Sunday, June 28, 2015

Understanding Your Introverted Female Writer Friend

We're the ones that you can't fully comprehend.  Why in the name of all things holy would we decline a Saturday night party in favor of sitting at home with microwave popcorn and Netflix?  

Because people exhaust us, generally.  And because we prefer the ones living inside our own heads.

We are the ones driving to and from work, or school, or the grocery store, listening to the radio and applying the songs to scenes in the movie-versions of our manuscripts.  

We work out and choreograph fight scenes in our mind.

We have the capacity to be incredibly kind and conversational to the cashier at Target but only for like four minutes and then we want to be done with people.

We remember you as you were when you inspired us to create a character based on you.  Not how you are today.  Which may be very, very different.

We think about writing fanfic, or we have written fanfic, and we wonder if it damages our ability to be taken seriously as writers.

We see ads in fashion magazines and create entire backstories for the people featured in the images.

We play dress-up in the mirror, carefully applying lipstick we may never wear in public, to get into our characters' heads.

We sometimes loathe selfies but we hope that ours - the ones we do take - make us look both pretty and pensive.  Smart is sexy.

We're in multiple fandoms and we do not take issue with people who like both "Star Trek" and "Star Wars" but for God's sake, people, don't confuse one with the other.

When we are not actively working on a story, we are dreaming up situations for our characters, playing with their histories and their futures.  We are listening to playlists we have created for them, trying to get to know them well enough to do them justice in print.

We like coffee.  And cats.

If you give us coffee and cats, we might put you in a book.

As a nice person.  Like, the hero.

...or maybe this is all just me.

The Bleeding Basement (and Other Homeowner Woes)

Surely I am not being too arrogant in assuming that at least some of my faithful readers have wondered where I've been these past six weeks?  Surely someone missed me?

Well, we moved.  It all happened rather fast, for something so big and dramatic and life-changing.  We weren't really looking for a house, but my husband was getting regular e-mail updates on local homes from his former boss, and now real-estate agent, Jan.  He wasn't reviewing them to move, per se, but was looking to purchase a possible rental property.  I wasn't keen on the financial risk, especially since we have a baby now, but he kept looking.

Lo and behold, a small house became available - on the same street as my parents.  Now, before we had the baby, I would never have imagined living so close to my folks.  Even though they are wonderful and I truly consider them among my favorite people in the world, I thought it was important to establish myself away from them.  I still do.  But a baby is a lot to handle, even a happy and relatively easy baby like Ronen.  

Long story short, it ended up being the perfect place for us.  Most everything is on one story, which is great because all of our parents are nearing that "limited mobility" phase in life, plus I don't want to trip down the stairs with my son ever again.  We call our new place the Hobbit House.  It was clearly built for short people (I can easily reach all the kitchen cabinets).  We love it.


Well, unless we started from scratch on a brand new home, there are always exceptions, right?  

The perks of the new place are many: recently redone hardwood floors, a galley kitchen (divine compared to my old "two-room" kitchen), two large and one small bedroom (which we turned into the TV room and are decorating with sci-fi posters and art), a slightly sloped yard, pleasant neighbors (kinda), and a huuuuuuge attic for storage.  The cats have already laid claim to their new spots - Loki sleeps upstairs, on the window ledge or atop the railing.  Freyja prefers the windows in the baby's room (the only grip I've got is that she leaves fur all over his changing pad!), and Thor likes to sprawl in the middle of the hallway between the rooms.  Which means I've already tripped on him 8,239 times since moving.  The basement is divided into several smaller rooms, one of which Ross has already claimed as his Man Cave, and another will be my writing nook (once we clear it of unpacked boxes).  

Oh, yeah...

The basement.

While it was absolutely a selling point for us, it's also let us in on some unexpected surprises.

Like the blood on the floor.

Well, it wasn't really blood, my hypersensitive olfactory powers determined.

It was balsamic vinegar.

And it was seeping up through the paint on the cellar floor.

If you go downstairs during a heavy thunderstorm, you will see "blood" drops glistening on the floor.  

It's terrifying.  And, yes, I had a "Telltale Heart" moment when I first saw it, oozing out from beneath Ross's gaming television.

Apparently, the elderly Italian man who had lived here was a homemade wine aficionado.  And apparently, he got rather clumsy when he imbibed.  So he spilled some.    We aren't exactly sure how that all worked out, but we guess that it stained the floor, dried up but was never cleaned, was painted over (with the wrong kind of paint), and now gets "rehydrated" during rainy days.  

So, yeah, maybe it's more Poe-esque than that, and maybe there's a horrible story associated with it.  I don't want to think about that, though.  Right now, we're just trying to figure out a way to dry out the cellar while keeping the litter-box smell from wafting up through the rest of the house.  The cats have their own "bathroom" downstairs, too, with a small window for ventilation and a door I prefer to keep mostly closed.  

Oh, and there's a bidet.

Did I mention the bidet?

I find Thor curled up around it, asleep, sometimes.  People, there's not a lot funnier than a cat wrapped around a bidet.  

Unless it's a cat in a bidet. 

(We're getting rid of the bidet.)