Saturday 9: Tammy (1957)

Saturday 9: Tammy (1957)
In celebration of Debbie Reynolds

Unfamiliar with this week’s song? Hear it here.

1. In this song,Tammy sings of being able to hear “the breeze from the bayou.” What sounds can you hear as you answer these questions?

Nothing so poetic. Mumblings from my brother’s tv upstairs. The hum of my white noise machine. 

2. This week’s song was the theme of a popular movie about a girl who grew up on a houseboat in Mississippi. Looking back on 2016, did you spend much time on or around water?

I spent zero time around water in 2016, which is highly unusual for me. Normally, I find a lake or river somewhere to spend some quiet time in the Spring and Summer. Maybe this is why 2016 seemed like such a disconnected year for me.

3. In addition to being an Oscar-nominated actress, this week’s artist, Debbie Reynolds, was a big movie fan. She amassed an amazing cache of movie memorabilia. Do you collect anything?

DVDs of my favorite movies and shows, normally due to the actors in them. I have all of Richard Gere, Tom Cruise, Matt Damon, Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts, Sandra Bullock, and Angelina Jolie’s movies. I also have all of the Babylon 5 shows and movies. All of the Star Trek shows and movies. All of the Marvel movies, and all of the Batman movies. I have the Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit trilogies. The Matrix trilogy. And all of the Harry Potter movies. I have limited space, so I have to choose my DVD collection wisely and only get those that I feel are most important to me. I also collect Stephen King, Orson Scott Card and Kim Stanley Robinson books. As well as books of poetry by my favorite poets. And the only other things I collect are crystals and stones. I used to collect tons of other things – swans, ravens and witches figurines; 60s & 70s Gothic novels, and tarot decks. I had to leave all of those behind in Oklahoma when I moved back to Virginia because I knew I wouldn’t have the space for them.

4. Though she never won a competitive Oscar for acting, Debbie Reynolds was awarded the Academy’s Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award earlier this year for 60 years of charity work. While she supported many causes throughout her life, one she was closest to was The Girl Scouts. She was not only a Scout herself, she was a leader when daughter Carrie was young and a fundraiser throughout her life. Were you ever in Boy or Girl Scouts?

No. The closest I came to anything like that was the 4-H Club for a year when I was a kid.

6. The New Year’s Eve fireworks celebrations in both Disney World in Florida and Sydney, Australia coordinate pyrotechnics and music. Are you expecting either fireworks or live music on your New Year’s Eve celebration?

Definitely not. I don’t do loud noises well. It will be a quiet evening here at home, doing some writing and drinking some spiked eggnog.

7. According to the National Insurance Bureau, more cars are stolen on New Year’s Eve than any other single day. Are you confident your vehicle(s) will be  safe and sound this Saturday night?

*laughs* I don’t own a car, but my dad has an old pick-up. I doubt seriously anyone would want that. Besides, we live in a small town with hardly any crimes (except drug-related, sadly that is everywhere).

8. Do you have any New Year’s Resolutions for 2017?

I don’t do resolutions. Instead, I choose a word a year to concentrate on. My word this year is ENGAGE.

9. Looking back on 2016, what surprised you?

That Donald Trump won the Presidency. Seriously, I am beyond disbelief. And that Prince, David Bowie, George Michaels, Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds died. I am still heart-broken.

#WeekendCoffeeShare – 12/31/16


If we were having coffee, I’d invite you into my sitting room. It’s a chilly, grey day here in Virginia, but the heater is on and the room is cozy warm. I’d offer you some espresso or Earl Grey tea and some little tarts that I made. There’s lemon, chocolate, pumpkin spice and coconut, my favorite.

If we were having coffee, I’d wish you a Happy New Year and tell you how grateful I am that 2016 is over. For a year that started off with so much potential, it sure turned south very quickly. Everything seemed fine for me until late April, early May. I started to get depressed over some stupid stuff with a friend and by June, I became suicidal and ended up hospitalized for a few days. Of course, the docs there medicated me and I couldn’t concentrate to write again until October, and only by taking myself off the meds. The US Presidential election in Nov bummed me out in a major way. I’d been a Bernie supporter and was appalled at how he’d been treated. I did cast my vote for Hillary, but reluctantly. I am definitely not okay with Trump as our upcoming President, but I am not going to allow him to upend 2017 for me.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you how excited I am for 2017 to begin. Not only will I be working on my health this year, but I will also be taking some online writing courses to help with my fiction writing. I do have a few writing projects for this upcoming year – Horror Tales in February, another Jack Diamond story, another Rayne Fallon story, and possibly another Astraeus story near the end of the year. I am really hoping that the writing courses will help me improve my storytelling. I plan on editing those previous three stories above later this year too. If I can figure out all the hows, I may put all of my novellas on Adobe .pdf and offer them for free. I think it would be easier for people to read them in their entirety in one place instead of on my blog.

And finally, if we were having coffee, I’d wish you a safe trip home. I’d pack a few tarts for you and your family and bid you a fond farewell until next weekend.

Dear readers, I’d love to hear about your week. How did your Christmas go? What are your hopes for 2017? Any major plans coming up for you? Leave me a comment. Much love!

This Weekend Coffee Share has been brought to you by Part-Time Monster and Friends


Monthly Wrap-Up: December 2016

December was a relatively quiet month for me here on WordPress, but I do have some things to share.

I finished my paranormal mystery Seeing You early in December. It was supposed to have been completed at the end of November, but my health prevented that.

I’ve also continued working with Keith Channing on the science fiction serial, Zanzibar. It is slated to continue into 2017.

I had no plans to start any new writing projects until February 2017, but my randy muse, Catharine, had other plans. I began Andromeda Dreaming, a YA science fiction story, on December 16th and it will be completed at the end of March.

Here on ATFWHI, I’ve just been doing some journal writing and catching up on Challenges. Expect more of the same throughout 2017.

Christmas weekend was okay. I had few expectations going into it. We don’t do much for Christmas except cooking and eating. We did plenty of that. My sister did finally come down two days after Christmas, very late in the evening. I wasn’t sure she would arrive at all. She’s like that – says she is coming by and then not show up or even call. But she arrived. It was a nice visit. I still haven’t seen my niece (sister’s daughter) or great-nieces in a while, since September to be exact. The last time I saw any of my brother’s kids and grandkids was early summer. They didn’t even call for Christmas. We are such an estranged family. Speaking of estranged, the estranged one bought me a Nutri-Bullet and an external dvd drive for Christmas. They were lovely gifts and much appreciated. He wouldn’t let me buy him anything. He knows how strained my finances are.

Well, that’s my December wrap-up. See you next month!

How about you, dear readers? How was your December? Did you do anything exciting? Writing projects? How was your Yule/Christmas/Hanukkah? Let me know in comments.

Tentative Schedule – 2017

Hello, dear readers. Below is a tentative schedule of events here on ATFWHI for 2017. This is set to begin (or continue) on January 1st.

Daily Writing/Challenges:

  • My Daily Tarot
  • The Daily Me Journal
  • 10 Daily Currents
  • End of Day Notes
  • (for a while, I will continue to catch up on The Sandbox Writing Challenge and then it will become a Weekly Challenge)

Weekly Writing/Challenges:

  • Share Your World – Mondays
  • The Sandbox Writing Challenge – Wednesdays
  • Hodge Podge – Wednesdays
  • A Delicious Torment (my memoir) – Thursdays (moved date from Mon to Thurs)
  • Saturday 9 – Saturdays
  • Weekend Coffee Share – Saturdays
  • Song Lyric Sunday – Sundays

Monthly Writing/Challenges: 

  • Journaling January – January (Note: this will be posted under The Daily Me Journal posts when appropriate)
  • A-to-Z Challenge – April

All of this is subject to change. It will depend on my health and other writing projects during the year. I hope you will join me for any or all of these upcoming projects and challenges. I will try to engage with you as much as possible, dear readers.

The Sandbox Writing Challenge #12 — What makes you feel loved?


What makes you feel loved?

I am pretty sure I’ve addressed this in other posts. I don’t feel loved. Never have and probably never will. I think if anything, some people merely tolerate me and those who cannot, exit my life. I’m just really not good with people and I don’t pretend to be. I think that makes people uncomfortable around me and prevents people from getting close enough to me to show me genuine love. And because since childhood, I’ve never felt wanted or that I am a burden, I don’t give out love easily and I don’t trust those who claim to love me. It is all so dreadfully complicated. And as such, I’d really just rather not bother with it all. I am better off being alone, and just loving myself.

Now there are ways these days that I show myself love. This is a relatively new thing that I’ve been trying out for about a year. I tell myself daily that I love myself, usually while looking into the mirror at her, and reminding myself that, for better or worse, she and I are one. I buy myself little presents to brighten my day. And I allow myself to have what I call “spa” days were I pamper myself. All of this is better than living a life devoid of any kind of love.


The Daily Me (Journal) A Different Life – 12/31/16

Today’s prompt comes from 100 Inspirational Journal Prompts by Melissa Bolton @ The Mogul Mom

How would your life be different if you felt comfortable being yourself at all times?

I would probably be living in Maine already, surrounded by cats and a published author. I allowed far too many people to tell me what I should or should not have done. And like an idiot, I listened because I thought they had my best interest at heart, but instead, they were just being incredibly selfish.

It hasn’t been all bad though. I’ve had brief periods of my life where I was in complete control and was comfortable being me. I just wish I had been vigilant and focused throughout my life and hadn’t paid attention to others’ influences. I allowed the words of the naysayers to cloud my own judgement. And once mental illness began to manifest, I allowed it to consume me as well.

I think I would have had a pretty idyllic life if I’d been completely comfortable being myself. I knew what my end game was at an early age – get a PhD, teach college, and write. I almost made it.

My Daily Tarot – Judgement


12/31/16 – Judgement

The message of Judgement is clear. You are being called to do something. You might not want to hear it and are actively drowning it out with noise of your daily life. You might be afraid of the call and the changes it will bring. Listen to it and face it with courage and action. It promises a more fulfilling life.

Be aware of two things: First, of ignoring the call or shrinking from it in fear or obstinance; second, of mistaking the desires of others or of society for a true calling. Do not feel compelled to dance to anyone else’s tune, and do not ignore the music of your own heart.

Yes, dear Tarot. I do have a calling. I know what it is and I know that I do allow life, in general, to get in the way of fulfilling that calling. But how do you convince people of your mission when they look at you like you are crazy? They believe that my story is so outlandish that it can’t possibly be true. They say, oh it’s your mental illnesses that make you believe these things. You must be schizophrenic, but I am not. I know why I am here, how I got here, and what I must do. It’s just hard to do my calling when everyone around me believes I am insane.