Tag Archives: bUneke Magazine

#WriteTuesday – April Off to a Great Start!

I didn’t do much (other than work my day job) for Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.  But wow, this weekend was really great!

On Saturday, I worked on drafts for some upcoming Sustainably North blog posts.  One of them is pretty much ready to go; I want to read it over one more time before scheduling it for next Monday.  The other one is mostly written but still needs a conclusion (hence why it’s going to be posted in two Mondays instead).

Then on Sunday, I got yesterday’s Sustainably North intro post written and scheduled.  I didn’t want to do that until I knew for sure what the other posts for the week would be.  Since Sustainably North is now one year old, I decided to go with the topic of “celebrations” for the rest of April.  I’m currently calling these intro posts “editorials” on Sustainably North, but I might change that to something like “notes” or “editor’s notes.” Any suggestions for what else might work?

Then yesterday, I got a good draft of next month’s bUneke column written.  The magazine requests all articles in by the 10th of the month.  Normally I have mine ready to go a week or two before that but I really struggled with this one.  The topic they chose was “clean water initiatives” and I had no idea what to write about.  Part of the problem was that they ask for pictures to go with the articles, and we still had a ton of snow here!  So even though I had ideas for the column (rain gardens, plastic pollution in our lakes and rivers, or rain barrels), I couldn’t get a good picture of anything (no one is going to care about seeing a picture of a rain garden under a few feet of snow).  I ended up going with rain barrels because that seemed to be the easiest for pictures.

frozen rain barrel

It’s not perfect, but at least you can kind of tell this IS a rain barrel.

After this experience, I’m thinking I’m going to go around this summer and take a whole bunch of pictures of things like the rain garden, just so I have them on hand should I ever need them.  I’m thinking I might post them on Pixabay since that’s where I’ve gotten a bunch of pictures for Sustainably North from – it’ll be good to give back to that community. 🙂

So that’s what I’ve been up to.  It’s feeling really good to be kind of on top of these things right now.  This week I really need to get reading the book I want to review on Sustainably North, plus I want to post some pictures and/or quotes there on Fridays; I need to figure out what that’s going to look like (at least for this Friday).   I’d also like to fix up the Sustainably North blog categories (some of them are fine, but others are more appropriate as a tag), but that’s something that can wait until these other priorities are done.

How about you?  What have you been up to?  What are your plans for the week?

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#WriteTuesday – YouTube and A Whole Lot of Thinking

About a week ago, I saw some ads for Viral Academy 2.0.  Specifically they were offering some free videos about how to make a profitable channel on YouTube and I was curious.  I’ve considered starting a YouTube channel for Sustainably North (although I admit that I have no idea about what sorts of videos I’d actually make for my blog), so I signed myself up to get the videos (knowing they were probably part of some sort of pitch for something, kind of like how a free exercise course I signed myself up for was pitching a longer course that you pay for).

So I wasn’t surprised when Video 4 ended up being a pitch for Viral Academy 2.0.  After watching Video 4, you had about a week to decide on whether or not to sign up for Viral Academy 2.0 before enrollment closed.  Every day I was sent an email about the virtues of signing up for Viral Academy 2.0.  I read them all and considered them deeply.  One particular email hit me pretty hard: it talked about how society conditions us to spend lots of money on the newest consumer gadget, but not so much on our own development.

I ended up sitting and contemplating whether or not I wanted to sign up for Viral Academy 2.0 right down to the last 30 minutes (I was sitting and playing a video game at the time, which was kind of just a mindless exercise while I debated whether or not I wanted to sign myself up).  And in the end I chose not to.  The more I considered it, the more I thought that starting a YouTube channel right now would just be a distraction from the writing I really want to do (both Sustainably North and short stories/games).  Plus when it got right down to it, I don’t really want to be making videos.  I want to write!

So I emailed them back, thanking them for getting me to think long and hard about what I want to be doing right now.  🙂

When all of that was done, I then started to think a lot more about Sustainably North.  Last summer I sat down and came up with an editorial calendar, which I then proceeded to ignore.  I know that starting to write for bUneke Magazine kind of threw me for a loop (I was so not expecting this awesome opportunity!) so I now need to actually come up with a solid plan for what I want the blog to be.  That will mean a lot less flying by the seat of my pants, so to speak (which is how I’ve pretty much been operating for the last while).

April is also the official first anniversary for Sustainably North. So most likely I’m going to keep winging it through March so that I have a solid plan come April.  I also bought a book on blogging on my Kindle some time ago, and I’m going to make a point of actually reading it before April as well!

To finish off my week, I also submitted another book review and article to bUneke Magazine.  Those will be appearing in the April issue. 🙂

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The First #WriteTuesday of 2019!

Happy 2019 everyone! Welcome back to another #WriteTuesday – the first one for the year! 🙂

Unfortunately this weekend I ended up getting sick.  So I stayed home, drank a lot of tea, ate a lot of soup, and just generally tried to get better.  It’s been slow going though – my throat has been sore and just hasn’t gotten better. :/

But in other news, over the weekend I heard back from Martian Migraine Press about “A Friend from the Deep.”  Unfortunately it was rejected (which I was kind of expecting).  So I looked through my list of saved markets on Duotrope and found a potential match for the piece in Zooscape.  I sent “A Friend from the Deep” off to them and shall now resume waiting.  I found myself obsessively checking my email that day to see if it got rejected by them, so I had to distract myself by going through some other emails, like the weekly ones Duotrope sends out; I found a few more markets that sound interesting, so once I get the story for the Make Your Way anthology done I’ll start working on stuff for them.

Yesterday afternoon I spent a lot of time reading the newest issue of bUneke Magazine (and scheduling tweets about it for @SustaintheNorth).  This month’s magazine is full of some great articles about environmental issues plaguing our planet.  It’s also got the first book review I wrote for them (I adapted one of the ones on Sustainably North) as well as my usual monthly column (which also happens to be a blog post adapted from Sustainably North).  I actually sent the next two month’s articles for bUneke Magazine to the editor on the 2nd, so I’m now a little bit ahead for that! 😀

In the early evening I worked on next Monday’s post for Sustainably North.  I decided to write about bUneke Magazine because I’m excited about the book review, plus Mary, the editor of bUneke Magazine, sent me pictures of that and my column.  With that done, I’m going to turn away from bUneke stuff for the next few weeks, particularly on Sustainably North; I feel like the blog and its Twitter feed has gotten really caught up with the magazine, and I’d like to just focus on the blog alone for a little bit.

After that, I went through some emails for a bit.  But by that point I felt like I had been at the computer for way too long, so I went to go and read.  So that’s been my week: relatively productive despite being sick.  How has yours been? 🙂

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Hello 2019!

Happy New Year’s!  It’s that time of year again – time to look at the goals I set for myself last year and set new goals for this year.  Last year, my goals were:

  1. Read 25 novels.  Success! I read over 50 novel-length books this year!  I didn’t read many long ones, but that’s okay. Having no pressure to read made it much more enjoyable over 2018.
  2. Write two polished short stories.  Failure.  I wrote one, but didn’t finish the second one. 😦
  3. Finish a bloody RPG! Failure. I didn’t really work on anything at all. 😦

For 2018 I was hoping to work towards freelancing more.  Even though I wasn’t really successful with my goals, I think I was somewhat successful thanks to starting my other blog, Sustainably North. Thanks to Sustainably North, I was asked by bUneke Magazine to write a monthly column, which has been a lot of fun and tremendous experience.  For my day job I also wrote 9 articles, 7 book reviews, and interviewed 12 authors for TBPL Off the Shelf, so that’s pretty good, too.  Oh and I almost forgot that 2018 saw my first published short story, “A Harmony of Soil and Sand,” which was published in Menagerie de Mythique Anthology back in May.  So while I didn’t exactly meet all of my goals, I still think 2018 was a pretty good year of writing for me! 🙂

Oh yeah, and I participated in my very first game jam back in January!  That was fun, too! 🙂

For 2019 I’d like to do things a little differently, particularly in regards to my writing goals.  This year I’d like to set smaller goals every month rather than big overarching goals.  My thought is that way I can use the end of the month as a deadline, plus I’ll have more flexibility in case other unexpected projects come my way (like when that big freelance project came my way back in 2017).  Plus if something takes longer than planned (like how the story I’m working on for the Make Your Way anthology got bogged down in worldbuilding), I can adjust my scheduled goals accordingly.  So here are my goals for 2019 so far:

  1. Read 25 novel-length books. 25 books worked really well for me last year and I’d like to keep the same goal.  Like I said, this took the pressure off of me and made reading more fun.  This goal is the only one I’m naming that’s for the whole year.
  2. Finish the story for the Make Your Way anthology by January 31st. I think that’s a reasonable amount of time to get this story written (and hopefully submitted!)

I’m not going to talk about Sustainably North goals on here right now.  At this point I’m kind of just carrying on, trying to get a weekly blog post written plus an article for bUneke Magazine.  If that changes, I’ll let you know. 😉

This will be an interesting year – I really hope that setting smaller monthly goals (with deadlines) will work better for me!

So what about you? Have you set any goals for the upcoming year? 🙂

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#WriteTuesday – What I Did on My Vacation

Apologies everyone – I was a little bit confused as to what day it was and wasn’t thinking about posting on here.  Luckily it’s still Tuesday (just a little later than I was planning on posting!)

So last week, when I was taking some me time, I was also on vacation from my day job. 🙂  The week off was fantastic – I made as little plans as possible because, as I said last week, I wanted to slow life down a bit and get caught up on some things I’ve been putting off.

Last Tuesday was #GivingTuesday. I wasn’t expecting it, but bUneke Magazine asked for all their volunteers to post on Instagram their #givingstory.  So I shared this picture to Instagram, Twitter, and my personal Facebook page (although the latter two weren’t flipped like Instagram’s was).  Once I was finished with that, I decided to keep working on some Sustainably North stuff.  For yesterday’s Sustainably North post, I wanted to recreate the paper wreath that I put up on my door this year (I included a picture of it with my November column in bUneke Magazine).  So I made a brand new wreath last Tuesday, and took a lot of pictures of all the steps for making it.  Then for next Monday I wanted to talk about the banana bread I also pictured in that column (it’s my grandmother’s recipe).  So on Wednesday I installed WP Ultimate Recipe to Sustainably North. I did a bit of research because I knew I wanted a professional looking recipe post on the blog – Shivar Web recommended WP Ultimate Recipe.  I installed it and tried it out; it seemed to work fine so I stuck with it.  I then baked some banana bread to take pictures of the entire process (although I barely used any pictures for the actual post, which will be on Sustainably North on the 10th), and later wrote and scheduled the post.

While taking the pictures of the banana bread, I was having a bit of trouble with my flash because I was getting a shadow from my camera.  I ended up trying out a flash diffuser my dad gave me some time ago and it worked like a charm! 🙂

freezer drawer full of bananas

This was my freezer door last Wednesday night!

Oh, and I also need to give a shout out to my friend who provided the walnuts for Wednesday’s banana bread baking!  I always forget that the recipe calls for walnuts (and is way better with walnuts) and I never seem to have any on hand (although I have a freezer door full of bananas).  When I texted her to ask if it was okay that the banana bread wasn’t going to have any (she was waiting to help me eat it), she said she had some “nut pieces,” which turned out to be walnuts!  🙂

After that, I started working on a draft of a book review to post on Sustainably North on December 17th.  Once that’s done, I’m going to talk about the article I wrote for the December issue of bUneke Magazine (I feel that it’s a perfect topic for Christmas Eve), then do another Article Roundup for December 31st.  And that will get me through until the new year!

I’ve been pushing to get all of these posts written for Sustainably North because I really want to reassess what my plan is for the next while.  Back in June I made a plan for the rest of 2018 on Sustainably North.  And then I proceeded to completely ignore that plan and kind of wing it.  I know that things did change a bit because I wasn’t expecting to be writing a monthly column in bUneke Magazine.  But now that I’m feeling rather on top of things again I think it’s time to stop running by the seat of my pants.

Wednesday was also when I started reading Will Write for Food by Dianne Jacob.  While writing the banana bread recipe I realized that I had no idea how recipe writing was actually done….so I read a whole book on food writing.  Most of the book wasn’t very relevant to my needs, but I found it pretty interesting to read all the same.  Once I finished it on Saturday, I went back and edited the recipe on Sustainably North; I feel a lot more confident about how the post and recipe look now. 🙂

Saturday ended up a rather productive day because I also edited and scheduled the book review for December 17th for Sustainably North.  That means I’ve just got two posts left to write and schedule for 2018!

The new issue of bUneke Magazine came out on Saturday, so over the last few days I’ve been reading it over and scheduling Tweets about it for @SustaintheNorth as I do every month.  Once that is done, I’m going to take a break from Sustainably North to actually think through that City of the Dead worldbuilding stuff and hopefully get on with that story for the Make Your Way anthology.

Oh, and I almost forgot – I had a book review published in the Chronicle Journal on Sunday (republished on TBPL Off the Shelf yesterday) about Patricia Briggs‘ Cry Wolf.  I actually read Cry Wolf last year and have been hanging onto this book review as a spare.  Over the last few months I’ve been reading a lot of nonfiction books that the library didn’t have, so I felt now was a good time to use this review.  Also regarding TBPL Off the Shelf, this month’s author interview is going to be a bit later than planned (thanks to me being off last week) – I’m hoping to get it posted tomorrow night, but it may have to wait until a bit later in the week.

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#WriteMonday – A Very Productive Weekend!

Despite spending a lot of time watching Pitch Meetings on Youtube (they’re by Ryan George for Screen Rant – sooo funny!) this was a fairly productive weekend.  I managed to actually work a little bit on the story I’m writing for the Make Your Way anthology.  I’ve had such a hard time sitting down with it lately so I was very happy to go from 326 words to 687 on Friday night.  Unfortunately I hit a bit of a snag in the story, so I need to sit down and actually figure out how to get past that before continuing.

On Saturday, I realized that I still needed to finish editing today’s Sustainably North post.  So I did that and scheduled it for earlier today.  The post ended up being called “Why I’ll Never Be Plastic Free” and goes through a lot of the plastic I generate just from having Type 1 diabetes.  I had a really hard time writing the ending, so this took a lot longer than I thought it would.

Then yesterday, I wrote and scheduled the next two Sustainably North posts.  Next week’s is going to be about this month’s article in bUneke Magazine, which is about homemade gifts. From there I decided to write some posts about the wreath and banana bread that I have pictured with that article.  So the end of the month talks about the paper flowers.  I haven’t written them yet, but I’m also going to write some posts for the first few weeks of December about making the actual paper wreath and making banana bread (I think I’ll share my grandmother’s recipe for that one, too!)

So with Sustainably North taken care of for a little bit, I’m hoping I can turn my attention back to my gamebook short story and hopefully get a lot more done on it!

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Overwhelmed!!!!

Last weekend was ThunderCon.  It also happened to be a weekend I booked off from work intending to do some writing and other stuff around the house; I booked it off before realizing it was ThunderCon.  It was also the weekend before Halloween, so I went to a few parties over the weekend, too.  By the time Monday rolled around, I was feeling rather overwhelmed by all the things I had intended to do and hadn’t had time for.

So earlier this week, I started trying to tackle what I could so I’d feel a bit less overwhelmed and a bit more in control of everything.  I tackled a whole bunch of emails (I’ll be honest, it was a lot of newsletters that I let pile up, mostly from Pinterest).  Later in the week I sat down and got some Sustainably North stuff organized, which also made me feel a whole lot better.  I edited and posted the blog post for Monday, and I finished editing the column for the December issue of bUneke.  For the bUneke article I had to find some pictures for it, too; I should have everything ready to submit by the end of the weekend.  The editor of bUneke had asked me to send her a few articles based off of Sustainably North blog posts to have as backups; she wants to use one for the January issue, so once I’ve submitted the article for their December issue I can start working on the one for the February issue!  I’m really glad to be a bit ahead on that. 🙂

And now that we’re at the end of the week, I made sure that this weekend is much more low key than last weekend was! Hopefully I’ll be feeling a lot more on top of things by Monday! 🙂

Ooh, and I should mention – the new issue of bUneke Magazine is out and it’s got an article I wrote about homemade gifts in it!  I’m hoping to read over the magazine this weekend. 🙂

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