At last, I have something fun to share! Some of you may be familiar with the gorgeous design work of Litographs. If not, take a look! I'm delighted to announce that Litographs has licensed the rights to produce a line of Kushiel's Dart t-shirts, wall art, tote bags, temporary tattoos, and laptop decals.
No details yet, but how cool is that? And I'm pretty sure that lobbying by my readers had a lot to do with it.
So I took part in an interesting project last month at the behest of a young friend in high school (Hi, Chloe!) who's studying the effects of positivity for an AP class. From a variety of options, I chose to practice mindfulness and maintain a gratitude journal on a daily basis, as well as performing tasks like visiting a loved one and exploring my community.
I'm a generally positive person who's grateful for many things in my life, but the results of this week-long project were surprising. First and foremost, searching for things to enter in my gratitude journal caused me to look at the world through different eyes. It didn't hurt that this project took place in late May as everything around me was bursting into bloom and the leaves were growing so fast, you could almost watch them unfurl... but still. I took the time to actively appreciate the beauty around me in a way I don't always remember to do. It's funny, I wrote about wanting to reconnect with my love of nature last month, and this unexpected opportunity certainly helped facilitate that process.
The majority of my journal entries were about aesthetic details, friendship, and food. The latter two were no surprise, but despite last month's musings, I didn't realize the extent to which I am affected by my surroundings. Thank goodness I live in a beautiful place! I like to think you can find beauty in almost anything if you look hard enough, but let's face it, it's easier if you don't have to try that hard.
Every time I reminded myself I was taking part in the project, it caused my mindset to shift to a more upbeat frame. I was less inclined to be hurried and impatient, more inclined to slow down and live in the moment. All in all, it was a great experience, and I plan to continue the practice. I imagine it will be harder to be diligent as the novelty fades, but I learned something about myself and how I relate to the world, and I want to keep exploring that.
On a totally unrelated note, another interesting project I've taken on lately is membership in a new committee at the Ox-Bow School of Art here in town, working to build stronger ties between the school and the community. Ox-Bow is a special place with a long history – it's actually featured in a brief scene in Autumn Bones, and I wish I'd been able to explore it further - and it's been a lot of fun to work with a group of wonderful, creative people who are passionate about art and community!
Here on the homepage are a couple of the beautiful things for which I was grateful this month: my neighbor's gorgeous azaleas, and this wonderful circus carriage on the Ox-Bow campus that's currently being used as a studio space.
More news to come next month!
Guest of Honor
August 28-30, 2015
of Hel: Poison Fruit,
US paperback release, September 2014
September 25-27, 2015
Archon, Guest of Honor
(outside St. Louis, MO)
October 2-4, 2015
Nerdcon: Stories, Guest
October 9-10, 2015