Praying to the Gastro God


What the fuck is wrong with me? The birds aren’t even singing and the sun hasn’t peek over the horizon. But I’m up on this dark, early, chilly morning pulling off my night clothes and stepping in the shower. I washed from head to toe and lotion from toe to head. I put on make-up!! Yes make-up, I sure hope I don’t rub my eyes and end up looking like a raccoon.


I love new clothes. Well not as much as I did when I was a hundred pound lighter. I don’t shop in stores, only on-line at fat lady apparel shops. No time to order, try on and send back, so I ordered everything the same size. Extra, Extra, Extra big! The shirt to wore under the jacket was a little too big. The pants were snug around the hips but too long. Now that I lost two inches off my height pants never fit right. I’ll tried and get away with it. It was suppose to rain, I’m so glad it didn’t and the bottom of my pants weren’t destroyed. I will get them hemmed for the next affair. I should have worn my spandex. The blouse I had on was long enough to cover my unsightly ass and the twenty month pregnant belly.



I’m going to be out all day. I need something to eat. What can I eat that won’t mess up my stomach. I ate two pieces of Hawaiian Bread with butter. I popped it in the microwave for a few seconds. I washed my pills down with water. I took 4 mg of medrol (prednisone) I started on 8 mg the night before.

I said a prayer to the gastro God. Please don’t give me uncontrollable diarrhea. I never know what will bring on that debilitating stomach monster.

I started taking the Metamucil regularly for the past five nights in hopes of keeping the digestive system behaving on the day of the conference.


At 6 am my Access-A-Ride arrives on time. There’s a customer inside that’s dropped off first. The driver has another pick up. That pick up is canceled. I’m going to be early. There’s a Starbucks right next to the building the conference is in. My stomach is bubbling so I use the bathroom. I drink a small cup of decaf and eat a quarter of a bagel. For some reason I look at my watch and I see 9 am. I throw away what’s left of the coffee, put the rest of the bagel in my pocketbook, and go into the building.

Security gives me a pass and upstairs I go. It was 8 O’clock. I’m not calling myself stupid but what else could I call myself. I had to go back downstairs when the event planner arrived and register and get my gift bag.

When I get back upstairs I offer to help with the book store set up but they refuse my help.

One lady asks, “did you bring your manuscript?”

I said, “yes and I hope I get to leave it. Its heavy and I don’t want to carry it back home.”

“I’m sure they’ll love it.” the lady says.

I smile and to take a seat, second row, right in the middle in front of the screen.


The host was a charming guy. He made everyone feel comfortable. The guest speaker was a Penguin Book (TarcherPerigee) Author Tama Kieves. Great speaker, inspiring and she shared her success in become a published author. I purchased an autograph copy of her Inspired Unstoppable – Wildly Succeeding in Your Life’s Work.

After Tamma a publishing panel shares the process of selecting authors. The process of reading a query, synopsis, and manuscript, what things excite them and what turns them off. They are very demanding but they remind us they are there to help us. They were informative and helpful.


My stomach was bubbling and I had to keep from farting. I was afraid that the fart would be loud or worst be more than a fart. Eventually I went to the rest room I took care of business. I took an Imodium D. When I got back to my seat my stomach was still doing flips. It must have been my nerves.

We went to lunch. I didn’t have anyone to go to lunch with but I’m a big girls and I went and had some steroid comforting food, an almond croissant and fruit. I wanted a salad but my stomach felt that fiber might be risky. After I ate I used the bathroom again and tried to rid myself of the debilitating stomach monster. I couldn’t shake that urge to fart.

There was another author Scott Barry Kaufman, Ph.D I couldn’t get two books so I’ll get his another day. He was also an inspiring speaker who shared his success of becoming a publishing author.

The next panel was about publishing, formatting, and marketing. They shared with us how to pitch our manuscript. We were asked to break up in groups and pitch to each other. I learned that I wasn’t the only one who wanted to tell my whole story. We helped each other and everyone got a chance to pitch in our group.

The host who is the vice president of Penguin Group (USA) Inc. wanted us to come back to order and no one was adhering to his yells. I asked him if he wanted me to whistle. He shrugged his shoulder. I whistle loud and clear and the room quiet down. He was impressed.
The VP had different people get up and say their pitch in 30 seconds. I didn’t try. We were then kicked out the room so they could set it up for the pitch meetings.




Did you skip everything to read down here? When we all arrived we were given a time and the name of the person we were going to pitch to. My time slot was six o’clock. I went to the bathroom yet again. I am so happy I didn’t have an accident. I just have an hour to hold on.

They had a cocktail hour with wine, cheese, fruit, nuts, and chocolate. A very nice set up. I mingled with my friend from the Meet-up Writing Club I go to. I’m not good on party politeness with strangers. I held my end of the conversations. I heard some interesting story pitches. My friend did his pitch. They weren’t interested and he was down. I tried to encourage him to keep working at it and it will one day work out. I invited him to join word press. I know you wonderful people will read his fun and interesting writing.

The VP came over to me and told me my whistle was terrific. So I will be known as the lady who whistled to bring order to the conference.


Six O’clock and I meet the woman who holds the fate of my baby, Hidden Temptation in her hand. Forget that synopsis that I tinkered with for weeks. I started telling her about Hidden Temptation like I tell all my friends. When I tell family and friends I see their eyes light up and I see them smile and I hear, that sounds good. I want to read it.
Could I expect the same from a professional? Someone who reads manuscripts for a living?

Was she smiling politely, this cute, red hair, light blue eyes, or were they green, my nerves. Those eyes were twinkling whatever color they were. The smile was real. She asked if there was sex in my manuscript. Yes graphic, I told her I was reluctant but then Shades of Grey came out and I added the graphic sex. She said they are still looking for books like Shades of Grey. I didn’t tell her I thought the writing in Shades of Grey sucks and mine is better. She asked if there was a lot of violence. I explained that the abuse the father did to the mother is back story. I forgot about the sisters beating Odette’s first boyfriend. I told her the only violent part was the part is . . . oh I don’t want to spoil it. She asked if there was going to be another book. Yes!!!

Moving on she asked if I had my manuscript with me!!!!! YES, YES, YES, YES!!!

I pulled Hidden Temptation out of my bag and presented to Penguin Group (Tracher) Romance Editor! I wish I could do back flips and somersaults!!!! I am floating.



Access-A-Ride didn’t show up until 7:30, 30 minutes late to take my exhausted ass home. I was in pain. I could hardly walk. My legs were like balloons, my back was screaming. My hands were swollen. Only thing in my favor, my stomach wasn’t twisting and turning any more. So it must have been nerves.


When I got in I took two oxycodones and a Larazapam and couldn’t sleep. I don’t know if it was the pain or excitement. After dreaming of being a part of a publishing house for many years and feeling it might finally come true is worth lupus punishing me for over doing it yesterday.
Now I just wait.

42 thoughts on “Praying to the Gastro God

  1. I’ve always envied people who could whistle like that, Kim, and those who have the courage to present a manuscript to a publisher! That’s fantastic and I love the very real and frank way that you write. Congratulations! 😘

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I don’t know whether that’s normal or not to have to wait to hear back for a while but just the fact that your manuscript was so eagerly accepted is pretty dang cool! Very, very happy for you, Kim.


  2. Phew, I was holding my breath and not in case you farted! I really felt your tension. And they took the manuscript to read … wow! That in itself is a huge achievement. Fingers crossed. I bet you did a lot of farting when you got home, with the sheer relief at having survived the day 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I think they are more interested in if they can envisage a place in the market for your book than a few errors; also, that you’re someone they can work with who’s willing to take constructive criticism. Thus, I think the odds are weighted in your favour. Am still keeping my fingers crossed for you, Kim … tightly crossed x

        Liked by 1 person

      1. I happen to admire people who can whistle 🙂 And as for running away, well I can’t blame you for feeling it but that you stayed really says a lot – and I for one am very proud of you.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I cannot imagine how you do it. But yet you DO. That’s what I admire MOST. It is easier for some who have not the scouge of Lupus and other afflictions, but even then they find it HARD and there’s you, with so much stacked against you in some ways and you just DO IT despite that. This is the heart of my admiration for you. I also think you do a really, really good job because you TRY and you don’t give up and you push yourself even when you get far out of your comfort zone. You battle many fronts but I truly believe if ONE PERSON can overcome it will be YOU and I truly believe IN YOU on many levels not least your spirit, your soul, your goodness, your heart, your poor lungs who need a friggin break and never seem to get them but your BREATH endures because YOU won’t give up and THAT makes me so proud of you, so proud to know you and hear your journey and support you with my prayers and my belief in you. I really, really do believe in you Kim and I wish you ONLY the things you so richly deserve most of all I wish that more people could be part of the magic of your existence and show you how lovely you are – for every time you aren’t sure / we remind you that you ARE.


    1. Oh Candy these are beautiful words. Thank you for your encouragement. I try not to let lupus win, I fight. There are times I have to sit down and regroup but I push myself to keep going. I don’t know how long I have to walk this earth so I want accomplish as much as I can. Thank you for your kind words.


      1. Hey, you use what ever talent you have to get noticed. You reminded me of the movie “Jaws” where the scraggly old sea captain and shark fisherman used his nails on the chalkboard to get attention.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow. She took your manuscript! That’s great, Kim! I did read the whole post and nerves are a bitch but you did it! So proud of you! Now we wait with bated breath and fingers crossed. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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