Mon. Jan. 14, 2013: NMLC’s Successful Seal Release!

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Monday, January 14, 2013
Waxing Moon
Foggy and mild

The weekend here was very mild, but it was foggy. Sunday was a brilliant day, but we’ll get to that in a bit.

Worked hard on Friday and Saturday, a lot of hours at the desk, not feeling a lot of accomplishment, unfortunately. I’m still struggling to get the right tone on the sample with the proposal, and getting discouraged. Worked with students. I need to figure out how to promote the small books more effectively — both the fiction shorts and the non-fiction Topic Workbooks. I also need to figure out how to enlarge the covers — that’s the only obstacle right now to getting into the premium catalogue — their system says my covers are “too small”. Yet, when I check the pixels, the jpg has what they ask for. I don’t get it. I’m frustrated.

I’m also not happy with “That Man in Tights”. It needs more work than I originally thought. I’m not going to release it until it’s the best it can be, but right now, that’s farther away than I would like.

The details are up for the workshop “The Graveyard of Abandoned Projects.” It only runs three days, it’s only $30. You bring in abandoned projects and we take a second look; we see what has potential, and what needs to be put to rest for good, and then we come up with a way to get them onto your schedule and get them done. Info and registration here.

Sunday was release day for Major Margaret “Hotlips” Houlihan, the NMLC’s seal patient that came in and was so badly injured. I was at the Center before nine, photographed MM’s final feeding and playtime with Townsend, the other seal patient. Then, she was loaded into her crate and into the animal ambulance. We had a caravan to Scusset Beach, where about 150 people gathered to see her off. Her crate was carried over the dunes to the beach, a pathway cleared to the water, and the door opened.

She was a bit hesitant at first, especially with so many humans around. The waves grew larger and more insistent, as though they called her home. She lit up when she realized what it was, and paddled herself down the sand and into the surf. She was truly HAPPY, joyful, to be back in the surf, and it was so wonderful to see an animal who’d been so critically injured back in her habitat.

It was a beautiful experience.

And it was great how many kids and families. et al, were all there, excited and supportive.

After we were done at the beach and cleared up, we headed back to the hospital; did some rearranging in the kitchen, a lot of scrubbing (there’s always a lot of scrubbing involved). We cleaned Townsend’s tank and refilled it — he was completely befuddled about what had gone on. I think yesterday was more stressful for him than for Major Margaret. But even the turtles in the other tank were sticking their heads up, wondering what was going on.

The other volunteers and staff kept working in the hospital and I headed to Osterville Library where Kathy Zagzebski, the Executive Director of NMLC, was giving a talk. Osterville built themselves a new library and it is GORGEOUS. Beautiful space, and we were in a terrific meeting room. Kathy’s presentation was great, and there were some wonderful questions, especially from the kids. I helped Kathy clean up, came home, uploaded my photos, and then collapsed in front of the TV to watch the Golden Globes. The cats were delighted, because I still smelled like herring.

Tiny Fay and Amy Poehler were GREAT as hosts. And there was a minimum of stupid banter, either from hosts or presenters. It always sounds fake anyway, so just skip it, people.

I started Sunday feeling very blue about a lot of things — and then had a good laugh, because the songs playing on the radio as I headed for the bridge were “This Girl is on Fire” and “Don’t Stop Believing”, which felt like they were a direct response to what was going through my mind.

It would up being a wonderful, wonderful day!

I have a LOT to do today, especially getting the play organized and start the writing — the title’s set, MURDER SEALS THE DEAL, with the play on words for “seal” — that I better get going. I also have a budget meeting for the Beautification Committee this afternoon, and have to get some material together for that.

Finished all my Cosmology homework on Saturday, but am still behind on Astronomy. It’s all fascinating, I just can’t keep up with sometimes 15 lectures per week that run 40 minutes or more. Thank goodness I’m only auditing, and have a little extra time.

Devon

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Tues. Jan. 8, 2013: Trying to Get It All Done

Tuesday, January 8, 2013
Waning Moon
Sunny and cold

Hopefully, I’m not getting sick. I feel a little run down and achy. I may take a nap this afternoon, if I can. I can’t afford to get sick, on any level.

Yesterday, I worked with students, but the rest of the day was about taking down the decorations. The house looks so big with them down! Some of the ribbons still need to be dealt with, but, for the most part, things are packed away and the Christmas closet is full again. We’re leaving the red ribbons around the windows and doorways until Valentine’s Day, because they’re pretty.

Reconfigured the space in my office a bit, so I have more breathing/working space. I’d reconfigured it to have the high buffet table (built of boxes of books, covered in fabric) for the party, but it purposely cut off the desk space, and I needed to switch it around again.

The Galaxies and Cosmology class started yesterday — I’m auditing it, too, rather than going for certification. I’m still trying to catch up in the Astronomy class.

Worked on “That Man in Tights” yesterday, prepping it for the Smashwords release, and realized that it needs some major work. Did a lot of work on it yesterday, but I think it will probably be the end of this week or early next week before it’s truly ready for release. I’d rather make it the best it can be than release something with more holes in it than Swiss cheese. I need to expand it a bit, flesh it out. I don’t want to lose the somewhat slapstick comic element, but it needs to go deeper, and I have to trust that the comedy will come organically out of the situation.

Got a lot of work to do this morning, so I better get to it!

Devon

Published in: on January 8, 2013 at 8:48 am  Comments (3)  
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Jan. 2, 2013: Racing into 2013!

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The winter doormat

Wednesday, January 2, 2013
Waning Moon
Sunny and cold

2013 and here we are! Yippee!

Since I’m rather fond of anything with the number “13” in it, I’m a happy camper about the coming year.

First of all, today is the last day “First Feet”, the Jain Lazarus tie-in story, is available. So download it before the link is cut. 😉

If you didn’t get a chance to read my first recommendation of a book for the new year, Shirley Wells’s DYING ART, please hop over to A Biblio Paradise and check it out.

The GDRS are up — the answers to my questions (and those were hard to answer both honestly and compassionately) are here and my To-Do list for January is here. I’ve even managed to knock a few things off the list!

I worked more than I expected to yesterday — I meant to just hop on “for a minute”, but then got tied up in stuff. Which is fine; it needed to get done.

Both “When Words Align” and “Sensory Perceptions” start today, along with a private student, so I’ll have my hands full for the next chunk of time. I’m almost finished with the wacky proposal for my agent, I’ve been working on the next assignment from Confidential Job #1, I got a few pitches out yesterday, and am still working on the Twelve Days of Christmas stories. Glad I didn’t commit to writing, editing, and POSTING them for this cycle! I like the challenge of doing them, but some need to be circled back to for some additional work.

I need to spend time on the Astronomy assignments today — I’m falling farther and farther behind. The lectures are long — there are about 15 of them per week, instead of the usual 6-8 I had in other classes, and a lot of them are double the length. However, I’m not holding anyone else up, since I’m auditing, and I’ll just keep working. The next science class starts on Monday, so I don’t want to fall too far behind on this one.

Of course, I’ve got a bunch of other work to do today, too, trying to secure some income-generating work immediately for the New Year! Lots to do, but I’m excited for the New Year!

Baked scones this morning (test driving the recipe for Sunday). It’s fine. Not brilliant, but it will work. Wrote my 1K on MURDER’S INTOLERANCE.

And off we go!

Devon