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Archive for February, 2014

I can’t remember how many times I’ve blogged about this so I’m going to date it rather than number it.
Outlining is going well. I’m almost finished with the first story I’ve ever outlined. It’s been keeping me focused and when I find myself mentally wandering, I look at the outline and strategize. While writing this story, I’ve realized this is part of a trilogy. Don’t gasp anyone who’s read earlier blogs. You know the ones, where I write I don’t care for trilogies. I can change my mind. Anyway, there is no cliff hanger. The story begins, has a middle, and an ending. I plan to make it so a reader can pick up any one book and enjoy it without going spastic that they can’t find the next book like I’ve done.
When I started this one story, I hadn’t planned on writing another. It just has come out that way. With that in mind, I have begun the outline for the next part. This involves quite a number of paper, the backs of abandoned printed paper that I collect for recycling. I need to get the idea down. I need to find the plot problems. Why is this going to happen. How do I get from A to B. All this I never used to do until I got to it in the story. All this that used to slow me down and lead me to either abandon the story or postpone it.
I think I really like outlining.

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My title may be a bit of an overstatement as it brings to mind a house stuffed to the brim with books. I do, however, make it a point to go to every library sale I see if I can. Right now the ones I have the best access to are the libraries where my Mom lives and where I live. Hampton only has one book sale a year. The county where my mom lives has four. Both are good, great really. They’re not the warehouse size like the Houston Public library, but it feeds my need.
I didn’t get to go to the last Hampton county sale. I’d attended a conference that week and to drive there, then back to my mom’s just wasn’t worth the gas even with half-price Saturday. I can get a bag of smoochie paperbacks for three dollars. I don’t know which ones my Mom has read, but chances are, if she’s read them she may have forgotten she has read them so it’s okay. I pick up whatever catches my attention for myself. Lately that hasn’t been much. I have too many fiction books I haven’t read and I need to purge my inventory.
A few weeks ago, Richland county had it’s winter sale. While my mom browsed the fifty-cent books, I eyeballed the DVD’s, CD’s, and whatever section I remember I wanted to look in. That’s usually the writing and travel section. This time I included drawing and arts, snagging a really neat crafts book for a dollar. Now, really, when will I have time to do any arts and crafts? I don’t even time to play my Wii anymore. It’s for retirement, I tell myself. I wonder how long before that eases itself into my garage sale pile. I have about five boxes of books for that. Almost a library book sale in itself.

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I love library book sales. What’s not to like? Books, used, for sale.
I remember my first book sale, in Houston. I can’t remember where I saw the notice, but I knew I had to go even if I had to take a bus there. At the time I didn’t have a car so that’s how I got around. Bus riding in Houston is nothing like Europe. It’s not that easy. Still, that Friday, I hopped on the bus and headed downtown to the main library. An awning sat in front. Under that, laden on tables, were books. Lots of books. A bibliophile’s heaven.
Not having much money, I didn’t get much. Upon my return to the apartment, I told my sister. We’ll go back tomorrow she said. And we did.
My sister is a reader, like I am, but she doesn’t enjoy spending money, pretty much like me, except I will loosen up the dollars to buy books. She’ll just look. Imagine my surprise when I turn around and there she is barely managing to cram one more book in her arms.
In the next years, the book sale moved from the tent to a cavernous space some blocks away. Now instead of a few tables, there were rows of tables, tens of tables and all filled with books. I joined the Friends of the library only so I could go to the early bird sales on Friday. When that Friday came, I got off work early on some pretense or another and headed downtown, often arriving among the first five. Sometimes my sister joined me, sometimes not.
The clock would click down. The doors open. It was like a Macy’s sale as we rushed in, heading toward our favorite sections. Me, I like just about anything – fiction, nonfiction. Up and down the rows I wandered gathering book after book. And on Saturday? Usually I came back again for another round. I have to say, if there’s anything I miss about Houston, it’s the book sales.

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Snow!!!!!!

For those of you accustomed to even an inch of snow every winter, you may wonder about the people in the Southeast portion of the United States. It takes a while to get used to the mentality and even then we must laugh. One snowflake is sighted and schools close, the government shuts down, and people go crazy. Yep, it’s really like that.
Currently I live in an area that gets, maybe, say .5 inches a snow every three to four years. Ninety miles north, it’s more often, 1 to 2 inches every other year. I admit, I get caught in the hype too. Please let it snow. Only I do it more because it means a day off work and I can use that right now.
A few years ago, the lowcountry got hit with a light dusting of snow. School. Cancelled. I’d been all ready to head on out the door. Looking at the tiny drifts under the the bushes, I could only shake my head.
The ‘s’ word started a week before the big snow hit. Rumors of snow. Will it or won’t it. We hope yes; we think no. As the word snow is bantered around more often, hopes rise. Yes, we really get that excited about snow. Even the weatherpeople are elated. One knows it gets serious when the emergency teams are activated. And then everything starts shutting down. My school went for half a day on the 28th and closed for Wednesday and Thursday. While there was hardly any snow to comment on, the ice remained to be the big problem. I did a happy dance when I heard we’d be closed Thursday, singing aloud to the radio.
People in the South don’t know how to drive in snow and ice. They think they do. They don’t. They go all over the place. Think of Atlanta. My mom had a doctor’s appointment on the 28th. I drove up Monday to take her only to hear early Tuesday it was postponed. Darn. I missed a half day. On the other hand, if the power went out like they said, I’d be really cold at home. Here, I’d be warm and comfy. They expected sleet by noon so I didn’t head on back. I knew Wednesday school would be closed. They’d decided that the day before. By six, still no sign of snow. The newspeople said people were calling and calling. Where’s the snow? It finally started at nine.
I left for home on Wednesday. It’d stopped snowing. There was no hint of more. My mom just knew I’d fly off a bridge somewhere. I told her I’d be fine. I only worried about other drivers, but thankfully most stayed home like we were all told. It turned out the worst bit was two stretches of road by my mom’s house. I got home fine. House – all okay. Even at my set temperature of 63 I felt warm.
I hope it snows again.

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