Absorbed in the writing.
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Almost all good writing begins with terrible first efforts. You need to start somewhere. - Anne Lamott

Just Keep Writing

“At this rate, you’ll finish after December 24, 2017.” This is what Write-o-Meter tells me every day. It’s what I use to keep track of my NaNoWriMo. (What can I say, it takes a lot of energy for a community manager who’s only slightly extroverted to join a community in her free time.)

It’s a bit depressing to be behind. But the fall and early winter has brought a lot of changes in my work role. I can usually put off outside activities during November — I’ll be watching The Punisher later — but I couldn’t ignore Thor Ragnarok or the newest release of more Great British Bake Off on Netflix. Or hanging out with friends or taking care of my home.

Thanksgiving is coming soon. The weather makes me want to put on my pjs at 3pm and drink tea all day.

I’m at 17,987 words into a nonfiction book about event management. I should be slightly over 30,000 words.

Bookworm corner

I’ve read 113 books in 2017 so far. Three over my 110 goal. 📚

Come as You Are: The Surprising New Science that Will Transform Your Sex Life by Emily Nagoski  ⭐ 5/5 stars

Don't let the subtitle fool you, this book is mostly about deconstructing how your biggest sex organ, the brain, processes sex, sexuality, and cultural messaging. It's written for and about cis women, mostly heterosexual ones. It largely assumes if you are reading it, you are looking for advice around sex-related issues in a long-term monogamous relationship with a person you love, who loves you back, and for the most part, have a great and healthy relationship. The language gets self-help-y, the metaphors were too much for me at points, and the last chapter could've been cut. However, there were valuable things I learned, and other things I thought of differently than before when it comes to how our brains react to sexual stimuli.

Elements: Fire by Taneka Stotts (editor) ⭐ 5/5 stars

Excellent collection of bite-sized comics by creators of color. Stotts does an incredible job at editing the anthology from story and art choices to how the book's laid out and organized.

Each story is fire-themed, and all the art is black and white with red used as a pop color. The stories range from fantastical and magical to futuristic and technological. There are stories about first love, ending war, school, parents, best friends, kindness, weather, and eating the last doughnut from the office kitchen. Full review coming soon.

Disclaimer: I did back this book on Kickstarter.

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman and Dave McKean (illustrator) ⭐ 5/5 stars

This book is scary, heartwarming, and compelling in all the right places. Probably the most consistently well-written Gaiman book I've read. Though, as always, he proves true to form and knows how to make an impactful ending.

Letters For Lucardo (Vol 1) by Noora Heikkilä ⭐ 5/5 stars

Super sweet love story between a vampire and a mortal man. Definitely erotica. Some interesting twists on vampire life and nice to see a romance featuring an older man (who's the mortal). Full review on my Patreon.

Taproot by Keezy Young ⭐ 5/5 stars

A lovely comic book about being queer, loving gardening, and seeing ghosts. Basically, everything I love. Full review coming soon.

Things I wrote recently

On Patreon:

Reviews on my comics blog:

Political days

Get on the phone and call your Senator to oppose the tax bill now. ☎️ 

The House has already passed this Tax bill, but we can still stop it in the Senate. Here are some highlights of Tax bills:

— Adding $1 to $1.5 Trillion to the deficit with no budgetary solutions to cover that and only a promise to talk later.

— Permanent tax cuts down to 20% for corporations (currently 35%)

— Removes the estate tax (only charged on estates worth over $1 million)

— Slashes the spousal and child exemptions from $4,050/person to $300/person. 47% of families would see tax increase.

— Guts the ACA. Estimated 13 million without health insurance.

— Claims to "double" deductions, but only raises them by 15%, which doesn't cover slashing the spousal/child exemptions.

— 1 in 4 households would actually have higher taxes, and by 2025, 100% of middle class tax payers would see increase.

— Eliminates the SALT exemptions (meaning if you live in a place with high state income tax, you will pay more).

— Takes away the $250 teachers get to deduct school supplies.

— Removes undergrad and graduate student protections and would charge them tax on any tuition their universities pay for.

— Cuts Medicare by 4%.

— Removes tax deductions for hiring people with disabilities.

— Taxes alimony.

— Removes medical deductions.

— Eliminates a corporate tax credit responsible for 50% of low-income housing built in the US.

— Taxes startup employees on vested startup options.

— Remove alternative minimum tax.

— Exceptions and write-offs for all private air transportation. Bonuses for private jet owners.

— Adds a personhood provision for fetuses and college fund accounts for them. You can already start a tax-exempt college fund while future college goer is still a fetus. This is about making an anti-abortion law declaring a fetus a person.

That's just a few things.

The script that I used: I'm [Name] and a voter of yours in [zip code]. I'm calling to let [their title and name] know I want them to vote No to Congress' Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Not only would this bill create a 1.5 trillion dollar deficit, but raise taxes on the middle and working classes. It only benefits the super wealthy and corporations. Around 70% of Americans already think corporations are not taxed enough in this country, and we need to stop the lie that Americans pay higher taxes than the rest of the world. (We don't.) Personally, I'm okay with paying higher taxes, but what I'm not okay with is is my tax dollars going to corporate welfare & the farce of trickle down economics. Vote No. Thank you.

Call asap as the Senate will vote before Thanksgiving. They are rushing this because of the special election in Alabama.

Green thumb update

The spider mites are almost beaten. I’ve spent probably 20+ hours cleaning off my jalapeño plants. (See another reason why NaNoWriMo has been slow.) I’m using a mix of neem oil, dish soap, and water. I cleaned each plant by killing and removing all adults and eggs from every single leaf and stem. And some had mites on every single leaf. Unfortunately, this did cause some loss of blossoms — mites love them and they are impossible to remove without destroying the flower — but I’d rather have mite-free plants that can grow in the future.

Of course, now there are thrips. I brought in my catnip from my porch, and I’m pretty sure they were the culprit. It snowed twice in Seattle! In November! The catnip was nipped!

Other Things

[Thanksgiving] — If you’re in the Seattle area, don’t have a place to celebrate Thanksgiving, and would like one, there’s room at my table.

See you on the other side and call your Senators before they bankrupt this country,


Erica McGillivray

Copyright © 2017 Erica McGillivray, All rights reserved.

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