Crazy Dream

I had a dream last night that I was crazy. Or was I? That was the question that was haunting me in the dream.

I was running through an insane asylum, looking for a way through to get to my dorm room. There were people chasing me, claiming I was an escaped inmate. They said the reality I thought was real wasn’t and that I had to accept the fact that I was crazy so they could treat me. I was trapped in some kind of nightmare world and I thought if I made it to my dorm room then the real world would come back.

My husband’s alarm woke me up before I could find a way to my dorm though. Good thing too as it wasn’t the happiest of dreams. Kind of Silent Hill-esque. Maybe I was making noises or something in my sleep because my husband asked me if I slept okay. Or maybe it was because our son kept waking us up coughing and trying to climb into the bed at all hours of the night.

This dream intrigues me as a story idea – is the person crazy or not? Written 1st person.

Challenge:

Pay attention to your dreams. Write them down if they interest you enough. There could be gems hiding in your slumbering mind. Take a dream that really grabs you and mold it into a story.

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Electronics Time Limit

Lately I’m getting nasty headaches all the time. This could be caused by certain special foods I’m eating. Or it could be caused by staring at my iPad screen for long periods of time while playing games. I wonder if staring at the computer screen while I write could be included in that statement? Probably.

The headaches are usually centered behind my eyeballs so it could be that my eyes are super dry; that would explain why my eyes themselves hurt. I get dry eyes from staring at computer screens. Maybe having the tv on all the time could be to blame as well.

So my diet is going to undergo a change to see if that helps and all electronics are going to be cut back to about 2 hours every day. This mainly goes for my son because he watches too much tv and plays on the iPad too much. All electronics stay off in the morning and evening. While I work for 2 hours in the afternoon, Jacob can watch tv and play on the iPad. After 2 hours I have to stop working and then all electronics will be once more turned off.

This will suck. But hopefully not for long. He needs extra help with certain things anyway so I’ll be able to sit down with him and work through these issues. Hopefully it won’t take long for him to make progress. I have mad skillz at understanding him as a child and discussing things with him till we understand each other. At least, my skills are probably the same as any other parent’s but my husband has none so he thinks I’m amazingly talented at it. And I think I am too.

I’m very humble. Can you tell?

Star Wars Boring?

Everything in my life at the moment seems to center around my son and fitness. Sometimes the two even go together because my son will join me when I’m trying new workouts. This shouldn’t be putting my writing on the back-burner but that’s what seems to have happened.

I feel the ideas drifting along in an invisible body of water in my mind but when I try to reach for them they’re forced away from me. Always out of reach. Like when you try to reach through water to get some unknown speck and it keeps getting pushed out of reach from the force of your movements through the water. Very aggravating when I’m literally trying to do that. Figuratively though, I know getting aggravated will just force the idea further away so I’ll never get it so I remain calm and wait.

I feel these ideas but I don’t know what they are. Vague shapes in the distance, wavering in the heat that’s radiating from the asphalt in summer.

So I’m trying to read instead. This would be quite easy if I hadn’t chosen such a boring book. I love the Star Wars movies, even Clone Wars. But trying to read The Phantom Menace by Terry Brooks is proving much more difficult than I anticipated. The problem is that I hate Anakin Skywalker. I liked the movie but hated the actor they found for the kid. And the actor they found for his “grown-up” counterpart in Episodes 2 & 3 is even worse. I can stand the kid Anakin but I despise the spoiled, conceited, selfish brat who he becomes in 2/3. At least in the Clone Wars they have him acting more like a normal, responsible adult.

Ugh. Breathe. Don’t get started on that. Anyway, I thought I’d like The Phantom Menace because I like most of the characters but it’s just not interesting. I’m not quite sure why but it feels like I’m slogging through it. I’m even skipping parts now! I hate doing that but it doesn’t feel like I’m missing out on anything.

Bad sign. Skipping parts in a book but still not missing anything? Ouch. But maybe I’m the kind of person who prefers to watch sci-fi and not read it? Maybe. I read Rogue Planet by Greg Bear when I was in high school and really enjoyed that though. It’s the book that comes after The Phantom Menace. Oh well.

Fun Times with a Sick Child

For the majority of this last week my son was feverishly sick. After his fever broke, he was left with a nasty mucus-y cough and a runny nose but tons of energy and a healthy appetite. So instead of going out we stayed inside reading and watching movies. Guess who likes The Hobbit now? MUWHAHAHAHAHA!!! Gollum is too much for him though. Can’t blame him – the animated version of The Hobbit when I was a kid was way scary for me. The animation made even Bilbo seem frightening! Every frown of confusion made him look like he was going to bash my head in and eat my brains! Anyway, we skip the scary parts and I never let him watch it alone because that would be too much for him to take. However, when there’s sword fighting he jumps to his feet, brandishes his invisible sword, and defends us all from the evil orcs! Oooooh it makes me laugh! What a cutie!

And before people gasp and say I’m a horrible mother for letting him watch something so grown-up, let me first say that both his dad and I had serious misgivings about it but there were the happy times in the beginning of the movie and the traversing through the countryside. The bad language is minimal and the violence is nothing he hasn’t seen already in The Clone Wars. It’s sad but there it is. But I watch him carefully just in case he’s reached his scare limit and I ask him often during the scary parts if it’s too much at which point I skip forward to happy scenes. He really likes Radagast and the cleaning-up song the dwarves sing in the beginning.

I finished reading Agatha Christie’s Poirot novel “After the Funeral” too. It was so good! Very different though. Poirot barely did anything in the novel but still figured everything out. I thought the mirror-image theory was interesting too. I won’t go into details because I wouldn’t want to spoil it for anyone who hasn’t read it.

Attack of the Killer Coffee!!

Maybe calling it “killer” coffee is a bit melodramatic but the coffee did attack. It more than likely wasn’t hot anymore because the man had been sitting at the table with it before I got there and we had been sitting there for quite some time before it happened.

But what happened??

He accidentally spilled his coffee.

Why is this important?

Because he’s writing a book… long-hand.

GASP!

He spilled coffee on his paper! Luckily it didn’t really get on his writing. It looks like it only colored the top part of the paper that had today’s date and some other info on it. It wouldn’t be the first time I’ve sat next to him at Starbucks. Both of us writing away, me with electronic gadgets, him with his paper and pencil. Not even with a pen; he uses a pencil. Yes, this is an older gentleman. His name is Mike. He comes from a time when boys were raised to be gentlemen. He even called me Miss. Anyone younger would’ve called me Ma’am. Shudder. Oh the horror. Ma’am makes me feel so old. He’s a very nice man and I enjoy sitting by him when I go to Starbucks. It’s interesting to see how his writing’s going. If his creativity isn’t cooperating, he writes letters to people instead. His handwriting is very neat and precise. Not the kind of writing you see nowadays. His friend usually joins him. Occasionally if my work is lagging I’ll eavesdrop or even talk directly to them. Mike and Gary. Nice men.

Spilling coffee on your papers. How often have writers done that. Now the risk is spilling coffee on your laptop or iPad or whatever but whatever. I can look at one of my notebooks for one of my novels and pick out food and coffee stains. It seems to be an integral part of the writing process. I told him he needed to save the paper to show people in the future so they could see what the writing process looks like – garnished with food and marinated in coffee.

Good times. Very good times.

HL Henrikson’s e-novella “All For One”

After years and years of kicking her butt trying to finish a book and get published, HL Henrikson has finally succeeded in her goal! Behold!

“One For All (Chronicles of the 13 Colonies)” by HL Henrikson

When Talbot joined the top secret Agency to protect the welfare of Colony 3’s citizens, he dreamed of crushing the criminal element running her streets to pave the way for class equality. Now, several decades and countless apprentices later, social degradation continues as if his hard work meant nothing. Life may be beautiful in the skyrises, but between the neon and the gutter, drugs, gangs, and violence rule all.

He’s about ready to call it a wash and retire to one of the colony’s sprawling vignards when a routine trip to his favorite watering hole puts him on the scene – and in the way – of a high profile murder. With the limelight shining holes in his cultivated anonymity and his intuition counting down the days to something big and dark and dangerous, the last thing he expects to find is a new protégé. The last thing he needs is the danger she brings with her.

One final mission to the learn the truth. One last hope to save the cause. One way or another, Talbot will find out what’s going on in his city…even though it’s likely to get him killed. Because a life without a cause isn’t worth living, and besides…secret agents aren’t allowed to retire.

“One For All” is a sci-fi novella and is the first installment in a series.

You can find HL Henrikson on her website, on Facebook at HL Henrikson or on Twitter @HL_Henrikson. She also has a blog you can read – Between Worlds.  “One For All (Chronicles of the 13 Colonies)” by HL Henrikson is currently being sold on Amazon as a Kindle edition ebook for $3.99.

Congratulations to HL Henrikson for completing a lifelong dream! Hopefully we’ll see much more of her and her writing as her new career takes off!

Never too busy for Agatha Christie

Lately my writing has been taken over by my reading. I have only so much time in my day and it’s broken up into very tidy sections:

  • Writing
  • Family
  • Work/Study
  • Fitness

Lately though my normal schedule has been thrown completely out of alignment due mainly to the fitness part of my life. The rest of my life has gotten a little wonky as well but it’s really the fitness part that’s the cause of the major changes. I had my class – Foundations of Group Fitness Instructor – on Saturday (yesterday) but was behind in studying the book to be ready for the class so for the past week and a half I’ve been using all my writing time studying. I passed the class. Yay! But am now so very behind in my writing and I will remain behind for a little while longer because I now have to practice a demo class to prove that I’m ready to teach. Then things will calm down and return to normal…I hope.

Until then, rather than write at night, I use the last of my free time to rest my aching head and read a book. Right now I’m into Agatha Christie’s Poirot novels. They’re not horribly long mysteries and each chapter is short so my imagination is constantly on the move. It’s nice. There’s no time to get bored. Right now I’m reading “Lord Edgeware Dies.” I accidentally flipped to the end and saw who the murderer was when I was looking to see how long the book was. Oops! I almost returned it to the library because I felt the book was ruined for me then because I already know who did it. But I kept reading and Agatha Christie has made the case so complicated and interesting that I find myself second-guessing the snippet I read and wonder if I really don’t know who the murderer is! Then I think, “Well, even if it turns out to be so-n-so, I have to keep reading to see how they did it!” I am so in the dark as to how it could’ve been done that I’m dying to find out.

Makes me laugh to write that. Agatha Christie was such an awesome writer. I’d be sorry she was dead except that she wrote almost 80 books so she left quite a legacy to enjoy! She lived a full, successful life and it sounds like it was an enjoyable one too. There should be no grief in her death in a case like this. I’m merely happy she was alive to begin with.