January 8, 2020

​2019 was not a great year for me. So I was really holding out hope that 2020 would be better. Unfortunately, so far, 2020 has been proving to be just as difficult:

Romance Writers of America (RWA) Implosion. If you haven’t heard about the current controversy, you can read about it here . Basically, RWA has shown itself to have institutionalized racism and discrimination and lied to its membership about its willingness to become more inclusive and diverse. If you have seen #IStandWithCourtney on Twitter, this refers to the incident that started off the current controversy. I count myself among the thousands of people outraged by the actions RWA took against Courtney Milan. I’ve lost all confidence in the organization and I’m not planning on renewing my membership unless they make radical changes. It breaks my heart that the organization that has given me so much help in my writing career and has introduced me to so many wonderful friends and mentors has shown itself to only care about a select subset of individuals.

Ransomware Attack. A couple of days into the new year, my county library got hit with a ransomware attack. A ransomware attack is one in which the malicious actors block you from accessing all the files on your computer unless you pay them a ransom. The library has had to take two servers off-line and are working with the sheriffs department. But it has been almost a week and the servers are still down.

Skunks! Yesterday, I awoke at 4:07 a.m. to an overwhelming skunk smell blowing on me from the HVAC system. It was so strong that I felt nauseated and started sweating and shaking. I sent off a email to my landlord saying that I feared there were skunks underneath the unit. I had to get ready for work in the middle of the awful stench. Even opening the windows on the non-affected side helped only a little bit. It was 36° outside so I couldn’t keep the windows open for long. The long and the short of it is that my neighbor on the other side of the wall from my condo had suspected there were skunks underneath his unit. He’d called the County Vector Control unit and they had set up traps. Well, the traps worked. They caught two skunks. The pissed off skunks sprayed, so I got a double dose of skunk smell through my HVAC system. Fortunately, the smell had dissipated a lot by the time I got home. Still, I sprayed everywhere with vinegar solution, opened the windows, and replaced the filter in my furnace. Today I can breathe again.

2020, so far I am NOT impressed!

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