I’m so darn late because I actually have been busy! Very busy! Yay me! (sort of. LOL)
Welcome to Night Vale live was glorious. If you’ve never listened to it, the format is a community radio station’s news report, in a very weird little town in New Mexico. Think of it as NPR meets X Files. Aliens fly around the Arbys sign at night, angels help an elderly lady change her porch light bulbs (and then she puts the burnt out ones on ebay), a teenage activist challenges the weirdos in city government, and an inquisitive scientist arrives to investigate the whole thing and ends up falling for the radio station’s news anchor (and the station’s levitating pet cat). The live show was like a stand-alone episode, with live music (always introduced with ‘and now, the weather’ LOL) and audience participation!
I donated a crocheted character doll to an online fandom charity auction. We ended up with four bids, and the mods asked if I thought I could make all 4 so they could honor all the bids. Hey, it was the difference between generating $50 for Random Acts (https://www.randomacts.org) and $165, so, like I’m going to turn that down? get real.
All characters from Supernatural: demon hunter Sam, his angel friend Cas (two bidders requested different versions of him, actually, one with wings as seen here and one without) and Rowena the witch!
By the time I got those finished and pictures posted, and started mailing them to their forever homes, I had several more orders, so I’m working on those now. I’m also making a few more pygmy puffs to take to Dragon Con, and casting on two new styles of fingerless gloves for another charity auction in October. So lots of crafting going on!
I did have a brief moment of panic when I started to gather things together to go to Atlanta the end of this month, and could not find the confirmation postcard you get after paying for your Dragon Con ‘membership’ (aka ticket or pass).
What actually happened to the card was made clear when I went back to check my in box (I figured I’d print out the confirmation email and take it in case I need backup proof). I paid for my pass on a Friday in February, and got the confirmation early the following Monday morning, along with a note that my postcard was on its way. Thing is, a few hours after that email was sent, McKendree called me about mom, and of course by that afternoon she had passed. Needless to say, if something came in the mail that week, with relatives all over the place trying to help out, and it did not have the obvious look of a bill or something equally important, it likely got lost in the shuffle. I explained that in a couple of mildly panicky emails to the con management, and got a sympathetic note and assurance that the postcard is not essential, my payment is in the system, and as long as I bring ID I will be registered and happily given my pass to wear around my neck all weekend.
It’s going to be weird, being able to go to a structured (well, semi-structured) event covering most of 5 days and most of downtown Atlanta, and not have my hand in my purse constantly checking to be sure I haven’t missed a call. I mentioned that briefly, in relation to my Smokies trip back in the spring, and I felt it again, even more acutely, when I went to see Night Vale. Maybe it was because that was a performance, something that, should I get a call that required me immediately, would be more of a disruption to get out of. Just the sheer scale of Dragon Con is going to, I think, make it in turn yet another variation on that theme. It’s, well, just weird, not feeling that invisible umbilical cord constantly pulling at me, that weight holding me down.
Speaking of cons, the one in Murfreesboro was great fun. I attended several panels, chatted with crafters, artists and vendors, and hung out with a knitting group. We did that last year, but I hadn’t seen a mention in the run-up this year, so I didn’t take any knitting with me.☹ Sadness. As usual, tiny Tony rode shotgun on my shoulder and got far more attention than I ever could. He loves his adoring public.
Best of all, after an excellent panel about writing, I approached one of the publishers on the panel with some questions about submitting Song for the Seacrossing for his perusal. Getting on board with a publisher, as opposed to self-publishing, means you get built-in beta reading, proofing, and advice as needed, which would be awesome. He was intrigued enough by my brief pitch that he gave me contact info, and now…we wait. Seriously, he said give them 90 days, so I likely won’t hear anything until early October. Gives me time to get more stuff done, though. (For those who follow fanfic, I confess that since my last blog post I have written three stories that fixed what I didn’t like about Avengers Endgame in three totally different ways, and am still working through the massive epic series of stories that will end in yet another fix. LOL, what can I say.)
I got a few decent tomatoes off my one plant this year (y’all may remember the issues I have had in the past with spending lots of time and effort and getting nada, zip, zilch.) These were not big but were quite tasty in salads.
This weekend’s to-do list includes working on finishing my continuing education for the year. Just because I would rather not have to go back to doing therapy, doesn’t mean I don’t want to keep my license and certification up to date and in my back pocket just in case. Plus, I can knit or crochet and watch an educational video at the same time.
That said, there’s a lot of stuff on TV I want to binge and catch up on. Good Omens, Stranger Things, Umbrella Academy…
AND—I’ve mentioned before sending out resumes and pursuing job listings in hopes of getting back into the work world. It’s been almost six months now, and I’m feeling more than a little bit lazy and guilty that I haven’t been able to land a regular job. As I said, I don’t really want to have to go back to doing therapy—not the therapy itself, you’ve heard me talk about how much I like that, but all the ancillary stuff! The paperwork, the unrealistic productivity, the micromanaging by supervisors who often don’t have a clue what I do but like to act as if they do, all of that wears you down. And, I’ll be honest, while being able to make lasting positive change in patients’ lives is great, I…was getting weary of the stress of knowing people’s lives literally depended on my daily decisions. Of the allied health professions, speech pathology, because of our position leading swallowing treatments, is really the only therapy that can say our work is a matter of life and death, and to be real, I don’t want to have to take that on, if I don’t have to. (Which, maybe isn’t an issue, since I haven’t gotten calls back on most of the positions in speech I’d inquired about. I think that’s mostly a combination of my age and the fact I’ve been out of the field for three years.)
Anyway—a week or two ago I noticed a job posting from the state governmental department one of my cousins works in. It was looking for a proofreader and general assistant in their publications division. Hey, words! I don’t have to tell y’all, working with words would be a dream gig for me. (Come on, how could I pass up a listing whose required qualifications included ‘Knowledge of the proper use of the Oxford comma’?)
So I sent my application off, and asked my cousin for advice. He thought I was terribly overqualified. I couldn’t see that, because I seem terribly underqualified for anything outside the very small niche for which I was trained. Every time I read over a listing, whether it’s for a copy editor or a bread baker, it seems to list skills I don’t have. Shooting low appeared to be the best option, because at least I would have something!
The other day, though, I got a call back, and the next day found me on the phone with two very pleasant people from human resources. One’s wife is even an SLP so he had some empathy for my situation. We talked about the job requirements, I asked about some of the nuts and bolts (dress code, parking, lunch and breaks, et cetera) and I even found out that since I had worked for the state for a number of years, I would come back onto the payroll and immediately start to accrue more time off than a new hire! Yay!
Now I wait, again, argh. :D If they want to look at me again, they will call me to come downtown for a face to face interview and a skill test in proofreading. I should fly through that; I have always had such a keen eye for spelling, punctuation, grammar, and the like. More updates as they occur! For now, I will appreciate this free time even more knowing it may soon come to an end.
Oh! one more cool thing, book-related. An author I really like posted a very unique giveaway on her twitter feed: donate to her favorite charity, send her a copy of the receipt, and get an autographed copy of her latest book! Like I could possibly pass that up, even though I already had the book on my Kindle. (it's a superb book if you like zombies btw. https://www.amazon.com/Dread-Nation-Justina-Ireland-ebook/dp/B071RQX7W9/)