Tuesday, Oct. 2: Slow Start, Slow Internet, Lots of Work

Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Waning Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Cloudy and cool

CE Lawrence is a terrific thriller writer (and a great teacher). Lawrence was also kind enough to be a guest today on A Biblio Paradise here. Drop by and leave a comment!

Got a few hours of focused work done in the morning. Picked up my friend from the train station at 1 o’clock. We had a good catch-up chat on the deck, out in the sunshine, cooked dinner, chatting all the time, and she caught an evening train back. We hadn’t seen each other in two years, since before I moved, but we’ve kept in touch and picked up where we left off. It was great.

Found out that the person set to join me here on site wasn’t coming yesterday after all, but would arrive today. Gives me more uninterrupted work time, for which I’m grateful.

Have to do a rewrite for an editor — we thought we were on the same page, only to find out we’re on different pages! Not a big deal, just re-angle it a bit.

The cover is coming along for OLD-FASHIONED DETECTIVE WORK — I’m looking forward to it. And the DEATH SPARKLES anthology is moving towards its release date.

Watched REVOLUTION — had some interesting backstories and complexities. Even though I’d figured out some of the Miles/Lance backstory, there were some good layers. But I’ve still got to ask — why no windmills? Why no waterwheels?

I have to get going on this week’s schoolwork and writing assignments, along with the writing that pays the bills. I feel like I got a slow start this morning, but I hope to pick up speed. The internet connection is so damn slow, I can’t be efficient. Very frustrating.


Wed. Aug. 15, 2012: Injury Slowing Me Down

Tessa and Violet resting between patrols

Wednesday, August 15, 2012
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Sunny and warm

Good work day yesterday, and got the front mowed. Today, it’s the terraced back area.

Somehow, managed to hurt the hip flexor in my right hip. I remember feeling discomfort during the conference, which got worse as the week progressed, and also driving to and from CT over the weekend. Now, it’s gotten very bad — can barely sit to drive. Sitting, in general, is excruciatingly painful. Standing, walking, lying down are fine, but sitting . . . which makes work more difficult. I think I’ll have to cancel out of tonight’s event — I can’t sit long enough to drive there, and then I can’t sit when I get there.

Planned to go to a reception for a new theatre collection at a local library. Only there was no parking. After driving around the area three times, and refusing to do what other people did and just park on people’s lawns, I left. If you’re going to have an event and don’t have enough parking, make arrangements with a nearby place who does, and let people know the overflow. Very disappointed. But, in light of the amount of pain I was in, perhaps it wasn’t entirely a bad thing to come home. Ice doesn’t help, heat doesn’t help, stretching doesn’t help, ibuprofen doesn’t help, pressure points don’t help. I may take a Valerian later this afternoon to force it to release, especially if I cancel out of tonight’s thing.

Something was rummaging out in the back of the garden this morning. I couldn’t tell what it was — too far away — but it was fairly big and made noise. Not like a cat or dog, either. Tessa was furious — got all puffy and was ready to rumble when I took her inside. Not afraid at all, but very protective.

Got a good day’s work in yesterday, and have an even longer one today. I’ve got an errand to run early this a.m., but then I’ll be at my desk, working. A lot of work over the next few days will be on the ghostwriting gig. Need to land another couple of quick-turnaround, quick paying gigs in the next couple of weeks, since one long-term assignment is ending in the next couple of weeks, and it’s replacement hasn’t panned out as well financially as promised.

It’s hard not to feel discouraged when one is in pain, because it’s so exhausting, but I’m trying to keep my attitude in perspective and the rest will align.

I read CE Lawrence’s SILENT VICTIM yesterday. It was great to see how what we talked about in class is applied. I loved all the New York stuff — really a great example of “Setting as Character” (will add her to my reading list for that class). Well-done story. Kept me on the edge of my seat in the best possible way. A lot of things I knew in theory are now making sense in practice.

Off I go, then, trying to get everything done, and also get this damned hip injury sorted.


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Tues. Aug. 7, 2012: Conference Day 1

Tuesday, August 7, 2012
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Sunny and cooler

It’s only Tuesday? So much has gone on, I feel like I’m living a week in every day.

The Conference is great. I got some work done yesterday morning before I left, work with students, etc. My first conference session was with C.E. Lawrence, for mystery/thriller. Great, great session. Plus, we both love Edinburgh, we both have theatre backgrounds, we both have long histories in New York. The class gave me a series of “aha” moments that will help me in my work. Today, I’m going to read the opening of the aviation piece, to see if what bugs me about it is what the others pick up on.

Met up with friends and had lunch at the cabana by the pool. The back of my chair got hit with a golf ball, so I stomped over to the links, waving it, demanding to know who nearly clocked me. No one would take responsibility, so I said, “Fine, you’re not getting it back.” I stuck it in my bag, brought it home, washed it, and the cats are playing with it.

Afternoon session was with Peter Drummey, of the MA Historical Society (I always get his title wrong, I keep calling him “director”, but I think it’s something else), on historical research. I’m like a kid in a candy store. I can get a Boston Public Library card, even though I live on the Cape. As a “citizen of Massachusetts” (that makes me feel so Revolutionary), I can access libraries and collections all over the state. I’m beside myself with excitement. Now, if I could send these selves to some of the collections simultaneously, imagine how much I could get done. Great session, and gives me so many ideas for my research for the aviation, whaling, astronomy, and mill girls projects.

Had to shoot out of that session like a bat out of hell, because it ran over, and we had to be at a reading in Sandwich at 3. We were only a few minutes late — Randall Peffer was reading from his new Civil War novel, SEAHAWK BURNING at Titcomb’s Books. Since one of my friends/students is studying with him, and I know him from both his work and writers’ center events, off we went. It was great fun, and we wound up sitting around chatting for a full hour past the time of the actual event.

I sent my friends off to the Beehive for dinner, while I raced back home. I had to grovel to the cats (who were mad at me for being gone all day), get some work done, and marinate the chicken for Wednesday’s dinner party.

Back to the conference center, for a talk by Joe Finder. He was engaging and hilarious — he really knows how to uplift his audience. I’m familiar with his name, but hadn’t yet read any of his work. I bought VANISHED. He signed it, and I had nothing of value to say at the signing table, so I simply said, “thank you.”

Met Gina Barreca on my way out, and didn’t realize until later that she wrote THEY USED TO CALL ME SNOW WHITE . . .BUT I DRIFTED, which is one of the books that got me through the 90s, along with KISS MY TIARA by Susan Jane Gilman, and were very important when I wrote my show WOMEN WITH AN EDGE. Which makes laughing and talking with her even more special.

Home, worked on the synopsis for HEART SNATCHER, could not get online to my students. Prepared my bag for today, and fell into bed.

Got up around 5:30. Tweaked the piece I’m going to read in the mystery class — moved around some description, cut some qualifiers, made a couple of things more specific. Hate reading work this raw, but if I’m going to find the right direction and learn the expectations in this genre, I need to take what I have and learn how to make it better. If I’m not willing to be bad, I can’t learn to be good.

I have to say, I love just being a student for this, and running around laughing, talking, and listening as much as possible. No pressure, just learning.

I have two cakes to bake before I leave, and I want to see if I can get into the forum to spend time with students. I better get moving!