Mon. Sept. 19, 2016: Getting Back to a Writing Rhythm

Monday, September 19, 2016
Waning Moon
Mercury Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Rainy and humid

We finally have some much-needed rain!

Saturday, we were up and out very early, headed to Providence. We dropped our friend off, then headed down to Newport. It was a gorgeous day.

The International Boat Show was in Newport. The place was packed! And I happened to walk into a store, and there was my fellow Sister-in-Crime, Alyssa Maxwell, doing a book signing for her Gilded Age mystery series set in Newport! I knew her work, of course, but we’d never met before. It was great to have a chat, meet, and I bought and she signed the book I didn’t have! 😉

We met friends for lunch at the Red Parrot (lots of choices, but a bit disappointing). I did some geographical research for the Victorian mystery.

Exhausted by the time we got home, and the cold came back full force. To bed early.

Sunday, I gave myself the day off, mostly reading and doing a few errands.

Today, it’s back to the page, once I’ve done some errands. I need to start opening out CONFIDENCE CONFIDANT (I need to submit the full length within the next few weeks), and work on the other projects I’m juggling. I’m also starting the next round of edits on DEATH OF A CHOLERIC, and preparing for another trip later in the week.

Busy, busy, but good busy.

I think I know what’s coming next for the characters in “Lake Justice” – so I’ll have to get that going soon. I want to pair three shorts for the “Lake Justice” characters – one set in a ski resort, and the other set on an island in Maine. That will make a good set of stories to put together with the re-released “Lake Justice.”

I also want to do another Twinkle Tavern series mystery – probably a novella.

Somehow, I have to figure out how to fit them in with the projects I’m juggling, including the plays and CHOLERIC and SONGBOUND.

But it’s a good dilemma to have!

I will be very relieved when Mercury goes direct in a few days – and the Equinox is coming up!

Devon

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Thurs. Sept. 15, 2016: Another Solid Creative Wave

Thursday, September 15, 2016
Waxing Moon
Mercury Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Sunny and pleasant

Busy days. Got in some good writing on one of the fantasy projects, and also a contemporary piece that was inspired by the trip to the dunes on Monday. So that was all good.

Lots of cooking, talking, and running around. Plenty to see, which is good.

I have to do some work on the expanded version of the Kate Warne play, CONFIDENCE CONFIDANT, next week. There are two possible venues for it once it’s a full-length, and I want to give a shot at both. I’m also excited to keep working on the projects I’m juggling, and to get back to the revisions of DEATH OF A CHOLERIC.

I’m also spinning some ideas for another Twinkle Tavern mystery, and a couple of other pieces with the characters from “Lake Justice.” The latter will be packaged as a trio of stories with “Lake Justice” for re-release through Smashwords.

I’m putting together a new marketing campaign for the Delectable Digital Delights pieces.

So that’s all good. Lots of creative stuff happening. It’s a relief, after feeling for so long that I was fighting to get any words done per day.

I’m looking forward to Mercury going direct next week, too!

Devon

Published in: on September 15, 2016 at 9:11 am  Comments Off on Thurs. Sept. 15, 2016: Another Solid Creative Wave  
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Fri. Jan. 8, 2016: Revising the Writing Schedule and Goals

Friday, January 8, 2016
Dark Moon
Mercury Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Meeting in Hyannis yesterday morning. It was fine; at least I didn’t want to jab my eye with a fork, like I do at some of these meetings.

Back to work, tried to catch up. Computer isn’t working properly, so that makes it more difficult.

I got some sad news: Amber Quill, with whom I have half a dozen titles, is shutting its doors on March 30. LAKE JUSTICE, SEVERANCE, ELUSIVE PRAYERS, and TRACKING MEDUSA will cease to be available from them at that time. I wish I’d found out directly from THEM instead of through a second party, but, other than that, I’ve always been treated well by them. I loved my editor; they paid on time; they gave me good covers. They believed in their authors. I will miss being a part of the company.

So what does that mean for my writing?

Several different things.

I’m meeting with my advisors to decide what to do. There are still two months until the doors close, two months until rights revert back. Once rights revert back, unless I’m going the indie route, it doesn’t make sense to just shoot the titles straight out again. While it makes me nervous to have anything go out of print, at the same time, I need time to launch a re-release properly, wherever and however I decide to do it. I expect they will be out of print until at least September. If I go independent, I’m going to have to marshal massive marketing resources to make it worthwhile. Right now, that much marketing emphasis isn’t going to fit my schedule. I’m not convinced the independent route is the right choice for me. I prefer to work in a more traditional model right now.

I do realize that, when I’m ready to launch the series that started life as THE POWER OF WORDS (which now has multiple titles as it breaks down into multiple books), it is most likely I have to use the independent model, because it would be exceedingly difficult for a traditional publisher to put it out in the usual channels. It’s a strange monster – one I love, but one that would require the type of Gentleman (or Bluestocking) Publisher to take it on, a type of publisher who no longer exists.

I was in the throes of planning a big marketing campaign for everything over the next few months, which now will not include the titles that won’t be available, for obvious reasons.

I also had three books scheduled to go to Amber Quill this year, all Gwen Finnegan books: BALTHAZAAR TREASURE, SANDOVAL SECRET, and SHAKESPEARE’S BACON. It was a pressurized schedule, but I wanted to make sure I finished the Gwen Finnegan cycle quickly for them, with an eye to moving in some new directions, as inspired by last August’s conference, where Claire Cook gave me the push I needed to give what’s now TIE-CUTTER a shot, and Carole Bugge encouraged me to continue work on SONGBOUND SISTERS.

With those three books off the schedule, at least for the moment (which means I’ll work on them in and around other projects, without the pressure) it moves up SONGBIRD SISTERS and the aviation mystery set in the late 1940s that I’ve been playing with for a few years.

I do love Gwen and Justin, and I want to see their stories to completion, but a break may not be a bad thing. As I kept saying last year, struggling with BALTHAZAAR, I can do it fast or I can do it well. Both aren’t happening in tandem right now.

HEX BREAKER and OLD-FASHIONED DETECTIVE WORK, the Jain Lazarus books, are still with Solstice, and I’m not sure what’s next with them; we’re in a bit of a holding pattern.

I have several play scripts and radio scripts on the slate for the year, and some film and television scripts on which I worked last year, which go out on submission this year.

The focus will be more on writing, polishing, and submitting this year, building on the previous writing, but taking me in new directions that I’ve been interested in for the past few months. That’s a positive. It moves up the timeline for me, but it’s a positive. It takes a lot of the “write as fast as possible” pressure off me – something that’s bogged me down over the past couple of years and actually interfered with my productivity, instead of increasing it.

As saddened as I am by the news, I think it’s the push I need right now. My gut tells me this is a positive in the long run.

I’ll have a long day at work today, but, since I’m feeling run down, I pulled out of my commitments for this weekend. I have some work to do for Monday’s NMLC Board meeting, and I’m going to write. I want to finish the first draft of the short radio play that goes out at the end of the month, and I’ve been approached to adapt the historical play into a radio play. I’ll take a look at that to see if it makes sense. I use a good deal of sound in the play anyway, and I think if I make some changes to make it more aural than visual, it will work. I also need to get LIGHT BEHIND THE EYES into US radio format from BBC format, because I have a US market interested.

Plus, I want to stay on schedule with TIE-CUTTER and DEATH OF A CHOLERIC.

So I’ll have a solid writing weekend ahead of me.

This certainly didn’t happen the way I wanted it to, but I have a feeling that, in the long run, these changes will be positive.

I remain hugely grateful to Amber Quill for their support, belief in me, and everything they’ve done for me and for my writing over the years I spent with them. I wish all the partners well in their new ventures, and I hope we can all stay in touch and support each other’s work. Thank you, Amber Quill!

Have a great weekend, people.

Devon

Fri. Sept. 19, 2014: The Longing to Write

Friday, September 19, 2014
Waning Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Sunny and cold

I was discouraged about a variety of things when I got back home on Wednesday afternoon, along with just being damn tired. Did some work on INITIATE, read VIRTU. Went to bed early.

Up early yesterday, wrote a bit on INITIATE. Headed to work. Busy day. Got 40 books processed; the woman who covers them was in, so we got them either onto the shelves or out to fulfill holds. I still have a stack of DVDs to process. Wrote a proposal for the small library conference at the end of October. Did some promotion for our upcoming programs, including the Rights Roundtable on Monday night that kicks off Banned Books Week.

Yup, Banned Books week is next week, and this year’s focus is graphic novels. So grab a banned graphic novel and dig in! 😉

Updated the library website, contacted some people about programs. Busy day.

My editor wants another book as soon as I can write it. I still have some research for BALTHAZAAR before I can get back into it, and, of course, am consumed by INITIATE. But I have to give them something soon.

I also found out that I have a 5-cup Review of TRACKING MEDUSA over on Coffee Time Romance, and a 5-star review of the same book on Amazon. I loved and believed in the book for a long time before I found the right publisher, so I’m glad others are enjoying it, too. “Lake Justice” got a 3.5 out of 5, which is good, with the main criticism being it was too short – which is helpful! 😉 Maybe the next Bronwyn adventure will be longer. Maybe I should cough up a Bronwyn adventure soon while I’m working on the other books for my editor!

Home, very tired, glass of wine on the deck, then grocery and cat food shopping. Dinner, some work on INITIATE, then finished VIRTU. I’ve ordered the two remaining books in the quartet and should have them by next week. Can’t wait to dive into them. I just love this series. It’s very unique, lots of gorgeous writing. At times, I wonder why one choice or another was made, but then it all ties together. The world-building is spectacular. Not only am I enjoying them, I am learning from them.

Up early today. Worked on INITIATE. Tomorrow will be my first full day off in quite awhile, and I’m going to focus on INITIATE and on the garden. I’m supposed to read to kids at the Town Picnic on Sunday, but all I know is the time. I have no idea where I’m supposed to be or what I’m supposed to read. I’m half tempted to make something the hell up.

I have a proposal and a couple of reports to write today, along with everything else. Better get going. I’ll check in next week – there should be lots to tell from Banned Books Week!

And, of course, the Equinox is on Monday, so I’m in preparations for that.

A student who booked an editing intensive sent the materials in some weird format (I only accept .doc) and not in Standard Manuscript Format, and then wanted me to explain what that is. No. Don’t call yourself a writer if you don’t know SMF. Go look it the fuck up. I was very, VERY clear when we discussed the possibility of taking her on this semester that I ONLY accept SMF in .doc file format and anything else would remain unread. This has been an ongoing problem with this particular individual. I will not work on something that is not correctly formatted. Period. And if you’ve been in ANY of my classes, there is NO excuse not to know what SMF is, or to show the initiative to go look it up your damn self.

Devon

Published in: on September 19, 2014 at 9:05 am  Comments (3)  
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Fri. May 30, 2014: Good Busy and Day of Seshat

Friday, May 30, 2014
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cool
Day of Seshat

It was 38 degrees around here this morning! The kitchen looks like a jungle, because we brought in the plants.

Today is the Day of Seshat. She’s the Egyptian goddess of books and writing implements. Perfect for a library — and a writer!

Yesterday was busy at the library. Good busy, but busy. Did work on next week’s workshop, worked on the poster/flyer for Ron MacLean’s appearance, my boss landed Joe Finder for an appearance in late July, I did an Amazon order, I prepped an Ingram order, I set up for the evening’s Tango program, I helped out at the desk when necessary, I got some new books into the system and ready to go out onto the shelves, and worked on my new page on the library’s website, where I get to talk about the books, videos, CDs, and programs. I hope you’ll get into the habit of checking out the page here, especially if you live in the area.

Also did some coordinating work with the Writers Center for a program we want to collaborate on in September.

My boss is off to New York today, to BEA. We’ve all given her lists of what we want her to bring back! It was everything I could do to refrain from asking her to go to Chinatown and come back with supplies, too!

So tired when I came home — relaxed with a glass of wine, cooked dinner. Started reading Rebecca Mead’s wonderful new memoir, MY LIFE IN MIDDLEMARCH. One of my favorite lines is on p. 7: “Life happened at the library.” So true!

I’m going to get some writing done this morning before I head back to the library. There’s another busy day there. Then home, more writing and reading — I’ve got another book to finish for review for my editor — and I’ve got to invoice it.

Errands tomorrow, and I have to get some yard work done. Will also get going on the next two episodes of the script, and finish the revisions that have been piling up. I need to get out some press releases and media kits for “Lake Justice” and TRACKING MEDUSA, prep a draft for a press conference NMLC, and get some work done on THE BALTHAZAAR TREASURE. The edits for “Severance” will come in any day now, too.

It’ll be another busy weekend, but the right kind of busy!

Devon

Fri. May 9, 2014: Library, Scripts, Contest Entries, and Edits

Friday, May 9, 2014
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Rainy and cool

Busy day at the library. A lot of it was spent coaxing our machines to do what they’re supposed to do — what should have been a fairly straightforward project took much longer than it should have. A solid reminder of why I loathe Microsoft and how much happier I am with my Mac. However, I also got some other work done, on outreach for the theatre collection and to writers, encouraging them to use our library as a resource and even write their books on site, polish my report for the board next week, etc. There were also all those things that come up during the day, to help patrons find something they want, and to deal with the dozens of issues that come up during the day that need attention to keep the collection running so patrons can get what they need when they need it.

Today, I’ll be finishing up the big project from yesterday and printing a lot of book spine labels, along with everything else. A few things came up yesterday that I need the Circulation Director to teach me how to do properly, too! Always something new to learn, which keeps things fun.

Before I’d gone to work, I’d polished and sent the second episode of The Big Script Project. I’d integrated notes from the first episode that affect the second episode, and tried a few things that are easy fixes if they want a different direction. Later today, I’ll get started on Episodes 3 & 4, which need to be delivered next week, along with the revisions of Episode 1.

The next round of edits for TRACKING MEDUSA arrived yesterday morning (I think I mentioned that in yesterday’s blog post), so I’ll turn those around this weekend, finalize the Series Bible for it, and do the “Odd Word Sheet” for “Severance”, which is the next Amber Quill release coming down the pike for me.

Stopped at the store and the liquor store on the way home from the library. Had a glass of wine on the deck — Tessa was pouting and wouldn’t come out. Cooked dinner, and then got to work on contest entries. I have one stack to finish up over the weekend, and I’m supposed to meet with a colleague after work to go over entries on another contest.

Donna Leon’s newest release, BY ITS COVER, is out (and I got it, I’d put it on hold). It’s set against a Venetian library. I’m in heaven! Now, I just have to make sure I carve out some time over the weekend to read it.

At some point, I also have to get gas for the mower, fire it up, and start mowing my lawn, before it looks like a jungle!

Have a great weekend, all, and Happy Mother’s Day!

Devon

Hey, if you want a fun read for the weekend, pick up a copy of my ghost story, “Lake Justice”, released by Amber Quill Press here.

Published in: on May 9, 2014 at 5:50 am  Comments Off on Fri. May 9, 2014: Library, Scripts, Contest Entries, and Edits  
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Tues. May 6, 2014: Light at the End of the Long Workday Tunnel

Tuesday, May 6, 2014
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cool

Hop on over to Biblio Paradise to see the interview about “Lake Justice.”

Busy day yesterday. Worked on client projects, the Big Script Project, and wasted far too much time on administrative material with corporate assholes. The corporate structure in this country must be dismantled and rebuilt. Individuals cannot be allowed to mistreat and abuse customers and ignore laws and regulations due to “company policy”. If “company policy” is in conflict with a regulation or a law, the regulation or law takes precedence. The company and THE INDIVIDUAL who refuses to obey the regulation or law must be held accountable. If an individual doesn’t have the balls to stand up to illegal company practices, that individual deserves to be either fired or held liable for damages.

We had the put-in for the understudy for tomorrow night’s performance. Some of it was quite good; some of it needs work. It was a little distracting, because there was a volunteer orientation happening in the next room, but we all survived.

Tomorrow is the performance, then I file the final reports on SEAL TIDES, and we’re done. Big relief. I need to be able to settle into my new work schedule a bit, and figure out how to get the writing on my primary projects done in and around the library work, the script work, and the remaining client projects.

I also have a heck of a lot of yard work to get done.

Came home and worked on a script polish on the episode that I have to deliver today, and some work on the episode to be delivered on Thursday. I also have to get back to work on contest entries.

There will be more dealing with corporate assholes today, but at least I’m getting a lot of paperwork done, and I want to get these issues resolved.

I’m also working to get the TRACKING MEDUSA details into the Series Bible, so that I can dig into BALTHAZAAR TREASURE again, starting this weekend. July 1 is coming up quickly, and I need to get a submission-ready draft done by then — which means several rounds of edits.

Onward.

Devon

Published in: on May 6, 2014 at 7:25 am  Comments Off on Tues. May 6, 2014: Light at the End of the Long Workday Tunnel  
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Mon. May 5, 2014: Conference Wrap-up and Hotel Choices

Monday, May 5, 2014
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Rainy and mild

Intense, busy, rather wonderful weekend. I had a late start getting out of here on Friday — I had to get some stuff done before I could leave. Thank goodness that I had packed and prepared earlier, or I would have been scrambling.

When I finally got on the road, I had to run some errands in Falmouth before even getting over the bridge. Traffic coming on-Cape was already backed up — looks like we’ll have a prosperous summer!

The drive to Burlington, MA was awful. Traffic was terrible, too many crazy drivers, too many texting while driving. What should have been a quick run up there took nearly three hours. Checked in to the Marriott (I’d prepaid). My rooms was on the second floor, in the back — quieter than some of the other locations, and for that, I was grateful.

I had really mixed feelings about the Marriott, and it’s unlikely that I would choose to stay at a Marriott again. This should actually matter to them, as my business travel is going to ramp up over the next couple of years. The staff was lovely — something very important in my book. Well-trained, polite, friendly. I had no problem with the room, although it looked like an 80’s bachelor pad, with all the dark wood and mirrors. The king-sized bed was fun (although a bit soft). The towels were about the size and consistency of dinner napkins, which was annoying. I expect small, thin, scratchy towels at a budget hotel, not a Marriott. There’s no fan in the bathroom, which means it steams up and stays damp all day. I liked that my particular room was oriented towards the East — I got beautiful sunrises and could do yoga in front of the enormous windows, screened by the trees and the sheer drapes. The in-room coffee was dreadful, and the coffee downstairs was overpriced and not any better, and there was no way I was going to pay $6 for room service coffee.

But, for me, the deal breaker was charging $12.95/day for internet access in the room. Um, no. The last dozen budget hotels I stayed at had free wi-fi in the room. When I’m paying scale at a supposedly “prestigious” hotel, I expect free damn wi-fi in the room. Supposedly, one could get it for free in the lobby or the bar, but I couldn’t get the laptop to connect, and why should I have to haul my laptop into the bar? There was a public computer in the business center, and I hopped on there for a hot minute on Saturday evening, but still . . .Further, it should be clearly stated on the site BEFORE one books that wi-fi in the room is both a separate charge and the detail of the charge. According to fellow conference go-ers, every Marriott charges differently. So? Put it on the individual sites anyway.

Marriott is off my list for go-to hotels. If I’m invited back to the conference next year, there’s another “name” hotel a couple of miles down the road that offers a better room rate, breakfast, AND free in-room wi-fi.

It’s pretty amazing that budget hotels not only charge less for the rooms themselves, but offer more amenities.

There were no phone books in the room, and I couldn’t use the wi-fi without paying the ridiculous rates, AND there was no information about nearby restaurants or anything else — again, something that most other hotels I stay in offer. Most hotels have a folder in the room with nearby sights, restaurants, etc. This one had a guide about what’s going on in Boston, but nothing about local businesses, not even sights in Concord and Lexington, which is only a few miles away.

Which meant I was trapped at the hotel for my meals. Fortunately, the food was good, although the prices were more New York than not-New York.

Friday night, I went down to the bar and had a burger and a glass of wine. They had a bunch of fancy burgers on the menu, but I just wanted something simple, typical pub burger, and they were kind enough to accommodate me. I started reading Neil Gaiman’s THE OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE, which is a beautiful book. I also got an idea for a short story, which I hope to draft later this week, once I’ve got some deadlined work out of the way.

Went back up to the room, did some work on contest entries (I took a bunch of them with me for this second contest I’m working on), and re-watched THOR on TV. Liked it better this time around. Ran through my notes for the next day’s presentation. Toyed with the idea of putting together a Power Point for it, but was too darned tired.

Up early the next morning (love that Eastern-facing room). Bad coffee, yoga, meditation. The shower was decent, although the supposedly organic bath products provided by the hotel made me itch. No matter, I bring my own tried-and-true.

Dressed and in full make-up in time to go to the 7:30 buffet breakfast provided by the Conference. That was excellent, and I met some lovely people, including a writer who has experience similar to mine in marketing writer AND who is a costumer. We had a LOT to talk about.

I went back to the room, picked up my Bin O’Stuff, and headed back to Salon G, where my workshop would be held, and where the morning session I wanted to attend was held. It was great fun, about voice. Powerpoint, which made me wonder if I was doing a disservice by not have a Powerpoint presentation, but it was too late by then!

We had fun doing the turnover between the two workshops — the previous presenters were lovely and very aware of time and space. Last year, that was a problem. Last year’s presenter before me in the same space ran over by fifteen minutes and then stayed and chatted with people in the room while I was trying to set up because, “oh, I don’t pay attention to the clock.” Fortunately, this year’s predecessors were much more mutually supportive and respectful.

I even had a moderator to keep me on track with time, and some people were there who’d taken other workshops of mine. The handouts were a hit — there were a LOT of them. We got through all the relevant material, had time for questions, and even had time to discuss aspects of craft that weren’t strictly serials. So it was tons of fun.

We moved additional questions out into the hallway, so that my successor could set up for HER workshop, and then I took my bin back to the room and managed to catch the end of another workshop.

Lunch was fun — another buffet lunch provided by the Conference, which was really, really good. Along with fun conversation at the table, and a terrific speaker, a writer named Cara McKenna, who was a lot of fun.

I went to an afternoon session, which gave me devleopment ideas for the mystery series set at a marine life hospital. At lunch, an announcement was made asking for help to set up for the literacy signing, so that’s what I did — helped haul in books and set up tables, which is always fun. And then I bought some books at the literacy signing — four of my mom’s favorite authors put together a book, and I had all four of them sign a copy to her.

Dropped off the books in my room, went back down to help clean up, but the signing ran over. Had to head back to the room because the Kentucky Derby was on. Even though I’m not technically covering it this year (since, hey, I’m at a writers’ conference and not sitting in a press box at a race track), I didn’t want to miss it.

My pick, California Chrome, won! This is a horse whose sire cost $2500 and whose dam cost only $8000. He beat all the million dollar babies with both finesse and heart. For a three-year-old, he was remarkably together. Trusted his jockey completely, didn’t use himself up too early in the race, and, when the turn for home came, he poured it on and won by something like five lengths. He knew he won, too — he danced happily around after he crossed the finish line. Great personality, along with great skill. I was delighted. A truly great race. Usually, I don’t bet the favorite, but I loved this horse, and I’m glad he won. It wasn’t a money-making race for me, but it was a heart-warming race.

Had dinner in the room (overpriced Asian fusion — good, but small portion). There was supposedly a post-conference party for those of us still around, but a location hadn’t been set mid-afternoon and I was told, “oh, just come down, you’ll see us.”

I did some work on the edits for TRACKING MEDUSA, and went downstairs a little after 8:30 to look for the party, but didn’t find it. So I went back to the room and worked on edits until 11, when I was too tired to do anything more.

Up early on Sunday. Beautiful sunrise. Yoga, meditation, shower. Bad hotel room coffee. I was not about to pay $13 for a continental breakfast or $15.50 for Eggs Benedict (although I wanted the latter). I stayed in the room and finished the edits on TRACKING MEDUSA until an hour before checkout time, then loaded the car and checked out. Since I’d paid in advance and paid cash for room service and the meals, I had no extra charges on my card. Yet, this morning, I see they still put through a $50 charge. When I complained, I was told that it would be reversed “in a few days”. It should have been reversed up on check-out, when there were no charges on the room. Another strike against the Marriott.

Drive home was fine. It was raining in Burlington, but lovely on the Cape. Since I hadn’t eaten before I left, I was ready to chew the steering wheel by the time I got home, and I took my mother out to lunch at her favorite place, Cook’s.

Sent the completed edits to my editor and did some reading on the deck in the afternoon. I was too tired to do much else. Tessa got into trouble because she chased a chipmunk into a bush, instead of staying on the deck, so she’s losing her out-of-the-enclosure deck privileges and has to stay in the enclosure.

Watched some TV last night — as good as GAME OF THRONES is in so many ways, I find the unrelenting cruelty exhausting, and I’m kind of going off that show.

I’ve got two script episodes to write this week, work on the series bible for TRACKING MEDUSA, the short story I want to draft, and contest entries to work on. I also have to do things like laundry and library work and put in the understudy this evening for Wednesday’s final performance, and finish the reports for the Arts Councils. I also have some correspondence to deal with.

Onward!

tnLakeJustice

If you haven’t bought “Lake Justice” yet, I hope you do. It’s a fun read, and it’s only a dollar here.

Fri. May 2, 2014: Headed for the Conference!

Friday, May 2, 2014
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Rainy and warm

Yesterday was a long day, but fun. Welcome Spring at the library was a big success! Some of the books I ordered from the mystery grant monies arrived, along with other books ordered by my predecessor, and some DVDs. Everything got processed; some is ready to go on the shelves. The books that don’t release until next Tuesday will go on the shelf on Tuesday. I also did some research and put together information for a long review memo I’m sending out next week. We set up for the event, and it ran smoothly. I even won the item on which I bid — a lovely pottery ginger jar.

Came home, collapsed, packed a few more things for the conference.

Finished packing this morning. I have to pick up a few things at the store for the cats before I go, and then I’m headed out to teach at NECRWA this weekend.

I cannot wait for the hotel room with the king-sized bed and some peace and quiet. I’m also taking contest entries, my edits, and the material for the scripts I have to start delivering next week with me.

Have a great weekend!

Devon

tnLakeJustice
“Lake Justice” available as a digital release from Amber Quill Press here.

Published in: on May 2, 2014 at 6:44 am  Comments (2)  
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Thurs. May 1, 2014: Welcome Spring! (in Torrential Rain)

Thursday, May 1, 2014
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Torrential Rain
Beltane

What a way to start May! Torrential rain!

Busy, but good day at the library yesterday. I met the new Director, and we hit it off. We have a similar sense of humor and are both energetic. I got some book orders done, and I received a bunch of things I ordered, including some great DVDs to build our collection, so it encompasses both classics and the hottest new releases. I’m excited about the books I’ve ordered to fill a mystery grant, and also have enough left in this year’s budget to keep up with some terrific new releases. Everything that came in has been entered, given its Dewey call number, bar code, and is either on the shelf or on the cart to get a cover and will be on the shelf shortly. I’m still a little slow with all of this, because I want to make sure I do it right! There’s a lot of administrative work involved with getting the books people want and need onto the shelves, and making sure people have access to them!

I left early and headed over to the college. One of the acting classes spent the semester working on my play. The instructor wasn’t there, so it was just me and the actors — and I put them through their paces, the same way I would in professional rehearsal. We talked about reasons certain things were structured or phrased, when certain beats had to be hit, and when there was a little wiggle room. I made them to back when they messed up and run it a few times to get the feel of it. I had them do a speed-through of the lines on the act they haven’t yet learned. Overall, I’m happy with their work — they have a solid understanding of the piece and of the emotional beats of the character. Now, they have to be confident in the lines, because if they drop the pace, the comedy won’t work. I enjoyed working with them,and all the work they put in.

Today is all about our Welcome Spring event, the library’s big fundraising gala. Last night, I frosted the three dozen cupcakes I baked the previous day, and packed them all up, ready to go. I can load them into the car in the garage, but getting them from the car to the library will be a challenge.

I started packing clothes for the conference — I don’t want to put in my dress until the last minute before I leave. Everything else is ready — all my handouts, notes on the class, etc.

Should be fun. When I came off the road, I thought I never wanted to see another hotel room for years. Well, years have passed, and I’m looking forward to being in one, and having some peace and quiet. I’m taking contest entries and my edits with me, to work on when I’m not doing conference stuff or hanging out with soon-to-be-new friends.

Devon

tnLakeJustice
“Lake Justice” available from Amber Quill Press here!

Published in: on May 1, 2014 at 6:51 am  Comments (2)  
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Wed. April 30, 2014: Conference & Lecture Prep

tnLakeJustice
“Lake Justice” available here from Amber Quill Press for only a dollar!

Wednesday, April 30, 2014
New Moon
Mars Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Rainy and raw
Beltane Eve

I can’t believe tomorrow is May and I’ve still got flannel sheets on the bed and am wearing winter clothes!

Yesterday was busy. All my materials are prepped and packed for the conference. I had to run to Staples (again) in the middle of it for more ink. I’d just changed over the ink tanks yesterday, and I wasn’t printing THAT much! Something’s up with the Canon ink tanks for this printer. I used to be able to get 400 or more pages out of one ink tank. Yesterday, I BARELY got 200 pages. Also, the first time it beeps and says the ink is running out, I could override it and get an additional 50 pages out. Now, it’s only 10. It’s the same printer, the same paper — Canon downgraded the ink tanks. I do not appreciate that. I guess I’m doing printer research again. Plus, I want to get a new toner cartridge for my laser printer. Although it only prints B&W, it’s great for manuscripts.

Just shot a question over to the Cultural Council — although we have one more performance of SEAL TIDES, I’m prepping the reports for the Council and need to know if they want a copy of the final script.

Did laundry, baked the several dozen cupcakes for Welcome Spring, finished a draft of a client project and sent it out (took much longer than expected, but at least it’s out for notes), and worked on TRACKING MEDUSA edits. I’ve had a special place in my heart for this book since I wrote it, and I’m falling in love with the characters all over again — in spite of finding several places that need some serious work! 😉 I’m lucky to have such a good editor.

Prepped for today’s guest lecture. I have almost a full workday, and then I head off to the college. Then it’s time to frost cupcakes, work on edits, and pack clothes for the conference — I have all my materials, but I still have to wear something when I teach!

Having serious problems with my right hand and arm — tendon problems. Ouch! Will have to get a session with the acupuncturist.

Devon

Published in: on April 30, 2014 at 6:43 am  Comments Off on Wed. April 30, 2014: Conference & Lecture Prep  
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Tues. April 29, 2014: Trying to Get My Feet Under Me

tnLakeJustice

Tuesday, April 29, 2014
New Moon
Mars Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Rainy and cold

Have you bought your copy of “Lake Justice” yet? I hope you do — it’s only a buck! It’s a fun read, and if there’s enough interest, I’ll have more adventures with Bronwyn. I appreciate your support. I’m very fond of this piece, and glad it found a home with Amber Quill Press. You can buy the digital download here.

Yesterday was tougher than it needed to be, because of corporate bullshit and greed. That’s all I’m going to say about it. It took up time that needed to be used for other things.

Managed to get about 60+ pages of TRACKING MEDUSA edited, and nearly finished a draft of a client project that will finally go out today, if everything continues to work.

Today, I want to get that client project out, do more work on the edits, and finish up the materials I’m taking to the conference. I’m also preparing the guest lecture I’m doing tomorrow at the Community College. I’m so tired that all I want to do is curl up and sleep, but that’s not until next week. I also have to bake three dozen cupcakes for Welcome Spring, which is on Thursday — I want to have enough time to bake and frost them.

There is plenty to be grateful for, and I’m trying to focus on that.

Devon

Published in: on April 29, 2014 at 7:42 am  Comments (3)  
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Monday, April 28: “Lake Justice” releases!

tnLakeJustice

Monday, April 28, 2014
Dark Moon
Mars Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cool

“Lake Justice” released! It’s available in digital format here. I’m excited about it, and about being part of the Amber Quill Press family! I hope you’ll buy it, read it, enjoy it!

Busy, busy, busy weekend. Worked at the library on Friday until 2; headed straight for the show. We had a small, but enthusiastic house, and the show went well. Came home, started cooking for Sunday.

Saturday morning, up early. Had to finalize a contract and get it into priority mail — of course, the printer ran out of the ink, and the business services place down the street is now closed on Saturdays, so I wound up making photocopies at Tedesechi, the local convenience store. But it’s signed, out, and should land on the producer’s desk today.

I go back into development for the Big Script Project today, and start delivering episodes next week.

Worked at the library for four hours, then headed to the grocery store to get the rest of the food for Sunday. Got some cooking done, headed for the show. Another small, but enthusiastic house on Saturday night. Surprising — we thought that would be a big house.

Sunday morning, up at 5, cooking. The edits for TRACKING MEDUSA landed in my in-box, so those get started today. Finished everything up to feed the company, loaded it into coolers, headed for the matinee. Matinee was fun –enthusiastic house. We had a nice dinner together, as a company, between shows, and my actors gave me a lovely gift from Flying Pig Pottery, one of my favorite local artists. Evening show was lively and our best yet. Nice way to end our ticketed run. Met a woman who runs an organization who’d like to commission me to write something specific to her organization’s mission. Looking forward to talking to her.

I was very lucky with this company of actors. They were a delight. There were definitely challenges around the production, but it was nice to know that I could trust my actors to show up, commit, and do the work, both in rehearsal and performance. And the production would not have happened without the above-and-beyond support of Kathy, Ann Marie, and Jim Zagzebski. Huge thanks to them!

There’s one more performance, on May 7 — I’m working with the understudy early this week, and then she has a put-in next Monday for Wednesday’s show.

Came home, exhausted. Unloaded the car, did the dishes, packed away the leftover food, packed the props the way I need them for this week’s rehearsals, put aside what has to be washed for next week’s performance. Dropping stuff into bins for the conference later this week. After spending so much time on the road, I thought I’d never want to see another hotel room again, and yet, at this point, I’m looking forward to it!

This week is busy — need to finish client projects, turn around the edits on TRACKING MEDUSA, develop the Big Script Project so I can start delivering episodes next week, print off the rest of the materials for the conference, guest lecture at the college, work at the library, bake for Welcome Spring!, help out on Welcome Spring!, work on the next set of contest entries, and teach at NECRWA.

Onward!

Devon

Published in: on April 28, 2014 at 6:03 am  Comments (2)  
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