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She’s Off and Writing!

Finally, I started jotting down the ideas that have been bouncing around my head for days, perhaps weeks by now. I'm on my way to another Maggie and Della short story, this time for a mystery short story competition.

I've got the first few paragraphs jotted down, the intro part where I set the stage and the readers' expectations. It'll be humorous, like so many of my stories are. Poor Maggie. She's in for another saga!

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Proud As Punch, And On Facebook, Too!

As if my life weren't busy enough, I decided to give my mystery series a boost by producing short fiction podcasts. It's getting there – it's definitely getting there! Still learning how to use the audio editing software and am realizing how hard it is to soften those b's and p's when I'm talking. I'll have to get a little bitty pop screen for my microphone headset and then take up a collection (strategically timed around Christmas!) for a proper microphone and all that.

Dang, it's fun, though! Those two troublemakers, Maggie and Della, now have their own podcast, facebook page and blog. Will they stop at nothing?

And on Facebook:

Ridiculously long site address, isn't it?

Bunch of over-zealous baby boomers, if you ask me. There's no stopping them now. Sigh…

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Family Secrets, With Music

I'm proud of this, and am putting it out on the airwaves, wherever it will go. It's a video I produced to accompany the Maggie and Della mysteries. I'm still puttering around on the second book, but hope to make more progress on it a) once my consulting website is done and b) after a local writing group starts up again.

I dunno…this life stuff gets complicated.

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Wednesday Rambles

It's been a busy week, starting with an unexpected intellectual property issue that has yet to be resolved. No harm done other than to my long-term plans, fortunately, and a website that will no longer be getting any of the copy I fork over to them for free.

Just finished writing another chapter in my book, bringing the total number of chapters to 14. I still have a long way to go, but there's significant progress at least. I had a hell of a time writing that chapter. It's more a transition from one theme to another and I needed to make it fit in there properly. I started and stopped more than once, before the prose started to flow on its own. After that it was just a matter of deciding what would happen, and in what order. Not too bad. I had to go back and rip a bunch of stuff up, then start over. I think I may be finally past that. If so, then I can get back to the rest of the book and finally finish up the first draft. Phew!

The hubby sent off a tax extension (sigh), but it looks like we both owe money. We enclosed a deposit to cover most of that. Hopefully, he'll have time to finish up properly this weekend. Other than that, I'm recovering from way too much food at Passover (I'm a non-practicing Catholic, but my husband's family is Jewish). Not that I objected, mind you, but large quantities of rich food is not something we're used to (gratefully!). His family did a terrific job nf the Seder, though, which included two young children and their very tired parents. They decided to hold the Seder on Friday, to accommodate work and travel schedules. Very nice overall. Easter was not a big deal. I basically spent the day reading or walking.

It's still cold, although the rain has let up. I'm tired of being cold morning, noon and night. Still, at least it's warmed up enough so that it's possible to walk almost every day. I like that part.

I think I'm going to go back to reading, now. Lots of activity at the computer keyboard today and my hands are a bit sore from it!

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Great Way To Spend A Night

I ended up on the couch again last night, although this time it wasn't my husband's fault. I kept tossing and turning, unable to get comfortable. I went downstairs again and crawled into the sleeping bag, trying to get settled there. This time, though, I kept a small digital recorder on the coffee table. My brain was exploding again, with ideas for the Maggie and Della novel. Like a good little girl I grabbed the recorder and spoke into it as soon as another idea popped into my head. In the all-in-all, not a bad mental haul as far as the story outline goes.

I wish I could do that during the day, and leave my brain to its needed rest at night. Sometimes, though, my best thoughts will come to me in the shower, or in bed at 1:00 am. I think it's when the rest of the babble is turned off that the deeper creative thoughts come bubbling to the surface.

Better yet, I wish I could "direct" my brainstorms into the direction I want them to go. I'm still puzzling over a progression in the story, one of those knotted threads I have to untangle before getting back to work. No help there. However, I do have some great additional material for a single character that kept my brain going last night.

Sigh. No rest for the weary. At least not this weary one.

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Food, Family and – *burp* – More Food

Just coming up for a breather. Long weekend, beginning with Thursday for Thanksgiving. It was a wonderful night with more food than I've ever seen in one place at one time. My brother and sister-in-law drove over from the Albany, NY area for the event, along with their two young sons, both of whom behaved themselves admirably during the event. We also had a guest from Kenya, a graduate student at Brandeis who accompanied one of the other guests.

Not only was the table laden with food, the sideboard behind us was stacked full of tasty dishes as well. Turkey, potatoes, two squash dishes, several platters of roasted vegetables, a purple cabbage-chestnut dish, pickled beets, gravy and cranberry relish. Beforehand we had appetizers and I admit to being the guilty party who put them together in such abundance: basil pesto, a black olive dip, four different types of cheese (herbed goat, Manchego, brie and smoked Gouda), two different types of baguettes and crackers.

And dessert? Oh my God: pumpkin and mincemeat pies made by yours truly – and LOVED by all, by the way. I really shouldn't have worried. In addition to that, we had a berry pie, a cranberry-walnut coffee cake, a bowl of fruit and an apple crisp. *burp*

I had to work Friday, so left early at around 8:00 pm. We were all in a turkey-induced haze that day with very little done, to be honest. I remember spending a lot of the day staring at the computer screen and trying to stay awake. I wasn't much better Saturday. I wanted to get some work done on the Maggie-Della stories, and ended up piddling around with a new website for it instead. It was a wasted day, as far as I was concerned.

I've been a bit more energetic today. Put in a few solid hours re-writing the plot outline and have gotten myself through some sticky parts. For the life of me I couldn't figure out where some things were going with the story so I tore it up and wrote it another way instead. That's the glory of an outline for you. By the time I'm done I'll know exactly where I've gone and how I've gotten there. Wish I could say that for real life!

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An Update of Sorts

A while ago I took down the Maggie-Della website. I wasn't happy with it, and it wasn't getting visitors. I'm still hashing out what to do about it, since I own the domain name and would like to use the site to promote the book/s as they're published. For the time being, I've spruced up the storefront site, to include information from the old site, or at least some of it:

It's a start. I hope you like it. The web editor in lulu is not the most sophisticated and it's the best I could do, given the tools I had to work with. In the meantime I'm cranking away at the outline for the second book, under the ceaseless lash of my co-producer, Rosie. She's already got the movie mapped out and wants to talk to the actors no later than Labor Day of next year. So, I'm told, that's my deadline to get the $*$*#(@)$&&@ thing written and published. In fact, she told me Maggie and Della would be in the nursing home solving "The Applesauce Mysteries" by the time I finished, at the rate I was going.

Then she went and wrote a story by that name. Yes, it's set in a nursing home and it's about missing applesauce among the elderly residents. 🙂

Some people work quickly. Some people work slowly. Guess which one is which?

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