If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com.

April Interviews

4/07 Edith Maxwell, A Changing Light
4/14 M. E. Hilliard, The Unforgivness of Ravens
4/21 Grace Topping, Upstaged by Murder
4/28 Laura Jensen Walker, Hope, Faith, and A Corpse

Saturday WWK Bloggers

4/10 Jennifer J. Chow
4/28 Kait Carson

Guest Blogs

4/03 Saralyn Richard


Martha Reed's "Death by GPS" will appear in the Spring 2021 issue of Suspense Magazine, which will be released in the second week of April. Congratulations, Martha!

Susan Van Kirk has a new audiobook, A Death at Tippitt Pond, that will be released this month. Marry in Haste will be released in May by Harlequin Worldwide Mystery, as will Death Takes No Bribes in September. Congratulations, Susan.

Congratulations to Martha Reed. Her short story, "The Honor Thief" was chosen for the 2021 Bouchercon Anthology, This Time For Sure. Hank Phillippi Ryan will edit the volume, which will be released in August at the time of the convention.

Margaret S. Hamilton's short story, "Killer Weeds," appears in the January 20 edition of Texas Gardener's Seeds: From Our Garden to Yours. Congratulations, Margaret, who, if you follow Facebook know, is a superb gardener herself!

Congratulations to Jennifer J. Chow for garnering a 2021 Lefty Nomination for Best Humorous Mystery Novel. We're crossing our fingers for Jennifer!

Congratulations to Paula Gail Benson whose "Reputation or Soul" has been chosen for Malice Domestic 16: Mystery Most Diabolical anthology to be released this spring.

KM Rockwood's "Stay Safe--Very Safe" appears in this year's 2020 BOULD anthology. Congratulations, KM!

Margaret S. Hamilton's "Dealing at the Dump" appears in Cozy Villages of Death Fall 2020.

Margaret S. Hamilton's "Black Market Baby" and Debra H. Goldstein's "Forensic Magic" appear in Masthead: Best New England Crime Stories Fall 2020.

Jennifer J. Chow's Mimi Lee Reads Between the Lines (interview on WWK on 11/11) released on November 10.

Annette Dashofy signed with agent Dawn Dowdle of the Blue Ridge Literary Agency. Congratulations, Annette!


Sunday, May 24, 2020

Falling and Getting Up

by Kaye George

I’ve had a few life-altering experiences, as I’m sure most of us have. The most devastating ones have made me feel like the floor has been yanked out from under me. There was no stable place to walk. The earth beneath my feet had opened up and shown me a deep, dark abyss. Nothing was familiar.

That’s what it feels like when I go into depression. When I come out, I realize that there are still colors, and sounds—like birdsong and tree frogs, and bright things—like fireflies, stars, even a moon.

What has often gotten me through depression is the lists I’ve made, at the advice of my therapists. They are lists of what is good in my life.

Okay, so this plague has robbed us, stolen our lives. We are now living in a different historical era than we were a few short months ago. We’re in an unimaginable place. Unfamiliar. Hostile even. For me, I can clearly see that this intruder is out to kill me. I’m in the high-risk age group, and the bad-lung group, plus some mitochondrial stuff that doesn’t help. So I’m on the defensive. Many people don’t have to be so careful, or they think they don’t have to. Some healthy, young people have been fatally stricken, to everyone’s surprise.

Meanwhile, we’re learning to live in this alien landscape. We avoid crowds, or even, my case, most people. We pay attention and make sure everything is clean. We buy or make masks to protect each other (if we’re good people).

And that list? It’s still there. I still have many of the good things I’ve always had.

I have these.

-The love of my family, scattered across the country and even across the globe, into Europe.
-Many phone calls and other communication.
-The warm camaraderie of my writing colleagues online.
-An occupation I love, goals that keep me occupied, even when I can’t do everything I want to.
-Shelter, food, clothing, heat and AC, trash pickup.-Doctors at my beck and call by phone or video, or even face to face if I need to do that.
-The daily newspaper. (I know, that seems trivial, but I love the comics and puzzles.)
-So many books I haven’t yet read.-
-New books coming out all the time.
-My music, which I’ve neglected lately and am going back to in a small way.
-A spectacular yard, with roses and irises now, after a progression for the last couple of months, although those plants are really kicking up my allergies.
-Good neighbors who all keep track of each other.
---NEW: Social distancing walks with my local family, me on one side of the street, them on the other.

I don’t have these any longer:
[drinks out]
-New episodes of Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy!
-The news, which I used to watch, but no longer can.
-Dinner out with my kids and grandkids, and eating together at our houses.
-The joy of driving my grandkids to lessons and classes.
-Their hugs.

BUT, most of the items in the second list will come back in due time. And that first list is a lot longer.

What do you miss? What do you take joy in now? What are you looking forward to getting back…some day?

Images from Pixabay.com, Morguefile.com; roses are mine—aren’t they gorgeous?


Margaret S. Hamilton said...

Yesterday the village fitness center announced it would open Wednesday under "reservation only" access. This morning, I learned Ohio is spiking in new cases. Hair cutters opened two weeks ago, so we're right on schedule.

I'll get a bike helmet and use the bike one of the kids left in the garage.

Grace Topping said...

Thanks, Kaye, for the reminder to count the good things in our lives rather than focusing on all the bad. Sometimes I feel like as ostrich with my head in the sand, but I try to block out as much of what's going on in the world. I can't do anything about it (except heed the guidelines for keeping my family safe), so I see nothing to be gained by viewing the daily news and becoming stressed about it.

E. B. Davis said...

The gym! I can feel the flab as I type this. At an age where I need to be proactive, I feel as if I'm falling behind. For 30 years I've worked out at the gym, and it takes such a little time to lose all that good you built up. I might not be in the highest risk category, but I turn 65 this year. Not only do I have to beware of the virus, but I can't maintain the good health I've established. The weather hasn't allowed for walks or bike riding due to all the rain we've had. I'm not a fan of walking or biking in the public anyway because of cars and unfriendly dogs! And I don't keep gym weights and machines at my house because I always join a gym. When they do open, I'll be paranoid to go, too.

KM Rockwood said...

The biggest changes in my life have actually been positive.

Before we needed to stay at home, I put a great deal of (frustrating) time into getting my husband, who has dementia, to activities he could still handle. That often meant struggling to make sure he was properly dressed and had what he needed, then sitting in the car for an hour or two (at least I got reading time!) while he was with his friends. Now, of course, the card games & meetings & dinners they had are on hold. He really doesn't seem to miss them. And it's a lot easier on me.

I had already abandoned most of my own outside-the-house activities, except for my aquatics exercise class, which I do miss dearly.

And one of my sisters has set up a weekly family Zoom meeting. I'm from a big family, but the siblings closest to me in age have died, and the ones left are younger, at completely different stages in life. I've really enjoyed getting to know them better and follow their young families.

I do understand about the newspapers--we get two every day, the Washington Post delivered and the Philadelphia Inquirer on line. My husband grew up in Philadelphia, and likes to follow the news there.

Kaye George said...

Margaret, I count you lucky you have a bike and that you can ride it! I'd need a three-wheeler with my horrible balance.

Grace, you have much more self-restraint than a lot of us. Kudos. My therapist told me a couple of years ago to quit watching the news. I quit watching...some of it.

E. B. I'm feeling the lack of exercise, too. You're right, you lose physical abilities so much faster than you gain them.

KM, having take care of my husband with dementia for a few years before his passing, I can see how this is so much easier. If it were possible to bring him out, you would feel you had to. I know all about this!

Warren Bull said...

I mostly miss the up close and personal human contact. On the other hand, I have learned how to put up a YouTube channel. I have been working away at writing and singing, my wife told me there is nobody she would rather be quarantined with. I faced a "new normal" after cancer treatment and I'm certain I can face another one.

Kaye George said...

Warren, that's awesome, what your wife said! Using YouTube is useful and awesome, too. You HAVE had the life changing turning point and I'm sure that helps now.

Storyteller Mary said...

Our lists are similar as are our reasons for caution. My niece works in the C-19 ward; she'll tell me when it's safe.
The library will soon open for curbside pickup of reserves, but I've also learned to love e-books.
I'd like some restaurant meals. I've been cautious about even carry-out, but I may have to take the plunge . . . I crave barbecue. ;-)
Meanwhile, I stick my head out occasionally, pre-order produce to be brought to my car, and am grateful for the comforts.

Kaye George said...

Thanks for coming by, Mary. Take care and stay safe!

Polly Iyer said...

That's a wonderful way of looking at this debacle, Kaye. Finding the pluses doesn't erase the negatives, but it puts things in perspective. I remember years ago, I was moving some of my things from Boston to Atlanta. I packed a set of Fiestaware as best as I could. Half of them broke on the plane. I was heartbroken. When I spoke to my mother, she said, Look at it this way. The plane didn't crash. I always remember that. It didn't make me any less sad about the broken dishes, but it put things in perspective. I never forgot it.

I have to say I love staying home. The thing I miss the most is getting fresh groceries and going when I want instead of planning and masking, but putting that in perspective, I'm fine with it. Take care, my friend.

Kaye George said...

Polly, YES, the grocery store! I never knew how much I LOVED the grocery store.

Good for your mother. She sounds like a wise woman--lucky you, to have her.