Mon. Feb. 27, 2012: Some Challenges, Some Rewards, Some Opportunities

Monday, February 27, 2012
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde

Fascinating, challenging weekend. Friday, I shot myself in the creative foot by getting online too early to catch up with student work, and ruined my own creative part of the workday. The frustrations from that are on me, and I take responsibility for them. It is MY job to always put my own work first, and when I don’t and then get upset, I have only myself to blame.

However, I do not appreciate that students have been late (sometimes as much as 20 days late) and then dumped 100K on me all at once. There are not enough hours in the day to turn around 100K in a day or two, no matter what the price. And then, one of the students who has a pattern of lateness, procrastination, and time management problems got snarky with me. Publicly. Had to shut her down. Publicly. That cannot be condoned in the class.

My eyes are killing me. I’ve been using the chamomile compresses, but I need to add eyebright to the mix. Started using eye drops, too.

Took care of my mom, did four loads of laundry, got into the car to go to my lunch meeting and discovered one of my headlamps isn’t working. So I have to get that special-ordered and put in next week.

Fortunately, lunch was great. It’s with another writer, who also used to live in NY, and now lives locally. We like each other’s work, and just enjoy each other as people. We will both be teaching in a local program this spring, and brainstormed class ideas. She is opening the door to a potentially wonderful opportunity, and it’s up to me to rise to the occasion. I have to remember to be absolutely myself for it. We also talked about getting together once a month or so to support each other as we navigate the writing life.

We also talked a lot about the lack of commitment and follow-through so many people who say they want to write continue to show. When life gets tough, writers write though it. The writing is not what falls by the wayside. Because you don’t build a career – -in ANYTHING – -by making excuses not to do it. Writing is no different than biology or archaeology or finance or sports — put in the work, reap the rewards. Don’t, and you won’t succeed.

A local garden center contacted me to half-jokingly offer me a job. I nearly chucked the whole teaching thing and said yes! Pay would work out about the same, and at least the hours would be restricted!

This is definitely an interesting Saturn retrograde — but it’s doing what a Saturn retrograde is supposed to — making one redefine one’s life path.

Saturday, I finished this round of edits on HEX BREAKER. I’m excited about them. The editor encouraged me to open up some sections of the book in a new way. It’s going to help both this individual book and the whole series. I enjoy working with this editor a lot. I let the edits sit overnight, read it over on Sunday morning, and sent it off. I got the sweetest email from my editor this morning, saying how much she enjoys working with me. I got all misty! 😉

Saturday and Sunday I also worked hard to catch up with student work. One student lost track of what belongs where — hmm, let;s see, each exercise has the story number in it, and there are five stories – not brain surgery — and keeps saying she wants me to post a “key”. Babe, I’m not your personal administrative assistant. It was YOUR job to keep track during the class. You CHOSE not to when you fell behind. Go back, read through the exercises and figure it out. When I tell you there’s a story missing, don’t give me a link back to a story from a different exercise.

Meanwhile, there are plenty of other students working their butts off who are doing terrific work. THOSE are the ones who need the attention, not the ones who don’t do the work.

This morning, first thing, I had to get off some information for a potential Big New Opportunity. Scares the life out of me, but if it works, it will make my life easier for a long time, AND up my pay. This week, I also have to prepare some material so it’s ready to go if this initial material is positively received. I would rather have it ready than have to scramble at the last minute. I’ve got some meetings to prepare for this week, and some work for some freelance clients, along with getting back to some other manuscripts that need to get out in the next few weeks.

The Holiday Hocus-Pocus Workshop was a lot of fun. It was pretty easy-going and stress-free, more information-oriented than anything else. The participants seem to have generated a lot of fun ideas out of it. This is the last week of 5 in 10 — by next week, those that actually kept up with the work will have five short stories out on submission. Some will have more, if they did the optional exercises, so a couple of people will have nine stories ready to go. Next week, Sensory Perceptions starts.

I’ve got two manuscripts to get back to this week and whip into shape before my next round of edits comes through, so I better hop to it.

My treat for finishing my edits on time was Heather Blake’s IT TAKES A WITCH, the first in her new series. It’s both well-written and fun.

A contrast to another book, in the same genre, I read recently, where I really liked the characters and the humor, but there were so many flaws in the logic — setting appointments for specific dates and times, they passed and no mention was ever made of recognition or missing them or consequences, things put in different places than established without logic, etc.

Lots to do today, and this week, so I better get moving. If the weather holds, I’ll give myself a couple of hours’ break and do some yard work.

Devon

Published in: on February 27, 2012 at 9:01 am  Comments (3)  
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