Tuesday, February 2, 2010


The 2 Year Novel class has been offered by Zette over at FMWriters for years now. I've been vaguely aware of it ever since finding the site back when I was about 15 or so but it wasn't until last year that I decided to try it--which I did, and then failed miserably. I got behind, became frustrated and let it fade into oblivion. This year, I'm starting over and things will be different.

What makes me think it'll be different? Well, mostly because I've decided that it's time that I get serious and focus, and also because I finally completed a goal of mine I set back in 2003--to win NaNoWriMo. That first year I tried and bit the dust hard. The years after that were split between not trying at all, and half-heartedly trying that quickly died off when I couldn't quite get into the story. In 2009, I got a rough start but forced it to work for the first few days, and then gave up because it felt so forced.

And then, about the 15th I took another look at it and thought about how many things I've left uncompleted in my life and decided that I could and would win nanowrimo. I wrote like crazy and managed to write the last 39k in 15 days. I discovered that I could write 5k+ in a day-twice as much as anything I'd previously done-and that, even though I was rushing through the story and it's got some large plot holes and needs a lot of editing and rewriting and my punctuation needs work, I really felt like it could be a decent novel. Despite all the work that I know it still needs, I can now look at that and think hey, I actually wrote something with a semi-coherent plot that I think I'd read if I found it in a bookstore.

My grandfather used to tell me that I could do anything I wanted to. High praise coming from my grandfather who could be quite blunt, even about his grandchildren, and I believe what he told me. Oh, I've felt like a failure before and had plenty of moments of self doubt, but it's always been about things that I haven't done--that I didn't do my best, that I didn't finish something, that I didn't listen when I had the chance--but I've always felt capable of doing anything that I truly set my mind to, yet rarely have I truly focused myself. Maybe I've been afraid that if I tried and failed it would shatter my illusion of self-confidence, or maybe I'm just easily bored and enjoy the search for something new. Maybe something of both.

At any rate, I've decided that 2YN is something I want to stick with through the end this time around, even if I get hung up on some spots and then have to rush to catch up. This time things will be different. If you'd like to take a look at my project, it can be found here. (Not sure if you can view it or not without being logged in to the FM site)

Sunday, January 31, 2010


Well, I got my dog. :) Not an English Mastiff, but an Italian one--a Cane Corso. Quota's a little frustrating at times, but also sweet enough to make up for it. I love having someone to spend my day with, even if she is a dog.

I've always been a bit on the solitary side, but now that I'm living in a somewhat rural area though I've found myself at something of a loss. To be blunt, I don't have friends here and I'm not sure I know how to make new friends--mostly because I spend too much time wondering what other people think. I keep in touch with old friends of course, but how can I find new friends that won't think I'm crazy when I start ranting about the ridiculousness of a book I just read, or toss out references to Discworld, or who understand the awful awesomeness of 10th Kingdom? And because I'm too worried about coming across as odd or insulting something that they might like, I say nothing and turn myself into an unmemorable, quietly boring person.

And so, I've found myself a dog. Not as a substitute for making new friends, but as a reminder to myself that somebody can like me for me--even if I am a little weird sometimes. And really, who cares what everyone else thinks? My husband knows exactly how weird I am and he's okay with it. Even if I don't make any new friends in this area, I'm still lucky to have the ones I've made before because they're awesome and I can trust them to let me know when I'm being stupid, lol.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I want a dog

Lately I've become slightly obsessed with wanting a dog. It's even gotten to the point where I'll catch myself thinking that maybe a Chihuahua would be okay . . . and then reality steps back in and reminds me that I don't actually like tiny dogs. What I'd really like is an English Mastiff--big, adorable, sweet tempered, and not-so-likely to spend the whole day barking/jumping up and down. Not so crazy about the drool but hey, everything has its downside. I love the gentle giants, what can I say?
Reality raising its ugly head again says that there's no way I can afford a mastiff in the near future or that one would be suited to my current lifestyle. I acknowledge this. Still want one though. Someday off in the distant future I will get one. :)

That said, I still want a dog now. It gets lonely home alone sometimes and I'd love to have a dog to talk to and play with and attempt to train. Labs and Retrievers seem to be standard issue but I've never been particularly attracted them and would prefer to have something a little more exotic I guess, as shallow as that seems. They just seem like they're too high energy to me and/or have too much hair. I've had a dog with a long coat before and I'd rather avoid that in the future. Plus since I plan for my dog to spend a considerable portion of their time indoors with me I'd rather have a shorter coat that won't shed too much. Is that asking too much?

All I want is a nice largish female dog who is relatively calm, trained/trainable, doesn't shed or drool much (at least no more than is average), will be good with small children, maybe likes to play frisbee or something, and will be mildly protective of me. I'm not looking for a guard dog--I just want to know that she'd at least let me know that someone's inside my house. Is this so much to ask?

I've tried to research breeds on the internet but it's a case of overkill--there's so much information on such a huge range of breeds that it's hard to find any that is actually useful. Sure, breeds like German Shepherds, Labs, Spaniels show up a lot on searches but if I knew of a fairly common breed of dog that I thought would fit what I'm looking for I'm pretty sure I'd already have a dog. Instead I wind up looking through web page after web page, finding a mention of a type of dog that sounds interesting and then attempt to dig my way through all the conflicting information about the breed to try to piece together a realistic idea of what it is. I've looked at information on Samoyeds, American Eskimo Dogs, Jamthunds, Vizslas, American Bulldogs, American Pit Bull Terriers, Presa Canarios, Rottweilers, Border Collies, Australian Shepherds, and more. Those are just the more recent ones that came to mind. Some of these breeds are similiar, some are not. Some don't fit what I'm looking for physically but I'm trying to keep an open mind and realize that some of what I'm looking for is open to compromise, while others (like temperament) are not. And of course individual dogs can vary greatly from the general characteristics of a breed as well so I try to keep that in mind as well.

Anyways, I'd love to get some suggestions on any other dog breeds that might fit what I'm looking for. Or if you happen to have the perfect dog sitting next to you . . . my invisible ninjas will be seeing you. :P