Here I am, I have returned! I’ve been busy with camping trips and the Grave Touched Rewrite. And PT. And…vacation!
Yep, last week was my second vacation from work, 6 days of bliss. Hubby and I went camping (no surprise there!) where we had the most beautiful view of the lake from our campsite (the beach was literally steps away…and at night? The sunsets? I was in photographer’s heaven!) and where our little camper weathered a HUGE, crazy storm (winds 40 mph) and didn’t have a single leak! It was a lot of fun, a lot of excitement, and a lot of relaxation. Something I needed desperately.
The Grave Touched Rewrite is up to 89k (!). I’m still boggled by this. I did write a bit on vacation because, you know, deadlines and momentum. I also finished the edit of Changeling and sent that off.
So the plan is to try to finish Grave Touched by the end of the month, giving me three months to revise. Crossing fingers. I need a minimum of two months, so I can go over, but I really want that extra month!
Another thing I’ve been giving a lot of thought to is…what’s next? I definitely need a break from the Fey Touched world and a writing break in general, but after that…may work on Soulfire or one of my other revisions. It’s kinda up in the air right now, but I am pondering it.
I also have decided to reopen my darkroom. I’ve had it since 1999 and at one time, worked in there for three to four hours at least 3x a week. Once I got married to my ex, naturally my work output went way down, even though I continued to do photo shoots. When I came back home, I putzed with it a bit, but I was beginning to feel the effects of my age — in my back, particularly. The smell of the chemicals began to bother me when they never did. And the stamina required to stand for 3-4 hours at a time was just not there.
I’d basically given up on it. Whenever I’d think about reopening it, I always thought, well, I can’t stand, I’ll need to replace all my chemicals, I’ll need to set aside the time, blah blah blah. All excuses. My first love, and real passion, is traditional black and white photography. I probably sound like an old-timer, but that’s where my roots are (my grandfather was a darkroom photographer and I didn’t find out about it until I was in school studying it!) and where my soul feels most nourished. I love digital, but there’s nothing like b&w. I’m sorry, but to me, b&w is where the magic happens. I’ve missed it SO much that I regularly have dreams about it. I want to watch the picture emerge from a blank piece of photo paper. I want to spend time with each negative and figure out the best possible exposure time. I want to tone my images again. But most of all, I want to experiment with infrared photography, which is what led to all of this. I did some back in school and it was beautiful (everything glows, green plants and people’s skin is white, contrast is…out of this world) and I tried it again but didn’t have any good results. Tried a pseudo-infrared film but didn’t like it much, either. Then that perfect film was discontinued! Another thing I gave up on (it’s also wickedly hard to use, expose, and develop. But SO worth it). So anyway, a few weeks ago, I said, “Eff it. I’ve wanted to do this forever, obviously things have changed drastically, and I’ll need to put a ton of work into it (oh yeah, another thing — my darkroom area needs to be cleaned, organized, and thoroughly dusted — right now it’s a mess) but wait a sec. I don’t have to spend hours in there. I can buy chemicals little by little. I can still do everything. Just differently.” So, that’s what I’m doing. I’m going to give this a try. I’ve set a goal for myself. By my birthday in March, I want to have a significant portion of the work done to reopen the darkroom. I won’t buy chemicals until I’m ready to start and I’ll have time to get my 35mm automatic camera fixed (for infrared, it’s manual all the way — it’s been decades since I’ve used a manual camera! Looking forward to it!). I also will have enough time to attack it at my own pace.
Time is slipping by. This year is almost over, and it has flown by. I don’t want to go through the rest of my life wondering what beautiful images I could have made if only I’d taken the time to try darkroom again. I miss it, and it needs to be a part of my life again.
Words rewritten since last check-in: 7,650 (total so far: 35,561 words and I made my second goal!)
Words remaining: 0
What’s happening: The MCs are doing a ritual to ward off possessions
What’s next: MC is going to be very…lost
Eye report: Not too bad, even with a storm today
Back report: A bit better, but progress has been very slow
Chocolate consumption since last check-in: Well…a whole lotta chocolate. Too much to list. 😉