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Up and running

Hello! This is just a quick post to say… I MADE IT! I’ve made the jump to hosting my own website, and while there is a long way to go to get it organised and pretty, it’s here. I spent most of my weekend migrating from one laptop to another, and I always get antsy when moving my files around, even when I have backups of backups! So when that finished, it left very little time to sort the new blog home out…or write! So I’ve got a lot of work to make up this week.

And if anyone out there has knowledge about the best way to backup a WordPress.org site (hosted on Dreamhost), please feel free to get in touch 😉 I’ve backed it up once now, but as I just pointed out, I can get pretty anal retentive about this stuff. I also need to figure out things like how to make sure people who were signed up to receive my blog via email will get switched over to this one, etc. But I’m working on it! 🙂

Thank you for reading!!! Stay tuned 🙂

Corfu. Totally unrelated, but I’d like to go back.
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Migration

So this weekend my goal is to begin moving my blog over via wordpress.org to a new domain with a new name and new everything. I’m a bit scared, to be honest, as I’ve only just started this one up, and I’m asking all those newbie questions: will it be worth paying for? Do I blog enough to make the hassle worth it? Will anyone follow me? Etc. etc. But while I’ve enjoyed using wordpress.com, I feel it’s a bit limiting and I see other people doing nifty things with their websites I’d like to do with mine, that I gather can be done when you’re paying for it 😉

Considering new horizons… and URLs, believe it or not!

I’m going to give it a try, and for anyone out there reading this, I’ll post an update before I move across (if I can figure out how all this works) and let you know. Still undecided on the new URL/username. Thinking either cheyennecampbell.com, or aleapinthedark.com, or  chylucampbell, or something similar. Not sure whether it’s best to use my name as the URL, or my blog name, or maybe an abbreviated version of my name. Ahh! Decisions. 🙂

Suggestions?

Peace out for now!

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Spread the sunshine!

Wow! I was completely surprised and very grateful that a fellow writer, Valerie R. Lawson (whose blog header reads “Barbies on Fire” which cracks me up to no end), nominated my little ol’ blog for the Sunshine Award! Thank you, Valerie! That filled my day with some serious sun, and given the dark, grim, windy, wet weather Britain has been saddled with lately, this is most gratefully received 🙂 I seriously have been moaning about the lack of sun for the past few weeks, since it is spring and all, and how much, with each passing year, I seem to be affected by the lack of sunlight, blue skies, and warmth. So this was very special indeed. Thank you for making my day! 

Here are the rules for the Sunshine Award:

Include the award logo in the post.
Link back and thank those that nominated me.
Answer 10 random questions about myself and/or tell seven random facts.
Nominate 10 other bloggers and link them to the award in their comments section.

As for the 10 random questions, here goes (some are random, some borrowed):

1. Favourite childhood books: Since I can’t name just one, I had to come up with a few. My Mom always read to my sisters and I which I think was key in my love of stories from a young age. I know lots of parents do this, but only as an adult do I understand how different my life would be had this not been an institution for me. I was a big fan of Arnold Lobel’s FROG AND TOAD books, SMALL PIG, and best of all was MISS SUZY by Miriam Young, illustrated by Lobel.

2. What are you reading right now? VOYAGER by Diana Gabaldon in her OUTLANDER series. My best friend Wendy suggested I try the series, based on the mixture of Scottish setting, history, and sci-fi/fantasy. I’ve never been a big romance reader and in fact, the only real “romance” novel I’ve read, one of my favourite books, REDEEMING LOVE by Francine Rivers, is more of an inspirational tale than romance (though it was originally written as a bodice-ripper, and re-worked to focus on spirituality, interesting tidbit). But I do need to write a post about Gabaldon’s writing, as it’s so different to anything I’ve read before. I’m obsessed with Claire and Jamie Fraser. LOVE. Also finishing up READING LIKE A WRITER by Francine Prose.

3. Name one thing people can’t tell by looking at you: Well, there are countless things, I’d hope. If everything showed on my face, I’d be in trouble! I lived three years on a Native American reservation, from age 3-6, as my dad is half-Mohawk/Iroquois and we had a family home there. So I attended kindergarten and first grade on the reservation, and had weekly Mohawk language lessons (and no, I don’t remember much, sadly). 

4. Guilty pleasures: Not for the shoes, but the conversation, I’ve been a massive Sex & the City fan since it was on TV. I never tire of repeated viewings – so many classic lines. Guilty pleasure music: I have “Push It” by Salt n Pepa on my workout playlist. Don’t judge. There is worse than that on there 😉

5. Morning person or night owl? Night owl by nature/genetics I think. I do my best thinking at night. My brain seems to be in a cloud during the day, which breaks up only when the house is quiet and I can focus. But I do love being up with the sun – it’s just not always so easy to have my brain up as well.

6. Dream holiday: New Zealand. I will get there someday.

7. Favourite place lived? I’ve moved quite a lot; in fact, I think it’s now 31 times. But most of those were from apartment to apartment within the same city, sometimes the same complex. I grew up in Western NY state (Niagara Falls area), then moved to Nashville and lived all around the city. Then Northern California. Then England – Bristol and Cornwall – then Scotland, and back to England. It’s tough because I love so much about all those places. Least on the list: California. I get homesick for WNY all the time, but I visit about 3x a year. I miss Nashville’s size and nightlife. I’d move back to Cornwall in a heartbeat for the seaside villages and rugged coast. But Scotland was by far my favourite. Grim weather, but being a few hours’ drive from the Highlands made my heart sing.

8. What was breakfast this morning? 2 croissants with raspberry jam and 2 sips of coffee. Normally it’s something healthy like cereal or yogurt, but this is our weekly tradition 🙂

9. Music to write to? Yes. I have several writing playlists but my old standby is one simply called “Chill” which has a massive jumble of Craig Armstrong, LOTR and other film soundtracks, classical, jazz, and electronica/ambient/Ibiza-type stuff. Just bought the soundtrack to the Journey video game and it rocks. But sometimes I just need silence.

10. What moves you? Sadness. The thought of living without someone you love. Sacrifice for another. The human condition of struggling to protect or be with the ones you love. And while all of this sounds depressing, whether in film or novel, it ultimately reminds us of what’s most important in the very short time we have, and to embrace it for all we’re worth, while we can. 

So, my nominees… will be forthcoming 🙂 Thank you again, and have a sunshine-filled weekend! I will be hopefully completing one of my numbered goal items today, before heading off for a friend’s hen weekend. Back to work Monday morning!

**UPDATE! So it turns out a lot of the blogs I follow are already recipients of the Sunshine Award nomination 🙂 I’ve nominated the following fabulous and fun blogs, and more will be posted soon :}

1. Ermilia – Ermisenda & Eliabeth, co-authors of BLIND SIGHT.

2. Dorothy Dahm at Kidsbiographer’s Blog

3. Megan Cooley at WriterGirl

4. Ariel Swan, author of DISTILLATION

Thanks for sharing your great blogs, guys! Enjoy the sunshine!

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This blog needs a new home – and May goal check!

A walk around Windsor yesterday. One likes to have impressive homes…

So, the first week of May is at an end. Let’s see where I’m at with my May Goals, shall we?

1) Rework few small sections of 1st novel based on recent feedback. Not touched yet…
2) WIP: finish 2nd draft of first 7 chapters. Reworked first 3 chapters so far. 
3) WIP: finish outline. Not touched yet….
4) WIP: write 3 more chapters. Again…

Sigh. So, not doing so well. But try, try again. I’m finally beginning to learn that in life, you just can’t let misshaps, hurdles, and unforeseen events (bad or good) stop you from getting up and carrying on. And some of the good was an impromptu late-deal on a posh hotel in Windsor, so my other half and I embarked on a mini-adventure into the home counties 🙂 We drove out to Basildon Park, a National Trust property (since we are card-carrying members and all!) which I didn’t realise until we’d toured the entire building that it was the setting for Mr. Bingley’s home in Joe Wright’s Pride & Prejudice! It’s one of my all-time favourite films, and when I realised it was the location for the amazing long take shot of Bingley’s party, I had to, of course, traipse through one more time.

We had a fantastic little trip, did loads of walking and relaxed in the hotel. It is the Early May Bank Holiday weekend, after all! And it was great to get away before the wedding and put some things into perspective. Why is that easier to do away from home?

But that means a lot more work to do this week. I can do it! Check back in a week’s time and fingers crossed, I will have ticked off a few of those numbers.

On to topic #2 today. A new home for my blog. It hasn’t been around that long, but I want to make it a bit more professional, plus I just don’t like this font and while I love the theme, I think it’s a bit dark on the top of the page (it lightens up as you scroll down, which I adore). I need to buy my own domain name finally (or again, I should say), and find a host, and upgrade to WordPress’s web software rather than using the web-based blog. I haven’t read up enough on it. Anyone out there using it? I feel like I’d be graduating from the kiddie table at Thanksgiving on up to the proper table, with real china and actual silverware.

The only quandary with this revolves around what domain name to choose. While I have a plan (I say “plan” but I mean, if and when my first novel finds an agent and a publisher) to use a pseudonym for Novel #1, I would like to be known by my married name for the other genre stuff I write and plan to write (I know this sounds a bit lofty, but it doesn’t hurt to think ahead. WAY ahead ;). And since I’ll be using it from late May onward, I’d like to switch my blog over. I’ll be switching my email address(es) over as well. But I’m not sure if this will cause any confusion. Not that I have a load of followers! 😉 But I definitely don’t want to confuse anyone who does check my blog/Twitter. I don’t imagine this will be a huge issue, but I think it is one in my head if only because the idea of changing one’s last name is daunting.

I’ve been so excited about our upcoming wedding, and having met the right man 5 years ago, but when it comes right down to it, saying goodbye to your last name is a somewhat melancholy affair. I’m still Cheyenne Lucille Hill, and always will be. And it’s my choice to take on a new name. No one’s forcing me. I’m quite happy to become Cheyenne Lucille Campbell. But I’m still a Hill family member, and the history that goes with my Native American side of the family and roots is something I’m proud of and want to still “feel” connected to. A name is just a name, and not an identity. And I’m definitely not complaining. It’s just an interesting transition time, causing some unexpected feelings.

Okay, here’s to a fantastic week of #Writemotivation and good vibes! Best wishes, everyone!

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