Fri. March 29, 2013: Working towards the Weekend

Friday, March 29, 2013
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and mild

This is the big Easter weekend for many people. I don’t celebrate Easter any more, so I’m just going to use it as a chance to rest, renew, and hopefully get some work done in the garden!

Actually, I’ll be working on props and final ideas for the show, and trying to focus on the book, but that’s something completely different! 😉

Worked flat out yesterday, but didn’t feel as though I got very far. Got out materials for Confidential Job #1, started the next project for them, worked with students, got some pitches out, worked on contest entries, spent some time with the script, and dealing with some last-minute stuff with the show. Wrote and submitted an article.

I’ve got some pitches to do today — I got some ideas. There are two essays I want to work on this weekend, ready to go on Monday, I hope.

I’m ready for March to be done — it’s been a very difficult month. I’m hoping April “springs” to life with all kinds of wonderful possibilities. I’ve got some exciting things in the works — let’s hope they come to fruition!

Have a joyful weekend, everyone!

Devon

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Published in: on March 29, 2013 at 7:05 am  Comments (1)  
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Thurs. March 28, 2013: Rehearsals, Writing, Planning

Thursday, March 28, 2013
Day after Full Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Rainy and cold

Tickets are selling briskly for the second performance of MURDER “SEALS” THE DEAL, so don’t miss out! Visit the National Marine Life Center’s website for more information.

Worked hard yesterday, even though I was exhausted. Didn’t get enough work on the book done, which was frustrating. I’m having a hard time moving from the head space of the novel back and forth with the play. Pitched for some interesting-sounding jobs across a wide spectrum — if I land several of them, it would be an exciting period of work!

My article on “The Layered Edit” is up on WOW-Women on Writing. It came out well.

Rehearsal was good last night. We got to work some more of the details, and give Act II the attention it needed.

The moon was so bright, I barely needed my headlights driving home!

Fingers crossed some new clients come through from all these pitches I’ve done lately. And I’ve got some grant cycles coming up, so I need to do research and get that done.

The bulk of the coming days, though, I want to focus on the book. I need to stay on top of that deadline.

The potted tulips — purple and yellow — are blooming inside and gorgeous!

Devon

Published in: on March 28, 2013 at 7:45 am  Comments (1)  

Wed. March 27, 2013: Second Performance Added: MURDER “SEALS” THE DEAL

MurderSealstheDeal 4-8-13-2

Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Full Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cool

Take a look at the flier! Yup, we’ve added a second performance of MURDER “SEALS” THE DEAL. It’s Monday, April 8, the night after the initial performance. Monday’s show, doors open at 7:30 PM for an 8 PM go.

Very excited.

Worked yesterday, although I had trouble focusing, and had to do too much admin and not enough creative stuff. I managed to do some work on the book, although not enough, work with students, work on the play, and do things like get groceries and cat food in.

Today, I have to work full out, and then there’s another rehearsal tonight. I also have to work on the promotion for the second show.

It’s not even 9 AM, and I’m ready for a nap!

Devon

Published in: on March 27, 2013 at 8:00 am  Comments (4)  
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Tues. March 26, 2013: Meetings and Writings and Rehearsals

Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Cloudy and cold

Today’s guest over on A Biblio Paradise is Beth Barany, talking about The Writing and Marketing of an Independent Novelist. Go check it out!

Yesterday was busy. I didn’t have a good day’s work on the book, which was frustrating, but I worked with students, worked on contest entries, got out a bunch of pitches, and tried to get scheduling crap sorted.

The meeting at the Museum of Natural History in Brewster was wonderful and the show is booked for October. I’m happy. They were terrific to deal with, and I think it will be a great experience for all of us.

In the afternoon, there was a Mermaid Ball Meeting in Buzzards Bay — talk about going in all directions!

Tonight, we have our first rehearsal in the space, which should be interesting, so it’s a truncated work day. Which means I better make things count!

Devon Ellington

Published in: on March 26, 2013 at 7:24 am  Comments (1)  
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Mon. March 25, 2013: Sprouting Seeds and Scheduling Dilemmas

Monday, March 25, 2013
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Cloudy and cold

Friday was a difficult day, and, frankly, there were times when I just wanted to give up. But I made it through. This week will be tough, but, hopefully, I will get through this, too.

I don’t remember much about Friday, except it was a blur of stress and pain.

Friday night’s rehearsal was a nice break, though. The actors are doing well, although they still have work to do. Friday was the painful rehearsal for them, where they realized that, in spite of all the good work they’ve done, there’s still more to do.

Came home late, exhausted.

Up early on Saturday. I filled in as the set-up person for the Tomorrow’s Writers Today program for teens at Barnstable Intermediate School, set up by The Cape Cod Writers Center. The people at the school were great, the teachers were great, and the kids were great. Terrific all around. At 10 AM, I handed off the program to the Executive Director.

The only thing about the experience that sent a chill through me was the postings, in every classroom, on “lockdown procedures” and “safe spots” set aside in every room. This is what it’s come to? It’s heartbreaking.

Came home, set up for the online Query Clinic, ran that.

Dealt with scheduling issues for the show. MURDER “SEALS” THE DEAL is sold out, and we want to add a second show, but it’s getting it scheduled with the company that’s a challenge.

Received the grant money for SEVEN OF SWORDS, my other play, which just made me feel all warm and fuzzy. It’s not the amount (which was small, but fair), it’s the fact that we were respected enough, as playwrights, to be awarded money for our work.

Sunday was supposed to be my day off, and one that was badly needed, but it didn’t work out that way. Dealt with show stuff nearly all day, searched for stuff I needed for various projects, which led to reorganizing the storage unit over the garage. It looks great and I can get at everything, but I still didn’t get my hands on what I needed. So tired, I was shaking and dizzy.

The mesclun greens, bok choy, buttercrunch lettuce, speckled lettuce, and radish seeds all sprouted over the weekend. Very exciting! The tulips I planted in pots and overwintered in the garage are also blooming — lovely!

I have a meeting in Brewster this morning, and then have to deal with show stuff and the book. I’m supposed to have another meeting this evening, but there’s no way I can do all of it.

Didn’t get enough work on the book done, which upsets me. Worked with students, sent out a lot of pitches.

Have a blasting migraine, but have to work through it.

Devon

Published in: on March 25, 2013 at 7:12 am  Comments (3)  
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Friday, March 22, 2013: Yet More Snow

Friday, March 22, 2013
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Snowy and cold

I’m not quite sure how I’m getting to my morning seminar or if it’s delayed with six inches of snow. I’m about to go out and shovel.

Yesterday was tough. You know when you’ve burst into tears twice before 8:30 in the morning, it’s going to be a difficult day. But we all have tough days; you do what you can to get through them.

I survived the day, managed to get out a few pitches and work with students, and do the final prep for tomorrow’s Query Clinic — so yes, sign up! it’ll be a lot of fun, and help get you over the Passive Voice Boring Query Syndrome and also give you ideas to write engaging queries in the future. Information on sign up here.

I’m supposed to be at a meeting this morning, then it’s home for a few hours, then it’s off to rehearsal.

It looks really pretty out there — let’s hope it’s not tough to shovel.

Have a great weekend, all!

Devon

Published in: on March 22, 2013 at 5:45 am  Comments (2)  
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Thurs. March 19, 2013: Head Down Working

Thursday, March 21, 2013
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Frost on the ground this morning, so a good thing my Ostara planting was inside yesterday! I talk about it in the entry on Gratitude and Growth.

I also have a post up (in my Annabel Aidan persona), entitled “Are You Happy?” on The Writers Vineyard.

We’re coming up on your last chance to join Saturday’s Query Clinic — line-by-line support on you query letters, and ways to make them stronger moving forward! Information here.

Finished Chapter Six and wrote Chapter Seven of the new book yesterday, which was a pretty decent day’s work. Sent out some pitches, and landed an assignment, so I will tackle that today. Worked with students — I’m really proud of them right now. Worked on the contest entries I’m judging.

Feel very burned out. I’ve got some difficult correspondence to tackle today, plus the writing, and I’m trying to rev up for it. Even though it’s cold, and we’re supposed to get another storm, maybe I’ll do some work in the yard, and that will help.

Devon

Wed. March 20, 2013: Spring Equinox Lifts Spirits

Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cold
Spring Equinox

The angle of the sun is lovely, but it is c-c-cold! I’ll have to do some planting today (inside) in honor of the holiday! I’m looking forward to the ceremony!

Lost far too much of my workday dealing with the asshats at Verizon Wireless. The people in the office are both incompetent and take pleasure in being cruel. That’s why there are regulators, which is where this gets bumped to next. The paperwork will be a pain in the butt, but it will be worth it in the end. Corporations cannot be allowed to walk all over people, and the personnel within those corporations must be held personally and individually accountable when they commit illegal acts and hide behind “company policy”.

On the upside, I wrote nearly a whole chapter on the new book, did some marketing, wrote some pitches, worked with students, polished Saturday’s Query Clinic, and dealt with the press release special. I did some work for Confidential Job #1, got the payment stuff with them sorted out (like I said yesterday, they are one of the reliable clients), worked on the contest I’m judging, and started putting together my script coverage samples. I’ve done script coverage, but mostly for smaller producers. I need to take the samples and convert them into the more standard format, so I’ve got those coverage samples ready when I pitch for that type of job. I enjoy reading and evaluating scripts, and I can do so from a budget perspective as well as a creative one, so I’m going to start seeking out those jobs.

I’m going to help out the Writers Center on Saturday morning, setting up and checking in students for Tomorrow’s Writers Today (I’m not teaching, just helping them set up).

I cancelled rehearsal last night due to weather — I didn’t want anyone out driving in that.

Today, it’s pedal to the metal, focusing mostly on the book, but also on a few articles and other things.

Back to the page!

Devon

Last days to sign up for the Query Clinic — line-by-line support on your queries. Information here.

Tues. March 19, 2013: Another Storm

Tuesday, March 19, 2013
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Snowing and sleeting

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What can I say? I’m in a press release writing mood today! 😉

Yet another storm, on a rehearsal day. I’m really frustrated. If this keeps up, I’m going to have to call off tonight’s rehearsal — there’s no way I can expect people to be on the road in this weather.

Rue Allyn is my guest over on Biblio Paradise, talking about the muse. Stop by and visit! I also updated the “About” page, in case passers-by want to book a slot.

You can still sign up for Saturday’s Query Clinic and get line-by-line support on your query letters. Information here.

I worked with students, got out some pitches,wrote and sent out two articles, but most of yesterday was about finishing up the proposal for my agent. I got it off to her late in the afternoon. I’m still not dancing with joy about the synopsis, but the rest of it, I think, is strong, especially the first three chapters. The name change I was forced to do over the weekend actually opened the way for something better, including a catchier title. I’m happy that I got it done (on time) and excited by the possibilities.

Today, I get back to writing the actual book. It’s such an icky day out, it should be a good day to stay home and write. I also have to set up the tracking sheets for the book, so I can keep the necessary details consistent, and start setting up what will evolve into the Series Bible for this book.

Yes, I use the techniques I teach — otherwise, why bother?

Confidential Job sent me my next assignments. I’m still waiting to hear what the heck is going on with February’s invoice! They’re usually meticulous about paying promptly so I don’t know what’s going on, and I feel like I’m getting the runaround.

Plenty to work on, so I better just put my head down and do it.

Devon

Mon. March 18, 2013: Take a Breath, Mercury is Direct

Monday, March 18, 2013
Waxing Moon
Mercury Direct (as of yesterday)
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cold

What a relief to have Mercury go direct. This is one of the worst Merc Rets I remember in the last five or six years. Coupled with the Saturn Retrograde, it nearly killed me. I hope I can start getting things back on track, although, according to the astrologer, the upcoming full moon is going to be tough, too. Hopefully, I can mitigate that, and keep it from happening, instead of getting so worried that I make it happen.

Rehearsal Friday night went well. We are getting there, and let’s hope we just keep improving and peak on the show date.

Worked with students. I’m in a good rhythm with two of them and the third had a positive breakthrough and is back on track, so that’s all good. Got out a press release and am waiting for comments on it — if it doesn’t go out in the next day or two, there’s no point in sending it; it won’t print in time.

Speaking of press releases, here is the link to the release about the Author Services expansion with Fearless Ink.

There’s still time to sign up for next Saturday’s Query Clinic — bring in your query letters and get line-by-line support. Information here.

Most of the weekend was spent on the new book, and putting together the materials I promised my agent, that I want to get to her today or tomorrow (because there was no way I was going to send them during a Mercury Retrograde). The introduction, the thumbnails of the first five books in the series, marketing plan, and competition list — all of those are solid. I’m still not happy with the synopsis, and that’s what I’m wrestling with.

I managed to get out of the creative rut I was in — the pressures of chasing down payments soooo late, while trying to land work and rehearse the play and promote the book just released and juggle this project — I was feeling creatively drained. But, by having this project as my central focus, and doing a lot of pacing and muttering, I broke through, and I think I’ll be okay.

I also read several of the books for the contest I’m judging; some good, some weak.

Some idiot contacted me to “hire” me to write articles — at $1.50 per article. Yup, one dollar and fifty cents for an 800-word article, that would appear under the hirer’s name. My response was neither diplomatic nor polite.

So, it’s getting back to it this morning, and getting out some difficult correspondence, along with getting out the proposal, continuing to track down payments, some of which are now nearly a month late, pitching to potential new clients, working with students, preparing for rehearsal, running errands . . .you get the picture.

And, we’re supposed to have another snowstorm overnight — up to a foot of snow in some places!

Devon

Fri. March 15, 2013: Thank Goodness Mercury Retrograde Ends Sunday!

Friday, March 15, 2013
Waxing Moon
Mercury Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Meetings all day yesterday.

I got to meet with one of the actresses on the show at her day job, which is working over at WHOI in Woods Hole — and I got to see the Alvin! The Alvin is a deep submergence vehicle for oceanographic research. It’s been getting an overhaul at WHOI — and is an awesome piece of equipment! The people who work on it are the best in their field. What a great experience, to get to see the Alvin live! If you want to get an idea of what it’s all about, this is the link.

Then a meeting at the Marine Life Center, which went well, and we pulled more props.

Came home, sent off a few things that needed sending off, judged some of the pieces for the contest.

Still chasing down missed/late payments. Very frustrated, because I still have to pay MY bills on time, or else. This attitude that people can pay writers if and when they happen to get around to it, no matter what the contract, has to stop.

Need to spend time on the book today, and then rehearsal is at my house tonight. I’m so exhausted, but I can’t stop, because I have to make up for those missing payments and still stay on track with current deadlines.

This has been one of the hardest Mercury Retrogrades of my life.

Devon

There’s still time to sign up for the Query Clinic on March 23 and get line-by-line support on your query letters! Information here.

Published in: on March 15, 2013 at 8:19 am  Comments (9)  

Thurs. March 14, 2013: Running on Empty

Thursday, March 14, 2013
Waxing Moon
Mercury Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Cloudy and cold

I wasn’t feeling well, so yesterday wasn’t as productive as I hoped. I got some pitches out, worked on the synopsis for the new book for my agent, did some marketing, etc. I had a meeting about dealing with the trespasser — and he’s either being more careful or has backed off for the past two days. Got the batteries changed in the thermostat – -who knew it needed batteries?

Finished material for Confidential Job #1, and will write it up this morning and turn in the invoice — although the check hasn’t arrived from the last batch of work, which is unusual, and they’re “checking on it”. This client is very good about paying on time, so this is weird.

Watched the coverage of the new Pope. As someone who is not Catholic, the tradition, pageantry, and theatre of it all are fascinating.

Read a page-turner — THE ELDRITCH CONSPIRACY, by Cat Adams. I liked it a lot, and look forward to the other books in the series. I needed a break from reading what I HAVE to read, and read something I WANT to read.

As far as my own creative work, I feel drained and flat. I have to get past it, because I have deadlines, but the tank is empty. Still, I show up every day and push through, because that’s how it gets done, and sometimes the work that comes through on the hard days is what triggers a better flow.

The cats are being very clingy lately. I don’t know if it’s because they sense how much pressure and stress I’m under, or if something else is going on. I was so exhausted yesterday that I was shaking, so I made sure, after the meeting, I had a quiet afternoon and evening.

Today is meetings, back-to-back, all over the darned place, so off I go.

Devon

You can still sign up for March 23rd’s Query Clinic and get line-by-line support on multiple query letters.

Check out the new Author Services offered by Fearless Ink!

Wed. March 13, 2013: Exhaustion & Writing

Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Waxing Moon
Mercury Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and milder

Today is the final day to apply for the Prose/Stage Adaptation workshop. Details here.

And check out the author services now offered by Fearless Ink!

Yesterday, I had to deal with far too much corporate fuckery (and I’m not apologizing for the language, because that’s what it was. It was sort of resolved, but still . . .lost hours that could have been better spent.

A meeting is being scheduled with the landlord and the police to deal with the trespassing situation. “No” means “no”, whatever the context, and there have to be consequences for ignoring it.

I had a long catch-up with an old friend.

Rehearsal was good last night. We spent most of the time on the third act, worked out a lot of the physicality of it, which was fun.

Driving home, though, was a nightmare. It was pouring with rain and so foggy I had to drive with my windows rolled down sometimes to see enough to make turns. I was relieved to get home.

Migraine this morning, but too bad for me. I have a lot to do today. I’d like the bulk of the day to be about sitting with the new book and sorting out the outline. I’ve written far enough into it that I should be able to outline the rest of it — which means figuring out “whodunnit” and why.

I’m exhausted, on every level and would love to take the day off to just sleep; unfortunately, that is not an option right now. So, I have to sally forth and get things done!

Devon

Published in: on March 13, 2013 at 7:39 am  Comments Off on Wed. March 13, 2013: Exhaustion & Writing  
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