Robin Watch April 5

If you’ve been watching the drama box, you might remember last week I put up a bird shelf under my eaves for the robin who had been thinking of building a nest on the one-inch window sill.  After three days of checking it out, she instead chose to build in the old bush right behind me.  :-)  How cool is that?

So now I have a behind-the-back view of what hopefully doesn’t become too much drama.  I don’t see too many cats back here, so maybe there is hope.  Guy was the first one to spot her early this week, and I watched her first collect twigs, and then yesterday, mud to finish it.  I came together amazingly fast.


Sort of like this plot for book 13, which is the new 12, actually.  (nice segue, eh?)  I’ve got a very nice chapter-by-chapter outline done, but it has problem, and last night I thought about all the faults it has.  Today I’m going to explode it open and try to put it back together.  This is where my character grid comes in handy, helping me keep track of when I see someone so they can bring in whatever piece of information Rachel needs.  Once it’s exploded, it’s a mess, but if I can go back and see that Edden calls in chapter five, we see him in six, seven, and twelve, I know that whatever new thing I need him to bring into the story has to be in those areas and go right to them for repairs.  It also tells me when I have too many chapters crunched into a day, (which is what I’m running into now) and when I’m seeing too much, or too little of a character.  (For example, f the story isn’t about Quen, he doesn’t need to be there in six chapters, and I can give his “lines” to someone else who does.)  It also helps make sure I don’t have three chapters in a row take place in the same location, and that there is a flow from place to place, sunrise, to sunset.

So today I’m ripping it apart and putting it back together.  Right after I make a list of what’s wrong with it and a second list of a few more quirky things I didn’t manage to fit in the first time.  I’m going to need a steady stream of caffein today–and lots of it.  I have to get it all done today, or it will take me an hour to pick up my train of thought tomorrow.

P.S.  Planted a row of asparagus last night.  The small patch I put in the ground last year did so well, I’m going to try for more.  Weeding out maple seeds kind of came to a halt once I realized the ground by the drive was dry enough to work.  Yay!

18 Comments

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18 responses to “Robin Watch April 5

  1. Aww I see a cute lil face peeking out in the 2nd pic. Glad she found her spot.
    Sorry you can’t see the pic I tried to share.. maybe I’ll post it on your FB at some point.
    I saw you had some better chocolate then the emergency bar the other day. With Easter around the corner its hard not to endulge in some silky sweet goodness to celebrate.. or at least that is an excuse we can use.. right?
    As for me, I’ve been playing with my new camera and today got to play peek-a-boo with a lovely white horse in Newburyport. Plus, I dug around a lil bit in the yard. Found out I’ll have to remove a stump to a pesky prickly bush. I’m hoping I get it out before our vacation.. but if not it will be my project when I return.
    Keep up the good work on your masterpiece!

    • Chocolate is good, but I am a jelly bean junky, Lynn. We made a basket to send off to our son in the military and opened the jelly beans. They have since been hidden from me.

      Have fun in the dirt!

  2. twiser

    I know you recommend the Dark Days series and Sign of the Zodiac. Probably because they’re Harper too, but have the read Jaye Wells Sabina Kane series? Good! Have a good weekend and happy bunny day😉

  3. Looks like you’ll have a front row seat for the robin’s adventures this spring. I hope she gets her HEA.

    Did exploding your plot outline help? My plot has also exploded, although in my case the explosion wasn’t intentional. But I’m picking up the pieces and seeing what parts were strong enough to survive. And I can’t remember if I said this before or not, but thank you for the character grid! I’m using a modified version of it to put the plot back together and it’s really helping.

    • Hi SiSi. Yes, it did. I moved a few things around, slowed down a spot or two, and added in a mess of other stuff that tied in with things. It was a great day plotting.

      I’m so glad you’re finding some use in the character grid. I can’t plot without it now. It’s my backbone.

  4. jkh

    Bread machines are an excellent take-along if you’re RVing, you can have your favorite type of bread, fresh, any time. At home I use the KitchenAid mixer and bake off my loaf/loaves in the oven. And I can see that I’ll need to budget for another hardback, the next GN, in the fall. Right now I’m packing my books to take to my apartment from my dad’s house, passing on a bunch of things, but NOT my Hollows series! The happiest note (1 of the 2) is that I got my turn at A Perfect Blood from the library. I’m actually taking it slow — really unusual for me!

  5. purrfectkatus

    Oh that is so cool to be blessed with a Robin. When my hubby and I lived in a small part near Belmont, NC we had Bluebirds actually nest in a bird house on our front porch for three years in a row. The first year a Carolina chickadee nested in an ornamental bird house. It is fun watching the birds take care of their broods, from eggs to fledglings. We actually left our birdhouse behind since the bluebirds had not fledged yet when we moved out last summer. She always had two clutches every spring. Do the Papa Robins take part in the nesting ritual? Or do they abandon Mama to the task of making the nest and feeding the babies? That should be interesting to see and incorporate into your story. I cannot wait to see more pictures of your Robin family and your garden. Mmmm…asparagus. I miss the south already and it hasn’t even been a year yet.

    • That is beautiful! We’ve got a wren house that the chickadees are looking at. It might be too close to the sidewalk, though.

      I don’t know how involved the male robins are, actually.

  6. theebree

    I’ve signed up to receive these blog posts via e-mail and I just wanted to say that they are so much fun to wake up to every morning!

    Hopefully the little robin’s progress goes well, I can wait to see some pics of her chicks:)

    You are writing 12 and 13 so far in advanced. Do you think they will be released within the same year? Good luck plotting.

    • Very cool, Bree! I’m glad you’re enjoying my ramblings. -laugh-

      I doubt very much that 12 and 13 will be published in the same year, no. Even if I get them both written in time, my editor will be hard pressed to get me to turn them in before the due date. I like my one-book-a-year schedule, and having one in the cabinet finished gives me several months of cushion should an emergency crop up. Who knows? Maybe I could even take a vacation one of these years.

  7. James R. Fox

    Hi Ms.Kim-its jim from Warren.That robin has been busy,hasn’t she. There have been a few sparrows in the tree in my front yard,but it’s been late putting out leaves this year, and the whole herd hasn’t come by yet.The groundskeeper is doing the yards on his riding mower,my cat Quigley thinks that’s the coolest thing she’s ever seen,and she gets cat snot all over the glass cause she’s waching so hard. She and Smudge like the sparrows in our tree too.

    • jkh

      My Oliver was on sentry duty this am, keeping a close watch on some orange tomcat daring to cross HIS yard, and some busy robins and sparrows. I’m going to festoon his comb-out on the bushes, for nesting material.

    • James R. Fox

      Hi again Ms Kim-I just got a late weather flash.WE are supposed to get a BIG dose of cold air from Lake Erie for Friday and possibly the weekend.Snow on Easter! Yuck! as my buddy in Philadelphia says. She sent another video of her doing core exercises while hanging by one ankle from her trapeze,and this time she had clothes on, so I might ask her permission to show it.(She sells these sometimes when business is slow at her and her besties dress shop. It’s why she and bestie started the shop,they are both models, and both too short to get the good runway jobs 5’7″and 5’6″ all they get is kids clothes for newspapers and mags’, then they gotta sell skin as leases in downtown Philly are EXPENSIVE. Add in a halfway decent apt, and she says it’s big money…) Anyway,I hope you do not get any cold blasts from the lake

    • She built it all in about three days, Jim. Amazing.🙂

  8. Diva

    That’s a pretty good sized nest Ms Robin has going on there. Good for her.

    Happy to hear that work on the new book is going well. But when you say book 13 do you mean the “new” book 12? I can tell I’m going to be hella confused by the time all is said and done but that’s par for the course with me, lol.

    • There’s been lots of good mud for her to line it with, and yes, she really made a nice structure.

      He, heee. Yes, that’s the new book 12. It will be easier when I can announce a title.