Still Alive

I hesitate saying ‘I’m back!’ because I’ve said it before and things happen. But things always happen. I’ve been focusing less on stories and writing, and more on family and health over the past year, I just haven’t had the ?will? ?spoons? to come over here.

The Website needs updating, links cleared, theme redone. The books up for sale need a bit of an overhaul. The Patreon page (which I effing forgot about) needs attention, so does the Wattpad page. My goals, my focus, all that fun stuff needs to be re-examined.

And every time I’d come over here, I felt like such a goddamn loser. I just didn’t have the mental capacity to get shit done.

So here I am. Trying not to get overwhelmed and let anxiety win. I’ll take it day by day.

Life Status; My son, who had struggled hard for a few years (which was what initially threw me for a loop and knocked me off my game back in 2014) graduated this past May. Not only did he graduate, but on walking out of HS he walked right into a Cosmetology career, flat out bought a car, and just bought his first ‘house’ (ok, mobile home) and is planning on marrying his long time gf. He’ll be 19 in a couple of months. This is the kid who, I was told by the PA justice system, was never going to graduate, and would probably spend his life in and out of jail.

This, along with juggling a kid in college and a kid adrift, and herding the younger kids towards their own futures, has left me an exhausted , though very proud, mama.

Mental Health;

Did you know that many women who were children in the 80s & 90s (and earlier) were overlooked by mental health care professionals when they exhibited ADHD and autistic behaviors? It’s quite infuriating. Especially as we have determined that my ‘bipolar’ symptoms were mis-diagnosed. Bipolar? no. I have never experienced any kind of mania. But I have a textbook case of ADHD which took me close to 16 years to get any psychologist to recognize. Now on the right meds, functioning like an actual human being and not a depressed squirrel, has gone a long way in me reclaiming me.

This has led to better organizing my brain and dudes, sorta consistent writing even.

I cannot stress enough how priceless it is to finally get the correct meds to help get your brain functioning right.

Writing:

This IS a writer page after all, and lately I haven’t really been doing much of that over the past few years. So here’s a bit of an update on the state of those things.

Elemental Truth is temporarily on hold. Mainly because Zandercrack has hijacked my brain. So I’m going with it.

The Bastard Prince this is, hands down, a heart project. Which had roared to a halt because something wasn’t right. Well last week I figured out why I was having trouble. I’m back in the saddle, working on it daily for the past week, managing to push it from the low/mid 70k to 87k. I’ve got not idea how much (wordcount wise) I’ve got left to be able to slap The End to it, but if I go by scenes…. maybe 20 to 25 scenes? Possibly 30? Maybe?

Other Projects; I’ve got a few half finished fallout fanfics (which I doubt will ever see the light of day LOL), a few fallout inspired post apoc ideas which are silently begging me to finish them. Mostly everything is focused on BP and E1.

September Goals;
~Finish BP. Like, just wrap the fucker up, get SL (book 2) scene listed (planning on using it for NaNo this year). See if my editor is going to be available and toss it her way.
~Scene list the rest of the Zander Chronicles.
~ IF there’s time left over, dust off The Fallen, write the four or five filler scenes, and decide if it’s going to go up or is going to grow into a novel.
October Goals;
~Finish E1. Like BP it’s stuck just outside the grande finale and for some crazy reason I just… stopped. Not sure if it’s some inner fear of saying good-bye to loved characters, or just overwhelmed brain can’t take any more dished out at it.
~Scene list E2. if there’s time.

The rest of 2019 Goals:
~Write. Just, get back into the habit of writing daily. Of allowing myself to be creative without guilting myself.
~I would like to put both BP AND E1 up for sale before Christmas. We’ll see how that goes.
~Be more forgiving of myself. I am my own worst critic. In recent years I have become very harsh with my inner monologue towards myself. This is not healthy and inhibits both personal happiness and my creativity. I need to be kinder to myself.

Other Thoughts.

It’s okay to take a break. It’s okay to step back and rethink things. Even if you do it over and over and over. It’s okay. It doesn’t mean you’re a failure. It means you’re actively processing your situation.

I hope you are all having a good day (whenever you read this).

Be kind to one another
~N Phoenix.

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Some things on Patreon

Copied over from Patreon

 

So there is this kerfluffle, Patreon did a dick move and people are bailing. Lots of people are angry, hurt, sad and ready to say fuck it and go elseware. I’ve lost a couple patrons, and while I’m sad to see them go I 100% get why, and no I’m not mad or anything.

So where do *I* stand on this? My little patreon page hasn’t generated much more than coffee money, but then over the past year I’ve been in one of the darkest depressions I’ve had in a long time, and the content hasn’t been very reliable. That’s my fault, no one else’s.

But I can’t bring myself to bail from Patreon just yet,

I understand why people are angry, seriously I’d rather take the hit than making my patrons take it. I do wish the creators had been consulted ahead of time. but this was a business decision, and artists aren’t often considered business types.

I’ve come across three posts that solidified my decision not to bail.

Amanda Palmer’s post,

This Post:

And this:

I already made plans for changes to the patreon page, I’ll be making a few more.

I fully respect everyone’s decisions, regarding Patreon. Whether you decide it’s not for you, or if you decide to stick it out.

I hope whatever you decide, you have a great day/holiday season. Take care all.

 

Be Kind to One Another

~NPhoenix

EDITED: fixed the links.

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oops

So I forgot to schedule the payment for the domain and the site was *poof* for a bit. Obviously I got it straightened out, but there was that moment of sheer ‘OH FUCK!’ that had me in a near panic when I realized what happened.

This is another way of saying June is not ever a good month.

From now on I think I’ll be shutting down for the summer. With kids* and things, I’m just too busy.

But back to school is just around the corner. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

 

Writing;

I have memory issues, I won’t lie. I’m going to be bringing it up to the doctor at my next appointment. I went to schedule stuff for june, and… well I remember scheduling stuff. over at the patreon and here. I apparently didn’t. There aren’t drafts saved in the back office either here or patreon so I think I’m mis-remembering things.

This is kinda scary fwiw. it could be stress induced and up until this past week it’s been very stressful. Mind you there’s still stress stuff, but it’s not as severe/world is ending sorta stress. Or it could be some genuine issues. Either way my writing has ground to a halt as summer has progressed.

I’m working on getting caught up with stuff.

Bear with me.

 

Anywho, I hope you are all having a good summer. Mine has been good so far, stress aside.

 

~NPhoenix

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It’s…. june?

Ok, so summers are never good for me. I get distracted and our schedule gets all screwy. I should just hang a OUT TO LUNCH sign on the blog until the kids go back to school.

I’ve been on a bit of a gaming binge again, I don’t seem to have the brain power for much more, which tells me that my subconscious is working on something.

Not sure what.

The worst part? I thought I’d scheduled enough chapters on the patreon to go through july. I forgot!     **facepalms**

I feel horrid about forgetting. So for the weekend and next week the plan, is to finish scheduling stuff. I apologize again. But then again, it’s summer, and if you’ve followed me for any amount of time, plans go out the window during the summer. I’ll try to get to work on it though.

I hope your summer is treating you well. Mine is good, just lazy.

 

 

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Writing, Life, Politics, & Mental Health

This week has been busy, writing wise. Something in my head has clicked. I’ve been writing. Averaging 10 to 15 pages a day (2500 words or more). Scenes that have stumped me over the years have become clearer than ever and I’ve been scrambling to keep up with the ideas, scenes, and such. I’m starting to feel more like Me than I have in a long time. And I’m writing. And finishing.

Currently BP is sitting at just under 80k. I’m so very close to calling this completely DONE I can almost taste it LOL. Once it’s done, it’ll go off to the Beta readers, and I’ll schedule the rest of it over at the Patreon . And then I’ll re-focus on E1.

E1 is back up (I think I mentioned it last week, I don’t remember) and I’ll tackle the final edits and gap filling and get IT scheduled as soon as BP is firmly off the ‘to finish’ list.

Once those are done, well I’ve got a stack of unfinished things to finish finishing. >.>

So, with this resurgence in writing, it might seem that life has calmed down. Nope, it hasn’t. In fact on the 25th my 11 year old broke his pinky knuckle playing toss the football while he and a friend waited for the buss. I spent that evening at the ER and the following day trying to find an Orthopedic Surgeon. The 27th was spent in Dr’s offices, trying to determine WHAT to do (brace or cast. We opted for a cast fwiw).

Yet I’ve been pushing out words. Maybe only a few hundred, but still. Writing is something I love. And something that has been pushed aside. And that leads me to the cold hard truth about Mental Illness. Not only does it suck, it also causes a major disruption in a person’s life. And sometimes medication really is the best answer to the chemical imbalance in the brain that results in depression, mood swings, bi-polar and a list of other brain affected ailments.

About three weeks ago I was finally able to get back on my medication that helps with my issues. The fact the medication is doing its job, balancing out the chemical imbalance in my brain, is reflected in the fact that, holy shit, I can WRITE again. My focus isn’t perfect, but it’s a hell of a lot better than it’s been.

Once upon a time, I used to average at 2 – 3k a day. Or between 8 and 10 pages a day.

I’ve been doing that again. And it is a wonderful feeling to be able to get back to being ME.

Seriously, if you’re going to spout off those ‘the only therapy/medication I need is a walk through the woods’ you can just go kiss my ass. Sorry, that doesn’t work for everyone. If it did, I’d never have these issues.

**clears throat**

ANYWAYS.

I’ve been doing more reading, and surprisingly it’s not as much fiction as one would think. I got several of Dean Wesley Smith‘s books, and Kristine Kathryn Rusch‘s books and power read through them. Those have gone a long way it helping me find my writing footing again. Thanks Dean & Kris. In rereading their blogs I stumbled across the Writing Story Bundle over here (more about what the Story Bundle is over here). Part of the bundle includes one of Dean’s online lecture series on the Master Plot Formula. I already got the Writing as an Investment lecture series and WOW talk about eye opening. Even the hubs (not a reader OR writer) sat and listened to in, nodding his way through. So I knew the Master Plot Formula lectures would be as educational.

I was right (I started to type ‘write’ **snickers**)  Folks I would HIGHLY recommend investing in those two lecture series, at the very least do the Story Bundle and you get the one as part of the bundle (there are some really GOOD books in that bundle too). As a writer, in this day and age, educating yourself with the ins and outs of how the business works is a must. You can’t expect do be around for any length of time without understanding how it breaks down.

Changing one’s perspective and mindset is not easy. Especially when you’re fighting long held dreams. Especially when those dreams are founded on myth and not reality. I’ve re-connected with my writing/creative brain, due to a combo of the correct meds and changing how I look at writing.

The books I got which helped (not in the story bundle, I’m still working my way through those) were:

Dean’s books;

Killing the Top Ten Sacred Cows of Publishing
Killing the Top Ten Sacred Cows of Indi Publishing
Heinlein’s Rules: Five Simple Buisness Rules for Writing
How to Write Fiction Sales Copy  (I’m still reading on this one)
Think Like a Publisher

Kris’s Book

The Pursuit of Perfection (DUDES READ THIS)

Those were my birthday presents to myself.

 

Lets see there was something else writing wise I was going to mention but I forgot. I’ll remember later.

 

I was going to vent about politics, but I don’t have the heart to. What I will say it we are not done resisting and it’s going to be a long four years.

 

I think that just about wraps it up. OH I’ve deleted my livejournals. I’m over at Dreamwidth now (actually just dusted it off a bit) but I’m really bad about posting over there. https://necia-phoenix.dreamwidth.org/  Now it’s time to get back to writing.

I do have an FB and a twitter fwiw.

I hope you all have a wonderful peaceful weekend.

Please be kind to each other. ~ N.Phoenix

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Reviews, Elemental Truth, BP and other things

Over the past few weeks I’ve been working on getting myself back on track with writing. With the posting BP on the Patreon, I’ve found myself a lot more motivated. Having things settling in the home life is helping too. So I was at the website going over the backoffice stuff and discovered that there were hits to my site coming from a site called Web Fiction Guide.

Apparently when I first started posting Elemental Truth, I’d gone over and submitted it so it would be listed. Then life happened and I completely forgot about it. Basically it lists your web fiction, allows people to give reviews and whatnot. Well at the bottom of the Elemental Truth listing, was a review.

Let me say, for the record, I try not to read reviews. For a number of reasons, the biggest being, reviews aren’t for me. They’re for the reader. Well I went ahead and skimmed over this review. Then skimmed over it again. And a third time. Each time my jaw was firmly sitting in my lap and the hubsbeast pointed out if I didn’t close my mouth, a bug might try to make my acquaintance.

You see, I’d just spent several hours rereading Dean Wesley Smith and Kris Rusch‘s business and writing posts. I’d just bought the book Heinlein’s Rules; Five Simple Business Rules for Writing and read it (I’m a fast reader), just bought The Pursuit of Perfection: And How It Harms Writers and was reading it when I took a break and stumbled across that review. What timing.

The kind review is over here. Seriously people I am so stunned. Reviewer, thank you for your kind words. I hope I haven’t chased you away for good with my hiatus.

Perfectionism is a big problem with me. I find myself agonizing over whether it’s good enough or not. I see blaring issues.

I’m not sure what my thinking was when I pulled E1 offline. But to see someone who liked it, along with what I’d already been reading and my reawakening writing brain, I decided to go ahead and put E1 back up. I also fixed the TOC issue mentioned in the review (sorry bout that) and took a hard look at my writing schedule and what E1 needs to be called DONE.

The Patreon is scheduled through the end of May, so I can set BP aside and get E1 wrapped up. All I need to do, is filler for about five or six scenes. That’s it. That was all I needed when life crashed around me and I tucked it all away so I could focus on RL. Well now the focus is back on writing and I have a lot of projects I need to get finished and pubbed.

So that’s what I’ll be working on over the next week, and getting back on schedule for E1. I believe I’ll be posting on Thursdays, since the Patreon chapters are posted on Tuesdays (hey it makes sense in my head).

From there?

I’ll need to get a copy editor, and possibly redo the covers for both books. It would be nice to be able to pub both of them this summer. But we’ll see. The big thing for me is to finish E1’s posting online.

Reading:

I picked up a copy of Starla Huchton‘s new book Wild at Heart. It is book five in the series but I’ve been assured by both Starla and several friends that they’re stand alones (my fav type of series). So once E1 is done I’m going to dive into it. The cover is absolutely GORGEOUS.

I’ve got a list of other books, suggested by several friends, which I’m planning on picking up.

Anywho. I hope you all have a blessed weekend. Happy Easter for those who celebrate it.

Be kind to one another

~NPhoenix

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Some Things

 

Last night I spent a few hours brainstorming with an old pal. It has been years since we’d had the opportunity to do so. Her life, and mine, has been very hectic. Today there has been this sense of satisfaction. I finally got things handled, I finally figured out something that had been bugging me for years about BP.

Today I put that stuff into practice and have been editing, fixing, arranging and scheduling on Patreon. And napping. Hey the brainstorming session was late at night! 😛

A funny; I accidentally posted the chapter I was trying to schedule. I apologize folks, I did fix it, but it made me laugh.

I miss having a proper office. My computer is next to my bed (the laptop took a shit) and it’s getting very aggravating not having a proper writing space. I would get a desk, but there’s no place to put one.

I’m all over the place today, sorry.

I need book suggestions. Any genre. I want to get myself back to reading. Isn’t that horrible? I haven’t read new fiction in a while now. So if y’all could suggest some books and authors I’d appreciate it.

I hope you all had a good monday.

Be kind to each other.

 
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Patreon

I like patreon’s format. I like how they help artists of all nature share their art with their fans. I thought I’d share a couple patreon pages that I’m following.

 

Abney Park has some awesome steampunk themed music and seriously deserves a lot of support.

 

Seriously love their sound.

Their website is over here.

 

Another writer I support is Val Griswald Ford a long time dear friend. Recently she suffered a horrible loss so her page is sorta quiet. But her writing is fantastic and I really think people should take the time to check her out. Her patreon page is here. As I come across them, I’ll list other pages.

 

~NPhoenix

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Happy Imbolc

 

January was a difficult month. I’ve seen over and over on FB, Jan was the trial month, Feb is when 2017 ACTUALLY starts. Something I really can’t argue with. This morning, as I was coming home from grabbing a quick (and unhealthy) bite to eat I got bushwacked by an idea for the Avaria series. It wasn’t forced, it was the result of beating my head against the wall begging the creativity in me to please crawl out of the hole, I won’t let the monsters get you. It just jumped me from behind the bushes and I got a huge insight into a beloved character and explanation for some of his motives in the series (note; this wasn’t a Zander scene fwiw).

After months of blank brain, anxiety and depressed brain, I had clairity. and something else, kindof a startling realization; no anxiety at all. Yes there are concerns, I’ve got a lot on my plate atm, but the anxiety isn’t there. Anyone who has dealt with anxiety can relate that wonderful fresh feeling of being able to clearly think. However long it lasts, I’m glad it’s here.

SO, I’ll be getting fresh content stuff up and scheduled at the patreon page. Please check it out, maybe share it if you like it. Thoughts, ideas and suggestions are always welcome (even if I don’t agree with them). I’m slowly going through the website to fix links and whatnot some of this is way overdue for a cleansing.

 

Politics –  Call your representatives. Write letters, share stories the media refuses to cover, and always ALWAYS check your sources! And if you have to, disconnect, take a walk, paint, write, turn off social media and the news, turn on a childhood fave, blast your music, let yourself rest and don’t, for the love of all that’s holy, DON’T FEEL GUILTY FOR HAVING TO SELF-CARE.

Be kind to each other.

~NPhoenix

 

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The Plague

We’re sick here at Casa De La Phoenix, myself, the monkeys and the spouse type person. The posts I was hoping to write got pushed aside in a fit of coughing and hacking up lungs. blech.

Work has officially ended, I am back in the ‘unemplyed/self employed’ catagory. Gotta love that seasonal stuff. I had a blast, made some great friends, and am now debating my next move.

The patreon is live! I am super excited about it. There is so much to the Avaria stories, I’m almost bouncing in excitement. For those of you new to my blog/site/thingy you can peek at the planned book list over here. It’s a huge list, this stuff needs to get set free.

I hope you are all recovering from the disaster that was 2016. Time for me to get back to writing, and being ME.

 

~NPhoenix

 

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