Archive for January, 2013

Some serious thoughts–about guns etc.  I am not going to argue the pros and cons, and I’m not stating whether I am for or against.  Friends who know me know my stand on this subject.

What does concern me is the idea of limiting ownership by the “mentally ill”.  Now, who can/will define “mental illness”?  Is it to be a person who has a record of mental illness–as recorded by whom?  A Doctor of Psychology?  A Psychoanalyst?  A “Behavioral Science” Center (I think that’s a PC word for mental hospital?) 

These keepers-of-records of the mentally ill, will they be forced to provide names and details to the authorities when an individual makes application to purchase a firearm?  Won’t that be a tremendous invasion of that person’s privacy? 

What bothers me more, though–what about the mentally or emotionally  unstable people who are not, and who have never been, under the care of any doctor, never mind a Doctor of Psychology.  They have no record of mental illness, but judging by some of their actions, they are certainly borderline!  One old acquaintance comes to mind–he fancied himself as a member of a SWAT team–loved to dress in black combat pants and boots–the lot, and he owned several weapons;  he was an alcoholic and aggressive when drunk.  Some of my friends found him “amusing”–I didn’t, he was scary.

He was just the kind of person that I could imagine “going off the deep end” and doing harm–and the kind of person that, when he did, neighbors would say “He was always a bit strange, but we never expected he’d do that…” (I don’t now why not , all the signs were there!)

What about alcoholics? Or just drunkards?  Particularly the weekend drinkers who drink themselves into a state of sensitivity–taking offense at the slightest thing; and the recreational drug-takers?  Actually, any person who gets themselves into a falsely altered state, enough to become paranoid, perceiving threats where none are intended.

That’s my serious thought for the day.  Now…

 A PET PEEVE about salads.  Salads in restaurants, that is.  Why, oh why, won’t the salad-makers chop or cut the “greens” into smaller pieces!  I try to eat the American way–using my fork in my right hand–no knife (as opposed to the European way, fork in left hand, knife in right hand for cutting, keep food on fork in left hand and transfer to mouth.)  It is hard to pick up uncut six-inch chunks of leaf on a fork and push them into one’s mouth, particularly if dripping with dressing!  I could write more on the subject of salads, but I want to change the subject.

WORDS.  Do you have any words that you love to hear, read, or write, regardless of their meaning?  I do:  Hyssop; Cinnebar; Sammarkand; Samphire–to name a few.  I don’t care what the meaning is, the words fascinate me. I have more examples, but this is enough for now.

And this is all for now…

Keep Calm and Carry On




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Yeay–made a start on the new RAVENWOOD (the Not-the-Young-Adult version.)  It is definitely flowing better already.  I am treating my earlier work as a draft, so quite a few of the scenes are the same, but don’t feel to be as “forced”.  I am trying to keep an element of humor in it.  More about it as the work progresses.

Now, Pet Peeves.  I’m eating in a resturant, the waitperson comes by the table often–too often, to ask “Is everything all right?”  Next time, less than ten minutes later, “Is everything tasting good?”  Another five minutes, “Can I get you anything more?”  Then, “Can I take your plate?” or “More tea?”  Grrrr.  and it seems that every time the WP asks a question, my mouth is full.

I wish restaurants would do as a very good Mexican place in Phoenix used to do–there were little flags on the tables, to be raised if the diner wanted to order something, or ask the waitperson a question.  It worked splendidly.  No interruptions while chewing.

Short blog post today.

Keep Calm and Carry On

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New Plans

I have had severe writer’s block for several months.  My work-in-progress was stalled and I could not seem to make any headway.  I had planned this novel for young adults, and my protagonist was set as old as I could make her and have the story still considered YA.  It just wouldn’t come together.  Last night–well, the early hours of the morning–while lying awake trying to talk myself out of getting up to go to the bathroom, it suddenly came to me: why was I trying to make my story a young adult story?

See, I had the choice of changing the beginning, along with the ideas I had for the beginning, to make my protagonist much younger–say about twelve or thirteen.  But then I would have to change some of the scenes, and quite a bit of the plot line–and the back-story–and…well, my mind froze up at that point.  So–why not forget the young adult idea, let’s make this an adult story, make my protagonist just a couple of years older –maybe twenty-two-ish, make the witch-connection more scary, the paranormal part more fantastic, and the youthfully romantic part more–um, intense!

That’ll work, I thought.  The more I think about it–yes!  That will work.  Now I get the feeling I can let my hair down without having to think “What would an 18 or 19 year old do?”  I know what I would do in the circumstances in which I’m going to put my lead character–and the others around her will behave more like some of my friends (maybe my daughter–or granddaughter, who are definitely not young adults in the young adult genre  classification.)

The premise of the story will stay the same–the behavior of the characters will be a little different; though not a lot–they will be capable of behaving just as childishly as any  teenager!

I am now, once again, getting excited about this novel.  I shall breath new life into it–and it into me.  Yeay!

Watch this space…

Keep Calm and Carry On



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I’m through!

I’m through with trying to be nice, through with trying to be helpful!

What brought this on?  Actually a Pet Peeve, in a way.  I have lots of online friends, through the East Texas Writers Association, and Facebook–as well as a couple of other online forums.  Seems like every couple of days I get an email forwarded to me–and umpteen others–containing world-changing news, warnings, supposedly important facts, along with the request to forward the same on to as many “friends” as I can so that “…we can change the world…”

I don’t like to forward supposedly helpful emails to other people unless I have checked the message through Snopes.com.  If the result shows the message to be true, then I will definitely forward it.  However if (as happens in most cases) the information is false, I do not like to waste my time, or take up cyberspace by sending it on to more and more people who will not only believe the message and the incorrect information it contains, but perpetuate it’s existence.  I feel strongly that people should not be mislead by  false, and sometimes scary, information, and certainly should not be encouraged to waste their time, and the time of additional recipients.

I’ve even had forwarded messages that have declared “This is true, it has been checked by Snopes.com”–and on checking for myself, lo and behold Snopes said, in clear upper case letters, FALSE.

So I check Snopes.com, as I said, and forward if true, and if false I will send a quick response to the sender and sometimes to “all” the sender’s recipients.  The last time I did that (today!) I received back a couple of rather nasty responses, to the effect that, if I have nothing better to do but check Snopes.com on everything I receive, then I should “get a life”–another response told me I was being tacky!

So I’m through.  In future I will do as one of the responses suggested and simply delete all future forwarded emails–I will not care if the information being passed along is true, false, dangerous, helpful.  So what if people blindly accept incorrect facts, believe they will get kidnapped in parking lots asphyxiated by a spray of perfume–I no longer care.  Sorry.

But it will be one less email circulating and taking up space in the ether.  My time will be saved–let others save their own!

I feel better now–thanks for reading.


Keep Calm and Carry On



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New Experiences

I have been wanting to start using Copic Markers for a couple of years now, but they have been too expensive for me to try.  This past Christmas, though, I treated myself to a set, because no matter how much I hinted throughout the year, nobody took the hint.

I’m learning that there is a certain way to use them, certain types of papers to use them on–and I’m kind of scared to start!  In the past I’ve used rubber stamps to design my cards, but now I want to draw my own images and color them with my Copics! 

It has been a while since I have  posted to this particular blog page, so I don’t know if it still works!  If it does, look for more entries…

Keep Calm and Carry On…

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I have a lot of them, guilty pleasures I mean. At the last meeting of the East Texas Writers Association, the speaker (Vivian Keith, wife of “Blogmeister” Bill Keith) asked us each to tell three things about ourselves–things we thought summed up our characters. Where the majority of our members named “loyalty” as one of their characteristics, along with other really good qualities (including honesty)–I had to say that selfishness was a major failing of mine. Which, I suppose, shows that honesty is also a quality I possess.

That got me to thinking; a favorite television program of mine (when I watch at all) is a cooking show called “The Chew”, it comes on at 12 noon, which is when I’m cooking dinner. One of the Chefs asked the others if they had any guilty-food-secrets–in my mind, silently, I answered “Yes, who doesn’t?”

Here’s mine–Nutella! Not just spread lightly on a slice of toast for breakfast–no–straight out of the jar with a long-handled spoon (so I can get right down to the bottom of the largest jar I can buy.) That’s not all–chocolate chip cookies spread with the lovely hazelnutty, chocolatey, stuff. And that’s still not all–two chocolate chip cookies, Nutella and a scoop of ice cream between!

The fact that I don’t want anybody else around when I partake of that delight shows you just how selfish I am–and how guilty! I am not supposed to have sugar (Type 2 diabetes) the cookies and the ice cream are no-sugar-added (sweetened with Splenda)–somehow I don’t think Nutella is.

And that’s it for today, so…
Keep Calm and Carry On

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I have been reading about former Senate candidate Todd Akin and his controversial remarks about rape, and comments from Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-Ga) in which he says he believes the idea of a woman’s body “shutting down” during rape is “partly correct”.  He claims that stress can prevent a woman from ovulating and thus becoming pregnant.

From my own experience I can vouch for that!  I was married the first time when I was very young, and for the wrong reasons.  I knew I did not want to have that man’s baby, and though our–um–intimate relations were frequent and normal, I was apparently  unable to become pregnant.  After numerous visits to doctors and counsellors by both my then  husband and myself, it was determined that since there was nothing medically wrong with either of us, I was too stressed and “uptight” (or possibly scared, one doctor suggested) to conceive.

That marriage lasted four years–well, the marriage itself was ten years long–but only four of those years were we actually “together”–the divorce happened six years after the separation.  After the divorce I met and married my present husband–within the year I was pregnant. 

So I can vouch for the fact that stress does play an important roll in conception or non-conception!

That being said, I want to add the controversial part of my blog.  First I want to state that I am not anti-abortion; neither am I pro abortion.  I think it is entirely up to the female concerned–she is the one who will suffer with her conscience, not I.  However I do feel that Christian organizations who are anti-abortion because they claim a fetus, even at the very moment of conception, is a life and to abort it is tantamount to murder, but who say that it is all right to abort in the case of rape–they really ought to be consistent…

I mean, a life is a life, and no matter how, why, when or where that life is conceived, it is still a life, therefore aborting it is still murder.  That poor fetus can’t help how it was conceived–it should not lose its chance of full life simply because the man who fathered it couldn’t control his actions.

I repeat, I am neither anti, nor pro, abortion.  I honestly don’t think I could go through purposely aborting my baby–I thank the Good Lord I have not had to make that decision and won’t have to!  The above voicing of thoughts is merely an observation; if a Christian is to be consistent, then abortion even for violent rape, is just as wrong as any abortion.

I promise my next blog will be light hearted and possibly amusing–now that I’ve got my serious itch out of the way.

Keep Calm and Carry On


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