Tag Archives: anniversary

“Boston Strong” – G&L’s 3rd Birthday

A lot of you might know that I’m from Massachusetts, so you can probably understand that I’ve been glued to the television recently.  The bombing at the marathon and the subsequent shootout and manhunt were hard to avoid, even in Florida.  They were everywhere.  Watching the news teams across half a dozen networks cross-checking with one another, getting things wrong, exaggerating, recanting, apologizing, re-reporting–it was nerve wracking.

Worse?

Waiting on Monday for the phone calls, text messages, and Facebook updates from people that I cared about was agonizing.  But you know what?  It didn’t get easier when I had everyone safe and accounted for.  The people that were affected telling their stories, sharing their fear, and, most of all, helping each other, only made it more important that I stay updated.

When the thousands of photos and video clips flooded the FBI, when people responded and pitched in, and went above and beyond what was called for, I wanted to know more.  I wanted to help.

I’m nowhere near Boston.  I should be, but I’m not.  It’s impossible not to feel helpless when you’re 1500 miles away from the place and people you love in a time like this.  What could I do?  I posted links to the Red Cross on Facebook and urged people to help.

They didn’t need the urging.  Seriously, I’m sure you’ve all seen the reports of people doing everything they could for each other, opening their homes to victims and police officers, feeding and hydrating law enforcement during the manhunt.  It was amazing to me what people will do if given the chance.  Being able to see the good in people in the face of such horror tends to lap at the cynicism in me just a little.

Now, for those of you who don’t think there’s much left to do, that everything is wrapped up and over, you’re wrong.  Those people injured and killed at the marathon are going to have incredible hospital bills, living expenses, and the like.  There’s this charity on InktothePeople.com and there’s one day left to order a “Boston Strong” t-shirt, $15 of the $20 goes to the victims of the marathon bombing.  Ready?

G&L’s three-year anniversary is on Tuesday, and I’m going to ask something of you.  If you’ve ever enjoyed Goggles & Lace, if you still read in spite of my sparse updates, or if you just feel like offering up a random act of charity, order a “Boston Strong” t-shirt.  I would be really moved if any of you ordered one of these t-shirts, a fantastic anniversary gift to G&L.

Be awesome, and pass the link along to others!  There’s one day left!  I already ordered two, one for myself and one for my mother.  I’m excited to be able to wear it around Jacksonville.  Take a lesson from Boston, everyone; it’s only $20.

Thank you all!

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I regret to inform you all…

The contest did not receive enough submissions, even with the extended deadline.  I have a few submissions, but I have yet to decide how to handle them.  So, I’m going to talk to the authors over the next day or two and see where they stand.  I really would have liked to have made this fun little publicity project happen, but maybe it just wasn’t G&L’s time.  Maybe for another event….

In other news, I recently sent my pitch for Resurrection Man to Ruby Lioness Press, and my first few chapters and synopsis were requested.  I sent them off last week and I’m waiting (very impatiently and excitedly) to hear back.  Wish me luck.  =]  In the unlikely event that Resurrection Man gets published, there will be an epic post of unintelligible hysteria to follow. <3

In the meantime, I continue to work in food service and as an AVON representative (see the widget in the sidebar *SHAMELSSPLUG*) to fuel my writing career.  O, how we struggle for our art, ladies and gentlemen.

I love you all, and I’ll soon have a new post schedule up for G&L for this summer.  Probably by Sunday.  In the meantime, please respond to the following poll.  Your input is vital to the future and growth of Goggles & Lace!

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Happy Birthday, G&L!

Today, two years ago, in my crappy apartment with the slanted floor, G&L was born.  At first, I didn’t really have a direction.  I had no plans to be anything more than a fiction dumping ground, and now I have readers and friends that have helped me down my road in writing and in life, and I’m grateful for every single one of you.

In this next year, I plan to have another series up and running, the contest in May finished, and G&L to be its own domain.  In fact, I hope to have all of those things accomplished within the next two weeks.  The year beyond that is a mystery, and I hope you’ll all still be with me as I uncover it.

Now, I want to share something really special with all of you.  This is a gift to G&L from a dear friend.  It made me cry, and I hope you all enjoy it.

***

Dear Goggles and lace,

this is probably the best time to admit that I’m not very good at coming up with decent presents. My family and friends long ago told me not to bother with it anymore. I tend to give people the worst things. Once, I gave my father a heart-attack by being born on his birthday. I’ve given my mother a son with a cracked skull on hers years later and my niece got my deployment letter for her 21st. The list with bad presents could go on with a hangover from hell, a broken heart and a bruised ego, but I think the message is clear as they’ve politely asked me to stop giving gifts altogether. Which is good, as it saves me a lot of hassle and bodily harm, but makes for a rather poor visitor on birthday parties.

What to give a website anyway? I’m not technical, not one bit, so I can’t give you fancy fonts, flashy pop-up messages or even a blog post to wish you a happy birthday. A website might not require such things, even. I think a website just wants to be looked at, to be smiled at or perhaps just taken notice of, and Lord knows I’ve done all of that already. A birthday present should be something unique, I think, hence I haven’t given my father a heart-attack again, nor did I crack my skull twice. Small favours, and all that.

Perhaps it would be best to give my present to your founder, but I think it might just get awkward if I were to stare and smile at Kit for a whole day and night.

There’s nothing I can give you, it seems.

That’s not sad.  It might not even result in Kit arching her eyebrow when I turn up empty-handed like my family and friends do on birthday parties, either. It might be fine, as she specifically told me she didn’t want any presents. But it makes me feel like a right tosser, nonetheless.

So, a gift. I’ve thought about writing you a short story about my life here, but they all ended in deserts, dreams and bouncy castles so that might not be the best idea, either. Instead I will give you this story:

People have said a lot of things about my hands, in days gone by.

When I was younger and far smaller than I am now, people told me my hands were made for metal. Gold, silver, copper, nickel and platinum. Strong hands, made to bend those metals into jewelry, like my father’s. Earrings, necklaces, wristbands and eventually even watches. It always made me feel like a million pounds, because when you’re seven years old, you want nothing more than to be just like your father. And my father was a watchmaker. 
I would observe him, endlessly, while he worked on pieces of metal until they somehow melded into beautiful watches. Some fanciful, worn by ladies down the road, shinning and blinking when the light would hit them just right. Others more practical, plain silver pocket watches, slipped into the breast pockets of gentlemen who walked the halls of parliament. Or so I always thought. 
People would pat my hands and nod whenever I told them I would be the best watchmaker in town. My father would grimace, as if in agony. His eyes told me:please don’t, while his mouth told me, you can be anything you like, boy.

Later, people told me my hands were made for mending wounds. Scrapes, gashes, scratches and torn flesh. Gentle hands, made to heal those wound, like Simon’s. The strong watchmaker’s hands became trained in gentleness. Needle and thread, stringing together those scrapes and gashes until there was nothing left but a thin line and later, a faint scar.
Endless hours of studying, perhaps more than my peers because I’m not unusually bright but instead willing to work hard. Doctors would lean over my shoulders, peering at my hands while they tried to be gentle. The doctors would smile at me, and they would tell me that perhaps I wasn’t a lost cause after all.Good hands, they said. There may be hope for you yet.
People were surprised when I told them I was going to be a doctor. They would blink and smirk, because my father was a watchmaker. My first nickname while in uni was Charity. Everybody knew my parents weren’t the ones paying for my degree, and I studied all day and night, and never managed to hold down a job because of that. It didn’t bother me. My father was the one who smiled this time, saying; yes. You will be a doctorThe best one in town.

Still later, people told me my hands weren’t meant to create things or heal, at all. They were steady, strong and precise. Wielding guns, grenades, blades and knifes. Doctor’s hands, covered in gunpowder.
Endless nights and days, filled with adrenaline and boredom. Hurry up, and wait. I didn’t need to study anymore. Instead I spend my days running a thousand laps, doing push-ups and learning every curve and nuance of my equipment. Gentle doctor’s hands on metal, once more. Gleaming, practical metal which always felt warm to my touch.
Sergeants would look at the picture of a man against a board, fingers tracing over the bullets I had fired into its head and heart, and they would smile. Good hands, they would say. 
Welcome aboard, private.
People were shocked when I told them I was going to be a soldier. They would look horrified and scared, because my father was a watchmaker, and I used to be Charity. My father was never horrified, and I don’t think he was scared, either. Instead he was weary and getting old very fast. His eyes would say; don’t. But his mouth always said; I trust you. Come home, when it’s over.

People have said a lot of things about my hands, in days gone by.

No-one has ever told me my hands were made for typing. That doesn’t bother me, not anymore. I’ve got good hands, steady and gentle, rough and strong. A bit callused on the trigger finger, and discoloration were I used to wear Simon’s ring .They’re nothing special, my hands. They mend wounds, wield guns and make mistakes. And in the middle of the night, they sometimes type.
Words, letters, dots and comma’s. Stringing together thoughts, sometimes at random, other times forming true sentences and even stories. Those stories are never plotted, they always just appear on my screen as if summoned by someone else. They’re full of mistakes, spelling errors and bad grammar, but they always reflect what I was thinking at the time, so that’s at least something.
I’ve never told anyone that I am going to be a writer, because I’m not. Everyone already is a writer, in my eyes. The kid who scribbles down notes in class, the man who writes a shopping list and the woman who fills in forms behind her desk all day. Everyone is a writer, and everyone has got a story to tell.

It hardly matters, what my hands are like. They don’t define who I am or what I do. You’re a writer in heart, mind and soul, perhaps, but not in the way your fingers hit the keyboard.

My hands are just tools now. It’s my brain that thought up this present, in the middle of the night, while I was traveling down a dusty road, in danger of buying yet another sheep. (It makes me laugh how you’ll be the only one outside of my world here, who’ll understand what I’m referencing to, just now.) The first draft of this gift is written on my arm, all wrinkly, wonky lines over faint scars from the times I still fell down stairs and off my bike. New over old, stark black ink over pale white skin. I rather like it.

In the end, that’s all I can give you, Goggles and Lace, and you, Kit. Wrinkly, wonky lines, the un-plotted story of my hands and a lot of spelling errors, bad grammar and mistakes. It might not be a proper gift. And if a proper gift, then a bad one. But sitting in the back of a van, or behind a desk, or in my bunk, a thousand miles away, it’s everything I have.

Happy birthday.

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**Update** Anniversary Anthology Contest News

Salut, loves.  I have some news in several areas today.

  • My sister had a baby.  Yup.  Logan James is here, and super adorable.  The birth wound up being an emergency C-section, but both mama and baby are doing just fine.  Needless to say, since his Easter birth, it’s been crazy busy here.
  • I’ve been sick.  Like, dying sick.  I have a horrible chest cold, allergies, and asthma that are all feeding into each other and trying to kill me.  I’ve yet to recover, but I’m working on it.
  • The news you actually care about:  I did not receive enough submissions to make the anthology happen.  I’m extending the contest until May 1, and if I don’t have enough by then, I’m going to have to call it off.  Don’t be discouraged or afraid to submit to me!  Everyone wins with this arrangement!  Remember, even if you don’t get your story into the anthology, your name and website will still be listed on the index pages!  Share with your writer friends!  I’ll repost the guidelines tonight, and if you have any questions, my email is always open.

Well, back to bed to get better.  Hopefully.  Remember, the anthology submission deadline is now May 1!

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April Approaches!

With the G&L 2nd Anniversary on the horizon, I’d like to announce that, along with the anniversary writing contest, my blog will be sustaining an overhaul.  I still haven’t decided whether or not I will change the layout, but there will definitely be a new post schedule!  And my plan for the 22nd?  GogglesandLace.Wordpress.com will (hopefully) just be GogglesandLace.com!  Excitement!

I’m still calling for submissions, everyone, so don’t forget to send me a short story for the promo contest!  Read more about it!

Also, if you feel up to it, I’ll be Livestreaming progress on the new series due out sometime in April tonight.  8pm EST at www.livestream.com/kitwrites, keep me company!  Ask questions!  Better yet, suggest a title!  Haha.  Looking forward to chatting with all of you!

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Don’t forget! G&L is accepting fiction submissions!

Remember, Goggles & Lace’s second anniversary is coming up!  Anyone interested in submitting some short fiction for the anniversary contest: the submission deadline is April 8th!

Please see this post for more detailed information, and don’t hesitate to email me if you have any questions!

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Big Changes on the Horizon! (an invitation to submit to G&L)

As you know, G&L has been up and down for the last several months.  I’ve been a bad blog-mommy.  But, as I mentioned before, G&L’s 2nd anniversary is coming up in April, and I want you all to be a part of it!

I have some surprises in store for you, and maybe even for me, as I work my way up to April 22nd.  This particular “surprise” though, isn’t going to be much of a surprise, as it requires a bit of forethought.  Ready?  I know you’re ready.

G&L would not have come this far without all of you.  I’m not known for my ability to keep on one thing for any length of time, and if it wasn’t for my readers, G&L would have been one of the many things I would have given up for no apparent reason.  So, for all of you and everyone who promoted the posts here at G&L over the last two years, I want to extend the invitation to enter a small short story contest.

Now, I don’t have the means to pay anyone, keep in mind.  You’d retain all the rights to your work.  This would simply be a means of promoting your writing/blogs/websites through a small short story collection.  (For those of you who have read my collection  Something Peculiar, it would be exactly like that.)

Contest Details:

  • Of the entries, 7 will be chosen to be included in the collection. Submission deadline is April 8, 2012.

  • All submitters that are not chosen will have their names and websites listed on the final page of the ebook and receive a copy of the ebook to use in any promotions they like.  (The object of this ebook is to get our fiction out there, remember.)
  • No corrections or alterations can be made to any entry once its submitted.
  • The ebook will be sent out on April 22, 2012.

Contest Rules:

  • There is no set theme.  The genre must fall in the categories of fantasy, science fiction, or spec fic.  YA or adult fiction are both acceptable.  (Not “adult” fiction, by the way.  Erotica will be discarded.  I have some young readers, and I’d like any submissions to be a strong PG-13 at the worst.)
  • Entries must not exceed 1200 words.
  • If published previously, authors must currently hold the publishing rights to that particular piece of fiction.  I’d rather not get into a copyright battle.  Though, I’d prefer if the entries were not published previously.

Submission Guidelines:

  • Format:*
    • Page Information

      • Margins — 1.5 inches all the way around
      • Font — Courier, Courier New, or other clean monospace serif font from 10-12 pt. (I use 12 pt. Dark Courier.)
      • Line spacing — Double-space
      • Paragraph indent — first line, 5 pt.
      • Header — right justified, contains the following information:Last name/ TITLE/ page#A header does not belong on the title page. Start headers on page two of the actual manuscript. First labeled page number should be 2.
    • Cover page
      • Do not use a cover page with short work, either fiction or non-fiction
    • First page
      • Contact information — Name and address, phone number and e-mail address in the top left corner of the page, single spaced, left-justified
      • Word count — top line, right justified (you’ll have to do this with a table if you’re working with a word processor), either exact count, or rounded to the nearest ten
      • Title — drop down four double-spaced lines, centered
      • by — centered and one double-spaced line beneath the title
      • Name or pen name — centered and one double-spaced line beneath the word by
      • Body of the story or article — drop down two lines and begin.
      • Scene or section breaks — drop down two double-spaced lines, insert and center the # character, drop down two more double-spaced lines, and begin your new scene.
    • Second and subsequent pages
      • Header — should be in the upper right-hand corner of the page, and page number should be 2.
      • Body text — begins on the first line, doublespaced throughout.
  • All files must be in .doc or .odt format.
  • Must be fantasy, science fiction, or speculative fiction.  YA and adult fiction are acceptable.  (Not “adult” fiction.  Erotica will be discarded.  PG-13 rating cap.)
  • All submissions must be sent to gogglesandlace-at-gmail-dot-com with “Anniversary Submission” in the subject field.
  • Judging will begin on April 8, 2012.

Any questions, comments or concerns can be sent to gogglesandlace-at-gmail-dot-com.  Please include “Anniversary Contest Question” in the subject field.  If I missed anything above, please feel free to let me know.  I’ll be happy to make the correction.  =]

 

*  “Format” section borrowed from Holly Lisle.  If you don’t know of her work, check her out.  She’s amazing.

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Announcement & Call for Opinions

Salut!  I’m here for advice this time around instead of being the one to give it.  It’s a nice change of pace when I’m not pretending I know absolutely everything, right?  I feel like maybe this will make me more personable.  =P

No, but seriously.  G&L’s 2 year anniversary is coming up on April 22, and I want to put this out in ample time.  What do you think G&L should do for its 2 year anniversary?  I’m a little torn and kind of frazzled about the whole ordeal.

So, tell me, what should I do to celebrate?  The three best responses will be put into a poll on Febuary 14 (yeah, yeah, Valentine’s Day, I know.  But because I’m a barren old spinster, I’m not observing it) and everyone will be able to take a vote.

So, then, what should G&L do to celebrate two great years on the web?  Don’t be shy!  I love suggestions!

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