With a Critical Eye

I’m doing an Internet binge, the name of the show isn’t important, but my reaction to a plot pivot is—because it makes me think about my own writing in a constructive, critical way. Readers have no idea where the plot is going in The Betty Chronicles, in large part because I chose to not plan it out in advance and had no idea what the twists would be until the words formed on the page. The show I’m watching just lost me, the writers took a sharp turn that didn’t feel true to the character’s previous actions. Usually, I just stop for a random period of time and watch the rest of the episode with fresh eyes. I’ve also completely abandoned shows because of these awkward devices, even when the overall story and acting is stellar.

So, back to me. Have I done the same thing? Have I been guilty of using an ill fitting plot device? Ultimately, that is for the critics and readers to decide. I’m too close to the subject matter. My editors never hesitated to mark in red ink poor writing or ill advised angles and I only declared STET when it really mattered to me, so if there is such a stopping point in my books, it will be because of the individual reader’s tastes. Maybe it’s just me, maybe I’m looking too closely at the show’s writing and not just enjoying the entertainment, which would be ironic since I tend to live in the moment. The people behind this series are smart and extremely talented. Maybe I shouldn’t be so judgmental. What do you think?

Ah, the RV Life

After months of research and several forays to test drive RVs for sale, I finally pulled the trigger and bought—the only decent used twenty-nine-foot Class C RV for sale within two hundred miles. We still had to drive an hour and a half each way to pick it up, which was the actually the second visit to a small town south of Fairfield, Iowa. Thankfully we made it to my safe harbor, the back driveway of my house that is for sale, because the next time I drove it around town to test things out, the fan belt snapped and I lost electrical power. A seventy-two-dollar tow call later, which was just a jump start pack hooked up to my battery so I could drive the six blocks to the auto parts store, I was squared away and headed home.

Ah, the adventurous life of RV dwelling.

It has been about six weeks since I took ownership of this Jayco Eagle 296DB (Double Bathroom) and about a month since I started living in it full time. I do have the luxury of using the hot shower in the house and the washer/dryer to do my laundry while the house is for sale. I also have city water and electricity, so it’s basically a tiny house on wheels.

The hardest part of this whole conversion was shedding all of my accumulated stuff. Five garage sales later and I’m nearly there. Except for a few tools and some household items I want when I get my next house, everything fits into my 29’x8’x7’ space—including Kali, my dog. She is going to be ten this summer, so she is pretty much content with guarding our home as long as she gets outside a couple of times a day to chase her tennis ball. I will say this, my days of collecting Craigslist Free items is behind me, but that is a whole other post on overcoming addictions.

There are still some challenges, the engine misses a beat every once in a while, toothpicks and wood glue are needed to fix screws here and there, and teal just isn’t my color. With time, these things will all be ironed out, some of which will happen when I am on the road promoting my novels.

Click on the link and email me if you want me to come to your town for an event. I will be sticking to the Midwest for most of the summer, but after Control is released in August, I’ll be going nationwide.