A Hole in the Ground

That’s what we have in Tennessee right now! The builder has finished digging for the basement and foundation, and when we talked to him on Thursday, he was planning to pour the footers the next day.

While all that has been going on, I’ve been working on what I call “The House Book.” In software developer parlance, it’s basically a requirements document (along with the plans). It’s where I’ve noted everything we want as far as finishes go, as well as any minor changes to the plans. For example, we removed a couple of doors–there are TONS in this house. I also decided I would rather have a large, blank wall in my office instead of a closet–I’ll be getting plenty of built-ins for storage, and those are detailed in the book as well.

I haven’t been writing any fiction in the past month, because my head has been full of house stuff. It’s amazing how it totally takes over your brain! (Or is that just me?) I finished the house book last week and got that out to the builder, so time for fiction now, right?

Not exactly. I still need to do the electrical plan–that is, note on a digital copy of our house plans where each light fixture goes, any outlets outside of the ordinary, like one in the middle of the floor in my office,  to allow for a second desk that I’ll use for writing. And the electrical plan also includes where all the switches go, and which switch controls which light or outlet. This should go much more quickly than the book, and since it’s just one area, isn’t as mentally consuming.

I did manage to dig back into fiction a little, reading my latest scenes in an effort to get the WIP back into my brain. So there’s that.

I also kept reading, and have finished some good books over the past couple of weeks.

What I’ve Been Reading: In non-fiction, I read The Groovy Guide to Financial Independence: How to Escape the Tyranny of Mandatory Toil in Fourteen Years or Less by Mr. Groovy. The author is half of the couple of pseudonymous bloggers who write at Freedom is Groovy, one of my favorite personal finance blogs. I bought it because it was on sale for $0.99, and I knew it would be entertaining (while imparting good info). And it did not disappoint. I didn’t really expect to learn much, if anything, as I binge-read the entire blog, and as I expected, the book was pretty much the same material, reworked into a more organized form. It was still worth a read if for nothing but the entertainment value–Mr. Groovy has a fun-t0-read voice with plenty of humor, and makes otherwise dry financial topics into something fun. I mean, where else can you find a lesson on personal finance from Hannibal Lecter? Highly recommended, whether or not you’ve read the blog–doubly so if you haven’t.

In fiction, I finished Relic of Sorrows: Fallen Empire Book Four, by Lindsey Buroker. This is a space opera series I’ve been really enjoying, and this installment (book 4) was every bit as entertaining as those that have come before. Not only was there plenty of action and space battles, there was a logical progression of the characters and their relationships. This is one series that needs to be read in order, so if you’re looking for some good sci-fi, give the first book, Star Nomad, a read. Even better, it’s free.

What I’ve Been Writing: As noted above, the House Book. Now that that’s done, I still need to do the electrical plan, but my goal this week is to finish that, and dig back into the WIP. So my goal is to get anything written on it, even it’s just a paragraph. Baby steps!

What about you–what have you been up to? Read any good books lately? How are you doing on whatever goals you might have? I’d love to hear from you–please share in the comments!

Jennette Marie Powell writes stories about ordinary people in ordinary places, who do extraordinary things and learn that those ordinary places are anything but. In her Saturn Society novels, unwilling time travelers do what they must to make things right... and change more than they expect. You can find her books at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, Kobo, iTunes, and more.

9 Responses to \

  1. How cool that you’ll have a basement in your new house! I was so surprised that my daughter’s house in NC didn’t come with a basement! None of her neighbors have one either. Very strange. Many of the homes don’t have a garage either. Are you planning on putting ceiling fans in? They’re well worth the cost, In my opinion. Good for you getting the house book done. Sounds like one heck of a huge job.

    Yay that you’re getting back to your writing. I always look forward to your new books. Yep, your books rock! Have a wonderful week, Jennette!

  2. I’ve never had to do a House Book before. It sounds exciting and exhausting at the same time. So glad you’re getting back to your writing. Congrats on all of that!

    Despite all the medical drama around me for the last two months, I’ve managed to get tiny bits of fiction writing done every couple of days or so. Blogging has been sporadic like my energy. It’s been pretty intense, but hopefully, things are calming down and I’ll be able to adjust my old routine and adapt to the new situation soon.

  3. Lynn, thanks so much! Basements are kind of a geographical thing; some areas have too high a water table for them to be practical. You don’t see many full basements in eastern TN, but you see a LOT of walkout basements, which is what ours will be, because the area is so hilly. And yes, we’ll have ceiling fans! With vaulted ceilings we’ll need all the help we can get to keep our heating and cooling bills down. We’re also going to put one on the screen porch.

    Lynette, exciting and exhausting is the perfect description for putting together a House Book. So. Many. Choices! And so much to research. I’m glad you’ve managed to get a little writing done amidst the chaos – here’s hoping things will settle down and you can get back to more because I want to read the next book!

    Thanks, Sheila!

  4. Such an exciting time for you. It’s funny how a person doesn’t really think about electrical outlet placement when you buy a new already-built home, but how important it becomes when you’re starting from scratch. I’m just stuck with what someone else put in.

    Thanks for sharing the updates. I’m enjoying the home building journey.

    And, I know how easily something can become all-consuming. I’ve been doing nothing but marketing since my book went into the printing phase. I’ve got to get back to composing something new or I’ll forget how.

    Patricia Rickrode
    w/a Jansen Schmidt

  5. Patricia, thanks so much! I always hope I’m not boring everyone with my house details. And I remember how consuming publishing can be, especially for the first book! It does get easier.

    LOL Stacy, you know it! And yeah, definitely starting to feel real!

  6. Thank you very much for your kind words. I’m blushing here in North Carolina. As you know, we’re almost finished with our house build but I look forward to reading about yours.

  7. Wow, I feel like I’ve been visited by someone famous, Mr. Groovy! So cool of you to stop in – I’ve really been enjoying reading about your house build too, especially since I’m beginning one myself. Love your blog and your book – guess it’s time I stop lurking, huh? 😀