Poor Bear and My Readers

Thank the Lord!!! The goofy self-imposed writing every other day this month challenge is over!!!!  If I’ve learned anything from this is I can more easily deal with challenges I get paid for. Oh that sounds a little bad doesn’t it???? Oh well, it will add character. Thanks for reading and humoring me with my ramblings this month!

I apparently write like I scrapbook… Whatever I feel like and sometimes out of order and sometimes it’s what I planned when it’s done and sometimes it’s not. Sometimes I wish my allotted time was longer, sometimes I’m glad it’s over. The only problem with this is sometimes old pages are next to new and it makes me cringe. But I don’t go back and change the pages because they show how much I’ve grown.

I was kicking around another Here’s a Secret list for the workplace, or a funny story about Bird and him killing bugs on Father’s Day (so appropriate since I call him Bird and they eat bugs!!! I know right????) But neither of them truly appealed to me. So then I thought why not post my very first published story? Yeah, that’s the ticket. Showing my age there yes, maybe you won’t notice.

So back in the day (Oops I did it again! Twice! Ha!) there was a special edition of the evening newspaper printed on Saturday I think that was just for kids, called the “Junior Dispatch.” Yes it’s true, I was published in such a prestigious sounding publication!

I know I still have it but have no idea where it is, so sadly I can’t share my actual story, I can only share it as best I can from memory. I know but it will still be worth it I promise.

“How the Bear Lost His Tail”
By 8 year old (approximately) Yay.

Did you ever wonder why a bear has a short tail? Well I am going to tell you.

One day a bear was running around in the forest and got really tired. He didn’t want the hunters to see his long tail and chase him, so he sat down with his tail tucked into a groundhog hole. Well the groundhog thought it was a treat so he bit it. The bear’s tail got bitten off! Bear ran away and that is why bears have short tails!

Thanks for sharing you say?  You’re welcome!  😛

When Butterflies Appear

butterfly“Butterflies hover and feathers appear whenever lost loved ones and Angels are near.”

I have started a pattern of writing every other night, and mentioned it last week, and now as usual when I have a self-imposed writing schedule I am getting writer’s block. It happened when I did the November blog challenge, and again when I started my Miss You Monday letters. I was going to write about taking Peanut bathing suit shopping, (good story but not in the mood to describe it since she’s ignoring me so I don’t want to “summon” her and have her bite my head off just for breathing), and then considered the NAACP President calling herself Trans-racial (ridiculous in my opinion but didn’t feel like dealing with any backlash.) So I did the obvious thing writers do when they have writer’s block and opened my laptop and just sat here half watching a recorded (almost said taped! HA! 🙂 ) DVR of America’s Got Talent and flipping through Pinterest for inspiration.

So apparently Angel Mom wants to be the topic of conversation tonight because I found that quote that I had pinned a few days ago. 😛 I’ve written about my signs and dreams before. It’s funny how you really don’t pay attention to things until they apply to you. I had always been interested in pennies from Heaven and spiritual events, but never really thought they were real until July 23, 1999. After that I decided they were real because that was the only comfort I could find in the nightmare that had become my new normal.

Sunday I wrote about how I was feeling discouraged because my fundraiser hasn’t gotten the response I hoped for and my Horoscope confirmed that I’ve become apathetic and I need to change my attitude and I will succeed. Even so I hadn’t really done anything since last week, and with only 11 days left I can’t really afford to not work on finalizing the details. Last night I was looking at the Facebook page of a girl at Bird’s daycare who is hosting a Color Run on Saturday to benefit Penn State’s Four Diamonds Fund (Peanut and I are going to walk….so either you’ll have a great happy story or a great angry story…stay tuned!) in honor of Nephew, and I was a little mopey because her mother is very involved and proud of her and signed up to run or walk too. I wished that my mom was here to help me with my event and tell me she was proud of me for trying so hard to make this nice for everyone involved, and tell me of course it would be great because I was in charge of it and I learned how to plan amazingly successful events from her.

Today I had my women’s networking luncheon and as I was leaving a yellow butterfly appeared and fluttered wildly around, maybe so I would notice it, and then disappeared. Now it was very hot and humid, and there was a heavy rain shower while we were eating and there was still wind when I left although the sun was out. Typically there aren’t bugs around when it rains or when it’s windy. And it really did appear and disappear. They always do when they’re my signs. Most of the time I see yellow butterflies in ridiculous places…at my second floor window or in front of my windshield on the highway. That’s how I know they’re my signs.

The point of all this is I was encouraged by the butterfly’s appearance. After dinner I organized my raffle prizes, cleared out my scrap room a bit, worked on creating the prize info cards and updated my income spreadsheet and felt at peace. It will all come together and it will be ok no matter how much is raised, whatever I raise is money Nephew didn’t have before. Butterflies are proof that she is with me, and I love butterflies even more now, especially the yellow ones.

Kids to the Rescue Again!

I noticed I’ve been writing every other day for a couple weeks. I was restless today and not really feeling any of the idea notes from the week so I was thinking I would probably mess up my “schedule” already when I was just getting back in a regular groove. I don’t want to do that!

I was in my scrap room ignoring all my scrap stuff and stalking Facebook for new event attendees, and stalking WordPress for new posts from you know who 😛 but also someone else awesome I just found Elm and looking at quotes on Pinterest about teenage love because damn it I can’t stop checking his Facebook page and almost friend requesting him even though I should be like ha see what you gave up you should be begging me to let you be my friend! Then I was getting mad because I only opened an account so that I could spread the word about my fundraiser so why do I care what people are doing and who my friends are or are not!  Facebook must be partnered with Target with the mind control and loss of free will thing that goes on.

So I found a quote about that (teenage love and moving on in case you fell off the rant train) but wasn’t really feeling that either….and then my kids came to the rescue. You can read about  another time Bird and his friends did that here.

Bickering. 
Sounds of struggle.
“STOP IT!!!”
“MOOOOOMMMMMMMMMYYYY!!!!!! ”
CRASH!
Screaming.
Crying.
Stomping.
“OMG I HATE YOU! IDIOT!”
“UGLY BABY!”

And then the Writing Muse Angels of Pinterest appeared singing Hallelujah as they presented my idea.

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Which is probably good because livingdilbert and Elm have enough problems without worrying about some weird gray hair hating blogger stalking them. Don’t worry, I’m sure there’s a Target near LD and Elm is “across the pond” so I would be distracted from LD and too busy trying to find British groups to join on Facebook to worry about… What was I talking about?

I Have No Idea How to Explain That

Shocking statement coming….I LOVE MY BOSS! I would marry her! If we weren’t both already married. Or if it was legal to have 2 spouses in Pennsylvania. Or if we weren’t both women who like men. Oh well, the point is I’m happy with my work life again!

I realized I didn’t really talk too much about this transition other than to mention in passing that I started the new year with a job offer that I accepted. Not sure why I didn’t get into details. Now it seems weird to gush about it. Shrug. Maybe it’s just too new to have any good material. 😛

So what’s a positive name for a boss? Is there such a thing???? Suggest away if you have anything. Anyway, her management style is quite refreshing. She tells me what she wants and/or needs and lets me figure out how to get it done! And if I tell her during our weekly meeting that I didn’t have time to get to these 5 things she says, ok, I know, you were busy on these other 5 things. I’m waiting for the “Why are you so slow and you’re terrible at this!” speech I’ve been used to for 6 years and it never comes!

What does come, and has been more frequently, is the comment that whatever project she needs is a great opportunity for me to write. See why I love her? She looks for things for me to write!!!! She wants me to write!!!!! Before Crazy Boss would say, “Well, I’ll see what I can do but there really isn’t too much out there for you to write.” She clearly never read any of the stuff that went out. So today New Boss asks if I could write instructions for how to change our email signatures since we have new colors and a new brand and there might be some people who have no idea how to do that. Here’s another shocking statement coming….I LOVE writing instructions! I have no idea why. Maybe it’s because I like to write lists and instructions are long lists. Maybe it’s because as I write the instructions I realize things that will give people difficulty so as I explain it I feel like I know something. Maybe it’s just the Detail Nerd in me waking up and I get excited telling people exactly how to solve their problem! I also like putting screen shots with the text and drawing little red arrows to show exactly where people need to look. Mr. G, giving and following directions is not the same as giving and following instructions so just be quiet and go back to yelling at the TV and the Orioles that can’t hear you.

I happily spent the afternoon writing the email signature instructions. (Once I figured out where in Outlook that was. Hey if you don’t use how to bookthings frequently….!) But here’s what I’m afraid of. New Boss just joined the “Yay, she’s a teenager” club. I’m afraid she is going to ask me how to understand/talk to/get along with/insert any other thing I’ve complained about here for her daughter.

If you’ve read any of this blog you’ll know I have no idea how to explain that! Besides, I only have one thing to list that might work, remain in a drunken stupor, and that isn’t appropriate for the workplace.

The Second Thing to Do When in a Funk

So last week I mentioned I had a blast from the past. I’m struggling with it, though I didn’t seek him out, and it was all through email. I debated whether I wanted to write about it, and I’m not sure I do, at least not in great detail for however many thousands (millions?) of pairs of eyes there are in the world of WordPress. I was an English major for a reason! But to explain what I’m going to share I need to at least mention that he did something nice by making an anonymous donation, then couldn’t keep his identity secret, then told me he was a Tallywhacker back then (well he didn’t say it quite like that but it’s the new word of the day! 🙂 ) and he’s glad he could tell me he was sorry and help me now, and then closed the email account to stop further communication.

my first quote book/diary

my first quote book/diary

So because I’ve been in a funk, I did the second obvious thing people do when they’re in a funk, and looked for my yearbook and my old quote book that doubled as a diary when I began to write. My yearbook because he wrote 2 pages worth of wonderfully sappy romantic things that 17-year-old girls love to hear about them, and my quote book/diary because I knew I had written about him. I read these things and smiled and cried and wondered what if. That’s all, just wondering, but I’m a hot mess about this! Geez! I think because I had no say, and he stirred up all this stuff and then didn’t care to hear about me so I’m kinda like well WTF.

Because I need to stop or I’ll end up lying to myself and spilling the beans anyway, I thought I would share some of my early stuff. Remember I was 17. Now, if you are paying attention you know I have a teenager, but you also know I’m really not old enough to have been 17 that long ago. 😛 Ahem. The first one is hilarious, but the others I really like! Why didn’t I pursue writing sooner????

“Life is like a tossed salad. It’s all mixed up, and sometimes the things you don’t like cover up the things you do like. You have to get past the bad in order to get to the good. I hope I get to the good stuff soon, and I hope there’s a lot of it.”

“A full moon shines on the ocean’s waves and a girl alone with her daydreams. Daydreams of her and you laughing and gazing into each other’s eyes. Loving. Daydreams of holding hands or a surprise kiss that lingers. Happiness. Daydreams of being in love, together forever as a perfect couple. Us. The waves loudly crash and bring the girl out of her daydreams. I realize with a smile that my daydreams are real, for you are in them and you are mine.”

“It was you who fell in love with me, and made me blossom from shy and insecure into a person who felt pretty around boys. It was you who showed me what love was like, and how happy I could be when in love! It was you who was my Prince Charming and who made me feel so wonderful when you held me in your arms. It was you I loved. And then my heart was broken by a boy, but I could not turn to you for comfort because the boy who broke my heart was you.”

Sorry readers, since I published it myself you can’t use it against me when I’m famous. 🙂

When in a Funk, Make Yourself Sadder!

So I’m in a funk today.  Maybe it’s because I’m working on stuff for a cancer benefit fundraiser for my nephew, who is 18 and WTF universe haven’t they had enough sadness in their lives, and it’s so unfair and why him???? 

Or maybe because I’m in a strange place with strange noises so I couldn’t sleep. Or maybe it was that I had the bed to myself instead of being on the edge next to this and I’m not used to that.  No scratch that kitty needs to be comfy.  🙂 

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Or maybe it was the totally unexpected blast from the past who made a donation and now it’s a little weird and I’m feeling like I’m obsessed to know what he’s been up to. And feeling like I’m doing something wrong even though I told Mr. G.

So I take a break from my Scrappy place and do what everyone does when they’re in a funk, read my previous blog letters to my mother in heaven.  :O um.  What?  Why?  So now I’m crying and sad and reminded it’s soon June and her birthday!!!

But at least I was inspired to write and give you something to read on this muggy Saturday.  And I got to see my favorite kitty and the best rescue cat ever that I miss while I wrote.  🙂  what doesn’t everyone miss their cat when they’re away? What about my human family?  Oh yeah.  Oh look at the time,  time to eat.  Or scrap! 

Please Universe, Send Me Some Acceptance!

So I’ve been doing a lot of digging around the Interwebs looking for writing submission and freelance writing sites. I’ve been responding to a lot of ads. My traffic here on WordPress is increasing, because my website traffic is increasing and they’re all coming here. I’m getting more followers. It seems that should be good enough to prove that people want to read what I write. But I guess it’s that no one seems to think that what I write is good enough to want to pay me for.

I’ve applied to so many writing jobs on Craigslist I had to start a spreadsheet so I can keep them all straight as to what it was and how much I said I’d do it for! And the response, if any, has always been along the lines of  “you’re a great writer but just not what we need now, but thanks anyway! We’ll be in touch the month of never if we ever need anything else!”

And it’s not just in my writing where I’m feeling rejected, it’s with Peanut too. She barely seems to want to have anything to do with me lately unless it involves spending my money or driving her somewhere. Where did my sweet girl go who loved me and wanted to be with me just because?

I was thinking why do I keep trying to write a book and get freelance jobs to leave the 9-5? Why do I keep trying to be pleasant in the face of the hormone monster who just wants to bite my head off without reason? I started another post about rejection and then got discouraged and deleted it thinking no one would care. It’s just all too much lately. I just need one thing to show me it’s worth it, that my dreams will come true.

Then I found this quote by Thomas Edison on Brainy Quote:  “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.”

Wow, great timing Universe! I put that in the “sticky note” app on my phone so I will be motivated to keep trying. Just one more time….

 

The Results Are In….

cryingAnd I came in 4th, I think. The way they judge it’s hard to know for sure but I know I didn’t win. I’m bummed.

I was up against 4 good stories, and I’m happy that I was good enough to even be in the contest. Thank you if you read and voted. Thank you if you read but didn’t vote. I know that sounds weird to some, but I’m grateful that you are willing to follow me outside of WordPress. Exposure is exposure and I’m glad someone wants to read my writing no matter where it is.

But what upsets me the most is that some people left comments that really weren’t constructive, or nice even. Why? How can I improve my writing by you saying “Well, I don’t see why this story is even posted here, it doesn’t go with the others…. It’s not funny. …It’s not something I care about. …It’s not prize worthy.”

Ok, well the editor thought it was good enough and the other stories didn’t have the same theme either. What can I do about it?

And if you start reading the story and don’t like it, tell me what I can do to help you enjoy future stories! Tell me, “Well I didn’t like the story because I don’t go to yard sales, but I liked how you described telling the lady off. If you could write more like that…” Or maybe “If you developed the characters you saw at the yard sale a little more, I could relate to the story better.” Those are things that help me, not comments to the effect of “your story kinda sucked.”

I did have mostly positive comments, so my feathers are only slightly ruffled. I’m not letting the hateful, unhelpful people stop me from writing. I was looking at some other submission sites and I’m going to keep plugging away on my book. I know successful writers have faced multiple rejections and obnoxious comments before and during their success, and I will learn to shrug them off. I will keep calm and write on.