Sunday, June 1, 2014

A whole month off...

Where did May go?
(Image credit)
May flew by and--not a single post. Oops.

Yes, the A-to-Z took a lot out of me this year. Never again with more than one blog, never again in the middle of another project...

'S a matter of fact, maybe never again. Or maybe just not next year. It would be nice to just spectate for once. Get to visit blogs instead of stressing over my own posts or about not keeping up with the lovely comments y'all leave here. Which I love, and which I'll miss...

Well. We'll see. I love being a part of the A-to-Z, but I feel I miss out a lot. Yes, pre-writing is the key. (Why the hell is it so hard to follow one's own advice?) If I'm able to get at least half the post prewritten by January, when the sign-up list opens, maybe--maybe--I'll consider having another go. Right now I'm simply too exhausted to consider it.

What's been happening here over the last 30 days? Well, my laptop broke down mid-March. (The fact I did the A-to-Z on a borrowed computer might've contributed to the aforementioned exhaustion.) No, it's not fixed yet. It's a 2007 MacBook, and one of the fans is shot--but Apple doesn't manufacture it anymore, which means the pseudo Apple store here can't order it. They told me it's available on eBay or similars, but they've failed to give me (in spite of numerous calls to remind them) the specifications on what, exactly, I need to order.

Perhaps a new laptop is the solution. Sadly, seeing as I'm a starving artist (ahem) with a copious family of dogs who cannot starve, that solution isn't much of a solution at all.

Then the washing machine broke down. And then my car broke down.

This sounds like the beginning of a bad joke.

I'm done whining, though. I have this awesome borrowed laptop (borrowed from an even awesomer person--thank you, Cor!) to keep me connected to the world and--most importantly--to keep writing. The washing machine couldn't be fixed, so said Awesomer Person bought a new, supersonic and super quiet, one (thank you, Cor!)--and, as an added brushstroke of the Universe's goodwill, the delivery guys even took the old one away. And my car has been fixed. It was expensive, and it's not perfect (yet), but it drives. (Thank you again, Cor!)

It's possible the dogs might've missed the car more than I did. Which is saying a lot.

Awkword Paper Cut
Another marvelous thing that happened in May: I was featured all month on Awkword Paper Cut, in the Writers on Writing section, along with two other (pretty fantastic) writers to talk about Mexico and why we writers must (sometimes) leave our countries to find our writing. Awkword Paper Cut is a beautiful literary journal, and the Writers on Writing pieces provide powerful inspiration--as well as much-needed diversification--every month. Bookmark them, visit often, and enjoy.

2014 A Year In Stories
A 12-vol anthology
published by Pure Slush Books
And then there's the Pure Slush 2014 A Year In Stories project. Yesterday was the deadline to deliver all 12 stories in our cycles. I've delivered 9, have #10 in an almost-workable draft.

(Today, by the way, my June story is happening. Want to read it? You can, for free. It's part of the Amazon preview for the book. Just click on the Look Inside link and... enjoy. If you do like it, please remember I'm the ugly duckling among these swans of writers. Their stories are so worth your time. And money.)

As of last count, there's 315 stories (out of 365) delivered and approved for print. The July volume is now out, too, and volumes January through May have a 20% discount on

Aaaaaaand... The fantastic Susan Tepper, another of the magnificent 2014 authors, has snagged a reading date for the project at the KGB Bar in New York's East Village. Talk about illustrious venues! We'll be there on Wednesday November 5th--so if you're in the NYC area, it would be a super treat if you stopped by.

All right. You're all caught up. Now it's my turn to catch up with you.


  1. I feel for you. I have an early 2008 13" MacBook which I use sometimes. Most of my stuff is done on a more recent 17" Laptop PC, and I'm not really an Apple person (my tablet is Windows 8, as is my phone). I added memory to the MacBook, but am frustrated that I can't update the OS.
    Cor sounds like a splendid friend, and I'm glad things are working for you.
    Sadly, 5th November in NYC is unlikely (barring a lottery win), but I'll try to be with you in spirit - in wine, actually, I don't drink spirits.

  2. It sounds like you have had a busy month, with a lot to be proud of too. Why is it than things seem to go wrong in threes? Thankfully all my electrical's are behaving touch wood. Although my father has had nothing but issues with his relatively new car, which with all their electrics these days seem almost impossible to fix. There is a lot to be said for older vehicles I think.
    I too was exhausted after the A to Z challenge and don't think I will be doing it next year but we shall see.
    I love to read peoples post but I actually have an ulterior motive for visiting your blog today. I am trying to help a little dog called Mako. Mako was rescued from a life that had been spent tied on a roof in Peru. as a result of his time spent out in the burning sun Mako developed Cancer, which means his life expectancy is now uncertain. As Mako is looking for his forever home, his cancer proves a big problem. Finding someone willing to take on a dog with no idea how long he might live is a difficult task. Suzanne Yancey has asked for me to help and I am asking fellow bloggers to do the same. Mako's only hope comes from reaching as many people as possible. Perhaps you could pop over to my blog and take a look at Mako's post there and maybe, if you have the time, create a post to help spread the word about his predicament. Thanks Joss.

  3. Looks like you've been making great use of the time you've been away, Guilie. I myself have been pretty swamped all of May-- tho I don't have your challenges-- I don't think I could have delivered on deadlines with the kind of computer troubles you've had. Off to check out your story!

  4. Hi Giulie .. mine got fixed to survive the A-Z .. crashed and burned at X but was rescussitated (not spelt right .. but you'll work it out!) enough for me to finish and carry on using .. I've a 2nd hand pc here going to be updated with my info in about an hour ..

    November sounds a good time .. but doubt I can make it over .. still I'm glad the car is fixed, washing machine happily newly washing and borrowed machine typing away happily ...

    I too am about turn up the volume and get busy .. cheers and welcome back .. Hilary

  5. Wow! That's quite a bummer, having all those essentials broke down and taking a lot out of your pocket. Well, the least one can hope for in those kinds of situations is for the service to be good. And in your car's case, that it recuperates and proceeds on performing much better, which with the right calibration and replacement of spare parts, it will.

    Jason Aaforeign @ AA Foreign Auto Parts


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