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Coffee Talk

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Maggie, about 2 years ago

I've found a free moment to pop in, only to realize I haven't posted a blog in three weeks! Humble apologies. And here I thought I was Taylor Swifting my life. Not quite, it turns out.

There have been at least two newsletters during that time, though, so if you aren't getting enough of me, subscribe at the bottom of the page. So you know, my goal is a newsletter every other Tuesday and a post here on the Tuesdays in between. I was trying to do both every week, but alas, I've reached the limit of what's humanly possible while maintaining my sanity.

So this is just a woman-to-woman catch up chat. We don't do that like we used to, do we? Just get together and talk about life. So anyway, here's where I am.

I'm doing well in classes and the semester is almost over, and it was too much. I took on too much. I'm not quitting, but 16 credits with a huge family, 3 businesses, a book to write, and 3 blogs while also helping coach people into the best health of their lives (informally for now) turns out to be a little much. I'm managing it, but I'm almost out of gas. Spring is springing. It was only in the 40s today but they're calling for 80º Monday. I'm going to want to be outside. I am planning a huge garden. Where is that going to fit in?

But I love the classes, and I feel smarter every day. I didn't get to go to college. I had babies in my teens. It has been a nagging regret in my life. So I'm doing it now, and I am loving it. I just find myself missing the other parts of my life.

So my adjustment is to take 12 credits instead of 16 credits this fall – one less class. It's still considered full time, but I think it will be a lot more manageable. However it only takes one class to suck away my time. I am breezing through sociology and intro to healthcare and composition. (Get this: it's been so long since high school, that I have to take comp 1 and comp 2 if I want a degree in nutrition! You've gotta love irony!) Nutrition class is harder, but not a lot harder. It's biology that's taking the majority of my time. That stuff is hard for me! I'm pulling an A right now, but I am working my tail off for it, and I think the final is likely to bring that down a bit.

Like I said, I'm nearly finished with the semester. I think it ends May 22nd, but I should be finished at least a week sooner. I'm always working ahead.

My plan for the summer is to write my brains out, complete Harrison Hyde and the Runaway Bride, and get it ready for you all to read. This story is going to be laugh out loud funny, but also deep and touching. Lots of emotion. Lots of everything you love about the Brands. All that family warmth and loyalty. Badass women and the men who adore them. These two characters, Maria Brand and Harry Hyde are helping each other grow into their best selves. I'm in love with this book, and it's so fun being immersed in the world of The Texas Brand again.

Then I will decide what's next. Another Brown and de Luca? Another Fatal book? Another Wings in the Night? I never finished the follow up to Fiona, though I have about half a novel somewhere I started a whle back. So many stories. So little time. I need to live at least another century to write them all and do all the other wonderful things I want to do with this life!

Okay, here's the next thing, totally new topic: I'm feeling less and less comfortable coloring my hair.

It isn't that I'm worried about the chemicals. I get Madison Reed color, which is supposed to be very safe. I wait longer and longer between treatments just to see how it looks without. It goes white right in front of my ears, and all along my hairline, underneath. Those fine hairs there, you know what I mean. I actually think the white looks looks kind of cool where it does come in. But the parts that aren't white yet are mousy gray brown and that's no fun.

Then there are my eyebrows. If I don't tint them every few weeks or shade them in with makeup, they basically disappear. I'm just not ready for that look yet. When I was young I hated how thick and bushy my eyebrows were. Now I wish I had them back!

And yet, I feel like I'm rapidly approaching that point we all reach where too much color can start to look silly and fake. Besides, I like everything as natural as possible. So how am I still coloring my hair and brows? It doesn't fit with the rest of my lifestyle.

Am I ready to give it up and just go mousy gray-brown with a few pretty white places? Nope. I don't feel like I'm there yet. I'm conflicted, but I'm not there yet. This is kind of how I felt about eating meat for several years before I gave it up, so I imagine this is my process for large scale change. I need a few years to adjust to the idea.

I have a box of color sitting in the bathroom baiting me. Maybe I'll foil my white patches and color the rest, and see how that feels. Or maybe I'll just keep coloring it until it all starts coming in white or silver, and the mousty gray-brown is all gone, if it ever reaches that point, and then let it go natural. I think that idea feels best to me right now.

Thanks for letting me talk that out. My husband's a lot younger than I am, and sometimes I think I let that influence my approach to some things. He's the least shallow man I've ever met, and would love me even if I had no hair at all. But you know, I have an ego. He's finally getting some gray himeself. That's going to help. Maybe he'll eventually grow a long, snowy Santa beard like his grandpa had, and I'll feel like the dimepiece for a while.

Oh, hey, did you see the new look we're giving Wings in the Night?

The first six (but really 9) are done. Let me explain. We're adding each novella as bonus content with a novel. That's going to mess up the series numbering for a little while, because we can only give each volume one number. So the novellas will no longer be numbered, but they will be in the proper order. It just might be confusing until we get them all done. Due to expense we're doing three at a time. Sales have already picked up.

A stylized bat with drooping red floral border and the cover of Twilight Phantasies with same image

You can help me out by sharing one of these images on your social.

Thanks! If you want to link directly to book 1, (it's a Kindle exclusive in eBook) here's the link:

I've unlinked that so you can copy and paste, if you like. I'm not linking the images either to make them easier for you to copy.

If I learned anything from Taylor Swift this month, it's that fans are a powerful, unstoppable, irresistable force. And I know Wings fans are a particularly passionate group.

A vampire woman centered in front of a full moon wearing a black dress and a heart-shaped pendant at her swoolen breasts. her hair is dark and wavy, eyes pale blue. The cover of twilight phantasies is beside her.

Anyway, that's everything on my mind at the moment. Everything not political, at least, and I try to keep my passionate politics out of here. If you want a to hear my unfettered views on that, follow me on Threads! I'm @MaggieShayne there like most places.

Talk to you online! (I'm mainly on Facebook and Threads.)


Maggie's other blogs....

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