Ellen Million (ellenmillion) wrote,
Ellen Million

Monday's Post

Internet's down for the day according to the net guy, and I may get some writing done. Maybe. Got some work projects I need to finish before tomorrow, too. Wish I could work on EMG, but what I've got left needs to be done online. Getting close to re-release! Got all the entries fixed up, at least. Product pages are all that's really holding me up, and those need to be done with the search function in the final directory, so it's time to get rid of the old directory and move in the new one. Which will be v. nice because I've been at the absolute max. of my server space, as I discovered trying to upload the single color cards page. Doh! Need to get rid of all the redundant files soon. I wanted to have the new page up by the time Anthrocon was over so that people could get to Ursula's new work, but looks like that didn't happen. Ugh.

I'm really hoping the line out that's keeping us from the Internet today (railroad bridge with fiber optic washed out by Talkeetna) isn't keeping the rest of the world from EMG. I expected today to be a high-hit day, and I'm going to be *bummed* if everyone's getting 'site not found' messages. I'll be even more bummed if my email is bouncing. *crosses fingers*

Update: appears not! I went to press T-shirts at Kev's store during lunch and was able to check EMG email and delete the bulk mail folder of my yahoo account.

Productive weekend; got the vent all the way up through the roof!! Miserable work, it was about 100 degrees in the attic, and itchy with insulation particles. Had to get into some seriously awkward positions to drill the pipe anchors into place and get the pipes glued. I don't envy Jake at all, brave man... he got to climb up on the roof (which is *very* high and *very* steep) and put down the masterflashing, silicone it, and screw it down. Getting down was the fun part... mad scrabble for the ladder hoping that the rope held. I couldn't have done it; I hyperventilated in the attic even not being able to see down to the floor. We were both drenched in sweat and dirty and itchy at the end of the day, so we went outside and poured cold water over each other for quick sponge bathes. It was awfully refreshing!

I seem to have mangled my knee, which protests mightily when I try to bend it, and I have a host of new bruises and scrapes. Nothing to add to the scar collection, but I feel more than a little banged up. It was not comfortable scaling around in the trusses; lots of bracing in the way. It *was* very nice to find that our roof hadn't leaked in the slightest, and there were no bugs in there, except for the flies that got up while we had the trap door open.

EMG stuff:

1) Re-read contracts, grammar check, eyeball for carried-over stuff from old format that isn't applicable anymore. Finalize and send out copies to all artists. I'd really, really, really like to have a little gift/surprise to send out with the contracts, too... just a little celebratory something for the ten-year birthday of EMG. Maybe a sticker or a magnet? I might even dig up my very first catalog and include copies of it for nostalgia's sake. Maybe.

2) Build artist login pages. Should be fairly straightforward. Will be a list of designs with exclusions and a form with login, password and requests for changes. Considering whether or not this page needs to be password protected, as well as require password input for the form. Mmm... probably ought to password protect, which means separate directories, I think. Can't play with that today. Rats! Though I can probably build the pages. Might do that....

3) Ornaments with Melody? It would be marvelous if we could do that this weekend, but I'm thinking that won't happen. Jake and I still have to get the wet-wall built and the shower seated before we can install the toilet. Well, we don't *have* to, but it sure would be a lot easier and safer to do before we installed the toilet. So that's probably what I'll do this weekend. Maybe Monday night I can make ornaments? Maybe some evening next week when Jennie's here, too? (They'd get along well, I know) I'd really, really like to have some ornaments to sell at the fair.

4) Print, print, print for the fair. I've got a little pile of small prints, really need to work on large prints, really need to work on magnets and stickers. I think I'm doing well on cards, except for a couple of really stellar sellers (like full-color Candle). Mousepads! Definitely need more mousepads. And some T-shirts and puzzles. What am I missing? I'll have to inventory the coloring books and check some of the popular stationery designs; I think most are printed, just need packaged. Bookmarks. Need some more bookmarks, too. Have to check and see if Mom has a good grocery bag stash. (I re-use everything I can) Maybe a few sample mugs. Linework seems to come out muuuuch more nicely than full-color stuff. DragonSled looks great. Maybe I can do Dragon on a mug with custom names for order... Hmmm...

5) Scan in the new Northern Lights painting!! Make prints, cards and mousepads.

6) Delete old web directory, rename new directory, re-build webpage. Add new product pages, convert artist-pages, consider switching to a single holiday page for stationery and cards. Should be able to squeeze that in this week. If the Internet is being cooperative. If not, I can surely do it the week of the fair, leaving Jennie haplessly chained in the fair booth. Frankly, a few hours ought to do it. It's a sad, sad state of affairs that I haven't *had* a few hours all at once in so long I've forgotten what it feels like. Got three or four hours Saturday night, but that was combined with shower and laundry. Spent much of that time answering printing service queries following some judicious plugging on a SciFiFantasy Con list. Rargh! Have messages on that list to answer and can't, due to Internet down-ed-ness.

7) Answer emails. Will probably spend a full, dedicated day on answering emails next week sometime. Jennie will get to do the fun stuff like folding and sorting cards and cutting magnets and making new rack inserts, while I sit and dredge through my ugly, gawdawful inbox, sort new hopeful artists, send catalogs, remind old printing service-customers of my presence, and drag through all those messages that have been sitting around because I have no idea what to write back to them...

8) Reserve cabin at Circle Hot Springs! It's not strictly EMG, but it's close enough. Jennie and I are going to spend at least a night up there alternating art immersion with hot water immersion. YAY! It's really quite a relief planning a visit for someone who, like me, is just as happy 'arting' as being entertained or taken to the touristy places. Though we may just have to go to the Bush show at Alaskaland... pardon, Pioneer Park (recently - stupidly - renamed). I wonder if it's showing this summer... I don't remember seeing ads for it, now that I think of it...

9) Press and mail Chel's T-shirts today at lunch.

10) Once the new page is up, start adding the new work I have queued up. Start contracts for new artists. Gosh, it'd be neat to have Erin's kirin set ready to sell at the fair. And Suz's stuff, too! And Lacey, and Tito, and Victoria, and... damn! I need to get caught up. May close down new submissions for a bit after the fair. Certainly will right before Christmas during that hectic period. Also will need to let people know about the three-week post-Christmas shut-down. Going to Mexico!!!! Need relaxing-in-sun-without-EMG-or-work-stress so badly that I can taste it. And usually by that time of the year I'm suffering sun withdrawal pretty badly.

11) Dang it, there was something else... Oh! Layout the mermaid coloring book, if I have enough work now. If not, maybe *do* some new work. Definitely need to figure out what I've got and what I need. I have two of my own, one from Jennie, one from Roberta, at least two from Misti, I think I have one from Victoria Griffin, and Sarah (Ballard) Seiter was going to see about doing some pieces... ah... have to check my records; I think I have some leftover from Kelly and Robin, I know there are a bunch I'm forgetting.

12) Back up EMG!!! Preferably after I get some of the new designs laid out.

13) RWH Tarot. This never goes away. *blinks* Maybe I can do this a few days while Jennie's working the fair. Wow. Wouldn't that be nice!!! The idea of having a whole two weeks off of work and being able to spend almost all of that on EMG still hasn't quite sunk in. I want to spend some time at the fair, spelling Jennie and... well, I would actually enjoy sitting the booth for a while, too! I love gathering input about the products. And we *will* take a trip to Circle. But there's no reason that, on the weekdays (except the first stressful setup Friday), I can't drop her off at 11, spend until 4:30 working on EMG at my parent's house, and then either take Jake home and come back to the fair for the rest of the evening, or bring Jake to the fair with me for the evening. The idea of five days with ~5 hours each of EMG catch-up is mind-boggling. One day ought to fix the webpage. Three days ought to finish the tarot cards. That leaves one day for all the stuff I haven't thought of, or hanging out at the fair. That doesn't even count weekends! Eee!! Jennie, you are a *life-saver!*

14) Primer. Can't really get started on this yet, but better put it on my list so it gets done. And don't sweat it if you can't get it mailed this week, Jennie... just bring a CD with you and we'll manage. :)

15) Things for EMG to spend money on when she has some again: large clear bags for oversized prints, payoff DA for postage, decent papercutter.

16) Look at the Evil Box. This is a box of snail-mail correspondence that was once labeled 'not critical,' and has not been even looked at since I moved. Which was last September. *wince* If I'm very, very good, I will not only look at this box, but sort and answer everything. I don't know if I have that much good in me. It's a scary Evil Box.

Non-EMG stuff:

1) Finish wet wall, install shower, install toilet. I'm putting these down as one item because it's all for the same end-goal. Need to find out who manufactured the shower we have and see if they have instructions for installation online. Found some conflicting instructions, so I want to get something specific to the shower we have. MUST REMEMBER TO CAP OFF CLEANOUTS BEFORE WE USE THE TOILET.

2) Writing. Ought to attempt to finish one item, either an article, a Kaz story, a Torn World story, or a Jenny-Bjorn tale. But I'm not going to feel badly if I get that EMG list and house stuff done and nothing else!! Very much would like to have some sample contracts to offer Woodworks/EW Survival/Marie for various common things; commissions, illustrating, writing, limited rights, etc.

3) Horoscopes. Not negotiable. Should get started on that today so that the proofers have time with it. Still rather wish I knew where my tarot cards were; t'would be fun to do some readings to base them on. They weren't where I half-remembered them being, so now I'm back to square one for finding them. :(

Oh lord... evil new idea: a Termite Tarot set for Woodworks! I feel compelled to do a major arcana. Steal photos of the staff and put their heads on pictures of termites posed in traditional tarot poses... oh dear.

I got art time last night!!! I'm so happy!! I had two sketches I was moderately happy with but realized were slightly flawed/seriously unfinished, and I worked both of them up to something I actually like! They are appropriate to the Secret Project, so I'm quite happy on that front. The second in particular I would like to color... having serious tablet desires again. The good news is, we're making progress towards getting sheet-rocking done downstairs; a lot of the toilet needs are also sheet-rocking needs, and once it's in, we just need to get John over to finish wiring the fusebox, foam the insulation blocks at the rims, and we can sheet-rock!! Or rather (thank god), hire someone to sheetrock!! And once that's done, we can order a full-size fridge (the mind boggles!!!), a stove (with an oven!! Pies!!!), a sink, and I can think about moving EMG out to the house. Imagine, living with EMG again... having my own computer again... *wistful sigh* And just imagine... a tablet!! All of this, maaaaaybe, by Christmas... I'd be so happy.

At any rate, I am very pleased with a few hours of sketching in the glow of the brain-sucking television last night. Soothes the restless bits inside, even if I didn't actually start a new piece. I'm happy with the results, the cat looks like a cat (!!), the tree-girl looks wild and Jake agrees that she is hot, and the elf girl, though her near eye is, I think, too large and off-kilter, is looking alright, too. I've been working a great deal on the 3/4 view of faces lately, because it's hard and I suck at it. Getting eyes to match is my bane. I'm too afraid to erase the questionable eye and start it over, because A) it's a fairly good looking eye, and B) it's so dark that I'm quite positive that I wouldn't be able to erase it completely and I'd end up making her look like she has black eyes. Screwy black eyes, no less. So it shall have to live the way that it is until I get my tablet and can selectively work on bits of a drawing without worrying about fragile paper.

*ponders* Ya know, speaking of black eyes, the story of PSI could make an interesting article for Woodworks. :) Just a little obscure Elfwood history. I'm pretty sure there are still some versions of PSI up. There's probably a PSI tour. I have my version somewhere.

Lord, this got long... I am in severe danger of falling asleep at my keyboard... stupid after-lunch food coma.

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