Saturday, August 25, 2012

But I'm so good at it...

I'm doing that thing. You know that thing that writers and teachers do where they do ANYthing they can think of other than what they should be doing, i.e. grade papers, write, lesson plans... I am quite good at it, I must say.

What I really want to do today:
Read a book I got from the library yesterday about time travel.

What I would feel good about doing today:
Help my son pick out paint and get started painting and fixing up his room.

What I have to do today:
Finish lesson plans for the semester and get them posted into the online LMS. And check up on the online classes I'm teaching at the other school...

What I will try to do today:
The lesson plans and the online stuff... and we'll pick out the paint and at least make a plan for painting. Maybe we can get started painting tomorrow after church... the day of rest...

ETA: Goodreads is EATING MY LIFE. When I'm not messing around on it, finding more books, reading reviews and discussions, or requesting books from the library I've found there, I'm reading the books I've found there... ugh.

Friday, August 24, 2012

The conversation continues...

**This was super long and I had edited this out, but now I want to put it back in-- this post is NOT commenting on professional reviews. Thoughtful responses to scathing, professional reviews is a whole other matter and can be done very well, and, I think, is perfectly acceptable and should not be a mark against an author. The difference is that the power is equal (or closer to it)-- both are arguing from public platforms and at least some degree of fame. No author is going to embarrass a professional reviewer or make them too uncomfortable to review honestly again.

I've been thinking more about a convo in the comments of my last post between me and my friend, Jaimes, and I wanted to clarify a little. The post I made was more about how I related what happened with the author to an incident at work that day-- that sick feeling that I had gone too far in defending against what was ultimately someone else's opinion and how that is magnified when you're on the internet and well known.

I don't believe the author should be crucified in reviews of a book. Go ahead and discuss and/or blog about the bad behavior-- otherwise, how do you stop it? That and don't buy his or her book. Because without some kind of rebuttal to such behavior, the power isn't equal.The author in this case was calling on her fans to dog-pile on the reviewer, which is unacceptable. You cannot use your power as a well known author to shut up readers who don't like your book.

I probably won't pick up a book if I hear of an author behaving very childishly. I really want to "like" you before I give you the very precious time away from family and work that it will take to read your words, and it's hard to do that if I think you're small. I assume you're all right up until you prove you're not. (side note: I could not care less if we share political or religious views-- ha, I'd read much less fiction, listen to less music, and enjoy less art, if I took that stance!) You might be a great person, but the internet leaves a big impression that can last a long time that may only showcase a small part of you. If nothing else, I'm going to question your intelligence-- we've seen so many times that this doesn't go well, so why are you doing it?

But I would NEVER give an author a bad review or one star on a book based solely on that author's behavior. That isn't honest. Salinger wasn't a people-person, but the man could write. Do we penalize him for being a hermit, give ugly reviews because he wouldn't sign books or shake hands? Would you want to deprive others of his words because you were offended by his actions or an interview he gave? And where do we draw the line? What's rude behavior to you might not be to me.

But the responding-to-a-bad-review-harshly thing seems to be universally reviled and only detrimental to you, dear author. So please, step away from the keyboard... better yet, don't even click on those one star reviews on Amazon, and just walk away...

p.s. lively discussion on actual issues in a book is a whole other matter for a whole other post that I probably won't write. ;)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

There's always next summer...

It amazes me how fast my room goes from pristine to absolute pigsty. It's quick, my friends. One or two mornings of the "I don't know what to wear" game, a night or two of "I'm too exhausted to do anything but fall into bed" combined with a weekend away and not having time to unpack. Yep, that'll do it. That and returning to work and dumping everything when I stagger up the steps to my bedroom.

Tonight I'm ready to read and sleep. I'm not going in tomorrow, but I've got to finish lesson plans and set up my course online, a big task. My son wants to paint his bedroom, and I promised my boss I would look over her dissertation.

I do not plan well.

Bring on the school year.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

A Defensive End

So this thing that keeps happening happened again today to another author. Or it didn't happen *to* the author. And while I can stand outside and shake my head and knowingly wonder why they would ever think this is a good idea, I have to admit, I can understand the impulse. Today, I was in a meeting and [an idea I had] was attacked, or rather a group of people of which I am a part of ['s idea] was attacked, and I defended it-- not even in a scathing, upset way-- but I have this horrifying feeling that I talked too much. I worry that I looked too upset, too offended.

And it reminds me of this simple truth: not everyone is going to like me [or all of my ideas]. And more than that, not everyone *has* to like me. Trying to make those people like me is an exhausting waste of my time. It robs me of my joy. Hey,  I'm not for everyone. However, at the risk of sounding conceited, most of the people I meet, do end up my friend. But there will always be a few who just aren't going to like me, and I'm not going to stop being myself or chase after them or try to convince them they're wrong by sicking my friends on them to convince them they're wrong; instead, I've learned to shrug it off and enjoy the company of the people who enjoy mine.

Because life is too short, and the internet too big for this kind of nonsense. It doesn't work. It makes you look small. In the end, it reinforces all of the things they believed about you to begin with.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Dream Job?

I am going to force myself to come back here and read this next time I'm burnt out and think I don't want a job. Staying home without any schedule makes me USELESS. I watch a LOT of tv and that is about it. The first 3 weeks are usually good, then I just go to pot. That doesn't mean I feel like going back to work; I don't. But I feel very slimy and gross and depressed, and I know that needing to get dressed and ready and be somewhere, more than just for Sunday church is a must for me. And going out to spend money just makes me nervous, so shopping and eating out aren't as much fun as they might be for someone else.

I go round and round; if I were super rich would I still work? If I didn't, I'd have to be very disciplined and get some kind of a writing schedule in place, make appointments for book clubs, exercise classes, SOMEthing. I could do that now, but I'm going back to work one week from today and do have plans for the weekend (thank goodness).

Living the dream? I don't know. Maybe it works better as just a dream.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Wanna walk in the sun

It wouldn't break my heart this much if I hadn't loved the simplicity of the Lauper version. But this? Yeah, this is heartbreaking. Honestly, I cry every time.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Weight... Again...

So I started on Adipex this week. WOW. It's like I own my body again. I eat when I'm genuinely hungry and I don't overeat. I have energy I never imagined possible.

The drawbacks? Some of the side effects are uncomfortable-- I have some of the more rare ones. Probably the one giving me the most trouble is the random excessive sweating. I mean, I'm not hot, I'm not even doing anything, and there will be SWEAT. Sometimes it's a cold sweat. And if I'm cleaning or working out, fuggedaboudit-- sweat city! It's almost like my body is heating up, my metabolism is revving up, it's melting the fat-- because the sweat is in a weird place: my middle, where my fat lives, brutha.  I've also got cotton mouth occasionally.  But the trade offs? TOTALLY WORTH IT to feel in control of myself again. I'm a little worried about when I go off it; I'm just going to have to focus on making good habits and retraining my taste buds.

One of the good side effects? The label calls it "a false sense of well being." Which makes me laugh because, well, if I feel good, what's false about it? I don't think I'd still feel good if something bad happened, it's just like a normal day, and I do feel amazing, but how is that a bad thing?

I have not experienced any heart racing, something I kind of expected. That's the kind of thing that would be a deal breaker for me, so glad it's not an issue. If it becomes one, I'm done.

Anyway. We'll see. I'd love to be down significantly by my 40th in November. It's a big birthday.
Go. To. Bed.

Friday, August 3, 2012

At the Edge of the Ocean by Ivy

This song sort of captures the dreamy feeling of a scene I'm working on between my main character and her dead father. I've got it on loop. 

And it must have provided lots 'o inspiration for other creative types as it's appeared in Veronica Mars, The Nine Lives of Chloe King, Greys Anatomy, Shallow Hal, Felicity, and more.