It’s not a stretch or an exaggeration to say that I am a different person from the last time I wrote a blog post. I’m still a chonk, I’m still right handed, my hair is it’s very own version of chaos that I’m wise enough (in my 40s) to ignore and let do it’s own … thing. I’ll go into more details about this 2023 version of me below, but first some housekeeping:
First … HELLO! I hope that this finds you well. I cannot say that I’ve missed you, because I am in contact with most of the people who read my blog. But if you’re a casual reader or someone who clicks because I show up in some RSS feed of yours – hello.
Second … weekly blogging? Some people are really good at that. I enjoyed it for the years that I did it. But I had a thought the other day and that was – why not just do a monthly recap of what you’re reading, what’s pinging around in your head, etc. It’s probably a lot like its predecessor FRIDAY FARE, but it’ll publish on the first Friday of every month.
So here’s the news from me on my recent reads, what I’m watching, and writing progress:
Recent Reads: I finished COTTONMOUTHS by Kelly J. Ford and that was visceral. A couple other links I’d encourage you to explore are two from Paul J. Garth. First off, Garth’s story THE COLOR OF BONES was recently published by the Reckon Review. In and of itself, the story was fantastic. Then over on the DO SOME DAMAGE blog, Garth goes into the backstory of the story’s long genesis and journey. Given the gestation period of some of my stories, I really appreciated this insight into the importance of finding the right home for our stories.
Watching: I’m just hopping on the SUCCESSION train, just in time for all of the trade articles and social media to give away the series finale. Oh well – my mind is a sieve, I’ll probably forget all of the things that I’ve sussed out by the time I get to the conclusion of the series.
And because life’s been hectic lately, I decided I wanted to rewatch BOARDWALK EMPIRE. I don’t know many people who watch something about a 1920s era bootlegger for a “comfort” watch, but I’m just going with it.
Writing Life: I am … more about some of the roadblocks below.
So … under normal circumstances, First Friday would end there. And if you need a coffee break or your eyes are already glazed over – this is a good break point.
A verrrrry long story short – my mom died in April after a long illness. Anyone who’s been through the death of a parent has an inkling of what this feels like, even if it’s different for all of us. And for someone who makes a living writing words, I still lack the full vocabulary of how to express my loss. In the simplest terms, I lost one of my biggest cheerleaders. And even if my mom didn’t fully understand the ins and outs of the writing world, she had an abundance of faith in my ability to string words together. That’s the professional side of things right there … closer to home, my boys have lost one of their beloved grandmothers, my husband has lost his mother-in-law, and instead of that original nuclear family of four – it’s now my grieving dad, my brother, and me with the shared experience of who we were. My mom left behind her baby sister, more relatives than can reasonably be listed, and many friends who adored her. She was also survived by two beloved aunties.
Here is what I know … my mom and I loved each other very much. We told each other this often. Because I think we both knew that time was going to be too short for our liking.
*Shrug.* This is the 2023 version of me. Still learning, still evolving. Still hopeful and outspoken. <– that’s the legacy that my mama left me. 🙂
Thanks for reading.
What is First Friday? This started originally as “Friday Fare” where I posted a hodgepodge of links and some of the things that were living rent-free in my noggin. This is a monthly version of that.