Writers aren't exactly people, they're a lot of people trying to be one person. F.Scott Fitzgerald

Saturday, December 29, 2012


       I have noticed that each year,time seems to pass faster and faster.Now I am not complaining,I am merely making an observation.I have reached the age now,that time is whizzing by at an alarming rate.Seems like only yesterday,I was in my twenties and today I turned 68.How in hell that happened in such a short amount of time,I have no idea.Wasn't it just last week that I was celebrating my 40th birthday?
     Ahh well,time truly waits for no man,or woman. I am fortunate that I have most of my wits about me,even if I am more forgetful than I used to be.I am definitely not as fearless about trying new things and I have to really think twice about heading out on a long road trip by myself.I used to think nothing of jumping in Ema,my trusty four wheel drive Ford Escape,grabbing a map and driving from Texas to Louisiana,Austin,etc.Now I plug in my GPS to go across town.
      I have to write memos to myself to make sure I take my medications on time,keep appointments,and show up places that I have promised to be at a certain time.I have sticky notes all over my home as reminders for all sorts of things.I have a notebook by my laptop with all of my passwords,user names,etc!
      I write romance suspense novels and now I have to write down,characters names,vital statistics,etc.so I can have a quick reference and don't spell their names differently,change the color of their hair and eyes in each chapter,etc.etc!   
Lord help ,me even thenwhen I read over what I have written a few days later,i realize that I have written the same scene twice,or have the hero and heroine,meet each other for the first time in three different chapters.
    Now,as I said before,at least I think I did.I am profoundly grateful for being alive and with most of my wits intact.
Any day that I wake up,know who I am,where I am and don't walk out of my door naked,is a damn good day!  

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Life As I Know It Now.

I am 67 years old and every day that I wake up and know where I am and who I am, I am profoundly grateful that I am still still here and with all my faculties mostly intact.I retired from nursing after working as an LPN,then an L.V.N and last but not least an R.N.!I started my nursing career in Louisiana,moved with him to Tennessee,had two children and after a bitter divorce,my two children and I moved back to Louisiana, my home state, where I met a wonderful supportive man. I went back to school(while I was pregnant with our first baby together) and received my degree as a registered nurse(R.N.). Eventually, we moved our family to Texas,bought a home in a small town and settled into a happy,if not busy life. Somewhere along the way in the twenty something years our very hectic lives,my husband and I forgot the cardinal rule for a happy marriage.No matter how busy you are "Take Care Of each Other".
So here I am at the scary age of 67,living by myself in a lovely senior apartment complex.Both of my exes are married.I am retired due to two work related injuries and live on my income from Social Security/disability checks.There are days I ache for my old life and days when I am so grateful for the life I have now.Yes,there are times when I am really scraping the barrel to pay all of my bills and still buy food and other necessities,but as I stated earlier,I am so profoundly grateful for all of the good things I have.My children are grown and doing well,I love my grandchildren and all in all,I love the life I have now.I don't know how much time I have left,but I am thankful for every single second.Life as I know it now,is still pretty damn good and it sure as hell beats the alternative:)

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Things I Have Learned In My Life;So Far!

I have learned that no matter how bad it is,it can always get worse! I have learned that the good guy does not always win! I have learned that the bad guy does always get caught and pay the consequences for his misdeeds.I have learned that your good deeds often go unnoticed and your bad deeds are discovered quicker than you would like and are rarely forgotten.
I have learned that it is true when you marry in haste that often you repent for a very long,long time.I have learned that nice guys don't always finish first and bad guys don't always finish last.
I have learned that the fable about the grasshopper and the ant is relevant and one definitely needs to emulate the ant and not the grasshopper!
I have learned that the love of your life does not always remain the love of your life and sometimes they leave to look for the love of their life.
I have learned that as one ages that gravity is a bigger disaster to a woman than a man and that women ,as a general rule,do not age as gracefully as a man ages.
I have learned that as one gets older we receive more offers for burial insurance in our mail than offers for life insurance.
I have learned that the older I get each day that I wake up and remember who I am and where I am is one of the best moments of my day.
I have learned why my father used to read the obituaries in the local newspaper every day and quip that he was relieved that he didn't see his name.
Well those are just some of the things that I have learned so far and I look forward to being alive for a long time to see what else life has to teach me.
One of the most important things that I have learned so far,is that one is never too old to learn something new and I look forward to learning something new for many more years!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Surviving Getting Older is Not For the Faint Hearted!d

The older I get the harder living and surviving in a fast changing world becomes.Few people saved enough to live retire and live comfortably in their senior years.Health issues are the least of the worries in the majority of people over 55.Between the economy of today,health issues,the cost of Medical and Dental and the continuous threats of politicians of stopping or reducing Social Security payments(which is the only income many seniors have) the seniors of today are faced with increasing worry of how to pay for rent,utilities,food, and other expenses.
Add to those concerns the fear of being dependent on others,unable to drive, or faced with living in a nursing home and to take care of themselves without help.
No one wants to be a burden to their adult children and many seniors are faced with some very difficult decisions as they grow older.Our lifespans are outdistancing the medical research needed to keep humans healthy and able to care for themselves well into the century mark.
However;studies are being conducted all over the world to find ways to keep our brains functioning at a high level and our bodies younger and healthier.
That being said,another problem arises,OVERPOPULATION! Well,as Rosanne Rosanna Danna said."It's always something,if it's not one thing ,it's another"! How right she was:)

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Heartbreaking events for a Mother!

The most heartbreaking thing a mother can experience is to lose a child or have to stand by and watch your child experience a heartbreaking event with her own child.Your grown child doesn't have to lose a child to death to experience that awful feeling of having your her heart break.Losing a court battle to keep your child in your home to a soon to be ex- husband can be almost as agonizingly heartbreaking as having a child die.Adding another layer of pain in that moment is watching the other side gloat over their victory.
As the mother of the adult child and grandmother of the six year old,it breaks your heart on two levels;watching helplessly as you child's heart breaks and the gut wrenching pain of knowing there is nothing you can do to help except listen and be supportive when she needs you.
The ultimate loser in every divorce and custody battle is always the young child.I admire my daughter for her strength during a very painful court process even if the outcome was not in our favor,she did come out with new rulings that allow her more time with her daughter and that will offset much of the pain of not having her daughter living with her.
Time will take care of the living arrangements as my granddaughter will be able to choose for herself whom she wants to live with.For now,my daughter can focus on getting her degree and enjoy the increased time with her daughter.For now that will have to be enough and women are stronger and can withstand a lot more pain than men.I am proud of my daughters accomplishments and her amazing strength.She is an incredible young woman!

Saturday, May 19, 2012


There are times when you just sit and wonder what is life all about.Then there are those flashes when your past,present, and future crowd around you all clamoring to tell you what it all means and why.Well, I am here to tell you the real truth.We are not meant to know! Oh, we will flashes of insight at times and go AHA,so that is why that happened or YES,I understand it all now.That happened that way so this would happen and that would take place so I would be able to meet this person and accomplish this so that person would come into my life and I could help them do that.
Do I believe the true meaning of all that has happened will suddenly reveal itself to me?
I don't believe for one Nano second that any of us will know why,what or anything else about the meaning of our own life and why things happen the way they do while we are living this lifetime.I do believe that is in our highest and best interest not to know,because knowing would alter what we were put here to do and accomplish.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Do We Ever Get Over the Loss Of A Loved One?

I fell in love on a Friday night in 1962 at the tender age of sixteen with a 21 yr old young man who drove a brand new shiny red 1959 Chevy Impala.He and his family had just moved back to Louisiana. He had thick black hair,deep brown bedroom eyes and looked like a young Elvis Presley. He was a freshman in college and a member of Kappa Alpha Fraternity. I was hit by the proverbial thunderbolt and I wasn't even Italian.At the time we met, I was out on a sort of date with a goofy guy,James, who was a friend and not a "boyfriend".
Richard and his family had lived in the same neighborhood as James's family before they moved to Wisconsin and James and Chester became best friends.When Richards family moved back to Louisiana they bought a house across the street from James's family and as fate would have it,our lives intersected and my life was forever changed.
Chester wanted James to hang out with him and they asked if I wanted to go with them, but I had no desire to be the third wheel in the two guys reunion aka, "Bromance". James offered to take me home,but Richard took over and offered to take me home so that the two friends could hang out,drink beer and catch up.
Now I was exceedingly shy and rarely went out on a date,preferring to hang out at home,watch television,draw and ride horses on my soon to be stepfather's farm some thirty miles away.I was almost mute sitting in the car beside this gorgeous guy and managed to mumble some sort of answer to his polite questions.He parked in my driveway and I almost panicked,wondering what I should do if he tried to kiss me and desperately hoping he would.He turned toward me with a heart-stopping smile and asked if I wasn't busy Saturday night would I like to go to a movie with him.I managed to get the knot out of my tongue and say yes. He smiled and reached for my hand and I was terrified he could hear the frantic beating of my heart.
My heart nearly stopped then went into overdrive when he shifted closer,cupped my chin,leaned down and gave me my first real kiss.Now I was positive he could hear the wild gallop of my heartbeat.He straightened, smiled again and asked me what I was doing on Sunday and if I wasn't busy would I go for a drive with him.I managed to form the word yes while praying that he wouldn't kiss me again because I figured I'd probably faint and he'd never want to see me again.
Richard and I sat in the car neither of us speaking for a few minutes,then he placed his hand on my cheek,leaned over and kissed me again.After he pulled back he cupped my chin in his hand and turned my face toward him and asked me what I was doing for the rest of my life?
I sat there in the dark car beside him for a minute or a lifetime trying to understand what he meant by what he had just asked me and I realized I loved him and wanted to spend the rest of my life with him. Was it possible he wanted me,loved me too and wanted us to spend the rest of our lives together?I finally managed to nod my head and watched his gorgeous lips form a devastatingly gorgeous smile.
Richard shifted,opened the car door and walked around to my side and opened the door for me.We held hands as he walked me to the door and our kiss was short and achingly sweet. Inside the dark,quiet house,I stood at the window and watched as he drove away and wondered if I would ever see him again and if he had truly meant everything he said or was he just trying to nail a very innocent and inexperienced girl,me!
He was true to his word and I never dated another man.We were married on October 31,1964.A year later we were surprised by the arrival of a son,Richard Charles,II the spitting image of his father. and four years later by a lovely daughter,Jennifer,who inherited the best features of both of us.Richard was offered a promotion as assistant manager in a new store and we moved from Louisiana to Tennessee.We rented an apartment,then moved to a mobile home park. I loved the place we rented and the snow and view of the mountains in the distance but I was not as happy as I had thought I would be.I missed living and working on my stepfathers farm in Louisiana and Richard had been made assistant manager of the store where worked and he was rarely home,except at lunchtime.
After four years of marriage,and at his urging, I became pregnant again and we had a lovely daughter,Jennifer,who inherited the best features of both of us and a few months later Richard was offered another job as the manager of a new store in Phoenix City,Alabama and we moved from Tennessee to Alabama. I hated the place and everything about it.Richard worked from early morning to late at night.I saw him when he came home for lunch,which was rare now, and when he crawled into bed late at night.If he had time off he played ball with Rick and ignored the baby.
A week or two before Christmas,my parents, who were wealthy, sent me plane tickets so the two babies and I could go home for my birthday and fly back home in time for Christmas.We had to leave earlier than expected or stay until after Christmas due to unexpected flight changes. I opted to to leave early so we could spend Christmas at home with Richard. I was surprised when he picked us up at the airport and told me that he was working that night and would be working every night through Christmas.
I sensed something was wrong and I was surprised the next day when I emptied the pockets of his suit before I took it to the cleaners and found a love letter from a woman.Deciding that I would wait until after Christmas to confront him,I tucked the letter back into the pocket and draped the coat over the chair exactly the way I had found it.
Christmas was two days away and I realized I could not keep silent a minute longer and confronted him that night after the little ones were in bed. I was not surprised when he denied he was seeing this girl and told me that she had developed a crush on him and probably sneaked into his office and stuck the letter in his pocket hoping I would find it.
I decided to let it go after he promised he would transfer the girl or fire her and I wanted to believe him and keep our marriage together but I was not stupid and I knew in my heart he was lying.
No,I was not surprised when I received phone calls from well meaning anonymous people telling me that I deserved to know that Richard was cheating on me with a young woman who worked at the store.
I was surprised to find out that she was nineteen and if I do say so,not nearly as attractive just a lot taller.
A few months later, after six years of marriage I was surprised around midnight when he woke me to find him on his knees beside the bed almost in tears and I was surprised by his tearful plea to forgive him for asking for a divorce because he had fallen in love with a younger woman.
I guess is his world forever has a very short lifespan. I packed suitcases for me and my two children and called the two people I trusted most,my mother and stepfather. They didn't hesitate and I heard my stepfather 's sharp curse in the background telling my mother to let him have the phone.I held my breath waiting for his "I told you so.I never liked Richard.Told you not to turn down that scholarship at L.S.U. School of Veterinary Medicine.Told you you not to marry that that man. Instead,I heard him tell my mother to tell me to pack some clothes for me and the babies and come home.There would be tickets waiting for us at the airport and we could stay with them until he could find us a place to live.
So I went home again and grieved in private everyday for the love I had lost and the man who had betrayed my trust.
My stepfather built a small house for me and my two children on 2 of the 100 acres he'd bought after he sold the big farm. He had already built my mother her dream house and my sister and her family and stepbrother and his wife a house.Each house had two acres of land and were spaced so that we were on four corners of the entire acreage but within easy walking distance of the main house and each other.I called it the McElroy compound.
Within a few months my two children and I settled into our new house.My son was old enough to ask about his absent father,but his sister was too young to remember him.
So I grieved at night after the children were fast asleep for all I had lost until my stepfather took me for a ride one day and asked me what I wanted to do,spend the rest of my life crying over a man who was a cheat,a liar and left his children for a life with a new woman? Was I going to spend my time wishing for someone who wasn't worth spitting on or another minute of my time or was I going to square my shoulders and make a new and better life for myself and children.
I enrolled in nursing school within the month,graduated and spent the next few years getting a degree,passing the state boards and finally getting my RN license and raised my children the best I could.Life was not easy or always smooth but it was our life and I did the best I could,but there were times,especially in the quiet dark of my bedroom,I grieved for the love I lost and the man who fell out of love with me and left.
Time passes and it has been over thirty years since our divorce and there are still times I can hear his voice and see him in my son and daughter. Those are the times that it seems as though it all happened just yesterday and the pain of the loss hits almost as fresh and bright as it did all those years ago.So ,no I don't think we ever get over the loss of someone we truly deeply were in love with and lost no matter how much time passes.
It is always with us,dormant and waiting for us to give it life again,than it springs out and seizes us in it's painful and paralyzing grasp until we wrestle it back into our memory until the next time.Get over it completely,no,but we can and do get past it. We can love again and eventually be grateful for the lesson we learned,the good things we remember and the new life we have made for our self. Most of the time,I am very happy and grateful that I was loved,knew love and loved deeply.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

SNAFU and Welcome to Health&Human Services

This is a military term and describes most government agencies perfectly.For those who are not familiar with the term it means "Situation Normal,All Fucked Up"!
Unfortunately,almost everyone has experienced the tedious paperwork associated with many Government agencies,passports,car registrations,social security benefits,marriage licenses,and probably the worst two offenders the IRS and Health and Human Service. At least we all know the difficulties facing us with all the agencies except Health and Human Services.
Right off the bat,the name is deceiving.What you see is not what you get.What you get is an agency designed to test your stamina and perseverance. On your arrival at the office you sign in and spend hours sitting in a hard chair waiting for someone to call your name.
When you name is finally called you are told you should have already filled out a form that you didn't know you needed to fill out before you can be seen. The long involved form would even challenge the expertise of a lawyer.
Once you have the form filled out you turn it in and continue to wait your turn to actually see your case worker.That could take several more hours. Eventually your name is called and you stand up(stiff from sitting so long) and off you go into the back room,through a warren of cubicles and finally reach your goal,your assigned case worker. if you are lucky she will be in a fairly friendly mood.I say she because most of the staff seem to be females.
She enters your info into her computer and then tells you what assistance you do and don't qualify for. That's it,you are done at least for this day.Unfortunately you may or may not have to make several of the trips to the office where you will sit and wait until someone calls your name again and if you are very lucky,you receive your CARD.
The Card entitles you to SNAPS benefits,formally known as food stamps.Hopefully that is it and you are done.Don't hold your breath though.You may have to repeat the entire process because they lost your paperwork or several other reasons only the State of Texas understands.
Let's say,just for grins that everything is official and you understand what you can and can not purchase with your card and you are over the embarrassment of needing to use your card at the local grocery store to buy the acceptable foods on the list.
Do not think that is the end of it. A year later a complicated form arrives in the mail for you to fill out and send back to Texas Health and Human Services in order to continue receiving those benefits.Woe is the person who does not fill out the form correctly and send back within the designated time period. That person will have to start over from the beginning as if this was their first time to apply even though their data is still in the files.
Welcome to the wonderful world of Texas Health and Human Services!

Monday, February 6, 2012


A few months ago I was staying with my best friends while I searched for a new place to live.Mark and I were sitting in the living room and I began to tell him some stories of my childhood and stories of my family and ancestors. We were laughing when it hit me and I realized that there was no one left alive who knew me growing up, no one who knew me from birth through my teen years. These wonderful,sad,amusing,heartbreaking, amazing stories would be lost after I died(hopefully many years from now).
A cold fist closed around my heart,a painful ache coiled in my belly, a painful lump stuck in my throat as the reality sucker punched me in my belly taking my breath away.I don't think I have ever felt so alone as I did in that moment. That was the first time that it really hit me that I am essentially an orphan,the only person left alive who knows my own story and remembers all of the stories my mother,grandparents, and my great Aunt Jessie told me about the life and times of the Hearne and Caldwell family. Tears flowed as a myriad of emotions overwhelmed me
Mark,bless his wonderful kind heart, waited until most of the storm passed before he spoke.
I listened as his gentle voice offered words of compassion,understanding and a gentle kick in the butt. "You are a writer and you need to write these stories down before they are lost forever.It just takes doing it!It's up to you to pass them on."
Well it is now February 2012 and has been almost six months since that day and I am settled into a wonderful apartment in a new senior complex. Life is better and I am healthier in body mind and soul.
This morning I cleaned my apartment,took care of paying bills and sat down to catch up on my e-mails. A very disturbing dream I had about a week ago,pushed it's way back into my consciousness and I realized it was past time to begin my autobiography. I want my children and my grandchildren to know who I came from and what made me who I was and who I am today. I want them to know who my side of the family were and laugh at the funny stories,cry at the sad and be amazed as I was when I heard them the first time. I don't want those stories lost and I am the last so it is up to me to tell them and ensure they and my ancestors are not forgotten. So I will gird my loins(as it were) and write. Hopefully, they and all that come after them will enjoy the stories for many years and pass them on through the years even after I am gone. No one ever truly dies as long as they are remembered by someone.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Manuscript Revision Intimadation!

Does you manuscript intimidate you? Do you sit down and tremble with fear at the thought of massive rewrites, fixing scenes you have repeated,finding and correcting errors you have made in descriptions of your characters or writing a great scene that is totally out of character for them?
Have you ever written yourself and or your characters into a corner and can't figure out how to write yourself and your characters out of it.Sort of like painting yourself into a corner and having to wait until the paint dries before you can escape.
If you don't and never have,you probably aren't a writer and you won't understand what on earth I am talking about.For those of you who are nodding your head in total understanding, just curious, contemplating writing the great next novel,or have been working on another or your first manuscript, this blog is geared for you.
I have been writing novels for six or seven years now.I am not published yet,but my latest work in progress,"Evolution of Monsters" just might be," The One"!
This novel started out as a"just for fun" serial story on my blog.Somewhere along the wayI fell in love with the unique concept,the characters,and telling the story. A light bulb clicked in my writers brain and I realized it needed to be a novel.That was the beginning of my woes.
I copied and pasted the stories into a new document and I was on my way to writing a new manuscript that I was really excited about.Little did I know how this one manuscript would affect me. For months I sat in front of my laptop and worked to weave a cohesive manuscript out of these pages of a serial blog story. I rewrote scenes,deleted scenes,revised scenes,and worked to weave a new full length story out of pages of short serial blog stories.
I revised,deleted,wrote new material,fleshed out scenes,added new characters and weaved a new story out of the original serial bog story.
Six months passed and I was bogged down with scenes that didn't work,repetitions of scenes written in a different way,timelines that didn't work,new material that didn't flow,etc.etc!
After almost a year of the most frustrating writing experience I have ever had, I began to avoid even looking at the icon on my laptop for E.V.O.M.
Merely seeing the icon on my computer screen turned the blood in my veins to ice water.I didn't just have a case of writer's block, after a few days I could not even force myself to open my document and even avoided even looking at the icon on my desktop as though it had the plague.
After a few months, I opened the document and stared at the prologue until I felt steady enough to scroll through with the intent to revise,delete,rewrite as needed.After an hour of reading through the manuscript with the intent to rewrite,revise,and delete as needed,I closed the document and walked away.
That was probably the beginning of the longest and blackest moments in my writing career and sadly it continues into this new year of 2012.This is the first time in more than a year that I have confronted the issue head on.Maybe this post is my way of exorcising the demons so I can begin again. I still love the concept,the characters and the story.Now I hope that I will begin to love writing the story again.
I know it won't be an easy fix,but I am a writer and I can do this.I can conquer the ball of ice in my belly and pounding of my heart whenever I sit down and start to open the document.
Writers can't not write and I am not going to be intimidated by a story that I created.I still believe it is a damned good story and I will do whatever it takes to finish it.
That being said,I think that I'll go clean house or maybe do a bit of shopping and start tomorrow.One more day won't hurt. After all,as Miss Scarlet said."I won't think about that now.I'll think about that tomorrow.After all,tomorrow is another day!"