Jan. 27, 2016: Creative Flow

Wednesday, January 27, 2016
Waning Moon
Mercury Direct (as of the 25th)
Rainy and mild

We had a nice big snowstorm on Saturday into Sunday — 15 inches. So much for the idiots who said it would be 3-5. We dug out with the help of our neighbor, but stayed tucked inside for most of the day.

I mostly read, working my way through contest entries, reading my friend’s manuscript, doing research. I outlined a new book, and wrote 11 pages on it, so the characters would stop bugging me.

I re-read the work I’ve done on RED WIDOW, and really like it. I need to find a way to work that piece back into the queue.

I worked on the short radio play. Tried a bunch of things that didn’t work, and finally found what did. The play is finished, polished, proofed, and will go out today. The deadline is Monday, so I’m happy to get it in a bit early. It’s a lot of fun. I’ll have to convert it to BBC format, and get back to converting “Confidence Confidant” into both BBC and US format for radio.

I came across GLAMOROUS HEARTS — that’s a lot of fun, and I think I’ll do something with that in the coming months. I’m finding all kinds of interesting stuff as I go through my boxes.

I did some work on DEATH OF A CHOLERIC, but not as much as I’d like. I feel like I’m behind where I should be, to meet the mid-February deadline for a first draft.

Last night, just moments after I finished the play, I attended the monthly HobNob. It was lots of fun, nice crowd at the Cotuit Center for the Arts. Carl Lopes was our speaker — his work is wonderful. We had a lovely conversation. I also met actor Neil McGarry — I like his one man CHRISTMAS CAROL, and we talked about all kinds of theatre stuff, and the possibility that he’ll do some Shakespeare for the library in April. All in all, a creative evening.

Picked up my mother at knitting. Only got about two rows done, but that’s life.

The radio play goes out today. I turn my main focus back to DEATH OF A CHOLERIC then, and I think, this weekend, I’ll also have the chance to start working on the next play, set in 17th Century Italy.

I will have a long day at work, but I want to get a couple of panels finalized, and get us into ArtsWeek Boston before the deadline.

I can’t believe January is almost done!

I have an article on answering when opportunity knocks over on the GDR site. I hope you check it out.

Devon

Published in: on January 27, 2016 at 10:32 am  Comments Off on Jan. 27, 2016: Creative Flow  
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Wed. Feb. 5, 2014: Ideas Come From Everything

Wednesday, February 5, 2014
Waxing Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Snowy and cold

Update on all the teeny little plants we’ve got going here, over on Gratitude and Growth.

Worked yesterday, pitching jobs, working with students, etc. Did the week’s work for my Environmental Law and Policy class. Totally love that class.

Worked on the play — still not happy with it.

Finished reading Jake Arnott’s THE HOUSE OF RUMOURS. I liked it, especially structurally, although some of the chapters felt as though they meandered a bit too much before all tying back together. It was an interesting conceit, though. I’ve played with the idea of structuring something along the Major Arcana, but haven’t found what works for me, yet. I think I’d approach it differently, so it was interesting to read this approach.

Started another book, a thriller by a well-known author, and it just didn’t work for me. So I put it down. I’ve hit the point where I only push through on a book that doesn’t engage me if I’m paid to read and review it.

Played with some characters and ideas. Would like to do another serial, but not sure which outlet I’d pitch to. I’m not interested in one of the sites where you only get paid if you get enough votes. This is my business, not my hobby. I get paid for the WORK, not a popularity contest.

One story idea came because of a job pitch. I made the first cut (it’s a very, very competitively sought position and I’m the “out there” choice), and if I get it, I’d have to spend a certain amount of time each month out of town. That could align with another project in which one of my former professors wants me to work with him on, in the same area. I was idly looking at shares in the area (it’s too far to commute, and doesn’t make sense to stay in a hotel), and found a dream share — not that I could contact them until the details on the job were finalized. The photos and the tone of the ad gave me an idea for a story. So, you see, ideas are everywhere, and even if these projects don’t work out as jobs, they’ve served a purpose!

Plenty to do today. The snowstorm is worse than predicted; not sure I can get my mom to her doctor’s appointment this afternoon. I’m getting sick of shoveling — ready to hibernate and come out when it all melts!

Making some decisions on some changes I want to make, both personally and professionally. Feels good.

A-writing we will go!

Devon

Published in: on February 5, 2014 at 8:39 am  Comments Off on Wed. Feb. 5, 2014: Ideas Come From Everything  
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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Wednesday, January 12, 2011
Waxing Moon
Snowy and slushy

So far, it looks like we didn’t get slammed as badly as some of the other areas. We had a coating of snow and now it’s a snow/rain mix. I can still see some of my driveway and front walk. It will be a pain in the ass to shovel that wet, heavy mix (too wet for the electric shovel; I’ll have to do it by hand). I don’t want to go out in the rain, so I’m going to wait a few hours before I tackle it.

As long as the power stays on, we’re good, and the chat will go forward.

I’ve made hot water bottles and put them in the bed and will refresh them every few hours, just in case, and I’ll probably put up thermoses of hot tea and soup. Got flashlights, batteries, candles, books, writing — I can just wait it out.

Got to the dump yesterday; disposed of the garbage (only one bag) and the recycling. For some reason, the guys who work there find me highly entertaining. Glad to bring some sunshine to their day.

Wrote a bit, commented on my students’ work (this group rocks, they’re willing to take risks), but, for the most part, I lay on the couch and read Susan Cheever’s biography of Louisa May Alcott. Louisa and Harriet Beecher Stowe are two of my idols, and have been since I was about seven or eight years old. They are part of the reason I became a writer.

There’s a passage Cheever wrote on p. 107-108 of the book that I plan to print out, source to her (of course) and hang in my office: “Good writing is almost always subversive. It uses the nuts and bolts of the texture of everyday life to communicate truths that may be as disturbing as they are original.” Thank you, Susan Cheever, for reminding me of that.

Wrote a proposal for something that would be a Very Big Deal if I decide to actually pitch it. A huge commitment of time and energy for a long-term commitment-phobe like I am. The money would have to be right and my own mental preparedness in place for me to do this. But it would also be a transformative and productive experience for those taking part. I sent off the first draft to people I trust for feedback, and I’ve already thought of some other points to include overnight.

I’m worried about the commitment because I have to keep up with my other freelancing and also the novel and play contracts, AND with the garden and running the house, AND I want to go back to school at some point in the next year to get certified as an herbalist. Of course, this proposal would pay for the schooling. But could I handle them together? That’s a question I have to answer for myself before I can pitch it. I have to be really, really sure to the bottom of my soul and the tips of my toes that I can see the commitment through.

As long as the power stays on, the live chat for tonight at 8 PM is on, over at Savvy Authors. I don’t know if it’s open to the public or just for members — I’m just showing up and saying a few things, and then taking questions. Let’s face it, people don’t want to be talked at for an hour — they want interaction. So I’ll “talk” (type) for ten minutes or so and then take questions for the other fifty.

On the agenda today — writing as much as possible. I’ve set today aside to be primarily a writing day, in and around the shoveling!

Hop on over to Gratitude and Growth to read about my seed-ordering dilemmas!

Back to the page.

Devon

Friday, February 5, 2010

Friday, February 5, 2010
Waning Moon
Mars Retrograde
Cloudy and snowstorm approaching

I wish it would hurry up and get here already, because the pre-storm headache is killing me. Nothing works on these headaches — nothing over the counter or prescription. I just have to ride them out. As soon as the storm starts, I’ll feel great, but the time during which it approaches is excruciating.

The headache started yesterday afternoon and laid me low for the bulk of the day. I managed to get the grocery shopping done in the morning and some writing. I was useless for most of the afternoon, although I could read a bit here and there. And I made a broccoli-mushroom casserole for dinner, which was good.

Finished Deanna Raybourn’s SILENT ON THE MOOR last night, which I enjoyed. The first book in the series is still my favorite, thus far, although I’ve enjoyed all three. I really love the Yorkshire Moors, so I was a little disappointed when the protag didn’t have the same enthusiasm for them that I do. That has nothing to do with the quality of the writing, though, just one of my own little quirky responses.

Very good first writing session this morning on REDEMPTION KILL. An obstacle’s come up for my protags that surprised me, and I’m still trying to get them off that cliff, but it’s a worthwhile obstacle, so we’ll go with it. I’ll go back to it and hopefully finish the chapter later this morning, then switch back to POWER OF WORDS for a bit, tweaking an earlier scene so it aligns with something going on now.

I’m hoping to work on the steampunk this weekend. It’s starting to churn again, which is good, because I want to get that first draft done and give it time to ripen before I do revisions and get it out. I’ve got a deadline for it, although not a harsh one, and I need to put my focus back on that.

And I have to tackle Confidential Job #1.

But first, oh hurry up and start snowing so this darned headache lets up!

Have a great, warm, cozy weekend.

Devon

Published in: on February 5, 2010 at 9:02 am  Comments (8)  
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