With a Little Help from My Friends

Spring is here. Bursts of activity and creation, from outdoor events to the bright shiny new work of authors, publishers, and all those types that bloom in the sunshine, full of new work and bright words.

Writers and their affiliates (from presses to magazines to podcasts) get hell on the Internet for self-promotion – and a lot of the time, GAWD, rightly so – but sometimes friends are friends, and the PSA/The More You Know message of this post is that when no one is looking, and for no other reason than being good people, this group of miscreants and snake oil salesmen will unblinkingly throw sponsorship money to a 9 yr old in Southern Ohio for an event at his elementary school. And one will blink, and think how lucky, to have “networks” that are more than that word, associates and peers that are friends.

Selflessness is supposed to be its own reward, but here’s my kid kicking some ass at the Ninja Dash obstacle course/fun run. He was sponsored by Booked. Podcast (Livius Nedin and Robb Olson, Thunderdome Press (Mike Gonzalez), GAMUT Magazine (Richard Thomas), his friend Elijah Kasper (from PLT days), Kay & Allen Hayes, and Heather & Jeremy Barker. They expected nothing from him, but he wore a sponsor shirt with all their names.

Thanks to your generosity, my son gets to smash a pie in the face of his favorite teacher on the next-to-last day of school

And yes, since you asked, that green glitter shirt-lettering was all destroyed when I washed it, and the inside of my washing machine looks like a disco.

Happy summer!! And thank you for being a part of my life!!

2016 Scares the Shit Out of Me




It’s only the 2nd day of the year, nice easy Saturday night full of peppermint candy, Lana Del Rey and sleeping dogs.

Last night was Sherlock’s ‘The Abominable Bride’ (which was better than all of S3 put together, and I loved S3), and this afternoon was ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ with my almost-8-yr-old son in his Darth Vader sweatshirt and my cool-as-hell hubby (and it was GREAT! I was afraid to hope, after the prequels). So. I’m high on Moriarty and Chewbacca.

The year ahead lies sprawled in an almost impossible glowing light. These Lite Brite blips of things to come, and they seem too good to be true:

  • the first edition of Menacing Hedge I’ve worked on as full-fledged co-fiction editor with my incestuous sibling Craig Wallwork, out pretty much anytime – and conspiring with the beautiful crew there
  • more and more unbelievable announcements about the Gutted:Beautiful Horror anthology – just a lil ole book coming out this year with me in it….AND Neil Gaiman, Clive Barker, Paul Tremblay, Damien Angelica Walters, Richard Thomas…that’s not even all!! It’s just too hard to type out all the names, and they’re not even DONE with the ToC!
  • AWP LA, which I guess is some sort of “conference” or something, but whatever – I’ll be spending April Fool’s Day in California with the crew that welcomed me into the bosom of ‘Warmed and Bound’ nearly five years ago, only that crew times ten…ocean and bowling and books with some of the best people I’ve ever met or am about to
  • Tentative plans for a vast and ambitious family vacation that, worst case scenario, would take place next summer instead of this one
  • Tentative plans to finish a semi-vast and very-ambitious linked short story collection surrounding the concept of Frankenstein’s Monster and the freedom from the burden of chronological memory…that, worst case scenario, will be completed next summer instead of this one (it would take some massive laziness to drag out an entire extra year)
  • Jewelry – Jewelry!! Work!! They call it work, I call it a kitchen and laboratory full of adoptive family, gems, and magic lasers and elf-sized tools. They let me hang out there, and talk about movies and gold and life, and pay me for it…
  • my son and I have started the Harry Potter series, a mere two hours ago, and he’s into it
  • Richard Thomas has extracted a promise for a story from me for Gamut, which seems like something I should have to fight to get into
  • Craig Clevenger wants to podcast with me for a couple guest episodes of Booked.
  • My sister is going to give me another niece or nephew – another minion for my son!

Can I just stop there, and take a breath?

My fear is justified, yes?

Because this is my life, and I want to deserve it. I want to deserve the people and the love and the pictures in my brain and the roof over my head and the happiness,

and I don’t want to take a breath, or cough, for fear I’ll wake….

So, before I do, in this world now I want to say: I love you all. I appreciate you all. You’re heavy and light and wispy and warm in your love and support and confidence and laughter and conspiratorial smiles. My family, my friends, my work family, my writing , my reading compadres, my Sherlock-fiends, my fellow mothers of beautiful strong babes, my ladies in the shadows that whisper to me that I’m good enough.

Thank you. By the Stars and the Moonlight and the magic of breathing, I wish you all as beautiful a 2016 as you’ve made possible for me, just by being a part of my life.




(Magical Shiny Shoes to dance through the year)

HALLOWEEN IS HERE! Family Trick or Treat & Booked. Spookedtacular!

Happy Halloween! It may be rainy and damp, but the weak light and various colds have not dampened spirits this week. Below, see what happens when my son says “Star Wars” and then listen to what happens when Booked. says “What plan? It’s Halloween!” Thanks for a helluva week.

Also, ‘sexy’ Han Solo is just Han Solo – dig my lean….



Click the Booked. pumpkin to be transported to the SPOOKEDTACULAR!!

Click the Booked. pumpkin to be transported to the SPOOKEDTACULAR!!



What We Need Is More Phooootoooos….


Happy October! Love, Sandy & Amanda





spring in fragments

Photos from an Old Cell…

2006  in no particular order….

twas a good year

Christmas Trees, Party, Puppies (photos)

Poison Ivy & Harley Quinn

headcold household, day 3, last day. over the course of sunday and yesterday, eric and adam have managed to watch almost all 3 original star wars movies – they have 45 minutes of Return of the Jedi left, which i suspect they will finish tonight. adam’s favorite is R2D2, which he pronounces slighly different each time. he gets a consistent 3 out of 4 of the letter/number combo right. he also says yoda is a cat, a GIRL cat, and calls him toyoda (like “toyota,”  hot wheels enthusiast that he is) half the time. it’s been a pretty good sick household. characterized mainly by exhaustion and mouth-breathing as opposed to crankiness and coughing – i’ll take the former combination any day.

but we’re getting better. if eric could curl up on the couch with us it would almost be a pleasant sickness, it’s just bone-cold rain and grey skies outside the last few days anyway. being sick while the sun shines is a waste. being sick while it rains cold november – i’m gonna pull myslef quickly away from a guns n roses reference and move along – anyway, sick in this weather is just good time management. get the change of seasons colds out of the way before the sun comes back.

plus, cold pills make me sleep like the dead, so i’ve not been fighting the insomnia. i sleep through the night and hear nothing – unless adam speaks. it’s a weird characteristic of motherhood – eric can rattle around in the room, fight the dogs on the porch, i don’t hear a thing – but if the kid sits up across the hall and peeps “mommy?”  i’m immediately conscious. only children’s voices would call people back through a ouija board, i think. only your child’s voice could pull you back from the dead places. morbid maybe in what is essentially a christmas shopping post, but true. you can only wake your parents from the dead….

SO. point was, i started wandering around on etsy looking for xmas presents of the affordable and original variety while the boys bonded over “light savers,” and while shopping for a nameless lady friend in the owl watch section i ended up in the batman section and remembered either falsely or by actual memory her fondness for Poison Ivy, and from there of course wandered into the bizarre relationship with Harley Quinn, whom i only knew a few details about – since last night i have submerged myself in a cold pill haze of comic book pages, cartoon clips and fan art based around Ivy & Harley, and may have stumbled into an entirely new framework to show love, and caricature our relationship in a fun and gorgeous way…. that is, IF her love of Poison Ivy is not false memory…. 

all i’ve actually ordered so far is 2 sets of aqua globes for the females-in-law. kiddo is eating appleasauce and mouth-breathing watching ppg while i drink coffee and watch batman cartoons on youtube…. and you know what?? poison ivy was based on bettie page. whoda thought?


tuesday night pleasantries

sometimes not finding sleep on a weeknight post-coitus turns into lonely internet rambling that underscores middle of the night Loneliness with a tinge of Melancholia, especially if your feet are bare and it’s november –

other times you wake up to an email from a friend you’d feared lost just after finding, a horoscope that says it might be okay to be a little two-faced (or double-sided like a coin, if you prefer), and discovering your grinning mug and that of your sister’s in a few photos (5,6,11) on the website of a lovely philosopher met on a lovely spring day: http://www.zentennyson.com/default.html  – i’ll link that in here permanently so angela and heather can more easily find it 😉

my return to bed will be to sleep. this brief interlude of wakefulness has proved fortifying as opposed to alienating thanks to andrea, rob breszny & frank tennyson ❤

p.s. amy has a picture of her own hand holding a FIVE leaf clover – i know it’s real because i recognize her thumb. it’s preposterous!

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