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Wednesday Weekly Blogging Challenge

Each Wednesday from January 9 – December 18, 2019, Long and Short Reviews is hosting a weekly blog hop.

Blogging is a fun way to meet people and get to know them. We’re offering a weekly “prompt” for authors, non-authors, bookish folks and others to share something weekly and gain new friends and visitors to the blog. There’s no pressure to write something every week (though it should be fun and a challenge), but we do ask that if you do post something, you share your link on the weekly post we’ll put up at our site (it will be the top post on the home page each Wednesday morning) — the link list will be open for new links for 48 hours. Other bloggers will also share their links and you can hop over and see what they have to share.

March 13th – A Day In My Life

I debated skipping this week because I don’t have pictures for this challenge and I assume most people are going to use pictures to show their life details. However, I suppose telling it is just as good. You can still get a peek at how glamorous and exciting the life of an author is. 😉

I’m going to detail a day when I work, because I do that five days a week so it’s a “typical” day.

Some background: my day job is Senior Supervisor in a private airport lounge–you know those lounges you pay to hang out in when you’re traveling? That. But what the heck does being Senior Supervisor mean? I’m basically the assistant manager, since the only person above me is my boss, the General Manager. I supervise day-to-day operations–we handle the lounge’s food and beverage service, as well as housekeeping–but more specifically I run the bar in the lounge (I was a bartender for a long time before lucking into this job) which includes doing inventory, ordering liquor, making sure the bar runs smoothly, and training bartenders. I also do a lot of overall bookkeeping for the lounge and coordinate invoicing and bill-paying with the airline that runs it (the company I work for is contracted by them). Sounds exciting, doesn’t it?!

Oh, and I also write books on the side. But that doesn’t pay as much as the day job yet, unfortunately. SIGH! 😉

It’s also a night shift job, so I don’t go in until 2-4pm, depending on the shift, and I usually get home around 10-11pm.

So here’s a typical day when I work!

  • 8am – Wake up. For some reason my body is attuned to always wake up at 8am, no matter what time I went to sleep. My cat also makes DAMN sure I’m up at this time every morning to feed her.
  • 9am – 10am – Do any chores I need to do around the house, put in laundry–my adult son is my roommate and we both work nights (he works VERY late nights and sleeps in the mornings), so I usually throw our uniforms in the washer first thing in the morning (he’s a cook, so he has a pretty dirty, greasy job). If I have to go to the store or run errands I do it around this time too.
  • 10am – 12pm – If I’m done doing all the household tasks, I sit down at my laptop to write/work on writing tasks like blogging, promo, and checking groups/Facebook/Twitter for a while.
  • 12 pm-ish – Depending on what time my shift starts, I get ready for work and eat. I don’t eat breakfast, but eat a filling meal before I go to work because work is usually very busy for me and I don’t have time to eat during my shift, unless it’s a small snack. Eating right before I go keeps me from getting hungry.
  • 1pm – 3pm – Depending on when my shift starts, I’m on my way to work! I don’t own a car and take public transportation everywhere. I have a driver’s license, I just don’t want the expense of a car and I live in a big city with access to plentiful public transport. I live right across the street from the train station and the train takes me directly into the airport–and it only takes ten minutes from my stop to work. How convenient is that! I think even if I broke down and bought a car I would still take the train to work because it’s so easy. Also, it gives me time to just chill and listen to music/play on my phone before I go into work.
  • Until 9pm-ish  – Work! I like work for the most part, it usually goes fast because we’re very busy and I love my coworkers, we’re like a family. We close at 8:30pm, but there’s about an hour worth of closing down/cleaning up to do, and if I have additional paperwork tasks it might take longer. Sometimes I take the train home or sometimes a coworker gives me a ride home since by happy coincidence, a lot of us live very close to the airport. I don’t ever ask for rides because it’s MY choice not to drive and I don’t mind taking the train, but a few of my motherly coworkers insist on always taking me home because they believe it’s dangerous to take the train late at night, especially for a young woman. 😀 However, I worked downtown for many years as a bartender and often took buses/trains at MUCH later hours of the night through MUCH worse areas (and I was MUCH younger!) and was never bothered by anyone. But I don’t argue with Mama Coworkers.
  • 10pm-ish – I get home, usually eat something, shower, mess around online a bit, and maybe do a bit more writing if something was flowing well earlier.
  • 11pm – 12am – I usually go to bed in this timeframe. Gotta be up early to feed the cat, after all!

So that’s my day. Impressive, isn’t it? If you have any questions about my job or routine, please ask!

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The #evernighties Thursday Weekly Author Blog Challenge is a once-a-week blogging adventure brought to you exclusively by Evernight authors. Each week, we answer a new question (listed below and borrowed from MFRW.org) and the answers will be featured on the Evernight Reader’s Group on Facebook, as well as our own blogs and social media platforms. Check out the group or follow the #evernighties tag to see how other authors answered this week’s question!

Week #5: A book that has influenced my life

This is a great question, and there’s several–I’ve talked about some of these before, so I’m sorry if I sound like a broken record.

I didn’t exactly have the best life growing up/in my teens. My mother died when I was 13 and I went into a system of foster care, rotating between my much older siblings and other people connected to my family. I hated my life and most of all, I hated living in the small, backwards town I lived in where there was basically nothing for a teenager to do but get into trouble–which I did, a lot. Even back then I was obsessed with horror novels and movies, probably because I was morbid due to my circumstances. Around the age of 15 (it’s been a long time and hard to remember my exact age) I found a copy of The Vampire Lestat at a flea market/basement sale type thing and of course it had the word VAMPIRE in the title, so I had to have it and read it.

It turned out that book changed my entire life–largely, because if you haven’t read it, through most of the first half, Lestat is a young (human) man who is desperate to escape his dreary provincial life and horrible family situation. He ends up doing this in the most fantastical way, by becoming a vampire (though it’s forced upon him) and taking on Paris, becoming an actor and ruling the night. For me, it sounded like all my daydreams come true. And even though it’s a largely tragic story about losing your humanity while trying to find yourself, it resonated with me so strongly at that impressionable, miserable age and gave me hope. I still have that falling apart, rag-tag copy I bought for 50 cents all those (many!) years ago. It’s held together with tape now and the pages are yellow, but I will never throw it away.

Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird is also the book that changed how I look at writing, when I was a young and very green writer. Her dark and frank sense of humor is right up my alley, and the lessons she teaches in it made things very clear for me at the time. I still have that old book too! I also have an old copy of Sophy Burnham’s For Writer’s Only which is full of amazing and resonating quotes for authors. I have a lot of old books!

How about you? What book changed your life?

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The #evernighties Thursday Weekly Author Blog Challenge is a once-a-week blogging adventure brought to you exclusively by Evernight authors. Each week, we answer a new question (listed below and borrowed from MFRW.org) and the answers will be featured on the Evernight Reader’s Group on Facebook, as well as our own blogs and social media platforms. Check out the group or follow the #evernighties tag to see how other authors answered this week’s question!

Week #3: How much of myself is in my writing

This is a really interesting question this week, and the answer is kind of complex. It’s one I like to think about as a writer, though.

First, I think I put a good bit of myself into my writing as far as passion goes. Whatever I’m passionate about/into at the time happens to be what I usually write about. I mean, I think it would be hard to write about something you’re not really interested in. So I do tend to focus on subjects, places, and things that I’m fascinated by. I assume most writers do, and that’s the biggest part of ourselves that we put into our writing.

I also sometimes add personal preferences to my stories. My characters might have some trait or habit that I have, or they like (or don’t) like something that I do. No one character I’ve ever written is EXACTLY like me, but sometimes I give them a bit of my personality. I think that’s natural as a writer too–it’s part of that “write what you know” advice we get whacked over the head with. I might pull from my own memories or childhood to give a character a backstory, but again, no character is a carbon copy of me.

And of course, my characters sometimes end up in places I’ve been and I draw from those experiences. Life translates to fiction, after all. I think it’s fun that way.

What about you? Do you put yourself into your characters?

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The #evernighties Thursday Weekly Author Blog Challenge is a once-a-week blogging adventure brought to you exclusively by Evernight authors. Each week, we answer a new question (listed below and borrowed from MFRW.org) and the answers will be featured on the Evernight Reader’s Group on Facebook, as well as our own blogs and social media platforms. Check out the group or follow the #evernighties tag to see how other authors answered this week’s question!

Week #2: My earliest memory

Welcome to the second week of the blog challenge!

I only remember bits and pieces of my early childhood, but I remember those bits pretty clearly. We moved around a lot when I was a kid (even from state to state) and I remember a lot of the houses/apartments we lived in. I remember traveling a lot on a bus with my mother (we lived in Nevada but her family was here, in Ohio). I remember various significant events like birthdays and Christmas and family members visiting. I also remember school–I changed those pretty often too, due to all the moving. I think the fact that things were constantly changing is the reason I can remember them so vividly. After all, when studying the way our brains make memories, it’s been found that new experiences tend to get imprinted the strongest, because our brain is more alert and paying attention to the new information/surroundings.

However, my absolute EARLIEST memory has photographic evidence to back it up so I know it’s not a false memory. There’s a picture of me around two years old, sitting on a couch with my sister in our Easter dresses, with our Easter baskets. I can remember being on the other side of that picture, sitting on the couch–I really can! That’s honestly the earliest memory I have. It’s a brief flash but it’s definitely a clear memory. I think that’s pretty cool.

How about you? What’s your earliest memory, and do you think it’s real?

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We’re into the second week of 2019 already! Can you believe it? Only a few more months of winter here in the northern hemisphere, that’s the way I look at it. 😀 Even though, we haven’t really had winter yet–no significant snowfall, and the temps right now are spring-like. I know it’s waiting just around the corner, though.

The new year means resolutions for some people. I always make some…whether I follow through is another story. Some people don’t believe in making them and I totally understand that. The concept of time keeping is made up by humans, so literally any time is a good time to start working on self-improvement. I believe that too, but I also feel like the new year is a good time to hit the reset button. I always give it a good pounding, anyway.

Some of my resolutions were sidelined a bit during the first week of 2019 as I had some health issues that blew me off course. That’s okay–I’m trying to frame it that all the bad stuff got out of the way first so the rest of 2019 will be smooth sailing. My personal resolutions (which I won’t bore you with) stayed intact, but my writing resolutions got derailed due to having to go to the hospital (twice) and being on some mind-fogging medication. I’m back up on my feet and doing much better now, but I’m trying to get back on my writing resolutions. That is, more consistent blogging, and contributing some work toward my writing every day, even if I don’t have much time and it’s just a tiny bit. Part of that is keeping myself AWAY from distractions on the internet and TV and concentrating. Using my spare time more productively. I’m really quite horrible about it and easily pulled away so I’m trying to be more mindful.

Again, some people don’t do resolutions and I get that. Just because the year started over doesn’t mean you’re mentally, physically, or emotionally ready to make big changes in your life. I tried to focus more this year on making changes that I feel I’m ready for and capable of. And if you do make resolutions and slip on them, it’s important not to beat yourself up. Persistence and trying again when you fail is far more important to success than consistent perfection. Nobody ever learned to ride a bike, drive a car, or heck, even walk, by doing it perfect forever from the very first try. However, trying again and again got you there eventually.

Besides, everyone knows January is just a trial month to figure out how you want to spend the rest of the year. 😉

How about you? Did you make resolutions? Do you believe in them? How are they coming along?