Requisite Beginning of 2015 Post

Instead of talking about the shit shit shittiness of 2014, I am instead going to focus on the few good things that happened last year.

  1. Shawn’s cancer is in remission. This is, obviously, the best news.
  2. For the first time (probably ever) I established and stuck to a writing schedule.
  3. I was able to complete a long story for the first time in a very long time. This is great for me as I like to start things and never finish them. But I did it! And that makes me great.
  4. Shawn & I started a podcast together about our asstacular comic book collection called “Worst. Collection. Ever.” It’s free on iTunes and on sideshownetwork.TV in the “Comics on Comics” feed.

What’s on the old agenda for 2015? I’m not sure. The one thing I’d really like to focus on in 2015 is my creative life. I need to write more. I need to develop a niche for myself and my work. The internet is so vast, there has to be a place where a woman who swears more than the entire U.S. Navy can find some sort of following.

So far, my resolutions are:

  1. Get my ass to the gym 3 times a week.
  2. Maintain my writing schedule
  3. Read More
  4. I might watch Gilmore Girls (I’ve never seen it!) and start commenting on it right here on this blog. I might do the same for Gotham.

2014 took all my fucks. Here’s hoping I won’t exhaust my supply in 2015.

Cancer Year In Review

On November 1, 2013, I sat in the waiting room of UCLA Ronald Reagan medical center waiting for my husband to get out of surgery. Two weeks earlier, we’d celebrated our second wedding anniversary with the specter of a big, unknown THING hanging over us. Something was wrong with my husband. We didn’t know what was wrong, all we knew is the doctors were sending him for blood tests and scans and biopsies. A few weeks after that biopsy, we would be called into an oncologist’s office to be told that my then 33-year-old husband had cancer. Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, if you want to get specific.

He had his first chemo treatment right before Thanksgiving of last year. He only threw up once.

After 6 months of treatment, another surgery, several additional scans, and more fucking blood work than I could possibly fathom, we’ve been told that he’s effectively in remission. This is great news. It’s also news we accept cautiously. Cancer becomes a presence in your life. It lives in your home, it takes up space. Even when it’s supposed to be gone, you still wait to feel it – the sense of dread, the dark fear that takes hold in your gut and seeps into your dreams. It finds you when you least expect.

I don’t know why I wrote this. Because we’re still here? Because it’s been a year and we’re still here?

Why I Self-Published My Thesis

Ready for a bullshit post about my “feelings”?? Some hardcore navel-gazing? Here we go!

I wrote a book. Actually it’s a collection of short stories. Whatever, same difference. All you need to know is I wrote a thing and, eventually, I self-published the thing.

Back in the day, you’d have to spend money to get your books printed and bound and shipped to you. I never saw much value that. Still don’t. But digital publishing for e-readers? Count me in.

A lot of people rag on self-publishing. I know this because before the days of Kindle Direct publishing, I used to be one of those judgmental assholes. I used to think if your work was good enough someone would publish your stories or give you a book deal. And sure, there are those writers who are so damn good they automatically get noticed and published. But, more often, your work needs to fit a certain style. You need to fit the voice of the journal you’re contributing to, or fit the publisher’s image. Your subject matter needs to be in line with what’s considered “serious” and “literary”. You need to SAY SOMETHING IMPORTANT ABOUT THE HUMAN CONDITION through as many metaphors as possible. I’m not one of those writers. I never have been.

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Cancer Update

Taking a break from periodically blogging about the shit I cook to post about something else. As many of you know, my husband Shawn was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma back in November. I posted about it here.

When Shawn was first diagnosed we met with an advocate who recommended I send weekly emails to everyone we know detailing his blood counts and levels and what have you. Honestly, outside of someone who studies this sort of thing for a living, who wants to read that shit? No one. It’s not that people don’t care, they do, it’s just the language of the medical community and the use of numbers and percentages mean nothing to those of us who don’t live in that world 24/7. Knowing the levels of white cells in his blood isn’t going to really tell you anything unless you’re a medical professional. So here’s the actual shit you want to know.

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Disaster or Dinner?

Hi! I am aware I haven’t posted in awhile. Welcome back, me!

Getting ready to go to the store today when it dawned on me that I had no idea what to make for dinner. This is a common problem in my world, as I tend to stick to what I know. So I decided to branch out and pull a recipe off my old friend the Internet. Oh, Internet, what would I do without you? Frolic in the sunshine? Make real friends? Ha! Those things are all shitty.

Having just discovered that I don’t totally hate kale just because it’s called kale, I found a recipe from Cooking Light for Orecchieta pasta with kale, bacon, and sun-dried tomatoes. I thought, “I like all those things and would like to ingest them!” So to the store I went, shopping list in hand. (Yes, it was an actual list written down on paper and shit. Retro, bitches.)

At the store I discovered something. I have no fucking clue what orecchieta pasta is. The recipe says it’s “little ear pasta”. Now, maybe I don’t pay enough attention to pasta (or anything, really) but fuck if I can ever remember a time when I saw pasta that looked like a tiny ear. Apparently, it looks like this. That looks more like little construction hats to me, but whatever. I couldn’t find any ear pasta so I decided shells look kind of like ears (as much like ears as those fucking hats, Italy!) so I bought that instead.

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