Well, I had a few hiccups, but I have finally completed my move into my new web home. This last step–which required intervention by the folk at wordpress.com, was to bring my WordPress subscribers over to this site by way of Jetpack. Woo-hoo, no more double posting!
Regarding this theme–expect it to change. I am not in love with it, and have so far, been unable to use my banner with it. So I’ll have to either make a new, ridiculously huge banner, or find another theme.
When I haven’t been doing this (which has not taken a great deal of time) I have been busy re-POV-ing a novel and taking up the violin again after 25 years. I think both topics are worth a blog post. I’ve also been using Scrivener for my new stories, and I have a mostly-written blog post on that as well.
I have not been reading a lot, which I miss, so I’m on the hunt for a new, meaty, epic fantasy to read. Any recommendations?
14 Thoughts to “New Web Home! For Real This Time!”
Speaking as someone who’s been taking violin lessons: wow, glad to read that you’re taking up the instrument again! I’ll look forward to seeing what you post about it. 🙂
Cool! How long have you been playing? I had to overcome some arthritis that snuck up on me in my left index finger, but I have almost all the stiffness worked out. And I had to really strengthen that 4th finger, but I now seem to be playing the 4th finger notes in tune on all strings. My vibrato is still weak on that first finger due to the lingering stiffness, and I cannot yet vibrato that 4th finger. I am shifting again, and have been practicing a slow piece in C major to buff up those shifting skills. Working especially on bowing accuracy, intonation and shifting. Speed will have to come in time.
I’ve been taking lessons for just about a year now. Since I’m heavily invested in learning Quebecois traditional tunes, and because we have a local musician who’s active in the genre AND who is an excellent teacher, I’ve been seeing her once a month or so for lessons. 🙂
This isn’t my first instrument, which has been helpful. It’s meant my teacher hasn’t had to explain to me how, say, scales work, or any other music basics; she’s just had to focus on teaching me the physical mechanics of playing this specific instrument.
I’ve enjoyed it immensely! And am finally getting to the point where I can start slowly working on tunes I’ll eventually want to play in session. My current challenges are trying to get better at keeping the bow steady, and at reliably placing my fingers fast. I can do it slow, even without having any tape on the neck like I know a lot of beginners do. But doing it quickly is the challenge, I’m not quite up to that yet!
Yeah, when I first started playing, I was able to read music as well, due to playing the piano. It’s definitely a head start!
I’m also having trouble with bow steadiness, and the odd screech that occurs when moving from string to string. Practicing while looking in the mirror helps, to ensure that you are bowing in a straight line, and that the bow does not move in an arc across the strings. I do fine that way, but I often let the bow drop while on the D string, which can be jarring when it starts scraping across the A string. Therefore, I am practicing to keep the bow straight along both axes.
I screech the heck out of the high E way more often than I’d like. ;P Working on those string transitions, yep!
My teacher’s talked to me about the mirror thing, yeah. It’s something I need to try, though the only place I can practice in the house in front of a suitably large mirror is in fact our master bathroom!
The E string can be awfully deafening. One trick my teacher showed me is to tilt the bow slightly toward you so you are not applying all the hairs to the string.
It is a challenging and fun instrument to play–that’s for certain. You can really make it project powerful emotion on it because it seems that you must use your entire upper body to play it. I love it and I am so glad to be playing it again!
Yeah, all the wonderful little nuances and subtleties that I’ve had such pleasure listening to in all the trad recordings I own are a big part of why I wanted to engage a teacher. I was able to teach myself some guitar more or less on my own, but for fiddle? I TOTALLY needed a teacher. 🙂
Oh–I don’t know why my blog keeps holding your comments for moderation. I turned that off for now.
I hope the re-POV-ing is fun and rewarding rather than `gahh! Lots of work!’
As to epic reads, have you ever heard of
The Tales of Goldstone Woods' by Anne Elisabeth Stengl? I discovered her books this year. Her work is heavily influenced by the knightly tales of the middle ages and Renaissance (especially Spencer'sFaerie Queene’) so they have a very different feel than a lot of fantasy- the faerie country in particular is beautifully shifting and atmospheric.
It looks promising. Have you read all the way from the first book, and if so, would you recommend starting with the first book? They all appear to be standalone works.
I’ve read the first three. (Alas, my current budget wasn’t big enough to splurge on the whole series in one go.)
Heartless' can be read as a stand-alone. The second and third, though, are two halves of a whole. You don't need to readHeartless’ to read
Veiled Rose' andMoonblood’ (books 2 & 3) but it’s a much richer experience if you do, since they happen simultaneously to the first book and there’s some character cross-over.
Heartless' is a little uneven in astill working out the writing kinks’ kind of way. I looked on Goodreads and some people there were suggesting that book four, `Starflower’ is the place to start since it’s more stand-alone than the second and third books, but written after the author hit her stride.
I’m not sure why my comments have weird highlights in the middle. Hope it’s not too distracting.
Thanks for the recommendations. Regarding the weird highlights–Jetpack supports something called “markdown”. I’ll try turning that off.
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