Working Wednesday, October 16, 2019

I wrote 2500 new words for Nita today. Yes, I already had too many words, but if you’re going to refocus a book, you’re going to have to do some new writing. The big thing is, it was a wonderful feeling to create something new instead of trying to fix something old. Maybe I haven’t lost it after all.

What did you make this week?

50 thoughts on “Working Wednesday, October 16, 2019

  1. I made my children happy.

    Daughter got a new to her desk in her room and some shelving put up. So her books are now organized how she wants them.

    Son got a new to us bedframe set up in his room and I attached his headboard to it.

    15+
  2. Working on friend’s baby blanket. 4 blocks of 11 complete, fifth – a new color!, started. Nothing else, although there really should be.

    I’m in love with ideas but terrible at commitment and starting. Had a great photography idea last night, teased myself all night with things about it, and the idea is less appealing today. Not sure why – because it’s time to work? How disappointin. >. <

    Jenny, what makes you not want to write the HQ sequels? Just curious if it's a can't but want to, or no interest situation? What keeps you interested in sequels over time? And I'm SUPER HAPPY ABOUT ALICE AND CREW, just idle curiosity about the other ones. 😛 Super Happy – I love tieing all four together and can't wait! So, you definitely haven't lost anything!

    6+
    1. I can write them, Meg got me the rights to my characters back, but I wrote them over twenty years ago and I’m just not interested anymore.
      I’ve never been able to do sequels because I need my books to end, it’s that stable world thing. Haunting Alice isn’t a sequel; Maybe This Time was about Andie. I think it has something to do with my need to get my protagonist to a safe, secure place. So while I can do books set in the same world, I can’t do sequels about the same protagonist. What makes me interested in going back to those worlds is the characters. Davy hung around long enough that I wanted to do his book, but it wasn’t until I found Tilda, that I could write the book. I deliberately moved Maybe This Time to 1992 because after the first drafts, I knew I wanted to do something with Alice grown up. Monday Street happened because I wanted to keep playing in that world and I really liked Harry. I’m not sure I can call any of those sequels since some people were annoyed that there wasn’t more Sophie and Phin in Faking It.

      14+
        1. I’m amused to see characters from one of your books show up in another. Gabe, Simon, Tess and her Nick, Sophie and Phin as you said.

          Many of your protagonists have nutso moms and demanding dads who have contributed to the protagonist’s key problem. By the end of the story, the protagonist has found a way to deal with the parents and past and has also solved the larger challenge.

          Because of that, I have difficulty imagining the next generation as Crusie protagonists. Of course, Alice and Carter have huge pasts to deal with, so Andie and North haven’t messed them up. I’m not so sure about Nadine and Ethan because they were more level-headed than the adults around them during the events of Faking It.

          I don’t mean this as a criticism at all. As a reader, I’m a teeny bit concerned.

          Separately, I totally understand how great it feels for you to write something instead of edit out more and more.

          1+
          1. Nadine comes from a family of art forgers with a big, dangerous secret in the basement. Her mother has identity issues, and her grandmother eloped to the Caribbean with the FBI. Her most powerful mature male influence is Davy Dempsey. Nadine has some baggage to unpack.

            Ethan has a problem with reality–he considers it optional–which Alice will help him with. Alice has a problem with her past, still not dealt with, which Ethan will help her with.

            And honestly, I think Carter has bigger issues than any of them because he refuses to confront them at all. He’s FINE. (No, he’s not.)

            I think I’d have a harder time writing Dillie (Phin’s daughter) because she has a lot of back-up. I think Dillie’s biggest problem would be escaping from Temptation.

            I can’t think of any other kids I’ve written, not being a kid person in general.

            2+
  3. When my sister was here, she introduced me to a coloring app. I’ve been spending entirely too much time going back and doing the “daily” picture for the last year. I might be finished with that in another week or two. It’s a real drain on the battery, but fun to see the picture come alive. And of course, I had to install it on two devices, so I’m doing the backlog twice from different directions. Like I said – entirely too much time wasted on that!

    I’ve been working on the baby blanket for my friend that I started last week. I found where I missed a stitch, spent 24 hours contemplating how to fix it, then ripped out about 20 rows to go back and fix it. I’m about back to where I was when I found the issue, but I’m happy with how it is looking.

    I’ve also spent some time cataloging the linens I’m preparing to unload. I’m going to send a link to a google photo album to family so they can claim anything. If it doesn’t get claimed, I’ll sell or otherwise dispose of it. It makes me feel better to know that I’ve given them all a chance at it, even though I know that in all likelihood, no one will want any of it.

    I dropped off five entries (three quilts, two crochet blankets) at the State Fair. Judging is most likely today, but I won’t know the results until I go to the Fair (potentially Friday).

    And, as I left for work this morning, I noticed that Teddy was not as hidden as he might have liked. I couldn’t resist taking a picture.

    https://www.instagram.com/p/B3ri6xKhuGU/

    16+
  4. I painted a pine table from Ikea with milk paint and then waxed it. It is just the color I was hoping for. I set up my sewing machine and ironing board. Now to get some sewing done.

    10+
  5. We are in Tanzania and I have been spending all day blogging about our last two days here, one of which included visiting the child that we sponsor through World Vision. Have finished the text and am ready to add pictures. Can’t find the pictures. Husband had airdropped them to my laptop but they disappeared on me. Going to have to wait until he makes it back to the compound from the Theological college so that he can drop them on me again and I can add them to the blog post and then post it.

    Amazing how it can take me most of a day to document a previous day!

    11+
  6. I’ve been doing assessment worksheets. Argh.

    I dropped the car off for wheel alignment and rotation, and walked from there to the salon and got my hair cut. Yay for something I couldn’t do before my hairstylist moved to the area where the tyre folks are. Walked back and picked up the car.

    Food pics later, when I’m on the other device.

    8+
    1. I hate doing assessment writing! I’m not doing any more of it until I am facing destitution! My sympathies.

      4+
  7. I’m working on my Halloween costume. I have the body of it knit, but I need to add all the decorations onto it and make a belt for it (I’m doing Captain Marvel). There may actually be an event to go to on Halloween so I want it done by then.

    6+
  8. You are all so industrious! I feel good if I get dishes and laundry done.
    BUT over the weekend, I hired a young woman to clean my carport,
    which is now a thing of beauty.
    Baked cookies last night; at my day job now. Just had the fun of going into
    the library stacks to snag some poetry collections for a display.

    9+
  9. I finished 8 of the little quilts I mentioned last week. Evidence here: https://www.instagram.com/p/B3qUuMLAetQ/

    I finished the 8th one too, or will today after fixing a weirdness in the binding that I noticed only late last night, so pic next week.

    I also brainstormed a totally unmarketable (and possibly un-writeable) story idea. At least I got it out of my head, so it wasn’t talking over the voices I NEED to hear for the third garlic farm mystery. And I sent my editor/publisher the second garlic farm mystery manuscript.

    12+
  10. I’ve been researching freelance opportunities, and am going to Shrewsbury tomorrow to meet other local freelance editors and do sone more research in bookshops and the library there. I’m also expecting some proofs tomorrow morning – sounds like only a day or two’s work, but I’m hoping it’ll break my month’s dry spell.

    Have also been working on my garden design and doing some potting up and sowing of winter salad stuff and spring bulbs; plus clearing the allotment whenever there’s a long enough break in the wet weather. I’ve probably done about a fifth of it so far.

    10+
  11. Off-topic, but there’s a notice at Yahoogroups that, if I’m reading it right, says it’s essentially shutting down in the next month or so, with no new content after next week (it says October 21 in one place, October 28 in another)

    https://help.yahoo.com/kb/groups/SLN31010.html?impressions=true

    Anyway, I was just thinking that anyone who wanted anything from the old Jenny Crusie Fans group should download the info now or lose it forever.

    6+
    1. What’s on there?? I pop around to the different pages every once in a while and am completely disorganized! Any writing advice??

      3+
  12. I didn’t make anything this week but I went to Michael’s Arts and Crafts yesterday and got inspired. They always have so many interesting projects to drool over. For instance my favorite was a glass shadow box with two witches surrounding a cauldron with tiny lights. So simple. As usual I think to myself that I could make it and I could but then I remember all the decorations at home. A basket of quilted pumpkins topped with orange haired doll in witch costume. Eighteen three inch high figurines (pilgrims, Indians, scarecrows) marching across the mantel and window sills. Wooden black cats and orange pumpkins going up the stair case. And so on. So now I’ll just go and visit it until it is sold.

    5+
  13. I put down a tarp in the spare room where I overwinter some plants. I’m now ready to yank them inside if the night temps drop too low with littel warning.
    An it looks like one of the boards I’m on is going to make some trouble today.
    The bathroom is also clean.

    7+
  14. Had a Nita moment yesterday!

    The new season of Wellington Paranormal started (a mockumentary about the paranormal division in the Wellington police – it’s very funny, a spin-off from What We Do in the Shadows, focused on the two police officers, created by Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement) – anyway, the graphics in the opening credits have snippets of newspaper headlines, including: “Gates of Hell shut by Wellington Police”. Nita has moved to New Zealand!

    Re working, I installed an app on my phone that doesn’t allow me to access any of my reading apps, social media, or internet after 11.30pm (I set the time). Now I just need to set the restrictions for should-be-working time too, but like anyone with an addiction-like habit, I’m trying to tell myself I don’t need to do that, I can totally resist without being forced to it. Yeah, right.

    8+
  15. Yesterday, I cooked stir fry with bok choy and stuff. I’m eating the leftovers for dinner now, at work. I will commit stir fry again tomorrow – I have some bok choy and green onions and peppers left over. And chicken for the protein.

    Then I will do son crock pot cooking. I don’t know what, yet.

    2+
  16. Speaking of working – or, rather, not working…

    My husband and I have worked together for 32 years at the same radio and TV broadcast centre. He started less than 2 years before I joined, so has been there 34 years in January.

    Last week we announced to our staff that we are both leaving at the end of the 2019.

    I’m hoping to do more writing and start up a freelance editing business. He’s going to volunteer and build a workshop and tick things off the honey-do list before he gets a part-time job to help supplement the income. And we plan on doing as much travelling as the budget will afford

    We are both very excited and nervous at the same time. It will be a huge change for us, but it’s the right time to do it.

    Aargh!

    19+
    1. We just sold the company to son and wife. Going to be very different now. Hoping to write more and sew more and learn new things and thought about going back to university. So many options and there will be a move too.

      Exciting and scary times. Good luck Brenda.

      11+
      1. Oooh – going back to university! Even one class a semester would be a great experience. I’ll have to add that to my list of “things I want to do.” 🙂

        Good luck to you, too!

        2+
  17. This week, I made a wonderful Moroccan tangine in the instant pot (chicken, lentils, lots of vegetables, olives and dates, and spices). And I sadly put away my summer clothes and brought out the winter gear.

    I also have been enjoying playing guitar. Right now I am working on several ragtime tunes, which is a huge change from my friend’s cerebral and complex compositions. The ragtime is fast-paced and fun.

    6+
  18. I’m on vacation this week so have been doing fun things like going hiking, meeting friends for lunch, listening to the Prancing Pony podcast about the works of JRR Tolkien. Right now I am listening to their commentary on The Hobbit. It’s been very interesting, as well as funny in sections.

    A couple of years ago I and my surrounding community were flooded; most of us had 3 feet or more in our basements and homes. Yesterday I looked at the water marks on the basement walls again and instead of sighing and wondering if a paint job would be sufficient to cover them up, I got a pail of hot water with a cleaner mixed in and a scrub brush and started scrubbing. After half an hour, I could see results from the section I had worked on. So, since it is labor intensive, I am going to work on it in bits and pieces.

    11+
  19. I spent the weekend working on the newsletter because I had a book up for free. Then I worked on my website Argh. And now I’m working on making a narrator copy of Irish Magic for my narrator. Since I’ve used Deep POV I highlight when it’s ‘inner thoughts’ and not narration.
    Tomorrow I leave for New York City for a memorial service and then on to Michigan to visit my son and see his new house. So I can’t plan on getting a whole lot done while I’m away. I do plan to see Beetlejuice in New York and I hope one other show.

    5+
    1. The argh was meant to be a comment on how I feel about learning to create a website and then learn to put in SEO. I had made all these beautifuL BUY LINKS for my books, and now I find out I should’ve just put website addresses for the BUY LINKS because that’s better SEO.

      6+
  20. I have become the interim choir director for my church, so I had a conversation about a blue-grass service in November.
    I also drove up to Portland for a job interview as a technical writer, and I think I might get it. It would be more $$ than I’ve ever made, having never learned to ask for what I’m worth. If that doesn’t work, I have editing business appearing in the future, so it’s good either way. But it would be nice to make some cash, just for a while.

    10+
  21. It has been an interesting week. How is it only Wednesday?

    I finished the partial manuscript and synopsis of the cozy mystery my agent and I are going to shop soon. Working on the pitch. Why is it that the shortest bit is the hardest?

    Took the remaining two foster kittens and mama cat back to the shelter for their shots and for little boy Wizard to meet a prospective Person. She fell in love with him, so he is going to his forever home tomorrow. (Sniffle.) Someone is coming this weekend to visit mama cat, Freya, who is an absolute sweetheart. We’ll see how that goes. And I finally caved and admitted I was keeping little Diana. That’s what happens when you nurse them back from the brink of death. They’re convinced they own you. But I figure one foster fail out of four isn’t bad.

    https://www.instagram.com/p/B3kvgUIHXez/ That’s Wizard on the left and Diana on the right. Warning, the amounts of cute may be overwhelming.

    Yesterday I found a tick embedded in my neck and had to make an emergency visit to my doctor, who then found another one that had probably been there longer in my back. SIGH. Probably from when I put the garden to bed last weekend. Taking a Lyme titer test in two weeks and spending a lot of time praying in the meanwhile, since my body doesn’t tolerate antibiotics at all.

    This morning I realized my (actual not foster) cat Ember had a UTI and had to make an emergency visit to the vet. It turned out to be pretty bad, but she is being treated and doing as well as can be expected.

    I am not enjoying the theme to this week. On the other hand, I am very grateful that in both cases we were able to get seen so fast when we needed it, so there’s that. But I’m okay with less drama for a while.

    13+
  22. I let my publisher know that I’m no longer writing. I am fully retired. Yay! She reverted a half dozen books to me. The others will phase out over the next few years.
    I won’t renew my RWA or local chapter dues, and I also cancelled my FB, Twitter, and Instagram accounts. My website and blog have been deactivated.
    Honestly, I feel lighter, freer. Hopefully, with more disposable income, I’ll be able to enjoy traveling again. In the meantime, my new ADA unit at my daughter’s home is progressing. Today was pack up the kitchen day in her house. Demo is planned for next week. That should be a fun and messy adventure.

    11+
  23. I trekked out to the garden supply warehouse yesterday for more seed raising mix and possum deterrent spray, and started many trays of seeds when I got home. I objectively have too many seeds. Nobody needs four varieties of pumpkin or nine different types of beans. This is madness, and it can only end in too many pumpkins. Again.

    6+
  24. I am organizing drawers. 1 or 2 a day. They look better. The horizontal surfaces not so much. I am still in shorts. It’s in the 30s-40s here,(farenheit). I believe my bare legs will ward off winter. Also I’m not sure if my jeans fit.

    4+
  25. I did a talk at an industry conference, which had been stressing me out for weeks. It went pretty well and I’m so glad it’s done. Now I’m on holiday for a few weeks. Slept late this morning then walked this afternoon. We found a gorgeous beach and went for a swim. It’s a little early in the season but just warm enough and the water felt so good after 2 hours of walking.

    2+
  26. We painted two rooms after our daughter moved out. They look fabulous. Putting the garden to bed is tougher. I’ll mourn puttering in the dirt all winter long. Still, there are beets and carrots to harvest and lemongrass to dry, so lots to do.

    2+
    1. Oooh, I have two of those. Plus almost a third. I remember all of it with fondness now, although at the time I bitched a lot.

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