Well, April did happen, somehow. And progress was made, again, somehow.
Life often surprises me in the ways in which it actually happens. I have all of these plans and ideas for how I think or would like for it to be and, well, truthfully, they never survive contact with reality. I am learning to embrace the chaos, as I’ve mentioned, once or twice before. Which is part of the holistic creativity I’ve come to embrace. And a huge part of learning to work with my brain instead of against it.
I am also still learning to see progress in the small things, the seemingly insignificant things that are needed to complete things. And, that beginning where I am, with what I have is better than waiting until I’ve sorted everything out perfectly. Obviously certain things do need sorting but a lot can be built up along the journey rather than in preparation for the journey.
In April I ended up focusing on starting an art shop so writing, especially my novel, kinda took a back seat.
I think I’ve come to a better understanding of writing character and story, and have let what I’ve been learned sink in but I’m still troubled by actually writing. Partly I’m busy with many other things and partly I cannot manage to find the correct interest in actually putting words to page…which is kind of important to the whole novel writing thing.
So, while I did take a brief stab at putting some words down, there wasn’t a lot happening on the book front this last month.
New artwork has been a bit few and far between. April was spent with more focus to updating my website and starting work on setting up a shop.
With my deactivation of my Society 6 shop I was planning to add a shop directly to my site but that didn’t quite go to plan. I do want to move that forward later this year, though. What I did add was some art commission info, here, since I’ve had a few interested parties, and a links landing page, here, for people coming from social media, like a link tree but actually on my website (thanks to Eva Couto for the idea!).
I’m very happy with the look and have been tentatively working through some ways to share more on the socials in a more sustainable (for me) ways.
With the shop idea I’ve been working on making old and new art pieces into some super cute stickers. Technically I do have an Etsy shop up…with one sticker so far. I’m not quite happy with the way it is listed though. Print on demand services vs ordering things and shipping them yourself have a lot of nuance to figure out and I’m trying to figure that out on the fly.
In a way I think it was realizing that it was Easter and actually wanting to draw an Easter bunny that most actively brought me to the selling stickers idea. I did sketch an Easter bunny, wasn’t happy with it until I added some personal touches to the art: a witch hat and changing the paint designs on the egg it was holding to a cauldron. Here is the progress of the Bun Witch, who brings all the little bunnies magical painted eggs:
Also updated my logo, which has yet to make it onto the site in an official capacity since it was a later item I worked on, after I'd updated my website earlier in the month:
Writing the blog has been barely happening of late. By which I mean that I’ve been unable to get anything written much ahead of time this last month. I’ve been letting it go until right up against the deadline of Sunday mornings. But it is still happening, for which I am happy enough.
I’m hoping to make a better effort this month…we’ll see how it goes, lol. Guess what day it is as I’m writing this…
Reading Books (even less so) Buying ALL the Books
I love reading, and I have a lot less time to focus on it these days. I’ve planned for that this year, though. I may be waaay ahead on my reading goal for the year but that is a heavily reduced goal from previous years. I’ve been proud of myself to better balance reading with the other things that interest me and that I’d really like to put some effort towards.
The books I finished this month:
Unfuck Your Brain: Getting Over Anxiety, Depression, Anger, Freak-Outs, and Triggers with Science, Faith G Harper - The hubs and I read through this together, it was insightful, though more of an overview. It really brings a down-to-earth voice to mental health, making it far easier to understand the brain processes and why it does what it does in the face of trauma. Bonus is that it is published by a local (to our state) publishing house!
Grey Sister and Holy Sister, Book of the Ancestor 2 & 3, Mark Lawrence - I finally picked up the last books of this series. The first of which we found thrift shopping. I was so invested in finishing the story that I had to pick up the third and final book of the series immediately after the second. A wonderfully unique fantasy/sci-fi mash up in a world that is dark yet hopeful.
The Lost Metal, Mistborn 7, Second Era 4, Brandon Sanderson - Sanderson did it again, told a beautifully complex story that was just wonderful. I love Wax and Wayne but this book my favorite character was Steris. Wayne was a close second, and I loved that we got more about his backstory, too! I now need to read more of the rest of Sanderson’s Cosmere books, Stormlight Archives may be next, we’ll see.
Unmasking Autism: Discovering the New Faces of Neurodiversity, Devon Price - I’m having difficulty condensing my interests in this book, which are rather complex. I’m curious for curiosity’s sake, and for my own sake. I’ve been doing a lot of neurodivergent research since I have a family member diagnosed with ADHD. I do not have any diagnosis myself, officially. Personally I’m exploring both ADHD and Autism. Regardless of what conclusion I will make I’ve found it very, very useful, helpful, and healing to hear other’s talk about their lived experiences. This book does that and talks a bit about the history and the research. About masking and how you might unmask. I have found it useful and insightful.