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Wednesday Yardening

Mar. 29th, 2017 04:29 pm
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[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Today I fed the birds.  There are still two white eggs in the mourning dove nest.  I saw a brown thrasher in the fly-through feeder.

I trimmed some brush around the purple-and-white garden.  

The pear tree is blooming.  Both goji berry bushes survived the freeze earlier and are putting out leaves.  Pink buds are appearing on the redbud trees.

Weather today is chilly and wet, intermittently drizzling. 

Reading Wednesday

Mar. 29th, 2017 09:46 pm
rmc28: Rachel standing in front of the entrance to the London Eye pier (Default)
[personal profile] rmc28
What I've read: poetry
The Question Ever by Wendy Videlock (though I feel the urge to note that 'glove' and 'of' do not rhyme in my accent)
Diss by Makaila Dean
Upon Receiving My Inheritance
by William Fargason


What I've read: short fiction
Nevertheless, She Persisted - a collection of 11 flash fiction pieces for International Women's Day
For me, the standouts were:
Heart Stitch by Jose Pablo Iriarte
The Redshirt's Daughter by Evan Dicken
Attending Your Own Funeral: An Etiquette Guide by Erica L. Satifka

Bride by Mistake
by Nicole Helm (novella-length romance)

Mira's Last Dance
by Lois McMaster Bujold (Penric & Desdemona 4).  This just happened to show up when I was checking Hugo-eligibility of the previous two Penric & Desdemona novellas.  While the first three had quite long gaps of time between them, this one follows almost straight on from the previous, and leaves more than one plot thread unresolved by the end.


What I've read: long fiction
Broken Homes by Ben Aaronovitch (reread)
Foxglove Summer by Ben Aaronovitch (reread)
The Hanging Tree by Ben Aaronovitch
I had a couple of days where I really was too ill to do anything but doze or read, and inhaled these latest three.  The endings all struck me as particularly abrupt on this read through, the general destruction-level is getting ridiculous even with authorial lampshading, and there are really a lot of loose threads in play now.  (But I still enjoyed them all very much.)


Currently reading:

The Long List Anthology Volume 2 edited by David Steffen - I was surprised just how many of the short stories collected within I'd read - and surprised by a couple I'd not read but really should have.  Anyway, the quality level so far is excellent.

Hidden Figures
by Margot Lee Shetterly.  I am ... not enjoying this as much as I expected.  It is feeding my thirst for more information about Dorothy Vaughan (in particular) and the other women from the film and NACA/NASA more generally, but its style is both a bit too chatty and a bit too florid for my liking.  Or possibly having two bad colds in three weeks is making me bad-tempered and uncharitable.  Listening to the audiobook version doesn't seem to wind me up the same way, so I'm going to try listening the rest of the way through.


Acquisitions:
Bride by Mistake by Nicole Helm
Mira's Last Dance by Lois McMaster Bujold
Tony bought Digital Divide by K.B. Spangler, which has been on my radar for a while, so I may sneak a read of it.  (And/or go back to working through A Girl and Her Fed by same.)

I preordered Provenance by Ann Leckie (out in October) and The Furthest Station by Ben Aaronovitch (out in September).

That was quick!

Mar. 29th, 2017 06:56 pm
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[personal profile] flick
Quicker than expected, in fact: the new floor's all done, when we were expecting it to take until tomorrow. Unfortunately, we'd ordered things like new shelves, rugs and little felt pads to go under the furniture to stop it from making scratches for delivery tomorrow to tie in with it, so we're still a little short of furniture in here. Hopefully, we'll be all sorted by tomorrow evening. Hopefully.

Jo is pleased that she has her sofa back. The sofa bed was just not a suitable substitute, her legs were always hanging off the edges.

Both the anemones and the horses have been making the most of the sunny weather we've been having recently:


worklogs

Mar. 29th, 2017 05:53 pm
artsyhonker: a girl with glasses and purple shoulder-length hair (Default)
[personal profile] artsyhonker
Saturday: organ recital at lunchtime, chat with Ali Willis in the afternoon. It was work, honest! Do not be deceived by the fact that we had icecreams and were sitting on the beach!

Sunday: Church in the morning (Mothering Sunday, often a difficult one for me and this year no exception), then sang in Lenten reflective concert sort of thing in the afternoon, including the Magnificat from Paul Mealor's Selwyn Service -- under-rehearsed. Most of the music quite beautiful though. In the evening, a wind band/concert band concert at the Beach Ballroom, which seems like quite a good venue for such things.

Monday: sort-of a day off but there was Composers' Forum in the late afternoon/early evening, which was interesting. I don't often get to go. This was four of the Carlaw/Ogston Prize winners presenting about their pieces. Walked back with AW afterward and we had another chat over dinner, which I found very helpful and clarifying; more on that in another post.

Tuesday: not an amazingly productive day. Too much feeling overwhelmed by deadlines, not enough actually doing anything about them. Realised I can't use West Gallery piece I've been sitting on for ages until I have permission to use the text (I have implicit permission but need explicit). Thought about using 'Fall, Leaves, Fall' since I even have a demo recording of that one but I really want to leave it until I've found a choir to premiere it; must poke Dissenters Choir about it. They schedule things really far in advance so that would be maybe 2018. Wondering if I can find anyone to do it sooner than that, and write something else for Dissenters Choir. Set up Hootsuite to do some auto-promotion. Replied to e-mail about forthcoming Kickstarter project, due to launch Real Soon Now. Transcribed West Gallery piece I've been sitting on for ages, but part of the reason I was sitting on it is that my setting of the third verse is weak and needs to be scrapped and re-written. Panicked about deadlines some more. (OK, tha'ts more productive than it felt.)

Today: Some more futzing about with deadlines. Realised I could submit "O sweet and blessed country" for ORTUS and *also* use it for my Patreon piece this month; I mean, it would be better to get a choir to premiere it first, but given that I'm not writing especially fast and I need to get something up by Friday... yeah. I could use 'O Nata Lux' but I made some changes after Friday's workshop and I want time to let them settle, also there's a choir in Ireland interested in performing them and I'd like to give them a premiere. And there's 'Round Me Falls The Night' but that's still away at a competition which I haven't heard back from (and won't until 1st June), which means I can't put it online yet. And 'Winter Stars' is also in a competition and the winners won't be announced until "mid-June, with an official announcement by the end of that month." So, that's a thing. Did an initial draft of an SATB setting of Plowman's Song by Raymond Knister, a Canadian poet. I have in mind to do a setting of The Quiet Snow too. Maybe with another couple of short seasonal poems they could make a set?

Anyway, that's all fine, but I still want to write something for MASNOU and it needs to be at least three minutes long and I ned to finish it by Friday.

--

I think what's happening, here, is that I'm getting my work performed more, or at least exploring avenues for performance more, and I'm entering more competitions... and between that and sortof preferring (at least for the SATB stuff) to get at least a demo recording before putting new things online, actually releasing music is happening much later now, rather than just when I write stuff. I'm sitting on at least three pieces, four really if I wanted to get 'O Nata Lux' out quickly. Which is fine, but I want to get paid every month. Hmm. The answer, as always, is "write more music".

I'm still enamoured of the idea of finishing one composition or arrangement every week, but I have not really started arranging, and I think it's fair to say that I can't compose one item a week unless a lot of them are hymn tunes.

I also, at some stage, need to look at the next lot of competition deadlines, and make some decisions about which ones to enter; I've seen some interesting ones going past so need to check the usual places. Maybe I'll do that this evening; I want to try for a draft of the MASNOU piece first though, and to do that, I have to settle on a text.

EDIT: I also really need to get a first draft of the Cathedral commission done! arghhhhh etc.

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Ian

March 2017

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