What does your montage look like?
I can’t resist a montage
💻 what I'm up to 💻
I am indulging in the comfort of being home and enjoying the many bird feeders my husband has set up in our backyard. We got a new patio in May (the one from several owners ago was falling apart and the drainage situation was dicey) and I’m so grateful we have it for the summer.
I had a minor cold after Star Wars Celebration (thankfully not COVID) and spent last week sleeping as much as possible. Those germs aside, I was really grateful for Celebration. Like so many of you, I’ve spent the last two years+ kinda disconnected from the world and this event filled my energy reserves and gave me a much needed injection of joy. I saw so many friends, met new ones, hosted some incredible panels, and reveled in a shared passion for Star Wars. I cried a number of happy tears.
But anyway! I watched Nobody somewhat recently (very fun Bob Odenkirk kicking ass movie, by the way) and it had me thinking about montages. Not the epic training montages movies and TV so often have, though I think those are the best. No, I’m thinking of the daily routine montages. They show up a lot too, often to depict how boring everyday life can be. But I disagree with that angle. Our routines, our work… that is so much of our life. They have value. They still can be boring or bad or not ideal. They can be good too. I’m just saying I don’t like how those montages typically frame the “get out of bed, make coffee, go to work, come home” as some terrible life sentence. Capitalism is life, at least in the US, so going to work will be part of many people’s daily montage.
I got to thinking about what my daily routine montage would look like and it made me reflect on the good (I love making my dang breakfast smoothie), the not so great (the amount of time I spend on my phone in bed reading newsletters every morning), and the in between. It also helped me realize how much time I spend doing various tasks… like chopping vegetables forever, more mindless phone browsing than I’d prefer, and so on.
What started as a daydream of like “hmm what would this look like for me?” led to some surprisingly productive navel gazing. So my challenge to you: what would your daily routine montage be? If there are aspects about it you don’t like, can you change them?
📘 my book things 📘
Will I ever get to announce the book projects I have in the works? One day! But until then… I’ve opened a little book shop on Ko-Fi! If you’ve been wanting to order a signed book directly from me–including a couple copies of the elusive and out of print Elee & Me–you can snag one here. If shipping is wildly under what I’ve estimated, I’ll refund you the difference. Go forth and get some books!
If you’re enjoying Obi-Wan Kenobi (and by enjoying, I mean if the show is also ripping your heart into bloody shreds with each episode), please check out this interview I did with writer and executive producer Joby Harold.
📺 what I'm watching 📺
Did I adore The Quest? YES. Am I wildly envious of these kids who got to participate in an epic fantasy story? 100%. The premise: eight teenagers arrive in a fantasy world where they have to help save the kingdom of Everealm from evil. It’s a competition reality show with actors portraying all the main characters and I loved it. The kids all support one another and show extraordinary creativity and just seem like they’re living their best lives.
We’re four episodes into Obi-Wan Kenobi and it’s utterly fantastic. Bless Deborah Chow and Ewan McGregor and everyone contributing to this series. Each part is mirroring its counterpart in the saga and that is genius?! And little Leia is amazing? Every reference to Padmé, every emotion etching Ben’s craggy, gorgeous face… It breaks my heart and I can’t get enough.
And one more thing: I think Stranger Things 4 is the best season yet of the series. It’s scarier than previous seasons (almost too scary for me) but I am into it. Still considering buying a Hellfire Club t-shirt.
📚 what I'm reading 📚
Indistractable by Nir Eyal
Look. I take any book like this with a "how does it make sense for my life" approach, and I found some good takeaways here. It focuses on... staying focused in your tasks, whatever those tasks are. So, mindfulness. And it offers practical solutions/ideas in being less distracted in work, life, and relationships. I recommend it but you should also apply it however it best works for you.
Second First Impressions by Sally Thorne
It took me a little while to sink into this book, but once I got used to the style and got to know the characters, I couldn't resist. It follows Ruthie Midona, who works and lives at a retirement home and that's kind of her whole life plan. But then Teddy Prescott comes along and brings new perspective... it is of course more complex than that but I don’t want to give anything away. If you’re looking for a cozy romance, look no further.
I also read House of Sky and Breath by Sarah J. Maas; I stayed up late to finish it so when I got to that WHAT ending, it was 12:30am and I was so mind-blown/excited/stressed, I couldn’t fall asleep until 2am. Oops.
I’d also like to recommend Faeries of the Faultlines by Iris Compiet and The Heart Hunter by Mickey George and V. Gagnon.
🐳 something whalesome 🐳
I like wholesome things and the whale emoji is cute so: whalesome!
You know how Our Flag Means Death is the best show of the year (and just got a second season!)? The fan art for this show will warm even the coldest person. The above art by Katey Rose Arts is an excellent example but take a look at more.
🍃 creativity corner 🍃
Here I’ll share tips and tricks that are helping me write, imagine, and/or stay productive.
Since we talked about Indistractable earlier, I have an app to help you stay focused: Forest. You plant a tree when you want to stay focused, and as long as you don't exit the app, your tree grows and eventually you grow your own forest. And as you earn in-app coins from staying focused, you plant actual trees on our planet.
The key for me is remembering to open the dang app before I dive into reading, writing, working, whatever. I usually get to the end of some kind of focused session and then recall I should have been growing my darn trees!
📃 quote of the month 📃
“No one has ever lost by becoming addicted to stories–to the lessons learned by those who possess enough courage to put pen to paper.” - Ellery Adams, The Secret, Book & Scone Society
Stories are powerful. Never let anyone diminish or minimize your love for stories.
I hope you’re hanging in. Reply or comment and let me know. 💚