Snowpocalypse 2021

It’s a snow day here. We’ve had somewhere between 6 to 8 inches of snow in the last 24 hours. It’s a rare sight in my neck of the woods — we’re more prone to ice than snow. This weatherly treat has made for a long weekend for the husband and cozy day spent reading and thinking about writing for me.House Society GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

Oh, and ramen! I used leftover Christmas rib roast to make beef ramen and it was delicious and warm and hearty and all the right adjectives for a snow day. I’m sad that I ate it all.

I’m picking at a short story I started Thursday. It’s weird, which is normal for me. I’m not entirely sure what’s happening, but I like what I have so far. I’m doing some experimental(ish) things which is always exciting and nerve-racking, making me eager to continue and leery of stopping. When I stop I have time to overthink it. I’m playing with tenses and pacing and telling story that is (yet again) heavy on atmosphere and character and wicked thin on plot.

*Shrug* What else is new?

In the background both Tavi and Victoria are percolating. I had a couple of ideas for revision come up for Tavi today, so I’ve made the appropriate notes. I’ll start reading through it and making the noted changes this week, I think. It’s feeling like it’s just about time, and I’d like to get started before I go back to work. I’m going to need the momentum.

This week is a liminal space, all of twitter seems to agree. Writers around the country are relaxing, reading, working on projects without a deadline or concern. Working on the “extras”. And we all seem to understand that, come January 3rd, we all get back to business. We get back to the reality of routines and schedules and deadlines. We get back to work.

I have plans. Ideas and goals. But those are subjects for a different post. Tonight it’s just me, the snow, and recording a couple episodes of Top Shelf Librarians. The weather is keeping us apart for this recording, but at least the sound quality will be better! Silver linings!

Anyway, this short story is calling. I keep flicking back and forth between this post and the scrivener document.

Until later, Bloggarts.


Oh. Shit. It’s DECEMBER?!

Hey Bloggos,

Sorry it’s been so quiet over here. This weekend was a blur of birthday celebrations and I felt like I barely had a moment to think — in all the best ways! We drove up to Seattle for a couple of days and saw our favorite podcasters (The McElroys) perform both MBMBAM and The Adventure Zone live! We also walked around Emerald City Comic Con and ate so much AMAZING food. It was a truly wonderful weekend, definitely the best in recent memory.


Which brings me to today. I’m feeling really good. Refreshed in a way I didn’t expect, to be honest. It’s nice to remember there’s a world outside of work and home. And there’s no better city to remind me than Seattle. I love it so, so, so much.

Some things I wanted to talk about are actually writing related! I know, weird! I’ve joined — founded? — a Science Fiction/Fantasy critique group through Willamette Writers. Surprisingly, they didn’t have one already, and I have a very serious need. Tavi is at a point where I could use some outside eyeballs and I need a group of writers to hold me accountable. And I’d really like to grow my writing community. So yeah. That starts on Wednesday and it starts with me.

I’m not nervous or anything.Kermit Kermit The Frog GIF - Kermit Kermit The Frog Nervous - Discover &  Share GIFs

I’m still working on Victoria… Have I talked about my nanowrimo project with any sort of specificity on here yet?

*Searches recent posts*

Huh. Well, I’m writing a near-future, gender-swapped retelling of Frankenstein. It’s set in Seattle and is the strangest thing I’ve written, process-wise. I’m not going to get into it much here because the draft isn’t done. It’s nowhere near done. I’m about a third of the way through the first draft and I think it’s more of a zero draft than an honest to goodness first draft…

Point is, it’s very much in progress so I shan’t discuss it too much. I’m working on it.

In other news, I wanted to share that two of my short stories are now available in print! If you’d like to support small magazines/publishers please, please, please consider purchasing print copies of both the City. River. Tree. 2020 Anthology and of Luna Station Quarterly Issue 046.


They’d make pretty cool gifts and ship super quick. Just sayin’…

Top Shelf LogoIn other other news, a new episode of Top Shelf Librarians dropped Friday morning. If you haven’t yet, go ahead and give it a listen! I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Anyway, that’s all I’ve got for now. It’s the end of the year (finally) so I’m sure I’ll be back with some reflective musings and big plans for the coming year. I think I’m actually ready to think big things. But as ever, we’ll just have to wait and see, won’t we?

Until then, Blogland.


Reflection: Nanowrimo 2021

Well. It’s the last day of Nanowrimo. I have five-ish hours to write about 1,200 words in order to reach my EXTREMELY modified goal. Originally the goal was the legit, old school Nanowrimo target: 50k. It became apparent very early on that I would not be making this goal. 

Given the past two years of Pandemic Bullshit™ and the fact that I haven’t written anything super long since I finished the Tavi rough draft in spring of 2019, I’m not surprised that this Nano was a major struggle. I expected it, honestly.

The fact that I could reach 15k on a single project in a month is a major win for me. Breaking 19k total for the month is a HUGE win. It’s more than I’ve written the rest of the year combined. I refuse to feel bad about such success. 

They say that comparison is the thief of joy, but we forget that it applies to not just the world beyond, but within as well. Comparing my output to years past is an exercise in disappointment, when really I should be celebrating this productivity that’s leaps and bounds beyond what I’ve done in recent memory.

I’m headed in the right direction. Shocko Elf GIF - Shocko Elf Shock - Discover & Share GIFs

Beyond Nanowrimo, I have MORE news! Say what?!

My microfiction piece “Unforgettable” made its way into the City.River.Tree. 2020 Anthology. I may have missed the email about the anthology’s release, and I’m just now realizing it. Whoops.

Point is! My story is available in print! And that always feels amazing! As indicated by all these darn exclamation points!!!!

Ahem. Anyway. That’s the news. If you’d like to read my story, you can find it online here. OR you can support a small, indie microfiction magazine and buy the 2020 Anthology. It’s like, $8. Just sayin’.

All right. That’s enough procrastination. It’s time to get these final words on the page. See you soon, Bloggarts.



In Which I “Do Words Good”

So, I kinda, sorta announced this already, but figured it ought to have its own post.

I got my first professional sale!!!

happy dance

“The Lament of Kivu Lacus” will be in Laksa Media’s Life Beyond Us: an Anthology of Original SF and Science Essays, forthcoming in Fall 2022. My story was one of two stories selected from the open call for submissions — the other 28 stories are all by authors invited to submit (including heavy hitters like Mary Robinette Kowal, Premee Mohamed, Bogi Takács, Tobias S. Buckell, and more). What’s even better is that this anthology is partnered with the European Astrobiology Institute, and each story will be paired with an essay addressing the science presented in the work of fiction!

There are a lot of reasons to celebrate this sale, the obvious being that it’s my FIRST PROFESSIONAL SALE! I know that, ultimately, that doesn’t really change anything for me or my writing. I’m still going to get rejected. A lot. I will not suddenly be contacted by agents and editors begging for my manuscripts. I will not become an overnight award winner or a contributor to a Year’s Best Anthology. Okay… that last one isn’t AS unlikely as the other two, but the other two are literally not going to happen so…

The point is, this professional sale sure is validating. I do words good and someone else thinks I do words good too!

Another reason to celebrate is the fact of the sheer numbers I was up against. Only two stories were selected out of 250 submissions. That’s… not insignificant. The selection process is a difficult one — I’ve been there as a slush reader for The Audient Void. You know what stories won’t make it, but it isn’t always so clear which ones will. And, submitting to magazines is so subjective. There’s a lot that can factor into an Editor’s decision. Is this the third story about space whales they’ve read today? Are they a monster who hates cetaceans, even earthly ones? Did they skip breakfast and they’re grumpy? Who knows, man? Certainly not us!

But another reason to celebrate is this: the submission guidelines specifically said that stories about [REDACTED] would be a hard sell because they already had a story about that. I almost didn’t submit because of that one line in the guidelines. But, I thought about it, considered the weird, wonderful, heart-wrenching story I had written, and thought, “don’t self-reject.” I also honestly believed that whatever story they already had would be wildly different from my strange little tear-jerker. It was worth submitting.

And guess what, Dear Reader? It was. It was so, so worth it.


In Which I’m a Vampire Hunter?

As I may have mentioned, my planned NaNoWriMo project this year is a Pioneer Oregon Weird Western. There’s going to be lots of strange things in this book (a talking horse chief among them), but a big part of it is going to be vampires.

Now, I LOVE vampires. I was a goth kid in high school and a rabid Anne Rice fan. I am no stranger to vampire literature and film. But, if I’m going to write this story well the first time around, I need to know what the eff I’m talking about. I’m reading Pioneer nonfiction and historical documents as research so I figured I ought to research vampires as well.

All right, I’ll admit it: I just want an excuse to read and watch as much vampire content as I can between now and Halloween. Guilty as charged. I have a list of 67 films to watch and have started reading short stories in between all my other reading. I’ve been posting mini reviews on my personal Facebook page and thought you all might be interested in reading them.

First up in Vampire Research Reading™ were Fragment of a Novel (1816) by Lord Byron and The Vampyre (1819) by John Polidori.

The first was Byron’s product from the friendly writing competition between Byron, Percy Bysshe Shelley, John Polidori, and Mary Shelley. You know, the one where she came up with the idea for Frankenstein?

The second was inspired by Byron’s above fragment, and is generally believed to be Polidori talking mad shit about Byron who he’d recently had a falling out with.

Both are painfully Victorian. I thought Byron’s was actually more intriguing but he didn’t finish it soooo no points for him.

Polidori’s story features hapless women, pillars of virtue all, falling prey to a literal monster while the main character does nothing because he… Took an oath? That drives him crazy maybe? Or he just mopes in his room for a year to avoid being faced with the literal monster stalking the nobility. Jury’s out on that one.

Anyway, like three young women die and so does the main character. Bland AF vampire wins by faking his own death and tricking the gutless main character.

4/10 to both. Not enough spooky.

bright day GIF

Then I read Varney the Vampire (1845)(excerpt) by James Malcolm Rymer and The Mysterious Stranger (1860), which was originally published in German by an anonymous author. It was later translated and pubbed in the UK in 1860. Hope that anon got paid, but knowing Britain, probably not.

Varney is… Not great. More fun than my prior readings, more in line with what I expect when I think of vampire stories. A terrifying figure steals into a room to drink the blood of a fair maiden, etc., Etc., But the writing is… Bad. It was originally published in serials and the best way to make money off serials is to keep.




So it’s pretty wordy and unpleasant.

5/10. Seein’ some progress but still not digging it.

The Mysterious Stranger suffers from the same issue that plagues most Victorian works — it takes it’s sweet ass time developing the moody atmosphere and explaining in excruciatingly flowery language the appearance, dress, and disposition of everyone on stage.

Once it actually gets where it’s going (terrifying figure steals into a room to drink the blood of a fair maiden) it was actually rather enjoyable. A lot more action on the page and we see the introduction of both a vampire killing ritual and the use of mist as a vampiric mode of transportation.

Themes weren’t very palatable, however. Brash maiden longs for an adventuresome life free from the monotony of an arranged marriage to a boring noble fop, falls victim to a vampire’s eerie charm, subsequently almost dies. After following the direction of some guy she sorta knows, she takes the steps (unknowingly) to destroy the vampire. She then realized how brash and ungrateful she’s been all along, has a change of heart, and marries the boring noble fop after all.


5.5/10. More fun, laying the groundwork for some cool shit. Still mostly boring.

Vampire Diaries GIFs | Tenor

As part of my research I also watched a few documentaries about Vampires.

  • Secrets of the Dead: Vampire Legend – Season 15, Episode 1
  • Monsters Among Us: Vampires: From Folklore to Literature parts I + II – Season 1, Episodes 1-2

I found these on the Kanopy app through my public library and enjoyed them very much. The first one was pretty cool because it approached the vampire myth from an anthropological viewpoint, so it almost felt like an episode of Cold Case Files. The second one, while I enjoyed it, was much more lecture-y and felt like something I’d watch in a Horror Lit & Film class. Might not be as interesting for general consumption, but I liked it.

Expect these sorts of mad-dash little reviews to be a recurring thing this fall while I consume ALL THE VAMPIRE STUFF! Hopefully you enjoy it.


On Doubt

This morning started with an article from The Writer Magazine in my inbox. Now, I don’t normally read the newsletter-ish sorts of emails that spam my inbox, but this headline caught my pre-coffee brain. Why are Writers so Prone to Self-Doubt?

It made me immediately ask, “Am I prone to self-doubt?” Which is hilarious because I am so anxiety-riddled on a daily basis I can hardly make appointments for basic things and am a constant over-thinker. Of course I’m prone to self-doubt! I’m so prone to it I don’t even recognize it any more!

Anyway, it’s a lengthy article that looks at the various sources of anxiety and doubt for us Writer Types and it got me thinking about what my writerly doubts are and how I’ve coped with them. And since it’s early, and my brain is chugging away at something meaty, I thought I’d share. 

The Big One: Rejection

One thing that the non-writers in my life seem to struggle with is when I tell them I’ve had a story rejected. Usually we’re mid-conversation (or dinner or movie or or or…) and I stop engaging to look at my phone. I’ve received an email from that market that’s had my story for months, and of course the subject line is just “RE: SUBMISSION”. 

Now, I know the odds. Trust me, I’ve received enough rejections (and a few acceptances) at this point to know I am almost certainly looking at a rejection. But there’s that tiny part of me, the Writer who never gives in, that bubbles up in my chest and says, “What if…?”

So I hold my breath (I always do, I can’t help it) and open the email. And — oh look — a rejection. Exhale, screen off, return to the conversation (or dinner or movie or or or…). Of course now I realize how incredibly rude I’ve just been and say, “sorry, just got a rejection.”

Their face does that little crumply frown of concern. “Oh no! I’m so sorry!”

I wave them off. “It’s fine, I just need to remember to send it out again when I get home.” And that just confuses them. And that confused me for a long time. I mean, yes, rejection sucks but it is part of the process if you want your work published. There’s no avoiding it. So, early on, I just sort of braced for impact and gritted my teeth. Ate some ice cream while I spent 15-20 minutes looking for the next market, and then sent it off again.

Now I don’t even bother with the ice cream. 

But for folks unaccustomed to rejection, this is one of their biggest fears. Sharing something they worked hard on, put their soul into and are proud of, only to be told it isn’t good enough. I mean, looking at it like that, it does sound miserable. But… it just doesn’t feel like that anymore. Part of it is the practice, right? You submit, get rejected, submit again and that builds armor. There’s a whole ding-dang blog about it! (Aeryn Rudel’s Rejectomancy is a super neat site that likens rejection to a class in D&D and how you level up and gain armor, etc. Check it out!)

The other part is realizing what I do and don’t have control over. Now, part of being an incredibly Anxious™ person is a desperate need to feel in control of most things. Relinquishing said control is… difficult. But, with publishing there’s no control to be relinquished. I never had any to start with. The only thing I can control is the writing and where I choose to send it. So, to “ease” my anxiety over the whole process, the story must be as good as I can possibly make it and I need to research and carefully choose what markets I submit to. That’s it. That’s all I can do.

It’s all any of us can do. And that’s why I don’t mind rejections. They aren’t personal, they are an inseparable part of the process. 

So, What About My Writing do I Doubt?

Oh man. Well, for awhile, during the pandemic, I actually started to doubt my idea generation. That’s never been an issue for me in the past, but my brain was so creatively empty for so long that I started to wonder if I was tapped out. I now know that I’m fine and have plenty of ideas — my creative brain just decided to take a sabbatical. 

I doubt my ability to write really powerful, literary Speculative Fiction. I’m thinking N.K. Jemisin, Seanan McGuire, and Sam J. Miller here. They are freaking powerhouses writing story after story, novel after novel that just consistently blow my mind. I doubt my ability to blow anyone’s mind, either with plot or craft. That doesn’t mean I’m not trying! I am. Like I said in my post last week, I keep reaching and trying new things because 1. it’s fun, and 2. it’s going to help me grow as a writer. 

Kevin Hearne said it best on his short-lived podcast Ask the Bards, “Write more, write different, write better.”

But, my biggest doubt, or maybe my biggest fear is that I’m too transparent in my work. I don’t realize it while I’m writing, but when I go back to revise so many little things from my life are staring back up at me. To me they are SO. PAINFULLY. OBVIOUS. Anyone who knows me at all is going to read that and see all of me in those lines. Even the parts I don’t typically share. Maybe especially those parts.

We call that vulnerability and I hate it. Anxiety Brain, remember? I can’t control how others perceive me through my writing. Writing is a two-way street, an art experiment that is only complete when read by an audience. I can do my damndest to be clear with my themes and subjects and characters, but ultimately the final interpretation happens within the reader. 

And that I cannot control. 

I try. Oh, do I ever try. I am very selective about who gets to read my drafts. Seeing the work before it’s “finished” is probably the biggest declaration of trust I can ever make. Trust and that I value your opinion. It’s me opening a door into my consciousness and saying, “come on in! Sorry about the mess.”

But even this flex of control is just a balm. Because once a story is published, it is out of my hands. I can’t control who does or doesn’t read it, how they react to it. If they like it. Or how it might change their perception of me. Writer Brittany and World Brittany are two very different people. 

At least, I think they are.

One is meant for public consumption, the face I present at work, in my community, even to my friends to some extent. Writer Brittany is… well she’s real weird, all right? She thinks about death a lot, and about love too. She imagines tentacled, spectral moose monsters attacking subway trains and thinks it’s funny. And she seems kind of obsessed with characters whose decisions lead to isolation and loneliness, because they won’t open up to the people who care about them. 

There’s that vulnerability again. I still hate it. But if it’s there on the page then, yes, people will read it. They’ll see it. But most importantly, they’ll feel it. And they’ll know that, in some ways, the story was real.

That’s called authenticity, and in fiction it is everything. 

The conclusion then is that our doubts and/or fears are probably pointing to areas in our work that we need to embrace. That we should emphasize and focus on. Because what makes us uncomfortable makes us grow, right?

I don’t know, man. Take from that what you will. I have a novel to edit. 



My Process™

Here’s a detailed bullet-point list of my process, for those interested. Because, c’mon, you know you are. Just a little. Please remember that this is not prescriptive. My whole previous post was about how very unique each writer’s process is. I’m sharing mine because people seem to love hearing about writing processes, and because it’s kinda fun to talk about every now and again.

Ahem. On to the list.

  1. Get a weird idea for a story. Usually a line of dialogue or an image in my brain.
    1. For instance, the upcoming Pioneer Oregon Weird Western was born from my brain showing me a woman in a leather rain slicker on a horse in the middle of the Santiam Canyon getting drenched and looking rather unhappy about it.
  2. Ignore it for awhile.
    1. Stories need time to percolate. The longer I can ignore the siren call the better prepared I’ll be when I actually sit down to write the thing. It’s cooking and it needs to be left to its own devices for a bit.
  3. When the time to draft is getting close, start doing any necessary research.
    1. Usually about a month or two before I sit down to write a book, I’ll dive into pretty serious research.
    2. Short stories don’t typically require much research, so I can skip this step for most of them.
  4. Make a playlist.
    1. This may seem silly, but this is a very important step for me. Every story, big or small, gets a playlist. I spend a few days searching for songs from all kinds of genres. Songs are usually not only lyrically related, but tonally as well. They sound like the story. I don’t know how better to describe it, but there’s a vibe, okay?
    2. This step helps me cement the tone/atmosphere of the story. But it also becomes a sort of psychological conditioning. I listen to the playlist whenever I work on the story. It becomes the soundtrack and hearing it helps me settle down to the work that much quicker. This is an absolutely vital step in the process for me. It’s my version of prewriting.
  5. Write.
    1. This is the Wild West of the process. Every story is different. Some write themselves in a handful of sessions while others are arduous and painfully slow.
    2. Stories take the time they take. Some short stories take a week to write, dumping out over the course of a few days. Others take months with only a few writing sessions here and there. Novels tend to be a much steadier process for me, with dedicated (some would say obsessive) work over a span of six-ish consecutive months.
  6. Ignore it again.
    1.  When I reach “The End” I save it and close the document. I get away from it for as long as I can. For short stories a month is usually long enough. For novels… well, they live in my head longer so they require a lot longer to gtfo.
    2. I haven’t perfected the timeframe between the rough draft and edits for a novel. I’ve only done it a few times and each one was different. This current one had a lot of mental health issues to contend with. I was laid off the summer I finished it. Then I started a new, very stressful job. Then there was that whole global pandemic, and then a LOT of political and social unrest.
      1. My novels might not take place in the real world (very often) but I am a person living in the world and I am not immune to its effects. All of this plays into the process too.
  7. Revision, Round I
    1. Ugh. This round is all about reading the book. I print out the entire manuscript and read it in one sitting if I can. I take notes if anything good or bad stands out to me. I dread this moment of reading the book for the first time, but so far I’ve always been pleasantly surprised.
    2. So, I’ve got notes. I make goals based on those notes, and then I go back through the book and meet all those goals. This is typically big picture stuff. Scenes that don’t work, holes in the plot, restructuring scenes, etc.
    3. Try not to line edit, but inevitably do. Put all on-paper changes into the computer.
  8. Revision, Round II
    1. Read it again. Print it out and take notes again. Note if any of the previous revision’s changes don’t work as planned.
    2. Make goals based on this read-through’s notes. These goals are still fairly big picture, but they’re getting smaller. More specific.
    3. Try not to line edit, but inevitably do. Put all on-paper changes into the computer.
  9. Revision, Round III
    1. Read it again. Print it out and take notes again. Note if any of the previous revision’s changes don’t work as planned.
    2. Now, at this point, it should be pretty solid. If there aren’t any major notes, this is the point when I’ll give it to some trusted readers for feedback. Probably some sensitivity readers too.
    3. Try not to fiddle while I wait for feedback. Fail. Make changes in the computer too.
  10. Revision, Round IV
    1. Gather feedback and decide what I agree with and what I don’t. This can be tricky because stories are subjective. I live by this quote from Neil Gaiman: “When someone tells you something is wrong with your story, they’re almost always right. When someone tells you how to fix it, they’re almost always wrong.”
    2. Make changes.
  11. Revision, Round V
    1. Yep, still reading. Print it out. But this time, it’s less about notes. By now I’ve made all the big things work. I’ve done all the tough stuff and tweaked scenes and pacing and filled plot holes and added emotion where it’s needed. Now, it’s the fun stuff!
    2. LINE EDITS BABEYY. Now, knowing me, I’ve been doing some line editing all the way through because I can’t help myself. But this is where I get to wield my red pen like it’s a scalpel and just shave the book into something… glorious. Powerful.
    3. I love this step of the process. Can you tell?
  12. Submit
    1. So, I come off the line edit step of the process and jump feet first into the Submission step. I send it out and let that editing high carry me into the abyss of publishing.
    2. Start the whole process over on the next project. It makes the next step a bit easier to bear.
  13. Wait.
    1. Publishing is SLOW. Very, very slow. So, we wait. Often for months. The doubt trickles back pretty damn quick and I start to think I am an idiot for doing this and why would anyone ever want to read what I wrote?
    2. Ignore the doubt monster and keep working on the next thing.
  14. Rejection.
    1. Look. This is part of the process. The more you submit, the more you’re rejected, the less it matters. Rejections don’t hurt anymore. They are simply part of the process.
  15. Submit again.
    1. Keep throwing that story spaghetti at editors’ walls until something sticks!
  16. Acceptance?
    1. This is never guaranteed. As a writer, I have absolutely ZERO control over which stories get published and which don’t. But, with persistence, I have a decent hit rate.
    2. If I do get an acceptance, I celebrate. I reward myself with dinner or a drink. No matter how small the magazine, a publication is worth celebrating.
    3. Tell EVERYONE. Scream about it into the void of the internet. That’s the whole point of publishing, right? For people to read what you wrote? To share it with the world? Why wouldn’t you promote your work? PROMOTE YOUR WORK!
  17. Start again.
    1. I am always in the process. It looks a little different for each story, but I’m still always in it. Even when I think I’m not. And you know what? I find that oddly comforting.


It’s Monday.

I haven’t started my week with a blog post in a very very long time. I don’t have a ton to say today. There weren’t any writing activities over the weekend since we were at the coast partying it up with a good friend for her Bachelorette Party.

I have received some feedback on Abbie from my Elite Reading Group™. Nothing concrete that I can make edits from, but some general “It’s really good!” and “I liked it a lot” and even an “It’s so different from your other stories!”. And while that’s all fine and good, I need to give them all a little nudge to give me something a touch more substantial.

Now is about the time where I worry about where the heck I’m gonna submit this story. It’s quiet. So so quiet. The fantasy element is very thin, just a sprinkling of spice. I know at the start of the pandemic there was talk of a magazine being put together that would focus on these sort of stories… but I don’t know if that every truly came to be. I have a feeling this is going to be a very long submission process.


In other news, the newest episode of the podcast is OUT NOW! Give it a listen, and prepare yourself for another episode this Friday! We’ve been busy little library worker bees and have lots of good books to share with you!

Other than podcast editing, I’m going to start back on Tavi this week and see if I can get this very big ball rolling. I’ve got ~3 months to get it DONE. And I mean, done done. Like… start sending it to agents done.

I think I need to do some deep breathing exercises…

Anyway, that’s where I’m at. That’s what’s on the plate for this week, revisions of all kinds. I’ll pop in every now and again, either to tell you about all the progress I’m making, or to avoid all the progress I’m NOT making. You know how it goes.

Until then,


Goals Summary?

It’s Tuesday. It’s a weird week because Trev is off for our anniversary, so any routine I might have established is out the window. There’s a lot of non-writing things to do, both fun and necessary. I’m feeling restless while he’s still asleep, so I figured I ought to come blog about it. Y’know, like a writer or something.

I started my morning with iced coffee and Willamette Writers. Every Tuesday and Saturday they have zoom meetings (called, Coffee at your Kitchen Table) where members can pop in and discuss writerly things for an hour or so. Over the winter I co-led the Saturday meetings, but with spring and the outdoors calling, I bowed out of that responsibility. But, I still like to attend whenever I can, especially the smaller, calmer Tuesday morning session.

So, I did that today. We were practicing our novel pitches ahead of the conference this weekend. I don’t have a novel to pitch right now, so I just listened and took notes about what should be included in a good pitch. I’ll need that info sooner than later, hopefully.

Normally I would volunteer for the conference, but a friend of mine is having a bachelorette weekend getaway, so I’ll be out of town. And while the conference is virtual again this year, I don’t want to split my time between my friend’s celebration and the conference duty, so I had to ix-nay the conference. Sad day. I hope everyone has a great time and wish all the success to folks pitching their work to agents/editors this weekend. It’s such a scary thing to do, so kudos to you all!

After that, I picked up dog shit so the yard guy doesn’t have to work around it. I know, riveting stuff this Tuesday.

But, after this post I’m going to sit down to revise Abbie, aka In the Librarian’s Garden. Then, once Trevor’s up, we’ll spend the day cleaning house and the garage in preparation of our trip and the installation of a new HVAC system next week. So, it’ll be a busy busy day today.

Tomorrow we’re going to snorkel the river and hunt for agates, which is always a blast. Thursday is a free day until the evening, when we’re officially celebrating our anniversary (which was yesterday), and then we’re off to the coast for the weekend.

Somewhere in there I also need to edit and upload a new episode of the podcast.

Like I said, busy busy.

My biggest goal is to get this story polished and sent to my circle of readers for their thoughts. I want it to be mostly done before we leave for the weekend. Then I get to tweak and shine it up next week for submission. Once it’s sent out I can pivot my focus to Tavi and the monstrous job of revising it. I’ll have two-ish months to make it as good as I can. It’s going to take some pretty aggressive goal-setting to get that done.

Maybe next week I’ll actually post a real Goals Summary… Who knows? Certainly not me.

Until then, Bloggos.