March 29, 2010

Surgery Follow Up

Joshilyn is fine, just like I TOLD you she would be. You should learn to be more trusting, internet.

The surgery ran longer than expected so they plan to keep Joshilyn in the hospital until Wednesday, and then she'll be in bed rest for a week after that. Expect to see a post up by her sometime late this week.

I have several very fine photographs chronicling her adventures, but I rather suspect that would result in my very own hospitalization. I will leave that to your very fine imaginations. Suffice to say that she's still pretty hot, even in an open backed gown and hospital socks. Not very dignified, mind you, but still hot.

- Mr. Husband

Posted by joshilyn at 11:38 PM | Comments (40)

March 27, 2010

The Mr. Husband Report

Joshilyn is fine. Everyone say it with.... "Joshilyn is fine". Good, now everyone clap your hands and say, "I do believe in novelists".

The Scene: A hospital room in rural Georgia. Banjos play in the background and doctors and nurses square dance in the hall outside.

Mr. Husband: Good day Kudzu-ites.

As most of you know, Joshilyn has been having some ongoing issues with anemia. On Thursday of this week, she was admitted to the hospital and was given several units of blood and was soon resting in a bored and irritated fashion in a hospital bed. By Friday night she was feeling much better, but is still stuck in bed for the duration of the weekend. She says the upside is, hospital food is vile she is bound to drop five pounds, but she is appalled by the scant selection of cable channels and her inability to get wifi.

She will be going in for a surgical procedure on Monday at 11am. It's nothing that isn't considered common and she will be fine. It is still surgery, though, and prayers are always appreciated. If all goes well, she should be home by Wednesday, though she will be confined to her bed for a week or so following the operation.

She says to tell you she is being given "awesome drugs," and that she says, "I love you, man. I really do." Also, her excellent anesthesiologist is named Dr. Swami. I will keep you guys updated, and she should be back blogging in a couple of weeks.

--Scott

Posted by joshilyn at 11:54 AM | Comments (64)

March 23, 2010

The 5FP Tuesday Redirect, Now Actually Posted on Tuesday!

Today I am over on Five Full Plates, telling you absolutely everything, I mean EVERYTHING, I know about keeping your home lovely and spring fresh clean. So. Perhaps tomorrow I can tell you everything I know about brain surgery, and with equal authority.

Posted by joshilyn at 7:26 AM | Comments (5)

March 22, 2010

The Browser Borg

My computer has caught a bad case of the Google Creep.

It only came to my attention because my bookmarks all disappeared. Then later, when I logged into my google mail account, POOF! They were all magically back. I realized that at some point, Google “volunteered” to manage my bookmarks without me noticing. Whatever used to manage my bookmarks before is mysteriously gone, perhaps murdered! and I do not remember what it was, even. Google ate it and wiped all memory of it from the earth.

Google is INSIDEOUS that way. Most recently, Google has sent a little tab to pop up and ask me if I want to engage Google Side Wiki NOW or LATER. I can click later and put OFF the inevitable moment when I WILL engage the Side Wiki, either by choice or via a mismouse when the questions comes up for the umpty-thousandth time. But I cannot decline. There is no option for "I do not want a Side Wiki," or “Never, and please stop asking me.” I need an option that says, "GO! AWAY! I do not even want to know what a Side Wiki IS,” but this is also not on my list of choices.

Also without me noticing, Google became my constant browsing companion. In other words, I no longer have to go to google.com to google anything, because google has gotten itself a little tabby bit up in my browser. It is always there.

Even the WORD has even become pervasive, as you can see above, “Google it,” has replaced “Look it up.” In fact the other day, sitting in a coffee house with a friend and chatting while her laptop booted, we were trying to remember the name of the actor in a movie we wanted to see. Her computer finished booting and she opened her browser and her home page was Yahoo! Without thinking, I said, “Oh GOOD, there is Yahoo!, we can google it,” as if googling a thing was something one could do on Yahoo!.

But Google did not stop with infesting my tech-vocabulary. It has left my computer---heck it has left my OFFICE---and now has the run of the house. Yesterday my kids asked me if we had any grapes left, and I told them I did not know, they should “go google the fridge and see.”

Ze Frank used to say in a robotic voice, “Google is our dear and glorious leader” each time he mentioned it, and now I begin to see why. Google wants me to drink the microbot laden Kool-Aid. Google is the eye on the other end of the camera in my laptop that may be peering at me whilst I type all unbeknownsting. Google sees all, remembers all, catalogs and collates all, so google can put me-tailored ads in the side of my browser saying that women my age who live in my town are recommending specific products to buy to make my life googli-tastic.

Google is creeeeeeeping, and I’m creeped out.

Posted by joshilyn at 8:42 AM | Comments (10)

March 18, 2010

Naptastic!

I am up at three am because I feeling well enough today for my insomnia to come back. The Brightside of my boring and endless anemia has been, I have been sleeping hours and hours and hours at a time, just like a non-insomniac might. There’s something WONDERFUL about waking up after 9 hours of blissful unconsciousness. I think it is called, “Not being tired.”

Alas, with the anemia this un-tired state of being lasts four or five hours, and then I have to toddle off and take a nap, like a great-great-granny. My animals LOVE my new schedule---a human who naps as much as they do, it is so exciting! They see me creaking up the stairs with a mug of Raspberry Zinger in the afternoon and they get up from wherever they are currently sleeping to sleep with me in the spot of my choosing.

I always choose the bed. They pile in around me in a careful hierarchy.First the oblivious dog who does not realize there IS a hierarchy, and then Schubert and Boggart exchange “Tiresome Philistine! Does he not know WHO WE ARE?” glances. Then the cats come, Schubert first, natch, and they arrange themselves in careful pattern where the two cats both must be touching me but not each other or the dog.

Then they all NAP TOGETHER in a big fetid snoozy shedding heap and for about five minutes I think I am not going to be able to sleep, and I wish I could move my limbs without disturbing someone, especially since the someone in question has pointy bits on their feet. Then I pass out for two hours.

ANYWAY. I say all this to say, I FELT GOOD TONIGHT, very good and like me, so much like me that I woke up at three with a clear knowledge of what’s wrong in Chapter 7 of the new draft and I had to come down and work on it. I am going to go work on Mosey for another hour or two, and then at six I am leaving for Augusta State University to teach at the Sandhills writer’s conference. I will be out of pocket for the next three days, but I left a blog behind in which I tell you 39 true facts about my agent.

Yes yes I know it is supposed to be 100 things. But, you know, I got to 39 at about 3 pm yesterday...and then I had to go nap.

Posted by joshilyn at 3:12 AM | Comments (5)

March 15, 2010

Man Bites Dog

Scene: My house. Foyer.

Enter: Bagel. Feet a’scrabble, he runs to the front door.

Bagel: *on red alert* BARK BARK BARK!

Scott: What? Hey, dog! What?!

Bagel: BARK BARK BARK!

Scott: What is going on?

Me: A tiny, fluffy cat is on the porch.

Bagel: BARK BARK BARK!

Scott: Mister Dog. Unless that cat is coming at the door with a handgun, you need to shut it.

Hee! I love him.
Meanwhile, I have figured out a key component in my mental illness, and I blogged about it on Five Full Plates. If you haven’t been by the plates recently, we are now on a four week SPRING CLEANING Challenge.

Viva la Lemon Pledge.

Posted by joshilyn at 8:23 PM | Comments (5)

March 13, 2010

Pillow Talk

It is the family retreat! My family is supposed to be camping with a buncha families from my church in a gorgeous state park in Tennessee. And indeed, this is happening; my FAMILY is doing exactly that. My husband is there. My kids are there. My friends are there. I am HERE, chewing a large wad of self pity as if it were a cud and I had four stomachs. When that is not occupying my time, I spend it eating snacks, saying disparaging things to the Feline Foot-Menace, and otherwise trying to make up for missing it by at least feeling that I have been productive. Or as productive as a person can reasonably be without getting out from underneath an enormous pile of blankets. YAY Lap desks! Yay wireless! And BOO on still feeling like hammered crap every minute.

What I have done so far just TODAY!

--Drafted more than 2,500 words of the new novel.

--Blogged about my plans to SPRING! CLEAN! over on Five Full Plates. No, I am not exactly sure how I will clean out my children’s closets from under this enormous pile of blankets, actually. But I have options. For example, I could take apart this old laptop and use the parts to build a fleet of teeny robot dogs to do my bidding. Of course, based on how well my OWN flea-brained fleshly dog does my bidding, I do not think I can reasonably expect my robot dogs to do much more than poop gears onto the carpet and grind up my shoes in their teeny, mechanical jaws.

--Caught up on e-mail. This included FINALLY allowing myself to delete my VERY favorite penis improvement drug spam, which has been in my inbox since 10/21/09. It was titled, “Become her Drillosaur!” This made me laugh every time, but it was clotting up valuable in-box real estate.

--Did some manuscript evaluations for an upcoming workshop I am teaching...It is strange how reading rough drafts with a critical eye and with my brain set on FIND CRAFT ISSUES! Can make me suddenly recognize spots in my own work where I am being lazy or self-referential or assuming that an image or idea has made it fully onto the page just because I see it so strongly in my HEAD.

--Petted the Brown Cat until his petting cup was full and he began chewing me.

I a little while, I am going to adventurously STAND UP and begin an intrepid event where I DO NOT LIE DOWN. I plan for this adventure to end with clean dishes. If that works out for me, then next, I may become truly bold GO GET THE MAIL. Yes, all the way outside!!!

My life is JUST LIKE a freakin’ choose your own adventure book...if no one ever picked the "Get out of bed" option..

Posted by joshilyn at 3:55 PM | Comments (11)

March 9, 2010

Stamping on Hamsters

This is Tuesday, so of course I am over on Five Full Plates, oversharing about Dark Events that took place in 1997, oppressing teeny rodents, and prepping to triumph over my closet. Maybe even my garage, which hardly deserves the name. Garages, by definition, hold cars. This cavernous yet completely filled space has not held a car since…well ever. Maybe before we owned it it held one? Since the day we bought the house, which was ages ago--- Maisy was barely more than a FETUS--- it has been used as a tool shed slash poo heap.

Wow. Perhaps I need to NOT Epic Fail the upcoming Spring Clean Challenge with quite the same vigorous lose with which I pursued the 10 in 10 challenge...And now you pop in the back of the head like Gibbs and say, “Ya THINK?”

PS The titular hamsters are metaphorical. I did not ever nor will I in the future stamp on any actual hamsers. I only stamp on the HOPES AND DREAMS of would be Olympic hamsters. *shrug*

Posted by joshilyn at 9:37 AM | Comments (4)

March 7, 2010

Vidi-OH!

So if you have been here awhile you know I am mad for the novels of Frank Turner Hollon. I liked the first one I read so much I read the rest, liked them MORE, and then I stalked him relentlessly and forced him to be my friend.

It was hard because he is practically feral....he lives under a bridge in Rural Alabama, eating up any goats that dare to tri-trap over and writing books that rock my socks. This may well be my favorite of his, but if you asked me for my favorite of his on a different day you would get a different answer, as I flip flop between four depending on what I have reread most recently.

ANYWAY, one of his books originally titled LIFE IS A STRANGE PLACE was recently made into a movie called BARRY MUNDAY starring Patrick Wilson (Nite Owl! From WATCHMEN! *geeks out*) Judy Greer, Chloe Sevigny, Jean Smart, Malcolm McDowell, Cybill Shepherd & Billy Dee Williams. (!!!)

SO yesterday I get this email from Frank yesterday and it says, “Please send this trailer to every single person you've ever met so I can get very wealthy and pretend I don't know you. Thanks, Frank”

Pretty much every one I know is here, so HERE is the trailer. I must say, the film looks awesome but WOW, this preview, it is SO VERY NOT SAFE FOR KIDS! You are warned:

And while we are you tubing, and if your kids are about so you can’t watch BARRY MUNDAY, you CAN watch this. And you should. It is the most astonishing thing I have seen in a Good. Long. Time. It is a video for a song by OK Go, and it is a huge Rube Goldberg machine staged in a warehouse and... WOW. I have watched it about 8 times now and keep finding more things to see in it. Please notice this is ONE take. ONE TAKE. Camera never cuts away. It is TIMED like that.It is all one thing mathed out and done on complete purpose. *boggle*

Posted by joshilyn at 1:40 PM | Comments (12)

March 4, 2010

In Which my Children Fan-Pester Julianna Baggott

My blog is being taken over by the very bestest of all my best beloveds, aka my loinspawns. They are QUITE EXCITED to see how this is received when they get home this evening after ballet and piano, so it would be delightful of you if you had time to comment, and, should you choose to comment, this would also be an excellent time to restrain yourself from explaining how the eff word is SO fantastic because it can be every part of speech, EVEN A GERUND. (And here we all turn together and fix Karen Abbott with a steely gaze.)

If you have kids in the proper age range and you read my friend Lydia’s review of Julianna Baggott’s latest release for young readers, you probably have already gotten your kids a copy of The Ever Breath.

I, of course, got it for mine. Sam read it in a day and then passed it down, his highest praise for a book, to try and make everyone in the house read it. Maisy was so taken with it she has renamed her American Girl Bitty Baby doll after one of the main characters, Camille. However she is convinced you pronounce the name like “CAH-mih-lay.” I told her how to say Camille, but Maisy is not interested. Her way is better, she says, so we all bowed to it. The upshot is, when I interact with my pretend granddaughter, I have to call HER CAH-mih-lay, and MEANWHILE she is running around calling ME Mee-Maw. Yes. Mee-maw. I am unamused.

covereverbreath.jpg

Sam: I love your book, the way it combines some real world elements, like how Camille is focused on survival, with mythical ones, such as the dragons and giant spiders. I particularly enjoyed how you scattered the clues to who the villain was around the story.

Maisy: Hello. I wanted to tell you I loved your book very much, and it was one of the first books that was really Sam’s book that I read all by myself!

Sam: My favorite part is how you left it open for another book. Did you base any characters off of real life people?

JB: My characters are always conglomerations of people I know. I take notes all the time. I'll jot down one person's weird snore, another's dithering (danseyheadedness), another's badly knit hat, another's sad expression, another's queasy car-sickness. This way, I never have to invent a character from nothingness. I try to pay close attention to the world all around me while jotting all my little notes -- how one of my uncles always gets cheeze doodle fuzz in all of the buttons of the remote control, like an orange exoskeleton, for example -- and when I write, I lay out all my notes and see how I might stitch them together to make a good story with cool characters. So yes, my characters are based on little bits of people, taken apart, and then made into someone new.

Sam: How long did it take you to write it?

JB: THE EVER BREATH was originally called Truman and the Great Vootery. It was an idea that I pitched to an editor along with 25 pages. She loved the pages and bought the book and its sequel just on those pages alone. But then I realized that the pages didn't make as much sense as I'd hoped. For one thing, I really didn't know what the Great Vootery was. So I rewrote those pages and then a whole draft of the book. And then THAT wasn't quite right either ... and so I rewrote the book one more time! It took about a year to write a draft that really buzzed. Writing this book often felt like bear wrestling. And sometimes the bear seemed gigantic and big-toothed and large-of-claw. Eventually, the bear and I came to an agreement. We ate cookies in a civilized fashion and decided how the book should go ...

I'm at work on the sequel now -- THE EVER CURE -- and that bear is back and acting surly!

Maisy Jane: Do you have any kids and if so are they named Truman and Cah-mill-ay?

JB: I have four kids. Their names are Phoebe, Finneas, Theo, and Otis. The oldest is fifteen and the youngest is two. For Theo we had three names picked out and one of them was Truman. But it got out-voted. And if Otis had been a girl, Camille was in the running. So both of these names are ones I've loved.

My daughter Phoebe once demanded to have her name in one of my books -- tricky business because you wouldn't want to be Milta in this book, would you? So, if you ever get into THE ANYBODIES series (written under my pen name N.E. Bode), you'll find a Phoebe in Book Two. She's one of the good guys!

Maisy Jane: What is the being whose breath is in the Ever Breath?

JB: See! This is the kind of question an interviewer should ask! I can't wait for you all to grow up and start making the world smarter.

Listen, inside the amber orb called the Ever Breath, there is an actual breath -- a living, breathing breath. This is what makes the Ever Breath mysterious and sacred, what gives it the power to keep a balance between our world and the world that belongs to all the magical creatures. My characters don't even really know what to call the Being whose breath is in this amber orb. They try. Swelda goes back centuries and uses a really ancient term: A Being than which nothing greater can be conceived. I never use the word God. But this is the term that ancient philosophers used for God. And, well, I believe in God. I know not all my readers do, so I didn't come out and say God. But hopefully I talk about the breath within the amber orb in a way that people who do believe in God can think of it as the breath of God. And what I like about the being than which nothing greater can be conceived is that it's not just a dusty God, no, but one who breathes, who lives.

And this isn't an answer to a question, but, Maisy, I totally love YOUR pronunciation of Camille! From now on, I'll think of her as such!

Me: Fine. As long as you do not think of me as Mee-maw.

Posted by joshilyn at 11:22 AM | Comments (34)

March 2, 2010

Triple Hot

Hot thing one: Today I am talking about my (mis)adventures in Hot Yoga over at Five Full Plates.

Hot thing two: I remembered to tell you I was over there. For the first time in WEEKS. Perhaps my cold, dead, flu-brain is reviving? *hope*

Hot thing three: I’ve been putting reviews and blurbs up on the BACKSEAT SAINTS page as they come in rather than trying to make all of you read every nice thing anyone ever says about Saints for the rest of pre-pub---but this one from LIBRARY JOURNAL kinda has me over the moon and I really want to share it:

On the surface, she’s Ro Grandee, dutiful wife of a handsome Texan with ready fists. But underneath her flowery skirts and painful bruises lurks Rose Mae, a fierce Southern spitfire who’s already escaped an abusive father. These days Rose seems resigned to taking punches, working in the Grandee family gun shop, and waltzing with the vacuum cleaner until an oddly familiar airport gypsy foretells a fortune that is murder—literally. Rose’s husband is going to kill her, unless she manages to kill him first. Rose takes her dog, Gretel, and her Pawpy’s old gun and runs for her life, blazing a harrowing trail from Texas to Alabama and on to California and exhuming a heap of family skeletons along the way. VERDICT Jackson has resurrected a character from her best-selling gods in Alabama and crafted a riveting read that simply flies off the page with prose as luscious as sweet tea and spicy as Texas chili. ---Jeanne Bogino

Posted by joshilyn at 8:02 AM | Comments (18)