Pictures to Distract You: A Snowy Day, and Tools of the Trade

Hi, all. Waiting is hard. So here are some pretty pics to distract you. 

Friday was the day I’d scheduled to take some time off, go for nice walk, and get some pictures of the fall foliage.

In typical 2020 fashion, it didn’t go quite as planned… 

So I went with it.

Everything is great.

Here are some scenes…

…of October…
… in Massachusetts…

…just for you.

Now for some pictures of inside things. I don’t know about you, but this is a pretty stressful time for me, and I’m using every tool in my toolbox to stay healthy and well. One of those is — always — writing, and hardly anything gives me greater comfort than having fun with my writing tools.

I’ve explained before that I write by hand. Then, when I’ve written a sufficient amount that I start to worry about the house burning down, I transcribe my writing into a Word document, using voice recognition software. If you’re curious about the kind of notebooks I’ve written in previously and what my writing used to look like — and if you’re a writer who wants a reminder of how normal it is for writing to be hard — go check out my old post, Pictures of a Book Being Made

In recent years, I have some new tools.

Writing by hand has always been my way, even before I developed a disability that makes typing prohibitively painful. I’m left-handed, but not too long ago, after doing some realistic thinking about how much pain I work through on a daily basis, I began to teach myself to write right-handed, so that I can increase the likelihood I’ll be able to write forever. 

Now, after much practice, I alternate between hands pretty regularly as I work. The right-handed writing is slower and messier, and my hand gets tired faster. But it’s fine.

I’ve also started using smaller, lighter notebooks. This is partly to save my hands, and partly because the most recent books I’ve been writing feel different, and have been asking me for new supplies.

In particular, they’re asking me for smaller, lighter, less intimidating notebooks — and stickers. :o)

I’ve been hunting for stickers that feel like my books. Stickers that match my characters, my plot, the feelings that imbue my story. Then, as I write, I plop the stickers onto the page… And it helps. It gives me ideas; it slows me down, so that my writing is more thoughtful; it gives me joy. 

The two stickers on the left are the work of Katie at BearandFoxCo.
The sticker on the right is the work of Audrey Miller at CloudCatArts.

I’ll share some pictures of my stickers… And include, with some of them, samples of my right-handed writing, so you can see what I mean about that. Anytime you see handwriting, that’s my right-handed work. And anytime you see a sticker created by an individual/independent artist, I have gotten permission to share it.

Here goes.

Made by Katie Harmon at PinkPolish Design.

Made by Katie Harmon at PinkPolish Design.

Made by Katie Harmon at PinkPolish Design.

Made by Katie Harmon at PinkPolish Design.

This is an image from a cityscape washi tape, superimposed over some pale-blue sky washi stickers I can no longer find a link to.

Made by Katie Harmon at PinkPolish Design. (I colored her right eye red!)

I got a whole series of ship pictures on Etsy, but alas, they no longer seem to be available.

I found these butterfly/moth washi stickers on Etsy.

There’s one more artist whose work I wanted to share, but I didn’t get permission from her in time. Her Etsy shop is on a short break at the moment, but keep the shop of Helen Ahpornsiri in mind; she creates animals using pressed flowers and plants, and the results are beautiful.

And that’s my distraction for today.

Everyone, give yourself a break over the next few days and then however long this takes. Try not to check the news compulsively; wear masks to protect the vulnerable; forgive yourself for being stressed out. And hang in there.