Going on an adventure isn’t all it’s cracked up to be

It’s was supposed to be just a three hour tour–er, I mean drive. I had gotten off work early, we left town right away… Easy peasy.

Except we didn’t calculate for some idiot running over the median into oncoming traffic on the interstate at about the halfway point. We didn’t calculate for the four fatalities, or for the Dept of Corrections van that got hit in the accident. We didn’t calculate for the interstate being backed up and shut down.

We followed the GPS instructions for getting around the tie-up for a little while, but then we tried our own route… and ended up getting turned in the other direction by the cops directing traffic.

By that point, our three hour drive had lasted four hours, and we weren’t even halfway there.

Thank the Gods for SCA friends with crash space.

Hopefully by now (more than twelve hours after the accident that blocked us occurred) the roads are more friendly. Hopefully we can get to my in-laws’ house and enjoy pre-Christmas with my husband’s family.

I don’t think I can handle another adventure like that.

Slow burn

I’m trying. I really am.

I get up and go to work every weekday (unless the office is closed or–rarely–I request off for an appointment or something). I work a full week, sometimes into overtime, and I hardly ever call out or ask to go home early. I clock in on time, and I stay until my boss says I can go. If that means clocking out less than twelve hours before I have to clock in again, then that’s what I do. If it means working when I’m in pain, I do. If it means working through a panic attack, I do. I can’t afford not to.

Most weekends I end up doing SCA things; whether it’s an event, a household meeting, rapier practice, or crafting various things for SCA events, household meetings, or (rarely) something just for me.

I sleep when my body lets me. Sometimes it’s six hours, more often closer to four, maybe four and a half. I drink caffeine and take Adderall to make it through the above listed days without falling asleep sitting up…or standing up. Or while driving.

I do the laundry every week, sometimes multiple days a week. Sometimes I’m aching enough that I have difficulty picking up the clothes that end up on the floor instead of the hamper…. so I leave them. Sometimes I’m so worn out from all the other things that I leave the clean laundry in the dryer for a few days and just fluff it when I need something to wear. Sometimes I go to the effort of taking the laundry out of the dryer and putting it back in the hamper until I have the energy to put it away.

When I have time alone–usually in the wee hours, when sleep evades me–I write. Or edit. Or revise. Or embroider. Or sew. Or plan and execute social media marketing stuff for my writing.

There’s more, but right now I can’t think of exactly what.

I’m trying. I really am. But I am feeling more and more burned out lately. Just thinking about the things I have to do makes me exhausted and depressed. The things that I used to do for fun are now duties. Chores. Requirements. Necessities. There are deadlines upon deadlines upon deadlines. Even the SCA events that used to get me all excited now fill me with dread. It’s not “yay! I get to do this thing!” It’s “well, I guess I have to do this thing.” 

I need some me time. Problem is, time is not something that I have available to give myself. It’s all filled with things. Work. SCA. Housework. Crafting.

I can only do so much. My body and my mind and my spirit are all stretched as far as they can go.

I need to think. Introspect. Look inside. Take all the pieces and see where they fit–and what ones shouldn’t even be in the puzzle. I need to prioritize and cut back where I can. 

Some people might feel like I’m pulling away, but it’s not trying to get away from them so much as trying to regroup.

I’m committed to several things for the next two months. I have to hold on at least that long. But after Estrella War?

I might not try as hard. I really might not.

All Wrapped Up

The holidays are upon us, and even though we’re mostly giving out Mason jars of salsa or apple butter (made by my husband–I am NOT a cook-y wife) to a lot of people, there are still some presents that needed wrapping, which is usually my job.

I did a shit job this year. Lol

In my defense, I was pretty achy last night. Long day at work, and my back was having none of my shenanigans. Still, I got about a dozen presents wrapped, more or less, so that’s an accomplishment of sorts.

My project of making little gift bags for all the apple butter and salsa flopped, mainly because the apple-butter-jar-sized bags I was making ended up being too small for the Mason jars my husband is going to end up using, and I never got around to even making a mockup of the salsa-jar-sized bags. Oh well. So much for contributing to the gift-making this year.

There’s still lots to do to keep me occupied though–I just have to find the motivation to do it. I wasted time on bags (since the ones I made were too small, I have four that aren’t even finished yet), and I still have many many sewing projects to get done in a rapidly-shrinking time frame.

Persian garb. Embroidery. More embroidery. Hemming. All that combined with work and visiting family and SCA twelfth night parties and work and …. sheesh!

I’ll get it done. I have a terrible procrastination problem, especially when I’m achy like I have been lately, but I also tend to pick up the pace in the crunch and eventually get all the things done.

Speaking of that pesky work thing, though….I gotta go get ready!


Oh hey, look, I was writing a post.

I was also embroidering, revising, tweeting, Instagramming, showering, dressing, brushing my hair… but I started out writing a post.

I do that sometimes. I kinda squirrel. A lot. It’s not that I didn’t have some grand design for a great post. I just got distracted. Like, right now my cat’s snoring is distracting me a bit. It’s so damn adorable! The other cat just walked up to him to find out what was going on. Apparently she doesn’t understand snoring. Also apparently snoring = bath time. Those two are too stinking cute when they co-bathe. 

Where was I? Oh yeah, distractions.

I have so much going on lately that I can’t focus on anything. Everything’s a blur. I want to get so many things accomplished that I end up accomplishing nothing. It’s frustrating.

Maybe the upcoming four-and-a-half-day weekend will help me out. I can decompress and relax and pick what I want to focus on.

Co-bathing time is over. Now it’s wrestling time.

My main goal this weekend is to get my embroidery project done. That one has a timetable. Of sorts. Okay, I made up a deadline for it. Will it be awesome if I can deliver it on a certain person’s special day? Yeah, but it’ll still be awesome if I’m not done “in time.”

Once the embroidery is done, then it’s on to revisions and Christmas gift bags. We’re not going the whole nine yards this year–just maybe a yard and a half. Normally, we go full-out and blow a ton of cash getting a few dozen people gifts. This year, we’re going to be making some stuff to give out. Because mortgage. 

Rory won the wrestling match. Or River got bored. Or both.

I guess I’ll kill the remaining half hour until I leave for work with some more stitching.

Unless I see a squirrel……

Righting wrongs

So I was wronged. It was probably not the most offensive of slights, but I was offended, and as such I ended up wronging the wrong person in trying to call out the person who had wronged me.

I could have let it go. I could have just said, “Well, that’s money I’m never going to see.” But in wronging me, the wronger also wronged someone else, and that didn’t jive with me. The person wronged by both of us–her directly, me indirectly–didn’t deserve to be wronged. Never deserved to be wronged.

Now I have a chance to right the wrong. I can’t undo what was done, but I can redo what was done. I can make it better.

This leads me into Super Sekret Projekt #2…which I guess is acutally SSP #1, because I’m doing SSP #2 before I do the first one I mentioned. I’ll have a great thing by the time I’m done, and once I’m done with the thing the person wronged by me will be happy and maybe a little verklempt. Maybe. But it’ll be a good verklempt

I can’t make this a super long post, because SSP #2 is about to be attacked by a River Monster, and I can’t have that….Later!

Trollin’ with my homies

I’ve finished the latest round of revisions on Book 2, and as I go to do the Write Event games on Twitter (follow @writevent to see what I mean) I’ve decided that I let too much of Abnormal go out into the Web as tweets. Sure, it garnered interest, but how much is too much? And how much of Book 2 should I give my Twitter followers a peek of?

My solution: I’m going to start writing fresh lines just for the Write Event games. Some will be from my WIPs, but some will be pulled out of thin air.

That’s right. I’m going to keep people guessing. It’ll be my own personal writing game: Sneak peek or made-up crap?

With that now safely ensconced in my brain, I think I’ll be able to entertain myself for months. The bonus is, even if there are Write Event themes that don’t fit with my WIP, I can still tweet something related to the theme and make it look like it’s from the WIP.

In other news, this morning I plan on starting to outline my *cough* semi-completed draft, as well as writing up a query letter and synopsis. My November deadline for submission is fast approaching, and I’m going to try not to cram for it this time.

First, though, food. It may be oh-dark-thirty in the morning, but I’m starving. I didn’t grab enough food at last night’s SCA household meeting. Well, potential household–we’ve camped with them twice now, which meets their requirements for joining, but they’re waffling on voting us in or out. It makes me slightly suspicious, and I have to admit I kind of feel like my husband and I are the redheaded stepchildren of the household. Like, we’re kind of part of the family, but we’re expected to do more work and it’s kind of assumed that we’ll be around…not, like, appreciated, y’know? Sure, there are a few people in the household who I know like having us around, but I’m not sure why they didn’t vote last night, which was the first household meeting since our second time camping with a large contingent of the household. Hmm…

Maybe I’m not the only troll in the room…

A case of excitement

Tomorrow’s a big day for me in my publishing journey, and I can’t wait!

I have my first book signing scheduled at a local bookstore, complete with a case of books to take with me. I’ve got my markers and pens all bagged up, and I’ve got a ride to the store (my husband will have the car this weekend for an SCA event). All set–just have to make it through a busy Friday at work.

I gotta admit, I was kind of practicing my autograph a little bit when I went through my colored gel pens to find out which ones worked best. I mean, I can’t have a pen die on me mid-signature, right? And, even though my signature is atrocious and in no way legible, I want to be sure everyone gets a good one. And yeah, I’m fully aware that probably the majority of people showing up tomorrow will be friends who could easily get an autograph whenever they want–it’s the thought that counts.

Today at work is going to drag. Yeah, I’ll be busy as all get-out, but at the back of my brain my mind’s going to be at the bookstore. 

I’m also reminded today that there are only 49 days until Tucson Comic Con, where I will have a table to sell and sign books. I need to start saving up to bring some books with me; a case of books is not cheap, even for the author discount. Lol I was hoping to be able to cosplay, but I fear that life has gotten in the way of exercising the past six months or so, and my, er, size might not be the same as it was last year when I last cosplayed. In fact, I’m pretty darn sure I won’t fit any but one of my cosplays–certainly not enough to get me through the whole weekend. Oh, well. My own fault, I guess, for not making the effort to keep up with my workouts when I couldn’t make it to work out with my friends.

That’s okay; I’ll just be glad to be at my table, meeting new people and selling Abnormal to potential fans of the series. 🙂

Back in action

The other day I started Book 3 of the Abnormal series, and I’m stoked to get the story down.

Clare didn’t get to get much badassery done in Book 2, so I’m hoping to advance her character in different ways with Book 3. Sure, she had character development in Book 2, but I want her to be able to hold her own with the characters that have more physical Gifts, and I think I know just the way.

Now, the above isn’t necessarily what Clare looks like, but you get the idea. (Photo courtesy of Pixaby images, from the WordSwag app.) I want her to be badass, and not just mentally. Don’t get me wrong; she’ll still have faults. You gotta give your MCs faults or else they get boring. But yeah, a little more ass-kicking will do her some good.

First, though, I have to get her out of her current predicament. It’s not too hairy, nothing I can’t write my way out of, but I have to get through it before I can jump into stuff that happens later. I’m just not one of those writers who can jump ahead a few chapters or write the ending first. I have to go in order, at least with the first draft, and then if later drafts require it I can add chapters in between.

Book 2 is near-ready for alphas now. I just have a couple people who either need to A- read Abnormal first or B- finish current projects. I probably won’t get Book 3 done before the alpha reads come back, but that’s okay. Book 2 is technically priority right now, but it’s at a point where I can’t look at it anymore or else I’ll go crazy. Well, crazier

I’m debating on cutting back on SCA-related events and projects here soon. I’ve just got so much to do with my writing, and I’m getting kind of burned out on SCA events. Not that I don’t love my SCAdian family, but I will need a break very shortly or else I’ll be a hot mess. Events every other weekend, or meetings, whatever, gets to be a lot of stuff. I’ll still go to rapier practice when my body’s not angry at me from the arthritis, but I think that taking it easy will be better in the long run. I jumped into the SCA with both feet, right into the deep end, and I am having trouble getting to the surface for air.

Well, back to Book 3. Clare’s in the middle of–well, spoilers. 😉

To the bookstore!

I got an amazing selfie from a friend of mine yesterday who had just ordered a few copies of Abnormal from our local bookstore!

How cool is that? Look at that huge grin on her face as she went to order her copies of Abnormal! That could be you looking that happy! Just go to the closest bookstore and ask them to order it 😉

Yesterday was a long and draining day. This photo was my highlight, and it kept me going when I just wanted to go home. I tried to post this from my phone, but my phone was having none of my shenanigans last night. Luckily the draft saved, so here you go: one happy customer.

Two for the money

Yeah, yeah, I know that’s not how the saying goes… Still, it’s two days until Abnormal goes on preoder sale, so two for the money works for me. 😉
The cover reveal is in two days as well, and in sixteen days Abnormal hits bookstores and Amazon Kindle. Just a little over two weeks. I’m still going a little crazy with the waiting, but I have to remind myself that this is, like, over two and a half years in the making. Another two weeks and some change won’t kill me.
I’m not the only one who’s excited. There are friends and family members who are chomping at the bit to see the cover or read the book. I’ve already made numerous promises about autographs. It’s kinda funny how people who know you want your autograph more than people who haven’t met you. It’s like, you know me, I’ve been to your house, eaten your food, hung out with you, whatever, and now you want me to sign it? I mean, it’s cool and all. Makes me glad I have like almost 100 colored gel pens that I can bring to signings. Lol
Signings. Still none set up, but once the preorder link is live I can send the ISBN to a retail bookstore chain and see if they’re interested in having me. So far, the local bookstore isn’t panning out much. They seemed super interested, but then they kinda fell off the Facebook Messenger radar. I haven’t heard back from them in about a week, but I suppose I shouldn’t let that get me down. Sometimes Messenger doesn’t deliver notifications right away, and they could be busy with back to school stuff. I gotta be patient.
After all, there are sixteen whole days until the book’s release.
Two weeks and two days.
Less than a month of Sundays.