Monday 6 Feb 2023: Back to normal(ish)

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Well, I’m back to normal. The lurgy house is still going strong, but I have work to do and I’m already going to be a week late.

I didn’t do a lot of work on Friday. I wanted to alternate between ghostwriting, editing and my own writing, but I only managed a bit of editing and the rest of the time I was assessing that writing academy. The jury’s still very much out on that, so I think that might speak for itself.

There are two courses I want to do, and I can pay monthly, do them, and then cancel my membership if I want to. But either way. I’m not really in a position to start any new study just yet, so it will have to wait. I still might choose it for a birthday present if another show doesn’t come up we both want to see by then. It’s not for a few weeks anyway, so there’s time.

And that was it, I think on Friday. I did a lot more on Saturday, but I still didn’t get very much client work done. I did do another chapter of the editing work, so that’s something. This hard-copy edit needs finishing this week, though, so I can get the electronic edits done and then send the file back to the author.

Also on Saturday, I finally caught up with my date work so I’m at the right place to continue for next month. I’d already looked online for dates and topics of interest coming up in May and June, which are my current target months. On Saturday I went through my two dates books and added more ideas. This also gave me my throwaways for this Wednesday, and it means that my dates file is up to date.

Once I’d finished the date work I looked at the current calls for submissions to see what else I could fit in if I tried this month, and any deadlines. Not only do I need to be able to fit these in, they also have to interest me sufficiently to write something new for, and they all have to pay, either flat fee or a royalty. And, of course, I have to keep my copyright so I can continue to make the stories work after they’ve been published, if they’re successful.

Then I filled in all of the deadline dates for the current work in progress as well as these calls for submissions I’m going to have a go at. And I added Monkey Dust gigs to the end of the year and our two holidays, plus the Christmas break. This now shows me at a glance when or if I have too many or enough or insufficient deadlines or dates. If I have too may or enough, then I have to transfer those to the diary. If I don’t have enough, then I can easily see where I have to look for work to fill the time.

That means my new deadlines for the next few weeks, already confirmed, are

  • 22 February: 12 Stories in 12 Months
  • 28 February: short story competition deadline
  • 1 March: autumn call for submissions
  • 1 March: Christmas call for submissions
  • 14 March: deadline for up to 3 stories for weekly market

When I have it, I also have to add in the 12 Stories in 12 Months one once they release the prompt and the deadline date. For the short story competition, I can double up with a short story assignment from one of my online workshops. And it really means that I have to have three short stories ready by the end of the month as the deadline for two of them is 1 March. Diary of a Pussycat is due out on 28 February too.

I called it a day then for Saturday, even though it didn’t look like we were going to manage our trip to the seaside on Sunday. I was starting to feel a lot better, but the poet was still testing positive for Covid and he was really ill with it, feeling fluey and nauseous as well.

It took me a long time to get going on Sunday. The poet tested positive again, so that ruled out our trip to the seaside, even though we weren’t going to go far beyond our own car when we got there. He just wasn’t really well enough for such a long car journey. Instead, I spent a lot of time researching diet and light exercise to get us both back into condition and then I popped to the supermarket, masked-up although I was clear to go out again, to get some fresh salad and a few bits we’d run out of.

When I got back we had something to eat (at least he was starting to eat again), and then I came back to my diary work. I worked out my ghostwriting schedule to 20 February, when Part 4 needs to be done and dusted (I’m still on Part 3), and I did that extra diary work for the short story deadlines, working backwards to see if and where I could fit them all in. I also transferred most of last week’s meal plan to this week, as we’d been living on soup and bacon sandwiches and toast.

Today, I have to be back to normal. I have to get up on time and be at my desk at a sensible time as I have a lot of work to get through:

  • daily competitions
  • tomorrow’s blog post
  • Diary of a Pussycat revisions and additions
  • Catch the Rainbow rewriting
  • brainstorm short story for 12 Stories in 12 Months
  • Diane’s Gig List brief admin
  • Monkey Dust admin
  • GW1 Book 12 Part 3
  • editing for Yorkshire client

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