For most, July is the “middle” of the year, when things slow down and get lazy, the heat of the summer (or the cold of the winter, if you’re in the other hemisphere) starts getting to you, and thoughts turn not to immediate plans but the past and the future. For me, it’s the final month of the liturgical year in Kemetic Orthodoxy. As I’ve been practicing this religion since the late 1980s, my life definitely has a rhythm that July is not the middle, but the round-up and wind-up of everything I’ve been up to since last July. July is time to tie up the loose ends, finish the projects, and prepare for what is coming in August and beyond.

This July is no exception. Though I did start something new – my Patreon projects, specifically, are now live and seem to be doing well so far – I am mostly in wrap-up and ending stage on other things. I’m giving my first paper as a Ph.D. candidate at an annual Coptic Studies conference in a couple of weeks, and am finalizing my presentation for that. I’m finishing up work on the Ancient Egyptian Daybook Planner and shipping of the many boxes of the original Daybook that released earlier this year. I’ve figured out my healthcare situation so I can go see a doctor about some things I needed to look into months ago, and otherwise making changes in my life to make it better – or at very least, a little less stressful. No steady paycheck since last October has been an eye-opening and sometimes frustrating experience. Any way I can work on making that less difficult is a good way.

And as I wind down, I also remember that I celebrate my birthday in July, though I don’t know that I really do or have celebrated it in any meaningful way in some years. This year is a workday and also unlikely to be anything memorable or fancy. It’s just another day on an arbitrary counting of days, after all. At the same time, it’s also a memory marker, and a reminder that I’m still alive and I’m still here and doing the things and living my life. This is a blessing I’ve been glad to have every year since the first time I found out I had cancer, way back when I was 25. I don’t worry about getting old. Can’t say I enjoy the new aches and pains much, or that it’s all pleasant all the time. But every year I get is one I once thought maybe I wouldn’t get. That? Is definitely worth celebrating, and I will celebrate it again this year, even if it’s quietly by myself. Looking forward to the renewals of this July, and I hope that you are too.

Posted in Academia, Ancient Egyptian Daybook, Ancient Egyptian Daybook Planner, Appearances, Blog, Coptic Studies, Gratitude, Lectures, News, Patreon, Writing | Leave a comment

Patrons wanted – help grow my work!

With the advice and help of some friends, I am now listed on Patreon as a content creator. If you’re unfamiliar, Patreon is sort of the digital equivalent of the fan clubs people my age and older were part of when we were younger. In return for monthly support of an artist, patrons receive perks including early access to various projects, Patron-only projects, tangible gifts, and more. I actually have two different Patreons directed at the two very distinct parts of work I do around Egypt and Haiti, respectively. The button below and elsewhere on this site is for my Egypt-related Patreon work; if you’re interested in the Haiti-related work I do, check out the Mambo T Patreon instead. You’re invited to check them out and spread the word – with enough support I will be able to cut back on freelancing and spend more time writing and creating things for us to enjoy. Thank you so much!

Become a Patron!

Posted in Academia, Ancient Egypt, Blog, Books and Reading, Coptic Studies, Culture, Curious Things, Egypt, Gratitude, Haiti, Haitian history, Haitian Vodou, Heka (Magic), Kemetic Orthodoxy, LGBT+, News, Patreon, Technology, Website news, Writing | Leave a comment

Opening doors

Zigzag is complaining at me again. He’s frustrated that I seem to spend so much of my time sitting in front of the bright box on the desk, and not enough time petting him or playing with him. He’s also fussy and not sure what he wants; if I do stop, pick up a toy, pet him, or give him something as a treat, he will decide for a moment whether or not he is going to stop complaining and enjoy the thing. Then he enjoys it.

I understand your frustration, fuzzball. I’ve been doing my own complaining at life for a while, around sorting out shipments of the Ancient Egyptian Daybook (that are still going on despite my best intentions, due to a simultaneous lack of postage funds due to being over budget, and having to work to make money to get said postage funds together). I’ve raised good money via a second Kickstarter for the Daybook Planner, but I’m not touching that money – it’s for paying for art and editing, and I’d love to not be in the same pinch in a couple of months, so I am resisting the urge to take any advance off future project funds. I’ve cut back everything I can cut back. School funding doesn’t resume until September, so I’ll need to be very creative for the next several months. I can do this.

And I can do other things, too. Tomorrow morning, I’m flying back down to SoCal to do something I’ve been working at doing for nearly two decades now. I will be defending my dissertation proposal in Coptic Studies at Claremont Graduate University. Finally, after two attempts that were unable to be completed through no fault of my own, I am standing just outside another big door. Here’s to it. I’m ready to get this done. Now, if only the rest of the world cooperates and maybe we don’t all die in a nuclear conflagration brought on by governmental incompetence in the meantime…that would be fantastic.

What sorts of challenges are you meeting, out there in readerland? How are you faring with them? I wish you well.

Posted in Academia, Ancient Egyptian Daybook, Ancient Egyptian Daybook Planner, Blog, Books and Reading, California, Coptic Studies, Egypt, Gratitude, Kickstarter, News, Politics, Writing | 1 Comment

Six more days for the Daybook Planner!

We’re still raising funds to meet two stretch goals for The Ancient Egyptian Daybook Perpetual Planner campaign on Kickstarter.

Kicktraq is providing a quick link to how we’re doing – so far so good, but we’ve still got a way to go to our two goals:

The Ancient Egyptian Daybook: Perpetual Planner -- Kicktraq Mini

Please consider backing this project – or spreading the word about it. This entire project lives or dies on word of mouth, like all crowdfunding does. It takes a crowd to fund a project, and I’m delighted to be able to share this with all of you. Thank you so much.

Posted in Ancient Egypt, Ancient Egyptian Daybook, Ancient Egyptian Daybook Planner, Books and Reading, Curious Things, Egypt, Kickstarter, News, Writing | Leave a comment

Just shy of 75%…Ancient Egyptian Daybook Planner go!

Today we’re at 74% of funding for the followup project to The Ancient Egyptian Daybook. This is a standalone perpetual planner-style calendar, and a project I had mentioned doing back with the first Kickstarter but was holding until the Daybook itself was complete. Now it’s time to get that going, and you can help either by backing it/preordering your copy, or helping me to spread the word. If the Kickstarter doesn’t make its goal by the end of March – we have 21 days left – then this project will not be funded and it will have to wait until I can afford to do it in the future.

Here’s where to find it:

Thanks for your help with visibility! There is a very ambitious stretch goal for a calendar app to go with the planner – a way to print out calendars based on all your parameters and essentially an interactive digital Daybook – but that needs quite a bit more funding for me to hire the programmers in addition to the design and distribution people/licensing it takes. I’ve seen a very very basic prototype of the app already, and so I know it can be done. If that’s a thing that interests you or would interest your friends, please let them know. It would be great fun to put an ancient calendar out for our modern age in that way.

Posted in Ancient Egypt, Ancient Egyptian Daybook, Ancient Egyptian Daybook Planner, Books and Reading, Culture, Curious Things, Egypt, Kickstarter, News, Technology, Website news, Writing | Leave a comment