Monthly Archives: September 2014
I was sitting at my son’s hight school football game a few weeks ago and someone brought up the fact that they used to own a minivan. Suddenly, everyone around us chimed in with, “We did, too.” As I looked around at my friends (none of which drive minivans now) and thought of the cars I’d owned, I began to see a pattern.
My first car was a clunker hand me down that broke down in the high school parking lot on more than one occasion. My college car was a slightly nicer car that I wrecked by not yielding at a yield sign and it stayed wrecked until I traded it in after getting married. My first married car was a two-door sports car with a manual transmission. While that was fun, and a big improvement over my last car, sitting in rush hour traffic with a clutch wasn’t any fun at all.
Car number four was a four-door sedan we purchased during the family planning stage. It was a car, just a car, but it had an automatic transmission (thank you!) and got good gas mileage. Then came the dreaded minivan.
Yes, I had a child, and yes, I knew lots of people who drove one, but darn it, I wasn’t supposed to be one of them! I soon came to realize why everyone drove minivans. I loved the minivan’s sliding doors because, let’s face it, those infant carseats are heavy. We enjoyed taking the minivan to UGA football games where we’d pack all our friends and gear into the van for a comfortable ride to Athens. We tailgated like kings by taking the seats out and lounging around the grill in style. Speaking of taking the seats out, boy could we pack a ton of stuff into the minivan when the seats were removed. The thing was a veritable moving van.
And then my husband traded in the minivan and I was sad. Yes, I felt much cooler in my SUV, but it was hard getting the kids into their carseats. And the doors didn’t slide. “Watch the doors,” became my new catchphrase, because the under-ten crowd doesn’t care if they ding the car next to them.
Now I’m ready to size down and trade in my SUV for a comfortable sedan. According to the predictable pattern of car ownership, I’ll soon be driving a Lincoln Towncar and eating dinner at four. It’s kind of depressing to look back and note a predictable pattern of life played out through my vehicle purchases. Perhaps I’ll surprise everyone–including myself–and trade the SUV in on a convertible. But…why break a good streak?
How about you, WU? Any predictable patterns in your life?
I’m climbing out of my writing cave to let you know that a group of authors and I are giving away a $500 Visa gift card!!! Click here to enter! Good luck! Don’t forget to tell a friend. 🙂
This morning, I woke up and greeted my children, “Happy Fall!”
Glum morning pouts returned, “It’s not fall, yet.”
“But it’s the 22nd. Yesterday was actually the cutoff, so I’m safe today.”
“My calendar says its tomorrow,” my teenage daughter replied.
Hmph. “Your calendar is wrong, or this is one of those off years. Either way, I’m celebrating today! Hot cider anyone? Glass of red wine by the fire?”
Fall is my favorite time of year. Not only the cooler temps and fall foliage (leaves I get to enjoy on television), but it signals a change in pace. Gone are the unruly days of summer when life is a free for all with the kids home, bored, restless, but it’s also the time of year I get back in the garden.
In Central Florida, September is planting month and boy, have I been planting! So far, I have black beans, red beans, lima beans, cabbage, broccoli, tomatoes, squash, kale and peppers in for the new season. My okra and peanuts are finishing, making way for sweet onions, carrots, garlic and potatoes over the next weeks and months. Whew–doesn’t that just sound exciting?
How about you? Do you live where the gardens are going gangbusters right about now? If not, feel free to enjoy mine vicariously….at BloominThyme!
This past summer, at a conference for the Romance Writers of America, I attended a workshop by Sarah Wendell of Smart Bitches, Trashy Books about how to respond to reviews (basically, by not engaging, ever, at all.), how to read between the lines of them, and how sometimes, if you’re really lucky, bad reviews can be good for sales. It was a workshop I knew would be especially relevant for me this fall, as I steam towards my debut novel release date on September 30th, and I figured it would be well worth an hour spent cooped up in a hotel conference room.
Now that the reviews for The Last Breath are starting to trickle in on Goodreads and book review sites, I’m relieved and thrilled and mostly relieved to say most are overwhelmingly positive. But you can’t write for everyone, and not every reader is going to love your book. The criticisms I’ve gotten so far all center around one issue ~ too much sex. Kirkus Reviews, a site my writer friends assure me is notoriously harsh on authors, even went so far as to call it “sexual acrobatics” that got in the way of plot.
Perhaps if I hadn’t gone to that workshop, this would be the spot where I would defend my book and dispute the acrobatics of my sex scenes. Perhaps this would be where I would climb up on my soapbox and challenge and complain and make comparisons to other books, big books, with far more sex than mine. But Sarah Wendell’s words are whispering in my ear: Do not engage. Ever. At all.
So instead, I’ll just sit back and hope that her other words apply here, too. The words that said that sometimes, if you’re really really lucky, bad reviews can be good.
Because sexual acrobatics? Who doesn’t want to read about those?