Blog, My Books

Library Dictates

So, Vermont is great. Beautiful. Peaceful. Full of intelligent residents. Hikers and nature lovers abound, which makes me fit right in.

However, the library offerings are a bit wanting. The libraries themselves are gorgeous, by the way. It’s just that they don’t have the greatest selections out there.

My Amazon Wish List book selections are not to be had, unfortunately. I don’t want to pay for them – yet – so I am forced to make due with other selections.

That being said, it’s not that bad.

This week, I checked out Sick in the Head by Judd Apatow and Freedom – My Book of Firsts by Jaycee Dugard.

I’m not the biggest fan of Judd Apatow’s movies. The 40 Year-Old-Virgin was funny and poignant as was Knocked Up. However, in Sick in the Head, he manages to get some of today’s (and yesterday’s) best comedians to open up. I was particularly moved by Roseanne Barr’s interview, as well as Steve Martin’s. My goodness, did Roseanne Barr have a rough childhood! Steve Martin’s interview is not funny at all, but very intelligent and somewhat vulnerable. Jerry Seinfeld’s interview comes off as funny, but guarded. Chris Rock is very fun in his, and very honest. I enjoyed reading this book more than I thought I would.

I am still working on Freedom-My Book of Firsts by Jaycee Dugard. The light she writes with – and lives in – is so beautiful and bright. I have not read A Stolen Life and I don’t know that I will. I know that the adult – and her children – make it out alive, and I am happy for that. However, I am filled with fear at the thought of hearing the story of 11-year-old Jaycee. I’m a mom. I am also a kid who was almost kidnapped, but got away.

Still, I thank the library for facing me out of my book reading comfort zone. I’ve never been one to read many non-fiction books, but I am now.


So (not the smoothest segue here), you are probably wondering what I am writing.

I wrote something, darn it. Lol. I wrote Take Care of Youwhich is available at Amazon. It’s about a big sister who is forced to pick up after her sister in the worst way possible, which is covering the nature of her younger sister’s disappearance. It’s sentimental. It is hopeful. It is scary. Give it a whirl.

Take Care of You - High Resolution

As far as other stuff is concerned, I am not currently writing. I am reading. I am keeping house. I am hiking. I am homeschooling my son.

But I am still writing stories in my head. I am committing funny, poignant and clever things to memory. I’ll keep you posted as to what will make it to print next.

 

Cyndia Rios-Myers

Blog

November 9th, 2016

Chances are that you or a friend woke up to bad news this morning. I’m in the “bad news” group. I did not vote for the top two, but voted for someone else.

However, after forty plus years of life in this wonderful country, I’ve learned some things.

Our country exists on a pendulum. We have the far left group, the far right group, and the ones in the middle. I am in the middle, as are many of my friends.

If our pendulum swings too far left for too long a period of time, the folks on the right get upset. And rightly so. So, when the time for change comes, the pendulum swings to the far right and lingers there for a while. The same applies for the opposite swing.

If I were going to get on a soap box of sorts, I would say that our government and our leaders need to learn how to compromise. Give and take. Don’t just take and take and take and expect people to want more of the same.

Now, I am off my soapbox.

I cannot change what happened during yesterday’s election. I can change my focus, though.

With that in mind, I have thought of the happy things  I have enjoyed and the other things I have to look forward to. I’ll share those with you.

  • The Crown – Netflix’s awesome TV show on the British royals. (I finished the series yesterday, though).
  • Good Girls’ Revolt – Amazon Prime’s awesome series on 1960s working girls fighting for their rights in the workplace. I’ve seen over half of the episodes so far.
  • Mud Season by Ellen Stinson – a non-fiction book on a woman moving her family to Vermont. Funny, clever, and very insightful. Completely read, and thoroughly enjoyed.
  • The Dirty Life by Kristan Kimball – a non-fiction book on a writer who leaves the big city for the love of a farmer and of good food. Completely read, and thoroughly enjoyed, too.
  • Good Grief by Ellen Stinson – another non-fiction book on this funny lady’s life in Vermont. I’m about halfway through this one.
  • Sewing. I have some fat quarters of cotton that I want to sew…into something. I don’t know what, but I am going to make something like these lunch bags
  • Baking cookies. I found a great recipe for Soft Sour Cream Sugar Cookies I don’t know when I’ll cook them, but it will be soon.
  • Educational videos on how to improve your work life and your real life. If you can afford it, you can swing for a subscription to Lynda.com; if you are a military veteran (like me), you can get a free subscription. (Lynda.com is available as a Roku channel).
  • Fall and the great outdoors. No one can take that from us.

 So, be sure to look away from your fears. Look at what you can enjoy and what you can change.

 

Cyndia Rios-Myers

Blog

Old Songs for New Memories

I was going through stuff in my junk drawer, as I was sure that there were things I could purge. You see, I am still using the Marie Kondo method of decluttering. While going through a junk drawer, I found my old Case Logic book of CDs.

I don’t listen to CDs much anymore, thanks (or no thanks) to iTunes. But I keep them. I paid for them, after all. Also, I worry about losing all of my online songs. If that happened, at least I would have these ones to listen to.

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My son has very strong opinions about some of my CDs. He didn’t understand why I would buy an entire CD for just one song. I explained it. He then asked why I bought such bad music.

At first, I explained that tastes in music change. But then I remembered that I was thirty-nine-years-old to his nine-years-old. I told him straight out that I would not defend music choices I made nearly twenty years into the past.

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The last time this was my name was about nine years ago. The last time this was my address was eighteen years ago.

Even with the questions regarding my purchase decisions, I was glad to let him use my CDs at his leisure. He can learn what he likes and doesn’t like. He can use the CDs I am not using. He can learn to operate a CD player.

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If I am being completely honest, though, it is kind of about me, too. Seeing him listen to my CDs reminds me of listening to my mom’s records and her eight tracks. My stepmother’s records, too. I learned about Camilo Sesto, El Gran Combo, and Rocio Durcal. You probably don’t know those names, but that’s okay. I connected with the music and I connected with my mother’s past.

Maybe the takeaway from this is that my son will think of me when he hears this song. When he hears Torn by Natalie Imbruglia, he’ll think of me. (He won’t have my memory of 1997 San Francisco and cutting my hair short). When he hears Best That You Can Do by Christopher Cross, he’ll think of mornings spent in our kitchen in Essex Junction, Vermont, (and not visits to the shores of Lake Michigan when his mother was just a girl.)

I’m glad that I let him play the songs at his leisure. I am so happy that my mother did the same for me, too.

 

Blog

The View from Up Here

I am not afraid of heights. Never have been. The truth is that I should be. A constant scenario during dream time is myself standing on a bridge with no handrails. I fall off the side. I don’t remember anything that comes after. Maybe it’s how I died in past life.

Still, I am unafraid. I like climbing to the highest of heights and like looking down at everything else.

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I think that this is where I am supposed to insert a metaphor for life. I am not going to do that. I am going to keep climbing, though. Forever.

 

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Thanks for reading!

Cyndia Rios-Myers

Blog, My Books

Take Care of You – My New Book!!!

Hi folks!!!

I am so, so, so, so, so very excited to tell you all about my new novella – Take Care of You.  

I’ve gone ahead and created a question and answer session on it.

  1. Awesome! A new book. How long has it been since you last wrote something? Thanks! I am glad that you are excited, too. The truth is that I am always writing something. However, not all of those books are meant for an audience outside of myself. But the last time I published something was in April of 2013. 
  2. Tell me that this is a sequel to The Wolves!! Well…I can’t do that, because it is not. It is entirely unrelated to The Wolves. However, I promise that you will enjoy this. And that you’ll beg for a sequel!
  3. A novella again? Why do you write such short stories? Well…in my defense, short stories are shorter than novellas. But I’ll give you an answer. I think that some stories don’t need a lot of words to convey a scene, dialogue, or even a good monologue. I hate reading novels that should have been novellas or short stories. If you have a story, you should tell it. You should not add fluff to it in order to make more marketable or hit that 40,000 word count. Respect the story and its pace. 
  4. Where can I buy it? I am so glad you asked! You can buy Take Care of You at AmazonBarnes and Noble, or Smashwords.
  5. Okay. What’s the cover art like? Here it is!!! Take Care of You - High Resolution
  6. Cool. Where can I read a preview for it? Go no further than here! Take Care of You eBook Preview

 

Thanks for bearing with me, folks. I hope you like this one. I loved writing it! Please let me know your thoughts on this via reviews, emails, or feedback right here on this blog.

Thanks for reading!!

Cyndia Rios-Myers

Blog

Gone, But Not Forgotten

While looking for the headstones of deceased family members (of my husband and son) in Adams County, Pennsylvania, I found other headstones that moved me. I’ll let them tell their own stories:

What a hard, horrible year Loretta had.

 

 

He was born one year and two days after his older twin brothers born – and died. He was buried with them.

 

 

He was loved.

 

 

Love the unconventional font.

 

 

Sylvia rests with her parents.

 

 

 

 

“Jesus touched her and she slept.”

Blog

Be Cautious of Cautionary Tales

I think that parents’ intentions are good when they tell their children stories of fallen women and men. “You don’t want to end up like XXX. Study hard, ignore boys, and you’ll be just fine.”  I don’t know that it always works. As a young girl, I would immediately feel interested in the “fallen” woman’s life I’d been warned against. And attracted. The reason behind my interest was the knowledge that the fallen woman had taken another track – one strongly advised against. Cautionary tales fail because children like alternate tracks. They like “What If” stories. They like doing what is unexpected and unaccepted.

What parents fail to realize, though, is that they do a disservice to the protagonists of their cautionary tales.

We (because all of us – at some time or another – have been the protagonists of cautionary tales) are not the sum of our bad times.

We all have bad days, bad months, and even bad years. We are not defined by those, though. We should also be wary of being good cautionary tales. We might have the great job, great boyfriend, and a much admired family life. Still, bad things can happy to us; stuff so bad that it derails everything we are a part of. What might a careful student or admirer of our life postulate then?

In the future, I will be one to correct others when they use people as cautionary tales, as I have been the subject of cautionary tales.

The age of fourteen was a rough one for me. My behavior and my words got me kicked out of not one, but two houses. The age of seventeen was a good one; I surprised everyone when my tiny self joined the Navy and made it through boot camp. The age of nineteen found me with a bad, bad, bad man. I did bad things because of him. In summation, those experiences shored me up. They afforded me the strength to get me through a horrible, horrible hardship.

Perhaps you are finding yourself in a bad time. Perhaps you feel as if you are being measured against others, and you are falling short. Perhaps you feel as if you are being held up as a role model for others to see, and perhaps that is weighing you down.

Know that I won’t use you as a cautionary tale. You are not defined by a bad day, bad month, or a bad year. You are on a journey. It isn’t over.

 

Cyndia Rios-Myers