The One Rule for Writers!

 

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from Business Today. 

I skimmed an aggressively positive art-related how to blog correctly post, as you do. When you’re scrolling with a bored WTF am I doing with my life? air over on Twitter or elsewhere.

The social media sites that seem to be the wildly popular versus those who are not, with nobody-land, right there in the middle of those two extremes, being virtually uninhabited. It’s an either/or world when it comes to likes for a post across the social media global-sphere.

Whatever! Totes my goats!

So! 80 percent ‘helpful’ content for those who bother to ‘stop by’ for a visit and 20 percent SELL YOUR WARES. 80/20 which equals a hundred! 

So, here’s my advice for writers.

Do not follow my example, ever. There!!

Whew!

Whatever I do, writers and wannabe writers…you do the opposite. Glad I could help.

Ha ha ha, okay.

I should work up a list of writerly advice. So those that ‘stop by’ can chuckle, shake their heads or nod with wide-eyed wonder at my deep nearly unfathomable wisdom.

It’s an either-or world lately.

I must reflect that here…instead of writing a fifty page monologue with no paragraph breaks entitled, simply, “manifesto”.

Which would basically just be cuss words arranged in, hopefully, some new and startling formations, and which will end with ‘death to all enemies of unicorns’.

Because actually naming your enemy or enemies in revenge-minded cuss word-laced pages means I might have to start a GoFundMe page for a team of lawyers to get me off on the insanity plea.

All of which would make for the blog posts that the blogger who gave the rules for successful art blogging warned against!

Number one rule for writers from me? I guess it’s write. Yeah. Write stuff down. Send it off. Wait for the rejections. It’s a fun and fulfilling cycle that will turn you into a stellar human ‘bean’. Ha ha.

Always end on a happy, jokey note. Develop a heavy thick skin would be my other rule…or pretend to. You can sob in private, after all. You can pretend really hard in public.

That’s what adulting is, after all.

Oh– I have two books for sale. Two!

Oregon Gothic and House on Clark Boulevard.

I also might have Aftermath coming out soon. It’s been in editing for a while, so.

After that will probably be The Remarkable Women of Brokenheart Lane. I’m reading through that now and it’s a hoot!  I’m not puking over how bad my own prose is! That’s always a plus plus plus! Cannibal bikers versus wily old ladies in Fallon, Nevada! It’s funny and a lot gross!

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Ditsy Scatterbrained Hagfish

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from Redland City Bulletin. Hello, last remaining bee!

As I microwave my ancient morning coffee, which is ice cold, I ponder. I wonder. I’m also ovaries deep back in a Wonderfalls revisit. Talking souvenirs and kitsch objects giving cryptic instructions to a slacker chick. Because reality right now is just…um.

I wonder what it will take the crack the sneering veneer of Trumpikans. An actual murder? I wonder why the Democrats still have their velvet, be nice, gloves on.

Take em off, you squirrels. Take em off.

Stop playing nine-dimensional chess with assclowns swinging battle axes at everything in sight they find scary, threatening or scary. You two groups are not playing the same game. For thirty some years now, dears. Yeah.

I put half a candy cane in my microwaved coffee, by the way. Just for full disclosure. Yes, I still have candy canes left over from Christmas. Shoo fly, that might have been the last remaining bit of one. Can you buy candy canes for Easter? Honest question. I like mint, peppermint, the general mint family. Snapple with mint is still right up there as one of my favorite drinks of all time. Do they still make that? Honest question.

BRB!

I don’t believe Snapple makes this anymore. My hasty, barely glanced at google search seemed to find no evidence that Mint Snapple is available in March of 2019. Sad. Sad!

Spring has sprung. The spring bulbs planted eons ago yet again shove up their spiky green leaves, with hints that tulips and daffodils will soon follow. Bloom for about three days, then go back to sleep until next year.

The bees, all two of them, buzz about, inspecting me for pollen. Still don’t have any, bees. You’re making me nervous, bees.

Oh look, we still have bees. Global warming must be a hoax if I still see bees…

Seriously, Demo-door-mats, take them gloves off. Why do you think people are so freaked out by AOC??

IS SHE PLACATING THE VERY ONES PUNCHING HER IN THE FACE?

No, squirrels, she’s not.

I should run political campaigns, huh?

I’m trying to be super-cheerful. I don’t think I’m pulling that off. At all.

I’m readying my tiny bit of ground for a tiny garden attempt. My zukes were wildly abundant last year, yet my pumpkins, after a late belated start, were so so.

My eggplant…the less said the better but it was a weird ornamental variety. It tried. It grew tiny little eggplants!

Something kept eating or destroying my cukes and the summer squash never really got its engines running, if you catch my meaning.

The oregano went to town! My dill plant delighted me! The lavender, oh my! Lemon balm, never again. I don’t know what to do with it. I think I’ll try rosemary this year as I love rosemary in pretty much anything. Dill, yes! Sage and thyme! I might just go for spices and zukes and pumpkins.

I actually did manage to make pies from pumpkins I’d grown, after all. At least three!

I just need to work on my pie crust skills. Ouch. Ugly pies but they taste okay. I’m ashamed! I watch all those baking competition shows! My pies look like something that fell on the floor, then got stomped on by buffalo. I can and will do better!

I also need to dust off a novel that needs working on or finishing or…I’ll put a note up, stare at it a lot.

Work on novel.

Work on play.

Work on screenplay, you ditsy scatterbrained hagfish! 

What am I working on?

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New Puppy. Brigit. Don’t be fooled! She’s a perfect engine of destruction. 

 

It’s beginning to look a bit like spring time! I turned the earth over yesterday for my mini garden, Year Two. I’m also moving the stumps to New Locations. I am cognizant of both function and decoration via my mini garden. I am also eyeing the places where rabbits and ground squirrels like to visit. Plus, there’s the New Puppy. She likes to dig. Investigate where the humans go. Check out why the humans do this or that. I have a feeling my mini garden might not survive New Puppy.

Politics. If I. It’s just. WTF. I??!!

After that above enlightening delve into the current state of American politics, let’s move on. Oh sure, there’s a political rant in there eight miles long. It slaps the Spirit in the Sky, nut punches Jesus and generally includes words better suited for our POTUS and the Locker Room Boys known as the GOP. Anyhoo!!

What am I working on. Nothing.

That’s right.

I don’t have a PROJECT on deck or waiting in the wings. It just tires me to even think of rumbling up the engines right now. Or ever again. Which is troubling, to say the very least about that.

I have the Oregon novel. Which deals with the sorts that took over the Malheur wildlife refuge over by Burns. I really do wish to work on this. Eventually. It interests me. I like doing the research into extremist radical gun-toting scary ass militia groups as well as Oregon history. Scraping some sort of novel out of all that, interesting as well. But not right now? Or maybe tomorrow. Or.

Rework my Beastface Bay tales. Fuck no.

Start a brand new something. Maybe even a PLAY. What?? I never leave the house. What can I write a play on?

My conversations with the three dogs?

My inner monolog on trying to decide to make a pie or not out of whatever I can find in the fridge?

A family story that’s so boring it’s almost interesting but it’s not? Something I saw in the news cycles????

Seriously, when fiction can’t compete with your basic cable opinion piece on liberals taking their babies home to kill them, reported with a straight face as if true…yeah. You just kinda deflate like a sad little balloon writer-wise. Maybe that’s just me?

That’s total fiction, of course. But all we hear is that LIBERALS KILL BABIES here in ‘murica. It’s going to be a slogan for 2020. It’s predictable. They control the narrative, so they get to direct the narrative with the Lefties playing wide-eyed defense. It’s just…fuh.

Oh no, political rant about to snarl forth like a castrated lion looking for a snack.

Short stories, flash fiction, humorous essays? Mmm. Nope.

I seem to be running on dead writer batteries.

I even scraped myself together long enough to go to a FREE WRITER’S WORKSHOP. In Nampa, Idaho. It was on a Saturday, all afternoon, at the library, which was right by where that other writer’s gathering had been! So I knew how to get there and back again. Score!

It wasn’t in the downtown one-way hell of Boise!

Yeah, I went to the workshops, as there were four of them. I did three, then the fourth had to be held at a coffee shop, as the library closed at five. I just headed home, I’d had enough. All three of those were practical, well run, informative and actually helpful.

Death Rattle is the name of the organization here. I can’t say enough nice things about them. I’m glad they exist and that they’re nearby. 

I wish, sort of, I’d schlumped off to the fourth one. The drive back was right as the sun was going down, so trying to see the road turned into GUESS WHERE THE ROAD IS HA HA for me. I also treated myself to a sausage biscuity thing and an outing outside my present comfort zone.

I also felt guilty. I was wasting time. I was feeding my delusions that I’m a writer. I clearly am not a writer because writers, well, for one thing, actually write. 

My thoughts all the time. All the time. All the time. A constant punching stream, with me as that bag the boxers hit. Except it’s punchy thoughts that swing haymakers at whatever’s left of my drive, ambition or will to GET SHIT DONE.

Maybe it’s time for the ole writer standby of heroin, wine, mind-altering shit that allows one to be totally oblivious to reality while writing about reality. 

I am trying to co-write a screenplay. I should have whipped that out in a couple days. Nope.

To sum up!

I just need to retrain myself to start writing again. Something like that. Just put some crap down on the page! I am in a frightful abyss, looking upward for any bit of light. There isn’t any. I always admire people who are positive, or at least pretending super-alot. The ones who’ve lost their entire family to the local volcano, then found out they have brain cancer. Their dog then gets run over, and their house catches on fire. Yet, that person smiles at the world, going, oh, isn’t that daisy growing through the cracks of that mass grave grand?

Maybe I need to hang out with more creative sorts. That energy seems to sizzle the old writer batteries a bit. Except me and other humans have seldom gotten along. I’m always too much or too little in some way…it’s confusing. Oh sure, just be yourself! If I fucking knew who that is, I’d now be a teacher with a pension plan, a bad perm, wondering what would have happened if I’d followed my dreams…

You get hammered in the face, dear.

That’s what I’d tell that other me. You get hammered in the face and it’s supposed to mean something. That’s pretty grim.

Smile. You look so pretty when you smile!

So, there ya go. You’re all caught up on my Artistic Strainings. Thanks for stopping by. I hope…

mumbles something about almost ready to outline that Oregon zombie novel set during the imagined ages of Middle Earth if it were run by the Narnian minotaurs. Almost ready. Almost.

 

 

 

Groundhogging

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I remember February 2 as being my grandfather’s birthday. Now that you’re warm and fuzzy or perhaps full of rage because your grandfather happened to be a total bastard, or bastards, if you knew both…Where was I?

Groundhog.

The groundhog said it will be an early spring. A charming American tradition or rodent torture run amuck?

Punxsutawney Phil.

There’s a Bill Murray movie about this, where he’s caught in an endless loop until he learns to be a nice person.

Why did this tradition catch on with America? I have no idea. None.

Oh wait, I do have an idea: I think we think it’s cute and charming to have a giant rodent predict the ending of winter wrong most of the time. It feeds into some sort of anti-science, pro-magic sort of mindset. We like our air conditioning and computer-run cars, but evolution is a plot dreamed up by Al Gore to bilk the government out of hard-working tax payer bucks. Global warming is a hoax made up by the Chinese to turn everyone into commie social marxists. Wheee! Freedom!

[ note to self– must stop reading comments under science articles. Must stop reading comments under science articles!]

I’m sure others have done in-depth psychological essays on everything Groundhog Day. I won’t.

Writing? Art I writing-eth? Oh woe betides and sucketh much-eth moi!

I seem to have wandered into some sort of Lake of Ultimate Doubts. I’ve drowned, they’re performing CPR right now. Someone is. I hope they are. I don’t think they are.

Who are they???

I haven’t been writing lately. I find I can’t concentrate. That I write something for a bit, then read over it, go…OMG THIS SUCKS DEAD WHALES. Then I start over.

I repeat this pattern for days on end. Days. On. End.

It might be the epic bout of never-ending depression. It might be that I suck as a writer. It might be that damn groundhog. It might be invisible unicorns sent by the trickster gods of Narnia. At this point I am open to all suggestions and ideas.

I am trying to get submissions off. I am trying to rework old pieces, get them turned into better this or that. I might be making them worse. At this point, I DO NOT KNOW.

Welcome to Writer Has Massive Doubts, Episode One Billion, Two Hundred Six.

Is there a writer alive or very dead that hasn’t suffered like a groundhog forced to predict weather patterns for an entire country?? WELL?? IS THERE??

Prolly not!

Fifty Shades of Sharknado

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Our one snow storm, from December or so. See the corn? And the cows? Mm.

Dreams. They invade our sleep like strange armies. Jumbles of images, faces we’ve gathered while awake. I remember reading that the faces you see in your dream are faces you’ve seen while awake. As your brain can’t or won’t make up new faces to delight or frighten you with during dreaming time. There are no strangers in our dreams. Which is rather creepy.

Well. Last night. Yours truly had a dream. Where I combined my local scenery with that guy from Fifty Shades.

Stop. Stop right there.

You’re either laughing or already looking to perform an exorcism on yourself after reading even that far. It’s not one of THOSE DREAMS.

It was more me walking up and down the lane and road by the house as we chatted, then we were riding in a car, in what looked like downtown Los Angeles somewhere, at night. You know how dreams abruptly switch locations on you? Yep.

Summer. Sunshine. Yet the corn field across the way seemed in its winter state. Yellow bits of stalks left, the electric fence up to keep the feeder cattle contained. As people turn out their herds on harvested corn fields here, let them eat away to their heart’s content on corn stalks. Not being in the cow business, I have little to no interest as to why this is. Something about not wanting those giving birth to be too fat or something. I really do need to perk up my ears about the bovine trade, oh dear. Where was I. Oh yes.

Summer yet winter corn!

The juxtaposing of two seasons, yet the harmony of it. All while I’m chatting away to Mr. Fifty Shades. Jamie Dornan?

My truly malicious naughty dream inventor creature slapped together some amalgam of the Fifty Shades brooder with what is probably not the actor’s personality at all. Also, this amalgam stood in the lane, quite a distance from me. I walked up and down the road! Yet we could hear each other fine.

We had supernatural hearing. As you do in dreams.

Yes, a bit of polite flirting. I remember him muttering I wasn’t ready yet. Ugh? Then I was asking him what it was like to make that movie, if that was okay to ask him.

So it went from the Fifty Shades character to the actor, back and forth, like a weird game of chat tennis. It was both the Fifty Shades grim alpha hamster and the more down to earth, perhaps a bit more realistic actor persona.

Which I totally made up, I’m sure, for that dream series of sequences. Am I  a fan of Dornan or harboring a ghastly desperate want to get a slice of that fantasy? Not that I know of!

The dream ended before we two arrived at whatever destination in this convertible car. You should always drive in downtown Los Angeles in a convertible when dreaming– that’s my sage advice for now and always. But we clearly liked talking to each other. I perhaps miss people I can talk to– that might be what this dream tried, in symbols, movie stars and country roads, to tell me. TALK TO ACTUAL PEOPLE, YOU TWIT.

Maybe it’s a warning. Talk to real people before you actually do become one of those crazy hermit sorts, muttering at the rats you’ve made your boon companions about the state of today’s youth.

Maybe it’s meant to tell me to stop watching awful movies, just watch the ones that win lots of awards. No, no! I’ll never give up my junkie bad movie ways! No no no!

Ah, well, probably be checking the mail in my dreams tonight while chatting up one of the sharks from Sharknado.

Don’t bite me, combined with– Did you enjoy being one of the main sharks? Wherewith the shark will bite me, then answer–Tip top, I did, old chum, it was jolly good fun, lots of laughs.

You’re British?? Why is everyone British these days??

Don’t be spiffy, dahling. I’d like to chew your arm off, do put that in the mailbox already!

[My dream creator might add some Jeeves and Wooster in there, oh heck.]

A bit of light-hearted nonsense on a cloudy January day.

I also completed a one act play.

You may now cheer, clap your hands, grin foolishly for hours, o gentle readers. Celebrate in a suitable fashion. Remember to get some rest afterward.

I wrote twenty pages or so of dialogue about tigers, Pocatello, Idaho, and ghosts.

Clawtooth.

It needs some spiffing, pages numbered, nipple clamps added, but by Jove, it’s a rough draft! Mr. Gray will be so pleased. 

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This is from Sharknado II. I’ve seen all of them. 
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In case my genteel, well cultured readers had no idea to what I was referring. Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson as Edward Gray and Bella Steele. Something like that! Tee hee. 

XAVIER AND VICKIE

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Miz Bridge. A little skinny cow dog mix. 

Christmas. It’s over. I have tales. A new dog. A relationship so toxic Baby Jesus winced even as Baby Jesus gave the two the side eye. A funeral. Ah.

The death of a mother. A friend of mine. Right before a big holiday season. Not pleasant when there isn’t a string of days devoted to this or that. Horribly nasty when it takes place during festive times. A Buddhist funeral. I’ve never been to one. I went with another family member, who’d never been to one either. This was a neighbor lady, Japanese, who had lived at the house across the field for eons. Farmers. Everyone about here are either farmers or teachers. Or cook meth. It’s that kinda world here lately.

Bells. Incense. Chanting. Very dignified. A sort of foggy Christmas Eve day. No snow. Wet, muddy, foggy. A reminder that Dicken’s immortal classic began with a funeral on Christmas Eve. Marley’s. More bells and the sweet odor of incense. 

Christmas Eve is spent with the hillbilly side of the fam’ly.

Christmas Day was and is traditionally spent with the other half of the family. Both sides of my family got along very well, in case you were wondering. Both sets of grandparents really enjoyed visiting with each other. Both sets migrated here to Oregon and Idaho from Nebraska, where they grow corn and manners and tornadoes. That’s what I’ve gathered from all that talking back and forth over the years. Christmas Day was giant meal, the women did all the cooking, and we played cards all afternoon.

Christmas Eve was spent with the hillbillies.

That’s my own pet snarky nickname for my mom’s kith and kin. I did get to see pictures of the cougars my cousin trapped and hear about how the price of coyote pelts is through the roof right now. I silently wondered who’s buying fur anymore. Who the fuck is that? Cause you’re not eating the cougar meat. You’re not eating the coyote meat– though I did see where you can cook it and turn it into haute cuisine sort of food. That was when Andrew Zimmerman still wandered through the Travel Channel. But anyway, before I get distracted and this gets super-ass long as hell!

I do cuss. If you’re new here, well. I do cuss on occasion.

Yes, now to Xavier and Vickie. Which is not their real names.

My little group trundles off toward the Christmas Eve festivities. It’s a foggy, muddy, somewhat rainy Eve. No snow. No real cheer. Just obligation and the thought of the chips and dips. Which tell me the holiday season is truly nigh. Sad. Chips and dips is what I look forward to, not halting awkward family interactions and hearing that the lib’rals have attacked God-fearing red-blooded ‘murican farmers.

I’ve done entire blog posts about what I hear pooped out of human mouths around me. M’kay.

We get there, it’s cool. As in groovy, not my auntie needs to turn the heat on or stuff some wood in her wood-burning stove.

Calm.

Most of the people showing up for this gathering are already there. It’s mellow. My aunt has enough food to feed Boise bubbling, boiling, baking or waiting to go into an oven. Ham. Turkey. Taters. Stuffing. Bacon mac and cheese, from scratch…with six kinds of cheese in it. OH MY WORD. Oh look, chips and dips. And then someone else brings bread and HOMEMADE DIPS THAT ARE SUPER TASTEFUL.

Veggies? No. I have yet to see a veggie dish show up since the death of my own mother over ten years ago. No salad. No squash. No weird green bean casserole attempt. Just meat and carbs and DIP. 

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Old-timey recipes! 

However, I pick up on how watchful people are. Waiting. One cousin is not yet there. I hear, nearly five seconds after I enter the house, decorated with red and green, blue and silver, gold and sparkly lights, that Vickie is a bitch. There’s the oh no, don’t start that yet admonishment. Do I already know what is thought of Vickie and her California ways? Yes. Yes, I do. Yep, she’s from California. California is a bad word in Eastern Oregon/Western Idaho. It’s kinda the queen mother of bad words here. You want to really insult someone, ask if they’re from California. [Because it’s run by liberals, the housing, the myths and legends people absorb as truth, the…uh huh. Then, Californians are all moving to Idaho and Oregon, ruining everything. Uh huh.]

I’ve mentioned that one, too. I know I have.

Okay! So we’re all waiting for Xavier to show up. If he and his little woman show up. It’s that kinda crowd.

Ah, the two arrive. The lights splash along the driveway! We’re all tensing already. What will walk through that door? Stay tuned to find out! Where’s the dip??!!

It’s just Xavier and one of his very young chil’ren. She’s fucking still out there in the car, he snarl-snaps at the startled, still sorts watching this entrance.

Suddenly, we’re watching a Eugene O’Neill play, except with modern language added. [The f bomb, mostly.]

Xavier dumps his first load of baby stuff– as it takes several Sherpa loads these days to take babies anywhere– to fetch the other kid and the rest of the stuff, presents and stuff. Vickie has not yet made her appearance. We’re all…uncomfortable audience members to this kitchen sink reality show of epic proportions. It takes perhaps half an hour before Vickie makes her DRAMATIC ENTRANCE.

DOG SHIT. ON MY SHOE. BIG PILE OF DOG SHIT. RIGHT THERE BY THE CAR DOOR. WHAT THE FUCK? DOG SHIT DOG SHIT DOG SHIT!

She’s more wound up than a barrel of rattlesnakes and twice as poisonous. Something like that!

Instantly, as we’ve been enjoying the two very young babies– both under two years old or so– the tension goes to eleven.

Xavier bristles. Vickie uses Wet Wipes to clean the poo from her shoes. Instead of just removing her shoes, leaving them by the door. Or laughing about stepping in dog poo right out of the car door. Or…so many other choices here than what she chose to do. [It’s family, you pretend you have manners. If I learned nothing else, I learned that, hello!]

Though dog poo on velvet shoes or delicate little spendy numbers you adore…but. I saw the shoes, just some old cheap ass boot looking things. Then the mutters, from Vickie, about the baby crawling on the floor…mm. If the tap water was drinkable. To keep so and so away from Baby X. Mutters. Oh the mutters one overhears at times. 

Xavier and Vickie apparently fought the entire time they drove to the Christmas Eve gathering. Apparently, they’ve been fighting since before they met, if you know what I mean. So, there’s muttering. So much under the breath muttering, just muttered loud enough for all of us to hear. Those not front and center in this O’Neill gritty reboot, have the side eyes down to an art. We’ve all become experts in body language communication exchanges. There’s selective deafness goin’ on! Whee!

The holiday air seems stained with invisible dirty bomb emissions. The chips and dips, so good! Everyone’s munching or in the other room, shoulders hunched up. Because surely, this ugly pimple is gonna burst. Spray noxious fluids all over us. Ever had one of those ugly angry white-topped pimples? Yeah, like that. Ever watched cysts and infected pimples get drained?? So gross and yet so satisfying!

Where was I.

The presents get opened. Ah. Thanks! The sound of ripping paper, the asking if those pretty boxes were bought at Joanne’s. [The local craft store.]

The food, the literal mountains of food, become available for consumption. The alcohol has been flowing, so actual food that’s not chips and/or dip, nice. Xavier, shoulders hunched to his angry earlobes, slaps some of that food on a big disposable plate, prepares to chow down. Vickie mutters she’d sure like a hot meal as she slams about getting out baby food stuff. Xavier about comes out of his angry skin, like a butterfly bent on rampages, bursting out of a cocoon, ready for carnage. He shoves that giant disposable plate away. He goes off for cartons of baby goo to shove at the youngest kiddo. The older kiddo gets mac and cheese and other tidbits. The two sit on the same side of the table. We’re…careful. Watching. Afraid to breathe.

Are the guns locked up? [I had that actual thought. Both sides of the fam’ly are totally into GUNZ.] This is the lead up to one of those Christmas Eve drunken fam’ly shootings. I’m watching it in real time. That was the impression I had.

Now, the two are shoving food at the two kids. Neither talk. The one year old can barely crawl. I see Xavier about once or twice a year, if that. My other cousin’s little woman fills me in on all this so…I have the gossip and what I observe. Okay!

Not long after the most uncomfortable dining experience I’ve had to sit through in years, Xavier and Vickie pack up their spawn, their shit, and head back ‘home’. Without a kind word for each other, without much enjoyment shown toward either kid, with faces like death masks from a Greek tragedy. A Greek tragedy channeling Long Day’s Journey Into Night with big handfuls of Mamet’s way with certain words thrown in.

During this brief, awful family drama unfurling, I go outside where people are smoking the funny weed that’s legal in my state. I burst out about the tension, what the hell is this, does anyone have any heroin, because it will take the edge off that scene in there. We all laugh, gossip fiercely, suck down some smoke. Because hey, why confront directly when you can smoke funky plants and gossip in half-whispers?

No. I don’t do heroin.

Okay! I’m not around Vickie on a regular basis so I don’t really know her but it does seem she got painted early on as a bitch, and unlikable. That she never really had a chance. When you’re around people who don’t like you, no matter how nice they’re pretending to be, you tend to get defensive. A lot defensive. Poor Vickie can’t avoid her own kid’s grandma. Well, she can and has, I gather. What a mess, a hot sticky this is gonna hurt to actually resolve this MESS.

That was my Christmas Eve. I had pecan-flavored whiskey, but did not get drunk. A bit high, but not drunk.

The fate of those four caught in some loop of resentment, outright hatred, commitment entanglements, children, obligations, job loss…ugh. I don’t know. Counseling might help, some neutral party that can weather the pimple bursting far better than family members can. I see a nasty as hell breakup galloping down the two-lane. Maybe people going to jail for assault. [Yes, that’s the air I got from all this.] I don’t want to hear Xavier and Vickie imploded and took everyone around them downward, too. I want to hear they took a realistic look a their situation, their relationship, worked out custody and money matters, then parted for good. So they could both heal from all this and become far better people on the other side. That’s my Christmas wish this year.

And the writer part of me…sadly…goes– how to use this? They don’t read my stuff. Or if they do, I don’t hear about it. [If that side did read my collected works, they’d tar and feather me, after asking me if so and so was them…] Family drama fuels a thousand percent of literature is my humble opinion. Usually first-hand family drama.

Except those writers who grew up in a vacuum somewhere in the wilds of Oregon on a communist commune where nothing happened except the day’s baking of nan bread. They grew up, wrote nice poems about flowers and were politely puzzled at another writer’s seething three-book rage-athon on why their dad was a POS.

Xavier and Vickie, poor things. Their two little peanuts. You just want to offer to take the two kiddos, let the two adults go destroy each other all they wish…

But hey, found a stray dog. Cream underbelly, dark brown silky soft short coat. What we call a cow dog. But there’s something else in there. Rottweiler? German Shepherd? Maybe even a bit of pit bull? Boxy head. Smart, female, no collar, skinny. I did post her on social media. I did ask the folks living where I found her if she was their dog. Nope. I found her where we’ve found other dogs, it’s a spot to drop unwanted canines out. Brigit. Or Miz Bridge. As she was found by the bridge. Yeah.

So far she’s torn up some mats and a old magazine. And my flip flops. But. She’s a big puppy yet.

I’ll end on a nice note instead of the intense sadness that is my cousin’s life situation at the moment. New dog! Oh and it snowed. It’s not a muddy spring-like mess without. Snow. I do love snow.

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I just like this pic. We have rabbits, there’s snow now on the ground. Then I wonder if that poor bunny is cold…

Blocked

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from the Whiskey River Soap Company.

I read, somewhere, in the vague reaches of the internet’s reachage, that writer’s block happens because there’s serious doubt going on. Or some sort of self-ingrained idea that no matter what you write or create, it’s CRAP ON TOAST. So why bother at all?

Bingo. That one wormed inside, took up residence, made itself a cup of tea on the inner barely working stove. Where only two of the four burners work, and one of those working burners keeps trying to quit, too.

Obviously, I’m wallowing in those Don’t Wanna Write Nuthin’ waters.

There’s no joy left in creating anything word-wise. Even my silly, ain’t gonna show this to no one, crapwriting won’t flow like a sad little river these days. I’ve started the same file over about five times now.

Then go–I’ve written this EXACT FREAKING THING ALREADY, GO FALL ON A RATTLESNAKE, YOU TALENTLESS WEASEL. How dare you try to write at all, you BLEEP BLEEP BLEEP!

Bleep.

Same goes for a play I started. Started it several times over. Want to scrap whatever I wrote, start over. It’s a compulsion at this point. Start over. Start over. START OVER. Write about fifteen pages, get that notion that even a dead syphilitic rat would not piss on this! Then I go read headlines about the state of the world.

That’s where I am, writing-wise. Defeated at the thought that not even a dead rat would bother wetting itself [I know, how can a dead rat pee on anything? I know. Just humor me a bit here.] on pages I’ve managed to form from the deep voids.

It has not snowed yet. It’s cold, it’s supposed to snow tomorrow. But today, no snow. None. Snow perks me up.

Maybe I’ll write the Bestest Thing Ever!!

when or if it snows tomorrow.

Maybe the dead rats will pee on it with glad singing in their dead hearts.

Maybe? Maybe. Maybe!!

And those little voices in my head whispering no no no nope no no way nope nope nope.

Little fuckers. They never shut up these days…!

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from Showpo. Yep. Yep yep.