Wed. May 9, 2012: Rain, Project Shifts, and New Circles


The tulip tree at my great uncle’s in Maine

Wednesday, May 9, 2012
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Rainy and cool

Saturday’s the Amazing Antagonists Workshop, a day of creating fascinating, complex characters to be good obstacles for your protagonist. Sign up now — registration closes Friday night, so you can’t suddenly wake up Saturday morning and decide you want in!
Information and registration here.

Worked flat out all day yesterday, trying to get it all done, get the grocery shopping, bill paying, all that other stuff done along with the actual work so I can pay the bills! 😉 It was too wet to mow (aw), but hopefully, it will help both the grass seed and the anti-ant stuff I had to put down (yet again). And I’m doing the laundry rather piece-meal — a few loads here, a few loads there.

Designed and printed a new Fearless Ink business card. I really want to redesign the website, too. It’s a little too simple, and I think I’ll upload the portfolio, so there are samples.

Spent some time with students, sent back a bunch of assignments where I asked for two scenes and they submitted four or five. Two scenes means TWO scenes. And, when I’ve provided a tip sheet on what a scene IS and you ignore it — no, the assignment goes back. When I say you can’t use something from a current WIP, and I recognize the characters and the location from another class — it’s going back. There’s a reason the assignments are structured in a certain way and build in a certain way. I’m trying to get them to look at structure in a way that supports their overall work, so they’re very aware of the weight and balance of each scene and the importance of each scene in relation to the scenes around it, and don’t dilute their stories with needless wandering. Learn how to read and apply guidelines. It’ll help a lot of submissions being deleted unread when you submit!

Didn’t get as much of my own writing done as I would have liked, but I’ll make up for it today.

Drafted a PSA and a press release for my pro bono client; am waiting for the green light to get it out. Contacted an editor to find out when I’ll get the specs for an article they asked me to write — they forgot to send them or thought someone else was sending them or something. In any case, I never got them, and the deadline was last Monday. But they are holding the spot for me, and I’ll do it this week.

Two new assignments from Confidential Job #1, both of which look terrific, and I can’t wait to sink my teeth into them.

Made the appointments to get the car serviced (tomorrow) and the cats to the vet next week. Yup. All three at once. Get it over with. Whew! That’ll be a chunk of change!

Attended an open house for the American Business Women’s Association over in Hyannis. I had a good time and met some interesting people. I’ve been to a couple of these type of events elsewhere, and it’s all corporate types gossiping about things that aren’t any of their business (well, that’s what gossip is, isn’t it?) This event was completely different. The participants were lively and interesting, representing a wide array of professions, and they could talk about a vast array of topics. One could have a conversation, not just blah, blah, blah, buy this, blah, blah, blah. I’m glad I went, and I’m interested in spending more time with them to find out what they’re about. I don’t know how much I can do that this summer — which is already booked to the gills between teaching and visitors and the Cape Cod Writers Conference and yoga and my own book deadlines. But it’s nice to know it’s there, and I may get more involved in the fall.

A potential client who talked big of course did not come through. Not at all surprising, and I’m relieved to be out of that one! If you’re trying to present yourself as progressive and ethically responsible, you better be able to back it up, and this one can’t. Doesn’t have the balls.

The positive result is that the project that this individual had blown a lot of hot air about how fabulous it was, how important participating in it was, and then backed out of because the individual can’t walk the talk, is taking a new direction that’s both more economically viable and will get us a broader, international audience. So it all worked out for the best.

A colleague of mine had a great episode central to his character on his TV show last night. He did an awesome job. So happy for him.

I’m going to yoga this morning, since I have to take in the car tomorrow to Plymouth. It always rains when I go to yoga!

Going to try to get a little bit of time on the page before yoga.

Devon

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Waning Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Sunny and cold

37 degrees F this morning. And no heat. Yeah, it’s illegal, but they don’t give a damn.

I have a piece over on Sole Struck Fashions about shoes in Prague.

I had to scold a few students, reminding them they don’t get to choose which elements of the exercise they use in their work — they have to integrate ALL of them. And they wonder why editors send them back material for not following guidelines — if you don’t learn how to read and follow guidelines, you’re not going to get published. So don’t give me a song and dance about “organic process” — organic your process all you want on YOUR time — follow the directions when it’s MY time.

Got an incredibly boneheaded email from someone — with next to no credentials — telling me how to write. It was so moronic I had to laugh. Got another email from a lit mag asking for a donation — a lit mag who can’t be bothered to acknowledge or respond to submissions or follow-ups. And I should support you because . . .? I’m sorry, I’m just not that nice. Deal with me in a professional way, and we’ve got a starting point. Act like a spoiled, entitled child, and I’ll do what I do with all spoiled children — ignore you.

Got out the work for Confidential Job #1. Smoothed out the essay and got it to that editor. Stayed on top of the workshop exercises and even got to participate in some of the other workshops.

Froze my little tootsies off — no heat until after 5 PM — so am breaking out the fleece-lined slippers! The cats are well-wrapped in fleece nests and hot water bottles.

Accepted the fact, this morning, that “Be the Monster” is the beginning of a bigger piece and not going to fit into the 5K word limit. Set up the folder, the character charts, the terminology charts so, as I create the world, I can track it instead of having to flip back and forth through pages to see what I meant. The writing went well — about 1500 words a day seems to be its natural pace. The last thing I need is another project, but Catriona is very stubborn and my metaphorical ass is sore from the kicking she gave it when I didn’t pay attention to her enough yesterday. It also needs a new title — this one was adequate for the section I hoped would be the bulk of the short story, but not for the larger piece.

Every piece has its own shape and rhythm and you’ve got to trust it.

It also means I have to come up with another story for the anthology — and fast.

I’ve got to keep up with assignments today, take the fans to storage and retrieve my cappuccino maker, and work on the grant applications.

Better bundle up and get to it.

Devon