Fluid Flow

Autumn means fir needles everywhere, and as the trees disrobe the rains come, cutting channels through the clutter. On its way down the hill, the temporary stream makes art.

Playing Hooky

There was a yarn sale and a houseguest yesterday (not in that order) so it was a day of hooky after I got in a bare minimum of wordcount. The day ended with good news, a bottle of syrah, and gumbo. I did not have to cook dinner, which made it a win all the way around. And now I have enough yarn for a second kimono sweater.

I also had time to curl up and read a couple graphic novels said houseguest was kind enough to bring me. Grendel was so-so, but Old Man Logan was a treat. I’ve been putting off seeing the Logan movie until I could read the latter, so now I have something for a knitting night. Something other than an opera, I mean.

That meant I’ve achieved my super loose goal of a book read each week this year. It’s a small goal, and I alternate between gigantic doorstop history tomes and smaller, shorter works, so it all balances out and I am feeling quite vindicated and victorious at once.

Yesterday’s bare minimum wordcount was worth more than it should have been, because I figured out a huge plot point AND how the space travel in that particular universe works. There are days when the heavy lifting is all internal, and one needs to do a certain amount of putting pieces together before anything can be written. And, of course, revisions on Season 2 of Roadtrip Z are slow going.

I also have a Silly Hat recording to get done for my Patreon subscribers. I was a bag of feverish flu when we hit that particular milestone, so my reading was not up to par. Also, the recording will mean locking the dogs out of my office, otherwise the only thing my subscribers will hear is Odd Trundles’s snoring. (He really does love it when I read to him, though.) I’m sure I could make a YouTube bundle off a recording of Odd doing what he loves best–snore-snuffling in his sleep, natch, or eating–but I’m often laughing too hard to hold a camera steady. Not to mention the pressures of celebrity wouldn’t be good for poor Odd.

So it’s back to work today, still feeling a slight dizziness from the syrah last night and almost shaking with relief at the good news–which I will announce as soon as is feasible. There’s a wind advisory today, and the double seashell-noise of bulldog snores and the remaining cedars along the back fence whispering is soothing in the extreme.

Over and out.

Smokeless Fire

Samhain has passed, and we’ve had a bit of rain. We’re about to have more, but the long stretch of sunny days and cool dry nights gave us some color before the grey descends. This particular tree in the neighborhood blazed for three days straight, a smokeless fire.

I love fall.

Most Glorious

It’s that most glorious of days. Crisp weather, bowls of candy on the dining-room table, acres of good food to be made, the beginning of a new witch-year to celebrate. The Little Prince is home from school–eacy year I am amused by the reactions when I call and inform them he won’t be in, it’s a religious holiday for us.

My joys are small, but they are mine.

Lately I’ve been touching the chunk of bloodstone on my desk whenever the light overhead flickers. I wasn’t sure why until I realized it’s the first anniversary of a passing. The body remembers, even if the conscious mind doesn’t. Of course, once you realize what you’re carrying, the load becomes lighter. Human beings need a reason, and if they can’t find one, they’ll make one.

This is, like everything else to do with humanity, both blessing and curse.

Time to smear some sunscreen on and get the morning’s run in, then begin the first round of prep. I want chicken soup, which means I need to roast the defrosted fowl. I’m also going to make these, something the kids are looking forward to with great anticipation. In between, there’s writing to be done and release day prep to finish. Now that I know what I’m about and the last day of the year is here, I can put a few things to bed.

I can’t wait.

Working Time

I’m waiting for the coffee to settle before I go on a longish run, and thinking about the day’s work. There’s Beast of Wonder to get decent wordcount in on; the book wants to be written piecemeal with a dialogue skeleton first. Which is my very most un-favourite way to write a book, but since this one probably won’t see publication, I can let it take the shape it wants over however-long. There’s also the YA my agent wants. Which makes two projects that will perhaps never see publication. It’s not a good use of my working time on the whole, but the next bit of Roadtrip Z needs some thought. I know what happens, I just need the proper entry into that phase of the story. Which requires thought.

I know what I’ll be thinking about for most of my run. Frustration will mount, and by the time I get home, I’ll be no closer to a solution but at least I’ll feel like I’ve taken action Later today, maybe in the shower or while cleaning in between writing sessions, the opening will appear to me and I’ll wander away from what I’m doing to write it down. (Hopefully not in the shower, it’s no longer summer.) Or maybe while knitting, which means I’ll drop my yarn and start typing furiously.

There are other projects waiting, like an attempt to go back to Deadroad and maybe resurrect that poor story. Not to mention Harmony, which needs another 30k. It’s a monster of a book, but since it’s only for one person, I suppose that doesn’t matter. Today, though, I’ll write to please myself. Especially since we’re coming up on the release of Steelflower at Sea. I’m excited for the new release, of course, but I’m also…well, the book has had a long hard road to publication. I still get stress nausea when I open the mostly-done third book (Steelflower in Snow) and go back into that world. A lot of writers don’t talk about the emotional cost of people outright stealing our work. It’s damn near crippling on some projects.

I’ve my work cut out for me, but first I need to get my coffee down and get out the door. The wind it up, so my eyes will be stinging and leaves will be flying. Of course I’ll return with my hair full of leaves, needles, and possibly bees. I do try not to carry the bees too far from their territories, but if they’re going to crawl into my hair, well, they get what they get. The other day I also had a beetle nestling in my braid, for what purpose I do not know. Maybe I’m just public transport for pollinators.

I also lost some writing time last week doing the website revamp. Do you like it, fair Readers? It should load far more quickly now.

That’s all the news for today. It’s the end of the witch’s year, and tomorrow the kids are home to celebrate Samhain with me. There will be food, and fun, and baking. And not a little sugar.

Over and out.

Verticals

Walking with Miss B, I am always looking for the missed, the passed-over. Trash, forgotten spaces, detritus. I have a fondness for discarded things. I also have a fondness for things we take for granted. Like the sound-catching grooves on walls near freeways.

Look underfoot. Look in the forgotten spaces. Look at the ruined, the bent, the passed-by. Stories hide there, too.

Frustration Saturation

Quiet intersection
© | Dreamstime Stock Photos
October hath arrived, that most blessed of months, wherein I can finally buy house decorations and candy comes in reasonable bite-size pieces BY THE BAG LOAD. Also, pumpkin spice. I love me some pumpkin spice. Not the chemical syrups, no, but ground nutmeg, clove, cinnamon, all in a handy shaker. It’s like crack, I put it in my coffee, in my morning gruel, in pies and other baked goods. PUMPKIN SPICE EVERYWHERE.

The world is burning, but Samhain approaches, the turn of the witch’s year. I have a lot to think about since the last time the Wheel reached this particular spot.

I took some time off in September to luxuriate in the aftermath of a creative frenzy. Now I’m itching, and I long to get back to work. The pressure behind my eyeballs has reached its normal level, so to speak. There’s the zero of Roadtrip Z’s Season 3 to finish, edits on Steelflower at Sea, and I’m sure now that Afterwar is up for preorder I’ll be getting copyedits and proof pages soon. That’s apart from the epic fantasy I’m currently being consumed by, and now that the weather is cooler I really want to finish the zero of Dog Days.

There’s no shortage of work, and forcing myself to take two weeks of 200-word days, as wearing on my nerves as that was, means I’ll be able to do it more effectively now.

I’d talk about the current fascist mess, but I just can’t. I’ve hit frustration saturation. My resistance today is self-care. And working. It feels wrong to be joyous about Samhain, candy, and work, but I need that joy to get through to bedtime, now more than ever.

I hope you have some joy to get you through your day too, dear Readers.