Saturday, June 26, 2010

Looking Back, Gearing Up

This was such a productive research-and-planning-and-writing week that — after just one great weekend day — I'm already itching to get back to it.

I'll wait till Monday. Of course.

But I'm still feeling good about all those puzzle pieces snapping together. And I thought I'd better blog it so I can find proof in the next extended moment of writerly frustration (in which nothing goes right and my writing seems like drivel) that I do, in fact, love my work.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

New Blogger Template!

I've been waiting a very long time (as others have, no doubt) for Blogger to introduce some new templates. Just today I decided to work on sampling free third-party (or is it just second-party?) templates to apply. But lo and behold, Blogger has come through with a new designer and set of options.

I was waaaaayyy over the dots theme. And I think this fresher look will do for now.

Still thinking about merging my author site with the blog under one URL. No decision yet, though.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Busy Spring-into-Summer

Thought I'd better check in here before I lose my lease.

It's been a busy spring of chasing new freelance projects as a few previously scheduled ones fell through. Hate when that happens, but it is part of the biz. I constantly remind myself that I'm no different from the businesses and independent contractors I use (or don't use, or decide I won't use, or stop using). It's easy, when you're lucky enough to generally have steady, reliable work, to take a break from hunting for new clients and thinking up new ways to use your skills. But this has been a good reminder for me that keeping in touch with the regulars and introducing myself to the futures is essential. 'Cause I'm all about keeping the work coming IN.

I wrapped up my PNWA gig as a Spring 2010 Writer in Residence. I got to run a Grade 6 writing workshop at a Seattle-area elementary school. What a treat to work with students. (Not to mention my target audience.) They were sweet, smart, and so insightful.

There's been lots of hearth-and-home stuff to deal with, too, including tending to my honey of an office assistant (see sidebar for pic), who's had a very rough several months of dealing with serious back problems. I worked very late last night, and I can't even tell you how happy I was to have her "on the job" with me, just like old times — she felt good enough to supervise, so yay for that step forward.

What else is new? Well, I am thrilled to say that I'm hard at work on a YA manuscript. It's historical fiction: my favorite thing to write. I've actually been doing the research for a very long time, off and on (and mostly off). So far I've created a thorough outline and gotten unbelievably satisfying peer feedback on it — the kind that tweaks your own vision for the story in such a way that you really wake up and smell the game-changing coffee. Love when that happens. I've written a significant chunk and set the attainable goal of finishing a decent first draft by year's end. I plan to start blogging my progress, people!

And that brings me to what's going on today: In just a few hours I'll be on the horn (and Web) moderating a fun teleconference for the Editorial Freelancers Association. The topic is "Social Media Strategies for Freelancers," and my wonderful guests are writer/social media strategist Greg Pincus of The Happy Accident and freelancing expert Jake Poinier of Dear Dr. Freelance.