Posts Tagged ‘Netflix’

Hello Wednesday. You’re already much more steady than yesterday. Thank you for that gift. Now that I have my breath back, let me explain a little of what happened.

In the midst of the highs and lows of yesterday, (1) a truck at the post office decided to try to run me over. I had to run to keep my legs. This is a great way to get the adrenaline pumping. In other news, (2) I got my first letter from a publisher seeking me out. It certainly was no offer of publication, nor is it a company I would ever choose to go with, but the offer should be the beginning of a chain reaction. And it was very thrilling and honoring to receive. (3) I’m also learning French. I’ll spend nearly ninety days studying so that I can perhaps use it for the three days I’ll be in Paris. But hey. I love language. It feeds my brain as nothing as else does. And if you’ve read Mark of Orion, you know that Evie hails from France so it could work out very well for the novelist in me too. (4) Yesterday also contained a canceled Starbucks meeting with a friend. While I was sad not to get to see her, I very much enjoyed the extra downtime. I spent a large portion of it doing research for the group meeting I had in the evening at my church, but I sneaked in a little time for McMillion and Wife–my recent Netflix kick.

Further details would just bore you, so I’ll stick with what I’ve mentioned. As for today, its full of tea and firesides and writing and strictly taking all the supplements that will make me stronger. It’s got extra rest in its margins and opportunities galore for me to catch my breath. It is a good day.

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On this quiet morning, with my parents still asleep above me and the furnace warming the house, I find myself with an unfamiliar ache. I woke up missing my Sister Kate (she’s on vacation with her husband. Good for her!) with a furry that actually made me stiff and sore. That I would miss her was no surprise at all. Kate and I have been joined since I entered the world of men. But, being a reflective sort of person, I thought that the pain of her being on vacation was a bit over dramatic. Pretty soon I realized that I might have been misplacing some of the longing for a sister.

When other sister was four years old, she stood up in church and told the congregation what she was going to do with her life. Now, twenty-six years later, she’s in the Middle East to do just that. When we traveled through the ice and snow last weekend to say our goodbyes and join in her farewell service at her home church in New York, I felt very little other than a healthy dose of affection for her. In the first place, she has lived away most of my memory-making years (for college, grad-school, and a year and a half in Southeast Asia). And in the second place, I have been prepped since birth to accept her leaving. So while I was prepared to miss her, I wasn’t prepared to feel this. It is not missing, really. I probably wouldn’t have spoken to her in the last week anyway. No. It is the deep understanding that as she pursues her calling, life will not return to the way it was. Twice-yearly hang-out trips turned shopping and Broadway in New York City are behind us. Teaching a class together, editing a novel, watching Netflix on the couch until we both fall asleep, coffee dates… Those things may or may not ever happen again.

But that ache I woke up with, once understood, could be turn to joy. Because while life will never be the same, that may be the best thing ever. Just imagine, teaching together at a University in the Middle East instead of New York, or sharing a cup of coffee as tourists in Jerusalem, or creating a novel based on the things I witness when I visit her. Yes… Life will never be the same again. And that is perfectly okay.

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See that little countdown on the side of my homepage? It says there are only six days to my book release. Six days! It was thrilling to hear from several people yesterday. With enthusiasm, they talked about the creative masks they will wear to the gala. I can’t wait to see the characters from my first series come to life

There is a lot to do for this gala. Taking a page from my book, my momager will be helping from out of state. Thursday, my grandmother had a stroke. She is okay, but my mom left this morning (after we had coffee at Dunkin Donuts as a send off) for home (aka Pennsylvania). I wish I could be going with her.

Instead, I stay home. I am feeling rather domestic. Grocery shopping, laundry, dishes, and cooking have already consumed most of the day. And now I sit on my couch trying to dredge up the creativity to work on NaNoWriMo. I am failing at that, by the way. It seems my head is in a fog.

Well, I will try to be faithful for a little longer. And if all else fails, there is always Netflix to distract me.

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Naturally I love Castle–the crime solving show following sharp female homicide detective Kate Beckett and her author tagalong Richard Castle. The creative moments of the show when Castle has his daughter duct-tape him to a chair so that his mind can stir on how to get his character out of a similar situation; the eye flashes of success as his mind spins on all new ideas; the passion and concern that only fellow authors can truly grasp. Woopee! And Beckett? An oustanding character. When we rented the first two seasons on Netflix my mom started calling me her Beckett and I have to say that I took it as a big compliment. Confidence, snazzy dressing, witty comments, sharp mind, huge heart, sorrow in the past but hope in the future. Woopee x2!

So when Becket and Castle have the moments where they play off each others sentences, each spinning the other towards the final conclusion, it feels like both sides of my brain are finally working at the same time. And when Becket and Castle fight, it feels like the (more frequent) times when they are out of synch, but somehow shooting for the same goal. I love the show!

As my writer’s block grew this semester I found more and more strategies on how to beat it. I grew considerably envious of Beckett’s white board–a massive dry-erase masterpiece with pictures and comments. For hours she would stare at the board until she saw the missing pieces suddenly fit. For hours I would attempt to draw my mini-timelines in frustration. With my coming summer job as  I writer I indulged in a few luxuries. A new set of pencils (yay!), a specially-chosen notebook (perfect for the biography notes) and a dry-erase board. I have already scratched out my ideas and thoughts, wiped them away, and begun again. Finally my Beckett board has found its way into my life. I love it!

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This week was a blur. As a homeschooler I never fully grasped the wickedness of midterms. I now do. Monday was fairly normal as days go. Tuesday was busy, very busy. I hopped from one thing to the next, but I still found time to plan my roadtrip and watch NCIS. Wednesday I had my first midterm and a surprise doctor’s visit. It kept me busy, but the afternoon allowed for a nice and necessary nap.

Thursday I studied and studied and studied and studied. One of my professors knew my sister and thinks she was a genius and that I am a genius. The pressure not to let him down was big. So I studied and I studied and I studied. If it had not been for a disk of Castle from Netflix, which eases my writer’s soul, I might never have relaxed. Not relaxing on a before the test night is a very bad thing for me! But I did and I took my two tests and a quiz on Friday. Homework for the afternoon classes was crammed in around. The day had its ups and its downs. School was stressful. How could midterms not be? One of my grades was not all that great, but certainly above average. I am, admittedly, a perfectionist.

The happy ending note was that I got a paper back in my English class. We had been working on it for over a month. It was worth fifteen percent of my grade and I was nervous. As I have mentioned countless times before I hate criticism. I do not like other people messing with technique and I loathe grammar. This is why I am not an English major, despite my passion for writing. I was mortified of this one English class I did have to take, both because it was an English class and because through a CLEP test I had gotten out of English 1, so I did not know what I might have missed. But the class was going well. I have a few friends in it and I get along with the teacher. There is not too much criticism and it is probably my favorite class. I was both excited and nervous to get my grade back. Somewhere in my mind I know that one bad grade in an English class does not mean that I am not a good writer, but the fear of failure is still there. Well, A+! It is nice to know that all I have invested in writing merits something other than a difficult, if potentially wonderful, career.

This weekend was a youth Bible Quiz in Augusta. It was a long weekend, but it was nice to catch up with people, be helpful and get to talk to a fellow-writer who helps out at the quiz. Sometimes it feels so good just to be completely absorbed in something–anything. Now I am home and happy to be so. I cannot wait to go to bed! Goodnight world!

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