Having a No Job Party

It was suggest to me that I put a positive spin on my current employment situation with my other job.

You see, the union went to bat for other people who had hours cut and what naught, and the higher ups settled with the union by cutting my position. Well, by saying all the people working jobs like the one I have must be this other title/position and quite possibly belong to the union.

Anyway, since union dues would break me at my current rate of pay, the new position may only allow one of us per office, and I can’t even try to take the exam I need for this other position until the job is posted and still have no guarantee of getting it, I’ve decided on this for a positive spin: a no-job party.

I’m going to treat being fired (which they lack the guts to say they’re doing) as a reason to celebrate.

I’m currently not sure all that entails, but I know writing will be a part of it. So, if anyone wants to join the celebration with prompts or share music or pictures, feel free to do so.

I am toying with doing a bit of combined genre stuff. I’ve been rereading some of my historicals and was thinking of blending some of them with science fiction. I was starting a blend of sci fi mystery with the Integrated Division stuff I did, and I think I’d enjoy doing more of that even though I keep getting stuck on Division stuff.

I was, of all things, thinking of using the Fire and Water universe to try this fusion. Cress and Occie are fourth generation water, after all, and I see some real potential there, though only a day or so ago, I almost deleted all Fire and Water files from my computer.

I guess that proves the need for a positive spin on the other job. So, let’s celebrate.

Let’s see if there’s some fun or at least some writing left in me.

About Nano

I don’t think I’m going to do Nanowrimo this year.

I usually do, have since I found out about it and thought it was a step toward getting me to finish something.

I thought I’d need it this year to get me back to completing stuff, but the more it loomed out in the distance, the more I realized that I’m already drowning in enough stress, and I’m not going to add to it artificially by imposing a deadline and a goal I’m not capable of reaching right now.

I can’t sustain a 50,000 word novel. It galls me to admit that, but it’s true. I only had one get that far since last Nano, and that has become a disaster in several ways, and I just don’t think Nano is a good idea this year.

I went ahead and deleted my nano account. I was already frustrated because I couldn’t change my username, and I haven’t gone by that one in over two years anyway, so why not make another clean break? I’m done with livejournal, done with Nano.

Sometimes I rather feel like being done with myself, but that doesn’t quite work. Still, I think it’s better if I don’t try and force myself through Nano. I may even shut down the website for the rest of the year because I’m not so sure any of the upcoming events/time will be a good mental place for me. Holidays, even though I don’t celebrate them, make my life miserable at my other job, and as long as I have it (which might not last though the date is currently December 22 when I’ll lose it) and the winter months and a certain other event I won’t specify because then people want to celebrate it, will all combine into making me a very unhappy person, and it will likely mean no writing or at least none worth showing.

So that’s where things stand now.

No Nano.

Possibly nothing new until next year.

I’ll see.


Hiccups and Hosting

If, by any chance, you were visiting the site sometime between last night and this evening and experienced some downtime or other weirdness, that owes to the site switching hosting.

There were a few minor hiccups along the way, but it seems to be back in order now.

I keep telling myself I’m writing something to celebrate the move, but I had a very lousy day at my other job and have no inspiration. If someone has some to pass along, I’ll give it my best shot, but in the meantime, at least the site is back up and running.

Digital Thank You Basket

So I was considering doing something else in addition to the digital care package.

I have been struggling to make more for that of late, but I was gripped by a bout of brilliant insanity that said I should make more than just a package for sending when people are sick. Think of the many reasons people send gift cards.

This was in part inspired by the idea of how much I owe people who were willing to read my stuff and give me comments, and also how much some of them liked music and how we liked to share music, and so I thought… Well, maybe, as a very overdue thing, I should give the twins (and maybe others if it’s not too overwhelming for all parties concerned) a thank you basket.

It’s kind of awkward because I don’t know that anyone wants the stuff I’d put together, even the music, but only once giving a lame thank you card isn’t enough.

So I am thinking of collecting prompts for digital thank you baskets as well, trying out putting some of that together. I don’t know how well that would work, but it is worth trying too, I hope.

If anyone has any suggestions or if someone has read stuff and wants to opt out of me testing this by sending it to them, just let me know.

Once More Stymied

I seem to have become stuck again.

I didn’t manage to get all the way through testing the digital care package. I’m not sure why I can’t find more with Dillon and Larina for it, they should be easy, lots of past and present and perhaps even future to fill in, but I can’t seem to get anything there.

Nor can I seem to summon up anything for my other project.

So… I may be off the site for a few days while I try to reorganize my head and get unstuck. Or until this mood passes. Or I find another story or other characters to fill in some of the gaps with.

To that end, if someone could point me in the direction of something different, I’d appreciate any suggestions I might get and will do my best to fill them in.

The basis for the care package is here, but I’m open to other prompts as well, since I don’t want to lose momentum now, not when I finally got things back almost stable again.

Retesting the Digital Care Package

I think I can rate my first attempt at this as… a failure.

However, I still think that a digital care package is a neat idea, and I think with practice I could make it something with more appeal, something more enjoyable than my first effort. To that end, then I am trying to put together another care package, this time with perhaps more specialized approach.

I was thinking of doing a specific world or pairing for each item/prompt this time.

Here is the idea behind the digital care package: it’s like the sort of package you’d send a sick friend if you were helping them through an illness or long recovery. I found this list of items to put in a care package for one that is sick, and I used the items as a sort of basis for short fics, and then I found cute or funny pictures to go with the items or the stories. I also selected a song to go with each fic.

Then I put it all together, tried to package as well as I could with a minor cover art and threw in a coupon for more fic, and I sent it off in a .zip file.

To test things here, I’d put the written pieces in Kabobble’s Choice, with the pictures as a part of the entry, and then add the songs to Kabobbles Sing Along. Ideally, this would be a downloadable file that could be sent to a sick friend one isn’t close to and doesn’t have the address of, but since I need to write again and I want to see if this is a viable idea or not, I’ll try posting it here.

If not, I’ll find some other means to keep me writing.

Almost a Year’s Worth of Nothing

So… not long ago, I observed that it had been almost a year since I finished anything.

Now, most people may not see that as much of anything since the truly great writers took years to complete their pieces. I’m not one of those, though. Things only take years for me when I stall out in stupid ways and can’t get past myself.

I found it somewhat bitterly ironic that I had a story that I’d put off for almost ten years done in about a month, its sequel done four months after that. A book I put off for two years was done in less than a month, same with another.

I guess my point is: when I write, I’m fast.

Perhaps too fast.

Over the period from 2011 to 2013, I completed forty some novel sized stories. By novel, I’m going with Nanowrimo’s fifty thousand word definition, since all of them have at least that much, some much, much more. It’s hard to define otherwise because some people don’t see my stuff as complete or as separate pieces when I do.

*shrugs*

What people tell me about that number, other than its inherent insanity, is that what happened was burn out. What I needed was time off. I needed to take time to do things other than write.

I disagreed.

I am a writer. I don’t know what to do with myself when I’m not writing. I’m not interested in much outside writing. I am tired of being burned by television shows and books and movies. I’m tired of having things I object to based on my personal beliefs being in almost every form of entertainment, of having no refuge from those things. I have to accept that they’ll be there if I watch television or movies or read books by others. I don’t have a choice other than avoidance.

Well, avoidance and my own fiction. I became more and more enamored of the worlds I created because I didn’t have to have them there. Oh, yes, bad things still happen, and people still do things that they shouldn’t, but they’re not the main characters, the ones I spend time with and care about.

So I found, I suppose, that my writing became not only a sanctuary but also a means of control, finding this place in the world and keeping it safe from all that stuff that is against what I believe and what I want to see.

It’s hard to accept criticism about your safe place, and it’s hard to share that safe place, especially when many people don’t want that safe place. They aren’t bothered by the things I am, and they don’t see the choices I do as wrong.

I had a whole battle with myself over whether or not I should even write with the way I believed, if writing itself was against what I should do to keep my faith. This is not a new debate. I’ve had it several times over the years and when I think I’ve settled it, I write like crazy. When I question it again, when I think I’ve done wrong, I can’t write.

This last year has been filled with lots of debates with myself, lots of failed projects, and a lot of writer’s block. I’m still in the middle of that last one, and I just had to put away a couple of projects because it’s clear to me that even though I find nothing objectionable in them, I’m not capable of working on them in a productive way.

I have eight major projects that I’ve tried and failed on since I last finished something. Doesn’t seem like much, but when I used to complete a novel a month or so, I feel it. I sometimes think I shouldn’t complain, but I cope much better with the things in the real world when I’m writing, and the real world has been… rather difficult of late. I feel a need to be writing, a compulsion, and yet I can’t.

It’s been hard to find anything to work on publishing or posting in this mess I’ve been in, and I gave up on updating the website at all, even considered taking it down.

I have not made myself do that yet, and at times I think I’ll go back to my grand plans of reorganizing the site and editing the books I have for sale (they’ll get new covers, better edits, and a rerelease, though probably not Just a Whim. I don’t think I will rerelease that one.)

I was going to wait until I was ready to overhaul the site to say anything, but this is overdue, again. I needed to get some of this stuff organized in my head to know where I was going next.

So I will be working toward either an overhaul or a removal. I will be trying to get one of my failed projects to a conclusion. I will be working on fixing the issues with my current books and serials.

I’m even considering posting a bit of what I’m working on each day. Not sure about that. I hate spoilers, hate giving them, and I don’t like posting out of order, but I’ll see what happens. I’m still very much in a process of figuring everything out.

I had an idea I thought was great that I was going to show off once I knew that it worked, but I don’t know if it was liked, just received, so it’s hard to work myself up to doing another, even though I wanted to try again just to get myself writing.

I wish I had something to say that was concrete, a real promise or plan with a real timeline for implementing it, but I don’t. I just have things I’m going to try to get past this phase and I’ll see how that goes.

A Rather Overdue Message

I should have posted something about this last month, but I had at first hoped that this was a fleeting thing, and then I hoped that things would settle, but as it has lingered and nothing has settled…

It would seem that right now I am unable to write. This is due, in part, to the chaos that my life has become, almost completely blocking out any time I might have had for writing, but more to the lack of inspiration that has come with that block.

I have been trying to reread and make edits to some things when I have spare time, but writing has been impossible, and I haven’t done anything new in about two weeks, and before that, it was rather scattered and obviously nothing has been posted to the site.

So… I don’t know when or if I’ll be posting anything new to the site as I haven’t made any progress towards a postable serial nor do I even have little themed snippets. I’ve got nothing.

*sigh*

I really would like to be writing, and I am trying to get back to that, but I do not know when it will happen, and I doubt any publishing will happen for even longer than that.

Sorry.

Introducing Themed Snippets

I still haven’t quite gotten organized enough to have a new serial up and running.

I have a plan there, but I still need some time, and it would be better if I could find the ending, so in the meanwhile, I thought it best to continue the trend of sharing some writing every day that I started back up when I did Nano.

So I thought: what about a short snippet in Kabobble’s Choice every day?

These won’t necessarily be connected, though they will follow a daily theme, and they can be from any story I’ve written or am writing.

Here’s the schedule I’m thinking of:

Sunday Silly – something lighthearted and funny
Monday Mayhem & Mystery – something from a case or some action, it depends
Tuesday Truffles – I’m thinking the chocolate type of truffles… that is, sweet moments
Wednesday Wardrobe – scenes that open up a character’s closet and their fashion sense (I see a lot of appearances from Effie here)
Thursday Travel – scenes involving talk of travel, the journey, or the aftermath
Friday Foibles – characters make mistakes, and they have to try and make up for them
Saturday Songs – something inspired by a song or a song brings up the scene when I hear it

Today I will start it off with an older prompted piece that falls under Sunday Silly, An Excellent Throw Rug.

If anyone has something they’d like to see or other suggestions, feel free to comment and let me know.

It’s November, and That Means…

So I know I have yet to organize a new serial. I haven’t finished or fixed the issues with Even Better than Dreams or The Squirrel Prince.

I also haven’t been as good about adding to the other categories as I said I would be. I am not very good at nonfiction, which was why I’d decided to promise only the serial in the first place.

I apologize.

I do have a bit of good news, though. Well, depending on one’s opinion, of course, but it is November. That is National Novel Writing Month.

I have participated in Nano since 2009, won every year since that first, and I may have mentioned that my first published novel was the one I wrote for Nano in 2010.

Last year, I posted the parts of the story I was writing to my livejournal as I wrote it, but this year, I will be posting them here. I don’t have a sequel, and you will be seeing the roughest of rough drafts as I’ll just be grabbing the closest stopping point at the end of my writing day and posting it.

Still, since I don’t have a sequel, maybe this is worth enjoying.

Maybe not.

I’m creating a new section of the site for it, and the first few scenes will be here. I’ve got no art for this, not even a title, as I am only eight hundred words in and still figuring things out as I go along, but I am crazy enough to share the journey, so here goes.