Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Ane Mulligan (anemulligan.com), contributor to Novel Journey (www.noveljourney.blogspot.com) and fellow writer is guest blogging about our first experience brainstorming with a very 21st century technology.

I'm working on my newest manuscript's outline, when my brainstorming buddy, Sandra, emails Penwrights, a critique group we belong to. She proceeds to tell us Mac-ites there's a new app for Macs and iPhones called Face Time. It's just what we need for brainstorming face-to-face, instead of on the telephone.

That should have been my first clue. Sandra's a known jokester. I have the photo to prove it.

Sandra (S. Dionne) Moore, Ane Mulligan, Gina Holmes

Now, I love technology--although I'm a techno-doofus—Istill like to try it all. I know the tech support dudes at Apple are rubbing their hands together, gleefully awaiting my next call for help. They need new fodder for the lunchroom comparison game. You know the one. It's similar to Name That Tune, only it’s Name That Dolt.

However, I navigated Skype, so I figured I could handle Face Time. I downloaded it with ease and congratulated myself. I should have known to stop there. But I thought how hard could this be? I mastered the download.

Sandra was waiting for me, so I clicked the icon. The window opened up and I was on camera. Did I mention that I don't put makeup on when I'm working? I barely run a brush through my hair.

I'm sure she heard my scream all the way up in Pennsylvania and was chuckling. The only author I know who dares show a "Writer Cam" photo of herself is Tosca Lee, and I'm no beauty queen.

In that little window I looked like my mother-in-law. She's 92. Every pore, every wrinkle, every blemish vied for attention in the camera's eye. YIKES! Nobody should be subjected to that, including me. Sandra could just wait while I went to put some make-up on. And fix my hair.

Twenty minutes later, I swallowed my fear and tried again. Okay, I still wasn't Tosca, but at least the camera didn't tremble. I called Sandra. We connected and she held her cute little dog, around which she peeked. Was she hiding something? Like no makeup? Hmmm?

I have to insert another warning here. Not only is the camera intrusive, so is the microphone.

My son sat at the breakfast bar, eating, while the hubs plunked away on his banjo, practicing. She heard it all: the clink of a spoon against a bowl, the slurp of the milk, the tinkle-plink of the banjo strings. She even questioned the hub's speed when he slowed down the tune. But when my son belched, albeit politely, Sandra burst out laughing.

Heaven knows my family entices laughter, what with our moose-dog and his antics, but Face Time had crossed the line. It revealed way too much.

So writer beware. You must have your hair done, your makeup on, and your family locked away prior to opening Face Time or suffer the consequences.


  1. Ana-banana. . .I need another brainstorming session. CALL ME this time. No more FaceTime. It's way too scary and I'm in pre-workout clothes (and Hair). It ain't pretty.

  2. This was fun! Thanks for the early morning laugh!

  3. LOLOL! Now Sandra, didn't you just send ME an invitation to Face Time? Are you hoping to catch me in all my morning glory?

    Sorry, Sis, I'm like Mrs. Brady. I go to bed, makeup and all! LOLOL! ;-)

  4. Thanks for having me on, y'all. Scary face and all! LOL


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