Today, I found myself in a molasses-slow line at my local DC post office. In trying to while away the what-felt-like-hours, the women waiting ahead of me got to chatting.

Somehow, the conversation wound its way to a stereotype claiming that Texas women are obsessively attached to their cosmetics (even to the point of slathering on lipstick pre-Cesarean section).

Being a proud Texas gal myself and friends with many a Texan-ess who rocks the bare face,  I was about to pipe up and offer some schooling:

“It’s a big state, y’all–we Texans aren’t all created equal! And where did this stupid stereotype even come from?!”

Fortunately, I gave the crowd one last gander… and realized I was the only one of six women wearing makeup. Because how long does it take to swipe on some mascara before you walk out the door?

Yep–Great strides were made today toward busting up clichés. 

Like what you’ve read? Follow my blog via email or WordPress (on the sidebar), or shoot me an email (using the footer).

FEATURED IMAGES PROPERTY OF  Images from Texas.

Advertisements

Ah, the twin hazards of being a freelance artist/writer: procrastination and performance anxiety.

As soon as I sit down at my watercolor block and pick up my brushes, I find myself convinced that the writerly muse has suddenly, decisively descended and I must return to my novel RIGHT. FRICKIN’. NOW.

The minute I pull up that chapter I’m re-writing for the second third fourth fifth time, my eyes sneak back toward my painting. I mean, is it really wise to give up the last good natural light of the day?

I think I might need a personal assistant. Just to set off the shock collar every time I think changing up activities every five minutes is a good way to be productive.

Like what you’ve read? Follow my blog via email or WordPress (on the sidebar), or shoot me an email (using the footer).

FEATURED IMAGES PROPERTY OF businessbooksforwriters.com.

A Week of Excitement

This has been an exciting week, both for me and for Paulette Jiles. Jiles is the author of News of the World, which I reviewed last week. Her happy occasion is this: News has just been named one of the five finalist for the National Book Award: Fiction. Job very well done, Ms. Jiles!

And here’s my cause for celebration: I just received word from the collaboration’s editor that INSULT TO INJURY: VIOLENCE IN SPANISH, HISPANIC AMERICAN & LATINO ART & LITERATURE–an anthology in which I have a chapter entitled “Brutality, Borderlands, and Bildungsromans: Violence and Cultural Conflict in Américo Parades’ George Washington Gómez and Rudolfo Anaya’s Bless Me, Última”–will be in print at the end of December.

So, yeah: a good week all around.

*Featured image property of Dixie Pixel.

These days, I’m working on my résumé as I prepare to apply for a new job. Yesterday, upon hitting a task-weary, inspiration-empty moment, I asked my best friend Amber if she’d just write the thing for me. Here’s what she came up with:

Lauren M. Peltier

  • Author, Editor, BFF, Bad@$$ employee
  • Everyone loves me
  • Speaks English, Chinese, and a little French
  • Held a baby tiger
  • Can swim because I was a mermaid when I was 4 (somewhere on a slow boat from China to South America there’s a Halloween picture evidencing this)
  • Excellent shopper
  • Not a picky eater

Not too shabby, I’d say. And here’s to best friends, who are always in your corner.

*Featured Image is property of quickmeme.com.

Work, Woe, & This Thing We Call Writing

Satellite TV being rather spottily available in China, I got stuck with Andrew Zimmern’s Bizarre Foods as the best of my limited options for entertainment during my Monday exercise session. I mean no disrespect to Bizarre Foods; it’s a perfectly good show. But on general principle, while I’m running I try to avoid watching shows starring food; I’m already physically miserable (sweaty, tired, etc.) without being reminded of how hungry I am. That’s a self-torture I just don’t need in my life–especially since I’m not the biggest fan of running as it is (hence my need for distraction via visual stimulation).

But my limited viewing options wound up being a happy accident. Continue reading “Work, Woe, & This Thing We Call Writing”

Tree Lazies in the Mist

In honor of my husband and my onward assignment–our next post will be in South America, near the Amazon Rain Forest!–our Chinese teacher used this week’s class to teach us some related vocabulary. Some of the terms were intriguing, even charming:

yǔ lín (雨林) – Rain Forest

shù lǎn (树懒) – Sloth (the Chinese literally means “tree lazy,” which is adorable and accurate. This my favorite vocab term since I discovered the German word for raccoon: Waschbär, or “washing bear.” You know, because they wash their little faces with both hands?)

But then our lesson took a slightly darker turn:

è yú (鳄鱼) – Crocodile (or “hungry fish”)

shí rén yú (食人鱼)- Piranha (the Chinese literally translates as “eat man fish”)

wén zi (蚊子) – Mesquito

dēng gé rè (登革热) – Dengue Fever

wēi xiǎn (危险) – Dangerous

A sane person might have begun feeling a touch trepidatious at that point–might even have begun reconsidering their move to a locale that could inspire such vocabulary.

Me? I just gave a mental shrug and thought, “Eh? Why not?”

I guess that means I’m officially adapting to Foreign Service life.

*Adorable sloth photo courtesy of Flickr, Wikimedia Commons