Bad Headspace . . .

Being away for four or five days doesn’t seem very long at all. As I mentioned in the last post, sometimes I disappear for a month or so from everywhere just to write. That’s usually the only thing that stops me from being ANYWHERE for any (decently) substantial length of time. So I guess this newest (small) break (of sorts) was a pretty new sort of experience for me.

I’ve taken actual breaks before, where I don’t ‘work’ at all. Usually when a new video game comes out. I’ll spend a week or so playing it (bonus points for couch co-op because that means I get to spend time with Husband too). I’ll take a bit of time here and there when I’m waiting for other things to happen because . . . hey, might as well.

I know I’ve mentioned before that when I’m not working, I want to be working. (And will be ‘plotting’ (as much as I ever really can/do) books out while I’m doing other things.) The last few days haven’t been an exception in that regard, but there was one definite difference.

Usually, when I’m inside, I’m wanting to be in my shed. Even if I’m not writing at that point, or editing, I want to be out here because this is my space. This is where I check the rest of the world at the door and get to think about nothing but work. (Is it work if you love it?) The last few days have been an exception because I honestly just did not want to be out here.

I worded that wrong. I wanted to be out here. I just couldn’t.

It’s sort of weird (maybe) how it happened, but I’ve been in one of the worst headspaces I’ve occupied in a pretty long while. (It was a piling.)

It started with me getting utterly overwhelmed by the amount of stuff I have to do. I get frustrated at how long it takes me to do . . . pretty much everything. So I think I was just over-thinking a lot of these things. Asking, “How am I supposed to get all this done and have time to EVER write again?” rather than saying, “I just need to (mentally) shut up and do it.”

That alone would’ve been fine enough. I’m pretty used to having quite a bit on my plate. (Or am used to juggling multiple plates at once. Or, er, used to having multiple plates that I will ‘juggle’ one at a time of.)

I watched a TV show the other day, at the ‘start’ of this bad headspace. It’s probably wrong of me to do, but I’ve been blaming a not-so-good mood going from that to undeniably horrible on that show.

I started watching Cold Justice last season. I’m kind of weird with shows like that. Love detective shows, but some . . . no. (The way I explain it is: I have no issues seeing a [prop] head in a box, but I have issues if the show shows how said [prop] head ended up being in said box. Meaning, I don’t like/can’t watch CSI.) I watched a few episodes of Criminal Minds while my husband was deployed. Then I had to stop because, no matter how interesting the show was to me, it just got to be too much. (I’m weird about blood in shows/movies. I don’t mind seeing it there as long as I don’t have to see how it got there.)

Anyway, I love detective shows. I love trying to figure out who the bad guys are (usually do) and why they did what they did (usually do). But there are certain sorts of things that really . . . bother me. When I start thinking about real people doing the sorts of things I’m watching, whether or not it’s plausible, etc. . . . yeah, that really gets to me.

So yeah, Cold Justice. Even though that is them going around working on REAL cold cases . . . I’ve been pretty alright with it. Sure, there have been the moments of, “Oh my god,” or, “blah blah, that bastard, blah blah.” I don’t have the ‘disconnect’ that I have in shows like Sherlock, or Elementary, or The Mentalist (which used to be one of my favorites) because there’s no ‘this isn’t real’ barrier. I get angry a lot of the time, watching it.

Anyway, a few episodes ago, it was a check-up one. And they had John Walsh on there hosting.

So I got this bright idea to watch The Hunt with John Walsh.

Big mistake, C. BIG MISTAKE.

There I was, already at the beginning of a horrendous mood, and I watch an episode of that show. I almost cried. The entire show, I was almost in tears at just how . . . messed up (not wording that how I want) it all was. Then I was torn about how good it is to have stuff like that out there, when the ‘person’ is still on the loose. (I really hope someone catches that . . . . man. (Not wording that how I want to either.) I don’t care that he’s as old as the hills now. Don’t freaking care.)

I was genuinely upset. Then something frustrating happened while I was still trying to deal with all the not-good-feels from that. I went to sleep, woke up, got frustrated by something else, and the story moves on.

My point is that every time I thought I might be getting out of that headspace, something else would happen to pull me right back into it. (Many, many things over the few days.) I had all this stuff I needed (still need) to do, and I just couldn’t. I didn’t feel like I could deal with any of it, and I said something I have never once (to my knowledge) said before this point.

“I can’t even be out here right now.” (My shed.)

So I played Skyrim. That was what I did. No matter how frustrating that game is or can be, I really felt like I just couldn’t. I don’t ever really get to the ‘I can’t work at all’ point because I’m always wanting to write. Getting other things done means I can get back to it, so I’m always wanting to do something.

I’ve woken up every day of the last few thinking, ‘Maybe today will be the day [where I’ll be able to get back to it].’ And it just kept not-happening. Got upset yesterday when I went inside because feeling like I couldn’t be out here is just . . . not right.

The shed is, like I said, my place to check the world at the door. I didn’t like feeling it had turned into something else. (The place where I got completely overwhelmed by absolutely everything and could do absolutely everything apart from what I want to do [write].)

It took me a really long time with this to realize that taking breaks for myself is alright. When my anxiety sets off for whatever reasons it does . . . it’s okay to take some time and recenter myself. (I’m talking about when my anxiety gets me to the ‘I can’t function right now’ point, which it occasionally does.) I guess that even though I know as much, it’s still difficult for me to put all the stuff I need to do out of my head. But I really think that not letting myself get to where I have been this week is important. I don’t want to get to ‘shut down mode’ ever again. I honestly felt like I’d just . . . crashed. (When you open your laptop, ready to work, and it shuts itself down with updates only to take FIVE YEARS to reboot. That’s something to compare it to, only it was a crash rather than a reboot.)

So I’m popping in to say that I’m not completely done with this pseudo-break. I think I’m going to take the rest of this week (which is almost over) and next week as well. I’m going to write, and I’m going to try to make a REALISTIC schedule for myself. (For writing/blogging/etc./etc./etc./etc./etc./etc.) I also need to figure out how to rearrange these questions for the video Q&A in order to split it into separate ones. I’d already had them arranged a certain way. Anyway, that’s on the to-do list as well – trying to tackle all that.

I think that just setting up something I know I can tackle will be best for me. That way I’m not stressing out about absences (because everyone will expect them) and whatnot. I’ll still be able to write. Theoretically.

I WILL be posting something tomorrow, so check back for that (if you want to).

And I’m not saying that I won’t be stopping in anywhere this week, only that I might not. I will be trying to get caught up with responding to emails/messages/comments/etc.

Hopefully this schedule thing will work out.

Sorry this was so long.

 

The battle continues . . .

Updates after an unplanned absence . . .

So, I’ve been completely absent for nearly a month now. I need to apologize for that.

(I’m sorry!)

It wasn’t planned. I wish I could blame Mercury being in retrograde again, but it is right now and honestly when it started is around the time I started getting everything straightened out. That would’ve made sense (or as much sense as Mercury in retrograde actually makes) as to what was going on with me several weeks ago. I don’t have the excuse.

Do you ever have one of those days where you’re just . . . bleh about everything? Of course you do. We all do.

I had a little more than a week of that. I don’t know what was up with it, but I seriously couldn’t force myself to do much of anything. I worked a little here and there, and just wasn’t feeling it no matter what I tried to work on. Wrote up a few blog posts during that time. Didn’t post them. Then I gave up and just played Skyrim until I felt a little more like myself. I take that back. I played Skyrim until I reached the point of, “I need to work regardless of how I feel. I’ve got too much s*** to do.” Then I worked until I felt more like myself.

I do have my theories to explain the weirdness. I think I was (and still am) overwhelmed. I was bogged down by not just trying to get this second book ready, but trying to get OTHER books ready (so I can eventually focus more attention on new things), also trying to work on new things, all the while trying to figure out how in the world to balance social stuff (at least the internet-sort). I’m used to working a lot (all the time) and prefer it that way, but I think I just hit some weird sort of breaking point that stole absolutely every bit of my motivation/drive. I did NOT like it. I’m used to being stoked to get out of bed every day so I can get to work.

There were also a few road blocks to getting book 2 ready, which left me kind of fumbling around not knowing what to do or what to say to anyone. So I stayed off everything until I would have something a bit more definitive to say.

Let’s see . . .

I have to delay book 2 a bit. Not long, but I was hoping to have it out within the next few days (with my projection). Not going to hit that projection. I don’t have a more set day yet, but I should be able to give everyone an update within a week or so. (*fingers crossed*)

I should have an update about the cover within the week as well. All I can say there is that it’s in the works.

I did (most of) another run-through of the trilogy. I’m currently part of the way through the last book, RIGHT AT the part where the time line flub starts. I wanted to be able to tell everyone I’d finally gotten that fixed, but I can’t because I haven’t.

I did some writing here and there on a few different things. The standalone short story that goes along with the Reave series, and also the ‘spin-off’ (of sorts). I actually got quite a lot done on the former of those.

Book 3 of the Reave Series is already in the hands of a beta-reader and has been for a couple weeks now. I’m really happy to report that people are liking the second book more than the first (LIKE ME!). I’m even happier to say that, last time I checked, my beta-reader was liking the third book even more than the second. (YAAAAAY! That’s SUCH a relief.)

Said beta-reader gave me cupcakes in exchange for B3, so I wasn’t joking before about taking bribes in all forms of cake. Not really. I was going to give her that one anyway, but I do love all forms of cake. By the way, THEY WERE THE MOST DELICIOUS CUPCAKES EVER. Not joking there, or exaggerating.

I passed on an opportunity to go back to Florida with my sister. I’ve been upset about that. I wanted to go, but there’s just TOO MUCH going on right now and I couldn’t justify being gone for ten days. Sad face.

I’ve been going back and forth about whether to release the third book in the Reave Series after the second, or to release the first in the trilogy. I haven’t decided yet. I’ve been wobbling about that for a few months now, but I’m leaning more toward first in the trilogy. That will all depend on a few variables, and I’ll keep you all updated either way.

Let’s see . . .

I went through books 3 & 4 in the RS as well during all this time. I didn’t print them out due to how few changes I made on book 2 the last run-through. Couldn’t justify ‘wasting’ money on the ink . . .

It gave me migraines. I hate going through books on screens, for so many reasons. I probably won’t do that again, ink costs or not. I really don’t know how people can use e-readers. >.< Well, I do know, but I just can’t do the ‘screen’ thing. I digress . . .

I think that’s really about it.

I just need to get my What’s in the works? page updated now to reflect all this and whatnot.

I’ll try to be on here a little more often. There will be a few days (hopefully soon) that I won’t be able to, due to busyness with B2, but I will definitely say something on here before that. I hope nobody else was bitten by the zero-motivation bug. That was seriously one of the worst things ever for me. I hope it never finds me again.

Preparing to work on book two in the Reave Series. :)

After a bit of a hectic time (again, hectic for me), the past few days or so have been the opposite. Granted, that was my doing so I shouldn’t act like I’m surprised, but it’s always surprising for me anytime I’m not working my brain off (??) trying to get stuff done. (Figured ‘brain’ would be better suited to the point.)

I found out a few days ago that Monday (today) would be when I got a beta-read copy of book 2 in the Reave Series back. I think that only reinforced what I was talking about a couple posts back in Writing and Releasing. Working on the RS was getting ready to take precedence in my life once more, and receiving the news as to when seemed to mentally put the new series on hold.

I’m picturing skewering all those characters to trees by their clothing and saying, “Just hang out there for a little while. I’ll get back to you as soon as I can. Promise I’ll come back for you.” I don’t even want to get into the shouting that would ensue or all the nasty remarks I would have said back to me. Something or other about human idiocy, I’m sure. That would of course be followed by (nearly) all of them trying to get themselves down, failing because I put them there, and then more than one threat about how one or more will ‘get me back’ for this. I’m sure they’ll be trying to get themselves down during this time, and that all the struggling will periodically draw my attention back to them. That’s a good thing, as long as I can get everything else done that needs to be done.

I’ve written a little bit. By ‘little bit,’ I mean LITTLE BIT. Book 3 has been even more difficult to get out than the others. I’m crossing my fingers that it really is to do with situations and timing rather than my ability (or lack thereof) to get this story out in general. I suppose I’ll figure that out in a couple months or so.

I’ll be honest, what I’ve mostly been doing the past couple days is playing Skyrim. I hate the load screens in that game. And tell me why I can’t fast travel from inside buildings so that I don’t have to sit through multiple load screens back-to-back. It makes absolutely no sense to me. Sometimes I wonder why I’m even playing it, despite how amazing it is. Husband has had so many random glitches in his games that make it to where you can’t even finish quests after however many hours spent playing, so why take the risk? Because it’s amazing, and ridiculously addictive, I suppose.

Anyway, I’m glad to be getting book 2 to prevent me from getting sucked as hard back into that as I potentially could’ve been. Also, I’m just glad to be getting it back in general, to get it one step closer to being ready for release.

I’m really looking forward to it. I always look forward to starting another run-through of book 2, but it’s going to be interesting to get more feedback from it, to see if things are taken the way I intend them to be. So far seems to be working out that way, from what I’ve already heard. I reckon I’ll see a bit later today.

I probably won’t be on here much over the next few days while I’m going through this. I might be, but I might not. I know I haven’t been on here much in general lately, but at least I’m giving a bit of warning this time. I keep trying to tell myself that once I get more of these books off my plate and released, I’ll have more time for other things. I’m sure I won’t though. I’ll probably just find something else to work on. Who knows though? I just know I have to keep myself busy or else I go insane. I mean, even when playing Skyrim, I make lists and the like. That’s just how I am, and it works.

So yep, I’ll be really busy over the next few days, working on book 2. I know some people are really wanting to read it (and I’m really wanting it to be read), so I’ll be getting it another step closer to that happening. 🙂

Playing Catch-Up: Birthday, Geographer, Skyrim, New Book

The last couple weeks have been a bit . . . hectic. I suppose that would be a word to call it, but I’m not entirely sure anyone else would agree with me. Hectic for me might be a little more appropriate. If I move out of my shed in general, that makes my life feel hectic. Silly, but that’s just how it is.

Between my last post and now, I had a birthday that put me one step closer to thirty. I still have a few more years left until that milestone, but it does feel somewhat strange to be undeniably closer to thirty than twenty. I think I said last year around this time that it was nice to finally ‘feel my age,’ but I guess the best way to say that is: “I’m finally at an age that’s closer to what I feel.” Or I’m getting there, I suppose.

Birthdays are a bitter time for me. (If anyone wants a good dose of [hilarious] bitterness, check out Bitter Ben‘s blog.) I don’t know why that is, but they just are. Maybe it’s the wrinkles I’m getting on my forehead from scrunching my face up all the time. (I guess parents are right when saying your face DOES stick that way. Mine is certainly doing as much. -_-) Every birthday is just another bit of validity as to why they’re showing up (those wrinkles). Maybe it’s just that I don’t like getting gifts. Maybe I don’t like the attention (I don’t, which is why I’m MORE THAN FINE with hardly anyone knowing when my birthday actually is).

Now, Husband knows I’m not the biggest fan of gifts. I’m also not a fan of surprises in general, as I like to have as much control over my life as possible (not really possible, but don’t burst my bubble with this). He got me a surprise before my birthday. That was two tickets for us to go see my favorite band, Geographer, again. After the initial overload of all the things I was going to have to mentally prepare myself for (PEOPLE?! I HAVE TO BE AROUND PEOPLE?!) and things I had to get sorted (I HAVE TO BE AWAKE AT A CERTAIN TIME?!), we were super excited about it. Cut to the evening of this show and there a line of storms sat, RIGHT OVER the interstate we would have to drive for a couple hours to reach our destination. Our car isn’t the best in the rain. I have anxiety attacks every time there’s a downpour here because our car is REALLY not the best in the rain.

As much as I love Geographer (which is such ridiculous amounts that you can’t even imagine), we discussed the situation and decided it wasn’t worth potentially dying over. They will tour again, and I will see them then. But I was sad. Very, very sad. I’m STILL sad.

You have NO IDEA how amazing they are live. Seriously. If they weren’t so amazing and I didn’t love them so much, I wouldn’t put myself in a crowded room of people that can all potentially bump into me. (Please excuse me while I go [mentally] vomit at the thought of being in such close proximity to that many people. Don’t ask me how you can mentally vomit. I do it all the time, but can’t explain it.)

Anyway. Sad.

If you’ve liked my Facebook page, then you might’ve seen the update on there where I was also complaining (on the night of that missed show) about how I had played Skyrim and couldn’t stop thinking about snowberries. Still having that problem, but it comes and goes. I played that again for a little while yesterday. Let me just say that I save that game a ridiculous amount of times due to all the anger and rage (*Jeremy Clarkson voice for ital. there*) I feel when dying and losing even five minutes of playing. (ALL THOSE ALCHEMY INGREDIENTS THAT I’LL HAVE TO PICK UP AGAIN!) So yeah, played it yesterday. Didn’t save for about an hour. Died. Lost all those alchemy ingredients. Turned it off.

I should write a post about WHY that game made me so angry that I couldn’t play it for such a long time. I might do that.

I know I haven’t been on here in a while (two weeks), but I did write up a few things that I may (or may not) post at some point in the future. They weren’t the typical book-type stuff. They had/have nothing to do with that at all and are essentially me just rambling off about random things. (Like Star Wars and Batman, not together.) Might post them at some point.

I’ve also been writing on the new book/series, which has (surprise, surprise) taken up most of my time. I had one night where I finished four chapters. (Longer ones.) Don’t ask me how. Most of the time was spent in the same way as before, with me having a bit of trouble (or more than) getting it out.  There was one night that I sat here trying to write, and at the halfway point of my awake time . . . I still hadn’t completed a chapter. It’s been frustrating, but despite the odds . . .

I HAVE FINISHED WRITING THE SECOND BOOK OF THIS NEW SERIES.

It both went how I intended and didn’t at the same time. Certain things (all of it) took longer than I thought they would take, which caused me to leave it off before I was sure it would be left off. I suppose that doesn’t matter. This series is kind of different from any of the others I’ve done. Every book in those other ones have been one part of a larger whole. This entire series is just . . . one long story rather than the individual pieces. At least it’s seeming to look that way.

I don’t know if I said before, but I’ve written one of my favorite characters ever in this series. Probably my second-favorite non-MC ever. That’s made it a lot more fun than I think it would’ve been if he wasn’t there. Anyway, I need to update my What’s in the works? page now that I’ve finished that one up.

On to the next, I suppose.

Hope everyone has been well! 🙂

Also, I’m going to see Godzilla this weekend and I am STOKED. O.o

Sorry this was so long. I’ve been trying to keep them shorter, but it’s been a while . . .

The strange things people do in their sleep…

I do weird things in my sleep, or so I’ve heard.

It’s kind of funny, when thinking about it, that people who would be in the know about what I do in my sleep never deem it worthy to inform me of those things in a reasonable time frame.

I didn’t find out that I talk in my sleep until I was 22 years old – while my husband was deployed – and walked out into my parents living room one day only for them to ask me, “Were you talking on the phone last night?”

Um, no.

So, after being informed that they’d heard me talking, I decided to call Best Friend. I asked, “Do I talk in my sleep?”

Her response was, “Yeah.”

That was one of those how could I know that if you didn’t tell me?! moments.

Countless sleepovers throughout the years (we used to spend all weekend and nearly every day of summer and school breaks together), and she NEVER TOLD ME.

I’ve been known to sleep with my legs straight up in the air, tickle my arms, and do all sorts of EXTREMELY strange things. I think those two things are enough for anyone to know in that department. Too much, actually.

Yes, I tickle my arms in my sleep sometimes. I know it’s weird. TRUST ME; I know it’s weird.

Talking in my sleep was the most disturbing of things I’d heard I did by far. Needless to say that when my husband was preparing to return home from that deployment . . . I was afraid, despite having slept next to him for however long before that unwanted parting.

I’m unsure how long it took for Husband to inform me that I do not SPEAK in my sleep. I mumble – incoherent words that my brain must know, but not want let out. I’m a mumbler in general though, so I shouldn’t be so surprised. Still, I AM surprised, as my mouth is a constant frustration-inducer (it so rarely does what I want it to). I’ve mumble-sang in my sleep once before. That was interesting to hear about.

After so long of being irritated that nobody deemed these things worthy of telling me, I’m kind of glad now. Husband and I were talking about this a few days ago, and I got so uncomfortable at some of the things I do (the mumbling, which I wake him up doing because sometimes I apparently argue with myself, or some unknown person in my dreams [I call it fair because he wakes me up grinding his teeth and giving me the occasional *knee-jerk* in the rear], heavy sighs that also wake him up [I suppose I’m as discontent in my sleep as I tend to find myself while awake . . . such is the curse of nothing ever being good enough to suit me]) that I’d rather ignore the fact it happens at all.

Now, my husband also does some things in his sleep. There’s the teeth-grinding, which has lessened significantly from when he and I first met. But he, also, talks in his sleep. Not as often as I do, because I allegedly do it nearly every time I sleep, but when he does . . . it’s clear.

While in Alabama a few months ago, he woke me up doing such a thing and the only two words I heard were, “Soul cairn.” He’d been playing Skyrim and he loves video games in general (as do I, but his love for them goes above and beyond). What can I say? There’s not often that I can wake up out of a dead-sleep and laugh my ass off; I usually don’t consider myself awake until I’ve had my eyes open for at least an hour. I did that day. I laughed for several days about that. I’m laughing about it again now.

But there was a one or two week time period about two months ago that was just . . . unprecedented. I’ve only heard him say things in his sleep a few times (which might be due to the fact that I am generally a HEAVY sleeper), so when it happened three times in that time period . . . I don’t even know.

Once, he woke me up laughing. I asked, “What are you laughing at?”

He was dreaming about a dude on skis falling.

Once, while he was napping, I asked him where the extension cord was. He said, “It’s under the fish tank.” This was after we’d returned to Kentucky. Our fish tank is still in Alabama, with our former roommate. He didn’t know he’d said it until I managed to wake him up by VERY firmly saying, “THE FISH TANK IS NOT HERE.” He informed me he was dreaming about the fish tank that time.

The one that will forever stick with me was me walking into the bedroom to inform him I was going over to my mamaw’s to eat potato soup (I believe). He sat straight up in bed and literally almost shouted, “Good day!” at me. I thought he was saying it just to say it, as he seemed completely coherent and being strange/random isn’t off-base for him. Imagine my surprise later when I bring it up and get the scrunched-eyebrows-confused-face and, “Did I really?”

Good day! is now a running joke with us, understandably so.

I’ll probably regret posting about the weird things I do in my sleep, but who really cares?

Hopefully somebody gets a laugh out of it.