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So I haven’t had the energy

March 31, 2016

intheshadownewI see a rheumatologist every six months for my disease– Wegener’s Granulomatosis. I was first diagnosed with the disease in 2003 after a real fight, where I ended in the hospital for almost five weeks. The next year, while I was on IV Cytoxan and high dosages of prednisone was even worse. Some of my experiences are in this book that I wrote several years ago for other WG patients.

The good news is that C-ANCA is not showing up in my blood, meaning that the disease is quiet. As my rheumatologist said, “It is a very sneaky disease.” One of the things this disease did was damage both of my kidneys.

Recently, I started to have headaches and low energy. It was a gradual slide after the flu I had in February. Yesterday, I saw my nephrologist, who watches my kidney function. The creatinine levels spiked. I know that most of you do not know what that means. The kidneys have two functions: make water (or urine) and clean the blood. The high creatinine levels in my blood show that the kidneys are not filtering my blood well. But, you can survive on one kidney. I am surviving on less than that. When the creatinine levels spike, it can mean that my kidneys are going towards an inevitable decline.

So my inability to concentrate on my writing and the need to cuddle my dog, probably has been caused by the spike in creatinine levels.

The good news is that my levels did slide down in the last two weeks. The bad news is that I am taking more medication than ever as well as I have to be more conscious of my health.

So apologies again. I am one-third through the second draft of Dragon Boy. I hate excuses, but please forgive me.

So where is Surely?

March 20, 2016


“Slowly, but surely” was something my grandmother would say when we asked her when she was going to complete one of her projects. She liked to crochet and would make an afghan for each of her grandchildren when they graduated from high school.

One year she had three of us graduating in the same year. Later she said that she had cramps from all that crocheting. It was a relief that the next grandchild wouldn’t graduate in two years.

When she used that phrase, she usually meant that it would be between days and months before she had finished a project.

So in memory of my grandmother who died over a decade ago, I am using that phrase again. I am slowly, but surely editing and revamping Dragon Boy. The main structure story is strong, I just had a few problems with description and viewpoint. I had started with Hilda as the main character. She does have a major role, but the main character is actually Davi.

If you remember him, he was the dragon in human form who helped Michael reach Delhaven. Davi in this book finds his powers as a magical being. He finds the instability inherent in magical beings and he grows up.

Hilda does have a major role in his growth.

When I am finished with the edits, then it will be time for beta readers.

Yesterday while I was working on the edits, I finally saw the direction of the next book. The main character will be Hilda. Oh yes, and I have a title “Unlicensed Sorceress.”

For those of you who enjoyed “Hilda’s Inn,” I am planning on having “Dragon Boy” ready for beta readers at the end of the month. As soon as it gets out, I will be starting the next sequel.

Thank you all for the push to keep me writing.

Spring is early here

March 3, 2016

8a5d8-chickadee-2The birds sure think it is spring. I was sitting on my little porch, watching the birds, when I saw two Doves doing the dance and then one hopped on top of another. It was so raw and real that I had to go into the house to give them a little privacy.

Even the trees and bushes are sending out spores already. I walked down the sidewalk and crunch yellow phallic looking spores. So yes, I have some allergies this early spring. Don’t you?

The change from cold with fever to “hay fever” happened almost instantaneously. My voice still growled with both. I still coughed up sputum. But Monday, my doctor gave me a clean bill of health. There is no infection in my throat and ears, plus even better my lungs are clear.

I know that the rest of you are still dealing with the cold and snow. Come south west and play in the Las Vegas casinos. You’re welcome. I am sitting here in a short sleeves and watching the mercury rising to 67 at 8 a.m. If you wait until the weekend the temperature will drop to the 60s.

If we have an early spring, does this mean we’ll have a really hot summer? Probably. But let’s enjoy what we have right now. I can take the dog for a walk and not freeze my fingers and toes.

Oh yes, and don’t look into the trees. The birds are getting busy early this year.

Life and the usual foibles

February 23, 2016

IMG_0055 It was a rough day yesterday, Foxy was at the vet for her yearly exam. Normally I don’t worry about her except to remember that she has had pancreatitis. That was not fun.

But this time the vet wanted more of her teeth even though she is not in pain. I decided no, because I just can’t afford it now. For that matter, I haven’t been able to take care of my teeth for awhile. So we muddle along with what we have.

The other problem is that her liver is enlarged. I was assured that she she wasn’t in pain and that her liver proteins were in range. He wanted me to go get a sonogram for her. It would cost another 5-6 hundred dollars and my “plan” would not cover it. So instead I am feeding her some pills. She is too smart to gobble the peanut butter so I have to crush them. Plus I am keeping her on a liver diet. Oh yea, she needs to lose weight. I saw a really fat chihuahua yesterday and Foxy actually looks slender compared to the other dog. I think the liver diet has caused her to gain weight. So that is the pain involved in dog-keeping. Still I will do what I can with the resources I have.

On the other hand, while she was at the vet, I missed her badly. I felt her in all the rooms. Plus she is a stabilizing influence on me. She is the adult in this family.

I also have some health problems that my insurance doesn’t want to cover and to add to the grief yesterday, my internet service raised their rates.

So where is this economic recovery that we are in? Seriously when I hear that come out of certain Senators’ mouths, I wonder if they are living in the real world or an imaginary world just for them.

Now for the good news-– I am on my third WIP this year–Diamond Butterfly. This has been the best writing year …EVER.

I will be starting the second draft– for Dragon Boy — this afternoon. I am hoping to have it ready for Beta readers in March sometime. Then it will be publishing preparation time.

Thanks for listening to me… and thanks for all the fish. (Douglas Adams)

The Quickening

February 18, 2016

At this time I am in the last quarter of Dark Moon Rising, the second EJ Hunter book. There were a lot of stops and starts for a couple of years on this book, however, all of a sudden this morning, while I was writing a thousand words, I started to see what was coming next.

The first draft will be done by next week. I have a third story in this series, but before I write it, I want to finish a small novella from the EJ Hunter world called Diamond Butterfly.

dragonboy2016 As for Dragon Boy, I have not started the second draft, which will pull the story together, discover the plot holes, and add descriptions.

I was lucky to find the image last week for the cover art. So here is the cover for Dragon Boy. The image was created “by Mel” and I am so fortunate that I can use it for my cover.

So this is the State of the Writer. Even with a cold and now I think it is extended because of allergies, I have continued writing. I want to have this story out this year.

My sincere gratitude to the excellent digital artists on the ‘net. Without them my covers would be a lot worse.


If he were still here

February 16, 2016


If. It’s one of the saddest two-letter words in the world. I am so grateful that I had so many years with my capricious elf.

Today would have been our twenty-third anniversary. As was our custom we would have had dinner together.

He brought so much life and love into my heart. I miss him every day. There are days when I hope to see him again.

Not now and not yet– I did promise that I would live and write. To that end I brought Foxy, a chihuahua-terrier mix, into my life. She keeps me on track.

So this afternoon, my brother and I are going to lunch, and we’ll talk about Otto and how much we miss him. Then we will laugh at a few of his jokes. Can I tell you a secret? His life was no easier than mine. But, he knew how to dwell on the good and let the negative go. I keep remembering when he told me to hold onto our memories because they would never come again.

So I miss him deeply. I really miss how he could make me laugh even when I was in my crankiest moods.

He used to say, “I don’t wake up cranky. I just let her sleep.”

It still makes me laugh.

Sore throats and fevers

February 12, 2016

So the last two days I haven’t been getting to my minimum goal. I think after this post I may be able to crank out another five hundred words. I’m not sure how I picked up this cold. I wasn’t around any sick people. I did have to shop for dog food, so I may have passed near someone that was germy. I have been known to get sick from people just by being in the same air space.

Since the dog had pancreatitis last year, I have to be careful about what I feed her now. I go to PetSmart for specialty food. I used to feed her Royal Canine, but it has too much fat content for her stomach and liver. I am trying out a new brand and we’ll see how she does on it.

Yesterday I was able to pull out five hundred words and then I slept the rest of the day. When I have a fever, all of my muscles and joints hurt like hell. It’s one of the only things that make me stop and rest. Oh yes, and fatigue. I do get that after I push too hard and too long. As I get older, it is harder to refill my energy. I have to pick– if I wash clothes today, will I have enough energy to write?

Anyway, enough of my little problems. I am alive, I am writing, and I have a companion.

Since you miscreants have finished reading this post, this weekend, Saturday and Sunday, Living in the Desert, a collection of short stories is free.

Living in the desert collection ebook coverThis is a collection of short stories about living in the high-deserts of California, Utah, and Nevada. Stories include wildland fires, desert rescues, and a cougar attack.

Plus there is at least one alien encounter.




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