Wednesday, August 31, 2011


Sunshine-kissed kitty

Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Waxing Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cool

More retrogrades, people! And, technically, the summer vacation-that-wasn’t for me is over, and this gig is nearly over. I needed to write 15K in these past two weeks, here on site. I got 500 done, due to interruptions and the amount of stuff piled onto me that had nothing to do with my job. I can’t write a single sentence without a massive interruption, and I cannot be in that situation. Even if I tried to stay up all night, after I was drained of every ounce of life force from this place, I’m interrupted constantly. Just not acceptable, and I can’t put myself in this situation again. The daily micromanaging has abated, slightly, but now I find out the client’s given out my cell phone number to this one and that one without permission — and I am extremely fierce about who gets that number. Again, not acceptable. Well, Friday, I’m gone.

I got the following sent to me about my former building in NY. Read the article here.

If I still lived there, I’d be in a hotel somewhere — and what would have happened to the cats? I moved at the right time. My heart breaks for my former neighbors. I talked to a couple of them yesterday — they are in shock, dazed, and angry. One expects something like this from the scumbag landlords, but the City is also liable, morally if not legally, for continuing to allow those basement apartments to be rented when they are regularly flooded out and the residents lose everything. WHEN someone dies — and, eventually, someone will — these scumbags will still feel nothing. Because both the landlords and the current City Council there don’t consider the tenants are worthwhile citizens. The landlords consider them an ATM machine, and the City Council doesn’t think they are “good enough” to live in that pretentious Westchester town because they’re renters instead of owners, so the Council doesn’t care

Yesterday was practically productive, if not creatively productive. I got out some questions for a press release I’m working on, to wrap up the Mermaid Ball, four sets of interview questions, and got the last details worked out for the Year-Long Intensive, which starts tomorrow. I got in two good sessions of yoga, and a good meditation sit, which helped a lot.

I thought about what book I want to start working on tomorrow (while I finish SPIRIT REPOSITORY, which I simply can’t work on here, because I can’t get enough time in to write more than a line at a time without interruption, and then I lose my train of creativity). I circled back to the yoga mystery, reconnected a bit with it, and wondered if, maybe, that’s what I should work on. I’d be challenging myself within the formula, but not setting up so huge a challenge that I can’t meet it. In other words, it’s a pretty safe choice, which means I’m not sure I should do it. I’m trying to decide if I should do one of the two urban fantasy ideas I was playing with. Both are unique, stories I haven’t seen before, and I’m writing them because they are something I’d like to read. One rotates through three POVs — initially, it only rotated through two, but a character who was supposed to just be in a couple of scenes stepped up and said, “Hey, I’m important to this process!” The other one has a strong base in mythology and an intense central relationship, but never quite handled in this particular way. Then, of course, there’s the urban fantasy comic noir, which I originally envisioned as a series of linked short stories or novellas, but I could turn into a novel. And I need to make a decision — soon.

Today, I have to write the press release, work on the newsletter, and see if maybe I can possibly get any writing done. There will be a cleaning crew in here on site, so, again — constant interruptions.

Two more days. I just have to keep it together for two more days.

I feel very, very lucky and have enormous gratitude for the fact that I am HERE and not where I used to live, and that we had little storm damage and kept the power on. So many are so much worse off than I am, that, in perspective, these irritants are just that — irritants. They are something that I can,ultimately, not let happen again. But you can’t control a hurricane.

Devon


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available in print and digital versions from Champagne Books, and digitally on Amazon Kindle.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

August 30: Please welcome Shirley Wells

I “met” Shirley Wells online soon after I started blogging. She’s a wonderful writer and a wonderful human being. She was kind enough to spend some time here, talking about her newest release, DEAD SILENT. Welcome, Shirley!

IT STARTED WITH A CREAM CAKE…

I had plenty of vague ideas for my second Dylan Scott mystery, but none that yelled “Write me, NOW!” until, one day, I was sitting outside a city centre cafe enjoying a coffee and some rare sunshine. Opposite the cafe, a girl in her early twenties was sitting on a wall by the fountain and she was eating the biggest cake I have ever seen. Real cholesterol-laden cream oozed from it. Jealous? Me? You bet. She was disgustingly slim (I only have to look at cream to pile on the pounds) with long, curling red hair. Still eating her cake, she spoke to someone on her phone. She was laughing and she glowed with happiness and vitality. At her feet, a small, scruffy and obviously much-loved dog waited for crumbs.

I looked away, distracted by something else. When I looked back a few seconds later to see if she’d finished that cake, or maybe needed a bit of help with it, she’d gone. Vanished. I had a good view of streets leading off the square in several directions but there was no sign of her or her little dog.

She had vanished off the face of the earth.

Of course, people don’t really vanish, do they? They might be taken away, they might run from their demons, they might be murdered and sent to the bottom of a lake … but they don’t vanish.

That girl became the inspiration for my second Dylan Scott mystery, DEAD SILENT. I wonder how many novels have been published thanks to a writer’s longing for a wickedly, calorie-heavy cake.

If you’re curious, this is from the back cover:

Ten months ago, Samantha Hunt set off for work… and was never seen again.

Despite the statistics of cold cases, Dylan Scott wants to believe the young woman’s alive – and not just because her father, his client, is desperate to find his missing daughter before he dies of cancer. By all accounts Sam was a lovely girl, devoted to her younger stepsisters, well-liked at her work, in love with her boyfriend.

But as usual not everything is as it seems in sleepy Dawson’s Clough. Sam’s boyfriend has a violent past. She may have been having an affair with her boss. And Dylan can’t shake the feeling that her stepfather is hiding something. Meanwhile, someone is trying to scare Dylan off the case.

Who wanted to silence Sam, and why? The truth turns out to be worse than anyone expected…

Having had several hundred short stories, ten serials and ten novels published, Shirley Wells is finally getting the hang of this writing lark. She’s lived in Orkney, Cyprus and the Cotswolds, and now lives in Lancashire, UK, where the Pennines, with their abundance of great places to hide bodies, provide the inspiration for her popular mystery novels. She shares her home with her husband, two dogs, two cats and any other stray animals that fancy being pampered.

For more information, visit her website, follow her on Twitter or find her on Facebook.

Her latest Dylan Scott mystery, DEAD SILENT, is available from Carina Press, Amazon, Barnes & Noble and all good e-book retailers.

Published in: on August 30, 2011 at 6:27 am  Comments (10)  
Tags: , ,

Monday, August 29, 2011

Monday, August 29, 2011
Waxing Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Sunny and GORGEOUS

First and foremost, we are fine. Falmouth got hit pretty badly, but, although we are only a few towns over, it was mostly wind, very little rain. No trees fell on the site or my house or the car, so that’s all good.

I’m over on Let’s Talk Romance, where I discuss “Diving into Life” as a writer.

The Mermaid Ball was a HUGE success, and I’m glad we went forward with it. It didn’t even rain for most of Saturday — one downpour that lasted about twenty minutes, when I was home changing. We got there, set up, the facility had to board up the plate glass windows in time for the hurricane, we drew the curtains, lit candles, and it still looked like undersea enchantment. We had a wonderful turnout and a wonderful time. What better timing to help injured sea animals than the NIGHT before the hurricane? People looked great — quite a few came in costume, which was fun. There was dining, dancing, live and silent auctions went well, people were happy. I’ve been working these types of events since 1991, and this is one of the few times where it really felt like everyone on the Committee rolled up their sleeves and worked, and the results sparkled. We were lucky to have a really good Chairperson who placed people where they were strongest and where they enjoyed what they were doing.

There will be follow-up press, and I’ll post links!

The only sour note was that my relief from Crazytown called during the day, with a completely false claim that the National Guard was closing all the roads from 6 PM Saturday to 9 PM Sunday, and I should come back before 6 PM Saturday so she could go home. What part of “I”m working & not available” is so difficult to understand?

Coming home was not a problem — roads were clear, no rain, no wind. I got to bed a little after midnight.

I was up before 5 AM, because the winds were picking up, scaring Iris & Violet. Tessa thought it was fascinating to watch everything blow. Nothing scares that one! She’s hilarious.

I was back at Crazytown (can you tell I don’t care if I burn this bridge?) by 7:30 in the morning, sent my relief home before the storm picked, up, and hunkered down. There wasn’t much rain, just a lot of steady wind, The reports from where I used to live — remember those photos I posted back in 2007, where I lost my car, and the entire neighborhood looked like it was in the middle of a muddy river? Same thing this weekend. I am SO glad I don’t live there anymore — my old building was again, completely flooded, and you know those scumbag landlords just let the people in the basement apartments lose everything. The city is equally liable, for allowing the landlords to keep renting apartments that everyone except the people renting them know flood all the way to the ceiling regularly.

We got out at the right time.

This morning, it’s actually quiet here for once, and absolutely gorgeous outside. I’m sure there will be plenty of clean-up later on. I’m going to head home for a few hours in the afternoon to check on my house (do I care that I’m not supposed to? No) and see what kind of clean-up I have to do there, as well as starting to get the plants back out onto the deck.

In the meantime, I hope to get some writing in. The constant interruptions here make it hard to get anything done.

Back to it. I hope everyone rode out the storm safely, and best wishes.

Devon

Published in: on August 29, 2011 at 6:47 am  Comments (5)  
Tags: , , ,

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Saturday, August 27, 2011
Dark of the Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Cloudy, humid, prep for Hurricane Irene

I am HOME, briefly, thank goodness, and got the first good night’s sleep I’ve had in a week and a half. I was practically delirious from exhaustion, and I’m so run down I’m getting sick.

I was far too optimistic, thinking the conversation with the client resolved anything. I was woken up all night Thursday into Friday with texts and calls about things we had already discussed and resolved which weren’t even my job. I don’t want to hear “I don’t understand the time difference” when you have an iPhone and this time zone is your default setting. It is inappropriate to call me after 10 PM or before 7 AM unless it is an emergency. MY definition of emergency. Nothing is going to change in Crazytown, and I have to make sure that Sept. 2 is my last day there ever. I couldn’t turn off the phone because I needed the alarm. The client ignored “it’s inappropriate to call me now.” I made it very clear that, today and tomorrow, I’m working on something else, and my phone will be off. I am NOT to be used as the intermediary between the client and my relief. The client needs to deal directly with the relief. When I got home yesterday morning, I shut off my phone for a few hours. When I turned it back on, there were 4 phone calls and 17 text messages in 3 hours, until the client realized I was serious. The lack of boundaries, the lack of respect, the lack of honesty about what the job actually entails — unacceptable.

I was so happy to be home, and the cats were happy to see me. Even Violet was velcro kitty and purring all day. I had a LOT to do — since I wasn’t “allowed” to leave the site the previous four days and had to catch up. Library, take my mom for a blood test, Stop N Shop, Wine store, PetSmart, Verizon, Trader Joe’s, CVS. Everything got done, though, and before 2 PM. My relief told me that people were being vile in the grocery store, but everywhere I went, people were laughing and joking and helping each other get things off shelves, etc., etc.

Broadway has cancelled all shows for today and tomorrow. I can’t remember that ever happening, but, for once, the producers aren’t putting people in danger. The fact that all Mass Transit shuts down at noon today probably has something to do with it. I think NY will get worst of it, mostly due to the expected angle of the storm. I talked to Costume Imp — he’s hunkered down with his cats in his prewar apartment uptown. He should be fine. People on higher ground are taking in their theatre colleagues (and pets) from lower ground. Everyone on Twitter’s joking about stocking up enough wine and beer to ride it out. As usual, theatre folk are looking after their own.

As of right now, the Mermaid Ball is still on for tonight. I have mixed feeling about that. I think a lot of people won’t show. In about two hours, I’m headed over to help set up. I’ve got my dress and stuff packed up and along –we’ll see how the day goes. I don’t really want to be travelling anywhere at midnight tonight in the middle of the storm. They’re expecting to stop the ferries to and from the islands later tonight. People are being smart in preparations, but cheerful and no one’s panicking. So we’ll see what happens.

Devon

Published in: on August 27, 2011 at 7:07 am  Comments (5)  
Tags: , , , ,

Friday, August 26, 2011

Friday, August 26, 2011
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury DIRECT
Scheduled to post

Mercury goes direct today, thank goodness! This has been an exceptionally rough retrograde for me. I am not sorry to see the back of it. Even by early afternoon yesterday, I could feel the pressure ease.

Yesterday morning was spent sorting out some of the current site problems. It seems that some of them have been resolved, and next week should run more smoothly than this one has. We can hope.

Tried to read a novel by a well-known author whose work, both fiction and non-fiction I’ve enjoyed before. Unfortunately, this novel was too much religion and too little soul, so I put it down. Will put it on Bookmooch. Big disappointment.

Didn’t get much writing done, unfortunately.

People here are preparing for the hurricane, but aren’t panicking, which is a good thing. I’ve scheduled this to post because my relief is supposed to be here early, and I’m out the door, running errands, prepping the house for the hurricane, and doing last-minute things for the Ball.

Mermaid Ball is tomorrow night. I’m looking forward to it, but also worried about the storm. I go back to the site on Sunday (and an interview with me will run on Sunday — link will go up on Monday) for ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT. I hope all this pavement-pounding is turning into book sales!

I’ll be back on site on Sunday morning, and here all next week, until I head down to CT for a few days. I need to finish polishing my classes. I keep re-arranging the exercises for the Dialogue Workshop. I haven’t found just the right progression yet.

Still trying to figure out which novel I should start next week along with my class. I have an early idea for a kind of a steampunk thing which would be a good way to stretch, but I’m not sure I could sustain it. I could take the safe route and do the third Annabel Aidan. Or I could do one of three urban fantasy novels I’ve been playing with, or the comic urban fantasy noir. Just not sure. I can think about it this weekend. I mean, if there are 120 mph winds, torrential rain and no power, it would be a good idea to think about something other than the storm, right? ;)

I’m looking forward to being home briefly, even though it’s for such a short time. I’m feeling creatively empty right now, and I’m hoping that “home” will give me a boost. I was so careful to set up my new home to be a creatively nurturing environment, and I’m having trouble here on site getting anything done. This was supposed to be a place where I could have large swaths of uninterrupted worktime, and just “be available” if something went wrong. Unfortunately, it’s been nothing but interruption after interruption and unnecessary drama. I can’t wait to be HOME.

Devon


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available in print and digital versions from Champagne Books, and digitally on Amazon Kindle.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Published in: on August 26, 2011 at 1:00 am  Comments (4)  
Tags: , ,

Thursday, August 25, 2011


Iris

Thursday, August 25, 2011
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Sunny and humid

You can smell the hurricane, even though it’s still thousands of miles away. I’ve dealt with hurricanes ever since we moved to the East Coast in the late 1960’s, and they have a specific scent of wetness, decay, and chaos, unlike a thunderstorm, which smells and feels heavy, but then everything is fresh.

The day on Long & Short Romances Chat Loop was a lot of fun. I got on just before 9 AM and was on pretty much all day until nearly 8 PM. Interesting questions, good conversations.

In and around that, I wrestled most of the heavy iron furniture at the site into the garage. I’d asked the grounds crew to help me, since they were walking around waving leaf blowers at nothing, and they refused. I realize the client couldn’t know there’d be a hurricane, but expecting me to move stuff that’s way too heavy for me is out of bounds. At the same time, it’s too dangerous to leave it where it could smash through the glass windows/walls.

I did not feel at all bad when one of the coyotes snuck into the cab of their truck and ran off with the Burger King bag. In fact, I was highly entertained.

Quiet evening, to bed early. Had trouble sleeping as the electronic devices went wonky again (and no, there’s no way I can cover them/hide them/whatever. Tried. Doesn’t work). Up early, wrestled the last few big pieces of iron into the garage. Two of the coyotes were watching me, making it clear they thought I was out of my mind. I said to them, “Really? ‘Cause it’s not like this is fun for me, you know. I am NOT in a good mood today. Be warned.” Dumbass grounds crew does nothing but walk back and forth from 8 AM – 5 PM every day waving leaf blowers unnecessarily. Yesterday they mowed the exact same patch of ground at 8:30, at 11, and at 2:30. The patch of ground they’d mowed the previous day. And you all know how I feel about leaf blowers.

Hopefully, I can get a little bit of productive work done. I have to check in with my “relief” later, who’s supposed to take over for me while I deal with the Mermaid Ball tomorrow and Saturday. Then, I’m back here on Sunday to deal with the hurricane and into next week.

I get reports from home that Tessa is finding all sorts of new things to get into, everything from taking all the dishcloths down in the kitchen (and dragging them all over the house) to unrolling the toilet paper to playing with the rubber duckies in the bathtub. Yes, I have rubber duckies decorating the tub. I think they’re funny. I can’t wait to see her again. Iris is still being mean to her, but Violet is ignoring her.

I am determined to triumph over that difficult chapter in THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY today, leaf blowers or not.

I can’t type more than a sentence or read more than a paragraph here without an interruption. Not conducive to getting anything done. And the interruptions can’t be stopped — I don’t have any say in how I set up the workday here, which is not what I agreed to.

I have stories that need to be spun and classes that need to be prepped, and everything is fractured and frustrating.

Devon


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available in print and digital versions from Champagne Books, and digitally on Amazon Kindle.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Published in: on August 25, 2011 at 8:10 am  Comments (3)  
Tags: , , , , ,

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Sunny and humid

I’ll be over on the chat loop at Long and Short Romance all day, answering questions. That should be fun.

So that whole East Coast earthquakey-thingy was interesting. I missed it, out here on the Cape. Didn’t feel a thing. The animals were upset — should have listened. Friends in New York said they felt things shake, but nothing major. DC seems to have been hit the hardest — Smithsonian evacuated and then closed. And here I’d just hopped on Twitter, hoping for a few minutes of distraction!

Fragmented work day. The person who’d demanded the 9AM meeting yesterday regarding the client project never showed up; never called. She’s supposed to take over for the weekend. She damn well better show up on Friday morning.

Paced and muttered a lot this morning, because in the waiting process, I frittered away the best part of my writing day. Didn’t dare to dive into the writing for fear of interruption. I should have just done it anyway. Caught up on email, did some promo work on ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT. Struggled with SPIRIT REPOSITORY.

Worked on the lectures for my classes, including doing prep for the book I’m supposed to start in September along with my year-long intensive students. I read the notes and felt . . .nothing. Now I have to figure out what the heck I’m going to do for that. I’ve got a couple of intense pieces that need my attention. I’ll weigh each of them, and see which one I think I can live with in the context of the class, for a year.

I’m restructuring the Dialogue Workshop quite a bit. It’s Advanced, so hopefully most of the students have taken the intermediate workshop and won’t start whining because they don’t know what a beat and a scene is.

Didn’t sleep well. I don’t have any electronic devices in my bedroom at home. Not even a clock radio. No TV (I hate TVs in the bedroom). The room I have to sleep in here is FULL of them, and they whistle and hum and blink all night, driving me nuts. On top of that, at 4 AM, the cable box went nuts for whatever reason, and didn’t settle down until after 7. I was worried the computer would be wiped, but it seems okay.

And now I have to deal with a frigging hurricane coming in and I won’t even be at my own house. I have to be here on site, in a strange place that’s built like it’s made out of matchsticks instead of being in my stable, sturdy little house with my cats. When I go back on Friday, in preparation for the Mermaid Ball, I will bring in all the plants and the deck furniture. I have to get in the patio furniture here, only it’s cast iron and HEAVY and I have no place to put it. Where there’s room — the basement — only has long, narrow stairs. I am not wrestling heavy stuff up and down those stairs on my own. But I can’t leave it out because, if we have hurricane winds, iron or not, it’s going to smash the windows if it starts flying around. I’ll have to figure out how to both fit it in the garage and drag it all the way around the house to the garage. I have to leave my car unprotected, because there are two cars in this garage, and I have to leave it in front of the house. And there are tons of unstable trees all over the place. Not a happy camper, and trapped here until September 2, except for a brief foray out Friday and Saturday for the Ball.

I’m hoping some of this pressure will lift when Mercury goes direct on Friday. Because I am DONE.

Devon


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available in print and digital versions from Champagne Books, and digitally on Amazon Kindle.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Published in: on August 24, 2011 at 7:52 am  Comments (7)  
Tags: , , , ,

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


Sunflowers on my deck. Wish I was there!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Sunny and cool

Temperatures are going down, and it’s lovely outside. Too bad I’m someplace where I can’t even crack a window!

There’s a lively interview with me over on Long and Short Romance – some interesting questions. Stop on by! And I’ll be on their chat loop all day tomorrow, answering questions.

Got some work done yesterday. I’m struggling with a difficult chapter on THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY. Yesterday, the chapter won. Today, I need to take back the authorial edge. That particular scene needs to be there in the book because it’s a turning point in the plot; it doesn’t work anywhere else, and it’s the key to hurtling us towards the last third of the book.

Got a bunch of promo work done for ASSUMPTION, and some for the Mermaid Ball. It’s at the end of the week! I’m looking forward to having a break from this site gig, which is more stressful than it needs to be. Today, I get to have a confrontation with yet someone else the client sent to check up on me — and the client lied to both of us about our positions on the project, which is part of the problem. I’m really tired of the lying, the manipulation, and the distrust. Unfortunately, I can’t walk away until I fulfill the contract. I should have trusted my very first instinct when I came to discuss the job — the instinct was, “This won’t work. Stay away.” It should have been a straight-forward, simple, stress-free job. And it’s not. The money’s good, but it’s still not worth it.

Well, I have a lot to look forward to in September, and for the rest of the year. I just have to keep going. This is temporary; I can’t let it define the other aspects of my life. I have too much to do, and too many wonderful possibilities opening up. This gig was a step backwards, and, while there may be planets in retrograde, I need to move my life forward.

Devon


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available in print and digital versions from Champagne Books, and digitally on Amazon Kindle.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Monday, August 22, 2011


Tessa’s imitation of a supine Halloween kitty

Monday, August 22, 2011
Waning Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Cloudy and humid

Saturday was a good day. I finished and got out the door two articles. I have a few days’ breather before I start on the next round of articles due in September. I finished reading an autobiography of a writer whose work and political activity I’m mildly acquainted with. Always interesting to read someone’s account of the same events I lived through, but through a very different lens. We have similar experience of some things, such as the country’s current economic collapse seeded in the Reagan years, where he took off the regulations so his rich friends could do whatever they want, and look where that’s gotten us — and entirely different experiences on many other fronts. Very interesting.

The party was a lot of fun, although I got terribly lost trying to get there. Thank goodness for locals who give good directions! Google Maps was sooo wrong! But it was lovely to kick back and relax with my colleagues for a couple of hours.

I forgot to mention that last Friday’s episode of TORCHWOOD was superb. The writing, the acting, the pace, the way the storylines paralleled and then met. I got a little ahead of it at one point, but didn’t mind, because it felt like I was meant to hit the realization a few scenes before the characters. I also like the way the series deals with power, corruption, greed, and cowardice.

Sunday was reasonably quiet. I read the papers, dashed home to pay a bill and do some refereeing. Worked here on site a lot, and got some writing done. I read over a couple of projects I’ve been playing with. They have solid potential. I just have to figure out how to slot them in, and do some outlining. The premises are unique, and the type of thing I want to read and can’t find. So I’m writing it. I got some work done on THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY. Today, I need to write the most complicated scene in the book, so it better be quiet. And then, we’re galloping towards the end.

Did the work here on site. The client doesn’t trust me and constantly sends people to “check up” on me and “help.” Either you want me to do the job or you don’t — this constant interruption and mistrust is not acceptable.

Add to that, a coyote showed up right across the street, bold as brass, not in the least bit intimidated at being in the middle of a residential area. Whatever he’s doing on a coyote level, I recognized his message on a broader level, and I consider myself warned. Physical coyotes have crossed my paths at very specific times, with very specific meanings. I have a great deal of respect for them on every level.

It’s challenging to keep up my yoga/meditation practices in this environment, but this is when I really need them, so going to the mat regularly is helpful.
Onward. This week will be challenging, and then, the Mermaid Ball is next weekend, which should be a lot of fun!

As long as I can get pockets of uninterrupted writing time in, it will be fine.

Devon


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available in print and digital versions from Champagne Books, and digitally on Amazon Kindle.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Published in: on August 22, 2011 at 7:25 am  Comments (2)  
Tags: , , , ,

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Saturday, August 20, 2011
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Cloudy and humid

Good, steady workday yesterday. I got my assignment off to Confidential Job #1, and the invoice; they’ve already sent the next one. I should receive it on Tuesday or so. Worked on articles, did promo for the Mermaid Ball, did some work on the next PR push for ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT, and, of course, worked here on site. I miss my garden, I miss the cats, but that’s life. The money for this was good, and I couldn’t turn it down.

Did an hour’s worth of errands, which included swinging by home to referee the cats a bit and pay some bills. I’m doing yoga morning and evening here — the bed is softer than I’m used to, and,with all the sitting I’m doing at the computer, my hip is bothering me again. In three weeks, I get to see my acupuncturist, so it will all be fine. In the interim, I’m using a foam roller.

Today is more article work, and then I’m going to a cocktail party for a couple of hours just over the bridge. I’m not very good at parties, but this one is thrown by someone I really like, so I plan to enjoy myself. The bulk of the weekend will be spent on THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY, though.

I also managed to submit a manuscript. I’ve been waffling as to whether or not to send it to this particular publisher, but it needs to find a home, it fits the guidelines, and off it went. I would rather send it to my current publisher, but I need to submit THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY first.

I started re-reading ELUSIVE PRAYERS again, with an eye to another rewrite. That was the tie-in to THE WIDOW’S CHAMBER serial, spinning off Brother Joseph, the supposed monk that Nora suspects is a con artist. Initially, in ELUSIVE PRAYERS, the entire action took place in one small western town Brother Joseph stopped in on his way to taking care of “unfinished business” from his past before permanently returning to his order in Vermont. Originally, it was a novella, dealing with just the situation he found himself in the middle of in this town, and setting the seeds for the relationships between the widowed Eliza Grief and Mick Kane, and between Melody, the minister’s daughter, and the cynical “Doc” of the town. Those could then be explored in their own novellas. Now, I’m wondering if perhaps I need to make it a novel, and either have some of the characters intersect with Joseph on his quest, or bring the object of his quest to the town and finish it there. Without the context of THE WIDOW’S CHAMBER, it doesn’t really make sense as a novella — it feels truncated and unfinished. The characters are strong enough to carry a book, but I’m not delving deeply enough into the situation for it to be satisfying. The style is very lean, but I still think I need more sensory detail. I have to re-think it — frustrating, because here I thought I had something nearly ready to go. I tried making the piece more about Eliza, but this is Brother Joseph’s story, and I have too much fun exploring him.

I need to think about it. Figure out the best way to tell the satisfying story. Then, of course, I have to worry about where to send it – it’s not a romance, technically, although two couples in the book fall in love. It is a Western, but I’m worried that, because my protagonist is a flawed monk, people will try to put it into a religious line, when that’s not the point of the piece.

But, first and foremost, I need to tell the best story possible, and figure out which structure works best for it.

Devon


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available in print and digital versions from Champagne Books, and digitally on Amazon Kindle.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Friday, August 19, 2011


Tessa likes the eggplant

Friday, August 19, 2011
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Cloudy and humid

The WATCHMEN, HOGFATHER, and Donna Leon Mystery Deconstruction Workshops have been cancelled by Savvy Authors. I’m glad they let me know far enough in advance so I hadn’t yet put in the 60+ hours I put in preparing them. I was going to re-watch WATCHMEN this weekend and finish the lectures. It’s a big weight off my shoulders, and the Donna Leon was going to be my last deconstruction workshop for awhile anyway. Most of the students can’t be bothered to read the books or watch the movie before class starts, even though it’s clearly stated in the requirements they’re supposed to read/watch before they sign up. When I remind them of it, most of them don’t bother to do it over the course of the class. Now, if you misunderstood the requirements of class, wouldn’t you try to catch up? Most of them can’t be bothered. And they wonder why their writing gets rejected for not following submission guidelines! It’s been frustrating, and the time and work invested on my part doesn’t balance out with the money or what many of the students put in, so I’d already announced that the Donna Leon would be my last for awhile. The Anita Blake and Harry Potter deconstructions are still on for later in the fall, and it gives me more time to prepare for them. And I wouldn’t have been paid enough for the workshops for the cancellation to affect my bottom line negatively. So it all worked out.

Steady work day yesterday, although not as productive as I would have liked, mostly because I was mentally exhausted. And, this site job is more complex than most other similar jobs, so I have to spend a larger portion of the day on the reason I’m here! The windows don’t open here (central air) and it’s driving me nuts (yeah, I know, short drive). I’ve revelled in the quality of air and the scent of the sea since I moved here, and I miss having the windows and doors open all the time. And, of course, I miss the cats terribly.

I re-read part of a piece I’m playing with. I was happily surprised by its quality and focus. The characters are unique, and the relationships I set up are dynamic. I need to sort out what still needs to happen, plot and story-wise, so that I don’t lose the thread and the voice. I like it a lot and think it has huge potential, but I’ve got to finish SPIRIT REPOSITORY first. I’ve got a big two-day event over at Long & Short Romance next week – an interview on Tuesday, and I’m answering questions all day on the chat loop on Wednesday. I’ll post the links on the relevant days. This is in the Annabel persona, promoting ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT.

I’ve got an errand or two to run later this morning, and I have to clear a few projects off my desk before the weekend. Busy is good!

Devon


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available in print and digital versions from Champagne Books, and digitally on Amazon Kindle.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Published in: on August 19, 2011 at 6:32 am  Comments (3)  
Tags: , , , ,

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Thursday, August 18, 2011
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Sunny and pleasant

ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT is now available in a print edition! I’m pretty thrilled. It also means that I can pursue some of the bookstore opportunities locally. I’M IN PRINT! Had a great conversation with my publisher, and it fuels the need to get THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY to them quickly. I’m so far behind on that, it’s not even funny.

I’m on site and things are fine. I’d just rather be home, because now I have a nice home in which to live! And it’s noisy here — landscapers and tree cutters and all the other “busy work”.

Yesterday was busy here, but I also managed to get the next assignment done for Confidential Job #1. It was really good. Today, I’m here all day, working from this site, polishing a couple of articles and getting them out the door.

I found my notes for the book I want to write along with my students during the year-long intensive, and I’m very excited. I was worried that I’d lost them. I knew I’d found them in the move, but then I put them in a “safe place” and couldn’t find them again. But I managed, and I can look over everything in time for the class. I’m also prepping my other fall classes this weekend — once I’ve gotten my articles out the door!

That’s the scoop — just trying to get some steady work done over the next few days.

Back to the page.

Devon


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available in print and digital versions from Champagne Books, and digitally on Amazon Kindle.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Published in: on August 18, 2011 at 8:04 am  Comments (4)  
Tags: , , ,

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Sunny and cool

It’s really starting to feel and smell like fall in the early mornings and the evenings, even when the day time hours are summery.

Yoga was great yesterday — smaller class in the cloudy weather, but lots of fun. So many seals were on the sandbanks watching the humans do silly things! And then the sharks turned up, and all the beaches were closed, as far as getting in the water.

Came home, did some more grocery shopping, got to work, got as much done as I could, headed to Buzzards Bay, took the photographs, we had the meeting, did some more work when I got home.

Today, I’m off on a difficult assignment. I should have internet access while I’m there for the next few weeks, but, especially today and tomorrow, it will be challenging. I hate leaving my house and the yard and the cats, but that’s the reality. I’ve still got a couple of articles to finish this week, too, and more work for the Mermaid Ball. I’ve got my project bin packed, so that I can polish the fall courses.

Thank you, yesterday, for all your support when I was feeling so blue. I can’t wallow, because I have other assignments which need my focus, and I have to see what I can learn to do things better moving forward. I’m feeling creatively exhausted, along with physically, and, although August was supposed to be “vacation”, that’s not how it turned out. I’m about to go into an insanely busy autumn, and I have to dig deeper and find the inner resources for it. I’m trying to find pockets of time where I can renew myself, but the reality of what I want/need and what needs to get done aren’t in harmony right now. Hopefully, I can move them closer together over the next few weeks.

Devon


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available from Champagne Books and Amazon Kindle.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,051 other followers