Walking to the Beat of Your Own Drum

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I thought it would be fun to think about the theme songs for some of the main characters in my various books. I picked out a few favourites. And, in some cases, songs jumped out at me for those particular characters.

In completely random order.

– Woody (Pure Dumb Luck) – A tie between ‘Humble and Kind’ and ‘Real Good Man’ by Tim McGraw

– Francis (After the Scrum) – ‘All I Want’ by Kodaline

– Elaine (Misguided Confession) – ‘This Is Me’ from The Greatest Showman

– Mac (One Last Heist) – ‘Let Your Heart Hold Fast’ by Fort Atlantic

– Bishan (The Grasmere Trilogy) – ‘Ode to Joy’

– Iggy (Here Come The Son) – ‘Sympathy for The Devil’ by Guns & Roses

– Fie (At War With A Broken Heart) ‘Ring of Fire’ by Johnny Cash

– Ivan (Forged in Flood) – ‘Killing in the Name’ by Rage Against The Machine

– Ivy (Ivy/Blackbird Anthology) – 93 Million Miles’ by Jason Mraz

– Dusk (Found You) – ‘Changes in Latitude, Changes in Attitude’ by Jimmy Buffett

This was fun.

I might have to do it for other characters.

 

 

The Joy of Writing

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The one word that epitomizes Pure Dumb Luck is fun. Definitely. 100%. Fun.

And I definitely made that decision consciously.

The first two novels I wrote in 2019 were emotionally heavy. One was a nightmare to write from conception to the last word. I desperately wanted/needed to enjoy the process of writing again.

Woody and Eddie are the epitome of a Rom-Com. While writing, I definitely visualized the entire story as a movie. Pure Dumb Luck—coming to a theatre near you—I wish.

Sadly, we’ll have to settle for the written word.

It was lines like this that had me laughing constantly.

“What’s a blowjob on the baseball scale of sex?” Woody followed Eddie down the trail. They had four more miles to go before they hit their first campsite of the hike. “Third?”

“Two balls and a strike .”

There are so many moments in the novella that had me chuckling (and wondering if my editor would make me rewrite them.)

She didn’t, thankfully.

I might’ve had to fight her to keep my precious moments of silly humour together.

Do you love a good Rom-Com?

What am I binge watching this month?

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I thought I’d share the shows I’m currently enjoying on TV, Netflix or Amazon Prime. They’re in no particular order.

  1. Hunted UK
  2. Bake Off
  3. SAS: Who Dares Wins
  4. Blown Away (a fascinating glass blowing competition)
  5. This Farming Life
  6. Alone (on History channel)
  7. Forged in Fire
  8. Deadliest Catch
  9. As Time Goes By
  10. DIY SOS

What about you? What are you binge watching this week/month? Do you binge watch at all?

Fighting Your Muse.

Inspiration

I’m writing this blog post on Sunday. And my brain is all over the place. It’s hard to find peace and joy when the world seems chaotic and filled with pain.  And writing a holiday novella seems almost impossible.

Though, that is not the topic of this post.

I wanted to talk about fighting your muse. Something I don’t recommend, and something I frequently do as a pantser.

My muse likes to dump ideas on me constantly at inconvenient times and places.

In the middle of writing a story?

My bastard of a muse: “here’s a brilliant and completely unrelated idea.”

Falling asleep?

My muse: “Have you considered….”

In the shower?”

My Muse: “I am a genius.”

So when do you fight the muse?

It can be dangerous to ignore good ideas. I mean, they’re good. You want to write them.

Some ideas I have to let go because I don’t think they’re mine to write. Others I jot down in my idea notebook (I start a new one every year.) And some, I start immediately because my brain won’t quit.

The key is to know when to battle your muse into submission–like when you have a deadline and don’t have time for a new idea.

And when to go with the flow.

How about you?

Does your muse flood you with ideas at the worst moments?

 

 

 

I didn’t lose my mind.

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A little over a week ago, I attended my first book signing at the Writers on the River event in Peoria, Il.  I thought I’d share ten things about it.

1. Sensory Overload to the max. As an autistic, I severely underestimated my ability to handle the noise and chaos of 300+ readers in one room.

2. Writers on the River has brilliant organisers and some of the kindest volunteers. Highly recommend, though if you’re autistic, consider how well you deal with crowds.

3. I survived.

4. The best burger I’ve ever had from a dive called Burger Barge.

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5. I learned I need to do better at respecting my limitations.

6. Everyone likes free candy. (And Reese’s Peanut Butter cups go first.)

7. Best cupcake ever.  Chocolate espresso cupcake. So good. OMG. So good.

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8. Swag makes everyone happy.

9. I can push myself too far in an attempt to fit into the allistic vision of an author.

10. The Grasmere Trilogy paperback has by far my most popular cover.

*If you’re interested in learning more about how attending a book signing affected me as an autistic, I’ve vlogged about it over on my patreon.*

 

Red Flags.

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Relationship red flags have always been a hard one for me to spot. As an autistic, I have frequently struggled to get a good read on people. The older I get, the better at it. I become through a very painful process of trial and error.

I thought I’d share some of my hard-earned lessons with you.

  1. Anyone who gets enjoyment out of your embarrassment or humiliation. Nope. Big red flag for me, particularly when it’s clear that you aren’t laughing along.
  2. They try to separate you from your friends/family. Anyone trying to isolate you is a big massive RED flag. Run, don’t walk.
  3. Physical or verbal intimidation. If they rely on scaring you or intimidating you into doing what they want, another warning sign. Don’t pass go, don’t collect $200.00, just go.
  4. Lies. Everyone tells little white lies, but if you’re with someone who lies about the big things all the time. Nope. Sorry. Not a good sign.
  5. Immaturity. Now, I don’t mind moments of childish enjoyment and silliness. But if someone is emotionally immature, it can be a red flag.

They are so many more. These are just ones I have personal experience with. It goes without saying if a partner is physically, verbally, emotionally, or in any other way abusive. That’s more than a red flag.

An Open Letter To Myself

….well, a letter to twenty-year-old me.

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Dear Self,

First, you’re going to be okay. Divorce is scary, but it’s not the end of the world.

Second, you’re autistic. I know you think you have some terminal illness because you get so tired after being around people. It’s okay. You’re autistic. And you’re going to be so relieved when you find out.

Third, you will fall in love again.

Fourth, the divorce was about him…not you. He’s been divorced three more times since you.

Fifth, you’re brilliant. And you can write. You just have to believe enough in yourself to try.

Now, stop crying into the ice cream.

He’s not worth it.

You’re going to be fine.

Love,

Me