New neighborhoods are always fun to explore, in fiction and life.
New neighborhoods are always fun to explore, in fiction and life.

I’ve always believed 2015 was going to be a great year. Based on what’s happening so far, I need to listen to my premonitions more often. First, and probably the most important news, my husband was recruited for a new job! For him, it’s a mixed bag of feelings. He’s sad to leave his employees at his current job, but excited to work with something new. For the rest of us, it means a lot of changes for the whole family. Mainly because said new job is on the other side of town, which means we’ve spent almost every night looking for places to live. Pretty soon I’ll have to start digging through all the junk we’ve accumulated over the past four years in our current place to throw out what can be thrown out, donate anything we don’t want that’s still in fairly good condition and pack the rest. 

I’ll cut in with a side rant, I HATE moving. When we moved to our current neighborhood, I had assumed we’d stay here for a while. I should have known life doesn’t work out so neatly :).

Why am I taking up your time talking about what’s going on in our lives? I guess to explain why, if you stopped by yesterday you didn’t see the poetry update. I’ve put those on the back burner. I’ll also probably only go down to one blog post a week. Some people can throw up a blog post in a matter of minutes. I like to take my time with them. I’m a slow writer, I guess. I savor the post. I research whatever I’m talking about. Try out different paragraphs. Walk away, and come back to it a little later. Read it out loud to hear how it sounds. A blog post typically takes me about two hours. The more detailed ones, like the poetry ones, take longer. I’ll still blog about poetry sometimes, and whatever else inspires me, but I’ll spend most of my time over the coming weeks researching schools, neighborhoods, houses, apartments, packing, and cleaning. Because I become so grumpy no one wants to be around me when I don’t write, I’ll still carve out a few hours each day to finish the sequel to Ashborne.

For those of you wondering where I am, I’ve pushed past the 30% mark this week. It also appears as if life and fiction are mysteriously intertwined. Just as we’re preparing to settle down in a new part of the city, Joelle and the Ashmen also entered a new city, Aramas. It turned out to be quite an emotional day for more than one person. I’m always fascinated by how I show up with a plan just to have the story end up laughing at my plan and taking on a life of its own. Characters I didn’t plan on dying have died. Other characters have surprised me and the new characters popping up feel like they’ve been there all along, waiting to step into the limelight. It’s fun, except on days when it’s not. I have to believe we all have those days. Days when the words just don’t come as easily. Days when I re-read what I’ve written three times trying to get into the zone because for whatever reason the zone has vanished. On those days, I push myself and if I only get 600 words, I tell myself it’s forward progress. A spring release still looks doable. In fact, next week, I submit my first three chapters to my writer’s group for critique. I can’t wait to hear what they have to say about it!    

What else, besides all the normal household chaos, has happened? 

  • My writer’s group organized a professional photo shoot for the newcomers and I expect my official author photograph to be ready any day now. If you visit the Stockholm Writers Group page, you’ll see my name at the bottom, waiting for the photograph. Super excited! We’re also going to take a group photo when we can. The plan is to update the photos every year. I like that part. Allows me the chance to change anything I didn’t like the year before.  
  • Somewhat related to the photo, I had a ton of fun picking out a quotable line for my profile on the writers group website (accessed by clicking on the name or photo on the website listed above). So much fun I have a separate post in the works for that process. If you have never gone through your own work looking for a quotable line, you’re missing out on something special.  
  • I’ve taken a cursory Meyers-Briggs personality test and discovered I’m INFJ. Also a blog post in the works! 
  • I’ve discovered the secrets of the Swedish Number Conspiracy and once I get all my notes in order, you can read all about it here. 
  • I’ve signed up for another University of Iowa MOOC, poetry this time. It starts at the end of March. God I hope I can keep up! 

Whew! Lots of stuff. And underneath it all, sitting inside my head, begging to be heard, are more stories. Too many stories. I can’t get them out fast enough. Does anyone else have that problem? 

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