Tag Archives: date night

A change in plans

Today, I was supposed to knock out a couple of my beta reports in anticipation of finishing tomorrow. We also wanted to go to town together. We had a generic list like most weekends. The other idea was to maybe have beer and pizza tonight.

That isn't what happened. Some good, some not good.

Otto woke up in the middle of the night and sat alone in the bathroom. I discovered him when I had to pee about 3:30. This isn't like him. The girls got up when I moved around, and this means everyone has to go outside.

Otto went to the bathroom too, and I thought maybe that's what he needed. At dawn, he seemed to be pretty sore and depressed. He refused to eat or drink.

My wife decided to do her grocery shopping and we could assess how he felt when she got home.

I decided to tackle my beta edits in force. I did more than I intended, because they changed my wife's shift again, and now she's off tomorrow. I only have one left to work through, and it will take a couple of hours. This is the good part.

Our veterinarian is open seven days per week. This saves us from going to one of those emergency centers. Of course we had to take the puppies too.

Turns out Otto ate more of those pecans than we thought. One X-ray, a pancreatitis test, and an office visit later, and he has an impaction. The doctor showed us the X-ray. It's all the way at the end, and she is certain it will pass. The impaction is causing pain, because he was born with two fused vertebra and another one that is half sized. This is a result of breeding for the bulldog's curly tail.

She gave us some pain killers to give him, and said after they kick in to take him for a walk. Also to try giving him water. He refused water, but went for some chicken noodle soup. He managed a mediocre poop when we walked him.

The doctor said he's going to have pain problems when he's older and to keep an eye on him. Never one to take something at face value, I did some research of my own. It says if your bulldog reaches nine months without a problem, he probably isn't going to have one. It also said the spine deformaties are more common in screw tailed breeds and aren't usually an issue.

I, on the other hand still can't keep food inside for more than an hour. I feel fine otherwise.

The puppies were pretty popular at the vets, and they got free bandanas out of the deal.

Some good stuff, my beta edits moved forward more than I thought. I may not get to the final one this weekend, and completion was the main goal. I'll take what I can get and be happy with it.

I think we're going to ban pecans from our house. All my dogs liked nuts and never had any problems before. They weren't given unsupervised access to all they could eat, including the shells.

We have tickets to Wonder Woman tomorrow, and even have someone who can watch the puppies. It may be all the date-night we can muster. Tonight, we're watching John Wick 2 on blu ray. It isn't date night, but it's the best we can manage.

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Small Victories

I'll even write it like this: Victory! It's taken me a lifetime, but I'm learning to let some things go. I wanted to release two books before school lets out this spring. I kind of wanted The Enhanced League to come out sometime around opening day for Major League Baseball. It quickly became obvious that opening day was out, then the end of school too.

Part of this involves puppies, but I chose to do that. I work a full-time job, plus I treat writing like a job too. There are times when I have to fit being a husband, father, and a real life into the mix. The real life things are moving to the forefront now, as they do every year. I hate the idea of releasing one book during the summer, let alone two, because my experience with that has not been good. It will get done, when it gets done, and then I'll release them. In your face, Summer.

My goals this weekend were to work on some of Lisa's interviews, and do a little reading. I accomplished those goals. Having nice weather really helped, because I moved out to the back yard and gave the puppies free rein. At chapter breaks I checked on them, and it was wonderful.

I got Lisa's interview for Thursday all scheduled, and several more in various stages. I'm in good shape for that part of my plan. Maybe this evening I'll chip away at a guest post I have to write. Maybe.

Beta editing still needs to happen, and it looks like I'm booked up for several weekends in a row. I don't like doing it, but sometimes I can sequester myself in another room in the evenings and make some baby steps.

Somewhere in the mix, we even managed a quick date night. It was just dinner and beer at Kahoots, while our son watched the puppies, but it was a nice breather. (Today is our 24th anniversary.)

One of the new things I've been saying lately is, “If you're going to fall, fall forward.” It may not apply perfectly to my current situation, but the spirit of the saying applies. All these baby steps will add up, but with the arrival of Summer, I'm going to do other things too. There are a couple of fun things on my horizon, and I'll keep you posted on those.

Hope everyone had a great weekend, and can declare more than a small victory.

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Projects and family

I managed to assemble a future Lisa Burton Radio interview early this morning, but that was about it. I don't actually have a lot of projects looming right now, so I feel pretty good about this. I hit it hard during my time off and cleared some space.

Our daughter was here, and we all had a nice visit this morning. She and my wife went to the mall, but I still didn't get a lot done. Otto was pretty lively, and I admit to spending a good chunk of time playing with him. About all I managed to do was add one line to my list of short stories. It isn't a bad idea and might make a decent Macabre Macaroni someday.

My main goal now is to finish the first draft of The Yak Guy Project. After that comes several rounds of edits on The Enhanced League. Right now it's looking like Monday is my best opportunity. I have the post over at Story Empire that day, so I'll have to monitor comments more closely. At least I hope there are comments to monitor. It's an opinion piece about “write what you know,” and I'm trying to be opinionated this time.

We had date night at Red Lobster, and got our cheddar biscuit fix. It was a nice date, but we're back home now. Nothing too spectacular, just a few hours together.

Party day was a big success once more. It started off a little slow but that was my fault. Club rules are to send in a link before it goes live so they can include it on the tour page – piece of cake. They also want the post to go live around midnight Central Daylight time. I always schedule for midnightish, so that's what I did. Then I rolled back the time by a couple of hours to make sure it was live when the club expected it to be.

Yeah, when you roll back prior to midnight it doesn't change the date. This means I had it scheduled about 23 hours later than it was supposed to be.

I got it fixed about 4:30AM and sent an emergency email to the club. They fixed me up, but it took several hours. I know I missed some of the early traffic, but it was completely my fault. What a rookie.

There was still a lot of sharing, and some great comments. I gained blog followers too. Every little bit helps. The club will tell me who won the mugs, and I hope to get them sent out PDQ.

There may be a week long delay in shipping. My paycheck job is sending me to Louisville on Tuesday for a convention. I'm excited to go somewhere new, even though I'll be working most of the time. Maybe I'll see something interesting to share with you while I'm on the road. Is there anything I can't miss while I'm there?

I keep thinking about how one week later might have been more interesting, and caused me to stay a few extra days at my own expense. I've always wanted to attend the Kentucky Derby, and I'll miss it by one week. I have a hunch some bourbon will get sampled as a consolation prize.

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A small chores update

Honestly, I'm starting to wear out on chores. I've been away from the paycheck job since Wednesday at quitting time, and don't have to go back until Tuesday. During that time, I've hit the chore list hard.

I'm not embarrassed to say I didn't get as much accomplished today. I managed to get my critique work done for our meeting on Thursday night. I put it in my truck, because that's my insurance policy against forgetting it when I need it.

What I didn't post about was pruning fruit trees. The sap is up now, so I stopped at about 2/3 to 3/4 of what I want to remove. After the trees adjust, I can trim the rest. They're all in a big pile in the back yard, and my son and I are hauling them to the dump tomorrow. Part of the peach tree must weigh 400 pounds, so I'm glad to have an extra back involved. This stuff takes time too, but it didn't do much to advance my author agenda.

Today, I worked on my beta reading project. I'm about 2/3 of the way finished now. If everything works out well, I may finish and deliver my notes tomorrow. (Maybe)

I also assembled and scheduled Thursday's Lisa Burton Radio. I have two other interviews out there in cyberspace, but it's Sunday night and the first guy finished became the first guy scheduled.

Honestly, I could have hit it hard and finished everything else, but I'm wearing a bit thin. I caught up with recordings of S.H.I.E.L.D., and don't regret it a bit. ABC scheduled this beyond reality for a working man, so I have to record the episodes and watch them later.

My other son and I also stayed up late every night playing Diablo III, and we had a great time. I think my wife is wearing out on us, but she's the one who surprised me with an X-Box. (So there.)

My so called vacation was a lot of work, mixed in with a bit of fun. We even worked two date nights into the mix. The good news is my path is cleared, or will be very soon, and my next day off may let me work on my novel.

Hope all of you had a Happy Easter.

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The weekend… ends

I don't have much of a progress report. After the trip to Shoshone Falls, we turned Saturday into an errand kind of day. Pretty mundane lifestyle things mostly.

We had date night at Ruth's Chris Steakhouse. The food is always great, but I always think I could have gotten two steaks elsewhere for the same price.

Today, I finally got around to my reading. I spent several hours getting past the halfway point of a very good book. My eyes got too tired to go on, or I would have. Reading has to be a priority for me now. I have my RRBC club goal to meet for this quarter, plus I accepted a beta reading project and an ARC for review project that I need to finish before May.

I still have Yak Guy waiting around for me, and the delay brought me some clarity on his journey. I know what to do to reach the conclusion. I simply need to find the time to bring it all together. Since I don't have a publisher breathing down my neck, it has to wait for higher priority projects.

I did a bunch of blog work today too. My cohorts over at Story Empire and I have a promotional push going on soon. I think it's going to be a good event, but all the work has to happen ahead of time.

Beyond that, I ordered a cover for The Enhanced League and three new Lisa Burton posters to help me promote it. Once I get a break, I'll start the editing process. It is possible to have it available by the end of school. I'm still hung up on summer releases, and may hold it back until fall if it takes that long. Some of you might be able to convince me that summer releases are okay, but I think some genres are better suited to it than others.

Time for The Walking Dead, then I have to turn in early. Four AM comes around pretty early.

So, how was your weekend? Did you do fun things? Did you make progress on your projects? What do you think about summer releases?

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What, shall we talk about?

I've been kind of quiet here lately. We had an awesome guest on Lisa's radio show, and I reblogged some things, but I have been notably absent. The fact is, I'm in kind of a mood. (The image should explain it.)

I had a brutal week at work. Oh wait, that should be spelled BRUTAL!!! With three exclamation points. It's one of those weeks that make you doubt your entire life since birth. Most of my followers are writers, so you might understand the desire to do meaningful work. A younger man might try something more satisfying, like pumping out septic tanks or working at a slaughterhouse. It's harder in your late fifties to jump ship.

I need to accept the rote tasks as my job, do as many of those as possible, and retire. Anything more meaningful tends to make me buy in and give it my all. My all isn't what's needed, or wanted, anymore.

We had a partial date night last night, and went to see Kong Skull Island. To be honest, it left me a little bit flat. I confess it may be my overall mood, so take this with the appropriate grain of salt. Kong was much more of a man in a monkey suit than he's ever been since 1933. He walks upright and occasionally thumps his chest to remind us he's a gorilla.

Skull Island doesn't have any dinosaurs, excepting the skull of one triceratops. There are a bunch of bone headed reptile things that crawl around on two arms, but no legs. Even so, it's an action film, and there is plenty of that.

What got me the most is the complete absence of the romantic element. I don't mean the relationship between the ape and the girl here, but there wasn't any of that either. I mean that Kong is a tragic character. He's supposed to scare you, then break your heart. The furthest this film got is telling us his whole family is dead. I still don't like the whole telling vs showing bit, but if there was ever an example this is it.

As far as writing goes, there isn't going to be any. I'm behind on other projects, and need to dedicate time to them. This includes some prewritten posts for others, and some reading obligations. I made a tiny little dent in that today, but that's it. I got the shtick out for a Lisa Burton Radio, and wrote one post that still needs some work.

The rest of the day was filled in by a repairman, and my grandkids. Between those bookends, my son and I played some more of our video game. That may be the best part of the week. The reading part might be satisfying too, but that can't happen until tomorrow at best.

Tonight, Old What's Her Face and I are going to try another partial date night. Enough partials adds up to a whole one eventually.

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Progress, such as it is.

We just walked in from date night, and took Otto for a walk. It's nice to have the gigantic snow drifts gone again. There are still some ten foot tall piles around everywhere, but most areas are clear now.

I managed about 1500 words today on my novel. That isn't great, but it's better than nothing. This part involved killing some bad guys, and accomplishing one of his goals. The next goal is a journey through the wilderness with people who are ill suited for it. (Children.) This time, he's the one leading and not in the care of others. Did I mention this is a personal growth story?

The story structure is based on the Major Arcana of the Tarot. I'm torn as to whether to include the Death card in the next section, or not. It might come across as forced, and many might not realize that it doesn't signify actual death. Decisions to be made on the fly.

After this journey, one big turning point, then denouement.

I stopped to take care of some neglected chores. Where we shoveled the driveway, there were four + foot piles of snow for the last two months. It was 50+ degrees this week, and that's all changed now. The drifts are small enough to allow me to recover my extension cords. These were out for Christmas lights, but got frozen in place then buried. I also picked up my ladder and broom, these were in place for multiple cleanings of the satelite dish. My dream is that's all behind us now for the rest of 2017.

Right before date night, I hacked my way through a proof of next week's Lisa Burton Radio interview. If my guest author approves, I'll assemble and schedule it on Sunday. I have another one to work on too. Then I need more guests.

Tomorrow I have another shot at some writing, so maybe I can work right up to the end. I could actually finish, but that would be an extraordinary day. If this one stumps me, I'll shift over to the book of short stories.

Hope the rest of you are having a great weekend.

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