Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Sunny and warm

Late getting online today. I went to yoga this morning — it was wonderful. My attitude had already adjusted a little bit on the way there, and it was just the gentle shove I needed in the right direction. Barely any traffic coming back on 6, and then I mowed the side lawn and back terraced area. It’s supposed to get really hot over the next few days. I can let the meadow grow for awhile, but I really needed to get the terraced area done. The front will probably be okay until the weekend. The mower was a pain in the butt the whole time — the spark plug had to be adjusted, then something else had to be adjusted, and something else and so on. Urgh. A new mower shouldn’t be having so many issues.

A huge gray and white tabby streaked across the lawn when I mowed, leapt halfway up a tree, glared at me, then leapt down into a run and took off across the neighbors’ yards. Gorgeous cat. And what an athlete!

Yesterday was a pretty decent writing day. The New Mexico chapters are coming along well on POWER OF WORDS. The Prague chapters still need work, but at least I have their basic structure. I switched into third person omniscient POV in the Prague chapters, and that is jarring — doesn’t fit with the rest of the piece. So, when I revise, I have to go back and figure out from whose point of view I want each section. At least I’m moving the plot forward, growing the characters, and exploring arcs. The rest is all fixable, and the layering will happen.

Got stuff done for the ball, and prepped for tonight’s concert. Watched some TV — EUREKA and WAREHOUSE 13. I really like what they’re doing, character-wise, with WAREHOUSE 13 this season.

Started the “Revise in Company” workshop yesterday, and got them started on their first exercises. Checked in with the “Reviewing for Craft” workshop — we’ve talked and read now, for a couple of weeks; it’s time to start writing reviews.

Going back to the page for as much as I can this afternoon, and tonight is the jazz concert.

I hope it won’t get as hot as they predict — I really don’t want to use the air conditioner this summer!

The garden is growing nicely, although most of my stuff is much later than the neighbors’. That’s okay — as long as I have happy, healthy plants and Bessie the squirrel doesn’t keep snatching all the blossoms from the pumpkins and the zucchini for her little brood.

Back to the page.

Devon


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Annabel Aidan webpage here.

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Published in: on July 19, 2011 at 10:36 am  Comments (3)  
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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cold
International Women’s Day

Yup, here we have it, International Women’s Day. I wish I’d been able to put together a project this year like I did the year my friend Avonne and I set the creation atmosphere for MOON TRIBE TALES. I say “set the creation atmosphere” because the actresses who spent months developing material for the piece are equally a part of it. It was a wonderful experience for both those participating and those who attended, and I wish I’d been set up to seek funding for it to be an ongoing project. When I look back at the script, little has changed in the intervening years. If anything, women’s rights and progress are regressing.

Actress Allison Scagliotti, whose work I throughly enjoy in WAREHOUSE 13, has a great piece up here about looking for role models in her industry. It’s difficult to find strong, complex female characters in media right now, although I think there are more of them on television than in film. Too often, they simply behave like men would, but they’re played by women. While to a point, a strong person is a strong person no matter what the gender, since biology influences a lot of how we deal with things, I’d love to see a wider range of representations in film and television.

I think women are making inroads behind the scenes — although probably not enough. You look at writers like Jane Espenson and directors like Kate Woods, and there’s progress.

I think the rise of urban fantasy in literature has created some great female characters. Look at Diana Bishop in A DISCOVERY OF WITCHES — she doesn’t fit any mold but her own and is fascinating and complex. Look at Camille, Delilah, and Menolly in the Otherworld Series — along with most of the female characters Yasmine Galenorn writes. They don’t fall into cliche, they’re certainly not perfect, but they’re strong, intelligent, and interesting. Or the characters like Ann Aguirre’s Corinne Solomon. These women are all very much women, not girls acting the way men might act in this situation, and they are very resourceful and approach the world with unique viewpoints.

To me, that’s part of what a feminist is — a woman who is strong, intelligent, and interesting, and who won’t keep anyone — male, female, Republican or alien — from allowing her to fulfill her potential to its fullest. Can a man be a feminist? Yes, if he’s willing to support the choices of the women around him to be the best and most they can be, even if it’s inconvenient to him personally! 😉

Got out the write up for Confidential Job #1 and that’s off, and got out my column. Got word this morning that they’ve already sent the next assignment. Caught up on commenting on the student work — some of the comments have been helpful, and they are diving back into the material with fresh enthusiasm, which is what I’d hoped.

MA Dept. of Revenue emailed me my quarterly vouchers, the little dears. Considering the NY State Tax Dept. could never be bothered to provide correct paperwork, nor have they ever posted a payment correctly in the years I lived there, and they generally feel they can remove any money they want from anyone because they don’t have to answer to anyone, the MA attitude is quite refreshing.

Responded to student work. They have a deadline today, so there will be a lot of work on which to comment. Also received materials from a partner for the tele-seminar, so I need to go over that. A big stack of errands to run today, but then they will be done, and I don’t have to worry about them later in the week.

Had a good morning’s work on the play — I’m having fun with it. It wants to have more characters than I’m allowed, so some of the actors may have to double. Or, I just have to keep it lean and cut them in the rewrite. I’ve written for a finite amount of characters before — I know I can do it. Want to do some more work on the play before I switch back to everything else that demands attention. Fortunately, the company wants a piece with high verbal dexterity, and those are the kinds of characters I enjoy writing.

Devon

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Wednesday, December 8, 2010
Waxing Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Sunny and COLD!

Busy morning yesterday. First load to the dump was the single bag of household garbage, and the rest of the car was filled with recycling. We just don’t generate that much garbage. That one 30-gallon trash bag was from nearly a month’s living. The rest of the car was filled to bursting with cardboard boxes, tins, glass, plastic, etc. for recycling.

The guys who work at the dump are so nice. They explained how everything was set up, the protocols, etc. It’s extremely well-organized. I walked the whole space to get a sense of it (‘We’re really not as fun as the amusement park,” one of them said drily, as he watched me take in the sights), but I wanted to figure out where everything was BEFORE I started carting stuff out of the car.

Trips 2-4 were leaves. I got 21 of the leaf bags emptied out, and have 10 more left in the garage. I can get 7 bags (30 gallons each) per carload, and, since the dump is only about a mile away, I just kept making round trips. The leaf piles are huge — I should take my camera next time, they’re really, really cool-looking.

Yeah, I’m new, and I even find the dump fascinating! 😉

Ran some errands, had lunch, decided it was too cold for yard work (procrastinator). We spent the afternoon unpacking the most of the rest of the kitchen boxes. We’ve got two left. But everything’s unpacked, and most of it is put away — the island has too much stacked on it, but I have to figure out a few things.

Of course, I still have 60 boxes of kitchen stuff stacked the garage, but I’ll go through that a little at a time — or a lot, as we get closer to the party.

Finished the assignment for Confidential Job #1, got it off, did the invoice (forgot I had the holiday paper still in the printer, oh well). It’s a FESTIVE invoice.

Violet is OVER all the unpacking, and Iris simply hides. I think we have mischievious pixies around, because things are vanishing and turning up in different spots in the house. Violet is very non-chalent about it all, but there are times when Iris enters a room, her eyes get huge staring at something I can’t see, and the she shoots out of the room like her tail’s on fire. Don’t get me wrong, the house has a great vibe — there’s just a sense of mischief around lately, and sometimes it’s okay, but when I’m tired and hunting for something — not so much.

Found the candles I put aside for the holiday, so I could put them into the candelabras (candelabrae?) on the mantel.

Wrote domestic cards A-D last night (about 20 cards) and packed 5 more of the gifts to ship. So, it’s off to the post office this morning again — I also have to buy some more packing supplies. I have about 8 more gifts to pack and ship this week.

Taking another carload of leaves this morning, helping my mom with some stuff for her prescriptions. I’ve already had to rip her former doctor’s office a new one and the insurance company a new one. They think because my mother is 86 and a nice person, they can take advantage of her and make things rough on her. Then, they get to deal with ME, who is not 86 and not a nice person. Sort of an immediate karmic return for them. Sometimes I think I do better as I am without insurance, although as a MA resident, I’m now required to get health insurance. Won’t the companies love it when I interview them — because guess what? It’s my money, I’m doing the interviewing. The health care industry in this country needs to be completely gutted and dismantled, and rebuilt from the ground up without profit to the corporate executives. It needs to go back to being what it was originally — non-profit.

Car gets fixed at 2 PM, so there goes the afternoon.

The Hounds of the Baskervilles went above and beyond in their arias yesterday afternoon. I think it’s hilarious — hey, it beats leaf blowers, right?

I’d like to work on the yard a bit today, in spite of the cold, but it’s also really windy, so I don’t know if it’s counterproductive.

Hitting the page for a few hours this morning first, though. I’m behind on everything, and I overslept again this morning. I didn’t want to get out of my cozy bed!

Watched the special Christmas episodes of both EUREKA and WAREHOUSE 13, and laughed my head off, especially during the former. Both were very clever and absolutely hilarious.

Devon

Published in: on December 8, 2010 at 8:34 am  Comments (3)  
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Wednesday, September 22, 2010


totem pole outside of the Bruce Museum, Greenwich, CT

Wednesday, September 22, 2010
Waxing Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Cloudy and mild
Autumn Equinox

Yesterday’s jaunt to the city actually went well. Train was sorta on time, I got a seat, I wandered over to my first meeting, everything went better than expected, I wandered over to my second meeting further on the West Side, that went better than expected, and I got to hang out with a friend and colleague for awhile, catching up. He was my business rep on Broadway, and now he’s shifted over to handle the film and TV contracts, and just one of my favorite people, so it was nice to sit down for an hour or so and catch up.

It was a lovely, sunny fall day and I wandered back to Grand Central. The fall B’way shows are loading in, so I got to stop and say hi to about 110 of the crew guys I’ve worked with over the years on this show and that show, and catch up. Much as I adore them all, it made me realize even more that my life is no longer here. I’ve got years of wonderful memories, I hope B’way continues to thrive, and I need to be doing other things. May we all be happy and successful!

Got on the train at Grand Central, after climbing over a film crew. I’m surprised NYPD let anything film on the East side with all the stuff going on at the UN. Of course, the train didn’t work — two working trains in one day is more than Metro North can handle — so we all had to move to another train. But at least it was before we left the station.

I got home early in the afternoon, took care of some other business. I was worried that I wasn’t as sharp as I needed because of the migraine, but I seem to have held my own pretty well. And I was actually dealing with people and organizations who work WITH me rather than against me, which is a nice change.

The ducks are lining up nicely, and pretty soon, I’ll get them to quack in formation! 😉

I got about 30 floppies transferred to flash drives. It’s slow going, because I’m at the boxes of old material that has to be converted to RTF before I can transfer it, or I can’t open it on the Mac. Just keep going, a little bit every day, because a little bit still gets us further than doing nothing.

I want to repack a little bit for the Philly trip. I’m off to acupuncture today and then dinner with a friend.

The landlords sent me a threat via email right before the close of the business day yesterday. They always do that, so one can’t contact the appropriate agencies, hoping it will ruin one’s day. Um, no. All it did was piss me off. I responded with a very pointed letter cc’d to the appropriate agency individuals that will go out via certified mail. They don’t get to ignore the parts of the law they don’t like and make stuff up when they misinterpret what they do.

Watched some TV last night, hoping my migraine would go away. Excedrin Migraine no longer works, and none of the prescription stuff does, either. Interested to see where WAREHOUSE 13 goes next season. They set up some interesting possibilities. Glad to see that Eric Christian Olsen is now a regular on NCIS:LOS ANGELES. I like his work, and think he adds an interesting dynamic to the group. He makes some interesting, detailed choices in scenes that are so different from the other actors in the show, and they work so beautifully, both as an individual performance and in the larger, ensemble context. It’s sometimes tough to put that kind of detail in a procedural show and have it work.

Decent morning’s writing. Not brilliant, but decent. The piece is taking an interesting turn. It will be hell to revise due to the twists and turns it’s taking, and it will be an interesting challenge to make it all logical within the context of the fictional world, which is modern contemporary, a fictional town stuffed into a real region (me stretching geography again), but with its own odd personality.

Didn’t sleep well last night — odd dreams that might turn into a new script, and also the migraine pain. Thank goodness I’m going for acupuncture today.

Devon

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Partly sunny and pleasant

Supposedly we had horrible storms and hail all night. I slept through it; never heard a thing. The cats woke me up at 5 AM (so not cool), but it wasn’t because of storms. And I have an hilarious “bad kitties’ photo to post later this week. Little stinkers!

Spent about three hours working in the unit yesterday; got a lot done, started getting the medium-sized unit folded in. I found quite a few books I needed, and carted those home, and tossed quite a bit of stuff. Since I can’t leave the garbage there, I had to haul it back in my car and dispose of it here. I don’t know when the big move is yet, but I’m getting the energy and momentum going for it.

Ran a few errands. Did some client work in the afternoon. The assignment for Confidential Job #1 is a bit more complex than I expected, so I’m a bit behind. But I’ll catch up today. Client work, discussions with editors, pulled a couple of listings for possible pitches, but didn’t have the time to actually pitch them (guess I didn’t want them enough).

Did not watch the Michael Jackson memorial. I enjoyed his music growing up, I’m sorry he’s dead, but I didn’t know him, never worked with him, and it doesn’t have a lot of personal impact. I wish they’d stop carting his casket around and let the poor man rest in peace. I feel for his family and the friends who actually knew him and loved him, especially his kids. I have nothing but contempt for the so-called “friends” who were “too upset” to attend. This isn’t about you, bitches; you should have put aside your egos, pulled it together, and shown the man some public respect. With “friends” like that . . .

Cooked salmon in a sesame-ginger teriyaki sauce and put today’s pork chops in the maple chipotle marinade so they could soak all night. I have to go grocery shopping today after I spend a few hours working in the storage unit, and I need to make my list. I’m also going to do a rough inventory of everything, so that when I relocate I have an idea of what’s where.

Talked to a friend to make plans for dinner next week — we haven’t seen each other in awhile and want to catch up.

Lousy writing session this morning. I’m just going to have to navigate rough waters for a bit.

Watched the premiere of WAREHOUSE 13 last night. I thought most of it was clever. I had a few structural problems with it, although, for the most part, I liked the writing and the casting. Cross-cutting Artie in the warehouse hunting down the portrait with the building investigative MTV-byte-length scenes, in my opinion was a mis-use of comic relief — it dissipated tension/suspense instead of building it. And it was unclear why the professor brought back the book with the comb — it sounded as though he was ordered to do so, but if the comb is where the power lies, it doesn’t make sense he would just “happen” to find it and bring it back. It’s kind of a chicken-egg question that was ignored and never logically explained. I could conjecture, but I wanted to KNOW. It may well have been a scene that was shot and then cut. I also wanted more character development in the guest roles. I know one has to establish the leads and the core quickly, but give them interesting CHARACTERS to play off of each week, not just odd SITUATIONS. Although the nod to the RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK warehouse situation did make me giggle. And the Sci-Fi channel now calls itself “SyFy”? Really? Barf. It’s not a “hip, cool re-name”. It’s stupid. It makes me not want to spend time on the channel because I feel as though those making the decisions are insulting my intelligence. Yeah, i know they do that anyway, especially with their Saturday movies which are so poorly written and executed that they’re laughable, excruciating, and unwatchable (I think I’ve lasted maybe four minutes on a couple of them, and less on most), but some of the series are actually pretty good. However, this re-name pushes me away from the channel rather than drawing me towards it because the name alone means I can’t trust the content.

Okay, I’m going to get some more work done on the assignment for Confidential Job #1 before heading back to storage.

The problem with having a subscription to NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC is that they also publish fantastic books. And they have sales. Yes, I succumbed.

Devon