Let’s have a little fun. School is fun, right? Tests, quizzes? Well, maybe not. But those teeny-bopper magazines sure drew their young readers (and the dough from all the vacuumed floors and birthday money from grannies galore) with multiple-choice “tell me about yourself and we’ll tell you what your future holds” quizzes. I remember them from middle school. Quite the page-turning reads depending on whether you wanted to know if you were in the “in crowd” (I flunked those) or whether you’d be cut out for celebrity-hood (flunked those too). Most of those quizzes I came across were of the choose-your-own outcome variety. I guess I had no need for celebrity status or in-crowdedness.
Now I think those writers’ offspring grew up to write quizzes for Facebook and such. Polls for the youngers. That start fights and “my life is totally ruined” meltdowns all across the globe.
So, here we go…
1. What fresh catastrophes did July 2020 bring that posed challenges in the B.A. Paul household?
a. Laptop crash
b. Tornadic winds
c. Post-concussive syndrome from a ladder fall
d. Thyroid crash
e. All of the above.
The answer is e, all of the above. Though I wasn’t the one to personally suffer post-concussive syndrome, that was a dear family member. Stressful, nonetheless. Folks, don’t let your loved ones climb ladders unattended when they have no business climbing ladders unattended.
And folks, if you can get away with never having thyroid fog, I’d highly recommend any option other than that. Detrimental to mental capacity and productivity. All you want is a fuzzy blanket and a cat. And the cats are over cuddling in the heat, even with the air on.
Tornadic winds (some called them straight-line. Not sure officially. I’m calling it The Great Wind Event, as it was definitely not in the “warm summer breeze” category) downing my ancient, twisted, giant glories? Yeah, let’s do something else next July. That was no fun. And this week will be very loud and tumultuous as the trimming crews come to clean up the mess. Nonetheless, we were very blessed that it only did damage to the trees. We were out power for a bit, but others got it worse. I didn’t hear of any injuries. It was a close one.
Laptop? Well, my poor old Lenovo had one digital foot out the door for quite some time. Slower and slower by the week. My dear, sweet hubs bought me a new setup for our anniversary—quite the surprise, but very much appreciated. We’ll have been hitched 25 years next month. We were to fly into Seattle. Seattle. Have a gander around the city for a couple of days. Get on a boat. A boat. To Alaska. On a boat.
Nope. We canceled our trip when the virus ripped through the states. Then the cruise company canceled our trip on top of us canceling our trip. So, a laptop it is, and I’m very grateful. I’m still searching for ideas for him, which brings me to question #2:
2. What should Beth do for her husband for their 25Th wedding anniversary?
a. Nothing. Her love is enough.
b. Reschedule the boat for a future year and hope for a different outcome.
c. Yard knick-knacks (he’s got a thing for benches and swings…)
d. Compose a short story and dedicate it to him.
e. Jury’s out. We shall see.
E. That would be E. Likely not d. I’ve got a week or two. There’s time. And had I bought the swing, The Great Wind Event would’ve toppled the tree onto it. So there’s a wee, bitty, bitty bright spot. We did not suffer the loss of a swing that I did not buy yet. We’ll hang onto the bitty bright spot, since this year is so 2020...
3. Setting a weekly, public writing goal is just the push Beth needed to
a. Worry about writing.
b. Find reasons to push the writing to the end of the week, then panic.
c. Get words down on the page.
d. All of the above.
If you chose D, you’d be correct. Funny what thinking about others “knowing” what you’re supposed to be up to does to the mindset. I’ve gotten words down that I wouldn’t have otherwise, so I’ll keep posting the weekly goal until it doesn’t work.
4. How does B.A. Paul feel about learning a new program designed to make her publishing life easier?
a. Great. Learning is fun. I wish to learn all the things!
b. Mediocre. Thyroid fog, crashed laptop, and The Great Wind Event have hindered the progress.
c. Chin up, dearie. It’ll come. Beth’s brain isn’t as young as it used to be. But it still works…occasionally.
d. Little Miss Muse would rather be writing, causing Beth great anxiety over time spent floundering on the program vs. time spent on getting new words done.
e. Beth is about to mortgage the house to pay someone else to do the dumb program.
f. All of the above.
Yup. You guessed it. All of the above. Sometimes I rip through all five choices in the span of two-hour time chunks.
5. What will be the title of B.A. Paul’s next release when she finally masters (read “masters” as “good enoughs”) the publishing program?
a. Spunk and Spice
b. Out There
c. Mystery Minutes
d. All the Feels
e. Just a Tick of Whimsy
f. All of the above. She’s obsessed with releasing them all at relatively the same time.
You ought to know by now. I’m leaning toward F. Maybe one a day or something, but out they’ll go to the big, wide world, hopefully starting next week. Next week! The end of July 2020.
6. Announcing the release of her short story collections by the end of July 2020 just the push Beth needs to:
a. Worry about it.
b. Find reasons to maneuver the work to the end of the month, then panic.
c. Get the collections done and out the door already.
d. All of the above.
I likely already know the answer to #6. Hopefully, though, I can break the “last one is always the right one” pattern and choose C. This week, I’ll aim for C.
Let you know in a week or two.
In the meantime, enjoy the rest of July, 2020.
And I’m laughing all the way out of the room as I hit save.
Bonus Question: To enjoy the rest of what 2020 has to offer, one should:
a. Turn off the news
b. Take a blessing tally
c. Take a social media hiatus
d. Take a walk
e. Take a chill pill (or a nap another walk)
f. Take up a new hobby
g. All of the above
This one’s a choose-your-own outcome deal. Pick one. Any one. Or a combination. You’ll not be wrong…