I am in serious output mode. I got the latest Harley costume almost done on Sunday, all that remains is the white parts and a little glue, but that was the least-interesting part of the weekend.
In-between sewing, I hosed off the porch, washing away 10 years of cobwebs and road dirt, and washed the front windows. It was so amazing to be able to look up and actually SEE through the front storm door, I left the front door open all afternoon. Luckily we had a small rainshower blow over and the air was cool and fresh.
I washed all the small area rugs in the house, but the red one bled over the others and one of them came out pink. Oh well.
I've been happily watching my hits rack up on the Victorian dresses on Etsy. Nobody's buying yet, but it's a nice little egoboo. As soon as this costume is done, I'm going to do the Harley Quinn Lolita dress. It's decided. No more messing around. It's been in my queue long enough I no longer have an emotional attachment to it, I just want it gone.
I'm amused, though--apparently a lot more people come looking for bustle dresses than for Harley Quinn costume patterns. Hmm. Maybe a Harley Quinn-patterned bustle dress, á là Mardi Gras? Or Marie Antoinette-style?
Speaking of Marie, I heard back from Jeweler-girl, and sent her a quote. If she accepts it, that project will take up the next two months or so--it's three big French court dresses. Very exciting. I'm trying hard not to think about all the time it will take, the equipment I'll have to acquire, the reinvestment of capital I'll make.
I was feeling so very nonchalant on Friday that I sent "Parlor Games" off to Baen. They rejected it pretty quickly--I got the note this morning. I don't mind much--they don't really do that sort of supernatural-fantasy stuff. I was kind of bemused by the first reader saying it reminded her of "The Sixth Sense," since the only element they have in common is the character who sees ghosts--hardly an unusual trope--meanwhile, the themes are dissimilar, the character dynamics and setting are completely different. People are weird, in the little things they latch onto and can't see around.
But oh well, they said the writing was good and invited me to submit again. It's too bad I'm not really writing right now. I'd like to be--my meeting is Saturday--but my writer's group only wants to see Trace, and I don't know if I want to write about Trace anymore.
Had a fun class on Saturday; Tony stayed home to rest his knee so I got to work with the boys and lead exercises. I actually felt as if I knew a thing or two. Of course Sit was also teaching the young'uns the tai hui form, and it's been two years since I've had any review in that, so I got lots of correction on what I don't know. It's encouraging--I'm at a point now where I've quit worrying about how good I should be or whether I'm better than that guy, I just want to do it correctly. It's a liberating feeling; takes the ego out of the equation. Lets me enjoy the activity for what it is.
There's also an interesting feedback/learning loop going on in my head where the sword form is concerned. Tony mentioned he could see a lot of improvement in my weapons forms in general, and I think that has to do with learning the traditional sword from, from which all the preliminary forms are derived. The moves are bigger with the sword: they must be, to accomodate that long shank of metal you're waving around. As a result, I can see what the movement is supposed to be, the back and body moving the arm, the sword as an extention of the arm. Part of it is just the level I'm at, part of it is being forced to see the movements from a new perspective, part of it is just plain practice--I like the sword and it feels very natural to me.
That wasn't always the case. I used to be very uncomfortable with a sword in my hand. The staff was my favorite weapon for quite a while--not saying I was good with it, I just liked the bluntness and the balance of it. I think now I was just intimidated by the sword and didn't understand the movement of it.
But yesterday, I was cleaning in a tight space and Tony was moving things out of the way. He handed me a Japanese ripcut saw and asked me to put it back on the rack, on the wall. Almost unconsciously I moved it like a sword: in a vertical arc, so the blade swung up between us and posed no danger of snagging on flesh or clothing. And I realized as I did it, that's why the sword must move that way: it's the safest way to move an edged weapon in a tight space without binding it up. Sit tried to explain it to me, but it's like a math problem, you don't get it 'til you see it in use.
My productive energy was contagious, too. Tony got my raised-vegetable bed all framed together, out of scrap lumber from his last job, and quite handsome it is, too, sitting in the backyard. Unfortunately the place I need it to rest, for maximum sun exposure, is currently occupied by a pile of bricks. So that's what I'm going to tend to, as soon as Ms. Harley is shipped off tomorrow.
AND, in the excitement of the bid for Jeweler-girl and my raving desire to sew more, more, MORE, Tony said, "I need to get your workroom done!" He dragged me into the half-finished room, and pointed out to me all the reasons why framing out that second window jamb was a pain in the ass. I made sympathetic noises, and then he waved me back to my sewing and went and framed out the jamb. I guess he just needed to talk about it.