Tues. July 31, 2018: Busy and Behind

Tuesday, July 31, 2018
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mars Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde

I had a rough time of it these past few days, and I’m way behind where I need to be on a bunch of things.

The writing did not go well at all on RELICS & REQUIEM. I couldn’t get a pivotal scene right. I couldn’t put in a place holder, because what happens in that scene affects every other scene in the book. Besides, I don’t like writing piecemeal. It doesn’t work for me, except in a few unique instances. Each scene builds on the next. I’ve fought my way through it for now, and am frantically trying to get back on track; I just hope that I can.

Which means I also got behind on DHARMA. And I tried to work on POWER OF WORDS, but the amount of information I have to juggle in order to write the scenes properly — well, I got about 7 pages done, that’s all.

It was hot and uncomfortable, which didn’t help.

I managed to get a review up and out, and work on the longer article on that same topic that goes up next week. I’m behind where I want to be on the calendar articles.

At least we’re ahead on some of the book covers — now I have to make sure the books live up to their covers! 😉

Busy couple of days with a client today, since there’s a big event coming up.

One friend is still in hospice. I heard back from another friend, with whom I’d been out of touch for awhile — his wife died a couple of months ago. It’s a period of loss right now. Sunday was the 46th anniversary of my dad’s death.

Even though it’s hot and humid, it smells like autumn, especially early in the morning and late at night. Tomorrow is the first day of autumn, first harvest. An important day on my personal calendar.

So I will be back blogging on Thursday.

Hopefully, I will have undone this muddle by then.

My wrap-up is over on the GDR site, and I have a post up on A Biblio Paradise, too!

Onward.

 

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Published in: on July 31, 2018 at 1:22 am  Comments Off on Tues. July 31, 2018: Busy and Behind  
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Mon. July 30, 2018: #UpbeatAuthors One Tip To Improve Your Writing

Monday, July 30, 2018
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mars Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde

 

In my opinion, there is only one real thing that will improve your writing. You improve your writing when you write, and when you apply what you learn from each project moving forward.

Write. Every day, except for days you choose, ahead of time, not to be writing days.

Work on melding your art with your craft. Craft matters. The more you write, the more you learn rhythm and pace and character and plot. Listen to feedback. Learn from critiques.

APPLY what you learn moving forward.

The most frustrating thing when I teach is when grammar, usage, and structural problems are explained to writers and they refuse to apply the notes moving forward. They expect me to keep correcting the same things. It’s not a style choice — it’s that they never bothered to learn basic grammar and structure in school, and can’t be bothered to learn and apply it now.

It’s a waste of everybody’s time.

Every project has something to teach you. Not only in terms of subject and the research you have to do on subjects you don’t know to bring them to life. But on the writing process itself. Every book or short story or play has its own innate rhythm. It has its own voice, that layers over the author’s unique voice.

The more you write, the more you learn to listen to these rhythms. You learn where to bend them to fit structure, and you learn where to CHOOSE not to do so. There is nothing wrong with breaking “rules” of style, genre, structure. But each break needs to be a defendable choice, not just “I don’t like rules and structure” or, even worse, that you don’t know them.

You want to improve your writing? Write. No excuses. Just sit down and write.

 

Published in: on July 30, 2018 at 4:43 am  Comments Off on Mon. July 30, 2018: #UpbeatAuthors One Tip To Improve Your Writing  
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Fri. July 27, 2018: Retrogrades, Lunar Eclipse, Sigh

Friday, July 27, 2018
Full Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mars Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Sunny, hot, humid

I don’t do well in this weather. I got some stuff done yesterday, but then faded out (although I did clean out a few things in the front hall closet).

So, I’m behind on pretty much everything right now and have to dig down and get it done. Plenty to do, plenty I WANT to do, but I slow down terribly in this humidity.

Grocery shopping this morning, and waiting to hear on a potential appointment off Cape this weekend, although I doubt it will happen.

I hope we get a break in the humidity.

I’m in an “inner percolation mode” right now. That means that I’m thinking and plotting and mentally working on several different writing projects, but not much is getting down on paper, and I’m at a stage where I can’t discuss much. Which is boring for my blog readers, but a necessary part of my own process.

With all these retrogrades and the lunar eclipse, I’m going to try to be quiet for the next few days and try to give people a lot of extra room (and hope they do the same for me).

Back to the page. Even if I struggle, every word I get down is one more word than I had before. Eventually, those words add up, even if it’s not as fast as I need them to!

Have a great weekend!

Published in: on July 27, 2018 at 8:39 am  Comments Off on Fri. July 27, 2018: Retrogrades, Lunar Eclipse, Sigh  
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Thurs. July 26, 2018: And Mercury Goes Retrograde, Too!

Thursday, July 26, 2018
Day Before Full Moon/Lunar Eclipse
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mars Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Rainy, hot, humid

I’m tired of everything being perpetually warm and damp.

Mercury goes retrograde today, with all these other retrogrades, and right before a full moon with the longest lunar eclipse of the century.

Yesterday was not a productive day on RELICS, and I’ll have to make it up this weekend. I have a deadline looming (although my editor let me push it back a few days). But this new deadline still must be met. I have Amanda and Phineas’s first real love/sex scene to write, and it’s tricky. I haven’t been in the right headspace to write it, and I can’t just skip it, move on and go back, because how it plays out influences the rest of the book. I know the focus and drive of it and what happens after, but the nuances I’ll discover when actually writing the scene will make a big difference.

Review out, a few blog posts ahead on some other blogs. Worked with a client on a batch of blog posts. The new hire at that client’s place is working well, so far. We’re finding lots of mistakes from the person that left. I also got a raise at this gig, without having to be the one to say, “I’m raising my rate.” Which is nice.

Got some work done restructuring THE BALTHAZAAR TREASURE, so I have an idea of what I have, how much, what needs to be tweaked since I split out the material that grew into MYTH & INTERPRETATION. Behind on where I want/need to be for DAVY JONES DHARMA, which will also have to get caught up this weekend.

The consensus on the DAVY JONES DHARMA cover was that it was too cutesy. Since the Nautical Namaste mysteries intentionally break some of the cozy formula rules, the covers can’t be entirely cozy, although they are more light-hearted than the ones for the other series. My cover designer showed me two other options. My editor, publisher, and I all liked the same one best, and I admit — they were right, I was wrong. The new one fits the tone of the book and the theme of the series better. We’re still debating whether or not to have the figure seated in lotus position, as we did on SAVASANA, to keep it consistent. But it looks wrong, so we might go without.

Also saw a rough of the cover for THE BALTHAZAAR TREASURE, which I love, love, love!!!! Completely different direction than I expected, and much better.

And the cover for RELICS & REQUIEM is beautiful. We also have a rough of the fourth boo in the Coventina Circle series, GRAVE REACH, which is lovely. The image was originally one of those proposed for MYTH & INTERPRETATION. It wasn’t right for that book, but was compelling and fit more in the style of the Coventina Circle books.

So all of those covers are done ahead of time and are in good shape. I’ll be working with my other cover designer on the covers for the re-release of the Jain Lazarus Adventures for next spring, and the next set of covers we need to worry about are those for what used to be POWER OF WORDS, but is now going to be called something else, and get its own logo and subdomain and website and all the rest, so it’s a lot.

I have a few things to do this morning and the library, and then it’s back home to write, write, write!

 

Published in: on July 26, 2018 at 8:42 am  Comments Off on Thurs. July 26, 2018: And Mercury Goes Retrograde, Too!  
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Wed. July 25, 2018: Prepping for the Onslaught

Wednesday, July 25, 2018
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mars Retrograde
Mercury goes Retrograde TOMORROW

Batten down the hatches, we’re about to be in for a bumpy ride.

Click on over to Ink-Dipped Advice. I’ve got some suggestions for dealing with “tired brain.” And it’s not about sleeping.

I overslept yesterday, which put me behind as I worked on RELICS and tried to pull the radio proposal together.

I was pleased by the positive response to The Idea Vat over on Biblio Paradise. I’m so glad people found it helpful. It helps me let go of the irritation at the author who flaked out on the slot.

Worked on the review I’m writing; I’m doing some short reviews for the review sites, per instructions, and a longer piece will be up on A Biblio Paradise next Tuesday for her release day.

I don’t have much of value to say, and I want to stay relatively quiet over this difficult retrograde period. Five icky retrogrades.

Busy day with a client yesterday.

Happy with the way RELICS is going; just wish I could do more each day. It has its own rhythm, and once I’ve hit it, that’s it for the day. If I push too hard, I have to throw out the words the next day. But then, each book has its own personality. I’ll still make the deadline.

There’s some less-than-stellar response to the potential DAVY JONES DHARMA cover. I thought it was really cute in the right way; the general response seems that it’s veering too much into the cute. So, we’ll look at a few other things.

The RELICS cover will be revealed in September, just after Labor Day.

Digging into BALTHAZAAR TREASURE a bit, too, and I have to get focused on CRAVE THE HUNT again. In a couple of weeks, we’ll look at the manuscripts of HEX BREAKER and OLD-FASHIONED DETECTIVE WORK to see what needs to be tweaked, and I’ll need to find the rhythm for HUNT again (not to mention my notes). Because March isn’t that far away. And we’re trying to wrangle the newly re-shaped POWER OF WORDS into possibility, so we can announce the new series title, the new book titles, and get working on the websites and covers.

Never a dull moment, which is a good thing.

 

Tues. July 24, 2018: Brace For A Challenging Week

Tuesday, July 24, 2018
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mars Retrograde

Mercury is about to go retrograde (on Thursday), and then there’s a full moon on Friday. With all these other retrogrades. I’d really like to stay home, in bed, until it’s over! Unfortunately, that’s not an option.

Hop on over to A Biblio Paradise to see the post on the Idea Vat.

Spent the weekend doing what yard work I could before the storm, writing, doing laundry and household chores, and working on purging boxes from the basement.

The writing, of course, has priority, as it always does. Steady work on RELICS & REQUIEM, although not as fast as I’d like. Slower, but also steady work on DAVY JONES DHARMA. Some organizational work for THE BALTHAZAAR TREASURE.
Work on the book I’m reviewing. Work on the Foreword. Notes on a couple of other things. Work on the other radio proposal, which went out yesterday.

Yesterday was stressful at my client’s site. Last day for one of the other people there, and more to learn so I can cover on my days there until they hire someone new. Which, fortunately, they did –and she’s lovely – and she starts today.

I had an excellent session on RELICS & REQUEIM yesterday, and I hope to keep up the momentum. It’s veered far from the Writer’s Rough outline, but it’s being itself in a lovely way. It’s a much leaner book than SPIRIT REPOSITORY, and very much true to Amanda and Phineas.

A little tired, a little sad, and bracing myself for a challenging week.

Onward.

Published in: on July 24, 2018 at 1:19 am  Comments Off on Tues. July 24, 2018: Brace For A Challenging Week  
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Mon. July 23, 2018: Dealing with Failure #UpbeatAuthors

pier-1467984_1920
Image courtesy of Cleverpics via pixabay.com

Monday, July 23, 2018
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mars Retrograde

As usual, this will focus on how failure affects us as authors, in our work and life. Some aspects can be applied to other parts of life, but the focus is on our art.

The first way to deal with it is to define it.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines “failure” as:

Definition of failure

1a omission of occurrence or performance; specifically failing to perform a duty or expected action 

  • failure to pay the rent on time
(1) a state of inability to perform a normal function 

  • kidney failure

 — compare heart failure 

(2) an abrupt cessation of normal functioning 

  • a power failure
c a fracturing or giving way under stress 

  • structural failure
2a lack of success
b a failing in business bankruptcy 

  • He was trying to rescue the company from failure.
3a a falling short deficiency 

  • a crop failure
4one that has failed 

  • He felt like a failure when he wasn’t accepted into law school.

 

But do you?

I sometimes feel I fail if I let someone else down. If it’s because I was thoughtless or disorganized, then it’s on me and I damn well better find a way to make it right. But sometimes it’s because the other person put an unfair expectation on me and I wasn’t strong enough to say no right off.

Sometimes I feel that I failed if I don’t get an acceptance from a market or a publisher or a grant to which I applied. Yes, I failed to get that particular slot. Most of the time, though, another opportunity comes up that I wouldn’t have been able to accept if I had landed the previous one. Also, because I’ve worked on the publisher side of the table, I know that acceptance is more than just a well-written book: it’s about fitting the tone of a particular publisher, and fitting into the needs of a particular list. Most traditional publishers and some of the smaller publishers have to balance their list so it appeals to a spectrum of readers. If they have too many of one kind of book and none of another in any particular season, they will lose readers that season, and might never regain them. It’s about where your piece fits into the bigger picture, not just your piece.

Many organizations that give out grants expect you to apply (and fail to get an acceptance) over a period of years before they take the application seriously. This always angered me, even when I worked for such non-profits. But many organizations want to see that an artist can sustain work over a period of years before giving that individual money. They don’t want someone who will use a day job or another excuse not to work, or to accept the grant and not meet the requirements of the work that needs to be produced.

None of that knowledge takes the sting out of those refusals, or alleviates the sense of failure.

How do you deal with it?

Acknowledge that you feel angry, sad, whatever. Don’t get on social media and rant and rave against the publisher, agent, or organization. It’s fine to admit disappointment, but don’t attack. Save the venting to do in person, privately, with people you trust. Because there IS a need to vent; there’s just no need to do so publicly. Your feelings are your feelings; they are valid. How you choose to handle them has consequences.

If there’s any feedback, step away for a few days, and then re-visit it with a more objective sensibility. What can you learn from this? How can you apply it positively moving forward?

There are certain publishers and/or organizations that are not a right fit. Just “getting published” isn’t enough. It has to be a place where you have a positive working relationship and both the writer’s and the publisher’s needs and goals are met. Sometimes what starts out as a promising relationship deteriorates. It’s not that one side is “better” or “right” — it’s simply that the needs of both parties aren’t being met, and it’s time to part ways (hopefully amicably), so you can both move on to a better situation. That’s true in any job situation.

I think it’s often harder for artists to deal with failure because what we do is so personal, so much a part of ourselves. It’s difficult not to feel that it’s a rejection of us as human beings.

If something we wrote doesn’t sell well or sell at all, we feel we failed. After a period of time, we can look back. Could it have been structured better? Used stronger language? Have you learned something in the interim that makes it work now? If it’s a sales number, what can you learn from that book’s campaign that you can apply to future promotions? We are pushed to think in terms of immediate large sales numbers, instead of a steadily growing readership. There are plenty of books I’ve read with huge opening sales numbers — and I’ve never read anything by that author again either because I didn’t like the book or because the author never managed to get anything else done, feeling the pressure.

But there are a lot of competing needs and agendas out there, and we’re not all compatible.

When it comes to finding the right agent or publisher, I often compare it to dating — it’s unlikely you’ll find your soul mate the first time out. You need to meet a lot of people and date around. Finding the soul mate for your work is similar.

There’s no need to dramatize or villainize if something doesn’t work out (although, in the first flush of hurt and disappointment, we will). Happy yippy platitudes too soon to the hurt are counterproductive. But then, take a step back, look at the positives, and apply what you learn moving forward.

As a teacher, that’s the most infuriating aspect. When a student REFUSES to apply a correction moving forward. We all start somewhere. We all have things we need to learn. When something is explained (such as the difference between a possessive and a plural) — learn it. APPLY IT MOVING FORWARD. Don’t keep making the same mistakes over and over again and expect someone else to fix it.

The only true failure is REFUSING to learn from something that didn’t work and refusing to apply it moving forward.

Most other situations are disappointments or setbacks that can be overcome.

–Acknowledge

–Create objectivity

–Learn

–Apply

And then go on to create something wonderful!

Published in: on July 23, 2018 at 4:50 am  Comments Off on Mon. July 23, 2018: Dealing with Failure #UpbeatAuthors  
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Fri. July 20, 2018: We’re All Busy

Friday, July 20, 2018
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mars Retrograde
Sunny and cool

It smells like autumn this morning.

Decent day’s work yesterday. Good client meetings and good potential client contacts. Some follow-up today and we’ll see where it goes from there. Put together a big packet of information for a request, and that went out this morning.

Not enough of my own writing done, but then, it rarely feels like it is.

I got a peek at a rough for the cover of DAVY JONES DHARMA, and it’s really cute, in the right way. We’ll have our final consult on the cover of RELICS & REQUIEM soon. I like what I’ve seen so far.

Our bunnies are having the best time in the yard. The local wildlife feels safe here, because we don’t use chemicals of threaten them.

Started weed whacking the meadow. It’s slow going. But every bit that’s done is more than was done before.

I’m re-reading EVERYBODY WAS SO YOUNG, about Gerald and Sara Murphy. I own a copy, but I don’t know where mine is, so I got it out of the library. It’s well done, although the tense shifts are annoying sometimes.

I’m writing the piece for the book I’m reviewing, so I can post it next week and put up the long version on A Biblio Paradise on August 7, her release day. Of course, this coming Tuesday’s guest flaked out on her commitment, so I have to scramble to replace her. This is NOT OKAY. I cut the rant I wrote here, because, well, not worth the energy.

This weekend must be about writing, yard work, and cleaning out the basement. A lot needs to get done.

Fortunately, I had a GREAT morning on RELICS, getting a whole chapter done, and I hope to have an equally productive morning on DHARMA.

Back to the page.

 

Published in: on July 20, 2018 at 10:31 am  Comments Off on Fri. July 20, 2018: We’re All Busy  
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Thurs. July 19, 2018: And It’s Always A-Changing

Thursday, July 19, 2018
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mars Retrograde
Sunny and pleasant

Never a dull moment, that’s for sure.

Woke up this morning to find the birdbath knocked over in the backyard. I’d heard a young coyote pup crying in the night — I bet he stood up to take a drink and it fell on him, poor thing.

Hop on over to Ink-Dipped Advice, where I list some suggestions for working while going through the grief process.

Got a nice chunk done on RELICS on Tuesday, but Wednesday seems to be my non-writing-on-deadlined fiction day. I had a couple of errands in the morning, before heading out to a client. Had another decent session on it this morning.

The person who caused the problems on site with the client lately quit for another job. So that will be interesting. I’ve been asked if, during the days I’m on site with this client, I will handle some of the duties until a replacement is hired. That’s fine. As long as it’s temporary. I’m ahead of everything that needed to be done for the next few weeks; someone will probably be hired soon — ads are already up, resumes coming in.

Figured out the basic shape of the comic radio play; hope to get some work done on it in the next couple of days, so the proposal can go out. I have to come up with a catchy title. At first, the idea was too convoluted, but I pared it down.

Plenty of client meetings stacked up today, and I hope I can fit in a yoga class. Also, have to get work done on RELICS & on DAVY JONES, write a review, and get to work on the foreword. Plus keep working on almanac articles.

Like I said, never a dull moment, which is a good thing.

I’ll post late tomorrow, close to afternoon my time, because I have errands to run in the morning, and I have to run them before the tourons clog up the roads.

Back to the page.

 

Published in: on July 19, 2018 at 8:45 am  Comments Off on Thurs. July 19, 2018: And It’s Always A-Changing  
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Wed. July 18, 2018: Working Situations

Wednesday, July 18, 2018
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mars Retrograde


MYTH & INTERPRETATION
released yesterday, digitally. It will be out on Amazon in a few days. If you didn’t see the piece about it on A Biblio Paradise, I hope you will hop over and take a look. It’s a Gwen Finnegan between-the-books novella, and I’m happy with it. And, it’s only $1.99.

RELICS is humming along, although not as quickly as I’d like. But steady progress beats no progress. I’m behind where I want/need to be on it, which means I’m even further behind where I want/need to be on DAVY JONES DHARMA.

I talk about grief and work over on Ink-Dipped Advice today. Click over and take a peek. Add anything you feel I missed.

I found a way to explore this particular type of grief that I feel about my friend’s terminal illness in the book I’m outlining that’s set at Culzean Castle. Originally, the protagonist was trying to recover from the death of her long time partner, but a new character, also recently deceased, came into the mix — a long time friend. This way, I can contrast how the different losses impact the character. The way the book is taking on a life of its own is kind of beautiful.

Finished reading an advance copy of a colleague’s book and loved it. Will write about it soon.

Client work on-site was fine on Monday, and a little more difficult on Tuesday. The person who caused an issue between my client and me last week caused a problem between the client and another employee. And then, of course, pretends innocence. Okay, I get it now. THAT’s who and what she is. Done. I have no doubt it will be even more stressful today. Had another client appointment on Monday afternoon, but got home at a reasonable hour. It was too hot to do yard work or much of anything else, so I finished the book I have to review instead. That way, I didn’t have to feel guilty about not getting any work done!

The Quisling Narcisstic Sociopath’s behavior in Helsinki on Monday was appalling. Any doubt that he’s a traitor and fully owned by Russia is gone. The fact that Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan enable him — and therefore are equally treasonous — is even more appalling. Russia has succeeded in dismantling our democracy. Ryan and McConnell must be held accountable for their responsibility in this. They don’t get to walk away giggling and smirking and cashing huge checks. The GOP is no longer an American party — it is filled with agents of a foreign government hostile to the US. It is disgusting. The Democrats’ lack of fight is equally infuriating.

Thank goodness for the Tuesday night group meeting for savasana/sukasana/reiki. It helps to get calm and centered. Because only from a place of groundedness, not denying the rage, but using it, can we come up with solutions.

I have a proposal and a few sample pages to write for a radio comedy, and I’m really not in the mood. But too bad for me. The work still has to get done.

Onward.

Published in: on July 18, 2018 at 2:21 am  Comments Off on Wed. July 18, 2018: Working Situations  
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Tues. July 17, 2018: Release Day Amid Sadness

MYTH&INTERPRETATION Cover

A Between-the-Books Novella

Stuck in NYC when plans for their next expedition fall through, Gwen and Justin accept teaching jobs at different local universities. Adjusting to their day-to-day  relationship, and juggling the academic and emotional demands of their students, they are embroiled in two different, disturbing, paranormal situations that have more than one unusual crossing point. Can they work together to find the answers? Or are new temptations too much to resist? For whom are they willing to put their lives on the line?

$1.99 on multiple digital channels here.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mars Retrograde

It’s release day for the Gwen Finnegan novella, MYTH & INTERPRETATION. It’s only $1.99 on digital channels, and will be available on Amazon in a few days (there’s a delay for the Amazon listing with this distributor). Hop on over to A Biblio Paradise to read more about the process of the book, and an excerpt, and go on over to the Gwen Finnegan website for even more.

I feel good about this book. It was great to be back with Gwen and Justin, and now I’m excited again about THE BALTHAZAAR TREASURE, which will release in January of 2019.

I hope you enjoy it, too!

Difficult weekend. My friend, who is suffering from cancer, said her goodbyes to us, and is going into hospice. She is a shining light. I was confident she would beat this. It’s heartbreaking, especially for her parents, and for her daughter, who starts college this fall.

I didn’t get much writing done. I played with a few ideas, but didn’t work on any of the deadlined stuff, which means I’m getting far behind.

I managed to get the international play proposal out on Friday, along with one of the radio proposals. I have another couple of radio proposals to get out this week, along with at least one article pitch.

I’m on site for the first part of the week, working for a client, in the same space with the individual who caused a problem last week. We’ll see how it goes. I have no interest in engaging. I can be a pleasant work colleague and share space, and still stay out of the crap. I have no doubt she will do whatever she can to escalate the situation, but I don’t intend to participate. I have other priorities.

Decent day on RELICS on Monday, but I’m still behind. Hoping to get back on track with DHARMA, too.

Tonight is savasana/sukasana/reiki, and it is much needed.

Tomorrow, I’m back on site, and then I have a few other appointments, and, weather-permitting, yard work.

Onward.

 

Mon. July 16, 2018: Reflections on a Year of Positivity #UpbeatAuthors

rustic-3441673_1920
image by Felix Mittermeier courtesy of Pixabay.com

Monday, July 16, 2018
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mars Retrograde

Wow. We’ve been doing these #UpbeatAuthors posts for an entire year.

It’s a pleasure and has introduced me to authors I might not have otherwise met. Our commitment to make the world a better place through our work is heartening.

Our work matters.

It also matters that being upbeat does not deny the darkness. Instead, it works to balance it when appropriate and overcome it when appropriate.

I look forward to another year with you, and our circle of joy expanding.

Published in: on July 16, 2018 at 5:16 am  Comments Off on Mon. July 16, 2018: Reflections on a Year of Positivity #UpbeatAuthors  

Friday, July 13, 2018: Wildlife Adventures and Proposal Writing

Friday, July 13, 2018
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mars Retrograde
Cloudy and cool

I love Friday the 13th. It’s usually a good luck day for me.

It’s amazing how reader stats jump up if you title a post “Clown Semen.”

Feeling weary on many fronts. But, hey, deadlines and work that needs to get done.

Got out some LOIs yesterday, posted some copy, did some follow-up and scheduling. Didn’t get as much work done on RELICS or DHARMA as I needed to do, so have to make up for that today.

Mowed the terraced back area of the yard. Need to do the side front and no man’s land today. I like working with the push mower much better than the gas mower. Once the first long cut is done, it’s easier and the lawn looks better.

I still don’t like mowing, though.

I promised wildlife anecdotes, and therefore, you will have some. We don’t use chemicals in the yard and neighbors do; also, our yard is wilder and not as typically suburban as our neighbors’ yards. So the local wildlife hangs out here.

I haven’t seen much of the coyotes this year. Those of you who’ve known me for awhile remember a few years ago, when the coyote pair raised their pups in the yard. I saw a pair early in the season, but haven’t seen them (or any pups) since.

But we do have Bratty Bird, a nuthatch that comes on the deck and teases Tessa terribly. I think Bratty Bird’s wife made a nest in the hanging impatiens. It’s too high to see, but it looks like they built something in that pot. Bratty Bird bounces around, making demands on the deck, roaming around the tops of the chairs, laughing at us, complaining. Yesterday, I didn’t wash out the birdbath and put fresh water in fast enough to suit him (I change it every day to prevent standing water/mosquitos). Then, there’s a family of chipmunks living under a bush. The little ones chase each other along the terraced wall, and sometimes come up on the deck. Bratty Bird dive bombed them this morning. Then, there’s a family of bunnies living under the forsythia. They are really cute. They come out and munch on the dandelions.

It’s interesting to watch them do their thing.

Received my first Goddess Provisions box yesterday and it is wonderful. I’m having so much fun with the contents!

Worked on the international proposal for the play. I need to do some more work on it before it goes out today. I’ve been honing it this morning. I want to sound committed and focused. I keep cutting out qualifiers. I don’t want to sound egotistical, but I have to sound assertive and professional.

One of the radio play proposals can go out today, but I need to do some work on the other one.

Trying to finish reading a book that I don’t find tightly written and I don’t like the protagonist. I find her pretty stupid and lose patience with her every couple of pages. I’d put it down, but I like the puzzle aspect and the international locations. I’m also reading it to analyze WHY what doesn’t work for me doesn’t work and what I can learn from it.

It will be a pleasure to then re-read Ron MacLean’s HEADLONG this weekend, a book that excels in plot, character, and the beauty of the writing.

The weekend will be split between writing and yard work. Lots to do, and not a lot of time to get it done.

On Monday, I’ll have the mid-month check-in up at the GDR site, and, later in the week, the mid-year evaluation.

Have a great weekend!

Published in: on July 13, 2018 at 8:43 am  Comments Off on Friday, July 13, 2018: Wildlife Adventures and Proposal Writing  
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