Fri. Nov. 29, 2013: Never a Dull Moment

Friday, November 29, 2013
Waning Moon
Jupiter Retrograde

Busy, busy times. Will fill you in on the details on Monday.

If you choose to shop on Black Friday, stay safe.

Consider shopping on Small Business Saturday instead, and support your local artisans and business owners. These are your friends and neighbors, the ones who will lend a hand when something happens in the area. The more we support our local economies, rather than those running large, impersonal corporations and lining their pockets on the backs of the people actually doing the work, the more we can create positive change and abundance in our own communities.

Have a great weekend!

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Published in: on November 29, 2013 at 7:55 am  Comments Off on Fri. Nov. 29, 2013: Never a Dull Moment  

Happy Thanksgiving!

May all the blessings of the day shower on you and those you love!

May we share with those around us – -there truly is enough for us all to have what we need.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Published in: on November 28, 2013 at 7:53 am  Comments (1)  

Wed. Nov. 27, 2013: Flexibility is Key

Gotta be flexible, especially with big storms around the holidays!

Adventures abound.

Published in: on November 27, 2013 at 7:52 am  Comments (1)  

Tues. Nov. 26, 2013: Comcast sucks, stress, and late night cooking

Tuesday, November 26, 2013
Waning Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Cloudy and snow showers

I lost most of yesterday, work-wise. I had a decent start, then went out to run errands, and then spent the afternoon dealing with Comcast, who majorly fucked me. There is no polite way to say it. I checked and guess what? They violated both Federal and State laws, and I filed complaints against them. I refuse to let these major corporations turn me into a victim, because they think they are above the law and no one will fight back.

But I lost a half a work day. For which they will pay, on more than one level.

There was some other unpleasantness to deal with, too.

Unfortunately, because of Comcast’s doucebaggery, I lost a job I was scheduled for yesterday, and also lost the ability to take an editing test for a BIIIIG upcoming job. I’m trying to reschedule the latter for today.

Ma Bell was broken up so they wouldn’t have a monopoly, yet that’s what Comcast has here on the Cape. How is that legal? They are my only choice.

Didn’t get the screenplay finished. Managed to work with students and get some other work done.

Wound up staying up until three a.m., doing the cooking and baking for which I’m responsible for the holiday. All that’s left to do is to frost the lemon cupcakes.

Today will be crazy busy, as will tomorrow, then the holiday, then the whole weekend crazy busy.

But not with shopping. I don’t shop on Black Friday and I sure as hell boycott the stores that are trying to lure customers in on Thanksgiving themselves — especially those who don’t pay their employees a living wage.

Devon

Published in: on November 26, 2013 at 7:52 am  Comments (1)  
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Mon. Nov. 25, 2013: Deep in the Writing Groove

Monday, November 25, 2013
Waning Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Four degrees this morning! Youch!

Busy weekend, lots of writing. I’m working on the climactic sequence of the screenplay. It needs to be orchestrated carefully, because it’s the first time all the players are together, and is taking time.

Did some work on the television pilot script, some work in the development notebook, some reading just for me. Baked brownies, and am getting things in order for Thanksgiving this week.

I’m deep in the writing hole, and will remain there until I get all the pieces for this package assembled early next year. But that’s a good thing, and the results will be worth it.

Devon

Published in: on November 25, 2013 at 7:49 am  Comments (2)  

Fri. Nov. 22, 2013: Mourning and Writing

Friday, November 22, 2013
Waning Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Cold and rainy
50th Anniversary of JFK’s Assassination

Yesterday was busy: worked with students, worked on the script, worked on pitches, worked on the paperwork for the script packages I’m preparing. Got some grocery shopping done — my job is to make dinner for the family the night BEFORE Turkey day — beef stroganoff this year.

The script took up most of the day. I’m into the final act now, and this one’s been humming along nicely. There is a character that wants to enter, but I want him to have more of a purpose than he’s currently demonstrating. I might let him in, with the caveat that if he becomes too much of a deus ex machina, he gets cut.

Today is the 50th anniversary of JFK’s assassination. I was too little to remember it – -although I remember Robert Kennedy’s assassination clearly. Day of mourning.

But along with that, for me, a day of writing.

Devon

Published in: on November 22, 2013 at 8:53 am  Comments Off on Fri. Nov. 22, 2013: Mourning and Writing  
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Thurs. Nov. 21: Writing and Critiquing

Thursday, November 21, 2013
Waning Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Worked on one of the screenplays yesterday (it’s coming along well) and also the paperwork I have to get ready for the packets going out in January. Get a jump on that, prep each project, and then it’s just a case of assembling and making sure it’s all put together.

Got out some pitches.

Most of the day was spent finishing a large critique project. Got that done and out — I was there at the project’s inception, so it’s exciting to see how it’s grown.

Busy day, trying to get everything done before the holidays next week.

Stay warm!

Devon

Published in: on November 21, 2013 at 8:14 am  Comments (1)  
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Wed. Nov. 20, 2013: Change of Venue

Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Waning Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Busy day yesterday. 15 pages on a screenplay, worked on the critique project, pitched for some jobs. Gave some requested quotes.

Was out of the house before noon and to Sandwich to the storage unit. A group of us from the Writers Center sorted out 50 years’ worth of material that had stacked up. Some of it was tossed; some repacked; some will have to be sorted in detail over time and shredded (because of personal information). But we can definitely move everything to a smaller (and cheaper) unit.

On the down side, they auctioned off the contents of another unit. I don’t care about the “why” — seeing the ghoulish vultures descend upon the space made me SICK.

After we were done in the unit, I headed over the bridge to Buzzards Bay for a development committee meeting at NMLC. I couldn’t stay for the whole thing, but we worked on some ideas.

Had to dash home and step in as moderator for a live chat during a television show, featuring actors and fans. A friend of a friend was supposed to do it, and then had a medical emergency, so I stepped in. I’ve worked with moderators when I was the featured guest before, so I knew how to do it, but I’d never actually juggled the chainsaws before. It went well, was fun, and several of the actors and fans thanked me after the chat.

Today. I have to get a lot of work cleared off the desk to make up for being offsite yesterday, although it was nice to have a change of venue.

Talk about feeling silly — I took such good care of myself hauling the heavy materials, and then wrenched my foot later, at home, taking off my boot of all things!

Devon

PS Sign up for “Organize Your Writing Life” on Dec. 7, here. Three hours online, and a year’s worth of writing organization.

Published in: on November 20, 2013 at 8:42 am  Comments Off on Wed. Nov. 20, 2013: Change of Venue  
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Tues. Nov. 19, 2013: You Get What You Pay For

Tuesday, November 19, 2013
Waning Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Cloudy and cold

I’m trying to remember yesterday. I know I pitched for jobs, worked on a big critique project, and juggled three screenplays. I had to do some layering on one, upping the stakes early on, and then just did opening sequences for the other two, so I wouldn’t lose them while they were hot.

As I suspected, a client who’d booked me for a big project needed before Thanksgiving flaked. Forfeited slot, deposit, and specially negotiated rate. Had another person contact me who’d ranted and raved at me that I was too “expensive” on the rate quoted to line edit a novel. Fine, I respect that, go somewhere else. The client hired a cheap-ass editor, and now is getting rejected by publishing houses because of all the errors in the manuscript. Now the person comes back to me and says that I “HAVE” to re-edit the messy manuscript — for $150, because the writer spent so much money n the other person.

Honey, I don’t “HAVE” to do anything. I choose my clients, the same way writers choose their freelance editors. And I’m not going to work at a fraction of the price I quoted because YOU made the wrong choice. When you come back and expect me to clean up the mess, the price goes UP.

In negotiations for a long-term gig on a cool site; hope it works out. I’d get to work on a wide range of topics.

Got to get a lot done this morning, because a team of us are going to the Writers Center storage unit to clean it out this afternoon, then I have a development meeting at NMLC and then I’m helping a friend of a friend with a live chat during a TV show.

Busy day, but at least it mixes it up a bit.

Devon

Published in: on November 19, 2013 at 8:45 am  Comments (1)  
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Mon. Nov. 18, 2013: Health Wins & Screenplays

Monday, November 18, 2013
Last Day of Full Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Stormy and rainy

Busy weekend. I had to knock off early on Friday, because I was coming down with the flu — fever, chills, aches, headache. I dosed myself with my herbal brews, rested, and I think I kicked it before it got a chance to really put me out for a week or more. Fingers crossed.

I got about 40 pages done on a new screenplay, and am spinning another idea — got the initial scenes done. Got some work done in the development notebook. Got out a book review, and read most of the next book I need to review. Worked with students. Pitched for jobs.

Over two unreliable clients, especially since I gave one of them a special deal. Deposit and materials aren’t in today, as booked, and the price goes up. Sick and tired of these asshats who want professional services but don’t want to pay. Grow the fuck up, people –no one owes you anything. You want a professional, you HIRE one. There’s a fee involved, the same way you pay the plumber and the lawyer. Was also approached by a publisher who wanted me to give a “publisher’s discount” to hire me as an editor — meaning he would pay me less than the individual author clients. I never heard such stupid shit — -publishers pay MORE than individuals for professional editors, not less. Needless to say, I refused.

Big critique project arrived over the weekend; will get that turned around as fast as I can.

Finished watching THE UNUSUALS on DVD. I wish that I’d worked on it (but I was already committed to another show), and I wish that it ran more than 10 episodes. It was created by Peter Tolan, so of course it was good, but I’d forgotten HOW good until I sat down and binge-watched the episodes. The balance it kept amongst the characters, the character development, the episode-specific balance versus the overall balance of arcs, the writing, the acting — fantastic. Also watched SWAT — I’d forgotten how it jumps right in from moment one — I kept thinking I missed the beginning — and I would have liked to see a little bit more character development amongst the team. The action and pace were good, but I think some of the character development suffered with so much focus on Colin Farrell’s character at the expense of the others. You wouldn’t have to give Street any less time — just give more detail to the other characters; the strokes were too broad, in some cases.

Don’t forget to sign up for “Organize Your Writing Life” on December 7. We’re getting a lively group in there, and it should be enormous fun.

Got a lot of writing to do today, so I better get going!

Devon

Fri. Nov. 15: Catching Up on DVDs and Prepping for a Writing Weekend

Friday, November 15, 2013
Waxing Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Sunny and cold

I didn’t blog yesterday. I was out of the house before 7 AM, thinking I’d be back by 9, but it was closer to noon. I had an early morning board meeting at the NMLC. It was a good meeting, it just took longer than I expected.

Wasn’t very productive when I got back — worked with students, got out some pitches, fretted about unreliable clients.

Wednesday night, I finally watched THE AVENGERS. It was better than I expected, lots of clever lines and some great character moments. Jeremy Renner was underutilized, but it’s hard to keep a balance amongst an ensemble like that. The fight scenes ran too long, I wasn’t happy with the sound editing, and, since 9/11, I have trouble watching anything that has the “destruction of New York” in it. It still hits too close to the bone. I may never be able to watch movies that use that device again and actually ENJOY them. But I’m glad I saw it, and, as I said, I liked it more than I thought I would.

Watched more of the UNUSUALS yesterday. Damn good show. I’m learning a lot from it.

I hope this will be a good writing weekend.

Enjoy!

Devon

Don’t forget to sign up for the Organize Your Writing Life Workshop on Dec. 7. Only $10 here.

Published in: on November 15, 2013 at 8:39 am  Comments Off on Fri. Nov. 15: Catching Up on DVDs and Prepping for a Writing Weekend  
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Wed. Nov. 13, 2013: Submission Catch-Up

Wednesday, November 13, 2013
Jupiter Retrograde
Snowy and cold

It snowed most of the day yesterday, so I stayed home and worked. Glad I got so much yard work done the previous day!

Didn’t get enough of my own work done, although I did some work in the development notebook, got out a few submissions, and found a few interesting submission calls. I’ve been focused so much on other people’s work that I feel drained when it comes to my own, and that has to change. My own work must always come first.

Got paid for a piece by someone I’d written off; always a good thing. Still waiting for a project that was promised nearly a month ago — no communication, no project. This is why I’ve started to ask for a non-refundable booking deposit.

Errands to run today, and tomorrow I’m out the door very early for an NMLC Board meeting.

I need a vacation, but there’s no chance of one anytime soon.

Devon

Published in: on November 13, 2013 at 8:26 am  Comments (1)  
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Tues. Nov. 12: A Development Epiphany

Tuesday, November 12, 2013
Waxing Moon
Mercury Direct
Jupiter Retrograde
Sleeting and cold
sc

Busy weekend. Took some time off to read and gorge myself on episodes of the television series THE UNUSUALS on DVD. Outstanding writing and acting. Wish the show had lasted more than ten episodes.

A request for a partial of a novel I wasn’t expecting to send out until after the first of the year landed on my desk, so I rewrote and polished the chapters and wrote the synopsis (which was on the schedule for December) and got it out. When the request comes it, it has to go out within 48 hours, so if the materials aren’t ready, you do what you need to do to get them there.

Did some work in the development notebook, and fleshed out some of it as I typed. I figured out how to prevent my very charismatic supporting character from taking over Book 1 — his primary partner doesn’t get introduced until his book, which is Book 3. I’d planned to introduce her in this book, but it pulls too much focus of the characters I want to be the primary pair for this book. He still has an important role to play in this book and book two, but he doesn’t come front and center until book 3.

VISCERAL INVISIBLES, the screenplay, comes out of marination this week and goes into rewrites.

Worked with students, did some pitches, did yard work. So many bags of leaves in the garage I can’t get the car out. I’ll take them to the dump tomorrow. Rubbed teak oil onto the porch furniture, took it in, took in the last of the plants. Still a lot to do, but it’s getting done, slowly but surely.

Don’t forget to sign up for Organize Your Writing Life in 2014, by signing up here. It’s only 10 bucks and three hours on December 7, and gives you a year’s worth of organization, and tools to use well beyond.

Off to work.

Devon