About J.M.Cowan

Posts by J.M.Cowan:

Signs and portents

So I woke up yesterday just way too much of a heckin boss, what with the getting to work right on time, and getting out of work before five, and then actually cooking real proper food when I got home. I had even woken BEFORE my alarm went off, though admittedly this had more to do with me waking up thinking it was Tuesday and slightly panicking about whether or not I’d turned my Office Day alarm back on after my vacation and of god how late was I anyway–—

Which turned out to be oddly prescient, what with managing to sleep straight through all three alarms this morning, not waking until about half an hour after I was supposed to be at work. And then proceeded to have what could be considered A Heck of a Morning, if I may use the technical term. Scrambling to get coffee, a portable breakfast, and barely remembering my lunch (the aforementioned actual real food I made yesterday) and my allergy pill and my doctor-mandated supplements (I’m iron and Vitamin D deficient because of course I am, this entire body I inhabit is a complete trash bin that some jackwagon set on fire just because I didn’t have enough problems in the first place) and did I feed everyone and does Ben have plenty of water because he drinks like, all of the water, I don’t know how he doesn’t just float away sometimes. (Or maybe he’s just an enormous floof of a dog, idk)

Then to add insult to injury, just as I was getting ready to head out the door, my lunch slid itself right out of my bag and absolutely shattered all over the kitchen floor. And it was in a glass container so I had to especially careful cleaning it up so BenBen wouldn’t be hoovering up shards of glass all day because that is a vet bill I definitely cannot afford right now.

Then I got to work (only an hour and a half late!) and apparently some skeevy punk threatened one of my coworkers because she wouldn’t sell him tobacco products so that was fun and ate up a good half hour as I went over security video for the police officer who dealt with that.

Then I had to stay after I finished the paperwork and the new girl was listening to the absolute worst selection of pop Christmas and redneck chick country music until I wanted to discus toss her phone into the highway.

Also I realized as I was pulling into my driveway afterwards that I totally spaced on my house insurance payment so *waves goodbye to that extra ten bucks*

Yeesh. Anyway, plants to water!

In which things are not going so great in my brain

So (if there’s anyone actually still reading this) you probably noticed I haven’t updated like.

Anything.

In a while.

Things are not so good in my brain currently. I feel no creative spark. I feel no sparks at all. I am exhausted, mentally, physically…basically I’m a sad lump. I don’t even feel sad. I mostly just feel…tired.

I don’t know what I’m trying to say here. Maybe I just needed to say it, even if it’s only just shouting it into the void. I should make a doctors appointment and see if this is a symptom of something, maybe get my brain pills upped, but thinking about all that just makes me so tired.

A Chapter and an Update

A Flower With Thorns, Chapter 24: Conciliation With a Side of Anger

If you’re scratching your head and puzzling over the chapter number, AFWT ch23 went up…week before last, I think? But only on AO3. Official sit is currently down due to an issue with the wordpress installation, and will remain so for the foreseeable future, as my time is short of late. It’ll go back up sometime when I have the time/energy/mental spoons to fix it. For now, you can still find the serial on Archive of Our Own, since it’s easier to update.

I am currently sitting at my dining table/plant stand, looking out over my frozen back yard. Honestly, if it’s going to be below freezing, we ought to at least get some actual snow out of it, but no, it’s frost-covered grass as far as the eye can see. There is ice on the trees, and they are making a rice-crispie sound in the wind. It is below freezing even though its the middle of the day, and in central Texas, that’s a pretty damn rare occurrence. Especially since we already had a bad freeze a few weeks ago, and lemme tell you, if anyone tries the climate change denial around me now I’m gonna point that out right quick.

In other news, in an attempt to get my slacking, super ADHD ways under control in the new year, I made myself an alarm schedule for my days off, and the Sunday schedule has a dedicated block for posting AFWT chapters before I get on to my plant-related shenanigans. So cross your fingers that I’ll be able to get those out somewhat regularly, barring day off-eating events like last week’s cleaning and cooking extravaganza for my father’s birthday.

I’ve actually been a tiny bit proactive since the brain fog induced by losing one of my ADHD meds cleared up. I wasn’t able to afford my health insurance this year, and apparently without it atomoxetine retails for $600. That’s a 90 day supply of pills, just for clarification. Completely bonkers. So I declined that one, and I think maybe now I’m actually doing a bit better without it? I hadn’t been productive at all since like, last summer, creatively speaking, but I managed to write a tiny bit this week, mostly on my phone at work, but still. I’ve been getting up earlier, or at least I was before the weather took a turn for the gray and frozen, sigh. I’ve also been organizing my future farm/plant nursery plans: creating spreadsheets, sorting plants into categories, accumulating growing information and sustainable farming methods, gathering materials for vertical gardening adventures, saving money for greenhouses…also binge-online-shopping for heirloom seeds, plus plant varieties that will do well in my nine-months-of-severe-heat-and-humidity climate. I’m toying with the idea of doing a vlog focused on building up the business. But that’ll have to wait until my next post, since I do have a chapter to get up and about a million plants to water and a house in desperate need of a vacuum cleaner.

AFWT Chapter Twenty-two

“Seya? I did not expect to see you back here,” [Zan] said. He frowned after Rheta’s swiftly retreating form. “And fighting in front of my gate again.”
“Yeah, well. Had to bring you a thank you gift, didn’t I.” Seya said, gesturing to Nemone.

Read the chapter here!

So, uh, here’s the long awaited(?) chapter 22. I’m going to stop apologizing for letting this hellscape of a year kick my ass. I am trying, it’s just hard to proof these chapters when I can barely get myself out of bed. And my rare bouts of useful energy are all being directed at keeping the enormous number of plants I’ve acquired since March alive, since to do otherwise would be a huge waste of money. Speaking of which, I have to go water all those succulent props in my studio if I want them to survive to be sale-worthy next year.

In case you thought I was joking about the plants…

AFWT Chapter Twenty-one: The Start of a Long Day

Three more days, Seya thought as she found herself at the window once again, searching for a small, furtive figure that wasn’t there.

Two and a half days, now—she had whiled the morning away, tense and restless, looking for something to do besides sit around worrying and imagining the worst. “What were you thinking, offering to help some damn brat kid when you can’t even help yourself?” she scolded herself out loud as she was cleaning the apartment. “Idiot.”

Brace yourselves, guys, it’s gonna be a real long day for everyone. Content warning for evidence of child abuse. Read the chapter here!

AFWT Chapter Twenty

Jayen sighed impatiently and lowered his shields, his hand closing over Vico’s arm as he felt the other man’s presence sifting through the clan bond, sinking into his aura. It felt much like a healer’s touch, except Vico’s presence felt warm and achingly familiar. And irritated. And…affectionate? Jayen dismissed the notion. Vico had done this for him before, checking his aural signature after particularly bad fights and magical disasters, and he had never been able to discern anything like feelings before. Still, it was a pleasant fantasy. Almost as good as the real thing. It was hard not to indulge in a small bit of fantasy when Vico was staring into his eyes so intently.

Read the rest of the chapter on the official site!

AFWT Chapter Nineteen: Reminiscences and a Broken Promise

Jayen arrived promptly at seven forty-five to ferry Seya and Vico to the Halcyon clinic for her checkup the next morning. Vico was prepared to fend off his attempts at flirtation, as he had since that day in the Mediations office—Jayen was nothing if not persistent—but he was in almost constant communication with the security detail at Bretinne. It was…rather disappointing, actually, even though Vico had been the one trying to maintain some distance. He shook his head, exasperated at his own weakness.

Read the rest at the official site!

Ok, my lovely readers (if I actually have any), I’m attempting to set up as many chapters ahead of time as I can with the rest of my vacation. Spent most of it reading And messing about with my plants. :)

A much belated AFWT update

Chapter 13 is up, finally. Sorry for flaking, I seem to have had a depressive episode that intersected with some hardcore hyperfocus, and I basically spent the last three weeks obsessing over succulents. Yes, the plants. I’ve managed to accumulate quite a collection of them. Also seeds for my annual gardening project. (Wait, what about that purple garden—yeah, that’s still in progress. Tiger rose is still alive. Wisteria is hanging on by a thread; we’ll see if it leafs out this year before I say anything more.)

Expect pictures of all my recent acquisitions at some point, which include a raspberry bush, a couple of flowering cherry trees, and a kiwi vine. I also bought a lot of heirloom fruit/veg seeds. My plan is to make a vertical garden with scavenged/reused materials. Probably some raised beds and a couple of arbors too, because what else is Pinterest for but giving people grandiose ideas about what they’re capable of?

AFWT Chapter Twelve

So I am still attempting to work this upload schedule into my routine. It still hasn’t taken yet, and I keep forgetting to do the pre-posted pages because really, WHERE DID ALL THE TIME GO. She asks after spending six hours scrolling Pinterest yesterday. NOPE NO TIME HERE ONLY EXECUTIVE DISFUNCTION LA LA LA.

ANYWAY. I did scrape together the time to upload Chapter Twelve to AO3 and the official website today, but only because I don’t have to go to work until four. Links for the rest will come…eventually. Maybe. *sigh*

And in case you missed it, I did post Chapter Eleven—at least, I thought I did. Turns out I forgot to hit update so the page I was looking at before I had to leave (for work *sigh*) was the preview page. Oops. It’s up now, and the Table of Contents has even been updated!

*flings self into the void*

AFWT Chapters 8-10

Because I am a magnificent flake, I totally pasted Chapter Nine into a document titled Chapter Eight, and did not realize it until yesterday afternoon! ADHD is so fun. Anyway, I fixed it, and if you were wondering why something seemed to be missing–it was. Oops. Anyway, I fixed it. You can read the actual Chapter Eight now, and since I goofed, I also posted Chapter Ten to make up for it! Yay!

Chapter Eight (the actual one!)

Chapter Nine (in case you want to reread it with context!)

Chapter Ten (In which there is a duel! And a cliffhanger, just FYI)

I apologize again for being a flake. Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria is real and I HAS IT. And believe me, IT SUCKS. But! I have just noticed that I can pre-post pages in WordPress, and I intend to spend Sunday setting up the next few chapters and announcement blog posts to automatically post, so hopefully that will help.