Wednesday, September 20, 2017

The Tech Issue by Konnie Enos

Did you ever think about how much time people nowadays spend on tech? How much time they spend connected? Can you even remember what life was like before we had all this tech? What would you do if your internet went down for a day or longer?
For some reason, a couple of days ago, our internet went out. Turns out it was our phone lines completely so it wasn’t a quick easy fix. They had to send out someone. We’d already gone the whole day without being able to get on and they told us it would be late in the day the next day before a technician could get here. So two days without tech.
For me the first day had been busy enough that I didn’t really notice the problem until late in the day. (Which explains me not calling for repairs until late.) The second day was a different story.
I got up as usual and as is my normal routine I picked up my laptop. After looking at it for a moment without opening it and put it back away. What was I supposed to do on it if I couldn’t get online? At the moment I needed to do things but every last thing I needed to do required me to have a at least a minute or two of connections to check something, online.
The only other thing I could have possibly done on my computer at that time was write. The problem was I didn’t have a few hours to delve into any of my stories and I didn’t have a connection so I couldn’t surf which is how I often get inspiration for my posts.
Being limited in time, I pulled out my Kindle. Still tech, but it had things on it I could do without getting online. I could play a game, or do all the Sudoku puzzles for the day, or read a book. Oh fun and joy, I had time for all three yesterday, since I couldn’t get online, couldn’t check my emails, or banks, or prepare this post head of time since my Wednesdays are hectic.
Anyway, as I thought about all the things I couldn’t do that I would normally do each day, I realized I’m too connected. I’ve never considered myself to be addicted to tech. I certainly don’t spend most of the day surfing the net or playing video games. However, yesterday each time I reached for my laptop, I realized I did spend a great deal of time online most days.
I read some headlines, check my emails, and see what is on Facebook (way too often). But I also balance checkbooks, and do other banking transactions. I shop online. I’ve been getting ready for Christmas. I also do surveys for which I earn a small amount of money.
But what I think I do most online is contact with other writers. I’m in critique groups and I wanted to post some work for critique and couldn’t yesterday. There is also my chat groups, which fortunately I didn’t have to miss because that interaction with other writers is important.
And the biggest issue for a writer.
How are you supposed to get information to help make your writing realistic if you can’t google it?
Yes, yesterday was a frustrating day for me. It still made me feel we are way too dependent on technology. Anybody else agree with me?

Smile. Make the day a brighter day.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Twins in Stories by Bonnie Le Hamilton



I’m a twin. I am not just a twin, and not just an identical twin I’m a mirror twin, hence the name of this blog. I’m also a writer. As a writer, I’m supposed to write what I know.

And it’s not as if I don’t write about twins. I have twins in fifteen of my stories (technically sixteen, but they’re less predominant in book 2 of that series, and yes, it’s the same twins, more than one set even.) Fifteen, or sixteen, out of fifty, and in only one of them is the main character a twin. And in all of them, the sets of twins present in the story are younger siblings, and or nieces (excluding that second book where they are the older cousins of the heroine).

I know twins. I know what it’s like to be a twin. I don’t know what’s it’s like to be a singleton because I am a twin. That’s just part of who I am. Yet as often as I write heroines who look like me, I’ve only written one who is a twin, and that was a fraternal twin, and said twin is dead.

I’ve written, well as I said, sixteen stories with twins in them, but I don’t have their POV’s in the stories (excluding the one story). I don’t have scenes where someone mistakes them for their twin.

Okay, maybe I don’t have that, because I consider this a bit cliché. Not that I’ve actually read them, I generally don’t read beyond the blurb when I realize it’s another switched places or got-mistaken-for-the-other type of story. It’s more than a little overdone.

But how to do you write stories about twins without mixing up or switching them?

In ways it makes since writer’s who have twins in their stories follow that line, but I’m getting the feeling that’s the only thing authors think of when they write about twins.

Off the top of my head, I can think of four published books with main characters who are a twin, which doesn’t do this. In two of the ones I can think of the main character is Kit Fielding, i.e. one of Dick Francis’ characters, and Kit is a fraternal twin, so mixing up and switching places is out of the question. One is a romance where the hero’s identical twin brother is brain damaged. No way to get them mixed up, despite how much they look alike. And the fourth is “And Jacob Have I loved.” Again, not about twins switching and getting mixed up.

In other words, I feel the getting-twins-mixed-up or the twins-switching-places stories are overused, overdone, and need to be scrapped.

And that explains why I’ve never had an identical twin as a main character.

Glad I finally figured it out.


Happy writing everyone! J

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Of Holiday’s and Other Memories by Konnie Enos

There are some holidays you can remember for months, even years afterwards. Then there are others that seem more like normal days and within a couple of weeks you’ve forgotten exactly what transpired. For me Labor Day falls in the latter category, generally a very forgettable day.
Generally.
To this day, thirty-eight years and counting, I still remember a good deal of what occurred the morning of Monday, September 3, 1979.
I can remember my bedroom. It was so pink. Pink walls, pink dresser, pink carpet. I even had a pink bedspread. I’ve always assumed the total pink color of the room is why I didn’t have to share with anyone. At the time I had two brothers, and though the youngest probably didn’t care, he was sharing with his older brother. I can guarantee our oldest brother wasn’t going to sleep in a pink room.
As for my two sisters, well neither one of them have ever liked pink. So yeah, I had the luxury of a whole room to myself for the first time in my life. I even had a nice big full sized bed to myself. (My siblings all had single sized beds, and roommates.)
So on this particular morning I slowly came to realize the sun was peaking over the distant mountains. I looked up for a moment noting how the cloud cover turned everything into more hues of pink. I was appreciating the view and the thought came to me that I normally didn’t have time to see it because I was getting ready for school.
Wait! School!
I very nearly jumped out of bed before I remembered it was a holiday. Sleepy me snuggled back down for some more sleep.
A few minutes later Dad appeared at my bedroom door. “Get up.”
“Why? There’s no school today.”
“To help Margo.”
“Help her with what?” Bear in mind that Dad was a pro at forcing us kids to do someone else’s chore because he thought he had the right kid doing it. I was not budging unless it really was my chore.
“Pack.”
“Pack? Why? Where is she going?”
“The hospital.”
Well that did it. I bolted up telling Dad I was coming and he could leave so I could get dressed. I finally realized my stepmother, Margo, was in labor with her second child.
To this day I don’t understand why he didn’t just come right out and tell me what was happening and why she needed help. But I also find it funny that I went from groggy still snuggled in bed to wide awake in a split second when it finally hit me.
And I did go downstairs to help her, though I don’t remember what exactly I did to help. Most women are smart enough to pack go bags well in advance so all I can think of was I gathered a few last minute items for her then helped Dad get her to the car.
It was much later, after we got to see our newest little brother that Margo told us about the funniest part of the day. You see she delivered in the same tiny hospital she worked in. Her co-workers were snickering clear through her labor about her being in labor on Labor Day.
So for me our youngest brother’s appearance into the world is a day I’ve never forgotten.
Then about nine and half months later the little squirt made Father’s Day memorable by walking, for the first time, clear across a country kitchen and into Dad’s arms. Made Dad’s day.

Smile. Make the day a brighter day.