Boring is the New Scary

boredThis month, we’re talking about what scares us. I grew up reading whatever the adults around me laid down, and my mom was a horror buff. Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Peter Straub. The Good stuff. (Horror shout-out: Anyone else reading Doctor Sleep this month?)

Who’s a scaredy-cat? This girl.

I was never the kid not scared of anything. I was prone to night terrors and listening in the dark, long after everyone else went to bed, for creaks and whispers. Which, actually, was more of a heaping dollop of anxiety than fear.

As I got older, the things keeping me up at night stopped being faceless monsters and turned into worries like, Do we have enough in savings if something terrible happened? or How would I raise the kids alone if my husband had an accident? Scary, grown-up stuff.

What if nothing happens?

Then, after some soul-searching and crazy living, I realized my own deepest fear was being mundane. What if I never do anything magnificent? What if I never get to stand at some random podium and thank the people in my life because everyone else in the room is applauding me? Are there awards for being really good at assisting in the creation of 2nd grade science projects? I just can’t imagine that fitting on a trophy.

Am I being a total drag and ruining good-time, scary month for everyone else?

At some point, I realized the monsters are actually people and the enemy is time and maybe-tomorrow. Thing is, I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one. I have a sneaking suspicion that tons of people feel this way. They see time slipping by as nothing great happens. They wonder if they’re up to the task of… an interesting life.

Don’t get me wrong–I wouldn’t trade my kids, or my husband, or worrying about which laundry detergent gives me the best value for the world. Not even for a room full of strangers tossing roses at my feet.

It’s just… these are the things that keep me up at night. And so, I’ll read about a spunky heroine rebelling against societal norms or a recovering alcoholic defying the supernatural for a second chance at life. Because those stories, those endings and victories, make me believe.  My day will come.

How about you?

Sure, the zombie apocalypse if crazy scary, but what every day concern scares you? Don’t forget, one winner will be chosen at random this month from all the comments to win an e-copy of Sutton Fox‘s romantic suspense, Beyond the Winner’s Circle plus a $10 Amazon Gift Card!

About Lori Sizemore

Lover of nail polish, pens, her Kindle, and fresh coffee. She likes romance filled with messy, real characters and lots of snarky banter. Reading was (and still is!) her BFF; when she discovered writing she fell in love. Come for the snark. Stay for the story.

Learning Never Stops

We don’t have back to school in our house. We have an empty nest. But with so much of our lives lived online these days, it’s almost impossible to not be affected by your friends or family getting the kids ready for another year. Personally I love September.Young Girl Does Her Math Homework

It’s a time for review, a reminder if you will, about tasks that need to be completed before years end. The weather is cooling a bit, so it’s time to dig out all the wonderful recipes you don’t make in the summer because they require using the oven. It’s the holiday train at station 3 ¾ picking up steam headed straight into, dare I say it? I can’t bear it. Let’s just say some sort of holiday or reason to shop for something from here on out.

It’s also a time I use to assess my writing, what I’ve accomplished through the year, and what I still want to learn.  Yes, learn. Advertisements are starting to show up for next spring’s writer’s conferences, along with requests for leading workshops, and teaching online classes. I don’t know many writers who aren’t either attending some sort of class about something do to with writing, or teaching the same.

But I don’t always take classes about writing. Let’s not forget all the jokes people make about romance writers and research. Certainly some of them are true. I’m just not at liberty to say which parts. In order to suspend disbelief for the reader we need to understand the settings we’ve placed our stories in, as well as the jobs our characters have, and many other things. In short we need to give our readers something to identify with. It’s true that we’re not born knowing everything. If only that were the case!!

If I weren’t a writer I’d probably be a professional student. I love learning new things. I’ve taken classes on weaponry, witchcraft, serial killers, army infantry, knitting, calligraphy, and many other things. As writers we are always working to perfect our craft. And that’s at best an elusive goal. But the journey is one I wouldn’t trade for anything.

I think my favorite class was the one I took at a community college to learn calligraphy. I didn’t realize just how much there is to the alphabet.

Is there a class you’ve taken that you absolutely loved?

 

About Sutton Fox

Sutton Fox has been published by Lyrical Press, Gypsy Shadow Publishing and wrote a bi-monthly column for an auto racing magazine for several years. She traded life in Bluegrass Country for life in the Windy City in a home she shares with The Man, a lonely cat, and her beloved dog, Lucy. When she’s not working the edj, you can find her writing or spending time with her extended family.

A Lovely Wedding, A Beautiful You

One of the many hats I wore before becoming a mostly full time writer was that of a licensed esthetician. I managed a full service salon and spa for about ten years. It was one of the most fun jobs I’ve had. As you can see from my hair, it still hasn’t worn off.

Wedding parties were always a challenge. Managing to do hair, make-up and nails for a group of anywhere from three to ten girls, along with the mother of the bride, and sometimes the MIL to be, in a short amount of time left one feeling frazzled. In a good way.

So I thought I’d give you some tips on how to manage those pesky details that may not be mentioned in the How to Look Your Best on the Special Day wedding guide.

—Do get the groom and groomsmen haircuts the week before the wedding. Not the week of.

For the bride:

The best thing you can do is to think about the look YOU want. Spend some time looking at brides online, in magazines, etc. Pick a few looks for hair, make-up and nails. Bring pictures to the salon with you for discussion.

If you are getting hair, make-up and nails done professionally choose a group of stylists that you trust or find a group that’s highly recommended.

Hair: If you want to change your haircut or color start six months before the wedding. You need time to make sure you’re happy with your new look and also to make corrections if you’re not.

Do schedule a trial run about four to six weeks before the wedding. Make sure when you set your appointment you tell them you want a wedding up-do. These things take extra time. Be fair to yourself and give your stylist time to give you what you want. If you will be wearing a veil or putting flowers or something in your hair, bring it with you this time so you can be sure everything works with your hair.

The day of:  Do wear a button down shirt to the salon. You won’t have to take it off later, over your hair or make-up.

Make-Up: If you’re having it professionally done, do schedule a practice run so you can be sure the look you want looks good on you. The day of, is NOT the day to make adjustments. You’ll be nervous enough.

Remember, you are the star! You’ll be having photos taken of you the entire time, from every angle. You’ll need great make-up. If you’re not comfortable wearing a lot of make-up, practice. You’re not comfortable wearing a gown and heels all day either. The last thing you want is to look washed out.

If you’re doing your own, there are tons of how-to wedding make-up vids on YouTube. Make the time and practice in advance. You’ll be glad you did.

And the very last helpful hint I have, because this happened more often than not, is this – If you’re part of the wedding party, the bride asked you to be in her wedding because she cares for you. Don’t say bad things about her to the professionals who are working hard to make you look your best for her big day.

Now go out there and be beautiful!

*And don’t forget, don’t forget all commenters this month have a chance of winning our $5 Amazon GC Giveaway!

About Sutton Fox

Sutton Fox has been published by Lyrical Press, Gypsy Shadow Publishing and wrote a bi-monthly column for an auto racing magazine for several years. She traded life in Bluegrass Country for life in the Windy City in a home she shares with The Man, a lonely cat, and her beloved dog, Lucy. When she’s not working the edj, you can find her writing or spending time with her extended family.

Bethanne’s Thirteen Firsts

Hello!! Welcome to our blog, Through Heart-Shaped Glasses. Everyone’s been hitting up the topic of Firsts. Firsts… life is full of firsts, isn’t it? When I found out the topic, I told my husband. He kind of looked at me funny, lifted a brow, and gave a small shake of his head. <grin> Ha!

But then, I thought, this is another first–group blog. And since not everyone knows me, I think I’ll do a Thursday Thirteen Firsts.  A cross between our theme for the month and a meme.

13. First move — 3 years old, from New York to Florida. There have been  many moves since then ranging from New York to Florida to Michigan to Pennsylvania to Ohio to Colorado to Ohio to Virginia to Illinois to Georgia, and finally, back to Colorado.

kiddie photo12. First day of Kindergarten — I had two of those, actually. Flunked out the first time.

11. First Detention — 2nd grade. I forgot my homework, which sounds sooo familiar now that I have two kids who are alot like me. It’s not intentional. It’s a thing…hopefully they get better at organization and remembering than I am.

10. First shot of insulin — November 23, 1988, my Diabetes Birthday

9. First written story — 6th grade, which my teacher loved, but suggested I not end with the cliche of waking from a dream. That was the first writing advice I ever recieved. I have never forgotten it. Later in life–high school, I read a smutty romance novel that actually ended that way…with the heroine waking from a dream. And I thought, “that book was so stupid!” And I knew Mrs. Richter had been right. Happily Ever After is too important to get fudged by a dream.

8. First College — Franciscan University of Steubenville, a good Catholic girl who wasn’t convinced to study nursing and did 3 years of an English Literature degree before getting pregnant, getting married, and moving on with her husband. 🙂

7. First Kiss — from the not-yet-hubby, a lovely asked-for kiss…the ultimate peck on the cheek. Heart racing, hands sweating. It’s a kiss you never forget.

wedding6. First Husband — And only husband! haha. Love that man so much. <3

5. First Baby — Her name is Virginia. She’s 13 now. OMG! THIRTEEN!

4. First Manuscript — A story inspired by Trixie Belden called Certain Suspicions. Well, now it’s called that. I can’t remember the original title.

3. First critique group — Charlotte Dillon’s Crit Group. A nice group, for the most part, yet too big, too anonymous. 🙂 I love my CRITIQUE group, Passionate Critters!

ForLoveorDuty 200x3002. First Book published, June 2012, For Love or Duty

1. First Contract — Wheeeee! With Entangled Publishing! A contract for my Christmas story, Letters from Home.

About Beth Rhodes

Beth jumps into life with both feet...or head first. Impulsive and spontaneous to a T, she joined Passionate Critters and never looked back. She loves writing and reading, which made this wonderful group of woman a perfect match for her.

  • Our LATEST Buzz!

    Cyn D. Blackburn's Wrapped Up in You releases on November 13. *** The first two books in the Cupid's Cafe series were released in June by Lori Sizemore and Landra Graf *** Lori Sizemore's Infamous was released on December 14. *** Julie Jarnagin's Cowgirl in the Kitchen is available now. *** Bethanne Strasser LETTERS FROM HOME from Entangled Publishing is available now! *** Nina Croft's latest books, Her Fantasy Husband, a hot contemporary romance from Entangled's Brazen line, and The Order Boxed Set, a compilation of the three full length novels, plus a new novella, exclusive to the boxed set, both released in April 2016 *** Debora Dennis's holiday novella, A PROPOSAL & PUMPKIN PIE is on sale for .99 through Thanksgiving.