Monday, January 5, 2015

Back In The Saddle Again

Hello, all. I know it's a bit late, but Happy New Year!

As you may have noticed, I have been absent from the blogosphere for a while now. Like, over a month now. Life was a tad hectic—more so than usual—and the blog fell by the wayside. But I am back now, at least for a little while, which I'm sure thrills you more than can be expressed with mere words.

Here's what's been happening since my last post:

The Day Job Front

Technically, my last day at The Store was over a month ago, but because I am an OCD-ridden control freak and we had a complete Management overhaul, I've stuck around a bit longer because of conversations like this:

New Manager: Who does the signs?
Sales Associate: Oh, M.J. does the signs.
New Manager: Well, who does them when M.J. isn't here?
Sales Associate: Uh...M.J.'s always here.

And then there was this soundbite from our delivery guy, as said to me after I told him I was on my way out:

Him: You're leaving? You're really leaving? I thought Brian was just joking about that to scare me! You can't leave. What are they going to do without you here? What am I going to do without you here? You can't leave!

But now that the holiday season is over, and the new managers are getting their footing, we shall likely find out what they'll do without me, for I shall likely be starting the possibly painful detox process. I'm slightly concerned over my ability to do this, and I'm not alone, either. Fortunately, I have plenty of things to help distract me from my newfound unemployed status.

The Home Front

In a previous post, I talked about my upcoming move to the Sunshine State (hence the quitting of the day job. 2000 miles is a tad long for a commute, as I explained to my wailing boss the day I handed in my resignation letter.). We had a buyer for the house and expected to be moving...well, now, as a matter of fact. So I began to pack up my books. I have 40 boxes packed thus far, and still have more books to go. And you should have seen the vast number of books I gave away to the library. It was kind of embarrassing to drop them off because I had to make so many trips.

But then our buyer backed out, and we had to do the going on the market thing. I am not enjoying the going on the market thing, but because I am an OCD-ridden control freak reasonable and very, very mature, I am dealing with it very, very poorly very well. Especially when the realtor and I had the following conversation:

Her: What's this all over your dining room walls?
Me: My storyboard. I write novels, and this helps me keep the plot and characters worked out and figured out.
Her: That is so cool! But yeah, you have to take it down, okay?
Me:


So, because the storyboard is too personal an item to have on display to potential buyers (Me: Can't you just assure people that the storyboard comes with me? Her: No.), it is, sadly, no more. (And I wasn't a bitch at all the day I took it down. Nope. No siree.)

I do, however, have a replacement storyboard now, which I'm planning to talk about in a future post (Probably Wednesday) because it's an idea that will work for people who want a storyboard but don't have the wall space to devote to it. It might be interesting. Or, it just might be me rambling on some more about whatever pops into my head. Because that never happens.

To wrap up the home front section, we've had lots of showings but no offers. I'm terrified that the house I'd like to acquire down south will sell before we can buy it, and I get super cranky (shock of the century, I know) every time the realtor says, "Well, we'll wait to see what happens."

The Writing Front

I am working on Second Nature. It feels weird to have this as my main focus, as Effigy is actually freakin' published. It wasn't just a very vivid dream. It's actually out there in the world, and some people not related to me have read it, and some of them have even liked it. Which is amazing given how poor a job I've done marketing it. It's one of my resolutions this year to get better at that. First step is to go to a local indie book store and talk to someone (gulp!) about stocking my novel and maybe even scheduling a book signing event.

But I really want to get Second Nature finished. This draft has been dragging on, mostly because Every. Single. Plan. I have concocted thus far has been blown to smithereens by my characters. They just keep doing whatever they want to doDon't tell them, but I have a new plan now, and I'm wishin', prayin', and hopin' I can execute it successfully before they realize what's happened. The current word count is sitting just over 222,000, and I have approximately 10 scenes to finish...before I get to Part Three. This is a monster novel. I realize that.

And on that note, I'm heading back to work. On the WIP, not my day job. Well, unless they call me and beg me to come in. Then I'll probably end up doing that. Because I have a terrible sickness.

I need to move. Far, far away. 2000 miles may not be enough.

Take care, all. Thank you for stopping by.

52 comments:

  1. Thanks for the update on all things your way. I feel so bad for the delivery guy. And even more so for you, for having to take down your storyboard. I'm hoping you simply moved it to the shower curtain.

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    1. I was not expecting that reaction from that delivery guy. I kind of feel bad now, too.

      I honestly didn't even consider the shower curtain, but I'm guessing that'll still be too personal an item to have on display for the unimaginative perspective buyers.

      See...incredibly reasonable and mature. Every time.

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  2. Sorry the deal on the house fell through. At least you're not dealing with the stress of the The Store anymore. Just keep believing it will all come together.

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    1. I'm worried that not dealing with the stress from The Store will be too stressful for me. I MUST know what they're doing because they're doing it wrong! I just know it!

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  3. What you need is another writer to buy your house - that's who is going to appreciate that story board room/dining room. :)

    And welcome to the Sunshine State!

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    1. Story board room. I know, right? I don't know why the realtor insists on calling it a dining room.

      And I can't wait to get to the Sunshine State. If for no other reason than I can once again have a storyboard. Actually, that is the only reason at this point.

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  4. So sorry your house deal fell through. I hope you can find a buyer before too long. Love the Sherlock gif as that represents me basically 24/7 LOL.
    Good to see you blog here!

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    1. I think that Sherlock gif might be my favorite gif of all time. It's so perfect for just about every post I write. =)

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  5. Meant to say back here, not blog here. Geez!

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  6. Take down your storyboards? That's not fair. You need those.

    2000 miles might be enough. That's how much distance I've placed between my family and I and it's worked so far.

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    1. That's what I've been saying. I need those! I may or may not have been going my best Gollum impression at the time.

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  7. Happy new year to you too! And that sucks about the house deal and the storyboard. My fingers are crossed for you.

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  8. Yeah, I don't envy the home-selling. Here's wishing you a quick sale so you can get your writerly groove back (and on the walls). Wow, sounds like lots of changes for you in the new year.

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    1. Thanks...

      Yeah, there are a lot of changes in store for me this year. I'm certain I shall deal with them all beautifully.

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  9. Good luck selling your home and the move to the "sunshine state" sounds wonderful in a cold and dreary winter.

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    1. Yes, I'm sure that when March comes around and I'm on a beach somewhere and not outside shoveling the three feet of snow that always falls during that month, that I'll be much more enthusiastic about my change of address. =)

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  10. Wow! You have a lot going on! You definitely sound valued at your job. Hopefully they can get on without you. They will certainly have to figure out how to.

    I hope you'll find a buyer for your house soon! I also plan on moving (I already live in Florida but I'll be moving to another city) this year. And best of luck with finishing Second Nature!

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    1. I ran into a co-worker at the grocery story this afternoon, and the first thing she said to me was, "Are you coming back? We really need you!"

      So I guess they haven't worked everything out yet. =)

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  11. Good help is hard to ind. Good luck on the move. We are considering a major move this Spring. We'll see what happens, Happy New Year to you and yours.

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    1. This will be the most major move I've ever done. I can't imagine I'll ever want to do it again, so I hope I end up somewhere nice.

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  12. So glad you checked in! The job I left last year was like that--I didn't know how they would survive without me. But I just had to not care. Good luck with writing--can't wait to read the next book! (And I swear I will eventually get back into review writing and get a review for Effigy up on my blog and elsewhere since I finished it three months ago...yeah, I'm terrible...)

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    1. I haven't done well with the not caring part yet. Time and distance will make it easier...I hope. =)

      Thank you very much for taking the time to read Effigy. I sincerely hope you enjoyed it (and not just because you're planning to write a review). :)

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  13. Happy New Year! May you have lots of success this year. Wow, I can't believe you actually went back to the store willingly. You are definitely awesome. I hope you get to sell your house so you can get the fresh start you deserve. All the best with the writing too. You are doing an awesome job.

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    1. I always love it when you stop by the blog, Murees! You always say such nice things.

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  14. Congrats on your (mostly complete) divorce from The Store! And best of luck with book two, the sale, and escaping the bitter cold of New England. (I'm referring to both its climate and its people.)

    Oh, and though it was a far more stressful activity for you, at least your storyboard removal wasn't nearly as time-consuming as our re-painting will be. We're planning to sell this year (though we'll be staying in NE), and apparently unimaginative buyers are turned off by wonderfully orange living rooms, as are manly men by lavender bedrooms. Though I rather suspected the latter.

    Happy new year!

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    1. I think the problem in my house has been things like...Oh, I don't know...the working built-in turntable and 8-track player. Apparently, those give off the illusion that my house isn't updated. Whatever.

      I will miss New England desperately, though.

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    2. "Not updated?" Pish posh. Those are merely evidence your house remains compatible with all audio formats. It shouldn't detract; it's a feature! Like having a half-dozen different inputs on a TV or laptop.

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  15. You should hide cameras around there to capture the disaster after they're no longer graced by your presence.

    I'm sorry about your story board. How painful! Along with the talking about signings and stuff. Good luck with 2015 :)

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    1. I have considered installing web cams, but I'm afraid if I see what they're actually doing in my absence, I'll start breaking in at night to fix it.

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  16. That sounds like how things will go whenever I leave my day job. Although, the other day I was telling a coworker how the inlaws wanted to know when hubby and I were moving down south. The boss came in and asked what we were talking about. When I told her, she said "If you leave, I'll kill you. Or clone you."

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    1. My boss just said she'd cry. And did.
      If I had been a better employee, they would have wanted to clone me...

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  17. It's nice to know you're appreciated, isn't it? Kind of?

    Keep good thoughts about the move. Here's a thought: rather than focusing on the buyers of your house, picture yourself in the sun and on a beach someplace. Living in your new state. Maybe that'll help make it happen.

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    1. I just hope they remember that when I apply for new jobs and get called for a reference.

      And I do imagine myself on a beach frequently...especially when I'm shoveling snow.

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  18. Ouch, house selling is stressful. Hope someone snaps it up soon, storyboard or not.

    On the plus side, at least people like your work, the (old?) day job and the writing!

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    1. They do, don't they. I guess the world never stops surprising you.

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  19. Welcome back!

    Just when you think you're out, they pull you back in, eh?

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    1. It's like they have a tractor beam or something. You know, something like my inability to let things go.

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  20. Congrats on Effigy! Super.
    Strange how the characters take over and rule the keyboard, LOL

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    1. It is strange. I still always feel as though I should be the one in charge. But I never am.

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  21. Interruptions suck! It can really drag out the writing process.

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  22. Darn characters don't like to play by the rules, do they? I hope you find a buyer for your house. I'm looking forward to your storyboard solution!

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    1. I'll have it posted soon. Not as soon as I originally thought, though, but soon.

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  23. Yay! I can't wait for you to move into my hood! The sunshine sure helps with all the crazy of life, and seriously, who needs close-toed shoes? FLIPFLOPS all the way.

    Best of luck with all the crazy of transition, but in the end, it will be good.

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    1. We were in Florida in December looking at houses, and I wore sandals the entire time. It was heavenly.

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  24. Wow! Best of luck with the house AND the writing! When I left my day job I got sucked in into coming in a couple days to help with certain things a few months after. I wouldn't be surprised if it did happen to you, us OCD employees are just that crazy lol

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    1. I've been out for two weeks now, but I think until I'm actually 2000 miles away, I'm still in danger of being called back in.

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  25. Sorry the sale fell thru :( but oh boy I envy you moving somewhere warm!

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    1. Yes, after that morning when it was -26, I was really on board with this move.

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