Fri. July 25, 2014: Trundling Along With Work and Writing

Friday, July 25, 2014
Dark Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Sunny and pleasant

Busy day at the library yesterday. Patrons came in waves — sometimes there were a lot of them, sometimes it quieted down. The internet system crashed — gotta love how the anti-net neutrality rulings affects libraries. Thank you, FCC, for selling us out and not doing your job.

We worked a lot on promotions for upcoming programs, and I did a solid bit of work developing the Cozy Mystery group that will start in September. I’ve named it “Muffins, Mittens, and Murder”. I’ll announce the first book early in August, and get that all sorted out. I’ve read several books in preparation, taken extensive notes, and planned the first meeting. I have to work on handouts, once I get a better idea of how many are coming.

I also created web pages for the Book Clubs, so people can keep track of when meetings are and what’s being read when. I hope that will also get more people interested in the clubs and attending the various gatherings. I got a bit of work done on the page for the Nancy Reardon Theatre Collection, and updated my Adult Services page (that sounds fairly naughty, but it’s really not). What I did was congratulate the winners of Thrillerfest.

There was a glass-blowing program for Young Adults, where they got to etch glass — really cool. I pulled some books in connection with that. Set up for Tango, stuff like that.

I’m happy to see that the books from the last order that came in this week went out to readers as soon as they were processed. Makes me feel good, knowing that people are eager to read the books I pick.

Came home, worked on research most of the evening after supper. Coyotes woke me up again, so I overslept, and didn’t get the writing done this morning that I wanted to.

I have A LOT to get done today at the library. I’m borrowing my boss’s computer to work — I might get mine back in about ten days or so.

My registration is through for the conference, and I’ve even been invited to speak at a panel on the conference’s Friday night.

Some characters are swirling around in my brain, but nothing concrete. I wish they’d take a number — I have enough to worry about, without new characters.

Someone’s interested in re-releasing one of the books on my backlist that recently went out of print. I want to make some changes in the manuscript, but I may well submit it early in the fall. Would save me quite a bit of work from commissioning a new cover and researching printers and formatting and all of that. I want to do some more research on how much they promote their authors, however. If they don’t give any promotional support and it’s all on me (again), then I might as well do it all myself and be responsible for all the incoming and outgoing finances, instead of involving a third party. Lots to weigh.

Still trying to figure out if I want to accept a freelance gig. It would have to meet certain criteria, and I have a feeling it won’t.

I need to get a LOT of writing done this weekend, no matter how tired I am or how much lawn needs mowing. I have to just buckle down and do it.

Have a great weekend.

Devon

Thurs. July 24, 2014: Trying to Get it All Done

Thursday, July 24, 2014
Day before dark moon
Uranus Retrograde
Humid and warm

Busy day at the library yesterday, but got a lot done. Still have no working computer in my office, so I’m moving from computer to computer, depending on which program I need. But an order came in from Amazon, an order came in from Ingram, I got them into the system and spine labels made up, and they’re on track to be covered and get on the shelves. We have a huge donation of terrific CDs, but 90% of them are not in the system at all. With it taking 20 minutes or more to create each new record — and that’s only if I don’t get interrupted, because if I get interrupted in the middle of cataloging, the system goes down and it’s a mess — it will take a good deal of time to put in about 500 CDs. And that needs to be done on MY computer, not someone else’s, and in and around all the other work that it takes to keep people in books, videos, audio books, ebooks, and programs.

Dealt with a bunch of email and program material, helped out at the circulation desk when needed, put together the information for a display to congratulate the recent winners at Thrillerfest.

I have to get going today on the information for the August newsletter, the city-wide events calendar, work on the web page for the theatre collection, and add web pages for the Book Clubs. I’m hoping I’ll get the information I need from our audio vendor and the large print vendor, so I can get in some orders for that, too. I’d like to get a head start on the report for the Board, too, although I won’t be able to get the circulation figures until the first full week of August.

I still need to update my own webpages and finish the media kits for both “Severance” and “Elusive Prayers” and do some work for the Mermaid Ball.
I’m getting things sorted out for the books that will sell at the writers’ conference, which starts in two weeks.

On the writing front, I had a good evening writing session on THE POWER OF WORDS — nearly 20 pages. On the research front, a bunch of books came in for several projects, so I have to sort and then use them.

I need the upcoming weekend to be a really solid writing-and-research time.

Onward.

Devon

Published in: on July 24, 2014 at 7:48 am  Leave a Comment  
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Wed. July 23, 2014: This N That N Writing N Painting

Unpainted Chair
Unpainted chair

Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Waning Moon
Saturn Direct
Uranus Retrograde
Sunny and hot

Monday was a busy day, full of errands, but at least I got the chair painted. Thought you’d enjoy some before and after pictures. Got some research done, not much writing done, and prepped for the Mermaid Ball Meeting.

Painted chair

Painted chair

Only took an hour and ten minutes to get to Buzzards Bay (which is 21 miles from me, so it shouldn’t take that long, but . . .summer people). Good meeting. Came back, watched R.I.P.D. The film had a clever premise, but the places where it stalled felt like it did so because too many people were giving notes.

Realized an insert scene I’d written for POWER OF WORDS is between the wrong characters — have to rewrite it with Scott instead of Terrell.

Yesterday, I was up early for a Skype rehearsal with the actor I’ve been working with. He’s shooting . . .somewhere, I don’t know where, but needed a break from the angsty character he’s playing, so we worked for a couple of hours. The monologue’s in good shape, and I hope it serves him well to land the kinds of roles he wants. I went back to bed and overslept.

Mowed the side yard and did some work on the front — pruning hydrangeas and forsythia, trimming a few things. Wanted to do it in the morning, before it got too hot.

Got some reading done, but spent most of the day doing research for BALTHAZAAR. I might move the location of the book from the Bahamas to Jamaica. I set CHARISMA KILLINGS in the Bahamas, DARK ANNIE’S SECRET will be in Bermuda, so why not put BALTHAZAAR off the coast of Jamaica?

I’m keeping two sets of notes — one set consists of research notes, the actual facts I need as background for the salvage/treasure hunt. The other set of notes consist of the storyline and character ideas the research spurs. I’ll have to pick and choose from those as I write the Writers Rough and then the book, because I can’t use all of it. I’m hoping that some of the plot points I cut from this book can be massaged to work in DARK ANNIE’S SECRET.

Cooked a nice dinner last night, and then watched THE WHISTLEBLOWER, a movie about sex trafficking after the war in Bosnia, where UN employees were complicit with the American contractors. Rachel Weisz played the lead, and she was (as always) wonderful. This whole thing about foreign contractors having immunity needs to stop. If they break international laws and are complicit in something like human trafficking or murder, then they need to be prosecuted.

The coffee pot exploded this morning and made a giant mess. I bought it when we moved in, so it’s not THAT long ago — it better not be on its last perk. I’m tired of everything being built to break, so you’re constantly forced to buy again.

Nice morning’s work on POWER OF WORDS (yes, I’m playing with better titles for it). But that allows me to start the day in a much better frame of mind.

Today will be a long day at the library again. Wonder if my old computer will show up, fixed, or if the new one’s arrived yet?

Probably won’t get to mow the meadow until Saturday — by then, the front and the terraced back area probably will need it, too.

But it was nice to take all my research materials out on the deck yesterday and work.

I made my decision on the course I want to take at the conference. I’m only taking one–as a Board member, I’ll need to run around in that capacity, so one course makes sense.

I got an interesting freelance offer, and I’m debating on whether or not to accept. My gut tells me the timing is wrong; at the same time, I don’t want to blow the opportunity. I think I’ll need more information.

Have a great week.

Devon

Mon. July 21, 2014: Chaotic Start to the Week

Monday, July 21, 2014
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cool
 

Friday was busy at the library, complicated by the fact that I don’t have a working computer at the moment, and different computers have different programs, so I migrated between six different computers over the course of the day, trying to get things done.

I also had to keep my phone on all day, because Iris was quite sick in the morning, and I was worried I’d have to rush her to the vet at a moment’s notice. But, she got better as the day wore on. I suspect it’s a bad reaction to the flea/tick medicine.

After work, my boss and I headed to Centerville Library, to support the dedication of the new addition. I hadn’t seen the whole thing yet — it’s gorgeous. The Community Room is huge, great for events, would be great for yoga. The bookstore is also magnificent. The renovation’s beautiful, and worth every penny. There was champagne, and there were h’ors d’oervres. Everything was lovely. Got to see some of the staff I’ve known since I moved to Centerville, and introduce my boss around. The director from Hyannis was also there, and I got to meet her, along with some other locals. It was good that we were there, supporting a fellow library. I was surprised and a bit dismayed that more library personnel from other libraries weren’t there.

We came back to the house for martinis on the deck, and then headed back to the Mills, where a sports auction was going on in Liberty Hall, the door take to benefit the library. I wound up bidding on (and getting) a wicker chair for my mom and some minor league hockey pins for myself.

Home, tired, unwound a bit. Saturday was my “on” day at the library, so I was up early and over there. Still no working computer for me, so I floated around to other computers, trying to complete paperwork and place some orders.

When I got back from the library, I cleaned, repaired, and sanded down the wicker chair. The caned seat needed to be fixed, and some of the wicker was coming unspun, so I fixed all of that. The frame is a good, sturdy wood. It’s been painted quite a few things, under the white — red, hot pink, and green.

Did some research for upcoming projects, got some reading in. Thoroughly enjoyed Ilona Andrews CLEAN SWEEP. Lori Roy’s UNTIL SHE COMES HOME is both claustrophobic and disturbing, but in a good way. Elizabeth Adler’s SAILING TO CAPRI was fun.

Watched COMPANY MEN — excellent movie. Didn’t get enough attention when it came out. What a terrific cast — Ben Affleck, Rosemarie DeWitt, Tommy Lee Jones, Maria Bello, Kevin Costner, and great supporting actors as well. Really well done, but John Wells only does excellent work.

Slept in on Sunday. It was raining off and on, so I couldn’t mow. But I did head to Home Depot. Don’t like shopping there, but I hoped to replace a lamp globe I broke and pick up paint for the chair. The staff was disgustingly unhelpful with the lamp globe. Not only did they not know how to help, they didn’t care. I found the paint though — called “Spa Blue”. Painted the bottom of the chair. Took most of the day to dry.

Had to fix my bed frame and do stuff around the house. Also cooked some Sichuan Noodles and steamed vegetables in a ginger soy sauce for tonight’s meeting.

Planned to go to a climate change lecture, but something happened and the lecturer was delayed indefinitely, and I couldn’t wait around.

Got some research and other work done, then watched PEACE, LOVE, AND MISUNDERSTANDING, which was a lot of fun.

Up early this morning. Couldn’t find the flash drive with all my work on it. Drove to the library and found it in one of the public computers I’d been using on Saturday. This is what happens when I’m constantly interrupted. Came back, started to paint the front of the chair, ran out of paint, went back to Home Depot (only because it was the only place open that early), got more paint, finished painting the chair. It’s drying.

The writing plan for this morning is on POWER OF WORDS and BALTHAZAAR TREASURE. I have to nip out to one of the libraries to get a few things done, and then pick up a cushion at Christmas Tree Shops for the chair. I need to finish a review for my editor, work on some media kits, and then head to Buzzards Bay for a Mermaid Ball Meeting tonight.

Did about 1500 words on POWER OF WORDS. Have to nail down the writer’s rough on BALTHAZAAR. I’m going in circles every time I sit down to write. Book 3 is almost fully formed, but book 2 is not. It’s frustrating, because somewhere I HAVE a detailed writer’s rough, but I can’t find it in any of the files or the drives. So I have to start over.

Have a great week!

Devon

Fri. July 18, 2014: Busy and Chaotic

Friday, July 18, 2014

Waning Moon

Saturn Retrograde

Sunny and pleasant

 

Up at 5 AM yesterday, baking for the NMLC Board meeting.  Discovered making streudel at that hour is not one of my favorite things.

On the road by 7, in Buzzards Bay for the 8 AM Board Meeting.  It was one of the best ones since I’ve been on the Board — we had a good turn out and got a lot done.

Saw the seal pups (who are as cute as can be — all three of them are in the big tank together), and the new, injured girl.  Fingers crossed that we can nurse her back to health.

Got in to work to find we were short-staffed, and that my work computer refused to acknowledge my existence or let me change the password.  Early afternoon, a computer tech guy came in, thinking it would be a five minute fix, and, two hours later, walked out carrying the tower.  There are certain things that can only be done on my computer, so there are plenty of things — like cataloguing — I can’t do until I have it back.  At the same time, new computers have been ordered, so why spend a lot of money getting this one back up when a new computer should arrive any minute and the whole system has to be reconfigured?

Worked the circ desk all afternoon instead — it was busy, and I might as well do something useful, right?  But it’s frustrating.  And I got the hall next door set up for Tango, and oriented the people who are renting it for a sports auction tonight.

Got a lot of compliments on my dress and shoes, though, which was fun — even at Stop & Shop, where I ran after work to pick up butter and coffee.

Cocktails on the deck, cooked dinner, read a bit.  Went to bed early, exhausted.

Planned to be up early this morning to work on BALTHAZAAR TREASURE, but Iris was very sick this morning, so it was all about making sure she was okay and comfortable before I left for work.  I’m actually keeping my phone on at the library today, in case she has to be rushed to the vet.

Someone’s trying to figure out what happened to the copies of TRACKING MEDUSA that were ordered for the signing at the end of June and still haven’t shown up (although they’re paid for).  Hopefully, they will turn up soon.  I need more for the conference bookstore, but I’m hesitant to order them when the first batch hasn’t yet shown up.

Tomorrow is my Saturday “on” at the library, and I also have to do some serious yardwork and some serious writing.  My research books should be arriving — I want to write another chapter of BT and then write the writer’s rough outline, and then get back on track with it.  Meanwhile, I’m going to work on the next Bronwyn Rowan short and figure out the next two installments of “Ramsey Chase”.  I won’t hear back on CHARISMA KILLINGS until, probably, October, so I’ll probably just rough outline the second book for that series (DARK ANNIE’S SECRET), and also get back to work on the ferry girl novel.  I need to make some changes in the new version of the book whose rights I just got back, and prep the second book set in that world.  And I’ve got some script work to do.  Along with all the promotion and the rest.  And I want to finish the story inspired by the Edward Hopper painting and get it to the editor who was interested.

If the technology we paid for would actually work properly, it would make things much easier.  Makes me glad I still do a lot in longhand.

 

Have a great weekend.

 

Devon

 

 

Published in: on July 18, 2014 at 8:24 am  Comments (1)  

Wed. July 16, 2014: Trying to Prioritize

Wednesday, July 16, 2014
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Rainy and humid

The last few days have been so humid. I keep wanting to cut sections of air out, wring them dry, and put them back in. Might work in a fantasy novel, but not here!

Yesterday, I did some running around, and got the galleys back to my editor for “Elusive Prayers”, caught up on email, got some reading/research done. A little writing, not much. I want to tweak what I did on POWER OF WORDS, and I need to do a writer’s rough outline of both BALTHAZAAR TREASURE and DARK ANNIE’S SECRET before I can go much further on them. I’d done a ton of research for BT, but I need to refresh myself on it, and research Bermuda for DARK ANNIE.

Early dinner, and then to the library. They’d already done most of the set up for the Elisabeth Elo event; by the time I got there, it was mostly about the food, etc.

Her presentation was WONDERFUL, and it was nice that Tuesday book group was there and had read the book, so she was talking to an audience mostly familiar with the material. I liked so much of what she had to say, especially about the process of it and how the book came together. She and her husband are both lovely people, in addition to the quality of her writing being so high.

She signed a copy of the book for me — I still love that.

Helped with the clean up, came home, unwound a bit. Big thunderstorm in the night, which has helped cool down and make the air more breathable. Long day at the library today — lots came in on my days away.

I’m trying to sit down with the writing projects and prioritize. I need to figure out what to do when, and then also make sure there’s enough time built in for whichever one pulls the hardest, no matter where it is in the schedule. That way, I know what to work on as my first 1K of the day, and what to do in the evening writing sessions I’m going to have to build in to my day. I hate writing at night, but it’s the only way to get everything done.

I need to decide, this week, what I’m taking at the Conference, and whether or not I want to attend the banquet.

I’ve got some other changes looming on the horizon, some which won’t be easy to make, but necessary. There’s too much trying to interfere with the writing right now, and some of it has to be cut back, especially when it doesn’t support the writing.

Devon

Published in: on July 16, 2014 at 7:38 am  Leave a Comment  
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Tuesday, July 15, 2014: In the Writing Cave

Tuesday, July 15, 2014
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Rainy, hot, humid

I’m getting good about hunkering into the writing cave on Mondays, but that means I usually skip blogging. Sorry about that.

Friday was a busy day at the library. Good busy, but busy. And I’ll have the chance to get some advice from the Morgan Library when I’m in New York in September. Very excited and tremendously grateful that the individual I contacted is willing to take time with me.

Friday night was tiring. Saturday, I did some running around, and had to pop in at the library quickly. Managed to also work my way through a stack of research books, that I can now return. I wanted to work on the website, but the host was down. Tried to get some work done on the press kits for “Severance” and “Elusive Prayers”, but didn’t get very far.

Sunday was my disconnect day. Mostly reading, including SILKWORM on the Kindle. I like the Kindle much more than I expected.

Yesterday, I descended back into the writing cave, writing 32 pages on THE POWER OF WORDS. I’m back on that, while still juggling BALTHAZAAR, and wondering if I can write BALTHAZAAR TREASURE and DARK ANNIE’S SECRET simultaneously, since both of them deal with sunken treasure ships, albeit in very different situations, or if they’ll bleed into each other.

Finished the final galleys on “Elusive Prayers” and they’re about to go back out. Trying to decide if I should write Brother Joseph’s novella set in Iowa Territory or the Doc/Melody story next in that world. It also makes me long to go back to THE WIDOW’S CHAMBER and rewrite that as a novel in first person, adapting it from third person serial. And the next Bronwyn Rowan novella is percolating in my head.

Decided on the new title for ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT (will reveal that when I do the cover reveal in autumn). Will add back in something that was cut, so that it serves as a better introduction for Bonnie in THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY, and then figure out how to get that book back on track. If the re-figured A of R is released under new title and cover in fall, I’d like REPOSITORY to release in the spring.

Can’t figure out which course to take at the conference in August.

Trying to find out where the copies of TRACKING MEDUSA, which were supposed to be here for the signing in late June, are. They still haven’t arrived. I need copies for the bookstore and for the bookstore at the conference.

I have some grocery shopping and bill paying to do today, and then — it’s back to writing, until I go to the Elisabeth Elo event tonight at the library.

Watched THE KING’S SPEECH again last night. Terrific film.

Have a great week!

Devon

Fri. July 11, 2014: Rolling in Pages

Friday, July 11, 2014
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and hot

Busy day yesterday. Good busy, but still busy. Had a terrific meeting with the woman who donated the theatre collection to the library, and we discussed ways to partner between New York and the Cape. There are very exciting possibilities.

Also brainstormed with a colleague about exciting plans for Banned Books week, and booked poet Charles Coe. Exciting times!

Revised my report for next week’s board meeting, got out some PR for the Elisabeth Elo event, brainstormed the Mermaid Ball release with my cohorts over there.

Bought flowers from one of the local farm stands on my way home. So pretty! Love how people have cutting gardens, cut/arrange/sell their flowers.

Finished proofreading THE CHARISMA KILLINGS and the proposal last night, and sent it out this morning. Got a little bit of work done on BALTHAZAAR, but not enough. Have to do the galleys for “Elusive Prayers” this weekend.

Didn’t sleep well; fretting over things, in a way that my grandmother would call “borrowing trouble.” Coyotes woke me up at 2 AM again, but once I fell asleep, I figured out a few things and made some decisions. I didn’t make it to Broadway without an element of ruthlessness, and some of that has to be applied to the situations that currently bother me.

Done.

Have a great weekend.

Devon

Thurs. July 10, 2014: Are we sure Mercury’s Direct?

Thursday, July 10, 2014
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and humid

Yesterday morning, I wound up getting a nice chunk of work done on BALTHAZAAR TREASURE, which meant I felt better about life, the universe, and everything. I’m starting to reconnect with the characters and the story again.

The last round of edits for “Elusive Prayers” went back to my editor, so I’m sure it will be galley time soon, and then another drop. I have to finish up the press kits and the website material.

Library was busy. Lots to do. I got volumes of Vital Records donated from another library, and Poetry and Drama criticism, which will be great for our collection.

Had a good program committee meeting, and got the go-ahead on a few projects about which I’m excited.

Last night, I started another pass on THE CHARISMA KILLINGS, which will go out again soon. I like it better than I remembered. It’s very different than a lot of what’s out there, which I think is a strength. I still believe in the book.

Busy day expected at the library again today, but I hope it will be fun. I love working with books and getting people excited about books.

Devon

Wed. July 9, 2014: Back To It

Wednesday, July 9, 2014
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Humid and ready to rain

I’ve been offline for a few days, for a much-needed break. I’m creatively exhausted right now, and need a chance to reinvigorate. The past few months have been at a ridiculous pace, and took their toll.

Thursday was a busy day at the library — people stocking up for the holiday weekend. That’s always fun — people who are excited about taking out books for the weekend, or for any other time. It’s one of my favorite things about the work — helping people find reading material that they enjoy and that engages in them. Also managed to get my desk cleared off for the first time since I was hired.

Exhausted Thursday night, and grateful that Friday was a holiday.

However, I was up at 5:30 on Friday morning. Since Hurricane Arthur was set to hit, we had to bring in all the plants from the deck and all the outdoor furniture and all the statuary, etc. We set down old sheets on the floor in the living room and the back bedroom and hauled everything in. We had to lock Iris in the downstairs bedroom and Violet and Tessa in my room, or we would have lost them, since we had to have doors to both outside and the garage propped open.

But we got everything in and then . . .waited. Most of the day was spent in humid suspended animation, waiting for the damn storm. I wrote a bit, read a lot, and battled the pre-storm headache. The storm didn’t hit until evening, and then I was glad I’d brought everything in.

Watched the Joss Whedon version of MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING, which was very clever.

Saturday, I took out some of the plants before I left for work. Since there were so many power outages, I was afraid the library’d been hit, and didn’t want my colleague there in a dark building on her own. So I went in early, the Exec Director went in early, our colleague was there, and the power was on. So it was all good. But it was busy, and there was no book delivery, which meant we couldn’t give people the books they’d ordered, and it was more chaotic than I’d hoped.

Came home, exhausted, and got the rest of the plants, furniture, statuary, etc., back out onto the deck. Read.

Sunday, I was out early and got us a Dunkin Donuts treat. Wrote a bit, then ran errands — had to do things like get the re-up cards for the phone. Looked at Kindles, and a few other things. We even went to the mall (oh, horrors) to get the phone cards and to pick up some things at Crabtree & Evelyn, where we had one of the nicest salespeople I’ve ever encountered. So nice, I’m letting the office know. Got a case for my phone, too.

Back home to read and write a bit. Juliet Blackwell’s newest, A VISION IN VELVET, arrived on Saturday, and I read it. I enjoy the Lily Ivory series.

Worked on the final round of edits for “Elusive Prayers”, which will go out to my editor today. Wrote the press release and the PSA for the Mermaid Ball.

Monday, up early and off to run errands in Falmouth. Stuck in traffic all day. Gave up after awhile, realizing it was going to take as long as it would take, and that was simply that. Getting upset wasn’t going to change anything.

Wrote a bit, came home long enough to make a black bean ful, and then headed to the Marine Life Center for the Mermaid Ball meeting. It took me an hour and a half. The meeting was the meeting, and, fortunately, coming home was quicker than getting there.

Watched FROST/NIXON — excellent. Fascinating interpretation of a period in history though which I lived.

Up early yesterday. Writing, but feeling burnt out. The weather didn’t help much, either. Went to Just Picked, where I found some good deals, but mostly was an uncreative lump, reading, and trying to replenish. I’m so tired that everything is a ridiculous amount of effort right now.

Up early this morning. Usual routine (which I’ve managed to keep up every morning, in spite of the exhaustion) of yoga, meditation, etc. Had a bad night — I had trouble sleeping and was fretful, for some reason. The last thing I need to do right now is borrow trouble. Getting some work done before I head to the library. I’m sure it will be a busy day — it always is when I come back from a few days away — and then we have a program meeting in the afternoon.

Onwards. I need to get back in the groove of BALTHAZAAR TREASURE, and it hasn’t quite clicked yet.

The copies of TRACKING MEDUSA that were supposed to be here for the signing, and then the bookstore haven’t arrived, but the copy that the library ordered is there. Go figure.

I settled on the new title for the re-release of ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT, and have to book the new cover artist. I’m getting print quotes. I hope to re-release it under the new imprint, title, and cover in October. Stay tuned.

That also means I have to get THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY back on track, because I won’t be releasing it through Champagne, I’ll do it through the new imprint.
I’ve got to get BALTHAZAAR back on track, get back to the ferry girl novel, do another pass on CHARISMA KILLINGS and submit that to an interested party ASAP, and do the next Bronwyn Rowan piece.

Yet I’m feeling about as creative as wilted lettuce.

I’m also tracking my activity/commitment with an organization with which I’m working to decide whether I will remain past my commitment (which ends next year) or not. If the financial ratio and the ratio of emotional give/receive do not balance better than they have in the past two years, I will withdraw when my commitment is complete. I would like to withdraw now, but it is unfair not to fulfill my commitment to the best of my ability, and not to spend a reasonable amount of time gathering actual data to review, rather than making a decision based solely on emotion.

Onward.

Devon

Thurs. July 3, 2014: Hurricane Arthur? Really?

Thursday, July 3, 2014
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Muggy, foggy, hot

Yesterday was up and down. Too many interruptions and technical problems, but also some good work done.

Came home, had a glass of wine on the deck, cooked dinner, read a book by an author whose other series I truly enjoyed — but, unfortunately, this one was a disappointment.

Worked on some other stuff, and did some recalculating. Unfortunately, in some areas, I have to be in a RE-active mode instead of my preferred active mode. However, if I’m going to get what I want in the long run, I have to be patient in the short run. In other words, Saturn is busy kicking my ass again. But, there are a set of benchmarks where others make decisions, and from those decisions, I will make the decisions I need to make regarding what is best for me. In other words, the lesson of misplaced loyalty to those who have none for me has been learned (we hope).

So it looks like Fourth Festivities will be mucked up by Hurricane Arthur. So I was out the door early this morning, getting in milk, eggs, and water.

I will feel better once the storm actually starts — the pressure in my head will ease.

Have a great holiday weekend, all. I’ll check in next week.

Devon

Published in: on July 3, 2014 at 8:36 am  Leave a Comment  

Wed. July 2, 2014: Are You SURE Mercury’s Direct?

Wednesday, July 2, 2014
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny, hot, humid

I was offline yesterday. I needed the break. I decided that, this week, I am only going to write what I WANT to write — the scripts are revised and sent off, the initial round of edits for ELUSIVE PRAYERS is back to my editor, “Severance” dropped. I need a break before getting into the writing/promoting rounds again.

I haven’t had an actual vacation since 2007, and this won’t really be a vacation, as there are other jobs I have to do, but at least it’s a break.

Monday was good — especially, in the evening, when I served as a judge on Milbilly Idol, a singing contest for local kids. The two that won were terrific. Serious talent there, and every single kid who participated worked hard and put in the dedication required. It was a pleasure to participate.

I read a lot on Tuesday, in preparation for the Cozy Mystery Group we hope to start at the library. One was very good, one sucked, and two were mediocre (one had a stupid heroine — who finds the object that people have killed over, is “too tired” to call the police, and then goes out gardening the next morning instead of turning it in? I kept hoping she’d be killed).

Also re-read Elisabeth Elo’s NORTH OF BOSTON (she’ll be speaking here in mid-July). Enjoyed it even more the second time.

Got some mowing done, and worked on a modification of the blue lemonade martini. I’m using the blue raspberry vodka, but now I’m using lime juice and adding real raspberries. It’s very good.

Technical chaos so far at the library this morning, and I’ve got a big stack of stuff to do.

Oh, and because I didn’t HAVE to write today, I wound up writing 2K this morning before I came in to the library.

Onward.

Have a great week.

Devon

Published in: on July 2, 2014 at 9:47 am  Comments (2)  

Mon. June 30, 2014: Go Direct Already, Mercury!

Monday, June 30, 2014
Waxing Moon
Mercury Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny, warm, humid

Busy weekend.

Friday just sucked every possible way. I don’t even want to get into details, but I was furious by the time I left work, and had to reassess some of my goals and how best to get there. Hate it when Mercury and Saturn are retrograde at the same time.

Came home, and Tessa was like, “Mom, calm down. Play with the turquoise mouse. It’ll all be fine.”

Read a bit, wrote a bit, worked on the last three script episodes, finalized my PR materials for Saturday.

Friday night, we had coyotes in the yard. Woke us up at 2 AM, right up at the house. It’s a strongly bonded mated pair, and I think they’ve got little ones close by. They’re absolutely gorgeous animals — but they’re coyotes, and very close to the house. Tessa wasn’t phased at all, but the twins hid under the blankets. They were establishing territory — we heard them circle their two-mile patch for several hours. I don’t want them hurt, but I also don’t want them to hurt any person or animal in the neighborhood. If anything, I’m most worried that a neighbor will do something stupid and then officials will come in and hurt the animals. I’m hoping we can peacefully co-exist, but let’s face it — humans are stupid and arrogant, and it’s almost always the habitat that suffers.

Exhausted on Saturday, from lack of sleep. Sent off the last script episodes (will be happy when the final check arrives). Sent off some emails, took care of some business.

Headed home for lunch and to pack up the materials in the car, then over to Osterville Library’s tent for the AuthorPalooza event. There were 27 of us there, hosted by Books by the Sea. The copies of TRACKING MEDUSA didn’t arrive in time, but I had HEX BREAKER, OLD-FASHIONED DETECTIVE WORK, and ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT in print copies, and the sell sheet for the three digital releases, and the sell sheet for the Topic Workbooks. We were a fun, lively group. I got to catch up with some people I hadn’t seen in a long time, and meet some interesting new ones, AND talk to some of authors about the possibility of doing a program at the library. My boss came from the library after work, my friend from NMLC came, and it was, all in all, a fun afternoon. We were on the grass, so every time I got tired, I could slide out of my shoes and put my bare feet on the grass and re-energize.

Stopped at the liquor store on the way home and found an affordable bottle of blue raspberry vodka. Toss in a squirt of lemon juice, and I have my blue lemonade. Yummy!

Watched AMERICAN HUSTLE on Saturday night, on DVD. I’d seen it in the theatres when it came out, and now wanted to see it again. Enjoyed it thoroughly. It reinforced my sense that Jeremy Renner’s work wasn’t given the praise it deserved (although he didn’t maintain the Jersey accent consistently, which I hadn’t noticed the first time I watched it, but noticed here). What an amazing cast. In the interviews, the director talks about inconsistencies in characters and how that interests them, but my sense was that they were true to their cores, and then layered the inconsistencies onto that core to get what they wanted and needed.

Yesterday, I was going to do many things, but decided to stay true to my commitment to Disconnected Sundays. I did, however, turn around my edits for “Elusive Prayers”, which I will send off to my editor.

I also read Lauren Owen’s debut novel, THE QUICK. It’s getting a lot of hype, and the initial printing was 100,000 copies, so her publisher is very confident. I read the whole thing yesterday. Yes, it’s a great, big, fat book, but it held my attention. I absolutely loved the first 100 pages — especially her phrasing. I liked and admired almost all of the rest, and was frustrated by the last chapter, although I saw what was supposed to be the final twist coming about 150 pages before it did. It’s a literary horror novel, and there are vampires involved. Anything more would give away too much. It’s very well done, much better than most, but I’m rather vampired out at the moment. It’s definitely a novel I would go back and re-read in a couple of years (especially if I manage to avoid most vampire novels in the interim, which I doubt I can do). It’s definitely up there, for me, with DRACULA (the original Bram Stoker one) and Elizabeth Kostova’s THE HISTORIAN (which I loved).

Read a cozy mystery where the protagonist’s best friends were so unlikeable I kept hoping one or both would be the murderer’s next victim. No such luck. Also, there was only one body drop, and the protagonist was never in any actual peril. Boooring. That author’s off my list. Not reading more of her books for myself, nor am I ordering any for the library, nor will I recommend them for the Cozy Mystery Book Group that we hope to start in the autumn.

Re-reading Elizabeth Elo’s NORTH OF BOSTON, because she’s coming to talk at the library in July. It’s kind of a modern Boston Noir (very different from other types of noir).

The coyotes did a howl-by last night as they raced through the yard, but that was it.

I’ve got to mow today, send off some materials, and then run errands. Monday is errand day, after all.

Champagne Publishing and I have parted ways, as of today. The last few copies of ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT are the last copies (it’s officially out of print), and it’s no longer available online. You can get the print copies that remain through Books by the Sea in Osterville (as of later this week — I have to drop them off when the copies of TRACKING MEDUSA arrive). Cotuit Library also has a copy in circulation. The rights have reverted back to me. I wait thirty days, then I’m commissioning a new cover, changing the title, changing a few things in the text back to my original vision, and it will be re-released, both in digital and paperback formats. I will keep you up-to-date as things happen.

I will be so happy when Mercury goes direct tomorrow.

Have a great week!

Devon

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