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Work From Home March 19, 2020

Posted by Hydy in CSCC, library, photos, reading, writing.
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My library is now physically closed and we are working to setup virtual supportfor our students when they return to online classes next week. This has meant learning new technology, and various tickets into our IT department for the things I could not troubleshoot myself. It’s been a hectic week, and chat hasn’t even been approved yet.

On the home (office) front, I’ve bought a seat cushion/lumbar support set. It arrived very quickly, and is certainly a step up from two pillows, and cheaper than a new chair.

We also ran our D&D game on Google Hangouts this week. A bit of lag here and there, but an overall success.

A lot of people are putting out free media online. From performances, to virtual conventions, to cooking lessons and exercise routines. My favorite came for Gail Simone over the weekend.

Starting on Friday, @GailSimone ran a comics writing bootcamp, she called #ComicsSchool. In six days, she helped over a thousand creatives, including myself, write a script for a 5-8 page comic. A Discord server was created by one of the attendees, as a place for us all to gather, socialize and give each other feedback and support. That community will keep going and growing. It even got a mention in the New York Times.

In book news, I’m listening to The Library of the Unwritten, but with self-quarantining, I have a lot less car time. I do, however, have all my comics to catch up on, and Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount showed up on Tuesday.

Be safe everyone!

The More Things Change… January 25, 2020

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Another colleague moving on. Work environment stress ratcheting up. Meeting to clarify spreading of duties just made it more muddy than before. I keep doing what I’m doing. Two new hires starting soon, then another round of sorting out job descriptions and interviews.

I’ve started a new thing in writing. I have a prompt that I’m going to respond to every day for at least four weeks. No word count requirements, just write what I feel that day. The prompt is:

Tell me how you crumble when
you hit the wall, the place you
cannot go beyond by the strength
of your own will. What carries you
to the other side of that wall,
to the fragile beauty
of your own humanness?
Oriah Mountain Dreamer, The Dance

After I finished Kushiel’s Chosen, I’m back on Benedict Jacka. Got through Chosen and now on Hidden. I also am working on Volume 6 of Locke & Key.

I am From… October 26, 2019

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We did an activity at our Student Success Summit yesterday, that I wanted to share. It comes from the I Am From Project.

I Am From

I am from handcrafted furniture.

From Encyclopedia Britannica and Texas Instruments.

I’m from swampy parsonages full of pinochle games and bibles,

Filled with the scent of boiling tomato sauce and apple cinnamon.

I’m from church camps singing The Fruit of the Spirit and Father Abraham, and school yards singing Little Bunny Foo-Foo, and college dances playing Nothing Else Matters and Unforgiven.

I’m from rural churches in Michigan forests singing Amazing Grace before endless potlucks.

I’m from sitting in the front pew eating Cheerios watching my parents preach.

I’m from high school classes with Mrs. Heinrich, who knew me better than I knew myself.

I’m from ‘Not All Who Wander Are Lost’ and ‘To Bodly Go Where No One Has Gone Before.’

I am from ‘God is Love’ and ‘Love Your Neighbor.’

I am from a father who grew up on a farm in New England, and met my mother at Seminary in Ohio.

I am from a mother who was just going to teach Sunday School, but ended up District Superintendent.

I am from a mother who knew my name long before I was born, and a father who chose to spell that name with two Y’s.

I am from best friends who taught me chronic illness doesn’t define you.

I am from chosen family that is just as strong and supportive as my blood.

I am from Dreams, Creativity, and Stubborn Persistence.

October Nights October 17, 2019

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Well into Fall now, the trees have all turned and the temps have dropped. Soup and chilli is the order of the day.

I had one conference this week on digital collections in Ohio, and tomorrow is Academic Library Association of Ohio’s yearly conference. Lots of networking and learning this week. Next week begins several weeks of intensively scheduled instruction sessions. Busy times at the college.

I’m doing a lot more drawing and writing lately, as well. Stories for the pictures and pictures for the stories. Nothing complete, just bits of inspiration to get me started. Enjoying it thoroughly. Also learned to use air airbrush to prime miniatures this week. Now to find time to paint them.

In books, I’m still working on Embrace Your Weird (Felicia Day) took a break from Grave Peril (Jim Butcher) because Over the Top (Jonathan Van Ness) came in from the library. I’m behind in my comics because life and creating. 🙂

Autumn Changes October 10, 2019

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The weather has turned, though I’m not counting on hot days being gone, yet. Apples and pumpkins fill beverages, pies, and our weekends.

The fall semester is busy with lots of classes coming in for instruction. I’m teaching about one class a week. I haven’t seen the grant paperwork, yet, but I assume that’s on its way soon. Very much looking forward to getting that going. I have two conference next week: ODNFest and ALAO, so that will keep me busy.

October is a busy social month with cookouts, parties, and Halloween fun to be had every weekend. Still a few more weeks of the RenFaire, as well. Enjoying getting out of the house to hang with friends before it gets really cold.

Slow, but steady progress fleshing out ideas for my writing and drawing. I am working my way through Embrace Your Weird by Felicia Day. It’s all about just putting stuff on paper, even if it’s bad, to unblock your creativity and break down the walls adulthood put up around it. Full of exercises and prompts, so I have to listen with pen in hand. Also on another go round with Dresden, between library borrows.

Winter, Spring and Leprechauns March 18, 2019

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Crazy weather week had me running around coatless one day and freezing the next. Sorry for the late post.

Spring Break at work went quietly and well. I got to have a meeting about my big project and get some plans in place. We will have an awareness campaign over the next few months and hopefully be able to provide better resources in a more accessible way to all our students.

In health news, my weight is mostly maintaining a slight downward trajectory. I have started seeing a therapist to work on anxiety and self care to keep my journey going in a healthy direction. I have also started writing a new short story and my drawing is improving, too.

Nervous Goblin: Nott the Brave from Critical Role

Nervous Goblin: Nott the Brave from Critical Role

I finished listening to Every Heart a Door by Seanan McGuire and now am on to Friday Black, written by Nana Qwame Adjei-Brenyah, the older brother of a good friend. I am also very excited for a new comic coming out this week: A Darkened Wish, written by B. Dave Walters and drawn by Tess Fowler. And also, the Critical Role Kickstarter just surpassed another stretch goal, now reaching over 10 times the original requested amount!

Pirates at DeCon January 16, 2019

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The semester has started and the students and winter have returned in full force. Icy mornings, and full computer banks fill my days.

This coming weekend is also DeCon, in a new hotel. And we will be full of Pirates. We have a pirate family coming, and our very own pirate artist as Guest of Honor, along with our usual shenanigans.

On a creative note, I have restarted my gaming blog, and added my NaNo project, planning to put a lot of my new writing online. This time as a separate account at WordPress: Ravonlocke.

Watching: I am up to Episode 75 of Critical Role, campaign one. Listening: I finished Mask of Shadows and started Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi. Reading: I have moved on to Locke and Key v. 2, and read DIE Issue 1, a D&D + Jumanji mashup. Looking forward to A Darkened Wish. I did read the first volume of Saga over the holidays, and bought a bunch of comics on sale. And finally figured out that Chronicles of Atlantis is an Aquaman comic. (This is how little I knew before The Wednesday Club.) There is just So Much.

Holidays Are Done January 4, 2019

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I had a great holiday week off from work, and it was super busy and fun.

I visited my brother, sister-in-law and family. Five kids is a lot, but we played a few games together, and had a nice time. The kids’re all playing Fortnite these days, when not on YouTube or running around.

I finally got to visit my parents’ house as well. (Pictures in previous post.) We mostly relaxed and watched TV while Dad colored. Mom made tasty food and treats for me. Bailey is a silly dog, but she’s a good girl.

I also got to visit with Erika, Alyssa, and Kate ( and Kate’s Mom). That was nice, just to hang out and chat like we used to. Only now it’s about kids and family.

Over the weekend prior to the New Year, I spent around 50 hours playing D&D with a small group, and we had a blast. We started and ended in a homebrew world, and powered through Curse of Strahd in the middle. The DM went above and beyond, including organizing an in-character candlelit dinner with Strahd.

Formally set table with rose centerpiece and candelabrum.

Pre-Dinner Shot

I am organizing my writing into one place again. I also started listening to a new book after finishing City of Brass. Mask of Shadows by Linsey Miller, a young genderfluid thief strives to become one of the Queen’s assassins.

December Thoughts December 8, 2018

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Well, it’s definitely winter down here in Ohio. Temperatures have plummeted, and frost and snow keep covering the cars and ground. Nothing serious, yet, but just enough to remind us of the season.

At work, I’ve finished the Guided Interviews of my Usability Study, and next week I try to tempt random volunteers for a card sort exercise. It’ll be finals week, so I don’t know if I’ll get any, but it’s worth a try. Then we have a month-long break between semesters, including an entire week+ off between Christmas Eve and New Year’s Day. That will be awesome, first time ever, for me. Have already started planning family visits and gaming marathons.

Along the gaming lines, I’ve had a spectacular few weeks, having successfully completed our Marathon and finished off two campaigns. All by defeating super-powerful entities that people/cultists/dragons were trying to bring in/rise up/free to take over the world. Huzzah!

On the reading front, I’m still making my way through City of Brass, but I have quite a few thing waiting in the wings, thanks to reading Publisher’s Weekly at work. I’m still trying to make my way through Campaign 1 of Critical Role, and have made it through Episode 47 so far.

On the writing front, I’ve started writing holiday letters to people, typing up my marathon notes as though being told by the character I played, and an ever-growing backstory for my next marathon character. I’ll have another character backstory to write on Tuesday, as well. I’m still journaling, and pondering the next few scenes for my NaNo piece, too.

Thanksgiving Reflections November 29, 2018

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I missed posting last week (sorry Mom) because I spent the Day with friends, and then the weekend creating a story in the Rifts multiverse with more friends. My character ended up being without language, which I didn’t expect, but I worked on a soundboard so she could still communicate. I am often too shy/embarrassed to put on a voice for a character, but I had been planning on it for this one. Turned out her voice was mostly birdsong, which was interesting and entertaining (I hope) for everyone.

NaNoWriMo is about to end, and while I didn’t “finish” or “win,” I did learn about myself this past month, and I have some ideas to move forward with. This includes scheduling writing time, but not beating myself up for missing it. Journaling more. And a card writing project for Advent. I’m also looking at venues for posting more of my writing online.

In other news, Dissolution papers have been filed, and accepted (only took two tries). My job is stable and steady, and I’ve managed 8 of 15 usability tests/interviews. Thanksgiving with friends three nights last week was wonderful. And I am so grateful for my friends and family who support my crazy life.

In reading news… I finished Death’s Mistress by Terry Goodkind. I’m now listening to City of Brass by S.A. Chakraborty. I’ve also been reading comics on Comixology thanks to The Wednesday Club on Geek and Sundry Twitch/Project Alpha. Classic Deadpool V. 1, Runaways V. 1, and Love is Love. Planning to try Saga and Fables next.