Friday, January 27, 2012

Dear Diary: One Word—OUCH

The new mattress is here. They told us it would take some getting used to. We aren't sure we'll survive the "getting used to" phase. Dan suggested we both might need a sick day to recover from the first night. In the store it was soft and squishy and lovely. In our house, it's made of concrete. The good news is that Brandy had no complaints and slept like a baby. And of course that's really all that matters because the new bed is for her. Ahem.... We can return the mattress within 60 days if it's not working for us. They suggested we give it two weeks before we decide anything. I wonder if we'll make it that long. Dan moved to the sofa at 3 a.m. Not a good sign! On the plus side, the new bedding looks AWESOME with the paint. You gotta love when that happens. :-)

I got some good writing done yesterday on Hoping for Love, and we're up to about 45,000 words. I hope to bang out a big chunk this weekend to keep things moving. I'm also thinking a lot about Fatal Attack and hoping to get deeper into that one very soon. I was talking to my writing friend Jessica yesterday, and she was mentioning about how she is thinking a lot about her new book but not getting much chance to write. That gave me the chance to share one of my writing philosophies with her: thinking IS writing. It counts. If you are thinking about your book, mulling over where you want to go, getting to know your characters, or plotting as you drive, shower or cook, you ARE working on your book. Writers often fail to give themselves credit for the time it takes to puzzle out a story. If we aren't putting words on a page then we feel like we're wasting time. It all counts.

It's pouring rain here in RI, my favorite kind of writing day. I'm heading to the gym and then my Realtor friend Dawn and I are going to an open house at the house former Congressman Patrick Kennedy is selling in my town. Naturally, we have to grab lunch, too, so let's hope I can get my work count in this afternoon! Speaking of that, I used to think it was funny when authors would Tweet or FB about not making their daily word count or the various challenges to meeting the daily goal. I'd think how I'd hate to be beholden to a daily goal. Shudder. That was when I had a full-time job on top of my writing and couldn't set unmanageable goals for myself. I don't believe in setting myself up for failure. Now that I can do whatever I want during the day, I'm seeing the point of the daily word count goal. It keeps us from being total slackers! These days, I'm setting myself up for failure by NOT having a daily word count goal. Food for thought as I move forward with new life, month two!

I want to add a daily mention here of what I'm reading for fun. My reader friends at Marie Force Book Talk were gabbing about Lisa Kleypas (one of my all-time favorite authors) this week, and a few titles were mentioned that I hadn't read. Here I thought I'd read all her books, but alas that was not the case. Even though I'm supposed to be reading/judging books for the RWA RITA contest, here I am reading Then Came You (which I loved) and Dreaming of You (just started). How am I supposed to read RITA books when there are unread LK books demanding my attention? What are you reading? What's the latest book you just couldn't put down?

Last night I attended my daughter's swim meet (they won!) and she swam the 500, which is 20 lengths of the pool. Watching her cut through the water, it occurred to me that at no time in my life could I have done that. Neither of my kids are what you would call "natural" athletes like their father (they got just enough of my genes to ruin them!). Rather, they are "scrappers." They get out there and give it their all. They'll never be the best one on the team, but they bring plenty of heart to the game, which makes us very proud of them. Since it was a girls-only meet, I was surrounded in the stands by a group of high school boys cheering on the girls. That was the perfect time to receive an email from a 17-year-old boy in New Zealand who has been reading my books and "learning a lot" about women and relationships and sex and what is expected of men in these situations. The very sweet note from a lovely boy halfway across the world got me to wondering if reading romance novels shouldn't be mandatory for all teenage boys. Maybe if they better understood women and how to be half of a successful relationship, there'd be a lot fewer divorces. What do you think?

Have a great Friday!