Is it just me, or is spring/early summer a crazy time? I feel like I'm racing around like a crazy person (no comments from the peanut gallery) trying to get everything done. Of course, dealing with the Year of the Rat in the middle of everything else didn't help...
So--here's a general update on what I've been up to:
Rats! -- I think I've gotten all the little devils. Fourteen in total. (Even the pest guy said, "Wow, that's a lot of rats." Seriously...you don't want to impress the pest guy.) It has been over a week since I caught the last one, and I'm not hearing anything in the walls anymore. Whew. As a bonus, two not-very-bright mice came out of the walls a couple of days ago and were summarily dispatched by the cats. (Who were clearly trying to prove that it wasn't their fault that the rats had only come out into places that the cats aren't allowed to go.)
Today, the appliance repair guy comes to replace the chewed-through hoses on the washer and the dishwasher (ka-ching!), so I will be back in business there. Sometime next week, the pest guy will come back to clean the disgusting mess the rats made of the basement (those suckers poop everywhere). More ka-ching, but he can do it safely and I can't, so there you go.
Once THAT'S done, one of my handyman pals will come over and patch all the holes in the walls of the basement (some of which are so large, you can see daylight through them...thanks again, RATS) and generally try to spiff the place up a bit. (Ka--oh, nevermind. You see where I'm going with this. The damn rats are costing me a lot of money.) After that, or maybe during, I'm going to have my electrician put much better lighting down there, so the next time there is a problem, I will hopefully spot it earlier. Also, it will be a little less spooky....
Jewelry -- It's spring, so I am in the midst of a spurt of jewelry making, trying to round out my existing stock at The Artisans' Guild with brighter seasonal colors (like rose quartz and aventurine) and fill in the gaps in everything else (how did I end up only having ONE pair of lapis earrings?). In theory, I'd planned to finish this before I started work on the next book. In reality, life interfered (see rats, above) and so I will probably finish up this weekend. What, you thought I was going to be relaxing?
I've pretty much given up on the Etsy site, mostly because I just don't have time to keep updating it, but if you ever want a piece of jewelry [I'm looking at you, Lisa Shearin], just let me know and I'll see what I've got.
Writing -- I'm waiting for my lovely new editor at Berkley, Leis Pedersen, to get back to me with edits for The Baba Yaga (gulp). I just went through and reread it prior to starting on the 2nd book in the series, and the good news is that it was even better than I remembered. The bad news is...it was even better than I remembered. (GULP) Now I have to equal or exceed that quality in the next one. Oy. If you look at the word count meter at the top of the blog, you can see that I have started working on The Baba Yaga's Sister. It's going slower than I'd like (see rats and jewelry, above), but the beginning of new books almost always is slow going for me.
I'm also getting ready to teach another couple of classes, and madly trying to get the garden in the ground in between torrential rainstorms.
What are you all up to these days?
And as promised, here are this week's cute cat pics. You're welcome :-)
Oh, and a belated happy birthday to my pal Sierra Meinster, who as usual, is giving me an invaluable assist with research for the new book. She rocks.
I hope you all have great plans for the Memorial Day weekend (if you live in the US), and that you aren't feeling too crazy trying to keep up with life.
To Chapter or Not to Chapter
16 hours ago