6 Months Seems Like Forever (My New Life and Other Sordid Memories)


So dear readers. We have passed the 6 month mark. I have also lived through a majority of the firsts. First Labour Day, first Halloween, first Thanksgiving, first Christmas, first New Year’s, first Valentine’s Day, stepdaughter’s first birthday, first book…all of these firsts without him. My heart breaks non stop for all of these things and the few that will be coming up. I spend a lot of time reflecting and remembering. Crying and kicking myself for crying. These are the things life is made of.
I switched jobs shortly after the last blog. Well just before Christmas. Running a program was way too stressful and my impending health issues with the diagnosis of broken heart syndrome made some changes necessary. I realised that going to work in the dark and coming home in the dark was greatly affecting my mental health. Not even to mention the toxicity of the previous 2-1/2 years. It had all weighed so heavily upon me that there was nothing else to do but get out. So I did.
That is not a choice that my husband would have approved of. But I started thinking that something had to change or I would end up like him. Happy means more than money sometimes.
I bought a new car. Yet another decision my husband would not have approved of. But I just wanted the piece of mind of not worrying about car issues. I have very few other things to worry about, so what the hell.

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I also have justified it because Autie Zombie Girl Gifts had outgrown the Hyundai. And all I have to do is wave my foot under the tailgate and it pops right up. WIN!!!!! I did put the Hyundai plates on it. Makes me feel like he’s still there with me. This car also reminds me of our old Blazer. Which he had bought just a month before we met and we owned until about 2 years ago. I miss the Blazer.
When I think over this last year and a little, it’s crazy. I did some things that I never thought I was strong enough to do. I participated in the Fear Project and my husband was one of my biggest cheerleaders. He gave me the pep talk I needed every week and held me for an hour while I cried the morning I was eliminated. He kept me going when I didn’t think I could.
We lived through our first parental death this year. It was hard dealing with his mom dying, but we somehow did it. He did it with his calm and quiet manner and made all of us understand the true meaning of compassion in dealing with others even when you are not dealing well. The eulogy he gave was beautiful. It also served no one but his mother which is the best tribute any boy can give to the woman who gave him life.
In all of this, I think of where we finally were in life. He was working part time at a job he enjoyed. It also gave him time to continue doing the things he loved to do. Fix music equipment and tinker with things electronic. He had met some guys that were going to be supplying him with some fairly steady work and working on things that challenged him. I was working on my first season of craft marketing and I was successful with lots of support from him. I won’t lie, the first time I tried to set up without him, I lost it and almost packed up to head home, but my friends at the market rushed in to help. Once I got busy setting up, I almost forgot about him not being there. This winter I set up and even had new merchandise and new display stands!

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This display stand is actually really purple now. So without his support, I wouldn’t be moving toward making my shop into something real.
In a last little tidbit, the new anthology is out.

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You remember how to get your very own autographed copy, right? Message me. I have 37 copies left to distribute. They are moving fast. Better get to it!

Tales From the Editing Trenches and other Endeavors


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It’s been awhile since I’ve written, I know dear readers. It’s been a busy summer. I’ll only bore you with a few of the details, I swear. I hope that you walk away with a few of the insights that I did even if you’re bored to tears. I’m laughing to myself right now as I sit in my new auction purchased writer’s chair in my cluttered little office. I laugh because like all things in my life lately, I am examining where to begin. This is not an easy chore.

As some of you know, I started a new job this summer. I have been frightfully busy doing nothing because of impending changes due to the federal sequestration of funding. Then I was frightfully busy waiting to be able to implement the changes which I could not do until the powers that be made a bunch of decisions. In true “powers that be” form it took until the last minute and then they want to start asking why I didn’t make these changes sooner. To which I blow giant raspberries. Typical government crap….hurry up and wait and then change everything to fit today’s needs in yesterday’s timelines. I also am starting to think that this job problem is biting into my social media time….I’m laughing out loud at how acclimated we have all become to the constraints of real life on our virtual lives.

The summer has also been busy with following my heart on many things which is starting to prove to be a very worthwhile endeavor. Even though it is scary and sometimes uncomfortable for this little autistic zombie girl, I am very happy to report that I have just closed my eyes and done lots of deep breathing. Then opened them to the surprise. Wow the surprise is that this method has actually worked!

I’ve also seen lots of movies and in typical summer pursuits at our house gone to lots of concerts! My dislike for old man bands grows while my anticipation for the upcoming Adam Ant show makes me giggle in 80’s girl insanity.

The biggest changes of this summer, outside of the new job issue is my slightly changing view of myself and the world in general around me. Not that the world has suddenly become autistically inclined, but more in the comfortableness of myself and learning to balance all of the new roles within my own little world.

One of the most important changes has been in my own house as I am the main money maker, now. Yes, the Fix-it-guy is still unemployed. I feel his tension in the shift of the money power, and honestly, I really try not to point it out. Occasionally, however, I take just a little delight in poking my finger at it. I actually have a little extra money these days and I treated myself to a brand new netbook. I have waited far too long for Scrivener to pull an iPad app out of thin air. Honestly, Scrivener, you started on Mac, why isn’t this the first thing you worked on? The call of NaNo looms hugely over my head and the pressure to be mobile as the new ML of the Indiana Elsewhere group charges at me with its ugly little stubborn head full force and completely without brakes. I wish technology would keep up with me, honestly. Why is the march of progress so relentlessly slow? It’s like a snail.

Wee Geek continues to struggle with the parameters of his grown up world. This has been the most difficult part of my life lately. I know that he has to struggle and I feel so powerless in pushing him up the hill and over the hump. There was a misguided and misunderstood non-suicide threat which landed him in the nut hut for a couple of days. This did make him understand that he needs to learn how to control his emotions a little more and also to understand that he cannot do this huge job of mopping up the mess his dad made all by himself.  I’m sure that in his dad’s little control freak brain, it made perfect sense to disable rather than to enable this kid. What he really did was create a huge cauldron of crap that is taking a lot of time to unravel. Wee Geek spent so much time stuffing himself down to keep from getting killed in that awful environment that there was little opportunity to actually learn how to cope. Now that his life has settled down and started to find a path, he is unable to control the feelings that are surfacing. The biggest of which is anger at his dad. I feel a great deal of frustration in him sending all of his energy in that direction. That too is a coping mechanism, however, and I have to let him get through it. No matter how inefficient it truly is.

It’s been a struggle for me not to run to bring him home. There is value to all paths we make decisions to follow. Not always wisdom, but value. He refuses to go file for unemployment. He has been warned that I will be somewhat unsympathetic toward money issues if he does not take steps to help himself. We all have to draw lines in the sand. In reality, the Fix-it-guy and I know that the best thing for him would prolly be to come home and let us help him to get on the autism waiver and get involved with Voc Rehab to help him with financial stuff and getting a new job. It would be helpful in getting him back into school, too. He’s very afraid to take that step. It feels like he’s taking a step backward to him. It’s progress in a backdoor way and he is not excited for that in the least.

The biggest event of the summer came in a very strange way, however. And it almost didn’t happen. My publisher Post Mortem Press (go see link here) http://www.postmortem-press.com/ threw a little retreat for its authors. I had planned for Fix-it-guy to come and at the very last minute (and I do mean that in the most literal sense of the word) he decided not to go. So, I drove to Yellow Springs, Ohio all by my lonesome. The motel was fantastic http://www.thespringsmotel.com/ and I recommend it for that truly creepy Bates Motel experience. Not that the motel was bad, it just gave you this very distinct feeling of going back in time. It was your typical one story strip mall kind of motel with gigantic dollops of nostalgia.

It was interesting to meet the other authors and most exciting of all…..extremely motivational! The main activity of the weekend was a little Edited! (rather than Chopped) contest. We had to submit a flash fiction story before we arrived. Don’t worry, I had to look it up, too. I had no idea how to write flash fiction and only barely understood what it actually was. This link helped me to get it: http://www.writing-world.com/fiction/flash.shtml .  So I wrote this strange little story called “Damned If You Do” about a boy zombie killer and his girlfriend. I know, no surprises there. After placing in the top of that round, we were given the lyrics to an old Joy Division song http://www.lyricsfreak.com/j/joy+division/love+will+tear+us+apart_20075884.html “Love Will Tear Us Apart”. Here’s a link to the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qHYOXyy1ToI  . Didn’t really miss Joy Division, did you? So I wrote another little story of the same title about a man who kills his wife and they in true Norman Bates style, keeps her as if she was sick. The next prompt was a picture prompt. It was a strange little photo with a young girl holding a baby and a storm brewing in the background. That story was born of a strange experience in a haunted school (that will be later) called “Vortex Baby”. It was about  a child of an incestuous rape being born. The final story was based on the prompt “The Caretaker”. This story was rooted a little in the story that appeared in “Fear of the Abyss” http://www.amazon.com/Fear-Abyss-Post-Mortem-Press/dp/0615732518  and a little on the movie “Daybreakers” http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0433362/ which I highly recommend as refreshing look at the vampire mythology.  It was about an alien race who used humans as their Life Force. It smacks greatly of “Solyent Green” http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0070723/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1  again another movie that comes highly recommended from yours truly. This story was the winner.

I know that the strange string of events that led to this was nothing short of silly, but it worked and as a writer of fiction, who am I to argue with the debate of fiction needing to be more real

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than real life. At any rate, my winnings consisted of a little plastic trophy and a  huge cache of Post Mortem Press books. Winning this really did something to me. It validated that I do indeed know what the hell I am doing. It made me realize that this is what I should be doing with my life. It also solidified the need to get all three of these books out of my computer and into a book.

So, never fear, the zombie novel is finally coming.  I was so inspired and energized by spending the weekend with 20 people that I didn’t even know of outside of Facebook and some not really at all, that I now count them all as wonderful influences on my life as a whole.

So here are some links to authors that you should link to.

Nelson Pyles http://nelsonwpyles.com/ who also runs https://www.facebook.com/TheWickedLibrary

J. David Anderson: https://www.facebook.com/authorjdavidanderson

C. Bryan Brown: https://www.facebook.com/cbryanbrown

Jessica McHugh: https://www.facebook.com/author.JessicaMcHugh

Gary Braunbeck: http://garybraunbeck.com/

Tim Waggoner: http://www.timwaggoner.com/

Lucy Snyder: http://www.sff.net/people/lucy-snyder/

Kenneth Cain: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Your-eyes-My-vision-the-Dark-Fiction-of-Kenneth-W-Cain/177796992258142

Brady Allen: https://www.facebook.com/authorbradyallen

Georgina Morales: http://www.diaryofawriterinprogress.blogspot.com/

I think that hits everyone. If I missed someone feel free to let me know.

What I did learn from this fateful weekend is so awesome that I find it hard to find words to talk about it.

I know, you are dying to know about the Haunted School trip. It was at Poasttown school http://poasttownschool.com/Home_Page.php . There is a place in the heart of the school that they call the Vortex. It’s a kind of place that all the roads in the school merge into. It has a very unique energy. As most of you longer time readers know, I have Asperger’s. This means that my brain is never quiet and I never stop ticking. This is usually fairly easy to control with massive doses of Benydryl. As I walked into the vortex, I was taken completely off my feet. My brain was quiet. My body was quiet. I didn’t feel the need to rock or twitch or move or really anything. I know that most neurotypical people won’t get it. They can actually turn off their brains. My brain does not have that switch. It is constantly moving and driving me into distraction and destruction. The feeling of complete and utter calm was so foreign that I almost didn’t know how to react. At first the quiet scared me. It was immediate. Like a switch being turned off in my brain. It was dark and felt like everyone was sleeping. If it had only been quiet and I had not had the stillness in my body, I prolly would have run like hell. Instead, I just stood and enjoyed the curiosity of it.

At any rate, that was the reason behind the “Vortex Baby” story. It also brings me to a screeching halt here in the Land of the Not Quite Right. I have a roaring allergy headache that refuses to go away and I am seriously going to lay down and try to get rid of the damn thing. I am inspired once more, so hopefully more blogs will be leaking out of my head as I continue on this creative binge.

 

 

 

Winter has hit the Land of the Not Quite Right….Finally


It’s a little late. But Winter has finally hit the land of the not quite right. Amazingly enough. We are frozen more than solid and it’s colder than if hell had given up its lease and became a Fridgidaire dealership. It was inevitable and bound to happen, I suppose.

All things are frozen in the Land of the Not Quite Right. The C-Span wars have temporarily been suspended. Only after reminding the Best Buy guy that I know where we keep the sharp things. There were some comments made about my touchiness over the telly, but in reality, I just don’t see the point in flipping the channel every time there’s a commercial and then I end up missing half the show I was watching. It’s stupid. I have damn few other things in the universe that I actually enjoy, why work so freaking hard to take those things away from me? It feels very counter productive. Of course, the BB guy’s standing mode of operation has been that it’s so much easier to piss off the one that you live with, you only have to live with her after all. Stupidity runs rampantly through my house some days.

Wee Geek is somewhat more on kilter. He went back to work for one. So he’s feeling somewhat more on schedule now. People just don’t get how important those little bits of stability are in the world of Asperger’s. We thrive on those little schedules that we build into our lives and we have to have them. We don’t always like them and occasionally we even work at odds against them, but we desperately need them to function. Wee Geek is no exception and the constant stress that has been so wonderfully provided by his asshole father in the last few months has not helped at all. People on the spectrum cannot function with their brains in constant stress. It’s not kind to our systems. Wee Geek isn’t holding up as well as I want him to but he’s also doing much better than I ever expected. I just keep giving him little bits and keep trying to keep him focused on the big picture goals of the universe. The big picture of this entire thing is that he is giong to make it through this and when he is done, it will point it in the direction of what his next step should be.

I have some faith in the universe that this is the way things operate. Everything happens for some reason and we are always pointed in the direction of the path we should be on. Some times we veer off the path and take a different road for awhile. Mainly when we know that’s the road and we are trying to avoid it. I avoided the road that I’m now on for 20 years. Part of it was trying to avoid admitting to myself what I was. Avoiding that I was different and still dreaming about being “normal” or at least fitting in. Pipe dreams are wonderful things, but rarely come to fruition. Part of it was not dealing with what my true talent in life is and swimming in it. I have quite a few talents, but there are some things that I am so much more amazingly good at and that I should just stick with.

I have faith that Wee Geek knows his talents and that he will go with them. I am trying to guide him in that direction so that he doesn’t waste 20 years looking for his way back on the road. It’s a very demented yellow brick road phenomena. As he grows, I realise that the destiny I ws always meant for was to guide him on a path that did not mirror my own. My path sucked and it was long and hard and filled with lots of unnecessary side steps. I want his road to be easier. But then again, he’s a spectrum kid and it is almost inevitable that it will not be. Sucks to be a spectrum kid sometimes.

He was also very upset when his dad didn’t even bother to message him on his birthday. He feels so utterly abandoned and there is nothing that I can do to make that feel better at all. His dad has forever used him to get back at me for whatever the current imagined injustice he is harbouring and now he is no longer useful. Wee Geek is very cognizant of this and it weighs on his conciousness very heavily, I think. I try to keep his head up and he does too. He constantly says that his dad told him he’d never be able to survive on his own because he was such a huge pathetic loser, but he’s doing it. That’s a really big deal. Especially for him. I just keep pumping him up and telling him how proud I am of him. It’s very sad when your relationship with someone is based solely on power. It’s sad when you use that power to make them feel like they don’t deserve to live. Even worse when you use that power to make them think that they are nothing without you. I’m so glad that Wee Geek stood up for himself and showed that he could do things without his dad hanging over his shoulder and belittling him.

Wee Geek did post something about his dad not bothering to tell him happy birthday on face book and got a huge backlash from his dad’s wife’s family. Boy, does he have them snowballed. I wish I had the money that all this super villian-dom should be affording me. He actually has them all believing that he’s some great guy. Wee Geek was told that if he would just apologise to his dad and move back home then all would be forgiven. What a crock of crap! What does my son have to be apologetic for except for having an ass for a father? Why should he apologise for being a victim of a sociopathic whach job. If his dad his so freaking great, why isn’t he doing his part of the job? The backlash of all of this, of course, is that his dad will then run around playing the victim about how unfair it is that he has to pay for all this stuff. If he’d let the case switch to Ohio, this wouldn’t have been an issue. I have such nasty and hateful words in my reportoir for that judge. My kid never gets to come out ahead on anything.

The good news is that I started remapping the zombie story last week and today…miracle upon miracle…but prolly more attributable to the fact that I rarely throw anything away and because electronic files take so much less space than real things…well, I have saved it indefinitely because I’m a collector and I can’t bear things to disappear. I knew that there was a good chance that the electronic file was still somewhere. I tried the netbook and of course, I had transferred it because of the netbook’s little memory. I haven’t invested in an external drive, yet. I suppose that will have to be my next big purchase for the author branding. And a tablet. In the interest of rambling, I found the files and got them printed. I now have printed copies of both zombie novels. Now, the decision remains whether they should remain two novels or become one good super novel.

I’m fueled by the posting on Zombie Fiend this week that 2012 is the year of the girl zombie author. What better girl to put a notch on that title than your very own Autie Zombie Girl? Well, no one of course. I will be making some of those decisions this week, I think. I really am excited about getting back into the rewriting/editing part of this. I really want this novel out the door in the next few weeks. Unfortuneately, my job is not conducive to thinking when I get home. I usually just want to veg out and do nothing. Lately I’ve been doing cross stitch again. And watching Netflix. Not productive on the whole, but relaxing.

When I figure out what path the zombie novel is taking, I will report. In the meantime, use your evil powers for good.