Sunday, August 24, 2014

Sunday Update - Week 33

Well, folks, it's that time again.  Let's look back at the week, shall we?

The writing slacked a bit this week.  No excuses.  Okay, maybe one or two, but still...  I only got 8335** words rewritten on Bloodflow this week.  In my defense, it's really coming together well.  And I had a couple spots where I rewrote... errr, retyped... the same damn thing without changing it and then had to go back and delete words because the scene just wasn't working.  Which is why I'm rewriting this instead of merely editing it - because I get lulled by my own words and don't do the work that needs doing to make it a better book.

**After this posted, I noticed an error in my word count data and I actually wrote 10250 last week.  Can't quite figure out how that happened.  Still, it's less than the week before and way less than I'm capable of, so instead of rewriting the above paragraph, I'm leaving it.

As for the polishing, I'm down to just over 102K, so only a couple thousand left to tweeze out before I can submit this thing where I want to.  And it's a better book for the tweezing.

I haven't really read anything this week.  And now the progress I made earlier in the year to get ahead of the goal on Goodreads has really come in handy, but is totally erased.  Next month, I'll pick up the slack.  And since a book I beta read has been published, I can add that to the goal - as soon as I can wrap my head around it enough to review it properly.

In other news, you might have heard me kvetching on FB about my AC problems.  The damn motherboard that controls the doohickey went kaput.  Good news, the HVAC guy bypassed the board for this weekend and he has a dude who will delivery a new board on Monday, which he will then install.  So we're cool again, baby.

Which reminds me, we're in a heat wave down here.  Send cool thoughts.  It was 99F on Saturday and promises to match that today.  

Nothing much else doin' here.  How are things in your world?  Anything good to report?

Saturday, August 23, 2014

All You're Ever Gonna Be Is Mean

Ever know someone who, in the guise of being helpful, is just downright mean?  Bet you do.  Well, there's this person who shall remain nameless (you can think the name, just don't say it here) who makes part of their job being mean to writers who are sincerely looking for help.  Although why they would come to this person is beyond me - they must not be reading the backlist of posts.

A few years ago, I was one of the followers.  I so wanted to have this person as an agent.  I figured as high-powered as they were, they'd be good for my career.  And I took their meanness as frankness - which I appreciate.  After numerous rejections, I still tried.  Then one day, I decided to friend them on Twitter - cuz, hey, that's what writer folk do. They didn't accept my friend request.  Not only that, they blocked me.  Which confused the hell out of me, because I am really not block-worthy.  Unless you're a certain kind of person who likes to spout rules but makes sure they apply to everyone except themselves.  Then I could be block-worthy*  :shrug:

So, I didn't bother bothering this person anymore.  I mean, it was clear that any query I sent them would be rejected anyway.  "Oh, it's that B.E. Sanderson person again.  Auto-reject."  Oh well.  We had a sufficiently large chasm between our general philosophies of life, we wouldn't have worked well together anyway.  And still, I followed their blog because every rare once in a while - amidst the frankness meanness - they would drop a kernel of something important. 

At some point there's a watershed moment.  That moment when you can run one way or you can run the other.  When the scales are overbalanced to such a degree that you have to notice the benefits are outmatched by the bullshit.  No matter how many tiny kernels of data they may hide amongst the crap, they will never be worth putting up with the digging.

And you realize that all they're ever gonna be is mean.  So screw them.  And pretty much screw the people who follow them, too, because the comment chain is more and more like a gathering of the International Association of Mean Teenaged Girls all the time.  What are we, folks, thirteen?  Let's all point and laugh in sync, shall we?

Oh, and in case you don't know where the post title comes from, watch this

*block-worthy should totally be a word.


Friday, August 22, 2014

Cheap Decor Finds

Hey all.  I know I've already showed you my nifty typewriter and my awesome chairs - heck, they're right up there in the header for this blog.  This week, I got a really awesome painting for cheap and while I was taking a picture of it to send to a friend, I went around and took pics of my other art finds.  I thought today would be a good day to share those.

(And before you look, please understand that these are hung straight - it's the photographer who's a little tilted.)

This one is hanging in the office near Hubs' desk.  He loves labs.

This is over by the bookshelves.  I just loved the old world feel of this and the fact that it's a special print on a thin piece of metal.
Hubs and I found this at the antiques mall.  It's my first real painting (that I didn't do myself in art class.)  It's hanging where the kitchen transitions into the dining area.
Here's my latest score - another real painting.  We put this over the dining room table.
I found this next one as just a print in plastic in the thrift store bin.  Then I located a frame I liked in their frame bin, but that didn't have glass, so I bought a crappy frame with a good piece of glass.
I got this next one the other day.  It just makes me happy.
This next one I bought because the dog reminded me of my childhood pet.
Lastly in the photo array, but not the last stuff I have on the walls is one of the first pics I bought after we moved. 
All of the above for under $100 total.  Score!

Well, I hope you enjoyed the art tour of our house.  There are still a few boring spots on the walls, but I'll fill those as I find things that make me happy.  (And I have my eye on this gorgeous old print and frame of a train stop and people in Victorian garb. I just won't buy it until I can envision where it'll go.)

=o)


Monday, August 18, 2014

Fat Boy

Here's the pics of Fat Boy I promised on Sunday:

If his head was bigger, he'd be mistaken for a calf.

Now here he is with his mom, who we've named Scarlet:
Please note how Fat Boy isn't really that much smaller than his mom. 

And here he is taking a snooze in the yard:
Of course, we really have no idea if this is a male of female fawn, but Hubs read somewhere that the boy fawns are generally larger than the females, and he's been the largest since we first started seeing him. 

In other deer news, we learned he isn't the only fawn left on Walton's Mountain. Turns out we've started a trend and several other homes are now feeding deer, so they're hanging out at those houses instead of ours.  The twins we thought we lost are actually over there.  Yay!  I still miss the big herd around the yard, but at least they're okay.

Oh, and in case you missed it on my FB feed, the bucks came back the other morning:
=o)



Sunday, August 17, 2014

Sunday Update - Week 33

Hi ho.  It's Saturday night for me and Sunday morning for you, but I don't plan on doing any more work this week, so this is as up to date as I can get.

With regard to writing, I typed out 13567 words this past week.  I'm looking ahead a month and don't know whether I can get the rest of this done by mid-September.  Well, I might have the words all typed, but I'll still need to go back and polish it before I let anyone see it, so I won't totally be breaking my promise.  This just took way longer than I thought it would.  But it is so much better than it was before already, so that's a win.  =o)

In polishing news, I'm down to just under 104K and halfway through the book in the line-by-line tightening.  I wish I was farther along, but I slacked off on that part.

I'm also not making any progress in the research category.  No offense to them what love Mallory, but he's long-winded and I haven't the patience for him in my more advanced years.  The last time I read Le Morte d'Arthur I was in my teens.  Young with my scads of time.  (Probably skipped doing homework to read the book - cuz that was how I rolled, baby.)

I did work on the driveway drainage thing a bit this week.  We got like 2.3 inches of rain one afternoon, and it showed me exactly where the flaws were so I could correct them.  (It was like a freakin' river out there.)  I think I've got it mostly corrected, but I won't know for sure until the next big rain.  And who knows when that'll be.  :shrug:  Even if it is fixed, I still have cosmetic work to do - because right now, it's functional, but ugly as hell.  LOL

As I said Friday, I've also written several blog posts that will never see the light of day.  Long and ranty.  That's not the positivity I've been going for - either here or in my real life - so screw it.  Still, writing those posts helps get the poison out of my head so I can face the day without wanting to hide under my bed from all the crap going on in the world.

And just as an update, Fat Boy the fawn is doing well.  He kinda freaked me out the other day because he was sleeping in the side yard - and the last time a fawn slept in our yard, she died.  But he was just napping.  His mom showed up after a little while, and he got up to go eat with her, then they left together.  Since then, he curled up in almost the same spot after he finished eating while he waited for her to finish, then they left together again.  It's all very cute and Disney-like (minus the hunter part where Bambi's mom dies.)  I'll post pictures of him another day.  =o)

How were things in your world last week?

Friday, August 15, 2014

Hummingbird

Since the only posts I seem capable of writing this week are long and ranty (and unpublishable - hence the radio silence since Tuesday), here's a light and fun photo for you:

It's a female ruby-throated hummingbird visiting the feeder on my front porch. 

Have an awesome day!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Eating on the Cheap - Cowboy Dinner

Okay, in keeping with my post yesterday, I thought I'd post a recipe or two this week to help the budgetarily deficit.  So here's a recipe I came up with that we had for dinner the other night (and many other nights).  I call it Cowboy Dinner.

Cowboy Dinner

1 large can baked beans
1 small can baked beans
4 bun-sized smoked sausage
1/2 large onion
2 strips bacon
ketchup (optional)
BBQ sauce (optional)

Slice bacon strips into approx. 1" pieces.  Begin browning bacon.  Slice smoked sausage into about 1/2" thick slices.  Add sausage to pan with bacon.  Chop onion into about 3/4" pieces.  Once sausage and bacon are browned (but not crisp), dump them into a crock pot.  Put onion pieces into pan to brown.  Open cans of baked beans and dump those into the crock pot.  Stir together.  Take onion (not too browned or only just beginning to get clear is fine) and add that to the pot.  Stir until well combined.  Add in about one good squirt of ketchup (about 1Tbsp) and two dollops of BBQ sauce (about 2 Tbsp).  Stir.  Turn crock pot on high and let sit for 3-4 hours - stirring occasionally.  Add salt or pepper to taste if you choose.  Spoon into bowls and serve. 

With this recipe, you can obviously add more of anything or less of anything depending on your budget and the number of people you have to feed.  If you can't afford bacon, leave it out or use whatever REAL bacon bits you can find (Walmart's version of them is inexpensive and good.)  If you can't afford BBQ sauce, add in some chili powder and some brown sugar.  Don't have brown sugar, try maple syrup - but go easy on those or it'll be too sweet. 

As for the smoked sausage, I used BAR-S because I bought a bulk pack of 12 of those puppies and they weren't awesome on a bun, so I came up with this recipe to make them not suck.  And you could probably use pork-n-beans if you can afford those more easily than baked beans.  Work with it and work with your budget until you hit on a combination you enjoy and that you can afford. 

If you don't have a crock pot, use the biggest pot you have and cook it on low until it bubbles.  Everything in it is already cooked, so use your best judgment.  The extra cooking just helps meld the flavors better.

This fed both of us with enough leftovers for two lunches or another dinner (so 2-4 more bowls).