Welcome Gentle Readers

This blog tends to wander from its main purpose -- updates on my fiction. I do have updates and excerpts of my work. But I also write about my obsessions -- food, friends and pop culture and my weird life in Los Angeles. Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Plus Sides, Thwarted Plans and Updates

Well 2010 was right scary at times, but I don't want to dwell on that. Pity parties make those really tough days even harder to get through. Besides, there has been a whole lot on the plus side of facing cancer. Rarity, for one. I have a rare enough cancer that I was able to get completely free treatment at a very fine teaching hospital. There was some extra luck in that my primary care Doc had been a resident and still had connections at said hospital. It cut down on the evaluation by four months. The head of Oncology had only seen two patients like me in 20 years (both are still cancer free which makes me very happy). Of course, that means I get to meet every resident in the program rather than being assigned to one Doc, but they are all so very young and earnest that I don't really mind. They all love hearing the crazy story of how I was diagnosed, and I like being a star. Blind luck, for another plus. Somehow, I found just the right desks to land on in the various government bureaucracies to get long term assistance in other areas. Good days were another plus. Before the second surgery, I got to have a really long run up to my 50th birthday. I also discovered what a cool neighborhood I live in, got to cook new and exotic recipes and got to read a whole lot of books. And then there was the writing. I will save that for Updates, but it was a good year for writing. Last but not least, great support has been a really big plus. The Hubs has been extraordinarily steadfast and patient. The family who helped a lot by staying calm. My dear friends here who've helped schlep me to appointments or who sat with me through chemo. And everyone who has kept me and Jon in their prayers. I've never, for one moment, felt like I was facing this alone. That has been and continues to be a really big plus.

So I turn the page on a scary but not too horrible a year and look forward to more pluses and much better days in 2011.

Best Laid Plans

About an hour after I wrote the paragraphs above, I finally decided to take my temperature. I'd been having chills all day and was curious to see if I had a fever. Well, I did. In chemo world, that means I have to report to the nearest ER. I thought I'd bee there several hours, but would be home for the New Year arriving eating tasty nibbles. That was not the case. During the countdown, the ER Doc was explaining why they were admitting me and that it was likely it would be some days before I could go home. Joy. Still, there were positives. During my stay, my counts were raised to normal. That means that I should be on schedule to finish chemo by the end of the month. Jon and I hadn't planned on going anywhere during that time anyway. All I have to do is replace the collards and black eyed peas I've had to toss. We'd left everything on the stove when departing as I didn't think they'd keep me. The food was out until the next afternoon. Jon had stayed the night in my room. That was tragic. Both dishes had turned out very well. But they are cheap eats. I will make more for this Friday. Because I'm having my New Year's Eve, dagnabit. Oh yes, with tasty nibbles, movie marathon and the midnight toast. All that will be missing are those lame New Year's Eve programs especially the one with Kathy Griffin, and I can live with that. Now, all I need is a tiara...


I've been most pleased that I have kept writing in some fashion throughout the year. Mind, I'm not writing as fast as I would like. Sometimes, my focus is like that of a kitten with shiny objects. Still, I have my Soldiers sequel well under way. And, somehow I started an entirely different novel. That seems a bit crazy, but it actually helps me keep going. When I'm blocked on one, I work on the other and they are getting done. I don't kid myself though. I know that I won't really reach optimum output until after I finish the final cycle of chemo. On the film front, we still plan to shoot the web series we started production on before I got physically overwhelmed. There are some new possibilities for locations because of a very cool new camera we have access to. We're thus rethinking what we can do with shoots like Demon Under Glass. It's all very exciting. Hopefully, we'll be shooting something in several weeks. As for the big shoots, we had a lot of activity shortly before the end of the year on two of the films. More meetings are upcoming soon. Enthusiasm is high and the connections look good. It's been a long since the last film, and that has tried our patience and sapped our resolve at times. But I must admit that the connections we've made during all that time are really good. And that sort of thing does take either a long time or a lot of blind luck. The upshot is that there should be a lot happening with the big films in January and February.

Stay tuned.

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