Tonight I realized who he was. In this book I’m reading, I’m over halfway done with, and it clicked.

I know who he is, which character. I read the sentences, and slammed the book shut.

It is him. It is him and I feel as I did soon after he left me: used.

I was nothing. I was a curiosity.

Then I became part of the routine, the one it took him two years to break. Maybe he realized he was bored. And so he left. And thank God.

He was not unfaithful, but nor was he supportive.

I can’t believe it took me this long. I read this book the first time relatively early in our relationship. I couldn’t put two and two together. It is him. Is that the fate of an English major? I recall a Venn diagram I saw once, with “The curtains were blue” at the top. The left circle was titled “What your teacher thinks it means” and had inside: The blue represented his despair… The right circle was titled “What the author meant” and had inside: The curtains were fucking blue.

I read into things too much because I was taught to. But then I get lost in books, can’t relate them to real life. They are separate.

Until revelations like this.

I was nothing. I was a curiosity.

Needless to say, this evening has taken a downward turn. But tomorrow is another day.

But damn.


Well, here it is. The end of one glorious year and the start of another. Since lists seem to be the “in” thing these days, I’ve compiled a fun list of events (focused on perks) of 2012 and what I’m planning resolutions-wise and event-wise in 2013.


  • Steampunk-themed contra dance party with fantastic costumes, goggles c/o la boyfriend (now of nearly 2 years)
  • Vacation to Seattle to visit cousins and play tourist
  • Finding out Dad had prostate cancer, supporting him from far away, and then having an “Adios, Cancer!” party when we found out he was cancer-free (44 radiation treatments later)
  • Incredible women’s climbing weekend in West Virginia
  • Interesting, if amusing, debates followed by re-election of President Obama (phew!)
  • Friends-filled college “reunion” going-away party
  • Vacation and travel through Peru, catching 15K heights and Machu Picchu
  • Maryland Renaissance Festival and dress-up
  • Started second novel
  • Joined/helped form an independent author’s collective/publishing imprint
  • Sent over 30 letters to Sandy Hook Elementary School
  • Spent first holiday with boyfriend’s family



  • Eat breakfast every morning
  • Spend 1 hour before work writing and/or editing
  • Meditate twice a day
  • Still arrive at work at sane hour
  • Make more home-cooked meals (cheaper and healthier!)

Events to Look Forward To:

  • Time-travel-themed contra dance party with boyfriend (yay more dress-up)
  • Parents visiting DC
  • Seeing more old college friends
  • First time going to Las Vegas (conference)
  • Seattle visit with cousins
  • Saturday classes for project management
  • possible Hunger Games food/watching event
  • I turn 25 (woo rental cars!)
  • Attending brother’s wedding in Hawai’i as bridesmaid
  • <Possibilities!>

Well, hello. I’m finally getting down to the deadline here for NaNoWriMo (see previous post if you’re confused). There are 10 days left until November 1. Ahhhhhhhhhhh!!!

But, okay. I have a plot idea rolling around in my head. I’ve tentatively titled it “Hidden in Nepal” but, as happens with crash-starting any new book, this is likely to change.

My plot on my profile on NaNoWriMo is as follows:

I plan on writing a mystery about a sister and brother who discover evidence that their father is alive and not, in fact, dead from a trip to Nepal as their mother told them, and so go on this goose chase to Nepal and Mount Everest, which they discover is a kind of Shangri-La and people are nearly immortal. Some more science. Then a decision to stay or go, if the security people at the mountain don’t, ah, “take care of them” first, and see if their father is there and all.

<working on details, and a better title>

So, there it is. In brief. In detail, I have:

Further Plot Details

Everest is manmade and is an advanced research facility. Shangri-La. They have already conquered immortality and are very close to time travel. Have accomplished teleportation, how the Tuesday nights worked. Mom (Lily) and dad (Christopher) part of training and research team. Tuesday nights. Travel to Nepal ostensibly for anniversary when children young. Dad stays and mom has to come home alone pretending he died.

North face is not actually that much more difficult but it’s where the entrance is, so climbers are…taken care of. Current society could not handle all the advances yet (work on this) so they keep it complete secret.

Martha finds documents, starts to think dad may be alive. Goose chase!

Martha Gidcomb

Martha works for The Coastal Times now. She bounced around for a few years after college, taking this job or that. Bookstore, local diner Nellie’s, nanny for awhile until the parents divorced. She proofreads the daily articles and columns (except the front page and major articles), and compiles basic information for regulars, like lotto tickets, game scores, weather, and the police blotter. She’s written a few editorials but has yet to find her consistent place and her boss seems unimpressed.

Age: 28
Sex: Female
Eye color: Green
Hair color: Brown
Physical description: Slight, with plastic black-rimmed glasses. Hair always up in a messy bun except when she has meetings, when she pulls it into a perfect ponytail

Additional Notes: Martha always knew there was something odd about her family. Growing up, her parents went out to meetings, never said where, and never together. They always switched. Her mom two Tuesdays in a row, then her dad two Tuesdays in a row.

James Gidcomb

Brother to Martha. Artist, primarily. Painter. Dabbles in music (trance and classical, sometimes mashup), picks up odd jobs as he can. Engaged to Some girl

Age: 33
Sex: Male
Eye color: Brown
Hair color: dirty blondish
Physical description: pretty

Additional Notes: Knows more about the family history than Martha but wants to protect her. Also thought it was over and done. Until now.

James’ fiance(e)?


Barbara B<something>

Gidcomb’s neighbor growing up, points them in the direction of “dad may be still alive.” a little nuts.

Lily Gidcomb

Mother to James and Martha

Christopher Gidcomb

Father to James and Martha. Still alive. Living in Shangri-La, Mount Everest

This November, I am going to write a novel. This means I am in high gear trying to figure out a plot, outline, characters, motives, and doing lots of research. Because I have to get to 50,000 words in just 30 days. Why, you ask? Oh, I hoped you would!NaNoWriMo 2012 Particpant


This is my second year participating in the National Novel Writing Month – or, NaNoWriMo, for short. The premise? Write a novel in 30 days. That’s really it. You win if you make it. You don’t if you don’t. You can plan, but not begin writing until 12:01am November 1. Last year, by some convoluted twist of luck (and amazing support), I swung about 51,000 words by November 29.

The community is absolutely incredible. There are dozens of forums, social events for people living near each other, online events, a place to connect with other people writing the same genre, or who are the same age. A place to ask all the experts out there about everything from adoption to having a big family to what kinds of weapons are made of silver. Anything and everything. I answered a few this week; one about large Renaissance Festivals.


Last year, I wrote a story about families working at a lighthouse in Canada (research: lighthouses in the Pacific NW, homeschooling, helicopters). I wrote a ton of short stories in high school and college. I had planned out my initial ideas of the story, some character quips, and just about finished my initial storyline…25 pages in. So it turned into a whole lot of craziness, more shipwrecks, weird family relationships, another emergency and a finale that came together like a giant movie ending, all the pieces very suddenly getting tied up with ribbons.


So. 2012. The year of attempting-to-actually-plan-this-time. So far my plot idea has serious potential to be novel-like in length. I am writing a crime mystery thing inspired by the fast-paced Dan Brown books I devour, thoughts from Bones and NCIS, and apparently am throwing a little old Terra Nova in there. Just a little. I have the NaNoWriMo trial version of a new writing/planning software called Storyist and bought the iPad version – using Dropbox I can sync my work between my computer and iPad. Which, for a writer, can be key. I will live with my iPad when I’m not home so I can add ideas when my supposed Muse strikes me over the head. Then, with Internet, I will sync this new writing or research to my computer. Psyched? Psyched.

What Am I Juggling?

A demanding job (40 hours – minimum, usually closer to 50/55); boyfriend who just moved a little closer but is just starting his new job; 8 days of November in remote mountains hiking sunup to sundown; researching grad schools and setting up applications/GREs; Thanksgiving festivities (my brother is finally coming home for a week from Hawaii – which is awesome – and also demands I spend lots of time with him).

How Will I Do It?

  • Love and support from you, my followers, friends, and family
  • Twitter Word Sprints: Last year, I used Twitter for a useful purpose (rather difficult for me to do) and did word sprints with other people. Basically word sprints are designated times (like, 6-9pm, or others, as many as will do it, and people sometimes pick up on their own if others are on) where someone says, “Write for the next 10 minutes, and tell us your word count when you’re done!” and you just write like crazy trying to get as many words as you can in the allotted time.
  • The fact that I’m publicly letting the whole world know what I’m doing, putting the pressure on to actually do it
  • Caffeine
  • Snacks

I have just a couple weeks (and a mad dash for a huge project at work) to outline my novel, title it, and run with it.

I know, you’re dying to know what I’m writing about. Save that for the next post. In the meantime…I’m writing a novel!