Blog No. 315
After a less than stellar summer of writing, I managed to pick things up over the last few months. Christian and I were both coming to the end of our individual projects, so we made an effort to get together when we could and work. I managed to get the first draft of Neon Heart done that way. I put that aside for a few weeks in order to start my novel and give myself some time and space from the novella so I can be very critical when I went back to it. I intended to hit it hard starting on December first (putting the novel aside for the month and getting back to it in the new year. The problem with that plan is that, not only am I really lazy, but the day job decided that I shouldn’t be aloud to do anything but work there (and suffer).
Part of it has to do with the extra work that comes with staging. We have stage pieces that are available to people who rent rooms and when they are part of a rental, someone has to put them together. That also, sometimes, comes with lighting and draping. We currently have a small staff (which works most of the time since it’s feast or famine at a rental facility). It’s mostly a good thing, but it also means that we have a limited pool to draw from when it comes to those tech shifts. Thankfully they are extra hours and don’t count towards the max we are allowed to work (though we are often over that in the feast times) but they aren’t overtime. Just more time (that I don’t have for writing).
The stage pieces are big and cumbersome, finicky to get together, and require a lot of extras even with the most simple setups. This time of year, we have a lot of rentals that want to use our stage (concerts, recitals, plays, public forums) and they all want it to be different. Some want lighting, some want the drapes (a whole huge job in itself) and some don’t want the stage at all. That means a lot of putting the stage up one day (after a shift or on my days off) then taking it down a day or two later, only to have it back up at the end of the week. Since I’m the most well versed in the tech shifts, I tend to be automatically scheduled for them and whoever else is available gets to help.
In general, our busy time is the end of the year, so I know it’s coming, but this year, there seems to be a lot of extra shifts that I have to do (because there is no one else to do it) and the schedule for the stage is extra busy. It means money (which is hard to balk at, for sure) but it also means that from last week to the day before Christmas eve, I have very few days off. Now that the ChiSeries Best of the Best of the Best is over, I should be able to make use of that time, but after a long string of busy work days and stage building, a single day off is tough to take advantage of (especially with all the other things that people have to do like grocery shop and with the extra Christmas tasks that need to be completed). I hope to take advantage of that time, but I know I’m going to be tired. I’m already tired and I have so much longer to go. Then again, the extra money this time of year is certainly helpful.
Essentially, I’m going to be behind on everything, again. I do get a good week and a bit off of the day job between Christmas and New Years (with a few shifts scattered in there and a dreaded New Years Eve shift that I would pay to get out of). I’m going to have to use that time very diligently to get my editing caught up. I really wanted to have a clean enough draft to start sending it to folks by the new year, but I think I’ll be behind on that just based on logistics. I have until the end of April for my deadline, but I’d love to be ahead of that. Printing is such a time sink (and the most frustrating part) I want to have some extra time for the process. For now, it’s head down, plow through, get paid, and try to get some editing and podcast work done in when I can. P.S. The ChiSeries Fundraiser went much better than I figured. We still didn’t have a lot of people, and we had to pressure some friends to take part last minute, but we managed to create the atmosphere we wanted, and people seemed to like it. I don’t know if I have anything else for the rest of the year. I’ll update my events as I get them!