Monthly Archives: June 2013

Hitchhiker seeks Loving Family

I picked up a hitchhiker today.  What else could I do?  She was starving, dirty and lost.  She also fits in my hand and is covered in brown and black striped fur.

I was driving home from my day job, exiting the amazing amount of road construction in Marion.  I noticed something on the shoulder of the road, and it was so small that at first I thought it was just a piece of trash.  Then I noticed the piece of trash had four legs and a tail. 

By the time I realized that the thing on the side of the road was a kitten, I had gone too far past it.  I turned around at the next light, hoping I could get back in the westbound lanes before it was too late.  As I maneuvered my car through traffic, I knew I simply could not have another cat.  I also knew I simply could not leave it there on the highway, to combat four lanes of traffic all by itself.

I’m sure the drivers behind me were not pleased that I was going about five miles under the speed limit, searching hopefully for the kitten.  When I passed it this time, it was barely visible against the weeds on the side of the road. 

As soon as I got out of the car, I could hear it meowing pitifully.  It took a few steps toward me, and had absolutely no problem being picked up.  I looked around for more kittens or a mother, but found nothing.

The drive home was interesting.  Forty minutes in speeding traffic with a rambunctious kitten in the car does not a pleasant ride make.  On my lap, on my shoulder, on the passenger seat, exploring the console, and even sinking its little claws onto my Broncos steering wheel cover and trying to do the driving for me.

My boyfriend and I are big fans of rescuing animals. Three out of our four current pets were rescues.  Porkchop, a pug and beagle mix that had been left at a foreclosed home, is absolutely in love with our little foster kitten!  He stood guard next to her cardboard box for at least an hour after I brought her home, cocking his ears to all her little noises.  Elwood, my most recent cat rescue and up until now the baby of the household, is terrified of this little creature that is about an eighth his size.  He has spent a good deal of the evening in my lap, assuring himself that he is still loved just as much.

This poor little kitten (whom we believe to be a girl) can’t be more than six weeks old.  I am at capacity with my pets, so I would really like to find this baby a “furever” home.  Please contact me if you are interested.  And, as Bob Barker would say, please have your pet spayed or neutered.  There are enough homeless babies out there.

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A Small Sneak Peek

I just had the most awesome time in a cemetery!  I know that sounds very strange to most of you, so let me explain.  I have been preparing to release my latest book, Life, Death and Frank.  Like any other book, it needed a cover.  Since this is, in essence, a mystery story revolving around a ghost, much of the book takes place in a cemetery, so that seemed the only logical setting for a cover photo.

I grabbed my cover designer (Sydney, of Artistic Photography by Sydney) and headed to the cemetery near my house.  We got the right shot for the cover pretty quickly, but we didn’t turn around and head back to the car after that.  The particular graveyard we went to has a very interesting mixture of both new and old headstones, dating back to the early 1900’s.  It was remarkable to read them all and imagine what these people’s lives were like and how they might have ended.

I have often taken inspiration from the names on gravestones.  Last year I attended a funeral, during which I stumbled across the name that would inspire Life, Death and Frank.  The name haunted me; I felt like I needed to do something with it.  It rolled around in my head for a couple months, until I attended another funeral.  As I gazed across the cemetery during the services, I realized I could solve the mystery of what happened to this unknown person by writing his story myself.  My novella was born!

My trip this evening has not only given me a great cover shot, but also the last name for the main character in the new book I am working on.  As I came home with half the cemetery on the bottom of my feet (flip flops were not a good idea), I couldn’t wait to sit down and let the creativity flow.  Look for Life, Death and Frank coming soon!

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A Casual Rebuttal to Confucius

They say, “Do what you love, and you will never work a day in your life.”  In researching this quote I found some conflicting information, but for the most part “they” appears to be Confucius.

I, however, am not so sure I agree.  I mean, I love to write, but there are certainly times when it feels like work.  The creative part of it is a bit of an adventure, and it’s not so bad.  But when I am sending out a manuscript submission, I can’t just write “Hey, check this out!” on a sticky note, slap it on a manuscript, and shove it in the mailbox.  When the kids are asleep and it is Time To Write, I sometimes find myself too tired to do as much as I would like.  If it wasn’t work, could I ever be too tired to do it?

In addition to writing, I have a day job in the financial sector.  I don’t really care for finance, and it most definitely feels like work.  So what’s the difference?

If you decide to Google Confucius’ quote for yourself, you will find several articles advising you not to do what you love.  They say (“they”, in this case, being business and financial experts) that you will be miserable and broke.  So should you do what you love and be miserable?  Or do what you hate and be miserable?

To me, it seems that the biggest delineation between the two is the willingness to do the work.  When I sit down to write, or send submissions, or order business cards, it is definitely work.  But I am more than happy to do it.  In fact, I am excited to do it.  Writing brings me more satisfaction and self-worth than any other job I have ever had.

So, while I concur with Confucius’ general idea, I think it should be amended a bit:

 

Do what you love, and you will want to work every day of your life.

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