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Point of view…

A couple of months ago an author on Facebook posted that she was thinking about writing a future book in the First person point of view and asked for opinions on the idea.   I learned a couple of things from the comments that followed.

The most important is that, wow, people are rude in their bluntness.  I know that I shouldn’t be surprised but it amazes me that people are so up front about being rude.  These aren’t direct quotes just the general sentiment that I remember reading a few months ago.

– Yuck!  I’d never read it.

– I hate books like that.

– I put books back if I pick it up and it starts out with ‘I’.

…and my personal favorite

– I’ll never read your books again if you do this.

The second thing I learned is that some people like first person and third person equally, some favor third person but are okay with first and those that dislike first person seem to really hate it.   I was really surprised by this, I’d never heard that people disliked that point of view.   Well, actually I remember a gal that I worked with griped about the Stephanie Plum books and the first person POV.  Of course, she griped about everything so I didn’t really take her seriously at the time.

I’ve written my stories in first person for as long as I can remember.   At first, I think it was easier to write because I could put a bit of myself into the character.   When I read books I enjoy that connection with the main character, there’s a certain level of honesty or intimacy that you feel privy too.  That being said, I can’t really ever say that I have disliked reading a book in third person.  I’ve actually stopped reading a book or two that were in first person.  I definitely stopped reading one that had first person point of view but for different characters.  It was a gritty, paranormal sort of story and one point of view was seen through the eyes of an evil entity and it creeped me out.  Every time the point of view shifted  to the shadowy bad guy I’d put the book down and eventually I never went back to it.

I did some research today on advantages and disadvantages of different points of view.  I am seriously thinking about revising my current work in progress from first person to third person.  I’d been having issues with the inner voice parts, as opposed to my dialogue, of which I have too much.  This WIP was written during NaNo so I knew at the time that a lot of the dialogue would get slashed during revisions.  

I think part of my problem with this story is that the main character is doing things I’d never do.  Writing from third person may make it easier for me to connect with the characters.  Also, writing from a male point of view would be new to me and possibly increase my investment in these characters.  I’d love to revive the story and get it properly revised.

Here are a few of the articles and blog posts that I read today, in no particular order.

WHAT POINT OF VIEW SHOULD YOU USE IN YOUR NOVEL? 

What are the advantages and disadvantages of writing in first person?

Writing in First Person

First or Third Person: Which Point of View Is Best? 

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Satellite…

I’ve felt frazzled all week and to be honest the week wasn’t that bad.  Boo was getting over her cold and Sully ended up with an ear infection.  I am not thrilled about either of them being sick but it’s not the end of the world either.  Those two things along with the several other annoying things that happened this week really should not have bummed me out as much as I have been this week.

Today, I was in the car with my sister and I felt like I was about to come out of my skin.  After a few moments I looked at her and said, “Are you extremely stressed out?”  She said yes, and that she’s so upset about everything going on with her husband.  I told her that she needed to let it go because I felt like I was coming apart.  “I don’t know if I want to cry, puke or slap someone,” I told her, leaving out the part where I really wanted to slap her.   It would have been completely uncalled for but I still think it would have made me feel better.

This sensitivity thing, where I pick up on other people’s feelings, is not a new thing.  I’ve done it since I was a kid, I didn’t really understand it then, not that I really understand it now.  It was kind of freaky when I was a kid and I tried to ignore it as much as possible.  As I got older I’ve found it more and more difficult to ignore.  It seems like the days that I ignore it end up being like today where I end up extremely agitated and emotional.

When I was in college I remember talking to my dad about it.  I had just come back from visiting a friend from out of state and I was telling him how I had discovered that I didn’t really like to fly.  In our conversation, I started picking apart what I meant.  It wasn’t a fear of flying or of heights, or the length of the flight.  It wasn’t being stuck in our seats or the tiny restroom.  There weren’t any obnoxious people sitting around me or a crying baby on the flight.   I finally got around to talking about the plane being full and the constant buzzing.  After talking a bit more I realized the buzzing sound wasn’t the plane or people talking but it was all of the emotions of the people on the plane.  Right away he says, “You’re like a big satellite.  You collect all of these emotions that people are sending out.”  He said that he’d seen me doing that since I was a kid.  It was nice to hear, I kind of thought I was a bit nutty.

This all probably does sound a bit nutty.  I am not saying I am psychic or that I have secret powers.  I am not Jean Grey, I can’t read your mind or move objects with mine.   I’d love to move objects with my mind, if I could.  I mean honestly I think that would be the most awesome power.  I have no desire to read your mind though, you can keep your pervy thoughts to yourself, thank you very much.

Kimcanyn (2)

Also, I just discovered that this is a thing that other people experience, it’s normal not a disorder.  I am a highly sensitive person, which anyone that knows me and has seen me cry at commercials or some other random thing already knows.  When I was a kid I was told I was ‘too’ sensitive, that I needed to toughen up.  I did toughen up and I am still highly sensitive.  I am ok with that.

Check out Dr. Elaine Aron’s website to get more information on being highly sensitive.  If you are wondering if you might be highly sensitive there is a self-test here.   You can also check out the November 2012 issue of O, The Oprah Magazine, for a small article and a great version of the test.  This test gathers your answers to give you a result along with some helpful information.

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Phase 2:  Day 13
 
I still haven’t walked.  I need to get back to it soon, hopefully this weekend.
 
I’ve been keeping up with my strength exercises.   My upper body workout is going really well, I am now doing three sets of 12 repetitions.  I added tricep dips this week.
 
My morning and night routines are actually going really well.
 
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Huh…

Sully’s ear is worse.  He woke up in the night with it really hurting, I called for an appointment as soon as the doctor’s office opened.  His appointment was for 2:30pm, we arrived early to fill out new patient forms since our doctor has recently changed offices.  We waited over half an hour past the appointment time in the waiting room and nearly 45 minutes in the exam room.  We saw the doctor for about 15 minutes and then we were on our way.  Luckily our doctor is awesome or I would be seriously annoyed.

I saved annoyed for the pharmacy.  I was told it would be about 30 minutes and that I would get a text on my phone.  Boo and I wandered the store and after an hour I finally went back to the pharmacy.  The prescriptions were filled but the assistant hadn’t entered them into the computer so that I would get the text.  So, I left the house at 1:45, dropped Sully off back at home, then on to the pharmacy and finally home at about 6:00.

cats-talking

 

Totally not the day I was planning on, but I am so glad that Sully will be feeling better soon.  The doctor put a wick type of thing in his ear because his ear is so swollen.  She prescribed antibiotic ear drops that also have a numbing agent in them, the wick allows the drops to get down to where the infection is otherwise the drops would just sit on the outside.  Of course, with the wick in his ear Sully can’t hear a dang thing and he’s talking really quietly.  Most of the day has been a chorus of ‘what?’, “huh?”, “are you talking to me?”, “did you hear what he said?” and my favorite the complete misunderstanding because we heard something completely different.  It’s been interesting.

 

Phase 2:  Day 10

Since I wasn’t home most of the day there was no walk.  Although I did wander around Walmart waiting for the pharmacy to fill the prescriptions.

I added another exercise to my lower body workout.

My routines are going well.

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Chaos…

Today had moments of complete chaos.  There was no huge thing that caused an issue but many little things that added up to a frustrating day.

Here is an email to Sully after he asked how I was doing.

“I am trying to get the last of the Christmas decorations packed up but I need ziploc bags.  The bags are with the stuff that got thrown in the laundry area.  I can’t get to it because all of the decorative boxes are stacked in there.  The boxes are stacked in there because the hamper thing* is all wobbly.  The hamper is wobbly because the people that made it used bolts instead of wood screws and so you can’t really tighten the bolts to anything.  I wanted to use ‘L’ brackets which I couldn’t find.  After a half hour of searching I finally found a pack of them. 
I put them on and it helped a lot but the hamper is still wobbly.  It needs another set of brackets attaching the crossbars to the sides to stop the lateral wobble.  I have another pack of brackets but they are missing now too.   We are working on school but the hobby room* is a mess.  I had to clear off the sewing table for Boo to do school there.  I cleared of Foley’s crate to put the sweats and shirts that I have to work on for Boo’s pjs.  Meanwhile, the Christmas stuff is still all over the place because I needed those stupid bags.  Ahhhhh!

I ended the email with, “It’s funny but frustrating.  I will be ok, just frazzled.”

That was in the morning, here is another email from the afternoon.

Sorry.  I’ve been dealing with more of the same stuff today but now the smoke detectors are going off.   That means I will have to stop at Home Depot before Boo’s dance class to buy batteries.   LaLa called and has been texting.  Oh, and get this, I was trying to set up the Paypal account but I can’t because I don’t have the account number for the new savings.  Every paper I have only has the last four digits on it.  I am going to have to go to a branch to get the full account number.  I will feel like a total airhead doing that.  I’ve got a bandage on my index finger* so texting is difficult and my phone is locked so the screen won’t turn.  I can’t figure out where to go to fix it.  By itself, none of these things are a big deal but altogether with the stuff from this morning just make me feel like screaming.
 
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So, yeah, none of these things are huge issues.  Each one individually would be annoying but not a big deal.  Except maybe the smoke detectors going off that is always a pain.  I had to bring in the ladder to unplug a couple of them until I could get new batteries.  

There were a couple of points there that I thought screaming was my only option.  Luckily I was able to take a step back, followed by a deep breath and then I was able to start handling things one by one.  Once I started getting things taken care of, then I didn’t feel so overwhelmed.  It’s always good to break things down into smaller steps.  It allows you to put it all in perspective.  One thing at a time, then move on to the next thing.

I am happy to report that after the initial ‘L’ brackets were installed I was able to stack the decorative boxes back on the hamper frame.  Boo and I were able to get schoolwork done with out too much hassle.  I was able to pack up the boxes of Christmas decorations and move them into the garage (There’s still more to do *sigh*).  I bought batteries at Home Depot and I will install them tomorrow.  I found the information about the savings account.  My finger is almost healed thanks to the bandage.  I fixed my phone, thank you to Google for help finding the answer.

*Notes*

Hamper thing = It has a wood frame with a off white canvas bag that slides out on a frame.  We use it for kitchen towels and other household type linens to be washed.  It sits at the end of our hallway in front of the linen closet.

Hobby room = The third bedroom; Sully’s hobby room, my craft closet and Boo’s school room.

Index finger = It’s been really cold and dry here.  The dryness coupled with the dust of the crates and decorations the end of my index finger split.  It was tiny like a paper cut and oddly enough it hurt as bad a paper cut.  I put some triple antibiotic cream covered it  with gauze and then wrapped some tape on it.  Of course then the end of my finger was like three times as big, it looked like a cartoon.  I am only telling you this so you understand why texting was a pain.

Phase 1: Day 9…
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The day was chaotic and I didn’t  have the chance to walk.  Although I did map our trek through Home Depot and we walked 0.2 miles.  So that’s something.

Lower body workout  went well, I added leg curls and leg extensions.  I decided to do just one set of 15 repetitions, just to get into the new routine.

Water = 32 ounces.  It’s really cold today, with the cold and the chaos I didn’t get to drink much water.  I definitely need to be better about this tomorrow.

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Down the line…

I continually amazed at how an incident at point A can cause an effect at point H or even further down the line.  It makes me think about how my actions might be affecting others including people I don’t even know.

This all started because my sister, Lily, was going to stop by today.  She was waiting for her grandson’s father to come pick him up, the mom and dad are not together.  Lily had another stop to make on the way to my house.  She calls me at about thirty minutes before the time that she was supposed to stop by saying that the dad still hadn’t arrived.  Thirty minutes later I get a text that he just called her.  He had just awakened, I was so annoyed on her behalf.  He lives about an hour away, so here my sister had been waiting on him for nearly two hours.  

My sister took her grandson with her to make the other stop she had to make and then returned home to wait for the dad.  She was quite flustered when she got to my house apologizing for being late.  I was fine, I had a few things that I was doing around the house.   I was annoyed though for her sake.  I really thought that was rude.  He apologized and it was accident, I get that.  I possibly would have been less annoyed if he was a more responsible guy all around.  He’s one of those ‘it’s all about me’ type of guys.  But, I am getting off topic here, kind of…

He overslept and didn’t make it to my sister’s house when he said he would.  That caused my sister to be late, which affected her friend who was moving that day and was waiting for Lily to pick up some boxes and furniture.  It affected me, to a lesser extent, but upset Lily because she was making me wait.  I got annoyed because Lily was upset.  After Lily left my house she was heading to the hospital to meet with the social worker regarding her husband’s medical care.  Lily had to reschedule that meeting for a later time, so the social worker was affected and possibly her other appointments as well.

It’s important that we think about what we are doing and how we are doing it.  Nobody is perfect and we all have our bad days.  For some people, though, they’ve made it a habit to not think beyond themselves and what they are doing.  My parents were pretty good about talking to us about consequences of our actions whether they be small or big.  I guess I am ahead of the game there.  In the future, I will definitely be thinking about how what I am doing would affect someone down the line.  

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Nothing going on…

My short rant for the week…

I am a stay at home mom, in charge of teaching homeschool, housekeeping, pet caretaking, landscaping, and pretty much everything else that goes on here.  Yet time and time again, people who very well know how much I do here but act like I just sit around watching TV.  No one has ever said anything straight out but there is definitely the air of ‘you don’t have a job so your schedule isn’t important.’  

It makes me crazy.  I offer to help and then I have to work around their schedule.  No one even asks me what will work for me.  Half the time I show up at the time they tell me and then I have to wait around for them.  I spend so much time standing around thinking of all of the stuff that I need to do at home.  It’s so rude and disrespectful.  It seriously makes me want to scream.  

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It’s about time…

It’s Tuesday and that means that Sully is working in the office today.  Work has been a bit stressful for him over the last few weeks.  Every year his company threatens lay offs and everyone freaks out between September and December.  It’s a bit ridiculous how they use fear to control I mean, motivate the employees.  It doesn’t help that every year they host a huge employee retreat in Hawaii.  Supposedly it’s to reward people for sales and other accomplishments but it’s the same people every year.  This year they didn’t even try act like they were taking the top people.  Usually the top person from each area is invited, this year, they combined the top people from three areas and picked one name.    

So every year, either right before the retreat or right after they get back the lay- off talk starts.  About the same time each year, they shuffle around the bigwigs, some go but most of them just get a new title.  The whole thing is frustrating.

Sully came home annoyed, their whole group is giving up a telecommuting day.  It’s a bummer because it means we will be spending more money on gas and lunches.  It’s not a huge amount but the 25 mile one way trip adds up. 

The cost is a bummer, for sure but the real issue is the time.  Sully and I really treasure the time we have together and his being able to telecommute several times a week is one of the best things about his job.  We know firsthand that life is unpredictable and time is fleeting.  You never know what tomorrow will bring and that you have to make the most of now.  Nobody looks back on their life and thinks ‘I wish I had worked more.’   We are confident that we will be able to look back and feel comfortable that we took advantage of the time given to us together.  My parents met when they were 14 years old and got married at 22 and were happy until my mom passed at the age of 65.  Sully and I didn’t meet until I was 30, we both kind of feel like we have a lot of time to make up.

It’s just more incentive for me to write my book so he doesn’t have to worry.