Little Happy Things Wednesday, Jan 30 2013 

A smiling woman has dark, wavy hair with pink streaks.

I dyed part of my hair pink.

I dyed part of my hair pink, as shown above.  I love it so much, the vibrancy, the way it makes me happy.  I look in the mirror and can’t help but smile.  My mom dyed part of her hair, too; it’s a splotch in the front left of her short hair.  She rocks it so hard.  I’m proud of her for doing that with me; maybe she’ll let me take a photo of her and me and put it online, but I doubt it.  She’s pretty wary of the web.

It’s been a while since I updated.  For that, I apologize; things haven’t been busy but I’ve been crazy sick.  Hard to update on a schedule when you’ve not given yourself a set deadline, and I’m bad at self-imposed deadlines anyway.  If someone says, “write 300 words for a contest in 6 hours,” that’s easy.  Writing something when I feel awful and give no fucks is much harder.

But, I’ve found some things that make me happy, and I wanted to share.

A game of tag that’s lasted 23 years

A pep talk from Kid President!  (You’re gooder than that!)

And finally, the last of my links:  The Emergency Kitten Blog–sadly no longer updated, but still brings a smile to my face.  Although, for dire emergencies, updates pretty often, and is full of adorable.

The last thing that makes me happy is… I’m taking some college courses.  They’re free, and only give certificates of participation… but taking a class, let alone two, is huge for me.  I barely graduated high school due to being sick.  Being so sick again yet trying to take classes is… intimidating, scary, but exhilarating as well.

So.  What’s making you happy these days?


Pride Goeth Before the Fall, But… Wednesday, Dec 19 2012 

I broke 5,000 words on my current short story.  This is the longest piece I’ve had since high school, and is only going to get longer.

I’m a slow writer right now, but I am going to finish a draft.  Even if I have to switch between stories to keep them fresh.

Monday, Dec 17 2012 

brb, goin to read my Writer’s Market

I’ve written myself into a corner. Thursday, Dec 6 2012 

It’s a funny phrase, “writing yourself into a corner”.  It comes from the act of painting a floor, which is now pretty much antiquated in my part of the United States.  There’s an old Archie comic short–I cannot find it despite a quick Google image search–where Jughead and one of his friends are painting the school’s floor, and the principal tells them to make sure they don’t paint themselves into a corner.  Jughead thinks he’s being smart by painting himself next to a door, until he opens it and realizes that his buddy’s painted both of them in!

There was a point to this post, but I forgot what it was.  However, I’m going to post it anyway, because that way I can say that I’ve written something recently.

A love letter to my cat Wednesday, Nov 28 2012 

A black cat laying on top of a sleeping older woman

Izzi curls up on Mom every night at bedtime.

The last truly nice thing my father did for my mother was getting her our cat from the shelter.

I should pause and give a bit of background, here–my father was not a nice man. He was an abusive, insecure son of a bitch, who would hit me if he didn’t like what I had to say. I’m still pretty screwed up.

He died in February of this year, and my feelings on the matter are… incredibly mixed.

But, like I said, the last truly nice thing he did for my mother was to let her get the cat. She’s a gorgeous animal; black, with a splotch of white at her collarbone. Sadly, our cat is the most skittish animal we’ve ever owned. We’re pretty sure she’s been abused. She is afraid of almost everyone; sometimes she gets scared of me, and I live at home, so she’s used to what I do and how I act.

She’s also incredibly sweet. She loves to be petted–on her terms, thank you very much–and she has the sweetest little meow, in this tiny voice. She still trills like a kitten. To say I love this cat is an understatement. When Dad and I brought her home from the no-kill shelter on Valentine’s Day in 2010, he and I actually had a very pleasant discussion in the car… even if I thought he’d kill all three of us with his reckless driving.

It took us about a week to name her. I suggested Bast, after the Egyptian cat goddess. Dad really liked the name, but Mom decided on Izzibella, the Queen of Dormont. After Dad gave her the concussion and she left (I’d been gone for about three months at that point, because he’d hit me and I’d finally hit him back), the cat had to be left behind. It took about a week before Mom could get Dad out of the house long enough to get poor Izzi and boarded her while Mom stayed with her deathly allergic sister. Once she found an apartment, she got the cat out of the pet hotel and brought her home.

At this point I was still living with friends, so I’m not sure how long it took for the cat to acclimate to the new conditions. I do know that she was underweight when Mom brought her home. To this day, the cat gets one can of food a day, with kibble to supplement her diet. She’s not a fat cat because of it, either. She’s svelte and beautiful.

When I moved in last year in late December, the cat and I had a fast bonding process. Mom had gone to visit my brother’s family in Atlanta before having her hip replaced in early January, so I was her sole caretaker for a fair bit of time. Even though she was less afraid of me because of that, I still didn’t see her often. She would do what we’d call “purrito”–crawl into Mom’s bed between the quilt and the sheets and hide there. She doesn’t do it much, if at all, anymore, and for that I’m thankful. I trust that it means she’s more comfortable, despite two moves in less than a year, my other brother coming to stay on and off for a month and a half, and most recently, the house being “invaded” by a team of maids.

I’m not sure why I’m writing this. I think it’s because I needed to write something, and cats are pretty darn cool. Maybe this will help me break my writer’s block!

Also, insomnia sucks. Just a random aside.

(Photograph taken with my cell phone, hence the crappy quality.  I have permission to use my mother’s photograph on the internet.)

Squee! Saturday, Nov 24 2012 

My first copy of Rattle came in today.  It is thick, and beautiful, and smells of new paper and promise.  I have three more mags to look forward to.

I am excited to open the book–gently, of course–and read all of the wonderful poetry selected by the Rattle editors.

I didn’t get accepted for publication in the magazine, nor did I win this year’s Poetry Prize.  I’m interested in reading what was accepted, so I can learn and grow as an author.  Poetry is not my strength, so studying will help me.

I can’t crack it open yet–I’ve trained myself to pretty much only read before bed–but it’ll be a good evening for reading, certainly.

I hope my American followers had a good Thanksgiving, and that if they ventured out on Black Friday, that they got everything they wished to buy.  I hope my international followers are having a fantastic weekend!

Dragonflies, needlepoint, and excitement, oh my! Wednesday, Nov 21 2012 

This is the first time in months that I have felt excited about a creative project, be it writing or otherwise.  The depression from being sick has sapped me pretty badly.

But, after talking to the doctor yesterday, and getting her perspective on what I need to do–and taking steps to do what needs done–I feel better today.  I bought two craft projects last night, and while shopping after my doctor’s appointment left me incredibly sore and tired, I still feel strangely invigorated.

I am hopeful again.  I’m cheerful, and I’m having a hard time sitting still despite being so very drained.

Today, I am opening my needlepoint kit, and getting to work.  I know it will probably take me a while, but feeling energized enough to tackle something feels so invigorating.

And, while I hate to say it–crochet and knitting are my first loves–needlepoint is far more portable than most yarn projects I’ve felt comfortable working on.

It’s Filler Time! Sunday, Nov 18 2012 

I’ve been struggling with what to write for a few days now.  Should I touch on how sick I’ve been?  That smacks of self-pity.  Should I talk about various books I’ve read?  That’d be writerly, but my brain is so foggy that I can’t remember details of anything.  What about what I’ve been writing?  Yeah, okay.

I don’t know.  I guess this is yet another filler post as I sort things out in my head.

Reality calling! Friday, Mar 2 2012 

So, I’ve been quiet lately, and I wanted to explain why.

Admittedly, part of it is laziness–I am utterly uninspired for a lot of things, and ergo, I’m just playing video games and chillin’. Writing is haaaard, okay, and I’m bad at sticking to something.

Part of it is that I’ve had a migraine for close to a month (23 days, to be exact). That would kill anyone’s inspiration, but I’ve been trying to write stuff even with one, and honestly? What’s coming out is utter shit.

But, the reason I’ve been absent since Wednesday afternoon, and will be so until at least next Wednesday…

My father died. They found his body Wednesday at 3:21pm, after the police had to force entry into his apartment.

It’s no secret that I never got along with the man, despite trying desperately hard to be the perfect daughter I could never be. He was an abusive misogynist, who hated himself so much he could never love anyone else, not truly.

I’ve lived my life in fear for 27 years, and now, I am free.

And yet. (Raise your hands if you were expecting that!)

I’m saddened, somehow, by his passing. There’s now no hope of him having a “Come-to-deity-of-choice” moment, and us having a real relationship. I will never have a man I can call father, not really; part of me will forever be incomplete.

I hate him, and I’m angry with him for dying, but I’m also rejoicing in the fact that he’ll never hurt anyone else. Maybe now, I can begin to heal.

Maybe now, I can find a way to become complete.

Oops! Sunday, Jan 22 2012 

I should have realized I’d forget to write here after my mother’s surgery.  Everything went fine and she’s recovering very well–the physical therapist had her using the cane instead of the walker nine days after her total hip replacement. I’m so proud of her, I can’t even tell you.  She’s getting better every day, and I’m so glad for it.

Currently I’m sitting in her room and we’re eating breakfast.  The coffee tastes like nectar and the muffins, ambrosia.  Oh, so tasty.  Seriously, I’ve made some really happy noises this morning!

I finished a short story last night.  I’m so excited.  I was originally writing for a prompt over on deviantART, but I think I’m going to polish this one up for publication.  I’m hopeful.  Just need to find a market.

I’m going to get back to writing, so I hope you will, too.

Keep writing!

P.S. I forgot something important!  I was published over at Dear Teen Me, a blog project where people write in to their teen selves. Warning for triggers. I’m really proud of this piece, though!

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