Posted in Reading Challenge, Reviews

Slow reading, Hamilton, and Adler-Olsen

It’s been a very slow reading year for me and I can’t say that I’m sorry. There’s just been too much else going on, including really digging into my writing. If I do a major reading challenge every other year or so I cut myself some slack on the off years. One challenge I set for myself was to go an entire year without purchasing books for myself so I’d actually read the books I own and haven’t read yet. (Of course I still buy books as gifts for people, don’t be silly.)

One series off my to-read shelf is the Laurell K. Hamilton Anita Blake series. There are 28 books in that series currently, including novellas. Since I like to have an audiobook series playing when I’m driving, I also started in on Jussi Adler-Olsen and the Department Q series. In addition to the seven books that are out/translated so far, the first three stories have also been adapted into films available on Netflix.

I’ve so far read the first two Hamilton/Blake books, the first three Adler-Olsen/Dept Q books, and watched the first two movies. They’ve all been well written and entertaining. My only complaint might be that there was a different voice actor for each audiobook, but that may be a common style choice I’m just not used to, spoiled as I am by James Marsters/Jim Butcher/Harry Dresden.

While in previous years I might’ve captured several quotes from each volume, I only managed to have the wherewithal to collect these four quotes from volume 2 of Adler-Olsen’s. Enjoy.



He was in the midst of a Led Zeppelin orgy while splattering soldiers on his Nintendo as his zombie girlfriend sat on the bed texting her hunger for contact to the rest of the world.


“Even though you’re a total asshole, know that you wouldn’t be the worst to have back if you chose to return after your leave of absence.”

The tired man looked at Karl surprised, or maybe the right word was overwhelmed. Burg Back’s microscopic emotional displays were difficult to interpret.

“You’ve never been especially kind, Karl,” he said, shaking his head, “but I guess you’re all right.”

For the two men this was a shocking orgy of compliments.


Suddenly she radiated a peacefulness Carl didn’t understand… A sense of release sent her spinning around and around, embracing the corpse in a dance without steps that seemed to make her levitate.



Then he breathed deeply, punched in the next number, and waited year-long seconds before Mona Ibsen answered.

Posted in Blogaversary

Happy Blogaversary!

Well, folks, we made it to ‘versary number four. Who knew we could do it? Four is a pretty hip number, too. I mean, you’ve got your four seasons, your four-leafed (leaved? left) clovers,

and then there’s these guys…


Well, maybe skip those guys. So anyway, here’s the number four written in Japanese kanji, using four pencils (and two erasers, but who’s counting). So today, let’s celebrate four. Because in Japan, four means death! Wait, what?


Posted in Jobe Update

Being Sick Sucks


So you’re going about your business just generally being awesome and you get punched in the junk with a bladder infection, BLEH. So that sucks, but you’re taking your antibiotic and it’s no big deal. Eight days later, you’re back in the doctor’s office and you’re barely alive and he’s talking about the hospital, WHAT? How did this happen!?!

Apparently, if you have an upset stomach on a Saturday evening after LitFest, it is not just because you had ice cream and you’re lactose intolerant, although that’s never really your best move. Then your Sunday is okay but you’ve got a yuck bug in your belly and you think, well, it’s just whatever. And then on Monday, you’re feeling great, you do your exercise, you go walking with a neighbor buddy, you leave the house earlier than ever, you get your oil changed before work! Life has never been so good!

You work your eight hours and although whatever you ate for your late lunch isn’t being very nice to you, you figure, well, it probably just had dairy in it, right? But the thing is, you’re stuck in the daily everybody-wants-to-get-home-at-the-same-time traffic jam, and now you’re starting to think, ugh, there is something really wrong. And by the time you get home you can barely get in the door and mumble “I don’t feel well” as you tumble down the stairs into your loving bed, where you may or may not moan like a baby until Husband brings you all the meds, and you go to sleep.

And you sleep the rest of that day, all night, wake up and realize Tuesday morning is a horrible time to be alive, and pass back out sleeping all that day. You’re feeling so low you’re actually proud of yourself for making it up the stairs to eat toast, because, you know, #goals. Husband continues to hover over you and make sure you have everything you need, because it’s really obvious you’re half-dead and he would really rather you not die.

So you try to sleep through the night but fever and chills and sweats are pretty awful and then there’s that whole throwing up thing (you don’t really want to talk about it) and finally Wednesday arrives and Husband is rushing you out the door to the doctor except your limbs are really not so into this whole “rush” thing, and everything hurts, etc. Doctor is very displeased at how high your white blood cell count is, perscribes a Super-Duper Antibiotic and some nausea meds, commands you to return the very next day and threatens you with The Hospital if you don’t get better stat.

You take the new meds, take a new nap, and LIKE MAGIC you feel… not dead! Suddenly you’re not hurting everywhere! Suddenly you have energy! Suddenly everything does Not Suck! You return to the doctor triumphant the next day and he confirms that you’re on the fast track to recovery. Good thing, too, because apparently a bladder infection that spreads to your kidneys is like, serious bad news or something. Kooky, right?

Also, everyone compliments you on the weight you’ve lost and you’re thinking, YOU GUYS I ALMOST DIED and apparently the way to lose 4 pounds in 4 days is not eat anything and vomit, but you really do not recommend it. Because toast is beautiful. And smoothies are divine.

Posted in Cool Tools, Writing Prompts

Jobe-Bot Writer-Prompt-ery Fun Times

There was an auto-generate app that showed up on Facebook called “What Would I Say.” It used an algorithym and sifted through all the words you’ve ever used on Facebook (paying particluar attention to phrases, so that the results would make a kind of sense) and spat out with the click of a button what Bot-You would post as a status. This kind of word game tickles me pink so I of course abused this power ad naseum and everyone friended to me got an earful (eyeful). Today when it showed back up in my feed (“Memories” from 2017, 2016, and 2015)  I thought some of this might make decent idea generation and/or writing prompt material. So if you get a laugh out of the below, great. If you get a story starter or a fun idea and write with it, even better. And if you’re weird like me and love this kind of thing too, here’s the link. Play, my lovelies, play!

Jobe (and Jobe-Bot)

  • If anyone is in bloom already!
  • See also, a mask and coat full of rats.
  • Hate has been.
  • When your kitchen smells the best for miles!
  • Me too, I’m going to be present and accountable today.
  • Natural colors where ARE THOSE OPTIONS
  • Yay my friends gave you two swords instead of just saying it’s a thing.
  • Even if you don’t see why this is a no.
  • Calling all angels, upcoming Women’s Day without a stop to all of it?
  • In dire need to read this.
  • You know red, valentine, etc? Nerds warm my heart.
  • She is so nervous poor darlings.
  • And then they were just sitting there with our story.
  • In the separate sections I believe me.
  • Thanksgiving visit to my hair.
  • I’m supposed to be visiting in the wrong thing where I love you all.
  • Lip bite is code for awesome.
  • I’m supposed to tag 5 ladies to do.
  • Can you believe how many episodes you’ve watched in Jack’s life?
  • 2009 Chevy Malibu with a poly group and the rainbow.
  • ROFL Sounds like a cute lil Malk but she tastes bad.
  • You definitely made a Ta Da.
  • Mowin’ the lawn like a top yellow but they go until you’re 50 or 60. You bleed a day off because you want a custom me doll versions of us.
  • I bet your kitchen smells the best I could do.
  • Mowin’ the garage into a bedroom.
  • Lip bite is nice to me.
  • Happy Six years, I dreamt Jasper and Izzy were superintelligent, capable of the twentyfirst century.
  • When I dream I’m going to that upcoming novel from Chase Night? Honestly, I got everybody here.
  • Jack and Arkansas can be damned annoying.
  • Hers is forest with love I got married. 1 year ago we signed a lease with rage, and petting my baby!
  • And I was a lesbian.
  • Pros, cons, and the ink blots washed out.
  • Tell me if you’re willing to be a dick?
  • Just my brain wandering about, the episode 21 really got 4+ dudes to sleep.
Posted in Cool Tools, Fitness Challenge, Writing Challenge

The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron (first half)

AW_bookimageThe Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron has lived on my shelf for a while now, and I’ve promised myself for some time that I’d get to it. It’s kind of like a workbook with a program to follow, made up of 12 chapters for 12 weeks. Cameron must be doing something really right, because 2016 was the book’s 25 year anniversary, and it is still selling strong. And Goodreads calls it “the seminal work” on creativity.

The two keystones of the program are the Pages and the Date. Cameron’s original vision for morning pages was three pages hand-written, first thing in the morning. You can write anything, with no structure and no limits—you writing one morning could be complaining about a coworker, the next morning it could be your grocery list, the next an idea that just popped into your head. It isn’t mean to be Your Art, just a way to clear your mind. 750 Words stretches the definition a little, calling them daily pages, and that works better for me since I run in the morning and write in the evening. (If more than one of your habits recommends itself as your “first thing,” well, you can’t exactly have everything tie for first.) I do enjoy hand-writing, but I love the organization of doing everything on the computer. (Maybe it’s a generational thing.)

The other major component of the program is your Artist’s Date, which you do SOLO, just you and your inner artist. It can be an adventurous drive or a quiet walk, a visit to a store or a park or a museum; it can be anything you want that sparks your soul, but no one else is allowed to accompany. Of course, simple as it is, people (read: I) still have trouble. There are weekly writing exercises to help you stretch your wings and there are weekly Check-Ins to gauge and monitor where you’re at with it. The Check-In questions go something like this: 1. How many days this week did you do your pages? 2. Did you do your artist date? 3. Good stuff? 4. Bad stuff?

Here’s a quick run-down of how I’ve done with the first half of the book.

Date Range Week Notes Run 3 pts 750 Write Date
Monday Jan 29 – Sunday Feb 4 Week 0 Gave myself a freebie week to ease into it 5 of 7 x x 4 of 7 (n/a)
Monday Feb 5 – Sunday Feb 11 Week 1 got sick 2 of 7 x x 2 of 7 Yes
Monday Feb 12 – Sunday Feb 18 Week 2 got new running shoes, started using 750 Words 5 of 7 x 7 of 7 7 of 7 No
Monday Feb 19 – Sunday Feb 25 Week 3 emotional writing 4 of 7 x 7 of 7 7 of 7 No
Monday Feb 26 – Sunday Mar 4 Week 4 Mar 1 started Blue & You Fitness Challenge 6 of 7 4 of 4 7 of 7 7 of 7 Yes
Monday Mar 5 – Sunday Mar 11 Week 5 I had a birthday! 6 of 7 7 of 7 6 of 7 7 of 7 Yes
Monday Mar 12 – Sunday Mar 18 Week 6 broke my writing streak bc I stayed out too late w friends 5 of 7 7 of 7 5 of 7 6 of 7 Yes
Monday Mar 19 – Sunday Mar 25 Week 0 fell off the habit, got discouraged, started up again 5 of 7 7 of 7 6 of 7 6 of 7 (n/a)