Sunday, July 24, 2011

For my lovely German readers...

Eichstätt changed something in me. Everyone I've ever known who spent time in Europe came back in love. Though it's now been 8 years since I was there, I still think about that little town as the ideal place to live--the place against which I compare every city.

I recently acquired German citizenship, and some people are more excited about it than others. Some don't understand why it's important to me at all. I like the laid-back lifestyle and the friendliness of the people. The streets aren't littered with trash and don't reek of urine. The trains are clean, well lit, and connect everywhere.  Not to mention, everywhere in Europe is easily accessible for a nice weekend vacation!

So if people don't share my enthusiasm, it's their own business. I love my new country, and can't wait to move there.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Cosmetology, Publishing, and other Stuff

So, jeez, where to begin?

It's been a crazy month or so. Started cosmetology school at Arrojo in New York -- commuting every day from Philly. It's a lot, but about a fourth of the people on the bus every day are regulars, so I'm not the only one doing this. Cosmetology just kind of happened all of a sudden. I couldn't be in the cubicle any more (they say office work is soul-crushing--I found that to be horrifyingly true).

Some things have been more challenging than others (getting the blow-dry right, for example), but for the most part, I love going to school, and I'm so glad I made this decision! The teachers are extremely knowledgable and helpful, always telling us why something is important rather than saying, "Oh, don't worry about it, just do it." Genuinely nice, too.

In the Writing World...
Can't give any specifics yet, but one of my short stories is about to see the light of day! The Morning After, the "little novella that could", finally piqued someone's interest when I chopped a few thousand words out. Not sure if the title will stay the same after it's gone through the final edit. Super excited! My first real foot in the door! Rest assured I'll keep you all updated on the release date once I have one. Until then, share in my happiness.

Awake is getting such a big overhaul that it's almost not the same story it was when I started. Granted, that's not all bad, but it's always disheartening when someone doesn't like your characters or doesn't enjoy a particular plot point (particularly when someone says a decision your character has made was stupid ... because really, it was me making the decision for him ... ouch). Nevertheless, all the comments and critiques I've gotten so far have helped develop both the characters and the plot. Every time I rewrite this story, I think it's finally the last time, but now I'll just let it go where it needs to. Each time it gets better, so in 50 more drafts, it'll be quite okay. Reassigning a few character traits, adding some backstory and suspense. Yeah, it'll be fine.

Other Creative Stuff
Because I can't leave well enough alone, I've decided to make and sell some jewelry and amigurumi. I've always enjoyed making things, and now I'm pushing them on you fine people! I mean, look at that bear in my hand. She's practically begging you to take her home. Don't make her cry!