Make a contribution to a depression scrapbook project

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Make a contribution to a depression scrapbook project

Marian:

This is such a lovely idea. Spread the word!

Originally posted on :

Sound familiar?

So how many of you are currently sat in bed or inside isolating yourself? Suffering inthiss the black hole that is depression. Not wanting to spread your current mood to people around you because it’s not their responsibility to take care of you or you feel like they wouldn’t care anyway. Or even understand. It would be unfair to be in this mood around ‘happy’ people because you’ll just bring them down, and in turn they’ll slowly reject you. So you have two choices. Sit in alone, or go out and put on your positive mask and pretend to be someone you’re not in order to feel normal, accepted or you physically need too because you can’t stand to be inside another day. So let’s say you choose the latter, you need to get up, shower, sort your hair, pick an outfit, get a bus, see strangers, perhaps…

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Using Pain

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Julia Cameron just posted this on Twitter:

Pain does use our energy, but we can consciously channel it toward positive action if we are willing to look at our options with fresh eyes.

It spoke to me like a message from the universe. My first thought was related to Rheumatoid Arthritis, for which I am currently being treated. I haven’t talked about it a lot here, but it’s been a big part of my life the last few months. (And I was suffering from it for a long time before that, but didn’t know what it was; the depression I have discussed was likely tied in to the chronic pain as much as anything else.) It’s been a relief to have answers, and the medicine I’m taking will likely prevent long-term joint damage.

Quick public service announcement: RA manifests in ways you might not expect. I had physical pain that I attributed to overtraining (and it wasn’t), but there are a lot of other symptoms I wasn’t aware tied into RA: fatigue, depression, getting sick a lot, flu-like symptoms. I thought I was going crazy, and I probably would have had a nervous breakdown if I hadn’t gotten a physical and learned more.

I’ve been feeling much better the last few weeks, due (I think) to a combination of medication and lifestyle change. I don’t get wiped out from everyday activity anymore, though I do still feel crushed if I overdo it. (Which is pretty much every time I teach Spinning.)

I’ve had to completely restructure my life. I was already pretty big on self-care, but now it’s the priority. Work is not my priority, though it’s going very well now that I’m part time, and don’t feel like I have to drag myself in at 7 a.m., feeling wretched and hating the world.

Anyway, the quote above, about channeling pain toward positive action, hit me in a way it wouldn’t have before. I have certainly used painful emotions as creative fuel in the past, but I’ve never considered how physical pain can make you look at your options “with open eyes.” That’s exactly what I’ve been doing the last week.

I know a 9 to 5 job isn’t possible for me now, maybe ever. With that in mind, I got a copy of the Writer’s Market 2015 from the library and started looking at my options. There are several great options for entry-level freelance in fitness magazines, for example, that I wouldn’t have considered before. I have stopped thinking of how low my chances are for making a living as a writer, and have instead focused on “filling the form” to work toward that future. I have started to see this disease as a gift – oh, I know, cliché city, right? – because it has ruled out what used to be my safety net.

I am finally feeling brave and strong enough to listen to that little girl inside who wrote stories for fun. So, I’ll write today’s pages, and do today’s research. And that is enough.

Why I Love ConTV

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I have been using the ConTV app (and ConTV.com) for a few weeks, and it’s pretty great.

When I go to cons, I do tend to prioritize the how-to panels. The actor Q@As/panels are great fun, of course, but I feel like I’m really with my people when I’m mulling over the ins and outs of story creation, and considering all the different forms a creative career can take. At last year’s Wizard World Comic Con in Richmond, I attended some great panels on storytelling, the 3-Act structure, and worldbuilding. I walked away with pages full of inspired notes and my creative zest re-ignited.

It’s been equally invigorating, while waiting for the next Wizard World Richmond (This just in! Billie Piper in Richmond! Do you think she’ll have a latte with me?), to watch on ConTV. The audio and visual is great quality, and it is great fun to watch by the pool, or on the treadmill.

Three recommendations:

1) How to be a Professional Geek
2) Calling all Aspiring Writers
3) Writing Fantasy and Science Fiction

All gave me lots of ideas and inspiration, and also gave me some motivation to examine fields I’d never seriously considered. Why couldn’t I write graphic novels? Why not look into writing for video games? I don’t really expect either to pan out, but it’s still fascinating to consider. (Next up on my watchlist: A Career in Video Games part 1.)

There are so many options, from fan panels to a whole section on “kick-ass girls,” that there really is something for everyone.

This all sounds very ra-ra, doesn’t it? I’m really not getting paid for this. I am simply sharing my enthusiasm.

Ooh, speaking of enthusiasm! You must check out Last Fan Standing. It’s a geek game show hosted by Bruce Campbell.

I really want to play.

Okay, time to post.

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Isn’t that an inspiring title? I know.

But one can only procrastinate on blogging for so long.

So, hi! Okay, random updates/thoughts:

1) Depression has been tackled head-on. I finally gave in and asked for antidepressants, and wow – I wish I’d done that sooner. Life is feeling pretty darn good again!

2) Writing has been sporadic. I have episode 4 of Once a Fairy just about done – and it’s been so for at least a month. I’m being a total perfectionist about it, which the whole serial-fiction thing was supposed to help me get over. Oh, well. It is shaping up as a novel, so I think I just need to accept that, and stop it as a serial. On the upside, that means I’m about halfway through writing a novel! Sweet as, yo.

3) I finished my intermediate photography course at Visual Arts Center, and really miss it. I did enter a photography contest for next weekend, though, at Dominion RiverRock, so I’m looking forward to putting my camera to use!

4) While everyone else is planning their summer vacations, I’m planning my convention-hopping! I’m going to World Fantasy Convention in the fall. (Actually, I’m not, because the memberships have sold out. But I’m going to the hotel across the street and hanging out with my friends.) And Wizard World Comic-Con is coming to me in August. I’m hoping to volunteer this year!

Okay, that is a post.

I would say something like, real post coming soon, but that would be a lot of pressure.

An Interview with Tad Williams, part 4

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Marian:

collect all four!

Originally posted on Welcome to Osten Ard:

Like Tad Williams, we tried to keep it to three parts, but it ended up being four. Below is Part Four of OstenArd.com’s interview with internationally bestselling speculative fiction writer Tad Williams, author of the “Memory, Sorrow and Thorn”, “Otherland”, “Shadowmarch” and “Bobby Dollar” books, and who recently announced the completion of the first draft of The Witchwood Crown, the first volume of a series of sequel novels to his classic “Memory, Sorrow and Thorn” trilogy, called “The Last King of Osten Ard“. The Witchwood Crown is tentatively slated for a Spring 2016 release.

Part OnePart TwoPart Three

The below questions were asked by readers on the Tad Williams Message Board and by OstenArd.com contributors. In this part of the interview, we asked Williams about publication plans for print and audiobooks, plans for re-releases of the classic “Memory, Sorrow and Thorn” books…

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An Interview with Tad Williams, part 3

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Originally posted on Welcome to Osten Ard:

Below is Part Three of OstenArd.com’s interview with speculative fiction writer Tad Williams, author of the “Memory, Sorrow and Thorn”, “Otherland”, “Shadowmarch” and “Bobby Dollar” books, and who recently announced the completion of the first draft of The Witchwood Crown, the first volume of a series of sequel novels to his classic “Memory, Sorrow and Thorn” trilogy, called “The Last King of Osten Ard“. The Witchwood Crown is tentatively slated for a Spring 2016 release. Part One of the interview is here. Part Two is here.

The below questions were asked by readers on the Tad Williams Message Board and OstenArd.com contributors. In this part of the interview, we asked Williams how his main characters from Osten Ard compare to Bobby Dollar, if he has any plans to ever return to other worlds he built, and if he ever regrets his decision to wander…

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