Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Distance and Time

Carlene Cooper was your average teenager. Average, that is, except for her relationship with Josh McCarthy, a member of one of the hottest bands in the world, South Station Boyz. Young love blossomed at a chance meeting when Carly was a senior in high school and Josh was just discovering what stardom really meant. Despite their chemistry, however, it was no surprise to anyone when their very different lives took very different paths a few months down the road.

Years later, their stars align again and they must decide if the spark they felt back then is strong enough to rekindle. Josh has built a name for himself in show business, but Carly, too, has also established herself as a serious journalist in New York City. Will they be able to successfully merge their lives and overcome the obstacles that drove them apart a decade earlier?
Just as she comes to the decision that will determine her and Josh's future together, Detective Trey Foster enters her life unexpectedly and Carly is faced with another choice. Will she choose the man she's spent her whole life loving or will she push it aside for a chance at happiness out of the spotlight?
This? Is my baby.

This is the story I've been working on since last year that has had me cussing and crying and shouting at the wind. Its fate sits in the hand of a publisher right now. They could scrap it and say they're not interested or they could ask me for more chapters to see what they're dealing with. I should know in a few weeks and will keep you posted.

Friday, November 5, 2010

No middle ground for me.

It's no secret that I speak what's on my mind and deal with the consequences of those words later. The other day I got into some hot water for having spoken my mind on Facebook. Long story short, people stuck their noses in where they didn't belong and my husband got dragged into it. (Believe me, you don't want to know.)

I sat there after all this happened in tears, dreading going into work. Hubs was home and we were talking about it. I told him that I hated that I didn't know how not to vent about things that make me mad or frustrate me. It's so natural for me to just spout off whatever's on my mind. I wear my heart on my sleeve and open myself up to shit like this regularly. I don't hold back. And it gets me into trouble. I told him, "I wish I could be like you: have a blow-up and four minutes later, be sleeping soundly with all of it blocked out."

That's when he pointed out something I hope I never forget: With blocking out the stress comes blocking out the passion.

I just sat there and looked at him as I let it all sink in. He continued, "When I shut out the stress and the emotion and the anger, I also shut out the smiles and the laughter and the happy. Just like you wish you could be like me, I wish I could be like you. You feel big as possible. You laugh for hours. You smile constantly. You're in a constant state of high emotion, whether you're happy or pissed. You don't know how to do middle ground and I love that about you. Me? I feel nothing most days. I don't get pissed or angry, but that means I also don't laugh a lot. I don't smile all that often. I keep everything pretty middle-of-the-road because I don't know how not to."

He made me realize that I never want to be like that. So if it means I have to apologize for my words, wrap my hand because I've punched a wall or pick up the shards of whatever I've broken, I'll do it. Because I wouldn't give up this laughter, these smiles and this happiness for anything in the world. 

The pissed will pass.

The laughter? Never.

#tweetyour16yearoldself: The Blog

Inspired by a recently trending topic, I decided instead of spamming my followers with all the advice I had for my teenage self, I would blog about it. Some advice is funny. Some not-so-much. All of it's the truth.

  1. You. Are. Not. Fat.
  2. See that crazy Asian girl sitting over there by the fireplace all by herself? She needs you. And you need her. It will always be that way.
  3. Your obsession with these five guys from Boston will never end.
  4. But that's okay because twenty years from now, you're not only going to have met them, but they're going to know you by name and face.
  5. Don't spend so much time trying to be grown up. You had to. I get it. But now? The pressure's off. Enjoy being young so you don't spend the rest of your life trying to be sixteen again.
  6. Don't waste your time trying to fit in with the cool kids. Be who you are and they'll flock to you.
  7. Stop being so self-conscious.
  8. Those hickies make you look like a slut. Stop it.
  9. Start deciding what you want to do now because that whole wife/mom thing isn't all it's cracked up to be some days. You'll want to have something to fall back on when it falls apart.
  10. You're going to be given an ultimatum to stay a cheerleader or go to a YABE weekend. Go with your gut. You'll *never* regret that decision.
  11. I repeat, you are NOT fat.
  12. Don't be so hard on your brother and sister-in-law. This is a HUGE adjustment for them, too. Cut them a little slack and stop acting like a spoiled brat.
  13. Yes, Mom is proud of you.
  14. Call Dad more often and stay close. There's going to come a time when you wish you had.
  15. You're going to marry the wrong man, but that's okay because he's going to give you two beautiful children.
  16. You have plenty of time to settle down and have a family. Don't rush it. Take your time, explore your options. Open up your life to opportunities farther away than this one little state. Try Boston College, NYU or Northwestern. You're smart enough to get into any of those three schools.
  17. You've got a great voice. Sing and be heard.
  18. That Asian girl? Call her more often and don't let her slip away. Remember what I said about her needing you.
  19. It's okay to be sad. It's okay to be angry. It's okay to say "Why Me?" Say it. Feel it. Be it. Then get over it. You are not a victim. You're a survivor.
  20. Write more.
  21. Use birth control. Always. It not only can happen to you. It will happen to you.
  22. There's something coming along in about five years called "The Internet." It's going to both ruin your life and save your life. It will bring people into your circle you never thought possible. Some will be there to build you up. Some to break you down. Embrace them all with open arms (just be sure to listen to your gut on that whole breaking-you-down thing. The signs will be there).
  23. You will drift away from your siblings over the next twenty years. It's okay. They will be replaced by "brothers" and "sisters" that love you more than you realize. I can't explain it. Just go with it.
  24. Stay away from the Sun-In and the hair bleach. Blonde is not your color.
  25. That pimple-faced kid is sweet, but he's not the one. 
  26. And for God's sake, don't sleep with him.
  27. Pay more attention in English and take some lit classes. 
  28. Congratulations on just saying no to drugs.
  29. Ask your sister-in-law to teach you how to manage your money.
  30. How many times do I have to say it? You are not fat.

Monday, November 1, 2010

I can do anything!

I can do anything.

Barbie told me so.

I am, was and always will be a Barbie Girl. I received my first doll when I was 3 and bought my last one just a few years ago. I owned almost every doll that Mattel put out in the 80's. I had the houses, the cars, the pools, the outfits, the shoes (Lord, the shoes!) name it, I had it.

Over the years, Mattel has changed Barbie's body mold to personify a more realistic looking "person" for girls to identify with, but the truth (for me, at least) is that I didn't love Barbie because she had great clothes and a 18" waist. I loved Barbie because she was exactly who I wanted to be: A movie star, Homecoming Queen, a rockstar, a bride, a mom, a doctor, a police officer, a roller skating queen, a Playboy centerfold, a vet, a dancer, an astronaut...and a thousand other things my childhood imagination concocted. Barbie was anything I wanted her to be.

Was she beautiful? Of course, but her beauty wasn't what drew me to her. It was the dreams and imagination she inspired in me.

I may be too old to play with dolls now, but Barbie still inspires me and I still believe I can do anything.