Catch up, breathe deeply

After what seems like forever, I am finally getting caught up. Most of last year was spent with one or all of us bed or house ridden, one passing it on to the other as is the way of things in homes with children. There have been a lot of people disappointed in me, a lot of people who knew me and understood, and still more who have been supportive beyond the call of friendship. I think all of us have dealt with snowballs at least once in our lives and but this one created an avalanche. I’ve not given up though and things are getting better each day. I am moving forward.

LITTLE BITS OF WISDOM
A few of the many things I have picked up along the way, that I try to instill in my daughter, have been active in my life lately…

  • You should always be “straight up” with people. Be honest. Whether they will understand or not, your conscience is clear and you’ve done the right thing.
  • Pick your battles. Do what you can to the best of your ability and honor others as well as yourself. Help as much as you can but know when to say no.
  • If it is worthwhile dream, don’t give up.
  • When everything is a priority remember that family comes first. When it is hard to label what is the top priority in a pile of pressing deadlines, always pick the one that will give you the most trouble.
  • Breathe. There is always time to take a moment, close your eyes, and just breathe.

COMPLETELY ENTHRALLED

I own an HP laptop and frequently receives updates from HP including their Personal Again campaign that features some incredibly well-done and creatively inspiring videos. Recently I found Paulo Coehlo’s The Experimental Witch competition that led me, breadcrumbs in hand, to his Alchemist site on HP.

The guitar music that plays on the site has me completely in thrall. I am hooked on it, sometimes leaving the browser window up in the background to listen to it while I write or work. I don’t know that he will actually see it, but I sent him an email on his MySpace requesting the name of the piece or the guitarist and thanking him for his contributions to the creative community. Admittedly I do not own personal copies of his books yet but hope to soon. His stories are wonderfully rich and I look forward to reading more.

PUBLISHED RECENTLY

I have been so busy on this end that I’ve not had the chance to tell you all about some wonderful things that happened recently!

100 Days of Monsters. My family and I found Daily Monster, Stefan Bucher’s absolutely addictive video blog, and have been glued to it ever since. We crank the volume up so we can enjoy the sounds of his pens as they glide quickly across the paper. It is fascinating to watch what each seed of ink will become, even he doesn’t know till he does it which makes for a wonderful mystery. Stefan asked people to post little stories about his monsters, what we thought they were doing, who they were, and the madness began. Everyone got involved and the stories rolled in. Incredibly funny stories, emotional stories, off the wall weirdness, and all of them great fun to read. Well, he made a book with a DVD. All of his videos for the first 100 monsters and then some are included. And two of my stories made it into the book. So pick up a copy and read about “Reggie” and “Herman”, monsters 91 and 95. They will be very happy that you did. And if you do, please post a reply here and tell me what you think. I hope you like them both.

Thank you Stefan for your inspiration and your kindness!

Never Forgotten. I am a member of the ZNE network and was able to contribute to a book project for one of its members who recently lost her mother. I encourage everyone to take a look at the book and purchase one for yourself or for a loved one who may need some support or encouragement. I do not received any kind of compensation and am even purchasing my own copy so this is not a sales pitch. My piece is Essence & Longing and is included under the “Healing: The Beauty of the Soul” section in the book. If you do buy a copy, remember to post here and tell me what you think.

BACK IN SCHOOL

Started back to college week before last, totally online, and love it. Wish I could have done it sooner. They have the same accreditation as the local university but without worrying about scheduling, gas prices, or the wear and tear on my vehicle. Val has been in since August, he’s on the Dean’s list, (WOOT You go baby!) and I should be there soon as well. I am working on my BFA in Visual Communications with a specialization in Digital Design which, mostly, is the degree for what I have already been doing for the last 22 years. I have been wanting to finish school though, needed the piece of paper, and wanted to get all of the new software so here I am. I really enjoy the interface, the structure, the whole layout of AIU. And, yes, it takes a lot of discipline. But I will have my degree in 13 months, not four years, and there is something incredibly motivating about that. When I graduate in July of next year, if not sooner, I will be working on my Masters in Education there or finding a school where I can complete my Architectural Design degree. Yup, there is the secret to my handwriting, I was an Architectural Design major previously.

TED TALKS

“Who is this Ted person anyway…” you say? Don’t worry, I said that too. During my Visual Literacy class I was linked to a TED Talk by John Maeda. An incredibly brilliant, very funny man. Maeda spoke of simplicity, applying it to design and everyday life which is something I think we all need to look at. If you get a chance to watch the video, do, it is well worth the time. I have also found the TED Talks to be a fantastic resource. I think one of my favorites so far though has to be J.J.Abrams talking about the “mystery box” and writing.

A NEW SITE FOR ART FOR CURES

Art for Cures has been in need of a site for a while and, though I had started building one, my life and health conspired to keep me from it. After seeing a few site on the Ning network, seeing the resources available and the network’s framework, I decided to build us a home there. Art for Cures is now part of the Ning network and we already have several members there. Looking forward to posting the auctions in the next week and moving forward!

SCRIBBLES, DOODLES, AND SQUIBBLES

We like to hang out in the local bookstores on occasion (read we live there) and I am always on the lookout for new things fir Ysa and I to play with. Not seeing anything I could afford to get this week, or that we didn’t already have, I picked up another Kumon book for Ysa’s homeschool. Ysa and I rummaged around the children’s section a bit and a book accosted me on the way out. Well, it didn’t actually accost me per se, but I am very visual and certain things tend to jump out at me on shelves. In fact when I worked for the bookstores (both BAM and the Noble Barn), I was the one people always came to when they couldn’t remember the name of something. Nine time out of ten I would know it by what the spine or cover looked like and sometimes the “look” of the author’s name.

This time, as soon as I saw it, I knew it was coming home with us.

Scribbles by Taro Gomi is part of a three book series (might be a series, should be) and all three seriously ROCK. The books are almost two inches thick and full of half drawn doodles that you have to finish. It is total creative license, total interpretation, total fun.

…and yes, for those who recognized the name, Taro Gomi also wrote Everyone Poops. hehe

BEING ANACHRONISTIC AGAIN

I’ve rejoined the SCA after a long hiatus and have brought my family with me this time. Val is going Art/Sci, Logan is going heavy weapons, and even my girl is considering it as well since they start youth combat at age seven. She already makes a great shield wall, ran over the last guy. Val has been working on his own medieval chant notation, Logan is making chaine maille again and I have been pouring through patterns and buying fabric in preparation for garb making. It has been way too long since I have been camping so I am really looking forward to it.

Oh, I was also given the honor of being the Shire’s new Web Minister (or Mistress in this case).

My new tagline?

Ana Maria Seaton
ska Ginuivive Alysabaeth Rosewood (Dragonfly or Alysa)
Shire of Amurgorod, Kingdom of Trimaris
“The Dragonfly caught in the Spidered Web.”

Web site for the Shire coming very soon. VIVAT TRIMARIS!

SCRIPTFRENZY

ScriptFrenzy is this month, brought to you by the makers of NaNoWriMo. I toyed with the idea of working on a script I have had in my head for a while now but my time will not allow it. Also, anytime I even consider working on another writing project, my two novels – Moonlight & Shadow and Odonatia – beat me over the head and throw tantrums on the floor begging for attention. My children’s book, Clementine’s Garden, can get away with it though. They don’t beat her up because she is too cute.

WAIT, YOU SAID…ODONATIA!?

Yes I did, you heard me right. Odonatia is fast becoming a novel. For those of you who are not familiar with it, Odonatia is a fiction project I have been working on for about 10 years now. Started as a simple postal issuing authority for artistamps (faux postage), it quickly snowballed (read avalanched) into an epic piece of fiction with real passports, a winery and other goodies coming. Turning very steampunkish. Plans include a daily blog form the island, downloads and other goodies. Looking at a couple of other creative associates that might get involved as well in the future.

ON THE HUSH HUSH

Two major projects going on, one involving my rubber stamp line that is forthcoming, are building up speed and about to take off. Sadly though, and yes I know I am a tease, both are on the “hush hush” right now till I get the okay. I know, stop pouting, I’ll post here as soon as I get the green light. Needless to say both are of incredible proportion and I cannot wait to tell you all.

…well, that is all I can think of for now. (aren’t you glad? hehe) I will be posting scans, photos and a few updates today and over the next couple of days. This week has been a busy one so I have been trying to stay focused and push forward. Hoping this finds you all well and in good creative spirits!

Brightest blessings!

Catch up, breathe deeply

After what seems like forever, I am finally getting caught up. Most of last year was spent with one or all of us bed or house ridden, one passing it on to the other as is the way of things in homes with children. There have been a lot of people disappointed in me, a lot of people who knew me and understood, and still more who have been supportive beyond the call of friendship. I think all of us have dealt with snowballs at least once in our lives and but this one created an avalanche. I’ve not given up though and things are getting better each day. I am moving forward.

LITTLE BITS OF WISDOM
A few of the many things I have picked up along the way, that I try to instill in my daughter, have been active in my life lately…

  • You should always be “straight up” with people. Be honest. Whether they will understand or not, your conscience is clear and you’ve done the right thing.
  • Pick your battles. Do what you can to the best of your ability and honor others as well as yourself. Help as much as you can but know when to say no.
  • If it is worthwhile dream, don’t give up.
  • When everything is a priority remember that family comes first. When it is hard to label what is the top priority in a pile of pressing deadlines, always pick the one that will give you the most trouble.
  • Breathe. There is always time to take a moment, close your eyes, and just breathe.

COMPLETELY ENTHRALLED

I own an HP laptop and frequently receives updates from HP including their Personal Again campaign that features some incredibly well-done and creatively inspiring videos. Recently I found Paulo Coehlo’s The Experimental Witch competition that led me, breadcrumbs in hand, to his Alchemist site on HP.

The guitar music that plays on the site has me completely in thrall. I am hooked on it, sometimes leaving the browser window up in the background to listen to it while I write or work. I don’t know that he will actually see it, but I sent him an email on his MySpace requesting the name of the piece or the guitarist and thanking him for his contributions to the creative community. Admittedly I do not own personal copies of his books yet but hope to soon. His stories are wonderfully rich and I look forward to reading more.

PUBLISHED RECENTLY

I have been so busy on this end that I’ve not had the chance to tell you all about some wonderful things that happened recently!

100 Days of Monsters. My family and I found Daily Monster, Stefan Bucher’s absolutely addictive video blog, and have been glued to it ever since. We crank the volume up so we can enjoy the sounds of his pens as they glide quickly across the paper. It is fascinating to watch what each seed of ink will become, even he doesn’t know till he does it which makes for a wonderful mystery. Stefan asked people to post little stories about his monsters, what we thought they were doing, who they were, and the madness began. Everyone got involved and the stories rolled in. Incredibly funny stories, emotional stories, off the wall weirdness, and all of them great fun to read. Well, he made a book with a DVD. All of his videos for the first 100 monsters and then some are included. And two of my stories made it into the book. So pick up a copy and read about “Reggie” and “Herman”, monsters 91 and 95. They will be very happy that you did. And if you do, please post a reply here and tell me what you think. I hope you like them both.

Thank you Stefan for your inspiration and your kindness!

Never Forgotten. I am a member of the ZNE network and was able to contribute to a book project for one of its members who recently lost her mother. I encourage everyone to take a look at the book and purchase one for yourself or for a loved one who may need some support or encouragement. I do not received any kind of compensation and am even purchasing my own copy so this is not a sales pitch. My piece is Essence & Longing and is included under the “Healing: The Beauty of the Soul” section in the book. If you do buy a copy, remember to post here and tell me what you think.

BACK IN SCHOOL

Started back to college week before last, totally online, and love it. Wish I could have done it sooner. They have the same accreditation as the local university but without worrying about scheduling, gas prices, or the wear and tear on my vehicle. Val has been in since August, he’s on the Dean’s list, (WOOT You go baby!) and I should be there soon as well. I am working on my BFA in Visual Communications with a specialization in Digital Design which, mostly, is the degree for what I have already been doing for the last 22 years. I have been wanting to finish school though, needed the piece of paper, and wanted to get all of the new software so here I am. I really enjoy the interface, the structure, the whole layout of AIU. And, yes, it takes a lot of discipline. But I will have my degree in 13 months, not four years, and there is something incredibly motivating about that. When I graduate in July of next year, if not sooner, I will be working on my Masters in Education there or finding a school where I can complete my Architectural Design degree. Yup, there is the secret to my handwriting, I was an Architectural Design major previously.

TED TALKS

“Who is this Ted person anyway…” you say? Don’t worry, I said that too. During my Visual Literacy class I was linked to a TED Talk by John Maeda. An incredibly brilliant, very funny man. Maeda spoke of simplicity, applying it to design and everyday life which is something I think we all need to look at. If you get a chance to watch the video, do, it is well worth the time. I have also found the TED Talks to be a fantastic resource. I think one of my favorites so far though has to be J.J.Abrams talking about the “mystery box” and writing.

A NEW SITE FOR ART FOR CURES

Art for Cures has been in need of a site for a while and, though I had started building one, my life and health conspired to keep me from it. After seeing a few site on the Ning network, seeing the resources available and the network’s framework, I decided to build us a home there. Art for Cures is now part of the Ning network and we already have several members there. Looking forward to posting the auctions in the next week and moving forward!

SCRIBBLES, DOODLES, AND SQUIBBLES

We like to hang out in the local bookstores on occasion (read we live there) and I am always on the lookout for new things fir Ysa and I to play with. Not seeing anything I could afford to get this week, or that we didn’t already have, I picked up another Kumon book for Ysa’s homeschool. Ysa and I rummaged around the children’s section a bit and a book accosted me on the way out. Well, it didn’t actually accost me per se, but I am very visual and certain things tend to jump out at me on shelves. In fact when I worked for the bookstores (both BAM and the Noble Barn), I was the one people always came to when they couldn’t remember the name of something. Nine time out of ten I would know it by what the spine or cover looked like and sometimes the “look” of the author’s name.

This time, as soon as I saw it, I knew it was coming home with us.

Scribbles by Taro Gomi is part of a three book series (might be a series, should be) and all three seriously ROCK. The books are almost two inches thick and full of half drawn doodles that you have to finish. It is total creative license, total interpretation, total fun.

…and yes, for those who recognized the name, Taro Gomi also wrote Everyone Poops. hehe

BEING ANACHRONISTIC AGAIN

I’ve rejoined the SCA after a long hiatus and have brought my family with me this time. Val is going Art/Sci, Logan is going heavy weapons, and even my girl is considering it as well since they start youth combat at age seven. She already makes a great shield wall, ran over the last guy. Val has been working on his own medieval chant notation, Logan is making chaine maille again and I have been pouring through patterns and buying fabric in preparation for garb making. It has been way too long since I have been camping so I am really looking forward to it.

Oh, I was also given the honor of being the Shire’s new Web Minister (or Mistress in this case).

My new tagline?

Ana Maria Seaton
ska Ginuivive Alysabaeth Rosewood (Dragonfly or Alysa)
Shire of Amurgorod, Kingdom of Trimaris
“The Dragonfly caught in the Spidered Web.”

Web site for the Shire coming very soon. VIVAT TRIMARIS!

SCRIPTFRENZY

ScriptFrenzy is this month, brought to you by the makers of NaNoWriMo. I toyed with the idea of working on a script I have had in my head for a while now but my time will not allow it. Also, anytime I even consider working on another writing project, my two novels – Moonlight & Shadow and Odonatia – beat me over the head and throw tantrums on the floor begging for attention. My children’s book, Clementine’s Garden, can get away with it though. They don’t beat her up because she is too cute.

WAIT, YOU SAID…ODONATIA!?

Yes I did, you heard me right. Odonatia is fast becoming a novel. For those of you who are not familiar with it, Odonatia is a fiction project I have been working on for about 10 years now. Started as a simple postal issuing authority for artistamps (faux postage), it quickly snowballed (read avalanched) into an epic piece of fiction with real passports, a winery and other goodies coming. Turning very steampunkish. Plans include a daily blog form the island, downloads and other goodies. Looking at a couple of other creative associates that might get involved as well in the future.

ON THE HUSH HUSH

Two major projects going on, one involving my rubber stamp line that is forthcoming, are building up speed and about to take off. Sadly though, and yes I know I am a tease, both are on the “hush hush” right now till I get the okay. I know, stop pouting, I’ll post here as soon as I get the green light. Needless to say both are of incredible proportion and I cannot wait to tell you all.

…well, that is all I can think of for now. (aren’t you glad? hehe) I will be posting scans, photos and a few updates today and over the next couple of days. This week has been a busy one so I have been trying to stay focused and push forward. Hoping this finds you all well and in good creative spirits!

Brightest blessings!

Careful, Fiction!

The Great American novel. Well, I wouldn’t actually call it that but I am working on my novel from last year and and am again using NaNoWriMo as incentive to get closer to my goal.

When I stopped last year I was at around 35,000+ words and had since added probably another 5,000-something, maybe more. This year I didn’t start writing till the 7th but it was actively mulling around in my head and pushing against brain cells trying to force its way out. I normally do between 2,000-4,000 in a sitting after everyone is asleep, which is my best time to work. I compiled everything I have written into one document to get a base word count then anything over that went toward this year’s NaNo goal.

This year has been particularly busy for me. At the beginning of the year I promised myself to be more artful on a daily basis – in both word and illustration – and I have done just that. I have learned a great deal in both aspects and am looking forward to the coming year. I hve successfully completed almost all of my goals, have re-evaluated a few and let myself off the hook for the two that I was not able to complete. My goals for the new year are lined up and waiting so I am looking forward to a very fruitful year.

SUMMARY

My story? I don’t even know where to begin to write a short summary on it so, for now, it is under wraps.

OUTLINING

For this particular project I started with an outline last year in MS Word and deviated from there. I use the outline as a framework, a way to order scenes. It is nice to be able to make a list of events that I want to cover and move them around on a whim in the computer. The analog version would be to write scene ideas on 3×5 cards so that you can shuffle them around and put them in a more ordered fashion. I have found that having the outline in the computer helps with my creative flow though as my hands are better able to keep up with the flow of streaming conscious thought. Once I have the basic layout, a basic point A to point B, several subplots usually present themselves just to make things more interesting.

FILLING IN THE GAPS

One thing that I have really found helpful in keeping me from going into “edit brain” is to footnote or annotate my work.

What usually happens when I write is that I will be cruising along at a good clip when a stray, invasive, attention-demanding idea sideswipes me and tries to derail my train of thought. Now, my brain doesn’t remember things at times – a long story in itself on the wonders of medical malpractice and Prednisone – so something like this could be detrimental to actually completing my original thought. When this happens I have a specific procedure I go through:

I stop.
I write a number, letter or word in subscript or in a margin.
I write the same at the top of another sheet of paper and quickly jot down the offending idea and anything I need to remind myself what and why I was thinking that or what breadcrumbs led me to that place in my thinking.
Doodling sometimes occurs.

Once out of my head I return to my original path and continue until I sputter out or decide to switch trains and go back to elaborate on the other outside path. When I go back to my little “side path” later I can refer to my notes and trigger the same train of thought. Some good “trigger inducers” would be to make note of what music I was listening to at the time or what was going on around me. This has proven, on more than one occasion, to be a good trick to keep me moving forward.

FEEDBACK

As a writer, I always like to see what other people think of my writing, how it flows and whether or not I can keep their interest as a storyteller. This has its pitfalls. If you are not very confident in your abilities. here is a word of advice: Do NOT, I repeat, DO NOT let anyone read your story till you are done with it. Everyone will have an opinion and some are less than charitable. I have seen first-time writer’s put down their pens and never pick them up again after taking personal opinion from friends who were, in their mind, “only trying to help”. This is the Kiss of Death.

Share a summary, share a favorite quote or scene, but do not let them read your story. For now you are writing for you. Once you have crossed that 50,000 word NaNoWriMo finish line, and have the confidence in your story and your writing ability that you should have at that point, then you can share your novel with those who are supportive and can give constructive criticism.


HOW TO BE SUPPORTIVE

Being supportive is an art form when you are put on the spot and asked to read someone’s work. You should always be honest but keep in mind that what you think is not the end-all-be-all and should not be offered as such. There are thousands of brilliant books that have done just fine without your opinion and one you are reading should be treated the same.

Are there any gaps or events that don’t make sense? Ask questions. Lead the author to fill in their own answers.

Suggest making a list of points to cover or make a list for them BUT remove yourself from it. DO not take things personally or push if they do not take your advice. In fact, refrain from giving advice altogether. Encourage them to write more and see where it takes them. Give them ideas to think on, things to add, but do not lead them down the dark path of editing. Don’t.

As the year continues, my main goal is to get as much out of my head and onto paper as possible. I am not going to allow myself to go into edit mode until I feel I am at a reasonable stopping point. I know that once I start the editorial process I will invariably add more to the story but that is what editing is for. As Nora Roberts would say, “I can fix a bad page, but I can’t fix a blank one.” In the meantime, keep moving forward.

Careful, Fiction!

The Great American novel. Well, I wouldn’t actually call it that but I am working on my novel from last year and and am again using NaNoWriMo as incentive to get closer to my goal.

When I stopped last year I was at around 35,000+ words and had since added probably another 5,000-something, maybe more. This year I didn’t start writing till the 7th but it was actively mulling around in my head and pushing against brain cells trying to force its way out. I normally do between 2,000-4,000 in a sitting after everyone is asleep, which is my best time to work. I compiled everything I have written into one document to get a base word count then anything over that went toward this year’s NaNo goal.

This year has been particularly busy for me. At the beginning of the year I promised myself to be more artful on a daily basis – in both word and illustration – and I have done just that. I have learned a great deal in both aspects and am looking forward to the coming year. I hve successfully completed almost all of my goals, have re-evaluated a few and let myself off the hook for the two that I was not able to complete. My goals for the new year are lined up and waiting so I am looking forward to a very fruitful year.

SUMMARY

My story? I don’t even know where to begin to write a short summary on it so, for now, it is under wraps.

OUTLINING

For this particular project I started with an outline last year in MS Word and deviated from there. I use the outline as a framework, a way to order scenes. It is nice to be able to make a list of events that I want to cover and move them around on a whim in the computer. The analog version would be to write scene ideas on 3×5 cards so that you can shuffle them around and put them in a more ordered fashion. I have found that having the outline in the computer helps with my creative flow though as my hands are better able to keep up with the flow of streaming conscious thought. Once I have the basic layout, a basic point A to point B, several subplots usually present themselves just to make things more interesting.

FILLING IN THE GAPS

One thing that I have really found helpful in keeping me from going into “edit brain” is to footnote or annotate my work.

What usually happens when I write is that I will be cruising along at a good clip when a stray, invasive, attention-demanding idea sideswipes me and tries to derail my train of thought. Now, my brain doesn’t remember things at times – a long story in itself on the wonders of medical malpractice and Prednisone – so something like this could be detrimental to actually completing my original thought. When this happens I have a specific procedure I go through:

I stop.
I write a number, letter or word in subscript or in a margin.
I write the same at the top of another sheet of paper and quickly jot down the offending idea and anything I need to remind myself what and why I was thinking that or what breadcrumbs led me to that place in my thinking.
Doodling sometimes occurs.

Once out of my head I return to my original path and continue until I sputter out or decide to switch trains and go back to elaborate on the other outside path. When I go back to my little “side path” later I can refer to my notes and trigger the same train of thought. Some good “trigger inducers” would be to make note of what music I was listening to at the time or what was going on around me. This has proven, on more than one occasion, to be a good trick to keep me moving forward.

FEEDBACK

As a writer, I always like to see what other people think of my writing, how it flows and whether or not I can keep their interest as a storyteller. This has its pitfalls. If you are not very confident in your abilities. here is a word of advice: Do NOT, I repeat, DO NOT let anyone read your story till you are done with it. Everyone will have an opinion and some are less than charitable. I have seen first-time writer’s put down their pens and never pick them up again after taking personal opinion from friends who were, in their mind, “only trying to help”. This is the Kiss of Death.

Share a summary, share a favorite quote or scene, but do not let them read your story. For now you are writing for you. Once you have crossed that 50,000 word NaNoWriMo finish line, and have the confidence in your story and your writing ability that you should have at that point, then you can share your novel with those who are supportive and can give constructive criticism.


HOW TO BE SUPPORTIVE

Being supportive is an art form when you are put on the spot and asked to read someone’s work. You should always be honest but keep in mind that what you think is not the end-all-be-all and should not be offered as such. There are thousands of brilliant books that have done just fine without your opinion and one you are reading should be treated the same.

Are there any gaps or events that don’t make sense? Ask questions. Lead the author to fill in their own answers.

Suggest making a list of points to cover or make a list for them BUT remove yourself from it. DO not take things personally or push if they do not take your advice. In fact, refrain from giving advice altogether. Encourage them to write more and see where it takes them. Give them ideas to think on, things to add, but do not lead them down the dark path of editing. Don’t.

As the year continues, my main goal is to get as much out of my head and onto paper as possible. I am not going to allow myself to go into edit mode until I feel I am at a reasonable stopping point. I know that once I start the editorial process I will invariably add more to the story but that is what editing is for. As Nora Roberts would say, “I can fix a bad page, but I can’t fix a blank one.” In the meantime, keep moving forward.