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Posts tagged ‘moving’

Miscellany

First order of business. I want to apologize for missing last week. No excuse, but I will explain that we were moving, and that weekend was the bulk of the move. I have now moved an entire household with a small SUV and a 4’x8′ utility trailer. I don’t remember how many trips I made that Saturday (it’s about a 15 min trip from the old house, to the new) and although I’d intended this move to be a slow, leisurely one, there was a point where external forces expedited it… On the other hand I’m happy to be sitting at the new house, in front of my big desk, knowing that the only boxes yet to unpack are the ones full of miscellany. Even had I remembered what day it was, and written something, I’m not sure it would have been coherent. It was late when I sat down and sent a message to a chat, making sure that friends knew all was well, when I was reminded I hadn’t posted here.

Routines are important. Disrupting them can lead to forgetting a little something, which can cascade into the whole situation we’re familiar with from the elementary school history lesson of ‘for the want of a horseshoe nail, the kingdom was lost.’ Order is also important. I was reminded of that, not only in my own internal pressure to get my house unpacked and organized (so I could actually find things like my socks, and my husband’s underwear, and forks in the kitchen), but as I told my teens that this weekend we will work on getting their room ship-shape. As soon as I said that, I wondered internally if they knew what ship-shape really meant. Living on a moving dwelling, one that doesn’t have much space to sprawl, dictates a whole ‘nother level of tidiness.

None of this, perhaps, is related to writing. Except inasmuch as the author wants to throw little obstacles at her characters, along with the big ones. I found myself perturbed at this move – it ate my time, it ate my brain, and I was desperately trying to keep up with homework (and gave up on blogging, sorry y’all) while we were undergoing the shift. It was really, really difficult. I found myself wanting to ‘play house’ and get the rooms unpacked, when I ought to have been studying (like now, when I have to memorize the dratted Krebs cycle, enzymes and all). I don’t know if it is because I am older – I was, after all, a military brat and we had moved a lot by the time I left home. Then, early in my marriage, there were again several moves before I finally settled on the Farm for 11 years of stillness. Something about being a middle-aged woman is different than where I was before.

Age really does make a difference, not only in writing, but in reading, I’ve noticed. Weirdly, this was not only part of my musing about the move, but listening to classmates present on a paper about aging in Drosophila and how it affects their ability to recover from environmental stresses. The study subjected the flies to a shock (elevated heat) and then saw that they were unable to fly again. However, younger flies (4 days. I’m not sure how that translates to a human lifespan, but they did say that the flies can live for up to ten weeks) would recover from the shock without losing any physical abilities. Fruit flies and humans are nothing alike, yes, but they are used as an initial model in studying humans (and then mice, and so-on). As we get older, we are less able to recover from shocks and changes. And as my knee and back are telling me this morning, we’re less able to lift and tote like we used to. I did have a giggle-worthy moment in this move, though. We have two furnaces in the new house, one propane, the other wood. I went to pick up a trailer load of wood, and was met by am elderly Japanese gentleman, who wanted to know how I was going to get the wood on my trailer. After a couple of minutes of watching me pitch firewood (unsplit) he mumbled ‘you strong’ and went back inside. I put too much wood on the trailer. Poor little thing won’t carry much in a load.

I’m rambling. It’s been a really long couple of weeks, and just as I’m looking forward to settling into a routine, next week is the Thanksgiving Holiday. For which I am giving fervent thanks. I’m grateful we found this little house out in the country with room for all of us. I’m grateful that I can write for this blog, it’s a good outlet for me. I’m grateful that while we were sitting around the table having family dinner night before last, my whole family was helping me plot a book. That was… I needed that. I’ve been really worried I’d never write again. But I’d had a flicker of story coming to me while driving, and when I mentioned that, my family ran with it. And while that story is not first in line, there will eventually be a third Children of Myth book, because my children demand it. And there will be a baby elephant in it.

What are you thankful for?

The Crack of Dawn

So, um, I had plans this morning. They involved getting up way too early, rolling over, fooling around with my husband and later, while he made coffee, my writing a post for here.

Yeah. We all know what happens to well-laid plans. They become unlaid plans, and sadly, that is the condition of my day. The First Reader is no happier about this than I am.

It all started about a week or more ago. I scheduled a technician to install internet at the new house – because as you all know, having the ‘net is just as important as the electric and running water (which we didn’t have until yesterday due to some confusion on my part and the landlord not communicating with the property manager, but I digress. There will be a lot of digressions.) So anyway, the only time I could get the tech was for the 8-9 am time slot, and that meant we had to be over at the new house this morning far too early. Still, I’d planned on posting before we went.

Why hadn’t I posted last night? That part of the story involves a trailer, a pile of boxes my kids dubbed ‘boxtopia’ and a hyperactive 11-year-old boy. Let’s just let that fade into the mists and say that I was very happy this morning while unloading at the new house that we hadn’t lost a box off the trailer, and nothing was broken, not even from the box of booze that had been packed with no protective wrapping. My son is excited about the move, to say the least.

Still, even knowing we had a ton of work to do, I thought I could write this morning. Except that at 7 am, as we were stirring ourselves, I got the call saying that the tech was on the way. um. Ok, we can do this. Where are the tie-downs for the trailer? Dang, it’s dark and foggy out at this hour. Is that frost?

Some time later, we made it safely there, to find the tech waiting, and a bit after that, we had unloaded, made coffee for the first time in the new house (a milestone!) and had internet. Now, I’m not blogging from the new house. Maybe next week. Because by that point (sorry!) I’d forgotten all about you guys, since my dear man was arthritic (we don’t have the heat on there, yet), cold, cranky, and hungry. We drove into the little town we’re local to, and discovered a very nice diner/restaurant, and enjoyed a lovely meal (ate way too much. So much food…) before hitting the local hardware store (you know the kind I mean. Crowded aisles, old-school, but they have one of everything) and returning to the old house. Where I remembered that I hadn’t made a post for today.

What does this have to do with writing? Well, a little bit of everything, and nothing. When you’re writing, let your characters make plans. Get as detailed as they want to. And then, cackling, rub your hands together, and smash them all to smithereens. Because if you don’t, your readers won’t believe it. Honestly, in my life I’ve had things go perfectly, and it was still stressful since I was holding my breath waiting on the other shoe to drop. The other thing this has to do with writing is that at some point this morning I turned to the First Reader and said “I have to write. We need money, this move is expensive!”

So, I know most of you are familiar with my work. But if you haven’t read it yet, check it out, and if you have, feel free to share the word with friends who like this sort of thing.

pixie-for-hire-coverPixie for Hire

He’s a pixie for hire, and she’s just another job.

Lom is a bounty hunter, paid to bring magical creatures of all descriptions back Underhill, to prevent war with humans should they discover the strangers amongst them. Bella is about to find out she’s a real life fairy princess, but all she wants to do is live peacefully in Alaska, where the biggest problems are hungry grizzly bears. He has to bring her in. It’s nothing personal, it’s his job…

Lom lay dying. Bella was tasked with not only the job she never wanted, but the one she did. Could she keep Lom alive long enough for him to come to the rescue when their kingdom needed them? And what did Raven, mysterious trickster spirit and honorary uncle to Bella, want with them? If the threat was big enough to have the trickster worried, Bella knew she needed to have Lom at her side. Underhill might look like a soap-bubble kingdom, but Bella and Lom knew there was a gritty underside. Why else would fairyland need a dark man willing to carry a big gun and be the Pixie for Hire?

This omnibus edition includes the full text of all three books in the Pixie for Hire trilogy: Pixie Noir, Trickster Noir, and Dragon Noir. With a new author’s foreword, you’ll be introduced to the books and then plunge into the world Underhill.

“The unlikely love child of Monster Hunter International and the Princess Bride, this book … is unalloyed fun all the way.”
-Sarah A. Hoyt, author of Darkship Thieves

“If Dashiel Hammett, Larry Corriea and Jim Butcher had a love child, it would be Pixie Noir. A wonderful mix of mystery and fantasy with just the right touch of noir.”
-Amanda S. Green, author of Nocturnal Origins