Discombobulated

Discombobulated is a cool word, somewhat archaic, yet surprisingly current. At least for me. It explains how I’m feeling—confused, disoriented.

I’m trying to get back into the routine of blogging, visiting, and writing. For the last week I’ve been making the rounds of blogs (hi, friends!), and I’m working on a WIP. The latter has been going well. I’ve finished a short story I wrote for a murder-mystery anthology. Currently, I am in the clean up and trim phase. I need to cut 2,500 words and then share it with my critique partners. I’m excited about the story and it feels good to be focused on a project again.

On the home front, life is less settled. I live in Pennsylvania, where half of our state has reopened to the “yellow phase” of doing business. My county is not one of those and has been slated to reopen on June 4th.

The problem?

Many counties—mine included—have decided to defy our governor’s orders and reopen on May 15th. Things have gotten f-ugly with state vs. counties. To make matters worse, the industry in which I’m employed is governed by the state. Needless to say the whole thing is a mess and I am monitoring day-to-day press conferences as is my employer.

I am discombobulated.

Close up of cat, big gold eyes

Perhaps this explains why I have been reading the same book for over a week. That’s odd for me, especially given the book is fabulous. I’m glued every time I open my Kindle. Yet I find it hard to open my Kindle for my regular evening routine. I’ve been going to bed earlier than usual and sleeping like a log. Being discombobulated is not fun.

I hope it doesn’t last much longer.

white cat lying on back with head tilted back looking at camera

All of that aside, I pray you and your love ones are doing well. Whatever phase of craziness your state is in, look after yourself, your loved ones, and your neighbors. A few months ago, we would have never envisioned this reality but there is no escaping it. If my father were still living, today would be his 98th birthday. I don’t believe he could have ever conceived this in his lifetime. Until a few months ago, I wouldn’t have either.

If you’re discombobulated hold faith that it too will pass.


And if you have a moment while you’re roaming the blogosphere, my good friend Craig Boyack is hosting me today with a closer look at my short story, In Search of McDoogal. I am so discombobulated, I got my wires crossed and thought it was next week—which is why I don’t have a dedicated post directing readers there.

But Craig has rolled out the red carpet for me, and I’d love to send visitors to his blog. If you are not already following him, you’re missing out on entertaining content and a great author. You can find today’s post HERE. Race you to Craig’s place . . .

With Apologies for My Absence

Hello, friends. I hope as I type this, that greeting doesn’t bring crickets. I’ve been gone for a while—over a month to be exact. I’ve popped up online here and there, but my blog has been quiet, and I haven’t been doing my usual rounds.

For that I apologize.

black and white close up of a cat's face, melancholy look

Dealing with the world as it navigates COVID-19 has been rough. I won’t lie. I’m an empath at heart, and have had to shut down and distance myself. Since mid-March, I’ve been working remotely from home (on my day job), and—strange as it may seem—it’s harder than working from my office. There are no interruptions, and I find I don’t take breaks even for lunch, preferring to work straight through. It’s easier to become immersed in a project. I’ve been highly productive, and have developed a new routine. For some reason, working social media into that pattern has been hard. Almost impossible.

But it’s time to adjust to the new normal, and I’m making an effort. Starting now, I hope to return to blogging and visiting, although my regular features may change or take a while to fall into a routine schedule. Before I went offline, I had a number of Wednesday Weirdness posts written ahead. Right now, I’m thinking that feature may change or not as appear as regularly. Just bear with me. As it stands, I’m happy to be back.

So, what have I been up to?

Pretty Siamese cat

Hmm…reading, of course! Since my last Book Review Tuesday post mid March, I’ve read nineteen books and/or novellas—far too many reviews to post. I may try to scatter a few of  them out in the coming weeks as I add new reviews.

I’ve also been invited to submit a short story for an anthology of murder mysteries. I’m knee deep in a story, reworking something I’ve had in the trunk for a while. Did you ever have a tale you loved, but knew it needed work? The story I’m using was written in the 1990s. That’s how long it’s haunted me. I always loved the overall arc, and it’s been fun to work with it again. Stay tuned for more news as the anthology progresses.

In Pennsylvania, we are still on hold. Twenty-four of our counties have reopened to a “yellow stage” but my county is still shut down. That means I’m still under a shelter-in-place order, working remotely from home. Restaurants are only open for delivery or curbside pick-up and non life-sustaining businesses are closed. My biggest outing is going to the grocery store—in which I haven’t seen a roll of toilet tissue since March 17th.

But, hey—I’m back. Or sort of. I’ll be making my rounds this week and in the future. Bear with me as I get my blog back on track. I’ve missed everyone.

In the meantime, tell me what you’ve been up to. I’ve heard news from a few of you—new releases in the works and new publishing contracts—but I’m behind. Drop a line in the comments and let me know what you’ve been doing. If you’ve got a new release or publishing contract, tell me about it. If your WIP is growing, I want to know. If you’ve read a good book and want to recommend it, tell me! Even if it’s just to say “hello,” I’m happy to return the greeting. Let’s chat! 🙂