Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Book Title

I'm often asked how I choose the absolutely correct title for my books. This book about lupus is no different. 
I wrestled with several phrases, all of which sounded not quite right."Living with Lupus" sounds lame, and I'm sure there are several books out there with that title. (Note to reader: Titles are NOT copyrighted. Anyone can publish any book with the title: Gone With the Wind, or To Kill a Mockingbird. Of course, any astute reader would recognize the rip-off right away. So that's not too common a practice.)
"Life in the Lupus Lane" was also considered, then aside.
Other titles with great alliteration followed, although I can't remember them right now.  That's how memorable they were.
Finally, my publisher came through with the perfect title. Somebody at some point said, or wrote, "Life isn't fair. You have to play the hand you're dealt." That led to "The Cards We're Dealt."
Perfect. That describes lupus perfectly.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Hope I Can Remain Lupus-Flare Free

I'm going to attend a writer's conference on Saturday. For the past few days, I've been gathering up materials to haul into the venue so I can (a) take notes during speakers' presentations, and (b) sell my books in the Author's Bookstore. Of course, I don't have all my books here at home; some are "out of stock" meaning I haven't ordered any new books in a while. So I'll have to do with Sabbath's Gift, Sabbath's House, Forces of Nature and two or three copies of The Cards We're Dealt.
I've also created a three-page "flyer" to insert in each book, listing all my books, along with a business card.
So I'm taking things slowly, being organized, so I won't have to rush around on Friday night, looking for things. 
Yet I'm a bit apprehensive.  It's about a 40 minute drive, in heavy traffic, and I need to register around 8:00 AM. Knowing my body as I do, I will arrive kind of frazzled from doing battle with other cars/trucks/buses on the Interstate.
Then there comes the setting up of my books in The Bookstore at the venue, where I don't have to be there to sell my books; instead, others will be present to take the credit cards/money, etc, so I can feel free to attend the speakers' presentations.
So far, what's the problem? I hear you ask.
Well, I'm the kind of person who goes "all out" in learning something from a writers conference.  Talking to others "of my kind" (authors) is a real "high" for me, with my adrenalin running a marathon through my body. I concentrate so thoroughly it's a wonder my head doesn't explode.
So I'll focus, focus, focus. Leave one meeting room for a presentation in another. Then lunch, then more meetings, presentations, until evening, when I pack up my books and head home.
I'll be shaking with fatigue. I know that ahead of time. Last Saturday was no exception, as I enjoyed myself thoroughly at a readers group tea. Books were traded and I came home with six. So many books, so little time.  I shook all the way home and when I finally got into the house, I peeled off my clothes and put on my nightgown. Bedtime was very early.
So, this is my plan for Saturday. Prepare ahead of time, expect the traffic to be horrible, focus on all the presentations, meet other authors and wanna-be authors, enjoy myself and then pack up and head home.
No doubt I'll be shaking about half-way through the conference. Not visibly, no. Just an unsteadiness on my feet (note to self: wear sturdy shoes. To heck with trying to look fashionable.) and an inner trembling that gets my attention. I'll come home, peel off my clothes and put on my nightgown. Bedtime very early.
Not exactly a writer's glamorous life, huh?
But I wouldn't miss it for the world. "Ya pays your money and ya takes your choice." I'm prepared to pay for this adventure with a couple of days of feeling lousy and fatigued.
That's the way my lupie world works. How about yours?

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Independence Day

So you say you have lupus and can't go out in the sun?  What to do instead? If you're in N Central Texas where a 95 degree high is considered a cool front, you'll want to stay in under the air conditioning.  And pray it holds itself together until say, November, when most of us switch to "heat." 
But I wanna go to the lake with everybody, I hear somebody whining.  (We do that a lot, you know.  Lupies are allowed to whine, at least to each other.) Fine.  Go, with my blessings.  Just don't forget your broad-brimmed hat, your sun block, wear long sleeves and long pants, and try to stay away from the lake or other body of water. I learned the hard way when I went to the beach with my daughter in CA.  I wore long pants, long sleeves, a broad-brimmed hat and sun screen.  I sat under a big beach umbrella. 
So imagine my surprise when I discovered later that day that I had broken out into a very bad rash.  Not a sunburn, but a rash.  Too much sun.  Huh? I learned a bit too late that even if you're covered up, protected as much as you can be, the sun shining on the sandy beach and/or the lake or ocean, reflects back on you, the body who is trying to do everything right.
So I hope you have a wonderful Independence Day, but be careful out there.  Me? I'm staying inside the air conditioned house.