What is Your Fetish?

“Hello, my name is Stacey. I have a handbag fetish.” There. I said it. It’s my first step to recovery. But who really wants to recover from loving handbags? I’m not hurting anyone. Why should I stop? Of course, it’s not just in the loving. It’s in the buying. I own 30 bags of all different sizes, shapes and colors. Those bags do not include luggage, canvas totes, beach bags (3 I used to live at the shore, remember), duffel bags, backpacks, computer bags (2) or lunch boxes. (I just bought a really cute lunch box that looks like a satchel with black and pink stripes.)

Cute, right?

I have never given away a handbag I have owned. Unlike clothes, books, comforters, and furniture, which I have donated when they no longer served me, but have plenty of life left to help someone else. I can’t part with my bags. I have the very first Coach bag I ever owned bought for me as a birthday gift from the Coffee King 25 years ago. I can’t get rid of it. One it’s a Coach bag. Two it was bought for me by my super cute then boyfriend. Handbags, baby, are romantic.

Just yesterday, I was in Kohl’s buying a birthday present for my ninety-year-old grandmother. I swung by the handbag department and found a really cute bag with lots of pockets. I love a bag with lots of pockets. Do you know how much organizing I can do with all those pockets? And it had a pouch that pulled out for separate use. Fun! I refrained from buying. Handbags were not my goal. I bought my gift and went home.

Only to keep thinking about that bag. How useful it would be when I attend a writer’s conference next month. Not that I needed it, mind you. I have bags for that. But I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I looked at the bag online just to make sure I still liked it. The bag was on sale and I had two coupons.  Someone told me once, ask myself “Do you love it?” when making a purchase. If you can’t say yes, don’t buy it. By 7:30 last night I was back in Kohl’s.

Handbags have been around since the 1500s. Men and women used them because clothes hadn’t been made with pockets yet. By the end of the 16th century, and the invention of pockets, bags were mostly used by women from then on. You can learn more about handbags at The Museum of Bags and Purses in Amsterdam. Can you believe there is a museum for handbags? Guess what’s on my bucket list!

The things that we like and don’t like really define who we are. It’s no surprise I like something where I can put things. I like wicker boxes and baskets. I love cubbies, built ins, and my jewelry box that has two levels stacked together, the top one with lots of different square sized cut outs to hold necklaces, bracelets, and earrings. It also came with a travel size box with multiple compartments. Everything in its place. To me, that means peace.

So, I can’t attempt treatment for my handbag fetish because handbags are the treatment for my compulsion to organize. Clutter gives me anxiety. Ask my family. They hear me yell.

In my current manuscript, my main character is a woman fondly referred to as “Miss Hospital Corners.” I bet she likes handbags too. I never asked her and she never told me, but I’d take a guess and say yes to that one. Should I give her a few?

What is the one thing you can’t live without? Can’t pass up? What does it say most about you?



Cross It Off! #LiveYourBliss

photo (13)

You probably noticed the blog has a new look. Tell me what you think. I’m not sure yet, how I feel about it, but I made some changes because things are changing for me. My middle grade series is finished, unless you all tell me you’re dying for another Gabriel Hunter book, and currently I’m working on an adult novel. It falls somewhere between Women’s Fiction and Romance. The book is in its infancy stages, but the story is about a middle-aged woman evicted from her predictable life when she receives an anonymous gift – a dilapidated house.

I’m also getting ready to open my doors as a development editor for fiction work. More to come on that in the future.

We’ve been talking lately about living your bliss. If you missed the posts check them out here and here. I hope you have begun taking some steps to bring your bliss to reality. You know, I received a message the other day from someone I went to high school with. It went like this: “Are you really an author? LOL – good for you.” I wasn’t sure what the LOL meant (and I know it’s Laugh Out Loud, thank you,) maybe he found it humorous I could write? But I think the most important part was the “good for you” And I want to say that to you.

Maybe you’ve done some research, hopefully, you found your partner to keep you accountable, but how do you stay organized while on your journey?

I like lists. I’m slightly anal retentive. You should see my cabinets. I make a two lists. One for my personal life and that includes anything I need to get done for me or the Noodges. My second list is my professional one. All my writing stuff goes there. I sit down either Sunday or Monday morning and I focus on only my lists. I write everything I need to do down (Yes, on paper and with a black pen.) I don’t care how long the lists become because once I have down what I need I don’t have to think about the “to-do” list anymore. I focus on completing my tasks and not trying to juggle, in my already crowded mind, what I must be doing.

I cross off each item as it gets done. I love seeing lots of black slashes on the page. I feel accomplished. Even when the page looks messy. As a matter of fact, the more scribbles through the list I have, making the list messier, the happier I am. Goes against the neat cabinet thing, but have I mentioned I’m a writer? We’re all a little off our rockers. If the end of the week comes and I haven’t finished a task, it goes on the list for the next week.

Even though I keep my calendar on my iPad because it syncs with my phone, allowing me to have my calendar with me at all times, I also block out my weeks on a paper calendar. A sample of my calendar page is right below. For this I use pencil. Step one: block out everything I can’t change like what time the school bus comes or kids’ activities. I add doctors’ appointments, hair appointments, social outings. I even include exercising and when I need to make dinner. Whatever white spot I have left on the calendar I know I can do what I want with that time. If you’re trying to live your bliss, that’s what the open time is for. It’s your appointment with yourself to follow your dreams. calendarpage

When I started writing novels seriously, my Noodges were somewhere around the ages of 3 1/2 and 2. You know when my open time was? 5 am! That’s when I wrote. I dragged my butt out of bed and wrote, by hand, until someone woke up which was usually around 6. It took me three years to write that first novel. (It’s unpublished and will remain so for fear of total embarrassment.)

If you’re reaching for your bliss you’ll find the time. I promise you. Write it down. Cross it off. Namaste.