The Aliens Came

The grass is ankle high, the weeds are popping up like popcorn scattered across the tall grass, the snakes, hopefully, are hiding in someone else’s yard, it rained again all day, and I got an e-mail from the publisher.

Like everyone else that is following the dictates to remain home to halt the spread of this coronavirus, so are the employees at my publishing company, which makes it difficult for them.

I thoroughly understand and appreciate their persistence in trying to make deadlines even under these extreme conditions by working from their homes. So with a pleasant thank you for notifying me and wishing them to stay safe and healthy I await the page formation of Amy’s Quest.

Today was my first trip to Walmart in almost three weeks and I think the aliens came. With my list of needs and wants in hand and my roommate with her list, we decided we needed a “Walmart fix.” (actually some groceries)

We pulled into the parking lot filled with cars and with a groan I said, “Oh my, the place is packed, we’ll never get what we need.” I found a parking space when someone pulled out and with umbrella’s at full mast we traipsed across the wet pavement through the downpour into the store.

I suddenly stopped and gaped at the empty aisles. A security guard walked near us and I said, “The parking lot is full, where’s all the people!?” There was not 25 people in that whole big store!

He laughed, shrugged, and replied, “I don’t know.” (It’s gotta’ be bad when they now hired a security guard!)

All during our hunt for what we needed; passing totally empty shelves, a meat counter that had some chicken and hamburger and nothing else, stacks and stacks of bottled water, Plenty of yucky store brand milk, (I like name brand thank you very much) and an aisle devoid of all toilet paper, tissue, and paper towels. Praise God someone delivered bread because that aisle was full.

I did manage to get three different kinds of canned veggies for a soup I wanted to make out of the sparse choices left here and there, and the whole time the place was like a deserted museum. This was not during early morning hours when everyone is still asleep. It was in the middle of the afternoon!

As we left we saw a few cars pulling in looking for parking spaces and only a couple leaving. Where’d the people who arrived in all those parked cars disappear to? There are no other stores!

Gazing up at the sky I yelled, “Oh look! It’s a bird, it’s a plane…”

It had to be aliens that sucked the people right out of their cars and headed back to space leaving my roommate and I to shop without having to stand six feet from someone else or fight someone for a can of beans. (Thank you Lord.)

And the highlight of my day? I was able to get 10 pots of beautiful purple Phlox. Ohhh I’m a happy camper now! The sun is coming out tomorrow and the rain going away.

Look out dirt – here I come!

Take your time format people, I got gardening to do. ๐Ÿ™‚

Stay home, stay safe, and see ya next time.


Spring Fever

I have spring fever and that is not a good thing when we are told, not asked, “stay home!” due to the Coronavirus stuff. And yes, I have been doing that and enjoying playing in the dirt.

I’m not so sure my roommate feels quite the same way because she has not been active for a few years due to just trying to survive. The last couple of days we have had beautiful weather. Thank you Lord for the reprieve from all the rain.

Naturally I want to take advantage of the beautiful weather and the first day I told my roommate, “Get some old clothes and shoes on that you don’t care to get dirty. I’m putting your butt to work!”

I have several large “monkey grass” plants that line my walkway and they have gotten so big they needed to be moved.

Now that was no simple task and we worked almost the full day digging big enough holes to relocate them and digging them up which meant dealing with any critters that may be hiding in them or under them.

My poor roommate was determined that she was having a good time in between sweat rolling down her face, shoulders and face turning a bright pink, and almost collapsing as it took two of us to pick up the dug up plant.

One freakin’ poisonous snake (copperhead) later we managed to get many of them transplanted.

Did I mention I HATE snakes!!!!!!

We merely moved them to the back of the garden away from the walkway that they were taking over. I still have more to transplant but until I decide where to move them we moved on to the next day.

“Sue’s determined to kill me!” Was told to many friends and put on Facebook. I’m really not. (giggle)

Yesterday, “Put your work clothes on, we’re going to initiate the new burn barrel.”

“Sue’s going to kill me yet.”

So we spent about 3-4 hours picking up branches, twigs, and sticks from the winters barrage on my yard and burned them in my fancy new burn barrel. The aches and pains from the day before left my poor roommate moving pretty slow so I showed the Lord’s compassion and let her take several much needed rest periods. (I don’t think I had a choice)

The problem now is that I’m ready to start planting new flowers in my front garden and with the, “stay home!” I am being conscientious about being exposed and possibly exposing others to this darn virus so I can’t go get the plants I want. Grrrr

I’m sure others feel the same but listen up, this too will pass and we all will be back to what we call normal living. Church is being live streamed, there are still some groceries to be found, (forget toilet paper and hand sanitizer,) but we are a resourceful people.

God is in control and its a great time to seek Him and enjoy the time away from the daily grind as much as possible. Take care of those chores around the house that you’ve put off for who knows how long, play with your kids, eat dinner together around a table, and put the freakin’ cell phones away for a day.

Stay safe and healthy and please pray for our truckers that are having a really hard time finding food and rest.


I’m Ready!

What a time we live in right now. Do you ever wonder what it will be like when all, or most, of the Christians are gone and the world faces a world where Satan is in command?

I have thought about that and to be honest, I can not even begin to imagine what will go on when I see the hatred, greed, and dishonesty that goes on now.

Watching the news, listening to people arguing and fighting over nonessential things during this pandemic of Coronavirus is astounding to me and yet it shouldn’t be, considering what an evil world we live in.

The Lord whispered in my ear as I stood gaping at empty shelves, “This is just a small sample of what is yet to come.”

Well, He also says we are to prepare. I’m ready…

I donned my hazmat suit and grabbed my Bible and off to church I went. Don’t tell me I can’t go to church! And after church I kept my safety suit on and I boldly stepped into Walmart and found an entire roll of toilet paper! I was so proud of myself even when the woman next to me tried to yank it out of my hands.

The canned vegetables were gone but I managed to snatch a can of green beans out of the 3 cases the man in front of me had in his cart when he turned his back, and I even found a small container of hand wash that was hiding behind the aspirins.

Of course I’m saying all of this in jest. (The 3 cases of green beans is true)

Listening to the main stream media and hearing all the fear tactics being spewed out from the t.v. screen one would think this is exactly what we need to do.

Instead they have closed the stores, leaving many out of work. They have shut down the schools leaving parents worried sick how to feed their kids, and the churches have closed their doors leaving me comfortably watching a live stream service from my church in my nighty, covered with an afghan, and a hot cup of tea. Hey, now that part wasn’t so bad. It’s the first time I’ve been able to sit through church warm!

I’m fully aware that the Coronavirus is a deadly virus and it is to be taken seriously. My heart goes out to those who have lost loved ones from this virus but please let’s use what common sense we have and not hoard, oh my gosh especially the toilet paper! Like our sheriff of our county said, “You don’t need 742 packages of toilet paper!”

Stay safe and healthy my friends and we’ll get through this with the Lord’s help.


Moving on Up

Having submitted the one correction that I had, I’m not really surprised that I received the manuscript back in just three days for my approval of that one correction. Since it is only one correction instead of several the publishers editors usually do it right away.

So I checked it, okayed it, and clicked the “accept editing” for all of the corrections including the one I sent. This is THE benefit of having a publisher that will make no changes, not even a little one, without your approval.

So now my manuscript for Amy’s Quest is sent to the Illustration Department for the page design. What they do in that department is the type setting which is setting appropriate fonts and sizes, choosing the right character and line spacing, setting accurate page breaks so the pages look nice. My book doesn’t have any photo’s, charts, or drawings but it is in this department that they do that plus the bar codes, pricing, and ISBN numbers. In other words, they do a lot.

So it is wait time again while they do their thing and in the meantime, while I’m waiting to get that sent to me for my approval, I’ve been playing in the dirt since it quit raining for three days and the weather was warm. Now we’re back to rain. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

I have a pretty Iris garden that needed weeding really bad. I didn’t need the freakin’ snake that showed up though! I hate snakes!!!!!! The trusty shovel took care of him and even though I kept watching to make sure he wasn’t resurrected, I was able to finish my weeding and admire the results of my hard work.

Hopefully it won’t take the 3-4 months to get the formatted manuscript back for my approval. It’s always exciting to finally see our book in the almost completed book form.

So the production process is movin’ on up and that’s what is important.

Have a great week. See ya’ next time.



Making a List…

Making a list and checking it twice is really, really important.

I received my edited manuscript back today. Remember I received the manuscript with the publishers editing done and I was to go through it and was to make any changes that I wanted and to check their editing. Even professional editors can miss something. (and they did) It must be gone through word by word.

So I did that and sent back my correction sheet.

Here’s an example:

On the original manuscript I had: Amy lies on her bed and watches as

On my correction sheet I changed and added; Amy has finally stopped crying as she lies on her bed and watches as

Another example:

On the original manuscript I had; detective Collins and
his wife

On my correction sheet I dropped off – his wife and replaced with Susan. So it now reads: detective Collins and Susan

Well this morning I received the corrected manuscript with the corrections that I listed. Again, the red and blue are still there, which made me think they had changed nothing. (Each publisher has their own way of doing things) Once I figured out what they were doing, editing wise, I had to go through, using the list of corrections I printed out that I sent them to make sure each correction was done and was done as I wanted it to be done.

This is very important! Be sure to make a copy of any corrections you send to the publisher for editing. Their corrections will be sent back to you for your approval. If you did not make a copy of what corrections you sent them – don’t count on remembering them! You must have a copy in your possession.

Instead of hours and days going through every word this morning I merely pulled out my list of corrections and went down the list one by one with their copy of edited revisions. It took me about an hour and a half versus 40+ hours.

So what happens if there is a mistake missed? Glad you asked. ๐Ÿ™‚ I had one ~~~ that separates thoughts, times, and places, etc. that I missed. I wanted them to be just one squiggle (~) instead of three. It’s a very obvious mistake and would stand out like a sore thumb in the book because there are several places this is used, so it must be fixed.

I e-mailed my representative and gave the page number and line number with the mistake that needs to be corrected. She will send it over to the editing department, they’ll correct it and send it back to me for my approval, I’ll hit the “approve” button and we continue to the next step in production.

Had there been no mistake that needed correcting I would have simply hit the “approve” button.

Now we move on, once I approve that one mistake has been corrected, to typesetting.

Stay tuned. We’ll talk about that later.

Thanks for coming by and I hope this is helpful.