Raineo, oh raineo, wherefore art thou, raineo?
It’s rained maybe twice this year. Houston is dry. Dry, hot, and dying. When you walk outside it’s like entering an oven. And don’t even think that if there’s a breeze you’ll cool off. Next time you’re hot grab a hair dryer and blow it on yourself. Yeah, it’s like that.
Despite the unbearable weather, Cooper still wants his walks. So we set off.
Unfortunately the path we take behind the neighborhood has become a bit sketchy. There are huge cracks in the ground that trip you up. Naturally when I try to steer Coop toward the less cracked parts of the path he veers back and walks over the spots that could eat his leg for breakfast.
We pressed on, though. Cracks be damned.
The path we walk usually has some wildflowers. Well, apparently they’ve given the sun the middle finger because when we rounded the corner we were greeted by an explosion of flowers. Wow.
There’s still pretty in this dry city.
Coop was giddy. He stopped every few feet to pee on the flowers with the happiest dog grin ever plastered on his face. It was a magical place for him.
And it was kinda magical. Sunflowers had exploded the whole way down this dirt road. There were other pretty plants too. Like these things (can’t remember what they’re called):
Until I looked closer…
Yes, I am immature.
Anyway, I took a gazillion pictures of Coop by the flowers. By the end he was exhausted.
We got back to the house and Coop dropped on the cool tile floor. I think he panted for a solid two hours straight. Being a mammal that sweats, I had the luxury of scrapping off a sweaty bra. Fun!
But the point! The point is that it’s not all terrible out there. Yeah, the summer’s brutal and we still have three solid months of heat, but there’s some life out there to enjoy still.
So last night the hubster and I hit up half price fajitas at Pappasito’s. Usually fajitas for one is plenty for both of us, but it was half price for the double platter. And really, who doesn’t need to shovel two pounds worth of beef and chicken down the ol’ piehole?
As we were seated I noticed there was a nun sitting at the table next to ours. It was one of those “Hey! There’s a nun at that table… ARE THOSE HOMEMADE TORTILLAS?” moments.
So, yeah, that was the extent of it.
About halfway through our meal I see this woman with a stupid grin approach the nun’s table. She has a camera out.
*laughter* “Can I take your picture?” *laughter*
There was this moment of awkwardness from the table next to us and I felt embarrassment wash over me. I was just eating, but you know those moments – you’re embarrassed for someone else.
It’s one thing to want to talk with someone or politely interrupt their dinner for some valid reason. But this woman was acting like she found a unicorn grubbing down on some tacos in Pappasitto’s. Like the restaurant provided some circus sideshow worthy of pointing and laughing at.
The nun obliged of course. And after the photo snapped the woman pattered back off to her family. I just couldn’t believe it. Rude. Awkward. Even this baby facepalmed.
FFS, indeed, baby.
It would do us all good to remember that not everyone is a middle class, suburban, khaki wearing douchebag (I include myself in that group). And that just because someone isn’t like us, does not mean they are there for us to derive entertainment from. They are PEOPLE, people. Have some manners.
I’m pretty sure we all do.
YA has been kicking ass and taking names at awesome covers for the past few years. So many of the covers I’ve saved in my “covers I love” folder are YA books. I hope when the day comes I have a contract I can convince my publisher to give me a cool cover and not something that resembles a photoshop job I could do.
Book Chick City has a post about some amazing covers. They are sooo amazing and the artist so awesome I had to do my own post of appreciation.
Meet artist Nekro:
Absolutely amazing. Go check out his website for more beautiful art.
Short post today but I have to say I’m super stoked because my new laptop has shipped! This will be my dedicated writing machine.
My plan, besides writing during the week, is to head out somewhere for a few hours each Saturday for uninterrupted writing time. I love being at home but on the weekends it can be a bit distracting.
So hurry up Mr. FedEx! And please show up like this. Kthx.
Last week I was at a work conference. It was Microsoft’s TechEd North America conference. It was awesome. As a software developer (by day) I really enjoyed all the breakout sessions.
Besides all the tech knowledge I walked away with, I also walked away with a valuable lesson about life in general.
I attended the Women in Technology luncheon and one of the speakers answered a question with a simple phrase that was like a smack to the back of my head. Someone asked what the best piece of advice she’d ever received was. Her answer: Make your own happiness.
Make your own happiness.
What a beautifully simple approach to life. Make your own happiness.
I sat at that table listening and nearly teared up. Sounds silly, right? It’s true, though. Lately I’ve been rather unhappy with my day job and wishing I could just write instead. But I realized while sitting at that luncheon that not only do I truly enjoy being a software developer but it had been MY FAULT that I was unhappy recently. My own attitude had blocked me from realizing that I can make my own happiness. I CAN mix happiness at my day job with happiness in my writing. It doesn’t have to be one or the other.
When Wednesday came and it was time to return home to Houston, I left the conference feeling happier and lighter than I have in a long time. I returned to home with a new purpose: to stop fighting my day job (which I honestly like!), to stop feeling that I’m not a “real” writer if I’m happy with a day job too, and to make my own happiness.
It may sound simple or silly, but I think we often get caught up in the grass-is-always-greener-on-the-otherside-itis. We have to remember that our life is what it is. If something needs to change, change it. But stop fighting things that aren’t really against you.
I’m making my own happiness. How about making yours?
Last week kicked my ass. I rarely get sick, so when I started coughing a week ago I figured “meh, whateve.” HOLY SHIT. I was down for the count. It’s been over a week and I’m still trying to get back to 100%.
What did I learn while being sick? I need to figure out how to at least stay a little productive. Seriously I did NOTHING for a week except lay in bed or drag my ass to work. Now that’s good in some ways because, well, I was sick. But I feel like crap now because I’m over a week behind schedule on my WIP.
In brighter news, I did take advantage of my down time to read a new book. I finished Jaye Well’s Red-Headed Stepchild and it was great! Now I want to flip through it again to jot down exactly why I liked it so much. What worked that made it so hard to put down? I MUST LEARN THE SEKRETZ!
Two things jumped out at me initially: 1) Jaye writes awesome characters and 2) keeps the action moving.
If you haven’t read this Red-Headed Stepchild I highly recommend it.
Now to get back to applying better writing techniques to my own project.
In the past week the theme of “owning it” has popped up numerous times. I’m not just talking in the writing world either. My friends and I have discussed how some people just fail to “own it” while others succeed.
Julien’s post had me saying “yeah!” Not only yeah but “fuck yeah!”
Too often we get wrapped up in what other people think. Do they approve of us? Do they like our hair, shirt, car? Am I pleasing someone else?
What we really need to do is, as Julien says, not give a fuck. But also own who we are. Who we truly are.
There’s a person in my life who often does not own who they are. This person often seeks approval from others and changes their decisions based on if someone else will like or dislike what they do. From the outside we can see who they really are, but they are constantly striving to be someone else. And honestly, it’s a bit sad.
We need to have confidence in ourselves, guys. This really applies to the writing side of our life. Write what you love, write it well, and own it. It’ll only make you a better person and writer. Plus, you’ll be happier when you’re true to yourself.
So go out and own it, people, regardless of what “it” may be.