Friday, July 25, 2014

So it is difficult to find something to do with myself lately. I don't have school stuff at the moment, after 4 years of after school planning for teaching and 4 more years of studying for my own college experience, having no homework is weird. I feel like I am slacking when I am not doing anything, when really, I have nothing pressing to do right now.

I go to work and do my job; 10 hour days are tiring and I don't feel like doing much afterward. But on days like today, when I have work off, I feel like I should be doing something productive. Last weekend I did a lot of sewing...I made a few dresses for my friend's little girl and I made about 8 dog collars. I will probably do more sewing stuff this weekend but I'm not feeling 100% into sewing stuff.

What I SHOULD be doing is writing. I gave my hard copies of my finished book, tentatively named Trios, to some friends last week. The first couple people have returned it with good comments. The
teenager that read it for me wrote me a fan letter (my first fan letter!) and it was very sweet. Now the second round of friends have the copies and I am awaiting their opinions.

I am trying to give myself some distance from the story because I find when I write and immediately re-read and edit I think that everything is terrible. I'm too close to the story, I know it so well, I can't look at it objectively. I have noticed this with fanfiction I have written; when I go back and read it months later I wonder at myself for not finishing it, yet I know at the time I didn't think it was worth a darn. Distance forces me to look at my writing with fresh eyes and a more objective point of view.

Therefore I am not going to look at what any of my friends wrote edit-wise until after it's been passed around. Then I will re-read the copies and edit what needs to be edited. One of my friends from work does a lot of novel editing, or beta-ing if you choose to call it that; she already has it filled with pink sticky notes, mostly grammar things from my quick skim through. That's awesome. It can only help me improve, right?

In the meantime, I should be working on something else. I have Contender half written; I'm blocked on that because I have to write a scene killing a beloved character and I don't want to. That's been that way for a little over a year now. I have my fantasy/dragon story that is a little over half finished. I have no excuse for not finishing that other than I was trying to focus on one story and Trios came up the winner. I also have a dystopia/spy novel that is about 40% finished that I could work on. I could work on a possible sequel to Trios that may or may not every happen but I feel I should have something started. Not to mention the fanfiction I intended to write for my sister and finish by Christmas. So lots of writing to do. The problem is, I just need to do it. I can find so many ways to procrastinate on writing, it's ridiculous.

And I know I won't get anything done tonight. I have to work in the morning, I have to go to bed early so I'm not a crab apple at work. I am having lunch with a friend. At some point I need to take the girls to the dog park to run because walking them two-three times a week isn't quite cutting it. I want to make a fairy costume for my dog because Ren Fest is next month. So many excuses not to write....I need to stop that and just do it.

We will see. This blog, whether anyone ever reads it or not, will keep me accountable. I'll have to report what I have or have not done next week. We shall see if I overcome the procrastination monster or succumb to its temptations. Let's try to keep positive thoughts, shall we?

Monday, July 14, 2014

Wow! It's been a long long time...

So, yes, it has been a while since I have posted on this blog. School has been killer, along with work, and laziness. I admit, I have been a slacker of blogs lately. School has always been the best excuse. Why would I blog when I really needed to be using my Internet time to do schoolwork? Of course, I was using it to get stuck in endless YouTube loops where you start with watching two videos with ten minutes in mind then end up on the other side of the Internet three hours later wondering what in the world you're doing with your life. Not much, not in that moment.

So now, it's official. I'm done with school...for now. I have a Master's degree in Educational Technology...with no where to use it. Michigan, for those of you who don't know, is tough for teachers. If you have a teaching job then you're golden, if you don't, good luck buddy. Everyone wants to teach here because, A) Michigan is the best state ever, and B) you get paid well to do so. So, I am struggling to find a decent teaching job....but I really like my current job. If I could make an actual living working there, doing what I do, I would so do that.

Currently, I'm working at a veterinary clinic as an assistant. I can do about 80% of the things there, I can talk to you until I'm blue in the face about dog care, I'm pretty knowledgeable about behavior, I've looked a lot into nutrition, and I can recommend the best course for you to take with your dog depending on your living situation. I love working with dogs, to a lesser extent cats, and I love the people I work with (for the most part). It's a great job, it's just not a career. I can't support myself with it.
Mia, Tilwyn, Bailey...waiting for their nightly treats.

I will say, thinking about getting a doctorate. Seriously. I would love to teach college. I think I would be a great college professor. That's as much as I'm talking about it today, however.

So now, the question is being begged, what do I do with my time?  Finish up my book, of course. Well, the first one, at least. I have about 3 others in progress, none are a continuation of the first, though there is the possibility of the first being a series, possibly. In that vein of thought, I have finished my revisions, my third go round where I changed up some things and started the polishing process. Now it's time for line revisions and getting POV from a broader audience. So I ordered 2 printed copies to disperse to my friends, emailed my sisters and aunt the link to the Google Drive, and now to go through it with a fine tooth comb.

My goal is to have it out and then back by September, maaaaybe October to put the finishing touches on it. I want to submit to agents by the end of the year. That is my goal. The end of this year. Sooner if possible. It's a long goal, as to make it obtainable. We're at the halfway mark and I'm about where I want to be. We shall see what happens.

Meantime, I do want to sew as well. I have to finish up a binding for Beth's quilt that her mom made, that will take all of an afternoon someday soon. I have been making dog collars, martingale style, and I want to make more but the company I order the tri-slides from sent me the wrong size! They are awesome, however, and they will send me the right size with instructions on how to send back the wrong size ones, no charge to me. Which it shouldn't be, because it was there screw up, but still they could have been indifferent about it but so far they have been amazing. So if you need hardware for purses, or collars, or whatever, check them out. They are a Cali company, which is cool as well.

I also have fabric for some dresses for Stacey, and I'm looking into making these new things that are "in," hooded-cowl things. I can't find a good pattern so I might have to make my own. Meanwhile, the animal hats that I made 1.5 years ago are now all the rage so I might make some more of those. I need to get an Etsy store going again. ALSO, I am making a scarf of darkness and redness and whiteness....if you know what that means you are cool. But I have some other scarves and stuff I want to work on...oh YES and doggie dresses. So many things....and yet I waste time in YouTube loops....

I am off to work on something. Writing or sewing, one of the two.   In the classic words of my new obsession: