Looking ahead

The best thing about the New Year is that it’s only a new beginning and a fresh start if you want it to be. But then again, June 2 can be one, can’t it? December 27th can be one too. It’s not about the date so much as the feeling of starting over and having another chance that always feels so great to me. And why not do it on the first?

I usually make weight goals as my resolutions, but since I finally lost all the weight I wanted and have kept it off for a few years, I feel confident in leaving that one behind. My goals for this year are different than they have been in previous years because my outlook on life is different. What was important years ago has taken on new meaning. So, without further discussion, my goals are simple and as follows:

1. Finish editing novel #1 and submit to agents.

2. Finish writing novel #2.

3. Forgive myself for the crap I’ve done this year. What the hell, I should start with a new slate of crap, right?

4. More discipline. It’s about time I stick to a schedule (or at least try this year.) Any help on that matter is most appreciated. How do you stick to a schedule?

5. Spend as much time with my daughter as possible. She gets her driver’s license this year, which means I will see less and less of her now. So, I’ll spend as much time as I can before my time is limited.

6. Spend as much time with my new nephew as possible. He’ll be born any day now and will live just 15 minutes away. No reason not to see him weekly and hug him as much as possible. Starting out in life, you can never have too many hugs.

7. Stay away from bullshit. I’m old enough now to resolve that I don’t want to be around it and I don’t have to be polite and put up with it. Life’s too short to put up with crap anymore.

8. Blog more often. Isn’t this fun? I’m going to spend more time blogging, learning about blogging and promoting myself (as an author and all around fun person who doesn’t like bullshit…)

Here’s to your New Year, free from crap and full of hugs and friendship. Thanks for following this year and making it a fun and prosperous year for me.

 

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Another evil distraction from writing-Professor Layton

Step Away From The Professor

I’ve always been so proud of the fact that we don’t have any gaming systems in our home. No Wii, Gameboy, PS2, and whatever else is out there. Not even handheld games. For that reason, my daughter is a huge reader. Her room is strewn with books of all kinds and she loves to write as well as read. Watching movies is also one of our passions and that takes enough time away from writing for me, but it is something we love to do together. So much so that she is now writing a monthly movie review column in the local newspaper.

So what is sucking my time, you ask? A damned Nintendo DS, that’s what. A small, hand-held gaming system for crying out loud. I bought a Nintendo 3DS for Daughter for her 16th birthday, which was about 2 months ago. She loves to play it and has discovered some wonderful puzzle/mystery games. I figure that’s good brain food so no problem. But then Husband gave one to me for Christmas and I’ve been playing it ever since. It’s only been a few days and I think I need an Intervention.

Ever heard of Professor Layton? It’s a puzzle/mystery game that is frustrating, fun, exasperating, interesting and a huge time-sucker. It’s also sold about 10 million copies and is one of Nintendo’s most popular games.

The professor and his assistant/sidekick Luke are searching in a small town for a missing Golden Apple, which is some kind of inheritance. Along the way, they must solve puzzles in order to get closer to solving the mysteries that pop up, such as a missing cat, kidnapped cousin, murder, etc. It’s frustrating since the games and puzzles involve geometry, numbers, shapes, etc. Some are easy, some are not. You can ask for hints, but it costs you and they aren’t very good hints.

I love it, and now I know why there haven’t been any games in the house up until now. I’m more of an addict that Daughter (if that’s possible). And not only that, the DS is pink. How cool is that? Now I’m looking for fun games to play on it and cursing Husband for such a crazy gift. I love it and I hate it at the same time.

Oh, and there are six levels of the Professor Layton series. Seriously? I’ll never get any work done!

Damn that Professor!

 

You say disfunction like it’s a bad thing…

Once again, a wonderful holiday with family and another year of realizing how much we love each other and very strange we really are. As I ponder the beings I call family, I wonder if there really is such a thing as “normal.” You know what I mean, those Hallmark Channel family Christmas gatherings with mulled cider, perfectly wrapped presents, everyone dressed in red velvet and lots of hugging. Where are those people anyway? Not in my house, that’s for sure.

Yes, we have lots of hugging. We love each other, I’m sure of that. But that has to be the only resemblance to that “normal” depiction of a holiday. Is there really a family out there like that? For so long, I felt as if my family just didn’t live up to the “ideal” family that sang carols together and had no issues at all except where to park all the cars. Well, that’s a bunch of crap, seriously!

I have a normal, dysfunctional family and we love each other, even with all of our faults. We argue, we show up late, we burn dinner, we even have awkward pauses (don’t you love those?) Perhaps being a writer makes me even more aware of our dysfunction and even more appreciative as the years go by. “Normal” now equates to “boring” in my eyes. Bring on the drunk uncle and the inappropriate gifts and the secrets blurted out at the wrong moment during dinner. Bring on the pouty teenagers and the cursing Grandmas. Oh, and pass the wine.

I love you all!

I slept late. I drank wine.

I went on vacation. I sat on a deck in the afternoon. I slept late and dreamed of my characters. I dreamed of their lives, their motivation.

I drank a lot of wine. I slept late. I dreamed about changes. I dreamed about new characters and new challenges.

I drank a lot of coffee. I came home. I began to rewrite.

I am recharged. I missed my desk. I missed my characters. I missed my obsession.