Fri. Feb. 20, 2015: Last Day Before the (Stormy) Weekend!

Friday, February 20, 2015
Waxing Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Sunny and very cold

My renewed driver’s license arrived yesterday – took just over a week to get it, after renewing online. Pretty slick! ;)

Work was busy. Good busy, but busy. Did a lot of research on a couple of things, and some press and programming stuff, and hopped on and off the desk as needed.

Home for a snack and to change, and then to tango. This was “milonga night”, so we newcomers could learn the milonga etiquette. It’s more for the experienced dancers than beginners, although two experienced dancers kindly took me on the floor to practice. Had an interesting conversation with many people, including another newcomer, a few people who’ve been coming on and off for years, the sister of someone I knew well from the library, a friend who works at another library, and a professional musician who’s part of a group and we might brainstorm on a collaboration.

Home, a couple of episodes of WEST WING, a late dinner.

Last night gave me some great ideas for the radio play.

Up early this morning; some work on the radio play and the hour-long pilot. I have to get out some press releases today and do a submission, in and around the work here at the library. We’re planning some really fun stuff for next week, in and around the book sale – author Kevin Parham will be here next Wednesday, talking about his book THE VINEYARD WE KNEW (weather-permitting, of course). And we’re doing something fun all day Wednesday, too – which I’ll reveal closer to the date! ;)

I’m looking forward to having a whole weekend off. I’ll be writing – and buying cat food before the next storm hits – but it’ll be nice to have the whole weekend on MY schedule. We’re supposed to get more snow on Saturday night into Sunday, rain all day Sunday, hard freeze on Monday, and more snow Tuesday and Wednesday.

Hopefully, that will mean a solid weekend of reading, writing, research, and student work.

Stay safe and warm!


Published in: on February 20, 2015 at 9:11 am  Comments (1)  
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Thurs. Feb. 19, 2015: Trudging On

Thursday, February 19, 2015
Waxing Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Busy day yesterday, but lots of laughter. I had to register the pilot with WGA before sending it out (because I’m not an idiot, and I make sure I have all the protections in place before I submit).

Got several press releases done for the library, and a new poster, and a few other programming things. Did some planning for events, and brainstorming.

Tired when I got home – the snow is just wearying.

A bunch of research books came in, but still not the microfiche.

Watched the third Worricker – SALTING THE BATTLEFIELD – which was interesting, and a few WEST WING episodes.

Percolated the screenplay for a bit.

More snow overnight. I had to go out early to go grocery shopping – the roads were awful. My road is so bad I need to start braking a good 500 yards before the intersection, and forget more than one car on the road at a time. Even Old Stage Road was a total mess this morning.

My debit card was declined at Stop N Shop, which was weird, because I know I have money in the account. When I called the credit union, turns out someone’s been trying to make charges in Minnesota and Texas, so they shut down the card. We got the fraud paperwork done, and they’re issuing me a new card. I’m grateful the credit union caught it and is fixing it without a fuss (the big banks I’ve dealt with always acted like I was the one trying to con them out of something, instead of being the one whose account was violated).

Busy day at work, and then tango tonight. I’m looking forward to a hopefully quiet weekend. Got some stuff out for the writers center that needed to be done today for feedback, so I can send out the information tomorrow.

Didn’t get in the writing time I needed this morning, which has thrown off my rhythm for the day. Was too busy navigating unplowed roads.

Tomorrow should be busy, too, and then I’ll have the first Saturday off in, I think, about five weeks. I want to get in cat food, write, and sleep. Because, y’know, there’s another storm expected on Saturday night.


Published in: on February 19, 2015 at 11:16 am  Comments (1)  
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Wed. Oct 24, 2012: Wide Feedback and Wacky Road Conditions

Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Waxing Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Rainy and cool

Yesterday was about cleaning, yard work, trying to get information I needed in order to get it to someone else, waiting to hear word on a project, working with my students, making lasagna, etc. One of my editors fought for me and got $$ for something the publisher wants me to do, but didn’t want to pay me for. Love this editor.

Got my feedback on my final project for the Sustainability class — which was the first three chapters of the mystery novel. Two people thought it was a great idea, and, although I didn’t encompass every idea in the first three chapters, they could see where I was setting the seeds, and how it could grow. They loved the idea of subtly melding these ideas in a work of fiction, rather than standing on a soap box. The third peer reviewer HATED it. Hated everything about it, said I didn’t understand what a “class” was and what it meant to write a paper — now, considering how many of us were doing non-traditional, art-based projects and HAD PERMISSION to pursue them, that was inappropriate. The funniest comment was, “There’s no room for Nancy Drew in sustainability” and the individual was mad that there was a dead body in the first chapter instead of a treatise on conservation. Um, it’s a murder mystery — you need the dead body to set things into motion! Ouch, and yet I couldn’t help laughing, because the vitriol came from such a place of narrow-mindedness and self-righteousness, all one could do is shrug. You could say, “I see what the person is trying to do; I don’t think it’s effective” rather than people don’t have a right to express sustainability concerns in terms of art. I knew it wasn’t going to please everyone, but the response from the other two reviewers at least let me know I’m on the right track. They had some excellent suggestions to keep it on track and raise the stakes.

Got on the road a little after one. Dropped off the minutes for tonight’s meeting with the president of that organization, returned books at Sandwich library — one was overdue and I had to pay a fine. 2 cents. TWO CENTS. Seriously. I handed over two shiny pennies. Hilarious.

Drive to Providence wasn’t bad, although there was construction around New Bedford and the dipshits who cut around cars and force their way back in, in a single lane, because they think they’re so important they can’t be behind another car drive me nuts.

Didn’t get lost this time, found the bus drop-off, and there was Costume Imp! Drive back was fine, we got settled, heated up the lasagna, opened a bottle of cabernet, and had a good dinner.

Lots to do today, and then tonight, is the Writers Night Out Dinner and Annual Meeting.

I have papers to read, work to do with students, and edits to which to attend.


Published in: on October 24, 2012 at 6:51 am  Comments (2)  
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Mon. July 9, 2012: Guest-Free & Geared For Insanity

Violet & Tessa get the bed back, once company leaves

Monday, July 9, 2012
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Sunny and pleasant

All the guest are gone, which is good, since this week will be beyond insane. But that’s okay, I’m just going to deal with everything one piece at a time, and, somehow, it will all get done. It was great to have friends and family here, although having them converge unexpectedly at the same time, and both groups bring extra people I wasn’t expecting and didn’t know was a bit much. Everyone was nice and fairly easy-going, it was just a lot.

Friday was busy. Saturday, I just hated everybody. For no good reason, just everyone and everything worked my last nerve. Overtired, and tired of people who are lazy and incompetent making unreasonable demands. I don’t have time or tolerance, and I’m not going to waste my valuable time with them.

On the plus side, the weather is quite lovely, the garden is growing well (see the latest post on Gratitude and Growth), and I’m figuring out what I want to do next and what direction I want to take, career-wise. I’m getting rid of what no longer works, even if it’s scary to get rid of the known devil, and going after what I want.

I got the notebooks for the writers’ conference next month — yeah, it’s early, but fellow writers will nod and smile at the excitement of finding the right notebook for the job. Next month’s conference will be fun, and it will be nice to go hang out and not be responsible for anything except showing up and being a good student! ;)

The short story due last Friday, about a woman aviator in 1947, really wants to be a at least a novella, or maybe even a novel. I’m excited about the feedback on what I tried (even though it didn’t work as it stands), and looking forward to finding a way to slot it in and do more work on it.

Today is the last day “Town Crier” is available for download. Billy Root has a few things to say about it, and the upcoming story featuring him, “The Occasional Ghost”.

The Scene Meat workshop starts today — looking forward to it. But you can still sign up for the Series Bible seminar that runs on Saturday, and, if you’re on the Cape this weekend, for the Character and Situation Workshop over at Three Fish and A Ram.

Today, I’ve got to make arrangements for the yearly house inspection from the town, work on three articles, the ghostwriting project, deal with Nightmare Client, prepare for tomorrow’s jazz concert, do three chapters of revisions, deal with students, work on the edits for an anthology I’m collaborating on, polish “The Occasional Ghost”, deal with some more HEX BREAKER PR, and work on the deadlined novels.

NEWSROOM just gets better and better and better. How terrific that there’s a show on the air geared for intelligent people, instead of the reality-pay-them-for-being-their-worst-selves that dominates network television right now.

So, I better get going!

Have a great week, people!


Wed. May 16, 2012: All Three Cats to the Vet (Big Drama & Yowling)

Iris and Violet are not amused

Wednesday, May 16, 2012
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Venus Retrograde
Rainy and cool

Busy day, but didn’t get enough done. Which means today I have to push even harder. Got some errands, done, though, which helped. And my meeting last night went very well — I’ll be teaching three in-person workshops in Falmouth in the fall — if people sign up!

Prepping for my workshop on Saturday — got my class list, and am looking forward to it. Putting together my “stuff” for the class. Prepping the Submission System Workshop for June 2 — there’s more information here and sign up. It’s so important to have an efficient system — it makes life a lot easier.

I’ve got five press releases (for my own work) to get out today. And I have to finish the write ups for confidential job #1 and finish the rough on my article. I’ll have to wait for a couple of quotes, but I want the article in good enough shape so that I can just pop ‘em in and send it out.

Check out Nancy Oliver’s post “When the Safety Net is Gone” over on Words on the Page, as part of Writers Worth Week.

I need to hustle some quick-turnaround and quick-paying work to make up for the money spent on the brakes and what I’ll have to spend today at the vet — all three little darlings are going in, and that’s going to be a big chunk of change. But, it has to be done.

Tonight is the Writers Night Out dinner, so I’m off to that. And I’ve got to buckle down on some of my other fiction deadlines. I’m behind. I’ve got to get back in balance with the short term work and the long term.

I’ve got a post up on Gratitude and Growth with garden photos.

Feeling a little run down, and am looking forward to next weekend, when I’ve got several consecutive days OFF.


Feb. 1: Workaday, workaday

Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde
Rainy and cloudy

Lots of work yesterday, and another short story out on deadline. Client work, admin work, grocery shopping, errands. I think the old adage of “chop wood, carry water” is very important. Anytime you think you’re “too good” for the basic chores because you’re “an artist”, you’re already down the path to self-destruction.

There’s a new post over on Gratitude and Growth, about my garden dreaming and scheming. Check it out!

Great meeting at the National Marine Life Center yesterday. It was so good to see everyone! And my gingerbread was a hit. I warned them that I’m going to start experimenting on them with recipes pretty soon. They said they’re up for it! I’m going to start blogging from them soon — I’ll be sure you know all about it.

The library was closed, so I missed doing some important research for this other potential new opportunity I’m trying to fit into the mix. I’m not going to be able to get there, probably, until next week sometime, although maybe I can squeeze in some time on Friday.

Back to the page for HEART BINDER now, need to work on two more short stories, and then both client work and my students. The ones who just passed the finish line of “the end” on Draft 1 get three days to sleep; the rest of us keep going on. Confidential Job #1 sent the next assignment — I should have it in a day or two – -and I’ve got two big client projects that need to be finished this weekend. I’d like to get them done early enough so I can actually WATCH the Superbowl.

Of course I’m rooting for the Patriots! I didn’t like the Giants even when I lived in NY! ;)

Tessa decided she wanted to be a writer yesterday, when I got up to do something. I came back to the computer; things were deleted; things were added; my settings and preferences had been changed. It took me nearly two hours to get it sorted.

Note to self: Always close laptop cover, even when getting up “just for a minute”. Tessa is determined to show you anything me can do, she can do better!


Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Sunshine-kissed kitty

Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Waxing Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cool

More retrogrades, people! And, technically, the summer vacation-that-wasn’t for me is over, and this gig is nearly over. I needed to write 15K in these past two weeks, here on site. I got 500 done, due to interruptions and the amount of stuff piled onto me that had nothing to do with my job. I can’t write a single sentence without a massive interruption, and I cannot be in that situation. Even if I tried to stay up all night, after I was drained of every ounce of life force from this place, I’m interrupted constantly. Just not acceptable, and I can’t put myself in this situation again. The daily micromanaging has abated, slightly, but now I find out the client’s given out my cell phone number to this one and that one without permission — and I am extremely fierce about who gets that number. Again, not acceptable. Well, Friday, I’m gone.

I got the following sent to me about my former building in NY. Read the article here.

If I still lived there, I’d be in a hotel somewhere — and what would have happened to the cats? I moved at the right time. My heart breaks for my former neighbors. I talked to a couple of them yesterday — they are in shock, dazed, and angry. One expects something like this from the scumbag landlords, but the City is also liable, morally if not legally, for continuing to allow those basement apartments to be rented when they are regularly flooded out and the residents lose everything. WHEN someone dies — and, eventually, someone will — these scumbags will still feel nothing. Because both the landlords and the current City Council there don’t consider the tenants are worthwhile citizens. The landlords consider them an ATM machine, and the City Council doesn’t think they are “good enough” to live in that pretentious Westchester town because they’re renters instead of owners, so the Council doesn’t care

Yesterday was practically productive, if not creatively productive. I got out some questions for a press release I’m working on, to wrap up the Mermaid Ball, four sets of interview questions, and got the last details worked out for the Year-Long Intensive, which starts tomorrow. I got in two good sessions of yoga, and a good meditation sit, which helped a lot.

I thought about what book I want to start working on tomorrow (while I finish SPIRIT REPOSITORY, which I simply can’t work on here, because I can’t get enough time in to write more than a line at a time without interruption, and then I lose my train of creativity). I circled back to the yoga mystery, reconnected a bit with it, and wondered if, maybe, that’s what I should work on. I’d be challenging myself within the formula, but not setting up so huge a challenge that I can’t meet it. In other words, it’s a pretty safe choice, which means I’m not sure I should do it. I’m trying to decide if I should do one of the two urban fantasy ideas I was playing with. Both are unique, stories I haven’t seen before, and I’m writing them because they are something I’d like to read. One rotates through three POVs — initially, it only rotated through two, but a character who was supposed to just be in a couple of scenes stepped up and said, “Hey, I’m important to this process!” The other one has a strong base in mythology and an intense central relationship, but never quite handled in this particular way. Then, of course, there’s the urban fantasy comic noir, which I originally envisioned as a series of linked short stories or novellas, but I could turn into a novel. And I need to make a decision — soon.

Today, I have to write the press release, work on the newsletter, and see if maybe I can possibly get any writing done. There will be a cleaning crew in here on site, so, again — constant interruptions.

Two more days. I just have to keep it together for two more days.

I feel very, very lucky and have enormous gratitude for the fact that I am HERE and not where I used to live, and that we had little storm damage and kept the power on. So many are so much worse off than I am, that, in perspective, these irritants are just that — irritants. They are something that I can,ultimately, not let happen again. But you can’t control a hurricane.


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available in print and digital versions from Champagne Books, and digitally on Amazon Kindle.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Tessa’s imitation of a supine Halloween kitty

Monday, August 22, 2011
Waning Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Cloudy and humid

Saturday was a good day. I finished and got out the door two articles. I have a few days’ breather before I start on the next round of articles due in September. I finished reading an autobiography of a writer whose work and political activity I’m mildly acquainted with. Always interesting to read someone’s account of the same events I lived through, but through a very different lens. We have similar experience of some things, such as the country’s current economic collapse seeded in the Reagan years, where he took off the regulations so his rich friends could do whatever they want, and look where that’s gotten us — and entirely different experiences on many other fronts. Very interesting.

The party was a lot of fun, although I got terribly lost trying to get there. Thank goodness for locals who give good directions! Google Maps was sooo wrong! But it was lovely to kick back and relax with my colleagues for a couple of hours.

I forgot to mention that last Friday’s episode of TORCHWOOD was superb. The writing, the acting, the pace, the way the storylines paralleled and then met. I got a little ahead of it at one point, but didn’t mind, because it felt like I was meant to hit the realization a few scenes before the characters. I also like the way the series deals with power, corruption, greed, and cowardice.

Sunday was reasonably quiet. I read the papers, dashed home to pay a bill and do some refereeing. Worked here on site a lot, and got some writing done. I read over a couple of projects I’ve been playing with. They have solid potential. I just have to figure out how to slot them in, and do some outlining. The premises are unique, and the type of thing I want to read and can’t find. So I’m writing it. I got some work done on THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY. Today, I need to write the most complicated scene in the book, so it better be quiet. And then, we’re galloping towards the end.

Did the work here on site. The client doesn’t trust me and constantly sends people to “check up” on me and “help.” Either you want me to do the job or you don’t — this constant interruption and mistrust is not acceptable.

Add to that, a coyote showed up right across the street, bold as brass, not in the least bit intimidated at being in the middle of a residential area. Whatever he’s doing on a coyote level, I recognized his message on a broader level, and I consider myself warned. Physical coyotes have crossed my paths at very specific times, with very specific meanings. I have a great deal of respect for them on every level.

It’s challenging to keep up my yoga/meditation practices in this environment, but this is when I really need them, so going to the mat regularly is helpful.
Onward. This week will be challenging, and then, the Mermaid Ball is next weekend, which should be a lot of fun!

As long as I can get pockets of uninterrupted writing time in, it will be fine.


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available in print and digital versions from Champagne Books, and digitally on Amazon Kindle.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Published in: on August 22, 2011 at 7:25 am  Comments (2)  
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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Sunny and cool

It’s really starting to feel and smell like fall in the early mornings and the evenings, even when the day time hours are summery.

Yoga was great yesterday — smaller class in the cloudy weather, but lots of fun. So many seals were on the sandbanks watching the humans do silly things! And then the sharks turned up, and all the beaches were closed, as far as getting in the water.

Came home, did some more grocery shopping, got to work, got as much done as I could, headed to Buzzards Bay, took the photographs, we had the meeting, did some more work when I got home.

Today, I’m off on a difficult assignment. I should have internet access while I’m there for the next few weeks, but, especially today and tomorrow, it will be challenging. I hate leaving my house and the yard and the cats, but that’s the reality. I’ve still got a couple of articles to finish this week, too, and more work for the Mermaid Ball. I’ve got my project bin packed, so that I can polish the fall courses.

Thank you, yesterday, for all your support when I was feeling so blue. I can’t wallow, because I have other assignments which need my focus, and I have to see what I can learn to do things better moving forward. I’m feeling creatively exhausted, along with physically, and, although August was supposed to be “vacation”, that’s not how it turned out. I’m about to go into an insanely busy autumn, and I have to dig deeper and find the inner resources for it. I’m trying to find pockets of time where I can renew myself, but the reality of what I want/need and what needs to get done aren’t in harmony right now. Hopefully, I can move them closer together over the next few weeks.


ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT available from Champagne Books and Amazon Kindle.
Annabel Aidan webpage here.

Friday, August 20, 2010

don’t disturb Iris unless you’re offering food

Friday, August 20, 2010
Waxing Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Cloudy and humid

Yep, Mercury goes retrograde today, until Sept. 12. If I didn’t have so much to do, I’d just go off the grid. I think my personal Mercury went retrograde about two weeks ago.

Good gig in CT, although I didn’t get as much of my own work done as I wanted. Got some solid work done on the Willowspring Grove novel, and that’s it.

On Wednesday afternoon, I fell asleep and had a dream-within-a-dream, which was weird. In the inner dream, I dreamt about an actor I don’t know and whose work I don’t particularly care about, so I have no idea why, of all people, he’d show up in my dream. I was pulled out of that dream, into my actual surroundings when I heard a toilet flush and heard a man call, “Jean? Jean?” But I couldn’t open my eyes. I kept thinking that it was weird that the dog wasn’t barking, but if someone had come in, I should talk to them. But I couldn’t get up, and I couldn’t open my eyes. I was still dreaming, although I thought I was awake and in the place where I was outside of the dream. When I finally pulled myself out of that dream, I called to the dog, who got up from her nap, ambled over and said, “What? Cookie?” It was very weird. Not the cookie part, that’s normal, but the rest of it.

I was completely disoriented for the rest of the day.

I drove home in the afternoon to check on Elsa and give her medicine, and, of course, the “workmen” were at it again. This time, there was a hammer left in my windowsill. I wanted to photograph it, then realized I’d left my camera on-site. I was going to take it in as evidence, when a workman climbed up on the fire escape (again — in violation of the City Code, which the City is too corrupt to enforce), grabbed it and waved it at me. Now, he could have been startled that I was there, but I felt threatened. And why was a hammer left on MY windowsill when, supposedly, they were working in a different section of the building? Because, perhaps, the SOB planned to smash my window, only I startled him? I think that is the most likely scenario, given the circumstances around here right now.

Once I knew they were gone for the day and everything secure, I headed back to the site. I gave up on getting the mail — it’s a 15 minute drive from the site to the mail box, because, in that area of Greenwich, the postal carriers are far too lazy to actually bring the mail to the house — they bring it to the bottom of the road, even though there’s a huge vandalism and theft problem at those mailboxes. I’d driven down four times by 8 PM and STILL no mail, so that was it for me. I’m driving through Red Riding Hood’s woods anyway to get there and back — not going back and forth all night.

I picked up the mail early in the morning — I had to hand off the car to my mom, who was going home to give Elsa her medicine and deal with the exterminator. She drove me back to site so I could get back to work, and headed home, where she found the workmen hanging from scaffolding outside our living room windows AGAIN.

Now, they are supposed to “do” 120 apartments in two months. So why are the ONLY focused, three weeks into this two-month stint, on the apartments of the tenants the landlord wants out? Because they are not legitimate workmen and this is not legitimate work.

And, of course, the exterminator never showed up. When my mom called the super he said, “Oh, I don’t think he’s coming today. We’ll just come in whenever he shows up.” And she said, ‘No, you will not. The appointment was today, between 10 and 11:30. I can’t sit here all day, and you do not have permission to enter when no one is home.”

That is a tenant’s right under NY State Law — the landlord MUST make an appointment unless it’s an emergency. The landlord can request access at other times, but it does not have to be granted. What these scumbags are trying to do is get tenants to agree to entry when no one is home once, and then go in and out as they please and do who-knows-what, claiming they have permission for entry. So we have a “stop notice” (provided by the Attorney General’s office) posted on the door, “reminding” them they do not have entry without an appointment. Past precedent has proven they are untrustworthy. They cannot enter without someone here in the apartment, ready for them. We have a special additional lock on the door that only we and the Fire Department have the authority to open — they can try to get in when on one’s home, but won’t get very far.

And then, on top of it all, my mom ran into another problem that normally would not have been a big deal, but, because of the stress and harassment, became one. Which I had to try to resolve by phone from where I was. So we had a rough day all the way around.

Elsa, funnily enough, is the calmest of everyone. She’s just getting through the day being very Zen.

I got home around 8 PM last night, unpacked, checked the windows (no further damage), etc. Elsa and Iris were glad to see me. Violet wouldn’t speak to me, but this morning, she is Velcro Kitty.

I’ve got a bunch of stuff to do here this morning, including preparing my neighbor’s apartment for her return tonight, and then I’m headed to a friend’s this afternoon to hang out and do laundry.

Hopefully, I’ll either have updated word counts tomorrow or next week.

I am not looking forward to this Mercury Retrograde. I’d really like to just go back to bed for a few hours, but, hey, the workmen are getting busy again, so I can’t.

I want to be long gone when the pack of Karma Dogs arrive for these guys.

Thank goodness I didn’t have to commute via train yesterday. In typical Mercury Retrograde fashion, Metro North didn’t run most of the morning. Ick. I have to travel towards the end of the retrograde — I’ll give myself plenty of extra time. And maybe some Valium.

Sorry the post lacks a focus on writing and is focused mostly on harassment from the landlords. I am, unfortunately, someone who needs an absolutely secure and calm home base (although I CAN write anywhere, I prefer to write in a serene home environment), and with the daily fights going on nearly three years, ebbing and flowing, it’s taken a huge toll.

Hopefully, the coming weeks will be more productive, both writing-wise and house-hunting wise, and I will get back into a steady focus on the work.

I considered flipping my schedule to write all night — but with the chaos, I can’t sleep during the day, and I can’t sleep elsewhere, because I have to be here to protect my home.

Have a good weekend.


Sunday, March 7, 2010

Sunday, March 7, 2010
Waning Moon
Mars Retrograde
Sunny and beautiful

Sent off the assignment to Confidential Job #1. Worked on the first act of MRS. TILLER’S (DEADLY) STORYTIME, and realized, partway through, I had to change the identity of the victim, because there was no way the death of the first choice could be funny. Since this is comic noir mystery, it can be satirical, but it can’t be creepy. So I pulled back from creepy and made the adjustment. I didn’t finish the first act, as I’d hoped, but I made good progress on it.

In spite of some of the venting I did during the conference the past week, overall, I’m very proud of them. I pushed them very hard — I am a terribly hard taskmaster, and I don’t accept excuses for not getting the work done. You committed to the week — do the work. And, basically, we did a semester’s worth of work on a week. I didn’t let up on them at all. Those who took both workshops were a puddle on the floor by the end of it, but they had the bones of at least one short story/section of a novel AND a flash fiction piece by the end of it if they kept up with the work. Those who let go of the whole, “I see it this way” and “this is the way I always work” and just went for it learned a lot.

I’m re-reading Terry Brooks’s wonderful book on the writing life, SOMETIMES THE MAGIC WORKS. It’s one of the best books out there on the writing life, and it’s a great inspiration when I feel like I’m not quite on track.

Took a walk on the beach at at the Boardwalk near the Amusement Park. It was beautiful out, and so many happy, playful dogs who were grateful to finally be outside after all the bad weather. It was really cute. A new restaurant will open on the Boardwalk next month, behind the ice rink — a tiki bar, no less. That should be interesting.

Figured out how I need to restructure the bridge chapters for ANGEL HUNT. As soon as I get the first two plays out to my producer, I can get back to that. I made some notes — it means restructuring the two chapters almost entirely into one, as I planned, and adding a few scenes. One scene, between Lianna and Zeke, where she initiates the contact instead of Zeke initiating contact, may have to be pushed later. I don’t want to get sucked back into ANGEL HUNT when I’m on deadline, because once I work on ANGEL HUNT, literally nothing else exists for the time I spend within the book. I simply don’t care if everything around me goes to hell in a hand basket. I care about the book and only the book. So I have to find a few days when I can give it my undivided attention with no distractions in order to work on it.

Started work on the next assignment for Confidential Job #1, which is far more complex and high profile than I expected. While I’m pleased they chose me and not someone else on their staff to do it, I also wish I wasn’t under such time pressure. But I’ll get it done, and I’m determined to do it well. Today and most of tomorrow will focus on it, with breaks to work on MRS. TILLER.

I do plan to take another walk on the beach this afternoon, taking advantage of the wonderful weather.

And ABC pulled their station from Cablevision customers — so no Oscars or Oscar viewing party for me! That’s okay — I need to work, and it’s not like we won’t hear about it on all the other channels all day tomorrow anyway.

Back to work.


En Route

Friday, January 22, 2010
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde
Who knows what the weather is? I’m scheduling this to post

I’m headed to Philly this morning for a weekend gig. I’ll be enroute when most of you read this. And I’m looking forward to some fun flirtation tonight.

Did the proofs for the anthology essay. Only found one mistake and sent in the correction. I’m satisfied with it — I said what I wanted to say, even though, in the early drafts, it took me awhile to figure out exactly for what that was. That’s what “drafts” are for, though, isn’t it? Overall, the anthology is very different than the initial concept that was pitched when I first signed on — focuses on a single topic of the writer’s work instead of the body of work.

Which doesn’t really matter; it’s simply an observation.

One of the things my friend and I discussed on Wednesday was whether or not I miss the work — on Broadway or on TV. I don’t miss the way things are run, the politics of the places, people who aren’t in the trenches of the work making decisions which make it harder to run the production well, the hierarchy, especially in the TV world. I miss some of the actual physicality of quick changes on Broadway — especially working with actors with whom I have a good rapport. I don’t miss the 8 show/week schedule and working nights, weekends, holidays, and the dreadful commute. I don’t miss the long hours on TV or the “hurry up and wait”. I miss the camaraderie backstage — the jokes no one else would ever get unless they worked on that actual production, the way you sometimes even miss people you don’t particularly like. I don’t care how many reality shows like AMERICAN IDOL pretend to show what goes on behind the scenes — each production is totally unique, has its own energy and rhythm, and relationships are formed with a closeness that, if you don’t work in the business, you can’t understand. Yes, a lot of them are transient — if you’re not working together, you don’t see each other. And sometimes, you work together again, and it’s like you picked up a conversation that stopped only moments before, even if years have passed.

As a writer, I miss being in the rehearsal room with actors — that’s always one of my favorite parts of the process. I’m not involved in the rehearsal or production process with Cloverleaf at all, but I hope at some point, to develop a piece with a director, producer, and cast along the lines of a more collaborative working process, which I enjoy, and which I’ve had in the past. That energy of creation, working on a common goal to make all the elements of it shine — it’s a wonderful feeling.

Provided, of course, you have the right mix of people. Put the wrong mix together — even if they’re talented — and it can turn into a nightmare. Been on a few of those. Where people’s personal agendas and power trips become more important than the work.

Got a good amount of writing done in the morning, less in the afternoon. But I got all the laundry and other crap done, so I can leave town with a clear conscience (and clean lingerie).

Should be connected in Philly — will try to check in over weekend.



Published in: on January 22, 2010 at 5:02 am  Comments (5)  
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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Waxing Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
No idea; writing this Mon. night

By the time you read this, I should be on the road to Saratoga.

While I’m gone, if you like this blog, how about nominating me as one of the Best 25 Blogs for writers here?

Or, of course, nominate any writing blog you think is really good!

Busy Monday. Trader Joe’s, Staples — they STILL didn’t restock the glossy postcard paper near me, so I had to drive well into CT for crying out loud, and they didn’t have glossy paper either, so I settled for matte. Whatever. They’re postcards. They also don’t sell the refills for my great Pentel pens — although they sell the pens. What’s up with that? Not a happy camper.

Did paperwork. Packed. Ironed. Put everything together for the trip. Missed the call from Apple — I was only away from the phone for 10 minutes.

Did some mapping, so I have a clue where I’m going. Finalized some arrangements. Busy day, but good busy. Didn’t get a chance to get back to AMENDS, and it’s eating at me, so I hope to sneak in a few pages here and there between events.

Will return soon


PS Threw an extra pair of shoes into my bag. Just in case.

Published in: on August 25, 2009 at 1:36 am  Comments (3)  
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