Thursday, June 30, 2011


View of the water in Newport
Thursday, June 30, 2011
Dark Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Sunny and beautiful

One of my students, Carol Dunsford, gave me a nice mention in her blog, talking about my “Setting as Character” class and my recommendation of A DISCOVERY OF WITCHES.

Stop by and check out her blog — it’s good stuff (and not just because she mentioned me). Give her some comment love!

I’m late posting this morning, because I left at 6:30 to drive to Chatham for Yoga on the Beach, by the lighthouse. It was the best yoga class I’ve ever taken. The teacher is amazing — she knows how to encourage and challenge without incurring injury. It’s Kripalu style, with which I’m comfortable, and I discovered I’m a lot more able to do many of the poses than I expected. She also had wonderful suggestions for the backbends, which I have the most problems with. There were about 30 people, men and women, from about eight years old to eighty. Great group. It was an hour and fifteen minutes, but felt like fifteen minutes. My thighs currently aren’t speaking to me, but they’ll get over it! 😉

I love practicing in the sand — there’s more give than on a hardwood floor, but there’s also support. They meet every day; I can’t take that four hour chunk of time out of my morning every day, but I hope to go at least twice a week.

Missed the turn back to 28 going home, so drove all the way out to the Eastham rotary and took Rt. 6 coming back.

Came back, watered the garden, showered, ate, and am hitting the page. I want to spend some quality time on SPIRIT REPOSITORY this morning, and then I’ll have to mow the front lawn in the afternoon.

Yesterday, I poulticed the swollen bites, which meant I had to stay quiet for 90 minutes with my legs elevated — yay, reading time! Everything’s much better now.

The annoying neighbor I call Idiot Boy was putting metal through his wood chipper yesterday. When he’s not working my last nerve by walking away and leaving his power tools on (right across from my writing room window) or sitting in his truck idling the engine for 30 minute stretches (and then moaning about the price of gas), he’s putting metal through a wood chipper. Hence, the nickname.

In spite of him, I managed to revise a short story and get it out to an anthology call that unexpectedly landed on my desk.

Bessie the Squirrel is Very Busy burying things in the vegetable bed. I hope she won’t think I’m after her stuff when I go to harvest my vegetables. The strawberries are starting to ripen, so, provided the birds don’t get them first, we may actually have a strawberry harvest soon.

Obviously, no matter how hard I work on “loving kindness” aspects of practice, I’m going to fall short when it comes to insects. I’m an ant murderess, often before breakfast (which, I suppose, is better than being an aunt murderess). If the ants would stay at the bottom of the yard, we could leave each other in peace. However, since they insist on pock-marking and weakening the whole front yard in their tunnel-building towards the house, I do not consider them practicing “loving kindness” towards me, either! 😉

In other words, although there are aspects of Buddhist Practice I try to incorporate in my own life, I’m going to keep killing ants. And mosquitos. Etc. I tried negotiating. I tried using natural pests to eat other pests. The ants are relentless. I have a momentary victory, but I’ve hardly won the war, and next spring, I will have to be much more aggressive far earlier.

On that happy note, I’m going back to the page. 😉

update: The June Wrap-up for Goals, Dreams, and Resolutions is here.

Devon


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

Advertisements

Wednesday, June 29, 2011


Detail of lobelia planter, Rosecliff

Wednesday, June 29, 2011
Day before Dark Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Sunny and humid

I dashed outside yesterday before my first cup of coffee because the Squirrel was digging in my vegetable bed. Excuse me, I did not give you permission to harvest the radishes! Actually, he was burying something, not digging it up, but I chased him anyway. By the time I’d finished the watering, I’d been bitten in three places on my legs — large welts. These aren’t spider bites, so they’re only itchy and uncomfortable and swollen, not making me sick. I poulticed the worst one, but again, it didn’t need a venom draw, even though it felt better. I think I have to adjust the formula slightly for mosquitos. I’m poulticing them all this afternoon, just to make sure.

Phone interview went well, in person interview went well. On the latter, my application has to be signed off by “The Man”, and I can’t see that happening, not with my history of activism, so we’ll see. Either it happens or it doesn’t. I have an in-person follow-up to the phone interview next week for the other job, and I think that will work out.

Stopped at the Sandwich Library to switch out some books — hard to find a parking space. But I used Ye Olde Parking Karma and got one anyway. So hard that one woman handed me books in the parking lot, asking if I’d take them in because she couldn’t park! Since they weren’t overdue, I said sure.

Spent the afternoon on paperwork and research.

Up early this morning. It was raining, so I didn’t have to water. It’s the little things in life, y’know? 😉 Took my mom to a medical appointment, and then we did all the week’s errands on the way back, which took most of the morning, so I’m late getting online. Got more paperwork to do, and I’ve started the next assignment for Confidential Job #1.

I need to do some plotting on SPIRIT REPOSITORY, because I re-arranged a few things, and then I want to spend some time with that.

I’ll be late getting online tomorrow, too, because I’m going out early for a yoga on the beach session. Then, in addition to the writing, etc., I’m going to have to get gas for the mower, mow at least the front, and maybe start painting the bureau.

I’m trying to keep it a quiet weekend for the holiday — doing stuff around the house, writing, maybe attending the Wampanoag Pow Wow on Sunday. I need to get some “home front” stuff done before my next class starts on Tuesday.

Devon


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

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


Bench detail, Rosecliff

Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Cloudy and mild

There was a saying on my mother’s side of the family, the ones who farmed and gardened to supply their restaurant — that the weather on the 27th indicates the weather for the next seven weeks. If that’s true, we’re in for a treat, because yesterday was lovely.

For the most part, I gave myself the day off from writing. I did some admin work, and follow-up on a few things. I read in the afternoon, some research, some for pleasure. I finished LESS THAN KIND by Mercedes Lackey and Roberta Gellis, a fantasy novel tied to Tudor England. It’s the last book in the series, and I never read the others, but, for the most part, it stood alone. I also finished THE BARN AT THE END OF THE WORLD: THE APPRENTICESHIP OF A QUAKER, BUDDHIST SHEPHERD, which was very interesting, especially when she talks about her struggle not to respond to irritating situations with anger.

Wrote to the Preservation Society of Newport, praising the flower show, mentioning the parking problem, and offering some possible solutions (all of which were more positive than my first reaction). Got a very nice response almost immediately.

Deadheaded the roses which faded, some of the pansies (can’t believe they’re still there), the petunias, and weeded. I’m going to have to get more gas for the lawn mower this week, and mow later in the week, and soon get some oil for it, too.

That’s pretty much it — a much-needed, quiet day. I’m back to the page today, have an interview with a potential client, and found some messages on my phone from another potential client. So we’ll see. September is so over-booked, I’m getting alarmed, and I’m having some growing pains in the career. I’m glad I’m in demand for a particular type of job, but I’m trying to shed that kind, not get more clients in, because it doesn’t fit in with my overall vision. So I’m trying to balance the need to keep the short-term, quick-pay jobs along with the longer-lead-time jobs. It’s getting more and more difficult for me to accept site jobs, because not all of them have internet or wireless access, and, at this point, because of the teaching, I have to have internet access. I put a lot of emotional pressure on myself with these jobs, which needs to stop, because I have to remember that I can always say no if the dates or conditions don’t work. Saturn Retrograde Growing Pains — what can I say?

Anyway, I’m going to try to spend some time on the page, return the phone calls, and then mentally prepare myself for the meeting.

Devon


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

Monday, June 27, 2011


Rosecliff

Monday, June 27, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Sunny and pleasant

Yesterday, we went to the Newport Flower Show, held at Rosecliff in Newport, RI. Rosecliff was designed by Stanford White and bought by a Nevada silver heiress. This year’s theme was “The Blue Garden” and it was gorgeous!


Theme of “the Blue Garden”

There were nine individuals gardens tied by theme leading to the mansion, which was filled with award-winning displays related to entertaining.


Table display inside mansion

Outside, the gardens opened out to the vendors, a tent with children’s activities, music, and a lunch tent. It was all beautifully done, and, in spite of bus after bus pulling up to disgorge people, it was run beautifully.

The day was rather misty, but lovely. I wasn’t really in the mood to shop, but I looked at everything, and wound up buying one small china piece and a package of potpourri from The Herb Lady which currently scents the whole house.

The only glitch was when we arrived back at the Casino, where we had to park our cars. I was in a double row, with car noses pointed at each other. The lines were faded, but visible. And a bunch of dingbats had started a THIRD row, boxing in the middle cars, of which I was one. How effing stupid can you be? It’s a parking lot that can handle several THOUSAND cars. The rows are clearly marked as double rows. Why would you make up your own row when there’s an empty one on the other side of the aisle?

The idiots were damn lucky that, in my particular case, there was an open spot diagonally from me, and my car was just small enough to fit between the two noses (with a cat’s whisker width on either side) so I could get out, after some backing up and angling. Or someone’s damn car would have been trashed or towed!

Wrapped up my class last night. They were an extraordinarily wonderful group, and I was lucky to have them.

This week, I have to focus on getting as much work on THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY done as possible, do the work for Confidential Job #1, and work on stuff for the Mermaid Ball and the Centerville Beautification Committee. My next class starts July 5.

I also have to weed — some of the beds need a bit of attention!

Back to the page.

Devon


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

Published in: on June 27, 2011 at 6:50 am  Comments (7)  
Tags: , , , ,

Saturday, June 25, 2011


The eggplant is growing!

Saturday, June 25, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Rainy and warmer

Yesterday was a Busy Day. Got some work done early, headed off to the breakfast. Overshot the Hyannis Yacht Club, but found a friendly local cop, parked behind his car, walked up and say, “Hey! Good morning! I’m lost!” He was very helpful. He recognized me as the one who always waved and said thank you to the cops guiding traffic around construction. The local cops seem to find me as entertaining as the guys at the dump do.

Got to the breakfast on time, shared a table with three very interesting women, and the speakers were great — one being Carol McCleary, who writes the Nelly Bly mysteries. It was so good to see her again! We talked for a hot minute before I had to dash to get home, change clothes, and do the make-up for TV.

I overshot the studio, too, but turned around and found it without police assistance this time! They were running behind a bit, which was fine, because we all just sat around and talked. Of course, I got lipstick on my shirt just as I was sitting on the set chair! Urgh!!!! The wardrobe girl in me was going nuts!!!

My interviewer was a lovely man, who’d actually taken the time to read the first third of the book — he doesn’t have an e-reader, so he printed out as much as he could before the ink ran out! He asked some really good questions, including one on belief that I answered honestly, when I should have probably been more circumspect, so let’s hope no one shows up on the lawn with torches and pitchforks! 😉 I’d hate to have traded the safety I feel here for a moment on television. But the crew actually came out of their various booths to chat after the interview, so at least they found it interesting. Of course, I’m fretting about some things I wish I’d phrased differently, but that always happens, even in the best interviews. You don’t get to edit when it’s live! 😉

The content of my talk was good, but my body position was tense, and I kept doing the death-grip on the arms of the chair, so I don’t think it LOOKS good –a downside for TV. I so prefer radio, because I can rely just on the voice and the content. But overall, it was a positive experience, and the show’s producer is also an actress and knows actresses who need monologues, so I may be doing some playwrighting again in the future!

I got home in time for supper, completely wrung out.

Managed to spend some quality time with my students. The next book and the students are my priority today. The interviewer got me talking about THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY, so I damn well better finish it soon! 😉

To bed early, tried to sleep in, but the cats weren’t having it. Have to do some bill-paying and running around today, but the bulk of the day will be spent on SPIRIT REPOSITORY and winding up the class.

Have a great weekend!

Devon

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

Friday, June 24, 2011

Friday, June 24, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Rainy and cool

Yesterday was busy. Worked in the morning. Realized that some of my student comments vanished and I have to go back and re-read and re-comment on some of the work.

Costume Imp had to leave, and didn’t want to, and we didn’t want him to, so there was much foot-dragging going on. But we finally packed the car and got him to the bus. I headed back to pick up a few things. It wound up taking NINE HOURS for him to get back to New York, which is just completely ridiculous. It’s supposed to be five and a half.

I got my next assignment from Confidential Job #1, and it looks really cool. I prepared the deviled eggs. I stripped the beds, did two loads of laundry, and vacuumed.

Just as I left for the meeting, the skies opened up, with thunder and lightening and rain as though someone tipped over a large bucket onto the Cape. It took me an hour to drive what usually takes about 35 minutes. But I got there, the meeting went really well, and we feel good about what we’re doing. The event’s going to be a lot of fun, and, with strong support, we’ll get this marine hospital done!

I returned one of the books I’d been lent as my “Recommended Reading” to get my science up to speed so I can be more useful. I’m keeping the other one, because I’m still working on it.

Came back and did the postcards, which was an exercise in frustration. I’ve been a loyal Canon customer for years, but the MX860’s plastic parts in the bottom tray suck. It doesn’t grab the paper properly; it says there’s no paper; it eats the paper; it won’t grab from the top tray. I’ve complained about it to them since I got the printer, and all I get are bullshit “there theres” instead of solutions. I am fed up. I have an all-in-one so I can run my business. By selling inferior products and not coming up with solutions, Canon is actively interfering in my ability to earn a living. And that is not acceptable.

Out of 48 post cards printed, only 22 are usable. The rest were chewed or smeared, and that’s once I actually got them to run through the printer. Not acceptable. I can’t afford to lose more than half of every batch I print. That’s ink and paper and time, which adds up to a lot of money.

I’d get my old one fixed, the Multipass I loved, which would print if you ran over it with a dump truck with barely a pause, but it’s not compatible with Mac. They phased it out without having the Mac software for it. And replaced it with a cheap piece of crap. I shouldn’t have to buy a new printer because the one they sold me sucks so badly bits of the plastic tray come apart in my hands, especially when I’ve complained about the same issues since the DAY I got it. Needless to say, Canon is getting a letter, cc’d to the BBB and other consumer organizations. With any other issue I had on any other product, they found a good solution immediately. The fact they won’t with this one and give me a song-and-dance about it means they KNOW it sucks and won’t take responsibility and fix the problem properly.

Anyway, I’m off to the Cape Cod Writers’ Association breakfast, and then I’m back to change and do the make up for the TV appearance, and then, this afternoon must be dedicated to my students.

It will be a busy day, and a social one. I’m a writer, used to being on my own with my characters. I’m not used to dealing with PEOPLE! 😉

Devon


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

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Thursday, June 23, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Rainy and cool

I answered the interview questions for the Christmas In July promotion first thing yesterday morning. My day is July 18 – -don’t worry, I’ll remind you! I also set up a meeting next week about teaching in person here on the Cape this fall, and discussed the possibility of another promotion via an “Author Roast” in October. So things are busy!

I felt like I was setting a bad example for my students because it was all before writing my first 1K of the day, but it had to be done as soon as it came in! And then, when I finally wrote my daily quota, it all sucked and I’m going to have to throw it out. We all have those days.

So the RADIO spot is actually a TELEVISION spot, which I almost had to refuse because of the whole no-photographs thing. But I got special permission because it’s community TV and students learning how to shoot, etc., etc. Of course, this means I better do my own make-up and hair . . .

I got a bunch of work done for the Mermaid Ball and for the Centerville Beautification projects. I fiddled with the sidebar and got the ball into it, and the press release is here.

Went to the Centerville Library to return books and get more out; went over to the HUGE library in Mashpee and found some interesting stuff. We got stuck in traffic coming back because of yet another accident (three major ones in the past three days), so I took a back way and didn’t get lost.

Tried to get some more work done. Had a simple dinner, and then got back to work. Didn’t do much commenting because I swear, by late afternoon, someone had scooped out my brains and replaced them with mashed potatoes!

Finished SACRED GROUND by Mercedes Lackey. Excellent. I don’t know if she has any other Jennifer Talldeer books out, but I’d love to see more with that character. There’s a novella in TRIO OF SORCERY, along with the Diana Tregarde novella, where I first was introduced to the character.

Costume Imp and I sorted out what I’ll wear to the Mermaid Ball (a navy velvet evening gown rather than a costume) and on camera on Friday. — which also means I have to come home after the breakfast, change, and do hair and make-up. But at least that’s all figured out.

Today, I settled into the writing immediately. I’ve got to do more work on just about damn everything, knock out an article, and make the deviled eggs for tonight’s meeting. Imp leaves this afternoon (Waaaah). And I have student exercises on which to comment.

I also got an invitation to join a really cool collaborative group. I need to think about it. It’s headed by someone whose work I really like and respect, but, as I reminded him, I’m probably older than his mother. I don’t want to spread myself too thin, and, honestly, I was so tired at the time he shot me the invite that I felt about as creative as wilted lettuce. I’d love to be part of something like this, but don’t know if it’s the right time. At the same time, I don’t want to miss out on a really unique and wonderful experience. So, I’ve got some thinking to do!

I’m going to fix Imp a nice eggs benedict brunch for Imp before he heads back to the city, and then try to knock out as much of my work as possible before tonight’s meeting.

I hope we have good weather next week — there’s a beach yoga class I want to check out!

Back to the page.

Devon


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

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Rainy and warm

Got some good writing done yesterday, and caught up with my students, too. Booked a spot at Friday’s writers’ breakfast — I get to support Carol McCleary, who I met a few months ago and who writes the mysteries featuring Nelly Bly. The organizer congratulated me on my new book, and wondered if I’d step into a slot on the radio show taping Friday afternoon, since someone cancelled? I jumped at the chance. So I’ll be headed from the breakfast to the studio!

The owner came home and fixed the toilet, so we’re back to having two working toilets in the house, which is great. Costume Imp did some stuff in the yard.

Imp and I drove over to Falmouth, to the new farmers’ market over on the Barnstable Fairgrounds. It’s in early stages, so not much was there yet, but I bought some fabulous soap! I know, me and my soap, every time I see handmade soap, I’ve got to buy some.

I showed him Ashumet Holly Sanctuary, which is right beside the Fairgrounds. Last time I was there, the fields were completely flat, and the hollies were prominent because the other trees were bare. Now, the fields are waist high in clover and daisies and other plants, and all the trees are leafy, so the hollies are tucked in among them.

We were hungry, and decided to head over to Dennis to the new Summer Stock restaurant. It’s on the grounds that house the Cape Playhouse, the cinema, and the art museum. The Cape Playhouse has been running since 1927 — a place based on such a compound would be a great setting for a comic mystery.

The restaurant is wonderful. The design’s good, the presentation’s good, and the food is outstanding. Prices are reasonable — not cheap, but fair for the area and what you get is well worth it. The staff is really friendly. Definitely a place to which I want to return often.

We wandered back to the Playhouse’s gift shop and found a poster featuring one of the actresses we’ve both worked with, along with one of my favorite actors. They appeared in a show here together — from the photo, it looks like sometime in the 70s or early 80s. I had to get it! Can’t wait to tell her what I found!

Took a peek at the Art Museum. They have some interesting opportunities there, not your run-of-the-mill stuff. I’ll have to look into it further.

Came home, hung out on the deck for a bit, and Imp cooked dinner. I scarfed it down, and then dashed down the road to the Beautification Committee meeting. We had a good meeting, we each have a list of things we need to get done, and solid dates.

Came home, and Imp and I had our Summer Solstice out on the deck. It was lovely. Nice way to turn the wheel!

To bed late, up early. It wasn’t supposed to rain, so I did my morning watering, but now it looks like there will be a cloudburst any minute! I have a LOT to get done today, wrapping up a few things for the Mermaid Ball meeting tomorrow, getting postcards printed to take to the breakfast, preparing myself for the radio interview, and preparing for the trip to Newport this weekend. Imp and I have to deal with my costume for the Ball today, too, and he has to get ready, because he heads back to “the concrete jungle” tomorrow. I’ve got some environmental science books I have to finish reading/taking notes on, and a press list to cross check. And my daily writing quota, and my students.

Off I go!

Devon


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHTavailable from Champagne Books.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Summer Solstice
Sunny and pleasant

Yesterday was a dedicated work day. I got a lot of writing and business done; it’s never enough, but it helps. I got a good chunk done on THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY, got out a couple of proposals, made a manuscript submission, and worked on the backlog of short stories that needed to go out.

In the late morning, Costume Imp and I drove to Hyannis to check out Tim’s Books, right on Main Street. We both found some great stuff. And found parking about two doors down from the store! Imp went on to meet a friend of his he’d recently learned moved to the Cape, and I went on to run errands, get some work done in the garden, and go back to do more work.

We had a craving for Kentucky Fried Chicken for dinner and gave in to it. Sometimes, you just need the fast food!

The evening was about reading (SACRED GROUND by Mercedes Lackey for me, very good), and then watching the repeat of the GAME OF THRONES finale. It was well done, and hopefully, the way they’ve left it means there will be a lot more of Peter Dinklage’s character in Season Two next year. His work is always good, but he’s outstanding here. And the scene between Jamie and Caitlyn was great. I’m debating whether or not to read the books in the interim.

Someone’s coming to fix the downstairs toilet this morning, my students have their next exercise due, and then we’re hitting a couple of farmers’ markets and natural food places. I’ve got a meeting tonight, and then we’ll do our Solstice ceremony.

In the meantime, I better get back to THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY and do my quota for the day! 😉 I hated to stop yesterday, but there were other things that had to get done. I’m hoping over the weekend, I can block off five or six hours just to work on the book.

Devon


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHTavailable from <a href="http://www.champagnebooks.com” target=”_blank”>Champagne Books.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Monday, June 20, 2011


Cliffs behind the Highland Light

Monday, June 20, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Sunny and cool

There’s an interview with me over on The Book Connection, as Annabel, giving some background on ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT.

Good weekend. I got some good writing in on Friday and Saturday, but didn’t get much student time. I was feeling pretty lousy. Better, but not myself.

We drove over to the arts festival in Falmouth. It was well done, but there wasn’t anything we couldn’t live without. We stopped at the farmer’s market Mahoney’s Garden Center sponsors on the way back. I grabbed an oregano plant and they had an edelweiss plant. As in the little white velvety Alpine flowers. I saw a lot of them when I was actually in the Alps, years ago, and thought it would be fun to have a plant.

We took it easy on the deck in the afternoon, reading and hanging out. I cooked pork chops in a honey tangerine glaze for supper.

We watched INCEPTION on HBO. What a frustrating movie! Convoluted just to be convoluted. If they’d stripped down the storyline a bit, it would have had more impact. Also, I kept getting ahead of it and waiting for it to catch up, which I don’t like. I don’t like to sit there, tapping my foot, saying, “Yes, I figured that out twenty minutes ago. Where were you?” to the characters. Ellen Paige’s character was mis-used — the way they set her up, she should have been able to re-architect the dreams while they were in them — that should have been what made her so special. Joseph Gordon-Leavitt was great, as usual, and I wanted more of him in the film. But then it wouldn’t have been as much of a star vehicle for DiCaprio. I find true ensemble pieces much more interesting than star vehicles. This pretended to be an ensemble piece, at time, because there was a “team” involved, but the supporting characters weren’t developed, for fear they’d draw focus from the star. I wonder if it was originally written as a true ensemble piece, and then re-written to be a star vehicle. Although, a well-written piece properly cast can still create memorable supporting characters with just a few, well-placed lines, provided the “star” is secure enough not to demand those types of scenes are rewritten. It could have been a great ensemble movie; instead, it was a mediocre star vehicle. The production design was gorgeous, though.

Sunday was a quiet day. Got some good writing done, caught up with my students (finally), and am grateful that this group is so motivated and dedicated that they kept up with the work and supported each other even when I was too sick to stay on top of it. But I’m healing well, and getting my energy back. And now I have an anti-venom recipe that I can whip up from stuff I keep in the house, and it takes about ten minutes.

Read Henning Mannkell’s THE FIFTH WOMAN. The translation reads awkwardly and seems to oversimplify the stories (which are pretty depressing anyway). I wish I could read them in the original language, so I’d know how much of what bothers me is the writer and how much is the translator. Skimmed through some of my research books. Wrote a proposal and submitted it.

Costume Imp made us carmelized French toast for breakfast yesterday, and I cooked spaghetti and meatballs for dinner. So, we’re eating well! The farmers’ markets are opening, but it was such a long, cold winter and such a cool spring that not much is yet available.

Watched the premiere of FALLING SKIES last night. Much better than I expected. I was worried Noah Wylie would do a variation of his Librarian character, but he’s really made Tom unique. I was prepared to dislike Drew Roy (who plays Hal), because there’s been so much fuss about his looks in the pre-release marketing, but he was good, and the way he and Wylie play off each other is great. And they’ve got Colin Cunningham as the Sawyer of this group, which should be interesting. It’s inventive, the writing’s good, the pace is great — they reveal information actively while moving the story forward and giving you just enough backstory so you get a good sense of the enormity of what happened, without tedious clumps of information thrown at you. And they start out in my home state (supposedly — I don’t think they shot here, it looks a lot like Vancouver to me), which amuses me. They’re handling a large ensemble, and defining characters quickly, but memorably. They’ve got some interesting female characters who are played by interesting actresses — although they’ve acquired another blonde, so I’m wondering if one of the blondes gets killed off during the season.

Will watch the finale of GAME OF THRONES at some point this week. I was kind of surprised that so many viewers are so upset Sean Bean’s character was killed off. A) Sometimes really good actors don’t want a multi-year commitment, so enjoy their episodes and what they contribute when they’re there instead of having a fit; B) it was announced months ago he was the co-star in Ashley Judd’s new series, so DUH, he can’t hold major roles in two shows unless they’re shooting at the same studio and have worked out a schedule that would be brutal — days on set are usually a minimum of 16-18 hours for major characters, even if they’re not shooting every day, and you only have 8 shooting days to do an entire, one-hour episode; and C) from what I hear, the series follows the books quite closely, so if you want to know whether or not your favorite character lives or dies, go look it up! They weren’t keeping it confidential to build buzz, like they did on LOST. The information on the character’s probable destiny was readily available, so stop acting so shocked and betrayed.

Hopefully, Bean’s departure means more screen time for Dinklage! 😉

Anyway, I’ve got a lot of work to do for the Mermaid Ball this morning, writing to do, and checking in with students. I better get back to the page.

Devon


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

Saturday, June 18, 2011


View over Provincetown Harbor

Saturday, June 18, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Sunny and warm

Yesterday was kind of rough. Didn’t feel well at all due to the bite. Called the health line (since I now actually have access to health care), but unless I’m going into shock, all they can do is give me cortisone cream, and that didn’t help anyway. It was so swollen that I couldn’t wear jeans — couldn’t get them on. Had to wear yoga pants.

I did my morning quota for SPIRIT REPOSITORY, but didn’t feel well enough to comment on student work, which puts me way behind for the rest of the weekend. But there’s no point in not being coherent — that doesn’t help them.

Costume Imp moved the ENTIRE lawn. He made some adjustments on the lawnmower and wrestled it into submission. And he showed me what he did, so the next time it acts up, I should be able to do it, too. It looks great.

We also found the ants moved under the urn — I’m ready to take a flamethrower to the front yard — it it was “make the lawn boil” again. And he found some damage to the base of a tall tree in the back that could be a problem, and I have a message in to the owner. I’d hate to lose that tree, but if it keeps getting eaten at the base, it’s going to go over, and it’ll hurt someone’s house badly.

I took him to lunch at the Beehive in Sandwich, one of our favorite places. Then, we went over to the Library, and I got my library card from them — they are on a different network than the rest of the cape, with a loan system consisting of 28 off-Cape libraries, including the fabulous one in Plymouth and the library at Tufts University. And i got out a nice stack of books here, too!

We stopped at Lavender Moon on the way back, and he found a couple more pieces for his collection, and then the grocery store. Turns out our colleague who’s leaving Broadway to come here made the front page of the local paper and will be only one town over from me, as an artist in residence. So we shot over a welcome message. He drives up (with his cats) tomorrow.

I did some research and adjusted a poultice recipe. I made a concoction of oats, baking soda, turmeric, and olive oil, mixed it well, slathered it on a wound pad, and taped it down over the bite. It’s not entirely logical — the fang marks are even, but spaced so far apart the jaw would belong to something about 40 pounds, and I’d notice a 40-pound something clamped to my leg! So I don’t know what it was, just that it hurt like hell. The poultice made a big difference. I could feel it draw, and then I could feel when it was done (about 90 minutes later). It drew out something icky, the swelling’s down, and, once I cleaned off the turmeric (which stained the skin a bit), it looked pretty good. I put on an echinacea-and-eucalyptus cream that worked better than the cortisone, and feel much better all the way around. Fever’s gone, too.

Imp prepared us a lovely light Tuscan supper of basil, mozzarella, tomato, prosciutto, and melon. Yum.

We watched THE SORCERER’S APPRENTICE on HBO. Some clever moments, but there were passages I found downright offensive. Glad I didn’t pay to see it in the theatre!

At least I’m feeling better today and can hopefully make progress with everyone’s exercises. We’d hoped to go to an arts festival and a farmer’s market today, but if it’s raining a lot, we might skip it.

Had a decent work session on THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY. It keeps surprising me, in a good way. I just have to stay focused and finish.

Costume Imp woke up early and is already baking! So I’m doing my writing.

Devon

Friday, June 17, 2011


View from Province Lands Observatory, near Race Point

Friday, June 17, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Sunny/cloudy/warm/humid

It turned out to be a gorgeous day. Costume Imp and I got on the road a little after 9 and headed east. Well, we had to go west first to get gas, but you get the idea. . .

Provincetown was surprisingly quiet for this time of year. We parked over on Bradford Street, walked Commercial Street and the pier, drifting in and out of stores. We drove up to the Province Lands Observatory — I’ve been going there since 1968. It was a beautiful warm day without too much wind.

We visited the Highland Lighthouse on the way back. It’s one of my favorites, and Edward Hopper’s painted it (which is why it may look familiar).

I wanted to take Imp to lunch at the Beachcomber in Wellfleet — but it was closed, because today is their big opening for the season!

So we came home, drank mojitos on the deck, cooked dinner together and relaxed.

I started commenting on student exercises, and something was annoying me on my upper thigh, itchy, painful. Turns out it was a spider bite that swelled to the size of a baseball. How it managed to bite me in just that spot — if I think about it, I’ll dance around the house yelping for the next hour, so we’re just not going to dwell on it. So everything had to stop while we treated it with vinegar, witch hazel, a slice of onion, rosemary oil, lavender oil, and ice. Got the swelling down, but this morning the bite area is still large, it still itches, and I have a bit of a fever. So, treating all of that. It’s better, but it’s still annoying, and it’s slowing me down. The cortisone cream I tried is making it worse, so I’m going to try a tumeric-and-olive oil poultice with a bit of baking soda to draw the venom later. Yes, Grandmother Spider, you got my attention, could you be a little clearer in your intent? 😉

This is what I get for forgetting to take the vitamin B every day. Vitamin B makes you smell bad to insects and taste bitter if they dare to bite. I completely forgot.

Got some great news from a friend last night. I’m delighted for her, and look forward to when she’s ready to make the announcement to the world.

Up early, usual routine. Have to mow the front lawn before the rain starts. Also have to head out to Sandwich for a few errands, and I want to grab some cucumber to cool me down from the inside!

I have to get off the write up for Confidential Job #1, and catch up with my students. Got my morning quota done on SPIRIT REPOSITORY. It was rough, because I’m not feeling well, but I did it.

Devon

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

Thursday, June 16, 2011


Planter of petunias in the front yard

Thursday, June 16, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Sunny and warm

Boston won the Stanley Cup! I’m both delighted and surprised! It was quite a game yesterday. Winning something this big in someone else’s building is always bizarre.

I have my debut over on The Writers Vineyard talking about introductions, and then I’m also over on The Book Connection with talking about inspiration everywhere. Visit both and say hi!

Yesterday morning, I got a lot of my work done and spent time with students. Had a good session on THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY, did work for the Mermaid Ball, etc.

Costume Imp and I hit the road at 11. We drove out to Tobey Farm in Dennis to look around, stopped at Parnassus Books, and had lunch at The Optimist Cafe in Yarmouth, where both the atmosphere and the food are great. Then, it was back to Hyannis to the farmers’ market, Trader Joe’s, the liquor store, the the other grocery store.

I went back to work, doing some more stuff on Confidential Job #1, and Costume Imp cooked — pizza with pasta salad. He’s a fabulous cook, so it was great.

Watched hockey at night, celebrated the victory. Up early this morning – and Imp was up early, too (not my fault, swear)! I got my daily quota done on SPIRIT REPOSITORY, and then, in a little while, we’re headed east. We’re supposed to have a good day today, weather-wise, and I’m hoping there won’t be too much traffic/too many tourists.

I’ll have a lot to do when I get back (like mow, finish the work for Confidential Job #1, spend time with my students, work on articles). But I’ve also got to take advantage of the weather!

Devon


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