Believe It Or Not

I still exist. Really, I do. I haven’t slipped into an alternate dimension or been abducted by aliens. But 2017 wasn’t the easiest year, and writing slipped away from me.

I lost my mother in March last year. On St. Patrick’s Day. While it wasn’t totally unexpected (she was 89 and getting frail), I don’t believe we can ever be prepared for that time when it comes. It hit me hard. After all, she had always been part of my life, and now she was gone. The emptiness where she had been was greater than I ever would have imagined.

Then there were some nagging health issues. Nothing serious, but I had to get serious about reducing carbs and sugars, and thankfully my new doctor recommended physical therapy for my back, which had been way too stiff in the aftermath of two herniated disks.

And now in 2018, I’m feeling better. And there’s a new story underway. It’s different from the original three I’d been working on. There’s some writing wisdom out there that says we have to write three not-so-great books before we finally write a good one. I’m hoping that’s true.

I’ll probably make some changes to the blog’s appearance, in the near future. My Able theme is long retired from WordPress. I think that’s a sign to undertake a major refresh. I still won’t do many posts because I have to concentrate on getting back in the writing-of-novels mode. Ultimately that’s the whole reason for the writing of blog posts for me.

In my next-to-last call with my mom, she asked how the writing was going. I was honest and said not so well, but I was hoping it would pick up again. To that she said, “Don’t stop writing.” And I said “I won’t.”

Maybe this new idea won’t end up being the right one. If it does get published, maybe it won’t go anywhere. And maybe that’s okay.

But I’ll keep that last promise to my mom.

me and mom

Writing Again

No, you’re not imagining things. This really is a post from jmmcdowell. Albeit, a brief one. My blogging hiatus continues because I’m finally working on the novels again. And they must take priority. October’s word count is approaching 9,000—a significant increase over September’s 6,800. I need to keep the momentum going. And that means the time hasn’t yet come to dive into blogging again.20161010_114344I hope you’re all doing well and finding success in all your endeavors. Keep at them! If all goes as planned, the new year should bring new posts. And then…? Well, we’ll just have to see. 🙂

Which Way To Go

Well, the New Year is here. While I’m not normally one to make resolutions, this year, the time seemed right to do so. Of course, figuring out which goals should take priority isn’t always easy. But it was a heck of a lot easier than figuring out exactly what pedestrians are supposed to do when confronted with the situation pictured below!

So are pedestrians supposed to be part of an obstacle course for drivers?

So are pedestrians meant to be part of an obstacle course for drivers? Or must they step into an alternate dimension to cross the bridge?

Continue reading

A Merry Time In Old (And New) England — Part 3

Last week was uber busy with getting a big mitigation report out for one of our work projects. That really limited my time to visit other blogs, so I hope you’ll forgive my shorter-than-normal comments or apparent absence. It also meant I didn’t spend as much time with my PerNoReMo as desired, but I hope to make better progress this week. So today we’ll finish up the travelogue posts from my September trip to England with “The Walk” along a chunk of Hadrian’s Wall. Continue reading

A Merry Time In Old (And New) England—Part 2

So as I work on my PerNoReMo, we’ll keep this post simple. Here are some photos from York that my husband and I took in September. York features some wonderful old Medieval and Renaissance buildings and the wall that protected the old city.

We stayed in a hotel located in a building dating from the 1700s that had been built against one of the Medieval gates, which you can see at left below. The view at right is back up the street from the hotel.

york1

Continue reading