STREA. KING. Also words. And bats! #random.

Behold, the power of streaks, that lures me here to my computer when I really, really, REALLY just want/need to go to bed. BUT I AM HERE AND BLOGGING AT LEAST SOMETHING BECAUSE I DON’T WANT TO BREAK MY STREAK, OKAY?

So y’all get insanity once again. Sorry.

Happy today – I finally started When Worlds Collide, Sanctuary Book 3. Only about a month late, but hey – better late than never?? I’m pretty much planning to do NaNoWriMo this year, because I’ll have to to get WWC in on time – still shooting for a late Feb/early March release. Fingers crossed!!

But anyway, after doing SO much editing and proofing and formatting and all so far this year, it’s SO nice to be back doing *actual writing* (TM) again. Actually, I think this is pretty much the first proper drafting/writing I’ve done all year? Whoa. What even is this.

That considered, it’s even HAPPIER that the words flowed well tonight – about 1750 words in about 40 mins, which is pretty much top speed for me! Yay! I love writing Edge – her voice is just SO easy <3 <3 <3

Anyway, I think that’s literally all I can scrape together the brain power for right now, so I’ll leave you with this adorable bat gif that I discovered today and which I’m pretty sure is going to become my lil mascot (because carrier bats and cookies, right?*). And now Imma go snuggle up in a blanket of my own and sneep. I mean sleep. Or probably at this point just eep, let’s be real. Ha.

G’night!

* If you’re not obsessively following along on Twitter, first of all, what’s wrong with you?** and second of all, I don’t know, I just have this THING where if anyone says something that needs a response, it’s all “*loads up carrier bats with health/congratulatory/celebration/writing/editing/happiness/insert appropriate description here cookies and sends them to you*”. Sadly, the carrier bats have a bad habit of becoming waylaid and getting distracted, and rarely make it to their destinations. A few do, though 😉

** WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU HAVE A LIFE????

I’m Only Doing This Because I Promised Myself

See? Streak power at work right here. I had posts for every day last week, so now I want to maintain that. I noted last week that posting once a week was too infrequent for streak-motivation to kick in, but apparently this week-daily bizzo is doing the trick (and let’s face it, the Monday/Friday posts are all prescheduled anyway :D).

So I have things to say and things I thought I’d blog about, but tbh I had like 4.5 hours of sleep last night and I’m fighting off the plague and I’m really all just

right now. So instead you get a random, short, rambly update, I guess about books because… I have nothing else interesting to update you with?

So Sanctuary book three, When Worlds Collide, is officially In The Works. I’ve done a bunch of planning and outlining* and trying to fit together the jigsaw puzzle pieces I’ve left myself in the first two books, and tomorrow I get to actually dive into the writing – assuming I’m up to date with my marking by the time I get home, anyway 😉 At the moment I have it scheduled for release at the end of Feb, but that will depend on me maintaining a moderately gruelling schedule for the next 2.5 months, so it may end up tipping over into March. We Shall See.

And then that wraps up the Sanctuary series, and WHOA OH MY GOSH I WROTE AN ENTIRE SERIES. o.O Y’all have no idea how WEIRD that concept is.

But I’m SUPER excited about what’s coming after that. You might remember that last year I went and stayed with the Twinny One in the US, which was AWWWWWESOME, and that we spent a large amount of time Plotting All The Things, and that one of said Things was the big and tangled novel I have drafted that we detangled, reoutlined, and generally tidied up, filming the whole experience because… why not?

Anyway, yeah, that one. Ferrets and sarcasm and enemies-to-lovers and Mercury, the super-smart, super-possessive, super-snarky, super-SLYTHERIN main character. A bunch of people have read early drafts of this one, and you guys, you are going to love it. Promises. So. Much. FUN.

I’m really looking forward to getting it done and out :3

I’m also super looking forward to some writing courses I’m doing over Christmas, but that’s probably of less general interest! 😀

Anyway, the gloriously savoury scent of roasting potatoes and rosemary is letting me know my dinner is finally cooked, so Imma go deal with that. Food. I hear it’s good to eat.**

Hope you’re having an okay start to your week! <3

 

* I’m not an obsessive outliner, I don’t outline All The Things in comprehensive detail, but I do appreciate a road map.

** This, friends, is called irony, because I have recently learned that I am literally, actually, 100% medically confirmed food intolerant. More on that possibly later this week. *sigh*.

*Tap Tap* This thing on? (AKA The Power of Streaking)

Wow. It’s October already. How did that happen? How I am, like, making appointments and lesson plans and things through to the end of November already? How has it been six million years since I last blogged?

…Okay, so the answer to that last one is, as we all know, that I still suck at blogging, though I’m *slowly* getting better, and *le gasp*, I actually have most Monday/Friday posts done for the rest of the year.

So, y’know, even if I die you’ll still have content 😛 #macabrehumour

ANYWAY.

Wow.

I actually don’t even know where to start, which is kind of why I’ve been delaying writing this post for the last two weeks. I mean, I just had a book come out and everything, you’d think I’d have blogged that. But because I hadn’t blogged in SO. LONG., it felt kind of weird to come back with a ‘hey btw I made a new book’ post, I guess. Hence, avoiding it >.<

I found the secret to making myself do it, though. School’s gone back this week, and although I have a mountainous-crazy to-do list because I didn’t do enough school work in the holidays because publishing blew up on me in the first week and I got commissioned for three cakes in the second week…

I actually completed my epic to-do list yesterday.

Granted, I had to stay up until 1:45am to get it done (*wince* don’t tell my family), but IT GOT DONE, DARN IT ALL. And so today, when I realized I was likely to get through my to-do list for the SECOND DAY IN A ROW… Well, streak-psychology kicked in. As in, two-in-a-row-is-practically-a-streak-I-have-to-keep-this-going.

And one of the few remaining tasks on my list today is – you guessed it – blogging, so blogging I dutifully am, because I will have my streak, darn it all.

As it turns out, streak psychology is actually a really great motivator (though it can be used for nefarious intent – I’ve heard of a few problems recently with young teens and a snapchat addiction, because snapchat (yet another social media app) records ‘streaks’, i.e. how many days in a row you’ve talked with a particular friend, encouraging you to make sure you chat to all those friends again tomorrow to maintain said streak). I was browsing Dean Wesley Smith’s site the other night and noticed that he talks about streaks as a motivator for writing, too. Relevant, as I’m diving in Sanctuary Book 3 after this weekend, so I’ll need to ‘streak’ writing as well as everything else. (I’m plotting it out this week/on the weekend.)

So I guess I need to harness the power of the streak on the blog, and try to get that happening – and for exercise, too. The problem seems to be that once-a-week isn’t frequent enough to feel like a streak, even if you hit the goal ten weeks in a row.

Maybe I’ll try doing short, rambly blog posts like this every second day or something to get into the habit? Heaven knows that if you’ve been reading the blog/hanging out with me for long enough, you’ll be used to ramble.

Who knows, I might even discuss that new books that I released two weeks ago, and the con I went to, and the book night I hosted at home. With, like, photos and stuff.

But for now, blogging can be crossed off my to-do list (:D) and I have to get the kid inside for his gymnastics lesson.

I hope you’re all surviving okay, and I guess have a think about how you could harness streak!power in your life rn. If you do, please share in the comments! I’d love to know 🙂

MadeItMonday: Random Cartoon Sketches

Welcome to #MadeItMonday, where I post something I’ve made in the previous week, and where you can join in and post something you made too! The rules are easy: post a pic somewhere of something you’ve made in the last week (ish; let’s say in the last month as the hard-and-fast) and tag it. Sit back and enjoy scrolling through all the beautiful things we’ve collectively created, and celebrate the fact that humans can be awesome! 🙂

I did these a couple of weeks ago at the lunch table at work. I can’t even remember now what the conversation was about, but something to do… with… sharks?? Genteel sharks, apparently.

And then the conversation turned to all the things that kill more people each year than sharks, including… coconuts. So naturally, I had to sketch a killer coconut palm as well.

#AsYouDo.

What have you made this week? (It doesn’t have to be fancy!!) Don’t forget to tag your contribution, or even better, leave a link in the comments!! I love seeing what inspiring things other people have made 🙂 🙂 🙂

When Famous Paintings Come To Life (Dust My Shoulders Off – Jane Zhang)

So this is a super cool thing I found because someone had gif’ed the “The Scream” portion of this music video and it is SUPER, and then someone in the thread linked to the full video and YAY! Such a happy song! So cheery and determined! And what an AWESOME music vid, with all the famous paintings coming to life! There’s some serious hard work gone into some of the scenes in particular and wow, yay, much happy.

Here. Enjoy and be happy for a little over three minutes 🙂

#MadeItMonday: Party Table Sketch

Welcome to #MadeItMonday, where I post something I’ve made in the previous week, and where you can join in and post something you made too! The rules are easy: post a pic somewhere of something you’ve made in the last week (ish; let’s say in the last month as the hard-and-fast) and tag it. Sit back and enjoy scrolling through all the beautiful things we’ve collectively created, and celebrate the fact that humans can be awesome! 🙂

I have been seriously pressed for time this week (March and mid-May to mid-June are the worst two month-long periods in the first semester calendar) so pretty much the only non-school, non-writing thing I’ve created was this:

A quick pen sketch on lined paper of a table decorated for a party.

It’s a quick sketch in preparation for the baby’s birthday party (which doesn’t happen for several months yet, but hey). I’m doing an arctic mermaids theme, because I wanted narwhals and it’s a winterish party anyway, so I might as well roll with it O:) The spots hanging behind the table are going to be cotton balls on thread for snow, the jar to the right will hold branches sprayed silver with snowflakes in them (considering using sea stars as the snow flakes if I get time to decorate them?), and I’ll make up three fabric jellyfish with ribbony tentacles to hang in front of the table and to the left. The cake, as you can hopefully see from the picture, is a narwhal :3 (So ridiculously pleased by the prospect of a narwhal cake :D)

What have you made this week? (It doesn’t have to be fancy!!) Don’t forget to tag your contribution, or even better, leave a link in the comments!! I love seeing what inspiring things other people have made 🙂 🙂 🙂

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So, About Those Priorities

Trying so, so hard to make this wonderful quote from the inestimable Maggie Stiefvater my mantra this year. I’ve noted before that getting enough sleep is the key to managing my stress levels, anxiety, and also healthy eating. Some days I’m better at it than others. When we have company, I SUCK at it, because although I do actually passionately adore sleeping (because DREEEEEAMS, y’all, DREEEEEEEEEAMS!!!), people are also INCREDIBLY SHINY and VERY, VERY STICKY, just like this lounge I’m presently sitting on which is super sticky because I should get up and go to bed but it seems like someone has superglued me here oh wait that’s just the remnants of the kids’ breakfast okay never mind move along nothing to see here. O:)

SLEEP. I should get some, you should get some, and we all should be happy and sleep together.

Uh, um, or not. I mean, like we should all sleep at the same time. Or, like, in times appropriate to our particular time zone. Or, look, you know what? Just go to bed already, okay? I don’t care what time it is, just go… sleep.

Sleep is important. You should probably get some.

<3

7 Guys + 1 Girl + 1 Jeep + 2 Minutes = Most Epic Jam Session Ever

I first stumbled across this glorious jam session a couple of years ago, and then came across it again recently and thought I’d share, since it’s probably been long enough that a lot of may not have seen it? Anyway, it’s SUPER cool: a 2-min music beat recorded entirely from the sounds made by the Jeep. The YouTube subtitle notes that it took them 2 weeks of rehearsals and a 7-hr shoot to get this right, but the results are totally worth it 😀

(I feel like I could do something similar with my caking-making equip, honestly. The freestanding mixer provides quite a good beat 😉 😀 lol!)*

* Okay that was totally a throw-away comment based on the fact that I frequently get bored waiting for the meringue buttercream to cool (~20 mins straight of whipping in the freestanding mixer) and start bopping to the mixer beat, but now I’m actually imagining using the sounds to make a vid AND IT WOULD BE EPIC AND AWESOME. #AllThePlotting. (Still. I still owe the internet my and Liana’s authorial version of Part of That World from back in, like, October, so maybe don’t hold your breath???)

3 of the Most Highly Awesome Animals With Pointy Bits On Their Faces

Yup, today I wanted to share with you three random animals that I’ve seen repeatedly around the place lately, for various reasons, elaborated on below. Their common point is that they all have pointy bits on their faces! Oh, also that I think they’re incredibly shiny 😉 I know, I know, this is totally random, but they’re pretty cool animals, so bear with me 😉

First up we have the delightful nawab caterpillar, who’s been doing the rounds on Twitter:

green nawab caterpillar with frondy face that looks like an alien helmet

Innit so cute?! For a caterpillar that is…

Secondly, we have the ever-charming nudibranchs (also known less gloriously as sea slugs 😉 )! This is just an indicative image; nudibranchs come in all colours of the rainbow and are just as fabulous :o) I have a bit of a fascination with these critters (probably they are one of my favourite animals) and I see them on my social media feeds pretty regularly as the twinny one Liana Brooks is also enamoured of all things oceanic 🙂

white nudibrach with black and orange stripes and orange fronds

And finally, narwhals!! There are a whole buncha memes out there about how narwhals are the unicorns of the sea, and AS IF THEY AREN’T, HA. I’m kind of obsessed with narwhals at the moment because I’m plotting a narwhal birthday for the toddler later in the year O:) I may or may not already have the cake planned……. (Actually, that’s what inspired the theme of the party, because I’d seen all these amazing unicorn drip cakes around the place and wondered how I could put my own personal spin on them, and since she had a fabulous angler fish drip cake for her first birthday I figured why not continue the ocean theme?! :D)

two narwhals sword fighting in the ocean

So there you go. My random top three animals for the year so far. Leave a comment and let us know: what’s YOUR top animals of the year so far?