Today is the first day of my online workshop, Play In Your Own Sandbox, Keep All The Toys. I’m excited (Yay, workshop! Yay, new people! Yay, I get to blabber about stuff I love, to a captive audience, and ask them nosy questions! Yay, they will give me money for the privilege of allowing me to blabber and ask nosey questions and look at their work!)) and nervous (who the heck am I to be teaching a workshop? I haven’t done this in a while. What if I forgot how to do this, or I stink, or they hate me? :runs around in circles, screaming:) This is standard operating procedure for the first day of an online workshop for me, but, if I know myself (and I should say that I do) I will soon be riding high on the energy of the other participants, and the whole darned thing will click.
The sticky notes below the monitor are a throwback to my college days, when I didn’t know any better, and blithely pounded out several pages at a time, said notes (probably a often note paper with thumbtacks as sticky notes, back then,) and used said notes as mile markers, or the writer’s equivalent of Burma Shave signs. I have never seen a Burma Shave sign in the wild, but, as the child of mature parents, I became culturally literate in a few things from a prior generation. This is one of them. Signposts may be a better term, or mile markers. Each note has a goal to write toward. When I reach that goal, the note comes down. When all the notes are down, I am done (yay!) and get to play with my new watercolors. I am extremely bribable with art or bujo supplies.
I am also easily bribable with reading time, now that I am back on the scent of historical romance. My current read, The Queen’s Lady, by Barbara Kyle, is set during the time when Henry VIII was dead set on divorcing his first wife, but the Catholic church was not on the same page as Henry. After that, I start my O’Malley-a-thon, all of Bertrice Small’s O’Malley/Skye’s Legacy books (as a fan; I claim no insider knowledge of these books, or how they came to be written) which largely take place in Elizabethan times, and the days, and decades that follow. Have I ever mentioned how generational sagas are my very, very, very favorite sort of historical romance series? I finished my most recent Kindle read, Letter of Love, by Virginia Henley, also Elizabethan, and went looking for my next Kindle selection. I looked at my To Finally Read list, and saw Winter’s Fury, by Denise Domning, which is medieval, searched my library by author, and…waaaaait a minute. My attention fell (okay, was drawn like an industrial strength magnet) to Lady in Waiting, the first book in her Lady duology, which has a -you guessed it- Elizabethan setting. Well, okay, then. Can’t fight that. Lady books now, Season books after. That is my next seven Kindle reads.
Because Barbara Kyle follows The Queen’s Lady with six more books in her Thornleigh saga, also a generational tale, those are on my list, after I finish with my Small binge. I am chain-bingeing historical romance novels now, which is a big change from whining about how I can’t seem to get into anything. I will take that change, even though doing the numbers is a wee bit on the scary side. Smushing the O’Malleys and their legacy, the Thornleighs, the Ladies and the Seasons into one place, that’s about twenty-seven books I have promised myself I am going to read in the near future. Twenty-seven. Twenty. Seven. When the sam hill am I going to read twenty seven books, when I have a workshop to give (I am actually posting my intro after I post this) and am working on three books, and Camp NaNo is breathing down my neck (why did I ever think that was a good idea?) Not to mention all the YA reads I want to get in there, along with various stuff, like finally getting around to reading Dragonwyck, by Anya Seton, and spring cleaning and domestic tornadoes and and and and and…..
I’m not going to say “breathe” here, because when people tell me to breathe, I want to punch them in the throat. Instead, I’m going to head in the general direction of a sign-off for this post and mention something about how doing what comes naturally works a lot better than trying to cram myself into somebody else’s box (which I am apt to do, far more often than I would like.) U didn’t mean to go on a nearly-thirty-book Tudor binge, but that was the first era a ever truly loved in historical romance, and it never hurts to go back to the source, and revisit a first love every now and again. Sometimes, poking a few embers is all that’s needed to get a fire going.