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And I am glad it's almost over. A slew of medical appointments all around the end of the month and I am sick of them.
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Firstly, I signed up to be a Radish writer. The acquisition associate emailed me a few days ago and we chatted via email (since time zones!).

Secondly, I am currently sore, due to hormones. Even in my 40s and experiencing perimenopause, the cramps are just as bad.

So yes, this is my week. I am experiencing the effects of anxiety from two weeks - I desperately need a break away from this country. I want a walkabout.


Oct. 24th, 2018 08:41 pm
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Renewed DW account. Scaled down to paid, not premium.

Likewise, Samhain/Halloween (or Beltane) card draws are on until end of the month. The deck is inspired by/based on Southeast Asian/Peninsular Malaysian fauna.

A couple of things I worked on got published/greenlit. An anthology of international spec poetry will be out on the 4th of December.

And if things will work out, fingers crossed, I will be writing serialised fiction.

I am still feeling the remnants of anxiety, spillover from last week which was not an easy week (it being exam results week for Cub/my eldest). I haven't written anything. Instead I baked bread, drew stuff and made pumpkin soup from scratch. I am considering taking another break, since I also feel the onset of PMS. :/


Nov. 13th, 2017 10:56 am
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My worldbuilding essay in a series whom I titled The Heart of the Matter is now up on Patreon.

During the weekend, we had to take Meow to the vet as his haetoma had ruptured and became infected. Vet bills are scary.

So, if you can help.




Water Into Wine:

The Jan Xu books:
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I am mulling over this thought while I am doing editorial work on this Monday morning. First thing first: A big warm hug of gratitude to my supporters, readers and signal boosters! Without your likes and your support, I won’t be able to continue writing and producing things.

But that being said, this is the hard part. Can I reach $100? I know times are hard and I totally understand that. It’s always my dream to write full-time and 2017 is proving to be the year where I am actually *writing* a lot. Which is good – and this also gives me time to work on my health issues (invisible illnesses are no fun) as well. I left full-time teaching for good last year and deciding to embark on full-time writing was/is a big decision. I tried it a while back and it failed spectacularly. I ended back going back to work.

I am trying this again. I know that I am no big name author with a big fanbase. I do know that my Patreon payout does help in my medical fees. I do know that my Patreon payout helps in my savings. So, if you can, signal boost, spread the word out.

Thank you so very much from the bottom of my heart.

My Patreon
jolantru: (piss off)
I think I have gotten to the stage where I feel posting fiction/poetry acceptances and rejections on FB is just so blase. I mean, why do you want to do that? To keep score? To keep track? To play kindergarten politics? Sure, I would post the occasional “I signed …” stuff, but if your FB is just a series of your acceptances and rejections and whatever - then what’s your purpose of having FB?

People are inherently competitive. They keep saying “no, it’s not a zero-sum game”, because “we are nice people.” But if you are indeed a nice person, why are you causing anxiety to people? Are you fishing for compliments (because gosh darn, you are a good writer!) or validation?

Writers and poets all move at different paces. Do not expect people to be like you or work at your pace or standard. Nor not all people have the privilege of time and space to write that much like you.

We are all different. To expect everyone to move at the same speed is ridiculous.
jolantru: (me)
I am reading up on pedagogy of history teaching, thanks to the new syllabus which involves an inquiry approach to learning. Halfway through the file - and I am going "Whoa!" Theory is meaty, but I need time to digest it. And this is only the resource file I am reading...

Just had my medical appointment. I am apparently fine, but my specialist decided to add in more tests just to be double-sure I am ok.

Other than that, I am enjoying what's left of the school holidays (two weeks).
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If you have been reading the Amazon/Hachette dispute. I am not sure if you have taken sides, but Amazon has put us hybrid and independent authors in a very difficult position. All the posturing, saber-rattling and yelling aside, where do we stand?

My books, unfortunately, have been published under their direct kindle publishing. But I know that there are also folks who hate Amazon. So I have also uploaded my books on alternative platforms like Smashwords, Wattpad and Gumroad. The unfortunate thing is that I cannot live on free giveaways all the time - an author has to eat it (and that’s why I still have a day job!).

The question I want to ask people is that will you even bother with non-Amazon sites? Will you even care?

Please think about this for a moment.
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I parted ways with the school I was with for one year. I just hope Adults will remain Adults, that's all. Grownups can be so... immature. (I confess to being one... :( )

But, exacting demands. No.

So, I am technically free until the end of June. Then I start in another school closer to home.

Paid my DW account. :P

So... one door closes, another door opens.
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It wasn't bronchitis.

So on antibiotics now and medications to open up the airways. I am also having terrible cramps - so cancelling remedial lesson today.

Can February go already?
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I coughed and hacked my lungs out throughout work today, with the distinct feeling that my chest was tight. Prior to this, I had been fighting an infection which apparently has dug right in and camped in my body like a doughty cranky warrior. Dot also came down with a similar infection, though I think hers originated from the petri dish that is her school. Hers was fever that oscillated from high to low. So the doc gave her strong antibiotics and she is back to her bouncing bushy-eyed self.

My first thought was that I got bronchitis, which I tend to get, when it comes to respiratory problems. But no - doc checked. It's just the infection making its way down my airway, plus that the slight hazy conditions in Singapore don't help, plus my sensitivity.

So, that's my update. I am down with the ick. My brains are still moving, apparently - it's only my airways that are going belly-up.
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I am much better now. Basically an infection that had gone nasty.

It's examination week over here. So cue marking.

I am making a lot of bread. (Yeah, breadmaker!)

The Rider Trilogy has its own website.
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Saturday... and I am still sore. Morning was bad. Awful cramps that made me remember the ones I had in Perth, Western Australia. The type that made me crawl up the stairs and curl up on the bed, with painkillers like Nurofen or Panadeine.

I am not sure what's wrong with me.

But... Saturday was fun and relaxing, spending time with my parents and the girls.

Sunday might see me trying to make bread.
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Wednesday... and I am still feeling like shit/crap. Very sore. Seeing a doc IS a good idea.

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The Women's 24 Hour Clinic at KK Hospital.

I had bleeding last night. Thought it was yet another ruptured polyp. So, off I went today to the clinic, waited three hours and experienced the pain that is the speculum. The doctor took swaps and would call if the diagnosis was bad.

Medical leave for two days. Bah.

Balancing the good (that one book has been accepted for publication) with the bad (the bleeding and the soreness)/
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Now, with vertigo.

Yep, it's BACK.

*inserts anguished howl*
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will have a delayed release/launch, probably next year...

I need to work on the story and make it stronger.

But I feel bad for disappointing my readers.
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So, today, I am put on medical leave. The condition/reason: no voice and ongoing infection. Doctor's orders were simple: no talking.

For a teacher, this is a death knell.

My heads (departmental and subject) are understanding. Kept telling me to "GO REST!".

Me? Worried sick that the kids under me are behind schedule.
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Throat infection?!

Doctor said no talking.

This is a damned occupational hazard for teachers. Was given talk about polyps. Gee, thanks, doc.
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So first week of the June school holidays is almost over. Three more weeks to go. I am sitting at my desk. My joints hurt. No sure what's happening, but the joint pain started a week ago. I am worried again about things like gout or arthritis or something else.

Here I am, thirty-eight. What am I? Who am I? For a while, I thought I was a wolf, or someone who was wolf-souled or wanted to be a wolf. Now nearing the big Four Zero, my paradigms have shifted: I have two girls, been in and out of work, dealing with my financial woes, writing books and stories... and actually getting them published. I have tried self-publishing, cyberfunded creativity and publishing with small presses. I have even been foolish enough to think I would get published by one of the Big Six, part of my bucket list. I have told myself that if I don't get published by forty, I would jolly give up, pack up my bags and leave. Or simply forgo my dreams of ever being an author. I would keep all my stories, store them elsewhere and throw the keys away.

Last week saw the print release of Wolf At The Door. Excitement, anxiety, people congratulating me, etc. Then something struck me hard: it sucks to be a local SFF writer, especially somebody without a name to herself.

Let me be clear with this. This is my journal/blog/personal sounding board. I am decompressing. I am dealing with my self-doubt that has reared up again with its teeth and many heads, snapping away at me. I want to give voice to it and deal with it.

And let me be clear with this. I am grateful with the support I have from the people whom I know have been with me all the way. Grateful, thankful... words fail me here. I don't know what to say, except a heartfelt Thank You. That's all I could do at the moment.

There are moments when I feel trapped by circumstances and the resentment tastes like burnt gunpowder. Trust me. I want to attend cons. I want to attend big-ass literary festivals. Damn, I want to be recognized. But things like work and family are not going away. A writer needs to eat. A writer still needs to live. So when I see people talking about cons and geek stuff, I get... depressed and the real depression kicks in. Getting out of bed is a struggle. Getting myself to believe myself is a battle. How come I can't do this? Why am I so unlucky? Why can I just shut up, pull my bootstraps up and "hang in there"?

For people who know me, I have hypertension. Then in the mid-2000s, I was diagnosed with depression. At the moment I look and feel 'normal', whatever 'normal' is. I hide it quite well, apparently, because people see the happy and cheerful Joyce.

At the moment I consider being alive a triumph.

What do all these things got to do with me as a writer? Writing helps me cope. Writing is breathing for me. Writing is an outlet, a world I can go in and be safe, feel safe. Yet the hydra of self-doubt is often lurking nearby. Sometimes I have it cowed. Sometimes I feed it and it grows bigger, more gnarly and hurtful. This will be a continual journey and battle for me until the day I stop writing and stop believing in myself.

So I keep on fighting, fighting and fighting.


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