Tuesday, March 29, 2011


I know the heart has reasons that reason knows nothing of. You, my invisible, and likely imaginary reader...it's quite likely you know this as well. The sun shines today. The geese across the way sail majestically on their watery bit of real estate. Sean Hayes www.seanhayesmusic.com is crooning songs from his albumn Flowering Spade in his sexy, quirky, one of a kind voice from my speakers. I have time to write, and space and no pressing need to be anywere else. It's a writer's paradise, right? Yeah. It is.

Still, even on sunlit days, with Spring hovering impatiently in the antechamber of the seasons...it's possible to feel sad. For no particular reason, or perhaps for so very many and varied reasons that it becomes inexplicible. I could be feeling this bone deep sorrow because of the sad news of an aquaintence's sudden death this past Sunday. I could be tapping the well of feeling that is caused by my daughter's hospitalization. I might just be desperately missing my own mother, gone these 11 some years now. I don't know.

What I do know today is that what I am best equipped to write about in this moment is Joy. Go on. Ask why. I have a very good reason, gentle reader. It's because the font from which Joy springs is oft carved by the hand of Sorrow.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Manic Monday

Sheesh. Today was an experiment in frenetic fabulosity. I spent most of it in waiting, or in traffic. Fortunately  I was able to squeeze a little writing in during the waiting bits.

Which should keep me sane enough to tackle tomorrows tasks.


So. Chapter 11 of the current WIP is done, and my fab Beta and unparalled critique group pointed out the stuff that needs fixing (thanks ladies!) so I can make it pretty.

And that's all she wrote. Ha. Sort of.

I did paint a little tonight. With my Kliene Maus. Whom I miss like an accidentally amputated limb.


Ending this here, before it becomes maudlin.
I'm off to rot my brain. i.e. watch t.v.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Hope to See You There

I’ve been dreaming of going to New Orleans for nearly twenty years now. Since the day Stephanie Mechura came back from there with a fabulous new song called Slidell…and a pocketful of breath-stealing stories about The Big Easy. It amazes me that I’ve let life trick me into not getting there sooner. Cause Stephanie’s stories sent a whole lotta folks scrambling for their wallets and heading lickity-split out to the nearest airport.
I want to go to New Orleans now for all the reasons I’ve built up over all the years in between. Because I want my tourist dollars to help that beautiful old belle of the south get back on her feet. Because that’s the city Harry Connick Jr. sings about, and dedicated a whole tour to and helped rebuild. Because…well, I’ve only got five hundred words, and I could go on for days.
I want very badly to go to the GayRomLit retreat. Because for the two years in a row that I struggled with recovering from two separate spinal surgeries, and all the depression that came with losing my ability to work as a nurse, and the inevitable weight gain, and the just plain meh-ness of not being able to pay enough attention to my daughter because I was in too much pain, or too sad…during all of that there were these wonderful, incredible people who told me stories. Stories that made me laugh, and gave me hope.
I want to thank those authors in person. Because not only did they make those dark days bearable…they gave me hope and purpose again. So I can’t work as a nurse? So what! So the surgeries messed up my singing voice a bit? So what! I can still use my nursing knowledge to enrich the stories I now write. I can still write songs into the stories I now write. I want to look those authors who wrote the stories that, well, hokey as it sounds, saved me, in their eyes and thank them. I want to meet face to face the people I met on their chat groups who encouraged me to find a new dream and reach for it.
And hey…it’s New Orleans. I want to eat beignets, drink chicory laced coffee and ogle cute boys and girls. I want to party. Cause life is a celebration. I want to celebrate. So I’m hoping I’ll win. Ethel Ann (my ’98 GMC Jimmy) may not make it if I have to drive, and NO is a long-ass walk from Buffalo, NY.
But regardless, win or lose, I’ll be there. I’ll be the one in bright red lipstick, big silver hoop earrings and a smile bigger than Louis Armstrong’s. Hope to see you there.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Writer:a person who commits his or her thoughts, ideas, etc., to writing.

Yesterday I got caught up in the buisness end of writing. Looking around, as any responsible adult should, to assure that I was aware of all my options. This is a good thing. Writing is art, and the labor of my heart, but I'm not fooling myself...it's a business too.


I spent hours, quite literally, looking into what made more sense for me fiscally, both in the short and long term.

The only conclusion I came to was that I need to spend more time writing and less time looking at fiscal matters.

I think I got a little over fifty words written on my WIP. Oh, and I managed to feel both bitchy, and irritated at the world in general. 

So today I'm going to write. I'll take some time before bed to do a little more research on the business end of things. I'll look at the option of getting a literary agent (because it's another option I should at least be aware of), and maybe tomorrow ask some fellow writers for their input as to what has worked best for them, and why.

But not today.

Today I write.

Because what keeps me sane, what brings me joy, what makes sense of the madness of the world about me is that I'm a writer. It doesn't matter if I'm writing stories, or songs, or letters to friends. I have a quiet voice that wakes me from within in the dead of night crying out to be heard (I know, that was a serious mangling of a bit of one of Rilke's Letters to a Young Poet), and I must give heed to that voice.

Because, in the end? It all boils down to this...I am what I was born to be, with no more choice in the matter than I have over the natural color of my eyes or hair. I can be a miserable one who does not express what is inside, or a joyous one who gives voice to all the creativity burbling within me...at the beginning, end and every point in-between of any given day, what I am is a Writer:a person who commits her thoughs, ideas, etc., to writing.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

More Tales from the Writing Cave: That's A Lot Of Power

Today I realized a few critical things.

One, winter isn't quited done with Western New York. That may seem a trite observation, but trust me, it's a fairly large factor if you live here.

Two, the advent of the digital age has empowered me as more than simply a reader. It's empowered me as a writer also. I can write absolutely anything I want to. If I have a good story to tell, it no longer matters whether or not an already established publishing house likes my stuff. I don't have to wait for someone else to give my writing their stamp of approval. I can approve it myself, and I can publish it myself. I can have absolute control over the artwork that represents my book. I can say yeah or nay to possible editing issues...because I'd be the Editor in Chief.

Pretty cool.

Because for me, in the end only two things really matter. The first is whether or not I think the story is worth telling. The second is whether or not I can find readers out there who agree with their wallets. Because if I never make a best-seller list is a lot less important to me than if I make a living doing something I love. So I'm looking around. I'm thinking it through. After all that is done I'll weigh my options, and make a decision. Because ultimately the power rests with me.

That's a lot of power.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Dream a Little Dream

I woke this morning to the sound of rain pattering against my window.
Selena, my trusty feline companion was curled against my left side.
I had a warm sense of well being. You see, I'd just woken from a dream about my mother. Mom's been gone for over eleven years now. Dreams of her are like rare and precious letters from afar, and I cherish them. So to dream of her today/last night was...sweet, and soothing. It felt like she'd found a way to send me a hug from the spirit world.
Not a very exciting topic for a blog, but beyond exciting to experience. Love that never leaves? Love that can still touch you, still enrich your life from beyond the grave? Huh. Well, maybe something to get excited about after all. So tonight, when you lay you down to sleep? If you can, dream a little dream of love.

Friday, March 18, 2011


   I love to tease my favorite authors with idle threats of gathering (or even creating) thousands of adoring minions who will beg shamelessly, in unison, for this or that sequel, or another book set in such and such world. Imagine my surprise when it was pointed out to me by my delightful friend Jo that I actually had a forum to do just that! I won't assult your eyes with print versions of the raucous sounds that emitted from me in the form of squeals. Joy! Rapture!! I had power,and could gather minions!
   Which brings us to why Belinda McBride is has her lovely fingerprints all over my blog today. Heh. I put them there. Because she's brilliant. Because even sick as a dog with strep I can't stop myself from rhapsodizing about this novel, urging every person I know to read it. Okay, you say, I get that you love the book. What makes you think I will?
   A very good question. I fortunately had an answer that I believe will more than suffice to answer it.
   From the very first scene in a seedy bar, on a planet no-one really wants to live on, Ms.McBride slid me seamlessly inside her character, allowing me to see the world through his eyes. That is rare, and precious. How often do you get to see anything completely from someone else's perspective, and have it feel natural? Not very bloody often. That same ease follows throughout the entire story. During wildly sitting on the edge of your seat biting your nails and trying through force of will to move the characters to a safer spot scenes it's there. During those lava-lava-burning-hot gimmee-gimmee more gotta have it baybee scenes it's there. It's there, and it makes the book so wonderful you'll want to weep when it's over, even though you'll have loved the ending. You'll want to cry because it's over and you have to leave Belinda's world.
   And then you'll run, panting and screaming through the cyberworld until you find her chat group http://groups.yahoo.com/group/BelindaMcBride/ and you too will begin to beg, shamelessly for a sequel. Like Pringles for some, Godiva chocolate for others, you'll find that one will never be enough when Belinda McBride writes about an uncommon whore.  

Thursday, March 17, 2011

I Double Dog Dare You

   Thursday morning is here. We're one day and a wake-up away from the weekend. And oh, what a magical word that is. Weekend. The sum of all idle pleasures, the mecca of mini-adventures. Do you remember? When you sat in a classroom with the sun shining in at the windows thinking, "This weekend I can...I will...I'll see...I'll do..."? I remember those times.
   Let's not waste the moments between now and then holding our breath however. Anticipation is sweet, planning precious, but right now is magical too. No, really, it is.You may not be able to see it though. So you need new eyes.
   Well, luckily for you, I know how to make that happen.
  Oh, I don't claim to be the most clever person on the planet. I didn't pull this out of thin air. I just have a good memory. My dear friend Rich taught me this trick one day when he'd grown weary of my sour attitude. He may not have know it, but he saved something immeasurably precious in my psyche that day. It's a gift I hold close to my heart even now, and I'd like to teach it to you. A little spare change thrown in life's toll booth coin recptacle, if you will.
   Have you been around a young child lately? One old enough to know a few things about the world, yet not be cynical? Imagine yourself as being that young. Go on, it's not that big a stretch. You were that young once. Now put yourself, at least in your mind, someplace you've never been, doing something you've never done. That feeling, the one right there where your disbelief let go of you? That's what you're looking for.
   Take that feeling and apply it to everything you experience today.
   I double dog dare you.    

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Miles in the Morning

    If you've never listened to Miles Davis in the morning, I challenge you. Go to YouTube and find something from his albumn Sketches of Spain. Listen. Revel in the lush sounds, release your inner sensualist, or let that external one you wear so well slip the leash for a bit. Taste what you eat today, slow down for at least one bite, and savor it.
    My favorite combination of sights and sounds in the early hours? Whenever those early hours may fall for me or for you, ( oh,don't quibble now luv...) be it at 0300hr or 1500hr-that's 3pm to you civilians-yeah, yeah, you can take the girl outta the army. Heh.
    But where was I? Ah, yes, when my limbs are still sweet with sleep and I have that lovely bed-head look we pay too much to almost get for important evenings out...right then I crave the company of my two favorite guys, Miles and Joe. Both are by turns brilliant and bawdy, alternating between making love to my senses and screwing them quick and dirty up agaist the kitchen cupboards, and what lovely little menages we have!
    Let me introduce you, for they're awfully fun fellows to travel throgh the hour, the day, indeed, even through the world with. To my right, Miles Davis, master musician. To my left, Just Plain Joe, my beloved lil'cuppa. Spend a quiet moment with the boys. Unless you're an audiophobe and allergic to coffee or simply find it distasteful, I promise you a sexy, sumptuous time that will usher you into a day filled with wonderful longings, both appropriate and inappropriate.
    Yes, have that tasty latte or tea or bottle of quality h2O at work during your breaktime. Go nuts.
    No, probably best to save the dancing in your underthings because you are unbearably moved by the beauty of the day until you get home. Well, to someone's home who's of age and as into it as you are...you know what I'm saying.
    When you find yourself again at the edge of falling into that sleep-sweet state of floaty nothingness? Take stock of where you've been, and how far every miraculous beat of your heart has brought you today, simply because you took the initiative to begin your day with eyes, ears, heart, and spirit open to possibilities. You won't have "miles to go before you sleep...", for you'll have had Miles in the morning.

Falling Into Something New

Falling into something new sounds exciting, and it is. It's a hollow opening up in the pit of your stomach and suddenly, well, you're juming off of cliffs and you havent' learned  to fly...and no one ever warned you that they'd be so high. So now it's too late, cause you're already falling. So here's what you do. Savor your moment free from gravity. Laugh upside down and let the moon lift her face to you. Oh, and your dreams? Someone put 'em in your back pocket. Take a moment out of your day to find them. Take an hour with a friend, take a second look at the graffiti on the wall that speaks with power directly to your heart. Thank the person right there, who held your hand, read you the riot act when you needed it, gave you a band-aid when you scraped your knee. Fly higher than you've ever dared before, and when you fall back to earth? Try like hell to fall into something new