No rest for the weary

I swear I’m going to lose my ever-loving mind…

After a night with only two hours of sleep, I was going to type up a post that was 95% bitching about the insomnia. I actually did type it up, but I deleted it all. Because fuck the insomnia. I’m not going to let it win. I’m going to drink my coffee, take my shower, and get ready for the busy work day ahead. I’m going to do my job until it’s time for me to go home and then work out, eat dinner, and hopefully crash into a peaceful night’s sleep.

And if I don’t? Well then, it’s just going to be another long night.


I’ve gotten to that bend in the roller coaster again. I’d been fairly flat and level lately, but I suspect that the tracks are on a downslope as I get more and more sensitive to little things that shouldn’t bug me.

My biggest frustration stems from new knowledge that’s coming in that is slowing me down when it comes to utilization of said knowledge. I know, in theory, how to do these new things, but in practice I’m failing–big time. My mind is trying to apply the things I’ve learned and in the process I’m tripping all over myself…sometimes literally. I know that it’s a learning curve and I just have to be patient and keep practicing, but try telling that to me. I’m sure as hell not listening to it.

I’m also getting more sensitive, or maybe more paranoid, about what people think of me. Every time I hear derisive laughter and I don’t know what the people are talking about, I assume it must be about me. They’re making fun of someone and I’m weird, so they must be making fun of me. It’s not anything or anyone specific and it’s not logical in any way, but the thoughts come just the same.

These insecurities are really hitting me harder than they should, so I know it’s just my mind getting out of control again. Knowing that and pushing the insecurities aside are two different animals though; I can tell myself all day long that I’m worrying over nothing–it won’t make a difference. I’ll still find myself on the verge of tears for no good reason.

It’ll pass eventually–it always does–but it’s frustrating as hell when this part of my brain cycle hits.


Now that Phoenix Comicon is over, my work as a media attendee is in full swing. I already wrote one article during the con, but my recaps are still pending. I have one ready for editing/publication on and one draft, plus at least two more to write. Alas, the day job beckons, so I must wait until later to get those taken care of.

Speaking of the day job, the realization that I’ll be back to it hit midday yesterday. I only thought about my job once during the con, and that was a moment of relief that I wasn’t working on a busy day before a holiday. It has been nice not having work looming over my head nearly every day. Not that my job is a bad one, just that it’s a lot of work and quite exhausting at times. I definitely needed the break from it to decompress and just be me for a few days. It was nice having friends from out of town as company, and it was nice to get away from everything other than the con.

I also have non-work stuff that’s been simmering on the back burner for a while. I’ve got to get back to editing/revising/writing on the new series plus more garb sewing for the SCA plus remaking my Dark Phoenix corset (omg it turned out SO BIG on me even though I made a mock-up…I have no idea what I did), and gods only know what else I’m forgetting at the moment. I think the SCA sewing will likely be first on that list, as we have events coming up where we’d like something other than pajama pants to wear as “garb.” Not that the pajama pants aren’t comfortable, but I’d like to have some more actual Viking wear. The fencing tunics were fun to make, but they’re three layers of fabric and a little hot on those sweltering Arizona days. I’m improving little by little on the rapier fighting, but I still have a long, long way to go.

Once I have the one pending critique that I’m relatively certain I’ll get back, it’s editing/revising time. I’ve got several scenes in book 2 that need complete overhauls, but I have to wait for the critique before I get to those. Don’t want to write the new scenes only to have to make story-wide changes right after. That would be counterproductive (and more than a bit stupid). The corset? That’s at the bottom of the priority list right now. It’s going to be a while before we go to another con or cosplay-type event, so I’ll leave that for any imaginary “free time” I get in the future.

Speaking of the writing, I’ve gotten back in the swing of the “free writing events” on Twitter, which is basically themed hashtags where you use a line from your WIP and the hashtag to get snippets of your work seen. It’s interesting (and good for telling which lines can be condensed into smaller, 140-or-less-character lines) and good writing exercise. Theoretically I could write new lines for the themes that aren’t in my current WIP, but I prefer to skip the themes that don’t apply and stick to my story. I want to maintain that focus on the story and keep my eye sharp for the details and nuances that are (or are not) present in the books.

Though the five-day escape from life-as-we-know-it was nice, I’ll be glad to be back in the normal routine of work, sewing, and writing. Working is rewarding despite the exhaustion, and the “extracurriculars” help keep me sane when exhaustion is on the verge of winning.

Just have to make it through today

It’s almost here: Phoenix Comicon! All I have left to do is survive a super busy work day with most of my sanity intact.

Now that I’m done with cosplay work (yes, I finished in the nick of time), I’m finally starting to feel the excitement that comes every year with the con. I’m going through the Phoenix Comicon app with my husband to see what panels interest us, I’m double checking and triple checking packing lists, and I’ve gotten the guest room tidied up for company.

A lot accomplished in these past two months or so, but it has definitely worn me down a bit. My body and mind are weary. I definitely welcome the vacation, though it will be busy.

Guess I should get ready for that busy work day. As soon as work is done–skipping town! 

Almost weightless

I have almost done it! I finished the jacket last night, the pants this morning, and just have a couple small polymer clay things to finish tonight after work and I can call these cosplays DONE.

I think, perhaps, that I have learned a valuable lesson about procrastination on this most recent cosplay journey. As in, don’t procrastinate. I theoretically could have had all this done months ago. Months. I could even have had more time for a few extra details here and there. But nooooo, I had to write. I had to stare at the computer screen for hours on end. I had to nap.

No more. Next project (sewing-wise) is more SCA garb so we have more things to wear to events than just our rapier tunics. Perhaps I can even take some time to practice and learn embroidery so I can embellish the garb and make it more appealing to the eye. I’m not going to procrastinate though. I’m going to knock it all out as soon as possible. Pants next, then more tunics (with fewer layers this time), then maybe bracers, possibly shoes…as much as I can get done.

The only problem is that I have a critique of book 1 incoming after Phoenix Comicon. That means I’ll have to balance my time between reading the critique, going over the notes, revising and refining the manuscript, etc. and working on SCA clothing. But less staring at the computer screen and less napping for sure.

Now that I’m almost done with the cosplay work, I can settle down a bit and let the con excitement kick in–I hope. So far I’m still kind of nonplussed, but I think it’s because I’ve still got some work to do. I just keep telling myself that I’ll be done with the cosplay work tonight and then it’s cleaning up the craft room (aka the guest bedroom) and packing. A lot of the packing is done since we’re cosplaying each day of the con, but there’s still things like toiletries, makeup, meds, underclothes, etc. etc. etc.

I just hope we pack all the pieces of these newest cosplays. If not, I’m going to lose my ever-loving mind lol

The con is nigh…so why aren’t I more excited?

The con is nigh…so why aren’t I more excited?

I’m almost done with the jacket for my husband’s new cosplay. Almost. Just a few more steps, and it’ll be finished. So why am I not elated? Why am I not filled with excitement for Phoenix Comicon and the great things I’ll get to do there?

Part of it could be sheer exhaustion. Con prep hasn’t been the most fulfilling thing this year. It’s been stressful and rushed, largely due to my own poor time management. For instance, I should be sewing right now–but I’m at a step in the instructions that confuses me, so I’m really unsure on how to proceed. That happens to me sometimes: I can’t visualize what the instructions are telling me to do (despite the pictures provided), so I get stuck. I should be done by the end of today, though. There really isn’t much left to do. I just have to get up and get going. Kick my butt in gear. Get the fuck out of bed.

The upcoming con itself isn’t upping the excitement factor like it usually does. Maybe it’s because, though I’m going as a member of the media, I haven’t even heard official word from the con about how they’re going to handle guest interviews. Seriously? I mean, it’s 4 days from the start of con; how can you not tell your media attendees what process they need to start in order to interview people?

Another disappointment in the con is the rapid-fire cancellations of some of the guests I was most excited to see. Charlie Cox of Daredevil? Cancelled. Arthur Darvill? Cancelled. Jenna Coleman? Cancelled. Ming-Na Wen? Cancelled. Sure, they are active actors and have filming commitments that came up (well, Ming-Na had knee surgery, so it’s not really her fault), but those were all actors I wanted to meet in person, either in a quick photo op or maybe at an autograph signing…Except for Arthur. Him I wanted a photo with, but I also wanted to use the few seconds of posing to apologize for stabbing him with my foam spikes at Dragon Con. This kind of thing happens every year (the cancellations, not the stabbing with foam spikes), but it never ceases to disappoint.

Even the excitement of debuting our first steampunk cosplays (because let’s face it, my first attempt at steampunk ended up more burlesque) isn’t enough to get my engine revved up for Comicon. I had a lot of firsts with these cosplays. First time altering a pattern at the last minute to make it fit my husband. First time altering a corset pattern to have it fit *me.* First time sculpting with craft and EVA foam. First time leatherworking. First time airbrushing (see the pic of the fan at the top–yeah, not really well-defined flames, but I think it gets the point across…and it’s shiny). It has been a lot of work, and I might have to alter the jacket a bit to make it fit my husband, too (despite us measuring him beforehand–I am so sick of commercial patterns right now…wondering if the local community college has any classes on fashion design and patterning lol).

We’ve even got friends coming from clear across the country to visit us and join us at Comicon. That should have me super excited, because the four of us had a blast at Dragon Con. At the moment, though, I’m more…meh. No offense to my friends; I just can’t whip up any thrill for the con that usually strikes me each year.

I’m hoping that once the jacket is done I can sit down, take a deep breath, and chill for, like, half a day before the con is upon me.

C’mon, con jitters–kick in already!

Seriously? Less than two weeks before con?

I hate acne.

Thirty-seven years old and I still get it. It’s not as frequent or constant like when I was a kid, but it’s prevalent nonetheless. And it decided to pop up right before Phoenix Comicon. FML.

I’m hoping it clears up in the next two weeks. I don’t have any kind of cover-up makeup, and even if I did I’ve never known how to apply concealer and foundation and all that jazz. I mean, I can put the stuff on, but matching my skin tone and blending the edges around the jawline? Nope. Can’t do it. And there’s no way I’m buying new makeup just for con. I bought the eye makeup specifically for Comicon, for cosplay and maybe the rare occasion where I want to feel pretty. For me, that’s enough. All that contouring crap that’s in fashion these days just makes people look like they’ve got pancake batter caked on their faces. Eww.

If it doesn’t clear up, I suppose I can be grateful that at least one of my cosplays will have a mask over my chin and nose, where the current outbreak is located.

I’m not sure what evolutionary path led to stress-related acne. What’s that all about? How is that an appropriate reaction to stressors? “Hey, this thing is getting us anxious/upset/stressed out. Let’s grow giant boils on our face and stuff. That’ll take care of whatever imminent threat is lording over us.” I suppose I could Google it, but whatever. Knowing the theoretical evolutionary reason for acne won’t do me any good unless there’s a cure, and if there was a true cure it would be on the market already.

Dermatologists have prescribed creams for me in the past, but the problem with that is that the first few weeks of treatment leave my face red and raw and peeling before my skin gets accustomed to the new medicine. No thanks. As gross as breakouts are, I don’t know if I want to have to go through that again–not to mention that it’ll make me even more susceptible to sunburn, and with how often I’m out in the sun lately that would be a “no.”

I need to try to relax. I need to be confident that I will finish my husband’s cosplay clothing in time. I need to chill the fuck out.

Or maybe it’s just hormones, in which case this rant is pointless.