Wed. July 31, 2019: Learning, Growing, Planning

Wednesday, July 31, 2019
New Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury goes DIRECT today (thank goodness) — but it’s almost midnight by the time it does so
Hot, humid, storms in the evening

I don’t do well in this heat and humidity. I’m like the cats — all I want to do is lie around and do nothing.

Hop on over to Ink-Dipped Advice to see the second chapter of Fred’s adventures trying to hire a writer for his small business.

Meditation was great on Monday afternoon. A big group, and a great session.

I’m reading Jean Claude Izzo’s Marseilles trilogy. It’s quite wonderful. His tone reminds me a bit of Ron MacLean’s in HEADLONG.

I’m learning a lot from reading these international novels in translation. Not books by Americans set overseas, but books by writers about their own countries. The tone, the pace, the structure is very different from what we consider the “formula” for the genre, and it works.

I hope my little tiny publisher grows to the point where it can sell/negotiate international rights. I already know my plays do better in the UK and Australia than in the US; my friends in France, Spain, and Germany think my books would do well there, if translated properly.

Up early on Tuesday. Great session on ELLA, mediocre one on GRAVE REACH, but I’m determined to get back into its groove. I need to get it out to my editor soon. Fortunately, THE BARD’S LAMENT and DEADLY GROVE are properly percolating, so I hope not to get behind on those. Although I have to jump right back into the next round of revisions for BALTHAZAAR and then for DHARMA when GRAVE REACH goes out.

I’ve figured out where I want the next two ELLA books to go (it was always meant to be a trilogy), and how to make each book stand alone, while the three will be satisfying together. After that, I can decide if I want to write more ELLA books, or if I’ve said everything I have to say. I’m nearly at the two thirds point with ELLA. It’s been fun to write steadily, but not have a daily quota or a deadline on it.

My friend was pleased with the blurb I wrote for his book. I’m glad; it’s a lovely book and deserves to do well.

Still trying to pull myself out of the mire of discouragement. Client work yesterday was challenging, and will be so today. I’m working on my article for Llewellyn — that will probably go out early next week. I’m polishing some pitches. They’re taking longer than I expected, but I’d rather do them well than rush them and alienate a potential new-to-me editor.

Tomorrow is Lammas, one of the biggest days in my personal calendar. I’m trying to decide if I want to take a few days to disconnect and focus on writing, yoga, meditation, and the changes I’m trying to make.

Next Monday, the upbeat authors posts start on inspiration for the month of August. Believe me, I have plenty to say about that!

Have a lovely day. If I do decide to take a break, also have a lovely weekend as we slide into August.

 

Sat. Aug. 1, 2015: Lammas & Creative Energy

Saturday, August 1, 2015
Day After Full/Blue Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Venus Retrograde
Lammas
Sunny and warm

Blessed Lammas to all!

Yesterday was busy at work, but good, which is always nice.

I can’t believe the Cape Cod Writers’ Conference is THIS WEEK! And the Mermaid Ball is NEXT WEEK!!! And Casino Night is on Aug. 28!!!!!!

And then August will be over. And I’ll be ready for a straitjacket! 😉

Overslept this morning and then ran errands before work – it’s my Saturday “on.”

Finished Tanya Huff’s SMOKE AND SHADOWS – set behind the scenes on a Vancouver television set. Very well done and lots of fun. Started SMOKE AND MIRRORS – equally well done, although if the wardrobe crew had behaved the way their wardrobe assistant does, she would have been fired in a heartbeat! 😉 Even on some of the more dysfunctional sets, one couldn’t get away with her behavior, and wardrobe, in general, is much more the heartbeat of the set than on this particular production. Maybe it’s different on the West Coast and/or in Vancouver than out here in the East! 😉

I’m also chomping at the bit to finish the contemporary play and get back to work on both BALTHAZAAR and the fantasy novel on which I wrote so much earlier in the week. I will have to change the title of the latter – I LOVE the title, it’s one of the better ones I came up with – but, as the book develops, it’s no longer relevant. And the title needs to be relevant.

Have a great weekend – I’m sure I will have stories, next week, from the Writers’ Conference!

Devon

Published in: on August 1, 2015 at 9:30 am  Comments Off on Sat. Aug. 1, 2015: Lammas & Creative Energy  
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Fri. Aug. 1, 2014: Lammas, Power, Creativity

Friday, August 1, 2014
Waxing Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Sunny and pleasant

Busy day at the library yesterday. My boss had to leave early on a family issue, but we had enough staff to make it all work. The computers and printers are all cattywumpus again, and the new computers aren’t yet in, so I’m still floating around from terminal to terminal to get things done. But they’re getting done, and that’s what counts in the long run.

One of the doors in the library wasn’t properly shut on lock up and the alarm went off. I coded in and called the alarm company, who told me I’d caught it before any damage had been done, but, had the alarm made it all the way to the center, I would need to give a specific word in order for them not to call the police! Of course, I couldn’t remember the word or where to find it, but she said it was fine (since the alarm was stopped by an authorized code before it made it to the call center), and now I knew for next time! Glad the cops didn’t have to come out on a nothing call, and I’ve since hunted down and memorized the proper word. In other words, I didn’t have to call anyone to get bailed out! 😉

Headed to Stop N Shop for some groceries, dropped them off home, off to PetSmart to get cat food and cat litter. Swung by Cape Cod Beer one minute before closing — told them I totally understood if it was too late to get a refill, but they were gracious and lovely, filling my growler with Cape Cod Blonde. I love Cape Cod Beer – they’re so supportive of local organizations like the library and the Marine Life Center. So whenever I can spend some money there or bring people to the place to have them spend money, I do. Then off to Cape Cod Package store, to pick up another bottle of raspberry vodka, and some wine. Cape Cod Package Store is also very supportive of the community.

Home, drinks on the deck, cooked dinner. Updated the websites (Devon Ellington, Hex Breaker, Gwen Finnegan Mysteries, Delectable Digital Delights page on Facebook). That was it. Could not get anything else done. Was completely wiped out. In bed before 9.

Overslept this morning, which meant I didn’t get to bake the traditional cornbread I always do on Lammas morning. Did the morning ritual. The cards that came up are all about fire, creativity, long-term commitments, etc., which is interesting.

Only got 750 words done on INITIATE, which made me cranky. I think this is still part of Chapter one, and these chapters will be closer to 20 pages each than 10. I really want to spend some quality time on this manuscript this weekend, along with knocking out a few more chapters of THE BALTHAZAAR TREASURE. I have a lead on someone who can help me with the wreck diving info, which is very exciting.

Came into work to some annoyances, but, ultimately, they’re not my problem or decision, so I just do what I do and stay out of it, trying not to get too frustrated. I’m trying to mentally prepare myself for the Writers Conference next week — it’s going to be difficult to get into such a public frame of mind when all I want to do is delve down into the books. Somehow, I’ll figure out a way to navigate it.

Have a great weekend.

Devon

Wed. Aug. 1, 2012: Lammas

Wednesday, August 1, 2012
Full Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Sunny and humid
Lammas

Big day in my personal calender today, and I’m having fun with it.

Good, busy day yesterday, starting to feel more creative again, worked with students, worked on article (have to give one a good polish before sending it off today), got some creative work done.

Just happen to be reading a bio of astronomer Maria Mitchell — who was born on Nantucket on August 1! Love it when that happens.

A local business where I spend a lot of money is about to lose my business because they’ve been jerking me around unnecessarily for the past two weeks. If you don’t respect me when my wallet’s closed, why should I open it at your business? There are others who treat me better. And so it goes.

I rarely comment on celebrity gossip, but this is annoying me so much I have to speak up. Why is Kristen Stewart getting crucified about her alleged affair with her director, Rupert Sanders, while he gets a free pass? He’s twice her age, he’s her DIRECTOR ( a power-over situation, since the Director’s word is LAW on set), he’s the one who’s married, and it was his RESPONSIBILITY as the older adult in a position of power to not let anything happen. Yet she’s being castigated, while he gets a few winks and is called “solid” and “upstanding”. Both bear responsibility (she is of legal age, after all), but he was in a position of authority and responsibility that made it imperative for him to make sure nothing happened. Of course, chances are, he was the aggressor in this situation anyway. Having worked backstage and on set for years, I see that a lot, and the woman is always, always blamed while the man is celebrated. Two people were involved — both share responsibility. And then there’s Charlize Theron, who was going on and on and on about how much she adored Kristen Stewart during the filming, and now, supposedly, she’s “furious” with her for having an affair with the director, instead of stepping up to the plate and actually being her friend, pointing out the double standard. There are no secrets on set. There just aren’t. If something’s going on, everybody knows about it. There are never any secrets from wardrobe (for obvious reasons), but there simply aren’t secrets on set. You’re in too close a proximity for too many hours a day for too many months in a row — you can’t help but learn things about the people around you, and a lot of it you’d rather not know. That’s the reality of the business. If something actually was going on, the entire company knew about it, except maybe a couple of day players. But they were respectful enough to keep out of someone else’s business, as long as it didn’t interfere with filming. And you know these hypocritical bitches who are criticizing her while giving him a free pass are the same ones touting FIFTY SHADES OF GREY — a book about an older, powerful man sexually exploiting a young woman — as a wonderful book. There’s plenty of well-written erotica that doesn’t denigrate women — this book isn’t one of them. I’m not a particular fan of Kristen Stewart, but she’s being treated unfairly, and a lot of that is because she’s the woman in this situation. It’s ridiculous. It’s about time men were expected to shoulder their share of the responsibility when they screw up by screwing around.

On that note, I’ve got to get back to work!

Devon

Published in: on August 1, 2012 at 8:30 am  Comments (1)  
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Monday, August 1, 2011


Both cats

Monday, August 1, 2011
Waxing Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Cloudy and humid
Lammas

Lammas, the first harvest and an important day in my personal calendar. I’m looking forward to a good and sacred day.

It was a busy weekend. On Sunday, I had to drive my mom to CT. What should have been a simple, four and a half hour drive took seven hours. due to traffic. We finally pulled off to eat and visit the Book Barn in Niantic, where we found a few things, one of which was an arc of Jane Smiley’s THIRTEEN WAYS TO LOOK AT A NOVEL. Outstanding book on the history of the novel, and on writing and editing. I found some good passages to share with my students.

Arrived in CT, hadn’t even unpacked, and there was a major storm with a power outage. Go figure!

To bed early, up early on Saturday to head back. Smooth sailing until Bourne. From Bourne to the Sagamore Bridge, which is about six miles, it took two hours because of the traffic. I was NOT a happy camper. And there was no reason for it, except people were being stupid. If everyone kept moving and was considerate, we would have all gotten where we needed to go on time. On top of that, some dickheads were using rest areas and lookouts to simply drive through and skip a few cars. You think you’re that important? Bite me, I’m not letting you cut in front of me! Rt. 6 was packed in both directions, so I nipped off as soon as I got over the bridge and took 6A home instead. Much better.

I don’t want to hear any crap from local businesses that they aren’t doing well. When there’s a 22 mile backup in both directions to get over the bridge, people are coming to the Cape. It’s on the vendor to make the sales. The people are definitely here.

Exhausted when I got home. Unpacked, dealt with the cats (who were not amused), opened the windows, and took a nap. Woke up, finished Jim Butcher’s FOOL MOON, which was interesting, and wound up my two classes.

Watched THE TOURIST, which wasn’t quite as bad as the reviews claimed. The Venice setting was worth it. The dialogue could have been better — with those two actors, some witty exchanges would have made it worthwhile, instead of just taking a pause and looking at each other between each sentence. And I figured out the twist about ten minutes into it (although Rufus Sewell’s cameo was fun).

Up early on Sunday, worked in the garden, and then to Osterville for the meditation walk, which was wonderful. Truly a joyful morning. Some of us are going to meet next week to continue.

Got the papers, came home, and relaxed on the deck. It was a gorgeous morning. Lovely to be out. I got the fall catalog for the local place where I interviewed to teach in person and I’m in it, so I guess I passed The Man’s background check. I wish they’d actually confirmed it all. But it’s a month of Wednesday nights in October, which should be fun. I returned books to the library in Sandwich, and stopped by both the Sandwich Herb Shoppe and Lavender Moon for a couple of treats.

Read Jeri Ready-Smith’s WICKED GAME in the afternoon — clever urban fantasy. I liked it a lot.

Did some editing in the evening, watched a little TV. Did an interview for the book. Up early today and decided to go to yoga, although I don’t usually go on Mondays. But what better way to treat myself on this special day than attending a special class?

Then, it’s back to my desk — I have a lot of serious work that needs to get done today. I got behind last week, juggling all the classes. I’ve got an edit to finish, a review to write, lots of work for the Mermaid Ball.

But now — to yoga.

Devon


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available from Champagne Books and Amazon Kindle.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Saturday, August 1, 2009
Waxing Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Lammas
Sunny and pleasant

Yes, I’m up very early, but Lammas is a very big day on my personal calendar, so here I am. I’ve already baked cornbread, done yoga, fed the cats, and am doing this before I do my first 1K of the day, for once.

Yesterday’s work day was cut short because of this silly insect bite that felled me like a tree. I went to the family-run pharmacy. They’re fantastic. We talked, they took a look at it, the pharmacist suggested we try a specific cream and some Benedryl. And I was instructed to ice it for 20 minutes every hour as much of the day as possible. He warned me, that, although the box states you can take up to six a day, I should not take more than TWO in a 24-hour period. He asked me if I’d ever taken it before — it was ten years ago, when a little kid I dressed got into poison oak and shared. So he told me not to drive once I’d taken it, and definitely not to take more than two in a 24-hour period. The good news is that, by the look of the area around the bite, my immune system is in good shape — as he said, because I don’t take antibiotics every time I turn around, so that my body actually has built its own immunities and can use them. He also gave me two lists of symptoms: If the first list appeared, I needed to go to the Walk-in clinic, insurance or not; if the second list appeared, I had to go to the emergency room immediately. And, if by last night it wasn’t markedly better, I needed to go to the clinic first thing this morning. He said the insect bites are particularly potent this year, and you can’t wait a few days to see if it gets better. You take the first steps — if they don’t work within the first day, you need to get something a lot stronger FAST.

Good to know.

I went to Staples to stock up on supplies. With my coupons and rewards and all the rest, I only had to shell out $1.36 of my own money. That’s what I call good shopping! They no longer carry the file boxes that will match the ones I have, so I have to try to order them online.

Went to Michael’s. Couldn’t find what I wanted for the harvest wreath, but came up with an idea on how to switch out flowers on the current wreath to make it more harvest-y.

Home, Iced. Ate. Iced. Put the cream on. Iced. Finished my client project and got it out the door FIRST, and then took the Benedryl. Which knocked me on my ass in about 10 minutes. Don’t drive? I could barely walk! But my arm started getting better in a little bit, and the bonus was that, because I couldn’t do much, my wrist got to rest, too.

Finished the badly written book I mentioned a few days ago. I kept hoping it would get better, but it didn’t. Hoped the murderer would kill the protag, but that didn’t happen, either. Won’t be reading anything by that author again! One of the traits that made me dislike the protag was that she felt justified in lying whenever she wanted and however she wanted, with disregard for others to get information, but got mad when others lied to her. And it was never really dealt with in the book. If she showed some growth or reason for the trait, it could have been interesting. But there wasn’t anything. She was supposed to be a likable protag, but she wasn’t.

Cooked dinner, relaxed, called the yoga studio to make sure the meditation session was on in spite of the bad weather, and was told yes. Drove the 20-30 minutes, parking was a bitch (why can’t these places ever rent space where there’s decent parking?), hiked to the center. It’s very new and shiny and hard. The atmosphere is very shiny and hard. I waited for the previous class to finish. Two guys came out of the class and tried to pick me up, while a couple of over-Botoxed women stood nearby, talking loudly and trying to move their faces into glares. Only the eyes managed to convey their annoyance — if looks could kill, there’d have been blood all over the place.

The studio emptied out, and everyone was posing in their expensive yoga clothes and talking very loudly about all the cool events they planned to attend and the famous people with whom they’d be hanging out with between now and the next class. Wonder what they’d think if they know I’ve dealt with most of those people in their underwear in the quick change booth backstage or in the trailer on set?

The workshop leader was a young woman but she, too, had a hardness about her. There were five of us and the leader in the class. It was a very different style than any other meditation group I’ve attended, which is fine, learn new things, whatever I was sitting between a fidgeter and a moaner. The fidgeter I could deal with — part of the process is learning stillness, and for some people it’s harder than others. But the moaner? I kept telling myself, “acceptance, maybe it’s a medical condition or a mental condition” or whatever. What it was was distracting and invasive to everyone else. But every breath was micromanaged by the leader, she spewed psychobabble at us, we sat for only ten minutes, and she dismissed us. Excuse me?

I didn’t get a sense of any commitment to practice from her. My sense was that she’s in this because, in a wealthy suburb, there’s a chance to cash in on all those who are trying to pretend they’re not shallow. There’s nothing wrong with making money from your business, and there’s nothing wrong with running a studio that focuses more on the physical aspects of yoga than the spiritual. But if you’re going to present spiritual aspects, do so from a place of connection and commitment. Don’t repeat what was said to you at an overpriced workshop and was simply a repetition of material pulled off the internet. Even the altar set up in the room had a cold, magazine-shoot feel to it rather than the warmth of a well-used and respected altar.

I don’t want to renounce everything and be a full-time yogi. But I’m not playing at this, either. Yoga, for me, is a way to improve my life through a balance of body and soul, by taking time to practice both alone and in community.

At the other studio earlier in the week, there was a sense of individualism, tranquility, acceptance, and, most importantly, joy. People came with baggage, but, left with huge smiles, and laughing and interacting in a centered, happy way. The leaders are great about keeping things running on time, and being respectful of everyone’s time, but there’s never a sense of feeling rushed. There’s a sense of welcome and inclusion — everyone who walks in is considered a friend one hasn’t yet met. There wasn’t the loud, nervous chatter there was in this place last night. And what struck me, when people left class, was the lack of peace, joy, and energy. Usually, when the doors to a yoga class open, people waft out, a little high from the class. They’re smiling, laughing, they’re quiet as they re-enter the world, but there’s a sense of connectedness. Last night, everyone rushed out to pose by the juice bar, brag, and gossip, like they couldn’t wait to leave class. They competed with each other, which turned me off. I wish them well, but it’s not the right atmosphere for me.

In other words, I’m not going back to the place I went last night, but will continue at the place at which I spent time earlier this week! That’s what you have to do, try this studio and that studio and see which one works for you.

It was interesting. I was very polite — after all, I was a guest in someone else’s space. I said thank you and bolted as gracefully as possible. I turned up the radio on the drive home playing death metal, and, had i passed a bar on the way and not had to drive home, I would have downed several shots!

But the drive home made up for what the meditative experience lacked — one of the largest and most beautiful rainbows I’ve ever seen curved across the road — it was almost as though I could drive right through it! I love rainbows, and I’m very fond of Iris, the Rainbow Goddess — it made my week!

Came home, did my nightly yoga session to get the bad taste out of my body and get back to center. More cream, more ice, another Benedryl, and a good night’s sleep.

Up early this morning. I’m playing today — will have lots to tell you about tomorrow!

Devon

Published in: on August 1, 2009 at 6:25 am  Comments (3)  
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