Oregon writer, Rain Trueax, and Oregon painter, Diane Widler Wenzel co-author Rainy Day Thought. Diane generally posts on Wednesdays and Rain on Saturdays. There may be extra days or changes as situations warrant. Comments are always welcome and appreciated as it turns an article into a discussion.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015


This is always my week to think what I want in the year to come. Some decisions have to be made soon. If we continue to offer, as a vacation rental, our Tucson house in 2017, our renewal of VRBO has to be the middle of January. We are unsure we do want that. Should we sell it? That's possible, but we love that house. I like it being smaller than this one and do love the desert right outside its windows. 

BUT, it's a long way from our kids and grandkids. BUT, the first of those grandkids will be launched in a year and a half as she heads off to college. Where will they settle in their adult years? Questions with no answers as they are too far in the future. The immediate decision of paying to continue advertising Casa Espiritu is, however, at hand. It's a lot of money to pay if we decide not to do it later in '16.

In terms of trips for 2016, we want to go back to Lava Beds National Monument in Northern California and spend longer, maybe get into some of the caves. We'd like more time to camp there with family or friends. Some time there to just veg. I really liked that area. 

We loved the nearby Tule Lake Wildlife Refuge but its continued existence is threatened by farmers who need more irrigation water. Is this a cause we should be involved in or do we know enough? To see these birds enjoying this beautiful spot is definitely a delight and should be possible at least through '16.

One of the western romance writers has a June event planned for Silver City, Idaho. We are thinking we might pull our trailer to that one (or near it as not sure we could get the trailer all the way up to it). It'd be fun to meet other writers and get to know more about that ghost town that is a touristy kind of place in a backwoods way (no electricity). 

Then, there is Yellowstone or if not that far over, at least Missoula, Dillon, and Bannack. :)

In terms of my work, during this break, I've read a few romances but not in my same genre. I mostly avoid reading books that are anything like what I write. I don't want to be influenced or lose a plot idea I wanted when I read someone else already used it. There are only so many plots out there (some say Shakespeare used them all). That is true no matter what genre someone writes when you take it to the bones of the plot. I believe what separates stories from each other are the characters and their interactions.

My next book out will be set in 1905-06 and the next Taggert brother. I am trying to get a handle on his community. If you have read my books, you know community and family are big parts of them. His relationships once he pulled away from the family have been hard to get a handle on as he became a bit of a drifter. Perhaps community will come through the heroine-- or his family coming after him. 

Driving back from Arizona, I talked over plot ideas with Ranch Boss; so I know the gist of where that story is going for plot. What I don't know are its secondary characters, which make themselves felt once the writing begins-- which will be in January. 

Definitely I also want to write more contemporary books. I only did historical last year, and I am feeling the need for something in my own time period. I like writing both; so 2016, I think I'll mix it up. Most likely with shorter books than the recent ones.

The end of December is for me-- a time of evaluating my physical life (need to lose weight and exercise more), what I want next, and whether I am on a path that works for those goals. I like this time of the year with the expectations of Christmas behind (lovely or disappointing either way), for simple rituals like selecting next year's calendars (mine above the desk is called Simplify), and a quiet time to consider my world. Is it the one I want it to be or are changes needed?  

The December 25th full moon


Ingineer66 said...

Get the grandkids to start going to college in AZ. Then you will be closer to them. Get rid of the animals or maybe even the entire farm. See problems solved, easy peesy. I am good at solving other people's problems. Cracking myself up over here.

Rain Trueax said...

lol Ingineer. We just put money into a fund that will give us an Oregon tax break if they use it in Oregon or the schools approved nearby; so not sure Arizona will work unless it's a Master's like my husband did.

Tabor said...

I think as we age we see this time of year as a serious "start over" because we know we cannot put off the things we should do. Our start overs are getting fewer.

Rain Trueax said...

So many things complicate a start over like families. I still like this time of year to think about it. I used to do goals where I'd write where I wanted to be and the steps to get there. I haven't done one of those for several years. I like the lack of expectations for this week, nothing I had to do, but many things I am thinking about doing. We still have not decided on VRBO for whether to pay the money again or whether we want to rent the house through them in '17. Mostly it's due to the new cleaning agency. Much as we understand why our friends didn't want to do it-- a thorough cleaning, enough for renters to be happy, is a LOT of work (we have done it before leaving in past years), we are not yet comfortable with the rental agencies where we'd have those coming in who we don't know at all and have never talked to as we do the renters...