Thurs. Sept. 23, 2021: Unnecessary Complications

image courtesy of Michael Gaida via pixabay.com

Thursday, September 23, 2021

Waning Moon

Pluto, Saturn, Jupiter, Neptune, Chiron, Uranus Retrograde

Cloudy and humid

Yesterday was nowhere near as productive a day as I’d hoped. I got some work done in the morning, between script coverage and other small projects.

I’ve been invited to present next year at the Cape Cod Writers Conference. If it’s live, I’ll be down there for a weekend (it’s a paid gig, plus meals and accommodations). If it’s virtual, I’ll do it from here. Either way, it will be fun. Think of how much money they’d have saved all the years I lived right down the street from the conference center (they wouldn’t have had to pay accommodations). I have about a month to come up with what I want to teach. Their workshops are about rolling up the sleeves and writing in class, so I’m going to create or re-slant a workshop that focuses on the writing.

I started to put together the bookcases for the sewing room, only to discover that they weren’t properly prepped for assembly. Instead of being a single tall cabinet, they are built/broken down into two smaller units that need to be stacked and then fastened together. Only one of the units lacks the capacity to fasten it to the other.

So I took it all apart again and put it back in the box and tried to contact Target to arrange a return. Only Target tries to force phone calls. The claim to have a live chat option, but it kept going around in circles and not letting me enter. What they sent me was a “customer experience survey” which I filled out and gave them a zero.

I also dug out the email address from the corporate office that I used last year, when UPS lost a mail order. I contacted them, explained the situation, and asked for something in writing to allow me to return both boxes and get a refund. Because, you see, Target’s stated refund policy is that they only return goods in UNOPENED boxes.

One of the bookcases is in an unopened box. But there was no way I could have known that the bookcase was improperly prepared without opening and starting to assemble the one in the other box.

I heard back from the manager of the Target, who wanted to talk on the phone to “make it right.” What part of “I don’t do business on the phone” is so hard to comprehend? I told him, no, we were not talking on the phone, as I stated in the previous email, and that the only thing I wanted was to return both bookcases for a refund.

This morning, I got an email from him stating that I could.

Now, I lost 2 billable hours getting the damn bookcases in the first place; I lost 3 billable hours trying to put them together, and now I’ll lose at least another 2 billable hours returning them. That’s almost a full workday lost. But they’ll be returned, and I’ll head to Re-store to see if they have something that works that’s already an actual bookcase and not a bunch of shitty, overweight particle board that’s flimsy while being heavy.

Before anyone starts with “what do you expect from a cheap Target bookcase?” – the answer is I expect a cheap Target bookcase that will sit in the sewing room, not look too bad (I’d planned to embellish it), and hold the items I need it to hold for 2 years or so. I’m not looking for heirloom whatever. I wanted a simple bookcase to hold stuff. It shouldn’t be this much drama around it.

Because I lost three hours of worktime yesterday, I ended up working until 10:45 last night, not something I want to become a habit.

Autumn Equinox dinner was good: Cornish hen with apples and sage, sweet potatoes, spinach.

Simple Equinox ritual,

We’re having too much kitty drama, too, lately. On Cape, Tessa always stayed with me in my room and slept on my bed (since she was a kitten). Charlotte was shut out of my bedroom. In this place, Tessa doesn’t like my bedroom (no carpet, and I’m not unpacked yet) and doesn’t want to stay there. Besides, she likes to roam around at night. So Charlotte now sleeps on the bed with me.

But, by 4 AM, Tessa is hungry and lonely and starts howling. If we were still in the house, I’d let her howl and not get up until 5. But I can’t have her waking the neighbors. So, she gets what she wants, and I stagger up to feed her. But when I try to go back to bed, she starts howling again as soon as she finishes her breakfast. I move to the sofa and try to doze off again, and she’s fine.

She gets plenty of attention during the day, but she wants the day to start at 4 AM, and that’s too early for me. I’m fine with starting at 5. But 4 is too much.

Meditation was good this morning, and now I have to figure out how to get the heavy bookcases back down to the car and go back to Target. Urgh. I have a lot to do today, so I have a feeling it will be another day of work rolling well into the night.

I still haven’t gotten the paperwork sorted to switch over the car registration and our licenses. Since Mercury goes retrograde on Monday, that’s all going to be even more of a nightmare than it needs to be. Urgh. Again.

Well, nothing for it but to get to it.

The house on Cape has an offer pending on it. I’m sure my former landlord is relieved, and I hope whomever buys the place is very happy there.

Post about the garden over on Gratitude and Growth.

Onward.

Fri. Aug. 6, 2021: Teaching at the Conference (Online)

image courtesy of Alexandra Koch via pixabay.com

Friday, August 6, 2021

Day Before Dark Moon

Pluto, Saturn, Jupiter, Neptune, Chiron Retrograde

Foggy and humid

Meditation was good, as always. I’m so grateful I found this particular group.

I spent almost the entire day polishing my presentation for class, choosing and changing images for slides. Cutting, rearranging, making it sharper.

I took a quick break to join in the Freelance Chat, but other than that, it was about getting the slides to where I wanted them.

I’m pleased with both the content and look. Let’s hope that the Zoom “share” screen works, so I can actually show it to the students!

I chose the Tip Sheets and uploaded them to a special page on the website, and converted the Power Point to a PDF and uploaded that, too. The students will be able to download the handouts and have something to which they can refer beyond the class.

I stayed up working on script coverage last night, and I still have one that has to be finished and go off before class starts – along with putting on makeup and getting things set up for being on Zoom for two hours.

I slept until 5:30 this morning (should have gotten up at 5). Charlotte finally decided to get me up by jumping onto my stomach and landing like a sack of potatoes. Yeah, that got me up.

I did not give up my first writing session of the day on the book, in spite of all the time pressure. I need that first session to stabilize my day and set a positive tone. I wrote a little under 1K, but I like what I wrote, so that’s good.

Next week, I’m going to start adding in the book I SHOULD be working on, along with this book, the undeadlined book I WANT to be writing, so that there’s more of a balance, and I’m making progress the way I need to make it, along with writing whatever I want. It’s not that I don’t want to write the book on which I SHOULD be working; it’s that it’s connected to the chaos of the surgeries and illness last year and the move, so it’s difficult. I need to separate the negative associations surrounding the book and focus on the book itself.

Then, I need to balance the work on both books with the copywriting demands, the article demands, the script coverage demands, and the work that needs to be done on the plays. I got sidetracked the other day by Marie Collier research for that play. I have some ideas for a premise, but I need more of a sense of how she interacted with her friends and enemies. I need to re-read Dawn Powell’s diaries, biography, and novels, and then re-read a couple of Dorothy Parker biographies, so I can mimic both their voices for their play.

But today, I teach a workshop on character, for the Cape Cod Writers Conference, stepping in for someone who had to drop out. I’m sure my approach is different than hers, although I tried to shape the class along her description of it, since people had already signed up. Hopefully, they will feel they’ve learned something when they leave, and will feel excited and empowered to play with character dynamics.

Off to finish the script coverage, get that out, and then shower, put on makeup, and make like a professional. Hopefully, the cats won’t be too much of a distraction when the Zoom is open. Charlotte does love participating on Zoom.

After class, I’m headed off to Wild Oats Market for a few things, then I have one more script to read and write up before I can stop for the weekend.

Peace, friends, and have a great weekend.

Published in: on August 6, 2021 at 5:40 am  Comments Off on Fri. Aug. 6, 2021: Teaching at the Conference (Online)  
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Interviewed on Long & Short Romance!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Venus Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Rainy and cool

First and foremost, hop on over to LASR to read an interview with me — it was a ton of fun — I just love working with them.

ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT will be available at the bookstore in the Cape Cod Writers Center Conference — woo hoo! If HEX BREAKER isn’t in print yet, they told me to go ahead and leave promotional materials in the store. Talk about a much better arrangement than at Write Angles last year, which segregated authors, lied to me about carrying me in the store, and then, the night before the conference dumped the whole problem into my lap. This was easy-peasy — I emailed the guy running the bookstore, he sent me the form, and we’re good to go. No drama, no “you’re not with a big enough publisher and not important enough for our store”, none of that. Which is one reason this conference is one of the most respected in the country.

Yesterday, I worked a lot, but didn’t get enough done. Sound familiar? But I got some ideas to one of my new editors, got some work in for another client, mowed the terraced back area, took all the clippings to the dump, In the afternoon, I managed to write 1857 words (a whole chapter) on HEART BINDER, and I read 70 pages of a manuscript for critique. And baked a cake.

I went to the client meeting at 6:30 last night, and didn’t get home until after 11. It was fun, and nice to do focused work in company, but I was beat by the time I got in. Overslept this morning, and then did some more work for that client before I even got a chance to blog.

Tessa was mad at me — our routine this summer has been that I take her out with me in the morning and put her in her cage on the deck. She watches me water, and then is out with me while I have my first cup of coffee, percolate ideas, and write the first 1K of the day in longhand. Later, at the end of the day, she comes out with me again, while I have a glass of wine on the deck and either read or write some more.

Well, yesterday afternoon, I was behind in the work, and couldn’t take her out before I left. And this morning, it was rainy. She was one sulky girl. I took her out this morning in my arms and she got rained on — which, of course, in her feline mind, is all my fault.

Anyway, I’ve got a LOT on my plate today — better get to it.

I’m so happy with the LASR interview!

Devon

Don’t forget — Taste of Tarot workshop for artists in all media, this Saturday afternoon, June 16, at Three Fish and a Ram Community Art Center in Mashpee. More info here.