A new Column below!
Okay, it’s official. Next summer I am going to be put to sleep for the entire month of August. There is no reason to live through August in south Alabama. No reason—ever. I want to go into hibernation and I will wake up rested, much thinner, and rejuvenated. I am worried, though, that the dogs and cats will eat me, thinking I am dead.
The three-year hair-growing challenge has concluded.
This summer has whizzed by on one hand, and dragged into soppy, humid, suffocating weather on the other. I have concluded my 3-year hair growing challenge. When I quit teaching at USA, I decided I wouldn’t cut my hair for 3 years. I don’t have great hair—baby fine and a little frizzy. It breaks too easily for me to keep it this long, but I wanted to see how long it would grow. Now I know. I may wait until next spring to cut it because I like it long in the winter, but a change is coming. I have to admit, though, that crumpling it up in a bun is the easiest hair-do I’ve ever had! Other than the braids I wore in grammar school. Those were easy because my mother braided my hair.
Lots of book news, guys! Susan Tanner’s terrific TROUBLE IN ACTION has been selling well and getting glowing reviews. Coming up this fall we have Jaden Terrell’s TROUBLE MOST FAIRE, which is a delicious story set at a Renaissance Faire in Sherwood, TN. You are going to love it. Tuck (a pig) is one of the most fun characters I’ve ever read. And I have to say, since I have read the manuscript, that Jaden has a wonderful love for ALL of her characters. While Robbi and Mal work together with Trouble (and the pig) to solve the mystery and learn to trust each other, the main characters aren’t the only ones who complete their story arc in a way that will give the reader total satisfaction. The book drops on October 7, but you can grab your preorder now: TROUBLE MOST FAIRE.
I’ve done a couple of library signings in Mississippi this month. I had a lovely time in Laurel for an afternoon book talk. Just recently I had the absolute pleasure of being in West Point August 15 when Lucille Armstrong (my adopted cousin) and president of the West Point Friends of the Bryan Public Library was awarded the key to the city for her tireless efforts to support the library system. I’ve been going to West Point every year for a long time. They’ve been wonderful to me and they always laugh at my crazy stories and indulge me in my comedy act. We all share a love of books, a love of libraries, a love of small cities, and in West Point, a love of Lucille!
October 2 I’ll be at the Hattiesburg Public Library and in November at the Prattville library. More on that later.
THE DARKLING and THE SEEKER are going great guns. I take such joy in scaring people (I just can’t help myself). So as the days shorten and the evenings grow cooler, load up one of these books on your e-reader and prepare to enjoy Halloween.
A VISITATION OF ANGELS is almost ready to go up for pre-order. This is the 4th in the Pluto’s Snitch series. Fans have been waiting 2 years (I apologize!) but soon, very soon! I promise.
Until next month—when I hope it will be a smidge cooler and the grass stops growing 3 inches a day, here’s a little music: Summertime Nobody can sing it like Janice!
I am a woman in my early 40s and I’ve never been in love and I’m lonely. I’m decent looking with reasonable sag and cellulite but I’m healthy and smart and pretty good at holding a conversation. All of my former friends are married with children and they have found other people like them who are happy as hell in the suburbs. But I’m beyond irritated that I have to fake being happily single when people look at me pitifully like there’s something wrong with me for not finding Mr. Right at my ripe age. I have to slap on a smile and talk about how great it is to be single. That is such a burden—I could earn an Oscar! And maybe I’m becoming bitter too. Why should I always be the one to dodge a happy couple walking on a narrow sidewalk? Other ladies have their husband kill bugs for them, fix their car, and do home improvement things for them. I’m not always this grumpy. I have a satisfying career, I work out and eat kale and I’m always there when someone needs me. But I feel like a doomed spinster. Sure, not having a family means I can take off and travel whenever I want. But the struggle is real, it is SO hard to enjoy being alone. I so badly want the husband and children package, but I honestly don’t think it’s in the cards for me. How can I embrace being single with genuine joy? Do you have any words to help me get over the grief of doing life alone?
-Academy Award Winning Spinster
Dear AAW Spinster,
Girl, you gotta change the way you are seein’ yourself in the mirror. If you’re seeing a spinster who can’t, then that’s what folks are reading from you. Ever heard the word “projecting”? You’re painting me a picture of a woman who doesn’t see herself as a great catch—and it sure sounds like the opposite is what’s true.
On top of that, you got trust issues! You have everything you need right now to find you a mate—your friends. But first you got to let them know the truth: You don’t want to be single. You gotta trust people enough to tell them what you want. Tell them you’d like a little canoodling on these sweet summer nights. Tell them you want a partner. They can’t fix you up if they think you’re not in the market.
Until then, put on that thinking cap about what you want in a man. You don’t need a bug killer or a car fixer—buy yourself a can of Raid and get the number to a good mechanic! What you need is someone you love spending time with and sharing intimacies with. Forget the man on the Brawny paper towel roll. It’s all about respect. You gotta respect him and vice versa. Until then, why not try out fostering a young-un. Childrearing isn’t for everyone. (I have my doubts about Sarah Booth, but don’t tell her that!) Help out a young-un who’s already here and see how that shoe fits. Doin’ something good for someone else can sure change everything.
P.S. For everyone reading this, let me guide you honey chile. Get some advice by writing me at DearJitty@yahoo.com