Painful Rounds

I’ve been to a few blogs over the last couple of days to find people I dind’t expect to reveal their pain revealing their pain.

Seems the world has been less than kind to a lot of people recently, and while a few I know seem to make a habit out of stepping into a barrel full of scat and coming out smelling like a rose, it’s been sort of eye-opening for me to find most people are as vulnerable to pain and suffering as I am. I guess misery really does love company.

Not that I’m wishing anything but good fortune on those I see and follow. In the blogosphere, the only real friends I have, I don’t like finding out how much agony there is. I pray for them when I know they’re hurting, but I’m learning a lot about prayer right now and well… I don’t know.

How about the faithful readers and commentators here? Any of you have something bothering you you’d like to unload? Anything hurting you right now, keeping the smile from your face, keeping the spring out of your step? Or maybe it’s more serious and is weighing heavy on your heart. Dragging you under, so to speak.

You’ve all been good to me, now I want to try and return the favor.

This is your thread. I’m not going to answer, but for everyone who leaves a little bit of their pain here, a little piece of your heart laid bare and hurting here, I’ll be praying over the weekend for you.

It’s all I can offer to do to help you, if that matters to you, and it’s the least I can do for those for whom I have cared so much.

Sound off if you’re of a mind to. And God bless.

-JDT-

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Yowzers.

The human brain

What a day we had yesterday, huh?

Man!  That was some party!  You guys sure know how to shut up a traffic and comment whore, no two ways about it.  More than 200 hits on my post, more than fifty comments.  Yowzers!  You are the most incredible group of people I know.  You’re wonderful, really, and don’t let the fact that I don’t know any other group of people diminish that compliment, either.  You’re wonderful people, each one of you.  Yeah, you too, WIGSF.

So, while I bask in the afterglow of that euphoric, mind-numbing high — why bother trying to top or repeat that experience? – I’ll instead tell you all the boring stuff I’ve been up to this week.

Job hunting.  Priority one, all the time.  That’s a given.  No news to report, though.  Things are taut to say the least.  We’re doing okay, but the final clock is running.  We need a long-term solution soon.  If you’re the praying kind, we can sure use ‘em.

My kids’ computer is acting up.  The DVD/CD drive isn’t always working.  For some reason, it works when it comes out of sleep mode or when it’s first powered on.  On warm boot, though, it doesn’t read discs.  It just buzzes for a minute, acknowledges there is a disc in there, but you can’t see the contents at all.  So, I’m going to re-image the machine (which is IT speak for restoring it to factory condition) and see if this issue is the result of something I’ve done.  Wish me luck, ‘cause I can’t afford a new computer, let alone two of’ ‘em (if you don’t know, my beloved has been without her computer for months).

No matter how I try to think about horror stories and horrifying things, Mapelba’s post about drawing bunnies yesterday haunts me.  I drew a bunny with my new Sharpie pen.  It sucked.  So I drew another one.  Not good.  Another.  Better.  Kept drawing them.  Thanks, Mapelba.  I have a page full of bunnies where horror story ideas were supposed to go, and I see more bunnies in the future.  You’ve done something viral to my brain.  I need to figure out how to fix it.  (J/K.  Not your fault of course.  But hey, I can’t own up to bunnies, now can I?)  And, while I was at it, I drew WIGSF’s chickephant.  (Check out his post from Wednesday for more information about chickephants and how you can get one.)

Um … OH!  In the biggest news of all, I think I’ve finally, with your help, figured out the story planning and structure method which suits me to a tee.  It’s a system I learned about from this guy, who I found through this guyBryce, I can’t thank you enough brother.  You’re the man.  And Larry’s method looks like it’s really going to work for me.

How do I know?  Because I took my WIP and my finished manuscript and started analyzing them according to the structure proposed by Larry Brooks.  And what I found is, I was doing almost everything he suggested on instinct.  I followed his plan, his system as I think of it, almost to the letter.  So what’s the big deal then?  If I already knew how to do it, why is this so danged exciting?  What are you, a moron?

Well, yes, I am, but that’s beside the point.  The point is, there’s a system I can learn, adapt and work when I’m stuck.  I’ve been following it instinctively, but not completely.  Knowing a lot more about it now, I can actually address the problems I faced instead of just floundering around.  (The time I’ve spent floundering, by the way, wasn’t wasted at all; I did some terrific craft-learning during that time and it paid off big-time.)  I know what has to come next, or what can come next, or what possibilities exist.  And I know how to move forward.

That’s not saying I will.  That’s saying I can.  So that’s a major victory for me.  I feel more in control of my writing than I ever have before.  I feel like, for the first time in my writing journey, I have control over my writing, in ways I never did before.  I don’t have to outline; I can write organically if I choose.  This works with or without an outline, and folks, I hate outlines.  I’m going to try synopsizing my work and see how that goes, but no outlines.  Hated ‘em in school; hate ‘em now.  So they’re out, and I can move forward.  I can.  I can do this.  And for the first time ever, in my life, I am confident in my writing ability.  I am confident.  I was doing it right, all by my gut and wit.  Now, I have even clearer ideas what to do, and I feel unstoppable.  Move over Stephen King, here I come.

Well, soon anyway.  Heh.

That’s about it.  How’s it by you guys?  Big plans for the holiday weekend?

-JDT-

A Serious Moment

UPDATE:  Fantastic news from the hospital.  Fal’s friend is doing fine and news is as good as can be hoped for.  God bless you all for your prayers and kindness.  We’re very relieved and thankful to God our Almighty Father and Lord Jesus Christ for His blessing today, and the blessing each of you are.

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My wife has a close and loving friend going into the hospital for surgery today.  She’s been nothing but a blessing to us in the hardest of times, the most trying of ordeals, and her support of us never waivered, never faltered, never slipped.  She never doubted us when the rest of the world turned their backs on us, and she defends and protects us from people trying to hunt us down even now.

If you’re a praying person, please take a moment today to pray for her full and speedy recovery.  I won’t do this often, but when it’s something this serious and for someone this faithful as a friend, I have to.

And if you’re not a praying person, any good thoughts you can spare are appreciated.

Thanks everyone, and have a great weekend.

-JDT-