Life in progress


17 Comments

#SoCS – Doors we don’t go through

As the last door I went through that wasn’t mine was my son’s school door, it got me to thinking about my own school. I refer to it as mine loosely, for two reasons. One is I haven’t taken a course in almost a year–I’ve either been too busy making money to afford one, or too broke to afford one. There has to be a solution there somewhere … Save the money? Yeah. But I keep spending it on stupid things like hydro and gas.

The other reason I hesitate to call it my school is I’ll probably never walk through the front door of it. According to Google maps, it’s about 4,600km (2,858 miles) away, which is apparently a 42-hour drive. That’s one hell of a commute every day … or every four days if I don’t sleep. It really looks like a lovely place though. https://www.sfu.ca/ Lovely enough that I’ll try to visit one day.

Weird that we now have the technology and means to go anywhere in the world, but we rarely do. I imagine if I cut off my Internet and saved the money instead to fly around the world, I’d get out a lot more. But then, how would I know where to go without the Internet to show me the great places I could visit? Sure, I could go to restaurants and use their Internet, but that would result in spending my money again. Especially if I have to drag the kids along so they could get their Internet fixes. Yeah, bad idea.

This post is brought to you by Stream of Consciousness Saturday. Click the link to read all the other entries, which you’ll find in the comments, and join in yourself. It’s fun! https://lindaghill.com/2018/02/23/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-feb-24-18/


24 Comments

#SoCS – To Do

My to-do list is once again way over the top. I find it much easier when that list is dominated by stuff I have to do for other people. When I promise someone I will, for instance, have their editing job done on a certain day, nine times out of ten I get it done early. I’m able to concentrate better when I have someone counting on me. I have discipline. When it’s only me counting on me, I have none.

At the moment I’m supposed to be working on three short stories (I have a deadline for two of them, but they’re not motivating me yet), one of which I’ve gone as far as creating a Word document and naming. Not a single word in the document itself. The other two I have great ideas for, but the deadline for the first is closer. As someone wise once said (Stephen King?) starting is the hardest part.

My excuse for not working on my novel is I’m waiting for a beta reader to get back to me. I could work on it anyway, but there’s this short story …

All in all it seems I’m the last person on my to-do list who has any clout. I love to make other people happy by getting their work done on time, but me–meh. I’m not that important. I need to find a way to change that. And I need to find a way to stop procrastinating. In other words, I need to get off my ass and do things for me.

Suggestions on how to do that are welcome.

This post (that I managed to write, despite procrastinating) is brought to you by Stream of Consciousness Saturday. Click the link to find the other entries in the comment section, and join in today! https://lindaghill.com/2018/02/02/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-feb-3-18/


20 Comments

#JusJoJan 2018, the 4th – Passionate

I love language. My love for it compels me to study it constantly; it compelled me to become an editor. But I hadn’t realized how much of a passion I had for it until a couple of months ago when I talked to the dictionary.

It’s interesting, when I think of a dictionary as an old, unchangeable tome, to find that it really is a living and breathing entity. I use Merriam-Webster as a matter of course when I edit, because it’s associated with the Chicago Manual of Style, which I also rely on. So when I looked up the word “nocked” on Merriam-Webster online for a client, I was confused to find it wasn’t there. “Nock” was, but the conjugations were absent. So I wrote to them. And half an hour later, they replied with this:

Dear Linda:

Thanks for your email. Our online dictionary is based very loosely on one of our printed dictionaries, and it still maintains a few print-based conventions (though we’re doing our best to work through them). One of them is that participial adjectives like “nocked” that clearly derive from the verb and which have the same meaning core as the verb are covered by the participle, and therefore the verb. “Nocked,” then, would mean “having a nock or notch” or “fitted against a bowstring.”

I hope this is helpful. Thanks for writing.

Cordially,
Lee Goodrich, Editorial Department
Merriam-Webster, Inc.

I admit, I fangirled a bit.

This post is brought to you by Just Jot it January, and in particular, prompted by the word, “passionate,” provided by Rosemary! Thank you so much, Rosemary! You can find Rosemary’s JusJoJan post by clicking right here. Please go and say hi! To participate in the prompt, please visit this post, where you’ll find the rules and you can leave your link in the comments.


30 Comments

#SoCS – All or Almost Nothing

All the time I’ve blogged up until now–all four and a half years–I’ve been jobless. Okay, I have the 24/7 job of single-handedly looking after my two disabled kids, but other than a paper route, I haven’t had a job that paid me anything. I haven’t needed to work due to the money my kids receive from the government, thank goodness. But that won’t last forever. If one of them decides to move out, or if I don’t receive as much money when Alex turns eighteen next year (which I expect will be the case), I won’t have enough money to keep a roof over their heads.

Thus, the career in editing. And my forced inattention to my blog and those who support it. It’s not an “all or nothing” situation yet, but you might have noticed that I’m not visiting you as much lately. It’s not a case that I don’t want to, believe me. There are just so many hours in a day.

To be honest, I feel almost guilty enough to stop doing the prompts. Although you seem to be doing okay without my input, I feel like I’m being rude. Please know I’m doing my best.

In other news, I’ve been trying to get out for walks more often. This editing gig requires a lot of time sitting on my butt, and I decided that before I’m able to take up the entire couch by myself, I needed to get some exercise. Unfortunately, my beloved waterfront trail is under water at the moment. Here are some before and after shots:

So instead of walking down at the waterfront, I’ve been strolling around the neighbourhood, taking pictures of doors and flowers and bunnies.

Join us in Stream of Consciousness Saturday! Click this link to find out how! You know what’s better than SoCS? Nothing!


41 Comments

#SoCS – Project-ing

I hadn’t realized until now how much time I was spending on the project I just finished. It was an awesome 150,000 word urban fantasy novel that I enjoyed working on immensely, but the energy it took? Maybe I need to learn to self-regulate a bit.

I mean, I’m sitting down now drinking a bottle glass of wine (no editing, honest 😉 ), and it occurred to me that this is the first time in almost two months that I’ve allowed myself such a luxury. Through all this time I’ve spend editing this novel, I’ve held back from relaxing — not even listening to music — in case I had an hour to work. I’ve worked on it at breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and right up until I’ve gone to bed at midnight. Not that whole time, but for what adds up to four to sometimes eight hours in a day.

In exchange for all this, I have experience. I have a better idea of how to project the amount of time it will take me to edit a novel of this size. Of course it all depends on the level of editing involved too, but I won’t bore you with those details. Suffice to say its given me a better understanding of my chosen career. You know, the one other than being an author, which may or may not earn me millions of dollars and scads of loyal fans. Haha.

I know I have a while to go before I can make any serious money in the editing field… and perhaps stream of consciousness writing that I’m morally obligated not to edit isn’t the time to talk about an editing career… but what the hell.

Cheers!

socsbadge2016-17

This somewhat tipsy post is part of Stream of Consciousness Saturday, written Friday night and scheduled for early Saturday morning when it’s still a decent time to be drinking wine and not yet coffee. Here’s the link https://lindaghill.com/2017/03/03/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-mar-417/ Join in today! It’s fun!


26 Comments

Just Jot It Jan 3 – Warning

I need a warning light and a siren to come on every time I spend more than five minutes on Facebook these days. It’s never been more of a time-gobbler than in recent months. The thing is, I justify it to myself because I find so much inspiration there. Not only that, I make connections with readers, writers, promoters, and generally helpful people. I’m in a few fantastic groups where I’ve found opportunities not only to promote my book, but to get work as an editor. Once I start that, Facebook is going to be off-limits.

I know I should be working on my own novel, but again, I have an excuse. Proofreading takes intense concentration. For that matter, anything I do on my book demands that I get into a certain zone. My family can see on my face when I’m there. I go totally blank. It takes a chisel to get through that sort of zone.

Things should be easier once I have a real job to do and a deadline set by someone else. This working for myself deal is hard! Putting a schedule in place for myself, when I have a family around who needs everything now, is hardly conducive to getting any work done that can be put off ’til later, since it’s only me counting on it getting done. This is why I’m so looking forward to working as an editor.

I need structure in my life. And Facebook ain’t cutting it.

This is very appropriate and it’s a fantastic song:

Thanks very much to Dan Antion for today’s prompt, “Warning.” You can visit Dan and read his latest post (and see some great pictures) here: https://nofacilities.com/2017/01/02/sunrise-photo-shoot/

And of course, join us in Just Jot It January! Go here for the latest prompt and read all the other posts, too: https://lindaghill.com/2017/01/03/jusjojan-daily-prompt-jan-3rd17/

jjj-2017


21 Comments

Ultimately a Living

I have a passion for language. Ultimately, I hope to make a living through it.

“Ultimate” is the word of the day for the Tuesday Use It In A Sentence prompt. Click here to visit our lovely host, Stephanie, and join in today!

Okay, now for my news:

I’ve been busy these past couple of months taking a course in editing through Simon Fraser University. I received my final mark last week and I passed – with 95%.

editing-and-editors-an-introduction-grade

I realize it seems a bit self-indulgent to share my mark publicly, but there’s a sound reason behind it. I have no practical experience in editing anything but my own work and as it turns out, I need that just to apply to get into the Certificate program at SFU. I plan to hang out my proverbial shingle in the new year, so posting my results will, I hope, inspire confidence in my abilities. I’ve just started my second course of 12, but I can’t take the twelfth one until I qualify.

I have a passion for learning, for the English language, and also for helping people fulfill their own passions. I think I’m on the right path.