Monday, July 30, 2012

Cemetery Art and the Olympics

I noticed it has been awhile since I posted a picture from my Cemetery Art project – I was still employed! Oh well…I don't have that many left anyways.

This picture always makes me kind of sad. I can't remember if this was a grave for a youngster, but I assume it is. Those are always sad anyways, and to put a statue such as this only makes it worse, don't you think? As long as it brought the parents comfort, I guess that's all that matters.

* * *

Have you been watching the Olympics? I have. I think my writing will slow down for the next couple of weeks. Of course, the 2008 Olympics didn't stop me from reading the Twilight books. I just couldn't put those down!

Writing is a little different, though. I require either complete silence or so much noise I can't distinguish anything (like white noise). I cannot write if I can make out the conversation (or even part of it) – I tend to listen!

I do enjoy watching the Olympics, though. Kind of hard to watch it on mute, though. So, as long as they only show basketball games, soccer games, or boxing during the day, I'll be able to write (because I don't much care for those sports).

My favorites? Swimming, gymnastics, beach volleyball, cycling, diving, and track & field. There may be others, I just can't think of them.

If you're watching, what are your favorite events?

Saturday, July 28, 2012

WRiTE CLUB is Back!

Heh, heh, heh. I just remembered what I wanted to blog about on Friday!! :)

WRiTE CLUB is back and you can participate. Go to DL Hammons blog, Cruising Altitude 2.0, HERE to see how you can participate (either just voting or voting and submitting).

The first round starts on Monday, but if you want to vote, you need to sign up. You can also still submit if you wish, since submissions are an on-going thing. Check it out!

I did submit again this year, but with so many submissions, I might not get chosen. Won't be able to tell you whether or not I was chosen, either, since I cannot beg for votes! It's all anonymous (and I don't wish to be disqualified).

Go ahead and sign up. It's a lot of fun!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Friday Mish Mash

I know it's not spring, but did we actually have one? I think we went straight from winter to summer. Or maybe that was from fall to summer. I forget. It's been a strange year. Anyway, I took this picture of my daffodils (and some of the weeds behind them) and thought I'd add some color to my post. Especially since I don't have a subject to write about!

I had thought of a great subject for my Friday post. Unfortunately, I did NOT write it down. When will I learn???

I went to see the Batman movie on Sunday (with husband and son) and then again on Tuesday (with daughter). I think I enjoyed it more the second time (I kind of understood what was going on then). It might have helped if I had watched the first two movies before seeing the third (I tend to forget stuff), but I still enjoyed the movie.

On Wednesday, the hubby and I went to Kings Island for the day. Of course, it was one hot stinker of a day, but Wednesdays are the least busiest days (at least according to my children, who had both worked there at one time or another). The first ride we rode was Diamondback. That's the newest roller coaster there and I had never been on it. Man, what a ride! I loved it. I'd go back just to ride that thing over and over!

Overall, we rode four rides, attended two shows, and strolled through the water park during our 4-1/2 hour stay. Needless to say, my feet hurt and I was hot by the time we made it back to our car. But I had a fun day (and my husband was glad he fit in the rides better this time!). We just might go back on another Wednesday. He has vacation to burn and I don't have a job (we bought the seasons passes last year, which includes free parking).

I love amusement parks. Always have. Grew up with Disneyland and Magic Mountain (before they were Six Flags). Now we live within an hour of Kings Island. Roller coasters have always been my favorite, too. What about you? Do you like amusement parks? Which part is your favorite?

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Cars I Have Owned

No favorites list today, but I do have a list (and this blog is rather long, so if you're not interested, I understand!). Since I have already listed my favorite cars I didn't buy, here are a list of cars I did buy! They aren't all that exciting, and I don't (or can't find) pictures of all of them, but these are them:

Taken in front of my parents' house in Santa Barbara
Can you believe I got a red interior, with a hatch???
#1 – 1978 Pontiac Sunbird. I bought this car brand new, sitting on the lot. Actually, my Dad found this car for me (I was stationed at Ft. Greely, AK at the time and was on my way to Ft. Huachuca, AZ, where I would end up meeting my hubby!). I had dreamed of owning a Toyota, or a Firebird, and certainly not a stick-shift. Dad owned a Sunbird stick (5-speed) and I hated it. But this one was a 4-speed, where the shifting was a bit easier. Still, for my first car to be a stick, well, let's just say I learned on the drive home that you can't start out on a hill in second gear! I owned this car until I was married (Dec 1979) and headed back to Alaska (Ft. Wainwright to be exact). That's when it got sold and replaced with…

280Z is on the left. Ford Bronco on the right. This was
taken in 1980 at Ft. Wainwright, AK. Yep, both cars were
plugged in!! Brrrr!
#2 – 1978 Ford Bronco. We figured it was a practical buy. And it was. But not a very good one for a family. No back doors to get to the back seats. When our son was born (in 1982), we rigged a way to attach the car seat between the front seats. Don't know how safe that all was, but it seemed to work (and he was never injured!). Once our tour of Alaska was complete and we moved to New Jersey, a more practical (and easier on the gas) car was required and so we sold it and replaced it with…

Taken in 1987 in Beech Bottom, WV. I am fascinated
with snow, don't you think?
#3 – 1984 Chevrolet Cavalier. First car I actually ordered new. And another stick. By this time I had no problem with a stick (my husband owned a 1978 Datsun 280Z 5-speed). We thought we were smart getting a car without a cigarette lighter (since we didn't smoke). Never thought about needing it for plugging in electronics. We owned this car until around 2000 (my son eventually killed it, but he grew to love sticks because of it), but in 1990 my husband's Z was in an accident and we replaced that one with…

Wow! No snow!
#4 – 1989 Chevrolet Corsica. With two small kids, his old two-seater just wasn't practical. Plus, it was now in really bad shape. The woman who hit him (or who caused my husband to run into since she stopped in the middle of the road unsure whether she was going to go straight or turn left), owned a car dealership. They just received in a lot of Corsicas that were from a rental agency. We pretty much got our pick on the lot using the money the insurance paid for the repairs and turning in the Z. If money wasn't an issue, we would have probably kept the Z (because I know my husband really loved that car). This car lasted until around 1998 (my son killed this one first).

#5 – Chevrolet Astro Van. I can't remember the year of this monster (probably a 96 or 97), but we bought it used and it replaced the Cavalier. It wasn't my most brilliant buys, but it came in handy. The deciding factor of getting rid of this piece of junk was when the electronic door locks kept shorting out in the heat and draining the battery (kept clicking open, then closed, then open, etc. – even when I drove it!). We finally had to just disconnect the passenger auto door locks.

#6 & #7 – Ford Tempo. Yeah, we bought two of these stupid vehicles. Without photos, I'm having a hard time remembering their years and when we bought them. We bought one from a friend, the other from an auction. The one from our friend ended up going to our daughter. The other, my husband. There were so many problems with his, though, we barely owned it a year and sold it to be replaced it with…

#8 – 1996 Pontiac Grand Am. This used car was strictly an impulse buy (and for my husband) that we bought in 1999 (I believe). We learned never to do that again. But the car was fun to drive and we drove it into the ground (or maybe that was my daughter? I can't remember!).

#9 – 2000 Nissan Altima. I bought this in Nov 2002 as a new car (it was used as a transport car by the dealership and had 4000 miles on it, but was never technically sold, so I got the full warranty). This car replaced the Astro Van. And I was back to driving a stick. I really had no problem with this car. The original battery lasted nine freaking years! I would probably still be driving it if I knew my daughter did not want to buy it after all. But it got sold in 2011 because I had already bought my replacement (and we had no reason to own 4 vehicles).

#10 – 2003 Ford Ranger. We bought this used in 2005 and still own it. It's a stick and my husband and daughter are the only ones who drive this. There was a time we needed a truck and getting this one seemed to make sense. We keep it because it comes in handy as a spare.

#11 – 2008 Toyota Solara Convertible. My husband's main car (and I cannot find a picture!). We bought this brand new and still own it. I told my husband it was his midlife crisis car. He didn't know he was going through a midlife crisis, but he certainly didn't argue with me! He loves this car.

#12 – 2010 Nissan Xterra. I figured this would replace the Ranger. But my husband likes keeping the third vehicle and we had an easier time selling the Altima than the Ranger. Plus, the Ranger comes in more handy (for when one of the kids moves or something like that!). Ever since I featured the Xterra in my first book, I fell in love with it. I would prefer it were yellow, but hey, they weren't being made in that color anymore. Too bad. I really like the yellow ones, but I didn't want a used car.

Do you think 12 cars in 34 years are too many? I always thought we kept cars a long time. But those used ones really didn't last as long as our new ones did. I guess because we kept better care of them from the beginning.

I sure hope we don't have to buy a new car for a very, very long time! I kind of like the ones we have now.

Monday, July 23, 2012

What Would You Do?

I started writing my very first book in April 2009 and finished it in July 2009. By October 2009, I decided to seriously pursue publication. Ahh, but under what name did I want to be published?

I first thought I'd use my maiden name. My husband even purchased the URL before anyone else nabbed it. Then I Googled it.

My name didn't come up first. Some doctor in California (which is funny, since I was born in Santa Monica – who knew there were two of us from that state? Thurber is not very common) comes up first. So I Googled Stacy McKitrick. Hey – I was first. In fact, I had all the spots on the first page. So I decided to stick with my married name. My husband purchased the URL and directed to my new URL.

I also followed the advice of Bob Mayer (in a workshop I attended at the FF&P conference) and set a Google alert on Stacy McKitrick. I got a couple of hits (from other bloggers). All good, right?

Until the last couple of Google alerts I received were not me.

Seems there is a brand new country-western singer by the name of Stacey McKitrick. Her name now shows up first when MY name is Googled. And her concert announcements show up because Ticketmaster misspelled her name.

I've got to laugh over that, though. I can't count the number of times people have misspelled my first name (I tell them the E is my middle initial, not in my first name). I guess she gets the same problem.

So, should I be worried? Or is it a good thing? Maybe people will find me when they look for her!

What would you do? Hope for the best or go searching for a new pen name?

Friday, July 20, 2012

I'm Back Among the Connected

We got our internet back today. Yay!

I just never realized how often I checked my e-mail until I couldn't do it. Maybe that will mean I'll check it less often?

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Yeah, I crack myself up!

Tonight I'm headed out for a Dragons game. I hope the rain (yep, been having some of that - finally!) ends by then. I'm also going to tomorrow night's game. With all the writing I've been doing, I think I can actually sit back and enjoy the games, too. I really love not having to leave the house to work! Only problem: it doesn't pay! Well, not yet, anyway. Some day, though. Some day!

Sunday I plan on going out to see the last Batman movie (well, not the LAST, because I know eventually someone will create another one). My son has been looking forward to going. My daughter is bummed she can't attend with us, so I told her I'd go see it again on $5 Movie night with her (because that's the kind of wonderful mother I am!!).

Hope you have a wonderful weekend. See you around the blogosphere!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Please Stand By - Technical Issues at Hand

Here I was, all set to write a blog stating it was my birthday (yep, I'm officially a senior citizen as far as Bob Evans is concerned) and that there WAS no blog for the day when I couldn't even get to my e-mail.

Yep, our internet is down and won't be back up until Friday afternoon (provided the technician fixes the problem then).

So, instead I'm outside Buffalo Wild Wings copying this hastily written post and checking my e-mails (and I'm sure cursing at the slowness of it all).

There is some good to come of it, though. I'm forced to write and not surf the net! And I've been writing. Of course it helps when ideas for scenes finally come to life. Hey – add another character to bring in some conflict and the scenes practically write themselves. I love it!

At least you know I'm not ignoring your blogs. I just can't get to them. Have a great week and I'll see you back on Friday afternoon (I hope!).

Monday, July 16, 2012

Best Weekend Ever!

I had so much fun this past weekend.

We drove to Pittsburgh on Friday night and stayed at the Resident Inn across the street from PNC Park. Wow! The rooms were free for us (Marriott Rewards program) and we only had to pay parking. And we parked the car on Friday and left it there until Sunday morning (when we left).


This will probably be the closest
I'll ever be to Troy Polamalu!
Saturday morning, we walked to Heinz Field to take the 90 minute tour. Yeah, seeing the luxury box seats was neat, but seeing the locker room was awesome! I mean, the ACTUAL locker room!

Jack & Sunny hopped over the fence (you can't see)
and then dropped down to the field from here.
We also went down to the field (and of course it was raining), on the same end my characters (in MY SUNNY VAMPIRE) climb over the fence to get onto the field. It was an interesting experience because it seems so real that they did that and I was giddy with joy. I felt I had gotten the details down right, too. It was just a wonderful experience.

I can see Sunny running out on this field.
Of course, it was 3am when she did it!
I was happy I could answer the first question (on this
enlarged Trivial Pursuit card), but couldn't understand
why this was on the wall at Peppi's until I saw the last
question (might need to enlarge to read).
After our tour, we walked over to Peppi's for lunch. We love their subs (hubby got the Roethlisburger as usual) and always try to stop there whenever we're in town. We then walked back to our rooms (passing Heinz Field once again) and dropped off the few items I purchased before heading back out. Destination: Downtown.

We walked across the 6th Street Bridge (also called the Robert Clemente Bridge), found 5th Avenue and proceeded to walk to Console Energy Center. We made it there about 10 minutes before the Penguins Developmental Camp Scrimmage game. They played two halves and some shootouts. It was fun and over 6000 people were there. Got my picture taken with Iceburgh!

On the walk back, we went through Point State Park and walked across the Duquesne Bridge. By this time it was close to 6pm, so we decided to eat at a place we'd never been to before – Jerome Bettis' Grill 36. I had the mini pirogues. Yum, yum!

After dinner, we walked over to Rivers Casino. I actually made my $20 last about 2 hours this time.

Then we walked back to our room (again, passing Heinz Field). We figured we probably walked around 10 miles in all our treks. Yeah, my feet were feeling it, but my legs were doing okay. Even when I woke up the next morning.

It was nice staying in a relatively central location. Of course, we wouldn't have been able to do that if not for the free rooms. On the way home, we stopped at my hubby's Aunt's (in Beech Bottom, WV) to visit (and to give her some of the numerous books I received at some conferences). The whole weekend was so pleasant, even if it did get a little steamy.

So, was your weekend fantabulous, also?

Friday, July 13, 2012

Friday Hodge Podge

Happy Friday the 13th (I had to say this for my daughter, since it's her favorite non-holiday).

It's been a good week.

I finished the short story I wrote. I wrote 1000 words too many, though. I don't know what to cut, so I'm letting it sit. But I finished it! That's the important part.

I've actually added words to Book #5. I had to read it from the beginning, and stop myself from editing (which is kind of hard after having edited three books in a row), so I could get back into their lives. I'm a little stuck on my story, but as long as I write something, something good will come to me. It usually does. And I have future scenes all ready to write, I just have to figure out how to get my characters there!

Yep, I'm a linear writer. Can't do it any other way. But it sure is nice to get back into their lives. I anticipate many words today.

I also managed to make it to the gym every morning this week. Pushing the burn, too. I'm glad to be back and I'm glad the soreness has gone away! I knew it would, though. Just have to work through it.

My former employer kind of pissed me off this week – having to do with my final paycheck. Luckily, I got that resolved adequately. Still, I hated feeling used all over again. Need to cut that out!

But the best news this week – I killed a wasp! In the house!

On Wednesday, one of those little buggers managed to get inside. Don't know how. Must have hitched a ride on me (shudder), because I don't have any doors or windows open. Anyway, every time I tried to kill him, he'd get into the blinds and hide. Of which I wasn't about to go hunting for him. No – for me to kill him, he has to be on the window easy to smack.

When my husband came home, the wasp apparently disappeared. So of course he doubted its existence (even though I had a witness – my daughter). So for the rest of the evening, I kept my ear tuned to buzzing, but never heard anything. I couldn't imagine it left. Even if it had gotten in through a crack, what are the odds it left the same way?

The next morning, I'm still looking around the French doors in the breakfast nook (where he was last spotted). Still no sign of him. And no buzzing. I go to the gym, come home, have breakfast, and check e-mails. On my way upstairs for my shower, I take a glance out the front window panel (to the front door) and find my lips inches away from this buzzing sound.

AAAGH! I back away quicker than anything and grab the fly swatter (which I had kept in easy reach because I knew that sucker wasn't gone). I don't have my glasses on, but he was big enough and he couldn't hide.


Yep, he's gone. I even flushed the bugger because I wasn't taking any chances. I was able to rest easier for the rest of the day. Yay!

Tonight we leave for Pittsburgh. We're taking the Heinz Field tour on Saturday. Then we might actually make it over to the Consol Energy Center and watch the Penguins in a scrimmage game (which is FREE). I'm looking forward to all the fun. Hope the weather cooperates.

And I hope your weekend is just as fun!

Now, don't walk in front of any black cats! :)

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Tuesday $5 Movie Night

I usually attend the $5.00 movie night with my daughter. Probably because she and I have similar tastes. Then her Footy practice was moved to Tuesday. That kind of put a stop to the movie-going.

With her.

Last night my son and I went and saw "The Amazing Spider-Man." Now, I've seen all the ones with Tobey Maguire, and they didn't seem like they were made all that long ago, so I wasn't sure why another version was being made. Eh, I still don't. But I liked this version, too and will probably watch any sequels (which have already been set up, so it's kind of a no-brainer!).

I read somewhere where the special effects were better. But who could tell? I mean, the special effects for "Spiderman" were pretty awesome. If there was an improvement to "The Amazing Spider-Man," I didn't notice it.

Sort of like my Blue Ray DVD player vs. the up-convert DVD player we used own (well, we still own it – it's just in another room). There was supposed to be a huge difference on the Blue Ray player, but frankly, I don't see it (and yes, we tested it with actual Blue Ray DVDs). Main reason we still buy regular DVDs. They're cheaper. Why pay more for something you can't notice?

Probably the special effects the movie industry WANTS you to watch is the 3D version. Well, my son and I don't like 3D movies. They give us headaches. And I'm certainly not going to plunk down money to get a headache. Would you?

Do you like the 3D movies? Do you really think they're necessary? Or worth it? Because let's face it, you pay MORE for those movies. Even at $5.00 movie night, the 3D movies cost $2.00 more.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Picture Day

No Cemetery Art this Monday, but I do have pictures of…Arkansas! If you click on a picture, it should enlarge.

On a day that was supposed to be the coolest of the week, but hit 103 instead, we headed down to Crater of Diamonds State Park, located in Murfreesboro, AR. Found rock, dirt and more rocks (to quote our friend, Mary).

It's just a huge plowed field, with not much shade to be found. But people were out there digging for diamonds. Me, too (barely) as I found one of the few places that had shade (yeah, that's me in this picture). No diamonds for any of us, though.

The next day we visited Hot Springs, which is a small town inside the Hot Springs National Park. The high for this day was also 103. Thank goodness it wasn't humid - and the shade was tolerable.
I was amazed the hot springs didn't stink. When we visited Chena Hot Springs (in Alaska), it smelled like sulfur. The water in Hot Springs is drinkable once it's cooled from its 145 degree temp. See the steam in this picture? And it was HOT outside!
The famous bathhouses still stand, but only one is available to tour. One is still functioning, too. Others are either for sale or they are used for something else (one had a cafe & library - I had some iced coffee). I don't remember which one this was, though! 
This is one of the tubs. Yep, all the chairs are still there, too!

The baths are just lined up one after the other, too. Not much privacy, that's for sure!
The next day we visited the Graven Botanical Gardens. Nice and shady, especially when the high again was 103. Unfortunately, at this place it was a bit steamy! Everything was green  and everything was getting watered - they get irrigation from Lake Hamilton.
Here's a shot of Lake Hamilton (taken from the garden). The gardens were really beautiful, though and I highly suggest a visit if you're ever in the area!
Many weddings have been performed at the gardens and this church is also on the grounds. It was very impressive, too! Almost makes you feel like you're outside (yet it's air conditioned!).
On Friday and with temps at 105, we ventured up to Little Rock to visit the William J. Clinton Presidental Library. I've never been to a presidential library, so I had no idea what to expect. Lots of exhibits of what he did. It was interesting.
And there were some walkways and a park, but it was so hot, I had a hard time enjoying them! It also seemed to be in the middle of nothing! But then, Little Rock isn't a huge city (as you can see from this skyline - that's the Arkansas River). I think Dayton is bigger.

That's it for my pictures. Hope I didn't bore you all. We had a good time, though. I was pleasantly surprised (and happy the gas was under $3.00/gal in some places - when the gas was still $3.50/gal up here!) and wonder what it must be like in NORMAL temps!

The really funny thing was we went to Bob Evans on Sunday and the cashier had just come from a week's vacation in Arkansas, too! She was sad they were under a heat advisory and couldn't see any fireworks. But she loves the state. I can say the same now, too.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Saturday's Just Another Day

I've only been unemployed for a couple of weeks and already the days blur by. The holiday we just had didn't feel like a holiday, and now Saturday doesn't feel like Saturday. It's not a bad feeling. Just something I noticed.

I can't say I didn't work during the past week, even though it didn't feel like work. I doubt writing ever will. But it was a very productive week for me. My editing project is finished and now with my daughter for her input. When she's done, and I fix any problems (hopefully all minor), then that manuscript is off to the publisher who requested it. I don't think I've ever revised/edited something so quickly before. It helps when you have all day to do it.

I work. I'm just not getting paid for it (yet). And it's enjoyable work. Maybe that's what makes it hard to say I work.

I've also gone back to the gym, and boy do I feel it this morning. Thursday I walked 1.75 miles and worked on my legs. Friday I walked 1.80 miles and worked on my arms. Today I'm glad to rest. My body aches (but in a good way – I didn't over do it). I'll be back on Monday because I love going to the gym before 7:00am. Hardly anyone is there!

I will blame the past holiday and our vacation for my blogging failures this week. Hopefully, I'll get back on some kind of schedule. I work better that way, that's for sure. Monday and Tuesday I kind of floundered, because I wasn't sure what I wanted to do. That's when I realized I need structure. That's something I had when I got ready for the paying job. So that's what I do now. I get up by 6:30 and do what I need to do (exercise, eat, shower) so that I'm writing by 9:00. Just that little schedule has helped tremendously. But now it's Saturday and I miss it (so maybe it's NOT just another day - mmmm). Oh well, can't work every day, now can I?

Have a good weekend!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy 4th of July!

No favorites today. Why'd I think not working would increase my blogging? At least my writing isn't suffering. In fact, it's going great. But those times I'm not writing?

Let's see…

Monday – Errands consisted of visiting old workplace (left two things behind that I wanted back), trip to the library (a book I had ordered months ago and then found out it was useless to me!), a stop at the ATM (we needed the cash to pay back our friends for our Memorial Day trip), and grocery shopping (ugh – always ugh). Granted, normally I would have done most of this on the weekend, but we weren't here. Catching up after a vacation is hectic, isn't it?

Tuesday – Made 2 trips to Autozone for my husband. I walked there for one of the trips. Gotta get some exercise. It if wasn't so hot and sticky at 9:00am, I would have walked for the other trip in the afternoon. Ah, but I couldn't wait too late. I was meeting my daughter and her friend to see Magic Mike (I enjoyed the movie, too).

Even with all the interruptions, I managed to get many, many pages edited on My Sunny Vampire. In fact the whole beginning was revised and my daughter said it was a vast improvement (hardly made any editing marks – yay!). So now I'm basically reading it and hoping I don't come across any more awkward scenes (or scenes that need fixed because of the revised beginning).

I'm hoping my dream of uninterrupted writing is not an actual dream. That these last couple of days is because of our vacation. Because I'd like to work on my short story, too, so it's ready by August.

Today is a busy-ish day. Both the husband and I have hair appointments (we use the same lady), so that means brunch at Logan's Steakhouse (we have gift certificates we bought back at Christmas when they gave away free money if you purchased them – free money is always good). Then tonight it's off to the Dragons game. They are still playing pretty lousy. Hopefully, we'll get a win tonight.

Only bummer, though…I picked this game to go to because they were going to have fireworks and now they aren't. Apparently, they set them off on June 30. So I guess I won't be able to see any fireworks on the Fourth this year. If we weren't season ticket holders, I'd demand my money back!

I hope you all have a fun-filled day, and that it's not too hot out there for you. Anyone BBQing?

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Scam or Not?

I received the following e-mail from model.seth(at)

Dear Winner,

We are pleased to inform you of the result of the last final draw of MODEL SETH MITCHELL INTERNATIONAL LOTTERY Programs.

The lotto draws was conducted from an exclusive list of the fans email that leaves comment or questions for Seth on the blog.

After the automated computer ballot, your e-mail address account emerged as a winner in the category and e-ticket number: (redacted), you are therefore to receive a cash prize of $180,000.00 (One hundred and eighty Thousand) USD, from the total payout.

You are advised to contact our Certified and Accredited claims agent for category (match 1) winners with the information below:

Name: (redacted)
E-mail: (redacted)
Phone: (redacted)

Provide him with the following information:

Full Name:
Full Address:
Marital Status:
Telephone Number:
Country of Residence:

Note: I personally send the winning notification to you to avoid diversion of a winner's fund. If you do not get your prize after two weeks, do not hesitate to click reply to this message and inform me.

Once again, congratulations for your winning prize.

Best Regards,
Seth Mitchell

I'm pretty sure this is a scam, but I'm almost impressed in how they found me.

I did comment on a blog where Seth Mitchell (a real model, by the way) was featured. I said I wanted to be entered for the drawing. However, that drawing was for one of his posters. And it was back in 2010!

How many people do you think would actually respond to this hoping for the $180,000? The information they ask for doesn't seem all that sensitive, does it? It's not like they're asking for your SSN or credit card/bank information. Still, I know if it's too good to be true, it's most likely not true. And I never entered into this contest to begin with.

Unfortunately, I couldn't find anything on the internet stating this is an actual scam (or I'm just looking in the wrong place - not impossible!).

What do you think? Have you received one of these e-mails?

Monday, July 2, 2012

I'm Back!

Hello again!

I survived the heat. Arkansas was HOT. Every day reached over 100 – you'd think I was back in Arizona. But I had a wonderful time, except when I thought about my job situation.

Don't know if you could say I was depressed. I probably was for a bit – after the shock wore off. But after a couple of days, I was able to go to sleep without my mind going over everything thing I had done. Or worse, going over all the unfinished stuff I had left behind. Once I told myself it was their tough luck – I didn't leave them in a lurch, they kicked me out – I was able to stop thinking that way at least.

The comments from my last post also helped lift my spirits, so thanks for that.

Now I just feel inconvenienced. It's a pain searching for another job. Kind of depressing, too (I only have my own abysmal record to go by). All I can do is send out resumes and hope for the best.

And while I'm waiting, I have my writing. And an empty house. I could probably get used to that! We'll soon find out.

I don't have any pictures of my vacation yet (the camera is around here somewhere). Too busy with the editing (Book #3) and laundry. And probably a bit of laziness, too. Okay, maybe a lot.

I will say Hot Springs was pretty interesting. I might have enjoyed it more if it weren't so freaking hot, though.

Here's hoping for a cooler week.