1. falling… behind on just about everything that isn’t directly related to The Black Sun, including my photography, this blog, and reading other blogs. I’ll catch up soon.
2. assembling… the gallery wall I’ve been planning since I moved into the apartment. (Five years ago?) It looks fantastic.
3. dying… my hair purple, completely by accident. It wasn’t too bad—faded to pink in a day or so, and now it’s just a few very pale pink highlights, which I’ve been getting so many compliments on—but it’s renewed that urge to go properly pink again, so… yeah. Might be a problem.
4. breaking… out the big down coat. Already.
5. running… into a roadblock in the Big Scary Photo thing. It’s on hold for at least another month or two, and I’m so annoyed.
6. trying… to figure out what to bake for Christmas. I’m running out of time.
7. hoping… I can make my phone last just a few more weeks. This is a terrible time to need to shop for a replacement, but I can’t put it off much longer.
8. thinking… about my goals and plans for 2020. I’m really looking forward to the new year.
9. wondering… if all the typing and sewing (I’ve been sewing!) I’ve been doing lately might’ve messed up something in my wrist.
10. taking… a big step in the right direction.
Thanks to Hurricane Dorian—and a kind of miserable week, even after I got power back—I’m a bit late with this post. But I’m slowly getting back on track.
I hope. The power came back on for about an hour this morning, and just as I was starting to let my guard down—putting my phone on the charger, turning on the computer to write this post—it went out again. I still don’t entirely trust that it’s really back this time.
It’s been a dull couple of days, but that’s not exactly a bad thing. We lost a lot of branches in my immediate area, and I have to throw out nearly everything that was in the fridge, but if that’s the worst of it, I can deal. No one was hurt. Nothing was damaged.
I finished all four books I’d been reading, plus a comic collection I was saving. I took a few photos (but not as many as I expected). I baked the cookie dough I had in the freezer before the power went out (priorities!) and watched one of my across-the-lane neighbours parkour up to his second-floor apartment in the middle of the storm and go in through the balcony door, for some reason. I ventured down into the storage space in the basement to find the camp stove, even though the emergency lights had gone out at that point (but something was still beeping ominously?), and there was no better (worse) place for the zombies to attack.
(Related: I’m 90% sure that parkour guy—or his roommate or partner or whatever—is the one I regularly hear belting out “Zombie” by the Cranberries, but I haven’t been able to confirm it.)
It’s still going to take me a couple of days to get completely back to normal, to catch up with Instagram and Twitter and this blog. And everything else. Bear with me.
Ok, so: Hurricane Dorian is heading this way. The rain’s already started.
I’m fine. Everything’s secured, all batteries are charged, I’ve got food and books and a manual coffee grinder. I’ve printed off a copy of the Violet Lane outline, just in case. (What more do I need, really? And, yes, I have water.) I’m watching a couple of nearby trees warily, but really, the worst I’m expecting (personally) is to lose power. It might be for a couple of hours, it could be a few days, but this early in the season, with all the leaves still on the trees—power lines are coming down at some point. (When Hurricane Juan hit in 2003, I was without electricity for almost a week. But that was a lower-priority neighbourhood when it came to restoration, and my apartment building at the time was only about a block away from the high-water mark.)
Rather than run down my batteries scrolling through Instagram and Twitter looking for updates, I’m going to keep my phone and iPad turned off as much as I can. I’ll update this post if something important comes up, and tomorrow’s regularly-scheduled post has been… scheduled… (I tried five different ways of phrasing that and hated them all), but I won’t be responding to email or comments, or getting any notifications until I’m sure everything’s stable again.
I’ll be back soon!
1. fangirling… over all the Marvel Phase 4 announcements. (Jane Foster! Blade! An actual release date for Black Widow!)
2. falling… a bit behind on my 366 project. Twice. It happens, but I’m not happy about it. (I’ll be up-to-date again by the end of the day.)
3. getting… frustrated. More technical difficulties.
4. trying… not to melt. The humidity has been awful.
5. worrying… about one of the neighbourhood crows. It was obviously hurt or ill, but it wasn’t in a place where I could try to help. I’m still a bit stressed about the whole thing.
6. signing… up for another streaming service, just for Season 4 of Veronica Mars. And I’m kind of furious about it.
7. wondering… if I’m ever going to make ice cream this season. (I can’t find all the ingredients I need, because apparently grocery stores around here don’t bother to stock small cartons of whole milk anymore. I can’t bring myself to throw away more than half a litre, which is what will happen if I give in.)
8. moving… a few dresses back into the regular rotation. (Partly because of #4.)
9. taking… another big step on the big scary project that I’m still not ready to talk about. But it’s awesome.
10. realizing… that I’m complaining a lot this week. I’m sorry. I blame the heat.
1. thinking… about trying my hand at short stories again. Maybe.
2. stocking… up on sketchbooks.
3. accepting… the fact that I need a new desk chair. Something that at least acknowledges the concept of ergonomics. (Fine. But why do they all look so terrible?)
4. wondering… how I’m going to get through the current stack of library books in three weeks. (Literally all my holds became available at once.)
5. eating… blood oranges. So few foods are truly seasonal anymore, it’s always a bit of a treat to find the things that really are only available for a couple of weeks.
6. making… my sourdough starter. I’ve been threatening to do it for months, and I’ve finally started. I’ll let you know how it goes.
7. standing… around in the most miserable weather of the winter, waiting for a bus that was a full hour late.
8. getting… back to that decluttering project.
9. trying… to find desktop wallpaper that I don’t hate. Still. I’m ridiculously picky about this kind of thing. When I do manage to find something that meets all my criteria—not too bright or too dark (unless it’s for mobile, in which case the darker the better), not too busy, quotes are good if they’re not too twee, I’m not a fan of brush lettering—I end up leaving it up until I’m thoroughly sick of it and desperate for something new, and… well. Here we are.
10. looking… forward to getting my days back this week.
1. easing… back into my (good) routines, and trying not to fall back into the less-helpful ones.
2. trying… Scrivener. It’s taking a bit of time to get used to, but I might like it? I’m not sure yet.
3. marvelling… at the clerk in the camera store that directed his entire sales pitch to the guy who was with me, even after we both made it clear that I was the one who was making the decisions. (And I just said it was my favourite camera shop. I’m a little less sad it’s closing now.)
4. watching… the tracking info for… a bunch of stuff. Alternately cursing Canada Post (for never scanning anything) and USPS (for scanning my parcel a dozen times without actually moving it anywhere.)
5. rereading… Steal Like an Artist by Austin Kleon. It’s a good way to find my motivation again.
6. rethinking… pretty much everything. (This is the problem with trying to reestablish routines.)
7. hating… the cold. The last few days have been brutal.
8. organizing… revision notes.
9. looking… at all the hand-lettering lessons I’ve got saved. It’s a bit overwhelming.
10. feeling… weirdly unsettled by the whole new year thing. I’m not sure what it is this year, but… yeah.
1. reaching… my limit with the heat wave. It’s officially making me miserable, and I want it to be over. (The humidity’s been a little less oppressive this weekend, so I’m hoping things’ll start to improve.)
2. feeling… anxious. It’s fine. It’s all fine.
3. sitting… outside and eating ice cream by candlelight. (See #1. It’s the one nice thing about the weather lately.)
4. organizing… ten years’ worth of old analogue photos. It’s not too bad (they’re mostly in order already, I’m just culling the duplicates and genuinely bad photos and moving the rest from envelopes into proper boxes), but… it’s a weird experience.
5. watching… all the shows I didn’t get to during the regular season. So many series finales are making me cry—in the best way—this year.
6. thinking… of new ideas.
7. getting… ready to send The Black Sun off to my beta readers. 😳
8. falling… behind on my podcasts. Let’s be honest: it was only a matter of time.
9. finding… the last few (big) pieces for the office redo. It’s all details from here.
10. missing… the merlins. Now that the little ones have left the nest, the original pair has moved on. Hopefully, they’ll be back next year.
P.S.: Don’t forget—I’ve started a newsletter! If you want a deeper look into what I’m working on, that’s the place to get it. I’d love to see you there.
1. waking… up at quarter to six on a Saturday to help the cat catch a moth that somehow got inside. (Or… waking up at quarter to six on a Saturday to keep the cat from destroying the apartment in her attempts to catch a moth that somehow got inside.)
2. wondering… where my time is going in the evenings. Clearly, I’m doing something different, but I don’t know what.
3. brainstorming… ideas for a new story. Early days yet, but it has the potential to be kind of fantastic.
4. making… cold-brew iced coffee. Which is incredibly nice on those days when it’s so hot that the 7-minute walk to the coffee shop feels completely unreasonable, even if they do have air conditioning.
5. updating… the florals in black & white gallery.
6. planning… a few little changes to the site. It’s not going to be a full redesign (tempting as it is), but it’s time for a few improvements and new features.
7. taking… another big step on the office update. Every change I make, I fall in love with this space a little more.
8. wishing… the humidity would ease up.
9. trying… an iOS text editor that seems to meet all my criteria. (It’s not as pretty as I’d like, but it syncs with Dropbox and doesn’t implode when I try to open a novel-length file. And that’s really all I need.)
10. getting… ready to make one of my big announcements. This week!
1. editing… The Black Sun. I’ll be finishing the first pass this week. Then, I’ll do one more quick pass (for fact-checking—yay for slightly-skewed historical fiction!—and to make sure I didn’t introduce any new plot holes), and then… we’ll see.
2. trying… to get into the habit of carrying a real camera more often than I don’t. I’m not sure if I’ll bother taking it when I go to buy office supplies, but it’s something.
3. moving… forward on the next stage of the office update. I’ll be finished eventually, I’m sure.
4. enduring… the heatwave.
5. repainting… the balcony furniture. Finally. It’s been nagging me since May, at least.
6. worrying… that I might’ve aggravated my back again, but it seems to be fine.
7. hemming… more curtains. And seriously considering selling my sewing machine so I don’t subject myself to this madness again. (Joking. Mostly.)
8. working… on the outline for my new & improved take on Violet Lane. It’s like all the best bits from my previous two attempts are turning into something entirely new, and I can’t wait to start writing.
9. looking… for new podcasts to listen to. I’ve been up-to-date for too long, and not having something waiting in the queue at any given moment to is starting to irritate me. (Do you have a favourite that I might not have heard of? Let me know in the comments.)
10. feeling… the effects of not running or exercising during that heatwave. It was only a few days, but… yeah. I’m recovering quickly, at least.