Tues. Jan. 31: Busy, busy!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde
Cloudy and cold

Flat out working all day yesterday until I couldn’t even see the screen anymore. Good work on the novel and short stories; more good work on another short story so far this morning, and will have to circle back to the novel later. Worked with my students, wrote and posted a few lectures, wrote a review, worked on a client manuscript, discussed a possible additional editing job.

Today, I have to be out and about for most of the day, popping back in to do some client work, and then there’s a meeting at the National Marine Life Center at 5 to start planning this year’s Mermaid Ball.

I felt discouraged about my lack of fitness, in spite of the yoga, and dreaded going back to weight training. However, it’s essential for a woman of my age to have that in the regimen. SoI went back — and to my delight and surprise, the heaviest weights I used to struggle with aren’t the slightest bit challenging any more. So the yoga truly has strengthened me, in gentle increments. And I have to go and buy heavier weights! In some cases, I was doing triple the reps, and it still wasn’t an effort. That made feel better about things, in general!

Got to get some correspondence out, and then I’m running errands for the rest of the day. Busy, busy! I’ll have to do some client work when I get home tonight.

Believe me, I’m grateful for the work coming in. February is often a slow month.

Devon

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Published in: on January 31, 2012 at 9:22 am  Comments (2)  
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Mon. Jan. 30, 2012: New Possibilities, Good Work Pace

Monday, January 30, 2012
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Busy weekend. Happy with my new short story; can get it out today. Still have to polish two more, but they’re not on the same tight deadline, and get going on a third. Work continues on the second book of the Harpy Trilogy. Have to get back to the other book, and prepare for the edits on HEX BREAKER to come through soon.

Got a lot of client work done; will wrap up one project today and the other a few days early (I hope). In negotiation for a new one. Working with my private students; working on the lectures and listings for Holiday Hocus Pocus.

An interesting possibility has come up — it would take a good bit of work initially, but the payoff would be good, it would stretch me in new directions, and, if I can integrate it into the rest of the work, it might be worth it. I have to mull it over a bit more and do some planning, to see if it’s actually viable, or if I’m taking on too much.

Yesterday was my day off. I like making myself take at least one day a week off, and not even turning on the computer. But it definitely makes me feel more pressured when I return on Monday morning, even when I’m on top of the workload. But I need that day off, to read stuff because I WANT to read it, not because I HAVE to read it, and to putter around the house and do other stuff.

It was cold, but sunny, so we took a walk on Craigville Beach. Lovely. I found some lovely stones and shells. I need to get a book on shell recognition. I thought I had one somewhere — maybe it’s just not unpacked yet. Then we drove over to Sandy Neck beach — that was lovely, too. Amazing how the beach is filled with smooth chunks of granite. I picked up a few interesting ones there, too.

I’m working on garden planning — maybe “garden dreaming” is a better term. I’ve got plenty of seeds. I’m going to buy small herb plants this year and maybe some others, but, other than the Asian vegetables I want to grow, I’m in good shape with the seeds. I hope I will have a better harvest this year — but my primary focus is on herbs and medicinals, because that’s what I use the most.

Back to the page. A lot to get done today.

Devon

Fri. Jan. 27: Rainy and Raw — Good Day for Reading!


The twins

Friday, January 27, 2012
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde
Rainy and raw

Yoga was great yesterday. I was able to do both Triangle Pose and Revolved Triangle Pose correctly, without props — big breakthrough for me.

Had written an article and a review before I left at 7:30 AM. Decent start to the morning.

Came home, scarfed down some coffee and breakfast, headed back out to take my mom to her eye appointment — carting my work with me. However, it took much less time than they told us to expect, so I didn’t get as much done as I planned! 😉 But it went well, and that’s what matters.

Getting out early meant I had time to go to the Sandwich Library. I found some of what I needed, and a lot that wasn’t on my list, but was so interesting, I couldn’t resist!

I’ve started reading the Grim Reaper series by Judy Clemens — excellent. Really well done. I started with the third book,which I happened across browsing in the library, and now I’ve got the second. I plan to buy copies of all her books, and then read them in order. I’m also interested in her other series, the Stella Cross series. I like her style. It’s a clean, lean, spare style, but there’s a lot of complexity in character and situation.

Came home, polished and sent off the review,and spent the rest of the day with students. Until 11 PM. Little too much time on the computer, but there it is. Needed to get done. Spent some time on a couple of other client projects, too.

Which meant I had a slow start this morning, reluctant to turn on the machine. Had to take my mom to acupuncture at 8 AM anyway, and am just getting started now. My eyes are tired, so I’ll probably do a chamomile-lavender wash for them later this afternoon to rest them.

I need to finish up a short story later today, too, for my own deadlines, and get back to work on the novels. It’s a grey, rainy, raw day — I’d much rather be curled up with a good book.

And I’m reading one, too — in addition to the Judy Clemens books. I’m reading LITERARY WOMEN by Ellen Moers. Fascinating. She opens with a wry, hilarious letter from Harriet Beecher Stowe, detailing the dozens of things she, as a woman, got done, in the time it took the plumber to bother to show up and fix her sink. People only think UNCLE TOM’S CABIN when they think of Stowe, but her other writing is exceptionally lively and funny. If you ever get a chance to read her domestic comedies, do it. Moer also sets out a study of how Jane Austen’s EMMA influence George Eliot’s ADAM BEDE. Fascinating stuff.

Back to the page.

Devon

Thurs. Jan. 26, 2012: The Teaching Juggling Act


Tessa checks out the buffet table, the morning after the party

Thursday, January 26, 2012
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde
Still dark out

I’ve got a piece on “Fuel for a Weary Soul” over on Writers Vineyard (as Annabel). Go check it out!

Busy day yesterday. Read as much student work as I could before my eyes gave out. Got irritated because a student who wastes a lot of time expects ME to organize threads to HER convenience and keep HER organized, instead of taking responsibility for herself, and wants me to “add extra slots” in classes. First of all, I am not her personal assistant; second, every extra student adds at least 40 minutes to an hour to my work day; more if they have questions (which they’re encouraged to ask — you learn by asking questions and DOING). There are only twenty four hours in a day. I put limits on classes FOR A REASON. I’m not going to work 24/7 — not for these prices anyway — and too many students in a class means I can’t give the individual attention to each piece that it needs. I allowed two extra students in the current class, and I’m stretched beyond my limit, even though the class is lively and active and working their butts off and it’s all positive. The lack of respect some people have is just appalling. I’m sure all teachers go through it. Goes with the gig. People who don’t teach don’t understand the time OUTSIDE of direct interaction it takes to do the job effectively.

The wall is painted and looks lovely. Got a bunch of work done on Confidential Job #1,and will start the second part of the two-part project today, getting the write up of the first part out. Yoga this morning, then I have to take my mom to the eye doctor to get measured for her eye operation. That’s supposed to take three hours, so I will take a notebook and the materials for Confidential Job #1 with me.

I’m happy with the progress on HEART BINDER. I just have to get a few other of my own projects back on track, and I won’t feel so pressured and resentful. I need to remember to focus on and be grateful for all that is wonderful in the class situation and let the irritations slide off more. Everyone’s working hard AND doing good work. The year-longs are required to have their drafts finished by the 31st or they’re out of the class — 50% of them are done. Not too shabby. Most of the 5 in 10s are staying on schedule, and the work is terrific. Really impressive, and the range of topics and how they’re handled is wonderful. I ENJOY going to the page and reading the material each day — I’ve just got only X amount of time to get it all done! Being interested in the world helps make them better writers.

Not loving the Mars retrograde, I have to say. Struggling with the personal crap it brings up, and trying to handle it with a modicum of grace! It will be good to be in yoga class this morning, for some kick-booty Om! 😉 That’s part of the retrograde — gaining skills to help you deal with it positively. Saying “I am positively OVER this retrograde” probably isn’t what “they” had in mind! 😉

I was assigned my new editor for the reboot of HEX BREAKER, so let’s hope that’s going to be a good partnership. I need to start pulling together my press kit for that. Once I get my edits, they’re going to have to turn around pretty fast, I’d think — two weeks or so. So the more I can get cleared off my plate ahead of time, the less pressure.

To yoga, to medical appointments (scribbling in the waiting room), and then back to the page.

I’m reading the seed catalogs and dreaming of this year’s garden. Let’s hope I’ve learned something from both what did and did not work last year!

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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Fri. Jan. 20, 2012: Talking to Wallpaper


Tessa likes the toaster cover

Friday, January 20, 2012
Waning Moon
Snowy and cold

Most of yesterday was spent with students, commenting on work. I’m getting a little tired of feeling like I’m talking to wallpaper. If someone has taken classes with me for months, and I’ve given, repeatedly, the same comment on comma placement, I expect them to actually take the comments and do something about it. This refusal certain students have to learn the fundamentals of the craft is beyond irritating. When I say STRUNK & WHITE’S ELEMENTS OF STYLE is a required text, I mean it.

I discussed it with a writer acquaintance who shrugged and said, “Culls the herd. Dipshit can’t be bothered to learn craft, more open slots for those of use who do.”

Which made me laugh, but . . .as a teacher, I want my students to succeed. I want them to go off and live independent, successful, happy lives as writers. If I do my job properly, they’ll outgrow me, and good for them. So when they’re given the tools and REFUSE to use them, I get frustrated.

On the flip side of that, one of my best, most productive students has a new book out (she started working with me while she was writing it) and it’s getting great reviews. She deserves them — she’s talented AND works her butt off. And I’m happy in the wide range of topics that the 5 in 10 students are tackling. They’re taking some interesting chances, and some of them aren’t limiting themselves to a single genre. They truly are taking advantage of this opportunity to play and experiment out of their comfort zones.

Yoga was great yesterday, and then, in the evening, I went to a lecture on women’s health issues, was was both interesting and lots of fun. Lots of laughter AND lots of information, which is a good way to go. It’s also amazing how much misinformation is out there, especially as peddled by both insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies — for their own profit, of course.

It also confirmed something I know — I have to up my exercise ante at this stage of my life. I’ve been leaning entirely on yoga the last few months. I have to add the weight training back in, and, if I don’t run, I should at least walk. My mind doesn’t want to run, but my body’s craving it. I live in one of the most beautiful areas in the country. I can get out and walk a few miles a few times a week.

We had a little bit of snow — not much, just a bit. The owner’s coming to prime the fixed wall today. I’ve got a busy (and hopefully productive) weekend ahead of me. I’m spinning my wheels on a couple of projects, and I need to pull myself out of the muck and get down to it. A new client project comes in on Monday with a two-week turnaround, so there’s no room for any self-indulgence on my part.

I’m pretty happy with this batch of short stories I’m writing. They have a verve, an energy to them, that a lot of earlier work lacked. So at least I’m going in the right direction in some of my own work. Now, to get the novels back up to speed . . .

Devon

Published in: on January 20, 2012 at 8:31 am  Comments (3)  
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Thurs. Jan. 19, 2012: Even the Cat is Busy


Tessa

Thursday, January 19, 2012
Waning Moon
Still dark out

It’s supposed to be pretty stormy tonight into tomorrow, some snow, but not a lot. I’ll know what today’s weather is like in a bit when I leave for yoga.

Owner came to work on the wall yesterday. I got as much done as I could — a lecture on the writer’s need to remember he is a business person AND an artist, and that the two don’t cancel each other out, plus critiquing the latest 5 in 10 stories. With 32 in the class, and the lengths now in the just over 1K range, that’s 32K minimum for me to read, twice a week, which takes awhile.

Worked on my short stories. Not happy with the progress on either novel these past two weeks.

Went to a library one town over. Got out a book I need as research for the current assignment for Confidential Job #1, and some books that just looked interesting. Happens when I’m around books. On the sale shelf was an enormous, brand-new Monet book. The sign said $1 for sale shelf items, but I figured this book must have been left there by mistake. Nope. It was for sale and it was $1. I bought it. When I got home, the flap was still on — original price $75. Now THAT’s a sale! I’d love to do a collection of short stories inspired by his paintings of women by the sea or walking through gardens. There’s an optional assignment for the class next month to do a short story based on a painting — I’m going to use Hopper’s painting of a woman in a theatre lobby — but the plates in these books give me more ideas. I’d love to do a collection of short stories based on the work of each painter. A few years ago, a poet put out a volume of poems inspired by Hopper’s work. I’ve got it here somewhere — not unpacked yet.

I’ve got two sets of interview questions to get out for future guests on the book blog.

Last night was the Writers’ Night Out dinner. It was at a nice restaurant in Yarmouth. Sat with a memoirist I’d met at an earlier event, and met some new-to-me people who were very interesting, too. I like that the conversations at these events is always wide-ranging. So often at these types of events, conversation focuses on desperation of not being published (and that’s usually because the ones who want to be published aren’t actually using the butt glue and getting any writing done). Here, writers are writing, but they’re also doing all kinds of interesting things and can talk about them. The balance is better and the attitude is healthier.

The speaker was interesting, and I got to toss a few ideas around with him after the event. I also got to talk to my friend, who wants to get together for our next meeting on the theatre piece, and the Center’s director, who’s interested in having me speak at one of the breakfast meetings, which I think would be tons of fun.

When I came back, I discovered that Miss Tessa Houdini, the kitten, had not only found a way to get the dishwasher door open, she’d filled up the dishwasher. And not with dishes, but with pieces of paper and cat toys. Well, she sees me filling it up, so she figured she should “help out”. It was hilarious. The papers were in the slots for dishes and the cat toys were in the cutlery holders. She is extremely organized. And she was very, very proud of herself. The other two cats were running around howling. Typical evening, in other words. Tessa has Stuff To Do, while the other two act like the sky is falling.

Trouble getting up this morning — wanted to stay in bed. But I hauled myself out, and I’m trying to get a bit of writing done before I head to yoga. More work on the wall later this morning, must push through the student work, get further on Confidential Job #1’s assignment, get some paperwork filed, mail a signed copy of a book for a friend, and then, tonight, I’m attending a women’s health lecture.

Holiday Hocus Pocus will be a fun class. Even though it only runs a week, students will have a year’s worth of resources by the end of it, and notes that will serve them, probably, for the next five to ten.

I gave some students advice yesterday about “batch outlining” — outlining several projects in the space of a few days, and then working one’s way through, project by project. I think I might need to take some of my own advice. I’m a little derailed in my own schedule of the projects that need to get done and out this year, and I need to get back on track.

You know the drill: 1000 words a day, at least 5 days a week. Such is the life of a working writer. And most of the time, you damn well better be doing more than 1K/day, and it better be on more than one project, if you expect to keep a roof over your head.

To the page, and then to yoga.

Devon

Wed. Jan. 18, 2012: Busy Continues

Wednesday, January 18, 2012
Waning Moon
Sunny and cold

There’s a new post up on Gratitude and Growth, the garden journal. I ran into someone in a bar a few weeks ago, who asked why I stopped writing it, because she enjoyed reading it. So — it’s back up. I’m in the planning stages for the coming year’s garden, so it’s good for me to write it out and muse about it for a bit.

Again, lots of wind last night.

The hole in the wall is patched; this morning, the owner’s coming to put another layer of joint compound on it. He also taught me how to empty the central vacuum bag (a good thing, since it needed emptying). I couldn’t find the brush attachment at first; later I found it. In a bureau drawer. I must have been distracted. But at least I found it!

Tessa, of course, had to participate, every step of the way!

Worked with my students; didn’t get enough of my own work done. Got some research taken care of, and started on the work for Confidential Job #1. Tonight is the monthly writers’ dinner, which should be fun.

Until then, to the page and the students! In addition to my daily quota on the novel, I need to knock out the draft of at least one short story today. I’ve got two that need to be done this week, but if I do one today and one tomorrow, that gives me the weekend to do rewrites. I also have to get some papers filed with various agencies about the situation with Comcast — who, by the way, is raising rates for the second time in a year. It’s ridiculous that they are the only choice on the Cape. I’ve also got a couple of articles I need to work on.

I’ll take good busy over dull any day!

Devon

Published in: on January 18, 2012 at 8:37 am  Comments (1)  
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Tues. Jan. 17, 2012: Good Busy

Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Waning Moon
Cloudy and cold

What a storm last night! The cats and I huddled under the covers. No snow, though, and for that I am grateful (means no shoveling).

I’m teaching a Holiday Hocus-Pocus Workshop in February. Just a week of fun and brainstorming ideas for holiday-themed work, and then resources to develop and sell them. Come join us!

Busy work day yesterday, somewhat truncated when I tried to log on to the workshop site and got a “fatal error”. So I’m a little behind there. This morning, the owner came to patch the hole in the wall — he’ll be back tomorrow for the next phase. Tessa was right there in the midst of things, of course. And, this morning, when I came downstairs — all the wall switches were on. She was busy in the night!

Got my next assignment from Confidential Job #1 — a double, with no due date, so I’ve got to get one– I figure they need me to turn it around more quickly than usual.

Finished reading a friend’s manuscript (finally) and sent comments back. Great story, just needs a few tweaks. The ending shows a lot of courage — I hope he’s not pressured into changing it.

Must catch up with students this afternoon and get going on the assignments for Confidential Job #1. Also need to work on a few proposals. It’s “good busy”. And I’ve got to get my quarterly taxes in — since the 15th was a Sunday and yesterday was a holiday, today’s the date they go off. Quarterly taxes work much better for me — I’m grateful to be on that system instead of the Hell-in-April System.

Devon

Published in: on January 17, 2012 at 10:59 am  Comments (2)  
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Mon. Jan. 16, 2012: Productive Weekend

Monday, January 16, 2012
Waning Moon
Sunny and cold
Martin Luther King Day

Boy, has it been cold the past few days! Truly winter, but at least no snow that stuck (a few flurries).

The lunch on Friday was good — quite illuminating, lots of good conversation. Got me thinking in some interesting directions.

Busy weekend. Got a lot of work done on Saturday, including more work reading a friend’s manuscript. I’m taking longer than I should with it — I’m enjoying it, but it’s hard to get uninterrupted time to really sit down and focus on it. It deserves my FULL attention — it’s an interesting piece. Got some other work done, worked on the book, and sketched out some short stories that have to get done this week.

Re-read Margaret Atwood’s NEGOTIATING WITH THE DEAD, her fascinating book on writing. Re-read OLD BOOKS, RARE FRIENDS for research on a project. Started Paul Fisher’s HOUSE OF WITS, about the James Family (background for something else). Worked with my students.

Sunday was a quiet day. I’m taking one day a week (usually Sundays) where I’m unplugged — no internet at all. I find it’s helping me both physically (the problems of too many hours at the desk) and creatively. I’ve always liked working in longhand — the result is more thoughtful and needs less revision. AND it gives me a chance to percolate in a different way than sitting in front of a screen does.

I cooked over the weekend, nice and relaxing. I haven’t done much cooking in the past week. So that was fun. And got three loads of laundry done. Need to get the vacuuming done today.

In spite of it technically being a holiday, I’ve got a lot to get done today. Lots of work to clear off the desk, some proposals to write, time with students, etc. I actually have to do more than I planned, because the hole in the wall (from my mom’s fall) will be fixed tomorrow morning, which means I lose my prime writing hours. So I have to get double done today. I also have to dash out into the cold to get milk and coffee. Can’t run out of those!

Struggling with the current sequence in the book. I’m not happy with the logic.

I’m behind in reading blogs, so that’s on my list this week. I want to catch up with everybody. For the most part, it should be a quieter week than last week, which is greatly welcomed. But you never know what might happen!

Devon

Fri. Jan. 13, 2012: Day of Luck and Fun!

Friday, January 13, 2012
Waning Moon
Friday the 13th — a wonderful day!
Cloudy and cold — bits of rain and sleet

I love Friday the 13th! It’s a day when the ignorant hide, due to their own fears and guilt, and leaves open space for the rest of us to come out and play!

Yesterday was a good day, even if it turned out unexpectedly. Worked early, early in the morning. Went to yoga. Dashed back, changed for acupuncture. Ran some errands on the way to acupuncture.

Acupuncture was great. My bad shoulder’s been squawky and my hip was bothering me, and I have all that neck and shoulder tension from hours on the computer. So we worked on that, and I was told to rest for the remainder of the day to let the treatment set.

I felt giddy with energy when I got out, like I could run a marathon (provided it was a spiral course). By the time I got home, I was ready to lie on the couch –and woke up up in time for dinner! Guess I needed some deep relaxation!

Made ham soup for dinner. Which sounds weird, but . . .we had a ham bone left over from the party. I cooked the meat off it, tossed in some herbs and carrots and celery and kale and white beans — yummy! And very filling on a cold, raw January night!

Took it easy in the evening and went to bed early.

Feel better for it this morning. I’ve got work to do, including dealing with my students. I have lunch with a writer friend,and then some more work. I’m looking forward to a focused writing weekend coming up. I want to work on my new brochure, in addition to working on fiction pieces, and I need to update my business writing portfolio. People around here like to meet in person and see physical samples. Fine with me — I just want to make sure I’ve got the best possible ones out there.

Devon

Published in: on January 13, 2012 at 8:14 am  Comments (2)  
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Thurs. Jan. 12: Webinar Works and Healing Day

Thursday, January 12, 2012
Waning Moon
Rainy and cold

Worked hard yesterday, revelling in the quiet. The neighborhood was really QUIET. I got a lot of work done. In addition to dealing with my students, I polished a 500-word flash fiction piece. I’m really excited about it. First of all, I don’t usually work that short, so it was a good challenge. Second, I thought it was one thing, and it took a very exciting direction elsewhere. The found inspiration was the dead blackbirds falling out of the sky in Arkansas, and the story ended up being about the secret life of besoms. I think I may write more with this character, picking up after the stopping point of this piece. There’s also kind of a dark humor, so that may serve me well.

I sketched out another piece, the first line coming to me over dinner, and, earlier, I’d figured out the next piece to write for class. I’m not posting my stories in the class, but I’m writing along with them.

Not happy with where I am in either of the novels, but at least I got the other requested novel out, and I’m hoping the short stories motivate me back into the novels.

I did about four loads of laundry — still have some more holiday fabric to do — and changed all the bed linens but mine (which will happen today or tomorrow). I kept getting caught up in what I was doing and forgetting the laundry was down there — thank goodness it’s in the house and I didn’t wander off somewhere and forget it.

I looked at some job listings — considered one, but the time/money ratio wasn’t enough to warrant putting together a package. They want so many hours for so little money that I couldn’t do anything else.

Got some reading done in the afternoon, and rested a bit, in preparation for the evening’s webinar. It went pretty well. We moved through the material a little faster than I expected — the students got to work on 9 short pieces over the course of the class, which is pretty decent. They’ve got material to work from. What they do with it and whether they do anything is something else, although this batch seemed pretty motivated. Having this scheduled when some of them came off the flash fiction assignment got them juiced for more work along those lines. The mix of talk and type was interesting. I think some people were intimidated. It was a little bizarre at first, but then it was like being in the classroom together.

The cats, however, were impossible. I’d played with them earlier; I’d settled them with snacks and toys in the other room. Ha! Racing through the house at top speed, screaming, hissing, spitting, jumping on the keyboard, howling, the whole thing. Screeching into the mic for all the hear their shenanigans. I don’t have doors to shut in the office, so I was at their mercy. Badly behaved little ones!

And then, as soon as the computer was shut down, they readjusted their tarnished halos and slept!

I’m getting some writing done this morning, then it’s off to yoga, and, after that, off to acupuncture. I’m not going to be able to eat until after noon, which will make me one cranky little person! But the rest of me will feel better, even if the tummy’s rumbling.

To the page, and then out into the rain. Funnily enough, today is Ganga’s day (the goddess for which the Ganges River is named, a day to wear yellow and wash away the detrius of the year. I’m sure I have a yellow candle somewhere, and the rain’s certainly washing!

Devon

Published in: on January 12, 2012 at 6:11 am  Comments (1)  
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Wed. Jan. 11, 2012: Prompt Playground Webinar Tonight!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012
Waning Moon
Sunny and cold

Tonight is the Prompt Playground Webinar, from 8-10 pm. I hope you’ll join us — we’re going to play, writing 2 and 3 minute exercises, and then seeing where to take them from there. It’ll be fun!

Yesterday was not fun. Comcast screwed me big time, and it took six hours to sort it out. It doesn’t help that they have offshore call centers, and the “representatives” believe since they’re in other countries, they can do whatever they want, and are not answerable to US law. Imagine my surprise (yes, that’s sarcasm), when I checked with the MA Department of Telecommunications and Cable and discovered how many laws Comcast is breaking. It means two weeks’ worth of gathering 14 months’ of documentation, but it’s worth filing with the half dozen agencies that need to know about this crap. Good thing I write everything down. By the time I get all the info sorted, I’ll be sending a binder to each of the agencies with the relevant documentation. Seriously, it’s that bad.

I didn’t think Mitt Romney was all that bad until his “victory speech” last night in New Hampshire, where he promised to protect corporate special interests and turn us into a fascist military dictatorship. I stand corrected — he’s as bad as the rest of that batshit crazy field.

Very excited by the quality of work in the 5 in 10 class. The first pieces are really good. Let’s hope it sets the bar high for the rest of the class, and that they continue to meet the challenges. Got cat food and cat litter in, too, yesterday, and had a decent meeting last night — I want to type up the notes while they’re still fresh and then get going on some stuff I’ve got to get done before next month’s meeting.

This morning, I’m doing post-holiday loads of laundry — holiday fabric, the guest sheets and towels, etc. I finally converted the buffet table back down to the work table and am slowing moving the stuff that had to be stashed in my room to make space for partygoers back to where it needs to be.

I feel better, but my voice is still not where it should be. I’m putting myself on “vocal rest” all day so I’ve got something for the webinar tonight.

Back to the page — in addition to classwork, I’ve got two novels I have to move back and forth between, due to deadlines, and a novella. Plus, I’ve got to prepare some marketing materials to get out next week, and some more packets for reading groups.

The cats are having trouble adjusting to just one human to do their bidding, down from the amount of people in and out during the holidays. Oh, well.

Never a dull moment. And that’s a good thing!

Devon Ellington