Fri. July 31, 2020: Die For Tourist Dollars Day 72 — Lammas Eve

wheat-3506758_1920
image courtesy of Bru-nO via pixabay.com

Friday, July 31, 2020
Waxing Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Rainy and humid

Got out a bunch of LOIs yesterday, did some client work, enjoyed Freelance Chat.

Finished reading a book from a series I previously enjoyed, but was disappointed in this particular book. The protagonist got together with a guy who spent previous books behaving like a creepy stalker, and there’s no chemistry between them, and everything in this book was too easy.

Read another book, a first book in a series. Frustrated because the protagonist spent most of the first 100 pages crying and being dizzy. Sorry, that doesn’t make her relatable and cute. It makes me want to smack her upside the head.

So that series is a no-go for me.

So hot and humid that reading was all I could handle yesterday afternoon.

I managed to read and give notes on the latest version of a friend’s script. It really sparkles!

This morning, managed to get the front watered again – and then it rained, so I didn’t have to do anything about the back. Still none of the lovely thunderstorms we were promised, although it looks like a hurricane will find its way up here next week.

Did a grocery run to Star Market for some necessities, then a library run to drop off/do curbside pickup. Full disinfectant protocols. At least everyone was masked at the store and at curbside pickup.

I have a bunch of stuff to get done today, house and home stuff mostly, so I’m going to cut myself a break on the work. I have to re-think how I’m going to make the Topic Workbook example sheets work in the reformatted workbooks, because they’re not holding the formatting – and when they do, I can’t insert them into the text.

I need to get a lot of boxes purged from the basement this weekend, and work on the Grief to Art site. Over 150,000 dead, we need it.

But I’m not feeling hopeful, and I am feeling exhausted and burned out. So we will see.

Still, I’m looking forward to salmon burgers and potato salad tonight, and there’s now plenty of gelato, so there are some small pleasures I can enjoy.

And books, more books.

I have a review to get out today, and I’m writing an article in my head that I hope to get down on paper and out to my editor in the next couple of days.

Chasing down late payments, which is always frustrating.

Tomorrow is Lammas, a special day in my personal calendar. I will make cornbread early in the morning, I have blackberries. I don’t have any beer – might use wine or vodka instead.

First harvest – and I’m out of time on a few things, and not sure what to do.

Have a great weekend.

Thurs. Jan. 9, 2020: Frustrations and Creativity

Thursday, January 9, 2020
Waxing Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Hop on over to Gratitude and Growth for the latest on the garden.

Yesterday was exhausting. I was plugging away at my client’s when one of the reps needed an email blast sent out immediately. Of course, it was near the end of my workday. Then, when I logged onto Robly, the platform we use — they changed everything on their dashboard. So there I was, under time pressure, and they’ve made everything awful.

For the past three years, I’ve loved Robly and recommended it to everyone above Constant Contact and MailChimp. Now, without any warning, they’ve stripped everything that made them unique and versatile out of the platform. I can’t build a campaign from scratch anymore. I’m FORCED to choose one of THEIR templates, then have to dismantle it in order to rebuild it the way I need. Instead of being able to choose a blank template and building it the way I want. Everything that took one step now takes five. I’m being forced into setting up for metrics that my clients don’t want or need. Support had to work with me through live chat so I could send out a basic, simple email because the platform tried to force me into A/B testing of two different emails. I don’t want or need that for that particular blast. Don’t force me into doing extra work when I’m on time pressure for things I don’t want or need. No. YOU are supposed to serve MY needs, not the other way around.

So, no more Robly for me. I know there’s one particular client who won’t move platforms, but everyone else will, once I recommend it, will move. And I sure as hell won’t be recommending them to ANYONE again.

Way to lose customers, Robly.

Remote chat was okay, but I got in late and was upset, and had to work to catch up.

Stopped at the store on the way home to pick up a few things.

Charlotte was in meltdown mode when I got home, having an anxiety attack where she also got aggressive. She didn’t like the boundaries set while I was gone (that she couldn’t go up and bother Tessa). So she got hissy and spitty and aggressive. Then, she heard people talking outside and some idiot idling their engine for a good half hour and freaked out. I suspect that was the pattern when she was moved around — she had anxiety and got aggressive, there were loud voices, a car engine started up, and she was moved to the next location.

I coaxed her into my lap and soothed her. As soon as the truck drove off and there were no more voices, AND SHE WAS STILL HOME, she calmed down and was fine.

She has to learn boundaries. And she needs to learn that having to stay within certain boundaries (and there aren’t a lot: no aggression to the humans or cats in the household; stay off the counters) doesn’t mean she’s given away.

Time and patience. That’s all she needs. Time and patience. And consistency.

Worked on the Winter Solstice romance this morning. Will finish the draft of “Trust” this afternoon, and wash the holiday fabric, so it can be put away until next year. Have to get some wax out of a few pieces. That’s where the iron and the butcher paper come in handy. I can lift off the wax using butcher paper without hurting the iron or the fabric.

Will clean out some boxes from the basement this weekend, maybe get in some yard work, do research, write, work on the books for review.

Hopefully, a lovely, creative weekend at home. I need some peace and quiet!

Difficult, when there’s a psychopath determined to get us all killed running the country. And Congress lets him.

An article pitch and an LOI bounced back. I found another submission address for the article pitch. The LOI — the company removed the listing, so that’s that. Working on a couple more article pitches and LOIs that will go out either later this week, or early next.

Back to the page.

 

Published in: on January 9, 2020 at 10:23 am  Comments Off on Thurs. Jan. 9, 2020: Frustrations and Creativity  
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Monday, November 15, 2010

Monday, November 15, 2010
Waxing Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Venus Retrograde
Scheduled to post

Roller coaster of a weekend. Packed Saturday morning, went over to the site job for a few hours, came back, packed some more, was in absolute despair by the time I left, wondering how it will all get done. We’re at the point where it’s the weird-sized stuff, that doesn’t really fit into boxes, but the movers don’t want bags, they want BOXES, and large boxes are damn expensive. So it’s sorting what we take in the last carload today and what we can leave for the movers. I feel like I should put a sticker on the car staying “Weird shit” – only, I don’t put stickers on my car.

Went back to the site job, finished the assignment for Confidential Job #1, and also read Yasmine Galenorn’s HARVEST HUNTING. Loved it. Delilah is my favorite of the three Otherworld sisters anyway, and she just grows and learns so much in this book. Loved it, loved it, loved it. Plus, it was nice to read something just because I wanted to.

To bed early, lots of weird dreams, mostly involving actors (which means they must be anxiety dreams about leaving the NY area and Broadway). Up early Sunday, got some writing done (which felt GREAT, I miss my daily writing). After breakfast, headed back to the apartment.

Finished pulling stuff off the PC, was ready to pull the hard drive and dump the PC, then realized I don’t know what the hard drive looks like. So that had to wait. Packed some more, in absolute despair. Bought a bunch more boxes, mailed some stuff, returned library books, announced to the neighbors and a few local friends who know my neighbors that I’m leaving. We’ll see how that goes over. Can’t say as I care all that much — my friends are happy for me, and those who aren’t — I don’t have to deal with them any more.

Back to the site job. Looked up what the hard drive looked like, so I could pull it when I got home. Took care of some other stuff online.

I’m so sad to be leaving this job. It’s one of the few things I will miss.

Worked on the write up for Confidential Job #1 and emailed it when I got back.

Had to go back to the site because I left my cell phone there. Freudian slip much?

Returned a key to another job. Picked up my mom and returned a key to yet another job.

Packed some more when I got home. Cleaned the oven. Played with the cats, who are beside themselves with stress. Stacked the stuff that somehow HAS to get squished into the car today.

Eddie McClintock’s tweets on the Jets/Browns game were so hilarious I got distracted from my packing. Better than the game! Always nice to know that an actor whose work you admire is also funny and smart without a script!

Pulled the hard drive and dumped the old PC. I am now officially PC-free and totally Mac-converted. As my friend Barb says, “I am of the Cult of Mac, and it is good.”

Up to the house early this morning, with the last carload of stuff before the Carload of Cats. Errands, raking, and I bet I’ll be in bed very early. Everything hurts. I can’t wait to take a long, hot soak in Epsom salts on Friday night, with a great glass of wine, some scented candles, and Valerian root before bedtime. Because I”m taking waaaaay too many over-the-counter painkillers, and, in just two weeks, I’ve built up a tolerance. So, after Friday — no more for a few months — just massage, yoga, and my special stress-release bath salts.

Three days, people. Three days.

Devon

Friday, November 12, 2010

Friday, November 12, 2010
Waxing Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Venus Retrograde
Sunny and warmer

Busy couple of days. Got the car loaded up on Wednesday morning, but, because there were lots of oddly shaped items, it took longer than usual and we didn’t get out on the road until nearly 7. It was still raining, although not too badly. Got to the house around 11, unloaded. Had lunch. Ran some errands, which included things like opening new bank accounts. I’m still keeping my credit union account, of course, but wanted something local, and, fortunately, Chase is not allowed to screw people in MA like they do in NY, so I got to switch banks. It’s much easier to open an account in MA. Chase always made me feel like I was the dirt on the bottom of someone’s shoe because I’m not a rich, thieving financial sector worker. Not to mention the fact that they make up fees constantly, so my bank balance had very little to do with what I spent and more to do with what they felt like taking out. I’m closing the account I have with them today, and I bet you dollars to doughnuts they have a list of fees which means I get a tiny percentage of what I have in the account. They are an awful, awful bank, and I will be happy to be rid of them.

Couldn’t rake because of the weather.

The little Westie across the street sat in the window waiting for his person all day.

Unpacked in the afternoon, cooked in the lovely kitchen, worked on the material for Confidential Job #1 in the evening. Went to bed early again, but slept for nearly 12 hours, which I desperately needed.

Was angry to find that someone tossed an empty beer can onto my front lawn at some point in the night. I don’t know if it was just carelessness, or if they’re testing to see if someone’s living in the house. Cleaned it up. This better not become a habit, or the perpetrator will be seriously sorry he ever drove by the house!

Back on the road by 8 AM, stopped in Old Saybrook at my favorite store, bought a bunch of stuff I don’t really need, but really, really liked, including an oversized nutcracker. Got back to the apartment around 1.

The cats were happy to see us. Spent the afternoon catching up on things. The editor who granted me the extension sent me an email as though we never had the conversation. I kept my temper and reminded him that, just the day before, he granted me an extension and told me it wasn’t a problem.

It was awful to be back here with the noise, the dust, the chaos that the scumbag landlords create on a daily basis.

I have a lot of paperwork to do over the weekend, finish off a bunch of stuff, because there just won’t be time next week.

A friend scored some more of the good boxes for me, so I went to pick them up and drive her so she could pack up her car. Another neighbor across the compound wound up with an overseas letter delivered to him although it was addressed to me — typical of the postal carrier here. Another neighbor wants to put together a big block party in the spring so everyone can get to know each other. I have not yet made the formal announcement I’m leaving, so I just said I thought it was a great idea (which I do; I just won’t be here for it).

A friend laughed and said there’s no way I’ll actually be out next week on Moving Day, and I will wind up coming back and forth until the end of the month. I told her that if it doesn’t fit in the car or the two trucks next week, it’s going in the garbage. Once I walk out the door, I am GONE. I’m not driving back for four hours again for a couple of odds and ends. The only packing I want to be doing when the movers are here is retrieving the stuff that the cats stashed under furniture or that fell behind it. If that means pulling a couple of all nighters next week, so be it. People have offered to help me pack, but I’m sorting and figuring out as I do it, so there’s no way to actually help. It would take longer to explain it than to do it myself. But I do appreciate the offers of help!

I packed some more last night. Today’s agenda included another coat of paint on the window sills, tossing a bunch of stuff from the fridge so I can defrost it, getting some work done in the storage unit to make sure all they have to do is load it up, close the bank account, get the final check for the movers (maybe I should reverse the order of the last two, you think?), clean out the safe deposit box, come back and pack some more, and then have dinner with a friend. There are so many people I’d love to get together with, but just can’t. So they just have to all come up and visit.

A friend’s cat is very ill, so I’m thinking good thoughts for them. I’ve taken care of her many times and she’s a dear, precious soul.

I’m percolating a story idea. I’m trying to figure out the relationships between the characters. It’s nowhere near ready to write down yet, but at least it gives me something to do on the drives up and down.

Cablevision is being spiteful because I complained about them. In addition to refusing to make right when they screwed me a couple of months ago, they’ve weakened the signal, and now, every morning at 3 AM, the cable box switches to “bypass” and i have to reset it. On top of that, the internet connection gets slower every day. Total retaliation because I didn’t just accept their unprofessional level of service.

One week from today, we (including the cats) will wake up in our new home and prepare for the movers to arrive and unload the trucks.

And then I can concentrate on yard work! 😉

Devon

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Tuesday, July 7, 2009
Full Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Cloudy and pleasant

So, I’m sore in places I forgot I had. I meant to only go and reorganize the large unit, but we were on a roll, and wound up consolidating the smallest unit into it. I’ve got some things to be re-boxed this morning (the boxes are breaking), and I want to find an accessible area to stack the “Misc.” boxes so I can go through them and purge over the next few months, but we got a lot done. And today, after the re-boxing, I want to get at least 1/3 of the medium unit folded in.

I found a bunch of stuff I forgot I had. Some I brought back to the apartment (mostly books, a few dishes, a table). Some boxes I just labelled better so when I need something or when I unpack after the relocation, I’ll have an easier time of it.

I’m still looking for a few books I haven’t managed to locate, but found some that I need. So it’s all good.

The furniture I want to swap out is all stacked in the front corner of the unit for easy access. I’m sorting the stuff that has to go to the electronics recycling and the stuff I want to put up on Freecycle.

It’s quite a long process — a lifetime’s worth of stuff — but it’ll be worth it to get it sorted, organized, and purged BEFORE the big move. Why pay movers to cart stuff to a different state if I’m only going to throw it out once I get there?

Came home, exhausted, picked up Chinese food on the way from my favorite place. Rested a bit, then did some client work and started the assignment for Confidential Job #1, but didn’t get very far. I was distracted by a book called COBWEBS AND CREAM TEAS, about working at Felbrigg Hall in Norfolk. I rented the Mustard Pot cottage on that property several years ago, and love the estate. The people who work there are delightful, and the whole place has a warm, loving atmosphere.

The photo is The Mustard Pot, where I stayed. If you click the Felbrigg Hall link above, you’ll see the actual main house and grounds.

mustard pot2

I’ll have to make up for not working on the assignment today, since it’s due tomorrow.

I’m talking to an editor about an article, and a second editor contacted me about some sportswriting; however, the latter is ignoring questions as to frequency of assignment, length of assignment, and, most important, pay. If those questions are not answered, I will tell him to forget it.

The only computer workshop I need to take this month is on a day I can’t go. Oh, well.

Lousy writing session this morning. It’s taking me awhile to find my rhythm again. But I just keep pushing through, and, eventually, I’ll get there. I’m experiencing the part of being a full-time writer that’s not so much fun — facing the page when there is zero inspiration available, and all I’ve got to fall back on is craft. The only way to conquer it is to work through it and not give up because it’s a little more difficult or because I “don’t feel like it.” That’s what separates the pros, who CAN make a living writing from the wanna-bes — we do it eve on the rough days.

The Jupiter Retrograde is having a heavy effect on me this time around — I’m sorting out everything I can when it comes to house and home, and not taking any prisoners! Well, if there’s going to be a retrograde, I might as well use it POSITIVELY, right?

I’m going to attempt a little more work on the page this morning, and then it’s back to storage. I need to get the medium size unit sorted and consolidated by the end of the week.

Devon