Writing in Summer?

I don’t know about you, but my most prolific writing sessions seem to happen in the Spring/Fall and November (which I’m told is part of Winter…I don’t know, I’m from the South). Summertime, which seems like it should be the best candidate for long periods of writing, does not typically afford me enough time to really sink into the stories I’m trying to work on.

As I was thinking about this earlier, I came up with 3 reasons why that might be the case:

1) School is out. Even if you don’t have school aged children at home with you, the change is evident when you walk outside and there are children running around, riding their bikes through town, etc. Their voices ring out down the street and remind you that Summer has come. This then distracts you from your writing.

2) “Nicer” weather. Now I actually do know several people who prefer the cold of winter to the blaring heat of summer; however, for the most Summer is considered to have better weather affords people more opportunities to go to the lake, the amusement park, etc. This mentality leads to more people making trips (day or longer) throughout these few warmer months. Plenty of inspiration can come from these trips and from the nicer weather, but lazy cloud watching doesn’t lend itself to rolling over and writing.

3) Different Schedules. We’ve touched on this is the last two reasons. With summer comes a different schedule. Vacations are taken, day care hours are cut, visits are made, cookouts are had…etc etc etc During the rest of the year (discounting the Holidays of course) there are usually many less obligatory things for us to deal with. Schedules are much more easily set and you get used to writing for an hour in the evenings or right after breakfast. Then summer shows up…breakfast at the lake would be a perfect time to write if you go alone; otherwise, your pages are just likely to get a little wet.

Do you have other reasons why it might be more difficult to get work done during the summer? Is it easier for you to work during the summer?? Let me know! I always look forward to hearing from you!

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Too Many Minions?

Have you ever received a rejection letter that really just didn’t make sense to you? If not…please skip the miniature tirade in this paragraph and move on to the fun below. Otherwise, read on here: I just got one in regards to the following post. If they had just said, “This is not the type of content that we feel our readers would enjoy” and left it at that, I would have been fine. Perhaps I would have been a little miffed, nothing more than a minute or two of agitation couldn’t handle, and then I would have moved on. But that sentence was immediately followed by the words, “We are looking for lists that are remarkable—lists that make you go “wow!” This list is missing that remarkability” and then the suggestion that I learn how to cite my sources…fyi, the only source here is my brain. If I used another source, I would certainly cite it! I am feeling fairly frustrated at the moments because a) multiple rejections for either my work (submitted to places such as the above, though most with much nicer rejections like “we are not accepting submissions at this time) and b) the site asked for unique content but the rejection letter made it clear that my ‘unique’ content needed to fall into line with everyone else. I don’t know, I don’t often write lists so maybe this isn’t a “WOW!” what do you think?

Found by searching bing images for Minions

The Despicable Me franchise, and specifically the little yellow Minions themselves, has amassed a loyal following made up of movie lovers from the ages of 0-100. In my family we watch them at least weekly, even if only the short videos. There have even been multiple occasions in which 4 generations (4!) gathered together and watched a Despicable Me. Completely lovable in their anti-hero personas, Gru, Dr. Nefario, Steve, Mark, Phil, Tim, Dave, and all the rest secured a place in our hearts at least equal to Disney Princess status (and much less grating than having to watch “Let it Go” yet again). With the Minion movie coming out soon, the little yellow guys are enjoying a resurgence in their popularity, causing even more minion mayhem than usual.

So how do you know if you’ve watched these films a time or two too many? Well, that’s why I’m here! Here is a list of the Top Ten Ways You Know You’ve Watched Despicable Me too Much (If there is such a thing)…Don’t worry, I am guilty of all of them…and so much more!

  • Anytime someone asks you for something “pretty please” you’re automatic response is “The Physical Appearance of the Please does not matter!”

Gru says this to Edith, Agnes, and Margo near the beginning of their relationship in response to their request for a bedtime story. This sets the basis for a very funny moment a little later, and a moving and heartwarming moment toward the end of the movie. This also gave parents and teachers around the world a great come back for the ever present “Pretty Please.” Because, let’s face it, “I said no and I meant it” just gets tired.

  • Your child (and now you, to some extent) sincerely believes that a fire engine makes the sound “Be-do, Be-do, BEE-DO”

Because if a minion said it, it must be true right? RIGHT!? Ok, so the sound is somewhat similar if you think about it but this is one of those things that you take videos of for posterity while thanking the Good Lord Above that toddlers cannot actually make the sound of a fire or police siren.

  • You have actually tried to build one or more real working prototypes of Dr. Nefario’s little toys (Fart gun anyone??)

Toy Stores such as WalMart sale so those little replicas and plushy dolls. My child has a Dave that says 25 different phrases, burps, and can fart 4 different ways. I swear I rolled over in bed one night, kicked the thing hidden in my covers, and he said PAPOY! Scared me half to death!

Not only are these toys fun (F-U-N!!) but they also allow grown adults to spend time pretending to shoot farts at each other from a gun…a gun that at least 2 of my friends have attempted to build. (Sadly for them, they couldn’t figure out how to get the ‘gas’ effect just right…I tried hard to be upset with them, truly I did.)

  • You believe that a Squid Launcher could actually be a marketable tool.

Here’s one I haven’t seen at a toy store yet: Vector’s ‘launcher’ gun. I cannot tell you how much I would love to have one within arm’s reach most days. Being interrupted is a pet peeve and I’m pretty sure that if I had a squid or piranha launcher I could take care of that rude little problem fairly quickly. (side note: Does anyone else always say piranha and at least silently add “I’m a Piranha, they live in the Amazon?” from Finding Nemo)

  • Any Pharrell song (especially Happy or Where Them Girls At) comes on the radio and your 2 year old yells, “MY MOVIE MY MOVIE, WANT PICABLE!”

They don’t forget that either! You can be in the car on the way to dinner/movie/shopping/etc and when you get home 6 hours later BAM! They haven’t been in the house 30 seconds and that dvd case is being waved in front of you with ‘Pickle Me’ being chanted over and over and over until you wear down and find yourself hoping you remembered to DVR the 3 shows you were thinking of watching.

  • The word ‘fluffy’ not only snuck its way back into your vocabulary, it now has its own voice.

Seriously, try saying fluffy without the weird growly but childish and kind of high pitched voice that you now believe to be intrinsic to the pronunciation…sounds hideous doesn’t it?

  • You have to mentally correct yourself before asking your child if they want a “Bapple” or “BA-NA-NA”

This is a particular challenge in my home because she sometimes will not respond if you merely say ‘banana.’ Oh no, you must use the correct tone and, depending on the time and how hungry she is, you may have to actually do the slow motion yell from the ‘Banana’ short film.

  • Despicable Me’s Theme (aka-I’m Having a Bad Bad Day…) is either your ring/message tone or one of your ‘happy’ songs (funny enough, Happy is also one of your ‘happy’ songs!).

Do you know every word of these songs? What about dance moves or little almost involuntary glitches for certain parts? Yeah, me neither…I don’t know what you’re talking about. Let’s move on then…

  • Your toddler and parental unit know the dance moves and have the film timed out so that, without being in the same room or paying attention, they can converge on the television and do a disco dance party.

This can’t possibly just be in my house, right? Please somebody tell me that you too have been awakened from a sappy ending coma by your mother and/or child yelling “TIME TO DANCE!” as they run to block your hazy view and proceed to disco dance right there in front of God and everybody like they have no shame at all.  This can also happen randomly when listening to a radio station that includes songs from the 60s/70s because every once in a while someone plays the BeeGees and BAM! “MY MOVIE MY SONG DANCE DANCE” is being yelled from the back seat. If this has never happened to you, I feel mixed emotions on your behalf.

  • Every day your child searches for the moon. Then he/she tries to grab it. On days when the moon is ‘new’ and not visible for them, they blame Gru and demand we make him give it back again.

Though mostly self-explanatory, if you have never heard a toddler or young child excitedly exclaim “I’ve got the moon” in their best Gru accent while they clutch wildly at the air between then and the moon…I urge you to find the nearest young child that will do such a thing for you (after having a nice conversation with their parents, who you hopefully are quite well acquainted with) and hang out until you hear it. That, my friend, is worth the price of admission. My child, being the creative sort, also likes to draw “big big pictures’ of the moon and then demand Mommy (that’s me) translate her ‘language’ so everyone knows that those scribbles mean “I’ve got it! I’ve Got the Moon!”

Also on this topic, there is a great debate going on in my family as to whether or not the werewolf would have actually turned back into a nekked man when the moon disappeared, since it IS still full even though it was shrunk. So if the rules are ‘full moon’ then they should still apply no matter the size. Just a little extra food for thought (a pre-bonus bonus if you will)

BONUS: You have definitely watched the movie too much when even the DOG has his/her own favorite parts and knows when to come in for them!

The 12 year old Rottie will come in for the beginning of both 1 & 2, then grumbles and leaves around 20-30 minutes in (after Kyle latches on to the coffee shop loot in 1 and after the viewing of the purple rabbit in 2). He then returns for the end of 1…and more notably, for the attack of the chicken booby trap in 2 (then he leaves and returns for the EPIC MINION MELEE).

Phew! Did I leave anything out?  Thankfully, my daughter also adores Tinkerbell and Curious George so we get a break. My poor parents had to endure hours upon hours of Jem and the Holograms (I have no idea why my kid won’t sit through that with me, I still have my VHS tape from when I was 2 and NETFLIX even put it on the KIDS site!) But really, I can’t complain about re-watching movies all of the time. I did that long before I had a child and you know what else? I may or may not have watched the 2nd one during her ‘rest’ time last week….without her to be my ‘reason’ for sitting through the whole thing and laughing at every joke.

“Because I’m HAPPY!”