Inside my head this week

  • Been watching this year’s baby squirrels indiscriminately sample EVERYTHING in my yard. It’s their first seasonal Stock Up For Winter Festival of Foods, and they are relentlessly optimistic. One has nibbled the same hot pepper five times today, as if she can’t quite believe that it will taste nasty every single time. One of her siblings (or cousins, who knows?) can smell the tasty food scraps in the organics can, but they’re too deep to reach. So she relieves her frustration by nibbling on the lid. (No, she isn’t trying to gnaw her way in. She peeks inside, twitches her tail, then closes the lid and bites it before running off to investigate my tomato plants. Again.)
  • The latest in weird searches:
    • Puppet glossary
    • instinctive versus instinctual
    • 19th century ball sports
    • mauve etymology
  • Gumbo Fiction Salon was a special edition this month: celebrating Mary Shelley & 200 years of Frankenstein. Spouseman took the day off, and my author friend Toni Johnson came downtown for this one too, so it was a Super-duper Big Author Adventure. We had food and fun, and at the open mic I read a bit more from my veterinarian short story that I will send off to a magazine someday.  Extra-big plus: Toni and I had a Work Day together and I actually got words made too. Major Win.
  • I passed 50,000 words in Ghost Town this week! Celebrate with me, I’m doing a happy chair-dance. It’s officially a novel, and well over halfway done.
  • I am getting tired of my elbows and forearms hurting. I know what’s wrong and am doing all the things to treat it, but tendonitis and nerve entrapment take MONTHS to heal at best with joints like mine. Also I keep accidentally re-aggravating the tendons and pinching the nerves, which slows down the healing process. Yes, yes, I know better. But have you ever tried going through a whole day not rotating your wrists? Not easy.
  •  It smells like autumn at last. Fallen leaves, drying herbs, petrichlor, and frost. Ahhhh, happy nose. It’s pretty for the eyes, too. The sky is never so blue as it is after a drenching autumn rainstorm passes, and the sunlight never more golden than when it filters through the just-turned leaves of a big gnarly locust tree.
    (I adore fall, can you tell?)
  • Books, stickers, and new business cards ordered in time to have them on-hand for for the laid-back local Windy Con next month. GOOD TIMES AHEAD. Right? Right? Hmm. Need to make a date with my seamstress to get my Fancy Coat taken in to fit properly. (Hi, Cheryl! Let’s get together this week, eh?)
  •  My idea of an exciting Sunday: brain-free viewing on the television, a peck of apples set up to peel & prep, hot cider in my mug, and fresh popcorn with LOTS of salt in a big bowl next to me.


That’s all the all there is for now.

Notes from inside my head

  • Every so often I realize how many talented, generous, all-around awesome friends I have. It’s an astonishingly large number. Yes, including you. YOU READING THIS RIGHT NOW.  Whenever I realize this, I think, “I should mention to my peeps how great I think they are.” And so I have. Go, you.


  • The latest in weird searches
    • melting point birds (It was a Welcome To Night Vale thing. I had to check.)
    • British movie feet
    • Miata glove box
    • gray mold jelly



  • Love is: Spouseman taking me to IKEA on a dreary Sunday, and not only encouraging & enabling the purchase of new blinds and plant light brackets, but also spotting a room divider and saying, “You should get this for hanging the scarf collection in your workroom. They would look great on it.”


  • Writing thing: I totally missed my self-set deadline for Ghost Town (to hit 70k words before 10/6) but I did hit 47k, and that required a serious uptick in hours spent in the writing seat.  Getting my faulty wrists and elbows to cooperate has been the biggest challenge lately, but goals are good. I’m going to aim at 70k before Election Day now. It’s a target.



  •  My workroom is so cozy now.  Yay for nesting projects. The rosemary and lemon verbena are already looking happy and greening up again too. (One of my timing challenges is remembering to bring them indoors with lights before the shortening days put them into dormancy. Success! It only took me ten years to get it right.


  • Writing thing 2: speaking of targets. I’m officially pushing the release for Sharp Edge of Yesterday to late winter. I still haven’t gotten the revisions back from an editor who is as busy with projects as I am.  Yes, I’m going to make the squeaky wheel noises soon, because August to October is…tardy….but I am not going to rush this baby. It’ll be done when it’s done. And I’ve set up all the *other* parts, so when the words are done, it’ll go right into production without delay. (It’s going to be great, people. REALLY GREAT. Worth the wait, I swear.)


  • Yes, I am putting seasonal cat photos at the tops of my posts. CATS RULE THE INTERNET. Also, it gives me a valid reason to look at adorable animal pics. Like I need an excuse.  I will use dog pics too. Because doggos are the doggiest.


  • I think that’s all the all there is for now.

Book needs blurb. Author needs hug.

Writing cover copy is a particular set of writing skills, but skills can be learned, right?   Practice makes perfect. No pressure. These are just the words that make or break a reader’s first impression of my book. IT’S FINE, REALLY.


Here’s my first stab at a blurb for The Sharp Edge Of Yesterday, the next novel in my Rough Passages supers series. Thoughts, anyone?

Grace Trapani is fighting for her life. The Department of Public Safety wants her behind bars, her estranged husband wants to control her body and soul, and the power in her blood makes her a threat to her own family.

She left behind everything she knows to protect her daughters, but she can’t hide from the destructive forces growing inside her. Only a dedicated group of rebels within the Department can help her escape imprisonment and death.

I know it needs something. Salt? Garlic? A swift, sharp kick? Anyway.

Also, Grace’s last name is currently up for revision. It might end up being Horn or Reed, or maybe Keiffer?  NAMES ARE HARD TOO. Ideas welcome.

To end on a less-whiny note, pretty pictures! The top image is the full-wrap cover painting. Below is a detail on the front cover. It’s coming out pale on my monitor, not sure why. It’s gorgeous, really.