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Tuesday, December 18, 2018

I did it!

Went to a second writer's workshop.  And I tell you, after my first experience, I was terrified.

Terrified about reading "out loud" in front of strangers -- haven't done this in over 20 years or so.

Terrified about driving there and back, especially if it got dark.

But my shrinkologist told me to "face my fears" and go.

So I did.

Drove, but took the dog with me.  Drove even though it was raining on my way there.  My plan was to ask to read first, get it over with, you know, so I could just relax, but ended up reading 3rd, but at least I was able to leave before it got dark out.

And I did read it.  Read the first five pages of Chapter 2 of my memoir in progress.  Didn't cry, though I did tear up a little, managed to pull myself together and finish it.

And guess what? Got a lot of support, good comments/suggestions/critiques.

I think the most important thing for me was to hear some good feedback, know I haven't "lost my touch" as it's been over 10 years since I've written a book and I do doubt myself.  Especially since I've never written a "memoir".  My self esteem has been in the toilet lately, and I constantly wonder if my writing is "good enough" --- and after attending this group, I feel much more confident that I can actually do this, write this memoir, and get it out there, published.

It's going to take time.

Especially since I'm still dealing with these damn contractors!  I cancelled a dental appointment for tomorrow because supposedly someone will be here to repair the solar pool heater or at least figure out a way to bypass the solar and just use the gas heater.  I've not been able to swim in nearly 3 weeks, it's killing me as this is my big stress reliever (daily swimming).  Kona not happy either.  And both of us not getting enough exercise....

So my stress level is high, and doesn't help it's Christmas season without Bob and bah hum bug to all the sappy commercials and lovey-dovey music! it's damn depressing and lonely....  Can't wait until it's over.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Ho Ho Ho & Happy Home Maintenance!

I have spent the past two months trying to find someone to fix two leaks in our garage/guest house roof.

The guys who did come by, took one look and fled.  Yeah, it's an old roof....

Most wouldn't even return my calls.

The one who said he could do it and start in two weeks, which was back in October, finally called and said he was "too busy".

I finally went on Home Advisor and got connected with an "old timer" whose been in the business for 40 years and he managed to get her done, finally.


"In process"


"After" -- they managed to salvage the old tiles
and replace them after replacing the rotted wood underneath

And now just have find someone to paint new wood on the eaves and rafters.........  Though, I have been thinking about doing it myself -- somewhat scared to climb that high -- at least before I re-do my will!

And also have to get the guy out here to fix my solar system for the pool.... and have to fix a toilet and faucet and the sprinkler system (which wasn't working until I kicked it, ha!) but don't know how long that will last...

Seems all I'm doing lately is trying to keep this house from falling apart!

Good news, though, my father is back home!  Thank you all for your prayers and support.

Oh, and I signed up for the next writer's workshop -- my shrink told me to "face your fears" and go again.  Wish me luck!  And fingers crossed, I won't freak out and flee again......

Friday, November 23, 2018

Writer's Workshop

Well, I thought I'd be brave this month and join a local writer's group that holds monthly meetings.  It's been a long time since I've been to a writers' group and I was a bit nervous, hell, what am saying:  I was horribly nervous!

The group actually had an application process, "send in the first pages of your current project" and you have to accepted into the group.  I did, and I was, so that was a good sign, that a) my first pages of my memoir were "good enough" and b) looks like they only accept serious writers so wouldn't have be hearing a lot of poorly written stuff from writer-wannabes.

So I went, I took Kona with (asked first before I brought her).  The meeting was supposed to be from 2-5 p.m.  There was nine writers there, and by 4 p.m. only two had read their pages aloud and boy, did some of the folks rip them apart. We took a break and I went outside, walked around, starting freaking out afraid to read and get "ripped apart" -- also my dad in the hospital, worried sick about him, worried Kona was starting to get antsy, it's a long time for even a service dog to "stay down" and then I had a major panic attack.

Pretty much ran back into the room, grabbed my stuff and told them I had to leave! now!  The facilitator wanted me to leave my copies of my work, but I didn't want them ripping me apart behind my back, so she asked me to e-mail copies everyone.

I felt like an idiot taking off like that.... but I just couldn't do it. And it was getting late and didn't want to be driving in the dark going home either.

So this week, with much trepidation, I did e-mail my first five pages of my memoir.......

And guess what? I got some great responses:  Here's a few:

"Thank you for sending the brilliantly written excerpt of your memoir. Wow! I felt I was reading it in The New Yorker or a literary magazine. Don't change a word! I love the way you convey keeping feeling by sentence structure and action rather than by labeling the emotion. I read it out loud to my wife and she cried and wanted to read the rest of it right away.  I'm so glad you're sharing this with the world."

"Thank you for entrusting me with your incredibly moving manuscript. You are, undeniably, a talented writer..... Please, please PLEASE come to our next meeting!"

"It gave me chills. It made me feel like your brain was wounded and incapable of emotion only capable of noting objects and the color/shape of things. It reminds me of Debussy. Opening lines to piano pieces. It appears from nowhere. A single one. The next doesn't fit. They don't synchronize. They tumble on note after note until the movement is over.  It's perfect!  Loved it!"

"Well done! I immediately felt connected with your sadness."

Of course, there were some picky edits and advice, change this word, this sentence isn't need, take out this word, etc. but so far, the one's I've heard back from have been mostly lovely, some of the advice actually good and it's really has cheered me on to keep at it.  But, I haven't heard back from everyone, yet.

And then, conflicting comments, i.e. "don't change a word", to "change this or that." Who do you believe?  But, depending on any more comments ----

I'm thinking maybe, maybe, I'll try to go the next one in December.  Also depending on where the  meeting will be held, as they seem to change locations and I don't want to drive too far to get there....  Jeepers, I wish I could get over this anxiety of driving.  And the anxiety of "reading a loud" my own work.

Last night, went to Thanksgiving at friend's house and had to drive home at night. I was stressed about that, then cheered when I made home safely!  Only I cheered a little to early, because when I backed into the driveway, I ran straight into a pole. Damn! No major damage, just another freaking scrape on the car.....

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Wishing Everyone a Happy Thanksgiving

Today, my father will spend his first full day in Rehab.  He was discharged yesterday from the hospital.  They say the pneumonia and sepsis has cleared up.  Fingers crossed, that he will be home soon.

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Just an update

about my dad -- he was doing so much better yesterday, and discharge plan was on going on home Monday.  They stopped the IV antibiotics but then the pneumonia has gotten worse and also sepsis infection.  So, up and down.  And I'm thinking, well you know I'm thinking I don't trust the medical establishment at all -- so what the heck are they doing?

Thank you, in advance, for your thoughts, white light and prayers for both my Dad and my Mom (who is going crazy -- as I know how it is... )

Monday, November 12, 2018

My Father

Korean War Veteran --  should have been honored on this Veteran's Day but instead in the hospital tonight --

Pneumonia? Other issues?

Still don't now -- taken by ambulance Sunday morning...

Stressful day.

Thinking of you, Dad, sending my prayers, white light, positive healing your way.

And please, anyone reading this, send your prayers, light, healing energy, positive thoughts to my father, Leslie Snyder.


Love you, Dad, you are and always have been a wonderful father. And glad you are my Dad!

Great well soon!!!