Out On Their First Flight: Magic in the Mountains

Last night in Harrisburg… Yeah, it sounds like something important.  Maybe it is.  Actually, a lot got done yesterday.  First off, I finish the scene which means I finished Chapter Nine.  Which means I’m officially done with all the single digit chapters and I can move on to double digits.

Let's take a minute to say goodbye together.

Let’s take a minute to say goodbye together.

What’s coming up in Chapter Ten are four slices of what happens in the advanced classes.  Or I should put it this way: you get to see what happens in three of the advanced classes and what happens in one specialty class.  It should be interesting and it’s going to lead up to an event that may end up becoming the talk of the school after a while.

In fact, there’s a whole lot of stuff is coming out–I mean, the step of having a novel, correct?  But that’s beside the point.  The next two chapters are going to get real interesting and they are leading up to a big event.  And it won’t be long before we get there.

In the meantime we have to deal with what’s happening now, which means were dealing with the past.  Which means were about to see what really happened when Emma came out.

And it’s right here–


(The following excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Three: C For Continuing, copyright 2016, 2017 by Cassidy Frazee)


“Well, I was sitting there listening to Miora speak, but I’m hardly even listening. All I can think is the moment I come out my parents are going to freak, and I’m trying to put together was going to happen after that. Then, all of a sudden, Miora says ‘Emma, you have something to tell your parents, don’t you?’

“I knew what she wanted me to say, but I couldn’t get the words to come out. I just sat there like an idiot with this dumb stare on my face and all I can see is my family staring back at me. Just as Miora is about to say something, I sat up real straight and just said it: ‘I’m a witch.’ And I then sat back like it was no big deal.”

Kerry knew Emma well enough to imagine she was probably in a state of semi-shock the entire time this was happening at her home. Though she wasn’t quite the weak willed witch she had been during their A Levels, there were times when she was easily rattled, though those moments always happened away from the track. He suffered a great deal of nervousness during his own coming out, but he couldn’t imagine himself just sitting there and staring at his parents. “What did they do when you told them?”

She shook her head as she looked off to one side. “They just sat there: they didn’t do anything. My parents were looking at me like they didn’t quite hear what I said and my sister is sitting there rolling her eyes. That’s when Miora leans over and tells me that maybe I should show them some magic. So…”

“So you did.”


So Emma started laying out the magic.  It sounds like this is something that every coming out B Level does, and you have to wonder if there are tales of witches who were so nervous they botched their spells and did shit like set the dog on fire by accident or blow out a wall in the family abode.  So, what did she do?


“I did. It wasn’t anything spectacular: I did the Illuminate spell and levitated a couple of things. The one that got everyone, though, was when I made a small fireball—”

Kerry began laughing. “You crafted a Fireball spell in your living room?”

Emma’s blush was bright. “I know, right? I mean, they were duly impressed with the other spells, but when they saw me holding a fireball between my hands—” She smiled as she nodded twice. “There was no way they could say I was somehow faking things.”

“I know what you mean.” Kerry didn’t mention that his parents had the exact reaction that Emma didn’t believe her parents would have. “So what happened after that? What did you?”

“That’s the thing: my parents did nothing. After all that they just sat there on the sofa staring at me like they didn’t know what to say or do. Miora asked them if they had any questions and my father’s just like, no, I think were good. Even Ronnie—”

“Who’s that?”

“My sister Veronica: we call her Ronnie for short. She’s always the first person to mouth off and even she just sat there looking shocked and not saying a word. I really didn’t know what to think; it was kind of unnerving.

“Since my parents didn’t want to say anything, Moria decided to leave and she asked me to walk her to the door. When we got there she reminded me that I should contact her if there’s any issues, and if worse comes to worse I had the panic button. I didn’t think I had anything to worry about I told her so, but she wanted me to know just in case.

“After she leaves I go back in the living room and I just stand there looking at everyone waiting for my parents to say something. After like fifteen seconds my mom looks at me and says, ‘I made meatloaf; are you hungry?’.”


At least she had a good teacher when it came to the Fire spell:  Kerry told her during their first overnight flight that he’d help her with it.  So yeah, Kerry.  Those teaching lessons with Annie came in handy.

But you have to love her mother’s reaction:  “Oh, you’re a witch?  Um… I made meatloaf.”  Kerry’s parents are giving him and his case worker shit because they can’t believe this was kept hidden from them and Emma’s family are suffering from just a bit of shock, which is what you’d expect most parents to do when their thirteen year old kid drops this mic on them.  Your kid creates fire out of nothing and shock is probably going to set in–

The question now becomes:  how does the Nelson Family handle this new news?

Out On Their First Flight: Arriving in the Mountains

Life is full of surprises.  I was surprised yesterday during lunch I met someone who was actually interested in wanting to speak with me, and so for about forty-five minutes I ate and talked while she listened and asked a few questions.  I was surprised attending another political meeting when I learned of some of the things they wanted to support and some things they said they could live without.

I was also surprised when I was getting ready to watch The Walking Dead and I discovered my cable box was dead and not reanimated like the zombies I was about to see.  This means if I want to watch the show, I have streamed off my computer tonight after I arrived home from work.  And, I’ll have to do the same thing tomorrow when I go to recap the first episode of Season 2 of Humans.  Should be fun; at least I don’t watch as much TV as I used to, or at least watch it through cable itself.  And if I find I can do things this way, I may just end up dumping the cable box, and cable, later this summer.

Now, speaking of surprises…

One of the things I’ve been leading up to it this point is discussion of what happened to Emma when she returned home for the summer.  So without further ado, let’s shift our sights westward and see how things went in the mountains of Colorado:


(The following excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Three: C For Continuing, copyright 2016, 2017 by Cassidy Frazee)


Emma had been eager to talk about what happened to her over the summer since arriving at school, but she found it was almost impossible to do so during the other classes, and the special classes Kerry took on Tuesday and Wednesday nights prevented her from seeing him and discussing it then. “It went pretty well.”

“Just pretty well?” Kerry was a bit surprised that Emma was being so reserved.

“It was better than pretty well.” She eyed her wingmate carefully. “I’ve heard anything about your summer holiday, though.”

Kerry glanced upward as he spoke. “That’s because I haven’t talked about.”

“How did things go?”

“It sucked.” His disgust was all over his face. “My parents were not happy to learn they had a witch and a sorceress living under their roof. Oh, and my parents know that I have a girlfriend and they are not happy about that, either.” He motioned with his hands as if he was drawing Emma towards him. “I want to know how your summer went. Come on: tell me.”


Kerry is not interested in talking about his shitty summer.  He knows it was shitty and he wants to leave it that way.  He wants to hear from someone who didn’t have a shitty summer and that means you’ll have to listen to the person directly in front of him.  But first we have to ask an important question: how did she get home?


She waited a moment as she decided on how to begin her story. “Well, just like everybody else I was nervous. I didn’t think it was that bad until we jaunted into Denver International that I started to get shaky. I mean, from there, I’m only ten minutes away from home—”

“Where do you jaunt into in Boulder?” Kerry didn’t mean to interrupt, but it was a question that he’d always wanted to ask but never had. “Just curious, is all.”

A slight chuckle escaped from between Emma’s lips. “The city jaunt station is in the basement of the National Weather Service headquarters. The first time I came out of there about died.”


“As that place is exactly one mile from my house—” She grinned again. “I mean, one point six kilometers.”

Kerry grinned along with her. “You’re forgiven. Go on.”

“Okay. We get the car just waiting for us and we had for my house. It’s only like a four minute drive, so I don’t have that much time to actually prepare for what’s going to happen. I guess I figured I’d be ready for before jaunting home, but that didn’t happen.

“When we pulled into the house I’m a nervous wreck, you know? Just nervous as all hell. Were walking up to the front door and my mom’s got the door open before were even halfway there, which doesn’t really put me at ease because I know they’re thinking I’m in some sort of trouble. My caseworker, Miora, she immediately chills my mom out, so while I’m putting my luggage down and getting it out of the way, she’s telling my mom and my dad let’s go sit down and will explain everything.

“So were all in the living room. My mom and dad are sitting on the sofa and my sister Veronica, she’s sitting in easy chair, and my mom has set up two chairs in front of the TV, one for Miora and one for me. We sit down and Miora starts her talk, telling my parents that I’m not in any sort of trouble and this has nothing to do with anything disciplinary at school, it’s just that there something really important that I’m supposed to tell them.”

The memory of going through nearly the identical experience brought a small smile to Kerry’s face. “I kind of did the same thing. I can imagine how you felt.”

Emma let out a long sigh. “I imagine everybody went through some variation of anything.”

“I’m sure they did. What happened next?”


Boulder was kind of a challenge but it came to finding usable, fixed jaunt point.  Like so many places in the United States it doesn’t have a train station, and the only airport is a shitty little one runway job out of which Cessnas mostly fly.  I was about ready to put the fixed jaunt station somewhere on the grounds of the University of Colorado when I remembered that the federal government does have a certain presence in the city: namely a large National Weather Service installation.  And since The Foundation loves hiding in plain sight, why not put the jaunt station there?

At least when you arrive and ask, "How's the weather?" you won't wait long for an answer

At least when you arrive and ask, “How’s the weather?” you won’t wait long for an answer

We also learn something else: Emma lives a mile away from here.  And I do mean that: when I was measuring this out the drive from the National Weather Service to her home was almost exactly one mile.  So it made getting her home even easier.

And it’s fairly obvious that the set up to her coming out appears very similar to the set up for Kerry’s coming out.  Only Kerry didn’t have a little sister waiting for him to possibly throw shade in her direction once the Witch Word was unleashed.  Is that really what happened?

You’ll find out tomorrow.

How I Ended Before a Summer Vacation

We all know what’s going to happen today, don’t we?  It’s the end of the line for a certain story, just as I promised.

I do my best to keep my word even when it's not wanted.

I do my best to keep my word even when it’s not wanted.

Last night and this morning I wrote just one word short of fourteen hundred to finish the story of my kids and their B Levels, and because this is the last of that story, you’re getting it all with few interruptions.  Well, one of two, but that’s it.  And as stated before, since Kerry started this novel, it’s up to him to finish it . . .


The following excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015, 2016 by Cassidy Frazee)

The car was outside Cardiff Central Station when Ms. Rutherford and Kerry exited the train station not long after jaunting in from Berlin. Though the sun was still up—with it now a little after twenty hour, it wouldn’t set for another hour—it was falling behind the building of central Cardiff.

They didn’t stay long at the station. The boot opened as soon as they exited the station; Ms. Rutherford got in behind the driver as Kerry put his luggage in the back and closed the lid, and as soon as he was inside with Ms. Rutherford and his seatbelt was locked, the Mercedes C300 Sedan pulled away from the entrance and merged into early evening traffic.
They were only thirty seconds away from the station when Ms. Rutherford handed Kerry a small, button-like object. “This is your panic button. You know how they work.”

Kerry immediately picked up that his case worker was not asking a question but making a statement. “Activate the enchantment and you’ll teleport off to a predetermined location.”

“The spot picked for you is safe and secure, and you can go there any time, day or night. Once that’s activated someone will be with you within five minutes; I’ll arrive within fifteen. Ms. Rutherford gave Kerry a sharp look. “You need to either keep that on you at all times, or somewhere close by where you know it won’t be disturbed.”

Kerry opened one of the small, side pockets of his backpack and slipped the enchanted device inside. “It’ll be safe there.”

Silence filled the back of the Mercedes for almost another minute, the Ms. Rutherford glanced out the window at the passing scenery. “I know about your Gifts.” She turned to the boy on her left. “Both of them.”

He nearly did a double take with his case worker. “They told you? About . . .” He shrugged. “That?”

“The one that requires you being monitored?” She half smiled. “Yes.”

“Because you’re my case worker?”

“That’s one of the reasons.” Ms. Rutherford slid around in her seat as best she could with the seatbelt on so she could better see Kerry. “Because we sometimes have to hear secrets about our characters, my division is attached to the Protectors and not the Educational Council. That’s one of the reasons why I’m aware of your Bigender Gift. Also—” The half smile softened into something comforting. “I’ll be with the group that will come to get you should you have your first transition over the summer. I asked to be included as a member of Doctor Gallagher’s group as soon as I learned of her plans.”

“When was that?”

“A couple of weeks after your monitor was attached.” She face forward once more, softly chuckling. “Coraline agreed that it’d be best to have me deal with your parents while they prepared to move you somewhere—” She looked at Kerry out of the corner of her eye. “Well, where they can make you more comfortable.”

Kerry was made aware of this situation weeks back when all the B Level were given their “Returning Home” orientation. He knew he could call or text Ms. Rutherford at any time—he had her number in his phone—but the panic button was a special situation in case things at home took a turn for the worst and the student in question found it necessary to leave right that moment.

He was surprised by the revelation that Ms. Rutherford would be the person to speak with his parents should he have his first transition while home for summer holiday. Just that little bit of knowledge left him feeling that much more reassured that if the event did happen while he was home, he’d find himself being taken care of by people who cared. “Thank you, Ms. Rutherford. That means a lot.”

“It’s the least I can do for you.” She settled back in her seat. “It’s also my pleasure and honor to make certain you’re handled in the best possible fashion.”


I wanted to get a feel for how it looked in Cardiff as Kerry returned home, and found some new landscapes for Stellarium, and the one I found–well, it’s not in Cardiff, it’s actually from Sofia, Bulgaria, which must be come kind of strange coincidence.

Does this mean if you look hard, you'll see Annie and her mom out shopping?

Does this mean if you look hard, you’ll see Annie and her mom out shopping?

But it’s a good enough view, and I’ll stick with this.

This is also the first time we learn that Ms. Rutherford is actually a Protector, who are like The Foundation’s own police force.  If you want a comparison, The Protectors are like the FBI, The Guardians are like the CIA, and The Marshals, who haven’t really been discussed, are like The Foundation’s own special forces unit comprised of witches with military-grade, magically enhanced bang-bang.  She knows a lot of things, but not everything, about Kerry, because while she has a security clearance, it’s not as high as the one Kerry already has.

We also see the magical “Get Out of Dodge” piece of this homecoming:  every student gets a panic button just in case things at home suddenly go sideways and they need to beat a hasty retreat.  And you can bet someone will be checking up on Kerry over the summer, for should his parents go all tyrannical on him, he could just blast them through a wall and burn down the house.  People in The Foundation would much rather he just jaunt out of a bad situation rather than go full-on Natural Born Killer on his folks.  And given that the family abode is empty at least three days out of the week, how hard would it be for a team of Protectors or Guardians to jaunt inside and set up some of those bugs Helena once checked for in a motel room in Kansas City?  The answer is, “Not very.”

Speaking of the Malibey Home, we’re almost there:


Neither spoke during the remainder of the short ride home. It wasn’t until the car pulled up in front of his house and came to a complete stop that Ms. Rutherford spoke. “Remember, Kerry: if the situation should turn ugly in the next few minutes, it is not a reflection upon you. Who you are, what you are, should be judged on your attitude and behavior, not fear.” She gave his hand a slight pat. “Just be yourself and nothing more.”

Kerry looked up the path to his front door hoping that everything went well and didn’t degenerate into any of the worst case scenarios he’d worked out in his head over the last few weeks. “I’ll remember that.” He looked ahead at the seat back in front of him. “I guess we should get this over with—” He threw open the passenger door and stepped out into the cool, clear, Cardiff evening.

He was half-way up the walk when the front door flew open to reveal his mother ready to receive them. “Kerry.”

“Hi, Mom.” He immediately picked up on the tone of her voice: he was worried. Kerry wished he knew what she’d been told about his return, but I was impossible to ask that in front of her.

Ms. Rutherford held the outside door for Kerry. “Good evening, Mrs. Malibey.”

“Good evening, Ms. Rutherford.” Louise Malibey stepped back so Kerry could enter. She addressed him as he set his luggage on the ground floor landing. “How was your flight?”

“It was good, Mom.” He looked behind her and gave a slight wave. “Hi, Dad.”

“Welcome home, Son.” Davyn Malibey joined his wife. “Hello, Ms. Rutherford.”

“Good evening, Mr. Malibey.” She closed the door behind her and turned toward Kerry’s parents. “I’m happy to see you both.”

“Well, you did ask us both to be here when he came home.” Louise turned to her son. “Is everything all right?”


Being a mom, Louise Malibey goes right to the “What’s wrong?” option for his meeting.  Because we know something must be wrong if Ms. Rutherford wants to talk to his parents, right?  We know that’s not the case, and Ms. Rutherford step in to chill this shit out:


Ms. Rutherford cut off Kerry before he could reply. “Is it possible we could all sit down and talk?”

Davyn pointed down the hallway behind him. “We can all sit in the family room. Come this way—”

The family room was large room with lots of windows in the back of the house, situated between the kitchen and dining room, and the sun room leading to the back yard. Louise and Davyn sat on the sofa facing the television: Kerry and Ms. Rutherford pulled the chairs from either side of the sofa and place them so they could set facing his parents. As they were sitting Louise expressed what she was feeling. “Ms. Rutherford, when we got your message I got worried. It sounded so important, and yet—”

“I didn’t give you any details?” She set her bag on the armrest and crossed her legs. “It was a rather generic email, and for that I apologize. I didn’t mean to cause undo concern.”

“But the tone made it sound like there’s something important you needed to discuss.”

“And there is. But first, I need you to understand—” She looked at Kerry, sitting to her left. “This meeting has nothing to do with Kerry’s academic standing at school. He remains one of the best students in his level, if not in the entire school.” She gave him a broad, pleasant smile. “There’s only one other student I know of who is Kerry’s equal.

“This also has nothing to do with his behavior, either. Kerry’s disciplinary record is clean: it’s actually quiet outstanding. One might say—” She gave him a knowing look. “—he’s done far more than most students over the last two years to help out around the school.”


Hum, I wonder who this other student is who’s Kerry’s equal?  Maybe a soul mate from Bulgaria?  We’ll discuss that matter later:  right now, we’re getting down to the big moment–


“Then this is about what?” Davyn seemed perplexed that whatever the reason was for being in this discussion had nothing to do with his son’s grades or discipline.

Ms. Rutherford looked thoughtful for a moment. “This is more of a—you might say, a personal matter.”

“Oh, God.” Louise held her forehead for a moment. “Kerry, what did you do?”

Kerry turned to Ms. Rutherford instead of replying to his mother. “I should tell them.”

Ms. Rutherford nodded. “It’s time.”

“Yeah.” Kerry scooted to the front of his chair and leaned forward, resting his forearms on his legs. “Well, then: here goes.” He swallowed once and exhaled slow as he looked at his parents. “Mom, Dad . . . I’m a witch.”

The End


And that’s it:  that’s the end of the novel.  It’s over, it’s done, it’s 327,931 words written in 422 days, for an average of 844 words written per day.

There's the tale of the tape for all to see.

There’s the tale of the tape for all to see.

But wait!  What about Kerry’s parents response to his coming out?  What is that “The End” crap up there?  Well, you see, I’m leaving what happens after the reveal for the beginning of the next novel.

And I expect this to be the look on some faces while they do.


Yes, afraid so, folks.  I knew the ending of this novel before I ever began writing, and that ending had Kerry announcing his witchness followed by the words “The End.”  I also knew that the next novel, C For Continuing, is where the reader discovers his parents reaction, and this is something I’ve had planed since the days when I was laying out the time line for A For Advanced.  Yes, as Skye Hegyes commented about a week and a half back, I’m being a bad witch by ending the second novel on probably the biggest cliff hanger I could find, and I’m not doing it to be mean–that’s just the way this story rolls.

Don’t worry, though:  you’ll only have to wait a few months to see how this is going to turn out.

I mean, it’s not like we’re talking forever . . .

It’s Been One Month–

The time has gone by pretty quickly, but today makes one month since coming out at work.  It really makes a lot of things, ’cause February kept me kinda busy–

I came out; I finished a novel; I finished up editing another project; I started editing one of my old novels.  I successfully fought off a cold that was trying to take me down last Friday.  I’ve answered personal question and done at least five videos.  That’s a busy schedule when it comes to the artistic endeavors; so what about work?

Um . . .

"I thought at least there would be one day when people would run screming when they saw me."

“I thought at least there would be one day when people would run screaming when they saw me.”

Work be work, mon.  The first week people came ’round to see me, to speak with me, to congratulate me on doing something brave, and I took it all in stride and with a smile on my face.  I’ve had exactly one negative comment, and I shut that down pretty quickly, but everyone else has accepted me to the point where now, I’m just another woman in the workforce.

Which is how I want it.  I was probably the most surprised to discover that my coming out was the biggest non-event, and the fear that manifested a month ago about coming into work as myself quickly evaporated as I settled in and did what I always did.  Now, tomorrow, I’m giving a program presentation, and I’m probably going to break in some new shoes because I’ll need something to keep me awake.  Or maybe go with something comfortable, because I’ll be thinking about how much my feet hurt most of that morning.

So a month down and more to come.  This week I mark eight months on HRT, and it’s hard to believe that in another four months I’ll be a full year on hormones.  I should meet up with a friend this weekend, so maybe some kind of celebration is in order.  And for when I hit the big one year mark, I really need to do something.  No problems, though:  I have four months to think about what that might be.

I’ve cut down on my writing.  Most of it is due to editing, but a lot of it is due to being tired.  Sixteen months on a single project is a long time, and I’ve not fully recharged from the event.  Yet, I really miss my kids.  I miss bringing out their world.  At the same time I feel like I can’t write about them, at least now right now.  I don’t know why I’m feeling this way, but I am.  But there are ideas coming up for the next novel, and I’ve been drawn to the urge to start up a Scrivener project and start plotting out things.  It’s not gonna be as big as the last novel, but even if it goes one hundred thousand words, that’s still a lot to write down.

Things are normal.  It’s been a month out at work and almost a month done on the novel.  The longest I’ve gone without doing any new writing is about a month, but . . . maybe I can hold out a little longer this time.

After all, I still have other things to do.

In Through the Out Time

Today is post number one thousand, four hundred, and in another hundred I’ll be up to fifteen hundred.  For this event today, I’ve decided to answer another reader’s question, and this is from Joanne Brunetti, another of my buddies in Hodgepodge Crochet on Facebook.  But this isn’t a writing question:  it’s a personal one–some might say an extremely personal one.  And the question is . . .


Was there a specific event that led to you making the decision to go ahead and live your true life?


That’s certainly an interesting question.  And I answered it, but not in writing.  I decided that it was just too much to write down, so I recorded a video to talk about the moment when–

Well, you’ll have to watch yourself.  It’ll take about twenty minutes, and I promise it won’t bore you.  So enjoy.

The New Office Lady

In case you hadn’t heard, something happened to me yesterday.  Something . . . well, few things don’t get bigger.

Besides being Imbolc (in some parts of the world, that is) and the celebration of an oversized squirrel somewhere in western Pennsylvania, it was also my coming out day at work.  They’ve known about this for three weeks, and from what I’d understood the higher ups had already told their people this was coming, and that people should be ready.

So . . . that said, I’d been waiting, and–no lie–dreading the moment just a little.  Waiting for it because something like this only comes around once in your lifetime, and dreading it because it was something that wasn’t quite what you see every day, particularly in an office environment.

Like it or not, it had been affecting me.  I had a bit more in the way of nerves than I wanted to admit, and it was affecting my sleeping, my ability to do things correctly, and even my writing, because as I wasn’t sleeping well, then I was coming home and crashing out hard at night, and remaining sleepy throughout the evening.

But this was something that needed to get done, and done it would become.

I didn’t sleep well the night before, which meant I was dragging a bit when I got up yesterday.  And up I was at five-fifteen.  I tried to write my post the best I could, then checked the weather, looked outside and saw it was a mess, looked over the outfit I was going to wear . . . yeah, everything was ready, so all I had to do was get ready as well.  Cleanup, change, put on my makeup–all the good things.

And take pictures before I walk out the front door.  Always be taking pictures.

And take pictures before I walk out the front door. Always be taking pictures.

With everything out of the way in my morning routine, it was time to start walking and head into work.  I threw on my walking shoes–no way I’m trying to cover a mile in heeled pumps–and headed out into the cold.  Along the way I passed three people who greeted me with a “Good Morning”, which is something I never got when I was in male mode.  I half expected someone to tell me to smile . . .

Since I’m usually one of the first ones in the office, I just entered an went to my office, which is actually an oversized cubical–sort of like the groundhog, only it doesn’t pretend to predict the weather.  I got my jacket off, changed my shoes, and then snapped a picture to prove I really was in the office and not fooling with people.

Who doesn't look their best in the harsh lights of the early morning office?

Who doesn’t look their best in the harsh lights of the early morning office?

I got my coffee, stomping all the way to the break room at the other side of the building, because when you wear a size 11 women’s wedge heeled shoe, and the floor is covered without insulated padding between the pull-up carpet squares above and the concrete below, you’re gonna make some noise when you walk.  Then it was back to the office cube and another picture.

Much better now that I'm just about to mainline java.

Much better now that I’m about to put down my first cup of the morning.

People came down to see me a few times during the day to tell me they had my back.  People who spoke with me that day were kind and curious–and you can’t help but be curious, can you?  I wa in a couple of meetings that day, and no one thought it strange.  Everyone addressed me by my chosen name after I told them what it was, and I expect that to continue.

In short, by the time I got home last night I was pretty high on myself.  I felt great, although I was tired:  not getting a lot of sleep the night before took its told, and I was nodding on and off from about eight-thirty on.  I had the story ready to go, but there was no way I was going to write anything worthwhile:  I was simply too tired.

But I’m better now, and I expect to do some writing when I get home from work tonight.  I’ll get right to that after I eat.

There you have it:  the tale of a new office lady.  One who I believe will be around for while.

Now that I've had my close up, I should get back to writing.

Now that I’ve had my close up, I should get back to writing.

The Ending Starts

The last week I’ve really slowed down a bit on the writing–and yet, in a way, I haven’t.  I didn’t do a lot of writing last night, for which I blame my energy levels being down, and Inherent the Wind and Forbidden Planet being on back-to-back, I was sort of pulled away from the novel.  The funny thing, however, is that when I worked up what I wrote Sunday morning and added it to what I wrote Sunday Night, it’s came out to about twelve hundred words for the day.  I’ve written more, but I’ll take twelve hundred a day.

I realized last night I’m fighting the of the novel.  It’s one of those, “I don’t want to go moments,” and I’m working through it.  The strange thing is when you’re tired you feel like everything you’re writing is drab, and I was getting that feeling last night.  What I had to do to break out of that feeling was go back and read what I’d laid down in the morning, when I’d set down close to nine hundred words in about an hour and a half.  It’s the same ebb and flow, and I knew it was the same thing, the same words, the same characters.  And I felt more alive writing them twelve hours earlier than I had at night.

It’s funny how our minds work against us this way.  I should go back and reread some of my older posts about getting to this point in a story, because I know I’ve been here before.  I had a lot of problems writing the end of Suggestive Amusements because of what I had to do at the end of that story, and I just didn’t want to go there.  It was hard, so hard to get that ending in place.  Also Echoes.  I cried pretty much through the last two pages of writing, because of what the characters meant to me, and the feeling behind the character.

Like a certain Doctor I don’t like to say goodbye.  But I know I won’t be saying goodbye, really, to my kids, because there are more stories to tell.  I just have to finish this novel, then edit a four hundred thousand word story in three parts, get three covers–four when I sell the “Big Book”–and get that done before I move on to B for Beginnings, the second–and I promise, shorter–novel.  It’s a lot of work, and it’s on top of all the other things I have happening right now–

Like getting ready to come out at work next week.

This is the last Monday for the “Old Me” at work, and with the clothing in place–with a few bobbles here and there–I’m ready to go.  It’s just getting to that point where I can blow this final week off and move one.  The term “waiting for the other shoe to drop” has a different meaning for me right now, and I know I’m gonna be geared up come next Monday.  And thinking about finishing this novel isn’t helping.

"Send Annie and Kerry off to their homes alone and figure out how long it's gonna take me to do my make up in the morning.  This is so not fair!"

“Send Annie and Kerry off to their homes alone and figure out how long it’s gonna take me to do my makeup in the morning. This is so not fair!”

I will promise myself right now that I will finish the Invitation scene tonight.  Once that’s finished, that’s really the penultimate “school event” and then it’s a goodbye to all the students and . . . then Annie and Kerry start the trip home.  With a few stops along the way, but–

This is it.  It’s the beginning of the summertime blues.

The Tired Trek

The last thirty-six hours have been presented me with a real challenge:  how does one write when they aren’t there mentally?

It’s a strange feeling, let me tell you, but this whole weeks has been a bit of a writing bummer.  I’ve been managing five hundred words here, six hundred there, and while I was able to manage nearly twelve hundred on Wednesday night–which really is my night to shine–last night I managed only two hundred twenty-two, and I struggled the whole while I put that out.  Part of the reason was eating way more than I should have:  for some reason I was in the mood to pig out, and I overdid the carbs something spectacular.  That didn’t help at all.

Another reason is I’m tired.  I was up at four in the morning Friday, and last night I was up and down the whole evening, finally giving up the struggle to crawl out of bed about four-twenty and sit in my leather easy chair until about five, at which point I figured it was time to start getting ready for the long day ahead.

Why the trouble sleeping?  I’ve a few troubles going on:  there’s a friend I’m concerned about, and in another week I’m moving on from my old life and into the new one as I finally come out at work.  Nothing really major here, but it all adds up after a while and starts playing on your mind.  Particularly the coming out thing at work:  I’ve finally pulled the trigger on that matter, and though I’ve known it was going to happen one day, it doesn’t mean that I’m not finally getting a case of nerves over the fact that people I’ve worked with for a year and a half are now gonna deal with the New Girl in the Office.

Come on, who wouldn't love that shinny face?  Probably a few people, that's who.

Come on, who wouldn’t love that shiny face? Probably a few people, that’s who.

I’m also recognizing that the end of the novel is near, and I know this is gonna sound strange, but this time, I really don’t want it all to end.  Yes, it’s been a huge part of my life–sixteen months by the time I finally put it to bed–and it’s not only hard to say goodbye to these kids of mine, but there’s the realization that I don’t know when I’m going to revisit them.  There is a need to get out some other stories, and that will take me away from Salem and my Baby Snakes.

I have to finish this story.  And in a way, like them, I know they’re going to be real sadness when that happens.  I even had one of the lines I want to write for them in my head not long after I woke up–which followed, incidentally, a lyric from Wichita Lineman, “And I need you more than want you; and I want you for all time–” which was in my head as I opened my eyes this morning.  Those kids:  they won’t let me sleep.

A smoothie later and I’m finally waking up.  There is shopping ahead of me today, and I hope to get back into the story tonight after I return from my long afternoon trek.  Being out trying on clothes I’ll use for work should go a long ways towards waking me up.

Let’s hope the drive home doesn’t make me sad as I revisit the story once more . . .

The Bridge, the Dreams, and Everything

The first day of June was a good one:  sunny, not too hot, not too chilly, just right for getting out and walking around.  Which, surprise, I did.  I left the confines of the hovel and ventured out into the sun for the first time in a while, because I’m not a complete hermit or vampire, and every so often you need to prove to yourself that you’re not going to burst into flames the moment you walk around in daylight.

And just to prove that I was out, here:  pictures.

Nothing say The Burg like a bridge.

Nothing say The Burg like a bridge.

And an island.

And an island.

And there’s even more proof I was outside . . .

Photobombing Ol' Shaky, yo.

Photobombing Ol’ Shaky, yo.

So there:  two point two miles of walking–or three and a half kilometers as my kids back at my Salem school would say, ’cause screw those Imperial measurements.  You’re part of the Real World now, so Go Metric or Go Home.

There was a strange dream I just had, too.  I was time traveling with someone–a person I’d never seen before–and I had to travel back to 1984 to pick up a couple of people in an alternate reality, and then when we found them and were ready to come back, we discovered that our foci for channeling time winds or some crap like that was missing.  So we managed to get a message back to wherever our modern time was, and discovered the whole thing was a prank set up by Ricky Gervais–which, if you’re going to get pranked into time travel, you might expect that from him.

Needless to say we had a repair kit, and I was getting ready to repair our trusty machine when I woke up.  Probably for the best, though, because where the hell was the dream going to go after that?

It is something, however, that I can remember the dream, or even that it was so vivid.  I remember writing recently that I was upset that I didn’t seem to have vivid dreams these days, and then, bang!  The last couple of nights they appeared to be returning.  We’ll see what happens, if this is a phase, or if spilling about it kicked out some block I had.

I was also working hard on some time line stuff, because I’m like that.  Always thinking ahead, I am.  Even so far as to come up with a scene for one of my kids that was . . . the only way to put it is heartbreaking.  A lot of pain, and lot of crying, a lot of wondering why, if you’re born into being one of The Aware, does one have to suffer because you’re perceived as different?  Because, in this fictional world I’ve created, all the Normal kids have to hide who their are from their parents for a while, and then–Coming Out Time!  And as you might figure, it’s viewed by the folks like any other coming out:  some times there’s happiness, some times you’re kicked out on your ass.  You’ll find out from the instructors who were raised Normal that they all went through various rotations of that particular wheel–some had happy parents, some had confused ones, and some had to leave home before they were beaten–or worse.

And you’re find that some students got the worse . . .

And lastly:  writing!  It happened.  Eight hundred and forty-six words of happened.  No excerpts today, though:  I’m giving away too much.  Maybe tomorrow.  Maybe the day after.

We’ll see, won’t we?

The Memories Past

The story is over; the novel is finished.  Almost fifty-five thousand words.  Eighteen chapters.

It’s all first draft, and it’s all mine.

I only needed nine hundred and twenty words to finish the story last night.  I played Electric Light Orchestra’s A New World Record while I wrote, and managed to finish the story in about forty minutes.  That means I was really in my final grove, and the music was in me, I was in the music, and the story didn’t have to fight its way out:  it only had to jump into the computer and get comfortable.

Today there is no thought about writing.  In actuality, I couldn’t, because I’m going to head off to The Undisclosed Location tonight, and by the time I arrive, it’ll be too late to do anything but setup, relax a little, and sleep.  Then off to work tomorrow–or do I?  Du, duh, DUNNNN!

Fifty-five thousand words in about ten weeks; that’s easy math to work out.  Personally, in retrospect, this is about what I’d figure, based upon what I was producing every night.  But if I’m going to do NaNoWriMo, will need to work up that count.  Gonna need to go from eight hundred a night to about two thousand a night.  I might not “win”, but there’s the potential to get well into the story with a week, or so afterwards, to finish it up.

It’s safe to say, now, that Diners at the Memory’s End, was a tough story to write, because it was up, it was down, there were issues of loneliness, love, anger, isolation, and fear.  A large part of it, as I view it now, has to do with reviling your inner self to others.  There were secrets that both Albert and Meredith wanted to keep from each other.  As they grew closer to each other, they complicated their relationship by getting too close, and then realized they’d opened themselves up too much.

By the time the last three parts come into view, both have grown comfortable with who they are, and what they are, and when the final moment pass between them, there is the feeling that a great friendship is going to grow.

Does this mean I’ll write about Meredith again?  Actually, there is another Meredith story, somewhere down the line.  I can’t tell you just where in Albert’s time line he meets up with Meredith again, but when they do, there will be one hell of an emergency.  It will be written, one of these days.  But there are other tales to tell as well, and it might be a year or two before I get to this story.

There will likely be no writing tonight.  I think the next thing I’m going to do is an edit on Echoes, and get my ground work started on my NaNo Novel.  And I’ll keep up on Replacements for five more weeks.  But for now . . . I think it’s time to get into an edit, and concentrate on getting something published.

After all, if I do nothing but write, and no one reads it, was the story ever created?