Monday, September 15, 2014

Back Again Ten

Ten Things I Did While on Hiatus

Attended: An art show at a vineyard. We don't drink so no bottles came home with us, but it was interesting to people watch and see all the wine-making stuff along with the art.

Changed: My daily writing schedule, which over time had shifted more to afternoon and evening sessions; I've have gone back to getting up very early and writing in the mornings until mid-afternoon. It's slow going at the moment as I'm just now getting back into a regular routine, but the change seems to be helping.

Discovered: BBC's Call the Midwife series on DVD. Funny, dramatic, entirely lovely show; highly recommend it.

Dyed: My hair and went back to being a redhead. Had some strawberry blondish highlights put in, too. Nobody has fainted, laughed or thrown up after seeing me, so I think it works.

Observed: Lots of things I haven't noticed in a while. Like my dogs, who totally have me wrapped around their little paws.

Learned: How to make a cluster of grapes pendant out of twenty-one beads and 15" of wire (in under five minutes, no less.) Here's a pic of how my first one came out, and if you want to make one, here's the video tutorial.

Penned: A couple of poems, three short stories, many letters, tons of whiny personal journal stuff plus a synopsis and the first three chapters for a new project.

Read: Due to the last item on this list, not a whole lot. At present I'm working on the reissue of Barrett's Hill by Anne Stuart, after which I'll start Downfall by Rob Thurman.

Resolved: To do NaNoWriMo 2014 and write a new novel in a month. So I'm in; more details as I work out exactly what I'm going to write.

Survived: Not one but two eye surgeries. Yep, that's why I shut down the blog and was gone for so long.

Some of you know that I've been having eye issues for a couple of years now, but this past Spring my vision began rapidly deteriorating. I started having trouble with strange things, like recognizing colors, and driving at night. I went to the doctor thinking it was a post-menopause thing (or hoping it was, I should say.) That's when I found out I needed the surgeries.

As for why I didn't say anything until now, well, you can imagine how scary something like this is. Until I saw the specialist I wasn't sure what would happen or what outcome I could expect, either. I didn't want those of you who care to worry, and I also knew I'd be sporadically/temporarily blind while I recovered, so it would be tough to keep everyone updated.

The excellent news is that I'm not blind or going blind anymore. Thanks to my amazing surgeon both procedures went off without a problem, and there have been zero post-op complications. I'm expected to make a complete recovery, for which I will be grateful every single day for the rest of my life.

So what's been happening with you all since I've been offline? Let us know in comments.

Sunday, August 17, 2014


First, I appreciate all the nice e-mails that have come in since I began my blog hiatus. No need to worry; I'm doing well and working through all the real-life stuff.

I had also hoped to get back to my normal blogging schedule soon, but now it looks like that's not going to happen until probably mid-September. This annoys me to no end, but that's life for you. I apologize for any inconvenience this causes anyone.

I will check in with you all when I can, and post updates as things progress. Thanks for your continued support.

Monday, August 04, 2014

Off Again

I'm heading off again to get some necessary things done in real life. Hang in with me; I'll get back to the blog when I can.

Sunday, August 03, 2014

Blogging Blast from the Past

Today let's revisit some humor from my blogging past (this was originally posted on PBW on June 18th, 2008, aka back when I could actually have things made with sugar.)

After watching the Associated Press making all kinds of new friends around the liberal alternative blogosphere this week, I pondered how much I could charge for what other bloggers link to and quote from what I post here at PBW.

Here's what AP charges for what you excerpt from their stuff:

5-25 words $ 12.50
26-50 words $ 17.50
51-100 words $ 25.00
101-250 words $ 50.00
251 words and up $ 100.00

I wonder if that last and up means I'd only have to pay $100.00 if I quoted like a million words. Sounds like a real bargain, then, doesn't it? If so I might start writing political novels . . . .

Anyway, I know I'm not as big or as important as AP, and writers are usually cash-poor, so my new fee schedule is a little more realistic:

PBW Excerpt and Quote Charges:

5-25 words -- one dozen homemade cookies (chocolate chip)

26-50 words -- one cake (chocolate) with icing (dark chocolate) and strawberries (fresh)

51-100 words -- dinner at restaurant (French) with my choice of anything I want from the menu and the dessert cart

101-250 words -- one week's all expenses-paid stay at Colorado mountain spa (luxury) with young personal attendant (male and cute) to be provided with palm frond fans, champagne grapes (French) and books of my choice. . . . and oh another young personal attendant (male and cute) to rub my feet when I get tired of walking from the bed to the jacuzzi

251-300 words -- an all-expenses paid month in Paris penthouse (exclusive) with male film star of my choice (single) and new wardrobe of clothing (designer) and collar of diamonds (one carat or larger) and a lot of other stuff I can only get in France, like decent bread and cassoulet, etc.

Anything over 301 words -- my own island or country (democratic) with a healthy, well-fed population (happy) willing to work hard in order to shower me with wealth, mansions, private jets, yachts, and young male personal attendants (the population will have Sundays off, during which time they may gather to worship me as both government leader and benevolent goddess.)

I don't think that sounds altogether too unreasonable, do you?

Saturday, August 02, 2014

PBW Changes

What's been happening with the blog this week:

I've clarified how comment posting works on the About PBW page; see the newly-revised and trisected section E.

The Best of PBW page and the Backlist/Bibliography page are now up to date.

The outdated Latest Releases and Links pages have been deleted because they involve more time to fix than I have this week; I'll be rebuilding and reposting both in the near future.

The Tags page has been completely revised and updated, and oy, what a job that was. I use too many tags. In fact, if you see me using a new tag, please smack me in the head.

With much angst (I hate to delete anyone from my blog roll) I revised the Weblogs That Rock Me page and removed all the static blogs, missing blogs, non-blogs, blogs that haven't been updated in a long time, blogs that for whatever reason I have stopped reading, etc. I've also added a couple of new blogs I've discovered.

What didn't change:

The blog template. Again. I seriously considered switching to something new, but after looking through nine thousand-odd possibilities I couldn't decide on any one thing. I like the minimalism look. Okay, I wimped out. Anyway, the template is staying the same as it's pretty much always been.

Friday, August 01, 2014

Water? Glass? Both?

Browsing the Internet for interesting things to post on the blog occasionally results in me stumbling upon something wonderful. Here is a classic example -- a short video that depicts the opening titles for a Spanish movie; the animation is absolutely marvelous (and contains background music, for those of you at work):

Eva / Film Main Titles from Dvein on Vimeo.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Just Write

Today I'm off to write something new and post it online before midnight. Everyone inclined to do the same is invited to join me.

My link: In the Leaves novella, now in .pdf format, with my new material beginning at the bottom of page 14.

For more details on Just Write Thursdays, click here to go to the original post.