Tag Archives: daily life

What next?

We lost our beloved dog on Friday and it is giving me mixed feelings. She was sixteen, but her health had gone downwards for quite some time, so I knew this was coming. I’m sad, but at the same time relieved that she isn’t suffering anymore. So as much as I keep thinking back that if she hadn’t had her epilepsy attacks four in a row when she hadn’t had any since beginning of this year, she would have pulled through this spell too, it kinda was clear this time she won’t make it. It was sunny day though, and she fell asleep in my lap.

So I have been keeping away from internet for a while, because after stating it, thank you all for your kind words, when I returned, I saw another ending coming soon. Turns out my story Rare Pearl is ending with this month, too. I have made it into my policy not to post anything that doesn’t have an ending, but still the ending managed to sneak by me without noticing.

I’m now split in two – I have the next Gargoyle series book ready to go through the editing and be set up on the homepage. Or I could post a short story which would lead to the book after the next book. How do they usually put those 0.5 books in between the main series? It is sort of a prologue, but no matter how I look at it, I do want to post it. I guess I’ll look into it and see how others have solved the question. It’s just odd, in lack of better term – the crossroad.

A lot of feeling this week-end. That’s all.

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Business as usual

This month, to make myself more business oriented, because as an Indie author, one ought to, and I have tried to see myself as one, I went along and ordered myself business cards. That’s what they look like, except now they have nice black edges as well, but I figured if I photograph them before, they would actually stand out on the background.

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Maybe it’s an overkill, and I’m sure there are those, who think getting myself pen name business cards is that, but after having to explain people, how my name is spelled and how my homepage is named and writing on pieces of papers to get the info on, I decided that this little investment is worth that money. I chose info that would not change easily, everything related to my business-ish style and just had them done.

The style might look weird on first glance, like why wood and so dark, but if you visit my homepage, you’ll see that this is the style design I am working with, and the symbol has become my representational image in a lot of other places.

I plan to use similar style for my books after I figure out some design system for them, especially for few series. I am very fond of Japanese book cover designs and appreciate a good design style on series, so I am currently working towards having some recognizable design that would stand out enough that people check it and see it and realize who it belongs to.

So over a half a year of dealing with my Indie author project, ha ha haaa, I realized yesterday, when the business cards arrived, that I actually have an icon for myself, a name, a physical representation, few books on my name and a homepage that updates regularly. And I am working on new titles as we speak.

I am actually a business woman. My writing has become my business. Scary, huh?

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Place the light hasn’t touched

We all have those cupboards somewhere in the house that contain the memories of lost times that don’t get touched as long as there is anything else that needs work on.

I tackled one of them today. Despite the coughing. It just felt like it today. When I moved, I brought some of the shelves with me, because if you have books then there is never too few shelves. But before I could get them in place (we found a place for them! That’s a miracle), brother insisted on a merry-go-round. Because the things he wants to put away need a place in another cupboard, where we need to make space beforehand and those things need place of their own before, etc. Long story short – this cupboard was fourth in a row, not including the boxes underneath the beds.

I agreed to it and he helped! We had one morning off and in all, the biggest three took us only 3 hours in total, got a lot of space now and now I have place for everything. More like, now I know again where everything is.

But when I got to this one, it gave me a jolt – seemed like I hadn’t moved anything there the past 5 years after we rearranged our room. It indeed looked more like juvenile hideout than a grownup’s office…

I found some odd stuff from there, from the black tea brew I prepped for henna painting, some  Magic The Gathering cards, a bottle of Devil’s Oil (oil with sesame seeds and chillies – superb pain relief), a variety of paints, papers and coffee set… As if anything that needen’t be in daily life had ended up in there. So I took my sweet time cleaning it all out and replacing it with things that I actually use. Like organized version of the mess. I feel proud and accomplished, despite knowing there is one more office cupboard we need to tackle before we can bring in the bookcases.

I seem to do nothing else lately than clean. But it is all for good purpose. If for nothing else, then to know where i keep what. It’s just been so frustrating lately to search half an hour before I can start. It was as if there was no space to what I wanted to do. Maybe that’s also why my writing has drizzled down to nothing – I feel no space around me. With all the Barbie doll stuff around me and everything else, it just wasn’t happening.

Oh, yes, I’m making doll clothes again. Because sis moved too, some of the dolls came to my place for spa. And with all the tossing out old clothes, I kinda went through them with eye out for soft materials that would make nice dresses and pajamas and coats and trousers and… the whole wardrobe really. I have already turned my old red winter coat into one coat for Barbie and found punch of other stuff that would be nice material for some other things, including, if I can manage it, some handbags and other things. Gives me a way to test out some patterns I’ve been eying on Pinterest lately.

In that line, I’d like to note down that I am very proud for my niece. There was this Ken doll I got some years back on a whim that then moved on to niece. Turns out he has lost half of his arm at some point, yet she still plays with him and it seems to be no problem. “Perfect to play doctor on” as sis said.

Ok, but I’m gonna go and finish off some homepage stuff now and then see if I can finally get to that anime I’ve had an eye on for a while.

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Happy New Year!

winterHappy New Year, everyone!

Because writing wasn’t going so well and we had a small break from the workload, I decided to fill an old promise I had made for my niece a month ago before NaNo began – new set of doll clothes.

It was partly inspired by a revelation that I had mom’s sewing machine only meters away from my writing desk and that I haven’t sewn anything or done any other handwork in a while. Well, little things excluded like teaching niece how to make snowflakes after her ballet class.

As of writing, I think of taking up Flash Fiction this year on my homepage. It is very hard to write and do things without deadlines it seems, so perhaps setting myself some goals again might help it.

 

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Half of the result of the 5 hours in the kitchen.

I had a little surprise this Christmas, too. It’s hard not to get in mood, when your folks declare that they are heading to the forest and you are left with kitchen duty on Christmas Eve morning, so after 5 hours I finally did “go in the mood”, sort of. I think it was more like this soothing feeling that even if you are not in the mood, traditions don’t ask and still happen. Which, considering my mood, was a soothing palm.

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Pinky Cooper, later named Poppy.

Also, who can stay angry when the Dwarf Express decided that as my niece had asked a dog doll from Santa, because the doll is so different from the rest, her aunty must need one too. So my only present this year was this on the right. To everybody’s surprise they are very nice! Soft on touch, articulated hands and feet, entire body toned with blush and beauty marks, soft changeable hair, DETAILED and WELL MADE costume (which compared to some of the Barbies and others I’ve seen – wow! Yoke! With buttons! SEWN ON!). My niece loves it and I love it.

So, as to fulfill my promises before the new year starts, I picked up the sewing machine and went for it. Lessons learned: don’t trust the pattern sizes and the newbie mistakes are bound to happen no matter how many times you do it.

 

We have this old piece of white polyester cloth that got ruined thanks to a little puppy nosebleed on the most inconvenient time, so it has been sitting for about 15 years. As nothing big can be made of it, but as you can skip doing edges for it melts, it was perfect candidate for this.

The first dress was actually the easiest. The reason it looks pink underneath is doll’s swim suit. My first time trying to make sleeve like sleeves. There has to be an easier way to sew them! Must be! Thank god I couldn’t break the machine as it is not mine or I would have pushed it off the table so many times. Fixing the mistakes I made with the machine took more time than sewing it all by hand. I would know, because I have done this by hand for a long time. But in the end The dress got made and I am very happy about it. It fit! And who can deny that satisfaction!

The white dress was an experiment. The lacy part is the back to add some spunk. I tried to make a layered petal dress. Relatively easy, given the pattern didn’t fit at all in the end and this was the dress that proved to me – I do not like patterns with seam allowance. It drove me nuts when I spent the next 2 hours fitting it on the doll.

The puff pants bad image – haven’t got another image. That’s testing my own made pattern. After I had enough of all the off size measurements, I decided to make one of my own. I recall it being far easier in school. Oh well, it was fun :D.

And the last, but not the least my joy and pride – a coat. Because my niece likes to take her Barbies one by one to kindergarten, then she might as well use a coat to cover up their dresses so they don’t get dirty. This is made of the same material I had my own old coat made of. It is heavy though, but I loved it. This piece alone took me a whole day – all the seam allowances had to be stitched over or it would be a very short lived. I still like Lolita fashion on Barbies :D.

And now, as the last sunset of 2015 has ended, the second picture of it for you. A pink sunset for the ending year.

May the coming year be filled with inspiration and will to work, stamina, coffee and friends. May it carry only the best and bring you lots of publications and good reviews. 

winter 2

 

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Filed under Barbie, Handwork, writing trivia

3 is the charm

I like number 3, or it’s more like number 3 likes me. After realizing my biggest stumbling stone I have in literature right now and going through the stories I’m currently most keen on writing – all three share the same problem. So I’m currently going through my library in search for solution. Personal stakes. That’s the key phrase right there.

As if helpful hints that yeah, you’ve got the problem, are the interesting articles popping up around me on writing good strong characters. I will find the solution for this, even if I do have to read through half of the library again. You hear this? I’m in good mood. And who wouldn’t be? It’s no snow outside! Dirty and dusty, but no snow!

Which took me to dress shopping. I have been contemplating change of style together with this season. I guess it’s not so much to rattle myself up, but to give folks around me something to deal with. Lately I’ve heard a lot of sneaky remarks behind my back, when I’m not suppose to hear, how people know what I’m gonna do next or think next, because they think they know me so well, when it has been completely opposite to what I really think. So, in order to change this charade, I’m gonna change my style. And one way to do that with effect is to move from long skirts (and I’ve been wearing long skirts for years) to above knee dresses. Yay!

It won’t be so shocking to me as I’ve been thinking of this move for some time now, but I haven’t really discussed it besides my mom, who went as far as getting the first dress. So I went and got another one for daily wear too. Last time I even contemplated about shorter line, sis got the short skirt to herself and made it into her own, because my family’s reaction was bluntly “scare the people some other time”. Hehee, and now I’m gonna do just that.

And no, I’m not planning anything very provocative just yet – just something simple, classic and something that would play nice with my fuller figure, because I like it rather lot and my reason for full skirts has never been to hide my body. I just don’t feel I ought to show it to everybody as it is not FOR everybody.

April Nano is drawing near. So I’m contemplating if to go with something nutty and new or try finish the mermaid story that has been nagging on the back of my mind for a while. Yet, for that I also need to finish off the problem with the main character, which takes me back to the reality that I have the same problem with her that i have with others – personal stakes.

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Filed under Drama, Writing

Swearing in foreign country

I do not pretend to understand how it is in countries, where there is one major language and you have little need to learn other languages, but here’s my little dilemma of the day. Or, not really a dilemma as a growing concern.

Being in a country, where most of the population can understand minimum of two languages, but mostly know 3 or 4 by the time they reach to University – there is a growing trend among new foreign incomers to curse in their mother tongue. Not just use foul language, but seriously call Estonians names and yell abuse to them in their own mother tongue. They do it simply, because they believe their language is so unfamiliar here that they get away with it. Them being young, and all the other “excuses” – I would not give it light of day. Comes with the job.

The problem with this is that if they go around in Tartu, believing that fairy tale of their language being unknown to us, they are up for a fair beating. A beating they will then go on blaming others for and being “the guests” in this country, they make everything in their power to present Estonia as racists and xenophobic country. I wish this was something out of my own paranoia, but that’s the reality we are facing today.

However, the impact such behaviorism has, has started to come back to me through friends and locals. Over the years, watching how this youth represents their home countries and seeing how people literally move out of the house, because they do not want to live under the same roof with people like that, has made me understand that the reasons, why locals do not search active contact with foreigners is looking straight at me every other night.

You can call it prejudice if you like – it does not change the fact that they do not want to know the person, who at any point of the given time stands in a group of their countrymen/women and loudly criticize you or locals. Who would want to get to know someone, who calls you bitch in Italian, because you did not want to join their group? Should we look past that to see “the real person” behind it, when we have seen you act like that while you think you are safe among your friends? Which face will you put up to us then, when you want to make an impression? Which one of them is the lie you represent?

There have been several concerning incidents lately, where locals have been stamped racist after reacting to someone, whom I happen to know did abuse their language regards locals. The echo that ripped through the surface was refreshingly disturbing. The foreigners were all shocked, victimized and then displayed as suffering party of the conflict while the locals were presented as yokels and uneducated punch. I lost the count on how many after that suggested that “we really should learn from the big countries” and “that’s why the foreigners come here to bring us just a bit of culture.”

To hear this made my inside crawl. To hear something like that in 21st century was as disturbing as it was learning such medieval way of thinking in history classes. Should I believe that what the Estonians did was wrong? How do you expect them to react? Civilized? Respect goes both ways, you know – if you show them none from the beginning, when you think they do not understand, then you can’t expect it, when you both are speaking the same language. Had I not known those people openly smutted locals in Spanish before the incident, I would be inclined to give this a benefit of doubt. However, the fact that I do know they did that, turned the entire incident upside down.

However, this is the classic case of karma biting you in the arsh. The fact that we are “expected” to put up with something like that is disrespectful and idiotic. To expect us to believe that you did not start the fight after going around Tartu with that potty mouth for a while is also understatement. You can swear your hand on Bible, but if you abuse your own mother tongue for this – you gotta be real fast runner or really good with your fists.

They say there are always two parts in the conflict. I do not make excuses to racist groups and speaking instead of tossing something probably is the better way to deal with folks like that, but I can’t let this problem slide either and seriously want to put this out there:

If you go around, abusing others in your mother tongue and think locals won’t understand – you deserve what’s coming for you!
And no point of running home to your mother,
for what mother would be proud of you?

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Organizing privacy

It is third week (technically 2nd, but calendar says third and who am I to argue?) of January and I feel as if it is already the end of January. I know I haven’t been very active here lately, but life takes its own toll every now and then.

So, little updates on what’s been going on.

I began editing the Dead Child’s Portrait. Finally. Until tonight I’ve been second guessing myself and disliking the first page so much that…! Well, tonight it seemed a bit less evil, so I sucked it in and started. There is few big problems I know I ought to address if I am to work on on this story, but I guess I’ll just have to find the solutions and just go with the flow for change. But I’m on 3rd page and didn’t skip the first page, so yay! I have 3 pages done!

Talking of flow – I signed up on 2 Year Novel Course again, presented by Lazette Gifford. I did try once before, but then school cut it short, ’cause even with 10 + years of practice, you never really count on how much work one or other story demands. Yes, well, now I know better and say the amount of work only seems to grow the more you learn. Now that I don’t have school any more, I guessed I might as well try again for I do have a story that I am very much interested on getting done the proper way (ha ha haa!).

The story I chose is the one that I sought out couple of months ago. I wrote about it here. Reusing wasn’t quite working out. However, then an other odd idea from the past – more like a character – stuck to the story and suddenly it changed its form, gathered some fury and now it is pretty much workable. It is intriguing to me, because the morality of the story isn’t clean cut – just the way I like it and thus I feel it might live up to working on it for the next 2 years. Hehee – my next twisted tale of human moral justice.

I have lost my mechanical pen it seems. So tomorrow I’m gonna get that thing first.

Few days ago I realized that I need order back in my life. The past month has been one mess over another, because I trusted someone else to take the responsibility over things, because I’ve been having serious trouble with painful tooth that demanded antibiotics and painkiller mix which seriously messed up with my brain for nearly 3 weeks, that when I woke up from that messy time, I realized I really was in a mess. I started with clearing my laptop and PC and re-organizing some of the books I have. Next will be my table and then organizing my writing life a little. Things like, maybe doing the assignments of 2YN for every Friday?

And talking of assignments – 90 Days To Your Novel A Day-By-Day Plan For Outlining & Writing Your Book.  Yeah, I got it. Well, getting it more like it. Together with the copies of the anthology, it is supposed to arrive in few days. I’m expecting no miracle from it, but inspiration and perhaps few ideas to help developing a proper system out of what I already tested. Which I love! So! Yes, I’m think together with the other two this might just be interestingly wickedly good for me. Even if it is “from someone, who hasn’t written a book herself”, to which I’d like to reply – those, who can’t, teach! And they do it often better than those, who can write. Individual thing I guess :).

But yeah. I am thinking of organizing myself a bit more so I can get accomplished more. Well, until Walking Dead hasn’t got a new episode, there is very little to distract me :).

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