WESat (Writing Essential, Saturday), 8/23/14 – Embarrassed

This Week’s Challenge:

Write a true story (prose or poetry) relating an embarrassing situation in which you were involved as a kid.

If any of you want to get involved in the Writing Essential group, you’ll find this challenge and others at http://writingessentialgroup.com/2014/08/23/wesat-august-23-2014-embarrassment/comment-page-1/#comment-591

Once upon a time in Pam/Transamerica Title land, at age 23, I joined a UFO tracking group. That was just before and somewhat after the Travis Walton incident near Show Low, Arizona.

Transamerica Title, aptly known fondly as Training and Transfer, housed their main office on the first two floors of the Transamerica building. The floors above that were filled with law firms. This company, one of the largest title companies in Arizona, didn’t believe in technology, so our receptionist greeted people and also ran the phone switchboard. [For you young readers, a switchboard consisted of plugs and wires. If a call came in, she would route the call to the requested party. She would also eavesdrop.]

I know I mentioned to the leader of the UFO group that I had been on TV, and I might have neglected to tell him that was in high school days. Stupid! Stupid! He picked me as the one to do an interview on Channel 5, 10:00 AM news.

On the day of the interview I took an early lunch, not telling a soul of the destination. Yikes! Never having been in a real studio, this adventure sent my blood pressure soaring. Totally forgetting anything I had knowledge of, having a gadget put on me that I was told was a mike (okay I was expecting a large mike that stood on a pedestal), I was not ready. My only comfort was knowing none of my friends would see this—they were at work.

The anchorman asked me to tell about our UFO research. I asked him what he wanted to know about. We did a little adlib—okay he did the adlib, I answered while wringing my hands. Then, due to my mind being a scared blank, started making up words.

The interview lasted hours, but finally it was over and I went back to the office. Should have called in sick—my colleagues had gone upstairs to a law firm to watch my live performance on television. Never did live down all those words I made up.

WEThurs August 7, 2014: Squeamish, Centipedes

Last Thursday’s Writing Essential’s challenge was to write about what makes you squeamish. If my story makes you squeamish, I want to know all about it.
Beer, the wonderful liquid that kills my pain can be a pain. Middle of night and bladder complaining. Time to get up, take a whiz and wash my hands; always hoping I’ll stay half asleep. Not that night.

I guess everyone has issues with things that go bump in the night. Light turned on, body bumping into walls due to half closed eyes, hoping that whizzing and washing wouldn’t fully wake me, I turned on the faucet. When the centipede crawled out of the drain and I screamed… well I was fully awake.

The only thing handy was an empty beer can on the sink counter. I tried to behead it, but those devils are hard to kill. It ran back down. So I plugged the drain, determined to get some sleep.
No go. There was another one on the wall, directly above where my head would have been resting. Did I mention that centipedes were hard to kill? Needing a hammer, to the garage I went. Knocked a hole in the wall, but I killed that evil creature.

Desperately needing sleep, I climbed under covers, wiggled a lot (I’m a wiggler) and finally dozed off, only to be woken by a burning sensation in a rather delicate part of my leg.

Yep. I slept with a centipede.

Drather sleep with a centipede than a scorpion—done that way too many times.

Writing Essential Saturday. What the writer meant.

We partied hardy during those times. It was the best until the room started spinning, barfing began and the ultimate hangover; making it the worst of times. Perhaps it was foolishness, but we believed blood leaching was the epoch of incredulity.


My apologies to those that love this classic, but I’ve never been able to get through the first few pages, so I have no clue what this story is all about. Shame on me. We own a 2nd edition of, A Tale of Two Cities.

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity…

With Love, Elsie (a book review)

Elsie Cover

Elsie Duggan, near age 88, has seen and experienced life to the fullest. She’s gone through great happiness and joy, and sadly loss and heartaches, yet she’s kept her sense of humor. Her flowing poetry touches the heart as she shares with us the precious love that makes her who she is.

Her book, With Love, Elsie, is an outstanding book of poetry, filled with her life and feelings. She lost her husband a few years back in the physical sense, but is still connected and that shows in her poetry.

I think my favorite is, I Love A Whistling Man, but it’s hard to pick a favorite. This book is for everyone that loves poetry.

With Love, Elsie can be found in either paperback or as an ebook on Amazon.

The paperback link is: http://www.amazon.com/Love-Elsie-Duggan/dp/1500344869/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1406399430&sr=1-1&keywords=with+love%2C+elsie

And the ebook is: http://www.amazon.com/Love-Elsie-Duggan-ebook/dp/B00M5CNSNW/ref=sr_1_2_title_0_main?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1406399430&sr=1-2&keywords=with+love%2C+elsie


Daily, she sat on a ledge overlooking the Painted Desert, pondering the beauty of nature. The colors and textures eased some of her loneliness. Yet, it wasn’t enough.

She was known for her great beautify, loving qualities and wealth, and men would come from far and wide in hopes of becoming her beau. Yet, upon their approach, as they neared her, every one of them would flee in what appeared to be terror.

Often as the winds blew her dark, thick hair, she thought it told her in a wispy breeze that he would come. Her knight in shining armor did not come, and she started doubting herself; thinking that there must be something wrong with her. It certainly could not be all those men.

She sighed, knowing that her loving pets would be her only comfort.



Muddling Through Publishing, Ebook Index

I thought since I covered the Dynamic Table of Contents for a paperback, I should do another post to cover the Table of Contents for an ebook. Keep in mind, I have not yet helped anyone with publishing an ebook, so I could be so very wrong.

Word’s Dynamic Table of Contents doesn’t link to a chapter, so forget about that type of table. (Feel free to interject with thoughts, ideas and knowledge.) It is nice (in an ebook) to be able to click on something in the table of contents and have it link directly there.

Below, I went down to CHAPTER ONE (the beginning of the content) and highlighted CHAPTER ONE. Then, I hit the tab ‘insert’ clicked on ‘bookmark’.
Then, typed in the name (note it doesn’t like spaces) and hit ‘add’ Go the the next title.
Do that for each title and subtitle.
Now, up to your Table of Contents. Highlight Chapter One. Under the insert tab, click on ‘hyperlink’, change the setting to ‘place in this document’, click on Chapter One as shown in the drop down box.
Do that for all of the titles and subtitles, and with luck, you’re done.


Muddling Through Publishing, Part Four

Now to the Dynamic Table of Contents. It’s easy, but the instructions are muddy. I accidentally figured this out—pure luck, but what a wonderful tool. As Elsie changed her mind, deleted or added something, the table tracked the changes.
If (as in Elsie’s case) the interior is already written, insert a Dynamic Table of Contents.
Since Word defaults everything (sometimes) to body text, and the “Romance” catagory and the “Poems” are all in body text, the Table will look like this (maybe).
Change the catatory (Romance) to level 1 and the poems for that catagory to level 2. Right click on Romance, click on paragraph in the drop down box and change the level to 1, so the same for the poems, but make them level 2.
Now, click on the table of contents. A tab at the top allows you to update the table. Cick on the tab. It will look like this. Don’t worry that all the pages are on page 1 because they are. If I had put a page break between each poem, it would have shown a different page for the special poem. Later, if you switch things around, and you click on the tab, you can update the entire table.
Well, I’m done. After you have it (hopefully) perfect, open an account with CreateSpace and follow their instructions. I’ve been impressed with the ease of publishing on their site. When you download the interior, you can view is as it should look in the book, and you can re-do it to your hearts content.

Hope this all helps. You can click on the pictures for a larger view. Feel free to add more learning input or ask questions.