Category Archives: If We Were Having Coffee…

If We Were Having Coffee… Brief Visit

weekendcoffeeshare (1)Today’s post is a part of the Weekend Coffee Share, graciously hosted by Part Time Monster every weekend. A time for us to come together, share a cup of coffee (or our beverage of choice) to share some of what is going on in our lives.  It’s a lovely check-in!


If we were having coffee I’d be excited to tell you that I got to meet Corina of Wasted Day and Wasted Nights! We got together last night for dinner and then a venture into the Portland Underground (more about that to come at another time!)

Otherwise it’s been a pretty normal week – work’s been a bit slower which has allowed me some time for a few projects, but I haven’t managed to get as much editing done as I need. That’s going to change soon though — I am determined.

This week enters my countdown to vacation!  I have exciting plans starting next Friday and am really looking forward to the chance to get away from my normal routine for a while.

If we were having coffee I wouldn’t be able to chat for long — I’m having a group of friends over tonight for a play reading and need to do some cleaning and food prep for it.  But I’ve got some time to hear about your week – how have things been for you?

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If We Were Having Coffee… Bagels on Fire!

Today’s post is a part of the Weekend Coffee Share, graciously hosted by Part Time Monster every weekend. A time for us to come together, share a cup of coffee (or our beverage of choice) to share some of what is going on in our lives.  It’s a lovely check-in!


If we were having coffee I’d tell you a little about what I learned yesterday:

  1. Sometimes a bagel doesn’t fit into a toaster because it is a bagel and they can be oddly shaped.
  2. Sometimes, however, the bagel does not fit because there is actually a little heel of another type of bread down in the toaster that someone else forgot about.
  3. If there are small flames coming out of the toaster and someone else is around my first response is to calmly ask, “What do you do for a toaster fire?”
  4. Unplugging the toaster is always a good place to start.
  5. Putting a pizza pan over the top of the toaster will not cut off the air circulation enough to put out the flames.
  6. Blowing out the flames, though, can help do what the pizza pan could not.
  7. The colors of hot fire are really pretty and I kind of wish I could have captured them to look at more closely (I did not).

Thankfully the only casualty was half a bagel and that heel of bread, the toaster fared fine, as did the half a bagel that was NOT in the burning-side.

That was the big excitement of the week – what a way to start out my Friday…. Luckily the rest of the day went smoothly.

I’d tell you I’ve slowed down on my edits, but am still trudging along.  I’m liking the changes I’m making, and part of the reason I’m going so slowly is because I’m really trying to think about what needs to be done, how to do it well and then doing it. Yup, this is the revision where no gaps are allowed, where the story makes sense and flows properly.  Then I can give it to those first readers for their first impressions.

What have you been up to?  How are you doing?

 

If We Were Having Coffee… planning

Today’s post is a part of the Weekend Coffee Share, graciously hosted by Part Time Monster every weekend. A time for us to come together, share a cup of coffee (or our beverage of choice) to share some of what is going on in our lives.  It’s a lovely check-in!


If we were having coffee I’d tell you it was a pretty uneventful week.  Work has been busy, and I haven’t had a lot of energy in the evenings.  I need to buckle down on the editing, managed a little bit but am thinking that I may need to give myself a bit more time on this.  It’s my first time doing this kind of work on a novel and I’m learning an awful lot about my own process and think (hope) that the next one will be able to go smoother.

My plans for the weekend are very heavy on the editing — with a few other events scattered about.  Hopefully I’ll get back into the groove and make some real progress.

This weekend I also will be working on some blog-plotting.  I have some ideas brewing about, been doing a bit of plotting, planning and idea bouncing with people.  What I need to put some real time and thought into is just what I want to really focus on.  I have limited energy and need to manage it carefully – with work taking more of it, and wanting to make more progress on the novel I have to pay attention to what I’m working on.  Which means some planning — figuring out which projects will keep for a while, which ones can be knocked out more quickly, and setting things into motion.

That’s about all I’ve got today.  Lots of thoughts swirling around in my head, but if we were having coffee I’d calm them to hear what you’ve got going on these days.  Tell me, I’d love to hear.

 

If We Were Having Coffee… Mountains, Animals, and Theater!

Today’s post is a part of the Weekend Coffee Share, graciously hosted by Part Time Monster every weekend. A time for us to come together, share a cup of coffee (or our beverage of choice) to share some of what is going on in our lives.  It’s a lovely check-in!


If we were having coffee I might look a bit worn down. Ridiculously happy, but worn down.

It’s been quite the week! I had an out-of-town friend visiting and we spent Monday up at Mt. Hood!  My mom went with us, which was nice — my friend went for a hike and Mom and I had some time to visit which is something we don’t get to do very often, despite living under the same roof!  It was strange to see the Mountain with so little snow… very sad.

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Mount Hood. I see this mountain in the distance a lot during any given week, but I haven’t gotten up to it in a very long time.

In addition to visiting time I managed some writing time!  It was nice and cool up there, and the views were stunning.

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Mom captured this picture of me working while looking up at the Mountain
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Until it got too bright this was another one of my writing spots — looking away from the mountain.

The rest of the week went in a blur — work was busy busy busy.

But Saturday.. Saturday was the day I was looking forward to.  Back ages ago a friend of mine and I bought tickets to go see Wicked when the Broadway Tour came to town and this was the weekend to see it!

We made a day of it, which was fun.  First came breakfast out with her, her husband, and her two awesome daughters (I love doing things with her family! They are such an awesome little group of people.  One of her daughters has guest posted for me, and they helped me out with one of my reading challenges for Nerd In The Brain‘s Summer Reading Program!)

Then we were off to the zoo!  Well, my friend and I went to the zoo — the girls changed their mind so her husband took them for a day of activity.  I had been wanting to go to the zoo for a while, and it hadn’t happened with any of my out-of-town guests so I was very pleased to get the chance to wander around.  I know that some people have issue with Zoos… but I really enjoy them.

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I think this was the first time I saw this guy away from the lower viewing window!
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This picture looks a bit like a painting to me… This bird was having a fun time posing for me.

We saw Lions! And Tigers (well, sort of, he was trying to hide out) and Bears! And giraffes, and penguins, and elephants, and otters and much more.

And then, the main event!

20150808_133325I have wanted to see Wicked forever… I know the music well.  I read the books that it’s inspired by, and I just love it.

I was very pleased with the show – it was beautifully sung and acted, the scenery was awesome!

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The mechanical dragon above the map of Oz. From our seats we could see the guys up in the scaffolding who helped make the dragon move!

I generally love going to the theater but for some reason this show was one I REALLY wanted to see and I felt like a kid waiting for a big celebration — bouncing in my seat, grinning through the entire show (and mouthing many of the words).  It was so much fun!  And the story… the story they tell is just wonderful.  I love turning the Wizard of Oz story on its ear, looking at a different way of telling it.

Where I come from we believe all sorts of things that aren’t true. It’s called history.                              -The Wizard

My Storyteller brain and my historian brain just gobble it up…. I say as though those two parts of myself were separate at all…

I’ve about run out of steam so that’s all I’d have to say for now… how about you?  What have you been up to this week?

 

 

 

If We Were Having Coffee… Vacation and the Coast!

Today’s post is a part of the Weekend Coffee Share, graciously hosted by Part Time Monster every weekend. A time for us to come together, share a cup of coffee (or our beverage of choice) to share some of what is going on in our lives.  It’s a lovely check-in!


If we were having coffee I’d tell you that my friend is visiting from Maine!  It’s been a great visit so far, and we have the weekend ahead of us still.  Today we’re going to spend some time downtown, Powell’s is high on the list.

Yesterday we tried to beat the heat (it’s hitting the 100’s here in the Portland Metro Area, which is just not okay) by going to the coast.  It was a perfect day and I had so much fun.  For the first time in a long time I played a game that I loved when I was younger — chase the waves.  The goal is to reach the edge of the waves reach before it does. If you wade out enough before picking the wave to run from you get soaked in the race.  I just did one round but it was so fun!

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Racing the wave! With the bag I won from Nerd In The Brain Summer Reading Program! It’s such an amazing beach-bag!

We walked quite a ways then sat and wrote for a while before heading to Mo’s for lunch.  Then we drove down the coast a bit, stopping to take a little hike to another great beach.  I love the coast so much, the salt air, the sounds and smell, it is one of my favorite places to be.

Check out the pictures… just a few that I took.

I’m looking forward to the rest of the visit.  We’re sticking around town for the weekend, but Monday a trip to Mount Hood is in the plans!  I’ll be posting pictures on Instagram throughout, I’m sure 🙂

I know that there was other things going on but… the beach.  A day enjoying good company and relaxing by the water had wiped most everything else from my mind.

Late edit!  I just remembered the other thing I wanted to mention here!  Monday I am guest posting over at Part Time Monster!  I’m very excited about my “Monday Monster” post – I hope you’ll all come over to check it out!

If We Were Having Coffee… Am I rambling?

Today’s post is a part of the Weekend Coffee Share, graciously hosted by Part Time Monster every weekend. A time for us to come together, share a cup of coffee (or our beverage of choice) to share some of what is going on in our lives.  It’s a lovely check-in!


If we were having coffee I’d offer up some homemade chocolate lattes — I made a few when my cousin was in town last weekend and, since I’ve got the materials, it’s cheaper than meeting up at a coffee shop.  I’ve been trying to save money for a while now (not very successfully) but now I’m buckling down and really trying to make it happen.  There’s just too much that needs to be saved for, you know?

I’d sip my espresso (I’ve learned to like it just a little watered down, and am also trying to cut the calories) and make some comment about how this whole adult-thing is hard sometimes.  See, it would be easier to save if what I was saving for were just things I want, like season tickets to the touring Broadway season (excited about a number of the touring shows and really excited about some of the season options.  My birthday plans include going to see Book of Mormon… if I can get tickets), or getting a new laptop.

But highest on my list of things I need to save for is a PAP machine. I did a sleep study a while ago and the results came back that I have mild sleep apnea. I do not look forward to adjusting to using one of those things but try to remind myself that it could make a huge difference for me.  It’s just hard to say no to the yummy seasonal coffee, or to pack my lunch again so that I can save up for something like that, you know?

If we were having coffee I’d tell you that this is my “relax and catch-up” weekend.  Well, it’s my relax and catch-up Saturday, I ended up scheduling myself pretty thoroughly on Sunday.  Last weekend’s visit with my cousin and her kids was great fun — and they made it safely home on Tuesday.  Now I’m gearing up for a visit from a friend of mine from Maine.  She arrives on Thursday and I’m taking a few days off of work so that we can hang out and take a few day trips.  It’ll be fun, and I promise to tell you all about it next week!

Of course, we couldn’t finish our coffee visit without giving an update on my writing/editing progress.  Today I’m dedicating a lot of time to writing (well, and cleaning.  Some of this cleaning really just needs to happen.  That darned adulting thing again…).  I have some blog-work that needs to be done, as well as a few guest-post that really should have been written already! There are Passionate Geek posts to get ready for posting, and other possible contributors to check in with.  At the moment I’m in pretty good shape for posts, and have a number more that have expressed interest. I’d tell you it feels pretty awesome to have so many people floating around who are interested in this and I am seriously debating upping it to a twice-a-month feature.  I want to move cautiously there — too much, too fast, can be problematic.

Part of the reason some of the blogging work has fallen behind is because I have been in full-fledged editing mode.  The past two weeks (since I finished that first revision) have seen every spare moment dedicated to reading through the manuscript and making hefty notes.  I’m trying to look at larger, structural, issues in this round — making sure the story flows, that there is consistency, and that everything makes sense — but I’ve also been doing a lot of circling of words, sentences and paragraphs that will need work, with margin comments like “meh,” “ugh,” and “gah.”  Some of those changes may be made when I sit down with the computer file again, some may just be noted and wait to see if the scene they’re in even remains in the story.  It’s been nice to sit down with an actual paper-copy of the manuscript for this, easier to flip back and forth between scenes and make reference notes to other things.  It’s the first time I’ve done this kind of editing (on fiction… I’m definitely using editing tactics I learned through all my academic work) and it is awesome to be enjoying it!  I actually like the story more with some of the changes I’m noting and figure that’s a very good thing!  I’ve got about one quarter of the manuscript left to go through before I can start looking at what comes next.  First up probably will be creating a few more timelines (to iron out when certain things happen), deciding on a few names, nailing down geography and certain governmental structures, and doing a tad bit of research into a few things.  Then I can start actually writing some of these revisions!

I discovered I could edit all sorts of places.  On my lunch breaks (of course) but also during the commute, when there was standing room only, when I managed to snag a seat, when I was waiting for the connection....
I discovered I could edit all sorts of places. On my lunch breaks (of course) but also during the commute, when there was standing room only, when I managed to snag a seat, when I was waiting for the connection….

And…. I’m probably just rambling at you now… it happens when I’m excited about something, sorry about that!  Tell me, what have you been up to this week?  Are there any projects you’re working on?  Any vacations planned or guests coming to visit?

 

If We Were Having Coffee… On the Go

Today’s post is a part of the Weekend Coffee Share, graciously hosted by Part Time Monster every weekend. A time for us to come together, share a cup of coffee (or our beverage of choice) to share some of what is going on in our lives.  It’s a lovely check-in!


If we were having coffee it would have to be on the go this week.  My cousin and her son’s are visiting from New England this week and we have packed the weekend.  Today I was out and about (in the hot hot heat) all day with them showing them some bits and pieces of the city.  We spent most of the day wandering through Saturday Market, which was fun but a lot of people.  I have pictures which I’ll have to share another time (I also do share some of them over on Instagram).

I’d tell you that I’ve also been spending every free moment this week editing.  The first revision I did of the novel gave me a heads-up that there were some structural issues I wanted to deal with.  So I printed out a copy and have been making my way through, marking it up and making notes.  Some of the notes are wording-level changes that I want to make, but I’m trying to focus primarily on structure.  Though I’d wanted to have a second revision done by the end of the month I’m not so sure that’s going to happen with all the stuff happening this month.

I’d also tell you that I’m extending Taliana’s story slightly.  I was going to end it Sunday, but I don’t envision I’m going to have the time/energy to get the final segment written by the end of Sunday.  Participation this round has been seriously lacking, and I know some of that is because I just haven’t been able to put the energy into promoting it that I did for the last ones.  I know there is one contribution that might come together before the end of the day tomorrow but…. if not I am going to try to finish off her story arc.  I had fun writing her story over the year, and the challenge of incorporating other people’s stories was fun but I think that she’ll be taking a break after this story-arc concludes.  It’s a lot of work and takes a lot of energy that I just don’t always have!

If we were having coffee I’d say that I wanted to talk more, about my thoughts and plans for the blog in the coming year, about my writing progress and things going on in my life but, really, I’m exhausted and probably should go home and take a nap soon.  But first I do want to hear what you’ve been up to, what you’re going to be doing with the rest of the weekend.