I'd like to be ready

I don't even know how long it's been since I've posted here. I could go check, but I would have to care to do that. I'm mostly just blogging to check where all my post automatically goes to, but of course that means that I'm thinking about taking it up again. I miss blogging, even though it's sort of out of style now unless you're "monetized," some mommy guru or home improvement guru or religious...guru.

School is going great. I'll graduate with a BGS in December--that's two more semesters--and it looks like graduate school is out of my reach for now. As I'm looking at the jobs available around here I'm starting to despair that I'll ever make $30,000 a year, even with the degree. I'm working in a small museum run by a local historical society, and I absolutely love it. It's my calling. I want to do it forever and for a lot of money. If the lot of money can't happen, I'll just do it for a little money. I've been growing and learning by leaps and bounds. Hopefully all this life experience coupled with a bachelor's degree will transmute into a good-paying, fulfilling job.

I've felt really closed off the past couple of years as I navigate through some difficult headspace. Sorta hoping opening up for the blog will help me open up in other ways, like creatively. Not that I'll have time to write until I'm done with school, but I will someday and I'd like to be ready.
Tuesday, May 26, 2015
Posted by Sherri Cornelius

Checking out

A couple of years ago if you googled "Sherri Cornelius" my holdings would nearly fill the entire first page. Now... oh, wait, I just checked and I'm still most of the first page. However, some other Sherri Cornelius has taken the top spot. Hrumph.

My presence on the first page of Google after being away for what feels like forever. The last couple of years I very deliberately, yet reluctantly, stepped back from public life, just dipping my toe in here and there. Looking back, I think being responsible for marketing Skin & Scales short-circuited my brain. I've done pretty much no marketing, aside from the small Facebook ad campaign which drew few clicks and sold no books. One small thing I did was to submit my S&S to the library where I work, and it now has a home in the Adult Science Fiction section.

So that's pretty cool. I see it every time I push my book truck around the library. Let's hope it gets checked out.
Tuesday, September 23, 2014
Posted by Sherri Cornelius

Shut the front door

Let me ramble a bit and see where I end up, 'kay?

First of all, I'm finally seeing the end of the semester on the horizon. I think it's obvious from the two months between posts that this semester's classes have engulfed my every waking moment. Ask my Facebook friends, I've been mostly absent. Come look at my house and you will see evidence of my overwhelmitude in the dust and my dog's unclipped toenails.

But I've been complaining about the time crunch since the semester started. What is really happening is that I'm having an incredibly challenging and exhilarating experience. I have been this focused only a handful of times, and it feels great. I resent the necessary distractions of rest and relaxing activities even while complaining I need more of those distractions. Even housework has become a luxury, and I'm feeling nice and relaxed since I had an hour to get my room in shape. And not just the normal skim coat, either, I vacuumed (what?) and dusted (gasp!) and washed the curtains (shut the front door!). I know. I can't believe it either.

And now I'm seeing why all my readers have left me. All I ever do is talk about housework. I should have posted when my kid broke his arm, or when he ran into a pole. I should write an article about my weird inbred cat who drools constantly or my 15-year-old's cosplay obsession. Sorry.

One hobby-related bit of news is that I read some stuff I wrote years ago and I liked it! It was the beginnings of a book with some plot things and character stuff and a short prologue. The prologue is perfect the way it is, which is very exciting. I just wish I had a little more brain power and I'd find a way to fit in an hour or two of writing every week. But my brain is mush right now and writing will have to wait.
Tuesday, April 15, 2014
Posted by Sherri Cornelius


As I mentioned in my previous post, I have to do an internship this semester for college. It was up to me to make the arrangements so I looked for one that filled in gaps in my knowledge of library science. It took a lot of calls to a lot of organizations, but I finally hit upon what I think is the perfect one: photo archiving for a college. I have no experience in an academic library, nor in archiving. Cool beans.

The work so far is labeling pictures, matching them up with the negatives, organizing them chronologically. I was born for this work, I see now. I see myself as more of a facilitator than anything else, and organizing things for other people to easily find what they need fits right in with that. At least, this is my initial impression from two work sessions.

Oh, AND there's no air freshener. Yay.

Hopefully it won't be all labeling. My boss plans to take me with him to other archives in OKC to see their techniques. I'm also hoping to get a crack at the Library of Congress cataloging system, since I've only used the Dewey Decimal System.

I thought I was busy last semester, but this one has me driving all over the damn place. Forty-five minute drive north to Rose State twice a week and almost an hour south to Ada to take biology exams. Plus working all the other days. It was like pulling teeth to be able to get off the same two days every week. 

One good thing about being so busy is I don't have time for my social anxiety to kick in.

Let's see, what else... I bought another memory foam mattress pad for my futon to hopefully get enough cushioning so I can't feel the bar in my back. My whole body aches from that stupid futon. Only problem with the pad is that the foam offgasses so much it gave me a headache, sore throat and swollen lymph nodes just from being in the house while it expanded. I had to put it out in the porch room till it calms down, so I still haven't slept on it. I think it's going to be nice, though. 
Friday, February 14, 2014
Posted by Sherri Cornelius

fragrant limits

I don't talk about fragrance issues much anymore because I realized how it was negatively affecting my outlook. Also because I figured everyone was tired of hearing about it. Now that I'm back in the world, though, I'm finding my limits on the fragrance all over again and thought it was time for an update.

I stopped going to garage sales when I realized pretty much everything besides metal and glass soaks up fragrance: plastic, cloth, wood, paper, pottery, ivory. This means the things I would normally shop for at a garage sale I can't buy, like books, Tupperware, furniture, and clothes. Over the summer I tried it again since my techniques for getting out smell have improved over the years. We got a few sweaters and a pair of jeans that actually worked out, but several items never did release their smell. Into the garbage with those jokers. Even with the successful ones I get a full dose during the de-smelling process. Despite greater success, the reward is not worth the work. Wal-mart clothes don't cling to a scent.

(Speaking of clothes, the boy told me this morning he's outgrown his new jeans already. Sigh. It never ends, does it?)

I've reached an equilibrium at work. My library doesn't use air fresheners (yet), but people are people and so I encounter eye-watering fragrance on a daily basis. My position as a shelver makes it easier to move to another area, but if a coworker is wearing it I just resign myself to the eventual headache. I like my coworkers a lot, and it's hard to stay away from them.

Only a theory before, I know now for a fact that I can not work in a building with "freshened" air. But I have found that there's a limit to my fragrance-induced headaches when working with the public, so that's heartening. I could probably take a class in a real classroom without fear. A full-time job is not out of the question, as long as I didn't work closely with others the whole time. Right now I'm in the midst of finding an internship for this college class I'm taking, and the fragrance issue is in the back of my mind. If nothing else, it will be another test of my limits. I will have another benchmark, for good or bad.

For a long time I didn't let my children sleep over at friends' houses, nor have other kids over to ours. Now that they're older and have grown up with the concept of fragrance sensitivity they have no problem explaining it to their friends. They aren't offended when they have to play outside. The thing is, now that I know my limits better, I can calculate the risks of having a smelly child over and sometimes it works out. We've even had a couple sleep over.

This might not sound like a big deal to you, but to me it's huge. Not only from a fragrance perspective, but from a social one also. As a child I rarely went to friends' houses, and virtually never had anyone over to mine. So I've been very nervous about this aspect of my kids' social lives. I know how important it is to be comfortable letting others into your home, and you can only get this way with practice.

So, yeah. Limits. When you feel like your pain is limitless you're usually wrong. I'm dealing with my limitations, or trying to, instead of being a recluse. I just do as much as I can and try to shake off the rest. Though I don't think I'll ever get used to telling people their perfume makes me sick.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014
Posted by Sherri Cornelius


I've been a bad friend. Well, a bad Facebook friend, anyway, which tranlates to real-friend in some cases. Folks are having interesting happenings and life events and such, but I'm not participating in much of it aside from likes and the occasional share. Let me say this for the record: It's not you, it's me.

My throat is corked up tight. When I uncork it I say something I shouldn't, so I ram the cork right back in. I don't think my shouldn't-have-saids are worse than they were before the cork, but my own reaction is. For some reason I've become terrified of offending, with my opinions or exuberance or faux pas. When I look back at how I used to blog, just spilling whatever on the screen and hitting publish, a cold chill washes over me and the cork sticks tighter.

Yet I can see why this has happened. My network is giant compared to 7 or 8 years ago. I've deliberately included all different kinds of people in my social networks and I've started working in the public again. It seems like my foot is planted in my mouth several times a day, and I just wonder how the fuck anybody goes through daily social interaction with their confidence intact.

Anyway, I've been working on this blog post for three days now, and this is as far as I've gotten. I worry that someone is going to be offended that I said fuck in the previous paragraph. I worry that someone will think I'm melodramatic or stupid or trashy. I'm afraid if I bring up any important issue I won't be able to support my arguments, because I probably won't be able to. You know, because of that cork in my throat. Even if I'm only typing.

I know where the cork came from. I put it there. I put it there several years ago because I was in a situation that didn't lend itself to advertisement. When I'd put out a sentence here and there it felt bad, so I pushed those things down. Then when I got a job after years of relative isolation, I couldn't remember the etiquette of a work environment so I screwed the cork in tighter. Loose lips sink ships, you know, and I'm an oversharer if there ever was one.

At any rate, I'm starting to choke on the cork. I'm starting to realize that social awkwardness is simply a part of my personality, and it might be simply my own perception of it that is awkward. I hold back when I should emote, but a kind listener can bring it all out at once. I want to write books again. I have a permanent crick in my neck from the tension, and I know writing would help loosen it. Hopefully if I uncork like this regularly, it'll get easier. I have to do something.
Monday, January 20, 2014
Posted by Sherri Cornelius


You ever feel like you're doing it all wrong, but you don't even know what "it all" is? That's the way I've been feeling. For a while I had purpose. Everything fell into place as I made great, comfortable strides toward some undefined goal. Actually, I guess the goal was the action, after years of stagnation, and so it felt good to meet the goal.

But I don't know, I've just felt like I got off track somewhere and I can't tell where. I feel like I'm failing, like I blew past an important juncture and it's too late to backtrack.

This morning I tried to remember what I used to do to blow off steam. Many years ago I'd drink and hang out with friends, find a guy to flirt with. After I got married I'd go to garage sales and find projects around the house to do. That's also when I started writing seriously. I started blogging and that was a tremendous help in keeping my sanity as an isolated mother of small children. Then I started getting too much traffic to feel comfortable spilling my guts, but I found I didn't have much else to spill. Household projects I used to enjoy became too large for me to do on my own.

The final blow to my serenity has been college. I'm doing well, but the work is always there like a specter hovering over my shoulder. There is no time to find a new outlet for my anxiety, much less implement it. In a way, I'm more isolated than I was before I came back to the world, despite working with a great group of women at the library.

Maybe my life is changing to fast to keep up with, and I feel like I'm leaving part of myself behind. Maybe that's all it is.
Monday, November 11, 2013
Posted by Sherri Cornelius

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