Saturday, July 7, 2007

Saturday, July 7, 2007
Pluto Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Venus Retrograde
Sunny, hazy, hot

Enough retrogrades for you? Venus went Retrograde on Thursday. At least Mercury turns direct on Monday.

Lots of catching up to do.

The article for races 3-6 of the America’s Cup is here.

So Scooter Libby’s getting off. Once again, this administration shows that if you’re an FOC (Friend of Cheney) you can do anything you want without consequence. The absolute lack of consequences for anyone in the administration has got to stop. These people are our EMPLOYEES, not our kings. We pay their salaries. We (usually) get to elect them – although the “election” that put this Bush in office originally wasn’t a genuine election – when the Supreme Court orders the vote count to stop and hands the election to a candidate, it’s screwed up.

What happens at the top trickles down, and one reason there’s so much more person-to-person violence (such as spousal killings, child murder, etc.) is because the people at the top of the food chain make it clear that there are no consequences to their actions.

On another infuriating note: On Staten Island, a tiny Yorkie terrier was shot because he stood on his porch and barked. This was a family member, not a piece of property. I think the shooter should have his throat slit and be hung upside down to bleed out from the nearest tree. Read the studies – someone who murders/tortures an animal often moves up to doing the same to a child, and then moves up to killing adults. There have to be strong consequences for people who come in and commit murder, whether the victim has two legs or four. Especially when it’s an animal or a child, who can’t defend itself.

Day work was okay on Tuesday, although I started feeling a bit unwell towards the end of it. Managed to get home and prepare to leave for the trip, although I was not looking forward to driving while feeling ill. On top of all that, many places started having fireworks displays on Tuesday, rather than Wednesday, so there were time when I felt I drove through combat zones. Not my idea of a good time.

But, since I didn’t have to worry about watching any more races immediately, part of these past days have been a self-imposed writer’s retreat, and that’s always a good thing.

I managed to get some work done on Good Names. The process is so interesting – Good Names is an historical mystery, set in a slower time (1903). The pace of the book is slower, unfolding gently, with building urgency. And I find that about 1000 words/day is good for that. Tracking Medusa, which is more of an action/adventure/mystery with some romance tossed in, is contemporary, much more quickly paced – and I find myself writing chunks anywhere from 1500-2500 words at a time. The project directs the pace, and each project has its own pace. I have to remind myself that this book’s slower pace doesn’t necessarily mean I’m disconnecting from it. Although I need to do some character charts – the intricacies of the web of connections is getting difficult to store in my head. I’m looking forward to getting back to Tracking Medusa later today.

The 32nd America’s Cup Challenge is barely over, and the preparations are starting for the 33rd. The challenger stepped up almost as soon as Alinghi got off the boat, but now Alinghi’s dragging its heels regarding dates, venues, etc. I asked the questions to find out the “whys” although I suspect it all boils down to money, and trying to get as much as possible for the Defenders. I think the process is fascinating, and it will be wonderful to watch the process from the beginning. I have a lot to learn about the sport – and at least I KNOW I have a lot to learn about the sport, and I’m looking forward to having my readers grow in the sport with me. And maybe attract some new readers, as I learn more and more about the sport. I was sorry to read that the BMW Oracle Racing Blog will stop as of July 11 – it’s such a terrifically written site, and I’ve learned so much from it (and by bugging the writer/editor with questions). I’d hoped it would stay up so we could get a view of the process of putting together the next American team.

The party on the 4th was lovely. Huge – about 475 people, great food, good wines. It was moved into tents, because the weather was a bit wonky. With a group that big, you get some people who are interesting and terrific, and some who are not. I don’t care how much is in your bank account, you moron, I care how you live your life. Plus, we’re in the 21st Century, for crying out loud, and there are still far too many girls (because WOMEN have more sense) whose entire mission in life is to find a rich husband, so the only work they have to do is in the bedroom. As we used to say in the 80’s, “gag me with a spoon”. Trading sex for money is still prostitution, even if there’s a gold band involved.

However, there were also plenty of intelligent, interesting people there from all walks of life. Some of them travel quite a bit – and they’re the kind of people who are interested in things that are different, rather than just trying to re-create their comfort zone wherever they are. Several of them travel regularly to Chile, and it sounds intriguing.

Big screens were up so we saw the fireworks in DC, New York, and Boston. Boston’s was great – I mean, they had Craig Ferguson as the host and Mellancamp performing – plus, instead of trying to do something all serious and holy, they were just having fun.

I wrote the first article of the nine accepted by a particular publication, polished it, and sent it off. I sent some questions to the New York Yacht Club for my wrap-up of Challenge 32/Lead-in of Challenge 33. I started my restaurant article and shot off a few questions to the owner. I’d prefer to get answers from him, but, if I have to, I’ve got enough to do the piece without his input.

I’m getting addicted to working on the go. I think I’ll have to invest in a wi-fi laptop shortly, instead of just borrowing one. And the little printer – a mobile office is a beautiful thing. Although there are still plenty of times when I simply turn off the phone and am “unavailable”.

Thank goodness I could work on the run, though, this week. I’m working on multiple articles simultaneously; there are rumors and all sorts of potential stories flying about, and I want to get as many facts and confirmations, clarifications or denials as possible before I have to turn in my work at deadline.

Such as a horse trainer under investigation because cobra venom was found in his barn’s refrigerator at the track. In addition to being a banned substance, for freak’s sake, it’s COBRA VENOM. But, before I completely fly off the handle about it, I need to do more research. Especially since none of the vets I contacted would discuss it, even off the record.

Worked on another horse racing article, due tomorrow, after today’s stakes races go off. Worked on the final 32nd America’s Cup race article, also due today (it still needs a polish).

I started to catch up with my clip file – managed to get copies of all the FemmeFan articles which have appeared so far this year.

So much for those fantasies of sitting in the sun overlooking the water, reading an Edith Wharton novel!

Coming home sank me into a deep case of the blues. I’m not happy here, it’s not conducive to my work or my life, but pulling off the move is more obstacle-filled than I anticipated. I need to employ patience, but that’s never been a virtue of mine. I like to jump in with both feet and DO it.

A kazillion errands to do today, all over the map. Better hop to it. Unfortunately, I have a migraine, which will slow me down.

Also had to give Kristen King (InkThinker) the update for my participation in the InkThinker 2007 Query Challenge. Thus far, I’ve sent 63 queries. 29 were acceptances, and 13 have been published to date. Not a bad average. My pitching has grown smoother and more precise over the past few months. I’m sure there’s an article in that!

I’m supposed to attend a Live Earth party tonight. From yachts to grass roots activism, all in the course of a couple of days. I don’t know if I’m up for another evening in a large group of people I don’t know. But . . .

I LOVE being a freelance writer!


Good Names – 31,737 words out of est. 100,000

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
31 / 100


  1. Cobra venom?! What the heck could he possibly want with that? Man, people are so freakin’ weird.

  2. I totally agree about people who hurt innocent animals. I think they (those people) are one degree removed from humanity and need serious help. It makes me sick.

  3. Sorry about the migraine. Cobra venon. Shooting dogs. Did you hear about the guy who beat up a peacock in Staten Island? What is going on with these people?

  4. Cobra venom? I’m scratching my head on that one. That poor yorkie and it’s family. Some people are just inhumane.
    Sorry to hear about the migraine, but you sound very upbeat at the end of your post! I’m glad you are so satisfied with your writing career!

    Have a great day, whether you attend the party or not!

  5. gag me with a spoon was a favorite of my mom’s in the 60s! it made me think of her. also: enough to gag a maggot. she would hook onto one of those sayings and that was that – it was hers for the rest of her life.

  6. I SO agree with you on Scooter Libby. This administration has made a complete travesty of justice. And you’re right – the way Bush and Cheney did it was sneaky and very clever. Our government is becoming a complete joke – they are not even trying to hide that they are in it solely to line their pocketbooks, and we, the American people, totally don’t count.
    And you are absolutely right about the dog – I’ve read a number of Ann Rule’s true crime books, and inevitably, serial killers and their ilk start by torturing and killing innocent animals.

  7. Oh D!!! I’ve been away from the internet for a spell, and come home tonight after a 2 show day to find a Delicious posting on your blog. I’ve missed you girl!!

    Cobra Venom? uhmmm? Is this possibly a worst case scenario of needing something quick and painless to euthanize a crippled beyond repair animal? And I’m more than curious why any of the many vets you know Won’t discuss it…

    Anyhow, great posting. The ladies here in HK send their love to AuntiE. The suitcase rolled out last week in a move to clean up the bedroom. Bast has been exceptionally clingy, and Roo is eagerly awaiting my departure so she can gorge herself on all the food she can hold while I am away…

    Oh, Did I mention to you that I’m going to Rhode Island for a few days! A little get away before my holiday!!

    See you soon dearest! Love and Light.

  8. I stumbled on your blog this evening, and ended up bookmarking it so I can keep coming back to visit. Couldn’t agree with you more about Libby. This administration, which as far as I’m concerned has yet to be legitimately elected once let alone twice, has become the laughingstock of the world.

    Looking forward to reading more about your freelance life (I’m a freelancer, too!) and your world views.


  9. You are so right about people who hurt animals. As part of my sociolody minor, I took a class in social problems, and did a huge research project on animal abuse and its psychological and sociological aspects. I found that most serial killers started out by abusing and killing animals in their neighborhoods. If they had been punished appropriately (and put into therapy) then, maybe they wouldn’t have committed other crimes later in life. It makes you think, anyway.

    Oh, and yes… there are still so many girls who think all they have to do is marry rich. Here in the south, there are girls who go to college strictly to get what they call their “MRS degree.” My first college roommate was one of those girls. She was an undecided major as long as she could be one, taking the “fun” classes and the ones she thought the most guys would be in, and then she declared psychology, but by that time, she already had an engagement ring so she didn’t really care what she studied. It was hard not to scream at her sometimes because she was so vapid. Yuck!

    I love the upbeat ending to your post! It makes me happy to know you love your writing career so much. I hope I can be as successful and satisfied with mine (if I can ever get it off the ground, that is!)

  10. Devon,

    The following is what I banged out as a letter to the editor a few hours after the shameful commutation was announced:

    When the CIA first demanded an investigation be done to determine who leaked the identity of a covert operative to a journalist, Bush promised that the White House would perform their own investigation. He also pledged that anyone found who had divulged such sensitive information would no longer work in his White House.

    We now know that no internal investigation took place. We also know that Karl Rove also leaked Valerie Plame’s name to members of the press, and Rove still works at the pleasure of the president. Bush lied to the American people on this matter more than once.

    The act of revealing the identity of a covert CIA agent’s name was an act of treason. It was to seek political retribution against someone who alerted the public to the lies that led our country into launching an ill-conceived war of choice.

    Exposing Valerie Plame did more than just ruin her career, it destroyed a network of informants and the cover of “Brewster Jennings” a CIA front organization.

    We have no idea how many people died because of this act of vengeance on the part of the Bush administration, nor will we ever know how it compromised our intelligence gathering in the Middle East.

    Bush by stepping in and tampering with Libby’s sentence has shown that he values loyalty to him over the rule of law.

    Perjury, obstruction of justice, and contempt for the rule of law: all in a day’s work in this criminal, corrupt administration.

    The only way to stop them is to impeach, indict, and then convict them.

    Otherwise, all the crimes they have committed will elicit get out of jail free cards as Bush slinks into a retirement of cleaning brush in Crawford.

    However, there’s no telling how much damage they can inflict on this nation and the world before January 2009. Cheney wants to invade Iran and unless Congress takes powerful measures to stop them such as impeachment, we may all pay a terrible price.

    Unfortunately, they didn’t print it, but I had a lot of stiff competition because there was a slew of people sending in their irate reactions as well.


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