Well, not in real life, of course.
But in fiction, a villain is a necessary evil.
The hero of a book needs to have someone to provide a challenge, an obstacle or a conflict or else the reader gets bored.
When the villain is particularly nefarious, the stakes are raised.
Think of The Joker, Voldemort, Cersei, Darth Vader, or Nurse Ratched.
These guys just keep on coming, no matter what level of good or compassion is offered.
My villains (and yes, I have to create them to vex the protagonist) tend to be intelligent, entitled, and self-involved. In my previous world of work there were enough of them to be able to choose traits from one and habits of another to create someone you love to hate.
Check out the various villains in DEADLY WOODS out today on Amazon.
Actually, I never went away. I have been tapping the keys on two new books which are out in agent-land looking for a publisher. If you think cooking up a plot, writing, editing, and rewriting is hard, trying to get published is harder. Reading that JK Rowling’s Harry Potter was rejected by 12 publishers does not make me feel any better. But, I’m still plugging away. And now, I am expanding my social media platform to Twitter(@IbanezAuthor) and Instagram (Andrea9889) to get broader coverage. Feel free to share with family and friends!
No, not her dress. My dress. And no, the invitation has still not arrived but that doesn’t mean I have stopped my preparations. “Day dress” is what is required. I live in Arizona, so that would mean shorts, T shirt, sunglasses, and flip flops, right? Looking online I see that ‘day dress’ in Brenglish means something one might wear to a funeral except in some pastel shade. I see that ‘hose’ is an element of the outfit. Pantyhose? The last pair I had disintegrated in the drawer due to lack of use. Is a spray tan too tacky for the Brits?
I checked my options. Sears is closing so that eliminates the no-iron polyester options. Penney’s has plenty, but good luck finding a sales person to assist you. Dillard’s or Macy’s both have excellent rounders of discounted Easter go-to-church dresses (pastel) that will work fine. Also, polyester, no-iron, since I will likely be cramming my outfit into my carry-on for my Priceline flight to Aberdeen. That’s close to Windsor, isn’t it?
The long flight will give plenty of time to practice Brenglish: “Where’s the loo, love?” “Does my bum look big in this?” “Don’t be cheeky.” “Dunno.” “Tara!”
The gift. I can’t believe that Meghan and Harry (he insists that we call him Harry, although his real name is Henry something, something, something, hyphen, something) suggested a list of their charities to donate to instead of a gift. As if that makes the gifting any easier! How much is too little and how much is too much? We don’t want to look like bougie Americans.
Couldn’t they just sign up for a registry at Ikea like everyone else? That way, you know the appropriate monetary range of the gift, for example, if they want the VIMLE corner sofa in yellow, (an excellent choice) we’ll need to get some others to chip in. And maybe yellow, though on trend, is not a good choice, because they are sure to be having a passel of kids right away. If they have passels in the UK.
Being a practical person myself, I would go for the more affordable ALGOT vertical storage unit. Or in a sentimental vein, I could just gift them my mother’s service for 12 china that none of my kids are interested in. Sure, the palace has service for 120, but everybody needs dishes. Goes perfect with roast chicken, Harry.(wink, wink)
Women in the US are not really into hats as such. Okay, in the South, yes, and amongst church going women, yes. But those fascinator things? How do you even stick those things onto your head? With hairpins or a hot glue gun? (Can you even get a hot glue gun through TSA?)
My granddaughter, a six-year old fashionista, may be persuaded to lend me her fascinator: a multi-tiered fabric cupcake, surrounded by tulle and perched on a headband. With a cherry on top.
I pity the person who has to sit behind me bobbing and weaving to catch the main event. On second thought, maybe I’ll wear a Melania Spy v. Spy hat, which is just a larger version of what the Queen always wears. And then I’ll have a conversation opener with her. Stay tuned.
Okay, so I did manage to get her address and jotted a note about a wedding invitation, and it should have come in the mail, but it certainly has not arrived yet. BUT, this just in: Meghan’s father won’t be attending so there is at least space for one more! In another few days the airfare to London is going to be atrocious and forget about flying standby—when is the last time you saw an empty seat on a plane? Not to mention no hotel space being available in Windsor. I suppose some kind person in town would put us up in a B&B or Airbnb sort of way. Does anybody have any relatives in Windsor, by the way? Msg me.
(I did email to ask if we could stay at Kensington. I understand they have lots of space. No response.)
We became BFFs during the filming of ‘Suits.’ Really! While in Toronto last year, I was in a crowd scene when they were filming. Actually, I was in a crowd watching a crowd scene being filmed, and she looked over at me and smiled. I smiled back. She gave me the ‘call me’ signal but unfortunately, as she was saying something—probably the number—I was looking in my purse for my phone and alas, the moment was gone.
Anybody out there got her number?
Only on week until the wedding and I have to get things planned pronto.
After a few long weeks of living, loving, scheming, talking, thinking, planning, arguing, and finally coming to the halfway point of the first draft of “A Hoot Owl’s Call,” the first book in the Carolina Trilogy II, my fictional folks took the weekend off.
That means, aside from not following what they are doing and writing it down, I was also relieved of them chattering away in my head during otherwise quiet moments.
PBS binge Sunday night and then back to the factory!
Vicky and me
For those of you who watched “Victoria” on PBS for the past few months, here is a roundabout anecdote that can get you past the withdrawal.
At the Tucson FOB this past weekend, where I was hawking my new book,”WASTE WATER,” one of the authors in the Indie Tent (Independently published authors-nothing to do with Harrison Ford) brought his pregnant wife who is due in a few months. Being very tiny, she was a bit worried about how large the baby was projected to be and said she hoped there would be no problem.
It reminded me of a conversation I had with an older woman when I was pregnant with my first child many years ago who related that when she was at that same stage, her mother said there was nothing to it. You started to feel labor pains, they ‘put you out,’ and when you woke up, the baby was in your arms. At the time, I was horrified by the lack of information about childbirth for that generation of women, and the young woman I related it to was wide-eyed with disbelief.
But then I remembered that it was Queen Victoria who inadvertently popularized anesthesia during childbirth. She had nine children and after the birth of her seventh decided that something ought to be done about what they probably called the “discomfort” of the process. She and Prince Albert connected with physician John Snow who recommended chloroform, rather than ether, which had come into use during surgical procedures and was presumed safer. Thus, she had the soon to be famous experience of being ‘put out’ and waking up to a baby in her arms.
Dr. John Snow not only promulgated anesthesia and better hygiene in surgical situations, he is credited with linking the germ theory to the spread of cholera, a virulent disease often found in crowded areas and previously thought to be cause by ‘miasma.’
So, John Snow did know something after all.
I wrote most of “A Tanager’s Tale” at the entrance to this cave on Palawan in the Philippines last spring.
While the archaeologists dug, I sat and pounded out the 3rd book of the ‘Carolina Triology.’ (That’s my laptop case to the right)