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Happy Solstice

Solstice matters here.

Today is the shortest day of our year, less than 4 hours of daylight. The sun will only ever get 2 degrees above the horizon. Tomorrow, we will get a paltry 15 seconds more of daylight.

Right now, it is blue, and where the light hits, there is a brilliant golden or pink edge to the snow. We got about 5 inches of warm, wet snow over the last day or two, so everything looks beautifully wintery and festive.

We've got a tree, one of the prettiest we've had, and we hung Christmas lights on our woodshed, and it's terribly cheerful. I've got Pandora playing holiday classics. We have no real plans for the holiday, other than hunkering down and sleeping in. That suits me just fine.

Whatever your plans, wherever you are, whichever holidays you are celebrating, may your time be full of love and light.

Originally posted at Dreamwidth: https://ellenmillion.dreamwidth.org/1621866.html

September 2017 Roundup


Seven pieces for Sketch Fest: http://www.ellenmilliongraphics.com/sketchfest/sketchfestartist.php?id=9&date=91
These were deliberately pencil sketches that I had plans to finish as part of #inktober the following month. (And one already finished in ink, a piece for a Patreon patron.)

Basically, nothing else finished...


Almost 15k written on the Not-a-Book, which is just making my 500/day goal.


At least two Kindergarten colds. Thanks, germs.

I reduced my blogging to to-do lists, which helped me focus considerably.

Originally posted at Dreamwidth: https://ellenmillion.dreamwidth.org/1621304.html

August 2017 Roundup


3 ACEOs for Sketch Fest: http://www.ellenmilliongraphics.com/sketchfest/sketchfestartist.php?id=9&date=90

It was skycat month at Torn World, and I did four ACEOs (plus a sketch) for the Muse Fusion:

Plus http://www.tornworld.net/artpageview.php?id=562
AND http://www.tornworld.net/artpageview.php?id=563

And a new portrait: http://portraitadoption.com/portrait.php?id=2999


I edited my forth Not-a-Book, having finished it the month before. I also released it this month, which meant a certain amount of promotional and administrative work.

I also edited a short story for an anthology, which involved adding quite a lot of words.

I started a short story during the Muse Fusion, to the tune of 1200 words, but it isn't finished yet.


August... was hard. Really hard. I started the month entirely crippled from overdoing it, which comes with a pile of baggage. Kindergarten was an exciting new addition to the schedule. And I was laid low when I lost my beloved dog just a few days after that. It wasn't a surprise - his health had been failing for some time, but that didn't make it less of a blow.

Originally posted at Dreamwidth: https://ellenmillion.dreamwidth.org/1621173.html
So, that happened. I wrote a book in a month! I was using NaNoWriMo as a vague excuse to make this my goal, but I was aiming towards 'finished book' much more than '50k words.' And I did it! The book is 33k, but it's remarkably polished for a first draft - there are no gaps, no placeholders, no dangling bits I made notes to go back and fix. It's DONE. And I sort of love it. It has lots of my favorite tropes, and it's ridiculous and romantic and fun and funny. It's the sixth book I've written, and the second in three months.


I also finished this artwork, now available at my Etsy shop as a coloring page download.

Now I have to monitor homework, and there's a playdate pending, and I still have to post at Torn World and send an email...

Originally posted at Dreamwidth: https://ellenmillion.dreamwidth.org/1620077.html

Ornaments now available!

The gallery is here: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.1317785154992213.1073741850.407054896065248&type=1&l=77725453d1

(This one sold at quick sale already!)

I will be posting more as I get them photographed.

All auctions end Sunday at noon!

* * *

Writing continues. The project is at 22k (21k counts as Nano). Some days are great (3000! 2400! 2700!), some days are harder (500! 800!). But the book continues, and I still love its ridiculous face off and think I may finish it. There's a dragon duel coming up that I am gleefully in anticipation of.

* * *

I'm slacking on Muse Fusion this week. Which means not much is happening. But you should still leave me some prompts and maybe inspiration and time will miraculously coincide and a miracle will happen: https://www.tornworld.net/musefusion.php (Use your Sketch Fest login!)

* * *

Originally posted at Dreamwidth: https://ellenmillion.dreamwidth.org/1619761.html

Ornaments, Writing update, Muse Fusion!

Layla and I are doing an ornament sale with some of our leftover stock, over on Facebook!

There will be some special sales, collections, limited commissions, livestreaming of our painting, and even giveaways, so it should be a lot of fun. <3

I'm writing like MAD. Not-a-book #6 is just over 18k, with 17k of that being NaNo count. I'm not on track to win NaNo, but I can't bring myself to feel bad about it. I LOVE this book, it's just a pile of fun to write, and I think I'm close to half done, so there's a good chance I'll still finish this month, which was really my goal. And if I don't, I've STILL written a lot of words.

You can log in with your Sketch Fest credentials at Torn World and jump in on the Muse Fusion! https://www.tornworld.net/musefusion.php

Okay! More wood for the fire, a cup of tea, and I'm going to work while I have writing momentum. GOGOGO!

Originally posted at Dreamwidth: https://ellenmillion.dreamwidth.org/1619576.html

Updates of various kinds...

In the past two days, I've gotten about 4200 words written, which is amazingly good for me. My total for the month is at 6800, which gets me really close to on-track for my rough 1000/day goal. (Which would not win me NaNo, but would still put 31k in my book!)

Not bad, considering I've skipped several days and last week was frantic show prep!

The show, BTW, went very well. It's always fun to see all the familiar faces, and I love delighting people with the handpainted ornaments and specialty coloring books.

(Coloring books are waaaaay down from two years ago. Like less than half, despite having a better variety than I had that year.)

I do have some ornaments and lots of totes left, so look for those to go on sale... um... sometime soon? I will be offering them to my Patreon patrons first.

On that note, Patreon rewards are out today!

Dishes now, and more wood in the fire...

Originally posted at Dreamwidth: https://ellenmillion.dreamwidth.org/1619328.html

#inktober success and bullet list of life

I have SO MUCH to blog about that I sit and look at my posting page in a stupor. So today is the bullet points just so it's all down.


The weather has been seriously WTF. Rain. Freezing rain. Melting rain. Dribbles of snow. Our driveway turned into an ice luge and we had to hire someone to come out and gravel it because there was literally no way we were driving up otherwise.


Show this weekend! Come find me at the UWA bazaar with new greeting cards, painted totes, mountains of hand-painted ornaments (my skeleton army rises again!), and a BRAND NEW COLORING BOOK!

You can download a free sampler page to print and color at the pre-order page.


It's snow-unicorn month at Torn World, so watch for lots of new artwork and stories and such! Torn World site! There's a Muse Fusion the week of 13-19, so be thinking of prompts for me!


I am sort of NaNoWriMoing - I have a story goal, though I'm not sure it will end up being 50k. My more modest goal is to keep up that habit of 500 words/day that served me so well on the last book, hitting 1000/day whenever I can. I'm about 1600 words in so far, and outlined to the end, and really quite delighted with how it's working out. I like the characters. I like the conflict. The magic is fun. I'm ellenmillion there if you'd like to add me as a buddy, but I'm not really using the site.


I got the gym yesterday and am still trying to keep up with my P/T and remember to stretch several times each day. I think it's really working well.


Halloween was delightful and rather low-key. We didn't get to go trick-or-treating (see above about weather and imagine freezing rain on hilly roads. No thank you). We did go to the Children's Museum for some Halloween-themed play, and treated ourselves to McDonald's afterwards, and Guppy got to eat all of her Halloween candy loot on the day (because it amounted to only 4 pieces, between the post office, a grocery cashier, and the Children's Museum). Guppy wanted to be Rapunzel, and had a dress that only needed a little alteration, and I made her a fabulous yarn wig with hot glue, a pair of old tights, an elastic chin strap, and a whole bunch of clearance and Value Village fake flowers. She wore it about five minutes the whole day.


I won #inktober! I pinch hit a piece for the coloring book on Monday, and did the last four pieces Tuesday night. The last, in particular, is pretty phoned in, but I wasn't going to get that far and go to bed without winning it.

Click through for a bigger version. If you want to see any closer, just let me know! The Dreidel Dragon, the Pumpkin Kitty, and the Queen of Swords are sold, but the other originals are available. They range from $5 (the fur-tailed rat) to $300 (the 9x12 Folded City illustration). Most are in the $15 range, the Sketch Tarot cards are $20. Patreon patrons get half price!


So today, I've got stuff to do:

*Graphics for the $9 November sale!
*Write more words!
*Graphics for Coloring Book launch!
*Eat lunch!
*Graphics for Snowy Month!
*Probably more stuff I'm forgetting!

Originally posted at Dreamwidth: https://ellenmillion.dreamwidth.org/1619130.html


Stupidly busy...

Playdates and books and #inktober, oh my!

I finished my latest not-a-book on Monday. FINISHED IT DONE! I'm still reeling a little, because I wrote this book in 6 weeks. It's not a long or complicated book, but it's still A BOOK, and it's done and off for first round edits and I'm really proud of myself. I don't even feel like I pushed that hard - I started September ten days late and still got my 500 words/day goal for the month, and in October I aimed at 1000 words/day but didn't beat myself up if I fell short and then I was blinking at the screen and somehow done with the story. I'm sitting down with the outline for the next and hoping to make that my NaNoWriMo goal. This one I'm super excited about. Exiled dragon and mermaid thief! Woo! It may clock in shorter than 50k... but on the other hand, it may not. I am not going to snivel if I don't have it finished in November, because that's a lot of words and a busy month. (Two shows! Thanksgiving!)

Today I'm cleaning the house because we're getting double playdate after Kindergarten today. And I think I have to rsvp for a birthday party this weekend. (Hold me.) And I've got a dentist appointment this morning and tomorrow I have to take stock of my skeleton army and see where I am for the show next weekend. I ordered Christmas and flower cards last night because it suddenly occurred to me that I was running out of October in a very rapid fashion. OH! And I've uploaded a new coloring book to my printer and should be approving prints today or tomorrow.

And I'm still doing #inktober! I livestreamed #19 and #20 yesterday at my Facebook Artist Page - you can still see the recording there: https://www.facebook.com/EllenMillionArtistrix/

Prompted by Geekdame, this is probably my favorite #inktober so far:

(Original available, $30. Patreon patrons get half price.)

Off to do the things now.

Originally posted at Dreamwidth: https://ellenmillion.dreamwidth.org/1618734.html
I am feeling whooped but triumphant. Last week was five playdates in six days, including two (!) sleepovers (including a school day), and I survived.

I also cleaned like a mad over the weekend - reclaimed the junktable and all the windowsills, cleaned out some drawers of things, did laundry, tamed Guppy's room, and cleaned my entire closet (including replacing a lightbulb).

I went to the gym this morning and wrote 1100 words (a bit over 25k on the whole project now!). I have two half scenes to write, and a little bit of cleanup.

I'm still behind on #inktober, with 11 done. Some of them are pretty simple, but #10 is a doozy (complicated 9x12 piece with lots of teeny detail), and finished just in time for a deadline for an anthology that I also have a story coming out in.

#5. Original available. (Half-priced for Patreon patrons!)

Sketch Fest is Friday! Bring prompts and help me catch up on #inktober!

In weather news, we've been a weird extended pause. We got snow last week. And the week before. And each time, it got rained away the same day. Fermata is a musical term for an extended last note or pause at the end of a phrase, and that's what this feels like... the conductor is just still standing there letting fall fade out for just a few weeks more and everything is waiting. Saturday was surreal and foggy. Today, it's colder, and it's just now started snowing very lightly.

Tonight, bellydancing. Even though my abs are sore from P/T this morning.

Originally posted at Dreamwidth: https://ellenmillion.dreamwidth.org/1618523.html

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