Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Expecting Forever

SR Karfelt, Pregnancy Stories, The Glitter Globe
Karfelt SR

Like anything else in life, pregnancy is never what you'd expect.

Something I've never quite gotten over happened to me when I was expecting my first child. Considering that I was a high-risk pregnancy relegated to bed rest at about the halfway point, what traumatized me most was not really a big thing.

I'd been hospitalized and my days were spent lying in a narrow bed watching birthing videos like soaps. It's akin to watching horror movies when you're home alone.

If every cloud has a silver lining mine was that at least I did not have to go to the Obstetrician's office every Tuesday. Because I was high risk and had sucky insurance my OB-GYN happened to be the most popular practice in a large city. That meant hours in the waiting room, followed by hours in a little room waiting to be seen, followed by a barrage of testing that usually ate up another couple weekdays.

Since I was now gestating 24/7 in the hospital, it surprised me when Tuesday rolled around and a nurse pushed a wheelchair into my room and said, "You have an office appointment today." WOT WTF?

Not only did I have to heave my swollen 9-1-1 bed-headed self into that wheelchair in a HOSPITAL GOWN, but I had to spend 45 minutes being pushed through a ginormous hospital and over hill and dale to the medical center and into the dreaded waiting room!

Sitting there smack in the middle of everything I waited as usual, only this time with no underwear and in an backless sack with bare derriere sticking to the wheelchair seat. Not only was that practice the most popular it was also populated almost exclusively by high power manicured women wearing awesome business suits and effing heels to better show off their supreme gestating skills. I did my very best not to make eye contact, but I sensed every horrified look of pity shot my way.

Believe me if I'd had any recourse whatsoever I would have taken it. It's not like I could just walk out, and even if I'd wheeled myself away there was nowhere to go. Eventually I did get to walk though, because when my turn came to go to a private waiting area my wheelchair would not fit. Relieved to at least have some privacy I sat on the exam table and read the birthing posters and examined the big plastic replica of the female reproductive system, wondering why mine had to be so dang high-maintenance.

Time ticked on and I scooted back on the paper covered table to stretch out and stare at ceiling tiles trying to plot out a story, but having trouble putting the room waiting time out of my head. I might or might not have given into some tears of self-pity while wrestling with the STFU voice that pointed out that a healthy baby was worth whatever it cost.

At some point it hit me that everything outside the door had gotten really, really quiet. I sat up. It took a minute. I got to my sock-covered feet. My shoes would not fit, so socks were my new shoes. Dear Hubby's socks mind you, because my socks would not fit me either. Pregnancy is not my best look.

The writer in me wants to say I tiptoed to the door but who am I kidding? I lumbered to the door and opened it. THE LIGHTS WERE ALL OUT. "Hello?" I said. Down the hall someone sorta-screamed, that little sound you make when someone really startles you. The receptionist was the only one left, everyone else had gone home for the day. Yep, they'd forgotten me. She sorta apologized and because they were such a magnanimous bunch she squeezed me in to be seen on Thursday.

And THAT, Ladies and Gentlemen, is the pregnancy horror story I've never quite recovered from. I do not like to tell pregnancy horror stories, but if you're pregnant you do not have to worry about that happening to you because, well, what are the freaking odds?

The Point of My Story That Is IT's The Unexpected Little Things That Really Sometimes gut Punch you. My sequel to KAHTAR Warrior of Ages and The Heartless shouldnt Have been out by now, But I've been Stuck in A Proverbial Writer Waiting Room IF you Will .

When I got to the finally A Place Where I Could Have Some Time to Finish alone IT That I realized in this instance MY SHOES WILL FIT and I Could Run AWAY and make Some Choices That Would make My Stories and My Own Writing Experience Better. So I 've done just that. That's why FOREVER The Constantine's Secret is taking a bit longer than expected.

Any chance you can be patient with me? I promise never to leave you sitting and waiting too long, and I especially promise that I'll NEVER make you wait in a hospital gown with no underpants on. If you happen to be reading this in that situation, shoot me an email and I'll do my very best to break you out, at least metaphorically.

If you can not be patient, I'm afraid you'll have to take it up with my muse. You can reach us in Greece. We'll be there writing away. She said she needed some time in the land of her birth, so when the opportunity came up I grabbed it. I've found it best to obey the little nut-job, although just between you and me, she likes not wearing underpants.

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Friday, June 12, 2015

Five Stars for the Covenant Keeper Novels

KAHTAR Warrior of the Ages, SR Karfelt, Reviews
SR Karfelt / The Glitter Globe

Both KAHTAR Warrior of The Ages and Heartless A Shieldmaiden's Voice Were Awarded FIVE STARS by Readers' Favorite! How amazing is that? 


Readers' Favorite, Five Star Review, Karfelt, Kahtar, Warrior of the Ages
KAHTAR Warrior of the Ages Five Star Review

Readers' Favorite, Five Stars, SR Karfelt, HEARTLESS
HEARTLESS A Shieldmaiden's Voice Five Star Review

'Scuse me while I kiss the sky.

Carpe Gaudium

This is what I think I'm doing.

All reviews are good reviews, But reviews from Professionals are tougher to Come by Than Getting My Book worm readers to hop on over to Amazon Or Barnes and Noble Or Goodreads to Write A Review, and That's Saying Something! Reviews are the wind beneath writerly wings. So I'm flying today! Anybody else celebrate by jumping on the bed? I highly recommend it. 

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Making It Up -- Where Stories Come From

The Writing Process, S.R. Karfelt
S.R. Karfelt/The Glitter Globe

It's a mental quilting process made up of bits and pieces from the universe. It's a dance. It's a song. Call it right or wrong. Its magic is strong.


Take a cup of personal abuse and roll it through observed tragedy, stuff it into a boy. Give him the eyes you saw in the face of a WWII veteran in a parade once. That story you glimpsed there? It's his now.

You found the first name on a headstone in a seaside cemetery in New England. You met a man with that last name in Texas once.

Your hero comes from a place you made up while driving through the desert ten years ago.

The plot will unfold as you write, but you know it will combine the slap you took to the face at eight years old and the time you fell down the stairs. It will hold the day you fell out of a moving car and taste of a whispered line in a book that once broke your heart.

As you write you'll toss in ingredients accumulated from a lifetime: The day you ran through a field of sunflowers; the first time you almost drowned; discovering an old well in the woods filled with 19th Century odds and ends; a glimpse of the man who tried to force you into his car outside the library once; that hidden snake inside the blackberry patch, its teeth on your finger.

It all goes into the mix surrounded by the yellow walls of today's world and ground up by your story processor. Little will be recognizable even to the writer. It's verbal kimchi. It's word sausage. It's the dough of a book. The largest bulk of it will be spiced, salted, and peppered by subconscious nanites that march through your being so small and fine that their origins are impossible to locate although occasionally you'll catch a familiar scent like fresh bread baking in an smelly city.

After that it's verbal Sudoku. Line up words. Rearrange sentences. Hold all the impressions from above in your brain, feel all the feels, react as your character on the page. There's blood everywhere. It's the glue.

The complicated part comes now. It's time to breathe life into it. Delete the telling, show me your story. Bring it to life. You'll need help with this bit. It's time for CPR. Your story might need surgery. It might never be able to walk into the world. Sometimes an untold story shatters into glass shards that writers walk on forever. The pain of crippled stories haunt us. They float like specters inside our minds. See me. Why can nobody see me? Make me real. I want to live.

All the glass shards, the ghosts of abandoned tales, the unfinished works choking your hard drive are compost to be recycled into more stories until one finally takes a breath and becomes real in the minds of a reader.

"Where did this come from?" they ask you, "How long does it take to write a book?" You shrug and guesstimate how long it took to type up your latest, leaving out all the months or years of edits and behind the scenes madness, but the truth is this: Story comes from everywhere, and every one of them takes a lifetime to write.

Bump if you can feel me.