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Dipping toes back into the bubbling warmth

after all
That is, I'm going to be selling books at an upcoming convention again!

Ursula Vernon is the Guest of Honor at Foolscap, which will be held at the Redmond Merriott Town Center in (you guessed it!) Redmond WA on Jan 30th - Feb 1st, 2015.

SofaWolf, the publisher of her amazing graphic novel Digger, has other commitments and can't make the long journey from Minnesota. So I'm stepping up to make sure the folks at Foolscap get a chance to see this wonderful work, even if they aren't willing to sit in front of a screen and hit "Next".

SofaWolf is providing the books, I'm providing the enthusiasm, and Foolscap is providing the venue for us all to enjoy. If you're planning to come, please stop by and keep me company. And if you weren't planning to come, perhaps plans will change!?!

Little celebrations

These last two days have been (mostly) a delight - two days in a row when I'm home the same day Mike is. First time that's happened since I started the Country Store job in February. It isn't really a big deal, and not something I'm asking for. We do see each other a heck of a lot normally. But this was nice.

It was "(mostly)" because on Friday night I somehow slept at an odd angle, and woke up with a really stiff neck. By Saturday noon it was a *REALLY* stiff neck, and out came the ice pack, ibuprofen and gentle trigger point massage. As of this morning it's still a pain but nothing that makes me want to miss work.

Which leads to mention of little celebration number two - despite the ice and aging battery, I did indeed manage to start the car, and so have the choice of driving to work instead of walking. Yeay me! (And yeay Mike who jumped it yesterday and let it run for a while.)

Now, off to that work thing!

One AM. I should be sleeping. But I'm not.

after all
And just lying in the bed staring at the ceiling isn't very helpful.

So I tiptoed out to scrawl down some of the many things going through my brian, in hopes that they will all settle down.

Working at the Country Store has really underscored for me how much I love working retail. (I really enjoy it.) It also makes me itch to do more bookkeeping-type stuff, and wonder whether I should look into taking some classes to get a better grounding at that. The shop is not interested in having me do any of that sort of work, but watching what they're doing, and the choices they're making (some of which I disagree with) leads to thinking about the options I had at the bookstore, and what choices I might make if I was to try something like that again.

Then there's the whole "where do you see yourself in 10 years" thing. Maybe it really IS time to think about a move - either back to the midwest where all our family and most of our friends are, or down toward California where at least Mike might find some exciting work. I do like this house, but there are very many nice houses on this planet, and even with having been here for over ten years we haven't truly put down roots. We've made some new friends since coming out, but we see them even less often than the family back East.

In the short term I want to push myself into writing up more about the topics that interest me: costs in publishing, methods of artistic distribution, old snippets of encounters from the bookstore. I haven't managed to actually write any of those yet, but perhaps a tangible reminder like this will help.

Time to try sleeping again.

Chickening out

after all
Several weeks ago I started making a concerted effort to walk to work at least twice a week. I know the exercise is good for me, and the time investment reasonable.

Today was one of the days I would normally choose for this, and it isn't raining. But it's been a very slow-wakeup-morning and (for this area) it's unseasonably chilly (35F). So I'm taking the path of least resistance and cruising social media for half an hour instead.

Tomorrow! Tomorrow for sure.

Shifting focus

north edge
I've learned it's hard to make myself write things, and even harder to post them. But I enjoy reading everyone else's posts so much I'm once again making the try at it.

For much of the last year I've been trying to do many things, and failing at most of them. My head knows how it's supposed to go, and my heart remembers pulling off projects with delighted regularity, but today's reality is I just don't do it.

So this last couple of months have been me acknowledging the things I've said I would do and haven't, and letting the other folks involved know that they need to get someone else in. I'm really grateful to you all for having faith in me, and the grace and generosity you've shown when I fell short of that faith.

For now, I'm hunkering down. My daily energy is being directed at doing the best job I can at The Country Store and Farm. I'm allowing my time off work to be claimed by extra sleeping, reading a book, and light housecleaning. I've already passed on my responsibilities to all but one outside project, and now I'm going to stop mentally telling myself that I'll go to that drawing class, start back in on martial arts, put time into that stained glass project, or pursue any of the dozen new business schemes that bounce around in my head. Better to have no aspirations, and then accomplish some things anyway, than to constantly be surrounded by the things I am failing to do.

That's the plan anyway. Time will tell what works. Thanks for listening.

Rest in peace, my faraway friend Leah

I haven't been hanging out on the 'net much these last several months, and it was only this afternoon that I read that qtrhorserider, Leah Gadzikowski had passed away on Sunday after a long illness. We hadn't seen each other in decades, but I'll always remember our times together fondly.

Best wishes of comfort and support to Paul and the kids as well as all her many other friends.

Not enough typing

after all
When your dream devolves into two people arguing about the distribution chain for a particular book, it is clearly time to wake up.

Today's contribution to actually writing down (up?) some of the random things in my life.

Emerald City Comic Con

after all
Coming soon to a city near me!
Last year I could only go for a couple brief hours after working all day at the toy store. The years before that I was working the Studio Foglio / Girl Genius booth (which task I loved, but left me out of any part of actually seeing the convention). The last time I was there as a regular attendee was about ten years ago, and while I enjoyed it, I knew I wanted something more involved this year.

At the time I was making plans (October) I had a mid-paying full time job on the island that had weekends off, so I figured I'd splurge and reserve a hotel room for Friday and Saturday.

And to scratch that itch of involvement, I volunteered to be one of the Minions, their vast (~400 to 500) horde of go-fer helpers. It's been years since I last worked a con as anything other than a vendor, but I've always enjoyed it and it can be a great way to meet new people.

Segue to a few weeks ago, when I took a new job working retail at The Country Store. I made getting the ECCC weekend off a condition of taking the job (also Norwescon weekend, when I'll be running the Foglio booth), so the schedule still works. I'll be working all the *other* weekends in the year, but that's OK with me.

So now I'm pumped about the convention coming up, and all the great folk who are going to be there, and realizing that the thing that would really cap this whole experience for me would be if I had other people sharing the hotel room with me. But how best to find someone (or someones) who are planning to come to the convention, but haven't secured sleeping space? A puzzle.

Learning a second language

after all
It's something I've never managed. I took a year of German in school, and achieved my goal of sufficient vocabulary to read Einstein's Theory of Relativity. But never managed even partial conversational ability.

I love the Japanese language, and have poked at learning it for more than 30 years. I have a *wonderful* set of books and guides, and took classes from some great teachers. Pretty much none of it stays in my head for more than a week or so.

A couple of years ago my son became interested in Norway. (Norway?) I can only guess that it's related to knowing that his maternal grandparents came form there, but who knows. He's interested in learning Norsk, but not in traveling to Seattle every week to do so. So now I'm thinking maybe I'd like to learn Norsk, and we could both go, and it would give me someone to practice with.

I am, however, well aware of the challenge:

A link collection

after all
Random tab-closings that I know I'll never find again if I don't put them somewhere.
Glass harp of Sugar Plum Fairy (or, what to do if you're bored at the wedding reception).
Advice most often missed by time management self help books.
A kickstarter for an interesting-looking board/card game that I can't decide if I'm going to pledge or not. Deadline Feb 16th. If I do, I want to be at the $29 level. But since my income dropped from $2K a month to about $100 a month, I'm not that comfortable pledging to things right now.
Actual investigative reporting on a topic of interest to me. It gives me hope for the future.