Tuesday, August 24, 2010

A Novel Approacheth

The good news:  I am almost finished with the first draft of my novel!  I'm not there quite yet, but the end is is in sight.

The bad news:  The further along I get the more I realize I'll need to change when I revise.  Draft number two will look pretty different than draft number one, I think.

The good news:  I love the thought of revising and editing and proofreading and cleaning up and making better!  I have so many ideas of what to change, and I can't wait to get started.

The bad news:  It'll have to wait, because...

The good news:  Yay, I'm going to do NaNoWriMo again!  Woot.  A whole month of feverish writing, and not much else!

The bad news:  Oh  no, I'm going to do NaNoWriMo... again.  A whole month of feverish writing, and not much else...

Honestly, I'm having such a great time writing. Last year I did so well with the deadlines that NaNoWriMo imposed, I want to give it another shot, but this year, I am planning to write a Young Adult novel.  They are typically a bit shorter, so if I can hit 50,000 words in November I will basically have a completed novel (assuming I can get to the end of my story in 50,000 words, anyway).  So my goal for November is to write the entire first draft.

I have an idea that's been lurking in the back of my head for a few months now, about a gay teenager who lives in a very small rural town.  Her family and her community are homophobic, so she keeps her gayness a secret, and feels bad having to lie to everyone about who she is.  She quietly works at a crappy job while secretly saving up money so she can move to a city and finally come out.  I'm still working out the details, and I don't even really have an outline yet, but I'm excited about it.

I can't express how much of a difference writing has made in my life since I started last November.  I remember a year ago, already thinking about it, and wanting so much to get going, but so fearful that I couldn't do it. 

Whew.  :)

Monday, August 23, 2010

How I Know That I'm OLD

* I am getting new glasses soon, and I think I'm going to need bifocals
First I can't wear contacts anymore, then my eyes are too messed up to get Lasik surgery, now this.  Just shoot me :(

* I own pants with an elastic waist
I remember going shopping when I was 20 years old and wore a size 3, and if I took a pair of pants off the rack and saw an elastic waistband, I'd quickly put them back in disgust.  Eww, elastic waistband old lady pants!

*Those kids wearing droopy pants make me mad
Extra old-person credit on this one, since that has been in style for a more than a decade now.

*TV shows were way better back in the 70's
I mean, sure, there are some good shows on now, but they are mostly are on cable.  Back in the olden days a network would give a series some time to find its stride; a lot of great shows like MASH started off with poor ratings, but the network hung in there.  It seems like now that just never happens, and when a good show does come along (Like Freaks and Geeks, for example, or Undeclared, or My So-Called Life) and it doesn't get great ratings immediately it gets canceled, without being given a chance to find its audience.  These impatient young tv whipper-snappers today all need a good spanking, dammit.

* My purse contains more practical items than my entire first apartment did
I have in my purse, right at this moment: an umbrella, ibuprofen, tums, nail file, packet of tissues, excedrin, eye drops, lip balm, hairbrush, mirror, gum, cough drops, iPod, phone, little notebook and pen, ear plugs, bandaid, toothpick, pantiliner, nail clippers, safety pin, lip gloss, wallet. My first apartment contained: lawn furniture, a tv, wine coolers.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Teeny Tiny Update: The Marigold Project

I planted the old marigold seeds on Sunday, July 25, so it was two weeks yesterday. Today I spotted this:

Now, this little dude is extremely tiny (literally the size of the head of a pin), so tiny that it's really impossible to tell at this point whether he's a marigold or a weed.

Stay tuned!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Boobies, the Sequel

I had my first mammogram in March 2006, and my second one today.  Yes, I should be getting them every year.  Yes, it's one of the things I worry about and beat myself up over in the middle of the night when I can't sleep.

So, things basically went exactly the same today as they did four years ago.  I waited in the first waiting room, a large room with chairs lining all four walls, most of them occupied with people reading or playing games on their phones.  Then I was ushered into the little dressing room, where I took off my top and bra and put on a cloth mauve wrap top.  Then I sat in a second, smaller waiting room; all four walls lined with chairs filled with women in mauve wraps.  Once again, I took a Jennifer Crusie book (she's funny, and that cheers me up).

I am one of those people who will go far, far out of my way to avoid contact with strangers, especially when I am bra-less and in a mauve wrap, and it always ratchets up my tension level to sit elbow to elbow with other bra-less women in mauve wraps.

So after waiting 30 minutes in the first waiting room, and 20 minutes in the second waiting room, a lovely blonde woman in bright floral print scrubs came to get me.  There was no waiting in the actual mammogram room, after introducing herself she immediately got to work.  Unwrap my right side, grab the handle in front with my left arm, let my right arm hang to my side, try to breathe.  (Note:  there is no breathing when a sensitive chunk of your body is being crushed painfully.)  Then unwrap my left side.  Then back to the right side for being squished from a different angle.  Then back to the left side for the different angle.

I thought about just taking off the stupid wrap completely, since basically all it was doing at any given moment was covering one shoulder and half of my back, but when I imagined standing there completely topless, it did seem like it would make me feel even worse.  So I left it "on".

I decided to search for mammogram images, and I found this:
That is pretty much exactly how the machine today looked.  I think "compressed" is an amusing word.

I also found this:

That's hilarious.  See how the technician lady's hand is on the patient's shoulder?  She's not comforting her, or trying to make it easier -- she is pushing her deeper into the machine.  Get in there, breast!

Soon I was done with my squooshing, and my chest was covered with red marks.  Blonde flowery lady ushered me into the third, smaller waiting room, where again all four walls were lined with chairs, and only one of them was empty.  I briefly considered just standing in the hall, but they probably wouldn't approve.

Luckily I was only in the third room for a few minutes, then they told me I could go put my clothes back on and leave.  Apparently the results are mailed to me (and my doctor) in about a week.

It's always stressful for me, because I can't help but think about my Mom having breast cancer.  Twice. And sure, she recovered, she's still here and she's fine.  But she did have to have two mastectomies.

I am hoping that, if something really scary showed up, they would have told me right then.  Right?