Monthly Archives: September 2009

And then there was nothing. Much.

After all my excitement of last post, I haven’t heard a thing back about the article – how they’re going to pay me, etc etc.  I don’t know whether to hassle, or sit back and chill out for a bit. Don’t really know how these things work.

And after my PRG rush of accepted articles, it’s all been a bit quiet on the western front there too.  I guess things go with ebbs and flows – this week is very much “ebb”.  I haven’t exactly been churning out anything – just a couple for editing.*

[* Some ‘action’ after all, got posted up late today my time ]

I’m realising that my ‘get up and go’ is tightly intertwined with the whole monthly cycle business. Continue reading

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Filed under it's just another manic mum day, the things you do for.. nothing, what the???

Professionally speaking…

I’m not sure at what point I can start calling myself a “writer”. Or “freelance writer”.  I’ve had my FIRST magazine article ‘accepted’ for publication, with an offer of payment. Payment that sounded pretty good to me, even if it came with apologies because they’ve had to cut back with the global economic situation. I daresay I’m a bit naive, but,  sitting here at home alone when the email came in I did a squeal, and a happy dance – as much as one can happy dance while sitting on an office chair.

Yet to make payment arrangements etc, but still, it’s a breakthrough, non? I’m excited.

It tops off a good phase with PRG – got paid for a few more articles, and I’ve had two ‘up there’ this week!

I should be buying Linda and Trish a drink with a percentage of the proceeds (seriously, that’s about what it pays!) for the piece I whipped up after their contribution in the comments for my “Unfinished Business” post.  I even used ‘quotes’! So, thanks for the inspiration girls!  Glad to know I’m not the only one who has wasted money on one of those exercise contraptions.

And the Reunion Report continues – with Part 2 being run today (Friday.)   I recognise a certain person in the comments section there too!  Think Part 3 might get its gig next Friday, which will bring it to a close. I’ve certainly milked that experience for all its worth, haven’t I?

So that’s me for this week. It’s been a significant one for me.

Told you the scarf had symbolism!

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Filed under professionally speaking

Pretty in pink.

Words have dried up on me this week. (I’m doing the net equivalent of pacing up and down impatiently waiting for some news. Sadly that doesn’t involve exercise.)

So I’ll wax lyrical about the beach. Again. I took these photos last week.

pastelbeach

Have I mentioned before how it is always different?

Yes, Trace.

Have I mentioned before how my favourite time to walk is low tide?

Probably, you’re always going on about tide times and all that. Yaddah, yaddah… blah, blah, blah.

Have I mentioned how my favourite time to walk is late afternoon, when Mother Nature has taken her box of pastel watercolours out?

Hmm, maybe. I dunno…

Ok, I’ll just shut up now, and give up with the strained analogies.

pastelbeach2

pastelseagulls
If I could time manage myself to get out and walk at this time every day, I think I’d be onto something.

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Filed under miscellaneous minutiae, our beach

It’s called making progress.

Seems I’ve been a bit sidetracked this past week; at least one person has missed my dashing wit and sparkling repartee. (Seems I’ve been a bit slow on Facebook too!) What can I say… not so good with the multitasking.

But I’ve been making some progress on a few things. Important things that I need to finish.
Like this:

knitting
scarfprogressIt’s symbolic, ok.

Hey – I might even finish it before it gets too hot and humid to hold knitting needles and wool in my sweaty paws. If I can finish that this year, I can do anything!

I’ve been trying to set aside the mornings to some ‘serious’ writing. I’ve sent off some more writing pieces (waiting to hear back – especially to see if I get a breakthrough with a magazine.).

I’ve done some exercise every day. (Even got my road bike out and chalked up 19 km riding to meet a friend for lunch, instead of driving. So extra greenie points there, surely?)

And I’ve still managed to come up with something for dinner each night.

Go me.

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Filed under lost in procrastination, miscellaneous minutiae

Those were the days, my friend

We’re going back to the future. Sort of. (I’ve never actually understood that expression anyway!) Or maybe for a trip in the Tardis. Not far, not long – we’re only talking days and weeks. Just enough to mess with your heads. And for me to have to keep schtumm for a bit.

I went to my 30 year reunion last weekend, but for the purposes of getting a set of articles published online at PRG you’ll have to pretend it’s just about to happen. Yeah, it feels a bit weird not to be blogging it, but, hey.  When you’re a wannabe freelance writer, you take your paid publishing work seriously. (Am I sounding more professional than I actually am?!)

I’ve drafted the next instalment, but you’ll have to wait a couple of weeks to find out how it really went!

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Filed under like, whatever

A spring in my step.

Spring has sprung. Just ask the azalea bush outside my front door:

azaleas

It’s hard not to feel just a teeny bit upbeat with that profusion of pink to greet you at the front of your house. Sad thing is, I know it won’t last long.

azaleas2

How about that one spray of deep pink?  It’s there every year – making a statement – not centre stage, but off to the side, doing it’s own thing.  Dare to be different, it says. Be individual. Who needs to follow the crowd?

Not sure if the change of season has anything to do with it, whether I’m still buzzing after going to the 30 year school reunion last Saturday night, or whether it’s just that I’m in a good hormonal phase right now, but I’m feeling … alright!

I feel like writing again. I feel like maybe I can write. And that  it’s ok to be me, to be different. Also that there’s no reason why I can’t get stuff published. Other people do, why not me?

So last week I got off my bum and explored an opportunity that might open some doors, or at least get one article published in an actual magazine. Probably doesn’t pay much, but whatever. Never mind that I drafted it first, then contacted the magazine, and discovered that I needed to prune what I’d already written by about fifty percent!  [Still, at least they are interested!] I got part way on that effort and decided that maybe a total rewrite, with a slightly different approach, might be in order. Still got to do it, but I’ve got another week up my sleeve.

That, however, inspired me to get my mojo back with composing some more stuff for PRG; I sent off a couple of drafts and got some wonderfully supportive feedback. So I’m on a roll.

I think.

I could babble on and on about the school reunion, because I had a blast. But I’ll wait and see what makes it to “print”  first.  Yep. It’s “article fodder”. (And I thought I was bad when something would happen and I’d be thinking  “I’ll have to blog that” – Is it wrong that I spent the plane flight home scribbling notes for an article about it while it was all still fresh in my mind? )

One thing I have concluded is that I can’t manage to compose anything particularly read-worthy while I’m sitting here at night with the telly on in the background. Like now.  So I’ll give up on the words,  and show you some more things that made me feel good this afternoon when I decided to swing out the door and take myself for a walk.

But first I had to stop and admire the bottlebrush growing between the carport and the fence, which has suddenly burst into flower.

bottlebrushI love me my native flowers. Bottlebrush round here tends to flower in autumn as well – and lasts a heck of a lot longer than the azaleas.

lorikeetThe rainbow lorikeets love the native flowers as well.
And I could quite happily stand there watching them for ages.

Then I headed down to the beach. I’m working on doing some exercise EVERY day, and when I checked the tide time at around 4.00, it was bang on low, which is a sign from the gods saying ‘Tracey, get off your backside and go for a walk, you idiot. What more incentive do you need, woman?”

beachreflections
And if this can’t put me in a better mood, then I’m not sure what will.

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Filed under australiana, miscellaneous minutiae, our beach

Unfinished business.

My life is littered with stuff I’ve started but never got around to finishing.  The big daddy of them all is that after all these years I’ve not got around to deciding on a career. That’s a work in progress, you might say, but something that I should well and truly have “finished” by now.

But, as a big time cleanup for the renovation looms, I know I’m going to be faced with more and more examples of little projects I once began with enthusiasm, but let fall by the wayside. Soon I will be forced to decide whether to to just give up and throw them away or set them aside and give them a realistic finish date.   Overall, I guess, there might be some lessons in there to take with me as I tackle the future.

Here are a few examples.

Knitting.  I did knit once – mainly when I was still at home and Mum (a fabulous knitter) could come to the rescue  when I made a botch of things. I never truly learnt how to fix up my own mistakes.  In my defence I did complete a few jumpers and the like, even some with fairisle (sp?) patterns.  I still have a vivid memory of some grey and pink leg warmers I started in the 80s. Never ever finished them and they are long thrown out, but whenever I think leg warmers I think of them.

With my first pregnancy I pulled out the needles and wool once again. And never finished a little pair of leggings.  Green they were – I was always going to be into unisex colours. (But imagine washing woollen baby leggings anyway! What was I thinking?)

It took many years before I pulled out knitting needles again, but with the feathery scarf craze, I did manage to knit up one each for the older two girls and a Sydney Swans red and white striped job for myself.  The youngest chose a different wool which took longer to knit up. And, um… four years later it’s still not finished, and another winter just passed me by.  Doesn’t stop me checking out wool in the shops – the other day I was eyeing off a green wool that was an exact match for the girls’ netball association colours with the insane idea of knitting up scarves for the girls for next year’s state age.  (Never mind the cost!)  Commonsense prevailed and I walked out of the shop without being tempted. This time.  But maybe.. if I finished Ms 10’s scarf, then I could try one of those? Knitting could be therapeutic. Couldn’t it?

I learnt to sew a bit. Once. (Mainly stretch, when the kids were little.)  I’ve now got two big plastic boxes full of material, and a couple of patterns already cut out. But I couldn’t tell you the last time I sewed any garment, and Himself keeps having conniptions over the amount of material just sitting there. But, you just never know, do you?  I might suddenly come over all clever with sewing, and use my machine for more than the resented hemming of pants, or running repairs. (I did make a cool mermaid costume once. And an Indian costume. I could sew, you know, I’d just have to put my mind to it.

My biggest DNF in sewing projects, though, mocks me every day. Curtains. (And some of you who have travelled with me through internetland over the past x years know just how long I’ve had unfinished curtains hanging on my windows.)  I don’t know where the hell I got the idea that you should hang curtains unhemmed first to let them “drop” – but it’s the worst idea EVER. If you’re anything like me DON’T DO IT. Otherwise you’ll end up with four windows in the house with curtains still sporting pins in their hems, that have been that way for years (not months… YEARS.)  And the pins have, of course, rusted.  And fallen out. And the curtains in the kids’ room have even ripped.  And now there’s no point to finishing them because they’ll all be coming down.

The curtains are my biggest shame.

I could of course go on and on. Cleaning projects are my natural nemesis, but you don’t want to hear about my cleaning procrastinations.

I can, though, feel a Part 2 coming on, because I’m sure some of you, if you are willing to share, will remind me of various other projects I’ve also started and not completed. And that’s a “please share!” – just to make me feel, um.. more normal? That I’m not the only one who has a long list of DNFs on her resume.

knitting

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Filed under lost in procrastination