Monday, Dec. 2, 2013: Adventures in Maine

Monday, December 2, 2013
New Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Sleety and cold

Don’t forget to sign up for the “Organize Your Life” Workshop on Sat. December 7. A few hours on Saturday afternoon, and your writing life is sorted out for 2014! The techniques will serve you well beyond the class and the year. Information here.

We haven’t had a good sit-down for quite awhile, and that’s because I haven’t been around.

Monday night, during the 11 PM news, it became clear that Wednesday was going to be a stormy, difficult travel day. So, we stayed up until 3 AM baking lemon cupcakes and preparing beef stroganoff and putting together everything else we needed to take to Maine. We caught a few hours’ of sleep, called Maine at 8 AM and asked if we could come up a day early. The answer was a resounding “yes”, so I did as much work as possible, and we were on the road by 11 AM.

The drive wasn’t bad — a little testy around Boston, but, otherwise, traffic wasn’t bad and roads smooth. We made a couple of favorite stops up in Kittery and York, but made decent time, and arrived near sunset a little after 4 PM.

We were staying at my great-uncle’s house — a place we’ve visited since the mid-1970s. Many memories tied up in that house. But my great-uncle was moved to a nursing home a few months ago, so the house is mostly empty. Before that, he wasn’t able to do much, especially not cook. In other words, in addition to bringing up all the food we expected to need for the week, we also brought up pots and pans, and, from my writing bag, I had my wooden spoons, can opener, and wine opener.

We relaxed on Tuesday night and went to bed early. I slept like someone knocked me unconscious.

Up early Wednesday — and it was a miserable, stormy day. We were so glad not to be on the road. We hunkered down in the little house. Maine can be spooky, with the dark and the fog and the silhouettes of trees. There’s a reason a lot of horror and thriller writers live in Maine! There’s no internet access there, so I got as much done as I could, then hopped over to the library in the early afternoon, set up there, did what I needed to do online, and came home.

My job on the big Thanksgiving holiday is to make Wednesday’s dinner for the family members who work all day setting up the Hall for the holiday feast. Hence the stroganoff. The stove in the house is AWFUL — a very old electric thing. I was glad I’d done the cooking ahead of time on my good gas stove. It took over 40 minutes to heat the meal up. And no, it couldn’t go in the microwave, it would have tasted disgusting. But we had the meal and the wonderful Portuguese bread and the dessert I made, so it was all good, not to mention the chance to sit around and talk at the meal.

The Big Day consisted of writing in the morning, and then going over to the Hall to set up. We have so many people for dinner that we rent the Legion Hall every year. Everyone tosses in a few bucks for the rental and the food. I help set up, and am in charge of the mashed potatoes and the sweet potatoes. We’re taking vats with 20-30 pounds of potatoes in each, mashed with a four-foot tall masher. Not for the faint of heart.

We had 53 people for dinner this year, of all ages. The tables are in a “U” formation, and there’s the dinner buffet set up on one side, and the dessert buffet on the other. Great food, good company, no egos or drama. The rules are, if you show up, you treat everyone with kindness and respect. Those rules are always followed.

After the dinner, the clean-up crew moves into the massive kitchen and starts washing and drying the dishes. Yes, I help with that, too. I’m on the drying team. Dishes and pans from the Hall are washed, dried, returned to their shelves; personal pans and platters are washed, dried, and set out on the counter for pick up. We all split the leftovers and then go home in a turkey coma.

Shortly after getting back to the house, my cousin (well, not sure how the permutation works, but I call her my cousin) came over and we drove into Portland to visit my great uncle. He’s in an amazing rehab/nursing facility — brightly painted walls, an outstanding, enthusiastic and very kind staff, and it smells fresh without the scent of decay or chemicals.

My great-uncle is now in a wheelchair. His memory’s fading, but he recognized us still, and lit up when he saw us. We took him down to the very cheerful dining room so he could have his dinner, and met some of the friends he’s made at the facility. It’s amazing how they all light up the minute you treat them as an individual, with kindness and dignity. Some of them are fading, mentally, but their bodies are still going strong. Many of them are still sharp as tacks, but the body hasn’t kept up. But everyone was worth spending time and few words with.

My cousin goes every day. By this point, she knows most of the staff and the other residents. She’s practically an additional staff member. She’s also an amazing human being, and I admire her enormously. A lot of it, though, is just talking to the residents like people, which is something all of us did, asking questions, listening to their stories (many of their anecdotes are hilarious — a lot of these were quite the hell-raisers, back in the day, in the best possible way).

We got my great-uncle settled for the night after dinner, and went back to the house, and packed for the trip home. My cousin feels a lot of guilt about my great-uncle being in the facility. However, it’s as good as it gets for that kind of place, and so much better than any other facility of its type I’ve ever seen. He gets excellent, round-the-clock care, which he needs. He also has interaction with other people, more so than when he was home alone, getting checked on several times a day by the family. The family simply can’t take care of him at home, because he needs round-the-clock care, and hiring three shifts/day of in-home care would still mean numerous trips to the ER whenever something went wrong — as it does, unfortunately, quite frequently at this stage in his 96 year old life. He truly has a better quality of care in the facility, and family members visit him every day. In this particular case, it was the right choice.

This is probably the last time we will be in the house. It holds many wonderful memories. There were still some things there from my grandmother (she died four years ago), which my cousin gave me — little mementoes that wouldn’t mean anything to anyone else but me, because they hold specific memories.

It’s an emotional threshhold on which to stand.

We drove back on Friday. Very smooth drive. Everyone was far too busy shopping to be on the road except around the malls. Since I don’t shop on Black Friday on principle, I was happy to have clear roads.

I don’t believe stores should open on Thanksgiving itself. I think it’s disgusting. I also believe that stores that encourage brawls — and, let’s face it, the brawls happen in the same stores every year, such as WalMart, because that’s the kind of individual those stores attract — should forfeit their right to open on both Thanksgiving and the following Black Friday, if there is an altercation in the store. The individuals involved in the altercations should be banned from the site for 18 months, so they can’t come back the following year and behave badly again.

Exhausted when we got home Friday, but got some work done Friday afternoon, and more work done on Saturday, although a lot of things went to hell without even the handbasket. I managed, however, to upload all the topics for next week’s class. All I have to do next Saturday is show up and teach. Caught up Friday night with some episodes I’d missed earlier in the week, but what is the use of On-Demand when the show is only available for three days after broadcast? WTF?

By Sunday, I felt like I’d been run over by a steamroller. I got some work done, fretted a lot, tried to rest. It was the first of advent. We managed to get the tree into the stand (the stand SUCKS and is so poorly designed, don’t even get me started). The lights are on, some ornaments are on it, the festive fabric is mostly in place, and some of the decorations are up. It will be a work-in-progress for the upcoming weeks.

I re-watched THE ITALIAN JOB last night (such fun), THE TOWN (I like it better every time I see it), and sobbed my way through ANGELS IN AMERICA. It was a brilliant piece of theatre and translated into film wonderfully.

I’m exhausted and spent, but I have work to do this morning, then I’m helping set up NMLC’s tree at the JFK Library for the Spectacle of the Trees event, and then, who knows? Maybe I’ll get to bed early.

Right now, I have to try and get some work done, and hustle more work for the coming weeks.

Devon

Wed. Sept. 25, 2013: Feels like a Monday

Wednesday, September 25, 2013
Waning Moon
Cloudy and cold

Whew! Monday, I hit the ground running, did as much as I could early, and then hit the road. I had to drive to CT.

Good drive, easy roads, but I was tired. Lovely day to drive, though.

I was not able to get online where I was; although I could have worked on other writing, I didn’t even turn on the computer. I needed the break.

Instead, I read a book by an old friend of mine, Janet Laurence, called A DEADLY INHERITANCE. I knew Janet years ago, in the UK, on the conference circle, and she was very kind to me when I went through a nasty break-up. We lost touch, and I’m delighted that she’s working on a new series and I can track her down and reconnect. She’s a terrific writer and a wonderful human being.

Drove back to the Cape yesterday. Another terrific day to drive, and it was pleasant. The cats were happy we were home. I just had time to unpack and eat, and then I had to leave for a meeting.

There were several meetings scheduled yesterday, but I attended the one for the organization I’m leaving. I resigned my position with the organization — I think they’re wonderful, but the schedules conflict too much with work, and with my work at both the Marine Life Center and the Writers Center. Also, since more of my work takes me out of town, I can’t commit to either their meeting schedule or their events. I’m sad to leave, but it was necessary for everyone’s well-being. I will help the new person transition in over the next couple of months.

I have to hit the ground running again today, and I’m preparing for a client meeting with the west coast. I don’t believe anything until the contract is signed and the check’s cleared, but the project sounds good.

My new editor just sent me an assignment that I’m very excited about, my other editor sent me notification that my next assignment shipped (which means it should arrive today), I’ve got articles to polish and books to write, not to mention work on the play.

Better get to it.

Feels like a Monday.

Devon

Published in: on September 25, 2013 at 6:18 am  Comments (1)  
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Wed. April 10, 2013: Time to get back to work

Wednesday, April 10, 2013
New Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cooler

I’m over on Babette James’s site today, interviewed about OLD-FASHIONED DETECTIVE WORK, the play, and the topic workbooks.

Antagonist Cover

I’ve released another Topic Workbook by the way, called THE COMPLEX ANTAGONIST. It deals with creating interesting, complex antagonists in your pieces, instead of cardboard cut-out ciphers. This one is only $1.99 (because it’s shorter than the others), but also contains a mix of exercises and lectures. It’s available on Smashwords.

Yesterday, we went to Salem. It was a gorgeous day. We had a nice drive up there, walked around, checked out the stores. Some of the stores seem to open randomly, which was a shame, because those were the ones in which we would have spent money! We were looking for stuff that’s unique, and that we can’t get anywhere else– because that’s the point of going to Salem! We had a nice walk on the common, meeting a very cute Yorkie puppy named Teddy who was just the friendliest thing, and a cat sitting in the window of one of the houses we passed just wanted attention!

We had a lovely lunch at one of the restaurants, Victoria Station — our waitress had a great sense of humor.

Traffic coming back was awful. We were stuck in the Big Dig and it was crawling all the way down to Braintree — for pretty much no reason, except that the cars at the beginning of the line were being stupid and not moving along. A rock hit our windshield and nicked it, which upset me. The temperature also dropped again as soon as we hit Plymouth — it had been in the 70s up around the North Shore.

Didn’t do much but watch TV last night — was very tired.

Now, have to get back into the swing of work! There’s plenty of writing to get done! And I have to polish the presentation for the conference at the end of the month.

Devon

Wed. Oct 24, 2012: Wide Feedback and Wacky Road Conditions

Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Waxing Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Rainy and cool

Yesterday was about cleaning, yard work, trying to get information I needed in order to get it to someone else, waiting to hear word on a project, working with my students, making lasagna, etc. One of my editors fought for me and got $$ for something the publisher wants me to do, but didn’t want to pay me for. Love this editor.

Got my feedback on my final project for the Sustainability class — which was the first three chapters of the mystery novel. Two people thought it was a great idea, and, although I didn’t encompass every idea in the first three chapters, they could see where I was setting the seeds, and how it could grow. They loved the idea of subtly melding these ideas in a work of fiction, rather than standing on a soap box. The third peer reviewer HATED it. Hated everything about it, said I didn’t understand what a “class” was and what it meant to write a paper — now, considering how many of us were doing non-traditional, art-based projects and HAD PERMISSION to pursue them, that was inappropriate. The funniest comment was, “There’s no room for Nancy Drew in sustainability” and the individual was mad that there was a dead body in the first chapter instead of a treatise on conservation. Um, it’s a murder mystery — you need the dead body to set things into motion! Ouch, and yet I couldn’t help laughing, because the vitriol came from such a place of narrow-mindedness and self-righteousness, all one could do is shrug. You could say, “I see what the person is trying to do; I don’t think it’s effective” rather than people don’t have a right to express sustainability concerns in terms of art. I knew it wasn’t going to please everyone, but the response from the other two reviewers at least let me know I’m on the right track. They had some excellent suggestions to keep it on track and raise the stakes.

Got on the road a little after one. Dropped off the minutes for tonight’s meeting with the president of that organization, returned books at Sandwich library — one was overdue and I had to pay a fine. 2 cents. TWO CENTS. Seriously. I handed over two shiny pennies. Hilarious.

Drive to Providence wasn’t bad, although there was construction around New Bedford and the dipshits who cut around cars and force their way back in, in a single lane, because they think they’re so important they can’t be behind another car drive me nuts.

Didn’t get lost this time, found the bus drop-off, and there was Costume Imp! Drive back was fine, we got settled, heated up the lasagna, opened a bottle of cabernet, and had a good dinner.

Lots to do today, and then tonight, is the Writers Night Out Dinner and Annual Meeting.

I have papers to read, work to do with students, and edits to which to attend.

Devon

Published in: on October 24, 2012 at 6:51 am  Comments (2)  
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Fri. Oct. 5, 2012: I am Home!


DEATH SPARKLES releases October 12, 2012, featuring nine authors including Devon Ellington’s “Sea Diamond” featuring Fiona Steele

Friday, October 5, 2012
Waning Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Cloudy and cool

I AM HOME.

Can’t tell you how happy I am about that. I felt like such crap by yesterday morning, really like I’d warded off days of emotional battering. I have to remind myself that unhappy people resent happier people and actively try to destroy that happiness. But keeping up defenses and constantly wondering where the next sneak attack is coming from gets wearing.

On the upside, I managed to leave early than I expected. I got on the road before the worst of the storms hit, and, although traffic was bad, I managed to stay ahead of the storms all the way home. Grateful for that. Made brief stops for gas and in Mystic, to pick up some more of my favorite coffee. Other than that, all good, and got home in time for dinner.

Tessa was delighted to see me. Iris said hi, but she had my mom while I was gone, and my mom is Iris’s favorite person, so she wasn’t particularly upset. Violet did “talk to the tail” for a few hours, and then sat on top of me and scolded me most of the night.

The storms meant no computer work last night, so I went to bed early and had a good night’s sleep in my own bed.

I hope it clears up — the yard needs a lot of attention. I was only away for a week! Managed to give the mums some love this morning, but there’s a lot more that needs to be done. As it gets cooler, we’re slowly taking in the plants that need to overwinter. I’ll be putting in bulbs soon for next year, too — have to go to Country Gardens and get them, first! I also need to start decorating for Samhain — it’s already October!

Lots of work to do today, including finishing the article I couldn’t finish yesterday and getting the rough drafts of my projects done and uploaded for class.

The cover for OLD-FASHIONED DETECTIVE WORK is awesome, and, as soon as Solstice approves it, I’ll be able to upload it and share! DEATH SPARKLES releases next week — I look forward to that, too!

Have a great holiday weekend all!

Devon

Thurs. Oct. 4: Exciting Times and Time to Go Home!

Thursday, October 4, 2012
Waning Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Cloudy and warm

Worked with my students yesterday, got some good work done on a few other projects. Got an apology from the slow-paying client with a promise to “pay next week”. We’ll see if that happens. Watched several of my Sustainability video lectures, and several of the World History lectures, and took the quizzes. This week’s lectures are useful in terms of my flood/drought project. I also did an email interview promoting both the Jain Lazarus books and ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT that will go up in late November.

Tessa is sulky and upset. She got out of the house and was difficult to catch yesterday, poor little thing. Hopefully, she will be glad to see me when I get home, and not act like Violet. Violet always does “talk to the tail” for three days before she forgives me.

I’m over at the Writers Vineyard today in my Annabel Aidan persona, giving thanks for this year’s Writing Harvest.

It’s more stressful here than it needs to be; I will be glad to go home. Although “home” will be chaotic for the next few weeks — the owner decided the outside of the house needs to be painted and a new roof put on.

I had a lovely meeting with an agent last night, and we had a good chat that ranged over many topics. We brainstormed some ideas, and now it’s up to me to see if I can come up with proposals that fulfill what we discussed. Excited about it.

I want to get the revisions on the article done before I head back today, and will try to get as much schoolwork done as possible. Well, I’d LIKE to curl up and read a good book, but that is not going to be an option until about Sunday! And that book will be something I’m reviewing!

Quick reminder — I’m over at the Muse Online Conference next Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, teaching my Supporting Characters workshop. Hope to see you there!

Off we go — I hope the drive back won’t be bad this afternoon. I’m tired of driving in bad weather and dense traffic.

Devon

Mon. Aug. 27, 2012: Mermaid Ball a Success!

Monday, August 27, 2012
Waxing Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Sunny and cool

Busy weekend! Worked like crazy on Friday, trying to get things cleared off the desk.

Saturday morning, over to the country club first thing, and we set up for the Mermaid Ball. Back home in the afternoon for a quick break to get ready — Tessa followed me around. She was fascinated by the hair preparation, the make-up, all of it. She wanted to be involved in everything. It was really cute.

The Mermaid Ball itself was a lot of fun. Busy, hectic, but fun. People looked beautiful, they bid on auction items, all in all, a good time.

Then, of course, we had to take the room apart! And load up. I had a car full of decorations. I had to unload when I got home, and then my feet hurt, so by 1 AM, I was sitting in the living room, my feet soaking, and a glass of Talisker by my side!

Up at 4:30 on Sunday morning, on the road just before 6. Drove to CT, picked up my mom, turned around and drove back to the Cape. We stopped in Niantic for lunch. I was exhausted by the time we got back. I was in bed by 7:30 last night.

Up early this morning. Out on the deck to tend the plants and for the first writing session of the day. I’m about to mow the front. Then, I have a phone interview for an article (getting quotes), a rewrite of a piece due today, and I have to head up to Sturgis Library and take the borrowed dress to the cleaners.

OLD-FASHIONED DETECTIVE WORK is going into edits, and I’ve got my beloved Shawna Williams back to guide me through it. I’ve got to get back to CRAVE THE HUNT, and back to another project that dropped into my lap and has to be turned around this week. The ghostwriting project went off Saturday morning, so I’m waiting to hear back on that; I’d like to be able to finish it and invoice it by next week. I’m still waiting for some of the galleys on DEATH SPARKLES. I’m wrapping things up with the year-long people. Most of them plan to form their own writing group and keep working together, which is great. They need to fly free without Teacher looking over their shoulder all the time. They’re ready.

My Introduction to Sustainability class begins today — with 26,000 signed up. Sigh. Here I was hoping for actual interaction with the teacher. Oh, well, we’ll see how it goes. Assignments are due every Sunday, for those of us who want certification, so I want to get started earlier, rather than later. I don’t want to scramble at the last minutes, especially since it’s a field new to me.

Finishing up the prep for the Tarot Workshop. We’ve got a few slots left, so if you’re interested in a basic class on reading and then developing readings for characters in your work and using tarot to break through blocks, you can apply here. Well, I was going to give you the link, but it’s not coming up on the site. Do NOT get me started.

Got to go mow so it’s done before my phone interview. Busy, hectic week. So much for taking August off! Also have to have a planning meeting for some of my other classes, so we can schedule them.

Off to the races!

Devon

Mon. Feb. 13, 2012: Pedal to the Metal in the Flurries

Monday, February 13, 2012
Waning Moon
Mars Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Cloudy and cold, snow flurries

Busy, busy weekend! My goodness, me!

On Friday, I drove to CT and back. We left at 6 AM, and I was back in the late afternoon, which was great, because I didn’t expect to get back until the evening. And I even managed to stop at the Book Barn in Niantic and in Mystic to pick up a few things!

The Thursday night live chat with my year-long students, brainstorming about the round robin novella we’re doing, was fun. We got to be silly and throw out all manner of ideas, but out of that came some solid elements we can use as our foundation.

Saturday, it was pedal to the metal all day long, working with my students and starting the HEX BREAKER revisions. Driving back on Friday, I came up with some interesting marketing ideas — there’s Jain’s fan base, and that needs to expand. I know more people, and, with the deepening of her character that’s happening in these revisions, she’ll also appeal to a wider audience, without coming across as diluted to her loyal fans. Billy’s been a fan favorite since Day 1, so it will also be Billy-centric. I also worked on the revised outline for HEART-BINDER, did some work on HEART-BINDER, and I’m working on scenario ideas for a few other pieces for this other opportunity. I’ve got a start on one of them — if I can keep up a steady pace with that while not dropping any of the other balls, I should be able to hit a June deadline.

Sunday was my Day of Rest. I needed it. I was wiped out. Okay, so I did a bit of work on HEX BREAKER, and I read the assignment for Confidential Job #1, but I stayed offline! I also wrote about 2500 words on a piece that’s been gnawing at me for awhile, and the character said, “Either give me some attention, or I’m outta here.” So I gave her some attention. I’m hoping it will be a story in the 10-12K range, but we’ll see.

Read a delightful book called SHELF LIFE by Suzanne Strempek Shea, about a writer who takes a job in a bookshop. It’s an MA author talking about an MA bookshop — which, of course, now I want to visit! So well done, and it makes me want to read her novels, too.

Made banana pudding (still needs tweaking) and cooked a nice chicken-and-sage pasta. Sighed over gardening catalogues.

I’ve got a lot of admin work and bill paying to get done, and then it’s time to go get some cat food! Those little darlings have a low provisions in the cupboard, and they’re not happy about it.

All three cats are being very, very clingy lately.
Devon

Wed. Jan. 25, 2012: What Day Is It, Again?


Weekend snowfall on the Cape

Wednesday, January 25, 2012
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde
Sunny and pleasant

Yesterday completely got away from me, blogging-wise — interruptions all morning — planned, but still made it more difficult to get things done efficiently. Monday, I was on the road most of the day.

Busy weekend. Saturday, we got about a foot of snow. I made use of the time, writing, reading, working with students. Friday and Saturday, I wrote like crazy. I did about 6K on the harpy book — and moved the first ten chapters of what was Book 2 of the trilogy back into Book 1. That brings the first draft of HEART SNATCHER to 130K, which won’t work, so I have some serious cuts to make in revisions. That’s okay, it’s worth it. THIS is where the book is supposed to end. It feels much better than the previous end point, which was really the Black Moment, not the ending.

It gave me the momentum to vault immediately into Book 2, tentatively called HEART BINDER, and that is going very well.

Still working on short stories in and around that, and other client work. A new critique client dropped off a job yesterday, so I’m doing that. I have a review to write today, and another book to start, and I have to stay current with my students. I’m rearranging the lectures for Holiday Hocus Pocus a bit — it’s going to be a fun week, and I want to make sure I have as thorough a range of information as possible. I’m also taking another look at the material for Sensory Perceptions — that workshop starts the day 5 in 10 ends in March. I’ve got to get the application materials ready for the three month tarot intensive — people already want to start applying.

Sunday, I drove to CT. I re-plotted Books 2 & 3 of the trilogy as I drove. I also looked ahead — where do I see the characters’ lives in 15 years? In 20 years? There are possibilities that one of the daughters will wind up in her own adventure. The knowledge of how I see the characters maturing over the years helps inform the trilogy, whether or not I write any books with these characters beyond the trilogy. Monday, I drove back from CT, still spinning stories. Makes the drive go much faster, but I have to be even more aware of my surroundings, so it’s not “distracted driving.”

Today will be busy — including a few errands. The owner’s coming to put the final coat of paint on the repaired wall — it looks good.

Just keep working, dreaming about spring planting, and enjoying every day as much as possible!

Devon

Published in: on January 25, 2012 at 9:14 am  Comments (3)  
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Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Tuesday, September 27, 2011
New Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Sunny and warm

Come visit Karina Fabian on A BIBLIO PARADISE and hear all about her great new trilogy!

Michelle Miles will be there on Thursday, talking about her new release, ONE KNIGHT ONLY.

I am home, thank goodness. Still a little queasy, but home. The cats are relieved.

Yesterday, I did as much as I could with my students, wrapped things up in CT, but had to rest a lot. I had what I call the “Poison Headache” — the kind that comes from food allergies food poisoning, etc., along with the nausea and dizziness. I managed to do a Costco run and also get some ginger cookies and an apple, which helped, and at least gave me enough energy for the drive home.

The drive home was okay; stuck around New Haven for about 40 minutes, but, other than that, even with heavy traffic, it moved. Got home a little after 8:30, unloaded, played with the cats, had some scrambled eggs.

I love the new Victorian bordello lamp I bought at the antique store. And, yes, it works. However, it doesn’t shut off. The switch won’t go off. So I have to unplug it. I paid $9 for it, so I’m not going to put in $50 for a new switch.

Still don’t feel well, but there’s a lot to do today — errands, working with students, work for the Marine Life Center, my own work, a meeting tonight. I have to take it slowly, because I still don’t feel well, but at least I’m home, and that makes up for a lot.

The fog was heavy from New Bedford on home, and this morning, it was even thicker.

Came up with a new Jain Lazarus short story while I was driving, though, so it was time well spent!

Devon

Published in: on September 27, 2011 at 7:17 am  Comments (9)  
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Thursday, September 8, 2011

Thursday, September 8, 2011
Waxing Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Rainy and cool

I’ll be over at the Writers Vineyard later today, talking about energy vampires.

Got a lot done on site yesterday morning, both online and wrapping up what needed to be done there, packing the car, etc. Due to torrential rains, I had to cancel acupuncture — the roads I needed in order to get there were flooded.

So, instead of heading south first, I headed straight north, once I left. Traffic was heavy, and then it started to rain heavily again, so it was a long journey home, punctuated with a nice stop in Mystic for a few minutes to pick up a few things. I got home in time for a late dinner, unpacked some stuff, and went to bed early.

Woke up around 4:30 this morning to thunder and lightening; cats and I tucked under the covers and went back to sleep. So, no yoga on the beach for me today, and a slow start.

Need to spend time with my students and do some work on my own books and sort stuff out from while I was away. I need to clean off my desk, and also start the fall cleaning. I’d like to be done with it by the Equinox. And I’ve got a meeting tonight in Buzzards Bay, post Ball.

I’m percolating on my books, which is why I’m not writing about them. I have to form them a bit more in my head before I can talk about them.

Devon

Published in: on September 8, 2011 at 8:01 am  Comments (4)  
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Wednesday, July 8, 2011

ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available from Champagne Books now.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Sunny and HOT!

When you’re done here, hop on over to Diane Parkin’s blog. She’s got me (as Annabel) with a guest post on mixing what you know and what you don’t in your writing, and how that contributed to the creation of ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT.

Hit the ground running yesterday. Since I have to get the early morning watering/garden stuff done BEFORE I sit down at the desk for my first 1K (or I’d have to do my 1K at 4 AM), I now need two hours before hitting the desk instead of one for the yoga/meditation, and that means getting up earlier so that I can still be at my desk early enough in the morning to tap into my best productivity. If I wait to water the garden too late, it cooks, so it needs to be done early. I like to be very present when I’m working in the garden, not just thinking about what I should be writing (except when I’m deadheading the rhodies), so it’s kind of thrown off my process a bit. I’ll get used to it, it just takes some adjustment.

Did some work on various projects, not enough on SPIRIT REPOSITORY, dumped the next round of grass clippings at the dump, came back, loaded up the car, and drove to CT. It was an hour later than I’d hoped to start. It was a lovely day, though,

However, I wondered why the heck I was so grumpy, since it was such a lovely and sunny day. Then, I realized that I’d forgotten to eat breakfast and it was now past lunchtime. Since I am an army who moves on my stomach, I stopped near the MA-RI border at a McDonald’s, gobbled down a quick meal, and was in a much better mood by the time I got back on the road.

It was an okay ride — sunshine, I had music playing, I could hear myself think. Lots of traffic around Providence, as usual, and then from Madison on down was pretty intense.

But I got here just fine, in the late afternoon, got to work, and it was all good. Had a relaxing evening. It’s so much warmer down here — high 80s, low 90s.

Up very early this morning, yoga, meditation, and writing. I’m going to spend some more time on the page with SPIRIT REPOSITORY this morning, hopefully get some work done on Confidential Job #1, make a Costco run, do the work I’m here to do, and then head back. I need to wrestle this chapter of REPOSITORY onto the page, so that I can move on. I don’t want to write the Bonnie chapter first again and then go back to the Rufus chapter — I need to write chronologically for awhile, and I need to pick up the pace so we don’t hit “middle sag.”

Gas is 32 cents a gallon cheaper up where I am than down here, so I’m glad I can get back without having to fill the tank here!

I’m going to make the rounds now, and then get back to the page. There’s another book to get out.

I want to shout out to Juliet Blackwell — her third Lily Ivory mystery, HEXES AND HEMLINES, released yesterday. I look forward to reading it!

Devon Ellington

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Thursday, May 26, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Cloudy and cool

I am back home, thank goodness! Tuesday afternoon, I had to drive down to CT, take care of some things, and drive back on Wednesday morning. Thank goodness for laptops and wifi, so I could handle my class during all that.

The drive down wasn’t bad, even through Providence, for once, although New Haven was hateful. Got to stop at the Book Barn in Niantic, though, which was pretty darn good. I picked up only a few things — the first Dresden files book by Jim Butcher, a Paris memoir, and a couple of books about New York that I need for THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY and some other books.

Decided to stop in Niantic again on the way back yesterday morning, to pick up a book I knew I needed, but hadn’t bought the day before, and I found another book I’ve been trying to get my hands on for about two years.

I was gone about 24 hours, and so much bloomed! I am going to have a boatload of pumpkins (yay). The zucchini and strawberries are getting blossoms, both types of tomatoes have come up, as have the green peppers. I will be able to put stuff i the ground this weekend, after all.

I’ve started to sit more than just in my morning meditation. I’m sitting at night, before bedtime, and, the last few days, in the afternoons as well. Not for long, just 20-30 minutes. But it makes a difference.

Oh, and I finally have health insurance. Gotta love Mass & their universal healthcare. It took a lot of paperwork, and there are more papers to fill out, but I’ve been “accepted” into the system, which means next time I get sick, I can actually see a doctor without getting into insurmountable debt. Of course, I’ve still got to get set up with a doctor (which takes six weeks or so here), but if something happens in the interim, since I’m in the system, I’m still covered. Thank you, Mitt Romney, for universal heath care in this state!

Read the Paris memoir — A TOWN LIKE PARIS by Bryce Corbett. It’s hilarious. Very witty and engaging. One can see how he could get hired for a job about which he knows very little, because he’s smart and funny.

Planning to mow the meadow later this morning, deadhead the rhododendrons, trim a few edges, prune the lilac, and then dig up some of the sand in the vegetable bed (now that I have buckets) and put in garden soil in preparation for planting this weekend. I’ve also got to figure out how to get to Martha’s Vineyard next week — which ferry to take, what the schedules and costs are, where I can leave the car, etc.

Back to the page for awhile, and then to the class, and then to the rest of it. Right now, it looks like it wants to rain, which would put a crimp in my garden plans. I’m happy with the progress on THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY. It’s not as fast as I’d like, but the quality is pretty good, so I don’t mind slowing down if what’s getting on the page is worth it.

Made some other decisions. Will ease out of a set of responsibilities when I meet my commitments at the end of the year with one organization, because the ratio of money to time just isn’t balancing out. I’ve tried several different ways to reconfigure it, and it’s not working, so I will extract myself as gracefully as possible. I’ll still be working for them in other areas, but they need someone else for this particular portion of it.

Costume Imp is coming back up in about three weeks for a week — and wants to throw a party! Guess I should start coming up with a guest list . . .

Devon

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