Rowyn (rowyn) wrote,

August in Review

Activity was up this month, from an average of 65 minutes per day to 76 minutes. I blame the Team Rocket takeovers.

Eating habits are about the same.

I am down 12 pounds for the year. *\o/*

I wrote 14,800 words on The Lord, His Monster, and Their Lady, before I realized that I needed to write a version of the same elaborate formal courting process I used in Princess. This was daunting enough that I started to procrastinate on writing more of Lord by editing. Which is fine, because I'd been writing Lord in order to procrastinate on editing. It's the circle of procrastination. Also, the only way I ever get things done. This is the process and it's terrible but it's mine.

The Business of Writing
I finished initial edits on The Mortal Prince and the Moon Etherium, got feedback from first readers, added another scene, got more feedback, and completed final edits on August 9. I forgot how much faster this process goes when you're working on something novelette-length. Anyway, it's done and waiting on layout.

I also made the editing list for The Twilight Etherium, at long last. And then I started completing items on it. I've finished 15 of 34 items thus far.

The Princess, Her Dragon, and Their Prince sold 305 copies in its first two months. It's now #6 in unit sales among my books (ahead of four books that were published before it). Its first month was good enough to pay for the cover I commissioned for it, which is nice. I have commissioned covers for five of my ten books, and only two of those books have broke even so far. (Angel's Sigil is very close to the break-even point, however, and will probably make it there within the next month or two. The covers for Silver Scales and Golden Coils were considerably more expensive than the other three; at the current pace, it will be 3+ years before they break even.)

Jenn modeled for me briefly while I was visiting her last Wednesday, and I did some sketching then.

I also did the cover for Mortal Prince, which is in the same silhouette style and palette as the Etherium novels. It was mostly "find a good public-domain reference to base the figure silhouette upon" and then stitching together some existing background art from the Moon Etherium illustrations I did a few years ago.

I forgot to mention this in the last update: in mid-July, my old upright vacuum died, and I bought a robot vacuum, which I named Rovan, to replace it. Rovan is a Eufy 30C; I decided on that model after reviewing the recommendations from Consumer Reports.

I'm just gonna take a moment to aside on how much I love Consumer Reports when I need to buy an appliance. I got a subscription back when I bought my car, because their car-buying guide is the best thing. But I kept it because it makes other purchasing decisions so easy. "Oh no, I need a new washing machine, how will I ever decide -- WAIT I CAN JUST ASK CONSUMER REPORTS." (I bought a new washing machine in June and it's great.)

Anyway, I also love Rovan. Rovan does have one issue: his wi-fi connection to the phone app worked for a week, and then died. I tried the reset instructions, and then uninstalling and reinstalling the app, but the app still says it can't find him when I try to set him up again.

The app was convenient when it worked: it meant I could start Rovan when I wasn't at home, and it'd give me a message it Rovan got stuck somewhere.

But not having it just means "I have to hit the button on Rovan or use the remote to turn him on, instead of my phone." And at this point I've taken care of all of the problem areas on the floor, so he hasn't gotten stuck in weeks.

It took about a week of Rovan working for an hour every day before he'd finally gotten all the cat fur and Rowyn hair out of the carpet (by the time I got him, it had been a couple of months since I'd last vacuumed.) But at this point I run him every other day and he does a great job of keeping the floor clean. I am tempted to rent a carpet cleaner to tackle the stains, although honestly the carpet is 16 years old and if moving all the furniture to have it replaced wasn't a nightmare, I'd replace it. In fairness, though, the carpet looks pretty good despite its age and some stains.

I am also somewhat surprised to find that my floors are sufficiently clutter-free that running a robot vacuum daily works fine. The only thing he's had problems with has been power cords. I did eventually have to use some of the magnetic strips Rovan came with to screen the power cord on the reclining loveseat, but the others lie close enough to walls that he doesn't get tangled up in them.

Rovan also motivates me to do more cleaning sometimes too. You know how if you live with someone and they start cleaning, sometimes you'll think "Oh, I might as well clean too" out of solidarity or inspiration or guilt? The robot works for this on me.

In conclusion: robots good. Thanks to my friends and acquaintances who'd mentioned robot vacuums being fairly effective and easy to use these days. ❤️

I am still enjoying battling Team Rocket in Pokemon Go. Niantic modified the battles and it's now easier to fight Team Rocket if you use pokemon that are good against the particular team, as opposed to just "use your three biggest Slakoth and hope for the best". As a result, after a year of playing this game, I am finally starting to remember a little about which Pokemon types are good against which.

For me, it's a 20-minute drive to a good area for finding Team Rocket (you need a high density of pokestops if you want to be able to reliably spot a takeover at any given moment), so I don't hunt them every day. But on Saturday and Sunday, I'll often drive to the Plaza, spend an hour walking from one Team Rocket-held pokestop to another, then spend a couple of hours writing or editing at a coffee shop, and then another hour hunting Team Rocket before I go home.

Also, I went to midtown for the Suicune Raid Day on August 16, and in the last 30 minutes of the three-hour window, I made level 40. Whee!

This means it took me just over a year to go from "newbie" to "max level". It was about 6 months to reach 39 and then another 6 months to reach 40. :D

My enduring affection for Pokemon Go is mostly "I need to exercise anyway", but that does seem to be enough.

I visited Jenn twice in August, because she's moving in early September to live closer to her kids. She has many friends in this area, however, and will be back to visit. I probably won't see her every month anymore, though.

I think I'm doing pretty well. I've been feeling more ambitious, and also like it's not much a burden to get things done.

Score card for last month
Last month's goals were not ambitious:
~ Help Lut and generally adult
~ Initial edits of A Mortal Prince
~ Send A Mortal Prince
~ Do some fiction writing too
~ Do not angst about productivity otherwise.

I did all of these things! And more! And I didn't even angst much about productivity.

Goals for coming month
~ Help Lut & do general adulting
~ Use to-do lists for a few weeks. I'm trying to start doing push-ups and stretching a few times a week, and cultivating a new habit is easiest if I have a schedule thing I'm supposed to look at and that I can cross things off of.
~ Score 20 writing/editing points. Getting a novel 1.25% closer to completion is worth one point, as is completing one of the items on an editing list. This is really just a fancy way of measuring "write 20,000 words or finish initial edits of The Twilight Etherium or some combination of the two." But I want to do the fancy way because I want to measure writing productivity by "how close to done is the book" rather than "words written". You get more of what you measure, and what I want to do is finish books.
~ Do not beat self up for any productivity lapses.

This entry was originally posted at Please comment there using OpenID.
Tags: nyr, nyr 2019
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