Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Last day to vote for our Angie Gumbo Writer! Y'all just take a moment to click on that little thumbs up *smiling* CLICK HERE She's neck and neck with another blog! vote vote vote!
It is dark outside; I'm up quite early this morning: before Fat Lazy Lab Jake, before Good Man Roger, before the birds. It is silent, as our cove at Killian Knob can be - but through the closed windows and doors I still hear our creek -- the rains have brought it back as it was before.
I am overwhelmed at the support I am receiving from you all. To think, people I have never met face-to-face have become an important part of my life. You "see" them if not daily, then weekly. You are sad for them when they are sad, happy when they are happy. I can see some of us sitting around a table in a cafe, sharing coffee and something sweet, laughing and talking, and as we do, we are marveling at all the places we come from: here near far there yonder.
There will be no way I can do anything but say THANK YOU for all your support with Tender Graces - I only hope my words do your support justice. For TG is a love letter to everyone who reads her. As I wrote my Virginia Kate saga, I thought of all of you and all the hands that would hold her and that kept me writing and writing and writing. The thought it will soon happen just overwhelms me, but in that surreal but good way.
These days, publishing is a strange business. One never knows what will "work" and what will send books gathering dust on shelves and what makes them best-sellers. I hope the love and sincerity of my words will sell my books. I hope the story will sell it. The writing and language. I hope I do you all Proud; that is my wish.
Word of mouth - all of you - telling others about a good book you've read is, to me, one (or THE) most important thing when it comes to our books. A person reads your book and loves it and then tells someone and that person reads it and loves it and tells another and on the chain goes.
Never Ever Ever discount the important role that you, Dear Readers, have in the writer's life. I mean that in so many ways.
One day I hope to sell enough books to buy up land on this little mountain at Killian Knob so that all destruction - the cutting down of too many trees, the putting up of lights(blasphemy!), the postage-sized lots, My Muse Trail One decimated, Kayla's creek: gone....I hope that one day I can preserve what's left. I believe in having Goals - even if they seem too "out there" and lofty and hard. Maybe it'll happen, who am I to say it will not? But, I dream of walking Muse Trail One again, where the forest has taken over again, and Muse Trails Levels Two and Three remain wild as they are right now still. It is a "hard" goal, for writers do not make much money from the sale of their books: which is why we do it from Love. You may be surprised at what we make per book -- love...love....it is Love that keeps ups writing.
One more thing I have in mind: I contacted some libraries here in Western North Carolina about carrying my book and received very positive interest, but was saddened to learn that many small county libraries do not have a budget for books! Can you imagine? One of my other dreams is to help libraries --- those sanctuaries of my youth --- I am going to donate my book wherever I can; I do realize I can't do this at every library in every county (or parish of Louisiana) in every city, but, I can start somewhere. I urge you all to try to help your local libraries: donate books - it doesn't have to be mine (laughing!) - or find out how you can help. We need our libraries! We need our Independent Booksellers and Independent Presses....together, we are a strong force.
Monday, March 30, 2009
My friend Mike made this "wolf's head" arrowhead necklace just for me and I adore it. His wife Tanya is a photographer and one day I'll ask her if she'd like to post some of her beautiful photography here. I believe if you click on the images, they are larger so you can see better.
Fat Lazy Labrador Jake sleeping
My wolf painting we bought in Waynesville, at the Blue Owl on Main Street. Go see them if you are in WNC!
my "totems" and if you look closely, you'll see Fred the Spider who has taken up residence and whom I leave there and say hello to when I think about it. These came from Asheville's Woolworth Walk - worth the Walk. Except the round bowl shaped item came from a friend who lives in Australia!
and of course, my deep creek blend coffee in one of my favorite mugs sitting on the salt container that I also love. Deep Creek Blend is roasted at Smoky Mountain Roasters in Waynesville: if you are in the area, go there and get some.
So, every so often, I will have a "these are a few of my fave things...." What about you? what are your favorite things? If you post pics of them on your site, let me know and I'll go look! Happy Morning all!
NOTE FROM OUR ANGIE GUMBO WRITER!!!! "I need your thumbs up vote today and tomorrow, and appreciate your continued voting. The contest ends tomorrow night...so please visit this link today and tomorrow and click on the thumbs up under GUMBO WRITER---> " http://bloginterviewer.com/education/gumbo-writer-aka-angie-ledbetter
Sunday, March 29, 2009
Have you met our Fat Lazy Labrador Jake?
Well, Good Man Roger is painting a series of paintings that just make me laugh or smile, or go "awww!" He calls them: Le Chein Rouge. Have you ever seen "the blue dog" paintings? This is GMR's version *teehee* ... Fat Lazy Lab Jake is unfazed by the attention. As my brother Tommy says, "Jake has about one expression..." and he proceeded to show me those "one expressions" ..."Here's happy; here's sad; here's contemplative; here's 'I'm hungry'..." (and those expressions are as you see above) while I laughed...it's true! Unless FLLJ sees someone he thinks is an intruder - oh! Then the sharp white fangs are exposed, the lips drawn back in warning, the low growl: it's quite terrifying to UPS people and other strangers come round the cove. He is a good watcher of the cove and all his domain.
The Le Chein Rouge are at top of this post- and I am not giving them much justice as I took the photos in a hurry (I am the most impatient person...geez). GMR gave these LSU collars, since these are for someone(s) who loves LSU.
I spoke with the most beautiful person yesterday! She has a soft southern accent. Her voice is filled with energy. She is a sincere and thoughtful person. Someone I would feel comfortable around. Hmm, maybe I should use this as a contest to win a book! Every day I'll give a hint and see if y'all can guess who I am talking about *laughing* --unless this person has said something on her blog about how she talked to this weird Kat Mountain Woman who cackles when she laughs and says things like "huhn...." and "Lawd!" and "Well, la tee dah!" teeheehee. We talked about books and writing and publishing, etcetera. I have a hard time talking on the phone - it's weird, but it's hard for me to follow conversations and I sometimes accidentally interrupt - my brain needs to either write conversations, or I need to look at someone in person to follow the convo properly. Huhn. I hope I made any sense at all....haw!
Now, on to Sunday Breakfast; then, I want to come visit you all. It's too late to do anything else with Tender Graces manuscript....in spite of the fact that I woke up at 2:00 AM, was it Friday?, night in a panic and emailed Bellebooks and said "Oh no oh no!" and they said, "oh too late too late!" *laughing* So, that's that. La Tee Dah. Huhn.
UPDATE!: OMG! Just received an email from BB: BelleBooks is the BEST! They did go in and fix that thing I woke up at 2AM worried about - no one would have known what it was, no reader would have known, but it was something I'd wanted to have at the beginning...and they did it! They put that in! Even though they said they couldn't, and I said, "I understand" because it would be extra work and time and etc - but they DID IT! This is the beauty of the small independent press - they love you and work with you. *BIG GRINNING*
Saturday, March 28, 2009
tootles everyone -- going to take a mountain walk in the mists and fog first, then work work and work! MUWAH!
Friday, March 27, 2009
You'd think that would be it, but no. This guy just hung up on a woman he's been screwing, who is of the belief that he called her a b**ch and hell if she gave a damn where he was or who he was with, this woman wanted an explanation so, for the next ten minutes the scene went as follows:
(Aunt hits his leg)
GUY: I gotta go. (Guy hangs up. Phone rings)
GUY: So where you at now? ....I'm not saying nothin....What? So you sayin you don't want me goin?" .....I'll go. I'll come pick you up. We can hang out..
GUY: I gotta go. (Guy hangs up. Phone rings.)
GUY: So do you want me to come or not?...What?...why you like hmmmm, like you don't know? You got some other dude?....Yeah? Well, Sabrina's a b**ch too..... Yeah, but so why you listenin to her and not me?.....
The Aunt hits his leg but this time the guy doesn't say anything and instead just hangs up the phone. Not but two seconds later the phone rings again but instead of answering it he FINALLY decides that perhaps it would be better to continue the conversation outside and so he, very politely, I might add, turned to me, excused himself, apologized and exited the theatre. I didn't say a word because I was both shocked and amused at this guy's audacity and was somewhat sorry to see him go because at this point I was curious to see whether or not these two were going to end up together.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
And I said to myself: what a wunnerful world, unless it stops spinning or the sky falls or the stars quit burning or the sun hits the moon or....
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Flash forward to when you have a publisher. So, early on, the publisher sends back their edits/thoughts. Luckily for me, I'd polished the manuscript within an inch of its language so there weren't a lot of things to haggle over or change or fix, very few (BB has been happy with me *smiling*). After that's done and everyone agrees to changes/edits, etc, and they've been implemented, the manuscript goes to the person who fits it to look like the book will look and this is the galley that is to be proofed: this galley I had was in PDF form. This is what I've been up to since I returned home.
When you make marks on the galley, you don't send them back to the publisher like you do on the earlier one; instead, you make a list: Page 101, line five from the top, there are two periods at the end of the sentence. Page 205, line seven from the bottom, it's should be its.... et-cetera! Then when you have the list done, you send it back to the publishers and someone there plugs in the corrections. Then, if I understand right, I get to peep at it one more time, quickly....then it is out of my hands. Error-free, or not error-free. It is Out.Of.My.Hands. *gulp* -- and soon into yours.
Monday, March 23, 2009
The tax information I still have to do...gawd! I'm So Behind.
Sunday, March 22, 2009
I’m thinking about Spring today. Winter’s brutal is all but gone as I look out my window and see color. Yellows, green, green and more green. Bold red and blues from the cardinals and blue jays. Lovely colors!
WHAT COLOR IS SPRING? YOUR SPRING?
Saturday, March 21, 2009
I am peepin' my pea-head in here to say hello very quickly before getting back to work. I am reading the galley proof of Tender Graces and to do that I have to actually read it "word by word" --which means I can't read as I would normally. It's verrrryyyy sloowww but, if I don't do it that way, I won't catch errors that are hiding in there. Bellebooks does their reading of it, the author does hers, and I am having Good Man Roger read it as well. And, despite all of our efforts, I just know there will be a mistake or two in there - erk! It won't be because we didn't scour Tender Graces with Eagle Eyes, more than once. I did visit you all the other day, hope I didn't leave anyone out, and if I did, call me on it! Until I make this deadline, though, I'm going to be locked in this room and working, um, teehee, er, except I am here right now and I need to be there...so, I'll make this quick. Please continue to bear with me for not visiting and posting as I usually do.
I so appreciate Gumbo Writer Angie Ledbetter and Brian Mongold of Eazy Cheezy (click and read if you haven't) for being my Guest Bloggers. THANK YOU!
Also~! Brian of Eazy Cheezy interviewed me on his "Ten Questions..." series: he made me feel like a celebrity....teehee. If you haven't been by there and read, well, here's the link: Kat's Interview with Brian.
I do have this news: My book will actually be in at least one library in East Baton Rouge! Okay, maybe that doesn't sound so exciting, but it is to me! I love and adore libraries and am so excited. And, my local indie bookseller just ordered a very nice number of books so we could have a book-signing party - complete with champagne! and she's making this signing "reservation only" -wow! If you are in the area, let me know if you'd like to come...*smiling* -- if you have an indie bookseller you love in your area, let me know about it: that's what I'd love to do, have signings at indie's, at least where I can.
I send you a big ole Hug and Kiss - *MUWAH* -- send me positive vibes that I'll catch all those errors and make my deadline!
And for those who've pre-ordered, I want to take a moment to say I thank you...I am humbled and honored: THANK YOU~!
(PS -Hey, for you girls - I bought some Okay Pro-X cream in a tube - I splurged - I'll let y'all know if it is worth the extra bucks I paid for it!)
Friday, March 20, 2009
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Kat's been so kind to invite me over as a guest blogger, while she's circling the mountains. I'm extremely honored, but a bit overwhelmed since Kat's brilliance is consistently displayed here at TENDER GRACES. Trying to live up to the expectations of Kat and the Kat Fans is quite a bit to live up to. Bear with me and let's just wing it a bit and go for it.
So here I am sitting on the couch with the trusty laptop placed carefully on the left armrest of my loveseat. Typical writing environment for me. Lights are off, laptop is popping and the TV is serving as my backup dancer. The wife just made some tasty Tossimo coffee and I'm ready to go! My two pooches, Sienna and Miku are playing the usual "need more attention" game as they're fixated on my every move. As I glance over at Miku, I notice her attention has shifted. Her head in now lying comfortably on her backside. She has this talent she does that involves twisting her head to her lower backside and resting it there as she awaits a surprise. That's how we know when she's a bit gassy. Her head will be assuming the position as her nose is sniffing away. As Sienna sighs and Miku is now side-tracked, a thought comes to mind. How about sticking with what I do best and show you some resources that may hopefully bring a bit of value.
From hanging out at TG, I've gathered that many of you are writers of some sort and there's a ton of resources on the net that could increase your efficiency, make you a better writer and just flat out help you get organized. Two articles in particular stand out to me. Mashable.com provides a WRITER's TOOLBOX: 35 Best Tools for Writing Online and CollegeDegrees.com brings us even more categorized tools with their article, 100 Useful WebTools for Writers. Between these two, you should find quite a few helpful tools and ideas. Another link I'd like to share is Nerd Business' 5978 High Quality Icons for the Web. Nothing like some free, pretty vector images to include within our writings. I use this site for many of my blog posts.
The time you take out of your lives to carefully organize your thoughts on paper and the web is very personal and important to you. Unfortunately there are many on the net who believe that content you publish online is free game. Plagiarism on the net is far too common. I've personally had my proudest work, 50 Free Sites to Watch Movies and TV Shows Online, copied and pasted to its entirety. The author then began to add additional content to the work. The time I took to find these sites and post them took weeks to finish. In the end, I spent a good 30 hours on the series, while the content thief swooped in and grabbed it all in just a few minutes.
There are many great tools to help protect your work online, because unfortunately it may be stolen without giving you any credit whatsoever. The anonymity of the net makes it easy to do this and get away with it. Copyscape, a professional plagiarism search, lets you type in your URL and hit the search button as it searches for your content that's been copied. It's free to conduct a search, but to get the full results, you'll need to go premium which will cost you 5 cents per search. Though a bit dated, The Boston Herald provided a nice listing of The 20 Best Free Anti-Plagiarism Tools. A good site to keep up with related news and learn more about plagiarism is Plagiarism Today.
Hopefully the listings and sites I provided will help you today or someday in the future. I could probably go on forever and milk my 15 minutes of TG Fame, but I think it's time for me to head on back to Eazy Cheezy and get back to my flip flops. I want to first give a BIG thanks to Kat for setting up the spare TG web-room to let me write this. The brilliance of her writings here at TG is just amazing. I just pre-ordered my copy of TENDER GRACES and am so excited to get it when it comes out!
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
I also will have a guest tomorrow - Brian of Eazy Cheezy will be here. I love his site and all its resources - he's fun and personable and I could go on, but I'll let you all get to know him tomorrow, if you haven't already been by his place and come to know him! I want to have other guests, and will get round that soon as my head clears from its discombobulation.
Monday, March 16, 2009
There is not a more heartbreaking sound than the rapid, terrified breaths of a mother who thinks she is about to lose her son, especially when she has already lost one to the same kind of thing, and especially when she almost lost the other. The sound is breathless and quick and it cut to my marrow. I still hear it. I close my eyes at night and I hear her breaths...breaths....breaths...breaths...breathsbreathsbreathsbreathsBREATHS....
That was my mother's breathing when she ran out and said, "call 911..." I never knew how calm I could be, as if I were a robot. I calmly picked up the phone, pushed numbers, spoke into the phone, "Hurry, my brother is...." I look at my mother, for I don't know what's happening....her breaths panting... she said, "He's having heart attack...Tommy said this is how it was before, he said..." And...I spoke something, and then handed the phone to my mom...opened the door to ready for the emergency techs to enter, as Tommy came to sit on the stairs leading to the upstairs - the ones that face the front door, his face a mask of afraid...he said, "sister...." and my heart broke in a million pieces at that sound, but my face remained impassive...calm...surreal. I said, "Does it hurt?" he said, "yes..." I said, "they'll be here soon..." Calm. Impassive. Surreal. I hear distant sirens, too distant it seems. Tommy said, "I'm hot..." I opened the door wider, eyes scanning for the emergency techs, and let in the cool Texas air. I said, "Soon. They'll be here soon." I cautioned one look at my brother again - he was looking down, concentrating on his body, concentrating on hope that it wouldn't be like it was in 2005 when he coded several times (he told me death is peaceful, beautiful - but it isn't when you are still alive, is it?). I remained: Impassive. Calm. Surreal. Another heart attack? But a few minutes ago, he was laughing and talking. How? But...
He did - a "minor" one (and to me, no heart attack feels minor to those waiting, to Mother's with breaths breaths breaths breathsbreathsBREATHS). When my dad walked into the hospital emergency room, his face was folded in worry, drawn in - for once, he looked his age. Oh daddy!
Tommy's blood simply will not flow freely. When he has "procedures" - like his hernia surgery - where he had to get off the plavix (blood thinner), his blood just clots on up inside of him. I remained Passive. Calm. Surreal until he was settled in the emergency holding room and seen by a doc--then I broke down and cried. My brother has been through too much for a 46 year old man. And it's not like he hasn't tried to be healthy: he's thin, he quit smoking, he eats healthfully -- but his blood is just too thick, too clotty. The heperin shots he was taking in place of the plavix and aspirin saved his life. Next time he has a procedure, he needs to be on something stronger, however.
Right now there is good news and happy news and all is well-mere moments ago, he just had a stint put in, and all his other stints look good and he's doing great
But I'm not there with him today as he recovers from getting his new stint. I was chased away. I was told GO HOME DANG IT SEESTOR!
My friends. I am writing to you from a hotel in a cute clean little town of Bartlett Tennessee. I left Texas at noon yesterday, but not without crying and worrying. Tommy and Frank (frank is home now and we spent some time talking while my mom lay exhausted on the sofa, her breaths breaths breaths turend to exhausted moans in her sleep); both he and Tommy said, "Go Home! You've been gone almost a month -- there will never be a right time to leave." And then they both said I need to work on the book. I said family is important. They said, "family is proud of you and that book - are you going to let us down by not getting it done?" I struggled struggled. Tommy does not want to feel the "guilt" of thinking he "kept me" from what I am supposed to be doing. It's all tangled in familial love and worry and pride and ...all of it. I received promises from Tommy that when he left the hospital he'd go to our mother's house until he was all clear. He rolled his eyes, but he'll do it - because I told him I'd fly back down to Texas and kick his ass if he did not. Big Sisters Rule.
Now, I must go; get back on the road. I don't have my glasses -left them in the boopmobile - and can hardly see what I'm typing, but I wanted to come in to tell you what's been up. If you see my Boopmobile in your town today as I wend my way back to Killian Knob - give me a honk and a wave -- as i said, you'll know the Boopmobile when you see it.
Thank you all for being patient and for still coming round even though I've been away and involved and thank you for all your thoughts and....well -- *kiss and hug* -- thankyou.
Friday, March 13, 2009
The cover of the review copy uses the phrase “gentle yet unflinching.” A perfect phrase for this coming of age Southern novel.
I can see, feel, smell the settings in West Virginia…they are wonderful. Since I live in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Kathryn Magendie captures the “southernness” of Baton Rouge.
[Tender Graces] makes my heart weep with sorrow and joy.
Mary Laird, MLIS, Library Consortium Analyst
LOUIS: The Louisiana Library Network
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
One Two, buckle a shoe, three four, shut that door! Five six, pick up after cats, seven eight -when can I lie down straight? Nine Ten, a big fat grin
So, I wanted to step back in here quickly and say, "THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU...a thousand thank you's!" Just think, as I write this, I may be up to Six! 1 2 3 4 5 6 - ah ah ah ah
Okay, I promise (well, maybe promise isn't a good word *laughing* ) that I won't come on here every time I sell a book and write, "ten! ten books sold... one two three four five six seven eight nine ten....ah ah ah ah ah." *snork*
Okay, back to what I was doing - which is laundry, and finishing up some pudding for Frank
Monday, March 9, 2009
Sunday, March 8, 2009
When you live on a mountain in a little cove in a little town, the lights and buildings and people of The Big City can be overwhelming. Never mind that I lived in Baton Rouge for many years; it doesn't take long for one's body and brain and psyche to adjust to quiet mountain living, esp after a bit over 4 years. Big Cities frighten me just a little, and the noise and lights and crowds swarm across my body attacking nerve endings, and my brain that causes my synapses to fire off Bam Bam Bam Bam Bam! But! at least the headache is long gone. Funny those headaches I used to get long ago- I'd forgotten how they come mysteriously fast and just as mysteriously fast they leave.
All of your thoughts and prayers and vibes have helped Frank again! He is over the Hump! I did not stay at the hospital with Mom yesterday and last night - we didn't want to over-stimulate Frank, and he very much needed to Rest more than anything. So, I just talked to Mom and Frank is doing so much better. We were quite worried from Friday night until this morning. Thank you all!
Thank you for your words about my uncle--so true, yes. I will spend a few moments this morning with him on my mind and let my west virginia hillbilly blackfoot indian german italian celtic blood rage through the airwaves and straight to him.
Meanwhile, my 71 year old biological momma is Dating. She is giggly with Dating. She is in the flush of infatuation at 71. My biological momma is and was a beautiful woman. After her Coy died, I knew it wouldn't be long before Men were circling her like ...I was going to say vultures, but that isn't exactly what I meant *grin* She is in denial of her brother--it will be the third one she has lost. We cannot deny death -it always finds us. Always.
But, as for Life-- right now Life is all around. In Texasland it is spring - I took a photo, below, whilst going to my daddy's house yesterday. Spring! It's warm. Oh, but I miss my mountain at Killian Knob.
And, I am all a-blush with happy reading your emails about Tender Graces - so! Maybe I have sold more than four copies after all! *laugh* -- however, I have taken your message -- that the sales amount is not the thing to focus on. Thank you.
Now, my friends - I will sometime today go to the hospital with my brother Tommy. Yesterday I fiddled about my mom's house - making sure everything is neat and clean and sparkling. Bed linens freshened for when they return, dishes all done, plants watered, cats fed and etc. Mom won't have to do a thing when she returns. I will cook some things to put in the freezer, too. It is what we do - we Women -- it is how we control the uncontrollable: we clean and/or cook and/or fuss over and/or straighten and/or wash and dust and vacuum and launder. We bend over beds and kiss foreheads. We hold hands to warm them. We rub aches. We place bandaids on boo boos. We say, "you look good today" even if they do not. We say, "Everything will be okay" and then when we are away from them, that's when we have a cry or let the worry frowns settle - but not where they can see! We put steel in our backbones! We have electrical impulses firing into our marrow that keeps up moving moving moving as long as we need to move! We Women know what Has To Be Done and we do it - even when we are afraid or unsure it does not stop what Has To Be Done. I never thought of myself as this kind of woman - thinking myself as "self-indulgent chaotic reclusive writer" - but perhaps I have some of that inside me, as well? I know my mom does. I know many of you do, judging from your emails and comments. Women. Women. Proud to be a Woman, that I am.
(PS! - Some of you have asked about getting signed copies of Tender Graces - and if I will have a way to order them from the blog -- or my website -- I will be putting up a link or links for that - and as for signed copies, I would be so honored to sign your books---I guess we'll figure all that out as we get close to press date! *smiling* - thank you for your interest - it means a lot to me.)
Saturday, March 7, 2009
Ah friends. It's warm here in Texas. I had to go buy flip flops and t-shirts from Target. Silly me forgot about the deeper south and how warm it can get even in February and early March. My snow boots I wore when I left my mountain cove sit untouched, of course!
Frank's surgery went well and he was quite strong. He was out of ICU by yesterday, only one day after the surgery on Thursday! He was talking and alert and feeling fine. Then, this morning he is having a little bit of a setback - but not from the heart, for the surgeon said his heart is fine. So, I am back to ask for a bit more of your wonderful thoughts and prayers and vibes and all those things you do so he can get over this "hump."
Hospitals are the strangest of cities. Long corridors where my mom and I took turns and turns and seems we went a different way each time. The hotel within the hospital was a relief - although we ended up at a door trying to put the room key in the slot and wondering why the slot had disappeared and Mom is holding the room key to where the slot is supposed to be and I'm standing there and she's standing there and suddenly I look around and then burst out in hysterical laughter - we are in the wrong section - this was doctor's offices (closed for the evening)....we both went into peals of exhausted laughter. Then went searching for where we were supposed to be. No matter how many times we went to ICU, we seemed to take the same wrong turn and ended up heading in the wrong direction.
There is much suffering in Hospital, and the faces of the loved ones reflect the suffering, the hope, the devastation, the surprise, the delight when a loved one recovers, the tears and sagging of faces when they may not. There are doctors and nurses and other staff hurrying through halls. There are smells that follow and settle on clothing and hair, constant reminders as you toss about trying to sleep - sleep that seems to come and go in short snatches. Dreams that wake you - real? no, only a dream, it's okay, go back to sleep.
I will say this: for anyone who has been or is a care-giver, I am in awe of you. I've only had short snatches of being a care-giver or one who stays at the hospital to make sure everything is okay--this time and when GMR's mother was gravely ill. One becomes unaware of time and space and reality. The hospital, or the home where the loved one is, becomes this bubble - one doesn't know what is happening out in The Real World. Everything becomes about doctors, nurses, techs, outflow inflow, breathing, ....life....death...somewhere in between...hope...recovery...loss...found. Shuffling the hallways between fast-moving staff--staff who avert their eyes, less one asks an unanswerable question--then there are the question answerers, soft-voiced and dewy-eyed. It may feel as if time bends and alters, and when you emerge for breath, maybe only a day has passed, or two, but it feels as if everyone on the outside has moved on far ahead! When you step outside, the air on your face feels fresh and alive - and you feel a bit guilty that you are walking strong on your legs to gulp in that fresh "un-hospital" air. I have never eaten so much fruit in such a short time! I became enamoured of the hosptial cafeteria's fruit and yogurt parfaits, and the fresh salads, and jello, and fruit and cheese trays - things that keep one feeling more alert and not heavy and tired. Then I found "mexican cornbread" last night - Oh! Heaven! With hot soup! Something hot! Oh! I ate with gusto, fast and furious and without restraint.
I have never been around a loved one when they have the hallucinations from surgery meds and anesthesia! Of course, my writer brain was twirling with thoughts, but my stepdaughter brain was taken aback....so real it seems to them!
Again, I thank you all for stopping by - I am trying to visit you a little at a time when time is there. I have but a minute here, but will be back soon. I hope this post makes sense, since I am typing it so fast!
And for those of you who said you will buy Tender Graces so more than four are sold *laughing* -- thank you! *big grin of relief here....laugh...* My gawd, but the time is coming so close for Tender Grace's release....I can't think of it, my stomach is flip flopping around! *pant pant*
(PS - I almost forgot - my biological mother called - I have an uncle dying from liver cancer. I feel so strange - knowing i have blood kin out there who is dying and I am not at his side. I've only met him a few times - but we are bound by blood--West Virginia Hillybilly blood. I feel saddened - I don't know what to think or feel about this. I am here with my Frank and my family - but there is another family out there with my blood, dying, and I'm not there...strange lives we lead sometimes, full of ironies and metaphors and ....all.)
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
Oh, my friends! I keep thinking about my book - the Tender Graces book with Virginia Kate and how close it is to the time she comes out! It sends my stomach to fluttering. Sometimes I place worries on myself: what if it doesn't sell many copies and I feel "failure" as an author? what if I get a bad review (everyone must, I suppose!). What if only four people buy my book and three of those are me and the other one is my mom? *laugh* - then I calm myself by reminding myself that no matter what happens, I will have written an entire book with beautiful characters and that book will have been printed and have a cover and I can hold it in my hands and smell the pages, see and read and feel my Virginia Kate come alive! Now, that in itself is an accomplishment, right, my good friends?
The surgery has been delayed because of a Snafu with the hospital or doctor or something, and that just makes us all the more stressed. Each day someone has to stay in a hospital bed makes them weaker! Although, he has been doing quite well, under the circumstances. But, I've told Frank how people all over the world were wishing him well and sending thoughts and vibes and prayers and all manner of good things his way. He was very pleased, as was my mom; and both said, "Thank you so very much."
My head is pounding - it's been forever since I've had a headache, and especially one that takes over my head and will not let go since yesterday. I imagine this little creature wrapped around my brain - sort of like that creature on Twightlight Zone that was destroying the plane -pounding away, being a little snit about it all!
I know Tender Graces is on track, but there's something about being away from home and the schedule that has me all worried and discombobulated - as if I'm missing something I need to be doing! It will be ready to go next month! And, I've not had time to work on the second one--but I will. I know right now the headache monster, worry over Frank, and being away from home and off my eating and working schedule has me feeling out of sorts. Oh, stop whining, Kat! Geez....pah! There, now I feel my old toughie self emerge...ha!
Perhaps while it's a quiet morning this morning, before I head to Dallas to the hospital, I can visit you wonderful people. Sometimes I think about all your faces and I smile...you don't know (or perhaps you do!) how much it means to me to read your comments - thank you - and yes, I am reading each and everyone, even when I don't have time to come visit. I cooked yesterday for mom and whomever may be coming in town or whatever. And I made her kitchen sparkle and vacuumed and the like -- it's a woman thing; you know, you walk into your house and everything is sparkling and fresh smelling and clean and it just makes you feel better.
We are hoping the surgery will be at least by tomorrow. I'll be back with an update.
PS - I was visiting everyone and suddenly every time I go to a blog, the screen flits all over the place and then goes blank! ?? I have no idea what that is - so, if you see me on another blog and not on yours, that's why - will try again later!