Beneath The DarknessRandom Life Updates


So here’s the thing: I don’t even know how to fill you in on the past three weeks. I spent a lot of time keeping my foot planted firmly on top of about a hundred teenagers who were, for all practical purposes, transforming into a herd of feral horse/dragon hybrids with one thing on their mind: THE END OF SCHOOL.

We stumbled through May like a criminal who’s been pepper sprayed and then thrown into an obstacle course. By the time finals rolled around, everybody had one foot out the door and one in the classroom, and we were all just praying for it to end, GOOD GRIEF, PLEASE LET IT END.


And then it did.

May 23 was our last day of exams. I KNOW, most of the country gets out about three weeks later, right? But we go back mid-August, so it’s all the same. Personally, I’d rather get done before Memorial Day. Spring semester is a special kind of brutal and August around here is as hot as the ninth layer of hell, so you might as well be inside an air-conditioned building making lesson plans.


Here are a few other things May held for the Family Riley:

–We got our air ducts cleaned out and THEY FOUND MOLD IN SEVERAL PLACES. I realize this is a super boring piece of information, but if any of you feel like you (or your children) are constantly coughing and sneezing and just generally feeling poor, I highly suggest you have your ducts cleaned. Especially if you, like us, have just moved into an older house. You never know WHAT could be hiding in the ductwork. (Mooooooold!)

Mold and rust on the wall
Wow, isn’t this beautiful? It’s like a piece of Japanese artwork. I wish I could hang it on my DON’T YOU DARE HANG THIS ANYWHERE IN YOUR HOUSE. IT IS MOLD AND IT WILL KILL YOU. KIILLLLL YOUUUUU.

–We survived our very first lice infestation! The two-year-old and I were the only ones infected, but after a thorough wash with RID and some intense laundering of everything in our house, we managed to avoid becoming zombies. However, we also did not develop any superpowers, so the whole thing was kind of disappointing.

(Speaking of zombies, I’ve mentioned to Rob several times that if Earth ever falls prey to a zombie apocalypse, I’m going to TRY to get infected. Who wants to be a survivor in that situation? NOT ME.)

Zombie Walk 2010
I would totally just throw myself into the mass and let them devour me. For realz.

–I just, as in five minutes ago, emailed CREEPY FACES to Agent Emma!!! The good news is, she is a magician (no, really) and will help me whip that thing into shape. The bad news is, I couldn’t finish it before I sent it to her. Because I cannot look at it anymore. Because it has turned my brain to popcorn.

(Maybe THAT’S how zombies are made. They’re all writers who slave over the same manuscript until they’re covered in lesions and start lumbering around, latching onto random objects and mumbling about braaaaaaainnnnssssss.)

Popcorn, the other brains

(Seems probable.)

So I’m forcing myself to take a writing hiatus for at least a week. My next book is a contemporary, and as I’ve never written a contemporary novel before, I am SUPER excited to start it.

But not now.

For now, I must recover from Popcorn Brain.

I hope to lurk here on the blog a bit more often now that Creepy Faces is out of my hands for a while. Thanks for hanging in there with me.

Happy Summer!


4 thoughts on “OH HI.

  1. I’m jealous! We still have 4 full weeks before summer begins and we start back at the very beginning of Sept (sometimes late Aug). We don’t have air conditioning either – my classroom was over 90 degrees 2 days last week *sigh* Enjoy!!

  2. Haha goodness, it does sound like you’ve been busy! Also, I couldn’t help but chuckle at the caption for your mold photo: “Wow, isn’t this beautiful? It’s like a piece of Japanese artwork.” My sister had to deal with mold when she was living in a dorm, and it wasn’t pretty! Thankfully, I live in a mold-free apartment!

    May/beginning of summer is always kind of crazy, but I hope this week of hiatus is a bit better for you.

    1. Mold is disgusting. DISGUSTING. That photo of mold was the only one I’ve ever seen that looks even remotely artistic.

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