How I'm getting better at balance, increasing my wordcount, getting business done, and having more time to relax! Also, using AI "tools" as a writer and examining the whole point of being a creative in the first place.
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Good morning, everyone! This is Jeffe Kennedy author of epic fantasy romance here with my first cup of coffee.
Excellent today is Monday June Twenty sixth last week of June I hope that it's a wonderful June for all of you I know I know it's like here we are halfway through the year right um. I'm happy with myself though make you sure I didn't smear my lip pencil there. Do you ever do that? Well you who wear lip pencil look down and like you've got some smudged on your hand and it's like oh god did I just wipe it across my face. Ha.
Um, so anyway I'm very happy with my progress I had another great writing day on Friday I hit 3000 words so that makes four days in a row last week that I got 3000 words and I think the only reason I didn't on Monday was because I had to take my husband to a doctor's appointment. So um, fingers crossed that I will continue to do that. Well this week. Um, last week was my best word count week for the entire year and it was my. Um, fourth, best week for the last two years so it's ah yeah, very happy with my progress on increasing work count getting that flow back up again shooting for 3 k every day this week um and see if I can sustain that um book is still going well um, Oneira, I've passed midpoint so I'm read about 47000 words wonder what will happen now. Ah. Um Friday evening the gig with Melinda Snodgrass went grape quite a few excuse me. Well I sneeze loud enough to make the chimes chime. Ah.
Yeah, so the event went great. Had some good conversations Melinda and I are such polar opposites ah process wise. It's just kind of funny having those conversations with her and heavy people ask us about things because. Melinda is a huge believer in that she cannot write the story unless she knows how it ends and of course she comes out of hollywood she comes out of screenwriting and you have to be able to outline ahead of time and every once well she'll ask me about that. She'll be like but you have to know how it ends or you can't write the story and I'm like. Sure you can you just write from the beginning and you write all the way through and then when you get to the end you find out how it ends she I want to say that she doesn't believe me except that I know that she believes me but I think on some sort of gut deep level. She actually does not. Believe me? Ah, so maybe it's just sometimes it's really hard for us to grok the process of someone else who is not us someone who has a really different process. You know. It's just um I don't know maybe on some level. We can't believe it because it's just not how it works for us. So ah yeah, but it was a fun of it.
So I was just kind of thinking about some of those things that we talked about at that event. Um, yeah, it was. It was a good day on Friday um I was not too tired out when I finished too so that was great and I went and got my hair done if you're on video. This is really important stuff see so far. We've talked about makeup and now we're going to talk about hair. Um, she got it much more red this time which she needed to do because it wasn't enough last time but now it's really really red. It's um, really that full irish setter red. So now it needs to lighten up a bit. Lighten up a bit all. so ah so um and otherwise I did not do much this weekend which I know is unusual for me I've been you know trying to do better about. Like taking at least one day of the weekend off well this weekend I took both days off I know what has become of me. Ah, yeah, so what happened was Saturday morning.
I took David Fishing he wanted to go fishing so we went to Cochiti and if you follow me on social media. You'll see that I posted some ah pictures of Cochiti Lake it is behind a dam. It's on the Rio Grande and the snow melt upstream because Colorado and Wyoming. Got. Record breaking snowpack this year. So Cochiti was flooded like that. The restrooms were underwater. It was pretty cool to see so Saturday we um, we were there for a couple hours and then David got kind of wiped out and so we came home and I thought well I'm just going to. Go around today right? take my day off and so I went got some beer and sat in the grape arbor and read and um so I've been reading Naomi Novik's scholomance series I'm probably late to the game on this one except.
You know it's interesting like who reads which books it's the first book a deadly education has like 14000 reviews on Amazon because you know everybody in science fiction fantasy reads it I guess and it was a New York Times bestseller and all of these things. Ah.
I would I kind of want to go back and see if it was nominated for awards that year I don't think it won any but I think it's it's a great it's a great concept it's a really fun set of books I'm now halfway halfway through the second one the last graduate um, and it's kind of a rif. On ah, you know like the high school boarding school school for wizards kind of thing only the kids are completely isolated and there are reasons every once in a while I feel like her world building falters every so slightly. And it's always interesting when I read book 2 of an author and I see them backfilling a bit of the world building where people clearly people pointed out to them. Well how is this happening because like she provides some explanations for some things that was like. Things that I have thought were a little bit um not filled in on the first book and I think that's inevitable I do it too or I do it to explain things that I already knew that I just didn't put on the page. So we could give her credit. Maybe she knew those things and just had to explain them to people. So um, yeah, it's a cool premise because the protagonist is struggling against becoming evil she's basically.
Has been fated to be the the evil queen and so the the magic keeps giving her opportunities to fulfill that role and she's been raised by a mother who is like so far on the other end of good. And which might be the problem because there's like the the magic is always trying to balance out and so baby her mother was too good and maybe her father was too good and so now she's got to be evil to balance it out again, but she doesn't want to be evil and so she struggles against it and. So. It's really cool because it's um, it's an ongoing theme of of making friends with people of building teams of choosing to collaborate rather than compete and there's a little bit of a romance but it's It's very I mean I want to say okay I'm just going to say I get frustrated with Naomi Novik for this reason I think she's a brilliant writer I almost always love her books? Um, but I get frustrated with the way that she. And I say does not handle romance because she'll have a romance in there and then she like sexit drive emotion. She makes it like not romantic and you know maybe that's her audience. Um I don't know I I don't know.
I don't know Naomi I've better a couple of times but I've never had a conversation with her and I kind of want to ask her about except that's one of those questions that's kind of hard to ask. It's like why do you? I don't want to say suck at romance. But why do you pull back the romance um you know and maybe she just doesn't find it interesting but. You know, like uprooted was such a popular book and did win awards and had a great romantic setup and then she managed to like completely I don't know pull all of the emotion out of the romance. So. This one has a romance too that was really interesting in book one and so far in book 2 it's like barely on the page. This guy is barely there at all and it's like I don't know if she's going somewhere with this or she's just like avoiding romance right? because. Book one ended with a kiss which I feel like is not spoilery because that's pretty standard right? Um, you know so it's like and now nothing and now they're like not even spendinging any time together. So but. Still very much enjoy the books really recommend highly enjoying. Um, so yeah I spent the rest of the day on Saturday just hanging out in the grape arbor and reading and then Sunday morning. Um David wanted to go fishing again and I kind of looked at my to do list and I was like well you know.
There's nothing on here that has to happen this today or this weekend so I took him fishing again and we were there for a little bit longer and then came back into town and we went to Harry's roadhouse and had a great lunch at Harry's and that was fun and while I was out. At the lake um, the lovely Megan called me. She had a friend in town and she said oh that they were going out to Ojo Santa Fe to hang out in the baths and everything and did I want to come which I did but I was already at the Lake. So she said well you know, ping me when you're back in town I to be there all day and I was like no way it's gonna be too hot. And you know it was like gonna be 90 by 1 so sorry have something in my eye. It was a gnat. Ah oh yes, so compelling recitation of my weekend. So ah. You know, got home and I was just about to text her what she called and she said oh we're on our way out to beer creek brewery. We just finished I said well let me take a shower real quick and I'll meet you there so I did that and I got to drive the back way which is nice um to some really pretty countryside. Okay I'm gonna risk pausing. Yeah, well I worry about passing you all know that I'm just gonna have to keep messing with whatever this is in my eye.
The all right I'll keep talking so at least the audio was good here. Um yeah so wit met her and her friend and we had a beer and it was.
Their anniversary out at beer creek brewing. So a bunch of people were there and they were giving out cookies and then we went back to her house and hung out on the portal and they've done lots and lots of work I hadn't been there in a while and so it was great in just hanging out with friends and so. Then I got home at like 7 and just hung out on the front porch and did some reading so all of this is a very long way of saying that I had a weekend of total recreation which I almost never do and. So if you're squeaked out by people touching their eyes there. We go I think I've got it handled um, so we'll see we'll see how that how that does for me on this week I felt like I could because the other thing that's really working for me with getting this.
Work count flow nailed down and part of it is probably because this book is going well and so I can't expect it to be like that every time but I've been finishing my word count by about one o'clock and still feeling pretty energetic. So I've been able to get. My business thing's done after that and I've been working from you know, like 1 until 4 or 5 in fact, you know I've been thinking maybe I should stop at four. You know if I'm starting in the morning at like 7 um. You know make my days a little bit shorter if I can keep this up so as a result I did not have a billion business things to do on the weekend because I'm getting it done during the week remember how in school like they would always say. You know if you got your work done in class or doing student study period then you wouldn't have to do homework at home. Ah, although I understand that homework is like a totally controversial thing that's kind of changed I never have. Lots and lots of homework as I recall but in college we did right? We had to study anyway. So shifting around trying to get things I never really like the term like work life balance. Um.
I know it works for some people that doesn't really work for me. But I do like the I do like the concept of balance. Overall right? Not necessarily good and evil but I'm not tempted to but. Well occasionally attempted to become the evil Queen but not often. Um, but yeah, you know trying to trying to keep things in their places trying to um, not let the work take over everything else. Um, yeah, so so yeah that's how things are going for me. It was funny catching up with Megan because we hadn't seen each other in about a month because we've been asynchronously traveling and.
You know I didn't have tons of stuff to tell her. It's been a quiet month which is good. It's been. That's kind of what I need I talked about this a lot on the Friday podcast that I need this kind of quiet I need things to be not dramatic in order to get the words written. All the drama goes in the pages folks. So um I don't have a lot to talk about that's ah I haven't been thinking about things too much I've been offline not paying a lot of attention to. Any scandals and so forth. Um, one thing that was funny on Friday somebody asked about ah Ai about you know, like using things like chat Gpt. So I kind of just gave Sif was position. On it and talked a little bit about the same things I've talked on here about about the ethics of it. Um, and if you are you know, undercutting other creators in order to be successful and this one crit group list that I'm on. 1 of the girlss was talking about. Did they want to have a conversation about ah using ai to help with writing and I nearly sent a little rant and then I didn't I thought okay I'll just um, I'm not going to say anything. It's.
So everybody's got to choose for themselves. But um, boy you know I just feel like if you're if you're a writer I said this many times before there are easier ways to make a living right? And if you want to be a writer. It's because of the personal creative challenge right? It's like you want to tell your stories and you want to you want to bring yourself up to that level. You want to have the ability to do this and if you are using I mean. Think it's interesting because people are like trying to make it be not a thing by calling it a tool. Oh well, if we could use this tool and it's like well no, you're you're cheating um Belinda mentioned to me about a mutual friend who apparently asked her to. Rewrite their screenplay I thought they wanted to pay her to coach them and teach them and she said that was no rewrite it for me and it's like well why would you do that? Do you just want to jumpstart your career you know and pretend that you know just just have your screenplay out there. Um, I think we really have to examine why we're doing the things that we're doing what what do you hope to accomplish a friend of mine this weekend was asking me for personal advice on dealing with the situation. You know, like something that they want to do and feel like probably they shouldn't do in a personal relationship and I so.
Said well what what? you hope to accomplish and and it was kind of um it was like vengeance I I want to get my own back and it's like okay well I mean that's I'm not gonna say it's wrong. Yeah, but is that really what you hope to accomplish is that what you want. And I think it's worth bearing in mind right? What are we trying to accomplish. So um, yeah, why? Why be a writer if you're having someone else write things for you I know there are people who say they're making good money that way. Um. Yeah, okay, if that's all that it matters to you and if all you want to do is to be able to say that you're a writer. Um, but but you will know right in your heart. So on that note, um I hope you all go forth and. Do things from the heart I hope you are able to authentically create what you want to create this week and I will talk to you all on Friday you all take care bye bye.