Archive for December, 2005

See Ya Next Year

December 23, 2005 | Inspiration

I’ve told you my goals for 2006. Right now, I’m finishing line editing my book, enjoying my family and honoring my deceased parents. I wish you all a great Holiday celebration whatever you choose. I’ll return to my blog on January 3rd. On my Writing Humps, Dumps and Lumps page, Hotclue is going to start the year off answering quesitions on point of view. So until then:

Twas the night before Christmas and all through my house,
Every creature was stirring, including my computer mouse.
The stockings were hung by the chimney in disaray
Cause there weren’t nothing in them, so what the hey
My 22 year old had slept in her bed all day,
While visions of night time juking danced in her head
Now she and her AKA sisters have primped and prepped,
Cause by eleven pm sister girls, out they will step,
They all look so hot and want to have to have a good time,
Make some unsuspecting brothers spend their last dime.
Our son was grooving watching Adult Swim in his room,
Venturing out only for food and the bathroom.
He’s only fifteen and girls give him the frights,
And for this Mommy, that’s alright.
One day too soon, he’ll discover the opposite sex,
Making Mommy reach for a shot gun, shovel and Kleenex.
Hubby is snoring in the Lazy Boy, holding tight the remote,
Poor me, on this I’ve got no vote.
I’ll wait till he’s sleep, from his fingers I’ll pry it,
Then set reminders to pop up every hour, he’ll have a fit.
I’d just fallen asleep when I heard a great noise,
For a moment I thought it might be some hot boys.
So, I hobbled from my bed and peaked out the window,
Couldn’t see anything, no really couldn’t see anything – no glasses, but it was twenty below.
I stepped over our guard dog (yeah right a beagle) down to the first floor,
Wondering if the noise came from a window or door.
I heard some tapping up on the roof,
“Oh crap,” I said, “I don’t think the roof’s holeproof.”
Then suddenly the fireplace grew bright,
And I thought maybe ET’s stopping by for a bite.
Then black boots, red pants shimmed down the flue,
I didn’t know what to do.
Should I start a fire and burn him up?
Or get out the champagne and offered him a cup?
I braved the outside, since no one would wake up,
I stared at the roof, wishing I had backup.
Then I caught sight of a brand new red convertible Mustang,
All I could say was “Dang.”
Filled with bags, the strap of a Louis Vuitton handing out one side,
I yelled, “Oh Baby come on inside!”
I hurried back into the house, stood by the fireplace clapping with glee,
That jolly old man had brought me some LV!
He made it down the chimmey, tossed his bag on the floor, took a deep breathe and said,
“Woman, those bags are heavy.”
I eyed the LV bags all for me, smiled my best smile and said, “Oh Santa, don’t be so funny.”
He shuffled the bags and unloaded all the loot,
For my family what a hoot.
But, just as I went to touch a bag, my hand he gave a sharp wack!
“Not so fast,” he said, “Ms Smartaleck.”
“Have you finished line editing your book?”
He gave me a harsh look.
I bowed my head and shook it no.
He said, “To your desk, now go.”
“But it’s late”, I begged.
“I’ll do it tomorrow.”
“Yeah, I’ve heard that damn proscrasination line from Sloane.” He smirked.
Boy, Santa was becoming a jerk!
“I’ll take the Vuitton back, the Mustang too.
If you don’t do what you’re supposed to.”
“Oh no Santa, not the LV and my brand new ride!”
“I’ll write, I’ll edit, I’ll submit, just don’t take away my bribes!”
He paused for a moment, I was scared
I was going to have to beat Santa and hide his carass under my bed.
Then he leaned back and laughed so loud,
I thought he’d wake hubby – Not!
“Girlfriend, make me proud.”
“Success awaits you, now say it loud.”
“I’m black and I’m proud! Oops, my bad.”
I raised up my hand and said, “I got it Santa. I know what you’re saying.”
“Sit my ass in that chair and keep writing.”
“I’ve got potential, I’ve got promise, I’ve got stories to tell.”
“Millions of books to sell.”
He said, “Now, you’ve got it.” He reached down in his bag and said, “I’ve got one more thing to
make you happy.”
“Your own personal tv remote. It won’t work for anyone else, not even your hubby.”
Now I was feeling rather froggy and bubbly.
So with a short salute and a tap on my hubby’s head,
He waddled to the front door, outside sat a bobsled.
On top of a black Hummer.
As he gunned the motor, I said, “What a bummer.”
Those big rim spinners,
Just kept him grinning.
He roared around my block, turned the sound system way up loud,
My daughter and her friends would have been proud.
I could have sworn I heard him yell, “Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!”
But the bass was so loud all I saw was headlights.
So I’ll say it for Santa, my vixens and friends,
Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.


10 Days Until

December 21, 2005 | Inspiration

A few years ago, actually 1998, I was doing the Weight Watchers plan (still am) and one of the components is exercise. So I headed to the nearest health club, a wonderful facility, joined and started the aerobics class. That lasted a few months and then I became bored. So still following Weight Watchers, I took a beginners tennis program, called 1 2 3 Tennis taught by a tennis pro. Now, the first time I picked up a tennis racquet was when I lived in Washington, D.C. I did it because it was taught at a singles complex and I was single. It was really fun learning in the warm summer evenings. I even got a couple of dates out of it. I was born and raised in Virginia and the first time I saw Arthur Ashe I fell in love/lust. He overcame so many racial barriers to become a great professional tennis player, and although I never got to meet the man, I remain in awe of him. Especially his dignity in dealing with AIDS, and how he handled John MacEnroe’s temper outbursts. The next time I picked up a racquet was in Chicago after the birth of our daughter, and stopped when I returned to work. Then, 1998. Nancy, the pro, made tennis so much fun to play. For two hours twice a week, we sweated our butts off on a hot court. Little did I know this woman had an ulterior motive. Took me a little over a year to figure it out and by then, I was hooked. She suggested, after we finished the class, we join a team. Now, bear in mind a team of anything, including a writer’s group, can consist of beginners and experienced people. In our case, it was more like the beginners on one team and the experienced players on the other. It was especially clear when we played and they wiped our asses off the court. Of course not to be totally embarrassed, we kept taking lessons, found other women willing to play on our team and we got better. Then we discovered tennis outfits, which at any age gives a woman the right to wear very hot short skirts, skimpy tops and not feel bad. We continued to work as a team, bring in new members and learn to play better. At some point, a few years ago, the team I was on decided to split up. I’m not going to go into details, but the breakup left the advanced players on one team and the no so advanced on the other. Well, guess what team I ended up on. It caused a lot of hurt feelings, but again, here comes Nancy and she suggested I captain the not so advanced team. Since I had captained our summer teams and I was pissed at how the entire breakup was handled, I agreed. The first couple of years were down right ugly. We got our butts kicked, but we really liked each other as teammates AND as women. We also discovered a common love, clothes. As I put it then, we may look bad out there on the court, but we always looked good. To add to our team, Nancy sent a couple of new players our way. The team gelled, our tennis pro was patient and taught us well. Then we got better. MUCH better. My teammates have been there for me through the loss of both my parents. When a lady suffers, we are there for her. We’ve had teammates have children. Funny, how one half of our team is raising children, and the other half are finished. We party together, we have lunch on Saturdays after practice and for the last two years, traveled to Miami for the NASDAQ 100 Tennis Tournament. Our tennis wardrobes have expanded. If we choose a color to play in on any given weekend, everybody can find an outfit in that color in their closet. This year our colors are purple and black. We’ve had matches at other clubs scheduled for 3pm and we get there at 1pm because we know they’ve got a pro shop and we need to ‘look’.

We like each other, there have been very few arguments among us. It’s not allowed. No back biting. We’re particular who wants to join our group of 14. Must be able to get along with other women, must be willing to promote team first, must be able to listen (still working on that one ladies), must be willing to play with others, must be willing to practice and practice hard, and must be willing to shop. Our tennis pro, John drives us and he also is my sons’ tennis instructor. I treasure these women, their friendship. Each one is unique, different. We are an integrated group and proud of it. So many of the other clubs we play at can’t say that. We are protective of each other and listen to the opinions of our group. Tennis is more than an exercise. It can be a life long sport activity and you can build friendships that last a life time. Tennis for me is a way to relieve stress, get my aggressions out and return to writing after my body’s recovered. It is mental and physical exercise, and in my paranormal series, one of the main characters is a tennis player.

Watch a major tournament, the Australian Open comes up in January. Check out the legs on the men players. Check out how their firm, taut muscles gleam with sweat. Check out their facial expressions of passion when they win a point. Check out, how one minute they’re full of rage and the next crying because they’ve won the match. Talk about Alpha males all over the place. Think about it, if Andre Aggassi at his age chase down balls for four hours, is it any wonder he and Stefi have two children?


11 Days Until 2006

December 20, 2005 | Writing

Well, my countdown continues. Could someone explain to me, why my writing muse strikes at 11pm? My characters don’t sleep during the day, they bug me then also. It’s not so bad, except when I’m practicing my backhand, and all of a sudden, here comes Elizabeth, my heroine, wanting to know if I’m making her appear weak where her father is concerned. Of course I miss my shot, not enough shoulder rotation or follow through on my swing. I mentally remind her that she’s a ‘Daddy’s girl’. She’d rather face the Supreme Court in her underwear singing Tupac than confront her father. She loves Stephen and is caught in the middle trying to negotiate a family truce. My tag line for my novel, Romeo and Juliet but they don’t die. As for Stephen, he’s just happy to have five hot sex scenes in the book with Elizabeth. Men. In my original novel, I killed the father to create more conflict. Now, he’s still alive causing trouble. He’s not an evil man, just one who has seen what the world has to offer interracial couples, Elizabeth is black and Stephen is white, and doesn’t want it for his daughter. Of course, he has a secret, but that isn’t revealed until the sequel. Yes, I took a BIG chunk of the book out to keep the story focused on Elizabeth and Stephen, and have a second book. Provided of course, book one is published. I line edited two more chapters last night, before I decided to go to bed at 2am. I almost stayed up and watched Star Trek’s The Wrath of Khan, but decided not to. It’s bad when you start reciting dialogue and can identify the main plot, subplots, and dark moments. Tomorrow, I’ll explain how I was ‘recruited’ into tennis, when all I was looking for was a way out of aerobics.


Awesome Weekend-Back to Countdown 12 Days Left

December 19, 2005 | Family & Life

Well, it wasn’t a writing weekend and I was prepared for that. I knew family and tennis would take priority. Our match Saturday was great. I was supposed to play second singles, but the opponent defaulted. That means I got a win! As team captain, I went to the match to watch my teammates play and take notes on the opponent. We won 4 out of 5 matches. Did I tell you my ladies are awesome! Dainty, feminine looking, but on the court we are tigers, merciless to our opponents. Reality calling. I’ve got to get back to work, make sure my book is ready to go out after the holidays to an epublisher that wants to read it. As for family, we went to a restaurant we all love. I made reservations for 4:15pm, told hubby the reservations were at 4pm. If you’re in a relationship, you’ll understand. We arrived at 4:20, having left the house at 3:45 and it takes almost 30 minutes to get there. If he reads this, get used to it lover. From now on, you won’t know what time reservations are unless you make them, or check up on me. Like he did yesterday, but we were on the road by then.

Ok, 2006 goals. I’m working on a paranormal Wicca series and according to the excel spreadsheet I’ve set up, I should have the first draft of the first book by the end of March. In order to make sure I keep to my goal, I’ve signed up to read the first twenty pages to my Chicago North RWA group. My critique partners will have had a go at it before that. Boy am I glad I play tennis! I will be able to work the stress off.

But before I get to 2006, I must finish this year. I’ve set a goal of line editing my multi-cultural love story. Three chapters every day. There are minor changes and I want to get it right. My kids are busy entertaining themselves. The oldest is home from college, hanging out with her friends and starting her career search. The high school sophomore is playing video games, eating, and playing tennis with his team friends. Santa arrives in the form of gift cards and they know who Santa is. So, today is a good day. Today is a power day.


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