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42 Things That Made My Year (2019)

Growing oyster mushrooms from a kit. 
Making candy from the peel of grapefruits. 
Writing my first RPG after a year of wanting to.
Connecting with my femme peers and getting woo woo and weird at a women's day of empowerment at work.
Drinking good scotch, smoking a cuban and listening to coyotes with Paul. Watching him fall in love a little bit more with Albuquerque.
Everything DrupalCon Seattle: Introducing Dries, judging the Splash Awards, taking a leadership class, walking around in the Seattle rain and eating seafood.

How to read more.

As I worked on my 2019 fave books post, I realized I'm reading way, way more than I was four years ago. I've nearly tripled the number of books I finish in a year, which made me wonder what has changed.  

I now quit books I don't love. This helps in two ways: I don't spend that precious limited reading time on bad books, but I also don't lose reading momentum. Before, even a mediocre book would be so discouraging that it would suck up weeks of bedtime reading as I read a page or two at a time. Life is too short for mediocre books.

Handwriting.

This morning I worked on the very last of the handwritten poems from my kickstarter (I had permission from the recipient to wait until we bought a house together, so.) 

Twine.

I first saw Twine several months ago, but for some reason, it didn't stick.  It's a tool for making interactive fiction (games, choose-your-own-adventure stories, that kind of thing). 

Year Seven.

Woof. I'm writing from the dining room of our new house, still 90% boxes, over-caffeinated because we got too excited to try the builtin coffee maker. I can't find my notes. So let's do this.

After seven years of my new employment life, here's what's going on in my head:

Join me on Patreon!

You might have noticed a link added to the menu recently:

https://patreon.com/taraking

I've started a new endeavor over at Patreon, which is a service that supports independent artists. I'm super excited to be there, where I'll be sharing new poems, behind-the-scenes looks at what I'm working on, writing prompts, and more. I'll still be posting here on occasion, but Patreon is where most of my stuff is being shared.

My 2018, as a writer

I've noticed a pattern of forgetfulness around writing--I forget how many poems I've written, so when I set out to write 100, I write 104 instead. The bio in my second book of poems said it was my first book of poems.  When people ask me what I've been writing, I just flat can't remember. And so the void becomes the story.  

I don't like that story, so I'm rewriting it.

On fiction and poetry.

I want to write a lot of poetry and I want to write novels. It feels like a problem, a conundrum. The ghost of Malcolm Gladwell (someone pls exorcise me) whispers in one ear about how it takes so much focus to get truly good at something.  But that part feels scared, angry, threatening instead of supporting.  In the other ear, a friendlier ghost says it all matters. All of it folds in together into the same life; nothing is wasted. That voice feels gentle, loving, supportive. And so....I choose that voice. I don't have a problem; I have an opportunity.

Editing a novel.

I'm working this month on editing the novel I "wrote" last year (a.k.a vomited out a huge number of semi-related words with no structure or plan). I've learned so much about fiction in the last two weeks and my book is still terrible.

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