TL Boehm - Writer

Written in my heart

Werewolf Chicken - Bethany Unplugged

The genesis of Bethany's Crossing was a dream in which I saw a chicken thigh on a leather couch...(believe it or not) Eventually, the phrase "werewolf chicken" appeared as the book progressed. This page is a compilation of notes, journals and back story for Bethany's Crossing

Bethany's Crossing Goes Global

So I'm taking the advice of a few good friends here at ye ole multiply and taking a bit of a "me" break - yes, a cup of tea, streaming music - and THOU.
I am happy to report that Bethany's Crossing has now sold over 20 yes, TWENTY copies (ooh) and has been launched to the international market. (Tam's been trolling the bandwidth and here's what she found)
 
http://www.booky.fi/book.php?book_id=9781606932315  First stop, get out your mukluks and your sleigh bells - we're goin' to FINLAND. (go 'head. Click it....its way cool to look at even if you don't read Finnish)
 
http://www.kalahari.net/christian/Bethanys-Crossing/35685/33796556.aspx  says Afrikaans but who really knows? Again, very cool to consider 
 
 
http://connection.ebscohost.com/content/article/1031950758.html;jsessionid=13C1876A129AA7E536AE934506A4F676.ehctc1 Coyote Singing Dog - I include this because I found it on google. My first published piece. On coyotes, no less. This may be found at a library near you....or not.
 
http://www.thenile.co.nz/books/Unknown/Bethanys-Crossing/9781606932315/ New Zealand - if I can't go in person - I send my literary child in my stead. How very cool. NZ's largest bookstore....virtually that is.
 
How did all this happen? Well - after I sweat and strained and cried and wrote a book and paid a bunch of money - the little crawlers at my JVP set to work flooding the bandwidth. And because I am a good little authorette - I'm doing MY homework and stumbling upon the nirvana that is only found when seeing your name surrounded by a foreign language and a click to buy button....sigh.
 
While nary a soul may buy - I now know my existence is validated because I can google myself and get a result. LOL!
Peace.

01/14/09 

Bethany's Crossing extreme makeover cover edition 12/18/08

Well, if you've already bought the "blue edition" you officially have a collectors item. (falls off chair laughing) if not- here is the NEW IMPROVED cover. Buffi doesn't like the chain much - but she promised not to sue me...(LOL) I do have a soft spot for the at coyote.....(hint: read the book)

Anyway. I haven't been on much. Work has been totally ridiculous and at home? Well the MIL is staying with us and the PC is right there in the living room so - whereever I go - she can see. Usually the family looks away politely - but she stands there and asks me questions, or just chatters....she talks from the time she gets up until she goes to bed...and her voice....sigh

So - a girlie moment if I may...some of you are aware that the Tamster is slightly aged and unlike fine cheese - it is often awkward and unpretty being "me" - bad enough I have six or seven fully developed personalities...lets add HORMONES to the mix. So Saturday certain things that tell a woman she is most definitely NOT pregnant ramped up with a vengeance - and I asked my HOH (since he was already walmart bound) if he might procure some implements of feminine hygiene. On Sunday morning, I approached him ever so quietly with a kind "Didst thou" to which he responded "I Didst notteth" OK HAVE YOU SEEN THE MOVIE CARRIE! (Somebody help a sister out here...) So we stop at Walgreens on the way to church and whilst I am trying to extract myself from the back seat in a dress (and it's snowing) the hub says...."IF you would have PLANNED!) (OK YOU TESTOSTERONE PRODUCING PILE OF MEAT! Wait till ye ole prostate is the size of a GRAPEFRUIT and thou cans't pee. I shall say "THOU SHOULDST HAST PLANNED thy time for urination....y hola) So now the MIL knows and says "Well in my day we had to use rags and wash them out...." (and the poor male chillins is leanin their heads out the window gagging...) With Walgreens closed I crossed my appendages (ALL OF 'EM) and bit my tongue til we got to a gas station....I made one comment about trying to be 'discrete' to which the MIL said "well we can tell by your mood, ya know." (OH NO SHE DIN'T!) Yeah, well my MOOD would be FINE if you would SHUT UP! for TWO SECONDS! Uh huh.

If only I could "PLAN" for my entire reproductive system to go on TILT ya' know? I would be at home - completely medicated -with several corpses of those who defied me mounted in various entertaining positions on the wall whilst I listened to Dance music - naked and covered in lilacs -oh and lets not forget the unlimited supply of nachos. That, my dear friends would be preparation. In the meantime - I'm doing the best I can with the additional pressure she brings to my life with her incessant noise and anal behavior. Perhaps if the pitch of her warble didn't make the DOG HOWL - it would be tolerable. BUT NOOOOO!

She will leave on the 22nd. My boys' drawers are clean. The CD's are organized. I am completely embarrassed by the fact that I am a premenopausal female. I don't know where half my dishes are, and the dogs are afraid of the white bowls in which we place their food (where's the dirt? where's the slobber marks? WHY must she WASH our BOWLS?) My hollihocks are toast. (She wants the yard to look nice for Fred's graduation...ahem....in MAY? yeah, like the yard will remain pristine for SIX MONTHS YOU TROLL!) And if she says one more vile thing to the little spawn....I will turn him loose from his tether....and let him EAT HER!

OK. I'm better now. Peace. Catch you on the 23rd 

bethany uncovered 112008

For those of you who came by yesterday and read the saga of Bethany's Crossing and the cover coverage - thank you for your kind words and offers of assistance. I appreciate it, and you.

I am waiting for information from the management at Reese Winslow (the graphic designer) about the mechanics of approaching the publisher AEG to remove the art cover line credit from the back of the book cover. As soon as I find out the cost - I will contact the original website designer who provided the royalty free image and font to the designer without contractual agreement the designer can open the design template and remove the lines at no charge, but we are not sure what impact that has on the book publisher as the book is already being sold.

I will say just a couple more things, one for all of you (you and you yes, both of you...you's) if you want a signed copy, I did get the information about buying the book at author cost - so I will be talking to my financial advisor (the hubby) to determine when we can purchase, and I will let you know when I have copies that I can sign for you. I am humbled that some of you want that.

Now, for the designer of the website. Yesterday, I was appalled at the whole controversy. I've come a long way from the days where I thought I would "be famous" for my efforts and now I am more inclined to just be grateful to hold a book in my hand even if it doesn't "hit the bookselves at the local strip mall." Certainly, I want to take the project as far as it will go, but the process is more important than the end...I was upset yesterday, though and I made a comment that I now know I need to recant. When I said I would not recommend in good conscience the services of the web site designer, I was speaking from a place of offense. I've had a moment to come down from the adrenalin jolt and I know this is an inappropriate position for me to take. I am still happy with the look of my web site and I stand by it as a "satisfied customer." Furthermore, I will not be party to taking food out of the mouth of anyone. I have absolutely no reason to speak negatively about someone else's livelihood. And so, I will say - that the product I recieved from vertigo creations was in my opinion, exceptional and the price was competitive. I will only recommend that you - should you choose to do business with anyone - including vertigo creations that the days of a handshake and a "gentlemens' agreement" are long past. Especially with creative endeavors, make sure you draw up a simple contract that is clearly understood by all parties, and stick to it even if you have an existing business relationship with the entity.

While I love my website http://www.tlboehm.com/ I know it is now limited in lifespan. I cannot manage it myself - and the business relationship will be dissolved shortly as I will abide by the web designers wishes to remove his name and company from my project. I am still saddened by this but I will respect his position - and I will not speak negatively of him, or his company.

I'll probably suck it up and go back to myspace this weekend even though I deleted my personal website there, I'll set up something for the book that I can update easily. Right now, free is affordable.

Peace and blessings. If you had potential plans to do business with vertigo - don't round file them yet. Check the market and your options. It may still be a great deal for you if you are savvy. As for me, lesson learned. No harm, no foul.  

litigation already? he hates BC 11/08

I don't want to be harsh about this by any means, but let me put it this way: when your publisher's designer approached me about "incorporating the font and graphic" into your cover, I assumed there would at least be some changes, but clearly she has no dignity whatsoever and has created a hideous design out of my original work. I won't have anything I've created as part of something that will be widely distributed and profited upon, and obviously your publisher's designer cannot be depended upon, so I'm giving them and you two options:

1) create a new design that in no way incorporates the graphics that I created (the edited title font or the graphic in the background);

2) allow me to create a new cover that doesn't look completely ridiculous and give me a cut of the profits.

It is to my understanding that this is all your designer's fault, so I will be sending this email to her as well.

If my demands are not met I can and will take this to court.

Cheers,

Skyler

Yes, I got this from my "cover artist/website designer" in my happy aol mail this morning. Litigation? I suppose he can have a piece of TamsterEnterprisesdotcomeon. He can queue up behind the NM Mortgage Co, Ford, Chase, BofA, Discover, Amex, and those nice student loan people, I guess. My net worth being less than 0 at the moment.

I'm not angry. I'm devastated. His name is on the back cover. I had hope that I would be able to benefit the young man's business (not that he needs my help) by driving customers to him, by utilizing him as paid advertising (his company does that) and even eventually by using his company in my own publishing company. I guess not.

It's a small book from a small person. It hasn't even sold a single copy. It's four years of tears, sweat, prayer and broken fingernails. And now? It's toilet paper. I've been bawling like a baby since 6 this morning. I have no clue what to do. I am left to wonder, at what point did I miss the resounding NO! from above now that my choices have led to this? I guess I'll be scrounging through my mental notes this weekend, trying to find the fubar(s)

Personally, I think the cover is BEAUTIFUL. It's better than the book. I told him that. I asked him to reconsider. If he pursues litigation...I will have to get a lawyer. I hate lawyers.

Damn. I just wanted to be a writer.

I wanted to bless him and others. If he chooses to seek litigation, there will be no blessing for anyone involved. If I had money, I'd be investing in other people's lives and dreams. I'd publish BC gratis and give the book away. Now it's dust, and I am dust along with it.

Jeez. I need coffee.

Peace.

PS - vertigo creations to my knowledge no longer exists.   

I'm not here to peddle my faith - only my book

Only my book...(snort!)

Seriously, over the past few months I admit I've lost myself amidst the drain, the strain and the mundane that is my life both on and off the bandwidth. Call it stress, call it depression, call it lack of oxygen to the brain, but what ever you call it - it has resulted in a bit of a rancid  Tam.  Since August, there's been more cheese, whine and waffles on this page than you'd see at a swedish smorgasbord. And even though I've spent the past few days reorganizing, rethinking and relaxing (well, sort of) I'm not sure what the future holds for me here at this venue...or anywhere else for that matter.

I love writing and I am deeply grateful for those people in my life, who over the past four years have extended a hand or a shoulder or a boot to the lower extremities because without my friends I'd be faceplanted in the middle of the road - surrounded by tecate bottles and nacho droppings. You have lifted me from that broken poet, placing words in boxes under the bed...to "published author." and now I have the obligation to become a promotor, with sales and marketing savvy and honestly I couldn't sell seal to a starving polar bear...so I am a bit unnerved. This product, Bethany's Crossing, is a partnership and there are expectations at this level of the game...I don't have time to bask in the glory of my name popping up on Amazon's search engines...I have to hit the ground in my plaid pants and white belt and noisy tie and sell sell sell...(where's Herb Tarlek when you need him) Thing is, I have no way to track my sales since I'll only get royalty checks (oh my holy bovines...royalty checks yashooer) quarterly - provided the royalties are over 25.00 um....how many blue covered beauties is that? IDK.

So now that I'm caught up at the cafe, the laundry is done, and the leftover turkey is camoflaged as enchilada casserole I am without excuses. I'm fully immersed in marketing 101 and ready to launch my um...product...for real.

I'll start here - you know, the whole girl scout mindset - put up a table in the front yard first....and as I learn - I will share with you...free cookies are always good. Peace. And thank you for putting up with me...

For a blogmercial or two please visit the following multiply sites brought to you by Alfa and Bender:

For the virtual amazon connection nearest you:

and now showing at Barnes and Noble: complete with a synopsis

If you've read it or parts of it - there are no reviews yet on either site, and me reviewing myself is just...tacky.

Tam's lesson for the day....this started as a dream of a piece of overcooked chicken thigh on a leather couch...and now, 290 pages, 7 or 8 edits, many commas, a few dozen blogs, multiple color resistant gray hairs, and Alice in Wonderland amounts of tears - there's my first novel...wow.

I'm planning to start back on the second novel tomorrow. Today I have to take dinner to the dad, and Fred has a concert...the spawn wants PC time, the hub needs his usher schedule excellized and there's a concrete residue of eggy abandon on my frying pan...Ain't domesticity grand?

Peace. 

a shiny happy blog 091608

Ok so it's really small and you can't see much - but I NEED a happy - and this makes me all ooey gooey inside. For those of you who cain't see it....It's the cover for Bethany's Crossing. WOOOOOOO!

It's gonna be a rough ride for the next couple of weeks, this horse will definitely be lathered up and foaming at the bit...so if I'm sporadic - it ain't personal. It's just life. I'll splain later.

Beth - Welcome to multiply! Hyd - it's as close as I get to a happy blog....but I thought of you when I posted.

SP II - I haven't forgotten...it's just chaos 24/7.

I'll try to check in manana....Love all ya'll 

pray for me please 082408

I really need a new pair of socks. LOL!

Seriously, It's Sunday evening and the first time I've had this weekend to get on the PC and catch up for a moment. I recieved Rev(2) on Thursday and worked on it all day yesterday. Only about 15 errors this time around - about ten more than I should have but it's way better than 80. I will send in the list this evening - and wait for Rev(3) We're getting closer.

I won't be on much this next week - not because I am upset or depressed - but because my coworker is out all week - and I will be so busy at work that I won't even be able to think about taking a break - let alone actually taking one. I will try to pop on in the evening, but Tuesday's and Wednesdays we aren't home. If you pray, pray that I don't rip the limbs from anyone this next week....sigh.

I tried to mess with my scanner - it worked once after the great virus of 2008 and hasn't worked since. When the PC "sees" it, it won't run, and when the software runs and the scanner bed light is on, it won't scan. The USB device keeps giving me an 'unrecognised device' or USB failed message and the software CD will not run - so I am going to have to wait until I can get someone over to my house who is smarter than me to fix the stinkin' thing. I am disappointed about this as I have bunches of pictures I wanted to start archiving. Oh well.

I wish you all peace and a great week. It may be a week before I get to circulate - but I promise to do so as soon as I can. Hit me with a PM if there's something important going on. Or comment me here and I will check in.

Thank you for your support of Bethany. It's getting closer and closer. It's going well. Peace.  

and the pendulum swings up 082008

I gotta tell you (well actually I DON'T Gotta and we'd all be happier if I didn't) but yesterday was a slogging, hissing, full body heartburn, mess of a day. Monday wasn't much better. Wars and rumors of wars going on at work and the troops are wearing their grass skirts and looking for apples for the PIG instead of prepping their weapons. The TPB's at mi casa dropped their frontal lobes in the garbage disposal and are spinning in the "I worked/went to school" all day" mode so they can't possibly be held to any standard of cleanliness or orderliness. The bathroom smells like cesspool and swampland, the kitchen too...the lizard hasn't moved in days....Maybe he's mummified (kidding!) Dog's are rattling their bowls against the fence, tongues lolling out....and then there's this little pet project named Bethany's Crossing, oh yes. It's kinda like having a mamogram, a colonoscopy and a root canal - simultaneously.

Anyway, I had the perpetual crying jag jitters yesterday when I send the mondo 80 item list of oopses to the review manager. Today I got the bill....And because I did such an excellent job of identifying the changes (their kudo, not mine) the revisions will only cost 50.00 (Tam slides off chair in gooey heap.) Thank you, my dear friends for being the voice of reason in my life. I sincerely appreciate it.

So, after launching myself and one spawn from the pad at the speed of light today, taking out a loan from Guido and Vito's Inc to fill my car with gas,  getting two cavities filled (still wiping drool off the keyboard) and breaking the sound barrier to get to work - I have the list of uglies down to - coworker leaving for two week vacation at three and visiting my Dad. Whew. Let's not even consider tomorrow.

At least I won't be bored whilst waiting for Rev(2) and after two is Rev(3) and when I sign off on that - they block me, print me, link me and sell me....at least the part of me that's in the book.

Peace.  

a way way back moment 081808

This would be more personally resonant if I were at home with my happy scanner fully functional instead of here at work attempting to google the picture to define the moment. Sigh. I guess a cassette image shall suffice as the scanner is defunct and my ability to fix it is sadly lacking.

I have completed the 'list' for review one with the exception of listing the paragraph (I have page and line number, but not paragraph. Good thing I reread the destructions)  in which each infraction, fubar, and bonehead idiot internal editor crosseyed error occurs. There are 72 items consisting of a few spelling errors - poring/pouring that kind of thing - several it's its fubars, a couple of to toos, and those damnable periods. But the list is complete.

And now for the rest of the story. In 1983 or so (if I were home I could give you the EXACT DATE and a scanned image) I signed a contract with Hollywood Songwriters Service for a set of lyrics to be turned into a song. A year later or so - I got one of my babies back set to music. It SUCKED but a subsequent 'record' deal materialized with Cactus Flower Music - and for awhile I was in aspiring rock goddess heaven - until we tried to make one of the last payments on the contract...the place folded up, disappeared. And I was left with a sucky song and a big lesson learned.

It was probably about that time that I started opting to ride the current instead of swimming upstream. I became 'safe.' Gave up the Stevie Nicks wannabe mindset, found a real job. Tried college....got married. Had kids. All the things that were never on the radar, all the things I bristled against gradually became my identity and by the late 90's after a daliance with writing kiddie book ideas and one non fiction article I resigned myself to the fact that I was never going to be a real writer, and I dove into a safe career/wife/mom path. Until 2002. The writing came back to me as a soul eating MONSTER...and now? Here I am on the cusp of "publishing that first novel." As far as I've ever gone and in my head I hear that awful rendition of my 'first song set to music.' and I wonder.....is this round two? Will the book suck as much as that song does? 

Had the industry been honest - they would have politely declined the lyrics - instead they preyed on my aspirations and left me jaded and it was my fault for jumping in blind.  That's the real reason I suppose that I dread turning the list in. It's not just the additional money I will have to spend - it's what comes next. Yes, you have to invest in your business to launch your business - but not everyone you partner with has your best interests in mind. If I fail again, it will be my fault...again. I guess I am suffering from idiot flashbacks.

Don't misread me. I have to turn the list in. I'm just a little freaked over the size of the list, and the unknown fee I'm about to incur....it's very sobering. Mea culpa.... 

analyze THIS 081508

For those of you who actually READ my perpetual whining - you may be vaguely cognizant of the most recent development in the saga of bringing Bethany to print - or what I like to call my MELTDOWN OF EPIC PROPORTIONS. You see, I have in hand Text Block Preparation  Rev 1 and at this point in the comedy/tragedy/drama/telenovella/infomercial Y Hola You Can Do it series the raw text (that's me) should be ready for text blocking (that's them) with very few fixes. Now, I am an accountant by day - so 'very few' translates to 3 or 4 or maybe 5 but definitely not over six or we approach 'some' and then move to 'several' (that's me again) So I am up to page 105 and I have no less than 30 odd accumulated missing periods, (missing periods....never a good thing) missing end quote tags, missing posessive apostrophes, a couple of too/to errors - a few its/it's - one or two random spacing issues and a mispelled word. That my friends moves me past the "be nice policy" extended to my happy book writin' self and off into the 'oh the horror of grabbing the husband's melty credit card and paying out the wazoo by the hour' twilight zone of WHY WHY WHY DO I SUCK at WRITING a BOOK? By now we should only be finding random spacing errors - not basic language 101 fubars. It's deeply disheartening - and with each red mark I make I hear a little more creative air squeeking out of my flattening ego. I feel like such an idiot right now. Why didn't I see these before?

Yes, this is my first book and it should be a learning experience - but with every step, every time it comes back around to me - there isn't enough within me to complete the process without significant saline and aching heart pain. And when it costs me money, when it contributes to the debt that forces my husband to stock heavy boxes of candy - and me to perform a function I hate daily - when it adds to what consistently contributes to the reason I repeatedly tell my children "No, you cannot have, No we cannot afford" it is very close to a punch to the gut. How can I justify the covering of my own stupidity, my own arrogance, and my own myopia to bring my own pet project to fruition - and deny my family? Again.

The hubster, when I told him last night in tears, said again...."and you think you can handle success?" Every time this thing comes back to me - and I am required to put forth more effort than I am capable of - needing more knowledge than I have - all Hell breaks loose around me and I have to fight for the mere concentration and time to even look at the 'text block pages' Really. My dad has taken another step down, another dear friend faces serious financial issues, school has started and that brings multiple issues, life grinds on and this Bethany thing seems at times selfish, and at times insurmountable. I will continue, (I already paid for most of it) I've never taken ANYTHING this far. I've never been so out of my element. I want to rejoice, but I feel like such a big fake right now. It literally rips my heart and my ego - after the time I invested in editing and re editing and re editing to find multiple bonehead errors still exist. MY bonehead errors. What the hell kind of writer am I? I am no professional. I'm a sham. And I know it. I begged and pleaded for a REAL editor....and I got me. I want to fire me.

So what is the lesson? Perhaps I have prostituted that original gift from God, twisting it into my own agenda - and God, in His complete support of free will is letting a Tammy dangle...I can't do it alone, and every time it comes back, the lines of support get cut. And I am alone with it. I'm sure there's a reason. I just haven't figured it out yet. When I do though I'll probably blog it.

You know, I could sign off on the text as is, and send it to the printer with a hundred small errors....I could do that. I could give up. But I couldn't crack the book open ever again if I did that. It isn't my best effort yet. I have to keep going to that place....its not about the victory, its about the struggle -and I am feeling the burn right about now.  

Peace.

Maybe I should go back to ashes and angst emoetry. Ya' think?   

progression 080408

They feed on fear....

So I was teasing the Bigspawn about TShirts for BC and he said he would actually wear one if I could come up with a design...hm....

Things are a bit calmer ad Casa de Hovel now that Athena and Big Bertha (that would be the computer and printer) are back in their happy spots on my desk. I am fully functional again - except for an email glitch with AOL 10.0 (doesn't want to send out email when the software is running but I can go in through IE and send it....sigh) and of course the Whitesmoke CD that has not yet arrived.

I am however back to the editing grind. I managed to get through about 30 pages last night before I started to fall asleep at the keyboard, so progress is again being made. I will continued the manual edit until I am either done, or I get the Whitesmoke CD. If I get the CD before I complete the manual edit, I will use the software on the remaining 200 pages....otherwise, if I don't get the CD - I will send in BC as is...I have reset the goal to completion by Monday morning - August 4. Sooner would be better, but its a slow process and I only have tonight and Saturday to work on it. True to form we are obligated on Friday night.

Life is about to get even more hectic as the spawn go back to school on the 11th, which means Fred to class by 6:30 - since we only have two vehicles and we all have different drop off times - we are forced to carpool, sigh. It means that three days a week I leave the house at 5:45 to get my family where they need to go. So no morning blog time. I sit in the car with Eric at his school until I can drop him off at 7 and rush to work by 7:30. But Fred is a senior so this is the last year of toting his scrots around.

Yesterday he took the spawnlet and drove home - solo...I cried. I'm such a weanie.

I just wanted to thank everyone for being so kind whilst I repeatedly melt down over technology and life....its been an interesting couple of months, but I see the completion of BC - its so close. Closer than its ever been. (next time I'm paying for a professional edit. LOL)

Peace. I hope to be around and more normal next week...yeah.  

Miss stress 072908

For real.

Just a quick update for anyone who might be snickering in the background whilst watching my life play out like a poorly written telanovella....

This just in from the art dept:

The Cover Concept

-----------------------------------

I have received the information request sheet that you filled out.  Thank
you!  We use this information to create a cover design that meets or exceeds
your vision and provides the necessary market elements we have come to know
as professionals.


I very much like the look used for this book on your website...both the font
used and the image.  I would love to incorporate both in your cover design.
In order to do that, I would need to have the image file and the font (it is
not one in my collection).  Do you have these on hand or is it possible to
get them?  I can liaise with your web designer if that makes things easier
for you.

Once I have these files, I will create a concept cover and forward it to you
for your review and approval. You have the opportunity to suggest changes
and alterations in the design or you may accept or reject the concept
entirely.

We will make the revisions and then allow another review.

So - the cover is progressing - even though the final editing is halted. I still have no PC....sigh. I've relegated myself to watching too much TV and crying in the shower, and the bathroom at work. When I get the computer back - there are those 200 odd pages left....equivalent to hours worth of time....Yup. Heart still broken. BTW if you don't remember what the site looked like http://www.tlboehm.com/ - click on the lion to open, click on the word novels, then click on the picture that reads "Bethany's Crossing" - site is designed by vertigo creations http://www.vertigocreations.com/  (the site is no longer functional and the company is also gone)

To add to my chagrin - I just added Bigspawn to our insurance....Honestly, I don't know how we will be able to pay our bills for the next three months....we don't have the additional funds to cover him...until we pay off our car in November...But that's another problem for another day....I suppose I could wait to add him but that's not really an option. We'll just have to ride it out and eat cardboard for three months.

I'm not even going to broach the subject of work...

Peace.  

And then there was this 072408

First - for everyone who consistently comes by this cheesy bit of cyberspace fluff and nonesense, with encouraging words and wisdom beyond my brain capacity - thank you.

Second - some of you only know me on the bandwidth and judging me or making assumptions based on my yo yo mentality - you may rightfully conclude that I am a freak of epic proportions. While there may be a bit of truth in that assumption - if you knew me in person - you would see me differently - if you saw me at all. Truth is: I am 43, average appearance - I work in an office all day, I go to church, I don't party, I don't smoke - my idea of drinking is an occassional beer at home. I am quiet, logical, responsible - my desk is usually spotless and I keep my word. But I FEEL life, intensely. My only outlets are writing and bawling like a baby until the negative emotions pass.

I am under intense pressure right now from all areas - but I don't see myself as any different than many of you who face things that I could never be strong enough to bear. My deepest anguish is that I am not in a position to do anything for you - other than commiserate. That often breaks my heart because many of you are so kind and so giving. I know some pressure will pass, and things will be completed. But sometimes a girl just needs to scream....

To be honest: the book editing is hellish only because I am out of my element and my situation is beyond my control. Two things a Tammy savors...comfort and control. Take those away and you find me flopping like a fish on the beach. And you will see this 'flopping and gasping' right here on my page.

I still don't see it as an attack - and I see completing the book as a promise to myself and my Creator. So I am doing it. I hope I learn something. And I pray that the effort will bless others. Maybe I'll learn something that will help another writer. Right now, I'm being dipped in acid, but I know - etched glass is beautiful....Sometimes I scream and cry - and my flesh wants to quit, but I won't. It is no longer my nature to quit. I just have to work on the screaming. It comes from fear. And its counter productive.

I am taking a couple weeks off from my favorite poetry place so I can regroup, reorganize and come back creative and supportive instead of frustrated and ugly. But I will be back.

Meanwhile the saga of Bethany continues - I brought my memory stick in to work. My office PC will not 'see' the drives - so that option is nil. I will try highjacking Fred's laptop (won't hold a charge, has to be plugged in all the time....hm. I have outlets, its a go) and see if it will cooperate. If that option fails, I will go over to my Dad's and borrow his PC. Its a booger, but I will not be stopped.

I recieved a note from the "art department" regarding the cover for BC yesterday - in my spam folder (eesh) They asked multiple questions which were difficult considering I was trying to answer them with a virtual copy of BC (I saved her in my AOL folder when I submitted her) but it is back to them - so the process continues. They asked about a picture of me....I stood in front of the mirror for awhile this morning - different poses....and then I cried. I've never been fond of my face. Sigh. Wonder if I could find a stunt face for the back cover?

So that's my story. Thank God for "So you think you can dance" last night. It kept me from fixating on the blank spot on my desk and foaming at the mouth....

Peace, and thank you again. I know I said you wouldn't see me until I got my PC - maybe I should say - you won't see me CONSTANTLY...how bout that?  

Manuscript review 

So after arguing with the young spawn last night about this graphics program CD (Spore - we loaded the program only to discover our graphics card wont support it...we have to buy a graphics card...EEESH) - I finally pried the little mugger from my PC at around 7:30 - only to find an email from the Review Manager at Eloquent Books.  Some excerpts below - for your perusal...

General:

Overall, your manuscript is free of grammar, punctuation, syntax, and spelling errors. I did find a few in my cursory review, which are listed below. I would recommend a full edit, either by you or one of our editors, to find any other problems prior to publication.

Opening Paragraph:

The opening paragraph conveys a sense of fear and dread, from the description of the scene to the secretive movements of the creatures. The suspense is palpable in your writing.

Title:

Your title is basic, stating the main character’s name. The crossing is a nice way of putting her spiritual and maturity journey.

Other Comments:

Some of the dialogue is stilted and probably not what a 14/15 year old girl would use with her friends. (I have my own teens)

There also seems to be some missing paragraphs toward the end of the book, in the exchange between Bethany, her father, mother, and brother over the sick kitten. Reread your piece to find these missing ideas.

Overall, your story is compelling, blending Christianity, southwestern lore and demons. Not only will teens and pre-teens who enjoy fantasy enjoy this book, but so will their parents. Good luck with your future endeavors with this manuscript.

I’M GOING TO HORK RIGHT NOW ON MY BLOG PAGE. Part of me is so excited I can hardly contain myself. And part of me is FREAKING OUT because I cannot afford a professional edit. There was a section in the review that listed some errors, mainly comma placement (comma’s instead of periods before speech tags – he said, she murmured. That kind of thing) and comma lists. How will I find them all? I’m freaked and overwhelmed at the prospect.

The main issue that I feel is worth arguing over is Bethany’s speech patterns. It is simply part of her character to use words that a typical teen would not use. It is a defense mechanism and to change it would be to change her character. So I need to get that identified very quickly in the book and I am not sure how to do that. I have an idea. We’ll see if it works.

I am tickled that they liked the title – it would have SUCKED to change it…and I’m glad they think kids and parents will enjoy the book.

So now the editing monster looms. Pray for me. I’m scared that I don’t have the brain capacity – the knowledge base to edit this myself. Sigh…

Peace.  

Random Saturday and JVP 062108

Don't tell the fam I posted this one, they'd freak....(giggles) from left to right - Fred, me, Rico, the HOH and his sister. Taken last year in MI - just to show you I'm a real girl. I don't photograph well - partially because of the layer of seal fat upon my person, partly because I have face for radio and partly because my teeth are snaggly. But here we are.

So I'm sitting here after the fiasco this morning on Multiply. Upgrade central. It happens. Usually on Saturday morning when I have time - and most of you are snoring....sigh. The HOH is bathrobe clad - studying. Small Spawn is snoring. Big spawn is still at YHC - we pick him up this afternoon - a nice hot drive south for about 90 miles. WOOOO,

I went to the doc yesterday - who thinks I may have a small hiatal hernia - and possibly I am perimenopausal. Both issues can be dealt with. I just need to address them - in prayer and logic. As for stress, I gotta work on that too. Don't we all.

The big news according to Tamster today is this Joint Venture thing. I got the official "Let's Get Bizzy" email yesterday and promptly cried at work. Part of me is overjoyed. (woo publication!)  Part of me is deeply disappointed. (its not a major publishing co. and I have to pay) Part of me is embittered and skeptical. (I had to pay for this - I'll probably get no sales) and part of me just wants to hide under the bed. (Oh my cows, I have to think and act and I am going to fall on my hindquarters...again) I'm sure I will be waffling for days. 

So much to do and my organizational neurosis has not kicked in yet:

1. Pull free download from TL Boehm website. I emailed my webdesigner who cannot do it for me without charging me...Ah, a learning opp in the making. No stress. No  stress. 

2. Pull posts from Cafe. Either delete the book (a quick click away from oblivion) or save the comments - delete the text and put a happy blurb in. (labor intensive - but the better option) 

3. Fill out massive questionairre from publisher....everything from what are your goals and marketing strategies to why is the sky blue....(well not really but you get the point) 

4. Proof manuscript and email 'script and questionairre to publisher. 

5. Blog about it. (check) 

6. Freak out and cry. (check) 

7. Drive family nuts babbling about it - (in process) 

This doesn't even address the 60 day game plan outlined by the publisher...My hands get clammy just considering it. 

So - here we go. Pray for me. Peace.   

Bethany unplugged - selling dreams by the pound

So I've sweat and labored intermittently for the past four years to bring a half cooked dream of a piece of chicken thigh to completion as a published book - a fictional account of the amalgamated little girl I may have been, little girls I used to know, and daughter I will never bear. I've learned to place commas carefully. I've learned to study theology and culture. I've learned to spell 'curandera.' I've garnered a small readership and I own a beautiful website. (www.tlboehm.com) And now I am poised on the cusp of an albeit lowered expectation of the dream - but fruition nonetheless. I've adjusted my belt, pulled the freebie posts, and let go of a week's salary in the hope that Bethany will sprout wings rather than falling flat on her fictional face. It is a risk when fledgling children make the move from nest to altitude...

So many questions circle my frazzled dendrites this morning. Will my friends - all three of them who have promised to purchase - click the heady link that beckons a mere eight weeks future to now? Do I bring a copy to the church bookstore knowing they don't usually peddle happy fantasy stories? Will my family bother to buy? Certainly Bethany is a turn off for both biological parents....Mom sez I'm a Holy Roller, and Dad thinks I'm an apostate...So much for familial support. Should I have held out for Random House? Am I ready for multiple disappointments? (Have you met Tammy?)

And what if I haven't sold my literary child into JVP servitude, relegated to dusty links and a 'vanity copy' dry rotting in a box....what if Bethany returns the favor? What if she flies? I wax teary eyed even considering it. It will take 225 books to simply cover the cost. If the company had believed I was capable of selling 225 happy Bethany's - I wouldn't be COVERING a cost....So you see, selling this dream by the pound is pricey indeed...But perhaps...prayers and tissue paper wings will finally generate permanent lift.

The link is eight weeks away. Yes, I'm counting.

UPDATE: my website was deleted in 2009. if you're reading this...you're on my new site.

Overwrite me

So I've refocused, regrouped and repositioned myself - letting hope's wings unfurl under the sun of a new day. Gone are the insecurities, the percolating undercurrent that threatens to sweep my joy away like so much sand from an unstable shoreline. I have a defensible position. Yup.

Enter big footed behemoth usually known as disappointment to stomp the stuffing out of me. I recieved a very small envelope back from my potential agent yesterday. Those of you who have skipped down the road of submitting your work - you know the gut wrenching drop when you see your own handwriting on that envelope....and so I plaster the yellow happy face sticker over my own furrowed countenance and pretend for another day. The simple sentence piercing my gater skin - "I thought it (Bethany's Crossing) was overwritten - meaning here, too many adjectives and adverbs, but take heart, it can be easily corrected once you know..."

I will say this - if you are a Christian Writer (if that is your target audience) especially if you have a Christian Romance bubbling up in your heart, consider the Seymour agency. (www.SeymourAgency.com) At least I got a polite "reason" and a nice business card with a scripture. That's more than what you may recieve from other entities. What really blackens my bagel this morning however, is that phrase: overwritten. COME ON! Its a purile, plot shy, 300 page jaunt through the land of teen sass and angst, only slightly more structured than bathroom wall scritti....I can't wrap my synapses around that word...overwritten. The hub, in all his testosterone seeped wisdom said "Maybe she just didn't know what to say." Perhaps "overwritten" is the new agent euphemism for "you suck."

So - I'm asking a favor for those of you who have twenty minutes to peruse some light verbiage: Please go to http://bethanyscrossing.tlboehm.com - select the fourth option to the right of your screen and download the first few chapters (its a word file) If you're uncomfortable doing that - let me know. I can open up the first three or four chapters on WC for you. Please, be honest. I am choking on that word....overwritten.

On a lighter note, I am considering an exchange program for domestically deficient loinfruit. Maybe some of you remember a simpler time when chickens came whole, in a package, and one cut them up and baked them in a contraption called an oven. I thought it wise to educate my spawn on the intricacies of domesticity. He flunked chicken 101. The poor child called me in a panic -

"How do you cut up this chicken?"

"At the joints, son, like I showed you."

"But I can't get its neck out of its butt."  

Welcome to my world....

So an hour after coming home and heating up leftovers instead of reveling in chicken mango quesadillas, I pull out the unruly pullet only to discover, the chicken had no back...hm...Perhaps the slathered, steriod injected, overly plump chickzillas at Costco are the better option. He won't starve as long as he can pop a plastic top...but oh the poor birds running around with their necks up their butts...

Peace.

060108

show me the Monkey

know - it's not a monkey but i don't have a picture of myself handy this morning. Its only 11:45 and already I know I've had a week's worth of dung flung my way.

The hub is desireth of happy work hours and who am I - foul creature that I am - to deny the poor shmoe such a small request, even if it meaneth mass destruction and sacrifice of precious innocent tamtime. Who really needs Tam time, besides Tam, and who is Tam anyway? So in two weeks the morning fest of orneriness will abate to be replaced by shuttling odiferous and defiant loinfruit to places of public humilation (aka mid school) We did a test run this morning - it wasn't pretty. Irritating ingrate of a humanoid had a migraine...he's already sicked the school nurse on my unfeeling parental hindparts to no avail. May he rotteth in the entrails of gym class and the hated dungeon of science. (pause for evil laughter and cackling)

The morning has already taken on a ghoulish "Lemony Snicket" veneer...and it's only Monday - I shudder at the possibilities of gutting and bloodletting that threaten to commence should I raise my neck within shooting distance....woe betide me.

And to frost the whole sticky concoction of maggots known as 'my life' the big spawn has a concert tonight, practice tomorrow night and thursday....there are obligations and rumors of obligations for Friday night - and Saturday is the mythical and great Showfest...I haven't done the taxes yet - the great and powerful husband has not remanded, remitted or other wise dunged out from the cesspool of deskdom - the magical figures needed to render unto Caesar Chavez that which beith Caesar Chavez (don't get fired up. I live in New Mexico. I have to vent about state taxes. Get over it.)

So here I sit. Contract for Joint venture publication in hand....short 675.00 smackeroos of oblivion...what the frijoles do I do? Strike a match perhaps? Yup. If I give this nameless, faceless JVP toad my future earnings....will a prince of a published prize appear on my velvet pillow of dreams  - or will the whole thing morph into a Tameating dragon of epic and disappointing proportions? If I had the cash, I'd kiss the frog. But at the back of my pee brain - I'm recounting every fall from pedestal to pavement, all the stones Ive picked from my southernmost cheeks....all the bubbly pipe dreams I've blown.... The spawn share a room, the Hub stocks candy so we can eat beans pay 30% interest on more credit card debt than what we owe on the hovel - and I dropped my magic wand back in sixth grade. (we now pause for Tam to wring her warty hands and emit a stream of spanglish expletives.....) How many books would it take to cover the cost....more than the four she could wrangle from the family on guilt sales. (and if we buy the book ourselves, isn't that just pulling the finger out of the bottom of the hole in the already swamping boat?)

(note to self...when self is the owner of sparkly publishing company complete with fully paid for - state of the art - mondo equipment and all the glitter gel pencils a girl could possibly want - NEVER put a writer through this...NEVER.....cuz it sucketh)

I need a fairy godmother, several loyal rodents, and a lottery ticket blessed by God Himself. I need a full body pedicure and three weeks paid vacation. I need a masseur named Sven...I don't believe in me. I know my track record of face planting in the ooze. (If I had EVER succeeded, would I be here?) Besides the curiously overlooked but never out of sight fact that God Himself is not swayed by lamentations on a blog page. He already knows, and has chosen not to make the ULTIMATE plan available to the insect clicking away at the keys...I would wager - if I was a wagerer that he is in fact standing there, mighty hands on hips, rolling those all seeing orbs in derision at my perpetual screams....(get a life, Tam...I know I gave you one)

And as much as I love you....Sometimes I think you're just being nice, because the truth might send me over the edge...and you're too kind hearted to step on this cockroach...

So what do I do? (tam runs from page, snorting and wheezing...)

peace

040808

Lamentations of a wannabe

So here I sit in cublicloid purgatory contemplating the error of my ways as I attempt a second less venomous rant in response to the upwelling of sludge percolating behind my bloodshot eyes.


I was strangely hopeful this morning - that lift itself an ominous omen unheeded as I peeled into the parking lot - expectations effervesced as I checked my email (who in her right mind is bright and bubbly after two hours of spawn wrangling and predawn road rage...its obscene) and there it bristled - my inspiration, aspiration, persperation, - staring down the jaws of virtual evisceration....and me in a puddle - (the party over and I stand, flat Busch beer in hand and last years New years eve hat over my eyes so no one will see my great reptilian tears....)

For those of you who have come by to leave pleasantries - or perhaps even a 'hey you can actually string two sentences together coherently' kudo - Bethany's Crossing was placed with an 'agency' (writer speak for those faceless mofos who sucketh many benjamins from my wazoo and tell me to be patient with this process of virtual gutting) I've run the writer's gauntlet of 'lets get a critique, lets database it, lets build a website (um no. How many virtual incarnations does one cheesy chica require) and now - let's fire a volley over the bow of ten publishers in hopes that we recieve a response....

So I am left to wonder as I wipe these saline emanations from my second chin - is it better to face exanguination via 'friendly form letter' or should I have fired my own pea shooter at the black hole of publishing hell - knowing in my tiny heart not even a puff of smoke would survive....

We're down to eight now - as I sigh and cross Simon and Schuster and Time Warner off my Christmas List - the latter will cry and whine when the movie rights go to some indie with a small budget and a wide angle lense. And I wish my skin were as thick as my skull. Bethany circles that drain of wasted paper....spinning ever closer to the void.