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2017 Goals

  • write to my grandmother every six weeks or so
  • call my moms every month or so
  • cook/eat better
  • clean out and organize my writng/craft room
  • re-institute the cleaning plan
  • publish six books by September 2017
  • reach 120 to 125 pounds
  • walk the dog three times a week

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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Hellooo...! from the Mile High City


aka Denver Colorado!

 (From the Denver Colorado Wikipedia page)

Heading out later this morning to attend a reader/writer convention for my genre of choice and I'm so excited. I'll be looking forward to a fairly early night before the first day of festivities.

Tomorrow night, I'll be taking advantage of the fact that Colorado's hockey team calls Denver home. The Pepsi Center is just up the road and I got lucky enough that the Avalanche have a home game while I'm in Denver. I'll just have missed the Stars being in town, but I'll enjoy watching the game anyway.




Have a great rest of the week. I'll try to get something posted for Friday, but if I don't, forgive me. :0)


Monday, October 16, 2017

NHL.com Subscription vs. Cable Upgrade


Last year, I subscribed to NHL.com in hopes of being able to watch Stars hockey, but alas, because I live in the local area, I was in the "blackout" zone and got to see maybe one "free" game via the NHL.com app...We had the lowest level of cable because it came with our Internet package, which did not include Fox Sports Southwest where Stars games are aired here in North Texas.

Sadly, I saw more Stars games in person last year than I did on TV. Really. Well, not sadly about seeing them in person, but you know what I mean...

This year, though, I wanted to be able to watch Stars hockey on TV, so after all of last season's frustrations and research, I realized the only way to make that happen was to upgrade my cable.DH agreed, so when the hockey season was just about to start, I made the phone call.

We are now a week and a half into hockey season and I've seen one game live and in person, because it was opening night against a brand new team. Hockey history and I had to go, you know? I've also watched the first period of two games and the whole of another -- not to mention seeing various other teams play in whole or in part because I also have the NHL Network now, which is not the same as a NHL.com subscription.

Watched the whole game against the Colorado Avalanche this past Saturday and they won!!

So cost-wise, the cable upgrade will end up costing a chunk more than the NHL.com subscription, but I've already seen more Stars hockey on TV in the last week and a half that I did all of last year, so I can't really be sorry.

Also can't be sorry about seeing this!! My favorite player's first(!!) hockey fight of his career (513 games). I love hockey fights for the amusement factor more than anything else. They usually just make me laugh. (My guy's in green...) The fact that he was defending his teammate and captain's honor is also amusing to no end. (Bromance for the win!!)



So happy Monday to me!!


Friday, October 13, 2017

I guess it's time to do this publishing thing...


Book six arrived back from the proofreaders this past Tuesday...it was with some trepidation that I checked email everyday looking for it. After all the struggles I had, I really doubted that I'd sent her something at least on par with the first five.

As luck would have it, Ms. Proofreader had lovely things to say about the book as well as my writing--things I find hard to believe. Not because I'm trying to be humble or modest at all, but because I have doubts every time I sit down to write a book, because pulling a plot together and weaving any and all threads is a challenge each and every time, because plotting in the first place is not intuitive to me.

I don't have beta readers or critique partners that I run chapter by for feedback. Yes, I have my group of peeps who I ask for brainstorming help or their opinions or for help when I'm stuck, but they don't read my work. My proofreader is also my first reader. Which means not only does she find all my errors--of which there were many this time around--but her initial impression of the book is, I don't know, "pure," maybe? I mean...she doesn't know me. She's not obligated to encourage me.  I pay her to be honest with me about my words, to tell me if there's a flaw in my plot.

So, no, she doesn't have to love my characters or their particular tale, nor does she have to enjoy the genre I'm writing in order to praise my ability to actually tell a story. The fact that she has means a lot.

Anyway...all that to say that pulling the trigger on publishing my books hinged on book six being done. Well it's done and back in my hot little hands. So I guess it's time to get my little ducklings in a row and get them ready to go out into the world.

Look out world, here they come...

Well, in November!

Have a great weekend! I'll be busy checking and double-checking books 1 through 3 in preparation for creating the ebook files. But it's a task I'm suddenly looking forward to a heck of a lot more.



Wednesday, October 11, 2017

It's True by Garcia Lorca


It's True

Ay, the pain it costs me
to love you as I love you!

For love of you, the air, it hurts,
and my heart,
and my hat, they hurt me.

Who would buy it from me,
this ribbon I am holding,
and this sadness of cotton,
white, for making handkerchiefs with?

Ay, the pain it costs me
to love you as I love you!

by Federico García Lorca

~*~*~

Heard this on a TV show and liked it enough to want to save it somewhere for posterity. Lucky you.

 
Monday, October 9, 2017

Hockey Season Has Begun...


Unfortunately, we haven't gotten off to the start we wanted...

Friday's game: Stars vs Vegas Golden Knights



Saturday's game: Stars vs. St Louis Blues


I was disappointed by Friday's loss especially since I attended the game, but it's still early in the season. The team is still learning the new system from their new coach. He's not expressing too much worry yet, so I won't worry so much either...

Fingers crossed they start picking up some wins.


Friday, October 6, 2017

Do we really need a play-by-play...?


Granted national / local news and tragedies are way more important than sports, but does the American public really need a play-by-play of every. single. thing. about ongoing investigations and natural disasters and the clusterf*ck that is the American political system?

Some people are newshounds and. you know, they have every right to be. I'm not. I like to know what happened when it happens and then update me every so often, but hourly is too much. Daily is pushing it for me unless it's *really* important.

Now, I don't watch the news by choice. But--there is a bank of TVs at the gym, several of them turned to national news channels and another handful on local news. I can't hear what's being said, because you have to plug into the system to hear those. But I see the headlines constantly scrolling by.

I can ignore it, look away, concentrate on the music that plays and on my workout, read on my phone while on the treadmill and the stationary bike. But it's still there.

And I have to wonder when is it too much?? Does the bad news propagate itself?

I wonder...what would happen if there was a 24/7 national broadcast of good news?

Like successful return of any number of our military ships and our troops.

Like animal shelters being low on animals.

Like a peaceful protest--no police needed to be called.

We might have to scrape the bottom of the barrel to get started, because as I'm trying to think of good stuff that everyone would be happy to hear, it's hard to come up with stuff.

But you know, things like the Cajun Navy showing up Houston.

Like two little boys who went out in the rain to bring in the American flag one day at school getting soaking wet in the process because it was the right thing to do.

Like people paying it forward, like those Soup Ladies I mentioned Wednesday.

What if the nation were inundated with glad tidings instead of bad each and every day??

What could happen?


Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Who helps the helpers...?


Y'all know how much I love Mike Rowe, right? Well, he's got a new series out called Returning the Favor, where little Internet birdies whisper in his ear about some do-gooder, and he bounds off to help that do-gooder do even more do-gooding.

Yeah, I know, but keep reading please...

This weeks episode is about the Soup Lady--a woman who feeds first responders on scene. These first responders are usually stuck with MREs (meals ready to eat) and/or granola bars. Not the best way to replenish energy during high-stress emergencies. This woman and her retinue of Soup Ladies makes a batch of high-carb, high-protein soup and can generally feed up to 100 people out of one of her "go-trucks." She has at least two.




I thought this episode particularly fitting considering all the horrific things going on in our country right now where first responders--from Citizen Joe to the professionally trained--have stepped up in a big big way.

We definitely need more soup ladies across the country.

Here's to Momma Ginger and her Soup Ladies for the blessing they bestow upon those who run in when most of us run out.

And thanks to Mike Rowe for blessing her so that she can help even more people.

Monday, October 2, 2017

Quarterly Update...


I really have something to celebrate this time around!!!

After several years of yo-yoing and over a year of gym attendance, I have finally reached my goal weight. HAHAHHAHAHAAAAA! I'm so excited. My list there on the left says between 120 and 125 pounds. I've reached 123.2lbs and I'm terribly happy about that. I need to celebrate for sure.

I started my journey in January of 2012 at somewhere around 165lbs. I knew it was going to take a long time, and it has, but I'm finally here. That's not to say there's not a new goal in regards to all of this, but the weight part is done.

So let's visit the rest of the list...

--> I've gotten off schedule of writing to my grandmother and I really really really need to write one and get it in the mail. BAD JEN.

--> Call my moms. I've been doing pretty well. It's almost that time. One mom is on vacation though, so I'll probably wait a week or so before checking in. I should probably reach out to the other this week.

--> Cook and eat better. Well, this one kind of goes hand in hand with the weight loss, but not entirely. However, while I may not necessarily be cooking better because I don't cook--as in prepare ingredients and then prepare a meal over the stove--I am eating better. I mentioned that lavash bread awhile back which was a huge boon to helping me reduce the number of not-good carbs in my diet. I eat more salads and include spinach and kale in them and rarely do I use iceberg lettuce. I'm staying balanced between fats/(good) carbs/protein.

--> I cleaned up my writing room a little, but not the really concentrated sort/discard/clean I've intended.

--> Cleaning plan. HAHAHAHA. 'Nuff said.

--> Publish six books by September. Well, September ended two days ago and I just finished book six, like, a week ago. So that one's definitely a bust. But book six is now done and the new goal is to start publishing in November.

--> And guess what??? I actually started walking the dog. I needed a little more activity in the evening and she needs the exercise. we probably go five out of seven days, so doing better that my goal. Except now she's limping because she sleeps on the same side all the time on the hardwood floor and I think she's sleeping on a nerve.

So YAY for me for accomplishing two more very important goal. Still working on the rest.

My thoughts go out to the victims and their families as well all the first responders in Las Vegas.

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Jen FitzGerald
Thanks for stopping by one of my little corners of the world wide web. So, a little about me...My husband and I have been married for twenty years and we have three adult children although our youngest is still in high school. We've lived in Texas for fifteen years and for the rest of the story, click here.
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Jen's Glossary of Terms

  • DH = my husband
  • my Brown Eyed Girl = my oldest daughter
  • DD = my Darling Daughter (the younger one)
  • Sonshine or Marching Band Boy = my son
  • NT = the North Texas chapter of RWA
  • RWA = Romance Writers of America