stardate – made contact with Admiral Harvey. This quadrant of the galaxy has proven  troublesome crossings for her as well. Our discussion included guidance for traversing the upcoming storms, and keeping crew on standby for imminent dangers. For now, we will take it slow and steady, with all systems on alert. Our course?  Second star to the right, straight on till morning. These are the voyages of Starship Mack, signing off.

That’s the point of friendship isn’t it?  We pick each other out of the muck and help dust each other off.  Sometimes we share a laugh,  sometimes we share a cry. A true friend is one that you know has your back, will go to the ends of the galaxy with you in spirit if they can’t in person,  will stand by your side and support you and encourage you. I can only hope that I am as much of a friend to her as she is to me.  That goes for my other friends as well –  I hope you consider me a good friend, one that is there for you!

It’s been a difficult few months. I’m not making excuses, just telling it like it is. I’ve been down in the mullygrubs not knowing how to dig out. When I finally cried out for help, Misty was there for me. Being an author can be a lonely career that is often not supported by family or loved ones.  It takes a friend with the “Write Stuff” to get it, and she does.

I hope that each of you have a Misty in your life,  that will be there for you when you need it.  I hope  that you don’t find yourself in the pits as I have been,  but if you do, your friend(s) are there!

Write on my friends, write on!

A Learned Skill

Isn’t it amazing the things that you find out when you just listen?   Listening is a true talent.  Too many people apparently like the sound of their own voice much too much to listen to others.

It’s a rare treat when you find someone who actually listens to you.  Hence, people are willing to pay their therapists big money to listen to their woes.  Likewise, when you find good friends that are willing to actually listen. those are the friends you want to keep around because you know they listen and they care.

But are you a listener?  Do you hear what people say?  A good listener is patient, and doesn’t cut you off in the middle of what you are saying.  They don’t necessarily offer advice, but understand why you are upset.  A good listener lets you rant, or think things out,  or however you work through your troubles.  We all know eventually we end up figuring out on our own over ninety percent of the time anyway, we just needed a sounding board.   Having said that, however, as a good friend you should be able to reciprocate that.

There are a large percentage of the people  that just want to dump on you.  They want to unload all their woes on you like you are their personal psychologist.  If it gets to be a regular habit – charge them or take it in trade.

Ah, but then there are the group of people of which this post is about. The ones that speak with forked tongues, or speak out of both sides of their face.  Only a good listener will hear  what they are really saying.  ( Can I get a witness from one of my girls?)

For example, the ex girlfriend who is now your ” friend” because she wants to keep the peace.  First of all, don’t believe it.  If it involves the same man forget about it until you are an ex also.  THEN  the two of you can be friends and “friend” the current Ms. thing.  How many of you know right from the start that setup is a one way ticket to the cat-fight?

Then there are the ones that flattery oozes out of their mouth, but if you listen closely you will hear the hissing in the air as the hidden words and their true meanings singe your nose hairs.  Take cover for these can be venomous, and will strike just as soon as you let them get close.

Yet the one that always trips me up is the one that says a lot, but never says what they truly think.  They may make ” innocent” comments comparing hair.  They listen well enough to learn  where the chinks in your armor are.   Many women are self-conscious about their bodies, so she may say something about  her workout being easy, or that she’s lost weight or somehow topping what you said the last time.  There may be a discussion about hair, and since you expressed last time that your hair grows slow  she says that her hair grows really fast and that she needs to get it trimmed again.  Underneath all this  are the embers of rage,  The truth of the matter is, for whatever reason – usually a man –  she’s decided to be catty and  make you pay for her own  personal hell.

Now, you may think I exaggerate but I don’t.  Men get into it, they race cars, play sports, get in the boxing ring and have it out.  Women are never so blatant.   Women when spurned can be vengeful wicked creatures.   The expression hell hath no fury like a woman spurned is true.  Here’s the tricky part:  it doesn’t even have to be you that has  caused the spurning!  In fact, if there is any connection in her mind made that you are associated with the object of her revenge, that makes you a  relevant target to practice on.

You may think I  am a bit  paranoid or delusional.  Think what you want but I am still being cautious with certain individuals.  Especially when they are sugary sweet.  ( Dead giveaway.  You don’t know when they will strike – just that they will.)  Think I’m crazy?  A woman drove to Florida wearing  an adult diaper to kill her lover’s ex, and you think I’m making this stuff up?  Trust me,  there are some real whackos out there.

Luckily, most of us are relatively sane.  I think.

Stay safe and keep writing.  Some of this stuff is good for characters, just be careful to change the names and places to avoid lawsuits.

Write on my friends, write on!