Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Last Gasps of Summer

So school starts Tuesday. My children will be in 11th and 8th grades... no school changes, but my son will be king of the roost, in a way... I know even though the 8th graders don't change schools, there is a transition of sorts this year... My daughter worries that Junior year is rumored to be the most intense—it is the last one that plays hugely into college applications... it is a year of tests...



So GRASP IT ALREADY!

Yeah?

Cedar Point Long View
Well Hells, yeah... So in my full irresponsibility as a parent, I sent my children to ride roller coasters today... They are going to Cedar Point, which is about 2 ½ hours from here... they are going with daughter's boyfriend who is 18 and an experienced driver... I thought about going, too, but between finances, other obligations and back pain, it seemed better to send them off. A little nerve wracking, sure, but they prefer it this way, and it works better for us, other than a bit of worry.

You know, it's a funny thing—when I was 17, I went with a friend from Northern Idaho to Southern California for a week. But times are different... and the population out here is a lot denser... well, not denser than LA... I still can't believe my mom let me go, honestly... the trouble we got into, though, was not of too different a sort than we would have gotten into closer to home...

Cedar Point Juggernaut
Okay, that's a lie... there was Ray... but some characters in life are worth the trouble and he was one of them. What a character. Definitely not the sort of trouble I got into at home... but as we maintained an...erm... whatever it was... for a couple years... it AT LEAST was lasting trouble...

uh... yeah...

And so I guess we reach my belief that growing up is best reached in bits... that liberties and freedoms should be tried while still under guidance. I went to college at the University of Oregon, and while the kids from urban areas were better prepared academically, they were LESS prepared socially... you see... they'd been protected (for good reason, I might add). The rural kids were exactly the opposite. I am trying to balance the two... academic advantages, but some real life decision-making.

But as for the kids going to Ohio for the day... they should have a great time. Ohio is in school already and there are cheap tickets for Michiganders (trying to keep business running high as long as possible) so lines should be short and tickets a little cheap (about $10 off). Daughter's boyfriend isn't as keen on rides, so my daughter and son will do many together, making a threesome a better fit than if all of them liked them all...


Cedar Point's Cyclone
As for my OWN Final Grasps...

I have gotten feedback from the fabulous Jan, expect it soon from Leanne and Tara... and so will spend MY last weekend of summer cleaning up Begonia Bribe to send to my agent (Ellen in this case).

I've BEEN finishing the typing and initial read through of What Ales Me, taking notes on main plot points, so I can write a synopsis and plan the bigger edits, as it MAY be appropriate to pitch to Emily, my Berkley editor—Once I have a synopsis, Ellen will let me know, but I need to fill out the story a little first.

My plan there *BUWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA* is to send the first 50 pages and synopsis to Ellen as she sends me back Begonia...--a trade... so it is ready to present to Emily this fall...

I also am waiting for feedback from Amy on Kahlotus, but I know her reading plans had a hurricane aimed at them. She's in NYC (or nearly) and so I don't know if she has power—I really hope she didn't have big life interference... most of my NYC friends I've heard from have been by cell phone (I wonder... I guess they are using their cars to charge their phones... either that or they've made deals with some phone god we haven't met yet... none of our phones stay charged for days.)

Is that pathetic that the season doesn't matter much? I don't think so, as if I can:

Turn in Begonia
Get Kahlotus shaped up for fall submission
Get What Ales Me shaped up for a fall discussion

then I've met my summer writing goals and I can get back to WRITING. I will consider it a success.


So do you like roller coasters? What's the best one you've been on? Did you meet your summer writing goals?

18 comments:

Christine Murray said...

Hope your back pain isn't giving you too much hassle. I'm in awe of your organisation with regards to your books.

I think you're right to let them go. They'll have a great time and your daughter will know you trust her. If you have a nice mutual relationship like that, she's more likely to let you in on her decision making in the years to come. My parents were like that, and we have a great relationship now.

Carolyn Abiad said...

I'm not a fan of roller coasters, so I would be inventing some back pain to avoid them, if I could. (Hope yours feels better soon.)

My kids are going to have a hard time getting me to adjust to the idea of independence. (My oldest is freshman this year) But you're right. I need to back off. I know it. I just- Perfect analogy: I hate roller coasters and that feeling in your stomach. Letting go feels like...bleh.

However, my son let me in on a secret - if I scream (or exhale) on the way down, it doesn't feel so bad. It also helps to close my eyes. Defeats the point of the coaster, but maybe in this independence issue, looking away isn't such a bad idea?

GigglesandGuns said...

I LOVE ROLLER COASTERS!
You think at my age they wouldn't be an option but I love riding them. It's such a thrill.

My bet? Your kids will do wonderfully. Trust runs in two directions and you seem to manage that very well.

Thanks for the mention on Facebook. I about choked on my coffee.

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

School started last week for us. In some ways, it's a break for me. In others...

Am sure your kids will have a blast with the coasters!

And...sounds like you've got a lot on your plate! I'm trying to work on a few different projects, too...will see how that goes.

Hart Johnson said...

Christine-the back is generally okay sitting--it was the walking around and standing in lines I wasn't sure I was up for. Glad to hear my tactic may work!

Carolyn-no roller coasters?! You will get used to the letting go piece--I think it is hardest with the oldest.

Mary-I generally love them, too--though some of them seem to jerk me around more than they used to... Just got notice the kids are THERE!

Elizabeth-I don't know how you do all you do--it's nuts! I'm getting a dose of trying, i think, and I'm not really managing...

Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy said...

Wow, Hart! You are doing great with all of your writing and finishing up your books. I can't wait to read them. I hope that the kids had a wonderful time. Hey, I went to U of O in '76-'77 ... when were you there?

Have a wonderful week,

Kathy M.

Michael Offutt said...

Oh I'm so jealous and in so many ways. To be 18 again and running around at amusement parks.

Hart Johnson said...

Thank you, Kathy! And I was at UO from 84-88, so a little after you--man, I loved college. My best friend's daughter starts there this year and it's bringing back memories.

Michael-I know, right? Oh, to be 18... though there was a rough patch in my late 20s i wouldn't want to go through again...

Sarah Ahiers (Falen) said...

aww! That looks awesome! I bet they have a great time!
As for my summer goals, i both did and didn't meet them. I mean, i finished the WIP, but it took longer than i wanted. So kinda met i guess.

Mark Noce said...

Looks exciting! Funny how people approach summer in different parts of the country/globe. In my area the real summer weather doesn't arrive until Sept/Oct:)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Glad you're on track! I'm not much for roller coasters. Messes with my head.

Old Kitty said...

Yay for NAKED last gasps for summer! I cannot believe it's winding down already - actually I refuse to believe it's winding down and still pray for an Indian summer yet to come. More Nakedness! Yay!

Hope your kidlets had fun and that all went well!

Good luck with your writing goals - looks like they are going most nakedly!! Take care
x

Ciara said...

LOVE roller coasters!! I liked one I just rode at Universal, Double Dragon. Oh, and Goliath. I've always been a little bit of an adrenaline junkie. Congrats on all your writing success this summer.

Ketutar said...

Dear Tart, I stumbled over something, that made me think about you :-) http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/wordofmouth/2009/may/28/jamie-oliver-naked-chef-testicles

Hart Johnson said...

Sarah-they had a GREAT time! As for goals taking longer than expected? I think this just happens sometimes--especially with writing goals... and we ought to get credit for doing it anyway...

Mark-I recognize that west coast thing--I was there a long time. Sept/ Oct is Portland's best time, too. I actually love May and June in Michigan... warm and humid, lots of thunder storms, but not yet HOT.

Alex, I've gotten more that way--like my motion sickness has extended. but the stuff I don't like is the spinny stuff... used to love it.

Jenny--nuts how fast it's gone, eh? I wish it was still on! I've done good on writing though, so thank you!

Ciara- at one time I was, too, but I've outgrown it a little... I thought it was being a mom, but you're a mom, too!

Ketutar--naked chefs! Excellent! I will go check him out!

Crystal Pistol said...

You're a good mom. it sounds like something I would have done! I love roller coasters.

Hope your back feels better!

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I LOVE roller coasters!! Obsessed. Especially with loops. I've been to Cedar Point, and hate to say it, did not have a great time. We went on a Tuesday and it was SO busy, I didn't get to ride five of the coasters. Waited in line three hours for Millennium Force and I ended up liking Magnum better.
Best coasters are at Busch Gardens Williamsburg (love Apollo's Chariot) and Island of Adventure (love the Hulk and what used to be Dueling Dragons.)

Tonja said...

Whenever we buy season passes to the local amusement park (5 minutes from home), doom befalls us, keeping us from going, and we waste yet another $400. I never learn.

I get exactly what you are saying about sending the kids out into the world. I went on a vacation 700 miles away at 17. No way are my kids doing that.

Zero summer goals were met. September is looking better though.