Squeezing One More In

My final post of 2010.  It was a great year.  It was a hard year.  And it's almost over.

Fare thee well, 2010.  Don't let the door bang your heiny on the way out.

I don't have much to say.  Hubbykins, the Pea and I literally stumbled through the door after our epic cross-country holiday road trip just a few hours ago.  Somewhere around West Memphis, the Pea started making this pathetic whimpering sound.  But he's in his own bed now.  And I get to sleep in my own bed tonight.  And everything is better in your own bed.

I decided against doing a full blown "Christmas:  The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly" post this year.  It was mostly good...went to see Hubbykin's family in Atlanta.  They had their first white Christmas in something like 390 years.  Okay, not really that long, but it was the 1800's.  We went to the Georgia Aquarium (fun!), played with cousins (fun!), ate out a lot with Hubbykins so his family could have time alone with the Pea (fun!).  I had a near miss with a stomach bug on the way out (not fun!) and Hubbykins and I had to nix a trip to Asheville to see the Biltmore because of the crazy, crazy snow they had (sad.)

Oh, and both sets of our parents are probably convinced that Hubbykins and I are on the rocks because after six years of marriage, we finally put our collective feet down and refused to sleep on a full-sized guest bed together.  Hubbykins slept on the couch or the floor for 10 days straight.  What can I say?  A King-sized bed has spoiled me for life.

But, yeah, everything is better in your own bed. 

Why You Should Never Let Anyone See Your First Draft

I had a Christmas party last night and thought, "Oh!  I've wanted to make these for a fun holiday get-together.  Won't people ooh and ahh?"

That is not what I ended up with.  After much toiling and doodling on wax paper, this is what I got:

Seriously, it's so ugly, I had to keep it at home and eat it myself.  :)

After a little more practice:

Still ugly, but I didn't hear any complaints from the ladies at the party

Sometimes, simplicity is the best policy:

Although, on closer inspection, they look a little like blue boobs.

Proof I Think Better On Paper

One of Hubbykin's work associates (Okay, that makes it sound like he's in the Mafia, which he is not) made a scathing, underhanded joke at my husband's expense on Monday.

I thought of the perfect retort...this morning.  So I hopped out of the shower and emailed it to him.

There you go, sweetie.  I've got your back.

72 hours later.

The Pea's Worst Fears Realized

Hubbykins and I are staying up late, reading a Winnie the Pooh e-book* on the iPad and eating candy.

*We're not monsters.  It's for him on long car rides.

You Know You're a Writer When...

You wake up panicky from a nightmare that...

a.) you're being chased by rodents.

b.) a tornado is headed straight for your house.

c.) your husband tells you he hates your book and calls the ending "contrived."

Ha!  Oh, and I should add that I told Hubbykins about the dream, and he got this horrified look on his face and said, "But I love your writing."

Also.  I want these.

Contests, Contests, Contests!

Actually only two contests.  But they are both awesome.

In case you missed it, Beth Revis is hosting her Epic Contest of Epic.  Just go look.  I can't describe it properly other than saying EPIC one more time.

C.A. Marshall's contest for a free full ms substantive edit is closing tomorrow.  I want to win!  Yeeee!

Ooh, I thought of a third.  Ha!  I'll get you like that.  And it's ongoing.  Kathleen Ortiz is hosting daily giveaways on her blog to celebrate the 12 days of Christmas.  Yesterday's prize was a query critique from Mandy Hubbard.  Today, she has some great ComicCon swag.  How fun is that?

Okay.  That is all.


(This has absolutely nothing to do with writing.  Not even a weak metaphor.  Just a warning.)

I spent last night at the mall looking for an outfit to wear to Hubbykin's casual hipster office party.  Anyone who knows me in real life knows that I am no casual hipster.  At all.  I ended up with, after much mall angst, a suitable outfit.  But I had a few things I wanted to tell the retailers:

Dear GAP,
I'll admit it.  You've come through for me over the years, jeans-wise.  And I appreciate that.  But why, why, why am I three sizes bigger in your brand than any other store?  Why?

Cordially, Karen

Dear Maurice's,
Haven't stepped foot through your doors since 1997, but you stepped up last night.  Here's a cookie.

Sincerely, Karen

Dear Express,
Really, Express?  Really?!  You're going to create these...
...and not carry the tall size in your stores?  That's cruel.  These are jean perfection.  I love them.  No cookie for you.

Disgruntedly, Karen

Dear NY & Co,
I love you.  From all the stylistically-challenged, accessory-clueless ladies of the world, thank you for making everything matchy-matchy without being annoying.  Just...thank you.

Affectionately, Karen

Dear Every Single Store In The Mall,
Okay.  I get it.  Skinny jeans are in.  But I look like a half-plucked chicken in them, so no thank you.  Praying for this fad to go away.  Right. Now.

Grrrr, Karen

December, it is upon us.

Dang You, Eclipse.

Dang you, Bella Swan, and the sparkly vampire you rode in on.

Guilty pleasure admission:  I heart Edward Cullen.  (I feel that if Elana Johnson can admit it, so can I.)  Said brooding undead masochist is in fine form in Eclipse.  Both the novel and the movie.  I do not heart New Moon.  The only thing in fine form in that is Bella's whining and pining.

I rented Eclipse the other night and realized, "Dang it.  I want to buy it."  There's so much sparkling.  So much werewolf brawling.  So much intense gazing.

But here's the problem.  I have a titch of OCD, so the thought of owning just Eclipse does not sit well with me.  I would need to buy New Moon as well.  I don't want to buy New Moon.  Here's the other problem.  Hubbykins is slightly OCD also.  We have a PS3 that plays Blu-rays, so even though I can't see any difference whatsoever between DVD and Blu-ray, Hubbykins somehow can.  He insists on buying new releases on Blu-ray, so what are we up to now?  Eclipse and New Moon on Blu-ray...what is that, $60?


No, I'm going to fight it.

But, dang you, Edward Cullen!  And dang your adorable, lopsided, sparkly vampire grin.


Ready for some serious pulse-pounding fun?  Head over to Miss Snark's First Victim.  Agent bidding has opened on her Baker's Dozen Agent Auction.

And might I just add, great opportunity for some quick & easy agent researching.

Also.  Are unicorns the new vampire?  Discuss.


Let it never be said I didn't make money in my writing!

Thank you, GoogleAds.  Another two years, and I might save up enough for a Happy Meal.

But seriously...are the ads annoying?  To be honest, I set them up when I started the blog, and now I'm terrified to mess with my settings lest my template disappear or something like that.  But if they're annoying, I'll force Hubbykins to show me how to take them off.  Obviously, I'm not in to this whole blogging thing for the moolah.

One Of Those Posts.

I'm warning you now, this isn't going to be one of my usual light, fluffy, fun posts.  So if you want to read one of those, go click on "I Heart This" in my post categories.  I won't judge.

No, this post was inspired by some hard-to-read posts on other writers' blogs.  If you haven't read this by Natalie Whipple, this by Beth Revis, or this by Kiersten White, go do so now.  Maybe not all at once.  Like I said, they're hard to read and your head might explode if you attempt to read them in one sitting.

Do you know what I found myself dwelling on while I read all three of those posts?  Hint:  Not writing.  I'd be lying if I said I didn't suffer from an occasional bout of emerald eyes over other people's writing careers.  But, no, I found myself thinking about my ovaries.  They're for crap.

I haven't talked much about infertility on this blog, but I have in the past on my personal blog, so it's out there.

The thing about writing is that, yes, there are a few authors out there who try to put forth a happy face in their bio about how their entire story came to them in one fail swoop and then sprang forth from their quivering fingers in two weeks fully-formed.  But I have a sneaking suspicion that if I actually sat down with said authors over coffee, they would admit that their agent refused to sign them before they agreed to get rid of the evil bunny plot line.  And there are times they fear for their family's nutritional safety as they serve another night of frozen chicken pot pies.  And their toddler knows every word to every Wiggles song ever created. Not that I have personal experience with this last one.  And they feel guilty about those last two.  So, while my green-eyed monster may still come out and growl every so often, he stays at bay most of the time.

The thing about infertility?  There really are women (a lot of them) who get pregnant the first month they try.  Who have a surprise oopsie after one too many margaritas.  Who like to complain to you about it in detail.  And I go to one of those churches where every other week, some jokester (bless their clueless heart) comments that "somebody must have put something in the water with all these baby bumps around."  Umm, yeah, unless my Reproductive Endocrinologist is sneaking into my house to spike my water with a carefully monitored dose of Follistim, Human Chorionic Gonadotropin, and Progesterone, I don't need to worry about that.

But I digress.

Reading those poignant posts from three women whose hearts must have trembled the whole time they typed, all I could think was, "Yes."

Yes, Natalie, it sucks.  It sucks, sucks, sucks, the year you've had.  I wish I could promise you that this time next year you'd be holding an ARC in your hands, but no writer receives that promise.  Ever.  But I'm praying that you'll be able to send out some book-baby announcements soon.

Yes, Beth, it's hard.  It's so very hard to remember that there will always be someone with less and always someone with more.  I have friends who have walked the infertility path with me who don't have a cherished Pea.  Who haven't heard "I love you, Mommy" yet.  Do you know how much God loves them?  Just as much as me.  And just as much as Michelle Duggar.  But still, my heart hurts for them.  

And, know what?  I thank God now for my infertility.  Without it, I wouldn't have the Pea.  I'm also kind of thankful for it because it keeps the writing thing in perspective.  My husband and my child...they are real.  They matter.  No book (published or not) will ever matter like that.  And those harsh critiques now, the sting of rejection...I have faith that someday I'll look back and realize that they helped me to polish and hone my craft.  That I'll be thankful for them someday.

Yes, Kiersten, I'm enjoying it.  Every baby step of the journey.  I've been so blessed in my family even if 3 is as big as it gets.  I can't put it into words.  And I've been so blessed in my writing to have little victories along the way.  I know there are many writers who haven't had those and yet who still plug away.  Keep at it.  You're not alone.

So there you have it.  Crap ovaries, check.  Thankful heart, check.  Still struggle with the green-eyed monster, check.

In short, I'm human.  Just one who has a hard time making more humans.