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So despite having very little work and income this summer (boo), I'm managing to stay busy.

I finished a draft of an original paranormal romance novella/novelette (it's about 20k) and it was OK'd by someone who is much more in the know than me about these things - no major content changes suggested at all. As you can imagine, the standards aren't super high for stories like these, but that was exciting to hear nonetheless. Now I just have to finish formatting it and put it out there, which will happen early July, hopefully. The next Amazon "pay day" won't be until the end of September, and Amazon is changing its KU payouts in ways that make estimating potential income difficult, but so far comparable books (according to people in the know) can make a couple grand per month or more for the first couple of months. Hellooooooo new career.

I found orig romance a lot easier to write in terms of how quickly things came and how much I obsessed over editing. I think fanfic is, funnily enough, more meaningful to me because I really, really care about the characters to an embarrassing degree and I want everything to feel right and consistent and meaningful in terms of their characterizations and arcs (Loki, I'm looking at you). Whereas the self-pub rom market does not require that level of thought, so I could have a character say or think something super cheesy or clunky and not worry about it so much. It was SO HARD the first couple of times I tried, but it grew to be quite fun.

Meanwhile I've been trying to get into transcription (THIS IS SO HARD, I've failed the entry test four times already, and I spent money on specialized equipment for this!!!) and propositioning people on Elance for editing work. For the latter, I suppose I'm going to have to grit my teeth and lowball services significantly until I can get some jobs on my profile.

Because of financial thinness, it will be the summer of cooking cheaply; i.e., lots of nonperishables and little fresh food. It won't be quite as bad as that summer in college where I subsisted entirely on a case of ramen, frozen chicken breasts, and frozen broccoli, but it does mean a lot of hot food during a hot summer. I have plenty of beans and rice, but the next chance I get I'm going to stock up on canned tomatoes, evaporated milk (first time for everything), tons of eggs (they last forever, seriously), cheese (can be frozen if in blocks!), and peanut butter. Yeah, baby. I've spent a few years building a well-stocked pantry, which is going to come in handy.

I went to a friend's birthday on Saturday. I used to think of myself as such an introvert (insert cutesy graphic on ~how to care for your introvert~) but the older I get the more it's really turning the other way. PEOPLE. People are great. I need more people. She's moved in with someone who has an actual yard with a very overgrown and unproductive garden (seriously, the owner has let all kinds of grass and weeds choke out everything - she said "I don't like space going unused and I don't like bare dirt" to describe this situation and y'all, I nearly had a conniption fit. it's gonna be a process).

They're letting me come by and weed and caretake and giving me one of the four plots to use for myself in exchange. I've been really occupied by orcharding for the past year or two, but it will be nice to get back to my roots. (ha.) I went out Sunday and spent 90 minutes weeding like crazy (got about six square feet done - not bad really, considering how densely thicketed everything was, but a fraction of the total work to be done) and planted some cucumber seeds. Got a wicked sunburn in exchange, because I'm the kind of person who doesn't think about sunscreen, ever. Hopefully the seeds will have come up by the time I return - maybe tomorrow.
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