Monday, December 30, 2013

A good story can be a real killer & Your Monday Fortune Cookie, 12/30/13

What doesn't kill us usually makes for a good story.

SNARKY RESPONSE:  And afterwards, it's best told with copious amounts of alcohol.

What doesn't kill us usually makes for a good story.

Isn't it strange how often the sad stories, the difficult issues, and the painful episodes are the ones that we harken back to the most? Tragedies are infinitely more relatable than comedies. And, if you look closely at any comedy, you'll find the funniest things are built around a moment of pain, be it slapstick or satire, someone's hurting in there somewhere. The difference is that experiencing tragedies is more often private while comedies are public. We withdraw with sadness, but we fling ourselves outward with laughter. This is my observation and my experience.

As writers, we are lucky to be expected to break with that pattern and outwardly share both the sorrows and joys of our characters. Only if we convey the emotional depths properly can we hope to bring our readers the connection they need and desire in a good story. So, we hoard every experience, good or bad, recording the stimuli and response so we can remember it for the page. And what we don't or can't actually experience, we delve into our imaginations, building on the closest proximity, and creating the best facsimile we can.

So, writers and readers, take heart and this advice, when life hands you lemons, yes, you can make lemonade, but be sure that  you also take notes. Someone, somewhere, somewhen is gonna ask you how you did it. Trust me.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Wisdom? From Me? And your Monday Fortune Cookie 12/23/13

Wisdom is on her way to you.

SNARKY RESPONSE: I hope she's a lot more reliable than her cousin, Lady Luck! Marlon Brando immortalized that lady's unreliability in Guys & Dolls!

Wisdom is on her way to you.

Personally, I think Wisdom has opted to take the Grand Tour on her way to me. I get an occasional postcard in the form of a momentary burst of brilliance or personal fortitude, but mostly it's all kinda "wish you were here" from Lady Wisdom.

But I have learned this piece of wisdom - courtesy is never out of style.
Saying "thank you" is a simple two-word gift that you can give to anyone and everyone who offers you assistance and/or support.

Thank you, everyone, who has supported me in my writing endeavors - RichWriters, Writers Endeavor, James River Writers, Virginia Romance Writers, and especially all of the Strumpets of Tea & Strumpets! 

And thank you to my husband and family for everything they do every day to make my life more complete. Without you and your love, NOTHING would be possible. Love & thanks!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Best Laid Plans...Last Minute Shopping...Books!

Drop by the Celebrate with a Book event at Regency Square Mall on Saturday, December 21st, from Noon to 4pm! I'll be with a group of talented authors braving the last minute shopping frenzy to offer a dazzling array of books to help round out that Christmas list. 

This will be the first public appearance the paperback version of COLLECTOR'S ITEM. I'd love to see it nestled underneath Christmas Trees or tucked into Christmas stockings this year!

Stop by and say hello.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Diamonds, Tears, and Your Monday Fortune Cookie, 12/15/13


SNARKY RESPONSE: Unless we're talking about diamonds. Just ask Marilyn.

The pleasure of what we enjoy is lost by wanting more.

I think this is a particularly cynical or perhaps puritanical fortune. Cynical by assuming that we're so unappreciative by nature that something is devalued by desiring more. I'd think that the value of what we have is increased by our desire for more. And that's where the puritanical comes in, we should NEVER ask for more than what we are given. Why not? We seldom get without making the effort to earn or ask for it. I'd love to hear your thoughts, pro and con.

Today's fortune is very apropos to this the final section of BY TEARS BOUND.


His last kiss still warm on her lips, Annaree watched Erskine stride away from the village toward the cliffs.  He stopped at the edge where the cliff trail dropped below the horizon to wave before he turned to start down to the beach.
She stood staring long after he disappeared below the horizon, imagining his path down to the pocket beach, to the cave and to the discovery of his missing pelt.  She imagined his anger at her betrayal.  She had tried not to fall into the trap, but it had closed around her heart just as it did for every man or woman who had loved a selkie.
Unbidden images of their life before and after this morning rose in her mind.  The fading of shared laughter into the silence of betrayal, the passion that drew him to her turning to a desperate passion to return to the sea.  What had possessed her?  She had thrown it all away.
Knowing the realization came far too late, she drew a shaky breath, slammed the door behind her and ran down the path toward the village.
Annaree burst into her best friend's house.  "Maeve!  Maeve!  Where are you?"
Maeve poked her head around a doorway and frowned.  "What's wrong?"
"Where is it?"  Annaree demanded.
Maeve stepped into the room and jerked her chin toward a chest tucked under the front window.  "Not to worry," she said, wiping her hands on her apron.  "I've got it safe and sound in there."
Annaree threw herself to her knees and yanked the chest open.  For a moment, she stared down at the seal pelt, the reality of what she had done catching at her heart.
"'Twas right where you said it'd be," Maeve said, unaware of Annaree's distress.  "Had a real time getting it in that storm."
Annaree gathered the pelt into her arms and rose to her feet.  "I can't. 'Twas a mistake. I can't trap him this way."
Maeve reached out a hand as if to hold Annaree back, but stopped, hazel eyes clouding in sympathy.  "Even if you give it back, he'll never forgive you."
"He'll understand.  He has to understand.  He has to."  Annaree's voice cracked against the truth reflected in Maeve's eyes.  She shook her head, spun and raced out the door.
Oblivious to the surprised looks and shouted questions, Annaree ran through the village, her arms straining to hold the pelt.  But she refused to stop; she could not spare the time.
The village disappeared behind a curve in the cliffs and still she ran.  Storm debris littered the beach beneath her feet--crushed shells, dead crabs, foam and driftwood.  She stumbled and almost fell several times, but she did not stop running until she saw him standing on the sand, bareheaded, staring out at the sea.
She staggered to a halt at his side, gasping for breath, tears wet on her cheeks, and held out the pelt.
"I'm sorry," she said.  He did not move or acknowledge her as her words tumbled over each other.  "I don't know what I was thinking.  No, that's a lie.  I know exactly what I was thinking--I love you and I wanted you with me always.  Not just on stormy nights or foggy days or whenever you show up, but every day."
She studied his profile--the high brow, the bold nose and the line of his jaw, tight now with anger.  But he said nothing and she filled the silence with her attempt to explain.
"But when you left this morning, I knew I couldn't do it.  I knew I couldn't trap you here.  You're everything I asked for, but you're not mine.  So, here--take it.  I'm giving it back to you.  Just please don't leave me."
Again, she held out the pelt and waited.  He stood silent, so still he could have been carved from the cliff behind them.
The wind caught the tears that trickled down her cheek and tossed them into the waves.  She felt each drop that left her skin.  Just so had she cried the day she wove her spell and now she felt her tears unweaving it.
The man she had known as Erskine turned to look at her and she bit her lip.  His eyes held no warmth for her, only a cold flatness that cut her to the core.  Her arms sagged and the pelt slithered to the sand between them, a shimmering pile of brown.
He bent and scooped it up without hesitation, his silence eloquent, his face expressionless.
"Good-bye," she whispered to the stranger in front of her, then turned and walked away.

Do not cry into the sea, lassie
Let not your tears meet the waves.
For should the water of your eyes
Meet the waters of the sea
A selkie man will steal your heart from thee.


I hope you enjoyed BY TEARS BOUND. I'm sorry if you were expecting an HEA, but perhaps a future incarnation of the story will provide one. Maeve and Random Bay appear in my fantasy e-novella, The Festival of the Flowers: The Courtesan and The Scholar.

The poem that brackets the story leapt into my mind as I was researching selkies for this story. The Orkney Jar website spoke of the spell and Annaree's desire, dilemma, and disappointment were born. I just love research, don't you?

Sooo, do you agree or disagree that today's Fortune Cookie matches up?

Monday, December 9, 2013

By Tears Bound continues and Your Monday Fortune Cookie


SNARKY RESPONSE: Except for brussel sprouts. Oh! Nor anything intentionally containing insects as an ingredient.

Try everything once, even the things you don't think you will like.

You might be expecting me to take back my snarky response, but I'm standing by it. 
Now that that's out of the way, here's the next section of my story, By Tears Bound. I hope you're discovering that, unlike brussel sprouts, you like this.

By Tears Bound

Dressed in a gown of flowered cotton, Annaree left her black hair loose about her shoulders.  When she dabbed a drop of perfume in the hollow at the base of her neck, the touch of the dropper sparked memories of other touches.

Gravel crunched outside and she stoppered the bottle.  Setting it on the shelf, she turned to the door.

A knock, and it opened.

Erskine stood on the threshold, his hat pulled low over his eyes, his smile a flash of white.

She forced herself to cross the room calmly, her voice casual.  "Why is it you only come to see me when a storm's brewing?"

He pulled her into his embrace with a laugh.  His cloak blew around them while the storm broke over Random Bay, sending rain and wind racing through the village.

"I guess the wind just pushed me this way," he said before his lips made conversation impossible.


Life in the village revolved around the pub during a storm.  Life on the beach depended upon hiding from the ravages of the storm.  And life in the house at the edge of the village consisted of languorous kisses, passionate sex and drowsy conversations.

"Tell me another story," Annaree asked, snuggled against Erskine, her hand on his chest.

"I almost think you bed me for my stories as much as for my dashing good looks," Erskine teased, his voice rumbling against her ear.  He yelped as she tugged on a handful of chest hair.  "I yield!  I yield.  What would you hear?"

"Another story of your people and mine," Annaree said, hoping her voice would not betray her.  "Something with a happy ending."

"My people's experience with yours seldom ends happily, Annaree," Erskine said.  "Selkie magic is linked to his pelt and that link is our greatest weakness.  We cherish our time as humans; the contacts we make are treasured and savored for their rarity and brevity.  But humans have persisted in using it to trap and control us for centuries.  And even without that, there's the spell--the one you cast to call me from the sea."

Annaree paused, the words of the spell rolling through her memory.  Standing knee deep in the waves, she had cried her grief for one man and cast a spell to call another.
With seven tears shed in the sea
I call a selkie man to me.
From the ocean far and wide
My tears will call you to my side.
With seven tears shed in the sea
I call a selkie man to me.
"To a selkie male, the tears of a human female are like ambrosia to the gods, and yours the sweetest I'd ever tasted."  Erskine stroked her cheek with one finger.  "Such sorrow, such longing, such determination."  He rolled her over onto her back, his brown hair falling forward to curtain their faces.  "But I've no complaints.  Have you?"

Annaree fought the urge to tell him, then shook her head as she drew his face down to hers.  "None."


Silence pulled Annaree awake and she tensed beneath the blanket.  Eyes closed, she strained for the sound of raindrops pattering on the thatch overhead.  Instead, she heard the faint notes of birdsong.  The storm had blown itself out during the night.

For a second, tears prickled the back of her eyes and she squeezed her lids tight, willing the moisture not to betray her.  Only when the battle was won did she open her eyes.

The pillow beside her was dented from his head and her questing hand felt a trace of heat on the mattress.  She drew a slow breath and rolled over.  He stood before the window, naked, staring out toward the sea.

Pushing herself up on one elbow, Annaree watched him, admiring his unconscious grace.  "I've never known a man so comfortable in his nakedness as you, Erskine," she said.  "Though, to be honest, I've seen only one other naked man in my life.  And while Donnie shared my bed and my body, he never would have stood so before my eyes."

"Why should I not be comfortable like this?"  Erskine asked.  He turned, his face in shadow, his skin gilded by the morning sun.  "Should I get dressed?"

"No!"  Annaree bit her lip, embarrassed by the breathless denial.  She smiled.  "No, I like it.  But I'd like it better if you were over here with me."

"You're a wanton woman, Annaree Velton," Erskine said, laughter dancing around the edges of his voice.  "I like that about you."

"It's all that sunlight, my bonnie lad."  Annaree smiled and slipped back under the covers to clear a space for him.  "Now come and show me how much you'll miss me when you leave."


I hope you enjoyed this section and that you'll come back by next week to read the conclusion of By Tears Bound. Until next week.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Offering you a story along with your Monday Fortune Cookie, 12/2/13


SNARKY RESPONSE: Yeah, and it'll be way too late to do anything about it.

Someday everything will all make perfect sense.

Usually, I try to write something loosely related to the theme of the fortune cookie, but I think it's time to change it up a tad. You know I'm a writer, and I've indulged in the occasional shameless self-promotion of my books. Well, I've decided to offer you, in serial format, one of my short stories, published back in 2008 - By Tears Bound. I hope you enjoy it.

By Tears Bound

Do not cry into the sea, lassie.
Let not your tears meet the waves.
For should the water of your eyes
Meet the waters of the sea
A selkie man will be called to thee.

"Storm coming," Annaree murmured as she stood on the cliffs overlooking Random Bay.  The rising edge of clouds piled up on the horizon drew an early twilight over the coast.  The approaching storm pushed the wind before it and dusted the tops of the waves with foam.

Earlier, the fishing fleet had scurried into the harbor, the fishermen beaching and securing the boats as best they could.  Now the men would be gathered in the pub, downing dark beer and telling darker tales of storms long past.

A gust of wind wrapped Annaree's skirts around her legs and tugged at the shawl around her shoulders.  She tightened the knot at her throat as she watched the sea foam scattered on the beach below.  Then, she turned from the cliff edge and headed down the path to her house at the edge of the village.  Her fingers grasping the knot of her shawl tight, she smiled.

Storm coming.  Would he?


Golden lamplight filled Annaree's house while she bathed in the tub she had pulled in front of the fireplace.  Lavender scented steam rose from the water to perfume the air and coaxed the waves of her hair into loose curls.  But the relaxing warmth of air and water could not keep her from straining her ears for the sound of a footstep, a knock on the door.

She remembered the first time he came to her, appearing on her doorstep ahead of a savage nor'easter that raged for days.  She had checked her supplies carefully and prepared herself for a long lonely wait when there was a knock on the door.

Thinking it might be her best friend Maeve Tillson come to check on her, Annaree rushed to pull the door open.

"Maeve, I'm a big girl.  You don't ..."  She stumbled to a halt as she stared up at the tall stranger in her doorway.

"I'm sorry, sir," she said.  "Can I help you?"

"I think it's more a question of can I help you?"  The man's smile was a flash of white beneath the shadow of his hat.  He held out a bundle to her.  "I believe this may be yours?"

Before she could reach out, a sudden gust of wind made the door shudder in her hand and she remembered her manners.  "Please, come in."

"Thank you."  The man swept his hat from his head as he crossed the threshold and tucked it under one arm when he paused just inside the door.

Annaree latched the door against the wind and turned to see him still holding the bundle.  "Oh, I'm sorry."  She took it in her hands and then froze.

Her hands identified the familiar bumps and knots, her eyes recognized the pattern of stitches--her shawl!  The one she lost the day she ...

Her head jerked up and she stared at the man.  "Where did you find this?" she asked.

"It came to me on the wind," he answered, his dark brown eyes holding hers.  "It came to me when you called me from the sea."


I hope you'll come back next week to read the next installment of By Tears Bound.

Monday, November 25, 2013

What do a shard, a circus and a rooster have to do with each other? And your Monday Fortune Cookie, 11/25/13


SNARKY RESPONSE:  Yeah, good luck with that. How often have you thought "direct" was another word for bossy, bitchy, or officious?

Be direct, usually one can accomplish more that way.

Correspondingly, the shortest direction from Point A to Point B is a straight line, however, my bus tour of London was far from a straight line, and I was so busy snapping pics that I hardly heard our guide. I figured, and rightly so, that I could always Google the various landmarks and then put the names with the photos. There was just too much to see not to be captured by the images flashing by my bus window. Unfortunately, a moving photo platform makes for a lot of blurry images, but I managed to get about 1,000 pics decent pics.

And NO, I'm not going to subject you to them all, but here are a few of my London favs.

Piccadilly Circus - London's Times Square
Did you know Piccadilly comes from the word "piccadil" which was the name of a frilled collar used in the 17th century? And the "circus" part comes from the traffic round-about or circle. Circles are the traffic intersection of choice in the parts of England we travelled. Some were just small circles of grass and or shrubs, some had decorations in them representative of the locality. Imagine not ONLY having to ride on the wrong side of the road but negotiating traffic circles at every major intersection? I'm so glad I didn't have to drive.

Trefalgar Square celebrates the Battle of Trefalgar and Nelson's Column dominates the square. There are four plinths or platforms for commemorative statues, three occupied and the fourth left empty, currently used to display a variety of sculptures. Currently the Big Blue Cock holds pride of place. Rather jarring compared with the more traditional sculptures surrounding it, but definitely eye-catching.

Speaking of eye-catching - any Whovians will recognize this shot. The Doctor and Clara were deposited in Trafalgar Square in front of the National Gallery.

And how could any trip to London not include a shot of Big Ben and the London Eye, or better yet, BOTH in one shot!

Buckingham Palace was as impressive, stately, and beautiful as expected.

On the opposite side of the architectural spectrum is The Shard, designed by Renzo Piano

And finally, can you name this famous bridge in London?

Not London Bridge but Tower Bridge. I was delighted to get some really good shots of it from the side of the river and feel this is the cream of the crop.

I will continue featuring pics from my trip in future blog posts, so be warned. I hope this won't scare you off because I'll be including other topics and such among the pics. After all, I took 1,000 PHOTOS! I've got to do something with them, right? LOL

See you next week!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Hoarding, England, and Your Monday Fortune Cookie, 11/17/13


SNARKY RESPONSE:  Absolutely! The one who dies with the most "toys" wins!

In The Game Of Give And Take, Hoard.

This piece of sage advice does not come as news to anyone who has a hobby addiction of any kind. From antiques to toy soldiers to needlework patterns to model car kits, anyone who has a hobby rapidly descends into hoarding! Bits and pieces, research and meets, hobbyists will be hard-pressed indeed to resist the next "sparkly" that comes down the turnpike, website, or vendor's table.

In case you haven't been following me on facebook (why not?), I've just gotten back from my first ever trip "across the pond" to Merry Ol' England. My husband is a model ship junkie, and a member of the International Plastic Modelers Society. This year, there was a big conference in Telford, England, and they offered a 7-day tour of military museums to interested attendees. I'm NOT a modeler, but who am I to rain on my hubby's parade. Besides, it meant I got to go to ENGLAND!

I've always loved England and all the British Isles. My dearest wish was about to be granted. And let me say right off the top, the trip exceeded my wildest expectations. Even though the focus was on the modelers, I found myself caught up in the history and the beauty of the military museums.

The weather was exactly what I had heard - mostly overcast, sometimes rainy, more often drizzly, occasionally sunny. The temperature was mid to upper 60's. I took my new prescrip sunglasses and only needed them twice. We bought umbrellas on our first day, having forgotten to pack any (silly tourists) and used them often. I used my cell phone as my camera and took over 1,000 pics in hopes that I'd get a good 100 or so decent shots. Since we spent a lot of time traveling in a tour bus there were a lot of blurry pics to be discarded.

The plan was to spend the first day in London doing a bus tour, then begin the round of museums. And there were a LOT of museums, with never enough time to spend in any of them. Our last day sent us spinning back to London from Telford with a brutally short 45 minutes in Stratford On Avon and Shakespeare's Birthplace museum (my personal trip highlight).

But let me reassure you that even though I am not a military history buff, I became fascinated with the stories presented at each museum. Sadly, the focus was inevitably on war and the horrors that only mankind can inflict upon itself--and continues to do so. It's so hard to understand why we have never learned that lesson, but I can only pray that one day we will evolve past it.

The next few weeks will see me inflicting pics and commentary from our whirlwind trip through southern England. Here are a few pics from London to get us started!

The London Eye - From Afar

Buckingham Palace - The Royals Are At Home

The Tower of London
The Tower Bridge

Monday, November 4, 2013

Conflict, Story, and Your Monday Fortune Cookie 11/4/13


SNARKY RESPONSE: Oh, yeah. I'm even getting critique instructions in a crunchy cookie shell.

Every Good Story Requires A Little Conflict

And every good romance needs a bit of conflict between the hero and heroine. It's all about that "will they or won't they" that keeps a romance reader reading.

In COLLECTOR'S ITEM, the conflict between KT Marant and Peyton Allers is a struggle for supremacy. Two strong-willed people facing off over the best way to get to their individual goals.

Peyton Allers struggled to contain his temper as he faced the "princess" of the Marant clan, AKA Katarina Teresa Marant. Because a high-blood princess had slipped her leash and made herself a target for the Collectors, his cover and his operation were blow. No simple "chip & tip" would do for this Collector's Item, damn it!
KT finally lost her temper. She slammed her hands onto the floor and leaned forward to thrust her face toward his. "And just like that, you let your best chance at catching Douglas Torne slip right through your fingers? As well as my best chance to find out who has my aunt? Not happening. I won't allow it." 
When they finally resolve this contest of wills to join forces, I hope you'll agree that they truly do become greater than the sum of their parts.

COLLECTOR'S ITEM is now available in paperback at Wild Rose Publishing and on Amazon.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Pay-offs, Subs, and Your Monday Fortune Cookie 10/28/13


SNARKY RESPONSE:  Yeah, and the check is in the mail, right?

All Your Hard Work Will Soon Be Paid Off

Talk about hard work!

Anyone who says writing isn't hard, hasn't been doing it right. At least that's what I've been told and, frankly, that's also been my experience.

Oh sure the first draft is a breeze! Caught up in the moment. Chasing that brilliant story idea down the pathways of your imagination...and over the cliff.

It's  not the sudden drop that kills you, it's the sudden stop.

That's the moment when you begin to realize that you have to worry about characterization, plot development, voice, theme, and grammar. All the fine details of continuity - names, physical characteristics, verbal tics. Is the setting easy to visualize and the world-building both invisible and convincing? Does the dialogue flow easily through the mind or off the tongue? No one can ignore the rules without paying the cost. 

You have to make a solid effort to provide your reader with the best story told in the best way that you know how. And that takes work. Time invested in choosing the words, the phrases, and the action. Time putting it down on paper and then reading it over and over as you fine-tune it. Then time re-reading it and revising it some more. Words in/words out/rinse/repeat.

And from my perspective, while it might get easier as you become more experienced, it never becomes automatic.

I've just pushed the SEND button on a submission to my editor. It's a terrifying moment knowing that it's gone out of my hands, and I'm not going to be there when it arrives to help clear up any mistakes or misunderstandings. Will that cold read by my editor be all I hope it will be?

I just know that there's gonna be something I missed. Something I didn't quite nail. Heck, on that final read through, after having read Aces Down until I was green around the gills, I still discovered some continuity issues, missing words, and unclear situations. I fixed all I could find and now I have to hope it was enough. Enough to help my editor fall in love with Norah and Tristan, and the rest of the gang at Aces Down.

Well, only time will tell. Fingers crossed.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Good News! Options, We Love Options!

Wishes do come true! Indeed they do!

SNARKY RESPONSE: That's not a fortune cookie fortune

Yes, Snarky Me has called me out, but she doesn't mind because we're throwing ourselves a little party today!


Because I just got official word that COLLECTOR'S ITEM is now available in paperback! Isn't it BEE-U-T FUL?

Alpha were-jaguar, Katarina "KT" Marant is trained to protect the pride so when her aunt disappears, KT naturally takes up the hunt. Her suspicion settles on the Collectors, humans who view shapeshifters as the ultimate big game.

Peyton Allers can't believe he's got to blow his cover to rescue a shapeshifter "princess." Even harder to believe is that she wants to stage her own kidnapping in order to catch the leader of the Collectors and find her aunt.

Everything goes sideways when KT is kidnapped for real and by someone she never suspected. Will Peyton find her before time runs out? Or will she become a true Collector's Item?

Available NOW at
 and on Amazon

It's truly yet another dream realized. I've got a book in paper!

Novellas in paper are generally not considered a profitable price point, which is why I resigned myself to not realizing this dream for a while. THEN, TWRP, who had granted my First Wish of publication, granted my Second Wish of print publication!

I have to thank my editor, Callie Lynn Wolfe, and my publishers, RJ Morris and Rhonda Penders at The Wild Rose Press, for what they do to support me and all the Roses.

I hope that if you or someone you know prefers reading physical books, you'll consider picking COLLECTOR'S ITEM to Place On Your Book Shelf!

Wow! I actually get to say that!

COLLECTOR'S ITEM can be put on your book shelf!

Happy dancing!

Monday, October 14, 2013

Mondays, Maxine, and Your Fortune Cookie 10/14/13


SNARKY RESPONSE: That's a lovely sentiment, Fortune Cookie Guru, but I ascribe to a different credo, as espoused by that wise woman, Maxine, and others:

Life is not a journey to the grave with intentions of arriving safely in a pretty well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out and loudly proclaiming, "WOW! What a ride!

You will maintain good health and enjoy life.

You know, Mondays get a bad rap. We B&M (you can figure it out) about Mondays, but ANY Day that serves as the first day of the work week would get lambasted. If our work week began Tuesday or Thursday, we'd call it the dreaded T-Day or something.

Yeah, Wednesdays are fortunately positioned in the work week. That hump day mojo is pretty strong right now. Especially thanks to a certain insurance commercial.

It's pretty funny, but I bet even that ubiquitous ungulate would have a hard time selling Wednesday if it was the first day of the work week instead of the crest of the weekly slog.

Really, we should celebrate Monday's arrival. Yes, the drudge-trudge to Friday has begun, but the hardest part is now over. We're up. We've started, we've begun. We're on our way. WOOT!

Let's hear it for Monday. After all, there's only ONE a week! Think about THAT one, why don't ya!

Monday, September 30, 2013

Fall Ponderings and Your Monday Fortune Cookie, 9/30/13


SNARKY RESPONSE: Of course. It'd be ridiculous to say that one's ability for success will be followed by accomplishment. No, wait! That makes sense too? Today's fortune is a kind of palindrome. Who knew?

Your ability for accomplishment will be followed by success.

I was going to write about something else, hopefully something inspiring and worthy of a fortune about "accomplishment" and "success," but as I sit here at my desk, with my window open, I'm thinking about fall.

Sure, I can still hear frogs inviting someone, anyone, over for a drink and a roll on their lily pad, but soon the temps will drive every self-respecting amphibian into hibernation. Alone. Solitary confinement until spring when they'll emerge and begin their chorus all over again. Unless they don't survive the plummeting temps, in which case it's the next generation who will take up the tune.

Anyway, potential death in the marsh notwithstanding, fall is definitely beginning that downward spiral to winter.

Temps are falling,
Sap is receding,
Leaves are falling,
Daylight hours are dwindling. Everything is headed down.
Despite the holiday heyday,
Life is heading toward
Winter's full stop.

Despite the fatalistic vibe, I still find this my favorite season. The crisp Fall air, such a relief after the smothering humidity of Summer. The shifting of the greens of Summer to the glorious reds, golds, and yellows of Fall.

Summer's indolence rolls over and applies itself to harvesting and nesting. Meals cooked outside over an open flame, billowing smoke into a summer's day, shift to crock pots and stew pots and spice-laden air wafting through the house.

I'm pulling out sweaters, polishing boots, anticipating sleeves in all their lengths and weights. Summer whites, tropical brights, and cool pastels are packed away or pushed to the back of the closet to make room for fall and winter tones, earthy, jeweled, and spiced.

How do you anticipate Fall? Do you spend it mourning Summer's passing? Do you count it only as the approach of Winter?