vg_ford: (Default)
( Jan. 18th, 2017 08:30 am)


Wednesdays are going to be my week in review, moving forward. It’s a good day to stop and take a look at the last week (Sunday through Saturday) and see what I’ve accomplished (or not accomplished).


Last week, I was sick, so this week in review is not going to be as long as some of them. I lost Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, AND Saturday to the ick that I’m suffering from, so there was no writing. However, I did finally figure out how to do the corner-to-corner crochet stitch, so I got three squares done for my first afghan for Hooking for the Homeless, which was good.


Writing-wise, I got … nothing. I wrote blog posts for the week, and that was about it. But that’s okay – sometimes you need to do that in order to recharge.


This week, I’ve got the following planned:

  • Pitch a book to a publishing group
  • Write blog posts for the upcoming week for both the Patreon and this blog
  • More squares for the afghan
  • Write the pitch for Well of Dreams
  • Start the outline for Well of Dreams

We’ll see how I do in a week.

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

positive thinking


How do you find time to write? What do you listen to while you write? Where do your ideas come from? Do you have any rituals? What’s your favorite book/author?


These are all the things that are swirling through my mind right now, because I’m starting to work on the blog posts for the blog tour for Winter’s Secrets that’s coming out in May (ohgodohgodohgod). I’m also writing other things, because I’ve got a patreon site going now. In short, there are so many words to write, and there seems to be almost no time to write it all. It’s very exciting, and slightly terrifying.


Which means I need to write. Eek!

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

writerWell, I’ve been talking about it for a while, and I’ve finally taken the plunge.


I’ve signed up for Patreon. You can sign up for my stream here.


Now, to allay any fears – I will still be posting here too. And the Advent Story will still be here in December every year. And every so often, I’ll drop story stuff in here. But if you really want to read regular fiction from me, come on over to Patreon. I mean, for $1 a month minimum, you get stories. And the first one is the first book in the Shanna series. (For more money, you get more stuff, of course)


I’m also getting ready to do a blog tour! And boy, do we have some interesting folks willing to host me! The tour starts May 16 and goes to June 16, and I’ll have a full list here as soon as I’m able.


Now, I gotta get writing!

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.


I won’t lie – it’s been a rough few weeks. But I did finish Winter’s Secrets, and it’s in the hands of beta readers now. We’re on schedule to release at Balticon and ConCarolinas with ACTUAL BOOKS! And tea. Because, well, you can’t do a book release about Carter’s Cove that doesn’t involve tea. And scones. So hopefully I will see you guys there!


In addition, I’m putting together a blog tour for the book release, to happen within the book release time frame. Part of what I’m doing today is setting up the blog tour. If you’d like to be a part of it, drop me a line!


There will also be another Carter’s Cove story this year, because there’s still more stories to be told. This one will bring in some new characters, and some old ones, and will involve something that you can follow along with, should you choose. Yeah, I’m a tease. More information later.


Now that the current book is done, I’m going back into the Dark Horseman universe to start the Shanna stories. That’s my goal right now – to get the first book done. I’m actually opening with the vomit draft today, as soon as I set up the Google calendar for the tour. So much to do! But it’s good, because it’s what I need to do. And every word I write is one Mom can read, because I know she’s still reading. Heaven for her would be a bookstore, with unlimited amounts of tea and scones.

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

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( Jun. 13th, 2015 06:07 pm)

This might not be of interest to most people, as I’m using it as kind of a catchall of what’s in my head right now. My brain is responding well to 250 words a day (about to hit Day 4 in a few, and I even managed 250 last night on the tablet, because I didn’t have the energy to make it in to the studio), and that has had one very common side effect – it wants to write ALL THE WORDS, ON EVERYTHING. Which is not conducive to finishing anything. And if I don’t finish things, you guys don’t get to see it. And to be perfectly honest (and probably crass), if you guys don’t get to see it, I don’t get to sell it and make money.


So, brain, you and I have to have a rather firm talk. I totally want to write all the things too, but we need a schedule, and we need to follow it.  You game? Good.


Here are the projects we’ve talked about that need to be written:

-Summer Advent. This is non-negotiable, as we have already promised the fans this as of July 20th. So this is the first priority. And yes, this means we get to subject poor Robert and Lee to Christmas carols in June while we write it.

-Advent 2015. We need to start the outline for this, so we can write it BEFORE December. Because wouldn’t it be nice to have it all ready to go? Of course it would. And we have to do some research on this anyways, because for the first time, it’s NOT going to be in Carter’s Cove. (Yes, it will still be Molly, Drew and Schrodinger. Don’t worry. And Pavel. LOTS of Pavel.)

-Deep Waters. I need to get the next Sapph novel done, and I think the title still works. Because between Patrick, Mac and her own stubbornness, Sapph is totally in deep water. And I think the idea of what is haunting the town is perfect. If I can pull it off.

-Portrait of Abby. I really like this one, and we’ve got the first 3 chapters done. This is non-negotiable as well. It’s a nice palate cleanser from Sapph.

-Treaty of Betrayal. This one is all plotted! Now I just have to write it. Hmm, maybe this one should be pitched too.

-Faery-Tale Princess. Again, I need to write it. It’s going to be fun. Mundane executive, thrust into a fantasy kingdom to save them all. Somehow. With magic she doesn’t believe in.


Stuff to be polished and edited:

-Winter’s Secret goes to the editor in August. I’m very excited about this! Goal is publication in December, for Christmas.


Stuff that is still in the idea/outline phase, to be slated in later:

-Elen. This is an intriguing idea, but I don’t know quite what the story is yet. I have the world, but it has flaws, and I’m not sure who the antagonist is. This needs to marinate (this is the world amnesia story).

-Phases of the Moon. I need to come up with a pitch packet for this one, so I can see if anyone’s interested in it.  Also, a pitch packet will force me to write out the outline and the story idea. This one involves the Goddess of the Moon split into four different souls, and Sun Spiders. Very cool imagery.

-The Heart of the Universe. Another pitch idea. Space opera, involving space galleons (think SpellJammer), intergalactic civil war, and pirates, all looking for the Heart of the Universe. Because whoever gets it, rules everything. Except I think there’s more going on, and I have to figure out what.

-Raindrops. This is a one-shot (really!) but I feel like I need to write it. Twin sisters, one a mage, the other a diplomat, and they’re on the run, trying to figure out how to kill the evil usurper and free the rightful king from the dungeon. High fantasy.

-Plague Mirrors. This is a dystopia that I kind of want to noodle with some more. What if it wasn’t man who killed man – but Plague herself? And how would you defeat her, if she could travel through mirrors to find you? What kills Plague? This is a fantasy dystopia idea, but I need to flesh it out (no pun intended).

-Rose. I might combine this one with Plague Mirrors, or not. I love the idea of True Souls, and I need to figure out how to incorporate them.

-Midsummerland. I have it mostly plotted, but it’s not working, so I need to figure out why. This is the fae/human book, with all sorts of weirdness.


This post might get added to, as I think of things. Good thing I have a lot of ideas. I’d hate to run out.


Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

Of course, this could be titled “Why can’t Val do anything on a regular basis?” I seem to have issues with regularity, and I wonder why.


It could be that somewhere in my dim, distant past, something linked “a regular routine” with “boring” and I HATE boring with a fiery passion. And yes, I know that routine doesn’t have to be boring. I just don’t seem to be able to stick with it.


However, I am not a quitter, and so I’m trying again. With some differences, of course – if it hasn’t worked before, why would I try the same thing? Also, see boring, above. This time, I’m leaving my laptop at the studio, forcing myself to go in. And I’ll be doing my blog updates at the same time as my writing – they may not be long, but dammit, I’m going to update! Starting today.


I’m on the tail-end of pneumonia (yeah, in the summer. I’m talented, what can I say?), and I’m coming off a low that is partly sickness, partly sadness, and partly frustration. My new goal is 250 words a day. I’m on the Magic Spreadsheet again, and I’ve got a couple of projects that I’m working on. I have an editor for Winter’s Secrets, and one of the projects in the queue is the wedding of the summer – Molly and Drew are getting married on July 25, and they hope you’ll be there for it! There’s a 6-day Summer Advent story that will be going on, and there will be at least one prize (come on, you want one of their wedding favors, don’t you?), so keep a look out for that!


Okay, I’ve got a lot to do today, so off to the word mines!

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

New projects and new goodies for my readers!  I unveiled this on Facebook earlier today, but now I’ll share with you guys.  I’ve taken a challenge up to self-publish 12 of my short stories, one each month.  The lovely JA Marlow designed this month’s cover for Convoy, which is a short story set in a world of mine that I’m calling True Souls.  This story was originally published in the 2012 Forward Motion anthology “The Princess, the Boatman and the Lizard,” and is going to be available soon as an ebook.  I’ll definitely let you guys know when that’s available, but I have to share the cover now.

Convoy-VGF-1000H (1)Isn’t it lovely?  I am SO happy with it!

Now, this isn’t the only thing that I’m working on this year.  This year is the year of finishing and submitting things.  Right now, I’m working on the prewriting for my next novel, tentatively titled Faerytale Princess, which is about a female executive who is literally stolen away from her work’s bathroom by a prince of a magic kingdom.  It’s a fun romp, and the plan is to have it finished and out to submission to agents before November.

This month, I’m also starting to revise the very first Advent story, so it can be done as a novel.  I haven’t decided if I’m going to self-publish the Advent stories, or if I’m going to sub them as well.  I figure once I get them revised, I’ll decide.

My goals for this year are pretty lofty.  I plan on subbing at least three projects to agents/editors, writing and/or publishing 12 short stories and writing four new projects.  Those include the next Pendragon novella, and the next Advent story.

2014 is going to be MY year.  Be sure about it.

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

This is going to be a boring post – sorry, guys.  I just need to get out what I want to do with my long weekend.


To Do:

- Update checkbook and budgets

- Plot out the writing for next four months

- Work out the new website

- Revisit business plan

- Menus for the week

- Finish dress

And write, of course.

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.


So, I’ve been back to work on the Day Job for three half-days.  Today, I’m exhausted (although I don’t know if it’s because of the two hours at the dentist today to repair a broken tooth or just low stamina), but I have the next FIVE days off, so I’ll be able to sleep in, do some necessary refueling, and see how I feel next week.  Luckily, my doctor is happy to extend my part-time status if needed.  Finding a good doctor is so key – I’m very lucky with mine.  Seriously, if you have health issues and your doctor doesn’t talk to you or listen to you, fire them.  Otherwise, you’re just setting yourself up to fail.


This weekend, I’m doing some planning.  I want to redesign the website (because I’m aware it sucks.  There’s a reason I’m not a website designer, I’m a writer).  I’m going to actually PLAN it out, though, rather than just try and do it online.  I’m also doing some writing plans, which will involve calendars and metrics and all sorts of fun stuff.  I’m determined to keep my writing going, and this year is the year when I write stuff that I can then pitch to people.  I’m not kidding when I say I have nothing held back.  I’ve sold everything that I have finished.  I have nothing to pitch.  That is not a good situation to be in.  So this year is the year of writing.


I also need to start working on some publicity things for Last Rites.  I’m working on the page proofs this week, and then I will have some interesting news for you guys.  And some teasers!  And maybe, just maybe, some other things that you might be interested in.


And now, I’m going to bed.  Because I’m mean that way.

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

Yesterday was the day I ran my first solo 5k.  I did run about half of it – walked the other half, but that is fine.  My time was  1.05.56 – better than the last race (I think we were at 1.30 or something), and I was able to run across the finish line.  More importantly, I was able to walk afterwards and wasn’t too sore.  That happened later in the day, when my hips decided that they were done and locked up.  However, this morning, I’m feeling pretty good.


Taking today as a rest day – I have some writing/sewing to do.  And I’m going to take it easy on the hips/knees, so I can run tomorrow at the gym.  I’m already looking at what I need to work on for my next race in the fall.  I plan to run the Todd’s Trot again next year, and the goal will be to run it all in under 1 hr.


Today’s to-do list:

- Bake something.  Not sure what yet.  But something.

- Write at least 2k on Midsummerland’s outline (the best would be to finish the plot summary)

- Finish the line edit for Client #1 and get that back to them

- Fix 1 pair of pants for a friend

- Make meal plan for the week.

- Cut coupons.


I’m also going to make some time to play WoW today.  But right now, I have things to do.

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

To all my friends, pagan or no, I offer you blessings on Imbolc.  This is the celebration of the Crone becoming the Maiden again – Spring is coming, and it’s time to clean things out.  Mentally and physically.


In honor of that, I’m cleaning today.  All this weekend, actually.  So we need a to-do list, of course.



- Put laundry in Living Room away

- Disassemble broken couch and take to dump

- Move non-broken couch to other wall

- Move table under other window

- Do laundry!

- Clean catbox

- Bake sandwich bread

- Clean carpet in living room


If I can get this all done, I’ll start on the kitchen!

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.


positive thinking

This is from a lovely page on Facebook that I follow: The Pagan Musings.  They always have such wonderful things, and it makes me happy to see them on my feed.


Today’s to-do list:

- Morning Pages

- Dishes


- Reclaim the Dining Room table

- Off to Jenn and Mark’s for a UFP day (UnFinished Project!) to make a black velveteen Gates of Hell for Birka.

- Edits

- Food plans for the week

- Put laundry away


That’s a good list.  Time to get working on it.

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.


So yeah, lost most of the weekend recovering from the flu that’s going around work.  Call centers are petri dishes, you know?  I was feeling crappy on Thursday – by Friday, I knew I was sick. Spent all Saturday asleep, and am finally starting to feel better.  However, I know better than to push it.  I’m taking it fairly easy today, because I don’t want to push myself back into sickness.


I have to run tomorrow, after all.


Luckily, I have edits to do, so I can curl up on the couch with cups of tea and work through them.  I think I shall make cupcakes tonight too – I have a yellow cake mix (GF) and I want something sweet for lunches this week.  And maybe some pancakes for breakfast.  Or biscuits.  Mmm, biscuits.  And if I make biscuits, then I can make egg quiches and have breakfast sandwiches all week.  You know, I believe we have a plan.


Now to execute it.

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

And writing.  And laundry.  And cooking.  It’s one of those days.

I need to write today – I’ve got two blog posts I need to write, as well as the outline for NaNoWriMo.  I also need to answer email, and make food for what is going to be a busy week.  And there’s almost no clean laundry in my house.  It’s a scary thing.

So, on with the list!

- 2 batches of Chex Mix

- 1 batch of Egg Muffins

- Make dinner plans for the week

- Grocery list for Monday

- NaNoWriMo outline

- Laundry!

- Pack lunch for Monday

- Blog Post #1 (why do you write?)

- Blog Post #2 (Them Damn Hamiltons)

- Writing/Exercise Schedule for the week

I think that’s it. I’ll be cooking too – I don’t know what, but I’ll be cooking.

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

And it will never go away. *sigh*

No gym time this week – my head has been stuffed with cotton batting.  Plus, I’ve been driving, everywhere: Monday, to Mom and Dad’s after work; Tuesday, I felt terrible so just went home; Wednesday, to Northwood to pick up my car, and yesterday, staying late at work.  Bleah.

No writing, either – I’ve been trying to get myself to outline my NaNo novel, and it’s just not coming.  I think I’m hitting burnout.  I was talking to a friend at work and mentioned this – she pointed out that I basically at this point have 3 jobs: day job, writing, and SCA.  It’s exhausting, and something is going to give very soon.  I just hope it’s the SCA.  I can’t afford to let either the writing or the day job explode.

This weekend – I don’t know what I’ll get done.  I have an investigation Saturday night, I have to finish up my taxes for Tax Court next weekend, and I have to write.  But…

I just bought Mists of Pandaria.  I think I know what tonight is going to be.

Can I call in panda to work on Monday?  No?  Yeah, I didn’t think so.

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

vg_ford: (Default)
( Oct. 6th, 2012 01:30 pm)

Thanks to my wonderful webhost Verve, we’re back in business!

This weekend is a quiet one.  The only place I need to go is to my Mom’s tomorrow, and that’s a quick run.  Today, I am not getting out of my pjs. I do have a to-do list (including a story due Monday!), but it’s one that I’m stretching out all weekend.  I am even contemplating a nap today.

To Do this fine weekend:

- Finish Convoy and turn it in

- Fold all the laundry and put it away

- Make food plan for the next week

- Cook all the food!

- Clean the living room

- Measure the living room

- Listen to my digital recorder

- Nap

I’ve got butternut squash roasting in the oven, and my 2nd cup of tea cooling next to me.  Time to fold a load of laundry.

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

It is, actually.  Fall swoops in next week, so this is the official last weekend of summer.  And I slept half of it away – odd fever dreams dominated my day yesterday.  So today I have a ton to do!

I’ve been thinking a lot lately, even though I’ve been quiet here.  Life has gone ahead at warp speed – I autocrated the Harper’s Retreat event over Labor Day weekend here in New Hampshire, and then did my Remicade treatment the day after.  Then our van died, so I’ve been dealing with that as well.  No real writing, although I’ve got the beginning of the next short story that I’m working on (for an anthology I’d like to be part of).

This morning, I got up about 10 minutes after my alarm went off, and went into my office – and wrote.  I did my morning pages, just like I’ve wanted to.  Bear came in with me and fell asleep in the sun while I poured out the odd dreams I woke up to.  It’s  now a little past 10, and I’ve fed hubby, had my first cup of tea, and my breakfast is simmering on the stove.  I feel alive.

I do have a to-do list today, and it’s long, but I feel it’s all perfectly in my grasp:

- put away folded laundry in living room


- fold laundry in dining room

- put away laundry in dining room

- go to WalMart and get eyes checked

- Stop at Carter Hill and get apples and cider (and maybe donuts!)


- make mushroom-leek-ham soup for the week

- make herbed ravioli for dinner

- make maple-mustard chicken thighs for the week

- clean up kitchen

- Bread? (question mark because I’m not sure if I want to or not)

- Write 1k on Black Rose

- Catch up on email

- Store run: containers, pop-tarts, anything else I think of.


That looks doable.  Onward and upward!

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

Vacation can be exhausting!  Especially if you go somewhere.  Granted, we only went to Worcester for a few days, but sleeping in a strange bed, eating terribly (pizza and soda and chips and CRAP), and hanging out until all hours of the night is fun and tiring.  I feel like my brain is full of cotton wool.


So today is a rejuvenating day – a day to hang out at home, I think, and clean.  Do laundry, make pasta sauce and freeze it (or can it, if I’m feeling bold) because we’re drowning in ripe tomatoes, clean out the trash in my fridge and write.


I’m working on a couple of writing projects – I’m trying to finish a rough draft in an entirely new genre to me, which will most likely go out under a pen name, and then I have a couple of short stories I need to write.  And then, there’s the Advent Story – I have it on VERY good authority that Schrodinger, Molly and Drew are going to be back for another round this December!  So exciting!  I’ve got some planned projects that I want to finish too, so I’ll be putting up a Honey-Dew list as my next post (in case you’re interested).  Bear is once again snuggled up to me  - I think he’s afraid if he doesn’t have at least part of me touching him, I might go away again.


I also have some podcasts to listen to today, and it’s a day game.  I’m thinking I’ll watch the game and clean the living room (and fold laundry), then listen to the podcasts while I clean the kitchen.  I was thinking about going to the beach, but there are things I do need to do.  We’ll see.


Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

It seems like Sundays are the only days I blog.  Which isn’t good, but hey, it’s better than complete radio silence, right?  I’m trying.

Vacation comes up next week – I’m planning on one day of just writing, nothing else.  But I have to get through this week first.

I’m reading a couple of interesting books – one is called The Exhaustion Cure, and the other is called It’s All Too Much.   Sense a theme?  I’m trying to get a handle on things.  I have another one here called Instant Recess that I’ll start after I finish one of the others.  I’m just tired of being tired, and I’m realizing that  yes, I do too much.

Today is a day of rest.  Seriously.  I’m cutting my to-do list way down:

- Put away the folded laundry in the living room.

- Fold and put away the laundry in the dining room.

- Empty  my garb chest into the laundry.

- Make pasta and veggies for the week.

- Make a quiche.

- Make a rhubarb crumble for dessert. (We have a friend coming over)

- Write 250 words.

- Put away the dishes in the dish rack and wash the dishes in the sink.


That’s a doable list.  And not a hard one.  The game is on at 8 pm tonight, and I’m planning on watching and enjoying.

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.

Yep. I slept in today.  11:30, everyone.  It was AWESOME!  My hubby rocks my socks.  I really needed to sleep in.


Today I have lots of stuff to do.  I’m working overtime all week, which means I’m leaving by 8:15 every morning, and not getting home until after 9:30 pm.  Bleah.  So I need to have food for the week, and make sure all the laundry is done.  And sew.  I have lots of sewing to do (even though I’m not going to Pennsic!)


So here’s the list:

- Food for the week:

* Orange Chicken with Broccoli in the crockpot

* Rice for the Orange Chicken

* Shephard’s Pie

* Truffled Wild Mushroom Ravioli with Pesto and Zucchini (dinner tonight!)

* Garlic bread (For the ravioli)

* Rhubarb Crumble

- Laundry:

* Put away folded laundry in the living room

* Fold laundry in basket in living room and put away

* Wash garb from GNEW (including fabric for Kate!)

- Finish Kate’s blue chiton

- Sew Kate’s pink chiton

- Dishes!


Wow, that’s a lot.  But stuff can go in the oven and then I can ignore it.  First, though, I need another cup of tea and breakfast.  Then we go!!!

Originally published at The words of Valerie Griswold-Ford. You can comment here or there.



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