Odds and Ends


Wow, this week has been crazy! Anyone else having one of those weeks? OR is it months?

My TODO list seems to be growing exponentially while the check marks are scarce. Every time I mark  one thing off of the list, it seems three more are added.  I’m beginning to wonder if there is a light at the end of the tunnel or if I have entered a one-way cavern that leads to the pit of hell. Currently, my vote goes for the latter.

How do you dig out from under a mountain of work when it seems to grow daily?  It’s not like I was slacking, I’ve been diligently working on several tasks. For one project, I was greatly relieved that  my supervisor decided that I didn’t have to import everything from Word to InDesign.  InDesign is an awesome software system, but this particular manual has numerous graphs and charts in it.  When importing files,   it doesn’t hold formatting and when you add images to the mix – graphs charts, diagrams – it has ten kinds of fits. (Fits as in temper tantrum fits via digital means.)

However, my relief was short-lived when I found out the conditions of not having to  re-invent the wheel. *headdesk* Thus we come to the point of the story  of where the mountain of work came from.

I am behind  on an editing deadline,  I have an author chomping at the bits to get her book back. I must say, so far this one is the best one yet. I’ve edited the previous books in the series and   there is a marked improvement from the first to this one!

Sales in our resale shop have doubled this past month, which means  more work for me to stock inventory. That is a good problem to have aside from the additional demand on my time.

I don’t know whether to scream “Jane! Stop this crazy thing!” or double up on the coffee and ignore the caffeine addiction. At some point, I have to come up for air to catch my breath but in the mean time, I’m  going as fast as I can.

The only saving grace  for even halfway getting these irons attended to is my bullet journal.  It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything about  it. My friend Dana has  tagged me in her blog a couple of times  pertaining to  bullet journaling – hey girl!

At the beginning of April I started a new bullet journal in a Leuchterm1917.

SAy hello to my new BUJO! and it's red! Also, this fountain pen is amazing.

SAy hello to my new BUJO! and it’s red! Also, this fountain pen is amazing.

Isn’t it gorgeous? I set up my monthly spread as I had done for March, then quickly realized I  should have made some changes.

April

April

The calendar is ok,  but I put it on the wrong side of the page.  Oh well,  no biggie I just put my tracker on the left.  The next page spread is the month at a glance, and my Photo a day challenge for the month of April which was totally freaking awesome!  I don’t know if you guys enjoyed it but I sure did.  I’ve used dailies since I first starting using this system in January.  I added a monthly todo and monthly goals on the next page, which left a blank page on the facing page. It was blank until I saw a cool thing on Pinterest, so I made this.

20160527_063435

I’ll  color it in with red when I get a free moment or two.

HAHAHA! That’s funny, that’s real funny.

Anyway,  between writing, editing, administrative job, and  room shuffling my entries have been repeated todo lists. A little journaling,  a little artsy stuff,  some washi tape here and there, but most of all the daily reminder of what needs to be addressed.  Here are a few that I liked.

20160527_062306In cleaning up downstairs I found  some of my rubber stamps that I had been missing. They were stuffed into a box and carried downstairs to be put away later. *hangs head*.  The roses in the corners are stamped, the background script is a large stamp.  What can I say? I’m a big kid at heart. I find a misplaced toy and I have to play with it.  The numbered  items (11,12,13) are from a challenge from a bullet journal group, and as you can see, I have way too many arrows to forward items. I got tired of putting a P for partial completion and just left it  open.  If I had an arrow from the day before, it was the first thing I addressed the next day. Well, with the exception of reading that book. I still haven’t read it. It’s still on the to be read pile.  It’s not fiction so it keeps getting shuffled to a lower place in my stack.

Of course, while I had the stamps out, I used them for another craft project – coasters.  These are stamped then handpainted on tumbled quarry tiles. I’ve made several, sold just as many, and have a backlog of orders! Which is a good thing, right? 20160421_093650I’m trying to be positive, hence the quotes and bolded expressions. The next spread, which is the next page after this one is this:20160527_062321

A couple of things I like about this page:

  1. The blue banners that I use for date are  from paint chips. I really loved this color blue –  and I had apparently picked up a paint chip in this color every time I went into Lowe’s or Walmart. I had a bunch! Anyway, I cut them into pieces then made banners. 🙂
  2. My happy little cup!  I really like him!!
  3. My fleur de lies stamp –  found treasures.
  4. The beauty of scrapbook paper –  you can hide your mistakes!  I tried to do some fancy calligraphy writing and  botched it.

Things I don’t like – you see those blank squares? I thought I’d do a doodle a day challenge. It didn’t happen. I got to day `10.  Forwarded arrows. Hate them!

In May, I used pink ink and it was waaaayyyyyy too much pink. I’m talking  hurt your eyes pink.  I did like this page however – 20160527_062421I got to play some while waiting for a phone call.  It was a matter of not starting anything because I knew any minute I could get the call and have to rush out the door. BTW-  got to drive a big honking truck which was COOL!

 

OH, and  on the 13th I made a drastic change.  I went from long thick hair –  20150911_120026to a new style!

 

 

20160516_082823No makeup here, sorry. I guess there should have been a warning.  No that’s not pulled back, it’s gone.  It’s all gone. 12 inches of hair – gone. Plus the amount that she cut after that!

While I’m changing things, I’ve made a  plan for June that is different. I’m going with a weekly spread. We’ll see if I like it or not.  I can always change it back, I’m only doing one week at a time.  I am excited though for one nifty little feature I added –

20160527_062525

You see that box in the middle of the right side? the one that isn’t labeled? I decided to put a word counter there.  I made myself a little chart to track my progress and hopefully keep me on track.

I’ll send updated photos later, and admit my true word count – eep!  I realize this seems utilitarian, but it’s the start. Who knows what doodles or whatnot may find it’s way onto  the pages.

Write on my friends, write on!

Til next time,

Ellie

3Days, 3 Quotes Part 2


Just a fun little blogging challenge, from PaulaActon’s blog. For 3 days, post a quote from a favorite book. It’s that simple.
 My quotes are from my favorite Shakespear work – A Midsummer Night’s Dream
quote 2
 Love can turn your world topsy turvy, it can yank the rug from under your feet, and it can crush your soul with a fatal blow if love is unrequited, or spurned. 
Passion is the strongest of forces,  that can take us to the highest highs or the lowest lows. 
It can turn on a dime from one extreme to the other.  It can leave us breathless or stewing in anger.

You know how yesterday I said I needed to  find a term,  that term in epigraph.

                                       epigraph     [ep-i-graf, -grahf]

                                            noun

1.an inscription, especially on a building, statue, or the like.

2.an apposite quotation at the beginning of a book, chapter, etc.

 I had  quotes to start each chapter of the next story. I didn’t know there was a name for it –  but there it is,  it’s a thing!

 By the way,  a bit of information just for my blog readers: my character’s name was lifted from A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Tune in tomorrow  for your third installment  of this mini series of literary gold.

Write on my friends, write on.

Till next time ~~~~~

Ellie

3 Days, 3 Posts – Book Tag No. 1


Just a fun little blogging challenge, from PaulaActon’s blog. For 3 days, post a quote from a favorite book. It’s that simple.
I can do that! Easy peasy right?  Then I thought about it.  Oh wow, what book would I choose?  Decisions decisions.I asked my daughter for suggestions, unaware that she was studying for her final in her Shakespeare class.  She looks up at me with this “You interrupted me for that?” look on her face, then calmly said Hamlet.  
Erm, uh, . . . that’s really not my favorite Shakespeare so I thought we’d go with the theme and post my favorite quotes from the Bard from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, my favorite Shakespeare. 
Shakespeare quote

 Now I have to go look up a term,  one that a fellow writer posted in a thread in a writing group. I didn’t know the term for what I had used these for, but I’ll go find out and share that tomorrow.

I’m not sure if there is a format for tagging people for this post,  but I am going to challenge a few of my friends to share from THEIR book, or their favorite book.

VL Locey

Karen Docter

Aya Walksfar

Aedan Byrnes

Joshua Cejka

Short, simple and to the point. That shouldn’t be too hard right guys?  Guys? Why are they running away?

Tune in tomorrow  for your daily dose of literary gold. Write on my friends, write on.

Till next time ~~~~~

Ellie

 

Doors of Opportunity


Don’t you just love it when a door opens up?  In the writing world, it seems like we knock on doors daily, and most never open. It’s part of our occupation to be professional door knockers.  There are a variety of doors that we are faced with in a writing career. Every once in a while they open for us.

Locked doors: We knock and knock.  We know there are people inside, we can hear them see the evidence, yet the door never opens and the handle will not turn. Yet, we are a persistent lot and like the velociraptor, we keep checking the doors.  Some day, some one will have to open the door. Eventually.

Closed Doors:  Again, we knock.  And knock.  As a matter of etiquette we wait outside the door waiting for someone to open it.  After a while, through impatience we test the knob and it turns.  In the business world, it’s common to keep the doors closed, yet not locked so customers can come in to the front counter.  Are you going to the front counter? Or are you waiting for someone to open the door?  At someone’s home it’s poor manners to open the door and just walk on in, unless you’re family or good friends.  But, in a business – ie – publishing, are you crossing the threshold and stepping to the counter where someone can actually assist you?  Or are you pounding a business door, and they are inside wondering why you don’t just come on in?  Are you even checking to see if the knob turns?  sometimes we give up too easily.

Cracked Doors:  They are standing slightly ajar, just a crack.  It’s enough to slip your foot in.  Sometimes it’s all the access you need to get in there and make your sales pitch.  Take a clue from the Kirby salesmen here – pimp yourself baby!  If you don’t believe in the goods you’re selling, ain’t nobody else will!  Yes, around these parts ain’t is a word.

*secret huddle hereI’m not the most confident person.  Why do you think I listen to motivational things, read encouraging things?  I don’t get the Monday morning pep talk from the district manager.  We’ve got to be our own pep squad, encouraging ourselves.  Even if you’re wondering if your “goods” are good enough, sell them like they are the greatest thing since The Odyssey! *

Open Doors: Open doors come in different varieties.

  • Opening:  These are the ones that open to you, maybe as you walk up to them, when you knock.  Sometimes you’re not even looking to knock on THAT door, but someone opens it and invites you inside.
  • Standing Open:  It says come on In Y’all!  In the southern states and increasingly in St. Louis area, it is common practice in fair weather for cafe’s to leave their door open inviting customers to walk in.  It gives such a sense of welcome, and acceptance.  Many regional and local markets are like this, seeking a writer that knows the area.  This is how I got my OPinion Column.  It was an open invitation that I submitted sample writing to.  I was shocked and stunned when they accepted me and asked me to continue past the first year.  Sad to say though, that door has been closed.  The newspaper business is tough, and the readership just wasn’t there to sustain the business.  I enjoyed the ride while I was there though!
  • Flapping In the Breeze: YOu know the ones, they are dusty, dingy.  Makes you think of old abandoned buildings.  The kind that if it were a movie you’d be yelling at the screen telling the  star “Don’t go In there!”  Yet, as writer’s what do we do?  “Hello?  Anyone in here?”  We poke around, edging closer to that fluttering tarp in the center of the room, curiosity getting the better of us.

I have a door of opportunity that is a new venture.  I will be sharing a story over the summer, in a weekly installment on  Storytime Trysts.   I’m looking at this as a challenge, something new to try.  this will be far steamier than anything I’ve ever written before.  I know for a certainty that flash fiction isn’t my thing.  As much as I like poetry, I don’t have the knack for that.  Always willing to try new things though.  I’m also participating in a summer project on  RCGale  on a summer series entitled Bereshit bara.  It’s a collection of creatives thoughts on and what motivates, challenges us in our craft.  Here’s his intro for his series:

I’ve asked 13 incredibly talented Creatives to share with us what gives them the courage to create. They are writers, authors, teachers, professors, doctors, waitresses, pastors, painters, musicians, editors, mothers, fathers, wives, husbands. I just like to call them Creatives.

Creating is a daunting task. But it’s also full of joy and meaning and mystery.

How do Creatives make the first move, write the first word, fling the first brush stroke, peel back the first layer of clay?

What inspires them, what moves them, what drives them?

As if this wasn’t enough of a challenge, I’ve been given the green light from the doctor to add some low impact cardio back into my routine.  Good news, even while I’ve been limited to aqua aerobics class I’ve lost a bit of weight! Yeah!  I intend to challenge myself physically over the summer. The goal is to get back to the level of fitness I was at, and possibly beyond.  the goal – is to do 45 minutes of cardio nonstop.  We are making it a family affair by training daily.  Cycling daily on various trails and parks over the summer.   Maybe I’ll even get brave and share some photos.  Well, ok, I”m not quite that brave yet.  The one in my bio is bad enough! *facepalm*.

It’s shaping up to be a fantastic summer!  I Love a challenge!  So, here’s the deal: I’m expecting  my readers to keep me accountable, give me feedback, You’ve been wonderful already.  I’ve gotten way more feedback than I ever expected.  I’ll take quality over quantity every time!  You guys (and gals) rock!!

Write On!