calissa: (Default)
Now that I've had a few days to recover, it's time to wrap up my November Project entries.

Day 28: photos )

Day 29: photo )

Day 30 was a high pain day and I spent all morning visiting a friend who was also having a high pain day (we share some of the same environmental triggers). There was much tea and chocolate, and it was good for the soul. However, the day almost passed me by before I realised I hadn't done anything for my November Project. In the end, I kind of cheated: instead of doing something strictly creative, I took the opportunity to look back over the month.

This project ended up far more heavily focused on photography than I had anticipated. In retrospect, I'm not surprised. Part of it is because photography is relatively quick and easy in comparison to some of the other art forms I engage in. However, a large part of it is because I have been settling into an identity as a photographer. I've been able to test out the limits of my iPhone's camera and have learned a lot in the process. I feel that, on the whole, my photographs have improved over the last month--though there is, of course, still a lot to learn.

I also managed to write some poems I'm pleased with. Before November, I had wondered a little whether I'd lost poetry as an art form because it had been so long since I had written anything I was happy with (or at all). It seems ridiculous now, but it was niggling away in the back of my mind. Now that I know my inner poet is still there, I hope that we can get in touch more often.

Overall, I'm so grateful I did this. Not only did it nurture certain aspects of my creativity, but it was generally undemanding during a very busy time. It has been a good way to balance self-care and creative expression.

Bonus photograph )
calissa: (Default)
I mentioned yesterday that I have been trying to take a photo to replace my current Mt To-Be-Read icon. Today I finally managed something I'm happy with.

Day 27: photos )
calissa: (Default)
I have been feeling a bit overwhelmed and out of sorts over the last week and a half. Editing has picked up and I haven't had as much time for my November Project efforts as I'd like. I'm hanging in there, but I feel like I've not been giving it my best.

Day 18: photo )

Day 19 involved an attempt at repurposing an old birthday card as a "thinking of you" note for a friend who has been going through a tough time (in fact, that has been true of a number of friends recently *sends hugs*). I'm still not quite finished with that yet--there was a small hiccup and I haven't finished gathering the materials I need to complete it.

Day 20 was How Are You haiku over on [personal profile] jjhunter's journal.

Thunderstorms rolled on on Day 21, sending my pain levels soaring. I retreated to the couch and spent the day reading. It has so far been the only day I have missed on my November Project.

Day 22: photo )

Day 23: photos )

By Day 24 I was feeling particularly discouraged with my November Project efforts. Realising I had fallen into a pattern of thinking that I had to do either photography or poetry, I unearthed the list of ideas I had made at the beginning of the month. I spent the evening working on a Zentangle, helped along by a demo video on YouTube. It wasn't anything fancy, but it helped relax me and break me out of the rut I was in.

I spent some time on Day 25 working on the story bible for Wolfwinter. I have a little bit left to go and then it will be on to sorting out the mess that is the plot.

Day 26: photo )
calissa: A black and white photo of a large, dark teapot and a small Chinese teacup with a fish painted on the side (Tea)
A little while back, I promised [personal profile] onewhitecrow I'd try out and report back on a tea blend called Billy Tea from one of the local tea stores. I acquired a sample pack earlier this week and dragged it out this afternoon, being in dire need of a quiet cuppa after a very busy weekend.

Day 17: photo )

Despite it containing some small amounts of eucalyptus leaves, it doesn't really have the smell or taste of eucalyptus. Instead, a smoky flavour dominates. Fortunately, I quite enjoy smoked teas but I was a little disappointed there wasn't more to this one.
calissa: Photo of Swarovski crystal & gold figurine of inkpot and quill sitting on a page that says 'create every day' (Writing)
As many of you may know, my nephew was born today. I wrote most of this while waiting to visit.

A special thank you to [profile] alee_girl for introducing me to etheree poems.

Day Fourteen: poem )
calissa: (Magpie)
[personal profile] onewhitecrow wanted to know about galahs, so here are some shots. Apologies for the quality of the photos. The galahs are much more skittish than the cockatoos and won't yet allow me to photograph them without a pane of (very dirty) glass between us. The lighting was also not the greatest.

Day 13 photos )

Speaking of my friend from yesterday, he continues to grow bolder. He peered inside at me for a good half an hour while I waited for my sweetheart to finish grocery shopping and bring me some bird seed (we had run out). We even played peekaboo for a little while, him bobbing his head around to see past the furniture and catch my eye. When the birdseed finally arrived, the cockatoo then allowed me to get very close when I brought out the food. I held some birdseed out to him, flat on my palm, and he rebuked me by (gently) nipping my finger (it was, after all, a silly move on my part). It didn't hurt, but it startled me so much that I dropped the seed.

It will be interesting to see what tomorrow brings.
calissa: (Magpie)
I spent yesterday and the day before writing up some notes on the Robin Hood RPG I've been playing. I hope this will translate into a post on the topic once I get a little more time.

As for today's contribution: Day 12 photos )
calissa: (Default)
While the poem below was nominally written for [personal profile] wispywillow, I can think of a few other people on my flist to whom it also applies.

Day 7 poem )

Day 8 photos )

Day 9 photo )
calissa: Photo of Swarovski crystal & gold figurine of inkpot and quill sitting on a page that says 'create every day' (Writing)
As I mentioned yesterday, I have been struggling to learn to write poems again. So I'm a little tender about sharing this, but I wanted to anyway--partly because I wouldn't mind hearing some thoughts on it (and whether those last two parts need more of a bridge) and partly as a way of reciprocating to the tender, vulnerable poems I've been reading in my flist of late.

Untitled poem )
calissa: (Default)
We're almost a week into November already and I haven't yet checked in regarding my November project. To be honest, I haven't been quite sure whether I should because I find that I start thinking things have to be up to a certain standard in order to share them here. However, there have been some things that I have wanted to share. I'm also losing track of what I've done and when, so this might help keep things straight for me.

To recap: since I am unable to participate in NaNoWriMo, I decided to create my own challenge. I will engage in some form of creativity every day--at least enough to fill one A6 page. So far, this has tended to be photography because taking photos is relatively quick and I'm still enthralled with the new iPhone lenses my sister gave me for my birthday.

Apologies to those that follow me on Instagram and Facebook since you'll likely have seen most of these before.

Day 1 photo )

Day 2 haiku )

Day 3 photo )

Day 4 photo )

Day 5 poetry musing & photo. TW: grief and funerals )

Day 6 photo )

Unsettled

Oct. 29th, 2013 07:13 pm
calissa: A black and white photo of a large, dark teapot and a small Chinese teacup with a fish painted on the side (Tea)
The wind has been blowing in from the south, carrying a chill straight from Antarctica. Although I'm not a fan of the cold, I haven't minded today. When I woke up there was a heavy smoke haze hanging over the city and I was sure I was in for a bad day with my hay fever. Then the wind started up and pushed the haze back north. The sun was warm enough to take the worst of the edge off the chill.

The restless wind suits my mood this evening because I'm feeling a bit out of sorts. After spending the last couple of months working hard to meet deadlines, I suddenly find myself between projects. I've finished off all my editing jobs, except for one that is waiting for me to collect my final thoughts. A tentative table of contents has been put together for the Gold Coast anthology; my co-editor and I are preparing to send out notifications and are about to embark on the early stages of editing. I'm not currently writing anything and can't seem to settle down enough to start my November Project early. I finished reading A Room of One's Own last night and have started in on The Complete Book of Incense, Oils and Brews (on loan from [personal profile] sidheblessed and [personal profile] darakat) but I'm not really feeling all that into it.

There's plenty of stuff I could be doing, I just can't settle.
calissa: Photo of Swarovski crystal & gold figurine of inkpot and quill sitting on a page that says 'create every day' (Writing)
Editing has been picking up lately. I have managed to acquire a couple of new jobs that are keeping me busy and it is taking a little bit to adjust. I am somewhat amused by the fact that, even though I am a person who highly values stability and routine, I have ended up in a role characterised by deadlines and uncertainty.

There are definitely parts I'm enjoying. The sheer variety in what I've been editing has been awesome. It has also been nice to feel like I'm doing something useful with my time (though I wasn't exactly feeling useless before). However, the change in schedule to incorporate more editing time takes a bit of getting used to and my To Do list just seems to get longer by the day.

This afternoon I spent some time having tea and chatting with [personal profile] sidheblessed. I may have mentioned before that we try to get together once a fortnight or so to talk writing and keep each other accountable. Today as we talked I realised how tired I was. I've been chasing one deadline or another for a few months now.

One of the things we discussed was a November Project. Managing injury makes NaNoWriMo difficult, if not physically impossible, for me. So, I have taken to designing my own challenge. This year I have been tossing up between two possibilities. One was completing the story bible for Wolfwinter--something I had very much hoped to do by the end of this year. However, given how tired and over deadlines I am, I am rather regretfully putting this aside.

Instead, I'm going to do much the same thing as I did last year. My current writing journal is an A6 size. Every day for November I am going to fill one page with something creative. This could be a poem (or several), the draft of a story, a photograph, a painting... whatever I feel moved to include. I enjoyed the results from last year and hope it will be low-key enough not to stress me out this year.

Do you have a November Project you'll be working on? I'd love to hear :)

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