Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Status Update

Still alive!

It's been a while, and lots of stuff has happened, and some more stuff is imminent, so I figured this was as good a time as any to post a status update of sorts.

Alex: Prepping for kindergarten in the fall, of course. Very excited about it. I've got an appointment to turn in most of his paperwork next week (why I need an appointment for that, I have no idea) but it won't be finished until August, because that's the earliest the doctor's office could give him the physical and immunization booster he needs to start school. He's still planning to marry his friend Claudia from daycare. Though they "graduated" preschool a couple of weeks ago, and will be going to different elementary schools. Long distance relationships are pretty hard to maintain.

Penny: She just finished the 4th grade. She's edging into puberty (not to delve into TMI, but I expect she'll need at least a training bra before she turns 11). She alternates between being an infuriating know-it-all and breathlessly generous and loving -- which, as I am given to understand, still puts me ahead of many parents of preteens. After priming me carefully so I would not freak out when she got her first "C" (in social studies, her -- and my -- least favorite subject) she squeaked through with a B anyway and was on the honor roll again for the year. She's two months away from turning 10. Holy hell.

Work: The Day Job is a bit worrisome -- we have contracts that will keep me employed (though not anything like busy) through September (the end of the Government fiscal year) and then... not really anything. I'm fretting about it a bit and considering options, but not terrified. The worst of it will be if I do end up having to look for another job, I'm fairly likely to end up having to move to either the Norfolk or Richmond areas, which will play merry havoc with our carefully-cultivated custody schedule. My mom asked what we'd do if that was the case, and I had to admit that I had no idea whatsoever. The Dream Job is going much better, though it doesn't pay remotely well enough for me to even think about taking it full-time. (I got a 1st-quarter royalty check the other day for -- hold onto your hats -- $7!) But I've got a new story being released tomorrow (June 19th), and this one has a wider readability than most of my others -- a high fantasy story. It's got some romantic elements, and some kind of dark moments, but it's being released by Torquere's YA imprint, Prizm, so you can take that into account. :-) (I'll do a separate post to pimp it when it comes out. I'm really proud of it; it's some of my best writing ever.) And I've sold my first full-length novel (a fantasy m/m romance) to Torquere!

Personal Life:  B. and I are still dating. I suspect it's a relationship with an expiration date; we like each other pretty well, but have pretty wildly different goals and approaches to life, which occasionally leads to some friction. Sometimes that bothers me and makes me wonder why I'm wasting time on something that's most likely doomed, but most of the time I'm just ignoring it and trying to have fun. I've got enough on my plate right now anyway, right? Anyway, I'm technically still married -- though that's getting closer to changing.

I spent almost three hours sitting in my lawyer's office today. The first half-hour of that was with Matt present -- we signed our formal Separation/Property Settlement, so now I guess we're officially and legally separated. In about six weeks, when we've been living apart for a full year, I'll call the lawyer back and we'll get the divorce proceedings rolling. With a no-fault, no-contest divorce, the lawyer says it'll take about six more weeks to finalize. So I should be officially and legally divorced by the end of August or early September. I'm beginning to ponder ways to commemorate the occasion.

House: The other two hours I spent at the lawyer's office were spent signing the paperwork to refinance the house in my own name only. And then I went to the bank and had them cut me a mouth-dryingly large cashier's check to buy out Matt's share of the equity. Which is to say the house is, as of today (well, technically in three days, when the chicken-out period is done and the paperwork all gets filed) solely mine.

I've also written a couple of other mildly huge checks (oh, my aching bank account) to a contractor who is supposed to come in July and August and fix my rotten porch support posts and the rotten board in my dining room, and replace the yellowing vinyl flooring in my kitchen and dining room with tile. And as long as I'll have to empty the rooms anyway, I'm pondering paint as well.

Hobbies: I'm still crocheting a lot, though my efforts have taken a kind of weird turn... It started with this chibi Cthulhu (Cutethulhu?) pattern, because everyone needs a chibi Cthulhu, right? And then KT posted a link to this picture of a whole collection of disturbingly adorable Lovecraftian horrors:

And I was looking at it and thought... Some of those wouldn't be that hard to make, really... So far I've made -- entirely on my own, without recourse to any specific patterns -- a Hastur and a Nyarlathotep. (Nyarlathotep is a little closer to the scarier versions of him I've seen online than the one in this picture, but I'm considering it an inspiration, not a pattern, so that's okay. I'm less okay with the way his "hips" bulge out and make him look like he's an Elder God with a fondness for beer and cupcakes; if I ever do him over, I'll probably try to find a way to slim him down a little. I'm pretty pleased with how the mouth and tongue turned out, though.)

I've been calling them my Little Horrors, and yes, I'm planning to do the whole set. I'll probably do Yog-Sothoth next, now that I have a notion of how I think I want to do it.

(A few days ago, B. texted me and asked what I was up to, and I said, "trying to figure out how to crochet Nyarlathotep." He texted back and said, "Yet another reason why you're my girlfriend," and I responded, "The fact that you find this good rather than disturbing would be on the list of reasons you're my boyfriend.")


Wyvernsrose said...

I would really appreciate patterns for those! I have been trying to hunt such up all night without success

Emily Thatcher said...

I just googled "Nyarlathotep crochet pattern" and found this blog because good gravy, these are amazing! May I ask where you got the pattern from, assuming you used one? My boyfriend is a lover of Lovecraft, and I desperately want to make him at least one of these little guys.

Liz Brooks said...

The Cthulhu pattern I found online from a blog that (I just checked) no longer exists. But Cthulhu is popular enough that if you just google "Cthulhu crochet" you'll probably find several options. The others were... kind of just me winging it, based on a couple of years of amigurumi experience. I did actually write out the patterns at one point; if you drop me an email at liz . brooks @ gmail . com then I'll be happy to send it to you!