#FridayReads: Spring clean your noggin


Mind teeming with deep, dark wintry cobwebs? Aunty Ida’s just the one to clean them out.

Perhaps a little too enthusiastically.

So, you know, keep an eye on your brain. 

And if you’re brave enough for more…


Aunty Ida has the answers


She can’t cure everything.

It’s possible she can’t cure anything.

But she does have a way with brains.

Want to control time?


These days, who doesn’t? It would definitely come in handy. Unless it goes like this.


Get Away for a While


Definitely better than what’s going on right now.


Plus there’s eavesbraining, so there’s that.

Worry Fraught and That’s Just Fine


Muir Beach Overlook, Marin County, California. By Frank Schulenburg (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

That crawling feeling, that one that slinks its way behind everything, pops up with a droning sense of unease. You know what I’m talking about.


Some people are worriers, and some people aren’t. You non-worriers, I salute you and the mind doors you must possess, each with its own lock and miles of file cabinets where each thought is put in its place. Beyond those doors, I picture the inside of your heads like a tropical beach, all drinks included, the view bright and clear as far as the mind’s eye can see.

Not so much for the worriers among us,

And now, with the far-reaches of the internet, I have so much more to worry about. People I’ve never met and will never meet on far-off islands, once lush paradises, now stripped bare by vicious hurricanes. The citizens of Mexico, tormented first by one earthquake and a tropical storm, and then by another earthquake.

I worry for strangers who could be the targets of police violence; I worry for disabled children who rely on Medicaid to live at home with their parents instead of in an institution. And that’s on top of the normal worry stuff, like what if I never have another creative idea in my life, and hey wait a minute, that’s a good idea for a story.

But what if I don’t finish what I’m working on because I get distracted with the new story?

And scene.

But I’m going to fill you in on what might be a mixed-blessing secret, my lovely fellow writers and my lovely fellow readers. I can’t confirm it, but I think worrying is one of our superpowers.

Why? Worry leads you down a trail of thoughts, and thinking is the mother source of inspiration. It also forms the wellspring of imagination, and without an imagination you cannot get lost in a book.

So the trick is to harness our worry for good, to take these fears and find a way to make them work for us. And we might make it to those mind-beaches yet.

For more on my thoughts about Charlottesville and rising bigotry, please read An Open Letter to My Friends of Color.

Check out  my full-length novels: 

Aunty Ida’s Full-Service Mental Institution (by Invitation Only)   

Aunty Ida’s Holey Amazing Sleeping Preparation (Not Doctor Recommended) 

 Her Cousin Much Removed

 The Great Paradox and the Innies and Outies of Time Management.

And download Better Living Through GRAVY and Other Oddities, it’s free!

Peruse Montraps Publishing.

Mental Break


If you need a mental break like I need a mental break, check out Aunty Ida.*

*(Caution: Don’t let Aunty Ida get too deeply into your mental. Just trust me on this one. For realsies.)


Cheap Book and Keyboard Tip! ALL THE THINGS!


It’s been a long, well, whatever it is since you started counting, and we deserve a laugh and a break and maybe a little meddling in our brains (shh, I didn’t say that).

So for a very limited time, Aunty Ida’s Full-Service Mental Institution (by Invitation Only) is just $0.99 in the US AND the UK! OK, the dollar sign doesn’t apply in the UK, but in my defense I can never find the pound symbol on my keyboard. A quick trip to google could fix that.

Ah, let’s try my newfound knowledge. £0.99. EUREKA! It worked. I held down the “alt” key and then typed 0163 on the number pad. Another site suggested “alt” plus L, but that didn’t work.

I think I’ve digressed. Bet Aunty Ida has cure for that. Probably. Maybe. But at $0.99 or £0.99, it’s worth finding out!