On What Saved Jeanine

On what saved Jeanine

In the last three weeks, I have posted two linked stories that deserve a bit of backstory:



First, you should know that I’m a contrasting sort of girl. If the story is bleak, odds are I’m giggling and clapping at my own cleverness while I type. If it’s heartwarming, I’m sniffling self-sorrow and rolling my eyes in disgust. If it’s cheerful, then you can bet something AWFUL is going on in my life. My neutral and my stories’ neutral are about the only emotional matches.

Second, let me be clear. I have never been suicidal.… Read the rest

Site Design

So, as you know, last week, my dog ate the blog. #awkward. But unsurprising for a dog named Chewie. The theme I’m currently using is Foghorn? Foghat? I think I’m getting rock groups mixed up with WordPress themes. Never a good sign. Anyway, I’m working on a redesign over at http://test.jesterqueen.com, and I’d love input.

I’ve already gotten some good ideas from a couple of different people. One person pointed out that people visit Jester Queen for content anyway (which I considered a huge compliment) and I might consider going with a minimalist theme that didn’t rely on graphics.… Read the rest

Clara Jean’s origins

Hey everybody, first and foremost, I want to say that I got a visit from the Fairy Hobmother. I GOT A VISIT FROM THE FAIRY HOBMOTHER. (Yes, I know the link goes to an appliance store in the UK. It should. It’s cool.) The Fairy Hobmother (@Fairyhobmother ) is an Internet Awesome who randomly visits and bestows love. In this case, I have been gifted with £25 Amazon voucher. And if you comment on this post, the Hobmother might visit you, too. I’m prettttty sure that’s how I got found, but I really have no idea how this works. It’s not a giveaway, precisely, more like… well a visit from your fairy hobmother.… Read the rest

Got much spam in it?

If you blog on WordPress (.com or .org) you almost certainly use Askimet to help manage your spam queue. When I changed over from the WordPress hosted .com account to the self hosted .org software, the amount of spam in that queue shot through the stratosphere. Seriously. On my .com account, I had maybe five or ten comments a day get caught in the Askimet strainer. Now? If I don’t clear that thing every eight hours, it’s into the triple digits.

But Askimet isn’t perfect. It will very rarely (exactly once since I migrated a month ago) let spam sneak in.… Read the rest

Character Assassination Carousel: Tootle

Today, I am to taking a ride on Ninja Mom’s Character Assassination Carousel.  That means I get to take aim at a popular children’s book and fire arrows until it falls bleeding to the ground. I’m walking in some elite company here. The last character assassin, Mommy Shorts decimated Dr. Seuss’s Oh The Places You’ll Go. And the month before that, Cynicism 101 clicked Dorothy’s heels right back home and unseated The Wonderful Wizard of Oz from his throne.  The next rider is Robyn at Hollow Tree Ventures. If you’d like to grab a horse, get in touch with Ninja Mom over on her blog.… Read the rest

And so I write

I knew what I wanted.

I’ve been a writer since age ten. Initially, I just wanted a career (yes, I was thinking seriously of my future career then) where I could use the old Remington Rand manual typewriter. I loved the way it felt under my fingers, and I savored the letter-arm’s whack against the paper. Even now when I’m feeling completely empty, I type just to hear the clickity-clack of my keyboard.

My parents supported me. My dad is a musician, so they kind of had to by default. “Write,” they told me. “But have a backup.”

That advice has haunted me, still haunts me.… Read the rest


Writing is a business for me. It is my passion. It is the thing above all other things that I must do to remain sane. It is the guidepost I use to measure my bipolar, because when the crazy gets too bad, the writing goes away and I have to Do Something Else Pharmaceutical About It. So when I’m not grading, doing other things for my paying job, getting obsessive-compulsive about the state of my house, or being a Mom, I write. Sometimes, often, I throw over those other things to write, because the writing, in addition to being my bipolar barometer, is also my therapy.… Read the rest

Writer’s Block

  I’m completely stuck in my current novel.  The scene I’m on isn’t moving forward, and I can’t seem to just drop it and start the next chapter. I have a pretty good idea of what’s holding me back, too, and what I’d tell other people to help them fix it, but my own tips don’t seem to be getting my characters to actually speak to each other. On top of that, I’m coming up on a self imposed deadline on Friday to have the first fifty pages written, and this damned scene is bogging me down.

    Without going into too much detail, the main character needs to leave the hospital, get to a friend’s house, confront her controlling Mom, and come to terms with the realization that she’s underestimated her Dad.… Read the rest