"Butterfly Army" by evildogz -

Please forgive the delays in our regularly scheduled broadcast.  It’s been 12 days since Fat Cat flew the coop, and I’ve been busier than a one-legged man in an — well, you know.

Since FC left, I’ve taken care of various paperwork, done countless errands, had some nice folks come and decimate our weed problem and clean up the yard (got two compliments from the neighbors already), and managed to make the living room look like the washing machine blew up in it.  And that’s just for starters.

By the time FC returns home on leave, this house is going be rocking!  I mean, stuff is going to have its own place (and if it doesn’t, it’s going under the house), all the rooms are going to be clean and in use for something other than storage, and, if all goes well, the dishes just might be done.  So, as you can see, I have big plans.  Big, big plans.  Mwah-ha-ha-ha!

So…so far, so good.  Besides being deprived of my hubby’s company, it was a tough blow losing that guaranteed 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. Starbucks session every morning.  But after much experimenting, trying to write immediately after the baby goes to bed, at 1:00 a.m., 2:00 a.m., during naps, it turns out the best time for me to write is…well, 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m.  Go figure.

What with all the upheaval, writing’s been hit or miss.  I’m running terribly behind on a few deadlines.  But I’m very happy to report that writing is still happening.

Besides my monthly writer’s group, I’ve signed up for a weekly writer’s workshop through the college with my previous creative writing instructor.  It only goes for eight sessions total, but there’s nothing like an outside deadline to keep you hobbling along the road, even if you’re missing a tire and have to carry one end of the axle yourself.

The dogs gave me a new story idea last week, and the darn thing kept rolling around in my mind, gathering moss, getting bigger and fancier.  By the time I sat down to write it, it just smoothed out on screen like roll-on lip gloss.  It’s not a fast write…but it’s sticky-easy and truly organic.  I’m taking my time, and it’s going well.  Much faster than my kappa story.

And in keeping with my determined attitude to not sweat the small stuff, I’m letting the story unspool at its own pace.  That means, of course, by the time this week’s workshop rolled around, I only had half the story done.  So I broke one of my most stringent rules.  I brought it to class and showed it to people.

Usually, I avoid showing stuff to people before it’s finished because there’s an inherent danger that I won’t go on to complete the story once the energy of discussion has washed over it.  But this time it’s a little different.  First of all, we have a bit of a time constraint/length restriction, so I couldn’t bring the entire story even if it were done.

But what made feedback on an incomplete piece not only okay, but worthwhile and helpful, was the fact that my focus was not on whether or not the idea was okay or cool enough, but whether or not there I raised enough good questions.  Having people read the piece and give feedback in terms of their expectations of the piece was fantastic.  It let me know I was on the right track with where I wanted to lead the reader, and it also let me know where the story was a little on the thin side (sensory, sensory!).  So all in all, it was a good workshop session for me.

Of course, I had started that story as a submission to my regular writers’ group, but since I’ve used it for my college workshop, now I have to come up with another one for the regulars.  I have it.  It’s right here in my tiny brain.  But it’s dark and scary — a creature story — and so I’ve been loathe to write it at night.  You know, sitting on the couch in the lightless wee hours, the computer screen sort of blinds one.  Makes it hard to see if there’s something out there looking at me.  I know.  I’m a wimp that way.  I’ll probably get it going today…this morning…right now…right after I check on the baby, who’s probably warm and fuzzy and cuddly and not at all a temptation to return back to bed.

Anyway, probably way more detail on the update that anyone cared to read about.  Just wanted to apprise people that I haven’t slid off the face of the Earth, but am, in fact, clinging quite stubbornly to it.  Yay for gravity!

But now that things are relatively under control — I got it!  I got it! — I feel relatively safe in saying that we will now return to our regularly schedule broadcast.  So see ya tomorrow.  Maybe I’ll be able to report my itchy dark little story completed and out of my head.

Hope everyone out there is writing!  Oh!  And before I forget, *Script Frenzy!  It’s not too late.  Go!  Sign up!  Jump in!  I’m doing it…just starting next week.  Must get caught up first.  But don’t let 100 pages scare you.  Have you seen pages from scripts?  It’s all white space, my friend.  Be brave.  Commit.


*  If anyone cares to join me, my user name on Script Frenzy is squishyang.  Yeah!

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