Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Life in Revision & Introducing Catadora Tonks

Well I've been absent and missing in action in my cyber world for about 3 weeks. I occasionally have posted on the blog, but there just doesn't seem to be enough hours in the day. Why? Two reasons. One is that I have new fur baby. I didn't think we'd adopt another kitten after I had to say goodbye to my beloved Dowager Feline Clancy, but on September 24th my daughter told me that a kitten born 7 weeks earlier was headed for the pound. She was one of 7 born to a stray cat. The people who'd taken in the stray and kittens couldn't keep them all and had found homes for 4 kittens. I had ONE day to make up my mind. I couldn't even go see her because I had a scheduled event I couldn't miss.

I sent Darling Teen in my place. The kitten was at a school friend's sister's apartment. She called me to tell me about the tiny fur baby and I said, "Bring her home to me." They drove home with this kitten in her friend's lap, a big cup of dry cat food and that was about it. I had 5 women at my house for a Ladies Night and I left them as soon as I heard the garage door opening. There she was, the tiniest little bit of cream puff fluff and scared as could be after a traumatic car ride. I took her into my arms and it was instant. The connection, the love, and the trust she had for me was immediate. So for her first night with us she stayed in my arms, was loved on, had a bed and litter box set up in our master bedroom suite and was welcomed home.

I called the vet immediately and scheduled an appointment for the following Monday. We spent a great deal of time keeping her separated from the Darling Teen's cat Mischief. Mischief is 10 and not the best tempered cat plus we didn't want either cat to get an illness before my kitty went to the vet. Still no name at this point. We spent a full two days batting around ideas. All were shot down. Finally we zeroed in on a Harry Potter themed name. But the kitten was female. Not a lot of cat sounding names in the female characters. We hemmed and hawed. We played around with Le Fleur's name. That didn't work. Finally we had an idea. Nymphadora Tonks, Lupin's wife and just a great character stood out. We ended up transforming the name to reflect our little feline. Catadora Tonks, Tonks for short, had a name.

In the weeks following our adoption of our itty bit of fluff, I've attended the Moonlight & Magnolias conference, revised three chapters for an agent request, wrote a brand new first chapter for the Mills & Boon New Voices contest only to miss the deadline due to my inability to subtract (grrr), and revised four manuscripts beginnings for the Linda Howard Award of Excellence contest. As soon as I finished the contest entries, I began preparing my Golden Heart entries. I will enter 4 manuscripts this year--including the new one which is not finished yet. First up, I worked on the synopsis for the TYCOON because that story is completely different due to the revise and resubmit for Mills & Boon. Ugh. Dreaded synopsis revealed a bit of a plot/story issue. Fortunately, I don't have to "fix" that yet. I revised the first 50 pages of TYCOON, tweaking it and strengthening it for the contest. I have two more to work on before I head out to D.C. on Saturday.

Basically I am in revision and contest hell, but it's all worth it because it is making me push the envelope. And when I am not busy writing and trying to keep up with the household stuff and my family, I am playing with my brand new sweetheart. Catadora Tonks is a delight and a joy. Always sweet, good natured and a cuddle bug. She loves to play so when I take a break from my writing, I get on the floor and get her chasing after feathers on sticks and balls with bells in them.

Life is busy, I am tired. Catadora Tonks wants to play.
I am happy. Busy, but happy. There are a lot of good things in store for me and my family. I want to enjoy my daughter this year--her last year of school before she graduates. I want to enjoy my new kitten. I want to enjoy my new friends. And I want to enjoy working hard to build my writing career. I want to expand time, find a million and one ways to do it all, but that's just not possible. This time of year is always crammed full of stuff to do--as a family and as a writer. Sometimes things have to go by the wayside.

What do you put on the wayside when life gets hectic? Can you really do it all? If you can, tell me how.


Anne Gallagher said...

Oh, what a sweet kitty. Love her name.

When I can't do it all the first thing to go is the housework. Hate it anyway. But, because the house is so small I can usually manage to get it clean in about 4 hours. Well, minus the laundry.

Pam Asberry said...

You sound like me, Christine - trying to do it all, just not all at once. :-) Like Anne, housework is always the first to go, LOL! But when things get really hectic, it is great to have a furry friend. I am glad you have Catadora Tonks. Thanks for bringing us up to date.

Anonymous said...

Congrats on your new fur baby. Catadora Tonks is too adorable.
I'm proud of you - 4 MS in one contest, plus the GH. Wow! You rock, girlfriend.
Yes, for me too housework is the first to get left undone. Funny thing I don't miss it until I can't stand the mess anymore. Personally, I juggle.
This month I've been in a learning my craft mode. M&M, an all day class in NC and two on-line classes. Then no more classes for the rest of the year.
Enjoy Tonks & your Darling Teen.


Christine said...

Hi Anne: I didn't clean for two weeks. The Physicist and I mucked out the house on Saturday. Took us 5 hours. Ugh. But it's good for a while now. I kept up with laundry and basics, but floors and bathrooms? Ugh.

Hi Pam: Yes, we're alike in that we're trying to get lots accomplished. I have so much I want to do and only so many hours in the day to do them. I am also committed to my workouts and taking care of my body. That takes time. But it is important to try to maintains some balance. All computer work and no moving is not good for the derriere.

Hi Sia: Yes, I juggle too. I want to be in learn mode. Will be back in that mode come December. Will be writing my tushie off in November. As for all the contests, well I know all the entries aren't perfect, but it is a statistics game to some extent. Maybe one of them will make it through the gauntlet of judges LOL.


Sandy Elzie said...

Yeah Christine, my kinda girl...trying to do it all. lol Enjoy life while you can since you don't know what tomorrow will bring.

Love the she's my kind of pet...although Jack doesn't care for other kitties being around him either. I think she's cut as a button...just don't tell Jack I said that. (Shhhhhh)

Good luck on the contests.

Christine said...

Thanks Sandy. I've been trying to get back into the cyber world bit by bit, but the contests are killing me. And I've got submissions to send out as well for requests. Meanwhile, I am totally enjoying my sweetie. She was meant to be part of our lives.


Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn said...

Congrats on the new love and all the great writing progress you're getting done.

Keep up the good work!

Debra Glass said...

Aww, what a sweetheart! I have a Harry Potter named cat, too. Severus. He's black and has thumbs and is the best cat in the world. My sister named him and gave him to me.

Katherine Bone said...

Aw! Such a great story on how you came by your beautiful Honky Tonks, Christine! (Love the photo!)

I'm so proud of you for getting your work out there. Great job! Please remember not to work yourself sick. Okay?

Wishing you the greatest of luck with all of you contest entries and the comfort of a fluffy ball of fur.

Christine said...

Hi Carol/Annie: Thanks for your support. I have been busting my tushkin, but I am happy to be doing something I love.

Hi Debra: I really want to meet Severus. I love that he is a Hemmingway cat, too :-)

Hi Kathy: Thanks so much for your support. And it was a fun way to get Tonks. We're lucky (tho' at the moment she is full of naughtiness and has even managed to fall into the toilet once LOL).

Anonymous said...

Love your new kitty and the new name and the cute picture.

I'm proud of you for making so much progress in your writing.

Marilyn Baron

Christine said...

Hi Marilyn: Thanks for popping in to say hello. I love her, too. I'm going to post more photos of Catadora Tonks on the blog. She's a sweetheart.

And thanks for all your encouragement and support, too. You are a wonderful friend and PFHT sister (tho' I'll be a quasi sis next year).