Tues. Feb. 28, 2017: Creative Leaps

Tuesday, February 28, 2017
Waxing Moon
Cloudy and cold

Yesterday was about a lot of writing, and not much else, although I had a few errands and a meeting.

Hop on over to the GDR site for the February wrap-up. I totaled how much I’ve written this month, and, between the work on POWER OF WORDS and the adaptations, it’s about 100K. Not bad at all.

I have to turn my focus, in March, more evenly to SONGBOUND SISTERS and to NOT BY THE BOOK, since they will be quicker sale than what POWER has evolved into, but, after several months of struggling creatively, I’m glad to be getting back on track.

I had a horrible migraine yesterday, which slowed me down. It was better when I woke up, but it’s coming back.

I wrote a few pages this morning on a contemporary action comedy screenplay. The characters started talking to me yesterday, and I just want to get enough down not to lose it.

Errands, writing, research, and HobNob tonight.

And then it’s March. Wow. This year’s speeding by. It will be ever so much better when we remove sociopaths from the administration.

Onward.

Fri. Aug. 21, 2015: This & That & Enough Already

Friday, August 21, 2015
Waxing Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Venus Retrograde
Sunny and hot

Rough couple of days. Dealing with the recent deaths makes me even less patient than usual with meaningless bullshit. The fact that I haven’t punched several people’s lights out is a testament to my self-restraint.

On the positive side, the library is repainted and looks nice, and now the work of getting everything back on the shelves is ongoing. I managed to process a LOT of books on Wednesday during the painting (once we got the books OFF the shelves), and almost all of them went out on holds. In other words, I made the right choices in ordering! 😉

Collapsed Wednesday night. Watched KINGSMAN, which was clever and fun, although I would have trimmed about 20 minutes total, making a few internal cuts here and there. Colin Firth, as usual, was sublime.

Thursday was another painting day and also trying to get things back on the shelves as they dried. Managed to get PR out for the photography contest, which had to go out yesterday or wouldn’t make deadline. By mid-afternoon, I had a screaming migraine, which only got worse as the evening progressed. Managed to watched some of the final season of SPORTS NIGHT, but that was about it.

The migraine woke me up at 2 AM, and I was not amused with people texting and calling me by 8 AM asking if everything was back on the shelves. Sorry, bubbelah, I am NOT pulling all-nighters by myself watching paint dry and then reshelving. No.

The Meet-and-Greet for NYU Cape/South Shore Alumni is all set for the 28th of September at Mezza Luna in Buzzards Bay. I’m checking out the location for the wine event next week, and I also have the HobNob Event. If I can just get rid of this migraine, it’s all good.

I work tomorrow, and then the ghost hunters are coming back in the evening to do the overnight. Sunday and Monday are writing days.

I’m also investigating new phones and new phone plans. T-Mobile sucks and my phone is already “out of memory” – which is ridiculous, because I have hardly anything on it. Good thing I’m NOT on a contract – I can find something better.

I can’t believe it’s nearly September! Looking forward to the autumn. We’ll be staying in the house for another year, so that’s all settled. I’m cleaning out a lot of stuff and getting rid of a lot of stuff.

Looks like we’re losing almost all our tomatoes to Blossom Rot, which is discouraging. Live and learn. The hollyhocks, cucumbers, lettuce, morning glories, moonflowers, four o’clocks, rose of Sharon, and hydrangeas are all doing very well, though.

Have a great weekend!

Devon

Wed. May 21, 2014: Iambe, Writings, Meetings, and Writers Night Out

Wednesday, May 21, 2014
Waning Moon
Mars Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cool
Celebration of Iambe

Today is the celebration of Iambe, the goddess of communication for whom Iambic pentameter was named.

Polished the revision on Episode 104 of the Big Script Project and sent it off, along with Episode 105. Episode 106 (due tomorrow) is in good shape, and I’ll give it a polish tonight and send it off tomorrow morning.

I also finished and printed out the Tip Sheets for tonight’s Writers Night Out, which is about Writer’s Block, and gathered some other useful materials. Went to the grocery store, got gas in the car, mowed the terraced back portion of the lawn (it looks really good now).

Finished a book I read to review. Need to do the review for my editor and get it out. It took me longer than usual. I struggled with it. I see what the author was trying to do, and I don’t think it worked.

The past few days, I’ve been looking at what was originally called POWER OF WORDS, but what I think I will rename CREATIVE UTOPIA. I really like it, and still believe in it. I wonder if my current publisher would take it on. It’s a weird project — I always assumed I’d have to get it out independently.

Fighting both a migraine and back spasms. They’re both winning right now, unfortunately.

I have a long day ahead of me — library, Reference Committee meeting, library, staff meeting, Writers Night Out, polish on the script.

The daily yoga/meditation/first cup of coffee on the deck really help me mentally focus for days like this.

It’s good busy, a feast of great things. I just can’t seem to get over the exhaustion.

Devon

Fri. Jan. 10, 2014: More Meetings and Snow

Friday, January 10, 2014
Waxing Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Snowing!

It’s supposed to be “flurries”, but it’s coming down pretty steadily.

I was under the weather yesterday, migraine and stomach problems. Pulled myself together for a fun meeting with a potential client in the morning. If that comes through, it will be an intriguing gig that would last for about a year or so, with highly, highly intelligent people, so that would be fun. We’ll see — either I fit what they want or I don’t. It depends if they can accept someone who is versatile, or if they want someone who only does what they do.

Tried to read a book with an interesting premise and wickedly manipulative protagonist, but it was written in the present tense, and was too frustrating. If I’m not paid to read it, I put down books written in the present tense, because I just LOATHE them. No, I am NOT there in the moment, and the use of present tense reminds me, verb by verb, that I am outside the story, not inside it. Where the fuck are the editors on these books? Why aren’t editors editing for structure that supports story anymore? Especially with debut novelists?

Read a different book instead, AN UNEXPECTED GUEST by Anne Korkeakivi, which I thoroughly enjoyed.

My stomach felt better as the day progressed, but the migraine did not let up and then I got sniffly. I don’t have time to be sick.

Another client meeting for Monday, this time with a potential client in Brockton, so I have to make the hour drive there and back. Good for me to go over the bridge occasionally!

Busy day and busy weekend — because I have meetings EVERY day next week, and I have a lot to get done. I have to write the synopses for four scripts this weekend, and finish a longish short story.

Back to the page. Have a great weekend!

Devon

Published in: on January 10, 2014 at 8:10 am  Comments (1)  
Tags: , , ,

Thurs. Oct. 17, 2013: Stress and Migraines

Thursday, October 17, 2013
Day before full moon
Cloudy and cold

Yesterday was a difficult day, very stressful. I managed to get some work done on the novella, and a nice bit of work done on the screenplay (I love writing the screenplay), but not enough.

I’m tired of unreliable clients. Therefore, I decided to raise my rates as of January 1. I’d rather have fewer clients, but ones that don’t nickel-and-dime, and try to play me for a fool whenever I try to cut them a break. It should also, once and for all, sweep the wanna-bes, who pretend they want a writing mentor, when they really don’t want to put in any work.

I have no doubt the next few days will also be difficult and stressful. The migraine isn’t helping, although it’s better today. I desperately need a few days off, but I can’t afford it right now.

At least Congress finally did their job. That delusional fuckhead Ted Cruz is still nattering on, and Speaker of the House Bonehead needs to be removed, but at least the government is up and working again, albeit temporarily.

Devon

Published in: on October 17, 2013 at 7:11 am  Comments (1)  
Tags: , , , ,

Fri. Sept. 20, 2013: A Migraine for the Weekend

Friday, September 20, 2013
Final Day of Full Moon
Sunny and pleasant

Worked flat out yesterday, but not at any of the novels. Worked on the play, drafted a grant proposal (which needs a hell of a lot more work to make it exciting), and reformatted my radio script sample package to fit the formatting of the gig to which my agent is submitting me.

The latter was long and tedious, but necessary. When they want something formatted in a specific way, you do it or you’re not in the running. Part of the gig is proving you can adapt to how they do things.

Woke up with a migraine this morning, and my eyes really, really hurt. However, there’s still a lot to do today.

At least I got back to work on Project B this morning. I have to show the passage of time, so I’m creating short scenes that indicate the time skips and the most important part of what happens/how the relationship between the protags grows in that period. We don’t need to see all the daily details, but we need to know that it’s building and growing, and it makes more sense to show it in snippet than have narrative yapping about how the relationship progresses.

Have a great weekend.

Devon

Published in: on September 20, 2013 at 7:04 am  Comments Off on Fri. Sept. 20, 2013: A Migraine for the Weekend  
Tags: , , ,

Mon. March 25, 2013: Sprouting Seeds and Scheduling Dilemmas

Monday, March 25, 2013
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Cloudy and cold

Friday was a difficult day, and, frankly, there were times when I just wanted to give up. But I made it through. This week will be tough, but, hopefully, I will get through this, too.

I don’t remember much about Friday, except it was a blur of stress and pain.

Friday night’s rehearsal was a nice break, though. The actors are doing well, although they still have work to do. Friday was the painful rehearsal for them, where they realized that, in spite of all the good work they’ve done, there’s still more to do.

Came home late, exhausted.

Up early on Saturday. I filled in as the set-up person for the Tomorrow’s Writers Today program for teens at Barnstable Intermediate School, set up by The Cape Cod Writers Center. The people at the school were great, the teachers were great, and the kids were great. Terrific all around. At 10 AM, I handed off the program to the Executive Director.

The only thing about the experience that sent a chill through me was the postings, in every classroom, on “lockdown procedures” and “safe spots” set aside in every room. This is what it’s come to? It’s heartbreaking.

Came home, set up for the online Query Clinic, ran that.

Dealt with scheduling issues for the show. MURDER “SEALS” THE DEAL is sold out, and we want to add a second show, but it’s getting it scheduled with the company that’s a challenge.

Received the grant money for SEVEN OF SWORDS, my other play, which just made me feel all warm and fuzzy. It’s not the amount (which was small, but fair), it’s the fact that we were respected enough, as playwrights, to be awarded money for our work.

Sunday was supposed to be my day off, and one that was badly needed, but it didn’t work out that way. Dealt with show stuff nearly all day, searched for stuff I needed for various projects, which led to reorganizing the storage unit over the garage. It looks great and I can get at everything, but I still didn’t get my hands on what I needed. So tired, I was shaking and dizzy.

The mesclun greens, bok choy, buttercrunch lettuce, speckled lettuce, and radish seeds all sprouted over the weekend. Very exciting! The tulips I planted in pots and overwintered in the garage are also blooming — lovely!

I have a meeting in Brewster this morning, and then have to deal with show stuff and the book. I’m supposed to have another meeting this evening, but there’s no way I can do all of it.

Didn’t get enough work on the book done, which upsets me. Worked with students, sent out a lot of pitches.

Have a blasting migraine, but have to work through it.

Devon

Published in: on March 25, 2013 at 7:12 am  Comments (3)  
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Wed. Jan. 30, 2013: Moving Past Frustrations

Wednesday, January 30, 2013
Waning Moon
Jupiter direct
Cloudy and cold

Well, yesterday was a frustrating day, full of cleaning up messes that shouldn’t have been mine, interrupted writing time, and getting a knife in the back up to the hilt. Fortunately, I have a long reach, have removed the instrument of destruction, salved the wound, cleaned the weapon, and now I’m biding my time.

On a happier note, my editor suggested me for a gig. I contacted the person hiring, who’d filled all the slots, I made a flippant comment about keeping me in mind WHEN someone flaked, and he immediately responded that I was right, I should consider myself in as an alternate and part of the loop from Day 1! Getting hired because I’m a brat — I love it.

Also, back-and-forth with my wonderful agent on a couple of things, and more people signing up for the upcoming classes, and some possible new editing clients.

Unfortunately, I also got hit with a migraine in the middle of the day; however, stuff had to get done, so other than lying down for about 20 minutes, I had to push through. Nothing like feeling someone’s repeatedly driving a pickaxe through your skull to sour the day.

I wrote a review this morning, and I have to clear a few things off my desk. I have to take my mom to the clinic later — it’s a regular appointment, but she fell yesterday, and I want to make sure she’s checked out for that, too, when she goes to the doctor on Friday.

Audition notices go out today — if you’re in the area, come on by! As far as writing goes, you can still sign up for “The Graveyard of Abandoned Projects” on Feb. 4-6 and “Journal into Fiction” from Feb. 11-14 here.

Onward to meet the day!

Devon

Tues. Dec. 11, 2012: Total Chaos before 8 AM

Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Day before Dark Moon
Rainy and cool

I’m over on Marian Lanouette’s blog today, talking about blog etiquette.

Can you say chaos?

Before 7:30 this morning, the roofers, the landscapers, and the plumber all descended. I’d gotten up at 6:30, donned pumps and a full-length coat over my pajamas to move the car. The plumber did his thing; the landscaper and the roofers got into it, because the roofers are working on the garage — and the landscapers were here to move the bushes in front of the garage. Since the landscapers were SIX WEEKS LATE, guess who won? The landscapers stomped off in a huff. I’ll be surprised if they ever show up. I think the owner should just get someone else in. I find this company unacceptable.

Then, the roofers had to leave because it started to rain.

By 9 AM, everyone was gone.

It’s going to be one of THOSE days.

The migraine still lingers. I got some work done yesterday, but not enough, although the work on MURDER’S INTOLERANCE and the new play both went pretty well. Worked with my students, got some stuff done around the house. Had to lie down for awhile in the afternoon because I felt so darned awful.

More to do today, but I have a feeling it won’t be the most productive of days! 😉

Devon

Published in: on December 11, 2012 at 9:03 am  Comments (2)  
Tags: , , , , ,

Mon. Dec. 10, 2012: Rainy Start and Lots of Writing

Monday, December 10, 2012
Waning Moon
Rainy and raw

Busy times!

Friday was about the roofers. Really, they aren’t anywhere near as noisy as I expected. I’m quite grateful for that.

Flash 7 class started. Quiet day on Friday. They had a whole day to read and digest material before the first story was due.

Most of Friday, I spent working on MURDER’S INTOLERANCE. I’m happy with the way it’s going. Switching into first person made all the difference in the world. I typed up the first and part of the second chapter, while continuing to work on the fourth chapter in longhand. I’ve started my character charts and the other charts I need to track arcs and other elements that will need to remain consistent, especially from book to book (the seeds of what will grow into the Series Bible).

I also caught up on my World History homework. I thought this was the last week, but the class has been extended for two weeks. I enjoy it, but need to wrap my head around it.

Cleaned and prepped the various altars in the house for Yule. Got a little bit (but not enough) of decorating done.

Saturday morning, I wrote my 1K on MURDER’S INTOLERANCE, got the laundry done, ran the dishwasher, got the groceries in. Sat online most of the day on the class forum, but there wasn’t much activity.

Caught up on the Astronomy coursework. The physics of it, light, sound, wavelength, atoms, molecules, radiation, gravity — no problem. The mathematical equations – not so much. Much of that is my own fault — I am not willing to put in the time to break down the equations so I understand them and then put them back together. I want to know why everything has to be squared and then divided, or multiplied, squared, divided — it seems like there’s got to be a simpler way to set up the equations. It’s my usual resistance to math, believing these equations are created not to solve things, but because someone had too much time on his hands and likes to play with this shit. This is an unfair judgment on my part, but that’s my gut response to much of it. Don’t get me wrong — I’m glad that creating and using these equations makes people happy. More power to them! I am simply not one of them, and am glad they do it, so I don’t have to fret about it.

However, the demos are great, and seeing parts of these theories in practice makes a ll the difference.

Was feeling a little under the weather Saturday night, and by Sunday morning, had a full-blown migraine. Worst I’ve had in awhile. However, I worked with students and pushed through some more of the decorating. It’s still not done, but much more is up. The tree is pretty.

I like that we can decorate differently in the house each year. In the apartment, everything fit only one way. Here, we can try new things.

Polished a short story. Had to put aside a second one, because it didn’t fit the guidelines. I like it, and will continue with it, but guidelines are guidelines. Sent out two other stories that had stockpiled.

Have to do some business admin today, work with students, and get more writing done. I’m waiting on a few checks, which I hope arrive sooner rather than later. Also hope to start the history homework today, if there’s time. It all depends on the migraine, and how badly that affects me today.

Good first writing session on MURDER’S INTOLERANCE.

I have to say something about that dumb-ass prank phone call and those stupid Australian DJs who helped contribute to that British nurse’s suicide. Those two better start taking responsibility for their part in it. They feel bad? They should. They contributed to another human being’s death. To say there was “no malicious intent” is ridiculous. A prank call’s very nature is all about malicious intent. It’s about making fun of someone by humiliating them. When it’s done publicly, on a live show, even worse. The male DJ’s backpedaling of “every radio station in every country does it” — that’s the kind of lemming-like thinking that allows genocide. They’re in “hiding” and in “counseling” — yeah, probably paying someone to tell them what they did was okay. What they did was NOT okay, and instead of being cowards and trying to justify it, they should be looking for ways to make things right. Publicly crying about “how bad they feel” is a self-centered cop out. It’s not about them, and they SHOULD feel bad, if they have any pretensions at being ethical human beings. You fucked up big time, someone died, own it and now do something to make the world a better place. Stop the pity party. Actions have consequences, and they need to face the consequences for their actions. If there was no malicious intent, there wouldn’t have been a prank call. Everything they’ve said and done since this incident only fills me with more contempt. You did something stupid. Now do something positive to help get things in balance.

Devon

Two exciting classes coming up in January of 2013!

“When Words Align” — if you’re stuck in your manuscript or your edit, take this seven-day intensive to get back on track. Jan. 2-9.

“Sensory Perceptions”
— this popular class is back — in one month, learn how to use all the senses to make your writing more dynamic and engaging. You will work on stories specific to each sense, and one long, ever-evolving piece adding in sense-by-sense. January 2-Feb. 3.

Fri. Oct. 19, 2012: Gearing for a Busy Weekend

Friday, October 19, 2012
Waxing Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Cloudy and cool

Last chance to sign up for The First Three Pages: Dynamic Openings, which runs tomorrow. Registration closes at 5 PM today.

I had a horrible migraine all day yesterday, and was a total waste of food. I managed to follow up on a few things from the previous day. I tried to get work done, but couldn’t focus. I suffered a case of foot-in-mouth disease with a colleague, apologized, and haven’t gotten a response, so there’s nothing else I can do at this point. I’ve spent all my life with theatre people; I’m not used to civilians and their rules and their assumptions of dire motivations. It was a genuine apology on my part, and that’s what’s in my control right now.

I did book a day to go trailing around the Marine Life Center to learn the dailiness of the routines. The date we picked is election day, so I’ll have to go to vote early!

I pulled it together by the evening and we had a terrific live chat/distance reading hour and change with the tarot class. Truly inspirational. We got to work on everyone’s questions and read each other and interpret — it was great. We’ll meet in a few weeks to do a Q&A type of chat, and then another distance reading evening.

I went to bed early and feel better after a good night’s sleep. I HAVE to get my hair cut today — I can’t stand it anymore; I have a phone conference with an agent, and then it’s working with students, the finishing touches on tomorrow’s workshop, and catching up on my own schoolwork. I got a little bit done yesterday, but not nearly enough.

Busy, busy weekend ahead, filled with writing and schoolwork and teaching and editing, so I better get going!

Devon

Published in: on October 19, 2012 at 8:25 am  Comments (2)  
Tags: , , ,

Wed. Sept. 19, 2012: New Article Up & Television Musings

Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2012
Waxing Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Rainy and warm

In spite of the migraine, I had a very good day of edits on OLD-FASHIONED DETECTIVE WORK. I’m starting to feel good about the book and how it sets up the rest of the series, as well as standing on its own.

Also did some notes to shut up a character who’s been yapping at me the past few days, in a built world. I’ll be writing from a male POV, I think, this time,which will be fun.

Got work done on the opening of the marine life mystery.

Re-sent some invoices — I want to wind up completely with one client and be done, buh-bye, and the other wants more work from me, but the payments have to be on time, or it simply won’t happen.

My article on “The Renaissance Writer” is up on WOW-Women on Writing here. It was a lot of fun to write, and I hope you enjoy reading it.

Didn’t get enough housecleaning done yesterday, so I’ll have to make up for it today.

Planning on staying in today, writing, writing, writing.

Forgot to mention that I watched the pilot of REVOLUTION on Monday. I hadn’t particularly liked the promos –to me, they came across as jumping on THE HUNGER GAMES bandwagon. But Billy Burke has one of the leads, and I like his work (although I had no idea he was involved in the TWILIGHT franchise, because I haven’t bothered with the movies). I also wanted to see Giancarlo Esposito’s work — I liked him a lot in both BREAKING BAD and ONCE UPON A TIME.

I was pleasantly surprised. I LOVE the production design — sets, costumes, et al. The attention to detail is great. Again, though, I’m glad not to be doing wardrobe on it, because they’re outside a lot! Continuity with dirt is not easy! It uses archetypes from the Hero’s Journey nicely, although I hope they deal with the fact that one of the lead characters is a young woman. The heroine’s journey is, by nature, different. The writing was much better than I expected, and I thought the actors committed fully in a really wonderful way. One of the reasons I like Billy Burke’s work so much is that he is such an active listener. He is unafraid of stillness, and he listens completely and responds to what is actually said and done in the moment. He does that in interviews, too — there’s never a sense that he’s skipping ahead, thinking about what HE will say next. He’s very much a partner in whatever scene he’s in, not trying to take all the focus with the underlying, “Look at ME!” that so many actors (especially in leading TV roles) insist on. I’m interested in seeing how the show evolves.
However, if it starts messing with the audience just to mess with them, the way I felt LOST often did — I’m outta there.

Going back to the active listening and partnership in a scene, I’m already struggling to continue watching a different show that an acquaintance of mine is on. I like HIS work a lot, and he’s good at the give-and-take, but he’s a second lead and the two lead actors are very much in the “I’m the show’s star” mode in a way I feel hurts the overall show. Sometimes it’s the number of close-ups; sometimes it’s screen time; sometimes it’s not letting one of the other actors have a moment that makes more logical and organic sense. I continue to watch because my acquaintance and I dissect every episode after, in terms of writing and character development, and I’m loyal to him; but I’m finding it more and more difficult to watch.

Okay, I need to get back to the page and get a bunch of other things done today, too. We had a bad storm last night — we didn’t have too much damage, other than overwhelmed plants.

Back to work!

Devon

Wed. April 25, 2012: Inspiration vs. Stomach Bug


Flowering Almond

Wednesday, April 25, 2012
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Sunny and cool

Hop on over to Gratitude and Growth for the latest on the garden with azaleas, lilacs, and our owl. Photos, too, though not of the owl, unfortunately.

First I had the flu; now I’ve got some sort of stomach bug and migraine. This is getting real old real fast!

Meditation was great yesterday, along with the discussion (which I think I mentioned in yesterday’s blog). Worked for a bit, had to run some errands over to Sandwich and in Marstons MIlls, came back, worked some more, managed to get part of the front mowed. Amazon untangled the mess I made of the author page; they were very nice about it, accepted my apology, and fixed it.

Then, had to dash off for the meeting for the theatre project. We met at Bobby Byrne’s, over in Masphee, and had a great discussion. We’re thinking along the same lines, took a bunch of notes. I’m going to draft up a bit of the proposal, send it to her for tweaks, and then we’ll submit it. We want to partner with two organizations, one on either end of the Cape, so we can do performances at both ends of the Cape. It may be too late to get funding for it, since we plan to do it in the fall, but we’ll give it a shot.

Still trying to chase down my check; still being ignored. Frustrating.

I have some unpleasant and stressful business to deal with this morning, then get the draft of this proposal out, a proposal out to another organization, work with my students, and work on a couple of other proposals.

I feel like crap, but I don’t have the option for another day in bed, and my mom’s next surgery is tomorrow, so there’s a lot to do.

However, stepping outside even for a few minutes to be in the garden is renewing.

Onward!

Devon

Don’t forget the Amazing Antagonists Seminar on Saturday, May 12th. More information and registration here.