My mind… (Warning for four letter words. If you have no appreciation for coarse language, turn back now. It’s okay. I won’t hold it against you.)

… has been a bit unsettled of late.

Partly because I agreed … again … to do something I really don’t want to do. It’s not illegal. It’s not even particularly dangerous. It’s just … argh. If I talk about it, I’ll get really pissed off and say something I, or someone close to me, would regret. Long story short – I’m going out for a few days to do work I quit doing two years ago because it made me cry. So, if you see me in the next few days, I apologize in advance for growling at you. It’s not you. It’s me. Maybe next week I can take you out for cocktails to apologize.

It’s almost 2AM (see, this dumb favor is giving me insomnia) and I was reading a book that kind of, as the kids say these days, ‘got me in the feels.’ It was called Goodnight Tweetheart by Teresa Medeiros. It’s certainly not something I would’ve picked up except I thought it was a cute concept and it was on the swap table. What’s “the swap table,” you ask? I go to a romance readers’ group at my local library and the lovely lady who organizes it asks everyone to try to bring books for the swap table if we can. We bring books that we’ve read and are willing to allow others to read. Anything that isn’t taken at the end of the meeting goes to the library bookstore. So, we support each other and we support the local library. I’m all for that. Since I’m an e-reader user, I often end up bringing back whatever book I took the previous month. I hope that’s not cheating, but I’m not giving anyone my iPad. I’ve got Fruit Ninja, 2048, and Peggle on that iPad. Those things and the Kindle app keep me busy in waiting rooms.

So, this book is about a writer, Abby Donovan, who is lost in a sea of writer’s block. Her blockbuster came out a few years ago and she hasn’t been able to get past chapter five in her new book. Her publicist comes up with the brilliant idea of having Abby join Twitter.

This is how she ‘meets’ Mark Baynard.

Large swaths of the book occur over Twitter, so I can see how someone unfamiliar with Twitter might not really get it, although Mark does ‘teach’ Abby how to use Twitter. I even picked up a few pointers. (I’m almost jealous I didn’t come up with the idea since dialogue is my jam.)

As happens in most romance books, we eventually discover that not all is as it seems *SPOILER ALERT* – Mark, instead of being a professor on sabbatical, traveling the world for fun and sun, is actually a patient being treated for non-Hodgkins lymphoma and it’s not going well.

This is where the ‘feels’ part comes in.

Cancer sucks. I have been lucky enough to not be touched too closely by it as yet, but I know lots of people who have. I have a friend I went to college with being prepared for a stem cell transplant at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore right now. She has AML. She eats healthy food and loves her cats, yet she has Leukemia. I sent her a pair of space kitten leggings to wear in the hospital. I do hope they brought a smile to her face. I have another friend whose wife is being ravaged by breast cancer. Another friend who lost her mother to skin cancer. I knew someone who was taken by stage IV colon cancer before she turned forty. That’s some effed up shit right there.

So far, cancer has tiptoed around me. I know four skin cancer survivors, one breast cancer survivor, and one colon cancer survivor. With any luck the survivor list will continue to grow. It would be better if no one had to deal with it in the first place, but for now, I’ll take survivor.

What’s kind of awful about this is that I don’t know that many people! I’m a bit of a hermit. I don’t have a lot of friends! Yet look at that list… and those are just the ones I can remember right now – at what is now 2:30 in the morning.

In the words of the great (celebrity-I’m-currently-obsessed-with-of-the-week) F*ck Cancer. Let’s get this bastard.

Here's a cute picture of Ember to make you smile now that you've read my sad, depressing, ranty post.
Here’s a cute picture of Ember to make you smile now that you’ve read my sad, depressing, ranty post.
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