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Archive for July, 2012

Last night around midnight I made an embarrassing discovery at work.  As a result I planned a silly little confession post about why I needed to be a work at home gal and not a night shift hospital girl.  It was going to be a short and funny little piece of random about the clutter in my little head and the resulting goof that I’d made.  I wrote it out on paper when I had a few spare minutes around two or three a.m.

Then four a.m. arrived with three patients all at once.

Patient #1 A patient in their sixties who was seemingly fine one minute and the next?  Unresponsive and knocking at Death’s door.  It’s chaos as I am trying to get him scanned PDQ and help get him on his way to a bigger hospital and the specialists that he needed.  Tripping and bumbling over everyone, I managed to get him scanned with half the ER staff in my way. But they got him stabilized and on his way.  That’s all that mattered.

Patient #2 was a very young and very sick child with a prior history of bowel trouble and surgery.  The obviously sick little person was the best patient I had all night. Pukey, pale and in pain they behaved better than any adult I scanned the entire night.  It always humbles me when sick kids demonstrate how tough and resilient they are.  They make me want to be a stronger and better person.

Patient #3?  This one was ‘Batshit crazy’ according to the nurse who brought her to me.  The patient complained that their side and back and hip all hurt.  Came over in a wheelchair as what we call a ‘walkie-talkie’, or an easy patient.  When I finished her scan I discovered that there was so much WTFery going on in that poor patient’s belly they should have been curled up into the fetal position whimpering and crying. Nope. Whatever crazy they had going on must have been working some serious magic as they chattered away about crazy town happenings to me.

Each of the three patients was completely different from the one prior but each one humbled me in an equally moving way.  These are the patients that make working in the Real World worthwhile.  Some nights it feels like they are few and far between but when I have the privilege of participating in their care I don’t mind living and working there so much.

I do hope to give it up or retire from the medical field eventually but in the meantime it’s the patients like these that keep me sane and willing to come in and work a long 13 hour night shift.

Even if I did come to work wearing my scrub pants backwards and didn’t realize it until seven hours of my shift had passed.

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Moving On

I just sent off my little submission package a couple of days ago and I’m doing my best not to worry myself sick over it.  I really want to get The Call about this one.  But it might not happen.

I’m doing my best to keep my feet on the ground and not get lost in the clouds of “I know it’s going to happen this time.  And I’ll do this and we’ll do that and then I’ll do this…”

If there is one thing I excel at it’s daydreaming.  I have been guilty of finishing one project and sitting back and waiting for the magic to happen more than once.  And here’s a big shock.  It’s not getting me anywhere.

I can’t do that this time.  It’s time to get serious and look at this like the profession it is and not just a dream or a maybe.  If I want it to be real, then I need to make it a reality.

And there are some great characters up there in my head and they want out.  I’m thinking I should listen to what they’re telling me.

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In of those weird little quirks of fate I received a rejection on the same night that I finished the rough draft of the current work in progress.

It probably goes without saying that I was pretty damn disappointed.  I had my hopes up high for this one.  I had gone over that little novella too many times to count.  I’ve been investing in workshops and have tried my best to absorb every single word.  I went to my first RT in Chicago and attended more workshops and took notes on everything coming and going.

I pitched in person and for me that is a very difficult thing to do.  Face to face interactions with new people that I need to make good impressions on terrifies me.  I can try to reason my way through it all day long but that anxiety is always there lurking in the wings.

So even though I was probably a stuttering, bumbling mess I pitched again and again, two days in a row.  I practiced my “high concept” pitch on the very same editor that I hoped to publish with and she liked it.

What more could I do?

Two days prior to the dreaded email I was so pleased with my current WIP.  I was sure that this could be the one.  After the rejection email came the doubts began to creep in and set their hooks deep.

Is my premise stupid?

Will they like my characters?

The list goes on.

It is so very tempting to either shove the current WIP under the bed and forget it or on the other extreme, just send it off now and cross my fingers and live in the land of hope and denial for two months.

I’m not going to.  I like my little story and I have put a lot of hours into it.  I’ve made sacrifices for it and my characters will haunt me if I don’t give them my all.  So I’m going to go and reread the feedback that I received with my rejection and dig in hard and use everything that I’ve learned to make my little story the best that I can make it.  I’m going to open myself up further to criticism.

And I’m going to cross my fingers.  Feel free to cross yours with me, I won’t mind.

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