beth_bernobich: obsessing (obsessing)
I'm working through several health issues these days. There's the stress fracture in my foot, which is healing, thanks to a wonderful podiatrist. I should be in good shape for our vacation in a couple weeks. There's also the matter of a biopsy next week for possible breast cancer. I'll know by Thursday what the results are, and I'll deal with things as necessary.

Work is going quite well. We launched a new version of our financial tracking system. (Which involved tossing the old and horrible version and redesigning/rewriting from scratch.) I'm now overhauling our staffing planning application based on feedback from the department admins and the finance director.

And the novel in progress... There is progress, even though I still have four chapters left to write. The middle chapters, however, just went through another editing pass, with lots of words added, and lots more replaced. (Chapter 10, in particular, has been especially thorny.) I plan to making a polishing pass through this middle section before I tackle the final section.

And in two weeks, Rome. *bliss*
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (doggie)
This past month has been extra busy, between novel revisions and the dayjob. In early April, I asked my manager if I could temporarily shift my workday to come in two hours later. I'd say this means my workday ends two hours later, but in reality, I was already leaving later, so what this really does is ensure I'm not working overtime.

There's also the matter of those two hours of writing every morning. What a lovely, lovely treat for me. So far, I've polished the first six chapters of the pirate novel into a submission-ready state, I've ripped apart the next three chapters and rewritten them into two, and I've made a dent in rewriting the two chapters after that. I won't have the new draft done by the end of May, but I will have the major surgery completed.

I'm tempted to ask my manager to extend my shifted hours another month, but I'll wait until the end of May to take stock of my progress.

breathing!

Dec. 14th, 2015 09:00 am
beth_bernobich: Beak Bird (Beak Bird)
Application successfully launched. Department admins can now assigned courses to instructors, create new courses and sections, and run a number of reports. We have made a few tweaks in the past couple weeks, but overall, the new application is working quite well. In my spare time, I am setting up a real test server, creating profiles for automated builds, and converting a second application from ASP.Net to MVC.

All of this is a lot of work, but I am getting so much satisfaction out of making things right, both for the end users and the development environment. My boss hired me because he knew things were a hot mess and he needed an expert. I'm happy to oblige. Plus, he's ordered an ice cream cake to celebrate my birthday.

As for writing? I've completed the Writing The Other workshop, I'm sending out queries for Other Than Honorable, and I'm now reviewing my draft of The Edge of the Empire. Good stuff, satisfying stuff.

I'm also remembering to breathe.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (cat on a wire)
Well, I didn't stop breathing, but November has proved to be even more chaotic than October was. I met my initial deadline for the project at work, which led to more feedback from the product owners, which led to more late nights and some frantic code re-shuffling. We then got feedback from our first round of users/testers, which led to some even later nights.

However!

We are now in excellent shape for the December 1st launch. I suspect there will be more tweaks and fixes throughout the month, but the chaos should drop to a more manageable level. I plan to take some time off for my birthday and after Christmas. There will be breathing. There will be writing.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (nocturnall)
Nocturnall just went through copyedits. (Yay!) Yet another step on the road to publication. Over the next month, the final artwork will arrive, and my designer can get started with the interior and cover designs. I've also contacted a number of people about possible blurbs, and a number of reviewers about possible reviews.

In other news, one of my interns quit, which saved me the task of firing him. That meant I had to take over finishing his work, which was in even worse shape than I feared, so this past week has been one of late nights and much grumbling over the ex-intern. I foresee another week before I can put the new version into testing, then I can get back to the other project I was working on.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (arrow)
Work could easily take over my life. The interns need constant supervision. The junior dev needs to be kept focused. The finance director needs the occasional reality check. The general chaos needs to be managed. My goals are to 1) get the huge list of outstanding tasks down to a manageable size, and 2) get the necessary tools and procedures into place so that we can keep track of things.

And yet, on Friday, I picked up a tasty lunch from the Student Union, and sat outside on one of the many patios, where I could enjoy the sun and mark up the rest of the geek girl story. So, yeah. Life is good.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (cat on a wire)
Nocturnall Kickstarter: Things are going very well with this project. The cover artist and I worked through a couple rounds with rough sketches until we had the right look for both the story and the series. She then sent me a detailed drawing that had me dizzy with delight. We've now moved on to the color sketches. I've picked a color scheme from the three she sent me. The next step is the final version.

Current Novel: Out on submission. *fingers crossed*

Geek Girl Story: I've read and marked up the document for the next round of edits. The story grew quite a bit in the last round, and I suspect it will grow a bit more.

Edge of the Empire: Once I finish the GG story, I want to dive back into revisions for this novel. With the change in my dayjob, I no longer have any writing time in the morning, but I do have more time after work, so I want to experiment with short sessions in the evening.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (red sun)
...and the new job is wonderful.

I have a lot of work to do to wrangle our projects into order, but the interns and my junior developer are willing, and my manager backs me up with time, money, and support. Plus the occasional trip to the UConn Dairy Bar.

Meanwhile, I am looking forward to Readercon.
beth_bernobich: Crab (Crab)
This past week was a busy one. I finished up in fine style at the old job, which pleases me. I have (almost) a week before the new one starts, so it's time to play catch up. A bit more gardening. Miscellaneous chores. Writing summaries for possible sequels to Current Novel. Finishing the latest round of edits for my geek girls story. Petting the cats.

misc...

Jun. 15th, 2015 08:30 am
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (umbrella mushrooms)
Last week at the old job. I've finished a number of tasks far ahead of schedule, so I'm using these last few days to tackle some issues that we've always wanted to address.

Latest round of sketches from the cover artist have arrived. In the next day or two, I need to sit down with my cover designer and get his input. Guys, this is going to be such a great cover.

Agent loves the latest version of Not!Sherlock. She has proposed a short list of publishers to me, and the manuscript will go out Real Soon Now. *cue excitement*

And to scratch my writing itch, I am slowly working through my geek girl story. When I first wrote it, I thought it was the best thing ever. I still love the story all to pieces, but I know I can make the execution better.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (girl and balloon)
...I start a new job at the University of Connecticut at the end of June.

I'll still be doing web development, but in a totally different environment. While I like my co-workers at the soon-to-be old job, the company is going through chaotic times. With UConn, I am getting stability, better benefits, and a shorter work day.

Meanwhile, I am poking at various writing projects and doing a spot of gardening.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (book fin)
...and off to my agent.

Just in time for me to dive back into Nocturnall. The artist and I are now exchanging emails about the concept sketches she sent me. (I LOVE them.)

I am also poking at my geek girl story. Plans are to make another editing pass before I send it out again. This will scratch my writing itch while still being low-key. Just what I need after the intensity of Not!Sherlock.

Oh, and I am now back to full-time work as well. More details about that later.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (Rose Fractal)
I'm in-between these days. In-between drafts of Current Novel. In-between with my Kickstarter, which has twelve more days to run. In-between the start and end of my part-time adventure.

With Current Novel, I've finished reading the draft, and while I wait for reader feedback, I can take care of revising the synopsis and creating a brief summary of the sequel(s). I *think* this one is a three-book set, but unlike River of Souls, I want these books to stand alone, even while they include plots arcs that extend over the books.

The Kickstarter pledges continue to arrive in fits and spurts, which is typical for this point in a campaign. However, I have more blog posts planned and extras to research, which should help to get the word out.

And the part-time adventure has proved a smashing success. Not only did I finish a draft of Current Novel, I've had time for other activities. I've had the space to breathe. And I still have three more months to go!
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (scene 24)
Finished the chapter from last weekend and wrote half the next. One and half more chapters, then I flip the switch to edit, edit, edit.

Meanwhile, the dayjob is just one crisis after another. There's a company-wide meeting this week to announce a reorganization. That...should be interesting.

ETA: Just found out that more layoffs happened last week. Yeah. Not a happy time.
beth_bernobich: Crab (Crab)
I returned to the dayjob last Monday to find all kinds of crises. It turns out that having a layoff right before two major deployments, while the senior developer (that's me) is on leave and the other senior .NET developer has been reassigned to a different project, AND our new product owner is still learning the ropes, isn't such a great move.

The writing side, however, is going well. Over the past four days, I finished one new chapter and one diary entry, plus made a dent in a second new chapter. Less than three chapters to go...

quiet...

Oct. 19th, 2014 10:00 am
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (Black Cat)
It's been a very hectic couple of months. Crisis after crisis at the dayjob. The drama of Newbie (now, thankfully, over). At least four weeks in a row where I consistently worked long days and weekends. And though I was truly looking forward to our vacation in London, that also required time and work to prepare for. I had no time for writing, and I could feel my nerves frazzling.

But! Vacation did finally arrive. And it was lovely.

We rented an apartment near Russell Square and within a few blocks of the British Museum. Having an apartment instead of a hotel room meant we could have a leisurely breakfast in our pajamas, with coffee made to our liking. It also meant that on Tuesday, when my spouse decided to go visit coin dealers, I had the space to write, pace, write, make coffee, and write some more.

We're home now, and that too is a good thing. I have quiet. I have my cats. And yesterday, I opened up the latest chapter for Current Novel and spent the afternoon writing. #bliss
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (umbrella mushrooms)
...until The Time Roads comes out.

Between now and then, I have several deadlines at work, followed by a much-needed vacation. (London! Bath! Stuff!) I'll get back in time for Book Day, but other than a celebratory visit to a bookstore, I won't be doing much on the day itself.

That doesn't mean I'm doing nothing at all. I have four articles scheduled at the Magical Words blog, one each Thursday throughout October, and Tynga's Reviews will interview me for their Paranorm'All Hallows Eve.

And at some point, I will get back to writing that next book.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (Rose Fractal)
...to Book Day for The Time Roads.

I am very excited by this, though at the moment, I'm too tired to show it. :)

Work has been extra chaotic, eating up brain space** and writing time. On the one hand, this is frustrating. On the other, I tell myself that I have no deadlines, so I can take my time and savor the process of taking a good story and making it better.

** As I typed these words, Fred gifted me with an image of Aidrean Ó Deághaidh's daughter coming to Éire for the first time and doing the Queen a vital service. Wicked Fred.
beth_bernobich: petal twigs (petal twigs)
the coda story has a home. it won't appear until early 2016, but it will be easily available. my editor is still working out the details. more news when i have it.

i rewrote the first chapter of my pirate book and i am much happier with the results. only twenty-one more to go. i meant to tackle the second chapter this weekend, but the dayjob has been especially demanding this week, so i'll be writing code today (sunday) instead of writing prose.

here's a snippet from the pirate book...

snippet )

(and yes, that is ilse in a previous lifetime.)

update...

Aug. 3rd, 2014 10:05 am
beth_bernobich: obsessing (obsessing)
Last month at the dayjob, we interviewed five or six people for our .NET team. One person starts tomorrow, and another person is negotiating salary and/or other terms. Management also assigned a current employee, someone with SQL and Report Design experience to the team, which will be a great help. That brings us up to four developers, with several more planned. (Plus Newbie, alas.)

Current Novel is close to 30% done. Or maybe 40%. I've now crossed into the middle section of the novel, which is generally where chapters start to multiply, while other scenes vanish entirely as I figure out the details, so I won't know the true length of the novel until I have a complete draft.

Meanwhile, the e-ARC for THE TIME ROADS showed up on NetGalley this week. I'm hoping that this means more reviewers will see the book. I also hope they like it, naturally, but first steps first. As Kameron Hurley said, "Nobody can love a book they don’t know about."

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