Green's Hill-Amy Lane's Home - News

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Filking Internet...

Oh give me blog lots of blog with my options all above...
Don't net me in.
Give me blog lots of blog chatting w/people that I love...
Don't net me in.
You can meet knitters all on twitter and their tweets are sort of neat
And buy vegetables on Facebook with pictures that are sweet
But for networking my people whom I really want to meet...
Don't net me in.

Oh give me blog lots of blog with pictures I can post...
Don't net me in.
Give me blog lots of blog, that's where you'll find me most.
Don't net me in.
There's yahoo groups that come in troops with e-mail piled high
And forums where there's quorums and there's troll shit to the sky.
There's Live journal and my space where the chatter can all lie...
Don't net me in.

Oh give me blog lots of blog where I can prattle for all night!
Don't net me in.
Give me blog lots of blog, even when I am not right!
Don't net me in!
I can chatter on the Google chat and that's lots of fun for me
But when I'm really clever only Little Witch can see!
For sexy tips and chatty quips there's my group with DSP
But the group of peeps who never sleep and love the real me
Give me blog, my dear blog, I've missed the way you make me feel free!


And, in other news, I have a new mouse. It squeaks and it has no balls, and, most frightening of all, it has no tether to the computer. (You all thought it was a power cord--I know better. It was too keep that little bastard from running away.) But then, I guess if the little guy has no balls, he's not going to have the urge to wander, is he?

That's the idea, anyway!

Off to Ikea to buy a bunk bed now. Because, you know--MY LIFE IS THAT RANDOM!

And I hope to be back tomorrow. When I've had some rest. And I'm sort of sane. Because, you know--that would be a change!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Short and Groggy

Have I mentioned the tired thing?

You know it's funny, because on Sunday, I got up to go be a productive citizen, got out of the shower, barely got dressed, crawled back in bed and slept for two hours. When I got up from that, I curled up in chair and knit while Mate went shopping and took the short people out to play. I blamed that moment on post book depression, but the next night, Mate felt sick and woozy and went to bed early. After that, this entire week has been dogged with the sort of exhaustion I usually save for early pregnancy--I'm starting to wonder if maybe we weren't both sick. (NOT pregnant-- brother, was THAT a crappy analogy.) I'm thinking we were, because last night I could barely keep my eyes open over the keyboard.

Anyway, that being said, I really don't have a whole lot else! (Or, I do, in a way, but I'm not ready to process it right now. A moment occurred at work. I failed to be brave in an instance when I, of all people, should have plunged into the fray, sword swinging. I am not proud, and I do not know how to explain my lack, other than chronic exhaustion and a lack of belief that children should be that damned cruel. Anyway, like I said, not sure how to deal... I'll let you know when I am.)

But I do have a couple of tidbits, one kind of 'meh', and one that I found hysterically funny. For your perusal:

No agent for Amy. Alas, alas, the agent has deemed me 'too original for genre fiction' (his exact words, all!) and I'm not sure whether to be depressed or flattered. I AM a little disgusted with the American reading public, I'll tell you that much. I mean, I go on the forums on occasion and I get a whole lot of "Why to books ALWAYS..." and "Why can't anyone ever come up with something original?" *whine* Well, now you have the answer. Apparently people are coming up with original shit all the time. Publishers just aren't putting it out there. Well, I shall continue to stand on the electronic street corners, dressed in something spectacular and a little distasteful, with a cyber-sign reading PLEASE READ MY BADLY EDITED BOOK. (Which is so unfair, because, folks? Rampant's editing ROCKED. Just saying. Editing team? You did so good!)

And the other thing, the one that I found hysterically funny was this--and may I add, if I have lost my sword-swinging paladin capabilities for the moment, I am pleased to say that Chicken has found them.

The other night, Chicken was heard in our house asking questions about Josef Stalin, because her history book was not giving her a clear picture. Mate and I obliged, and yesterday, the following conversation was heard in Chicken's classroom.

Wide-eyed student world history teacher: "So, Chicken-- can you tell us who Josef Stalin was?"

Chicken: "Yeah--he was a total douche-bag!"

Student Teacher: "Uhm... can we phrase that a little more... uhm... professionally?"

Chicken--ingenuously: "Well, Mr. Stalin was a really really bad man who screwed up his country and killed a whole lot of people. How's that?"

Student Teacher: "Uhm... better."

Yeah, I know-- I should be telling her to phrase her answers a little more 'professionally' *smirk* but I've got to tell you--I NEVER would have had the ovaries to do that in high school. Me so proud. I should also add that if one of the teachers in my school had been told that Stalin was a total douche-bag, the automatic response would have been, "Excellent--you're right. Can you tell us why?"

Monday, February 22, 2010

Because You All Asked Nicely

Here it is--in crappy color because I couldn't find the camera (sorry!) but the ass-kicking-nightmare in pink! (Heretofore known as 'the Valentine Sweater).

And now, here's one with her brother in the foreground, so you can get that whole 'drunken leprechaun' thing going on at our house at any given time:

The yarn is Paton's Encore-- Petal Pink and Lilac (I have no idea-that's just the colors I think of when I see them) and the pattern is pulled out of my generously sized wazoo. I was aiming for one of those empire-waisted cardigans I've seen in the yarn stores and Target--looking a little closer, I realize I needed a shaped yoke to get this to hang open beguilingly and still cling to the back, but she seems to like it. I WISH I could get my shit together button hole wise--I can NEVER seem to measure an appropriate distance between buttons--and it doesn't matter which comes first, the button or the hole. Ah, well, c'est lavie-- the thing, she is done, and Squish seems to like it!

I took her to class by the way--her babysitter had today off when the school district took some random Monday three weeks ago--and I've got to say she was the most popular student since Chicken. (Chicken came with me twice last week. Once, she earned the Wrath of Mother by answering a question for a candy-quiz review. In the spirit of family relationships, I chucked a chocolate at her HARD--missing on purpose, of course--and earned the respect and admiration of both my students and her friends. Life is weird. A book in two months? Meh. Chucking chocolate at Chicken? An 'A+' in everything--including alliteration!)

Anyway, the students all 'ooohed' over Squish, and it's harder for them to hate me when they adore her, so that's always nice. And this week's Squish-ism? You've all heard me complain about the rabid squirrel that lives on my head and needs to be tamed before I venture into public, right?

Well, apparently, so has Squish.

"Mama--I combed my hair. See? No squirrel. And no hamster, either!"

Saturday, February 20, 2010

A Filk of Celebraton

To the tune of 'The Lion Sleeps Tonight'

(I'm not insane I'm not insane I'm not insane I'm not insane...)

In the brainpan, the damaged brainpan,
The dragon sleeps tonight...
Oh in the brainpan, the damaged brainpan,
The dragon sleeps tonight...

Who-eeee.... the sequel to Promises is done...

Hush my darling, and sleep my darling
The dragon sleeps tonight...
The kids are sitting upon your lap now
The dragon sleeps tonight...

Who-eeeee... it's done but the editing's still there.

(I'm not insane I'm not insane I'm not insane I'm not insane I'm not insane)

In the brainpan, the damaged brainpan
The dragon stirs tonight...
Shane and Mikhail have a happy ending
But the dragon stirs tonight...

I'll hold off writing until tomorrow
But the dragon stirs tonight...

Who-eeeeeeee... I might get some sleep tonight...
Who-eeeeeeee... My heads not screwed on tight...

(I'm not insane I'm not insane I'm not insane I'm not insane...)

The end.

Okay-- so Making Promises is ready for an editing pass and then submission, and I"m dedicated to short projects for the next few months. *whew* (Of course, some people have promised pitchforks and cattleprods if I don't produce Jeff & Collin's story in short order, but I've got a little tome called Quickening that I wanted to put out before that! We'll see if my resolution holds, though...I have to admit that when you mention on a thread that the sequel is done and a bunch of writers speak up to say "Huzzahh!" it does sort of go to your head! But, well... you know... QUICKENING! I mean, four pregnancies--all of that fodder for supernatural hijinx... how often do you really get to put THAT into play? just sayin'!!!)

Oh yeah-- Roxie? Needletart? RAMPANT is on its way! I finally got my author copies this week... SQQQQQQQUUUUUUUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And I'll leave you with the following moment from Squish. Squish has the family hair, and she's heard Chicken and I refer to the rabid squirrel on our heads since she first had a single follicle to call her own. (You've seen the pictures. She was like, a year and a half old.)

Anyway, she got a hold of a brush the other day and said, "Look, mom! No squirrel! No hamster, either!" Chicken and I had to scrape ourselves off the floor.

Remind me to tell you a good Chicken story tomorrow... right now, I've finished Making Promises, I've finished the ass-kicking-nightmare-in-pink (it's blocking-- Squish will model for you as soon as it's no longer wet), and I'm off to knit... I have some WIP's to finish!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Back, damn you, back!

Okay-- I told myself I would never again let the dragon get me by the throat the way it did with Promise Rock.

I only narrowly kept that promise with Making Promises. The dragon is sneaky. The dragon gnaws away at my knitting time and builds up crap on the kitchen table. The dragon scares away the children with blank looks from the computer and easy food from the freezer. The crafty bastard takes advantage of the teenagers by trying to get them to do chores that I should be doing, just so I can get on the computer and give it free reign.

But I managed to club it into submission this time-- barely. Just barely. I figure it'll take me eight weeks to finish Making Promises instead of the six weeks Promise Rock did.

Fucking dragon.

Oh yeah-- did I mention it is (and mind you, it's not finished yet--I've got one more chapter, about ten pages to go) already nearly 126K?

I'll repeat: fucking dragon.

But I think I've got it under control now. I'm going to be doing short projects for a while--a few DSP novellas, the final Jack & Teague-- you know, stuff that doesn't seize my by the throat and throw me back against the trashed kitchen table and say, "Write me, damn you!" (Okay--the last Jack & Teague might be the exception to that rule... we'll see!) Anyway, I am (wisely, I hope) putting off writing Quickening for a few months. I think I need to give the dragon cave a break from long projects for a bit, let it air out, get rid of the dragon crap, clean the kitchen table, that sort of thing, before I dive back in. Besides. A lot of projects lose their 'zing' when the character is put in the position Lady Cory was at the end of Rampant. I'm going to REALLY need my skill and my motherhood skills to make sure the series doesn't jump the shark with this next one. I'm going to have to give it some thought so that everybody stays true to themselves and nobody becomes cardboard cutouts.

You want to see a dragon hunting party? Man, just fuck with that thing's eggs!

(And ignore the subtle hiss of 'Living Promises' in the uncurling of serpentine scales. That project will wait... I swear... it will wait... Jeff and Collin will wait... please, dammit, back, damn you, stay away from my cave!)

Off to go feed the dragon-- and knit a sweater.

Hopefully he doesn't have a taste for wool.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Lotsa Little Things

It was a long, slow weekend-- just the way I like them.

Mate and I got to go out to Dinner and a Movie--it was awesome, although Mate called a moratorium on all movie knitting. It was sort of a shame--I could have finished a hat--but then, Mate and I couldn't have held hands during the whole thing either, and I would have been sorry to miss that. We saw Valentines Day, which I liked very much, although the 'big shocker' at the end was something I already knew about--and pretty much predicted from the beginning. All is well--Eric Dane and Bradley Cooper will simply star in some of my more prurient fantasies from here on out, that's all.

(As a side note, Mate and I lost count of all the people in the megacast that had worked together previously but who shared NO SCREEN TIME WHATSOEVER in this particular movie. It was a fun game. Seriously.)


On a side note, I'd like to say it was fun to see that as many of you hold book grudges as violent as mine. You had some good suggestions for 'break-yer-heart' reading--I'll be sure to give those to Chicken!


Oh yeah-- today was a yummy yummy hot guys marathon. Didn't get alot done today--but I did get a nice steroidal dose of Winchester love, and, well, YUM! On the same note, a friend (and fellow DSP stablemate) bless her, had a line on an AWESOME homemade calendar--and she sent me one. I owe her. I'm not sure how to pay this back, but this calendar ROCKS--and it's very Dean-centric... THANK YOU, MARY!!!


Chicken went to a birthday party at Teddy Crafters. *smirk* She got a stuffed wolf and named him 'Beo'. *smirk* Beo Woof. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA... Sorry. Had to get that out of my system. It worked for me!


Zoomboy and Squish were outside today--I took my knitting outside and tilted my head back in the sun and tried to make them go play on their own so I could sleep. (Did a LOT of that today!)

While they were playing, Zoomboy started to freak out--"There's a spider on the wall! It's SKKKEEEEEEERRRRRYYYY!!"

Squish grabbed the Barbie doll in her hand by the legs, like a baseball bat, and said, "Here, Zoomboy. Go whack it with this!" And that was it. Nap gone. I was laughing so hard I almost fell out of my chair. Love that kid.


And tomorrow, Chicken comes with me to work--it's 'President's week' in her district, and my district just spread out a bunch of three day weekends, and, well, my students are interested in her. As they should be. She's smart and beautiful and fully out of their league. Much hilarity will ensue.

I'll be sure to tell you about it!


(Oh yeah. I got THE. BEST. VALENTINES. GIFT. EVER. I didn't deserve it. I'll probably get it stolen. Again. But I got it. And I love it. And I'll defend it with my life and with my sharp, feral pointy teeth if necessary. It's BE-YOO-TI-FUL.)



Saturday, February 13, 2010

To Chicken With Love

Okay, one of my clear memories of childhood goes like this:

My grandparents used to take their kids to Lake Shasta all the time to go water skiing and camping--one year, my mom and I went with them. My mom's younger sisters and brother were still living at home, then, and the lot of us were thrown in the back of a van and left to rattle around like pebbles in a stinky shoe for a couple of hours, sans air conditioning, and I got whiny. (I was like five at the time.)

So I whined and I whined and I whined, and finally Alexa (my bio mom) said (in desperation) "Okay, sweetheart. How about I sing for you. I'll sing you a pretty song."

She sang "Puff the Magic Dragon."

And I sobbed violently all the way home. It was the saddest goddamned thing I'd ever heard. Of course it didn't help that her follow-up song was "You Are My Sunshine"-- complete with the ball-cracking second verse that ends "so I held my head and I cried."

Anyway, it has occurred to me since that things meant for children and young adults are not always cheery. In fact, "A Series of Unfortunate Events" is one of those things that totally capitalizes on the fact that children have a taste of the tragic and macabre. So Chicken and I (upon the heels of this story) began to list, in random order, the saddest goddamned things we have ever read--let's call this the adolescent girl's slit-yer-wrist collection, shall we? For anyone who has read Vulnerable and hated my guts, these are the inspirations I shall cheerfully blame for your misery--I'm serious. THEY did this to me.

And here it is, in no particular order--and I'll tell you this, I'm not sparing the spoilers. If you haven't read them and don't know the ending, by all means, skip this post:

* All's Quiet on the Western Goddamned Front--okay, I'm going to throw in some spoilers here. Everybody fucking dies. Yes. Even the main character. And (as Chicken noticed as she was throwing the book across the room) "He dies less than a month before Armistice, mom? Where's the fucking justice in that?"

God bless the American school system-- this was required reading.

* The Giver by Lois Lowry. More spoilers. The kid gets to watch his father euthenize an infant, and as he's reeling from that, he finds out that his girlfriend is doing the same thing to all the old people in the soulless dystopian community. Why does this bother him? A. Because he's the repository for ALL the emotional upheaval of the community, and B. BECAUSE HIS ONE YEAR OLD BROTHER IS NEXT.

This one has one of the most famous ambiguous endings of all times, in which either A. The kid and his brother find shelter, or B. Everybody fucking dies. I tell Chicken I think it's A. Privately, I think it's B.

* The Silent Boy by Lois Lowry. *shudder* Chicken introduced me to this one. The emotionally scarred kid who doesn't speak tries to save a farmer AND sister's incestuously produced offspring and the baby dies. Then the kid is institutionalized and we're pretty sure HE dies because it's the 1950's and that's how they rolled.

Chicken fucking sobbed for a week after this one. Bastards.

* The Lord of the goddamned Rings. Are you shitting me? Frodo goes to HEAVEN in a boat? Jesus save me. Or him. Whatever. I cried for two days.

* The Chronicles of Prydain. They kill off the Prince of Llyr. They kill off the bitchy Queen Achren. They killed off Col, the gentle farmer. They let our heroes survive, announce their love, and then get told that everybody they've ever loved HAS TO DITCH THEM while they rule the country.

Shit. Seriously. Just shit.

* The Hero and the Crown. Because choosing between Tor and Luthe was like choosing between Spike and Angel. Who wants to make THAT goddamned choice.

* Harry Fucking Potter. Unlike Lord of the goddamned Rings, which frequently condemned random anonymous BRAVE MEN to die, Harry Fucking Potter kills off your family. It kills off half of Fred&George. It kills off the pet owl. It kills off the finally happy lovers and Harry's last godfather. GodDAMNit, it kills off DOBBY. Children everywhere have been cursing and blessing Ms. Rowling for a year, and I don't think it's going to get any better. Well done, J.K.-- another person cheerfully scarring the psyches of children everywhere. (You know I adore this series, don't you? I'm only partly ironic.)

* Love Story. Yes. I know it's not officially adolescent fare, but I was 13 when I read it, and it hurt me, guys, it hurt me. "Love means never having to say you're sorry?" Bullshit. "Love means sobbing your heart out in your twin bed while the cats make a nest in your hair!!"

* The Cold Equation. I read this story to sophomores when I have it. I cry every goddamned time. That poor kid, getting jettisoned into outer space for one goddamned stupid move. If that happened to everybody, the race would have died out.

* Hamlet. Are you shitting me? The body count alone would cause a hardened veteran to vomit. The fact that Ophelia dies thinking Hamlet didn't love her? Or that Horatio loses his true love and soul mate just when he recovered his sanity? I mean really. What was Shakespeare thinking? Weren't they dying of the plague in big enough numbers back then? Did they have to add suicide to the mix?

And that's ten and where I'm going to stop... but by all means, help me add to the list here. I mean, if there's the potential for a richly emotionally scarring reading experience to be had before she turns twenty-five, we wouldn't want Chicken to miss it, would we?

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Bullet points...

* Supernatural rocked tonight. Just saying. Poor Dean.... be still my beating heart.

* I took a crappy two hour nap on the chair this afternoon. The kids are getting WAY too big to sit on me when i do this. Too many elbows and knees for anybody's comfort.

* I'm almost done with the ass-kicking nightmare in pink. Need to decide if it needs a hood. I think Squish would like a hood, don't you?

* I don't have a project for the Knitting Olympics. This really depresses me. Maybe I should just say "I'll finish three WIPs" and make that my goal.

* Dragon is still riding my back and gnawing at my flesh with sharp pointy teeth. Fucker.

* Needletart, I loves you sweetheart... you keep on correcting bad scholarship. I'm still using the story though, with a qualifier. It just works too well and teaches too much in my neck of the woods to forsake it now.

* Knittech's blessed husband keeps sending me happy news about my yummy yummy hot guys... Jensen Ackles as Captain America? Be still my beating heart! Another season of SPN? *WOOT!*

* I even named one of my main character's cats after Jensen... you know, if that cat's gonna sleep with you anyway...

* Making Promises is cruising right along. It's in a place where, if someone were to give me a bag of carrots, an unlimited soda refill, and 24 hours in my own head, I'd wake up with the story done, a complete hangover, and no idea where this completely unrelated but brilliant short story on my laptop came from.

Alas, they don't have writing bars in this world.

* I wonder--if I lived in the land of famine, would I eat myself to death or write until I starved? For those of you who saw SPN, it's always a good question...

* Oh yeah... I may have an agent for the LG books and Bitter Moon. I'll let you all know if I sign!

* Tired now. Going to sleep. Three day weekend ensuing at the end of the day tomorrow!

* Those of you in Pigsbird and points East? STAY WARM, DAMMIT!

Take care--


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Quilting, Literary Symbolism, Cultural Knowledge, and Black History Month

Okay-- I gave this little chat to my classes today.

It involved a copy of this book, which I held up and showed them, and then I gave the following talk:

"I haven't quilted in a while--it's tough to do with the four kids, and you need to keep your house clean, and usually, by the time I clean the house, I'm ready to do something besides work. But I loved quilting. You guys know how you make quilts? You piece them together--first you put together squares with a pattern--this is called a motif. The motifs are then repeated throughout the quilt, and the repeated motif makes a completely different pattern from a distance.

This is sort of like literature. In literature a repeated idea or symbol or conversation is called a 'motif'--so is a repeated refrain in music. (Here I hum Darth Vader's Theme from Star Wars.) Like this is the musical motif that introduces Darth Vader, right? You've all seen The Sixth Sense--what did the red objects represent? That's right. they represented the gate between life and death, but the only reason we knew this is because this *motif* was repeated consistently throughout the work.

So, anyway, these motifs all have names--see here? This one's the Friendship Star, and this one's the Northwind, and this one's the Log Cabin. Now, all these materials that go into making a quilt don't have to be the same--back in the day, when America didn't have first crack at the products of the London Textile mills, Americans got really good at scrounging material from places--dresses that had been turned and returned would be cut up and the good parts would be used for quilts. Grandpa's military uniform, drapes from grandma's kitchen--all of it could be turned into a quilt. Because quilts were the ultimate in recycling, they became the *perfect* art form for the slave communities. (Yup--I promised I'd pull Black History month into this eventually--I delivered.) The slave communities were only given hand-me-downs. Quilts--which were sort of a trademark American endeavor around this time--were great for artistic expression given only the materials at hand.

The thing is, that when the slaves gathered to make a quilt--just like when women of any race gathered to make a quilt--an entirely new community was born. The women knew the motifs on the quilts--they knew the names of the motifs, and even though the names would change from England to America to parts of America, each community kept their names consistent. And so the quilts made by the slaves became a PERFECT code.

You guys know about the underground railroad, right? Well, if someone wanted to signal that a place was a waystation in the underground railroad, they'd leave a quilt with a log-cabin motif hanging from the window. Anybody escaping along that route would see the log cabin and know what it meant. If there was a 'Bridle Path' motif, that meant to take the horses, a Northwind motif meant to go north, a Mariner's star meant to go to the nearest port, and a Friendship Star meant that friends could gather and escape.

And this code was well nigh perfect. You know why? Because most of the escaping slaves were women and children. Women and children would know the code! They'd INVENTED the code, in their communities, as they gathered together to stitch the quilt top over the cotton batting over the back piece (this is actually the part called 'quilting') they talked about the motifs and about what they meant and about what they were called. So this code that they used to guide themselves would be universally known IN THEIR COMMUNITIES--but not outside of them. The white men CHASING them would be completely clueless.

Now this connects to literature as well. Most of the literature you read that features motifs makes the assumption that you KNOW THE CODE. And for the most part, it's right. You know that red represents something important--most of you figured out that read meant death when you saw The Sixth Sense. You know that roses represent love, the sun going through the sky represents the day, kittens represent innocence, etc. etc. etc. You guys--just like those people escaping-- have been steeped in the code since you were very little. You just have to figure out where it leads you.

And that's it. That's Quilting, Motifs, Cultural Knowledge and Black History Month all connected in one little chat. Get out your books now, we're going to read about William Cullen Bryant and death. Won't that be fun?"

The end:-)

Sunday, February 7, 2010

sawmees and goats

Okay-- so I whined a bit about being in a piss-bitchy mood yesterday and then went back to write.

I woke up this morning, and it hit me like a big scaly monster with wings: I've been riding the goddamned dragon. No WONDER I'm sleep deprived. No WONDER I'm punky. I'm writing--my brain is in the place where it doesn't turn off, and well, hell--here I am. A piss-bitchy-scaly-winged horror, ripping my family's faces off and dining on their angst.

Well--there's a cure all for that, you know! It's called BUFFY! Sure enough, six, eight episodes later, and the dragon is tamed and ready to be cut loose on another couple of chapters withOUT the side of family faces for dessert. The family is much relieved.

But, I do warn you, there are some consequences to watching Buffy and ripping faces off. For example, there was THIS conversation with Squish yesterday:

"I had a bad dream, mommy!"

"Really--what sort of dream?" She is sitting on our bed as we have this conversation, and Mate and I are still under the covers.

"You waked up the man-that was bad!"

Mate and I look at each other. "I woke up your daddy, sweetheart?"

"No, no--the man. He was a sawmee."

Again, we exchange looks. "Saw-mee?" we mouth. "Saw-mee?"

I turn to Squish again. "Okay, Squish--you got us. What's a sawmee?"

She put her hands together in front of her. "Saw-mees! You know! Saw-mees! They is skeery!"

"Sawmees are scary?"

"Yes. Because they're with goats."

"The sawmees are scary because they're with the goats. What do the goats do?"

"They chase the sawmees!"

"So the sawmees are afraid of the goats?"

"Yes. The goats make scary sounds."

"Do they go "naaaaahahaahaaaa?" I ask. Trust me--I do a killer goat imitation. She couldn't have been confused.

"No--they go "wwhooooooooooooo"!" And, yes, she does a good imitation of the scary transparent dead.

Suddenly the light bulb goes on. "Honey--were the sawmees being chased by ghosts?"

Again, Mate and I, meeting eyes. "Sawmees? Being chased by GHOSTS?"

"Yeah. The sawmees want to eat my brains."

And now, can you see it? The glory-be-and-hallefucinglujia lightbulb?

"Squish--were you being chased by ZOMBIES in your dream?"

"Yes! I told you! The sawmees chased me, and the goats chased the sawmees!"

Mate and I were happy. We met eyes and said, "Of course. It all makes sense. Sawmees and goats! In our family, what else would you possibly want to dream about?"

Friday, February 5, 2010


Okay--took Chicken in to the doctors to get a skin tag removed--the tank on the Liquid Nitrogen tank leaked, and she ended up with a three by two burn blister on her neck. The doctor was hella embarrassed, but I kept asking Chicken, "Why didn't you SAY anything?"

"I don't know. It just felt a little cold."

In a way, it sort of reminded me of two of my labors. You know, the ones where I walked in between seven and eight cm dilated and the doctors said, "So what made you finally decide to come in?"

"I don't know. I'd just had enough of that shit."

Yup--I've heard that redheads have a higher pain tolerance, and although I often think I'm the biggest baby on the planet, sometimes, sometimes, that shit is true.

I've been sort of pissy and irritable lately, and I'm not sure I know why. I mean, good shit has been HAPPENING, if you know what I mean. I think it's just that I don't know where I stand--and that I'm really tired--and that I'm a little overwhelmed. I got two courtship letters in two days--one from Amber Quill Press and one from an actual, no shit, literary agent who is asking if I'd like him to pitch my stuff. I'm floored--I'm also a little anxious. I mean, as much as I wanted shit to happen, nobody wants shit to change, you know what I mean? Besides--I'm really not good at celebrating in immediacy. I've got this character in one of the novellas on my site--Name. The hero (it's actually an m/f romance, with only a pesky little psychic ability as a wrinkle... yup. Early stuff) is Henry Kim Raitherson--H.K. for short--and he frequently underplays shit in his life. "Afraid the gods will steal your good fortune, H.K.?" "They've been known to be vicious bastards, Maddie." And that's sort of where I'm at now. I'm sure some of you are shocked, SHOCKED I say that I cannot greet good fortune with a smiling face--trust me, I'm smiling. I'm even tentatively optimistic. But I'm also pissy and irritable. Maybe sleep will help, but personally, I'm thinking knitting might be the cure.

Besides. I've got too many plot bunnies and not enough time to write. *sigh* And aint THAT always the way?

But "If I Must" got a good review today right here and appears to have experienced a boost in sales accordingly. I'm ever bemused by this little story. It's a solid four star charmer. I enjoyed writing it, I enjoyed the characters--I may be more like Ian than any other character I've ever written, which is hysterical because to a one, all of the reviewers thought he was too flaky to be real. It in no way cost me the pain, angst, or dragon writing of any of my other work, and yet this little kitty has some LEGS on it--I can't believe how far my little Manky Bastard has run. I'm very pleased--I can only hope Promise Rock does as well, you know?

And I started the last sleeve of the ass-kicking nightmare in pink. Holy crap. I may finish a sweater, and (another shocker, I know,) POST PICTURES. You'll be so pleased at what a little beauty my Squish has become. Now, if only she'd rule the world and let me nap and knit in peace for a bit, the weirdness might fade just a little.

Here's hoping.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Fun small stuff...

Okay-- first of all, I took the kids to the doctor's today, just to make sure they were all growing fine. They were, although the doctor told me delicately that Squish couldn't get much squishier or that would be a wee bit dangerous, and I said, "Fine, no more cookies!" and Squish said, "But I LIKE cookies. I WANT cookies. Don't tell me no more cookies!" and then we had a serious discussion about how hella bright she is and whether or not a preschool would be a good idea in spite of the fact that she wasn't going to be ready for Kindergarten for a whole other year.

"She's three, you say?"


"Yeah. Well. You're going to want to do something with that."

Besides ship it off in a packing crate to gypsies when it tries to boss me around? Oh yeah. I'll get right on it!

Anyway, a couple of good book days for me, starting with this (erm, SQUEEE!) which was also posted here, which was a fun thing too!!!

So that's pretty exciting! Rampant is up to nine reviews, and every one of them is from the heart and SO SO SO SO SO very appreciated! I'm so happy that people seem to be embracing the direction the series is going. Now I'm REALLY going to be thinking about the next one--I want it to live up to expectations. (Uhm, we sensing a theme here? Anyone?)

I was also pretty excited to find out that one of my DSP colleagues, Mary Calmes had read the Little Goddess series, and I had a serious little *swoon* from excitement. I mean, uhm, COOL!

And I thought this was pretty cool. This is Chris. Chris likes knitting, cats, and (get this!) M/M literature! OMG OMG OMG--it's like a miraculous trifecta, and I'm so happy that Chris stumbled over me! Her two cats, Chaos and Mayhem (Roxie, Julie, Saren, I am aware those names will just totally tickle you all!) figure prominently in her blog--and I didn't scare her away when I told her the story of the cat violating my poor skein of Hermione--I think she's a keeper! (Okay--I may have scared her a little. But she was very stalwart:-)

And other than that? We'll see. I left my kids w/a sub yesterday. If I have any candy in my drawer and if my room is still standing, I'm gonna call this a win!!!

*whistles* Off to read blogs and (if time allows) watch the episode of Supernatural the damned television didn't let me watch last week. (##$%^^ satellite... oughta be a law!) Saren, if you're watching, you can tell Mike thanks, but he can take it down now!!!!

*happy sigh* And more yummy yummy hot guys tomorrow. Life IS good!

Monday, February 1, 2010


* Okay, the other night, I was wearing one of my Little Goddess promotional T-shirts, and we learned how well Zoomboy can read. "Ba-ack... back oooffff. Th...the man go-ds arrrrrrrrrrre miiiinnne. Cause there's an e on the end, right? So your T-shirt says, Back Off. The man-gods are mine! Is that right mom? I read your T-shirt!!!"

* So, this evening, I was walking around the neighborhood when I hear the sound of little dog who thinks he wants to eat me. The little dog's daddy, who is about six-feet gazunga and outweighs me is standing up by the garage with the light at his back (the better to look imposing, of course) was yelling at the little dog to get back to the garage, dammit and stop barking. But no, the little dog had to get a better look at me, and he came charging down the pavement to eat me, and then I pulled a mindfuck on him and turned around to say 'Hi'.


The little goombah went charging back up to daddy, who was looking at me like I was some sort of dog-kicker, and I turned to the behemoth in the shadows with my hands up. "Dude, I swear I was just turning to make sure I didn't step on him. I didn't mean to freak him out. I'm SOOOOO sorry!" The guy watched me suspiciously as I rounded the corner and his little rat-fink of a dog sat down and snickered to himself I am just sure.

* We had this little Cupid decoration for valentines day-- you've seen that sort of thing. Two cupids, facing each other, a little heart with an arrow through it between them. But the damn thing keeps falling off the hook on the front door. This evening, it fell down and the heart broke off, leaving two extensions about waist level, thrusting up between our two little naked men. The results were... well, highly appropriate for someone who writes what I do, but not so appropriate for a mother of four living across from the church. We took the decoration down, but not before my oldest son and I laughed our asses off. "That looks wrong," I said helplessly. "Very. Very. Wrong."

* Okay, this happens two out of three times a week. I open the door for Zoomboy and Chicken to get in and Zoomboy sits down and screams. "Ohhhhhh!!!! I gotta go to da battrooommmmm!!!!" Shit. The first bathroom within striking distance is at Beverly's craftstore, home of Red Heart and Lion Brand and *shudder* Beanie Babies and WebKinz.

"OKay, fine," I mutter direly. "But we're not spending a penny. We're just going in, using the bathroom, and coming out."

We got away only $15.00 poorer today. (The last time it happened we bought the little decoration with the cupids, pre-outing from the holiday decoration closet.) Tomorrow, I'm gonna make his sister take him to the bathroom BEFORE he gets in the car.

* This morning I had a long talk with a student who has read my books. I was trying to describe the difference between 'gritty reality' (which Promise Rock has been accused/praised for more than once) and the way I see the world.

"You see, Jacob, the thing is, it's like turkeys."


"Yeah. Turkeys. This morning, if it hadn't been an inservice day, I would have been late. Why? Because of the goddamned turkeys. There were about thirty turkeys in the middle of crossing the road, and there I was at a stop sign, two cars behind me, and we're waiting for--you guessed it..."


"Yeah, turkeys. So here's the thing. This is a normal suburban neighborhood. I don't wear eau de horny turkey, nor do I spray it on my car. The damned things just ARE. And they're just THERE. So if I can be late for turkeys, why can't Deacon have a day like the one in the chapter called Broken Levees, Dead Horses and Driving While Gay? Why can't Crick decide to rebel by joining the army? Why wouldn't the homeless people who came into Cory's gas station be something supernatural? Because, you know, the world is just that random."

"You're right, Ms. Lane. It really all does come down to turkeys."

* Today, Squish gave me directions home. Thank God. I've been making that commute for only twelve years, and I never would have been able to make it if she hadn't told me to "Turn here and GO mama... I don't CARE if the other cars have stopped!"