Tues. Dec. 11, 2012: Total Chaos before 8 AM

Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Day before Dark Moon
Rainy and cool

I’m over on Marian Lanouette’s blog today, talking about blog etiquette.

Can you say chaos?

Before 7:30 this morning, the roofers, the landscapers, and the plumber all descended. I’d gotten up at 6:30, donned pumps and a full-length coat over my pajamas to move the car. The plumber did his thing; the landscaper and the roofers got into it, because the roofers are working on the garage — and the landscapers were here to move the bushes in front of the garage. Since the landscapers were SIX WEEKS LATE, guess who won? The landscapers stomped off in a huff. I’ll be surprised if they ever show up. I think the owner should just get someone else in. I find this company unacceptable.

Then, the roofers had to leave because it started to rain.

By 9 AM, everyone was gone.

It’s going to be one of THOSE days.

The migraine still lingers. I got some work done yesterday, but not enough, although the work on MURDER’S INTOLERANCE and the new play both went pretty well. Worked with my students, got some stuff done around the house. Had to lie down for awhile in the afternoon because I felt so darned awful.

More to do today, but I have a feeling it won’t be the most productive of days! 😉

Devon

Published in: on December 11, 2012 at 9:03 am  Comments (2)  
Tags: , , , , ,

Mon. Dec. 10, 2012: Rainy Start and Lots of Writing

Monday, December 10, 2012
Waning Moon
Rainy and raw

Busy times!

Friday was about the roofers. Really, they aren’t anywhere near as noisy as I expected. I’m quite grateful for that.

Flash 7 class started. Quiet day on Friday. They had a whole day to read and digest material before the first story was due.

Most of Friday, I spent working on MURDER’S INTOLERANCE. I’m happy with the way it’s going. Switching into first person made all the difference in the world. I typed up the first and part of the second chapter, while continuing to work on the fourth chapter in longhand. I’ve started my character charts and the other charts I need to track arcs and other elements that will need to remain consistent, especially from book to book (the seeds of what will grow into the Series Bible).

I also caught up on my World History homework. I thought this was the last week, but the class has been extended for two weeks. I enjoy it, but need to wrap my head around it.

Cleaned and prepped the various altars in the house for Yule. Got a little bit (but not enough) of decorating done.

Saturday morning, I wrote my 1K on MURDER’S INTOLERANCE, got the laundry done, ran the dishwasher, got the groceries in. Sat online most of the day on the class forum, but there wasn’t much activity.

Caught up on the Astronomy coursework. The physics of it, light, sound, wavelength, atoms, molecules, radiation, gravity — no problem. The mathematical equations – not so much. Much of that is my own fault — I am not willing to put in the time to break down the equations so I understand them and then put them back together. I want to know why everything has to be squared and then divided, or multiplied, squared, divided — it seems like there’s got to be a simpler way to set up the equations. It’s my usual resistance to math, believing these equations are created not to solve things, but because someone had too much time on his hands and likes to play with this shit. This is an unfair judgment on my part, but that’s my gut response to much of it. Don’t get me wrong — I’m glad that creating and using these equations makes people happy. More power to them! I am simply not one of them, and am glad they do it, so I don’t have to fret about it.

However, the demos are great, and seeing parts of these theories in practice makes a ll the difference.

Was feeling a little under the weather Saturday night, and by Sunday morning, had a full-blown migraine. Worst I’ve had in awhile. However, I worked with students and pushed through some more of the decorating. It’s still not done, but much more is up. The tree is pretty.

I like that we can decorate differently in the house each year. In the apartment, everything fit only one way. Here, we can try new things.

Polished a short story. Had to put aside a second one, because it didn’t fit the guidelines. I like it, and will continue with it, but guidelines are guidelines. Sent out two other stories that had stockpiled.

Have to do some business admin today, work with students, and get more writing done. I’m waiting on a few checks, which I hope arrive sooner rather than later. Also hope to start the history homework today, if there’s time. It all depends on the migraine, and how badly that affects me today.

Good first writing session on MURDER’S INTOLERANCE.

I have to say something about that dumb-ass prank phone call and those stupid Australian DJs who helped contribute to that British nurse’s suicide. Those two better start taking responsibility for their part in it. They feel bad? They should. They contributed to another human being’s death. To say there was “no malicious intent” is ridiculous. A prank call’s very nature is all about malicious intent. It’s about making fun of someone by humiliating them. When it’s done publicly, on a live show, even worse. The male DJ’s backpedaling of “every radio station in every country does it” — that’s the kind of lemming-like thinking that allows genocide. They’re in “hiding” and in “counseling” — yeah, probably paying someone to tell them what they did was okay. What they did was NOT okay, and instead of being cowards and trying to justify it, they should be looking for ways to make things right. Publicly crying about “how bad they feel” is a self-centered cop out. It’s not about them, and they SHOULD feel bad, if they have any pretensions at being ethical human beings. You fucked up big time, someone died, own it and now do something to make the world a better place. Stop the pity party. Actions have consequences, and they need to face the consequences for their actions. If there was no malicious intent, there wouldn’t have been a prank call. Everything they’ve said and done since this incident only fills me with more contempt. You did something stupid. Now do something positive to help get things in balance.

Devon

Two exciting classes coming up in January of 2013!

“When Words Align” — if you’re stuck in your manuscript or your edit, take this seven-day intensive to get back on track. Jan. 2-9.

“Sensory Perceptions”
— this popular class is back — in one month, learn how to use all the senses to make your writing more dynamic and engaging. You will work on stories specific to each sense, and one long, ever-evolving piece adding in sense-by-sense. January 2-Feb. 3.

Fri. Dec. 7, 2012: Flash 7 Starts and Roofers Pound Overhead

Friday, December 7, 2012
Waning Moon
Cloudy and cold

The roofers’ pounding wasn’t too bad yesterday, and I managed to get in a good day’s work. Flash 7 starts today — should be a lot of fun!

The pounding is worse today. I overslept (because Violet woke me up at 4 AM) and had to pull on the down coat over the pajamas to move the car out of the garage before the roofers arrived. The windows are still covered in blue tarp — keeps the house warmer, that’s for darned sure!

I managed to get in a decent first writing session on MURDER’S INTOLERANCE. Changing from third person to first person was the key to really making that piece fly.

I pitched for a job yesterday that I think I need to withdraw from consideration. Something feels off about the ethics of it, and I’m not sure I want to be involved. Also, a client with whom I was parting ways wants to re-think the relationship. Honestly, unless I either give up everything that’s important to me (such as being paid fairly on time) or this client changes her business model completely (like paying me fairly on time and making the time/money ratio work), I don’t see how we can come to an agreement. My gut says no.

Slowly, the decorating is getting done.

I need to get a lot done today AND teach AND do my schoolwork (I was too tired last night), so I better get moving.

I’m reading Janet Malcolm’s THE JOURNALIST AND THE MURDERER. Fascinating.

Have a great weekend!

Devon

Delectable Digital Delights for the holidays! Two Nina Bell shorts and an Ava Dunne romantic comedy fantasy!

Published in: on December 7, 2012 at 9:00 am  Comments (2)  
Tags: , ,

Thurs. Dec. 6, 2012: The Roofers are Here

Thursday, December 6, 2012
Waning Moon
Sunny and cold

I slogged through yesterday, but I was basically a waste of food. However, there’s a nice press release out about the shorts, the Delectable Digital Delights. Check it out!

Today is the last day to sign up for Flash 7, where you write, revise, and submit 7 Flash Fiction pieces in 10 Days. Information and registration here — it closes at 5 PM tonight, so the final admin can go out and participants can get their passwords in time to start first thing in the morning.

I updated both the Devon Ellington and Hex Breaker sites yesterday, got the press release out, pitched for a couple of articles, did a library run, and started a letter that has to go out later today. The roofers came by to scope out the place, and they’ve started this morning. When you think how much more intimate the job is here at the house compared to the way things were done back with the Scumbag Landlords in NY, this is a cakewalk. They’re not even making that much noise (so far, anyway). They do have tarps over all the windows and there’s a dumpster in the front yard. Good thing I held off on the outdoor decorations!

Finished Jasper Fforde’s THE WOMAN WHO DIED A LOT, one of his Thursday Next novels. I enjoy them.

Had a good writing session before yoga, and, a few minutes ago, had an aha! moment — this particular book needs to be in first person, not close third. Because it’s one of a series, and I wanted the room to maneuver and tell different stories from different POVs, I thought I had to use close third for all the books, but maybe I don’t. THIS book wants to be in first; we’ll see what the others want. Maybe they will all want to be in first. Cross those POV rapids when they appear — I need to do what’s best for this book, which I think I’m going to call MURDER’S INTOLERANCE. I’ve written three chapters (44 pages) longhand and will shortly type them up and start my tracking sheets for characters, consistency, etc.

Lots to do today, writing-wise, teaching-wise, and business-wise, and it’s already after 11 AM, so I better get going. Also have to get started on my History class work — last week of lectures.

Hop to it, girl!

Devon

Published in: on December 6, 2012 at 11:24 am  Comments Off on Thurs. Dec. 6, 2012: The Roofers are Here  
Tags: , , , , ,

Wed. Dec. 5, 2012: Home and into the Fray

Wednesday, December 5, 2012
Waning Moon
Rainy and cool

I am back!

It was quite the trip. I am exhausted and stumbling around, and will be for another day or two. The roofers are starting tomorrow, so that should be, um, interesting. The guy heading it up is really nice, so, other than my usual horror of noise, I doubt it’ll be a problem.

Sunday, I managed to get the newsletter out (It will be up on the Devon Ellington site later today). Then, off we went to Providence to pick up the Megabus. The streets we needed were closed due to some sort of road race, but I got out and walked the few blocks to the bus stop, and off I went.

Bus ride was smooth, no problems. They let us out in front of FIT, and I hauled my luggage over to Penn Station for the subway kerflamma. Yes, I realize I should be grateful there’s even subway service to Brooklyn post-Sandy, but it was a lot of unnecessary chaos.

I got on the C train. Suddenly, we were told that the C line wasn’t running, so we’d have to take an F train, that would run on the local C stops in Brooklyn — only not the stop I needed. I was instructed to get off at W. 4th Street and take the B. I get off at W. 4th, haul the luggage down to the level where the B train is — only to find that the B does not run on weekends. The sign on the platform said take the D to Atlantic Avenue and pick up the Q. I had multiple sets of directions to the house, but the D didn’t figure in any of them. However, I jumped on the D train. When it stopped at DeKalb, I thought, “well, DeKalb is on my list of stops for the B or the Q. I’ll get off the platform and if I see a B or Q sign, I’ll know I’m in the right place; if I don’t, I’ll find a cop and ask him how to get to where I’m going.”

I got off, it was the right stop, all good. I hauled everything up too many flights of stairs, and walked down DeKalb until I hit my friends’ street, and there was the brownstone on the corner. I got in, hauled my luggage up to the third floor, and played with Costume Imp’s cats until he got back from work.

We went to a local diner for diner, really good food, and all got to know each other, friends and family from different phases in his life. Late to bed, up early, did my yoga, read a bit while I waited for everyone else to get up.

Monday, we set up for the party, cleaning and decorating, and all the rest. The party itself ran from about 1 PM to 8 PM (technically), although it was closer to 10 by the time everyone cleared out. It was a great celebration of Costume Imp, and old and new friends met and melded well. The food was amazing. We cleaned up and got to bed a bit after midnight. The house’s owner (also a friend) has a very old husky who’s blind and not very well. I think the party overstimulated her, because she paced and was upset all night. Since I slept downstairs in the parlor on an air mattress, I was up with the dog all night. I finally got her settled around 4:30, but I had to be up at 6, so it wasn’t really worth going to sleep. Poor baby. The other husky is a young male, lively and friendly, and there was also a little, lively dog, and another cat. Busy household. But it’s a household filled with love and laughter, the very best kind.

And I met an actor-musician at the party with whom I had an interesting conversation that got a dormant idea for a play percolating again. So that’s all good.

Out the door by 9:30, couldn’t find the subway I was supposed to take, found a different one, got directions from the very nice woman in the booth, switched trains one stop in and got an express to Penn. Exited Penn Station and headed all the way to the Hudson on 34th St. The Megabus now leaves from 34th St. between 11th and 12th Avenues. I got there waaaay too early and had to stand for over an hour, but finally the bus bothered to show up and we could get on it.

We left on time, and it was a smooth ride, although I couldn’t get comfortable, and wanted to doze, but couldn’t. Got in the driver’s seat of the car in Providence, drove back to the Cape, stopped for gas, unloaded the car, greeted the cats, popped something in the microwave, scarfed it down, and headed back to the Sandwich Library for the Cape Cod Writers Center Board meeting.

The businesses on Rt. 6A have a series of glorious, over-sized light sculptures up along the route. So beautiful! What a treat to drive it, tired as I was.

Meeting was good. Interesting. Learning the people and learning the dynamics. I was practically falling over with exhaustion by then, so limited myself to asking questions. I have to understand the foundation of what we HAVE before I can make useful suggestions of how to build on it.

Home, showered, fell into bed. Staggering around this morning. Already had to deal with the roofers, and have to call the plumber, because I can’t get the front spigot for the hose to shut off. All I want to do is go back to bed!

But there’s a ton of email waiting to be dealt with, and I have to hustle some quick turnaround, quick pay jobs in the next few days.

To the page.

Devon

Last two days to sign up for Flash 7 — write, revise, and submit 7 flash fiction pieces in 10 Days. Dec 7-16. Sign up here.

Published in: on December 5, 2012 at 10:05 am  Comments (2)  
Tags: , , , , ,

Tues. Dec. 4, 2012: Heading back to the Cape

Tuesday, December 4, 2012
Waning Moon

I’m on my way back to the Cape today, and headed right into a Cape Cod Writers Center Board Meeting.

Catch up with you tomorrow!

Devon

Only three days left to sign up for Flash 7: Write, Revise, Submit 7 Flash Fiction pieces in 10 Days. Dec. 7-16. Info and registration here.

Published in: on December 4, 2012 at 6:46 am  Comments Off on Tues. Dec. 4, 2012: Heading back to the Cape  
Tags: ,

Mon. Dec. 3, 2012: In NYC for Costume Imp’s B-day Bash!

Monday, December 3, 2012
Waning Moo
n

Can you believe it’s December already?

I’m the featured artist over on Weekly Artist — check it out! Drop a comment, so they know you stopped by.

I am in NY today, for Costume Imp’s birthday. Left yesterday, will be home tomorrow night.

Friday was busy and stressful. Had to do some errands, fretted a lot.

Started doing my coursework for the Introduction to Astronomy. I’m not going for certification, just auditing. I like the class a lot, but the math is beyond me. If I was willing to put in about 30-40 hours at the outset catching up, I could learn it and do it, but I don’t have those hours and the access to a tutor, so I’m just auditing, taking notes, etc. I’m still getting a lot out of it, and I’m not sucking away time from anyone who is going for certification.

This class will be a huge help in the aviation mystery, since, especially at that time (late 1940’s) a lot of night navigation was still done by stars.

Plus, it’s a lot of fun.

After watching some of the lectures, I went out to “look up” and put what we discussed into practice — but since it was getting ready to snow, I didn’t see much!

Will have to remedy that later this week.

Saturday was better, although I’m just so fatigued all the time lately. There was a line at the post office — looks like everyone’s got their cards done and their decorations up already. And it’s only December 1! I always felt so organized in NY, and I feel so behind here!

Finished making Costume Imp’s present. It was lots of fun. Hopefully, he’ll gt a kick out of it.

Sunday morning, the newsletter went out for December, and then, off I went!

I’m looking forward to celebrating Imp’s mega-birthday!

Devon

You can still sign up for the Flash 7 Workshop — write, revise, submit 7 Flash Fiction pieces in 10 Days, Dec. 7-16. Info and registration here.