Writing & Publishing

Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!

I was off today, so with Bill on Spring Break, we took advantage of family time.

A few weeks ago, The Cat in the Hat came to visit our local Barnes & Noble. Here was Talia’s reaction (notice she was excited as long as he was at a distance!):

Then because my sweet friend Caroline was working and knew it was Talia’s birthday that weekend, she had them sing to her!

0211171041.jpg

The Cat gave her a cupcake, which she quickly took!

When we got close, she hung onto me for dear life (while I balanced Liam in the carrier!):

0211171050.jpg

Today the Cat wasn’t there for story time, but we did read Green Eggs and Ham. Talia loved it. She also enjoyed pinning the tail on Horton, and coloring after!

Do you have kids? What did you do for Dr. Seuss’ Birthday? What is your favorite Dr. Seuss book? I think mine has to be “Oh, The Places You’ll Go!”

The children are now in bed, so I’m off to work on my book proposal on the Old City Jail. Be sure to look back at the post from earlier this week for photographs!

 

Advertisements
Life

How I Ended Up On The FBI Watch List (Probably)

Okay, so I don’t know for sure if I am actually on the FBI watch list, but it’s a pretty safe bet. Here is what happened:

It started with Isis…the cat, not the terrorist group. In 2010 when I was at the pet supply store with my yellow lab, a kitten up for adoption reached through the cage and started petting my dog on the nose. Her name was Izzy and I took her home. At the time, I was plotting a book (I am yet to write) about ancient Egypt. I had studied some of the goddesses from the era and loved the name Isis. It meant new life, which is what this kitten was getting.


Here is a picture of Isis with our iguana “Hulk.” He has since passed away of old age, but he was pretty cool!

Around the time Isis came home with me, social media started gaining popularity. Of course I was posting pictures of my sweet kitten, left and right. This was also the time the terrorist group started becoming popular. Since we all know the FBI and NSA watch social media, I was sure it was too late to change her name….I was already on the list, I’m sure.

Fast forward to this week. My friend Kim (also a writer) and I were helping each other on some story telling aspects as well as doing some of our own research for our novels. Using social media (we usually talk through Twitter or FB Messaging) we discussed how to blow up a large number of people outside a garage as well as how to traffic small children into the sex trade in India. Do you see the problem here?

Both of these instances are for research for books and not because we actually want to blow anything up or traffic anyone…however, a recent article revealed certain “target” words (target is actually one of the words) used on social media will land you on watch lists.

Keeping in mind my husband is a US Marine and we both LOVE our country, we are rather safe. I may be made of Italian part, but I am 100% American. There is no where else I would rather raise my family. Bill and I are lucky, we are living the American dream, and would never pose a threat to our country or fellow Americans. Even still, I can only imagine what the FBI/NSA/Etc thinks when they look at my social media. I can just see their faces if they were to access my browser history…….and it’s all in the name of literature! (How else can I write the next great American novel?!!!”

I worry one day I will end up in some predicament where my computer is seized and they look at it and think something is going on that really isn’t! I only hope I will be able to explain myself should the FBI come knocking!

Anyway, in other news, today was Story Time for Talia at Barnes and Noble. Daddy brought her because I had to see my shrink first thing this morning (she isn’t your typical shrink….we have a very friendly relationship, and I should probably start thinking about a good Christmas present…).

I met them at the bookstore and I was able to find Night by Elie Wiesel. Instead of waiting for it to come from Amazon, I whipped out my coupon and member card and made the purchase. (It is still cheaper from Amazon if you can wait.) I should have it finished for the book club on Monday, so make sure to follow the blog!

Talia picked out two books to read (well, for us to read to her) and Daddy found her a Dr. Seuss hat!

Also, in case you are wondering….the kitten is STILL here. Today he is helping me write….

I have been averaging about 5,000 words a day on my novel “Seeking Sita,” so maybe the cat isn’t a bad idea after all…..

Military Spouse Life

BYOB = Bring Your Own Butter

It was BYOB today at Barnes and Noble! It doesn’t mean what you think though….it means Bring Your Own Butter!

Actually, for all the butter I’ve seen Paula Deen use over the years, she looked fabulous tonight. Allow me to explain….

The day started out at one local Barnes and Noble for story time….which we missed….because I was late. Seriously, it lasts like 5 minutes. She still had fun…

image

We used a gift certificate she had from her birthday to purchase Curious George and an Elmo book!

image

Then it was off across town to another Barnes and Noble for our tickets…

image

We went home long enough for me to apply for some writing gigs, and then back to Barnes and Noble….

image

Paula Deen herself was there signing books. The woman looks FABULOUS!

She was also really sweet. She actually took Talia right from me when it was our turn to get our books signed. It didn’t last long though! She wanted mommy…

image

image

image

When the meet and greet was over and we had our books, Aunt Beka insisted on something from the cafe, where Talia had a cookie…..most of which was on her face!

Tomorrow is just as busy, but more focused on my own writing. It’s nice to be writing again!

Military Spouse Life

Settling In

Mommyhood, Day 13:

Talia will be 2 weeks old tomorrow and I’m trying to figure out how to slow down time. Everyone keeps telling us to enjoy this time because they grow up too fast. I can see that. I wish I could change it.

Since I can’t, I’ll do my best to enjoy it all. Talia sleeps A LOT right now, so I am anxious for her to be a little older so we can all do stuff together. In the meantime, I’m reading more than I have in the past, and getting more writing done!

I did start reading The Creating Brain: The Neuroscience of Genius. The book so far is talking about creativity and how to measure creativity. It’s absolutely fascinating! I was hoping the book would help me with my research for my own book, but instead it has me asking more questions and wanting to know more about how the brain works and what defines creativity and what defines genius. The most interesting part of the book (so far) is where the author has first hand accounts of known genius’ (i.e. Mozart) talking about their creative process. To hear how he thought in his own words was fascinating!

wpid-imag3805.jpg

This is what the book looks like, if you’re interested. I was able to start the book on Saturday while my good photographer friend started doing Talia’s newborn photo’s.

wpid-imag3807.jpg

wpid-imag3815.jpg

wpid-imag3811.jpg

It took about four hours, and I’m glad Selena and I are friends, because Talia urinated and defecated on her, the props, the blankets, and basically everything she touched. She did NOT want to go to sleep at all. Several times, daddy had to step in and sooth her. She is absolutely my (Sicilian) daughter!

In the end, she did get some great shots, and I can’t wait for all the pictures to come back!

I then was able to continue reading while Bill got his hair cut. This is not normally something I’d share, but as I sat there with Talia waiting for him, I knew as a writer, I had to share. The place where he gets his hair cut is a goldmine for writers.

It’s called “Ed’s Barber Shop” and it sits in a semi abandoned strip mall. The owners are trying to bring it back to life, but the only worthwhile place in there is the Barnes and Noble. Most of the stores are empty, even though it is at a busy intersection with a great anchor store. Apparently, Ed’s has been there longer than Bill and I have been alive. Directly next door is a Supercuts, though this doesn’t seem to be a problem for Ed’s. As I sat there reading, I noticed a steady stream of customers flowing in and out of the door. Customers came in and sat in one of the old plastic chairs which seemed to be from a left over school auction. They were greeted by the staff and promptly sat down, waiting for their turn in the old metal chairs with the original leather. They must be from the early 60’s.

The rest of the fixtures appear to be the originals as well. Old wooden cabinets with mirrors starting to cloud. On one wall sits several taxidermy heads protruding over the cash register. There are no hair products for sale, no up to date fashion magazines, and the hair dryers were clearly left over from the 80’s. It doesn’t matter though, Bill enjoys going there. Sure there are no plush comfy chairs to sit in, no head rinse stations for a quick hair wash, and you can’t buy overpriced shampoo made to smell like botanical gardens, but who cares? Ed must be doing something right, because the chairs are always full, and the customers are clearly repeats.

wpid-imag3817.jpg

It’s one of those places I really hopes survives. I would much rather see a small business owner succeed, than the giant next door with the corporate logo and shiny new floors.

Anyway…

Because our school has decided to split semesters into 7 week courses (you take either two or three and then two or three more instead of four to six over 16 weeks) we are about to end the first set of classes for this second half of the year. I’ve managed to hold a 100% in my Creative Writing class so far, but I have one more assignment to hand in today, so I best get on it.

Ciao for now!