Tag Archives: migraine

NPR Fail & A New Writing Contest

24 Jan

By Nevit Dilmen (Own work)

I had a story planned for the NPR challenge — a silly idea based on characters from my WIP. I was poised to write, and then — kabam — a migraine came a-calling. Hey Imitrex man!

By the time I slept off the nasty side effects and scribbled a first draft, it was too late.  The deadline was forty minutes in the past, and I was forty words over limit. Besides…first draft.

My husband did finish and submit a story! I’m really proud of him. And jealous.


In other news, there’s a new contest, and I’m flailing because I want to participate but don’t know that I’m ready.

For those of my writer-readers who possess courage and a polished first paragraph (not to mention enough of a manuscript to enjoy the prizes), check out former literary agent Nathan Bransford’s The Fourth Sort-of-Annual Stupendously Ultimate First Paragraph Challenge! (Gotta love the name.)

The grand prize…

The opportunity to have a partial manuscript considered by [Nathan Bransford’s] utterly fantastic agent, Catherine Drayton of InkWell, whose clients include bestselling authors such as Markus Zusak (THE BOOK THIEF), John Flanagan (THE RANGER’S APPRENTICE series) and Becca Fitzpatrick (HUSH HUSH), among others.

Other prizes include a signed copy of NB’s novel and a query critique.

Click on the link above to read the rules and/or enter. Good luck! You may see me there. Not sure. My first paragraph is pretty, but I’m not sure it’s compelling.

***The gif of the radiometer has nothing to do with anything. I just liked it. Purty.

The opportunity to have a partial manuscript considered by my utterly fantastic agent, Catherine Drayton of InkWell, whose clients include bestselling authors such as Markus Zusak (THE BOOK THIEF), John Flanagan (THE RANGER’S APPRENTICE series) and Becca Fitzpatrick (HUS

Ears Spiting Faces All over the Place!

20 Jan

Imitrex is a cruel mistress. Perhaps that’s why it shares so many letters with dominatrix. (Oh boy, the hits I’ll be getting now.)

It’s a gamble. It’s a deal with the devil. (Again. Devil. Dominatrix. If I get a zillion hits a day for Tigger when I’ve never even typed that word until just now, merely posted Eeyore’s picture… Hello, future misled search engine victims!)


Here’s the thing with Imitrex. It takes your migraine and sucks it right out of your head. No more migraine. Yay! Miracle!

HOWEVER, the makers of the drug are clearly fans of stories like “The Monkey’s Paw”. Its help comes at a cost.

Imitrex takes your migraine from your head — miracle — and crams it into every other cell of your body — the horror! At least, that’s what it does to me. No headache, but my skin hurts, my muscles hurt, I get puffy, my throat aches, I can’t eat or drink, my jaw feels tense and achy, my heart beats strangely, I feel heavy as granite. Oh, the fun we have! It’s still better than a migraine, but it’s crushingly awful for the first hour or two.

Oh, and tee hee hee — you must, simply must, take it at the very first sign of a migraine. Since I don’t get auras or any of those signs, it means I have to take it at the first sign of a headache. But what if it’s a normal headache and will go away with Tylenol? Then I won’t have to suffer psychedelic assault and battery for no good reason. But if I take Tylenol and it doesn’t help, by the time I know that, it will be too late, and I’ll have my brain replaced by a black vortex of howling pain.

In short, it’s a gamble, and one I’ve had to make for the past four days. I’m resisting a fourth Iminatrix right now, and my brain is messing with me. Here’s a trammeling of pressure and pain and — whoops — it’s gone. It will be back as soon as I start to relax. Snarl.

In other gambles this week, I ordered a pair of  shoes that were on clearance but still cost just enough that I got mad when they felt like walking on rocks. People swear they feel like heaven once they mold to your foot and get broken in…most of the time. If not, you’re still out the price of the shoes since they’ve been worn and are no longer returnable. I got lucky. One or two wearings (yeah, I took the chance), and they do feel nice.

Writing? Not sure. I was draping myself morosely across the furniture last weekend, bemoaning my lack of productivity, and then I remembered I’d just scrawled out 2500 words. It felt like nothing. Not effortless, just insubstantial. I’d already forgotten it. Two nights ago, I wrote 1500 words that I thought were quite useful, but when my husband read them to me aloud, I realized the scope of just how vastly wrong they were.  So am I writing? Yes. Am I happy about it? Hmm.

The good news is that my revised sections are great! The bad news is number four on this list over at the Office of Letters & Light.

Wishing you all a great week.

And Yet, This Is Better

18 Nov

If you go out in the woods today, you'd better not go alone. It's lovely out in the woods today, but safer to stay at home.

Yesterday, gravity quadrupled in the Untitlement household.  I tried to use a blanket to hold me aloft, but it just shoved me to the couch and held me there.

I curled up, eyes closed, wondering, “Is my heart slowing? No, it’s speeding up. Or is it slowing? Or speeding! Wait, am I breathing? Am I breathing now?” I couldn’t feel my heart beating. Can I ever feel it, though? If I stopped trying to breathe, would I still be doing it? And who did I call first, if this continued — 911 or my kids’ school to tell them I’d be late picking up my sons?

It was just a trippy hour — my first experience with the migraine drug, Imitrex. But I will say this — the pain was gone.  And since I’ve considered having my head amputated while in the throes of a headache, it was well worth the angst.

I’d like to read about Imitrex online, but the internet is useless in that it contains all answers — as in it will tell you both yes and no to the same question. A few maybes will be in there. A few others will link any topic in creation to Obama (insert snotty voice) or to Bush before him (same snotty voice). And every medical site, from Joe-Bob’s Fixin’ Hut to the Mayo Clinic, brings everything down to one unavoidable prognosis: You’re going to die.

Migraines? Could be nothing, could be you’re gonna die.

The treatment for migraines? It might help, but after Eastern and Western medicine wage a battle with swords and muskets and laser guns to prove that nothing really works and that everyone is lying about it, it all comes down to the fact that you’re probably going to die because of the meds.

I'm tellin' you, brother. I'd have made a better Aragorn.

These days, even sunshine, happiness, and Disneyland are prone to kill you. Really. So who am I to question the fact that both headaches and their cure are going to kill me, too? I’m no hobbit turned junkie/rock star/plane crash survivor. Without Desmond Hume hanging around to save me and divert my fate, I’m just hosed. I think I’ll give up worrying about it.

I went to the great authority, Facebook, and a few friends contacted me to tell me it will all be okay. I love that. Being told that everything will be okay has to be one of the best feelings on earth. It’s even better now than when I was a kid. Why can’t the internet tell you that? Oh. Wait. It does. Right next to the page that says, “What! Are you kidding? We’re screwed! Just look at Obama and Bush and Rasputin and Captain Kangaroo, and what they did with all the deadbeats and railroad tycoons and my tax dollars!”

Anyway, I’m still here, and I even managed to squeeze in my daily quota of NaNo words, although every last one of them is crap.

I will leave you today with these words: It’s okay (or not). Everything is going to be fine (or it isn’t). And it’s all [insert name of choice]’s fault.

{Insert Whooping & Hollering & Cartwheels & Somersaults}

29 Oct

A miserable week just got much brighter!

I just received the coveted email announcing that my NaNoWriMo novel has been selected for the semi-final round of 30 Covers in 30 Days.



We are excited to let you know that your 2010 NaNoWriMo novel may be receiving a cover designed by an amazing designer. Our design dream team has agreed to try to bash out 30 NaNoWriMo book covers in November as part of our “30 Covers, 30 Days” project, which you can read about in the official forum: http://www.nanowrimo.org/eng/node/3699349.  We’ve listed the designers participating here: http://www.nanowrimo.org/eng/node/3700248

We loved your title and synopsis. If you give us the okay, we’ll send them to the designer team, and the designers may use them to create a cover design for your novel-in-progress (we say “may” because we’re sending the designers a few options to choose from).  Plots will be sent throughout the month, so be sure to stay on pace with your word count!

Every year, professional designers donate their time to create covers for thirty of the tens of thousands of novels born of the contest. I’ve been coveting one for ages! Not only does it feel awesome to know that people are looking at my work, but I’m in love with book design. As big a reader as I am, I’ve bought many books just because I loved the cover so much, including my Bartlett’s Roget’s Thesaurus with a retro yellow design. [Edited to add that Kelly Blair, the designer of said thesaurus, is one of the designers for this contest. Spooky!  I had no idea when I first posted this.]

Now it’s down to ninety titles. Each designer gets three to choose from. I looked through the list of designers, and they are amazing, indeed. Lots of eye candy and blogs to add to my Google Reader.

I don’t know when I last smiled so much. I may not be selected for the final round, but this feels wonderful.

I think it even cured my headache.

In Which Autumn Socks Me in the Eye

5 Oct

Ah, autumn is here. October. Why, it seems like only last week we were suffering triple-digit temperatures, afraid to open our windows late at night because it was still 90.

Oh, wait. That was only last week.

I’ve been pining for true autumn weather, shaking my fist at shimmering heat mirages on the road and saying, “I have sweaters and boots, and I’m not afraid to use them!”

The good news is that chilly temperatures arrived yesterday. The bad news is that any major change in the weather sets off doomsday alarms in my head, so I spent most of yesterday curled in a ball, clutching my head, and feeling psychedelic levels of sea sickness although I live near the desert. I had to drive my eldest to school early in the morning, and that was terrifying — I could see the road just fine, but my peripheral vision was full of swirling shadows, and my head was full of stabbing pains like acupuncture gone wrong.

So, no blogging yesterday. My only thought was, “Ouch,” the laptop screen was too bright for my eyes, and Mother Nature was standing over me with a baseball bat, saying, “You wanted to have your cake and eat it, too? Eh? Eh?”

Today is pain free so far (knocking wood), and I gleefully dressed in tall boots, a heavy cotton shirtdress, and a long cardigan to walk my son to school. I even made it back home minutes ahead of the rain, so my new boots didn’t melt. Gotta waterproof those things.

On the writing front, I’m trying to decide on a story for NaNoWriMo. Right now I’m contemplating a prequel set in the 1950s.