I’m back …

ready or not … welcome to a brand new year here at blog-central.

My Christmas posts have been stored in my private archives and will return next December. From here we go on to newer, and hopefully, better things.

The blogesphere for instance …

There are great blogs that give us sound advice, guide us through the bramble towards our final goal of being published, or encourage us when we get down.


Ten truly funny blogs

I subscribe to dozens of blogs, read half of them and comment on a half-dozen more. I love to comment on Sheri Degrom, Patti Yager Delagrange, Sherry Isaac, my first and best blog friend, Christi Corbett, to name only a few.  Later Bloom with Debra Eve is the most inspirational and encouraging for this “late” blooming baby boomer.

The two I find the most helpful are Writers in the Storm and Anne B. AllenSaving WITS and Anne is like compiling a great reference book for writing, publishing, blogging, tweets and twitters and how to live with any and all of the above.

You want to know the ten pitfalls of a writer’s life, six exercises to do to keep your brain limber, eight signs you’re a writer, nine signs your family wishes you weren’t a writer, or the golden rule of all authors … publish or perish?  Well then, go to my sidebar and visit my friends. You’ll be glad you did.

I do not dispense nuggets of knowledge or give advice for two reasons.

  • One, I am still a student of this writerly world and continue to learn from those who have paved the way before me.
  • … and two, I’ve actually gotten lost driving home.

If you ever see me in the supermarket, don’t get on my line. The same holds true for all other types of lines … go to any other but the one I am standing on.


Maxine on Pinterest

The scene:  a supermarket. Time of day: I’m late for lunch with a friend.

I see two lines … one has two women with shopping carts stuffed with groceries, kids holding soda containers, husbands in tow with motor oil or gallons of water. They are met by a friend who only needs a couple of things and cuts into the line.

On the other line is a lone couple with a half dozen things that are already being scanned.

Naturally, I get on the line with the lone couple.

They check out, but she can’t find her card. While she is looking he adds two packs of gum. She finally finds her credit card and it’s declined.

“Evelyn, didn’t I tell you that one was cancelled last month.”

“Sorry, Harry, I forgot.”

Evelyn blushes and takes out another card. Harry shakes his head. “Write a check.”

Evelyn searches her suitcase-sized bag for her checkbook, fishes out a pen, fumbles with the chain that holds her reading glasses, and writes a check. The check verifier jams. Harry looks at the receipt and questions the price of an item.

“Hey, that was ninety-six cents not one-sixty.”

The manager comes over and scans the product.

“Sorry, but you picked up the one that is one-sixty.”

“Hell of a thing.” He grumbles. “Take it off.”

Another manager is called to void the item and the order is totaled again. In the mean time poor Evelyn had put her checkbook and pen back into her bag.

The two women with tons of grocers, five kids, two husbands, the friend that cut in line and two people that came after them are already in the parking lot on their way home.

The moral of this story is, whatever I tell you, do the total opposite.

Tell me … what accomplishments have you completed thus far in this newest of years? 

How have you weathered storms, rain, sleet or dead of night?

fOIS In The City



Filed under Ramblings

21 responses to “I’m back …

  1. OMG, Florence. Welcome back! Love your story and I so relate to it. Not because I have a propensity to pick the wrong line. Rather because I have a propensity to run late and underestimate the time it will take to run through the grocery story as if I were a competitor on Guys Grocery Games.

    I’m not the couple with Checkout Challenge Syndrome.I am the one who counts items in the express lane and puts stink eye on items over the max by more than five. I also get so dang peeved when someone in front of me waits until their purchases are totaled to begin to write the check.

    Inner me thinks. “Did you not know the date, the name of this store, and how to sign your freaking name until now? Oh, good grief. This is not a handwriting competition. Scrawl it out there.”

    Outer me mumbles: “God grant me the Serenity to…

    I have got to get back on the blog wagon. Especially since you were so kind and listed my blog in your sidebar. Yes. I will get those drafts finished and scheduled this week.

    Golden Heart entry deadline (Made it! YAY!) knocked me off track through mid December. The Holidays knocked me into the weeds through early January. And [kazoo trill, please] the sale of our monster house has had me dust bunny and Goodwill sacks deep in packing for our new, downsized home.

    I’ve begun to miss playing blog comments, tho’. And, with two weeks to go until our scheduled move, I’m down to sorting and packing the kitchen. I saved it for last because I have a secret romance brewing with Elf(a).


    • Gloria, I miss you when you are otherwise occupied. Since what has occupied you has been so productive, however, I applaud you discipline to leave the blogging stuff behind and get down to bare tacks.

      Good luck with the submission for the Golden Heart. That is very exciting.

      And my sympathies and prayers are with you for the move. Moving for me is like a death in the family. Yuck. Thanks for coming back to me 🙂


  2. Ah, Florence, thank you for mentioning me and I ALWAYS read your posts as well. My accomplishments so far in the 15 days of the New Year? Well, I sent in my query letter and synopsis to Chuck Sambucchino to edit. It’s for my fifth novel and I’m hoping that after having my first 100 pages professionally edited that between doing that and having Chuck’s advice, maybe someone will be interested in my book. The work will begin in February, sending out query letters and then WAITING. Aack! But I’m sort of looking forward to it.


    • Always happy to mention good blogs, Patti … and yours is one of them. That is the best news. Chuck has a stellar rep and I am sure that his edits and advice will steer you in the right direction.

      Here’s a wish for the new year that you find a happy home for your books 🙂


  3. Hi, Florence! I always read your blog and Patti’s! So far this year, I’ve begun the edits on my book. Always scary. I have a new short collection coming Feb 1; so that was up right after the first of the year. Picked up a new car. Took the poos to the groomer.

    I pick the wrong line too. Sigh.


    • Great news, Vicki … keep those stories coming to us. I look forward to the new short collection in February. You did a lot … the edits, a car and the pooch? Great work !!

      Ah, yes … someone has to get on the wrong line 🙂


  4. Happy New Year. I’m slogging through my sagging middle both literal and literary, which I guess is better than standing behind you at the grocery store. :0 Actually if I stood behind you I might get rid of the first one.
    So glad you’re back. I’ve missed you and your ramblings


    • Same to you, Shelley … slog away. Your new place and your new book are both worth the effort. The literary is the one to go with … the literal sagging we can dump.

      I missed being here and thanks for the visit 🙂


  5. christicorbett

    Yay, Florence is back!

    *does happy dance and toasts your return with my coffee mug*

    So happy to have your posts again, and this one I especially enjoyed because my hubby and I make a game of choosing the least horrible grocery line, and then if it turns out to be slow we mutter sweet nothings in each other’s ear like “You chose poorly on this line”, etc… 🙂

    Looking forward to your next post!

    Christi Corbett


  6. Welcome back! I’ve missed your wonderful humor. You and I have lots in common. I’m always behind that couple. And I belong to an entire tribe with such a bad sense of direction people say we can get lost in a phone booth.

    Thanks much for the shout out for my blog! (It’s Anne R. Allen, by the way) The R stands for Rogers, my grandmother’s maiden name. Her first name was Hazel, so I was kinda grateful I got Rogers instead. Kids called me “Roy Rogers” but I figured that was better than “Witch Hazel”. 🙂


    • Whoops, never made that mistake before, Anne R. At least the link address is correct.

      Yep, directionally challenged is my middle name. I’m so glad to be back, Anne … I love taking the breaks and then I love coming back 🙂


  7. Aw, welcome back, Florence and thanks for the shout out! Love the shopping cart story…happens to me every time :). My biggest accomplish in the New Year so far — resisting the urge to make resolutions! Seriously, in the grand scheme of things, January 1 is a completely arbitrary day.


    • Thanks, Debra. You are truly one of my favs and deserve the shout out. I gave up resolutions with guilt a while ago. I’ll life with my imperfections and let past transgressions fade in my memory 🙂


  8. Sooo excited to have you back! Your posts always brighten my day 🙂 Hmm, what have I accomplished? Planning the blogfest and blog tour for the release of 18 Truths this month was been a pretty big task. Not much time for anything else, I’m afraid.


  9. Welcome back, Florence! I obviously have the same line-picking skills as you do. LOL!


  10. I’m not big on dispensing advice either — for all the reasons you said.I hang out with people and observe what they do, and support them when I can. There is too much advice out there anyway.


  11. Florence: I’m late to your homecoming but count me in as being ever so pleased to have you back. Thanks ever so much for the shout-out within your blog and it’s always nice to see my name on a reputable blogger’s sidebar. I’m going back up top and browse a couple blogs that look interesting. Welcome home, my friend.


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