What Happened to June?

2009-06-16 10.50.44So I took off for the month of June and headed to the beach.

I know.

And I get that you kinda hate me right now, but you’ll feel better when you find out that I spent most of my time cleaning up the house. Not a little dusting here, a little mopping there clean-up. This was heavy-duty, sweaty clean-up work, and I suspect that some of these bruises are so deep, they’re permanent. Not to mention being ate up by mosquitoes.

And now you feel better, right?

So anyway, I’m back now, and I learned a little something something, being away for so long. Like…

Because I didn’t have wi-fi at the house, and I pay as I play for data, I skipped checking on Facebook and such. I don’t get a paper delivered to that house and so instead of starting the day with the news, I started the day with random reading…a novel, a book of verse, ghost stories. Sometimes, I’d watch the world news or local news, and oddly enough, I was attempting to fix a couple of channels on the cable on the same day as the gunman opening fire at the baseball practice, so I followed that news. But mostly, I just checked my email once a day, to keep up with any necessary business.

So I learned I have very little necessary business. What in the world have I been piddling around with every morning?

I learned that starting the day reading a novel or a book of verse put me in a better state of mind. Yes, I missed my AJC the first week. But by the next week, not so much. And now that I’m home, I’m beginning to wonder if I really need to read the paper every morning. I mean, after the headlines, it’s Dear Abby, the comics, and my horoscope. And if I’m being completely honest, Dear Abby ain’t what she used to be.

And I learned that life without social media is not only doable but relaxing. I love my friends, and I love knowing what’s going on in their lives, but I’m apparently incapable of balancing what I need to know versus scrolling through miscellaneous stuff. Once I checked into Facebook, I spent way too much time reading…what? I couldn’t tell you. But I can tell you that suddenly, I lost all that time I found at the beach. Time I spent working on a new manuscript. (Okay, calm down. I didn’t lie. I sweated ALL morning through the grunt work and then spent afternoons writing.)

So maybe I’ll give myself just one day a week to check social media. Maybe I’ll consider cancelling my newspaper subscription. And I’ve already stopped piddling around in my morning email routine.

Frankly, y’all, I need all the time I can wrangle. On top of the new manuscript, Precious the Laptop is gasping out her last breaths, and if you read my Muffin post, Get Smart, you’ll know how I feel about learning new technology.

I’m gonna need another vacation real soon.

 

Yes, It’s About Grammar (And, Yes, You Need This Little Lesson)

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Libby does NOT care even a little bit, but as she is a dog, I’m gonna give her a pass on the grammar lesson.

Every once in a while, I just can’t take it anymore. And by “it”, I mean all those words used incorrectly that pop up in the newspaper or across social media or even out of the mouths of candidates in their TV commercials.

Oy.

Thank goodness, I have the means in which to right the writing world. And so when I have one of those moments when I just want to scream like a crazy woman, “NO! It’s not effect, it’s affect! Affect! Affect!“, I can sit myself down and mostly rationally expound on “Two Little Words Used Incorrectly.”

If you know the difference between the use of “affect” and “effect”, then you can save yourself a few minutes and go on your merry way, patting yourself on the back. But if you are scratching your head and wondering, “Hmmm. Do I know the difference between those two words?”, then please do yourself (and me) a favor and give it a read. Because honestly, y’all, I really can’t take it anymore.

 

 

A Tiny Library! (And Mom)

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Note Mom’s expression. I was doing something with Cathy-on-a-Stick.

Before I manage to get myself out of bed every morning, I’ll stall a bit. And this morning, I realized it was Mom’s birthday so I wished her a heavenly happy birthday. And then I laughed out loud because I could just hear my Mom saying, “Pfffft.” (Not that she was anti-birthday, but she didn’t have time for any wishing of “heavenly” birthday foolishness.)

I sure miss my mom, but I often hear her. Not out loud, y’all, just in my head. If I start writing about literally hearing my mom (or Dad or Mister Man or really, any dead person), then I hope someone will contact one of the Hall kidders and send them over to check on me.

Anyway, my mom had an opinion on just about everything and I’ll often hear one of those opinions at the strangest times. Like this morning, when I was reading about the latest Tiny Door news.

Y’all remember that I’m completely smitten with the Tiny Doors around the ATL. So now, the folks who do Tiny Doors are opening a Tiny Library.

What-can-go-on-a-bookWHAT??? I am beside myself! It’s a fundraiser where you can get your own teeny tiny book on a shelf in the teeny tiny library. So you can become an art patron for this fantabulous project as well as get a little promotion. Or maybe get a little creative. Or maybe just put your name on the spine of the teeny tiny book for the fun of it.

The point is, it’s a tiny book! In a tiny library! You can find out more about the library project at C4’s website. (And you might enjoy taking a look around C4, too. Lots of creative stuff!) And you don’t have to be from the ATL area to participate, either. So when I go to the Tiny Library to take a pic of my book, I’ll take a pic of yours.

Now, back to Mom and her opinion of this Tiny Library. Can you guess what I heard her say (still just in my head, y’all)?

a. What in the Sam Hill is this tiny library?

b. Well, isn’t that just darlin’.

c.  If I were you, I’d spend my hard-earned money on that.

d. For heaven’s sake, Cathy, that’s as silly as a heavenly birthday. Pfffffffft.

(Note that I often hear her voice. I don’t always listen.)

May is for Magic

pexels-photo-127053It’s no secret that I’ve had a spot of trouble this past year, getting my writing going. But I think I may have wandered back to the joy of words, the thrill of creating. I think that I may have found my mojo again.

Which is not to say that I’ve suddenly written up a dozen manuscripts or sold a handful of others. That’s not what mojo is about, friends. It’s about magic.

The kind of magic that happens when a batter is on a roll, seeing everything good that crosses the plate. Or when a lawyer keeps winning case after case against all odds, or even when a mom has one of those days when the kids are happy, everything in the house is working smoothly, and at the end of the day, pizza–that’s still hot when it gets to the table!

Mojo. It’s a wonderful thing when you have it in your life. So if you want to know how I got mine back–and how you can get yours back, too, in whatever you’re pursuing–then zip over to the Muffin and read all about it in “Getting Your Mojo Back.” 

And P.S. May all my Mom friends– in whatever way, shape, or form that takes for you– have a wonderful and mojo-filled Mother’s Day!

 

Shout Out to #RhymeRevolution!

I’m starting May with a big shout out to Rhyme Revolution!

I love this month long celebration of rhyme, even if I don’t really write that much rhyme. The thing is, I LOVE rhyme, I love learning the tricks of the rhyme trade from excellent rhymers/authors, and I just love being a part of Angie Karcher’s community.

You will, too, even though, yes, it’s a little late for you to win in the giveaways BUT it’s not too late for you to be a winner! Angie has tons of opportunities available if you want to improve your mad rhyming skills, so zip over to the fun stuff information and join up with her!

(And P.S. I’ve taken a class from Angie and she’s the bomb diggity as Youngest Junior Hall would say. Not sure what that means when he says it, but when I say it, it means you’ll get your money’s worth and more!)