Finding Something Friday: Humor, Books I’m Reading, Contest, Writing Tips

That’s not a very catchy post title, but it does pretty much sum up the day’s catch.
If you’d like to read October’s column in Modern Senior Living, check out page 13 for “My Not-So-Smart Phone.” (I could probably write a book about phones at the Hall house. One time, I walked into Juniorest Hall’s room and found this mangled mess of wires and such on his bed. Just before I threw it out, he yelled, “Wait! That’s my phone!” Which he was actually still using. It was the phone I’d purchased 24 hours after I’d bought his first phone–but that’s another story.)
As you may remember, October is National Book Month, and I thought I’d update you on what I’m reading now: Bella at Midnight by Diane Stanley (a middle grade novel with fairy tale overtones) and Bodies of the Dead And Other Great American Ghost Stories (Did you know Edith Wharton wrote a ghost story? Neither did I, but there she is with Ambrose Bierce, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Willa Cather, and Harriet Prescott Spofford. I don’t know Harriet Prescott Spofford from Adam’s house cat, but how many times do you come across a name with that many double consonants? When I finish this scary book, I’m giving it away in the All Hallow’s Read Giveaway. Don’t forget to mention BOOk in a comment if you want your name in the cauldron.)
Janet Reid (yes, the literary agent, again) is having a contest. You have till tomorrow (at noon) to write a 100 word themed Halloween story with the words she’s posted. You can win a critique from Barbara Poelle, and that’s pretty awesome for a micro-fiction story. (You get bonus points if you work in the word “insalubrious”. And yes, I know that you know what insalubrious means, but I thought I’d give a quick definition for all those folks who may have taken a siesta during 10th grade Vocab drills: insalubrious=not conducive to health, unwholesome.)
Finally, just a quick mention of the writing tips you can find over at Finders & Keepers this week. I mentioned that I attended an SCBWI conference and I wrote a “what I learned from whom I saw” post. It’s packed with stuff you can use, whether you’re a children’s writer or not. (Seriously. It’s kind of a long post. But no one will know if you skim it.)
And now, as my insalubrious tale won’t write itself, I have a story to find on this fine Friday. I’m pretty sure it’s rattling around in my head, somewhere.

Finding Something Friday on Irony and Falls

I’ve been with my parents this week, hanging about while my mom recuperates from shoulder surgery. She had a fall, getting up from a chair too quickly after her foot fell asleep.

Today, the Beneficent Mr. Hall called and said my copy of Modern Senior Living came in the mail. That meant my column would be available online. It’s a piece about me taking a spill or two while on a canoe. It’s called “Pride Goeth Before the Fall(s)”.

Isn’t irony funny?

(P.S. Um, my mom’s not exactly laughing yet. But I’m sure in a week or maybe six years from now, she’ll find getting her ball and socket joint replaced a real hoot.)

Finding Something Friday on Eventitis

I found my column in MSL today and I seriously busted out laughing.

Um, not that I think I’m that incredibly funny. I mean, I am kinda funny. But the thing is, The Beneficent Mr. Hall and I bailed on an event the week after I wrote the column.

It will all make sense after you read “Eventitis” on page 15. And P.S. If at any time in the future you invite me/us to an event, and we don’t make it…well, that, too, will make sense.

Um, not that I would ever bail on you.

Tooting My Horn Thursday on a Lenten Loophole

I know I usually toot (my horn) on Tuesdays, but on that day, I was fighting a moral dilemma (as you may recall with the Submission Goldmine) and that took the wind out of me.

Um, let’s just move on to something less pun-filled.

So here’s this month’s column from Modern Senior Living. It’s about giving up stuff for Lent, which now that I think about it, is another one of those moral dilemmas I must fight each year. Except that I have a “Lenten Loophole”.

You’ll need to zip over to page 14 to read “The Lenten Loophole.” And here’s a little horn-tooting for Erma Bombeck, too. If you know who Erma is, you’ll want to read my editor’s article on the Queen of writing humor columns. His article starts on page 6.

It’s hard to believe Erma’s been gone since 1996. Her one-liners are just as funny now as they were twenty or thirty years ago. And honestly, I needed a few, good laughs. Because even dead, she’s funnier than me.

The Things We Do For Love

I’ll bet you’re thinking of love love. That’s a strange expression, isn’t it? But words (and connecting them to each other) lead to the love I’m thinking about–the love of writing.

You see, last month, after I sent my column to Modern Senior Living, my editor friend emailed and asked if I had a picture of myself in a hat. That’s because a hat comes up in the column.

Now, I write a humor column, folks. And with humor, writers play fast and loose with the truth. At least, this writer does. I’m not saying I make everything up. I mean, the part about the coyotes is one hundred per cent true. But the part about the hat may have been a slight exaggeration.

Still, I did have a hat that would go along quite nicely with the column. So, after 42 minutes of throwing things around the basement (and a couple closets), I found the hat. Then, after 13 minutes of badgering the Beneficent Mr. Hall to take a picture, combined with the 17 minutes he spent taking 8 different pictures trying to get the perfect one of Cathy C. Hall in a hat, I had a photo of me in a hat. (Whew.)

You can see the photo on page 8 of this month’s issue of Modern Senior Living Magazine. Not only did I send the photo to my editor, but here I am, promoting the look.

Oh, the things we do for love.