Virtual Trip to the 1300’s

The Time Traveler's Guide to Medieval England: A Handbook for Visitors to the Fourteenth CenturyThe Time Traveler’s Guide to Medieval England: A Handbook for Visitors to the Fourteenth Century by Ian Mortimer

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book gave a phenomenally fresh view point into 14th century England. I bought it as a reference text for a YA novel I’m writing, but I ended up devouring it cover to cover for pleasure. While some segments of the period were glossed over a little too much, the fresh perspective and global overview it presented will help me get more out of every other research text I use from now on. Best of all, I found the perfect solution to a plot problem that had me stalled. Thank you, Ian Mortimer!

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Sorry for the Delay

So we’re already a month in and just now getting to the travel blog. In my defense, I’ve been a little busy with finishing up a book. A real book with a publisher and editor and deadlines and everything. Finally submitted the last of my pages yesterday so I’m free to blog now. Yeehaw!

Today was also Ian’s birthday. I had picked up LEGO cake pans for his cake back when we went to LEGOland in February. Nice thought, but the execution was a little…flawed. For the gory details, watch this:

Kurt finished his last day of work from the coffee table at his parents’ house, watching Netherlands v. Brazil and Uruguay v. Ghana in the World Cup. Wireless internet definitely has its advantages!

So long from New Hampshire for now. I’ll try to catch you up on the past month as we progress through the last two weeks of our travels. Will have to use photos as memory prompts, though.

Cheers,
Jessi

Quotes of the Day

Ian (in response to a joke): You can’t chew water. It’s liquid!

Megan (when given a sibling-gift): Why do I get a present?

Cheap Diploma Substitute


Cheap Diploma Substitute
Originally uploaded by sudphoto

Day 7:   After reading so many research texts extolling the joy of completing a graduate degree, I decided to dig out my diploma and stare at it for awhile–to remind myself that I really did it. Only, I can’t find it. I’ve got my high school and college diplomas, but no grad school. All I could find were sealed packets of transcripts and this 3×5 card, which I guess was designed to be my temporary proof-of-degree? Not the same. You’d better bet that when I finally find my diploma, I’m going to post a picture of me holding it. Then it’ll go into the safe.

Daily Data

  • words written: 0 (0 total)
  • pages of notes taken: 0 (6 total)
  • pages of research read: 62 (402 total)
  • experts approached for interview: 0 (7 total)
  • experts agreeing to interview: 0 (5 total)
  • Quote of the Day: (during search for M.S. diploma) *censored*
  • Link of the Day: Post-positivism

Endeavor to Persevere


Endeavor to Persevere
Originally uploaded by sudphoto

Day 6:   Neither rain nor hail nor even migraine could keep me from my appointed research today. I may have done my reading with an ice pack on my head, but I did my reading. Think I’ll reward myself with a cozy British period drama from Netflix tonight.

Daily Data

  • words written: 0 (0 total)
  • pages of notes taken: 0 (6 total)
  • pages of research read: 118 (340 total)
  • experts approached for interview: 1 (7 total)
  • experts agreeing to interview: 0 (5 total)
  • Quote of the Day: “…remember the goal is to do the dissertation and graduate, so strive for adequately non-boring and forget burning interest…” from Evelyn Hunt Ogden’s Complete Your Dissertation or Thesis in Two Semesters or Less
  • Link of the Day: PhD Comics (Read multiple. I laughed ’till I cried.)

So Close Yet So Far


So Close Yet So Far
Originally uploaded by sudphoto

Day 5:   So I had plans to plow through another research text today. Note the keyword “plans.” But a boy with a case of “The Mondays” rewrote my to-do list. I did squeeze in a little reading. And I found out that I’m officially enrolled in a literary publishing course in June–which means 5 days kid-free (and nonsense-free) thanks to my in-laws. The news couldn’t have come on a better day, because *DING!* I wanna get away.

Daily Data

  • words written: 0 (0 total)
  • pages of notes taken: 0 (6 total)
  • pages of research read: 25 (222 total)
  • experts approached for interview: 0 (6 total)
  • experts agreeing to interview: 1 (5 total)
  • Quote of the Day: (from my son’s principal) “Um, we’re having another problem at school this morning.”
  • Link of the Day: Wanna Get Away?

8 am vs. 5 pm


8 am vs. 5 pm
Originally uploaded by sudphoto

Day 3:   If you look at the stats below, it doesn’t look like I made much progress today. Little wonder. Look at the state of my desk this morning! (It’s been that way for weeks, if I’m honest.) And after the chaos that was mommyhood today, I had to control what I could. So. Tomorrow morning, before the children wake up, I have a date with my books and my pencils and my notebook and…my CLEAN desk.

Daily Data

  • words written: 0 (0 total)
  • pages of notes taken: 0 (6 total)
  • pages of research read: 5 (197 total)
  • experts approached for interview: 0 (6 total)
  • experts agreeing to interview: 2 (4 total)
  • Quote of the Day: (from my mom) “I don’t need to scan my photos if it means you have to waste time cleaning your desk.”
  • Link of the Day: Real Simple’s 5 Rules for Working from Home

Intimidated No More


Intimidated No More
Originally uploaded by sudphoto

Day 2:   If there was one thing I learned in graduate school, it was to read critically. Read critically and take loads of notes. Thanks to that skill, I managed to get over my intimidation and find a couple gaps in a competing text–gaps I intend to fill.

Daily Data

  • words written: 0 (0 total)
  • pages of notes taken: 2 (6 total)
  • pages of research read: 95 (192 total)
  • experts approached for interview: 2 (6 total)
  • experts agreeing to interview: 1 (2 total)
  • Quote of the Day: (from my 11 year old) “Are you done reading that book yet? I need you to help me start a blog.”
  • Link of the Day: Online Writing Lab

Cannot read my own writing.


Can’t read my own writing.
Originally uploaded by sudphoto

Day 1: Dusted off & opened my 90’s research binder & thesis–for recall. Recalled the people, as well. Found one grad-friend listed on IMDB!

Daily Data

  • words written: 0 (0 total)
  • pages of notes taken: 4 (4 total)
  • pages of research read: 97 (97 total)
  • experts approached for interview: 4 (4 total)
  • experts agreeing to interview: 1 (1 total)
  • Quote of the Day: (to my 11 year old while I sat reading) “I know it doesn’t look like it, but I am working.”
  • Link of the Day: Walking with Beasts at IMDB

Early Days

I’ve finally gotten to the point that I have enough publications to warrant some kind of permanent index. In catching up on old publications, my work may seem schizophrenic. Sorry. C’est ma vie.

My first and second publications were in the children’s market. Ladybug Magazine to be exact. “Birds, Bugs, and Bullfrogs” & “Leaves” are not available to read online.

My next foray corresponded with early-educator workshops I was leading at the time. The following non-fiction articles are available to read online from Christian Early Education Magazine:

As J. Sudborough, I published the free-verse “Plum Rain” in Poetry Church vol. 13 no. 1–a print magazine in the UK open to submissions from subscribers. Shortly after that, my sonnet “Open” appeared in the Poetry Church Collection vol. 16, an paperback anthology.

At the close of 2008 (and as J.S. Graustein), my cinquain “Jimmy Buffett Night at Diamond Jim’s” appeared in the Modoc Independent News.

Thus ends the summary of my writing life prior to 2009. Are you dizzy–or bored?