State of Chaos

I’ve been most neglectful of this blog for the month of June. A few pre-scheduled posts about the month’s free Kindle download and that has been it. No Poetry Wednesday, no updates, nothing more. Why? Well, I’ve been working on the third move in nine-ten months. My time with my nephew has come to an end. I will miss him but I have also missed my typical day-to-day routines and my fur babies.

I knew it was truly time for me to go in May but things were delayed a bit as my sister got her ducks in a row to become a stay-at-home mom. Truthfully, I’m surprised it took her so long to do this. I figured out she’d eventually become a stay-at-home mom within 2-3 weeks of the baby’s birth.

In end of May/June, I worked really hard to complete Zephyr & Zinc and Xenium & Xyris. I was becoming quite frustrated that it was taking me so long to finish those books. I should not have been so frustrated considering I spent, since mid-April or so, 70 to 90 hours a week tending to my nephew, cooking meals, cleaning house, and grocery shopping. How I managed to get any writing or editing done from December till now continues to mystify me with everything else going on.

Those hours and their chaos have caught up to me though. I did okay in the beginning but now, I am very sick and will be spending the bulk of the next two months trying to recover. It may take longer than that but not sure if I can surrender so much time. Still, I have a long to-do list for the month of July including participation in the second session of Camp NaNoWriMo and getting my editing business back up and running. I also need to finish editing and formatting Zephyr & Zinc and Xenium & Xyris.

July and August will contain the theme of looking for a place to live. I am moving back to my mom’s house for the time being. Not looking forward to being around her ever-growing hoard of stuff. I’m trying not to think about the hoard. I’m trying to focus on spending time writing, recovering, reading, and cuddling my fur babies. I do not have much in the way of housing prospects right now because my income is very itty bitty but I am optimistic to find something and move into it by September which would make make for four moves in a year. Have I mentioned how much I despise moving?

I did have a small vacation in the month of June. I went to Vegas for 2.5 days and 2 nights for a Symposium in regards to volunteer work I’ve been doing for almost 3 years now. Most of the cost was covered by the volunteer organization which is why I was able to go. I became debt-free in May. There was no way I was going to allow myself to go into a small amount of debt again in order to go on “vacation”.

The Symposium was decent but not as informative as I had been hoping. I have fun getting away for awhile. A friend, who also attended the Symposium, and I went to see Thunder Down Under one night, Cheesiest experience ever. I continue to be baffled about how we let her husband talk us into going (so he could go to some other show guilt-free). I did get to see my paternal grandmother and her husband which was really nice as it has been almost three years since I last saw them. We had a lovely dinner together my first evening out there.

This weekend is the moving of the last bits of stuff aka the furniture. Hope it goes smoothly, and I dearly hope that I will be able to setup up my furniture at my mom’s house on Monday so I have a decent work space and a comfy bed. Last I checked, the bedroom I’ll be using/guest room continues to be overrun with stuff, and the other bedroom where the guest bed will go is so full that only a small walking path exists. My hope is minimal but maybe I’ll get to be surprised.

Poetry Wednesday should be back for July as will general posting.

 

Camp NaNoWriMo & NaPoWriMo 2014 – Day 18

And here we are at Day 18 of Camp NaNoWriMo and NaPoWriMo 2014. It is a surprisingly nice day here in Colorado, and I miraculously ended up not having to watch my nephew today. Sadly, it isn’t a day off. I’m supposedly editing a manuscript which I grossly underestimated the timeline on so I am facing a ton of work with a very close deadline. Does this mean I can focus on it? No. Exhaustion from the week and the flaring of allergies makes the day annoying.

I underestimated the timeline due to my nephew. This is the first novel manuscript I have received since his birth. Editing work, for the last six months, has been short stories, novellas, and chapbooks. Normally, I would already be done with the manuscript but the nephew is very time consuming. Even with my sister, nephew, and brother-in-law gone for a week and a half, progress has been slow going. Their absence was barely noted as I dealt with the drama from other things they had setup to have done during that time, and other issues from other things I work/deal with. I had wanted time to edit, write, and relax but no, never happened.

I, now, know I need to adjust my timelines for future editing work in order to reduce the undercurrent of panic I am feeling. I edit to help pay the bills. I am really good at it – I use to do a lot of auditing work which comes in handy in editing – but I’d rather leave it by the wayside in favor of writing.

I’m taking time out of editing right now because of a realization. To understand this realization, there needs to be a bit of backstory… I do not understand emotions in the overall sense. I have them but I am oddly detached from them. I’ll cry at a drop of a hat yet I have zero idea as to why I cry. Happy is like this bizarre twitch under my skin I just want to get rid of. There are moments where I know I should be mad but I cannot express it properly. I usually just cry in order to ‘flush’ out whatever the discomfort is. The only thing I truly understand is pain. I know that one oh so well and I wish I didn’t. I also understand paranoia and anxiety to an alarming degree. Through my poetry, I apparently understand longing or so others tell me. I honestly have no idea what at least 70% of my poems mean or imply. I really detest the question, ‘What does your poem mean?’, for this reason.

To today’s realization, these photos of this tiny house showed up on my Facebook feed. I thought, I really like that design. With a few minor tweaks, I could see myself living in one of those. I had this feeling about these images that I could not place. I mulled it over for a while. Napped on it then it hit me. I know what I was feeling. It has been so long since I had felt that kind of emotion that it wasn’t recognizable. It was unadulterated heady lust. The kind of lust that binds characters, in paranormal romance and erotica novels, to their destined mates. The kind of lust which drives them to madness should their mates be in danger. Pure, perfect, and all consuming.

My dream of having a tiny house has transformed into this lust. I am not surprised by this, however, as my kenophobia (fear of large/empty spaces) has gotten far worse since moving in with my sister, nephew, and brother-in-law. I may have a “small” room here but 90% of my time is spent in the rest of the 3300+ square foot house.

The “small” room is actually large enough where I could put a decently sized kitchen (sink, work surface, stove, and fridge), my queen sized bed, my 5 foot long desk, and a small sofa into it if arranged properly. Add in the bathroom, a small portion of the closet, and the little square hall between the bedroom door and the bathroom door, it becomes the perfect little cabin with ample space despite all it holds. It would probably even fit a stackable washer and dryer. What can be done with the “small” room has made me even more aware of how I could easily live in a tiny house with my beloved feline overlord. (I miss my Anubis cat so much. I miss my Iah pig too but not as much as my Anubis.) I still need to downsize my possessions some more but they are in the manageable range now.

I will be completely debt-free next month – at least two years ahead of schedule thanks to the selling of the flood-damaged house – but money remains an issue as I do not wish to go into debt again to achieve my tiny house dreams. However, I cannot stay in this huge house much longer. Having free room and board is very nice but it has meant too much sacrifice in regards to my privacy, well-being, and writing time.

A local tiny house builder, who’s homes are surprisingly affordable all things considered, is offering a chance at getting half of a house financed with possible income later but one needs to put down 50% cash up front. This offer comes with the requirement of letting folks tour the house once a month for about four hours. The projected income received from this ($500 to $1000 a month or so they claim) goes to the loan but, once the loan is paid off, the tours can stop or they can continue and the money goes to the homeowner. It sounds like a decent deal to me even though I do not like people in my personal space.

At my current income rate, it would take me a year or so to come up with that kind of down payment, if I am very lucky, unless miracles happen like I get a huge influx of clients with novels to edit, massively increased book sales, and my listed books & other items on half.com & etsy.com sell.

Writers and editors do not make a lot of money which is why I diversify. I know a lot of people who keep telling me that as soon as they publish a book, they are going to be making a lot of money, and they cannot wait to make a living as an author. It doesn’t work like that. It really doesn’t. The average author doesn’t start making money until their 10th book maybe. If you write for a niche, it might be right away, it might not. It is extremely rare for authors to find them in the position like JK Rowling and Stephenie Meyer where money is just throwing itself at them. I know this very well but I remain hopeful that one day my writing will start bringing in a nice income. Of course, I didn’t start publishing my work to make money. I did it to share the beauty of words. Money would just be a nice perk and a means to achieve a goal of being able to write full time without editing or worrying about how I am going to pay the basic bills each month.

Looking back over the last few months, today wasn’t the first time I had felt lust toward an idea/concept. The previous time was about two months ago. I was sorting through my writing files, current works in progress, and future writing ideas. All I wanted – and what I still want – is to shut myself away and just write until all of my works in progress were entirely done. This prospect is just too tempting. It is another goal I am striving for although the lust for it is not as strong as the one for a tiny house right now.

Now that I have over-shared my thoughts for the day, a status update.

Editing might be kicking my butt with reckless abandon but it has nothing on Camp NaNoWriMo/NaPoWriMo 2014. Oh I keep cranking out those poems – which are surprisingly great – despite missing Days 12, 13, 14, and 15 but progress amuses me not. I must remind myself constantly that this is the most writing I have done since November 2013. It is going to hurt. There’s a lot going on constantly which puts me off my creative game. Kenophobia is a huge stumbling block in the creative process. I just need to find new ways to cope so I can get back on an even keel. There’s not enough words to express the many ways that PTSD is mucking all over my days, much less my art. Must remind myself every second of the day…

For Day 16, there is Quicksand, a piece for Xenium & Xyris.
Day 17 has Scrolling, a piece for Nightmares & Nevermore, which expresses some of my present writing frustrations.
Day 18’s offering is Magpie, a piece for Zephyr & Zinc and testament to my intellectual nature – much to the chagrin of my family. They think I am a smartass who likes to pretend I know everything and use this “pretend” information to ‘one up’ people. Not the case. I’m just sharing random bits of information I collected because it seems to apply to the conversation and nothing more. They seem to think I spend time trying find ways to prove I am ‘superior’ to them so I just share things I made up. No, I just collect things. Sometimes, the information gets put together wrong but not making it up nor I am trying to be superior. I am a magpie. Information, words, paper, and ink I collect.

Present Stats
Xenium & Xyris: 71/100
Zephyr & Zinc: 78/100
Elysian & Ether: 39/100
Nightmares & Nevermore: 53/100
Overall Word Count: 13711/20000

And two pictures of my new tiny house desire…objectoflust2 objectoflust1

NaPoWriMo 2014 & Camp NaNoWriMo – Day 14

Today is the last day for the Unlined & Undertakers‘ Free Kindle Book promotion. Thanks to all who have partaken. I do hope you read, enjoy, and review it.

I have no poetry to offer up for today or yesterday. Chaos and pain got the better of me yesterday, and, today it is pure unadulterated exhaustion. It appears I also did not post anything for Day 12. I honestly cannot recall if there was poetry that day or just a lot of free writing as there was yesterday. I type this blog post with eyes barely open, mind barely functioning. I have a lot of work to tend to today – editing, caring for my nephew – and uncertain of how I will manage it.

So I have missed three days of NaPoWriMo but, at the same time, I have missed nothing for it. The challenge is a poem a day but I’ve been cranking out two to eight poems a day. The odds are in my favor here. Yesterday’s free writing put me over 11K for Camp NaNoWriMo too. Things are progressing well even if the day to day is not in my favor.

I hope for a decent bedtime and ample sleep this evening so I may resume my awesomeness tomorrow. 😉

NaPoWriMo 2014 & Camp NaNo – Day 3

A status post because it seems pertinent. Things have not started out all that great for me.

Day 1 did have a considerable amount of poems but did not put up the word count goal I set for each day. I was surprised by the amount of poems because it was chaos here. My sister, brother-in-law, and nephew were finishing their preparations for their flight, that evening, to Brussels, Belgium. My brother-in-law is from there so off they went in order for my nephew to meet his elderly great-grandparents for the first time as well as other members of the family. Day 1’s posted poem is Distortion, a piece for Nightmares & Nevermore.

Day 2 was almost non-productive as I experience agitation brought on by the presence of odd strangers. My sister, who developed a distinct dislike of the smell of paint during pregnancy, arranged to have the last four rooms of the house painted while in Belgium. I find their presence in the house annoying, and the smell of paint brings about a headache. I ended up spending a good portion of the day making a variation of a 1490s Florentine Gown for an upcoming SCA event. I found myself making a run for more paint near rush hour so it took considerably longer than anticipated. I also tended to other errands since the stores were in the same stretch of shopping center as the hardware store. Day 2’s posted poem is Phantom, a piece for Xenium & Xyris.

Day 3 still has the painters on the premises but I managed to get one poem written before their arrival. I intend to get the Florentine Gown done today. It is taking far longer to create than I would like but I am working with unfamiliar fabrics. I normally make SCA garb from cottons. This one is fashioned from linen. Linen has an unique temperament which needs accommodation as I work with it. My original intention was to do a ‘quilted’ feature on the bodice but the thread pulled and puckered the linen so I spent two hours removing the stitching yesterday. Day 3’s piece is Wake Up, a piece for Zephyr & Zinc. It came about while consuming my morning caffeine and free writing in haste before painters arrived.

I really need to pick up the writing pace. I have a lot of editing work that needs to be done by the end of next week. I also have a really long to-do list of things to accomplish before everyone else gets home from Belgium.

Present Stats
Xenium & Xyris: 63/100
Zephyr & Zinc: 68/100
Elysian & Ether: 35/100
Nightmares & Nevermore: 46/100
Overall Word Count: 939/25000

Trying to find the ‘Groove’ again….

It has been no secret that my life has been in a state of chaos since September, and this chaos has really affected my writing and writing time. I “woke up” on Wednesday with the realization that I really miss my pre-sleep writing time. I made a promise to start that evening but I did not as my sleep addled brain had other ideas.

Still, this step needs to be taken. While I written some over the past few months, it is considerably less than usual. This lack is also starting to hinder my physical and mental well-being. When the health begins to go, I know that the matter has reached a dire point.

My eager intent to find my writing groove again is further by my desire to get the four poetry books in progress done so I can also finish up the collected works book, Russian Hymns. I have this idea about what to do with Russian Hymns but I have to wait and see what else I end up writing to see if the idea will work.

I have high hopes to finish a verse novel or two this year as well. Although I could be put further behind as I will most likely move again some time between June and September. There is a small possibility of the move being sooner but the entire situation depends on what others decide.

It is a deep seated wish that after said move, I will not have to move again for a very, very long time. I hate moving so much.

NaNoWriMo 2013: Days Six, Seven, and Eight

Day Six featured a write-in where I completed most of the day’s word count of 1778. I spent the day working on a considerable amount of data entry work. Fortunately, the amount of work was half of what it was last year. The bulk of the word count consisted of free writing once more and five poems were written. I remembered to post for New Poetry Wednesday. I posted a piece from Zephyr & Zinc, written on Day Three, called ‘Over Eyes‘. This piece will also be part of Russian Hymns.

Day Seven had 1768 words. Two poems and a whole lot of free writing make up the word count. I was largely disappointed in Day Seven and I have no one to blame but myself. I spent the rest of my day finishing up the data entry and moving more items into long term storage.

Day Eight featured another write-in. I wrote two poems early in the afternoon so when the write-in came around, I was only four poems away from reaching the milestone of 1500 poems written overall. Poem #1500 is called ‘Black Cats’, for Xenium & Xyris, although it is not about black cats which was written about an hour into the write-in. I quietly celebrated in this milestone by indulging in a freshly baked cinnamon crumb cake doughnut. The Friday night write-in location, a used bookstore, is right next door to a Winchell’s Donuts. The used bookstore smells of ink, paper, leather, and doughnuts. It is a surprisingly delicious sort of smell. Words were extremely slow in coming to the point where I had less than 1000 words after two hours worth of work. I did not meet word count goal this evening putting slightly behind in NaNoWriMo.

Cannot wait for Sunday. Even though I am nervous about living with my sister and brother-in-law, I am in dire need of a different location for the sake of my creativity. More will be shared about that later in a Simplicity Reveries post.

Tuesday is the release day for three chapbooks. Yes, three! These are the final chapbooks from the Seasons and Moments of Self series of work. The series is also known as everything written from 1994 to late 2011. The works in The Mirth of Equinox, The Solitude of Harvest, and The Embrace of Solstice were written between 1999 and 2004. Overlapping on the themes appearing in The Soul of Winter, The Kisses of Midnight, The Tears of Spring, The Poisons of Noon, and the start of The Breath of Summer.

Today also marks changes for my paperback books as they will be available soon for bookstores, libraries, and other locations to order. If you are interested in buying my assorted books of poetry and want to support your local brick and mortar bookstore, they can order my books for you!

NaNoWriMo 2013 – Days Three, Four, and Five

Day Three was a surprisingly productive day with 2533 words even though it did not yield as much poetry as I would have liked. There were seven poems – Three each for Zephyr & Zinc and Nightmares & Nevermore, and Xenium & Xyris picked up one more. Most of the word count ended up being free writing which may produce another poem or two later on when I review it.

Days Four and Five had no poetry or novel in verse productivity. A lot of free writing and a lot of lists. Unfortunately, my impending move to Denver is at the forefront of my thought process. One of my lists involved the items I brought here to use on a daily basis that I need to have packed up by Saturday. Another was a to do list for the week as I have a data entry deadline and a possible manuscript editing project to squeeze in between packing, a chiropractic adjustment, a massage, moving boxes of books into long term storage, two write-ins, and keeping up with NaNoWriMo word count. I have managed to keep up with word count thus far even if it is not in the writing arena I wanted the words to be in.

Day Six will feature a write-in so I am hoping that it be productive with poetry, and that I can get my mind to stop fretting about this weekend in order to focus on poetry.