A Synopsis by Any Other Name

Thought I’d stick with the topic of synopses, given I intend to post the four revised ones for the Triple Threat Investigation Agency series.  Considering that the last post provided synopsis-writing pointers, there’s no need to repeat . . . at least not so soon.

So, playing around a bit, I came up with this:

S = Summarize

Y = Your

N = Notable

O = Outline

P = Plausibly

S = So

I = It

S = Sells

<LOL>  Some days, you just have to go with the flow . . . even if the river is running motionless. WPHulaSyn

Can you Hula Like Hilo Hattie, the sequel to The Connecticut Corpse Caper, finds the three amateur sleuths—Jill Jocasta (JJ), Rey, and Linda—serving as bona-fide detectives.  The owners of the newfound Triple Threat Investigation Agency even have a paying assignment courtesy of their first client, WP Howell: discover the secret of his young, pretty wife, Carmie.  Millions, and a much-desired divorce, rest on it.

What seems straightforward enough quickly becomes complicated when Carmie’s battered body is found in the sapphire waters of the Hawaiian Pacific.  It soon becomes evident that Carmie was not the only one with a secret, nor the only one to die an untimely death.  Who among a cast of curious, unconventional characters is tenacious (or crazy) enough to eliminate all living liabilities?

In the quest for answers, JJ, Rey and Linda encounter a plethora of suspects.  It appears many people had a dislike for, or held a grudge against the wealthy woman.

Their P.I. travels lead them along a few detours, where drug dealers and informants, treachery and blackmail, abound.  Benny Pohaku, working both sides of the drug-pushing fence, is young and brash, and his arrogance ticks off the wrong people.  Dealer Cash Layton Jones is as galling as he is attractive, and his habit of entering JJ’s condo uninvited results in a few heated encounters.  Carmie’s intriguing, if not odd, ‘tini friends serve as pieces to an expanding puzzle.  Jon Jonson, a currently down-and-out musician, has been blackballed by Carmie from playing the local music circuit.  Being unceremoniously dumped could serve as a motive for murder for Stacy Kapu, Carmie’s trainer and former lover.  Restaurant co-manager, Benoit Paillisson, had always had a hate-hate relationship with the rich young woman.

And there is certainly no love lost when it comes to hubby WP Howell.  What had Carmie known that might have proven detrimental?  Was it so damaging that it prompted the man to kill?  Young Salv Smith, a Trango gang member, had some sort of affiliation with Carmie, but what?  His mother, Lee, sports the same black widow tattoo—a gang badge—as her stepson.  How does she fit in? 

Gino Carpella, Carmie’s twin brother, is known to associate with questionable sorts.  It was even suggested that he had had his sister’s fiancé executed.  Has the rift in the twins’ once close-knit relationship played a part in Carmie’s death?  Or has one of Gino’s enemies retaliated by striking out at his closest family member?

While sleuthing, the women find the relations between people and happenings as clear as the contaminated waters of the Ala Wai Canal.  Fortunately, they possess perseverance—and receive occasional assistance.  Composed, thorough, and discerning Detective Gerald Ives works closely enough with JJ, Rey and Linda to provide guidance, but not so much as to have them tramp on his toes . . . too much.  A seasoned private investigator residing on Big Island, Petey May, serves invaluable to the women.  His P.I. experience helps in bringing new facts—and evidence—to light. 

As the body count increases and the suspect list decreases, the women determine the murderer’s identity, but need to prove it.  Resolve and help from pretty pink Tasers bring the evasive culprit, and cohort, to their knees.  Literally. 

While major incidents are explained, a few loose ends (and cannons) remain.  These are addressed, but not necessarily [yet] tied up, in the third novel, Coco’s Nuts.  JJ, Rey and Linda are budding detectives, after all, and they have lessons to learn and skills to hone.

Catch ya next week!

Summing Up the Synopsis

Exciting times.  Or taxing?  <LOL>  Because of the move to New Chapter, Creativia requested its authors submit new synopses for their books.  The result: a community chat about the appropriate length and requirements of a synopsis.  Ta-da!  Topic for today: synopsis refresher pointers.

What do you add?  What do you remove when all the adding’s been done?  Is the synopsis dynamic?  Does it capture all the important components?

You’ve completed your manuscript; now you have to sum up the story.  Ugh.  No fun, you’re thinking.  It’s not that bad, really.  Just commit some time, roll up those sleeves, and grab a cup (or three) of joe.

Start by determining the key/pivotal actions—feats, accomplishments, battles, trials—that your main protagonist embraces and endures.  You may want to write a short paragraph for each chapter.  And, yes, it’s quite all right to include the ending in a synopsis; you are, in essence, “selling” your book, be it to a publisher or agent.

Ensure that you provide enough backdrop in the beginning to paint a visual picture.  Where does the story take place?  Who is the protagonist?  What is the major trial he or she is facing?

Once you have all those paragraphs written, flesh out the synopsis so it flows like a serene stream and not a torrential flood (you can delete later).  Write it in third-person present tense (regardless of how the book itself is written—such as first person, present tense).

What’s important for the reader to know?  Have you provided critical components?  What’s the plot about?  Who is the main character?  What makes him or her tick?  What event(s) play a crucial part in developing and challenging him or her?  How are major issues resolved?

Once it’s all on paper/screen, start editing.  Keep the nitty-gritty and delete the redundant.  Publishers and agents vary on the length of the synopses they want.  Have a one- or two-pager at the ready, but keep a multi-page one handy too (you truly never know).

Here’s a revamped synopsis for the first book featuring the Triple Threat Investigation Agency gals, before they were official P.I.s.

The Connecticut Corpse Caper chronicles the antics of several inheritance recipients, as witnessed by weather announcer Jill Jocasta Fonne.  The madcap mystery begins when she arrives one November afternoon at her deceased aunt’s eerie (reputedly haunted) Connecticut mansion, primed for a week-long stay.  Two-hundred thousand dollars will be awarded to each person upon staying the course.  Should someone leave, regardless of reason, his or her share will be divided among those remaining.

Each friend and relative of the deceased and eccentric Mathilda Reine Moone (Aunt Mat) seems as odd as the next to Jill, save for her pastry-chef boyfriend, Adwin Byron Timmins, and her high-strung cousin, Reynalda (Rey) Fonne-Werde.  Simple and wholesome Linda Royale, a screenwriting assistant and B-movie actress Rey’s best friend, seems equally innocuous.

London barrister Jensen Q. Moone and Manhattan lawyer Thomas Saturne are somber middle-aged gents.  While the former resembles Dr. Abraham Van Helsing (sucking on prunes), the latter bears a resemblance to Tinky Winky, the purple Teletubby.  Neither cares much for the other.  Sophisticated May-Lee Sonit is owner of an antique shop called The Pied Piper and Aunt Mat’s good friend; the two women shared a love of wine and theater, opera and classical concerts.  There is a wacky brother-sister team: Percival Sayers is a writer of obscure poetry and landscaping and gardening articles, Prunella an avid bird lover and adventurer.  Unconventional servants—a portly chef, spindly maid, and grave butler—have been part of the household for years. 

All have a secret, as the three women (Jill, Rey and Linda) discover when they step out of their everyday professions and take on roles as amateur sleuths.  Others soon join in the sleuthing and the bumbling, stumbling—and mayhem—not long after the family lawyer passes in the drawing room.  Perhaps Saturne was heavy and out-of-shape, but he never appeared that unhealthy.  

Enter Sheriff Lewis and Deputy Gwynne; exit same, with body, into a misty and frigid night.  Enter and exit Lewis and Gwynne several more times as the body count mounts . . . until there is no option but to remain.

The trio’s Internet detecting reveals much: the history of the antebellum property and previous misfortunate (cursed?) owners, a liaison between Prunella and Thomas, and a sketchy bio of Fred the Ghost (as opposed to Fred the Cat, Aunt Mat’s fat feline).

When eccentric and not-so-deceased Aunt Mat dramatically announces a return from the dead, everyone is thrown into a tizzy.  The dither intensifies when the grande dame explains that the demise had been faked in hopes of ensnaring the person(s) responsible for monetary and in-house thefts.

As an ice storm approaches, legal sorts fall mysteriously ill.  Tensions mount, fingers point accusingly, and tongues flap crossly.  The determined, investigative threesome discover that not only hidden rooms and passageways conceal deep, dark secrets. WPCaperSyn

The Connecticut Corpse Caper is the perfect escape for those who love old B&W whodunit mysteries set in creepy oversize mansions filled with quirky guests, secreted passageways, and disappearing and reappearing corpses.

More on Saturday . . . .

Making Merry, er, Merrie

Hey, it’s Rey!  The Boss is taking the weekend off, so I’m doing the post, which I’m super stoked about.  Considering I’m not a fiction writer (and let’s not talk editor), I thought I’d post about something that recently took place here on the Islands, something JJ, Linda and I finally got a chance to attend and not just for one day, but four . . .

. . . the Merrie Monarch FestivalWPhula1kahikoStarAdvertiser

It seemed fitting to share this huge, decades-old hula event, which includes the Miss Aloha Hula competition, Hula Kahiko contest, Hula ‘Auana, and awards.

History’s always a “nice to have”, so here are a few fascinating facts:

◊  Polynesians, who’d originally colonized the Hawaiian Islands, developed the hula.

◊  Missionaries phased out this beautiful dance back when, but—fortunately—it was revived decades later, during the reign of King David La’amea Kalākaua.  He once claimed that “hula is the heartbeat of the Hawaiian”.  A patron of the arts, the king was showy and extravagant, as well as playful.  Small wonder he was known as the “Merrie Monarch”—and that’s why the Festival is called what it is.  Love it! WP1kingdavidsoravijDOTcom

◊  In Hawaii of old, written language didn’t exist, so hula and associated chants enabled Hawaiians to connect to the land and gods.  In Hawaii of today, hula is not only still a way to connect, it’s a way of life.

◊  Hula kahiko is traditional hula, complemented with a double-gourd drum or pahu drum, and chants.  Hula ‘auana is modern hula, developed with Mainland/western interaction.

◊  During the early 60s, Big Island was looking for a way to boost the economy.  After exploring ideas/options, a committee came up with the first Merrie Monarch Festival.  In the early 70s, it changed objectives and focus to what, basically, it evolved into today: hula dancing, Hawaiian artistry, and embracing Hawaiian culture and its people.  It grew in popularity (majorly) and in 2013 the Festival celebrated 50 years of success.

“The Merrie Monarch Festival is a non-profit organization that honors the legacy of King David Kalākaua, who inspired the perpetuation of our traditions, native language and arts.  . . . Our week-long festival features an internationally acclaimed hula competition, an invitational Hawaiian arts fair, hula shows, and a grand parade through Hilo town.” 

I thought the Merrie Monarch site summed it up nicely.  (Hilo’s on Big Island, by the way.  I think I’ll post about it next time around.  I’m happy and excited—and pretty proud—to share my thoughts about Hawaii.  It’s an awesome place to live.)

<LOL>  I wasn’t planning on providing so much background (Linda would be proud).

The Miss Aloha Hula competition was amazing.  We were riveted.  All 13 competitors were beautiful and talented (I have to confess, I was a bit envious).  Taizha Keakealani Hughes-Kaluhiokalani took the title . . . and then also won the Hawaii language award.  How awesome is that? WPauna1BigIslandNow2

The hula Kahiko and hula ‘Auana contests were both a pleasure to watch—the dancing was divine and the costumes were stunning.  The wahini (women) were lovely and the kāne (men) drop-dead-whew! gorgeous.

Even got in some shopping—T-shirts, sweatshirts, and bags.  Those four days were totally nui.  If you get a chance to attend the Festival, please do . . . and make merrie!

Pat on the Back or Kick in the Butt ?

It’s been two years since the debut of The Writer’s Grab-Bag.  As such, I felt a need to acknowledge its “anniversary”.  The hopes/dreams/objectives I’d had at the onset—and planned to implement after a few months—haven’t [yet] been realized.  That said, though, I have managed to write two weekly posts, review the odd book, and help with the occasional (behind-the-scenes) proofing.

I haven’t accomplished all I’d intended to—like get a “new look”, establish revenue-generating ads, and include affiliate links—but I’ve been consistent and as committed as I can be, given current circumstances.  Do I pat myself on the back?  Or kick myself in the butt?  <LOL>  Maybe both.  WPpat1

It’s all good.  Sometimes, life throws a few curveballs and plans/intentions simply cannot come to fruition.  Does that mean we give up?  Curse the poor wee laptop?  Whine and/or complain to the Big Guy?  Say “<bleep> that’s life <bleep>?  Sometimes ya win, sometimes ya lose.

But do we really lose?  Are we truly defeated or beaten?  Isn’t not winning part of the process, the evolution of life and living?  Isn’t it all about learning?  Growing?  Aspiring?  As the incredibly impatient person I am—who sometimes feels like plowing her head into a nearby wall (feels like, I emphasize)—I will be the first to scream/shout/yell “waiting sucks—big time!” . . . because it can and does.

But waiting also provides an opportunity to gather data, insight and support, and boost perception, comprehension and appreciation.  The process of waiting can be construed from two opposing viewpoints: as an annoying delay or the anticipation of something exciting to come.

Waiting is a temporary postponement, not a permanent pause or ending.  It’s all how you view life and goals—the proverbial half glass empty versus the half glass full.  So I’m not yet where I’d hoped or planned to be.  The optimum word is yet . . . thus far, until now, hitherto.

Here’s looking to a future that may prove totally amazing . . . before long, shortly, soon, forthwith.

Don’t you love surprises?

WPjump1A

 

Review: The Crimson Deathbringer by Sean Robins

The Crimson Deathbringer is the first novel from Sean Robins—and a great debut it is.  It’s chockablock full of action.  You have dramatic alien-versus-human-versus alien encounters, exciting space battles, an insane race to save the world, some warm-hearted romance, and a lot of waggish humor (reminiscent of Douglas Adams).  If you can get this granite face to break a smile, you’ve accomplished something major and Sean has done just that—by infusing campy fun at the right times, in the right places.

I was a Trekkie—and once a Trekkie, always a Trekkie, because I could still [effortlessly, happily] watch episode after episode after episode.  That said, though, I’m not a fan of science fiction.  I’d agreed to review the book, but not checked the genre, so when it arrived, it was a woe-is-me, “Tyler, what’d you get yourself into?”  Then, I read the first chapter and the characters and storyline yanked me in!

Not only do you have protagonist Major Jim Harrison, an Air Force fighter pilot, relaying action through his eyes, you view it through others.  It’s not simple to balance—juggle—different POVs, or stories within stories, but Sean makes it work exceptionally well.

His characters are carefully crafted and his descriptions of future Earth and alternative planets and life forms are well detailed.  It’s easy to visualize all that is transpiring—from perilous shootouts and intense combat, to silly pranks and friendly banter.  There is an emotional level, too—sadness when someone dies, dismay when all seems futile, and encouragement when something heartening happens.

Without giving too much away, the storyline is this: Jim Harrison and his lovely partner, Liz Lopez, are part of a troupe that intend to save United Earth from the dastardly clutches of the egocentric, win-at-all-costs General Maada.  Hailing from a far-off galaxy, his goal is to make the Xortaags’ kingdom the most powerful, most feared entity in the universe.  Fortunately for Jim et al, they have Tarq, who also hails from a distant star system.  His objective is to save his entire species, the Akakies, via Operation KGAFUP (which we’ll leave as an acronym for the sake of a “wholesome” review).  Throw in a corrupt world leader, determined Resistance members and tough Russian mafia sorts, and Bob’s your uncle (always wanted to say that).  The Crimson Deathbringer will take you on an enthralling ride as it swoops through Sean Robins’ cosmos.

And just who is our budding author?  A big fan of Marvel, Game of Thrones, Star Trek and Star Wars . . . and author Jim Butcher.  He’s also an English teacher who has resided in various countries, including Canada; hence those Canadian references, eh.

This novel would be a five out of five, but the editor in me has to give it a 4.5 for those items that need, hmm, a wee bit of editing.  Still, a stellar story.  Looking [most] forward to the sequel.

Rating:  savesavesavesavesave

WPuse at bottom

Please check Sean Robins out at:

https://thecrimsondeathbringer.home.blog

https://seanrobins73.wixsite.com/website

Amazon:  Mybook.to/crimsondeath

 

 

 

Dream On

OMG.   <ROTFL>   On the weekend, I’d posted “Dreaming the Impossible Dream”.  Given that this blog is dedicated to writing/editing and my own fiction endeavors—like The Triple Threat Investigation Agency series—I’d meant to tie it in with writing . . . how we, as writers, have dreams, be it to become a household name, make money, experience fame, or entertain readers.

I got sidetracked but, as an author, I go where the keyboard and/or pen takes me.

“A dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world.”
– Oscar Wilde (poet and playwright)

I’ve had many dreams over the decades, but there’s only one that’s followed me throughout—to be a writer.  I’ll admit I’ve always wanted to make money as one, not by the truckload, but enough to be able to write full-time, live in a decent condo, pay bills, and retire without worry.  And I’ll also acknowledge that it’s still a dream today—an aspiration. WPdreamusealso

As an FYI, a dream is something you wish were true or something you want, yearn for.  An aspiration, like a goal is something you’re determined to undertake, tackle, attain.

“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.”
– C.S. Lewis (writer and lay theologian)

How does one make a dream come true?  Having one to strive for helps.  Decide what yours is.  Really focus; ensure it’s well-defined and doable (sure, becoming a billionaire may happen, bu-ut).  Believe in it; there’s no waffling; no doubt.  Trust it’s yours to be had, that it’s achievable.

“The only thing that will stop you from fulfilling your dreams is you.”
– Tom Bradley (American politician and former police officer)

The “Law of Attraction”, creative visualization techniques, and umpteen sites will advise something to the effect of:

 Ask.  Believe.   Achieve.  

Sold!  Who can argue with simple easy-to-follow logic like that?  When it came out, I read The Secret by Rhonda Byrne.  Fabulous food for thought and practice.  Basically, whatever you think and feel will affect what you attract into your life—so maintain positive thoughts and feelings, and you’ll receive positive things.

<ROTFL again>  I digress.  Again.  Back to being a writer with a dream.  Once you’ve defined it, believe in it.  Release fear and worry, and determine (record/list) how you can make it happen.  Look at others who have attained what you’d like to; see how they accomplished it and decide what similar action(s) you can undertake.

“Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.”
– Harriet Tubman (abolitionist and political activist)

Understand that it will, with effort and action, take time for the dream to become reality.  Recognize that you may err or experience a setback.  That’s okay.  It’s not a true setback; it’s a lesson learned.

Learning is a very good thing.

 “To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe.”
– Anatole France (poet, journalist, novelist)

WPdreamALLuse

Dreaming the Impossible Dream

Thinking a lot about life lately . . . things that were, things that are, things that may/could be . . . like dreams.

We’ve all had dreams.  Still do.  Some were envisioned during childhood and youth, others during our 20s and 30s, and a few came later.  Some were realized, others changed.  Some we [now] laugh at, others we [still] wish for.

My mom’s a fan of Gomer Pyle: USMC, as once mentioned, so I bought the DVDs (yeah, I’m old-school, what can I say, LMAO).  Knew he could sing, but never knew he could sing until I watched the show.  One episode in particular—“The Show Must Go On”—has Gomer (Jim Nabors) singing “The Impossible Dream”.  OMG.  What a voice.  It makes me want to belt out the lyrics (fortunate are those not within listening range, LOL).

Especially spirited [moving] are these words:

That one man, scorned and covered with scars  /  Still strove with his last ounce of courage  /  To reach the unreachable star  /  To reach the unreachable start  /  For you know it’s impossibly high

A little history.  “The Impossible Dream (the Quest)”—a popular song from the 1965 Broadway musical, Man of La Mancha—was scored by Mitch Leigh, with lyrics by Joe Darion.  The song was first sung by Don Quixote (a character from 17th-century novelist Miguel de Cervantes’ Don Quixote) when he was asked what he meant about following the quest.  Quixote, by the by, had difficulty accepting the realities [struggles] of life and slipped into a fantasy world where windmills were monsters and he an honorable knight from a bygone era.

And a little trivia.  In 1968, Senator George McGovern introduced Robert F. Kennedy, campaigning to be president, by quoting the song.  It wasn’t that he thought Kennedy’s chance to become president was impossible, simply that he wanted “the audience to understand it’s worth making the effort, whether you win or lose”.  What awesome advice.  Endeavor, do your utmost, regardless of the outcome.  Strive for that impossible dream.

Dozens of singers have covered the song and everyone has his/her favorite rendition, mine being you-know-who.  I’d be remiss if I didn’t provide the lyrics and the wonderful YouTube vid showing Jim Nabors as Gomer singing the song.  It was a toss-up whether to present the long or short version.  The long has an “intro” as to how Gomer regains the voice he’s lost to stage-fright prior to a big Navy relief benefit show.  The short is simply the song.  . . . Flip of the coin.  Ta-da!  You get the long version.  Enjoy!

When days seem bleak and nothing good/positive happens, “The Impossible Dream” instills hope and restores faith.  Suddenly, nothing is impossible and that dream is within grasp. WPdream1

This is my quest  /  To follow that star  /  No matter how hopeless  /  No matter how far

Amen.

To dream the impossible dream
To fight the unbeatable foe
To bear with unbearable sorrow
To run where the brave dare not go

To right the unrightable wrong
To love pure and chaste from afar
To try when your arms are too weary
To reach the unreachable star

This is my quest
To follow that star
No matter how hopeless
No matter how far

To fight for the right
Without question or pause
To be willing to march into Hell
For a heavenly cause

And I know if I’ll only be true
To this glorious quest
That my heart will lie peaceful and calm
When I’m laid to my rest

And the world will be better for this
That one man, scorned and covered with scars
Still strove with his last ounce of courage
To reach the unreachable star

To reach the unreachable star
For you know it’s impossibly high
To live with your heart’s driving upward
To reach the unreachable star

Songwriters: Mitch Leigh / Joe Darion

The Impossible Dream lyrics © Helena Music Company, Andrew Scott Music, Vmg Golden Records Copyrights, Helena Music Corp., SCOTT ANDREW MUSIC

What’s Our Story?

It seemed appropriate to end the “What’s -?- Story?” posts with one aimed at actually writing one.

Maybe you’d like to tell your story, be it in a short post or a long book, or something in between.  But you’re not quite sure where to begin.

First, give some thought as to who’ll read your story: your audience.  Family and/or friends?  Your blog, social media, and/or website followers?  The public?  Do you want the story to be narrated by yourself or would you like to present it as a tale of fiction?

**  Determine your audience.  Decide how to relate your story.  **

Next, pick up a pen or sit at the keyboard, an audio recorder, or a combination thereof, and start.  Record what you’d like your story to entail, what to share and how to communicate it.  Is there a message?  Do you have something you’d like people to learn about or from?  Are there life lessons?  Or maybe you’d simply like to entertain?

**  Start by summarizing your story/life into three-four sentences.  That’s your focus, your description . . . your blurb, as it were.  **

Do an outline and don’t worry about the flow; you can determine how it should progress (timeline/timeframe) later and delete and rearrange accordingly.  In terms of incidents and events, and memories, you can always consult with family members and friends.  Their remembrances may vary and that’s a good thing—it’s called perspective.  Maybe you have some journals/diaries stuffed in drawers?  They’ll help tweak memories.  Old photos?  Use them, if only to fine-tune recollections.

**  Write down critical/essential junctures (two, five, ten, twenty) in your life that are crucial to your story.  They’ll help shape the narrative.  Whether you use them all is ultimately up to you.  **

If your story leans toward heartrending or sad, or tragic, you may want to add a few happy or cheering moments/events.  I don’t know about you, but I’m a “sobber”, a multi-tissue-box kinda gal.  It’s tough on the eyes and nose to always be bawling and blowing.  Prompting a laugh or two—even a smile—is a welcome break.

**  Give thought to what you’re sharing and why.  Maybe it’s a personal purge.  Nothing wrong with that.  Maybe lessons you learned would help others.  That’s noble.  Contemplate how tragic/emotional/funny/life-changing the story should be . . . how much you want—and are willing—to reveal.  **

This post could easily go on for several pages or be divided into a few. There’s a lot of “advice” to be provided re outline steps, narrative, writing “rules”, and the list goes on (and on).  Perhaps I’ll do that at some point but, for today, I just wanted to provide some food-for-thought ideas re you getting started on your [amazing] story.

Sad and laughing Theater mask

[Looking forward to reading it!]

What’s THE Story?

What’s THE Story?

Hey, it’s Rey, the last and best <LOL> in the story posts.  There are so many, it was tough to determine which to share.

Following the template created by the gals before me—specifically The Boss, Linda, and JJ—away we go!

∞ Personal

A two-parter.

The first is about the prickly relationship between my mother and me.  She didn’t much care for me becoming an actress, something I knew I’d be come hell or high water when I was nine years old.  When I left home at 19 to pursue that dream, it created an even bigger rift.  In truth, though, we’ve never been close.  Her thoughts about life and the cosmos and all that were a bit odd (okay, if I’m going to be totally honest, they were downright loopy).  Since I’ve become a P.I. the two of us have made an effort to forget the past and accept each other for who and what we are. WPReyprickly

Is it working?  Yeah, kinda.  Time will tell.  So while the final “Mom & Me” chapter has an outline, a full draft still needs to be written.  It’s all good.

Linda, JJ and I are in the same boat re lack of relationships.  Considering I’ve been married three times, I’m not that keen on commitment.  And given that most of the guys I’ve dated have been major duds, yeah, so not keen.  Confession: I like flirting.  It’s fun!  Sure, I wouldn’t mind having someone to date on a semi-steady—but not serious—basis.  I like eyeing gorgeous guys, being in their company, having them feed my ego.  That’s fun, too!

I think, though, that the relationship I really need to develop is the one with me.  I have a lot of growing and learning to do (as Linda has said on more than one occasion), and I’m kinda looking forward to that.  So the “Rey & Co.” chapter, at this time, is only a list of points and to-dos.  I’m guessing it won’t be completed for years to come and that’s all good, too.

Professional

Another two-parter.

I was a B-actress for years, as you know, and still do some acting, mostly in commercials and, now and again, community theater.  Love being in front of the camera too much to stop doing it completely.  It’s the ham in me (as Linda has also said on more than one occasion).

Do I see myself returning to it full-time?  Maybe, when I’m older—as in retirement older.  So the final “Rey the Artiste” chapter won’t be available for a few decades.

Then, of course, there’s the Triple Threat Investigation Agency.  I enjoy being a P.I.  Love it, love it, love it!  I even get to act now and again when we’re trying to get info outta someone or snoop around a business or company without attracting attention.  It’s challenging and dangerous, for sure, but it’s also rewarding, and I’m not just talking financially—it’s very satisfying helping people in need.

The last chapter of “Private-Eye Rey” will have to wait to be completed.  There are a lot of scenes still to happen.  Love it, love it, love it!

Lucky

Took me a while to find the right adjective.  Life hasn’t always been smooth.  I’ve struggled to eat and pay rent.  I didn’t (don’t) always get along with people.  But I’ve been lucky to do what I’ve wanted to (dreamed of), meet some fantastic folks, live and work on the beautiful island of Oahu, and grow as a person.  I’d never admit that last one to Linda, but I truly believe I’m developing and changing.  I haven’t been much of a reader or learner, but I make an effort—nix that.  I don’t try: I do.  May not always be successful, but that’s not important.  It’s what’s accomplished, even if only to declare, “I did that”.  <LMAO>  That sounds more like something Linda or JJ might say. WPReystoryUSE

Yeah, I’m very lucky and I’m gonna keep counting my blessings.

What’s Her Story?

It’s JJ on story post patrol today, with my cousin Rey taking up the rear.  As she’s been [not too humbly] saying: the best is yet to come.  Uh, yea-ah.  Oops, that just netted me “the look”.  <ROTFL>

In keeping with the personal, professional, and <insert adjective of choice> story model, allow me to share mine.

♠ Personal

Which one re personal, though?  The one about the father I never knew?  That the family is exceptionally eccentric . . . to a fault?  How Rey and I rarely got along when we were young?  That in my early teens I fantasized about marrying royalty?

Mom would never talk about “Dad”.  I don’t even know his name.  Some detective, huh?  <LOL>  I should put the ol’ P.I. skills to the test and find out who he is/was.  But then . . . do I really want to know?

Just looking at the Fonne family names tells you how unconventional we are.  Blame that on the grandfolks, Elmer Finkston and Jocasta Genvieve Fonne.  Grandfather was VP of a company specializing in joke novelties and fun gizmos, and Grandmother possessed a hysterically funny streak that could humble (and crumble) any stand-up comic.

That Rey and I get along so well now is amazing.  When we’d not attempted to shove each other into a bog or pond during summer holidays, we’d endeavored to bury each other’s faces in the dirt—for no other reason than we couldn’t stand each other.  She thought me pitiful Pollyanna; I thought her woeful wannabe.  One time, we were so engrossed in smacking each other silly, we nearly trashed the summer cabin we’d been banned to for the day (courtesy of a rambunctious food fight we’d initiated at a family picnic).  Uncle Charly lost a toupee (an ugly thing that looked like uncooked ramen noodles) and Uncle Flex no longer possessed that furry eyebrow (the two had melded into one long fox-moth caterpillar).  They were so not happy. WPJJstoryUSE2

I will [hesitantly] confess that I’d had my heart set on wedding into a certain royal family.  Unfortunately, they weren’t of the same mind, not having had the pleasure of meeting yours truly and determining that I’d be the “perfect girl” for their prince.  (I must also confess that I am somewhat envious of Meghan, lucky <bleep>.)

The final chapter is undecided.  In truth, there are several to be written . . . every one in its own sweet time.

♠ Professional

My foray into weather reporting had never been intentional.  I’d studied film for two years, then decided I didn’t care dealing with mega egos.  Environmental studies seemed a better option—and more respectful.  I could and would save the world, protect endangered species, and contribute to the termination of global warming.  When I got goosed by a crazed Canadian goose and gnawed by a disgruntled goat, I realized wildlife was better left to those with the calling.  A local cable station admin job rescued me from additional wildlife mis-adventures and, eventually, I became a meteorologist.

While I love being a private eye, I do miss weather reporting.  I suppose I had/had Rey’s acting ambition, because I thoroughly enjoyed being on camera.  I also, however, liked researching community events and local news, and putting together informative specials.  It wasn’t unlike being a P.I. now that I consider it—i.e. researching and assembling facts, and providing findings.

The professional story also has a few chapters still to be developed.  Although Rey, Linda and I often discuss our future as private investigators—expanding the Triple Threat Investigation Agency and all that—who knows how I’ll feel a decade from now?  Presently, though, I’m happy to go with the flow; the stream is winding yet smooth.

♠ Satisfying

My adjective/word of choice.  Satisfying because everything is proving gratifying and fulfilling.  Agency work is fairly regular.  The new house is filled upcoming projects, which will require new skills, so learning adventures are on the horizon.  Satisfying because all seems fairly untroubled.  Maybe my love life isn’t happening but, as a result, there are no squabbles or tension to contend with.  There have been no life-changing disagreements with my coworkers, simply the silly little ones everyone experiences off and on.  Life on this lovely Hawaiian island is truly very satisfying.

Who could ask or wish for more? WPJJstoryUSE