Monday, December 29, 2008

Updates...Gina and the last goal update of 2008

First off, thanks to all of you for your well-wishes for my cousin. Gina ended up with broken ribs, a couple of broken vertebrae, and a punctured lung. Her lung didn't collapse though, which made things slightly easier. She's in a lot of pain but she's been conscious and lucid enough to talk.

The doctors have been running a lot of different tests to check for permanent damage, especially spinal cord damage, but everything so far indicates that though it'll be a long and painful road, she will make a full recovery. So again, thanks to all of you for your support, and for putting up with me being a total mess the last few days. <3

Now for a quick goal update. This is the last of the year, so I'm going to see where I stand on all of the goals I haven't yet finished, based on what the original goal was. Overall, I'm impressed with how much I got done. When I started this at the beginning of the year, I was hoping to finish maybe four or five. I never thought I would add so many goals and yet manage to complete the majority of them. I'll definitely be putting up a new set of goals at the beginning of 2009.

1. Nano novel. Okay, the initial goal was to finish my Nano novel from 2007, and edit it once. Technically, this didn't happen, but I'm still thrilled with my progress. I'm probably 3/4 through the first draft, and I've already edited some large chunks of the story. I may actually finish a story, for once. >_>

2. Write every day. I didn't write every day, or even close to every day. I'd say I probably averaged 3-4 times a week. Considering before this year I'd go 6+ months without writing a word, it's an improvement. I may end up carrying this goal over to next year and trying to work up to every day.

3. Let other people read my writing. Much better than I expected with this one. I still have to work on it, but I managed to get over my terror of letting others read my writing a little bit. I even let my mother read something.

4. Learn Japanese. I've made a hell of a lot of progress with this. If I continue this or try another language next year, I think I need to set a more specific goal so that I can measure my progress a bit better.

Start buying less stuff, and finish what I have lying around the house. This is and probably always will be an ongoing battle with me. I have my times where I buy shit I really don't need, but having this as a goal I was consciously thinking about helped me to curb my spending a great deal. I've also managed to finish a lot of things I've had around the house for ages. And overall I think I've finished more than I've bought. Except for maybe books. >_>

Organize my stuff and get rid of unnecessary clutter. This is probably the only goal left on the list that I'm not satisfied with. I got a lot of this finished, but I still have a long way to go. I've made some more progress the last few days, so maybe I'll make it a goal for next year to finally finish.

7. Get through borrowed stuff. Very happy with this one. I don't remember what the original goal was, if I wanted to finish everything I'd borrowed or just get through as much as I can so I could return stuff. Whatever, I'm probably through about 3/4 of what I had, and I've been doing well not borrowing so much from people. I limit myself to the few things that really interest me so that I don't get completely overwhelmed with other people's stuff.

Like I said, overall I'm thrilled with how much I managed to get done. Even the goals I didn't complete, I made noticeable progress. Once I come up with some new ideas for goals for next year I'll start the posts again. I think having the blog and posting regular updates kept me on track with my goals, unlike regular New Year's resolutions which are forgotten in a week. Plus, if I stopped doing these updates, I think Jade might hurt me....

Thursday, December 25, 2008

What the fuck =\

So I was going to make a happy post talking about what a great Christmas I had, and all the neat things I got as presents. However, I just got a call that changed all of that.

While my cousins were on their way home from our grandmother's house, they hit a patch of ice and wrecked their car. I'm not sure on all of the details of the accident yet. All I know is that my brother just talked to my dad, and one of my cousins is okay. She's in the hospital here and might have to stay overnight or whatever but she'll be fine.

My other cousin, who was driving, is not okay. They had to life flight her to Pittsburgh and they're not sure whether she is going to make it. Again, I don't know all of the details yet, just that it's VERY serious.

I don't have any idea what to say or do right now. I don't even know if this post is coherent. I'm just a wreck and needed to get it out there.

I just wish there was something I could do. But there's not, so I just have to sit here and wait for the phone to ring and pray it's not bad news....:(

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Goals Update 18

1. Nano novel. Been working on this fairly regularly. I haven't had much free time but at least I'm getting a few minutes in here and there.

2. Write every day. Been keeping on my newest novel. It's been hectic with work and finishing up with this semester at school so I haven't spent as much time on it as I'd like to. I hope to get back into it more as class ends and I get through with my overtime at work.

3. Let other people read my writing. I let my mother of all people read a few bits of this year's Nano, and she seemed to really like it. This gave me a self-confidence boost considering she's an English professor with English and writing degrees.

4. Learn Japanese. I have yet to make any more progress here. I've been too swamped between Nano, class, and work. I have, however, kept going through my notes so I don't forget everything I've learned so far.

Start buying less stuff, and finish what I have lying around the house. I've done fairly well with this. I still buy more than I need to, and Christmas is going to add a ton to my "to do" pile (damn you Doug and your starting me on three more book series...), but I'm getting through a good bit.

Organize my stuff and get rid of unnecessary clutter. Managed to spend some time on this one since my last update. I'd love to get as much as I can cleaned out and organized by the end of the year. I'm coming up on five days off work due to the holidays. And there are still two weekends left, so I will hopefully get my ass in gear and finish this one while I have the spare time!

7. Get through borrowed stuff. Done well with this. I'm caught up on the Stephanie Plum books, and only have a few books out from the library. I finished a lot of my friends' stuff as well. Book wise I don't have more than a book or two from each person (with the exception of Doug). I have no more movies, and Roswell is the only series I have.

8. Nano 2008. Goal accomplished there.

So there's not a lot of time left in the month, but I don't have many goals left to complete. There are only a handful still even on the list, and of those most are ongoing efforts. I'll probably do one more update around before the end of the year, and then it will be time for me to decide on my goals for 2009! I already have a bunch of ideas....

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Three for three

There isn't really anything else to say on that subject. I'm surprised how much I still want to work on my novel. Of course, I will be taking a few days completely off to give myself a break and some time to think how I want to progress on a few parts of the story. ^_^

Also, I realized this is my third year of Nano, and also the third time I've won. I'm so glad that I found out about this through a few people on CAD. It's given me far more motivation to write than I'd ever given myself. Now if I could only finish one of my stories....

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Day 27

Happy Thanksgiving!

Also, I just hit 45,000 words. WOOOOOOOOOO!

I really have little to no motivation to write at all right now. However, it would be a tragedy to get this far only to quit at the end. So I'll keep plugging away...I'm past today's required word count and it's only 3pm, so hopefully I can get ahead this evening. I'd love to finish by about tomorrow but we'll see how that goes.

On another note, my grandmother wants me to run errands for her tomorrow. Why? I told her she should do her own errands as I was not going out on Black Friday, but I'm sure she'll manage to guilt me into it somehow. *shakes fist*

Monday, November 24, 2008

Day 24

Gah, still need to study a bit for my exam tomorrow before I go to sleep, so this is going to be a short entry. I'm not sure if I'll get to write tomorrow though I'm going to try and get about a thousand words in. Of course, I have to stop at Barnes and Noble after class to pick up a new book, so who knows if my novel will even end up opened tomorrow. Oh well, at least I'm ahead! And I have Thursday and Friday off work...

Needed word count: 40,008
Current word count: 42,271
Words left to 50k: 7,729

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Day 21-23

So I didn't bother blogging all weekend again. Not surprising really, I write at such odd times that regular posts are difficult. At any rate, I passed the 40k, though I didn't get much more than that. Still, I'm nearly done, and I'm more than a day ahead.

I have a big exam on Tuesday so I don't know how much I'm going to be able to write, but I'm going to try and get in as much as I possibly can. It would be nice to get the last 10k finished sometime during this week, and then I don't have to worry about it over the weekend. Considering I have Thursday and Friday off due to the holiday, it's entirely possible.

I can't believe Nano is so close to being over. Here's hoping that I actually continue with this novel once I've hit the 50k and am not obligated to write daily!

Needed word count: 38,341
Current word count: 40,515
Words left to 50k: 9,485

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Day 20

I'd just decided I was taking the night off, but then Angela messaged me and wanted to do an hour-long writing session. I haven't warred in a while and tend to not be so sluggish when I do, so I figured I might as well. I wasn't going to push myself much though as I was having conversations and tea shopping.

Yet I somehow managed to hit nearly 1400 words. Some of them may even be coherent. I'm now over 35k, and I think I'm going to make my goal for the end of the weekend 43k. Ideally I'd hit 45k but I don't think that's realistic at all with everything I have planned.

And now it's time for bed. Only one more day left of work before it's the weekend, and then a short week next week!

Needed word count: 33,340
Current word count: 35,654
Words left to 50k: 14,346

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Day 18-19

Was too tired to worry about blogging last night. I did type some. I think it was around 900 words. Still not too shabby. Tonight went well for the word count.

I'm starting to get sick of Nano though. Don't get me wrong, I still love my plot. I love my characters, and I'm having a lot of fun. And I really want to continue with this and eventually finish the book. But I'm tired of having to type nearly 2000 words a day. This in addition to 10 hours spent at work or driving, school, and all of the other things I have to do.

Of course, I'm starting to get into the home stretch with the 50k, so that probably explains a bit of it. But mostly it's work. I'm on the computer all day, entering orders, making spreadsheets, emailing vendors back and forth. Then I come home and have to type another 2000 words. No wonder I haven't been wanting to start until 10pm. :p

My goal is to have 40k by the end of the weekend, and preferably 45k. My weekend is looking like it's going to be insanely busy, but we'll see.

Needed word count: 31,673
Current word count: 34,258
Words left to 50k: 15,742

Monday, November 17, 2008

Day 17

Again, not writing much. It's nearly time for bed and I'm exhausted and cranky. I only even wrote tonight because I didn't want to be obligated to write tomorrow if I don't feel like it. I have work, then class, and it's supposed to be really bad weather. So I somehow doubt I'll be coming home wanting to pop on the computer and work.

Tonight went alright though, I think I got over 2k again. Under 20k to finish for the year. Hopefully I'm not so burnt out when I'm done that I drop the story instead of finishing it...

Needed word count: 28,339
Current word count: 31,124
Words left to 50k: 18,876

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Day 16

Don't have a ton of time for this entry, because I have a few things I want to get done before I need to go to bed. I didn't hit the 30k but I've passed 29, so I decided that was good. I think I typed about 2.5k today.

I'm hoping to have time for another entry tomorrow, besides the daily Nano one. Have some random things floating around in my head that I want to get on here. We'll see though...damn my busy schedule!

Needed word count: 26,672
Current word count: 29,045
Words left to 50k: 20,955

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Day 15

Today I was entirely too busy. I got a little writing done in the morning, but I was out the door by 11, so it wasn't much. I went to Barnes & Noble and picked up a present for someone, then went to Danielle's black belt ceremony in the afternoon.

I didn't get home until after 7pm, and Danielle came over around 9 to watch Casino Royale so we could go see Quantum of Solace tomorrow. I've written bits here and there throughout the day, and I'm continuing to do the same now as I try and figure out everyone's Christmas gifts.

I'll post an actual word count tomorrow evening, as I'm not done yet for tonight and I know I won't remember to update this post before bed. I'm aiming for at least 30k, which shouldn't be an issue even with my busy day tomorrow.

Now if I would just remember to do my laundry....and I might even post something not Nano related soon too.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Day 14


That about sums it up for tonight. I did two more of the hour-long sprints with Angela and Jamie, and got quite a bit done. I'm still getting along well with the scenes too, no more writer's block issues. Hopefully it stays that way.

On a non-noveling note, work is insane but going well. Cori actually yelled at me yesterday and told me to mess something up, because it was creeping her out that I hadn't made any mistakes yet. My test in class went wonderfully, I got a 97. Now I just have to do well on the last two. Hmm, what else. I haven't really been up to anything but work and writing.

Danielle gets her black belt tomorrow, so I'm going to see that. Then Sunday is Quantum of Solace. Here's hoping I actually have time for laundry and writing this weekend!

Needed word count: 23,338
Current word count: 26,036
Words left to 50k: 23,964

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Day 13

Again, I didn't really write before 10pm tonight. At about 9:50, Angela messaged me, and I was happy because I haven't warred in a few days and thought maybe it would help. She said, "Hey do you have an hour to write?" to which I replied of course I did, as that's what I was planning to do for the next hour anyway. She suggested we write for 10 minutes, break for 5. Then repeat that twice more, and then have a 15 minute war to end the hour. She said she'd done that the past couple of days and always hit over 1000 words. I agreed, happy to have any form of motivation to write.

In the first three wars (the 10 minute ones) I wrote over 1200 words. Total for the hour? 1826. More than the daily count. Instant mood lift. Not to mention, I started writing a scene and it was just flying. I glanced over it at the end of the war too, and it actually seems *gasp* good! I don't want to stop writing either, but I'm about to collapse from exhaustion so I suppose I should do the sleep thing.

Does this mean I've gotten over my writer's block? For now at least. ^_^

Needed word count: 21,671
Current word count: 23,210
Words left to 50k: 26,790

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Day 12

The second week of Nano nearly always sucks. The initial fun wears off, and you start to realize how awful your writing is. The third week is a bit better because you can see the light at the end of the tunnel, and the fourth week is nearly as fun as the first because you're rushing to the finish. But the second week...I hate it so.

Did okay tonight, though I couldn't force myself to start writing until almost 10pm. Still banged out about 1800 words. That's all I really have to say about that. I need to find some word wars soon, or something. I think tomorrow I may try and get some extra writing in, if I can motivate myself. If I write the first 15 minutes of every hour that I'm home after work, until it's time for bed, I can probably get about 2500-3000 words.

We'll see how it goes tomorrow, but for now I'm beat. This week has been rough. I honestly thought it was Thursday but no. Only two more days and then I can have a break.

Needed word count: 20,004
Current word count: 21,314
Words left to 50k: 28,686

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Day 11

Tuesdays are such a busy day for me, you'd think I wouldn't have any time to write. That said, I did really well tonight, so well in fact that I just realized it was after 11 and I really need to sleep. Otherwise I might be able to go for another hour.

Doing a bit better on the plot though a lot of it is still just summarizing what I want to happen and leaving the specifics out. I'll get to this later, but in the meantime at least I'm progressing.

I had the thought tonight that I might cut out a lot of Kieran's past so that I have more space for the rest of the story...which pretty much means that about three days of work would be useless and subsequently deleted. I won't make any decisions on it until after I'm entirely done with the first draft though.

I wrote more than the daily amount tonight, which is great. I'm more than 1k ahead again. Hopefully I keep this up the rest of the week.

Needed word count: 18,337
Current word count: 19,525
Words left to 50k: 30,475

Monday, November 10, 2008

Days 8-10

Didn't update for a couple of days, but I wasn't doing well on the word count and was spending time trying to write instead of blogging.

I'm still a bit stuck with my novel. I'm simultaneously writing two different things, and I'm not sure exactly where to go with either of them. I've been plugging away though, and while it's not been easy I've been forcing myself to write something to get through it. As long as I get the basics down I can flesh it out and fix it up later on. A lot of it is research that needs to be done, though I'm also having trouble with some of the plot specifics.

I'm glad I was ahead, as I've managed to not fall behind yet. I had a pretty productive night tonight as well, so I'm even back to being a bit ahead again. I'm going to try and write around 2k a day for the rest of the week. That's the daily word count plus 300-400 words. It's not much extra, but that 300 words a day will add up quickly and give me a nice buffer for the next time I get stuck. Or ideally it will help me finish the 50k early.

For now I'm a little over 600 words ahead, and I'm happy I've brought myself back to that.

Needed word count: 16,667
Current word count: 17,289
Words left to 50k: 32,711

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Goals Update 17

Writing is not going well right now. I've hit a mental wall about the point of writing a damned novel for no reason, so I'm taking the night off and updating my goal list instead. I won't quit or anything, but I'll be in a funk for a day or so. Glad that I was ahead on my word count now!

1. Nano novel. Shelved for the month. I don't have time for it, and I don't want to try switching back and forth between two entirely different plots and sets of characters or I'll screw myself up.

2. Write every day. I've been writing plenty, lol.

3. Let other people read my writing. Meh. I'm only working on this year's Nano, and I really don't like people seeing my first drafts, as they're utter shit.

4. Learn Japanese. I'm skimming through my notes and vocabulary a little bit every day. Honestly don't have time for more right now, but I'll keep up with that at least.

Start buying less stuff, and finish what I have lying around the house. Yeah I spent nearly $300 on a printer and purses. I think I fail this goal this time around. XD

Organize my stuff and get rid of unnecessary clutter. Failed this one too. My room looks like a tornado blew through it. I will be spending some time on it tomorrow in between writing though.

7. Get through borrowed stuff. Finished Ultimate Spider-Man, and more library books. I'm up to book six of the Stephanie Plum series. I'm not sure how much more I'll get through because of Nano, but I'm going to try.

8. Nano 2008. This looks like the only goal I'm doing really well with this time around. I'm at least a day ahead of schedule. Like I said I've hit a mental wall, but hopefully can beat my way through it and get back on track.

Enough for now, it's time for some sleep. Hopefully I wake up in a better mood and can get some writing and cleaning in. I'll update on Nano tomorrow night whatever happens.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Day 7

...was technically yesterday. I'm not posting a word count yet, because I did some writing last night after I got home and I don't know where I was at the end of the day. I'll just update tonight.

I have a dilemma though. How the hell long should chapters be? I can't gauge how many pages something will be by looking at a computer screen. I'm kind of making new chapters where I feel like it, and they're all over the place with length. And I never know whether I should make a new chapter or just hit enter a few times and make a different scene within the same chapter.

I suppose it's silly to even think about it at this point, but the less I have to be redoing stuff down the road, the better. I also know no one who reads this is likely to have a clue, but I was starting to write for the day and it was bugging me.

And now I'm off to write. Word count wise I'm still ahead of where I need to be for the next day or so, but I'm trying to get ahead. Still aiming for 25k but not sure that will happen. I have a purse party later, Madagascar 2, a haircut, and the Steeler game tomorrow. But we'll see how it goes! 20k at the very least should be feasible.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Day 6

I hit around 2k for the day before 9pm. I really did intend to get a little bit extra done, but then got distracted. Oh well. It was nice to finish up early and take a couple of hours to myself. It gave me time to read some Janet Evanovich before Jade passes me in that series!

This whole Kieran talking about his past chapter is turning out to be a lot more in depth than I originally planned. He's not even a vampire yet and this chapter is 3200 words so far. He actually only just had his first contact with a vampire, though he won't know it for a while. *Sigh* I'm really not sure how to handle it now. I might have him go up to when he becomes a vampire, then something happens and he doesn't get to finish the story until later? Or maybe when I go and edit the novel I'll take the entire sequence out. At the moment though the backstory seems important. We'll see how it turns out in the end.

I am also discovering that I need to do quite a bit of research. This novel is based in our world, after all. It doesn't have to be completely accurate but I want the general details to fit the time period I'm in. I doubt I'll get into it this month though. For now I've just been vague with details and added little notes to look up clothing styles and architecture and such. Shit...that means when I go add all of that in, this chapter will be even longer.

Does anyone know what a normal sized book would be, number of words wise? I know 50k is way too short but I want to say a normal book is 70-80k. It just seems I have over 14k words and haven't gotten to a LOT of my story yet!

Enough babble for tonight. Tomorrow is Friday, thank goodness. I can't take any more of this week. Hopefully I'll get a large chunk done this weekend. Still aiming for 25k by Sunday night, though I won't push it too much.

Needed word count: 10,001
Current word count: 14,010
Words left to 50k: 35,990

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Day 5

I had a hell of a long day again today. Work is insane, and I was exhausted when I got home. Then of course I had to fiddle with setting up my new printer, which arrived already today! By the time I got to it, writing wasn't going so well, but then I went through about a 1200 word push in the last hour or so while chatting to Christian.

I'd really like to hit 25k by the end of Sunday night, but we'll see how that goes. I might get stuck on the story. Actually I already kind of got stuck, I wasn't in the mood to write the big fight scene that's about to start. Instead I skipped ahead to where Kieran tells the others about his past. I also discovered he had six brothers and two sisters. Damn him. At least I only have to name two of them. (Thanks Chris! <3)

As always, name suggestions are welcome. Poor Vampire2 is starting to get sad that he has no name. And before I go on and on about my characters as though they were real people and scare you all, I'm heading to bed! See you all tomorrow.

Needed word count: 8,335
Current word count: 12,011
Words left to 50k: 37,989

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Day 4

Wow, it's only day 4? I have a long way to go.

Today I didn't plan to write at all, as I was running around constantly from the time I got up, shortly after 5am. I bought a printer, went and voted, worked all day, then crammed for my test. Then I had the test, came home and had to eat, shower, etc. I think I did okay on the test, I know I did better than the first one.

Got home fairly early and Angela messaged me for wars so I decided to try it. I'm pretty out of it so it was really rough going. Still managed to get over 1k, somehow.

That's it for tonight, I need to go to bed. Any name suggestions are still welcome. Not just for Vampire2, I'll still have a number of minor characters who will need named within the next week. No worries about the writing software though. I've started using yWriter and I'm loving it.

Needed word count: 6,668
Current word count: 10,103
Words left to 50k: 39,997

On an unrelated note, CONGRATULATIONS to Danielle, who found out today she passed her test and is now a black belt!!! ^_^

Monday, November 3, 2008

Day 3

I stopped writing a bit early tonight. I don't have to be in bed for nearly an hour, but I need to study some more and get everything together for tomorrow. I have such a long day. I have to get up, get ready (and look nice because I'm getting my picture taking for my security ID for work), leave an hour early, go vote, work all day, go study for an hour, take an exam, then I get to come home. Then I have to shower, eat, and get ready for work Wednesday. Maybe I'll even have time to write for a few minutes.

I got more writing in tonight than I expected to, which was nice. Word wars helped. Still pretty well ahead and I'm trying to keep it that way. I'm stuck on some names though. At the moment I'm just leaving them blank or putting in something stupid that I can easily change later. Niall has made an appearance, but he has a cousin who needs a name. Right now he's just "Vampire 2". I also need a good name for a nightclub. If anyone has any suggestions please let me know!

I'm hoping to have time to write tomorrow. I'd really like to break the 10k mark and get into the massive fight scene that's starting within a few pages. But for now I'm off to study...or to download Rough Draft and see if I can learn to work it.

Needed word count: 5,001
Current word count: 9,019
Words left to 50k: 40,981

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Day 2

I still haven't picked between the three names I have for one of my vampires. But he hasn't actually been mentioned in the novel yet, so I suppose that's alright. I'm going to get to him in the next chapter or two though so I need to decide soon. I did manage to come up with names for three of my other characters with very little hassle though, which was surprising but I will definitely not complain.

As far as the story goes, I'm pretty much through with the initial setup and should be getting into the fun stuff in the next day or two. I can't wait, though there are going to be a number of fights and I am not at all confident in my ability to choreograph fights and make them realistic. The first turned out really well though. I'll just wing it and see how it goes. I can always spend time editing them later on.

I'm really happy with the progress I've made and the story so far. I can definitely see myself writing this one through to the end and then going back to fix it up. I adore this plot. Here's hoping I don't botch it too badly!

If anyone knows any good programs for novel writing, please let me know. Microsoft Word sucks, big time. I've heard of Rough Draft and yWriter, so I'm thinking of checking one or both of those out. Please comment if you have any suggestions!

Needed word count: 3,334
Current word count: 7,077
Words left to 50k: 42,923

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Day 1

Ok it's 11:50pm, so day one of Nano is pretty much finished. I'd wanted to get about 10k written this first weekend, as I know I'm going to fall behind during the week and wanted to get off to a good start. I didn't hit 5k today, but at least I'm ahead a little bit.

I did get some notes down regarding plot and whatnot, which aren't part of the word count since they're not part of the novel. But it helped to get the general plot organized in my head, and I added in a few more major events that need to happen.

I have a list of details that need to be figured out in the next few days, dealing with some of the characters. And I'm working on names for everyone. Which is always the hardest thing for me to do. I've got two of the main characters though, and I've narrowed it down to three choices for another character. Hopefully I can figure out a few of the others, or if not they'll just end up being numbered for now, like I did last year. I'm supposed to write 1,667 words a day, I can't spend two weeks messing around with names.

Enough of a first update. I probably won't even write this much every day, but I will at least post the word count I'm supposed to be at, as well as my actual word count. See you tomorrow!

Needed word count: 1,667
Current word count: 3,124
Words left to 50k: 46,876

Friday, October 31, 2008


I was at the bar for a bit tonight. I'm still sick, but wanted to get out as I haven't been out in a couple of weeks. Plus it's Halloween. So Danielle and I go to Tom's as usual. It was a lot of fun seeing everyone's costumes, plus we saw a butcher, a cow, a cowboy, and a pregnant farmwife do the entire Thriller dance. Twice. XD

Anyway, I was lamenting my lack of a plot for Nano. Danielle and I were tossing some stupid ideas back and forth and not coming up with much of anything. Then out of the blue I had it. Seriously, my entire plot just hit me like a freight train. I've got the main few characters, the entire story, everything in my head. I stopped in the middle of what I was saying, grinned like an idiot, and was like, "I got it." Then I told Danielle my basic idea and she just said, "Holy shit. This is why you're the writer. I wish I knew where you came up with this stuff." She loved it.

So now I'm jotting down all of the ideas I had so I don't lose any of them, and waiting for Nano to start in just over 20 minutes. I honestly don't remember being so excited to write something, and I've never had such an intricate story just pop into my head in its entirety. As long as I manage to implement it correctly, it will be GOOD.

Not even sure if this all makes sense, but I'm really pumped as I've been struggling with plot ideas for a few weeks now. I just wanted to share. Fifteen minutes to go!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Goals Update 16

Ooops. I realized that I've been meaning to redo this list and do another update for a while, but I hadn't realized the last update was from the beginning of September. Guess I should actually try and get it done now. >_>

I took a couple of things off the list last time, and there are a few I think I'm going to add in. So here goes...first for the goals from the original list. I haven't made nearly as much progress on these as I'd have liked to the past month and a half. Work has been nuts and I haven't been doing much of anything once I get home. As I get used to the new job I'm going to make the effort to not slack all night once I get home (just most of it).

1. Nano novel. A little bit of work on this, but not nearly as much as I'd like. I probably won't get to writing any of it again until December, but I may try and do some editing over the next month.

2. Write every day. Ha. Hardly. I wrote to Jade a bunch of times but that's about all I've managed lately. I'm definitely doing this all week though, need to brainstorm for Nano ideas. Once November hits I'll obviously be keeping this goal.

3. Let other people read my writing. I haven't written anything for anyone to read. >_>

4. Learn Japanese. I've kept up with what I already learned but that's about it. I suppose it's better than dropping it completely and forgetting everything? I'd like to get back to it but realistically I don't think it will happen before Christmas break. I'm going to make sure I keep reviewing what I know though.

5. Physical therapy. Taking this goal off the list. I'm not able to bend my finger completely but I think I'm as close as I'm going to get. I use my hand normally for most things, and I'll still pick up the stress ball out of habit, so maybe it will eventually get back to normal. But either way, I'm done keeping track of it here.

Start buying less stuff, and finish what I have lying around the house. Good for the most part here. I've bought a few things, but I've also been getting through quite a lot. I'm going to try and cut my buying even more though, for the next few months. Christmas and bills to take care of.

Organize my stuff and get rid of unnecessary clutter. I don't remember what I said I was going to do in the last update, but I know I never did it. >_> I'm mostly done with this though. I have a box of books to put away, and have to reorganize my games. And I have to get my winter clothes out and go through them to see if there's anything I don't want. I'm going to do all of that for next time then this goal will be off the list too.

Get through borrowed stuff. Finished the Indigo books of Corey's, and decided I really wasn't into the other series he sent, so I'm just going to return it. That gets rid of 12 books right there. >_> Also finished a good bit of Christian's stuff, and I only have one library book out. I'll probably keep working my way through the two series I've been getting from the library, but other than that I'm not taking anything out. Now I just have to get through all of Doug's books...

And now for the new goals, or ones that used to be here but are getting put back on the list.

9. Nano 2008. I want to participate again this year, even though I think I'm insane for trying. And I want to win. I'd really like to hit 75k words instead of 50k but I don't see that being realistic so for now the goal is just to win. I'm contemplating doing daily updates through Nano on here for some feedback but we'll see how that goes.

Actually...I'm not going to add any more. It's nearly the end of the year, and these goals were originally things to try and do over the year. I'll just stick with what I have for now, and see where I am in two months. Then I'll start with an entirely fresh list on January 1st.

That's enough for now, I'll probably have a work update soon enough or else I'll write after my first day of Nano. If I come up with a plot for my novel.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Oh my....

And so ends my first week in my new job. Today I spent the majority of the day changing prices, because merchandising decided they wanted to use a different kind of spreadsheet? We have a price spreadsheet for each of the 300 or so vendors we have, and each of them needs to be redone every time any prices change. And suddenly merchandising decided the format used for the past 4 years isn't good enough anymore.

Yeah I don't get it, all I know is that means all of the old spreadsheets Jen spent countless overtime hours doing are worthless. Nice of them, huh? I'm going to redo about half of them for her before she goes absolutely batshit insane. I'm surprised she hasn't already, actually. I did one brand of shoes today and between all of the styles, colors, and sizes, had to change over 3200 prices. Must remember to start taking a pair of glasses to work so when I have to stare at Excel for 5 hours I won't get such a headache from my contacts.

Luckily, that one I did today was one of the worst. I have one more shoe spreadsheet and then the rest will be quick ones for some of the other stores. No more than 20-30 items on any of those so they will go quickly. This is good, as I'm starting to actually place orders next week and won't have the time to fuck with Excel so much. Cori also decided how she's going to split everything between me and Jen. She's giving me the flag, tea, and safety stores, and then Jen will have the other four. Mine are by far the biggest three stores, and the ordering for them involves some crazy Excel formulas. But Cori says I'm better with Excel so she wants me to handle them.

Jen and I will both be trained in all of the stores, so that if someone is out sick or on vacation we can cover for them, but for the most part we'll just be handling everything associated with our respective stores. Jen will do the returns for all stores on her own. There are a couple of other little things that Jen will do as well, so the work load will be pretty even overall even though I'm responsible for the bigger stores. Or that's what Cori says; I haven't done enough of this to know. She said that once I'm trained to let her know if it's too much and we'll see about redistributing the work a bit.

To say I'm nervous about all of this would be a huge understatement. Whether the workload is supposedly going to be the same or not, the fact remains that a week ago I was doing customer service and suddenly I'm going to be responsible for purchasing for stores that make up over 3/4 of our revenue. Luckily I will be clearing everything Cori for months before being left to my own devices, but it's still a lot to take in.

At any rate, I'm done thinking about it for now. I'm exhausted and need to get some sleep. Goals update will be coming on Sunday if all goes according to plan, and then I'll probably update on work yet again sometime next week. Or I might just post to panic about how I'm never going to learn everything and will get myself fired. We'll see. ^_^

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

So far so good

Today was my third day on the new job and it's going well so far. I haven't really trained at all. I spent maybe an hour Monday morning learning how to receive inventory and a few other things, and then they just kind of started handing me stacks of papers. And GOD the emails. I added over 300 folders to my email on Monday morning because I need separate folders for each vendor for 8 stores. I thought that seemed a bit much until I actually started getting the emails. I'm not sure how often Outlook receives emails but I get at least 5 every single time it does. And it's not even the busy season yet.

I'm perfectly comfortable with everything I've learned so far, and Cori said she's impressed because she figured it would take at least a week before I was working entirely on my own (like I have been since Tuesday lol). She's going to start me on one or two other things tomorrow, and then on Monday I'm going to learn about drawing up and placing the orders for some of the stores. She's not sure how she's going to split the stores in the end. But I'll definitely have the safety store, and she seems to be leaning toward giving me the flag store as well. Maybe strollers. The flag store is our biggest and would be more than enough in itself, but I suppose I'll deal. >_>

Another thing I really like now that I've moved is I'm allowed to listen to music. All of the computers in the company come with iTunes installed, but in customer service I never got to take advantage of that since I was always on the phone. I've already ripped about 9 CDs over to my computer and I'm sure I'll have about 600 songs by the end of the week. It's also really nice because I can put on headphones and drown out the wholesale people who are right near me. I like Todd and Sherri but they're really loud sometimes. XD

And speaking of music....

April brought me over a bunch of mix CDs she had so that I could copy them to my computer and have something to listen to besides the one CD I brought in from my car. It's a pretty good and random collection of stuff. I'm sitting there fiddling with inventory and half listening to one of them, and this weird techno like song comes on. I'm still only half paying attention and then all of a sudden the words got my attention. I restarted the song and sat there actually paying attention to it, and absolutely died laughing. I was in hysterics at my desk, in the middle of work. April came over, looked at the track I was on, and just giggled and walked away. The bitch. >_>

Turns out it's some Adam Sandler song, but I've never really listened to anything of his so I'd never heard it before. Here it is so everyone understands what I'm talking about, and why is was so damn funny...

That's about it for tonight. I really will be getting another goal update up this weekend, I hope. I've just been too busy to redo my damn list!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

My job is awesome

I said in my last entry that there were some things going on with work that I couldn't explain quite yet, but it's all straightened out now so might as well blog about it. I've only been at my current job for three months. I started in mid-July as a temp in customer service. I did well in there, obviously. I've already said in other entries how that went, and how I've gotten two raises and was offered a permanent position at the company. That kicked in this past Monday.

Monday afternoon my department had a meeting in the break room with Brian and Kim. They explained that we would be extending hours to 9pm Monday through Friday. Instead of the 8-4:45, 9-5:45, and 10:15-7 shifts we have now, the new shifts would be 8-4:45, 10:15-7, and 12:15-9. Kind of annoying but everyone would only have to work one of those late shifts per week. However, there would always have to be a supervisor there as one of the people working the late shift. At the moment we only have two supervisors, so Brian mentioned possibly naming 1-2 more supervisors so it would be a bit more even for everyone. If he would have done that there was a very good possibility I would be one of the new supervisors, just going by people who know what they're doing and have been there a while.

However, on Tuesday Kim said they'd worked something out that they didn't need any more supervisors at this time. No big deal, just went on with my day. When I got back from lunch I had an email from Brian titled "Opportunity". It started off saying it was strictly confidential and then went on to tell me about an opening in purchasing that he thought I should interview for. It also said that I could work there until I finished my bachelor's degree in May, and then move directly to accounting.

Problem was I'm not finishing my bachelor's in May, I'm finishing my associate's. Then I still have a handful of classes left for the bachelor's. So I'm slightly disappointed in this, thinking it means I can't get the purchasing job after all. But I email Brian and explain it anyway as I'm not about to leave that rather important fact out.

He responds asking me to come to his office around 4. When I get there he tells me that I can still go for the purchasing job if I'd like. I would just be there for a couple of extra semesters until I finished my bachelor's degree, and then move to accounting. Plus, they'll reimburse me for about $2000 a year in tuition, which means I can actually continue now instead of taking time off to save for a more expensive school.

So I say, of course I'm interested in the promotion, what is it? And he tells me it's for Mike's job, as Mike is up for a promotion to warehouse manager. Mike would be the purchasing manager for half the company, pretty much. I've never done a thing with purchasing in my life. Brian was all, "Well that's okay, you'll learn. I'll set up the interview with Cori (overall head of purchasing)."

I end up having to go for the interview Thursday morning. Because the entire thing was very hush hush, I had to go off-site for the interview. They didn't know if Mike was getting the promotion and didn't want him to know anything about them interviewing his potential replacements. So I went into work Thursday for about 45 minutes and then drove down the street to Bob Evans to meet Cori for breakfast (on the company, while on the clock ^_^). It went alright, but I honestly didn't think I would have gotten the job. The look on Cori's face when I said I'd only officially been an employee for three At any rate, she said she had some other people to interview and didn't know what was going on with Mike, so it would be sometime next week probably before I heard anything. I left feeling decent about the interview but didn't really have my hopes up.

Friday rolls around and I'm on one of my few calls as it's dead as hell. Cori pops around the corner and says to hurry up and then meet her in the conference room. I follow her in all honesty I figured she was going to tell me Mike wasn't getting the promotion. She'd said she had other people to interview and I didn't think she'd have picked me at all, much less after a day. But she did want to offer me the job. ^_^

The catch was that Mike was promoted effective immediately, so it starts this Monday. But what the hell, I'm not going to pass up the opportunity. So I accepted, and my supervisor congratulated me and nearly cried that I was leaving, which made me nearly cry. Then I sat in absolute shock for the rest of the day at what had happened.
I find it almost ridiculous that I got 2 raises and a promotion by the time I officially worked for the company for four days. Hell, I don't even get benefits until January!

So...Monday then. I'm not sure how it's going to go but I learn quickly so I'm hoping to pick it up. I'm nervous, but really excited to be getting off the phones and into a department much closer to my actual degree. We'll see how it goes!

Monday, October 13, 2008

My grandmother's car is trying to kill me

I swear it's out to get me. First it locked itself with the keys inside. My gran still doesn't believe that story but whatever, lol. I have no idea how it happened and I'm not sure I'd believe me either. Then there was this morning.

Right now the car is out of windshield wiper fluid. Noticed this on Friday. We didn't have any at home so I was going to get some on Sunday, but then Fran dropped a bottle off on Sunday morning. So I go to put it in the car and we can't get the hood open. We pull the lever, nothing happens. It doesn't pop. I went and tried wriggling my fingers underneath to get to the latch, thinking that maybe we just couldn't see it. It was not open. I put all my weight on it trying to pull it up and no luck.

So I tell my grandmother to call the dealer in the morning. We were thinking something got disconnected between the lever and where it opened, no big deal.

Right, no big deal at all. Until I'm going 65-70mph on the highway this morning on my way to work and the fucking hood flies open.

I thought I was gonna die, seriously. I can't remember a time I was ever that scared. Now luckily it did not fly the entire way up and block the windshield or I would have definitely wrecked. As it was, I somehow managed to slam on the brakes and go really slow to my exit which at this point was only a quarter of a mile away. Then when I got to the stop sign at the exit ramp I threw it into park, got out, and got the hood closed. I then proceeded to shake like a leaf the rest of the drive to work. As soon as I got there I called my gran and started freaking out. I'm just grateful that I managed to keep calm enough to get through it and to work in one piece.

Gran brought up a good point though. If it was going to happen I'm glad it happened to me, as my reflexes are better than hers. At least I was able to get through it unscathed, whereas my gran probably would have been in an accident. =\

Anyway, enough of the depressing shit. I'm starting to get excited for Halloween. I've started reading horror
books and watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer again. And I'm trying to find a bunch of horror movies to watch over Halloween weekend. Plus the costume thing though I still have no idea what to do there. Apparently there's a contest at work and whoever wins get's the general manager's parking spot for a week. So I might have to think about dressing up for work, if I can come up with anything decent in the next week or two.

Also, I decorated my desk at work a bit for Halloween today. Kerry has sooo much H
alloween stuff. She's got about a dozen little miniature scenes and things in her area. Plus a disembodied head sitting on top of the wall that keeps scaring the hell out of people because its eyes follow you when you walk. She's got way too much just for her own desk though, so she's letting a bunch of us borrow some of her miniatures to put at our desks. She gave me a haunted hotel that plays creepy music and flashes lightning.

She also gave me a pirate ship. The pirate ship fires cannons, and plays music. And rocks back and forth like it's at sea. And the pirates yell insults at each other. It's awesome. Yes I'm that easily entertained. I can't wait until tomorrow when she brings me more stuff to add. I have a feeling that by Halloween I'm going to have a hard time getting any work done at my desk...

At any rate, I'm done writing for tonight. I have a lot of stuff to talk about that will be going on with work, but
some of that needs to wait for reasons I'll have to explain later. I also have an updated goals list to get up. I've got class tomorrow so I doubt I'll blog at all but I'm hoping to have both of those entries up by the end of the week. Especially the work thing. I'm dying to tell everyone about it but I really can't put it on my public blog just yet. Hopefully by Wednesday at least some of it will be official so I can get it on here. ^_^

Friday, October 10, 2008

Chris and I have the most messed up conversations sometimes...

Denise says:

Denise says:
and I'm entirely too juvenile

Denise says:
but you are too so you'll love this

Christian says:
i think youve looked at enough weird foriegn shit XD

Christian says:
uh oh

Denise says:
I like, choke and die every time someone orders this shit

Denise says:

Christian says:
ok seriously

Denise says:
I shit you not

Denise says:
I did not know about it

Denise says:
and this guy calls in and said something like

Christian says:
i just giggled like a school girl

Denise says:
I'd like to check on the status of my spotted dick

Christian says:
and im scared

Denise says:

Christian says:

Christian says:
oh my gentle jesus

Christian says:
tell me you died on the phone

Denise says:
I half choked half laughed and I was like, "I'm sorry sir, WHAT?!?!"

Christian says:

Denise says:
Then I told him to hold while I looked up the order and laughed for 3 minutes

Denise says:
This may need chatlogged

Christian says:
i do agree

Christian says:
spotted dick

Christian says:

Denise says:

Christian says:
is it weird that im actually picturing a dick with spots

Christian says:
cuz i totally am

Christian says:
and yet more giggles are escaping

Christian says:

Christian says:

Denise says:
How the hell can I help YOU I haven't been able to breathe for the last 5 minutes

Christian says:
youre in my damn head

Christian says:

Denise says:
Take them out? What them? The penises?

Christian says:

Denise says:

Christian says:

Denise says:
Right. I knew that.

Denise says:

Christian says:
start breathing and chatlog >_>

Denise says:
I just did up to that last thing lol

Denise says:
every time I went to submit we kept being fucking stupid XD

Christian says:

Christian says:

Denise says:

Christian says:
see dick run

Denise says:
run dick run!

Christian says:
run dick run

Christian says:

Christian says:

Monday, October 6, 2008

Today kicked ass, even if it was a Monday...

Monday is usually my least favorite day of the week. I never want to go back to work. Even though I rather like my job and I wouldn't want to be bored all the time like I was when I wasn't working, it's still so difficult to drag myself out of bed at the beginning of the week and get going. On top of that, we're closed all weekend so Mondays are usually busy as hell.

Today was a bit different though. We were still busy as all hell, but just before lunch Brian (the general manager of the company) called me and asked me to come to his office, saying he and Kim (the head of my department) needed to speak with me. I of course immediately start going through my head to see what I could have done wrong that they would fire me for, because I am that paranoid. I know I'm doing well and yet I still automatically jump to the worst conclusion.

Anyway, it's all good news. They wanted to offer me the permanent position as I'm still a temp. Brian had said a month or so ago that they would hire me once my temp time was up, but they officially did today. So as of next Monday I'm a permanent employee. I've also gotten another dollar an hour raise, because I've been kicking everyone's asses in the statistics. Which is awesome, as I just got a dollar an hour raise a month ago, and wasn't supposed to be eligible for any more raises until January. Plus, in January all of my benefits kick in and I am still eligible for another raise. Not to mention, Brian said he can all but guarantee me that I'll be able to change to the accounting department if that's what I want to do, as soon as I finish my degree in May.

Then I get home, and the DVDs I ordered from Barnes and Noble that weren't supposed to ship until October 23rd were waiting for me on the kitchen table.

Yep, today was a great day. ^_^

Saturday, October 4, 2008


I am apparently going out for Halloween. Or so I was informed last night at the bar. That's fine with me since it's a Friday evening, but now I'm going to have to come up with something to wear. I haven't dressed up in a while and I've no idea what to do. I don't have a lot of time to put something together so I need either something simple or something I can buy online that doesn't suck or cost a fortune.

So if anyone has any suggestions let me know! Legitimate ones only please, I don't need more links to nurse costumes that can't even be worn in public. (Damn you Chris.) ^_^

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

New car!

I bought a car on Saturday, as many of you already know. It still hasn't quite sunk in yet. Every time I see it in the driveway I wonder who the hell is visiting, lol.

I'd started to think about buying a car a couple of weeks ago, after I got some of my other obligations paid off and was able to finally start saving a decent part of my paychecks. I figured I'd save what I could over the next few months and hopefully find something decent used around the beginning of the year (and actually one of the goals I wanted to add dealt with saving a part of every paycheck for that purpose). I mentioned this to my grandmother, who brought up the possibility of a new car. I thought she was nuts, but she has a GM credit card and she had about $1500 credit on it that could be used for a car. The catch was it had to be new. And the credit was going to expire soon. Since GM was having a big sale this month where all of their cars were being sold at employee prices, I told her I'd look into it at least.

I didn't think much would come of it to be honest, but a decent used car costs quite a bit anymore. I'm not the type who can buy a crappy car and then fix it up. I needed something that would get me around and not need a ton of work and cash put into it. So I thought, who knows? By the time I got employee pricing plus an extra $1500 off it might not be that much more to buy new.

I went last Sunday with Danielle to hit all the GM dealers and see what types of cars they had available and get a general idea on prices. Purposely scheduled it so that I could be there when the dealers were closed and no salesmen would try and pressure me into test driving things or buying cars. I decided I would try and go the next day after work to test drive a few different cars. One of them was the Pontiac G5. I'd seen a red one at one of the dealers I'd really liked.

The next day while I was at work both Mark and Danielle went to that dealer of their own accord and test drove the G5. And then both texted me that I should buy it. I laughed at them, a lot. All I wanted to do was try out a few different cars and then see if there was any way I could work out a payment plan and get my shit together by the 30th when the special ended.

The next thing I know, I'd spent 3 hours at the dealership after work. I'd driven nothing but the G5, never made it to any of the other cars. I took it home to show my gran and she talked to the salesman. And suddenly I'm giving them $200 to hold the car and putting a sold sticker on it.

The rest of the week was spent dealing with the salesman and insurance company and whatnot trying to work out all of the details. My gran gave me a lot more money as an early graduation gift for a down payment. Mark thought I was being cheated (I wasn't, he had misunderstood the numbers I told him) and started calling around to other dealers. I'm glad he did, as it made me realize that with the bigger down payment I would be able to afford some of the extras I'd initially given up on. And still cut the term of my loan by a year.

So I went in Thursday night asking if they could get me a different car. One with the sunroof and sound system, and another package that had cruise control and ABS and better wheels and a bunch of other stuff. The finance lady was SO pissed about it. Apparently she'd spent a couple hours getting everything worked up for the first car and then I wanted to change it all. Oops!

They managed to get it all worked out and actually got the right car in from Ohio the next afternoon. I went in Saturday morning and signed a bajillion papers and it was mine.

Most of the rest of Saturday was spent learning to drive it, as it's a stick shift and I've never really driven one before. Mark, being the jackass that he is, had me out on the road after ten minutes (I thought I was going into another part of the parking lot we were in, but noooo, it was the main road). It must have been hysterical for him to watch me flip out. By the end of the day I still wasn't that great at it but I knew everything I needed to be doing and was getting a lot better. Now it's just a matter of practicing. I'm hoping to take it out with my mom this weekend and be ready to start driving it to work next week.

The downside of this is that I lost an entire week and didn't really study for an accounting exam I had tonight. Oh well...I don't think I did too badly!

And speaking of Mark I have a ton of shit I could write about, but I think I'll save it for next time. Maybe. ;)

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Goals Update 15

It's been SO LONG since I actually updated this blog. I've started at least 5 entries and then never finished them. I'll get a goal update in now, at least, and then hopefully I'll get back to some sort of regular updating schedule. If anyone's still even checking this by now. :p

1. Nano novel. Plugging away but not making a lot of progress. I'm too damned busy anymore. Anytime I sit down to write it's like I barely get into it and then I've got to be off to work or class or something.

2. Play flute. My flute is all sorts of fucked up right now. I need to take it and get it fixed, but that's probably going to cost a few hundred dollars and it'd probably be better to just buy a damn new one than to try and fix the one that's nearly 20 years old. I'll figure something out, but needless to say this goal's off the list for a while.

3. Write every day. Been doing rather well with this. It's only usually 10 minutes or so, but at least that's better than nothing!

4. Let other people read my writing. I let Shel read a bit more of my novel. I'm hoping to have enough of this one finished before this year's Nano starts to let other people read it as well.

5. Take some trips. This goal's officially off the list as of now. I managed to do nearly all of the trips I'd planned. I got to DO, Philly, and New York, and I'm going to see Shelly at the end of this month. So I'm happy how all of that turned out.

6. Learn Japanese. I've been slacking on this lately. Before next time I'm going to either buy one of those books at B&N or go get a book out of the library so I can get back into it.

7. Physical therapy. Between work and Tae Kwon Do and writing in class, I've been using that hand and having to bend my finger a lot. It still doesn't bend completely on its own but I'm hoping it'll get to that point. Who knows, maybe I'll just never be able to bend it properly again. At least it's usable now.

Start buying less stuff, and finish what I have lying around the house. I've been doing remarkably well with this. I've gotten some more library books and a few games once I got the PS3, but I'm getting through a lot too. I've been averaging about 3 books per weekend and 1 during the week haha. I'm even getting a bit of gaming time in every day.

Organize my stuff and get rid of unnecessary clutter. I don't remember where I was supposed to be with this goal from my last update. I'm still working on it though. I rearranged my books again a week or two ago to fit all of my new stuff in. I'm going to need to do the clothes again soon as it starts to get colder and I need to get winter stuff out. But for next time I'm going to work on the couple of boxes I have left. And rearranging my games...again. I need to make space for the PS3 stuff and the DS games I got for my birthday.

10. Get through borrowed stuff. I borrowed entirely too many books from Doug when I went to visit. But I read one already at least, and finished another of Danielle's. I should finish the Indigo series of Corey's any day now. I've also stopped having 12 books out at a time from the library. I'm hoping to have everyone's books back to them in the next couple of months, and then I can start trying to get through games.

I am probably going to have to redo and update the list of goals I'm working on again, but I'm going to leave it for next time. Nano 2008 will be going back on here, as well as a few other things, probably. This is good enough for now, and at last I've finally finished a blog entry!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Does anyone actually read this?

If you do, comment or something and let me know. I've been wondering if it's worth keeping up with it if I have no regular readers.

I enjoy keeping the blog, but at the same time if I'm the only one reading it there's no point in my having both a blog and my normal journal...^_^

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Goals Update 14

1. Nano novel. Haven't done anything with this. Between Philly and trying to finish up my research paper I just haven't had the time. Once my class is done I'll get back to it.

2. Play flute. Fit about 45 minutes in. I was right about cutting back to once a week, I think. I wouldn't have the time for much more, but this way I still actually make a little bit of progress.

3. Write every day. See #1. I'll get back to this after summer semester is over as well.

4. Let other people read my writing. Sent another bit to Shel but not much. I really have to do more work on my Nano and then I have about four people to send it to.

5. Take some trips. Philly was a blast. On to New York on August 7th. Shelly sometime in September probably.

6. Learn Japanese. I haven't learned anything new but I've gone over what I've already done. I may go and get those library books over the next couple of weeks.

7. Physical therapy. My job has been really good for this, actually. I do a lot of writing and typing.

Start buying less stuff, and finish what I have lying around the house. Well I got my first paycheck and went and bought a game. And I bought a few movies for cheap in Philly. Other than that I didn't buy anything, which is much better than I thought I'd do with my first paycheck.

Learn Photoshop. I'm actually taking this off the list for the moment. I'm seriously short on time and to be honest I don't care much about doing it. I don't see the point in having something on here I don't even want to do. If I change my mind once I actually have more spare time I'll throw it back on.

Organize my stuff and get rid of unnecessary clutter. I've slowed down a lot with this, but I'm getting there. Eventually. I get through a box of stuff every couple of days.

Get through borrowed stuff. I got through a bunch of library books but that was about it. Don't have anything specific in mind to finish for next time. I'll just see what I have the time to do.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Six and a half hours later...

And I'm finally home. What a trip.

Brandi actually let me leave at exactly 5 on Friday so that I could get home and get on the road. She's fantastic. So we didn't leave much later than we'd originally planned. We stopped in Ligonier for gas and nearly got into an accident when some stupid bimbo on her cell phone decided to get into the left turning lane without actually bothering to see if someone was in it.

After that little incident we didn't have many issues. We did stop a couple of times, and we hit a bit of traffic that slowed us down, but we managed to get to Christian's around 11:30 or so. We hung out for a while watching TV and some ridiculous videos before heading to bed.

Saturday was of course Dark Knight! It was amazing. Heath Ledger was phenomenal. Danielle didn't seem as though she was that impressed, but I think she's just crazy. >_> After the movie we went to some movie store where they sell used stuff and I got the X-files movie (in preparation for the new one that's coming out), and the collector's editions of Juno and Sweeney Todd for just over $25. If only I had time to watch them....

We spent the evening gaming. We played Guitar Hero for a while, and then Brawl, and then hopped on Xbox Live to play Halo 3. We of course got our asses kicked, but it was still a ton of fun. Kyle was messing with people over the headset which was hilarious. Then we met Fridgeboob and Mississippi Queen (dunno who they were, that's just what we called them) and their friends. We spent the next three hours playing with the them and laughing at how stoned they were. And Mississippi Queen taught us how to make our little Halo guy do a dance.

Sometime after 3 Sunshine (Chris' nurse Pete) came in and said there were kids outside car surfing. Apparently the one guy was standing on top of the car while they drove down the road and his friends decided it would be funny to use the windshield wiper fluid and get him in the face. And he fell off the car. We went outside hoping they'd come back and we could get them on video but they never did. :(

Sunday was spent with more much for getting to see any of Philly, haha. We played more Halo then Danielle and I decided to head home. I'm really glad I made the decision to leave around 3 instead of waiting until 5 like we'd originally planned!

We made good time for the first part of the trip. Then we hit some insanely heavy rain. We had to go about 25 miles an hour (if that) because we couldn't see a damn thing. Luckily that didn't last too long. Then as we were getting close to the Breezewood exit, which would be about halfway home, we saw a huge sign on the side of the highway saying the turnpike was closed and all traffic must exit at Breezewood. We stopped at a rest stop and figured out how to get home from that exit, and then got back on the road.

When we hit the Breezewood exit though, the road wasn't shut down. We figured maybe they'd had some downed trees or something from the rain we'd hit, but had already been able to clear them. So we just kept on the turnpike. Everything was fine for a while. Then, just as we were getting to the Johnstown exit, we saw a cop and a big truck with a sign saying there had been an accident and to slow down.

"Slow down" apparently means, "come to a complete stop in on the highway, turn off your car, and get out to talk with everyone else and walk your dog." Turns out a tractor trailer had lost control and rolled, and then ignited. 90 miles of the turnpike was closed down for about 5 hours while they cleaned up the mess. Miraculously no one was killed. We sat there for maybe half an hour, then the state cops were letting people turn around and drive up the shoulder to get off the Johnstown exit. So we decided to do that. Good thing as in the end it got us home about 3 hours earlier.

So even after all of that we got home at a semi-decent hour. And my wonderful grandmother washed and ironed all my work clothes for me after I called to tell her about the accident. What a lifesaver. Despite everything, I managed to get home in time to get a good night's sleep for my first real day at work. All in all, the weekend was awesome, and I really hope I get to go visit again sometime soon.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Goodbye free time

This week has been insane. Last weekend I took some time to relax and enjoy my last few days of total freedom. Friday I went running around with Danielle taking about a million pictures. We went to Linn Run first, then somehow ended up at Beam Rocks, Livermore, and Torrance. It was a fun day and I really got to play around with my camera for the first time. Though, uploading all of those pictures to my Photobucket took me forever.

And while we were out taking pictures of creepy places (Livermore and Torrance) we realized that when we go to New York next month, we'll only be about an hour from Sleepy Hollow so we could go get pictures there as well. Somehow that inspired us to watch Sleepy Hollow that night with multiple bottles of wine. ^_^

Saturday we went to see Get Smart, which was better than I'd expected. It was quite funny, and I'm glad D convinced me to go. Then I went to reserve Breaking Dawn, since I know I'm going to feel the need to read it as soon as it's out, even though I'm only on the second book. Damn Sara! Sunday we were thinking of watching Batman Begins but I canceled since I had to iron all my stuff for work and get some schoolwork done. I went to bed pretty early, though I must have woken up 7 times. I kept having various dreams where I overslept or missed work for whatever reason.

Monday was my first day, and I was totally overwhelmed by the amount of information I need to be learning. Seriously, learning the various policies and stock and everything else for 8 different stores is quite difficult. So is learning everyone's names and who I'm supposed to call for which sections of each store. I've gotten a lot better throughout the week though, thank goodness. Tomorrow's my last day of training and then Monday I'm on my own, so I'd better know what I'm doing. Somewhat.

The people I work with are all really nice and welcoming, and also incredibly helpful. And because of the variety of things I'm doing and stores I'm dealing with, the days just fly by. Plus, I had to be all different shifts this week because Brandi (my trainer) is, but after that it seems like I'll have a more regular schedule. I'm pretty much 9-6 for the next two weeks, except for Fridays of course because we close at 5. I'm really glad for that, as the changing shifts this week were a bit of a pain. If I'm not off until 7pm and have to be back the next day at 8am that leaves me with virtually no time to get anything done.

Tomorrow should be excellent. I'm finally going to be doing my job on my own (while Brandi is there to help if I get stuck) instead of just one thing at a time. And I'll save a ton of time in the morning since I get a free lunch and can wear jeans (wonderful as I have to be at work at 8 lol). Then as soon as I'm out of work I'm calling Danielle, and she's going to meet me at my house. We're going to pack my stuff into her car and I'm going to change, and then it's off to visit Christian and the DeRiemer clan!

Anyway, off to finish packing and get to sleep. I'll see you all next week!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Goals Update 13

1. Get a job. Done. I've also gone and bought everything I'll need like shirts and shoes, and I'm ready to start for Monday.

2. Nano novel. Have worked a little bit on this but not a whole lot. The last two weeks have been insane. I still plan to make time for this outside of my job and shouldn't have a problem with it. I really want to get some parts edited so that I can start letting more people read it.

3. Play flute. Did fine with this one again. I think I'm going to cut it back to 30 minutes a week though. If I can I'll do more but I don't know that I'll ever have time on days I work, and don't want to feel obligated to do it both days I'm off.

4. Write every day. Haven't done every day, but I've been pretty close. Not bad considering how much I've been running around. I'd like to continue with this goal so I'll need to find a time every day that's good for it. Maybe right after I get home from work? Or even before work on days I'm not in until 10. I'll figure it out over the next couple of weeks.

5. Let other people read my writing. Shelly will have a laptop and internet within the next few weeks. Also told Danielle that she could read some of my Nano as soon as I have a sizable chunk edited.

6. Take some trips. If all goes well, I'll be going to Philly next weekend. Still have to work out some of the details of that. Part of that is waiting for Christian to get home and message me so we can figure out specifics. Then I just have to make sure I have the work and money situation handled. New York is also good to go provided I can get at least that Friday off work. I should get to visit Shelly sometime in August or September as well, I've already discussed a few possible weekends with her.

7. Learn Japanese. Still working through this. I'm going to be getting a couple of books and an audiotape from the library as well. Plus, once I get paid I might buy one of the books from B&N as they're only around $20.

8. Physical therapy. Working on it. I keep misplacing my stress ball, but I'm doing therapy at least 1-2 times a day regardless.

9. Time management. This is still going quite well. Unless I have a really hard time over the next two weeks because of suddenly throwing in a full-time job, I'm taking it off the list as of now.

Start buying less stuff, and finish what I have lying around the house. I haven't bought anything in the last two weeks aside from gas and stuff I need for work. I'm sure that once I get paid I'll buy a few things because I can, but I'm not going to go crazy with it.

11. Learn Photoshop. Haven't touched this yet again. I'm going to have to slow down on this goal anyway as I'm not going to have the time for it. I'll still try and work on it a bit every week.

12. Organize my stuff and get rid of unnecessary clutter. Failed miserably on this one this time. Too damned busy to get through everything I wanted to. I'm still working my way through the clothes and shoes, and I should be finished by next time. I don't have a lot left really, I'm just not going to have much time in the evenings after work.

13. Get through borrowed stuff. I'm through book seven of Indigo. I read through those so quickly. Also got through other library books and put some time into a couple of games. For the next week I'm going to get through whatever I can of Christian's, so that I can take it with me and return it. And by the next update I'd like to be through the last Indigo book as well as all of the books I have out from the library. As long as I don't go and check out any more. >_>

Not bad. Took another two goals off my list. Almost into single digits, at which point knowing me I'll come up with more to add. ^_^

Also, I'll still be doing these updates every two weeks like I have been, but they're more than likely going to be on either Saturday or Sunday now, since I'll be off work. Don't know that I'm going to want to type this much after a full week of work, though we'll see.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

So very busy....

Wow, it's been crazy lately. My weekend was packed, and then I have a million things to do this week before starting my new job.

Let's see, Thursday I went to the Arts and Heritage Festival at Twin Lakes with Danielle. We met her mom and aunt there and spent most of the day wandering around. I bought myself a pair of earrings and was going to get Jade a princess crown (hahaha) but around 3 it started storming like crazy and it completely slipped my mind in the mad dash to the car. I spent the evening in as I was exhausted.

Friday I did what classwork I could, then went to Danielle's for dinner. Emily came home for the weekend too, so we went to get her (minus the baby) and headed into town for the fireworks. Unfortunately they were already canceled by the time we got there, due to the rain. So we hung out at the fair for a while and got funnel cakes. Then Pat and Chris texted me, so we all met up at Callahan's for drinks. Em and I shared some buckets of long island iced teas. Then she and Danielle went home, but Pat, Chris, and I stayed. We went to Primanti's later on to meet some more people and get food, and then ended up going to some guy's apartment for some late-night drunken Guitar Hero. Fun times.

Saturday I went to see WALL E with Pat, which was excellent. Later on I went to the fireworks with Danielle and her family, but that was about all for that day. Sunday I went with Danielle to take Emily and the baby back home. We went out to see the new house Em and Jeremy just bought, and then hung out at their apartment for a few hours. Played with Keagan, which I don't get to do nearly as often as I'd like. Monday was nothing but a lot of school work that I should have done over the weekend. I got it finished in plenty of time though.

Yesterday I had to go back in to the temp agency to get my job information and schedule. Figured it's probably about 15 miles to work, which isn't as bad as I'd initially thought. At any rate I should only have to pay for gas every couple of weeks since I'm not the only one using the car. I also picked up I am Legend in audiobook format so I have something to entertain me on the commute. Not sure how well that's going to work as I haven't listened to an audiobook since I was 12, but it's really short so I figured I'd try it.

Today I went shopping for work clothes. I managed to get a handful of shirts and a good pair of shoes and only spent a little over $100. Honestly thought I'd spend more so that's fine. At least now I have enough to get by with for a while until I start getting paid.

That's about all that's been going on. I still have a lot I want to get done the rest of the week and weekend. Some more random errands, a whole lot of cleaning and laundry, as much classwork as I possibly can...the damn list is endless. I'll be happy in a couple of weeks when my class is over and I've had some time to get adjusted to my new schedule!

Thursday, July 3, 2008


I got the job! I go in on Tuesday to work out my schedule and do some paperwork, and then I start on the 14th.

That is all. ^_^

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

New job?

I mentioned in my last goal update that I'd found a temp agency in the area. They're only about 20 minutes from me, and once I asked around I heard a lot of good things about them, so I decided to see if they could help me find anything on the job front. My appointment with them was yesterday. I was there for a few hours; first I had to fill out a ton of paperwork, then I had to take a bunch of tests (since I was applying for office and accounting jobs they needed to test me with typing and such), and then I finally had an interview.

The woman who interviewed me, Debby, was so nice. She said that between my scores being really high and the fact I have so much accounting knowledge they should be able to find me something quickly. I wasn't really expecting any more than to discuss my scores and what I was looking for, and then hopefully I'd hear back from the agency in a week or two. But Debby went on to tell me about a couple of specific jobs she wanted to try me in. One in particular she sounded really excited about, so I said to go ahead and send them my resume or whatever. She said she'd get back to me about when my interview with them would be.

I was home for maybe an hour before Debby calls me, and is like, "Right so they're excited to meet you and I know it's short notice, but can you go for an interview tomorrow morning?" I was surprised they were so fast, to be honest. I wasn't hoping for much from this agency, and I certainly wasn't expecting anything quickly. But I agreed to go down there and do the interview.

One good thing about all of this was that it happened so quickly I didn't have time to think too much about it or get nervous. I went in this morning and interviewed with both the head of personnel and the person who would be my direct manager. I think it went really well, and they're supposed to let the agency know soon. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

As for the details...these people own an online company. They started with one store and have built up over the last 6-7 years to the point where they now have seven or eight different stores and about 90 employees. I'd be working doing general customer service and office stuff. To be honest the job sounds great. It's about half an hour drive, which isn't too bad, especially since I wouldn't have to deal with traffic the way I get there.

The position is temp to hire, which means if all goes well they'll hire me on a permanent basis after a few months. The pay is pretty good to begin with, and would go up as soon as I was hired permanently. It's 40 hours a week; there's three different shifts but I'd work no later than 7pm. They close at 5pm Friday and are closed over the weekend, so I'd always have that time free. They also close the office and turn off the phones for an hour every Friday and provide everyone with a catered lunch. There seem to be a lot of people around my age there and everyone seems really nice. Plus they offer all of the benefits. Medical, dental, vision, disability, life insurance, a 401k, etc.

They're more than willing to work around a class or two if I continue with school. On top of all of that, there's plenty of room for advancement, and they have their own accounting department as well, so if something opened up I'd pretty much be guaranteed a spot if I already worked there and wanted to switch departments.

All in all I really hope I get this job. Debby called me after my interview to see how it went (seriously this woman is one of the the nicest people I've ever met) and she seemed to be optimistic and think my chances are really good. I doubt I'll know anything before next week due to the holiday weekend though. I highly doubt they'd call me tomorrow. So I'm going to have a loooong weekend of waiting, but hopefully it pays off!

And hell, even if it doesn't, Debby had mentioned another two jobs at least that I would be qualified. I'm sure at this rate I'll get something soon enough. ^_^

Friday, June 20, 2008

Goals Update 12

1. Get a job. Working on it. God, the job market sucks. Found a temp agency and should be able to easily pick up a couple of things there. It's something at least, while I continue to look for something more permanent. Tamala's sister is still going to try and get me a job, but right now all that's open is in Pittsburgh so I can't take them. I'm not going to just sit around and wait for something closer to home.

2. Nano novel. I feel bad, I haven't even opened this the last two weeks. I've been stupidly busy lately and class has started. I'm going to make time to work on it at least a couple of times over the next two weeks.

3. Play flute. Did twice last week. Nearly forgot this week but then played for about an hour Wednesday, so still keeping up with what I wanted to do.

4. Write every day. Haven't really done this either. Too busy getting into the swing of my class, which is taking up a lot of my time. I'll start fitting some writing in now that I've gotten my schedule together.

5. Let other people read my writing. Let Shelly read some more of my stuff, and now she's moved. I'm not sure where I'm going to go with this goal. I guess I can email her once she gets internet set up in her apartment, and maybe find another person or two to start sending stuff to.

6. Exercise 5 days a week. Kept this again, so I'm taking this goal off the list. If there's a noticeable decline in my exercising I'll put it back on, but I think it's enough of a habit that I don't need the constant reminder.

7. Take some trips. New York will be in August, for sure. Philly is looking doubtful, as I haven't figured out a weekend that would actually work for everyone involved. I will absolutely be going up to see Shelly sometime in the next few months, she and I have already talked about it. Ireland, I don't know. Not knowing what is going on with a job and school in the fall is making me unable to plan that trip, so it might have to wait until next spring or something.

8. Learn Japanese. I haven't had the time for learning anything new. I've looked over everything I know regularly so I don't forget most of it. That's probably going to have to do for the next month.

9. Physical therapy. I've been fitting this in once a day, sometimes twice. I'm going to try and continue with twice a day so that I can be done sooner. Noticing a good bit of progress now.

10. Time management. This has been going quite well. Even though I'm insanely busy, I've been juggling everything easily, and even finding time for fun. If the next two weeks go as well, I'll take this goal off the list.

Start buying less stuff, and finish what I have lying around the house. I bought a bunch of books since Patty's had her sidewalk sale, and I wanted to mooch the next Sword of Truth book since a good copy finally came available. I also bought a new game. I still spent less than $20 on all of that though, so I don't feel bad about it. It's the most I've spent on myself (for fun things) in months.

12. Learn Photoshop. I didn't open Photoshop over the past two weeks either. If the weather continues to be rainy though I will this time. I've just been spending a lot of time out enjoying the sun. I don't feel like screwing around on the computer, not when I already have to be on so much for classwork.

Organize my stuff and get rid of unnecessary clutter. Said last time I'd be working on the clothes. So far I haven't gotten that far, especially since Shelly gave me that huge box. I did get through that at least, and I've organized all of my shoes. Have a lot of work ahead of me the next couple of weeks, though I hopefully won't have to buy anything now. We'll see if I get finished.

14. Get through borrowed stuff. Read and returned all of Shelly's books. Only got through one of the movies, but did manage to get a little bit of time in on FFIX. For next time I'm going to try and finish the library books I have out. Except for maybe Revenant, which is book 7 of the Indigo series that I mentioned in an earlier entry. I'm still only on book 2 of that so I don't know that I can get through all of those plus the other 5 library books I have out. At least, not with my class. =P

I'll also continue with FFIX. Not planning on any of the shows or movies really, as I don't want to sit around watching television. I'll get through a some when I get the chance but I'm not going to actually plan to do it.

Even though there were a few goals I didn't touch at all, I still feel that I've been getting a lot done. I do feel bad about the writing thing, though I've felt burnt out on that lately so maybe a little break is what I needed. And I also took another goal off the list. It's finally starting to become manageable, lol. Of course, I'll probably come up with more goals to add before long.....

Monday, June 16, 2008

Bored on campus with nothing to do

A while back, Corey sent me some books to read. Some of them were Magic books, and he also sent me the Indigo series, by Louise Cooper. Very little known fantasy series...seriously, it doesn't even have a Wikipedia page. I was looking up the books on Amazon, trying to find a damn summary of the series for someone else since at the time I'd only read part of one book. This is when I realize that there are eight books in the series. And Corey had only sent me seven books.

Turns out he hadn't even finished the series before sticking it in a box and sending it here. So he sent me books 1-6, and then book 8. I have been looking for the seventh for a while now. Patty's only ever has a couple of the earlier books, the only copy I found on BookMooch was in England, and on Amazon the stupid thing costs about $20 after shipping for a decent copy. No idea why that one book is so expensive when the rest are fairly easy to find.

Finally, I discovered a great library perk. You can request a book at your branch, for free, and then if any library in the state has it they will get it in for you so you can borrow it. Unfortunately, I hadn't gotten a new library card to use their spiffy new online system for this. It was only implemented a couple of months ago, and to access it you need the barcode on the back of the new cards, which you need to go and pick up at your local branch. And I've had a hell of a time finding time to get to the library when it's actually open to request the book and get my new card.

While all this shit was going on, I stopped reading the series entirely. Only one other library in Pennsylvania has the book, and it's up in the northeastern corner of the state (aka as far from me as you can possibly get). I figured it would take a while to get to my library, and at the time I didn't even know when I'd get to request it to begin with. I didn't want to get through six of the books then be stuck wondering what happened. So I let it go, deciding that I would pick up book two again as soon as I requested the seventh. At the rate I read it should be easy to get through them. They're all fairly short too, at around 300 pages each.

I requested the book...last Wednesday. And I have yet to bother starting the second. It's sitting on my nightstand with a bookmark in it, but I haven't actually read any of it yet. Of course, I've started five books besides that one. Then I went to Patty's today and picked up two more books. And then went to the library and got Ysabel since it was actually in for once. And now I'm sitting here on the library website putting in requests for other books that I haven't been able to get before. So far I'm up to four, I think. It would be more but libraries apparently don't feel the need to get much fantasy that's come out in the last two or three years.

Oh look, The Lies of Locke Lamora is available at my branch, and it's not checked out either. Same with one of the Mercedes Lackey books I've been wanting to read for a while. I should go and pick those up tomorrow...

At this rate the seventh book will be here before I even read book two, much less three through six. I am never getting through this Indigo series.