Monthly Archives: April 2015

Busy girl

The last few weeks have been crazy busy. All in all, it’s been fun though. I’m just not as far along on some of my projects as I wanted to be because of it.

I now have places to put things!

I now have places to put things!

We finally got the cabinets for our kitchen. They were a lot easier to install than I’d thought they’d be. Once my husband figured out where the studs were anyway since the finder doesn’t work well with lath and plaster. In any case, they’re up and I’m finally putting my kitchen back together. Not just putting it back together but getting to get things out of boxes that have been in boxes forever. I’ve got a couple of boxes of my  mom’s kitchen stuff that I’ve never been able to put away. Which means I’m also having to restore and re-season a cast iron dutch oven. But it’s so pretty. Eventually, we’ll replace the rest of the cabinets and do the floor and then it will be done. My youngest child has decided it’s like walking into the wrong house but he’s adjusting. Once I’ve got the kitchen put to rights, I’ll get started on the dining room.

I’ve got several releases going on – Hunter’s Crossing, Sha’Daa Facets, and coming very soon, Hardwired Humanity. I’m working on a couple of projects writing wise and haven’t gotten nearly as much done as I wanted over this last week.

In my downtime I’m reading Doug Bradley’s book Behind the Mask of the Horror Actor and Cormac McCarthy’s The Road. Bradley’s book is very interesting and, if you enjoy makeups, movies, or horror, it’s worth reading. The Road is very depressing. Beautifully written but depressing. I can only take a little bit of that one at a time. After I’m done with that – I need to read something happy and fluffy.

For now, I need to get back to work on something else really neat.

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Scary Movies have the best makeup

I have been watching and reading quite a bit of horror lately. One of my favorite things about scary movies is the makeups. So impressive. From the xenomorph in Alien to the incredibly detailed muscle, bone, and sinew suit Julia wears in Hellraiser 2.

I have a great deal of admiration for the people who create these incredible things. The Alien will probably be my favorite of all the effects makeups ever. The skill required to sculpt and engineer a thing like that, it’s pretty damned impressive. It’s one of the reasons I enjoy Face Off so much, watching the characters go from paper to application. So impressive. I know I keep using that word but there isn’t a better one.

I think my all time favorites are the Alien, the skinless Julia suit, the faun from Pan’s Labyrinth, and the torn up Jack from American Werewolf in London. What are your favorite on screen makeups?

 

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Embracing the Pudge

A long time ago, I was pretty skinny. Looking at pictures from way back when, I cannot understand why I was so worried about my weight. No, I know why I was so worried but I wish I knew then what I know now. There are some people who love to find and point out flaws, even when those flaws aren’t there. It’s worse when those people don’t even know they’re doing it and really do have the best of intentions. Worse yet when you start doing it yourself even when they aren’t around. It’s just a shame that it happens.

Magazines and movies don’t help. Little old ladies who remark on it don’t help. My own youngest child who asks why I still look a little pregnant if I can’t have any more kids doesn’t help at all. But, I’m done being cruel to myself. I can’t control what other people see or say but I can control how it effects me.

I have two children. I gained an obscene amount of weight during each pregnancy and have struggled mightily getting it all back off. There are people in my life who poke at me about that weight. It’s a whopping 60 pounds. In the grand scheme of things, it’s not so bad. I’m not thrilled with it but I am no longer going to worry so much about it either. I’m embracing my pudge. I’m going to wear what I want to wear and not care what certain other people think.

I admit, there’s a small part of me that hopes by accepting the pudge maybe it won’t hold on to my middle quite so tightly. I know I could work out like crazy and get it off eventually. I know I could limit my calories and eat like a rabbit and the weight would eventually go away. But I really hate exercise and I really love food. All food. But especially rich, buttery foods and sweet foods.

This isn’t to say a little exercise won’t be done but I’m not spending an hour every day working toward a goal that seems unattainable anyway. And if I want one of the croissants currently sitting on top of the fridge with a little bit of marmelade, I’m going to eat it and enjoy it and not feel guilty in the slightest.

Whether it’s fall insulation, winter fat, spring rolls or summer… I can’t think of a good one for summer. Anyway, whatever it is, I’m embracing it. One of these days maybe a cute little Adipose will separate itself and go about its merry way but until then, I’m just going to be happy with who and what I am. Period.

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A Blessing and A Curse

I’ve written about my over-active imagination before. Maybe not on this blog, possibly on twitter or my old LiveJournal. It’s a bit like the force – My mother had it, I have it, my children have it. It’s just much less useful. For me, it means that freshly turned earth makes me think of zombies, coolers on the side of the road make me think of serial killers, bits of rope dancing in the bed of a truck going 70mph down the high way bring to mind wiry brownies (the fae type creature, not the food).

It is a blessing in that it helps me create interesting and sometimes odd things in my stories. It is a curse only when it steps a little too close to reality. Like today.

I am a very vivid, lucid dreamer and more often than not, I remember my dreams at least pieces of them. Last night, I dreamed of bees. Specifically a queen bee in my bedroom. For me, this is not a happy dream as I am allergic to bees and they make me nervous. I woke up a bit out of sorts and trying to remember why the bee was important.

Today I had planned to work on getting the garden ready and put some peas in. I got about half the space for the peas cleared, turned, and planted and then I apparently disturbed some bees. Whether they’re in the ground or in the garage I’m not exactly certain but I annoyed them enough that three of them decided to start zipping around me pretty close. The kids and I retreated inside for a good long while for everyone to settle out and now I’m left to obsess over the meaning of the bee. I can’t shake it, won’t shake it, it will drive me bats until I find some way to use it in a story. It will bother me more because of the dream.

In stories I write and stories I like to read, dreams often are of great importance, showing something to the dreamer that maybe they don’t understand but does turn out to matter.

So, I didn’t get done what I wanted today, I’ll go back to it tomorrow. I still have some time before I can really get into the planting of things anyway. We usually start that around mother’s day. I’ll get more peas in somewhere as the kids eat them as fast as they grow and I may never actually get enough to can any. But I’m determined to try. I suppose if gardening is not on my list for the rest of the day, I should probably clean a little, write a little, and read a little more of the final Odd Thomas book (highly recommended series by the way).

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Star Wars and goosebumps

The new teaser trailer for Episode 7. If you have not seen it and you are a Star Wars fan – you must watch it.

I knew the voice the moment it started and found myself covered in goosebumps. I know I am easily moved by movies in general and certain franchises in particular (Star Trek, Star Wars, LOTR, and the list goes on and on). Certain sweeps of music send chills through my whole body. I can’t help it. I get swept up in the fictional worlds so much easier than I do the real one. Probably because the real one is the least logical and most irksome.

I am looking forward to Christmas. To taking my geeklings to their first big screen Star Wars experience. The youngest keeps googling for spoilers and cast lists and every bit of information he can find during the wait. The oldest fills his time with other franchises (he’s reading both the HIVE series and the Merlin series right now and plowing through them like they’re only a few pages long). Me, I’m just waiting for Mad Max and writing my own stories.

As much as I’d like to, we probably won’t go in the first few days – much too crowded – but it won’t be long after. I am hoping it lives up to the hype. I’m hoping we get the kind of movie that inspires instead of frustrates. Having seen the teaser, I have a great deal of hope.

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Today is the day! Hunter’s Crossing is here!

Hunter's Crossing by Sarah Wagner from Boroughs Publishing Group

Hunter’s Crossing by Sarah Wagner from Boroughs Publishing Group

It’s a very good day today for me. My book, Hunter’s Crossing is available! This book was a lot of fun to write and I really hope I get the chance to revisit some of these characters. Leilani Scott is probably one of my favorite characters if only because she’s got moxy, grit, and attitude.

To save the world from a demon apocalypse, hunter Leilani Scott and sorcerer Blake Pratt will have to risk everything: their lives, their souls, and their newfound love.

THREE WORLDS, ONE SAVIOR

Hunter Leilani Scott hasn’t been on the job long, but she knows an uptick in monster attacks can’t mean anything good for humanity. The powers responsible for protecting the borders can’t—or won’t—put a stop to it. In fact, the only person willing to believe her is sorcerer Blake Pratt. Distrustful of anyone or anything not entirely human, and certain the handsome magic-user knows more than he’s telling her, Lei senses they’ll have to act as one as she crosses into realms where human life is forbidden. She and Blake will risk everything—their lives, their souls, and their newfound love—to fight an army of demons to stop an apocalypse.

You can pick it up via Boroughs Publishing Group‘s website and Amazon. Barnes and Noble and Apple may take a few extra days but it should be available there as well soon enough.

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Older, wiser, not quite grown up.

I have journeyed another revolution around the sun. I had to actually count to figure out that I’m 36 today. I may be an adult but I am no grown up. It drives my grandmother a bit bats, that I’d rather buy toys and dress like a dorky teenage boy than look and act like the business woman that I am not. I would have made a very bad business woman. I’m much better at being a writer and a mom and a geek.

I’m very lucky that my husband is as big a kid as I am. Our interests may lie in different areas but we geek out over these things just the same. He might roll his eyes but he doesn’t get all annoyed with me either when I go mushy over all things Spock or squeal over the greenlight collectibles little version of the Impala.

I don’t want to grow up. I have no plans any time soon of doing so. Life is much more fun if you don’t. I don’t mean not being an adult and taking care of the things that need taken care of but let me be an adult without being a grownup. To me, that sounds just about perfect.

 

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It’s the little things

Kids and Chewie at Steel City Con

Kids and Chewie at Steel City Con

Today, the whole family went to the Steel City Con. I haven’t been to many conventions. In fact, I’ve only been to this one and this is the third time. I like this convention. It’s big enough to draw some really cool guests and small enough to not be overwhelming. I did a real write up of the convention for The Geek Girl Project that you can read here: Steel City Con – April 2015. This post is about something else.

My youngest son has autism. His symptoms, characteristics, tics, and stims aren’t super detrimental and some people wouldn’t even notice. When we took our oldest child to this convention in December, we left the youngest with relatives. He was very unhappy with us for that. We promised we would take him and now we have.

We were concerned going in how he would react to being in a space with so many people all jammed together in some pretty small places. We explained going in what he should expect – that there were a lot of people, a lot of noise, and sometimes people would bump into him and some of those people would be in costumes. We explained about the lines and that he’d sometimes have to wait. Even though he doesn’t like waiting, he was excited enough about the whole shebang that he seemed willing to do it.

We got there a few minutes before the doors opened. By the time we reached the end of the line, it was already moving so we could not have timed it better. We might have been in line but it was a moving line so it didn’t feel to him like waiting. That first hour, I went off to talk to people and get some signatures and my husband took the kids through the vendor room where everyone found a toy they wanted. By the time I met up with them, they’d gone through about a quarter of the room. When we reached the half way point, it was starting to be a little much for him so we moved to the artist alley. Either the aisles are bigger in there or people move more quickly but it doesn’t feel so crowded. My son then went on to introduce his brother and himself to pretty much everyone he came into contact with. I’ve never seen him do that before and it was adorable and all the artists were very sweet.

As good as he was being, it was starting to wear on him a bit so we took a break. I’d packed a lunch as there isn’t a lot available at the convention center and nothing at all my youngest would eat. We went out to the truck, ate lunch, figured out the game plan for what we still wanted to do and made our way back in.

I left the husband to keep the kids so I could head for the photo opp for Elvira. She was one of the people I most wanted to meet. She was one of my idols a long time ago. I wanted to be either her or Morticia Addams when I grew up. I was very excited to meet her. Unfortunately, for whatever reason, she arrived at the convention later than scheduled and her photo opp was moved to later in the day. I knew I wasn’t going to get that much time out of my kid so I will just have to hope she comes back to Steel City Con another time so I can try again.

By 1pm, the kid was done. He seemed headed for a meltdown, getting upset if anyone so much as brushed past him, getting louder, and at one point, putting his hands over his ears and yelling because I wasn’t doing what he wanted me to. We headed out before he hit an actual meltdown but now we know we can take him to an event like this. After he settled down, I know he had fun. He even says he wants to do it again. That works for me because if he wants to go, that means I get to go too! That makes this geek mama quite happy.

 

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Filed under Autism, Convention, Geek, kids, Life

Rocky Horror Picture Show

I love the Rocky Horror Picture Show. Tim Curry rocks that lingerie better than a lot of women could. The news that Fox is making a two hour TV special does not excite me. You cannot improve on perfection. At least they’re sticking with the script that already exists instead of hiring new writers I guess. I wish the powers that be would stop remaking things that are awesome just as they are. I don’t want to hear about all the new fangled effects that can be done and all that. I haven’t heard anyone talking about remaking Casablanca or Gone with The Wind. To me, Rocky Horror is just as much a classic as those movies and Tim Curry as irreplaceable as Bogart or Butler.

I get that the entertainment industry is a business and, as such, they want something they know will sell, bring in the watchers, the advertising dollars, the ticket sales. I get that Rocky Horror is a cult classic with fans so devoted they know every word, every nuance, even when it isn’t actually in the script. I just want hollywood to start making new things that deserve screen time and not remaking things that are perfectly good just as they are.

The casting has me most concerned. I can’t see anyone as Frank-n-Furter but Curry. Anthony Head was brilliant, but still not Curry. I imagine this remake isn’t being made with fans like me in mind but in trying to grab new, younger viewers who’ve never seen it. The rest of us will be too hard to please as we recite the lines they will inevitably cut and correct the television when they change words.

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It figures

With all the good things happening in the next week to ten days, I had to have a day of awful. That’s just how it works. Yesterday was that day for me. I woke up feeling awful, the barometric pressure shift made youngest child super extra cranky, the oldest child made things a bit worse with thoughtlessness and it just was an all around no good very bad day. But, I’m on the mend today and the kids are happier for it. I may not be running at 100% yet but I will be by Saturday and that’s what is currently important to me.

Saturday we get to do cool stuff and have some fun as a family. Monday I’ll officially be another year older with no where near enough gray to do anything fun with. Tuesday. Tuesday April 14th is the big day! Release Day! Hunter’s Crossing, my kick-ass lady saves the world story will be out in the world. I can’t help but be excited. I really hope everyone who reads it finds something in it they can enjoy.

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