Blog: Nothin’ Up My Sleeve

June 17, 2020 – Off to the Races … Again

This is my umpteenth time trying to get this site up and functional. If I weren’t such a perfectionist, I would have let it fly long ago. But … as it is, I’m a perfectionist. Each time I thought I was ready, I’d find something that wasn’t what I wanted for the long haul and subsequently just deleted everything.

Today I’ve made a stand against my perfectionism and have decided if it’s not perfect by my standards, well, then so be it.

I’m a writer and a copy editor and have been doing this work in law firms for several decades. Looking forward to putting myself into the marketplace for once and for all to discover if I have the goods.

May 9, 2020 – Coronavirus Update

Once you’re on Elm Street, turn left at the light and continue for three blocks. Turn right at the Stop sign and look for the house with the apple orchard on the east side. You’ll find me in the house. Walk up the porch steps and ring the bell. We’ll have tea.

Of course, this is a fanciful daydream I’m experiencing at this moment but I felt the urge to write it down somewhere. The United States as a whole has been under the dark cloud of the Coronavirus since January. Other countries on the planet are operating under their own set of criteria. We San Diego worker bees were furloughed and laid off our jobs on March 17 – St. Patrick’s Day – when we and everyone in California were ordered to go home and stay there, our children were directed NOT to return to school until they and their parents receive the All Clear. We were ordered to buy and wear face masks when we went outside of our homes, to stay six feet apart from everyone, except those we live with, wash our hands often and pay attention to the news every day.  At last count, tens of millions of Californians have applied for unemployment insurance. The truly sad thing about that statement is that there are so few open positions, possibly 100 of those tens of millions might be hired for a job that lasts more than a week. This is where we have been and it looks like this is where we’re going for quite awhile. No one knows when this nightmare will end. We all hope it is soon. Somehow we know better.

August 16, 2019 – C. R. Logan

Going forward, look for my books published under a pen name – C. R. Logan. My mother and her father would get a kick out of my decision, as the name, Logan, came down through the Irish strain descending from Ireland in the early 17th century when my Grandpa’s ancestor arrived on the shores of America, I believe Massachusetts. There’s no doubt I’m Irish (green eyes, reddish hair), with a small strain from the mighty Scots.

August 5, 2019 – Here We Go!

Okay, so I’ve been trying to figure out  how to get this editing business on the right side of the ledger, so to speak.

It occurs to me  no one in the book reading, writing or purchasing industry knows my name or anything about my ideas on where to take my business, I thought it might be a good idea (jumping into the marketplace) to offer my editing services to a handful of first-time writers for a substantial rate reduction so as to show that I can do the work, do it well and ultimately add their name to my “client list.”  By “substantial rate reduction,” I mean a 35% discount for the first four writers who have never before published a manuscript up to 17,000 words, about the size of a novella on the short end or a piece of a market-sized novel. After 17,000 words, I would charge market rates for the remainder. I’m still thinking this over, but I do think it’s a sound proposition for unknown writers, but I’m not finished thinking about it yet.

July 23, 2019 – Revamp and Restart … again

I continue to wonder when and if I’ll ever get this website to the point that I’m satisfied with it. Every time I get revved up and motivated to update the site, life inevitably gets in the way and the task gets moved to the back of the line. Irritating.

Because the 2008-2009 recession (and its 10-year aftermath for some, including me) seriously kicked my butt and took the wind out of my sails, I’ve been trying to catch up to where I was before it hit. A fool’s task and mindset, it appears. I must continue to work a 9 to 5 job because the recession veered me to a different road and my lifelong retirement plans were sidetracked. I have been forced to amend them year after year. The last two law firms I worked for were in serious free fall (a national firm that had to restructure due to a failed merger attempt followed by the major exodus of 30-40 senior partners) and the other trying to deal with serious financial issues. I lost my job at both of them. Made some great life-long friends in the bargain, but the jobs went bye-bye. Popped me into unemployment both times, so there was that.

Sometimes it feels like I’m attempting to climb a gigantic mountain while carrying a backpack filled with heavy rocks to weigh me down and slow my progress. But, like an idiot, I keep getting up every day and climbing that mountain. I guess it’s in my nature not to give up and give in and I’ll keep doing it ’til I can’t do it anymore. I’m hoping to take a serious rest in the future and focus on this website, getting my business up and running (I’ve joined a few writing groups), pitching one of my stage plays, and publishing the novel I’m currently writing. Oh, and looking for a 9 to 5 job is interfering with that progress.

Wish me luck!

May 26, 2019: The Stuff Novels are Made Of

I’m trying my hand at merging the beginnings of two pretty good short stories into a novel. The first story is a romance that blossoms into love. The second is a murder mystery encompassing law firm and police department intrigue. The thread that ties the stories together is a guy named Jake, a private investigator hired by a Portland City Councilman, and a young woman named Maggie, a lawyer at a firm in Lake Oswego.  Circumstances beyond anyone’s control bring these characters and many others together in significant ways. Working titles: Murder in the City of Roses; The Social Contract and Crime on the Oregon Coast.

May 8, 2019 – Change Is In The Wind

An editor friend of mine and I were discussing how to break into the editing world without going directly to a publishing house, and about what typical clients are like ~ what they expect and what we, as editors, can and are trained to offer them. I came to the realization that I might want to focus on another path entirely. It seems that even with a little bit of luck and a lot of hard work, establishing yourself in the market as a skilled copy editor and proofreader is a difficult road in and of itself.

I like to write fiction. I’ve written a stage play, am in the process of writing two more stage plays, have worked on a screenplay for seven years, and have written many short stories. An author friend of mine has made considerable money by writing, marketing and self-publishing romance novels, which to me, sounds like a doable next step. *END*

May 1, 2019 – May Day: In More Ways Than One…

On May 1, 2019, due to my new firm’s internal issues, my job was terminated and I was “laid off”. That was that.

In my previous post, I shared what a wonderful firm I had landed in ~ I loved the people, interesting work and clients, a real find. I knew the company was experiencing woes that started about a year ago but hoped it would blow over and the Gods would allow me to work there ’til it was time for me to retire. Well …. that didn’t happen. And now, I’m unemployed again. It isn’t the first time I’ve thought about getting out of “legal” but it seems most employers not in legal believe that if they hire you, you’re going to bail as soon as you get an offer from a law firm. That is not always the case.  In my case, it’s not true at all. I’ve contacted my old recruiters and am searching through the job-related websites. Wish me luck.

February 22, 2019 – Working, working, working

I landed a really great job in mid-January and have been training myself in a field I’ve never worked in before. Being the type of person who likes to have everything in balance, I’ve had many a sleepless night trying to finagle how to keep all the balls in the air. I’m reminded of a performer on the old Ed Sullivan Show who spun 10 to 12 plates on 3-4′ long sticks which were each connected somehow to a table ~ this guy was able to keep them all in the air at the same time. He was a marvel and we always watched him with trepidation ~ it was a live show and we didn’t want to see one of those plates topple and fall to the table or the floor. I think of that guy nearly every day when I’m trying to keep clients’ needs in the air when everyone seems to want what they want at the very same time and I’m still learning the job. I’m sure a little time and experience will allow me to figure out procedures and processes for doing that but for now, the plates are spinning and my eyes are squinting hoping one of those plates doesn’t fall.

Have a great day.