Another two months has passed – oi vey, where has the time gone. A lot has happened over the last few months that have kept us busy and our heads spinning. Between our writing, family issues, her full time job and other things, some days we don’t know if we are coming or going. I think her head has finally stopped spinning but don’t quote me on that.
My novel is progressing nicely but as usual when I reach a certain point in my writing, God places something in my life that slows me down. Sometimes, I wished God would stop putting obstacles in my way. It gets old proving to me and others; I can make it through what God puts in my path. It gets quite frustrating. As Towanna has pointed out to me, God doesn’t put anything in our path that we cannot handle. This, of course, is so true. I tend to provide myself with more pressure and obstacles than what really needs to be. I am an expert at taking an obstacle and making it a wall. I don’t need God’s help. I am really grateful that I have a loving family that endures my writer’s personality and attitudes. At any rate, I became Goliath and knocked down the wall and got pass the obstacles cast in my way.
Chapter five is now complete. It took longer than I anticipated. In this chapter, I entered into the female protagonist’s mind. Oh boy, I thought women were impossible to figure out on the surface. It is worse when entering their brain. Part of me wants the lead female character in the novel to hurry up and make up her mind but part of me ponders having her take her time. This could possibly lead to some tension. I know, I know – they say women are forever not making up their minds yet here I am doing the same thing. As Towanna read this she looked at me and said …. “Make up your mind already, you are driving me nuts.”
At this moment, the only thing I want to do is to be finished with this draft by Christmas. I am beginning to feel I can do it. LOL. Towanna is very happy to hear me thinking this way. She has known it is a possibility for a long time. She looked at me and told me – better late than never that I start believing in myself.
I am still researching augmentative and alternative communication devices – or AAC for short. They are so insanely expensive. I have found several I like – but not one that has all that I need. I still want to rely on my verbal speech but there are times that I just cannot communicate as effectively as I need to with others. God may have given me CP but he also gave me a voice and I want to use my voice as much as I can for as long as I can. As with any other writer, I have a large vocabulary that I want to be able to enter into the AAC. I need and want a device that can accept vast vocabulary as fast as I can feed it. There are some software products that can eventually learn my speech pattern but they take forever. Hmmm, is my impatience coming into play here? At any rate, I look forward to the day they make an AAC that I can use that has all I need. I usually let mom or Towanna be my mouth piece but I am going to continue to search for an AAC so that I can become more independent. Today’s world is just too fast paced for me to keep up with. People just don’t have the time nor do they want to slow down to listen closely enough to me. Maybe then, I will stop getting the stares and the cruel words that I sometimes here. But then, I am the same way at times. I can be just as unforgiving to myself as other people are to me.
About three months ago, I stumbled on a program called Dasher. For over a month, I whined, moaned and complain about the program. Sometimes I would get so mad at it. Finally, Towanna told me to stop the bitching. She informed me that sometimes a new program can be hard to get use to but it is worth it in the end. I am so glad that I settled down and allowed the program to show me what it was made of. I have found Dasher allows me to communicate a lot faster and better so it is not so embarrassing for my mom or me when I try to communicate with others. I use it for everything now. Once and a while, I do the old fashion concept of fingers typing out letters but the more I get use to Dasher the more I rely on it. The best feature on it is their word prediction. I am so in love with in. (Sorry Towanna another gal is in town that I love – laughs.) Dasher is making my life simpler and gives me more time for other things. I wished this program was available when I was in high school. Oh – the doors it could have possibly opened for me.
If anyone is interested in exploring either program the links are: http://www.inference.phy.cam.ac.uk/dasher/ and http://www.naturalreaders.com. The only advice I have for anyone who explores either program is to be patient and take your time. It is well worth it.
Another program I have found is called Natural Reader. It is a program that reads text by using a computer generated voice. The voice sounds as natural as my mothers or Towanna’s does. If you ever were in the same room as someone using this program, you would turn around to see whose voice it was. I am proud of myself for not giving up and continuing to find programs and items that make me more independent.
My next bit of news was quite a pleasant surprise to me. It seems that the writing bug has now bitten my baby brother. Oh lord helps this family – two writers in one family going to definitely drive everyone insane. All kidding aside now – Andrew sent me a poem he had written. Wow – I was blown away. He definitely has a talent that he has been keeping hidden from all of us. When I heard him reading this poem, my first thought was that he should enter it into a poetry contest. He had written a beautiful, heart touching piece. One day, while on Skype with Andrew, we got to talking and we decided that we will be writing a children’s book together. It already has a great start – and no Towanna, I won’t be giving anything away to you. LOL. Andrew – just a bit of advice from your big brother – while it’s fun to drive your woman insane – I don’t advise it. Towanna is already on the verge of buying a strait-jacket for me. I am very lucky Towanna deals with my workaholic binges but I doubt Victoria would be so patient. Pace yourself and balance everything out. LOL. Oh and Andrew – welcome to the Asylum.
I have recently attended the ConCarolinas in Charlotte, N.C. I left this past Friday and returned on Sunday evening. It was very long days but well worth it. It gave mom and I both some great quality mother/son time. The drive there was beautiful – especially going over the Smokey Mountains. I know Towanna would have had us stop every mile so she could get out and enjoy the view. We arrived there just in time to get me registered for the next days’ events and get settled into our hotel room. I don’t know who was asleep first Friday night – we were both so tired from the drive. Saturday was a brand new day. I listen to five panel discussions about writing. Also, I sat through a reading by David Drake. They were very informative and I learn a lot. I saw some great authors – Faith Hunter, David B. Coe, Misty Massy and others. I just wished I would have not been so worried about my speech disability and went up to them to say hi. After the panels were over and the reading completed, mom and I went to dinner. Afterwards, we retired to our rooms for some zombie time. We ordered a piece of double decker red velvet cake. I sacrificed my blood sugar level for the sake of job security for that baker. What else could I do? It was good going down and I do not regret an ounce of what I ate. Mom and I stayed up to the wee hours of the morning watching movies and having a great time. On Sunday we got up and headed home. I couldn’t wait to get home and back with my Towanna. I missed her so much. When I got online, I found out just how much she missed me. I thought she had become an offensive lineman while I was gone. She tackled me so hard and fast before I could even say hi. Imagine that – someone missed me while I was gone. I want to say thank you very much to my mother for taking time out of her busy schedule to take me. Thanks Mom!!!
Speaking of Towanna – what can I say? She is the most angelic, innocent, caring, giving person I know. LOL – I know, I know, she is the devil in disguise but she is my Bearsy and a very busy one at that. She is one hard working woman. I might have to take her to a convention one day just to get her to slow down. At this point, I think it would take me walking to her and sitting on her to slow her down.
Towanna finally has been able to open the coworking center legally. It was a long time coming but well worth the wait. Now, begins the advertising to get clients in. We both feel that it will begin to grow in leaps and bounds. I cannot wait until Florida is taken care of so she can move back to Bowling Green, Ky and get one started here. Yes I must admit – I want her here for me more than anything else. She is slowly but surely catching up in her course work for her class. It is not as easy as she thought it would be. She is struggling but somehow managing an A average so far. She has managed to begin writing and editing here and there. It is not as much time spent on it as she desires but she does do her best. She is hoping to get caught up on her part with in the next two months. I don’t see how she goes like she does but she does. She is definitely a go-getter. Once she starts something, she refused to give up until it is done.
In addition to her work, course and writing, she has had a full plate with family issues and other things. I did not realize how much she carries until I sat her down and had a long talk with her. She finally admitted that the daily pain she lives in has increased and the medication is not working any longer. On top of that, a longtime friend since elementary school past away. These two have been inseparable since they day they met. I am forever and a day trying to convince her to put her work and course first – the writing can wait but she doesn’t listen to me. Every day, her feet hit the floor and she talks off running (as the saying goes) and doesn’t stop until late at night. I know one day she will slow down – I just hope it sooner than later. She is highly stressed right now but I have learned that she will stop catch her breath then go right back to life. She claims that she is taking a vacation from June 30 through the 4th of July but I will believe that when I see it.
My intention was to do monthly blogs. However, time flew so fast the past two months it was half way through May before we realized I never did April’s blog. Such is life. The blog is now done. (Towanna is clapping her hands on that.) I promise to be more attentive to the time to get my monthly blogs out on the last day of the month for now on. Outside of research and writing on my novel, I have not set any additional goals for myself. I believe Towanna’s goals are to get advertising done and clients in her center get caught up with her course work and do some more writing/editing this month. We are both hoping to spend at least one day on line catching up on our chat and with her giving me my UK spanking that she normally does when we play QWERTY.
We would like to wish family, friends and our readers a great, safe and happy summer. Please be careful when outdoors. Make sure you stay hydrated. Work outside in the morning or late evening and use sunblock.