Hi, everyone, and Happy New Year! A very belated Happy New year. Here’s what I’ve been doing:
I mentioned that I had taken up the violin again. It’s been a good twenty-five years, but I two years of very good lessons (in the early 90s) to draw upon, and YouTube has turned out to be a fantastic resource.
It is helpful to have a commitment when doing something like music. My daughter is singing with the church choir, and I promised her that I would be playing with the choir by Christmas. I was able to keep my promise. I am not very good, but I seem to be good enough. Catholic music seems very well suited for violin because so much of it is a slow tempo in a minor key.
Playing music is a bit more of a challenge than it was when I was twenty-five. I’ve had to overcome a bit of arthritis and regain my finger flexibility. It is still not quite back yet. I have trouble with some of the reaches, as well crowding my fingers together in order to play half-steps in tune, such as from F# to G on the E string–very difficult for me. It was once trivial. I also now have vision problems, and the music stand needs to be a good three feet away in order to avoid hitting it with my instrument. It helps that I have a pair of reading glasses that are a few years old, so they are actually pretty good for reading at a bit of a distance.
On the bright side, the skill has come back quickly, and I continue to hear improvement every week.
I finished a major revision on one of my completed novels and I dove right into finishing up an in-process revision of another. I know I should just start submitting and/or self-publishing the first one, but I can’t seem to stop myself–the writing is just going too well. My sister wants me to start releasing my time travel novel a chapter a week on this blog. She has heard of other writers who have had success with that, but before I commit to such a thing, I would need to research exactly what those other authors did (I have names) and try to guess how successful I might be.
Work has been crazy. I often end up drained by the end of the day, to the extent of which I may have some decisions to make. So that’s all I have to say about that. I have been thinking about doing some business analysis blog posts, and posting/linking them on LinkedIn, under my professional account (not my writer account). I even have some articles ready to go, many of which I wrote years ago for the benefit (and amusement) of my teammates. If I decide to do that, I’ll build another WordPress site for the blog and an online resume, similar to what a lot of user interface developers do. It will definitely have to be something easy.
Yes, I do get time to goof off. My daughter and I also took up beading, but until she gets better at crimping, we only do that sporadically. My eyes just are not up to it. I can come up with some pretty patterns, and if I lay it out for her, she’ll bead it up. If I don’t lay it out for her, she seems at a loss as to how to imagine a pattern. But that should come in time. We’ re going to do rearranging on our spare room, and part of it (the sunny spot) will be a beading station.
One thing I haven’t been doing a lot, is reading. I think, this year, I have read fewer books than in my entire reading life. Something had to give, I guess.
What have you been up to? Do you have any good rousing adventure stories to recommend, to get me out of my reading rut? I’m in the mood for a rousing adventure epic. Genre is flexible–either a space epic, a fantasy, or even something historical (if it’s adventurous).
5 Thoughts to “My Summer. And Fall. And Winter …”
I’m in the process of revising a novel right now, and penning a novella-length retelling of Rumpelstiltskin with a fun twist, so, needless to say, I’ve been keeping busy. Time travel stories seem to be really in right now, so I’d suspect you could find a publisher for your story without too much difficulty, but I’m learning firsthand how agonizingly slow the submission process is!
As far as reading, I just started reading Laura Strickland’s “The Clue of the Red Tresses.” It’s a novella-length time-travel romance. I only just started it, but it’s off to a strong start.
Good luck with your stories, whatever path you decide!
Thanks, Denise, and I hope you are right about the time travel thing. I had no luck with my pre-revision agent hunt, but now the novel is about 20,000 words shorter.
I thought about doing something with Rumpelstiltskin with my fairy tale series, but I never could come up with anything. So good luck with it! I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of reading fairy tale retellings.
Sounds like you are busy! If you can hang on a week or two, I’m self-publishing the third Broken Rider–it has pirates, a kraken, and a pregnant Great Day!
I’ll look for it, Deb!
Good to hear from you, Tia! I’m so glad the writing is going well. I imagine it would be hard to concentrate on the busyness side when the words are flowing.
As for fun and exciting stuff to read, I’ve discovered two authors this past year. K. M. Weiland, especially her books
Storming,' which is a Diesel-punk story about a barnstormer pilot, andDreamlander’ which is a portal fantasy.
The other author is Anne Elizabeth Stengl’s
Tales of Goldstone Woods' series. They're Christian fantasy that read like fairy-tales. The characters slip back and fourth between the world of Faerie and a semi-medieval regular world, so it has a veryLegends of King Arthur’s Knights’ feel. It was strongly influenced by Spencer’s `Faerie Queen’. I might have mentioned the series to you before. (I mentioned it somewhere) and I said that on Goodreads they said you could start with book four, but actually the series is so much better if it’s read in proper order. The books really build on each other.
As for what I’m doing, my brother got married this summer. I’ve been spending a lot of time with my new sister-in-law who was teaching me to make Valentine chocolates this past week. 🙂
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