Codex Pandemonium (NN 6)

Friday November 18, 2022 I finished writing Codex Pandemonium – Nephilim Narratives Book 6. November 25, 2022 I intend to start writing Nephilim Narratives book 7 (in progress title is Codex Asmodeus) and Psychic Dreams. I will come back to writing Stalker Dreams when the crappy thing is a little less raw and I don’t feel like crying every time I think about writing another D&R book.

I hope everyone enjoys the upcoming holiday. I will not be writing for a week as I need to prepare for Thanksgiving Thursday (bathing the dogs is my least favorite item on my to do list this week and possibly the most challenging). Aside from torturing Lola and Kelly with a bath, I’ll need to deep clean the house and Wednesday and Thursday I will cook until we serve the meal.

I started a post last week about Kelly, she is such a weird dog. J goes to bed between 8 and 9pm during the week. Kelly goes to bed with him for about 5 minutes. Then she gets up, finds my mom and glares at her… Kelly will sit and glare at my mom until my mom finally goes to bed. This is extra weird because Kelly does not go to bed with my mom nor does she sleep with her. When mom does give in and go to bed, Kelly jumps into the spare room bed and goes to sleep. So why does my mom also have to go to bed? We have no clue.

In December I am going to bring back the new releases mailing list. I forgot that my mailing list died in early 2020 for reasons unknown to me… so in December I intend to get it back up and running.

New Medication and Sloths

The last four and a half years, I’ve been attempting to manage my anxiety without medication. This week, I’ve had to admit it’s not working. There’s just been so much happen this year (the last two years) that I am not managing my anxiety. I’m spiraling out when I go to bed as my brain creates mini-movies to play on the back of my eyelids of all the terrible things that could happen. My primary care physician retired in 2020 and my care was transferred to a just out of school new doctor who I instantly hated.

I went to see her for the first time when an ear/sinus infection didn’t clear up after the first round of antibiotics. This was not a first for me. I have a history of chronic sinus infections that require multiple rounds of antibiotics because of how bad they are (can get). During that appointment she pointed out I did not have a medical degree. She is not wrong. I do not have a medical degree. What I do have is 40+ years of experience living in this body and until I had rhinoplasty in 2005 all of my sinus infections required more than 10 days of antibiotics to treat and I can tell my sinus passages have shrunk again and rhinoplasty is not an option because of the CRPS. The second time… I got ringworm on my ankle and any parent could have diagnosed it. I knew it was ringworm. My mom knew it was ringworm. It was absolutely ringworm. I went in to see her to get something to treat ringworm. We start the appointment: “Somehow I got ringworm on my ankle” lifts pant leg and pulls down sock and shows her. “Do you have kids?” I do not. “Then it’s unlikely to be ringworm, lets try some antibiotics instead.” IT IS RINGWORM. I need some sort of fungal cream. I didn’t get fungal cream, I got amoxicillin. It didn’t clear up. I called and left a message that it didn’t clear up expecting she would admit it was ringworm and send in a prescription for antifungal cream. Nope. I got another prescription for antibiotics. So I bought some over the counter antifungal cream and cleared it up with that. I get it, she’s fresh out of doctor school and knows everything and is trying to prove herself and she’s pregnant with her first kid and she feels she needs to prove herself, needs to prove she belongs here but…. man I hate her.

So when the nurse practitioner in August told me I had to schedule an appointment for my annual physical with the doctor I groaned and said I didn’t need a physical… I see my pain management doctor every three months and my gynecologist yearly. I see plenty of doctors and a few nurse practitioners, I am good. I spent a month thinking of small things to mention during my physical, such as the mole on my arm that in the last year and a half has become scaly (scaly moles can mean melanoma – this one isn’t, it’s just dry). I’ll mention my bruxism because my grinding is out of control this year. Maybe I’ll mention the tight muscle in my neck that gets perfectly round and feels like a marble under the skin…

Huh… tension migraines, excessive grinding and clenching, sleeping problems, I haven’t written this year like I have in previous years… damn. I don’t think I’m managing my anxiety. But I don’t want to talk to her about it. Despite 19 years on medication for anxiety, she’s going to tell me it isn’t anxiety and piss me off. I didn’t sleep the night before my physical because I spiraled. My blood pressure was high when the nurse took it and I had to admit I hadn’t slept because the nurse mentioned how tired I looked.

The doctor comes in and here goes nothing. Except she listened! She listened and she didn’t contradict or belittle me. And she even agreed “That definitely sounds more like anxiety than depression. So what medications have you used in the past?” I explain about the SSRI intolerance and OH MY GOD! So, I do not sleep on SSRIs, at all. 1 dose will keep me awake and mostly alert for days. I have had psychiatrists tell me it isn’t the SSRIs because they have to build up in the system and a single pill wouldn’t cause insomnia, but a single dose of Tramadol causes the same symptom as a single small dose of Prozac… it is 100% the SSRI and this doctor who I have avoided seeing the last two years agrees with me.

She gave me several medication options, outlining the benefits of each. I decided to try amitriptyline, because it can help with nerve damage pain, migraines, and insomnia. I need assistance with all those things. It does come with risks because I still take opiates for my hip and arm pain and we discuss those and what I need to watch for… and tells me if I have issues with it, to call and she’ll switch me to my second choice and if we have to try forty medications she will help me get my anxiety back under control. Also, given my list of anxiety symptoms, has a doctor ever suggested that PTSD might be part of my anxiety issues. They have, I rejected it because I’ve never been in a war zone or had to kill anyone and am uncomfortable with labelling any part of my anxiety as PTSD.

“I suspect you experienced some sort of trauma as a child. You don’t have to tell me what it was, I just want you to think about it. PTSD has a variety of causes, including the death of a parent as a child. The history of nightmares and sleep anxiety are symptoms of PTSD and even if you don’t label it that… I need to keep in mind that whatever anxiety medications we try, need to treat nightmares, insomnia, and panic attacks.”

Wow. Okay. So, yes I could have PTSD and I’ve known that for more than twenty years and I probably have a few reasons for it, but to have THIS doctor voice it… Well, this appointment went much better than the first two. Maybe she’s settling in and realizes self diagnosis by patients is always going to be a thing? Because when I call to make an appointment and they ask why I need to be seen, if I suspect I know what’s wrong, I tell them that not my symptoms. My prescription for the amitriptyline hasn’t gotten ready yet, but I hope to start it tonight and start feeling more like myself soon.

My computer when I logged on this morning, informed me it was International Sloth Day. Despite how Ice Age tried to spiff up the image of sloths, they are gross. Cute, but gross. I messaged my best friend telling her it was International Sloth Day and she messaged back “Why sloths? Do they have International Whale Day? Possum Day? Skunk Day?” I know there’s a whale day, I don’t know about the others…. I Googled them all and yep they all have days. Opossum Day was October 18th. World Whale Day is the 3rd Sunday in February. Skunk Day is June 14th. Now there are only 365 (sometimes 366) days in a year, not enough for every animal to get it’s own day…. so why do we honor skunks, sloths, and possums with their own day? I went and looked at a calendar of international animal celebration days and marmots have their own day… Marmots! Just so we are all aware marmots are akin to prairie dogs and we believe the were the original source for Bubonic Plague, why are we celebrating them?

A Collection of Thoughts

I haven’t done a blog post in a while and it’s been even longer since I did one that was a random collection of thoughts. So here goes.

Labor Day weekend, my husband was trimming trees and he trimmed an oak tree and I noticed this:

Oak Tree Gall

Uh, what is that? I poked it with a stick to see if it was solid and ensure I was not going to be overwhelmed by something gross like insects. It was solid and hard. Okay, that’s just weird, I’ve never seen anything like that. J told me, he’s seen them before and much bigger and that when they get big, they are really cool to cut open (this one was roughly the size of a navel orange). That doesn’t tell me what it is and why it exists and he proceeded to tell me some oak trees just make them.

Nope, there has to be a reason for it. So the following morning (I noticed it at night), I went to look at it again because it was so interesting and weird. In daylight I noticed a tiny hole, no bigger than that created by a hypodermic syringe in skin. Okay, so it has to be a nest of some sort… but what sort of nest? Being me, I Googled something along the lines of “what’s the weird thing growing on the branch of my oak tree?” It is a nest made from the oak tree for a wasp called a “gall wasp” or maybe “mealy wasp”… I’m still unclear on the name of the wasp, it could be both and usage may depend on where the writer is from. The name of the thing “oak gall”. The wasp triggers excessive growth hormones to flood the area of the oak tree where it lays it’s eggs so that one of these grows to protect the eggs and larva. And the reason they look cool when opened? Because the larva eats the pulp that surrounds it. Once the hormone has started flowing to this area it doesn’t stop and the gall will continue to get larger and larger. And yes, it damages the tree. Too many galls can lead to tree death and other issues. However, it is more common for the wasp to lay it’s eggs on a leaf and the tree to create a “leaf gall” which is also less destructive to the tree.

Anyone who reads my books or blogs, knows I enjoy professional sports. During the spring, I often listen to baseball games while writing. Late spring and early summer it’s soccer (futbol) and I devotedly watch World Cup (which is coming to the US in 2026 including a match or two in Kansas City (just 150 miles from me). During late summer and fall into winter I watch American Football and have missed very few Chiefs games since the 1990s. Thursday night, I was not watching the Miami v. Cincinnati game, I got a text from my football loving nephew Poor Tua got rocked.

At that point, I turned on the game in time to see replays. I did not know in that moment Poor Tua Tagovialoa had been rocked Sunday in the game against the Jets. Thursday as I watched the replay I thought “wow that could be a career ending hit” given his reaction. Sadly, it could be a career ending hit and it was avoidable. The NFL Player Association quickly fired the neurotrauma team that cleared Tua to play Thursday night, but is it enough? I love watching football and I even played one year in junior high and loved that, but more needs to be done to protect players. Doctors should definitely be preventing repeat injuries such as this one than serving the interests of NFL owners and teams. I have since seen the hit on Tua last Sunday and watching him in the seconds after the hit, it is obvious even to me he sustained a head and possibly spinal cord injury and should not have been on the field just four days later.

And this is true of all professional sports, not just football. I’ve seen baseball players sustain incredible injuries, ditto soccer players, and I know these guys are tough, but a body can only take so much abuse. Ten years in the NFL should not ruin the rest of a person’s life as they struggle with side effects of CTE. However, if fans and spectators don’t demand better care and treatment of players, then few things will change because even NFL owners have to bow to the pressure of fans.

I’m working to clean up my writing. This is adding another month or so to the editing process, but it needs to be done. I’m reducing adverbs, passive verbs, redundancies, and filler words. I’ve timed it a few times and it takes me around 7 hours to make all these changes to a single chapter. The bulk of these hours is definitely spent removing passive verbs such as “had”… sometimes, I can just delete the “had” such as “Detective Graham had reached” but other times it is way more complicated and I’m forced to reword the entire sentence (or paragraph), which is why it takes so long to edit a full chapter.

I Did A Weird Thing…

I am currently working to remove passive voice, vary pacing, and change up some overused words from a book I wrote this summer that remains untitled.

It’s a weird thing though. It’s a mystery with clues and things (also a little comedy), but it turned out to be a semi-romantic mystery.

Don’t expect nudity or passionate kisses, it’s old fashioned romance not jumping in and out of the sack with the love interest on page 20.

I think the story is good. I also like the characters, they turned out better than expected. I’d classify it as supernatural cozy mystery. The female lead can interact with the dead and teams up with a cop to solve a murder. It’s been done, but not by me and I hope that’s enough to make it somewhat unique.

It also lacks my signature gore and violence. My goal is to finish the revisionist editing and send it to my friend to help me insert more funny and get a general idea of how it reads to someone not in my head.

It was fun to write. I started it after scrapping Stalker Dreams for excessive “shark jumping.” (Google shark jumping if you don’t get the reference).

I don’t know when I’ll release it. I might like it and my friend tell me it’s dreadful and incapable of being salvaged so I’m playing it by ear.

I Did What?

September 5th Kelly was on a cable at the campground and wrapped herself around a tree. So I went to untangle her and this made her so happy she began running towards me. The tree acted like a tensioner and the cable caught me a couple inches above my ankle and down I went.

I spent the entire week, thinking I sprained my right wrist. Sunday morning, I finally gave in and went to urgent care to get it looked at and the NP said “I think you fractured it, but you’ve fractured that bone before and the healed fracture looks weird, so I’m going to put you in a splint and send your X-Ray to a specialist.” For the record when I broke my wrist as a kid I did something called a greenstick fracture of 6 of the bones in my wrist meaning they didn’t break in clean straight lines, they broke in a sort of ballooning pattern.

Monday, I get a call from the specialist. He doesn’t think I fractured it, he thinks it’s a bone bruise. We’d need an MRI to confirm, but he’s seen enough of them… and the bone in question is my Pisiform wrist bone, which acts like a pulley and tensioner for tendons in my hand as well as the tendons that support the ulna. I’m now in a brace for 4-6 weeks to protect the bone…

I’ve spent the last two days teaching myself to type in the wrist brace. The biggest struggle is my thumb, not because it hurts, but because it can’t reach the correct letters in the brace. And did I mention it’s my right wrist and I am determinedly right handed? Even in the brace, there are things that cause pain in the wrist. Thankfully, typing isn’t one of them, it’s just awkward.

I did finish writing a book the week after labor day. I don’t know if I’ll manage to get it published this year or next… it’s a “cozy mystery.”

Beware the Scam

I have been searching for a job the last 7 weeks. Don’t panic, I’m not going to stop writing… All year, I’ve listened to writers complain about a drop in their sales, but it didn’t hit me until May and even with advertising and publishing a NN sales are still 60% lower than normal for me this time of year. Unfortunately, my bills didn’t go away just because sales did and so I have been looking for a job. I’ve run into a couple of things that I’m going to talk about here.

I have some strikes against me as an “ideal candidate for employment” particularly I don’t think I can work in retail because I don’t think I can stand that long. And even an office job is questionable for the same reason. I work using a couch which allows me to sit Indian Style this relieves the pressure of sitting from my tail bone and hip. Days when I can’t sit this way, my pain steadily rises and office chairs are not conducive to pulling your feet up under you. I think 4 hours sitting in an office chair is probably my absolute max time wise. My other problem is I am “overqualified” for entry level positions or so hiring managers keep pointing out to me as I look for remote work that will allow me to use my comfortable office and not an uncomfortable office chair somewhere else.

Earlier this year, I did a blog post of job scams because a friend of mine mentioned the company she works for was having issues with job scams. So during my 7 weeks of job searching, I have received a ton of messages that are scams. So many in fact, that when I did get a legitimate offer I was skeptical and told the company so. It turned out the company wanted me to sell insurance and that was the “data entry” part of the job listing. I am not going to be good selling stuff… If someone tells me no, I accept it, thank them and move on and I despise when people try the “hard sell” with me. For example after 20 years, I switched my car insurance this year and the poor guy on the other end of the phone was just doing his job but he offered me discounts to lower my rates, offered to add free services, etc… thankfully it was a chat session so he couldn’t hear my annoyance as I typed I wasn’t interested and we had “ALREADY” switched to ensure we weren’t penalized for a lapse in coverage at any point. Now, let’s talk about my personal experience with job scams because man, a few have failed to raise the red flags I expected.

Within a week of starting the job hunt, I got my first scam text message. It went something like “Thank you for applying at Company X. We have reviewed your application and think you’re a great fit for our company and we’d love to do an interview. Just let us know when you’re available.” No red flags. They didn’t ask me to download a “secure” messaging app and they told me what company they were with. Probably not a scam. So I went back through the applications I’d put in and wait, I hadn’t applied for a job, any job, with that company. Big Red Flag. Then came the second text and now they wanted me to download a secure messaging app for “my interview”. I asked if I should download it on my computer so we could use the cameras and they told me “no it’s a pre-interview screening” and it would be live chat not a video meeting. Well that’s not what they originally told me, so yeah…. Eventually they are going to ask me for money or tell me I need to send stuff to them…. I’m done.

The second one did a much better job. We arranged an “interview”… a video interview. This is probably a real job woohoo! The interview was scheduled for the morning after Kentucky and Ohio experienced severe flooding in July. So at my interview time I get a text “we are having technical difficulties due to the rain.” Okay the job was listed as being in Ohio so I can buy that. We moved it to 2 pm (EDT). At the start there was video, it lasted about thirty seconds and then they had more technical issues and we moved the interview to a chat only. In that 30 seconds though, I had detected a serious accent, definitely Eastern European so I expressed interest in their background. Holy crap. They told me they were from Bosnia and their family had come over during the genocide and he’d been a teenager and just hadn’t lost the accent yet. Wow. So I worked for a health department that assisted Bosnian refugees and this guy’s story is 100% plausible and yes, coming here as a teen and living with parents that still spoke their native tongue at home could prevent him from losing his accent. Then he offered me the job… at an extremely high rate of pay. Way higher than advertised. Hm…. that’s suspicious. And now, we just need you to buy the licensing for these programs and you can start work Monday and he gave me a list of accounting software programs. uh… well… Let’s see Peachtree was bought out by QuickBooks. Microsoft stopped supporting Microsoft Accounting… These two programs are defunct, they can’t be “bought.” “Oh no, you send us the money, we have a special licensing agreement with these companies that allows us to sell licensing keys to our employees.” No… No you don’t. Nice try but there is not a snowballs chance in hell that QuickBooks is allowing anyone to buy special licenses to use Peachtree. I did not take their fake job and they did not get $300 from me for the “special license keys” that would allow me to work for them.

That scam was super elaborate. Most of them are much, much simpler. They are text messages (nearly always text messages) and go something like “Thank you for applying to our job post. We are impressed by your background and would like to invite you for the job briefing and interview. If you are still interested in this job please download Secure Messaging App X and add our hiring manager John Smith (different than the name of the person sending the text) and connect with her for your interview.” I always respond to these texts with a variation of “What company is this for?” Because they almost never say and will this be a chat interview or an actual video interview? This usually ends the conversation immediately, on rare occasions the scammer continues, I continue to bombard them with questions. Here’s a list from one of my text chats with a non-hiring manager for the position of Data Entry Clerk.

  • Would it be possible to talk to a current employee who is doing this job so I can ask them questions?
  • I have a week long vacation scheduled in City X (Whatever city they are supposedly located in). I’d like to conduct this interview face to face, would it be possible to do that?
  • What is the ratio of female to male employees?
  • I’m about to go into my local church for a special service. Would you please email me the details of this position as well as a time I can contact you via phone? (I started using this one to see how a scammer would respond, it’s been interesting. Some are “we take religious worship very seriously and will contact you after your special service if you’ll give us a time” and some are like “How often do you attend special religious services?”)
  • Is this a sales position? I won’t participate in capitalist activities such as sales.

Essentially, I do everything I can except download the required app to waste their time. One of them offered me a data entry position at $40 an hour if I’d just download the app and take part in the “interview”. He seemed really annoyed when I told him I thought this was the interview and I didn’t understand how to download the app they were talking about.

Anyway, I haven’t stopped writing during my job search. I am not sure why my publishing schedule looks like for the rest of the year though. I have found job hunting slightly depressing though. I have sent out more than 300 applications and not a single “real” job offer except in insurance sales.

Writing & Dogs

I have been very busy writing on 2 books. The next D&R novel and a “dramatic comedy.” The last couple of months, we’ve encountered some doggy health problems. Kelly has a dilated kidney which causes her to have pee accidents particularly when she’s sleeping and she’s been put on daily medication for it. And then Lola’s pain medication just stopped working and we’ve been searching for an alternative to that.

I backed up QuickBooks last week to give to my accountant and then there was a disaster. I lost the backup. When I went to get another backup there’d been a QuickBooks update. Now the C drive of my computer is tiny and full… I had installed QuickBooks on my D drive and they’ve disabled that functionality again which makes it impossible for me to run QuickBooks again. I am now busy recreating my 2021 financial paperwork on my husband’s computer.

So, the economic problems have finally reached me. For a couple of months now, I’ve been listening to some writers complain about a drop in revenue due to inflation. The last two months have proven it’s hit me as well… and my monthly income has taken a significant hit. I am now considering applying for a second job… maybe I can work from home doing customer service over the phone or something.

The July 4th holiday was nightmarish. The fireworks were so bad they even bothered Kelly. So, Lola, Kelly, and I spent most of the last 5 days in my office although I was only forced to eat one meal at my desk. Okay back to work.

The Common Grey Catbird

Most backyard feeders get catbirds in the US. But I noticed an interesting thing about the catbirds in my yard. Catbirds are aggressive and territorial hence the name. But the 3 catbirds that regularly visit my backyard are exceptionally aggressive towards starlings. Comically so.

Earlier in the week as I watched my feeders and worked on Stalker Dreams, I heard a commotion and it was super loud! I looked up and there was a catbird and a starling fighting on the ground under one of our feeders and the catbird was definitely winning. As the starling gave up and tried to fly away the catbird grabbed the starlings wing and plucked a large feather from it.

On Thursday morning, back outside I continued to watch my feeders while deleting the rabbit hole Aislinn fell down in Stalker Dreams and that took up 13,000 words and added nothing to the story, I noticed there were 3 catbirds walking the ground under the feeders. Just walking back and forth and not eating. I made a joke they were acting as sentries. However, they weren’t bothering the red bellied woodpecker hanging off the finch feeder nor the half dozen house finches eating from the feeders, nor the red-wing blackbird. In other words the feeders were busy with close to a dozen birds eating out of them. The catbirds were bothering none of them. And then the commotion started. My singing and chirping birds got quiet and the catbirds became loud and raucous. I look up and nine starlings have landed in the yard and those 3 catbirds are not having it. They were chasing the starlings even though outnumbered and the starlings were running.

I googled this phenomenon, surely there’s a reason catbirds hate starlings and the internet knows the answer. Not so much. The internet claims catbirds will chase off all birds in its territory. Except that isn’t happening. I’ve been watching for days and the only birds the catbirds get aggressive with are the starlings. Now, they will pluck poor Lola’s hair if she gets too close to them while they are sitting on the back fence, ditto Poor Kelly. Kelly goes after them back and nearly caught one, but Lola just runs away from them. Kelly has more hunting instincts.

The point is, I would expect the catbirds to go after the cardinals, woodpeckers, and the dozen or so house finches that seem to constantly be at the feeders if it was a territory thing and they don’t, they only go after the starlings. Also, unlike the cardinals and house finches, the catbirds do not seem to fight amongst themselves. Sometimes, I’ll get 2 pairs of cardinals at a time (two male and two female) and then it’s on! They fight so loudly and so brutally all the other birds, even the damn sparrows leave the yard and it takes a while once it ends for the other birds to come back. (I hate the sparrows… we had gutter guards put on the house when we had to replace the roof and the stupid tiny house sparrows have torn sections of the gutter guards off and are nesting in our gutters under the guards they left in place also they don’t eat at the feeders, they just throw gobs of bird food out onto the ground and then fly away, so I wish the catbirds would chase them off).

At any rate, I will continue to watch the catbirds chase the starlings out of my yard while the weather is nice and I can work outside. The starlings don’t bother me as much as the sparrows, they are an invasive species, but they aren’t tearing up my house like the sparrows.

The Mystery Bird, A Herniated Disk, and Kindle Quality Control

I’ve mentioned before that when the weather is nice, I work outside in my backyard where we have six bird feeders… and with bird feeders comes bird watching. I get a variety of birds that I see all the time; house finches, goldfinches, cardinals, doves, red-wing black birds, stupid house sparrows (I hate them), downy woodpeckers, red bellied woodpeckers, chickadees, blue jays, titmouse, a few warblers, grey catbirds, ruby throated hummingbirds, and occasionally an oriel. Several years ago I downloaded the Audubon app and began keeping a bird sighting record. I love the app because you can use it to help identify birds. This year though, a mystery bird showed up. I’ve seen it a couple of times now and I have no idea what it is and neither does the internet or the Audubon app. It is hummingbird sized, so smaller than a warbler or finch… the back is black as is the belly, but the throat is bright bright yellow. I at first thought it was a ruby throated hummingbird, because it moved like a hummingbird and was small like a hummingbird. I have a ton of irises near my hummingbird feeders and irises produce yellow pollen, so I thought maybe the hummingbird had been feeding on the irises and that accounted for the yellow throat and maybe I just didn’t see it in enough light to distinguish the back feather colors which are dark green on ruby throated hummingbirds. Then a few days later, I saw it again on a sunny day. The back feathers are black and not dark green or brown. Also with the second sighting the throat was absolutely yellow and not the result of pollen from the irises. Except there is not a black and yellow hummingbird as far as I can tell and I spend enough time watching the birds that I don’t believe I would confuse a hummingbird hovering near a feeder with a warbler. However, I concede there are two warblers that match the color pattern I saw a yellow-rumped warbler (although it seems to have more white than the bird I saw) and Goldman’s Warbler. The Goldman’s warbler is not a migratory South American bird, so it couldn’t have been that, but it actually matches what I saw better than the yellow-rumped warbler simply because as I said the yellow-rumped has more white than the bird I saw. There is also the problem of the warbler being a much bigger bird than what I saw. I’ve tried to get pictures of it each time I’ve seen it, but it’s fast (like a hummingbird) and skittish (like a hummingbird) and I can’t zoom in close enough with the camera on my phone to get a picture. So a friend of mine offered to loan me one of her trail cameras, because her cameras take pictures of birds, even hummingbirds all the time. I’m hoping I can get a picture of the mystery bird as well as have a photographic record of all the other birds I get at my feeders using it.

I have herniated my L1 disk in my spine. I’m supposed to be on minimal activity as a result, but that’s been hard to maintain. I have been writing quite a bit though while letting it heal. I need about 40,000 more words to finish the next Dreams novel. I have two non-D&R and non-NN related books in progress as well.

Did you know if you are reading an ebook on a Kindle device, if you find a mistake (spelling, grammar, plot) in a book, you can flag it and report it to the author? If a book has enough errors flagged by readers, Amazon creates a report and sends it to the author (otherwise the errors just show up on a quality control dashboard Amazon provides to authors). I have received 2 during my time as an author one for Dysfunctional Dreams and one for Oh My Wizard. I’ve had other errors appear on my dashboard and I always fix them immediately and reupload the revised copy of the book when they happen. No there is a caveat to that, I didn’t realize what it was until recently (the quality control dashboard) and so didn’t fix the 9 reported errors in Demonic Dreams until a few days ago. So if you read my books on a Kindle device (paperwhite, Kindle Pro, whatever) and you come across an error that jerks you out of the story don’t be afraid to flag and report it! I attempted to report an error using the PC Kindle app and couldn’t, I also can’t report the error in the iPhone Kindle app. Editors are human and make mistakes and miss stuff, so if something breaks into the story for you and you are using a Kindle device to read on, report it so it can be fixed.