Archive for the ‘authors’ Category

Art in 2016 – Part 4 Review – Classes and Shows…and a Book!

This was a big year for showing our work – many more options and acceptances than most of our time in Arizona. We taught a beginning marbling class at BluSeed Studios in Saranac Lake, NY, and in the process of chatting, we became part of their arts curriculum grant project. I’m really looking forward to this activity; I miss the days of working with The Kennedy Center to bring integrated arts into the classrooms in the Chittenden East School District in Vermont.A lot of great memories from the conferences, and then great memories from arts work within the district (need to do a blog post and reflect on the work we did….)

A couple of pictures from our Saranac Lake class, followed by an individual machine quilting class I did for a fellow artist who wanted to expand her techniques. Mary Hill is a mixed media artist, with vibrant work.

We spent Vermont Open Studios sharing space with Mary over Memorial Day Weekend. LOTSSof great discussions on marketing!!

It was a challenge to plan for what could take Mary’s already wonderful art to the next level.

Mary Hill’s “experimenting as a result of our machine quilting class:

Plus, since May I have been working on an interactive teaching manual for the ebook Interactive Edge of the Sea. This takes all I have worked on in curriculum in 40 years of teaching and brings it together for teachers, with a modern update on using all forms of new assessment and social media within the classroom. My hope is that this manual becomes a template for other disciplines, as there are a lot of useful interactive teaching techniques – and everything is correlated to current educational standards. A labor of love with my second mom, Betty Hupp. Here’s the cover:

A snippet of the lesson plan section….

We are just about done with final edits, and after the first of the year it heads off to coding. I have a lot of links to check to be sure they all work!

Bunches of shows…..here are pictures of our small pieces at Sweet Grass Gallery in Williston, VT for the month of November.

There’s still more…..stay tuned!

My Nanowrimo……

Cactus Fountain, part of Digital Marbling series

Cactus Fountain, part of Digital Marbling series

So November has come and gone…..I lasted much longer for this National Novel Writing Month than previous times. But….I accomplished what I wanted to, as well as learned quite a bit about this new book. I needed a jump-start on book two – I’d gotten about 4000 words written before we left Arizona for the move. Then I did a chapter the end of May that I loved, but then….nothing. So I figured this would be the jump-start I needed, and I was right. 32,000 words later I now know where the book is going. I discovered that while I am a “pantser” to a point – someone who just let’s things happen – I really needed to plan this second book more carefully, especially in what I wanted it to specifically accomplish.

Consequently, when I wasn’t writing, I was thinking – a lot of time spent in the chair with a notepad, following plot points and the like. I realized that this will be a tough book to write – I now know most of the story, but I do have a lot of research to do on various aspects: Native American tribes in Arizona, indigenous peoples/First Peoples information, more banking information, water issues (even though I did a lot of research on that during this past winter).

Now I am ready to set time aside each week – working out marbling and art with the writing and finding a publisher. I’m looking for a new blog – bought a domain name just now, and as things are set up, I will start writing regularly there and sharing process. I miss my writing group in Tucson – every Tuesday for two hours – just writing, no talking. Haven’t been able to find a like-minded group in the area, so I will need to motivate myself.

Doing bartering with an editor/author in Las Vegas for her advice in exchange for a marbled gift basket she would like. I also have another contact who as self-published with Lulu.com, and I am looking at Northshire indie press, down in Manchester, VT. I finally feel like there is momentum, after 7 months of NOTHING – not even a no-thank-you from agents. This book will see the light of day!

Back Again….Hopefully Longer….

Holiday2011C

It’s been an interesting year. Two years ago this time, I looked at my blog and was 200 posts away from 1000. I thought no problem, I can do that easily. Well, I am still about 185 posts away from 1000. Life really has gotten in the way, with illness, depression, and a sense of disequilibrium. It has taken a while to determine what paths I will be following.

It is also ironic that while I haven’t written many blog posts, I have written 110,000 words in a novel. This has been ongoing since August of 2013. I am nearing the end of what looks to be volume one of a trilogy. It is my way of processing political events in this country and trying to deal with how this country is changing. It has meant some interesting research (what is the saying about a true friend? One who will clean out your browser history after you die?). I’ve delved into some pretty terrible things on human trafficking, read lots of government reports, and overall tried to get up to speed on policy that I haven’t spent much time caring about in the past. It will be interesting to see if I can find a publisher….in the meantime, I have started a webpage for the book: http://the-secession-wars.webnode.com/. This is very much a work in progress, and I want to include writing tips as I finish up the novel.

I’m doing a lot of quilting. I’ve been slowly moving away from the marbling business, and I’m not sure how I feel about that. We still enjoy marbling, but the business end of it is tedious. I have lots of projects using the fabrics I have, but not the energy to do anything. I have been quilting other projects, and I have four commissions for quilts lined up: for a good friend, for a new baby,
for my yoga instructor, and for my great niece. I made the commitment to myself that when each of my eight great nieces and nephews turn 13, I will gift them a quilt. Gracie is the oldest, and she turns 13 this August. I want to have the quilt finished for when we move back east and stop to see them on the way. I found a great fleece in her favorite color for the backing, so that’s in the queue.

I’ve also taken up sketching again, through a couple of Craftsy classes. I did some sketching on the road this summer, but I want to make this a regular habit. Pen and ink has always been my medium (and charcoal, too), which is probably why I took to zentangles so quickly.

I have joined a weekly writing group to make my writing more of a regular practice. We meet for two hours and just write – a brief statement of intentions from each person in the group, and then it is total silence for writing. It’s been great, and I think it will get me back to blogging on a regular basis.

So this is a quick catch-up, more so for myself, as I look back on what has happened over the last years.

Till next time…..

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