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A Package Went Out, A Package Came In!

This month, since I had to renew www.explore-oil-pastels-with-robert-sloan.com had a miniscule budget for art supplies or books or toys of any kind. However, it wasn't zero thanks to my having had some savings even if they were a bit drained last month renewing SFFmuse and splurging on a Chromatic set of Mount Vision pastels.

So when I got an email coupon from Cheap Joe's Art Supplies with a clearance item that I'd missed on when Blick had it on clearance, I checked their shipping, found I could do it and snapped it up a few days before my 3 Day Novel Contest started. They were very busy over the 3 Day Weekend and didn't ship till Tuesday, which surprised me. They gave an expected delivery date of the 15th, which had me stewing since it was so long... but it arrived today.

The Chosen went out the door and cost me $13 to mail, 210 manuscript pages. I could really tell the point I stopped editing for the deadline and I hope the judges see that as an example of how good I am at editing rather than choke on it and blow it off in favor of someone who edits faster. I remind myself that it's up against other people's three day novels, not books that they had entire weeks and months to polish before sending in. I've got as good a chance as anyone to win Publication or either of the two cash prizes or an Honorable Mention.

So, here's the package that came in:

24 Color Prismacolor Portfolio

I missed out on getting this at Blick's clearance page because I dithered over whether I really needed another carry-around... but it was so cool... but I don't need it... but I love Prismacolors and go through them like I smoke them. So when it vanished, I got the 12 color one and found out the "sketch pad" is actually good heavy paper that feels like Bristol and has a good toothy surface for colored pencils. The case is heavily padded and has an extra loop to put a sketch pen or a Prismacolor Colorless Blender, which is what I stuck in my old one since I use it so often.

The pad's naturally bigger on the 24 color one and for once, Prismacolor arranged the colors chromatically so you can see what you've got in the range rather than fumbling in a jumble to rearrange it that way and tell how many greens, blues, etcetera. It's a well chosen range. All of my favorites but Cream are there, Tuscan Red, Indigo Blue, Dark Green, a Dark Brown for mixing with Indigo for a mixed black. Goldenrod is a little more muted and brownish than Spanish Orange, it almost belongs down among the earth tones. But it's a color I use up fast whenever I do any nature scenes, for some reason it winds up running short.

As usual a few pencils lost points in the sharpening process and came up short. These are Prismacolors after all. The set on Clearance costs about as much as a 24 color tin set on sale -- it was $19.99 -- but the portfolio itself is permanent. Easily refilled with replacement Prismacolors or with your choice of any good artist grade oclored pencils, also the portfolio will hold either top or side bound pads. So when I use up the excellent paper they provided, I may well move a 9" x 12" Stonehenge pad into it.

So with my last worry about the Three Day Novel Contest done and this cool new art thing to play with this month, I'm a happy cat this morning. Ari is too. He slithered into my lap and purred while I was writing posts this morning and we had a good long scritch-a-thon before I finished and came to blog. Always stop sharpening pencils to pet the cat.

I am back to writing again on Monday, when I'll start doing the synopsis writeup for Vaumuru's Curse and in the course of rereading, keep going to get in the rough draft of the last chapters. If I don't wind up editing those as I go the way I did during The Chosen.

While I think it is important to separate writing and editing processes, a good thing to suggest to anyone who has trouble getting going, I think there also comes a point of skill at which the process is background enough that it doesn't matter if they combine. To reach that point you have to be that comfortable on both sides of the brain to where process itself doesn't get your attention. So I've modified my old hard rule and consider now that it was a learning curve about the editing process. Maybe I've finally caught up with myself.

Might post some semi-daily art later on, new pencils are inspirational!


Its timing is perfect. I'm looking at it now, having sharpened all the pencils, feeling a warm glow of accomplishment. I had the nerve to send in The Chosen. It is a real submission, one with a shorter turn-around time than most. I was nervous right up to the point Karl took the package this morning and brought back the receipt. I am so happy I did it. So this feels like a self-reward for doing the hard part.

Printing it out and putting postage on it, throwing it at the world.

I promise myself right now: The Chosen will go to new publishers if it doesn't win the contest. I will keep working on it and sending it out till it sticks somewhere. This one has a home, whether it's as this year's winning Three Day Novel or it washes up pro press or small press. I will earn some good money for what I did last weekend and enjoy this weekend for what it is.
Explore-Oil-Pastels-With-Robert-Sloan.com Articles at eHow.com, ETSY shop, My Bonanzle Booth, deviantART gallery, SFFmuse and look for art by robertsloan2art on eBay. Listed on Art Blogs 4 U
Proud member of the Oil Pastel Society
Interesting art blog: Patrick's Art Blog focused on realism!
New Topical Blog: www.robs-art-supply-reviews.blogspot.com for all the cool art stuff that isn't oil pastels!


2013 Nano Winner
Robert A. Sloan, author of Raven Dance

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