We finally got a storm shelter! Ever since our tornado scare two years ago, MBH and I have been trying to figure out how to fit a storm shelter into our household budget. Luckily, the Choctaw Nation has a grant program for tribal members that covers the majority of the cost. And of course, yours truly is a member.
Yep, if you didn’t already know, I’m a member of the Choctaw Nation, and very proud of my heritage. Even more so, now that I’ve seen first hand what they do to help their constituents. Yes, there’s a bit of paperwork, and several months of wait time before approval. And it took several more weeks for us to be able to get the actual shelter… ironically, because of the weather.
For those of you who might not know, storm shelters are typically pre-manufactured, then transported in pieces before being assembled at the installation site. In our case, the installation site was our back yard, and intermittent rain over several weeks kept the ground pretty wet. Much too wet to support a heavy truck with a mini-crane and a the shelter on it. It turns out that such a load typically runs over fifteen tons. And if you tell them to install and they get stuck, guess who’s responsible for getting a heavy-duty wrecker out to get them un-stuck?
So we had to wait until we had several consecutive days of dry, sunshiny weather before we were able to finally get it in the ground. And that didn’t happen until last week. But it’s here now, and just in time for tornado season.
Such a huge relief!
Writing news –
Payne and Suffering – I mentioned in my last post that I was having trouble tracking the plot and motivations in the latest Amber Payne novel. The story was threatening to stall for me, and I was really beginning to worry that I was on the wrong track. Then I had a dream about it. I’ve mentioned before that I actively try to think about my stories as I go to sleep when I’m having trouble… sort of guiding my subconscious in an attempt to get it to work the problem as I sleep.
Sometimes it works, sometimes not. To be perfectly honest, it usually doesn’t. But if it doesn’t work one night, and I don’t solve the problem during the following day, I simply try again the next night. This time, after several days of minimal progress, and nights of… well nothing, I had my eureka dream.
I realized that I was trying to force the wrong antagonist into a plot that didn’t fit them. Not only that, but I realized who my antagonist really was, and what their motivations were. Suddenly, the story is flowing again. Woot!!
IMR – The sekrit projekt I mentioned last month in WW105 looks like it’s going to really happen. It’s still in the early stages, so of course I can’t really talk much about it other than to say I’m really, REALLY excited about this one. We’ve had preliminary discussions, and the contract is being drawn up, so technically, it isn’t a reality quite yet. But we have verbal agreements in place, and things are looking really good. As for the story itself, the more we talked about it, the more convinced I was that this was going to be an incredibly fun project. It’s going to be a lot of work, and will of course impact my writing schedule for the foreseeable future, but I have to admit, I’m looking forward to it.
Watch for the new meter, (IMR) to begin moving when the final details are hammered out and the projekt begins in earnest.
Fringe News –
This one isn’t really related to my current projects, but rather to a past one. Streets of Payne was (I think) the first book I had produced in audio format. It’s available on Audible, Amazon, and iTunes and was narrated by the magnificent Joy Nash. At the time, Joy was a “struggling actress” in Hollywood, having been in a few shows. At that point, her most notable role was Simone on The Mindy Project. Since then, she has gotten several other roles and seems to have finally hit it big with a starring role in AMC’s new series, Dietland (co-starring Julianna Margulies and Adam Rothenberg).
So while I’m incredibly happy for Joy and her success, it looks like I’ll probably have to find a new narrator for the next Amber Payne novels.
And that’s it for now. Time to get back to writing. Take care, everyone, and stay safe.