Posted by: devonellington | July 31, 2017

July 2017 Wrap Up

July 2017 Wrap-up:

 

My plans for July pretty much went out the window.  I had a good creative time, just not what was on the schedule.

 

Complete:

12 Pitches

“Ramsey Chase” release

PLAYING THE ANGLES proofs

PLAYING THE ANGLES cover

Book review assignments

THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY cover

NAUTICAL NAMASTE cover

Article written and turned in for WOW-Women on Writing

Article written and turned in for Authors Publish

2 short stories

PLAYING THE ANGLES media kit

2 essays

Webpage for Coventina Circle Series

Facebook page for Coventina Circle Series

 

In Process:

THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY

Cleaning/purging

Yard work

Revision of SAVASANA AT SEA

Lavinia Fontana final research

Devon Ellington Media Kit

“Labor Intensive”

Promotional work for PLAYING THE ANGLES and the Coventina Circle series

Outlining the Coventina Circle series

 

Moved/Dropped:

“Miss Winston Apologizes” moved to August

Rest of THE FIX IT GIRL revisions moved to August

work on the mini-series moved to August

Next draft of WINNER TAKE ALL and logline/submission packets moved to August

 

Unexpected Additions:

Work on OLD SCHOOL MAGIC

Work on INITIATE

Project meeting in Harwich

Outlining the entire Coventina Circle series

Outlining a few other projects

Project meeting

 

Disappointments:

Late payments

Betrayal by someone trusted

 

 

Successes:

Broke into a couple new-to-me markets

Getting the Coventina Circle series back on track

Getting the covers adjusted so I’m happy with them

 

How was your July?  Where do you feel you were on or off track?

 

Posted by: devonellington | July 14, 2017

July Mid-Month Check In

How is your July going? Are you productive? Flexible? I’m under a lot of pressure, and I’m trying to keep it from interfering with my writing. Not always easy. I could use a little breathing room.

But here’s what I’m working on:

From the list:
Several pitches out — on track
“Ramsey Chase” released on time
Working on proofs of PLAYING THE ANGLES
Cover done on PLAYING THE ANGLES
Just got assignment from new editor
Cleaning/purging
Yard work, as weather allows

Not on list:
Landed new article for WOW-Women on Writing — almost finished with that
New direction for SAVASANA AT SEA
Notes on OLD SCHOOL MAGIC
Work on INITIATE
Lavinia Fontana research (final, I hope)
Work on Devon Ellington media kit

Posted by: devonellington | July 7, 2017

July 2017 To Do List

Finally Up!  It took awhile to sort it out.  What does your July look like?

 

July 2017 To Do List:

 

10-13 pitches out

Release of “The Ramsey Chase” — July 10

First draft of “Labor Intensive”

Work on “Miss Winston Apologizes”

Work on proofs of PLAYING THE ANGLES

Finalize cover for PLAYING THE ANGLES

Finish the revision of FIX IT GIRL

Submission packets for FIX IT GIRL

Assignments for new editor

Continue to clean/purge

Yard work

Continue work on the mini-series

Complete third draft of WINNER TAKE ALL

Do logline/submission packets for WINNER TAKE ALL

 

Posted by: devonellington | June 30, 2017

June 2017 Wrap Up

The early part of the month was more productive than the latter; I’m feeling a little burned out and un-creative. But I must push on or I can’t keep a roof over my head. I can’t afford Writer’s Block.

June 2017 Wrap – Up

Complete:
22 Pitches Sent — more than I planned
10 minute radio play submitted
2 articles pitched, written, paid
Part I of the first draft of the mini-series written
New cover for “The Ramsey Chase”
2 essays written, polished, submitted
1 flash fiction written, polished, submitted
Next assignment for new editor submitted

In progress:
THE FIX IT GIRL revisions — I’m behind, but they’re progressing
Yard work — always “in progress”
Short women’s fiction story
Part II of the mini-series
“The Ramsey Chase” final proofs
Opening of “Miss Winston apologizes”
Cleaning out what’s unnecessary/purging basement
Searching for the right cover image(s) for PLAYING THE ANGLES

Dropped/Moved:
Short stories adapted to radio plays — time/money ratio didn’t work
Moved the third draft of WINNER TAKE ALL to July
Moved work on NOT BY THE BOOK to July
Submission materials for FIX IT GIRL moved to July

Unexpected Additions:
The mini-series
Getting deadlines for Cornelia True and Twinkle Tavern pieces
Getting deadlines for PLAYING THE ANGLES

Disappointments:
Unreliable people
Lack of reciprocity

People who expect you to ply your profession, but don’t want to pay.

Successes:
2 articles quickly sold
Some good meetings
Upswing in short pieces

Posted by: devonellington | June 15, 2017

June Mid-Month Check In

Boy, is this month going fast! And it’s all over the place.

From the list posted at the beginning of the month:

13 pitches sent — I’m already over my estimate for the month.

Behind on THE FIX IT GIRL — I hoped to be done with the second draft by today, but the second half of the book is complicated, a real “re-envisionment” in some cases, so I expect it won’t be done until either the end of the month or mid-July.

10 minute radio play submitted.

Yard work, which is ever-ongoing

Working on assignments for my new editor

One of the two short stories I wanted to do this month is out the door; the other is nearly there.

Not on the list but added in:
Two of the pitches I sent were accepted, written, and paid already

Started work on a mini-series teleplay. Finished Part I (123 pages; some will be cut in revisions), and started Part II.

“The Ramsey Chase” will be ready for re-release faster than I expected, so that has to be factored in, along with outlining the next story in the series, outlining it, and deciding when it will be ready.

Finalizing the release dates for Playing the Angles and The Spirit Repository, and deciding how to factor in what still has to be done with them.

In other words, June has been busy and creative. I’m feeling a little burned out, but too bad for me.

How is your June going?

Posted by: devonellington | June 2, 2017

June To Do List

June’s To Do List may get thrown out the window, because there are a few things in flux that might make most of this list impossible to work on. I have to remain flexible and able to think on my feet for the whole month.

8-12 pitches
Third draft of WINNER TAKE ALL
Finish revision of FIX IT GIRL
Start working on submission materials for FIX IT GIRL
2 short stories out the door
10 minute radio play finished, polished, submitted
Re-visit the potential short story-to-radio adaptations
Get back on track with NOT BY THE BOOK
Decide which of the other ideas I’ve been playing with make sense to work in tandem with above
Yard work
Purge basement
Assignments for new editor as received

Posted by: devonellington | June 1, 2017

May 2017 Wrap Up

A day late, but hopefully worth it!

Complete:
Second draft of WINNER TAKE ALL
Article Pitches
First session on the Career Recalibration
Wrote 1 short article
New cover for Creative Stimulus Workbook
Short Story “Worth the Wait” & submitted it
First assignment for new freelance gig
Proposal packet to a producer for a new play

In Progress:
Personal issues
Second Draft of FIX-IT GIRL
Lavinia Fontana Research
NOT BY THE BOOK
Yard work
Purging basement
Discussions with new-to-me distributors

Dropped/Moved:
Adaptations of short stories to radio plays — time/money ratio didn’t make sense.

Unexpected Additions:
Rough outline of new mystery
Rough outline of new literary fiction
Rough outline of new paranormal Victorian romance
Rough notes on fantasy/mystery
Rough notes on DC mystery
Pages on mystery
Pages on literary fiction
Pages on paranormal Victorian romance
Pages on fantasy/mystery
Chance to submit proposal for a new play to a development deal
First draft of a short-short story
Landed new review gig
Discussion for a big, long-term project that may or may not come to be
Wrote short story “Worth the Wait”
Wrote short article
49 pages on a new contemporary mystery idea

Disappointments:
Local people

Successes:
Interest in some of the pitches sent out
New ideas are working
Recalibration will pay off, but not for awhile

Posted by: devonellington | May 15, 2017

Mid-May Check-In

May is proving to be a challenging month, but also a creative one.

Here’s where I am on my list:
Dealing with the personal stuff
Nearly one half way through the second draft of WINNER TAKE ALL
About 30K into the second draft of FIX IT GIRL
Finishing up the Lavinia Fontana research
Pitching and working on articles
Negotiating a reviewer gig
Yard work — which has run into some problems because of mower issues

I’m behind on NOT BY THE BOOK, the basement purge, and “Axe to Grind”.

But I’ve also outlined some new projects, I was asked to submit a proposal for a new play, and I’m plugging along. And I drafted a new short story, that I hope to polish and send out this week.

Fingers crossed that May only gets better. How’s your May?

Posted by: devonellington | May 2, 2017

May To Do List

May 2017 To Do List

Continue dealing with personal stuff
Revision of WINNER TAKE ALL SCREENPLAY (at least one, maybe two)
Start second draft of FIX-IT GIRL (six weeks, hopefully, so it will finish in Mid-June)
23K on NOT BY THE BOOK
Continue Lavinia Fontana research
10-12 article pitches
Yard work
Purging basement
Finish, revise, submit “Axe to Grind”
Make final decision on short story adaptations — either do them or drop them.

Posted by: devonellington | May 1, 2017

April 2017 Wrap Up

April Wrap Up:

Complete:
First draft of the screenplay WINNER TAKE ALL
Contest entries read and judged
6 article pitches

In Process:
Life stuff
NOT BY THE BOOK – behind where I want to be
Lavinia Fontana research — ongoing until end of June
FIX-IT GIRL — research keeps rolling in; figured out where I have to create new scenes in this draft and working on them before starting second draft. Will start second draft in May.
POWER OF WORDS
Yard Work (will be ongoing until the next snowstorm)
Purging basement (will be ongoing until done)

Dropped/Moved:
SONGBOUND SISTERS moved to later in the year

Unexpected Additions:
WINNER TAKE ALL screenplay
“Axe to Grind” short radio play
Revisions on “Seven of Swords”
Outline begun of art heist screenplay
Potentially adapt one or two short stories for radio
Playing with new mystery idea
Submitted radio play

Disappointments:
Some project interviews were disappointing and the decision was made not to go forward.
Not moving fast enough on a couple of things and missed the opportunity

Successes:
The craft on WINNER TAKE ALL.
Writing the first draft of a screenplay in less than a month (19 days)

Overview:
An up and down month, but overall, quite creative. It felt good to write a complete screenplay without interruption. POWER OF WORDS moves along, although in different ways. NOT BY THE BOOK needs to get back on track. The unexpected radio opportunities need to be grasped, and I had ideas and momentum for articles, which I haven’t felt in a long time. Didn’t do as much yard work as I hoped, due to all the rain. Did the final push on the contest entries, and I’m satisfied with my decisions. Still too much personal chaos that needs sorting out, and that drains energy from everything else.

Posted by: devonellington | April 18, 2017

April Mid-Month Check-In

April Mid-Month Check-In

Life stuff — ongoing.

NOT BY THE BOOK — Behind where I should be

Lavinia Fontana Research — still don’t have the catalyst for the plot

FIX-IT GIRL — research mostly done; plot points decided; working first draft of new scenes into book.

POWER OF WORDS — skipping around in it a bit. Some stuff I’m working on now informs earlier sections, so I did some inserts. Skipping ahead a bit to write sections set in Paris, on the Orient Express, in Venice, and in LA. May add sections set in Berlin and Milan. Debating about Costa Rica section.

Yard Work — ongoing, although not as fast as I would like, due to being out of shape.

Contest entries — finished two categories; almost done with smaller, final category and digital entries to read.

Purging boxes — not where I want or need to be with that. Have to get on the stick with it.

Unexpected additions: New screenplay, hit the halfway point; new short radio play; revisions on one act play. All for deadlines/markets that came up since my To Do List was created at the beginning of the month.

How is your April going? Having some good weather makes a big difference!

Posted by: devonellington | April 3, 2017

April 2017 To Do List

To Do List April 2017

The Private Life Stuff I can’t publicly discuss
NOT BY THE BOOK — 20K
Lavinia Fontana Research — find the incident that makes the play go
FIX – IT GIRL — complete costume research; decide other remaining plot points
POWER OF WORDS — whatever needs to be done on it
Yard work (per the weather)
Finish contest entries & make final decisions
Purge 20 boxes from the basement

Short list, but it makes more sense, given the “life stuff” that has to be handled before anything else can fall into place.

Posted by: devonellington | March 31, 2017

March 2017 Wrap-Up: Adjusting to Life’s Surprises

March was certainly a month of personal challenges, most of which I can’t discuss publicly.

Needless to say, I don’t even want to look at my To Do list, because it will read more like a “To Didn’t” list.

A great deal of the month was caught up in political activism, as it must be, if there’s any hope of surviving with this country as a democracy. Or having things like air to breathe, food to eat, etc. The level of corruption right now is immense. I’m working with my ethical representatives DAILY to try and make things better. Doesn’t mean we always agree, but at least they know where I stand, so they can represent.

On the positive side, I did a LOT of work on POWER OF WORDS — probably nearly another 30K.

On the negative side, I didn’t get anywhere near enough work on NOT BY THE BOOK, just a few thousand new words, and nothing done on SONGBOUND SISTERS.

I’m doing the research and plotting needed to finish the first draft of FIX-IT GIRL, but it’s not there yet.

I decided not to do a short story; in fact, I decided not to write several short stories for several potential markets because the calls for submission didn’t spark. I SHOULD go for them, but I want to skip them this year. Part of it is probably still being bitter about working so hard to meet a deadline for an anthology in which I was invited to participate, and then the publisher not having its act together enough to see it through, and the publisher not even having the courtesy to contact authors individually, but, instead, posting it on social media. Not professional by any standard.

At least I know that I don’t want to work with them in the future! 😉

There was some other conflict with a wanna-be who nagged me into agreeing to do something I didn’t want to do, and, when I put my own work aside to do it (as an unwarranted, unearned favor), tried to push it even further. Then argued when I put my foot down. Sorry, buh-bye. I shouldn’t have said yes in the first place; that’s on me. I had hoped that by giving an inch, that would end the constant nagging; instead, it made it worse. So, now, I have a firmer boundary, which I will not give on again.

I believe in “giving back”, I believe in sharing knowledge, in helping others, in answering questions and giving advice (if I’m in position to advise — otherwise, I’ll point them to a better source of information). However, there’s a difference between asking someone to share knowledge and experience, and demanding that they boost your career when you haven’t earned it or bothered to learn the craft, and, most importantly, make it clear that you have no intention or interest in so doing.

Between that, and the refusal, last month, to accept contracts that were detrimental to both my creative and financial life, the past weeks have been a lot of “no”. The positive part of that is it paves the way for more positive “yes”. While I may not have cleaned out the basement as I wished (or finished the spring cleaning as I wished), I am cleaning out a lot of detritus from my professional life that I think will only wind up as positive in the long run.

Doesn’t mean it’s easy now, but at least I’m making decisions based on knowing what’s best for me both creatively and financially, not out of mis-placed loyalty or fear.

The most important thing, for a writer, is to protect the work.

The To-Do List for April won’t be up tomorrow; I will most likely put it up early next week. I need to re-think a few things this weekend, and come up with something that makes more sense than my plan for March!

But that’s what Goals, Dreams, and Resolutions are — fluid. Living documents. That’s how you find the right path — by sometimes taking wrong turns, learning from it, and moving on.

Let’s move on, and hope it’s a more productive, creative, lucrative spring, shall we?

How was your month?

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