Sunday, October 15, 2017

Be Your Own Lady Fall Quarterly Update!

Se que nadie le esto así que  me siento tan solo triste y roto como todos los pensamientos que pasan por mi cabezaThe last time I posted, summer was just beginning, and I was feeling really whiny about the future, and I was 31, and I was a first grade teacher. Pretty much the only thing that remains unchanged is that I'm still taking myself mega-seriously, and I've still got it in me to whine.  One morning this summer, I was out to breakfast and whining to a dear friend about how I couldn't "make it all work." I knew I needed to cut some things out to grow in other places, but I didn't want to give up on Be Your Own Lady. She gave me an idea of using this space to share quarterly updates, still talking books and activism and writing without feeling the pressure of regular posting. I loved the idea. I think I'll probably still post a year-end recap, and I'm going to be trying to facilitate more guest posting, but I'm sticking to four major check-ins throughout the year. It will still give me the diary-esque feel I'm going for, and keep me interacting with Be Your Own Lady until I have more time to decide where all this is going.

Work: At the end of the summer, I got a job as a Library Media Specialist at the elementary school I was already working at. I was petrified for three days, then elated, and now I'm still over the moon and also kind of tired. I'm taking graduate courses through Salem State to get my school library license, and I'm learning a lot, but it's really hard. I think it's the actually-trying-to-learn-something thing. It's exhausting. It's worth it, because I'm living a dream that I thought might take much longer to reach. So I'm eyeballs deep in digital literacy standards and Makerspace ideas and the Dewey Decimal system, which, for a book lover and librarian enthusiast, I am shockingly unfamiliar with. I am finally using the nameplate Ben made for me years ago. Ashlie Swicker: Librarian.

Emotional Club (@emotionalclub) on InstagramWriting: Over the summer, before I knew my fall would be quite so consuming, I also worked on making a site for my writing work, with the eventual goal of trying to get a few more freelance jobs. I'm really happy with how it came out, and look forward to adding more of my favorite pieces to the clips page. Check out ashlieswicker.comThe biggest sacrifice I've had to make is my writing group. We've been meeting monthly since last September, sharing insight and excerpts and it's been such an amazing experience to talk about stories and have an excuse to keep my word count up. We met as part of a writing class and enjoyed each other's company so much that we kept meeting afterwards. I adore these ladies and leaving sucks, but I haven't kept up a writing habit for a few hectic months, and I know it will be awhile until things are settled enough for me to dive back in. I miss my story, but also have been picking away at the same plot for three years, and I feel weird relief to step back. Interesting.

Here are my most recent articles for Book Riot:

Buy, Borrow, Bypass: Body Positive Memoirs (Read THIS IS JUST MY FACE! Do it!)

I'm struggling with not writing for them as often as I  should, not keeping up with new releases the way I'd like to, and not pursuing new freelance work the way I thought I'd be this fall. My library job is bigger and more important growth, so when am I being pouty about it taking up so much of my time?

Reading: I'm going to keep myself together and try not to cry right now- I'm having a TERRIBLE fall where reading is concerned. I have so many things I'm interested in reading, but I'm not working hard enough to set aside the time. I could blame it on the fact that I am truly busy, but I find the time to mindlessly scroll Twitter and Insta for countless hours, so there's no excuse. I'm not working out as much as I should to feel good, and my best reading happens when I'm on the elliptical, so there we are. STILL I have read a few things that I loved the crap out of, so here:

Moxie  The Witch Boy  I Am Alfonso Jones  The Vanderbeekers of 141st Street

I'm also loving A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir on audio, when I get my act together and remember headphones to listen while I grocery shop, and I'm reading two library-adjacent titles for work (Resolve and Rescue and a book about Makerspaces).  I have some great books on deck, including the third in Libba Bray's Diviners series and some middle grade egalleys that I was praying I'd get approved for, then instantly forgot to download (EYEROLL AT MYSELF). Tell me what you're loving. Get me jealous enough to break this slump!

Blogging: I haven't been doing much but I've been reading some great things that soothe and inspire! Click through and be well (hopefully I'll get back to more focused Coffee and Blogs posts soon!)

Hymn: A Poem by Sherman Alexie  ("Alone, we are defenseless. Collected, we are sacred.")
5 Ways to be a Good Friend  (Another thing I am constantly working on.)
Reading Pathways: Paula Danziger  (Best author of all authors.)

I also check my horoscope every week/day at Astrostyle and monthly with Susan Miller. Chani Nicholas is another great resource.

Looking for similar Posts? Follow me! | Source: visualgraphcLife: My lucky little life is trucking along. Now that we're all back to school I'm MUCH happier than I was in the unscheduled, unstructured summer. Milo is in kindergarten at the school I work in, and I'm liking being so near to him- I wasn't sure how that would go. Elliott is doing so well at PreK, reaching his goals and making friends and seeming more mature everyday. My mom and stepdad were living up here for the month of September, and my sister Laurel is getting married at the end of October, so we've been spending our weekends on family time and birthday celebrations. Ben shot a new movie in September and his last film is being shown in festivals all over. 

I always wish there was more time- to read, to sit around, to see friends, to travel- but I recognize this is a period of wild career growth and I need to buckle down. Each of the boys has a skill they're really working hard on and both are right on the cusp of new milestones. Ben's brainstorming some next steps that are really exciting. We're all strapping in to make it through the holidays without too much stress, and I'm so excited for what 2018 will bring.

That's all I have at the moment, but I would love to hear from you. Where are you in work, reading, writing, life? Do you have a horoscope site to suggest, because I'm currently obsessed! What is making you happy? DO SHARE, these kinds of updates are my favorite things to hear. So much love to each of you. 

(image credits: 1, 2, 3)

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