About Raeanne G. Roy

I'm a woman from North Eastern Ontario living in Canada's capital region. My work background spans from social work to I.T. project management, but I also love writing stories and swinging swords. I'm currently working on an urban fantasy romance novel, an alien conspiracy novel, and a roller derby novel, as well as, my first screenplays and plays.

Endings

At the beginning of the week, I was looking forward to getting to this period where I have a bit of time to catch my breath. When Friday arrived, it was a mix of happy and sad. I’m going to miss my coworkers very much. That was the best place I’ve worked at in Ottawa. Unfortunately, mat leave contracts are not easily extended. Hopefully there will be room for me in the future!

Some things I won’t miss like the loss of time commuting everyday and depending on the bus. I’m looking forward to catching up on sleep and getting some things done around my place. The weather is also getting nicer, so I’m looking forward to that too.

But I have no shortage of things to do in the meantime. Row 80 is kicking off a new round and I have a revised goals list to go with it.

Goals Update

French

Class began on Saturday despite snow, freezing rain, and rain.

My teacher is an African hailing from the Congo. So far, he teaches in a bit of a scatterbrained way, but he gave us a list of all the French sound families and I think that is going to help a lot. I’ll be retyping it as it’s a grainy xerox and I want to have a copy in a safe place. Other than the scatterbrained part, there was a lot of useful information I’ve never had in all the times I have taken French.

I was initially really angry that I was bumped back to Level 1 after taking time off to do graduate studies, but I think this is going to be a good thing. I also decided that it doesn’t matter where I am in the “official” lessons as I can work ahead. Indeed, I’m currently ahead in my French speaking for this level, but there are a lot of little things I don’t know, like when to use liaisons and not. Clearing up those things might be enough to help me be more confident.

I’m planning on watching French movies and TV as well to help me develop my ear as that is a piece that I’ve been struggling with.

Writing

I have a number of things on my list. Here is the general order:

  1. Short for the horror project.
  2. Short for Digi60.
  3. Revise and rename Puppy Chow to send out.
  4. Increase the word count on The Page & The Magician to send out.

And in no particular order:

  • A non-fiction book [research and outline]
  • Finish Shads a.k.a. The Mockumentary [first draft]
  • Finish The Blood Waitress Club [first draft]
  • A podcast [research and outline]
  • Finish Scion [first draft]
  • I might also try to enter a short story into an anthology that has a June deadline.
  • Also, there are songs I haven’t written yet.

Home

I now have time to actually deal with my bathroom door. I’m wondering how much it will cost to have it delivered, though maybe I can strap it to the roof of my car if it’s not raining. I’m going to need to stain it and that may be fun to figure out in my little condo. I’m going to go with a whitewash stain, so it’ll look older than it is since it’s to be a sliding barn door style door.

Having more time for the decluttering effort won’t be bad. I want to get rid of anything I don’t need.

I’m working on a quilt of my old theatre tees. I stopped wearing them long ago, but didn’t want to get rid of them. I also didn’t want to wear them because I knew I wanted to do something with them.

And of course there’s no shortage of dishes and laundry to catch up on around here.

I want a proper dresser at some point. I feel this will help a lot, but it’s also not my top priority. I think getting my living room, kitchen, and bathroom fixed up is more important right now. Most people don’t need to enter my bedroom. I can’t close any of the other spaces off from visitors since it’s a fairly open concept floor plan.

Also, I need to start cutting apart my bathroom vanity as I will be replacing it. I plan to do it in stages because there currently isn’t a shut off valve on my bathroom sink. The counter spans the length of the room and really doesn’t belong in such a small room. It also has an out-dated design. I figure if I take half of it out, I’ll at least have a better temporary space for its replacement cabinet than my tiny hallway. I feel like I’m living in Tetris some days.

Finances

I will be spending a little time getting these done. I need my paper from school and from that bit of time when I did Uber Eats and then I think I can file.

My car is supposed to be paid off sometime in May. This will help me a lot.

Job

I’ll also be applying for jobs of course. If I can’t work where I was, I really want to aim for somewhere closer to home. It’ll be easier to accept a lower paying position once my car payments are done also.

Anyway, lots to do.
R~

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Head Stuff

I’m not feeling so hot tonight. Actually, that’s part of it. The weather has been changing drastically over the past few days. It’s now that time of year where it’s quite cold in the morning, but easy to be over-dressed by the evening. It’s both a blessing and a nuisance. Happy first day of Spring!

I have a headache and it’s probably due to the combination of not sleeping well last night, being startled awake at 3:15 AM for a fire alarm that was on just long enough to get us out into the hallway before it being turned off, the caffeine I needed for this morning’s meeting that turned into me presenting on the spot, the stress that comes with it being 7 work days until the end of my contract, and just being generally worn down.

Ah well, I got a bit of cleaning done despite the headache. I also got some spaghetti sauce cooking in my instant pot. I tweaked the recipe some to be closer to what I remember of my brother’s recipe. I’m also not cooking the pasta inside this time because it was a little overcooked before and clumpy. Maybe I have a hunger headache too? If so, that will be fixed soon.

Update: Food and wine have taken care of the headache. Perhaps Netflix as well. The sauce is still a work in progress. It is a little too watery.

Goals Update

French

  • French starts the day after my contract ends. I think I have everything I need for it. I have a duotang, writing implements, dictionary, and bescherelle. I’ve also been using Memrise.

Writing

  • I’m plugging away at my projects a bit each day. I will have extra time soon on these. My top two projects right now are my fantasy romance novel and what I will call a horror short. I need to increase my novel’s word count to submit it. A troubled stranger gave me some ideas in exchange for my ear. I hope he figured out his situation.

Iaido

  • I am sucking here, but I’m also focused on…

Job

  • I haven’t lined up my next position yet. I’m a little worried, but it might be for the best. I’ll let you all know what the next adventure is. In the interim, I have taxes, cleaning, French, writing, and some relaxation to keep me busy while I’m applying for jobs.

Home

  • I also have a few things other than cleaning that I’m hoping to get done soon. I did make a little progress on the cleaning tonight, which makes me happy. Or maybe that’s the wine 😉

R~

Countdown

So it’s my last week of work. We had our monthly meeting today and everyone got a bit mushy about me leaving. Me most of all.

I have 4 days left and I don’t know what’s next.

Well, I know a few things are on my to-do list as follows:

  1. Taxes.
  2. Apply for EI.
  3. Continue decluttering my home.
  4. Finish draft one on the horror project.
  5. Expand The Page & The Magician.
  6. Tweak and rename Puppy Chow.
  7. Maybe some banking. Definitely some budgeting.
  8. Catch up on sleep, chores, and whatever else I’m behind on.
  9. French class.
  10. Work on other writing projects.
  11. Get back in with my job coach.
  12. Apply for jobs.

I’m sure there is more, but I definitely won’t be bored.

And though I’m sad to be leaving, I’m going to enjoy sleep and a break from the commute.

R~

Adrenaline

Yesterday morning, I heard a noise in my condo parking lot. I didn’t react at first. My bed was comfy and I just figured it was someone tired of shoveling the snow or something. Then I heard it again. I looked out the window and there was a man lying in the parking lot!

I rushed to dress, grabbed my phone to call for help, and ran outside. When I got near, another man came and said he had called for help. I put my hat on the man who was on the ground. He had slipped and likely broke his wrist. I ran in for a blanket to cover him until help came.

I started feeling very nauseous, probably due to not having had breakfast yet, and I was coughing because of exercise-induced asthma, which I kind of forgot about because I never run and haven’t skated much recently.

The police came. I felt faint, so I sat down beside my car for a moment. They helped him into a cruiser and I guess drove him to the hospital.

As I walked inside, drenched in sweat, I felt shaky from the whole experience. And wet from sitting in the snow. I knew it was a bad idea, but I felt like it was either that or faint and I figured choosing to sit was a better plan. I also didn’t stop coughing for quite some time after despite having found my inhaler.

Next I felt chilled. Also emotional. It could have been so much worse! I didn’t check one time in my twenties and lost a neighbour who was like a grandfather to me.

It took me about an hour to stop shaking, but I was still twitching for awhile after. Friends told me I’d probably feel really drained soon, so between all that and the snow I stayed home from martial arts.

I used to play roller derby, so I was kind of surprised at how much the adrenaline affected me. But I guess we trained for that and we didn’t play on empty stomachs.

So I learned to always check out the window when hearing a noise. Also, it might be good to have some emergency supplies on hand in case something else happens in the future.

Goals Update

Writing

I guess the parking lot experience will help me with a current project as I have a character in an emergency situation. I just have to translate what I felt into movie… Just. It’s a project with a deadline and I’m not allowed to say too much about it, but I’m excited!

I’ve also revised my to-do list, so I can know which projects to focus on first. Ones with official deadlines come first. After those, ones that are the closest to done are next. Mostly. I have a shiny new idea that I’m also researching because I can’t stop thinking about it.

French

Registration opens tomorrow, so I’m hoping to get in for my next level of French. If so, class starts later this month and goes into June. It’ll keep me pretty busy as French class has been a lot of work in the past.

Home

I revised this to-do list too. The paper in the living room and a door for my bathroom are my top priorities. Eventually, I’m going to get leather repair for my loveseat and dye it a colour that actually goes with the other things I own. Probably black as there are black stains on it, so it will fix two problems.

Hobbies

I have a few things on the go there too, but I’m not rushing to get them done with everything else I have going on right now. Eventually, I hope to have a little more time to gradually plug away at them though. One of them involves painting my scooter and putting new handles on it. Maybe new wheels eventually too as I saw some light up ones that would be fun with the planned paint job…

Fitness

I’ve finally started using my space gym, otherwise known as the Oyo Double Flex Black Pro; I like space gym better though. I can’t quite make it through a full workout, but some is more than none.

Writing this all down helped me calm down after the parking lot emergency. So did finally watching Incredibles 2. I loved so much about that film including the new math part. I also loved everything they did with the baby.

R~

Back and Wiped

Sorry for not posting for a bit. I was too tired. Work was heavy as we made a big push on the last phase of a project that had me sending out around 100 emails a day for about a week and a half. It was more exhausting than I expected it would be. My brain has felt quite mushy since. Despite this, I’ve been starting some new projects both at work and at home because the ideas won’t leave me alone.

Goals Update

Writing

I finished the Songwriting Course I was taking. I learned a lot and I’m looking forward to using it soon. I’ve been plugging away at a script, but it has taken a backseat to getting my home clean. I have ideas for several more and I feel like I’m in this space where I have more ideas than I can write. Some may be beyond my skill level right now. All of this is frustrating to me.

Phillip Roth said, “The road to hell is paved with works-in-progress.”

That sums up how I’ve been feeling about my writing in recent weeks. I need to finish something, anything, really soon.

Home

I hate how much things got away from me while doing school last year. I made a lot of progress recently on cleaning up and decluttering. Enough progress that I think I can actually see an end to it in the near future. I’m not enjoying all the dust I’m kicking up and I’m sore from all the work I’ve been doing, but it’s worth it. I got a cabinet for my stereo equipment and vinyl, which has cleaned up a chunk of my living room. I plan to do more cleaning this week, then get back at the writing, and work on my French. Pretty soon I’ll just be down to dealing with the paper.

Martial Arts

I finally made it back to class. This winter has had me in a lot of pain. I’ve switched to standing forms and I’m still sore, but reasonably so. I have to relearn some bits. There were some kata I was fine with and others I wasn’t confident with, but overall it went well. I noticed that since I’m not spending my time grinding my knees into the floor, I can focus more on good cuts and proper grip. My posture still sucks, but I’m working on it.

Well, that’s all I have for now, but I promise it won’t be so long until I write again.

R~

Progress Makes Profit

How do you know if you’re really making any progress? This is why it’s important to have measurable goals. Some things aren’t as easy to measure though. Like whether or not your writing is improving. You can easily measure progress in terms of word count, but that doesn’t equal quality. All it means is that you are getting closer to a completed first draft. And that is a really important step. You have nothing to work with unless you create that first draft. Nothing to improve upon. So any words are better than no words even if all you can manage is a handful.

Some elements are harder to quantify. How do you know your dialogue writing is improving or your ability to write conflict? All you can do is measure against what you wrote before. You can also check it against your favourite authors, but that is dangerous. You don’t want to outright copy their style. You should want to be more than a mimic because your voice is every bit as important as those you idolize. And we often forget that they are far from perfect. Perfect shouldn’t be the goal for us either.

I think it’s hard to know if you’re really improving until you start making some sales. Beta readers can help, but a lot of them are afraid your feelings will be hurt, so they sugar coat or just say they like it even if it’s terrible. That doesn’t help. The readers that help you improve will say things you don’t want to hear. The best ones will say it in a nice way.

Progress also looks like chaos at the start. This is easily seen when getting a home organized. Sometimes you have to destroy what is in place to change the underlying structure before you can have things organized. I experienced this recently when changing out my shoe organizer in my hall closet. Previously, I had a horizontal shoe rack that was taking up the bulk of the floor space. I realized that with a vertical one instead, I could also have space to hide my recycle bin, which would clean up more than just my closet area. First though, it meant things had to get worse before they could get better. They did, and I’m working on the rest, but my recycle bin having a home that isn’t in my dining room feels great!

Writing is like that too. Especially when the editing stages come about. It often feels like it’s getting worse and moving toward hopelessness rather than ever being the way you know it can be. I often feel like the movie in my head is too wonderful to fully express. I expect there is a stage of painting a picture that is like this too. The point is that you have to keep trying to bring that vision about.

Progress makes profit. Profit doesn’t necessarily mean money. It could mean knowledge. It could mean the peace felt in a cleaner living space. Profit could even mean cookies.

Goals Update

Fitness: I did 20 squats and 10 lunges on the weekend. My legs hate me. I’m not where I’d like to be, but at least I didn’t overdo it to the point of having torn muscles. This is a reasonable level of sore post workout.

Shads: I’m making a lot of progress on this project. I’ve honed in on my concept and I’m working with it.

Home: I took some items to donation. I have several new whiteboards to keep track of things better. I also cleaned up my closet. I’ve been focusing on small things, so to me it feels like I’m progressing slowly, but I’m seeing the benefits. Some things have been just putting old hydro bills in with my tax folders and getting them off the floor. No, I’m not normally in the habit of keeping my papers all over the place, but I do create stacks on the floor when organizing to try and get everything together that goes together. I’m going to stop doing it that way though unless I have no idea what to do with something because I get busy and it lingers. It’s better to put things away as I come upon them instead, so it can’t get as messy. I also got my last kitchen drawer back together after about a year of it being apart. It was a fight the whole way, but it’s together. Hopefully I’ll find the right drawer knob for it soon as I can’t remember where I stored that for safekeeping. Isn’t that always the way?

Anyway, I’m going to go relax tonight as I brace for snowmageddon here in Ontario. I hope everyone stays safe!

R~

Slow and Steady

I’m behind this week on my posting. Sorry. There’s been a lot of personal stuff to deal with lately, which is making me exhausted. On the upside, I’ve refined some of my goals.

The Page & The Magician: I want to get this one up to 80,000 words minimum to meet a publisher’s requirement. They almost never take less and I’m not stupid enough to think that I’ll be the exception. I was fearing how to do this without screwing up the flow and plot. I ended up at a cafe on the weekend and ran into a young man who was having a terrible day. He chose to open up to me. Lucky for him I have a social work diploma. Anyway, long story short, I was able to help him figure out what he should do and he gave me some ideas for my writing predicament.

Shads: I made a lot of progress on this screenplay this weekend, so I’m pretty happy about that.

The Blood Waitress Club: There has been no movement on this one, but there definitely will be soon. I want to finish my current draft and get it to beta readers.

Home: My cleaning is coming along nicely. I’m sad I have no idea where the missing puzzle piece is to my completed Wave puzzle. I think it was sticking up too much and I removed it and put it somewhere “safe.” I suppose I’ll have to try and make a new one out of putty or cardboard and paint it to match.

French: I’m doing some online reading and learning as many words as possible. I’m currently going through anything I can find for free that is at the ultimate beginner level. I take about 5 little kid books, write down the words I don’t know, find their meaning, then use them in sentences with other words I know to try and get them into my brain. I’ve learned la perruche, le gland, le maillot de bain, and a few others this week. I have an idea there is a better name for a swimsuit than that in Canada, but at least I have something more than swimsuit to use.

Martial Arts: I’m sucking hardcore at this one. I’ve just had too much else going on and the constant weather changes are making my tendons angry. I’ll be glad when winter is over.

Music: I haven’t been doing enough of this. I think I need to revise my schedule as it’s too packed and I’m getting way less done than I had hoped to. Maybe I just think that out of impatience though.

Gaming: I’m slowly getting this into my schedule. I found a game I’m liking right now, which is Overlord II. You have minions and the goal is to be evil. It’s got a dungeon crawler feel, which I like very much. My gaming credibility is important if I ever hope to write for one. Also, they are a fun way to de-stress. I realized recently that I don’t really like Assassin’s Creed. I felt like a bit of a gamer failure because of that, but my friend Jagtress counseled me through that. You can find her Facebook page here, which links to her blog and her Twitch channel.

Reading: I haven’t done enough of this either.

The new WordPress Online editor is fun. I should have tried it sooner!

Well, I’m off to work on The Blood Waitress Club.

Rae~