Sunday, October 30, 2011

Happy Halloween, from Medusa

Medusa pumpkin carved by Ray Villafane. See more of his creations at

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Coffee with my muse

"It's about time!" my muse says when she sees me sitting at the kitchen table typing away at my lap top.

"Hmmmm...." I mumble, still fixated on the screen.

She picks up my Wonder Woman coffee cup. "You're writing again."

"Trying to..." My voice shows how annoyed I'm feeling, but as usual she doesn't seem to care.

"Your coffee's cold." She takes a sip. "And you didn't put enough cream in it. You know I like a lot of milk in my coffee."

I stop typing and look at her. "Who's coffee?"

"You need a warm up." She crosses the room to the black and gray pot half filled with dark, strong coffee and pours some into my mug. Then she opens the carton of milk I left on the counter and fills the mug to the rim. Sipping, she sighs. "Perfect."

"Who's coffee?" I ask again.

Sitting at the table beside me, she drinks deeply and then nods at my lap top. "What are you working on?"

"The kids book."

"Good. I'm very excited about this project. It's a great subject."

"I'm glad you approve."

"I do. And then what?"

"Once this is done I need to finish editing the new manuscript for the press."

"Wonderful! And then?"

"I finish my play."

"Excellent. I can't wait to read it. And after that?"

"I finish my coffee." I take the mug out of her hands and hold it tightly.

She raises an eyebrow at me. "Touchy."

"Did you need something?"

"Just seeing what you're doing."

"I'm writing. Isn't that what you wanted me to do?"

"Yes. But I'm making certain you're really writing and not just commenting on Facebook."

"Facebook can be very stimulating."

"True, but it's not writing." She taps my laptop. "This is." Rising from her seat she smiles at me. "Carry on."

I set my mug on the table and start typing again, but I've lost my train of thought so I have to pause for a moment. Reaching for my mug, I realize it's gone.


Saturday, October 22, 2011

Introducing the newest Medusa's Muse author

Right now I am preparing to edit a brand new manuscript from a brand new Medusa's Muse author. This is why I created a book publishing company: discovering new authors and fresh voices with a passionate story to tell. I've got my reading glasses on, my lap-top battery fully charged, a fresh cup of coffee, the manuscript opened in Word and "track changes" turned to "on." My muse is eagerly peering over my shoulder watching as I type notes inside the pages on my screen. Eventually she'll get a little bored; she finds editing tedious. But for now, she's just as fixated on this brand new Medusa's Muse book as I am.

The writer is Shannon Drury, author of The Radical Housewife. Click the link to explore her blog and get a taste of her writing. She's fabulous. A feminist housewife and mother living in Minnesota, and president of the Minnesota chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW). Her story is exactly the type I look for. It's honest, funny, passionate, and the author doesn't quiet fit within any category. If she's a housewife, how can she call herself a feminist? She gets criticism from both conservatives and liberals, which means she's perfect for my Muse.

Of course, I'll get a lot more editing done if my daughter would leave me alone for more than 10 minutes at a time. 

Monday, October 17, 2011

Depressed? Enter a Drag King contest.

It was time to do something drastic. I've been living with depression for months and have had trouble writing even the simplest sentence. My press is languishing, despite the fact I've signed a new author, and my Muse is so bored she's threatening to move to Mongolia just for something to do. So I entered a Drag King contest.

The event was hosted by our local chapter of PRIDE to raise money for their community grants program. The theme was "Marie Antoinette" and the hosts of the event wore elaborate 17th century French gowns with oversized powdered wigs. The stage manager wore a man's suit in the same style, complete with powdered wig and powdered face. The audience came in costume, some inspired by the theme and others simply celebrating Halloween. My husband wore a kilt and Valkyrie outfit, torpedo boobs, braids, horned helmet and all. I wore a blue velvet frock coat with lace cuffs and my shiny black boots, my hair slicked back. And then I drew a mustache and goatee using a .99 Wet and Wild eyeliner pencil. With my little round glasses I felt more "Sergeant Pepper" than French Revolution.

I performed to Depeche Mode's "Martyr" which gave me lots of opportunity to interact with the audience. Kind of sexy, very danceable, the song is all about giving yourself completely to love, even if it destroys you.

"I've been a martyr for love
And I will die in the flames
As I draw my last breath
As I close in on death
I will call out your name"

So much drama to work with! It was great. The audience cheered and waived dollar bills at me, tucked them in my boots and down my shirt, swooned when I knelt at the feet of one woman, laughed when I used my mic as a... lets just say prop. I had so much fun lip syncing and dancing it was hard not to leap on tables (they were plastic. it would have been a bad way to end my routine).

Judging was done by audience cheers, and the cheers were split between me and another woman in drag. Because it was so close, we had a dance off. I was already winded from my performance, now I had to dance one-on-one with a 24 year old girl who could dance circles around my tired 44 year old ass. I just leapt all in, acting cocky and sexy and wild.

And I won.

My Muse has agreed to stick around just in case I do something this much fun again.

And now I can't wait to get back to work on my play.

And start editing this new manuscript.

And blog more.

Yes, dancing in drag has definitely fired up my creativity.