Wed. Sept. 21, 2022: Digging in the Archives Of Law

image coourtesy of svklimkin via pixabay.com

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

Waning Moon

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

Mars is still in effing Gemini

Cloudy and humid

I pushed a little too hard yesterday. I wasn’t as fully recovered from the booster as I hoped.

I was out of the house a little after 8, but had not budgeted enough time for the school busses and the road construction. Mercury Retrograde, even though I gave myself extra time. It just wasn’t enough time.

Then, I went to the wrong building first. I navigated decades through the five boroughs of New York, yet Pittsfield baffles me. It makes no sense.

Anyway, I ended up in the state office building, at the RMV. There was a long line and grumbling when I went to the head of it to talk to the security guard. But when I said, “I need help. I’m lost” everything shifted, and everyone had an opinion to help me get where I was going. Which was basically across the street, but I had to go all the way up the street around the common and back down. Because, you know (gestures). Anyway, I thanked them all and they were smiling when I left.

I texted the librarian to let him know I was on my way, and got there a few minutes later. I had to park waaaaay down the street, because parking in Pittsfield is a nightmare. Plus, the street along which the court buildings sit has the music school and a whole bunch of other buildings with people coming, going, and needing parking. And one has to move the car every three hours. I sincerely hope jurors get their own lot somewhere.

Everyone is funneled through a single doorway in the basement of the building, through the metal detector. The very nice female security guard asked where I was headed, I told her the library, and she asked if I knew where it was. I told her I was lucky I found the building. She laughed and said, “Let me fix that for you” and gave me directions.

The library is on the top floor.

The restrooms are in the basement, which made restroom breaks a hike.

The library is lovely, and so is the librarian. He’d pulled some books for me, showed me how to read the statute indexes and where to find what I needed. I spent the morning going from book to book. I had to go back to the 1932 Statutes to sort of find what I needed.

He suggested that the bank POLICY might be different than the actual LAW, and I’m inclined to agree with him. The law talks about “persons” without regard to gender. So basically, it was bank POLICY to be misogynistic jerks, and no wonder they refused to give me the information.

Just for that, I’ll kill a few bankers over the course of the series.

The information I found will send me back to the historical society to dig through some more of their files.

I left just before noon, a little dizzy from all the concentration. I stopped at Adams Market to pick up some groceries, and then did a few more errands, including the library, before I got home, completely wiped out.

We had a late pizza lunch, and I finished reading A MURDER OF MAGES. I never get tired of that book.

I turned around two scripts in the afternoon and evening (should have been more, but I was too tired). I have to make up the difference today. Spent some time online with a fun group of colleagues on a six-week “marketing game” in which I’m participating.

I haven’t spoken about Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral. I’m an American; the monarchy is not part of my heritage, and I have never been a royal watcher/gossiper. It’s always been my position that what the family does is not my business. I don’t take joy in gossiping about them, and when I see Americans being snarky and nasty, I lose respect for them. I have a great deal of empathy for my British friends who mourn her. British subjects and those who’ve been colonized by the British are directly impacted by all this, and I’d rather listen to them than squawk my own meaningless opinions.  The history of the event intrigues me, and her long reign was astonishing. The way the world changed while she was Queen was astounding. When you look at the history that took place under the three major Queens: Elizabeth I, Victoria, and Elizabeth II – it’s quite astounding.

I started re-reading AN IMPORT OF INTRIGUE, the next Satrine/Minox book, and love it, too.

Awakened a little after two by coyotes yipping at each other, up on the mountain. This is the first time I’ve heard coyotes since I moved here. I’m only four blocks from downtown, but I figure they’re up by the lake, which is less than ¾ of a mile up the mountain at the end of the street.

I see Joyce Carol Oates has yet again said something unfortunate on social media. I will always admire her work ethic. I keep re-reading her early diaries on process. But the work itself has always been problematic, and the mix of attention-seeking ego/insecurity is exhausting. It was old in the 90s and is still eye-rolling now.

Trouble getting my act together this morning. I need to get some admin. I need to catch up on some stuff that’s come in thanks to my Creative Ground profile up, and do some website updates. Creative Ground is so much more useful to me than LinkedIN. The debit card clusterfuck begins today, and I am not looking forward to it. Plus, I have to argue with Berkshire Fucking Gas about the bill. Do not fuck with me during a Mercury Retrograde when Mars is in Gemini because I will be more like a rabid bear than a feral cat.

I want to finish up the last few chapters of the novel version of ANGEL HUNT, but Shelley has demanded some attention on LEGERDEMAIN, so I have to see how I can move between the two for a few days. And make up the script coverages that I didn’t get done yesterday.

There was a great quote in today’s note in the Mercury Retrograde journal: “Be so committed to creating your own Universe and the Universe will start to form around you.”

Damn right I am forming my own Universe.

I need to prepare for Mabon, too, since it happens tomorrow, whether I am prepared or not.

Tessa and her Scout Crow buddy are still having their morning chat at the living room window. There must be a lot going on out there.

I also need to contact the local community television/radio station about an appointment. I want to check out the facility before the next Artist Impact Coalition Working Group meeting.

I have Ideas.

Be very scared.

Catch you tomorrow, friends, and have a good one!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Saturday, June 26, 2010
Full Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Sunny and hot

It was hotter and more humid than predicted, but oh, well. Got out a batch of queries and five pitches, which was pretty decent. One of them is based in London, although I’d telecommute — it would be very cool to land that one. And it pays pretty well, too. Spent time with the cat next door, both morning and afternoon. Finished the wonderful Pepys biography by Claire Tomalin and went back to Joyce Carol Oates’s diary. Received my next assignment from Confidential Job #1. Made some notes on the Solstice Mystery.

Savvy Authors sent me the post for my Ons Story, Many Voices Workshop. Problem is, they’d promoted it as starting in August, only we’d moved it to January. We got it sorted, but I had a few minutes where I nearly had a heart attack, wondering how I was going to manage it with the time I’m booked to spend on the road, if we HAD to move it back to August, and also if I was crazy and had somehow written it down wrong.

But the paper trail was there, my calendar was right, and it’s sorted for January. That workshop is very unique because we start with a flash fiction story that’s literary fiction and then move it from genre to genre throughout the month, using the protocols of each genre to tweak it and explore it. By the end, you’ve either settled on a genre in which to expand the piece, or you have a handful of short stories in different genres. It’s not an easy workshop, by any means, but it’s really cool. I created it several years ago, when I was looking for something like this and couldn’t find it. So far, the students have loved it.

It’s January, it’s a long way down the road, but I hope to see a lot of you there. When it’s properly posted, I’ll put up the link.

I had some unpleasant business to deal with on my mother’s account. Some of it was handled; some will continue over the weekend and into next week. And I have to figure out my dates down in DC for some meetings, in the fall, but around the teaching jobs. I’m getting excited about going to Philly for a gig in a few weeks – not only will the work be tons of fun, and I’ll also have time to write, but I’ll get to hang out with some writer pals.

Today will be busy: writing, looking after the cat next door, sorting out some correspondence, clearing off the desk, taking a carload of stuff to storage, picking up some stuff from a couple of stores, maybe getting over to Target or Home Goods to replace the wine glasses I accidentally broke the other day (a bandaged hand is slowing me down). I want to get most of it done sooner rather than later, because it’s going to be a hot one. It never cooled down the way they promised yesterday.

Elsa improved quite a bit yesterday, and she seems even better today. She’s really working at getting better, and I’m doing everything I can to help her.

Not that we’ve heard back from the vet or anything since I contacted him on TUESDAY.

Back to the page.

Devon

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Sunny and pleasant

I love this cooler, saner weather. I’m so much more productive!

The amount of legal paperwork to file against the rat bastards who own the building is enormous. But, yet again, yesterday, they said they’d turn off the water for two hours, and it was off for six and a half. Every fucking week, we have no water for at least a day or two; sometimes they tell us, sometimes they don’t. They always, always lie about how long it will be off. Time to get the Health Department involved as well as the state. Yes, everyone is aware how illegal it is. No one cares, no one stops them – all consequences are just that, consequences, not prevention.

Plus, they’ve moved their “workshop” into the apartment next door, as a harassment technique, so that there is the sound, noise and dust all day from sawing, hammering, etc.

Not that ANY of the work can be seen in the partially finished hallways.

Errands were successful. At least one of the incompetents was handled with pleasantries, so that wasn’t as tough as it might have. The other, however, needed to be dealt with harshly. Such is life.

Not a very productive writing afternoon, but I managed to finish Chapter 19 in the evening, and I’m working on Chapter 20 this morning. Chapter 20 is the climactic point of the whole book. I think I won’t be able to stop at Chapter 21, it’s more likely to be Chapter 22. That will make OLD-FASHIONED DETECTIVE WORK approximately twice as long as HEX BREAKER.

Truncated writing day because I have two shows. Let’s hope I can stay focused, so that I can finally finish this piece tomorrow and not need a cooling down day between shows and focused writing. Maybe then, I can get it out this weekend – three weeks late. Oh, well.

Finished re-reading Joyce Carol Oates’s JOURNAL. It’s very inspiring, and I hope the next volume, covering the next decade, comes out soon. Her consistent work ethic, output, wide range, and talent are astonishing.

Back to the page until I have to dash for the train . . .

Devon

Devon’s Bookstore:


Hex Breaker
by Devon Ellington. A Jain Lazarus Adventure. Hex Breaker Jain Lazarus joins the crew of a cursed film, hoping to put to rest what was stirred up before more people die and the film is lost. Tough, practical Detective Wyatt East becomes her unlikely ally and lover on an adventure fighting zombies, ceremonial magicians, the town wife-beater, the messenger of the gods, and their own pasts.
$4.00 ebook/ $6.00 on CD from Firedrakes Weyr Publishing.
Visit the site for the Jain Lazarus adventures.


5 in 10: Create 5 Short Stories in Ten Weeks
by Devon Ellington. This ebooklet takes you from inspiration to writing to revision to marketing. By the end of ten weeks, you will have either 5 short stories or a good chunk of a novella complete. And it’s only 50 cents, USD. Here.

Writing Rituals: Ideas to Support Creativity by Cerridwen Iris Shea. This ebooklet contains several rituals to help you start writing, get you through writer’s block, and help send your work on its way. It’s only 39 cents USD. (Note: Cerridwen Iris Shea is one of the six names under which I publish). Here.


Full Circle: An Ars Concordia Anthology
. Edited by Colin Galbraith. This is a collection of short stories, poems, and other pieces by a writers’ group of which I am a member. My story is “Pauvre Bob”, set at Arlington Race Track in Illinois. You can download it free here:

Published in: on August 27, 2008 at 8:00 am  Comments (3)  
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Friday, August 22, 2008

Friday, August 22, 2008
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Sunny, hot, humid

Part 6 of my interview is up on The Creative Heartbeat Collective. Check it out. This time I talk about mythology, how working backstage influences the writing, HEX BREAKER (finally), erotica, and solitude.

Yes, Brandy, you’re absolutely correct. I was a little down and tired yesterday. Life stuff, and wishing I could finish OLD FASHIONED DETECTIVE WORK faster than I am. The additions and complexities are good, but I have to speed up the process.

I had a nice lunch with friends and then had a good wander, because I had to give the cleaning person the run of the apartment for the afternoon. I went to Robin’s Bookstore, one of my favorite places in Philadelphia, and bought a bunch of books. Not as many as I wanted to, but I’m on a budget AND I have to cart them all home. Two of the books are the compilations of the NY TIMES WRITERS ON WRITING, which I like. And, now that I think of it, I bet I bought them when they first came out and they’re in storage. If that’s the case, I’ll put the doubles up on Bookmooch. In the meantime, I can enjoy them. I also bought the memoir CHOSEN FOREVER by Susan Richards and a novel called THE FORTUNE QUILT by Lani Diane Rich.

I went to Remedy, the tea bar, and snacked on chicken summer rolls and an iced Earl Grey tea, and wrote some notes on a mystery, a comedy, and a possible other piece. Wandered over to Rittenhouse Square because it was so beautiful. Sat in the park and read all of THE FORTUNE QUILT during the afternoon. I thoroughly enjoyed the book. It has a lot more heart and depth than I expected. I’ll definitely hunt down this author’s other work. Also wrote notes on some observations I made on people in the park, which may wind up being a series of short stories.

Went to an Espresso bar for an espresso and an apple tart, then wandered back to the apartment. It was a good refresher of a day, refilling the creative well.

I’m immersed in Joyce Carol Oates’s JOURNAL, and in the research materials for the play HOSTAGE. I have to say that the latter leaves me with a great deal of despair about the state of the world. But it’s necessary to do the research if I want this play to work.

I haven’t spent anywhere near enough time on the ICELANDIC SAGAS – and I’ll be very annoyed with myself if I dragged an 1800 page volume down here and didn’t look at it.

I wrote a few pages last night on something that’s been bothering me – the scenes and images keep haunting me. Now that I’ve got it on paper, maybe I can put it aside and get back to what I need to do.

Back to the page. Let’s hope I am back on track and can have a productive writing day.

Devon
Devon’s Bookstore:


Hex Breaker
by Devon Ellington. A Jain Lazarus Adventure. Hex Breaker Jain Lazarus joins the crew of a cursed film, hoping to put to rest what was stirred up before more people die and the film is lost. Tough, practical Detective Wyatt East becomes her unlikely ally and lover on an adventure fighting zombies, ceremonial magicians, the town wife-beater, the messenger of the gods, and their own pasts.
$4.00 ebook/ $6.00 on CD from Firedrakes Weyr Publishing.
Visit the site for the Jain Lazarus adventures.


5 in 10: Create 5 Short Stories in Ten Weeks
by Devon Ellington. This ebooklet takes you from inspiration to writing to revision to marketing. By the end of ten weeks, you will have either 5 short stories or a good chunk of a novella complete. And it’s only 50 cents, USD. Here.

Writing Rituals: Ideas to Support Creativity by Cerridwen Iris Shea. This ebooklet contains several rituals to help you start writing, get you through writer’s block, and help send your work on its way. It’s only 39 cents USD. (Note: Cerridwen Iris Shea is one of the six names under which I publish). Here.


Full Circle: An Ars Concordia Anthology
. Edited by Colin Galbraith. This is a collection of short stories, poems, and other pieces by a writers’ group of which I am a member. My story is “Pauvre Bob”, set at Arlington Race Track in Illinois. You can download it free here:

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Sunny and pleasant
Philadelphia

Yes, I’m in Philadelphia. It IS Wednesday, right? The last few days have seemed like one long day. And I slept in this morning, which means I got a late start.

Megabus was fine getting down here. It’s clean, it’s cheap, they’re nice. But my seat was broken in the “reclined” position and by the time I figured it out, it was too late to change, and they don’t let you ON the bus until just before they leave, which I hate. I like a few minutes to get settled. Still, it beats driving myself through New Jersey! I had my music on, I read Joyce Carol Oates’s JOURNAL — she truly is one of the most prolific writers ever. I feel like an absolute slacker beside her.

I’m down the rabbithole of the writing, which is a good thing. Theatre seems very far away. While I miss specific individuals, I don’t miss the amount of energy and focus it requires, even an easy show. And I’m not the kind of person who does things half-way. I can’t phone it in. Wish I could — it would probably save me a lot of stress.

I’m working out a lot and doing several yoga sessions a day. Unfortunately, before I left NY, I wrenched my good shoulder a bit, and wrestling the luggage didn’t help. I’m trying to gently stretch it out and keep it from contracting.

Costume Imp, on tour with Herself, will be down here just for two days in early September, so I’m going to take the day off and come down to play. Because let’s face it, being separated for seven to ten months is simply NOT going to work.

In the meantime, this week is about serious writing time. So, I’m going back to the page, back to OLD FASHIONED DETECTIVE WORK. I left them stranded off the coast of Cape Cod, and it’s time to bring them back in.

Devon

Devon’s Bookstore:


Hex Breaker
by Devon Ellington. A Jain Lazarus Adventure. Hex Breaker Jain Lazarus joins the crew of a cursed film, hoping to put to rest what was stirred up before more people die and the film is lost. Tough, practical Detective Wyatt East becomes her unlikely ally and lover on an adventure fighting zombies, ceremonial magicians, the town wife-beater, the messenger of the gods, and their own pasts.
$4.00 ebook/ $6.00 on CD from Firedrakes Weyr Publishing.
Visit the site for the Jain Lazarus adventures.


5 in 10: Create 5 Short Stories in Ten Weeks
by Devon Ellington. This ebooklet takes you from inspiration to writing to revision to marketing. By the end of ten weeks, you will have either 5 short stories or a good chunk of a novella complete. And it’s only 50 cents, USD. Here.

Writing Rituals: Ideas to Support Creativity by Cerridwen Iris Shea. This ebooklet contains several rituals to help you start writing, get you through writer’s block, and help send your work on its way. It’s only 39 cents USD. (Note: Cerridwen Iris Shea is one of the six names under which I publish). Here.


Full Circle: An Ars Concordia Anthology
. Edited by Colin Galbraith. This is a collection of short stories, poems, and other pieces by a writers’ group of which I am a member. My story is “Pauvre Bob”, set at Arlington Race Track in Illinois. You can download it free here:

Published in: on August 20, 2008 at 8:17 am  Comments (7)  
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Saturday, August 16, 2008

Saturday, August 16, 2008
Full Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Cloudy and muggy

Part Five of my interview is up at the Creative Heartbeat Collective.

I gave myself the day off yesterday because I felt lousy, and today I feel better. I had some errands to run in the morning, but was back a little after noon and just took it easy. I did some crocheting – don’t like what I’m doing, will have to take it out and start over, once I find a pattern I like. I’m sure I’ll discuss it on The Tactile Muse, a blog which has been seriously ignored in the past few months.

Read a bit, played with the cats, took care of some admin work. Didn’t do much writing. I’ve been hired to write an article for Women on Writing – they want it by the 25th, but if I can, I’d like to get it out before I leave for Philadelphia this week, which means getting it done this weekend.

Also on the agenda this weekend: Finishing OLD-FASHIONED DETECTIVE WORK and getting it to my publisher, and packing for Philadelphia.

I need to put two enormous and heavy books in my suitcase – I want to re-read Joyce Carol Oates’s JOURNALS, and I need to (finally) read the ICELANDIC SAGAS, because I’m working on a proposal based on them, so I have to actually read them and take notes. I’ll also start the next Jain Lazarus story – which will be told through Billy Root’s eyes – work on the ghost story, and I’ll see what else. I’m trying to figure out if I should work on the play HOSTAGE or another screenplay that’s relevant or keep working on REAL. Taking REAL down means a lot of heavy paper, but I need to get it done.

In other words, most of my luggage will be writing, and very little will be clothing! But I should have a lot of time to write while I’m down there working, so it’s all good.

I wondered why my muscles were so sore yesterday – then realized because, after a long break, I’d done an hour and a half weight training workout on Thursday night. Duh! Getting back into a regular fitness schedule is important – letting it slide while I’ve worked on the show was stupid, and I’m paying the price.

I’ve got some errands to run, some bills to pay, some fights to fight with building management (so what else is new?), and then it’s back to the page for a hopefully productive day.

Have a good weekend, everyone!

Devon

Published in: on August 16, 2008 at 7:28 am  Comments (3)  
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