Happiness is Having A Writing Partner Who Doesn’t Blame You When You Screw Up The Book You’re Collaborating On

This week, I have not been happy, just grateful to Bob who isn’t saying, “How long have you been writing?”I’ve screwed up so many things, not just the book, and I’m trying desperately to fix them and it’s a miracle this whole post isn’t one big scream. So you guys are going to have to bring the happy this week.

What made you happy this week?

122 thoughts on “Happiness is Having A Writing Partner Who Doesn’t Blame You When You Screw Up The Book You’re Collaborating On

  1. I’m having trouble thinking about happiness this week too. I share a couple of young cats with my partner and his flatmate, and one of them has pneumonia, and while testing for that they found his heart is enlarged. Poor puss has spent most of the weekend in hospital. They expect him to pull through but they don’t know his long-term prognosis. So I’m not happy but I’m grateful puss is alive and that I’ve got the income to pay vet bills. After hours vets are not cheap!

    Other than that, I had a good friendly talk with my ex today. Glad about that too.

    1. I have a friendship with my second husband who I divorced 20 some odd years ago.

      If I couldn’t have that I might join in the people who are having the San Antonio Zoo name a cockroach after my ex and then feed it to an animal.

      For reals.

  2. I’m happy because I’ve managed to get a dozen gardens up and running and I haven’t tripped any breakers.

    Of course, Home Moanership issue #8 will be about the water leaking into the basement. Closing was December 29. 8 problems in a month sounds par for the course.

    1. I’m thinking about moving someday, so I followed your example and ordered some plastic bins. I already have some, but these will help with things that can then be put away in the basement. So, thanks.

      1. Yes, it was inspected. Problems identified on the inspection report were dealt with before closing. The specific leakage, as near as I can determine, is because of a damaged drain line inside the wall from the deep sinks to a sump outside under the kitchen entrance. The line is also partially blocked – the deep sinks drain v-e-r-y slowly. This wouldn’t be a problem, but the deep sinks are where the clothes washer discharges to.

        It wouldn’t have been discovered during inspection because there was no washer nor dryer installed at the time. The deep sinks properly drain to the sump, albeit slowly. There would be no leakage were the blockage cleared. I’m working on it.

    2. I think the worst of your problems seem to be things that would not be noticeable in a vacant house. It’s only under use that it is obvious!

      I relate, I’ve had the car, the laptop, and a spare mobile, fail for me. But upon attention of a certified repair professional, under workshop conditions, they work fine.

      Believe that I am careful to check any issues against the advice posts and sites BEFORE taking anything to anyone else. For the laptop (out of warranty) the agents charge a quotation fee to cover costs. If they find a fault and quote the cost of repair and I accept the quote, the initial fee acts as deposit and the balance needs to be paid only. Sigh.

      I didn’t send it away. I’ll get a closer to home Technical Tinker to look at it. For a much more reasonable cost.

  3. I find it hard to believe that you screwed up, but I guess we all do. Wishing you speed and grace in fixing it.

    My new thriller, The Shapes of Wrath, launches February first. I have to work, but my friends offered to cater a “book lunch” for me on Feb 6 at noon!!!!!!!

    That’s right, they’re hosting and making the food, including a homemade pasta and a custom dessert. The menu will hint at the second book in the series, gluttony. 🙃 We’ll livestream it: https://business.facebook.com/events/1406015723265135/

    Yesterday, as I got ready for a painting party, I got two emails. The Fairy Tale Magazine accepted my Snow White poem, and Presses Renaissance Press accepted my short story for Might, their anthology celebrating disabled superheroes.

    I came home from the party and my daughter was still awake and happy to try out the custom dessert, which I picked up from my friend on the way home. I ate one too, and my husband and I split a delicious butter tart.

    Yay yay yay, yum yum yum!

  4. Some days, the laws of physics operate according to the rules.

    Other days, the universe is on a tilt, and everything slides off perfectly level surfaces.

    Just breathe ☺️

    1. With Anne here. That’s a perfect description. At some point the four old will tilt in the other direction and things will go back in balance and Jennie, we are all rooting for you. And we’ve all been there at least at the point where nothing seems to be going the way it supposed to sending so much love.

  5. I feel like I’m moving beyond the winter blahs.

    I’ve been to an opera, a concert, dinner with friends, and New Haven to visit my daughter and grand cat. Yesterday I dropped off 7 bags of used clothing to benefit Big Brothers/Big Sisters. That’s about as much as I did during all of Covid.

    There’s more light now. The forester will soon have the final report on making our woods healthy, climate resistant, and a good habitat for birds. I now enjoy scrambling through the woods — the last three years have included a knee replacement, foot surgery, and losing weight. I keep feeling better.

    And we have plane tickets for a trip to England and France and Poland in April.

    Things are looking so good that I’m beginning to consider taking down the Christmas tree. I think maybe I don’t need it anymore. But I don’t rush these things.

  6. I’m not sure if I’d call it happiness, but I’m still immersed in the hockey series by Finley/James, by now into the 9th book. They may not ne great but solid and what I love is that they convey a nice sense of community: MCs of former titles pop up in a very believable way and they never take over. But you still get a sense that you don’t have to leave the fictionary world you feel comfortable in.
    My family is already making fun of me reading about hockey.
    But they immediately agreed to come with me when I aired the idea to get tickets for a game of our city’s team (never really on my mind before unlike football=soccer).
    Also, book 10 is about to be published soon, so having to leave those guys behind is not yet due.
    The one major point of sadness: hockey as rugby or US-football is so dangerous for the brain…

    1. My husband makes fun of me too for reading hockey books. Ignore them. What’s your city’s team?

      1. EHC Red Bulls of Munich.

        Our internet was down for almost a week (free wi-fi available e.g. in our local supermarket, so I got my ebook fix there ;-)), now I’m jumped down the youtube rabbit hole of all things hockey…
        I LOVE how available is all kinds of info via the internet!
        My kids are ribbing me in a kind way though, since me getting excited over books /film is nothing new.
        Which is a gene both kids definitely hsve inherited (dd more with films and YA appropriate stuff, ds as well – he’s a walking dictionary of all things soccer and geography.

          1. Rachel Reid, yes. Haven’t yet read all of the backlist, but looking forward to do so.
            When youtubing hockey like mad this weekend, I also came across sone rivalries that could have sparked the idea to Heated Rivalry 😀.
            I might also have read some Avon Gale yet, the others are on the tbr list 😉

          2. I haven’t read many hockey books but I liked Rachel Gibson’s See Jane Score. She has a series on hockey. I liked most of them but that series pretty much covers all the hockey books I’ve read.

        1. I also liked Rachel Gibson’s hockey romances. See Jane Score is my favorite, but I enjoyed reading the ones about the players I had met in other titles, too.

  7. I’m happy because yesterday we held a birthday celebration for my 90 year old mother and had about 80 people join the fun! Some drove 3 hours and some flew in to party with her! It was great fun and she was so overwhelmed and blessed!!

    1. Both my in laws made it to their nineties, and it is such a joy to celebrate their lives.

  8. Happiness is being trapped at the cottage from a heavy snowfall by the fire with a good book and two warm dogs.

  9. Happiness is forward motion, even if the going is slow.

    I am continuing to clean up my work space, my living space, and my backlog of things to list for sale on Etsy. I have stalled out on my personal closet. I have too many fun clothes and shoes that I don’t wear for work, ergo, I don’t wear them. But I can’t quite bring myself to thin them down yet. Argh.

    But I did put myself on the wait list for a local consignment style shop and am considering another one a little farther away. The idea of setting up a booth and changing it out for the seasons sounds fun, although I am a little leary of overbooking myself. Something to think about.

    1. Oh, I’m glad to read this. Thank you.
      I’m still doing my clean-up as it stalled terribly. I have to take note that is now a fire hazard. 🤦🏻‍♀️ So I have GOT to sort the most today.

    2. I have also been (reluctantly) editing my work clothes and shoes since most of my time is spent on zoom so no one sees me from the waist down. It’s now actually tough to find a place to donate to since most charities are not accepting clothes anymore in Toronto. I imagine I’m not the only one editing.

      1. This past Friday at 3 in the afternoon my doctor’s office emailed me to inform me that my doctor is leaving and moving to a new location. Also told me that they are not accepting new patients. Never mind I have been with them for almost fifty years and just about every month I read their newsletter that introduces a new physician looking for patients. My mind is still whirling at this news. Maybe I misread this announcement but I’m at a loss, surely I should be able to transfer to another doctor. Tomorrow is going to be an interesting day.

        1. Totally unrelated but I’m watching the football game and I am wondering how the players do not have to keep pulling their shirts down or have them always rising above the waist. I’m trying to stay away from my own dilemma by focusing on something else.

        2. Mary, Is the new location a place you can get to? I suggest writing to the doctor, reminding him of your long, long relationship and your need for seeing someone who understands your medical history.

          Around us, new GPs/Internists/doctors are almost impossible to come by. My doctor mailed a letter in June 2022 that she was leaving January 2023 and that her group couldn’t handle her former patients. I couldn’t meet with a new doctor until December 18th.

          My husband’s doctor of 30+ years died suddenly in August. The new doctor’s office that he managed to find had him meet with a PA even though they told him it would be a doctor. Now they consider him the PA’s patient.

          So, try really hard to stay with your doc. My advice.

          1. Good news! I was able to transfer over to a CNP as my PCP at the same location. Pulling up the last newsletter I read where there are fewer Physicians now than years previously. And speaking with the CSR I found out that a couple more have left. Not just mine. I think it is greener pastures.

            I’ve had a roller coaster ride for the month of January with little blips along the way and they all seem to be resolved in a short amount of time. Give or take.

      2. I sell off the good stuff on Poshmark and use the proceeds for my fun money, but I have a big attic to stash stuff in to wait for it to go. And I passed some on to work friends. And our thrift stores are all still accepting donations.

  10. I am happy that I don’t smoke. It’s 13º with 13 mph winds, and I could smell my neighbor’s cigarette smoke when I went out to fill the bird feeder this morning.

    I’m also very happy that all my ineffective, or hard to keep clean, small appliances are in large boxes, ready to be dispatched. Several spaces have been freed up, and things look tidier.

    I am happy that two days in a row were nice enough for a long walk, and now I have a warm home to sit in and read good books.

    I’m happy that flower essences and non-THC sleep gummies are helping me sleep better. Getting enough sleep makes such a difference! I have weaned off the pain killers except for the nights when a storm is coming, which really excites my arthritis, in a bad way.

    Last, I am happy that there are only two more days of Dry January left. After the first week, I was out of the habit of a nightly cocktail, which may be the point. There were one or two days I might have had a drink, in another month, but only those days. All in all, it has been a good experiment. I finally gave up on the fake stuff and just drank water. I think I mostly like the taste, and not the buzz. From now on, I will ask myself if I really want a drink, or if it’s just habit.

    Jenny, I’m sorry things aren’t going well. I’m guessing you’ve been thought this before., and come out victorious. You have the support of this group, and Bob.

  11. Arrived in Mexico late last night and woke up early and walked along the beach. DS and I are sitting on our little patio, listening to the ocean and birds squawking in the trees.

    I made my first sourdough bread this week – very pleased with my first loaf (I ate most of it). It took me a few weeks to stabilize my starter and my first attempt didn’t make it into the oven. Sourdough bread is a learning experience.

    1. Sourdough is with the trouble! I’m glad you eventually made some great edible bread.

    2. I’ve been working with my sourdough for quite a while, now, and I really have to agree, there’s quite a learning curve. I’m still working toward a loaf that is everything. The no-knead loaves that were all the rage a while back are stubbornly moist inside, which makes sense given how wet the dough is. So far, I’ve had success with King Arthur flour’s baguette recipe, on their website.

      1. I loathe sourdough bread but somehow I wound up being the tender of the starter and the baker of the bread…

  12. Main happy this week is more glimpses of sun as the days grow longer – even a splash on the side fence in the garden today. I cheered myself up on Friday by going to the two galleries in town, and having a chat about photography with the manager of the bigger one. I’m finally gardening again – doing some pruning – which is satisfying, despite second-guessing how much I’m cutting off. And I did my seed orders – extravagant but full of possibility.

    1. Extravagant but full of possibility! An excellent goal; I must aim for that (and get started on my seed orders.)

  13. Yesterday the sun was out all day for the first time in about two months. That was really happy. It also showed me that replacing what had been the exterior door in the living room with an interior door that now leads to the still-in-process 4-season porch was the right decision, even if it did add 3 days and a lot of money to the project. (Apparently doors are a bear to replace, especially doors in old farmhouses that had been installed by amateurs.)

    Happiness was a Zoom chat with one of my best friends who lives in California. We opened out Yule gifts to each other, which turned out to be Imbolc gifts. It was lovely to see her face.

  14. I unexpectedly swept the kitchen/dining room/entry/hall this morning. I even mopped the kitchen and entry. It was not before time, let us just say, but not something I planned, so it came as a nice surprise to me. Second load of laundry is in. This virtue will make me feel totally justified for lying about for an extended period today.

    My will-be 2-in-April kitty has apparently just discovered he can get on top of the fridge. he looked very pleased with himself.

  15. My happiness this week is coming from a visit by my daughter from her University town. Her tutors are busy marking her first term art (she is in her first year of an illustration degree) so she has no class.
    I am envious though of her tutors. When I have marking to do, I don’t get two weeks off teaching to do it!

  16. This week I submitted a conference abstract together with a colleague. We both have big academic administrative roles at the University, which means less time for research. These T&L roles (teaching and learning) tend to be filled by women, leaving men more research time. We decided this was our year to be more proactive. I am happy that we carved out a bit of time to pursue our own agendas.

    I also wrote a post about a newly finished cardigan, which I managed to knit despite covid. I really love it, and that makes me happy too. https://knitigatingcircumstances.com/2023/01/29/hirne-a-beautiful-cardigan/

    1. Gorgeous cardigan! I love Kate Davies’ designs, they are always so thoughtful.

      And supporting women in academic life is so important. The default of making women essentially the secretaries of university life is so pervasive, and so hard to combat.

  17. I am very happy that Lockwood & Co. is on Netflix and that it has been done well. I was afraid it would not live up to the books. Watching episode four right now.

  18. I have been enjoying watching figure skating. I have a subscription to the Peacock network and they broadcast both the European Championships and the U S Nationals. Today is the final day of US Nationals and it’s the Men’s Free Skate. I am happy that Jason Brown decided to remain an amateur and is competing. He is one of my favorite male skaters.

  19. Took care overnight of a 4-month-old miniature poodle puppy, fun and exhausting. So many toys on the floor! Also, his dog mom put a little flashlight charm on his collar, so I could find the small black dog in the dark when went outside.

    Made a chocolate Swiss roll for a dinner party with some good friends. The husband of one couple is developing dementia, so it’s hard for him to go out to see people. So we go to them, and laugh a lot!

    Today we’re going to the symphony, and as long as we leave on time, I’m good. If we’re late, I’m tense for the drive, and half the concert. But the plan is to leave in good time. Stravinsky, Mendelsohn, and Golijov, an actual living composer from Argentina. He came to visit our chamber choir when I was in college.

  20. Argh. Third times a charm.

    We have scheduled power outages here due to various factors that I just cannot begin to explain. They last approximately 2 hours on a rotational basis per area, maybe daily, maybe twice daily depending on the severity of the problems with generating electricity. So WiFi goes out and I had to switch to the device with a mobile connection.

    Site thought I was a bot. So that didn’t post. And next try stalled too.

    Puppy elicited an Agnes from Despicable Me type of reaction, “Ermagerd, so cuuuuute!”

    Jenny, I hope your frustrations are easily remedied. At least you’ve got something written!

    It’s been another very trying week. So I end up with a Saturday morning meander through molasses feeling. I only perks up once I attend class. So my happy is class.

    So it’s the start of the school year, we had an information meeting for parents. I have 39 grade 2s. Was supposed to have 41. Ten children’s parents came. Sigh. It might’ve been our fault for scheduling it on a month end Saturday when most people are at their busiest.

    Let’s narrow the happy down. I am happy that I have yoga, tai chi, and qi gong to make me smile and laugh.

    1. You changed your identifying picture. Maybe that’s why you ran into trouble. I thought you looked different!

    2. For some reason, the Gravatar is not available with one device, but it is with the other. Except, I am using the SAME email address. Must be an IP thing.

  21. This past week, my husband had a cold (not COVID) severe enough to keep him home. All Week. It wasn’t so much that he felt awful, but he *seemed* awful – snuffly, some coughing, froggy voice – and when you are a hands-on health professional with old & frail clients, you avoid making them feel endangered. This week he also had jury duty and was able to ‘report’ online, was never called to the court, so he’s done with that. Why happy? Because the man actually took a week off work! That literally never happens except when we schedule a vacation!!

    My Saturday was productive, thus happy. Did major grocery shopping, fed the birds, pulled some weeds, and oh yes got my 2nd shingles vaccine shot. Noticeable reaction? Bruised injection site and sore arm. Otherwise I’m blaming my body aches (and definitely the sinus complaints) on the yard work I impulsively did after getting home because the day was so perfect for it. Plus there was writer bizness accomplished, leaving today free to write another chapter of the novel-in-progress.

    Happy end-of-January, y’all. 🙂

  22. I’m happy to be in SoCal where it is not exactly warm (58, right now) but considerably warmer than home, where it is below zero. Also happy with Jenny’s rec of The Heart Principle, which was amazingly available at my library’s website to download to my kindle. Really hard to read at times as she works through her learned passivity but payoff is worth it.

  23. Last day of Cabaret today. I’ve really enjoyed doing the lights on this one.

    After this, I have no shows for quite some time…probably at least 3-4 or possibly through the end of spring. I’m bummed about that, but we’ll see what auditions come up in the meantime, if any.

    I also finished one layer of a skirt and a sweater this weekend. The skirt layer took a month and the sweater 3 weeks, so I’m pretty pleased there.

  24. Mixed week. I have been having down periods for no discernible reason. But we ate out a couple of times this week and that helped. Also my neighbor’s concrete work started this week and it turns out a lot of the bricks being removed were just bedded in sand so they come right out and are clean and the workmen are stacking them in my yard for me. I am going to have more than enough for my new sidewalk in back and I won’t have to clean mortar off them.

  25. I too was grateful rather than happy. I deeply offended an old friend with a clumsily worded email, and was wallowing in guilt and mortification when a different friend reminded me that WE ALL SCREW UP, and that it’s part of being human. She made me laugh and stop wallowing, so that was nice.

  26. A combined happy and early Working Wednesday report: I FINALLY finished a twin/throw-sized quilt (pic will be on Instagram for Working Wednesday, but it’s currently in the dryer removing cat fur, so a pic needs to wait) that I started at least ten years ago. Maybe twenty.

    I got most of the pieced section hand-quilted many years ago, but then I looked at the really wide borders (more total square inches than the pieced center) and my arthritic hands, and I couldn’t face hand-quilting it right then, so I put it away and then every five years or so, took it out to finish quilting it (without actually doing more than maybe ten minutes before remembering how hard it was on my hands and put it away again) until I finally took it out last year and decided to hell with it, I was going to machine-quilt the border, where the hand-stitching wouldn’t have been all that visible anyway, even if it was odd to have the center done by hand and the border by machine. And while I was finishing the border and attaching the binding (last summer), I realized that two blocks in one corner had never been hand-quilted. Sigh. Put it away to find the energy and hand health to do the remaining about two hours of hand quilting (much better than 50+ hours of hand-quilting to do the borders, but still daunting). Except, of course, the willingness to hand-quilt never happened, and I finally accepted that it was never going to happen, so I machine quilted those last two blocks today. It’s not heirloom quality, and never would have been, but now it’s done, and my next-door neighbors can use it in their camper and not worry about trying to make it last forever.

    Finishing UFOs (which also counts as de-cluttering) makes me happy! Now I need to set up for #DailyFeb2023, which is mostly going to be finishing some cat doilies (cat-sized quilts) for a voting rights auction, and finishing a purple baby quilt for a baby who was born in December.

    1. I am so grateful to you for introducing me to the term “cat doily.” I had actually forgotten it until you said it again up there.

  27. Yesterday I made it out to my favorite thrift shop. I had fairly good luck with the weekend transit schedule and not spending as long as I might have in the strong wind made me very happy. I bought a second teapot to give to Emmy because they were 50% off and I figured she could choose which one she wanted. When I got it home, I discovered that it leaked horribly when filled over half full, which is why Emmy can’t used the pretty one she already owns. I am very happy that I decided to test this pot before gifting it and that I only spent $2.75 on it. I decided to recycle it instead of donating it so that nobody will be scalded by this beautiful, but poorly designed pot.

    I’ve decided to go back to physical therapy in February. I was trying to hold off for a while because I do not want to be out of coverage early in the year, but I am having more and more trouble making it up and down my stairs. Also, my “good” kneecap is catching on my leg bones more and more often and I want to see if I can do anything about that before it causes any more wear and tear.

    1. I will point out in defense of the leaky teapot that if a glass or something will fit into the top opening it can be used as a flower vase. (I do this with my great-grandmother’s leaky teapot.)

  28. Small but long lasting happy: my sister and bil stopped by yesterday and bil law switched my drier door to open in the other direction. It’s going to be so much more convenient to load the drier from the washer from now on. (My other sister and I did try to switch it but couldn’t get the screws to go in all the way.)

  29. Happy and grateful for kind neighbors with snowblowers–the guy who goes all around the block, and the guy who saw me shoveling our driveway apron and hustled across the street to take care of it.

  30. I am having fun putting together a dreamcatcher. I am going to adjust the Tool Consecration and Blessing from Deborah Blake’s book: Circle, Coven & Grove to bless it when I’m finished.

    A friend who is moving to France gave us mega spices. So many that we had to reorganize the kitchen – which ended up with yet another house reorg. But the end result is happy!!!

    Had fun on Friday going out to Carrabbas Italian for dinner with my aunt for my daughters birthday. Meal was wonderful. They gave the birthday girl a piece of cake (which we shared) and sang a best wishes song in Italian for her. Will switch to my phone and put an instagram pic of us out in the comments.

    Mixed happy – I took pto this coming Thursday (happy) because I am refinancing my car (stressful).

    Myself & 2 family members are re-starting Noom.

  31. On the strength of having illustrated ONE picture book, I have been invited to present a workshop at a Young Author’s conference for schoolkids in April.
    Since April is too far away to panic about, I did submit a proposal. As it is young kids, and I am a part time entomologist, I focused specifically on bees- a bunch of ways to draw, paint, and write bees. Happy bees, goofy bees, angry bees, yourself dressed up as a bee, etc.
    Not sure if I am happy about this or terrified.
    However, I still have my trip to Basel, Switzerland in between, and who knows, the plane may crash, hopefully on the way back so I get to enjoy Fasnacht.

  32. I’m happy we are going to hire a wedding planner for my daughters London party. That is a sentence I NEVER thought I would write. But I’m in the US, she is in London, and the party will be on a farm just outside London that doesn’t regularly host events and can’t really provide any help in finding tables, tents, people to do set up, vans to get people from the Tube to the event,…. I used to run events for my job but have no idea where to start her and my daughter has no event planning experience, no network of friends that do, no friends that got married in London, and no time to learn this between her work, her PhD, the book she is writing, and possibly another book where she may be the not ghostwriter. ( A publisher that liked her book proposal but wasn’t the buyer has a big name TV person who signed a contract to write a book on political affairs snd then discovered he couldn’t write. They asked daughter to be a ghostwriter because she writes on the same topics but her agent is insisting she get her name on it. We will see …)
    Anyway, this is a huge stress reducer as the wedding planner can figure out the tent layout and generator and lights and hire the staff and see if dishes are supposed to be returned clean or dirty…. We are not looking for llamas, which at least one of her clients was. Just someone to manage the logistics of doing a party in a farm.

    I also have a mixed emotion thing I would love peoples thoughts on—so many authors here and also thoughtful readers. My sisters have a friend who I don’t know at all that wants to write a novel based on my dad’s life. As people have noted I’m deeply proud of my dad, and I would love his life to be captured. But I don’t know this person or how he would write it or whether he would do a good job . It would be a novel and I don’t know how much he would want to alter the facts. (He is also a novice and doesn’t have a book contract so it might not matter.)

    Any thoughts on pros and cons ? Questions I should ask? Limits we should set? My brother is also hesitant. Since my sisters can give him all the materials we have I don’t know that we can stop it but they did ask what we thought so we might be able to shape it.

    1. That’s a big decision, Deborah. I don’t have any useful thoughts – except, I suppose, does anyone in the family want to write about your father? Because if not, maybe this is worth the risk (of having an image of your father out in the world that isn’t how you remember him; although, of course, the same is likely to be true unless you yourself write it – and then it wouldn’t be how your siblings remember him).

      Maybe if you get yes on it, just let him write what he wants and trust it’ll spark whatever it needs to – ??

      1. Deborah, I don’t know anything about the business, but can you find other things this author has written? I would want someone who was writing about my family to be a good writer who has chosen to write about topics that would complement the sort of person I remember as my relative.

        1. He sent us one short short story—it got an honorary mention in a competition where the winner was published . I will read it but that’s not a big track record and it seems to me writing a short short is quite different from a novel

    2. If I were in your shoes, I’d say that at least one of his kids would have to review it prior to him sending it out to publishers, so that you could add, subtract, or recommend anything to make it match the person your family members knew so well. Also, if you end up agreeing to send him your family materials on his life, I’d add to it a sort of portrait of what he was like in interacting with other people — did he have certain tells that indicated he was doubtful about the truth of something? A characteristic smile or set of gestures that characterized him? If you are able to influence this writer in a direction that could give him an accurate sense of what your father would or wouldn’t do or say, and how to behave, you could be a step ahead of him writing a borrowed James Bond or Daniel Day-Lewis persona that would drive you and your family crazy to read.

  33. I haven’t read the comments, but I’m fairly certain someone has already said this: forgive yourself and move on. You and Bob have a history and a successful track record, and this book will come right. Most things aren’t as bad as we first think, though of course some things truly are disastrous. It sounds as if you’ve just been hit with a lot of things going katty-wampus at once, and I’m sorry for the pile-up. Be well, cuddle the animals, take care of yourself. You and your books are loved.

  34. My friend ran an experiment when she was going through a prolonged rough phase. She told herself whatever happens, its going to work out & she left it alone. When things got stressful, even they led to some positive developments or insights. She’s been trying it for 8 months and things are going well, consistent results.

    You sound overwhelmed, I hope you feel better soon.
    Maybe take a break, rest, drink some hot chocolate & sleep on it. Sometimes all we need is rest & distance.

    What made me happy?
    1 We have a cold wave coming in this week. Everyone is excited.
    2 3 new puppies in our society – a velvet black lab, a regal husky & a puppy who looks like butterscotch cake. Species unknown.
    3 Saw the royal rumble with my brother. Good times.

  35. Car accident Friday night. Airbags deployed. Seatbelt broke five ribs (5-9 right side). Car totaled. Spent Riday night and Saturday in a Bon Secours hospital. 2 CT scans and an EKG. Home now with Tramadol, Naproxen, and Cyclobenzaprine.

    Transition between laying down, sitting, standing excessively painful – sleeping in computer chair.

    By Grabthar’s hammer… OWWWWWWWWWWWWW

    Thoughts and prayers and good vibes, please.

    1. Oh Gary I’m so sorry!
      When I had shoulder surgery I rented a hospital electric chair for a few weeks . I could raise me to standing or lay me down by pushing a button—it wasn’t cheap but it was so worth it because it saved me so much pain and let me sleep through the night . Just a thought …
      Sending good vibes and thoughts.

  36. It must be time for more meds – they’ve worn off. Enough so I remember the accident was Sunday, not Friday. After two nights in hospital, released Tuesday afternoon to dotter’s care. Thanks, all, for thoughts. No chairs. I will sleep in my reclining computer chair until the ribs are somewhat better.

    1. Glad they sent you home with good drugs. I’ve never known anyone who broke more than three ribs–at a time–so it sounds extra painful. Glad the drugs are good enough to confuse your sense of time.

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