If you do what you have always done, you will get what you have always had.

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy New Year

I can't believe it's New Years Eve again. In some ways it seems like a few months since last year's party, and in other ways it seems like it's been forever.

It's been a good year. The builder broke ground on our new home in January, and we moved in June. Since then we've had a veritable flood of friends and family come to visit, and we've welcomed them with a minimum of fuss and almost no room swapping, thanks to the guest room and loft. Only once has Alex been displaced from his room, and although he's always been gracious and willing to bunk with his sister on a temporary basis, I'm sure he's relieved not to have to.

Eric retired from the military and got his first civilian job since high school. I will admit to being a little jealous; he got a high paying job, and he intereviewed over the phone, in a partial state of dress, I might add. And we bought him an interview suit that he didn't need! Not for that job, anyway! We're all much happier not to have deployments and militaryisms to deal with, although he still has a little trouble getting dressed for work now that he has to put outfits together!

Alex started high school this year, which has been exciting and traumatic for all of us. The work load was heavier than he anticipated, and the adjustment has not been easy, but I'm hoping that the worst is behind us.

Vicky joined the ranks of teendom, which means I'll be even more stoopid this year than I have for the last. It's a downhill slide I'll be making for the next, oh, 6 or 7 years. I'll hit bottom when Vicky is 17 or 18, but by then Alex will have been in college for a while and maybe I'll be a little smarter. I'm assured by my co-workers that college does make some parents smarter. :-)

I found as near to a perfect job as I've had yet. It doesn't pay a lot, and we work like dogs a lot of the time, but I never knew food service could be so much fun. It helps that it's a teeny little bistro, and that the women I'm working with are older than me and free from the drama of those younger than me. Whether I'm prepping plates, refilling coffee cups, or up do my elbows in dishwater, we have a lot of fun, and tips are my friend! I find I'm tipping better since I started this job. Since I started in September I haven't had one day when I've woken up and thought, "Man, I wish I didn't have to work today."

Goals for 2006:
Have fun
Develop more discipline to write every day
Focus on my health (exercise, diet, etc)
Pay stuff off

Are you doing resolutions or goals for the new year?

Friday, December 30, 2005


I'm not the only one who was sick on Christmas. Tambo and Stuart seem to have been afflicted with cousins of my cold, and Holly was down with a case of metaphorical liquid precipitation. (She didn't elaborate, so I'm not sure it's preferable to post nasal drip.)

Now I would never presume to put myself on level with those three. They're all kick butt writers, and they're published! I can buy their books at Borders, which is more than I can say for The Dragon's Lady. (I know, it's a shameless plug. Cut a girl some slack.) However, I would like to think that there is a small connection. We're all writers who were under the weather on Christmas day. Writers who were sick on Christmas will ROCK in 2006, right?

(Just nod and smile, and I'll go take my meds.)

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

2YN or not 2YN?

Zette at Forward Motion has taught a Two Year Novel Course, in which students write a novel from the ground up, following her guidance, from concept to submission. I signed up for the first one, which started in 2004, and learned a lot from it. The following summer we moved back to the States from Italy, I fell behind, and dropped out. She is offering it again this year, and I debated whether or not to try again.

I ran across my notes from the last time I took it. There is a lot of good information, a lot of which I can use right now. Finally I decided, since we have no moves projected in the next two years, to take the plunge. It should be interesting, and I already have a couple of ideas brewing for what I want to work on.

In the more immediate future, I am going back over some world building material to make sure I haven't missed anything big with Rogue Pawn before I do the final revision and synopsis. I also need to finish Peace Like A River. To try for more consistency with my writing, I have blocked out an hour between 3 and 4, Monday through Friday, for writing. It's not enough time if I want to go pro, but it's a start. I've learned this year that I have to start small and work up to big.

Took me long enough.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Merry Christmas

The cantata and carols have been sung and rung. The presents have been opened, Christmas dinner has been cooked, consumed, and cleaned up. My cold held off until today, for which I'm grateful. I have a week off with only a few chores lines up and some books to read and no other plans. *insert sigh of relief*

I'd planned to post this earlier and it got caught in the shuffle, so here it is, and I'll be back later in the week when I can breath again.

As you well know, we are getting closer to my birthday. Every year there is a celebration in my honor and I think that this year the celebration will be repeated. During this time there are many people shopping for gifts, there are many radio announcements, TV commercials, and in every part of the world everyone is talking that my birthday is getting closer and closer.

It is really very nice to know, that at least once a year, some people think of me. As you know, the celebration of my birthday began many years ago. At first people seemed to understand and be thankful of all that I did for them, but in these times, no one seems to know the reason for the celebration. Family and friends get together and have a lot of fun, but they don't know the meaning of the celebration.

I remember that last year there was a great feast in my honor. The dinner table was full of delicious foods, pastries, fruits, assorted nuts and chocolates. The decorations were exquisite and there were many, many beautifully wrapped gifts. But, do you want to know something? I wasn't invited. I was the guest of honor and they didn't remember to send me an invitation. The party was for me, but when that great day came, I was left outside, they closed the door in my face......... and I wanted to be with them and share their table. In truth, that didn't surprise me because in the last few years all close their doors to me.

Since I was not invited, I decided to enter the party without making any noise. I went in and stood in a corner. They were all drinking; there were some who were drunk and telling jokes and laughing at everything. They were having a great time. To top it all, this big fat man all dressed in red wearing a long white beard entered the room yelling Ho-Ho-Ho! He seemed drunk. He sat on the sofa and all the children ran to him, saying: "Santa Claus, Santa Claus"... as if the party were in his honor!

At 12 midnight all the people began to hug each other; I extended my arms waiting for someone to hug me and .... do you know .... no one hugged me. Suddenly they all began to share gifts. They opened them one by one with great expectation. When all had been opened, I looked to see if, maybe, there was one for me. What would you feel if on your birthday everybody shared gifts and you did not get one? I then understood that I was unwanted at that party and quietly left.

Every year it gets worse. People only remember to eat and drink, the gifts, the parties and nobody remembers me. I would like this Christmas that you allow me to enter into your life. I would like that you recognize the fact that almost two thousand years ago I came to this world to give my life for you, on the cross, to save you. Today, I only want that you believe this with all your heart.

I want to share something with you. As many didn't invite me to their party, I will have my own celebration, a grandiose party that no one has ever imagined, a spectacular party. I'm still making the final arrangements. Today I am sending out many invitations and there is an invitation for you. I want to know if you wish to attend and I will make a reservation for you and write your name with golden letters in my great guest book. Only those on the guest list will be invited to the party. Those who don't answer the invitation will be left outside. Do you know how you can answer this invitation? It is by extending it to others whom you care for. I'll be waiting for all of you to attend my party.

See you soon .... I love you !