Introducing the Only-Slightly-Frazzled Blog Editors, Julie and Pat

Pat: Well, Julie, here we are wrapping up two full months of the new Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers Blog. Thanks to our techno-goddess Wendy Howard, Mark Stevens and the RMFW Board of Directors, and a great team of regular and guest bloggers, I think it went pretty well.

Julie: I’m loving the blog but really broke a sweat pulling it all together. Oh wait, you already revealed the true worker bees and brain children behind the blog’s success. Yes, they were and are amazing, as were you and your step-by-step directions on how to edit posts (The “first, turn on computer” step was so helpful!)

Stoltey_webPat: I believe in starting with the basics, but maybe that was going a little too far. Anyway, now that we have a few minutes (seconds?) to chat, I think it would be fun to kick back and get to know each other better. Full disclosure: I’ve been going to Weight Watchers since September 2010, and I’ve almost lost 30 pounds. This photo I’ve been using lately was taken at the Northern Colorado Writers Conference in 2011 when I hadn’t made much progress yet. Check out these chubby cheeks. And stay tuned for an updated photo in ten more pounds.

Julie: Wow, that’s fantastic, Pat. Well, we do have a lot in common. I signed on to SparkPeople about 6 weeks ago, and have been working on shedding some weight myself. My cheeks are still a little chubby though. I call my extra face padding my natural Botox-- puffs the wrinkles right out!

Pat high school0001Pat: Okay, I just grabbed a piece of chocolate from my secret stash, so I guess it’s time to change the subject. Not too long ago on my blog, I told my readers three things I didn’t like when I was a kid and invited them to share their own dislikes. After that post, I thought of many more…I guess I wasn’t very easy to please. My hair, for instance. I hated my hair when I was a kid because I wanted to wear it long and straight and silky--like yours in your author photo…but my hair was thick and wavy and preferred to do its own thing. As a result, some of my grade school photos look as though I’d combed my hair with an egg beater (something one of my uncles often told me). By high school, I'd figured out how to set my hair on big bristled rollers to get something remotely resembling a page boy.

Julie Lueck_high schoolJulie: Isn’t it funny how we always long for what we don’t have? I had long, straight hair and always wanted full, fluffy hair with lots of body. I could never make it do the Farrah feathers in the front without cans and cans of VO5 (that was before we knew about the whole ozone depletion thing, of course). Thank goodness the blue eyeshadow and LaDisco jeans with colored stitching help deflect some of the attention away from my flat hair. But enough about hair; surely there was more to dislike in life than that...

Pat: Oh, you want something else? No problem. I was a farm kid with lots of chores to do, and one I really disliked was gathering eggs. The hen house was inhabited by a gang of nasty-tempered hens who persisted in sitting on those eggs and pecking the backs of my hands black and blue when I reached inside the nest. What I hated even more? The huge, vicious white rooster that stood guard. Yes, he would attack. I approached that task armed with a baseball bat…or a pitchfork. I was so traumatized by that damned bird that he was still in my mind and got a whole sentence to himself when I wrote The Prairie Grass Murders.

Julie LueckJulie: Writing therapy--very effective against latent rooster resentment. My mother-in-law tells me her brothers used to chase her with the chickens after they cut off the heads. Her phobia ran so deep, to this day she won’t eat chicken.

I grew up in the suburbs; I don’t remember any animal fears (unless you count rogue squirrels). My dislikes ran more to things like gym class in school. I still shudder to think of the little one piece shorts outfits they made us all wear and the Presidential Fitness tests I could never complete. It was scarring.

Pat: Was your one-piece gym uniform a magenta color? I had to wear one of those back in my day too. For me the worst thing about gym was that test where I was supposed to shinny up a rope. Shinny was not in my vocabulary. Can’t shimmy either...but maybe we shouldn’t go there.

Instead, let’s turn this question over to our readers and the members of Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers. Come on, tell us. What did you dislike most when you were a kid? You can comment here, or find us on Facebook and tell your story there. Julie on Facebook is here, and I'm on Facebook here.

Patricia Stoltey
Blog Editor

Patricia grew up on a farm in central Illinois so naturally had to use the old farm in her first mystery. The second Sylvia and Willie tale takes place near and in the little touristy gold mining town of Oatman, Arizona. Patricia’s third novel, a standalone suspense called Dead Wrong, was released November 2014. Dead Wrong was a finalist in the thriller category for the Colorado Book Awards. Visit her blog at

17 thoughts on “Introducing the Only-Slightly-Frazzled Blog Editors, Julie and Pat

  1. Chased her with a cut-off chicken? Now that is mean. And disgusting!
    As I am busy building a site right now I can appreciate everything that went into this one! Glad I have a team helping it come together.

    • Hi Alex, thanks for dropping by. Building this blog has been a wonderful experience, all because of the people involved. I hope your team is awesome, too.

    • I share that sentiment, Julie. It’s like having a bunch of crazy sisters (and a nod to all those brothers who flock to this blog to read our words of wisdom, too).

  2. Ahem, as a retired PE teacher, I’m sorry you were traumatized by class. I’d like to think most of my students weren’t. There’s a big push to bring back a lot of fitness testing just like testing is increasing in all other areas of schooling.
    On the trauma side of things, I could never get my hair to do that Farrah thing when it was popular.

    • Susan, some of us are not destined for athletic greatness…or even minimal fitness. I think I even flunked dodge ball in grade school. There will always be people like me traumatized by PE classes. And isn’t it funny that we always remember our hair traumas? I’ll bet guys don’t have that problem.

      • I was traumatized by the Presidential Fitness Death Tests. I don’t have many bad memories, oh except pull ups and rope climbing. Nevermind.

        But Susan? I jog now. Something got through to me.

  3. Pat and Julie – Thanks for sharing a little of yourselves. Pat, I think your hair’s beautiful; it was and is. I know all about wanting straight hair though; never did have it myself. Julie, you’ve given me memories of my own PE uniform – UGH! I wonder why they did that to us…

  4. Nobody believed my friends weren’t “imaginary.” I still sit with them (my invisible friends) and laugh at those lunatics of disbelief!

  5. Loved the blog and great pics! My mother is frightened of birds, all birds, but especially chickens because her brother would torture her with them. I have a chicken collection that is astounding – wonder what that says! LOL
    Hated, hated, hated! Gym class – yes scarring!

  6. Fun conversation! My hair is flat and curly at the same time…figure that one out. 😉 But when I go somewhere with humidity, all bets are off.

    Congrats on the weight loss! I like the natural Botox angle.

    Gorgeous photos, ladies! And I am super glad I didn’t have to wear a gym uniform. Though I had sweat pants my mom bought me at a garage sale and they were a really light aqua and were see-through, so I had to wear a long oversized shirt to cover them.

  7. Thanks for the fun post! I was raised on a farm, too, but my parents had gotten rid of both the chickens and the milk cows by the time I came around because they were no longer profitable. I was terrified of the pigs, but I think my dad did that on purpose. I, too, have trauma from P.E. class, though I liked my teachers. Maybe that’s a predictor of writing aptitude?

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