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A Little Something

It’s been a few weeks since my last post. When I entered this round, I’d hoped to get in one post a week. It just hasn’t worked out that way. I have to be okay with that especially considering that I was on the fence about participating at all. I knew my life was about to get very hectic for a while, but I chose to participate anyway. So, I can’t expect perfection. At least, I am still here.

I’m still getting some reading in. I recently finished Emma Holly’s book Fairyville. That is my second read from Ms. Holly’s arsenal and she has been an awesome discovery. I’m sure I’ll continue to read her work. I’ve also started checking out library e-books on my smartphone. Um…yeah….squeeeeeeee. Talk about like a kid with a new toy! I am currently reading like three books. Neil Gaiman’s American Gods. Faerie Tale by Raymond E. Feist. Out of Body by Stella Cameron. They’ll all be put on the back burner when I get the next installment of A Song of Ice and Fire. I’m expecting A Feast for Crows any day now.

As for my own writing, I’m still not doing much worth mentioning. I’m just letting it go for now. When things calm down a bit. It will be there. I will say that my new job introduces me to all kinds of possibilities for names. That’s a plus.

With our work schedule, we found it easier just to buy boxes. So, the packing has commenced. We also have our new apartment narrowed down and put on hold.  We are on our way to fill out the paperwork now. I hope that all is well with you guys. Until next time. 🙂

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Slow Going

It’s been a little while since I’ve checked in. That’s due to a couple of reasons. One is that my mind is mostly focused on two things right now: working and moving. I’ve officially graduated from the training program on the new job. So, all that time spent doing book work and taking assessments is over. No more eight hour study days. However, that also means that I’ve entered the transition phase. Now, I have to apply what I’ve learned. That’s the new challenge. And being the recovering perfectionist that I am, I expect a lot out of myself. Despite my  amped up expectations, I’m doing pretty well. I have ninety days in transition. That’s enough time to get  a handle on things.

As for moving, it’s getting down to the wire. We’ve given official notice to our complex that we’re moving, but I haven’t started packing yet. The roomie and I have bought a few packing supplies, but that’s about it. We need boxes.We were supposed to get some free ones from the grocery store, but that hasn’t worked out so far. I get the feeling that we’re going to end up buying some.

As to Row goals, there’s not much to be said. That would be the other reason for not checking in. I’ve been a bit exhausted lately. While I see little spaces of time when I can get some writing in, my mind just hasn’t been in it. I’m starting to really miss my writing too. I’ve still been reading. I just finished a book today called Prince of Ice by Emma Holly. She’s an author that is new to me and I enjoyed her work.  Last week, I finished up that last George R. R. Martin book that I was reading. I’m glad that I’m at least getting read, but good books make me long to write them.

Hoping all is well with you guys! Happy Rowing!

Inspired

The last few days have been writing light and reading heavy. I’ve blown through the rest of The Hunger Games trilogy. I’ve been totally engrossed in a series before, but none that made me so emotional. I can’t recall ever crying over a book. Some movies, but never a book. And I’m not a cryer, but this series did it. The first book was just a good read. The second one, Catching Fire, left me a little melancholy. By the end of Mockingjay, I was a complete mess.

My first creative writing teacher used to always say,”Your writing should say something important about living and dying.” Suzanne Collins achieves that. I am used to reading with a certain level of detachment. It’s that part me that knows no matter what happens in a story, it’s fiction. It didn’t really happen, at least not that exact way. While I know that’s the case here as well, I was unable to maintain that distance from the story. I felt it all.

And so, I am totally inspired. Good writing always does that to me. It amps up my ambition making me want to do more than just write. I want to write something great which takes me right back to learning the craft.  I’ve been deep into John Truby‘s The Anatomy of Story. Of all the last minute things I wanted to accomplish by the end of round, finishing it is probably the only one that will get done by Thursday. I’m cool with that.

Hope all is well with you guys. We’re almost at the end. Until last check-in.

A Few Kind Words

In better spirits today. Gave myself a nice pedicure. That always cheers me up. Things have been moving along since Sunday. I’ve gotten my writing in every day. I have read another novel, The Hunger Games. My best friend is determined that I see the movie with her. So I figured it would be good to read the book before hand. I don’t know what I was expecting, but I was pleasantly surprised by how much I got into that story. I started book two last night, to the delight of many of my fangirl friends.

Monday I found out that my start date for my new job has been pushed back until April 2nd. That also just happens to be the day the next round of ROW 80 starts. I was considering skipping the round, but some wise words from Gene Lempp ( sponsor extraordinaire) have left me with a different perspective.

It would be so easy to just put certain things on the back burner for while, especially my writing. Ultimately though, that’s not what I want or need. I’m going to have to be able to juggle a number of things. The only way I’ll know for sure whether or not I can actually do it is to try.  It might not be pretty, but it doesn’t have to be. So, I’m moving ahead with the original plan to participate next round. I just have to set reasonable goals and adjust when necessary. Duh! Isn’t that the whole point of this challenge?

It’s good to be surrounded by smart, caring people. Thanks again Gene and ROW family.

Until Sunday.

Going to Ground

Today is one of those days that I’d just skip check-in. If I hadn’t set a goal prohibiting such behavior, I’d do just that. This post would be lost to the overwhelming urge I have to do nothing at this moment. This week has been crazy busy with many emotional ups and downs. Lots of changes are on the horizon and I need to take some time to ground myself. It’s that or risk losing my shit in the midst of it all. I’d much rather be prepared than not. So, this post will be a quick one.

I have finished reading the novel Rosemary and Rue by Seanan McGuire. In fact, that’s what I’ve spent most of this afternoon doing. It’s a really good read. I definitely plan to move deeper into the series. And now, I’ll get back to my craft book. I’ve written every day except Thursday. No progress on novel analyzing or writing a story. We’ll see how all of that goes.

My focus is shifting. I know I’ll finish out this round, but I may need to sit out next round which is not what I’d planned. I guess I will have to give it some serious thought. I hope all is well with you all.

Until Wednesday.

Rock Star Moves

My focus has not been on my writing goals at all since Sunday. On Monday afternoon, I got a call from the company for which I’ve been interviewing. The representative set me up for an in-person interview on Tuesday morning. I’d already had two phone interviews and an assessment. Tuesday morning, I showed up feeling a little nervous, but mostly just excited. The interview went very well. So well in fact, that I felt like quite the rock star. Theme song for the day…

By four o’clock Tuesday afternoon, I had the job. Yay! I cannot tell you how happy, excited, and relieved I am. If you’ve ever been involuntarily unemployed for a long stint of time, then you know the havoc such a circumstance can wreak on your life. Chances are that you get it even if you haven’t had the experience personally.

Today, I’m running around getting paperwork together and completing my drug test. My start date will mostly likely be the 26th of this month. Once I get all my information turned in, I hope to end this round with a bang. Now that I don’t have to worry about job hunting, I can focus on enjoying my last few weeks of complete freedom minus the underlying tension that’s been there.

With all that said, I didn’t write yesterday. I was too busy smiling hard and dancing a jig or twenty. (No video evidence is available for your perusal. :P) I got some reading in over the last few days, mostly fiction. Seanan McGuire‘s Rosemary and Rue is the type of story that usually keeps me riveted, but I’ve just been too excited to focus on much of anything.

Thanks to you guys for all of the awesome support and encouragement. Catch you Sunday!

P.S. Everybody dance NOW!

Counting Down the Round

Operation de-hibernate has hit a bit of a snag as the temperatures have fallen again. On Friday, it was so warm that I wore flip-flops and short sleeves. I was oh so excited to break out my warm weather attire. By Saturday, I was back to jacket and sneakers. Sigh. Right now, I’m in bed covered from neck to foot by a heavy crocheted blanket. Only my hands are exposed so i can still type. I did get my walk in this morning; I was all bundled up.

This check-in rolled around pretty quickly. The end of the round is also just around the bend. And so, I am in evaluation mode again. One of my goals for round one is to write a short story. While I’ve been writing a lot, even working on a story or two, nothing has come of it yet. The stories that I’ve been reading are in an anthology called Home Improvement: Undead edition. I’ve read most of the stories included. Some, I loved. A few, I hated. Most of them fell somewhere in between. My best friend and I have both been struggling to write a finished piece. We decided to challenge ourselves to come up with stories that could have been included in the anthology. That triggered some ideas. So, that’s what I’m working on now.

As for the reading, one of the stories that I loved introduced me to another author. Seanan McGuire writes about the fae in her October Daye series. I started book one in the wee hours of the morning. So far so good.  I’ve got four more stories to get to in the anthology, but I turned the book over to my roommate for the time being. The other two things I’m working to finish by the end of the round are reading the current craft book and analyzing the novel that I started. All is well and moving forward.

Happy ROWing everyone!

Back to Blue Stars

I’m a bit tired today. I did not get much sleep last night. Monday’s interview went well and today I had a skills test that I passed. My next interview is scheduled for this coming Monday. So, there is much more prep and practice to come over the next few days. I really want this job. That is where my focus is right now.

Yesterday, I finally took a day off from writing. It was a little bittersweet to end my streak. I was running errands and by the time I got back, I just didn’t want to write. So, I let it go. It felt good to make the choice though. Today starts a new run. I don’t know if it will last as long as the last one but we’ll see.  For every day that I write, I get a blue star. I’ve grown accustomed to seeing blue stars on my calendar. The blank spot on yesterday’s date looks a little lonely.

Today, I got back to novel analyzing. I started working on Jennifer Estep’s Karma Girl. I just read that book last week I think. So, the scenes are still very fresh in my mind and therefore easier to analyze quickly. I am hoping it doesn’t take very long to get through. I’m actually excited to be working on this goal again.

As for reading, I’m finishing up the last book in Faith Hunter’s Rogue Mage series today. I really like the series. I am a little sad that I don’t have more of them to read. I did see talk of another one on her website. Fingers crossed. No reading in the craft department. That’s cool for now.

Catch you guys Sunday. Happy ROWing!

 

Ladies’ Day Out

This is a super late post for me. I’m all tuckered out. Yesterday, I was out and about for hours on end. I spent the morning finishing up my shopping. It was Valentine’s Day which just happens to be my best friend’s birthday as well. So, I spent the day with her.

We went out to lunch at Panera Bread. We ended up spending hours there talking, reading, and writing. Then we went to a movie. We saw Mark Wahlberg in Contraband. Her choice, not mine, a birthday girl’s privilege. It was a lot more drama than action which wasn’t quite what I expected.  It wasn’t the worst choice for my first theater visit of the year, but I’m hoping my next one will be better. (Hello, Hunger Games.) After the movie, we had dinner. All in all, it was a great day.

Today was spent playing catch up on the things I didn’t get done yesterday.

As for my goals, it’s been easy going since Sunday’s check-in. I’m a few pages from finishing Jennifer Estep’s Karma Girl. I’m sure I’ll get to that as soon as I finish writing this post. I have not read much in the craft book, but that’s nothing to worry about. I alternate my reading material a lot.  I had ordered the next two books in Faith Hunter’s Rogue Mage series. They showed up yesterday. Happy Valentine’s Day to me. 😉

My writing streak is still going strong. I did a good deal of brainstorming during yesterday’s session. I started playing with ideas for a short story. I’ve even started outlining for it.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Valentine’s Day. Good luck to all for the rest of the week. Until Sunday my friends.

Finding a Groove

At the start of this round, I was unsure about whether or not I wanted to participate. I was deep in the midst of a holiday hangover. It felt like round one was just starting too soon. I went back and forth about it. I didn’t want to start late or skip the whole round, but I had no clue what I really wanted to work on during this time. Ultimately, I joined. I pieced together some goals that seemed appropriate and I kept it moving.

As the weeks go on, I find that some goals have just died. Some have been tweaked. Some have popped up out nowhere and remain kind of unofficial. I have found myself a little groove. Once I decided that I wasn’t adding new craft books to my to-be-read list, I hit my own bookshelves. There are plenty of books already in my personal library that are untouched.

I’m content with my daily writing and getting lots of reading done. Since Wednesday, I’ve finished June Casagrande’s It was the best of sentences, It was the worst of sentences. I liked her approach to grammar enough to look into her other books. Ha, but since I don’t already own them, they’ll stay on the back burner for a while. I’ve started John Truby’s The Anatomy of Story.  On the fiction side of things, I picked a couple of Jennifer Estep’s novels from the library, Hot Mama and Karma Girl.

So, that’s where I am. Read, read, read. Write, write, write. Eat, sleep, and the usual stuff.

Hope all is well with you guys. Happy ROWing. Until Wednesday.