Taking on a Life of Their Own

I’m writing again and not just this blog and tweets hurled at the current occupant of the White House (Secret Service hasn’t been by to visit). In order to have new material, I have to sit down and actually create it (no chip in my head to translate to the Internet for your viewing pleasure. It’s a crazy, scary, jumbled mess up there anyway with calculations, mortgage guidelines, cat videos/memes/memories, and visualization of myself with the winning Powerball ticket. And stories, fragments, and “what ifs.” If my brain was a TV show, it would be an episode of “Hoarders” subtitled “The Craziest Pile of Shit We’ve Found Yet.”)

Looks about right

Looks about right

But I digress.

So, I’ve started work on a short story (whopping 802 words over 3 nights. Woo). I start out with pen and notebook (leopard print) writing narrative. It’s like jump-starting a standard transmission; hold in the clutch, get your friends to push it, when you get to around 10 MPH, pop it in first. My throwing it into first is moving the words from ink and paper to pixels on a screen.

And, that’s where the craziness happens.

Ask any author (and any author who reads this blog is invited to comment): At some point, your characters stop obeying your wishes and start doing things on their own. For instance, my current story (it’s a short story, so if I post spoilers, there won’t be anything left for you to read). I had an idea for what I wanted Patti and Ed to do. Their own words started coming out of their mouths. And then they started moving and doing “stuff” faster than I could keep up.

Time to turn off the motor, i.e., go back to the pen and paper to take notes.  (Please note: that is the proper use of i.e. Merriam-Webster wouldn’t lie)

This is really my notebook

This is really my notebook

So, I started scribbling. (I’m afraid to try to read my own handwriting) Dialogue fragments, questions to myself about the direction, various storylines (my initial one wasn’t necessarily going to remain). I almost wish I smoked (Never have). Just seems like a cigarette would be a useful prop for thinking. Cross-outs, margin notes, more questions…

All because two imaginary people decided to take on a life of their own.

My goal is to have this story complete (edited, printed, bound) in time for Book Obsessed Babes 2017 in Jacksonville on April 8 (Should my local friends read this, bring back a bagel and coffee from Einstein’s for me on Sunday, please).

After I finish writing this post, finding amusing photos to insert (or half naked men. They can be amusing, too), I will see where Patti and Ed lead me.

Half naked

Half naked

 

Life and Life and Life….

I got a very pleasant surprise this morning: the Authors Database named me and my books to a “Must Read” list.

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AUTHORSdb tweet

I have gotten only one bad review and that was from a guy who thought he was buying something else. Yeah, I don’t have as many reviews as J.K. Rowling (who I admire even more for her brilliant tweets), but only one bad one is pretty good.

In other news…

Life, the Universe, and Everything (we’re not far from the Deep Thought computer that Douglas Adams envisioned) seems to be hell-bent on seeing how badly I want to write something. I sat down to write a short story (which – are you listening, Life? – I want to have completed to offer at Book Obsessed Babes in Jacksonville on April 8) .

 One paragraph, one. One lousy paragraph and suddenly, I’m up to my armpits in other things demanding my immediate attention. This happens every bleeping time I sit down to write something new, I swear to God. One time, I powered through it and just hunched over my keyboard hammering away…

My computer died. And it died before I could upload the manuscript to a cloud and work on it from another device.  It took a year and a half before I could buy a new one (it was the lean times).

Life is a bully. Straight up. “Ooh, can’t reach your manuscript! Hey, your phone’s blowing up! (once, literally) Ah, look at that; you have to move. Poop emoji (Like is a bully fluent in modern hieroglyphics). Nice story you’ve started. Shame if something happened to it.“

o-POOP-EMOJI-ICE-CREAM-facebook

I hear from other authors that Life is equally mean to them at such times, sometimes in far worse ways.

So, Life, here’s the deal. Like it or not. I’m writing. You are not going to interrupt me. Got it? Go bug a sculptor or a stripper or someone doing a poetry slam. I’m busy.

In Brief…

A brief post tonight for a couple of things. Good things for me. Promotional thing.

First of all, Author MCV Egan interviewed me and reviewed “These Foolish Things” and “At Last.” Link below:

catalina

MCV Egan review

Also, I have 2 General Admission tickets available for Book Obsessed Babes 2017 on April 8, 2017 at the Omni (Oooh, swanky) in Jacksonville, FL. If you want them, leave a comment. Liking my Facebook page would help.

Bobase Jax 17

Susan Thatcher Author Facebook Page

 

 

I Am

You guys are getting a “two-fer” in blog posts today. One is me being pompous (at which I excel) and one is me promoting myself so you’ll say, “OMG. I need to buy her books and read them NOW!”

This is the pompous post, but I have something I’d like you to read, think about, and use. I want the people around me (and if you’re reading this, you’re around me) to be happy, free from worry, and have the psychic space, if you will, to enjoy life.

I-am-logo3-750x410

First, a bit of introduction. I have been a student of the Law of Attraction and quantum mechanics since I saw “What the Bleep Do We Know” in 2004. I had no idea what it was about, but I remember reading something in the Los Angeles times describing it as “fascinating” and a “must see.” My best friend came from a family of mathematicians, physicists, and one rogue lawyer. I wanted to understand the field a bit better (completely skipped physics in high school). What I saw changed my thinking on a lot of things. It is part narrative (Marlee Matlin, Elaine Hendrix, and Barry Newman (I remembered him from “Petrocelli,” an early 1970s lawyer drama on NBC)) and part documentary interviewing various doctors, physicists (Fred Alan Wolf talks about sub-atomic physics and says, “It gets a little nutty down there.” How could you not love that?), and a channeler discussing the effect of thoughts and emotions on our environment and that you can create your reality by choosing which thoughts get your focus. Energy flows where attention goes.

what the bleep

What the Bleep website

Two years later, “The Secret” came out on DVD and you’re more likely to have heard of that one. Essentially the same message, but simplified. And it has Fred Alan Wolf again. The takeaway, “Thoughts become things.”

You create your reality.

Somewhere, I came across the phrase, “’I Am’ is the most powerful phrase there is. It’s true. I have been on a roller coaster of financial/housing ups and downs since 2002. After finding these two movies, I changed my thinking about the down times. I chose to think of them as temporary, that my reality was something better, and I would return to it; I just didn’t know when.

“I am…”

How do you finish that? How you finish that sentence is your mindset about yourself. “I’m broke/tired/fat/depressed/helpless/angry/unloveable/lazy/useless/sick…”

shape reality

What if, instead of “I’m broke,” you said to yourself, “I’m okay.”? It’s not a denial of your financial condition; it’s shifting the focus from the negative to what is right. You may not have a fat bank account, but you’re housed, your important bills are paid, you have food, your needs are met. IN THE MOMENT, you are okay. That’s all you need. For the moment, I’m okay.

Chances are you’ll also be okay in the next moment. And the next.

“Well, I’m sick. Nothing I can do about that.” Saying to yourself, “I’m okay” doesn’t deny illness. It denies illness and pain their power to make you helpless and powerless. I sprained my hip once and any movement was brutal pain (I’m not a fan of painkillers, so I gut it out with anti-inflammatory meds like ibuprofen). After a couple of days, I went to roll over in bed and it was agony. I got so mad, I yelled, “Fuck you! You’re only temporary! You’ll be gone in a few days, but I’ll still be here!” Think of crumpling a piece of newspaper. I felt that intense ache diminish in intensity and area just like crumpling a piece of paper.

“I am okay.”

It’s an affirmation. It’s not Stuart Smalley, “I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and dog-gone it, people like me.” (Senator Al Franken during his “Saturday Night Live” days) played for laughs.

stuart smalley

It’s you telling yourself in two words that you will not let your problems eat you alive. You will claim this moment and psychic space for yourself. And the next one. And the next.

“But what if…” I would hazard a guess that if you can challenge “I am okay,” then you’re not arrested, blown to Oz in a tornado, being chased by a grizzly bear, or sitting in the middle of an IRS audit (actually, they’re pretty cool. They just want money and accurate accounting, not your immortal soul. You can be okay in an audit).

If you don’t feel okay, drink some water. Have something to eat. Close your eyes and take three deep breaths (unless you’re driving, then don’t close your eyes). Then reassess. If you still don’t feel okay, repeat.

I am okay.