Daily Thoughts 105: President Against Libraries

Author's selfie Today was another day of prioritizing sleep. In part because I woke up in the night and had trouble getting back to sleep. By the time I did get up, there wasn’t much time left in my morning before heading off to the library. Tackling my daily challenges had to wait and I ended up not making time for my writing. I’ll try again tomorrow!

Daily Sketch Challenge

Landscape SketchAs I’ve said before, it doesn’t have to be good.  I just keep having fun. I keep trying different things. None of this is anything that I’m worrying about. When I get done with this semester I plan to do additional drawing and painting outside of the daily challenge—eventually building up to creating new original cover art for all of the 20+ books in the reboot!

President Against Libraries

Next up on the block to be eliminated: Institute of Museum and Library Services. The American Library Association issued a statement.

The range of services provided to millions of Americans through LSTA grants is matched only by the creativity of the libraries that receive them: veterans transitioning to civilian life, small businesses seeking to expand their business online, summer reading programs, resources for blind and hearing-impaired patrons, resume writing and job skills workshops and computer coding courses to teach youth 21st century job skills.

The mission of the Institute of Museum and Library Services “is to inspire libraries and museums to advance innovation, lifelong learning, and cultural and civic engagement. We provide leadership through research, policy development, and grant making.”


Daily Thoughts 104: Fiona, Warcraft, and Writing

Author's selfieThis morning I prioritized walking. It was a terrific morning for it. The moon was out and bright enough that I almost didn’t need my headlight (this was just before 5 AM). I did end up running out of time to do much else this morning.

That’s fine, it just means taking care of things this evening instead. I started with my daily sketch challenge.

Daily Sketch Challenge

Sketch of baby hippo FionaI enjoy drawing animals. They’re interesting and fun to draw. I enjoy drawing people too, but when I watched the latest video with Fiona, the baby hippo at the Cincinnati Zoo, I had to make her the subject of today’s sketch! I’d liked to have had more time to work on it but there wasn’t time if I was going to have time to write too.


After spending time on my sketch, I spent a little time playing World of WarCraft with my son watching. He wants me to get to the Darkmoon Fair next month with a new character, so I’m working on that when I take breaks.

Daily Writing Challenge

I continued working on my story The Order today. No clear idea what I’m doing with this, exactly. It’s not a science fiction story. It’s a mainstream story with a non-gendered character. In the video you’ll see that I’m cycling through the story at points, going back up to earlier parts tweaking and working on the story before continuing.

The Secret Scripture

This looks good, sad, and interesting. I think I’d like to read the book first.

Daily Thoughts 103: Recording Writing Challenge

Author's selfieI prioritized sleeping again this morning, which meant that I didn’t have time to go take my walk. That’s a trade-off, sleep or walk? My default answer is to walk, but when I really need to get more sleep I try to listen to my body.

Daily Writing Challenge

Screenshot of Write!Along with sketching, I’ve been working on a writing challenge with a bit less success. I decided to go ahead and record the writing session, much as I’ve done with the sketching and see how that went. I’m using Write! for this story. It’s a distraction-free text editor that I’m trying out. It has a number of features I like, so I thought I’d give it a shot.

Daily Sketch Challenge

Sketch of PoppyI had about 15 minutes this morning to work on my daily sketch. I picked one of our dogs as the subject today. This is Poppy. I used a reference photo from when she was much younger. She’s 17 years old now!

Daily Thoughts 102: Newt Scratchmander

Author's selfieToday my focus has been mostly on my classes. I have several assignments due today. Since I worked yesterday, I have today off. It’s important to have a balance between work and everything else.

I spent the first part of the morning (after my walk and sketching) working on a Scratch game, Demystifying Dewey. It’s a simple Dewey-based matching game with a simple gameplay mechanic. Different badges are awarded at the end, based on the player’s score.

Screenshot of the Dewey Scratch game

I spent more time than necessary on the assignment. I created custom animations and sounds. As my first attempt at using Scratch, I think it went okay! I would have loved to have this sort of thing when I was a kid.

Daily Sketch Challenge

Newt sketchI spent more time on the sketch this morning. Rather than listening to music, I put in my earbuds and listened to the end of Allegiant by Veronica Roth. I enjoyed the series. I have too many books in progress right now, so it’s good to get one more done!

I’m calling this guy Newt Scratchmander.

Daily Thoughts 101

Author's selfieMy schedule is a bit different this week. Worked today, off tomorrow, working a few days and then off at the end of the week. Nothing like that to throw off schedules!

Daily Sketch Challenge

Carrot sketchI took a few minutes this morning to work on my daily sketch challenge. I find I’m missing it when I don’t sketch. Of course, I’m not limited to 5 days. I can still draw on my days ‘off’.

I need to start turning off the music when I’m doing my sketching. Today’s video ended up blocked because of music playing softly in the background. I’ve removed the audio, replacing it with a few comments, and uploaded the video.

It didn’t really matter. Other videos I’ve done showed that the YouTube software detected copyrighted material, meaning that I couldn’t monetize the videos if I wanted and any advertising revenue would go to the performers. I don’t have any problem with those terms. If that’s all that happened, that’d be fine. Since it can block the videos, however, that’s different. Going forward, I’ll just leave the music off.


Daily Thoughts 100: Wonder Woman

Author's selfieI’ve been wrapped up today working on a Scratch game for class. I’m doing a simple game focused on learning Dewey. The better the player does, the better badges they get. I have the basic functionality mostly in place but have a little more to do still. I probably spent too long creating custom animations, graphics, and sounds.

Screenshot of Scratch gameIt’s my first attempt at making a game in Scratch. It’s interesting! I’ll share the link when it’s done.

Best Superhero Movie Ever?

Can’t. Wait.

Looks great!

Daily Thoughts 99: Milestones and the False Big

Author's selfie I prioritized sleeping this morning. According to the CDC 1 in 3 adults don’t get enough sleep.  To look after my mental and physical health, I try to prioritize my sleep when possible. Of course, prioritizing sleep this morning meant less time to draw, write, or study before work. That’s okay!

Grizzly Bears


I love that The Oatmeal’s fan base supports efforts like this one, to support the restoration of grizzly bears in the North Cascades.

Check it out.

Daily Sketch Challenge: Bonus!

Daily Sketch Challenge of CaesarI’d already done my five sketches for the week, but I wanted to do another. Since I was talking about Planet of the Apes yesterday, I decided to go ahead and tackle a Caesar sketch.

Milestones and the False Big

Tomorrow marks the 100th daily thoughts post! My first thought at seeing that approach was to start thinking about what I could do for reaching 100 posts? It’s a milestone, isn’t it? In SuperBetter terms, is this an epic win?

Um, no.

Why not?

I’ve just posted to the blog for 100 days. There isn’t anything particularly challenging about doing that. I’m having fun. I enjoy it. Consistency is great. It works for me. It could be a ‘milestone’ in the sense of a stone marking a mile. It is 100 posts. Okay, let’s keep walking. It isn’t that significant. Tomorrow isn’t any more significant than today.

It points to the second issue with thinking of a milestone as something significant, what I think of as ‘the False Big.’ We make things out to be a big deal. I finished a story. A novel. Ten novels! Or we set out to do something ‘big’ in the sense of importance.

I’m planning a massive reboot project. Isn’t that a big deal?

Um, no.

Creating art is expressive. It may be fun (or not) depending on your approach. Adopting the attitude that creating something is important, that it is a big deal, puts stress into the equation. I don’t want that for my work. I’ve done that in the past, and I’m done with that. I draw because I enjoy it. Because I want to do it.

And yes, the ‘challenge’ aspect puts some stress on it, making it a ‘big deal’ in a sense. I’m walking a line with that concept. The challenges are goals. Reminders to stop and enjoy myself, to make time for the things I want to do. I’m not putting any pressure on any particular drawing, story, or other projects.

I’m having fun. Like I had fun today doing the Caesar drawing.

Daily Thoughts 98: It’s a Mad House! I Get Knocked Down, But I Get Up Again

Author's selfieSpent another day in our administrative offices. In addition to signing forms, reviewing documents, and meetings, I spent time looking at data. I also considered how we might improve our coding of materials in the library. I enjoyed it! I like being out in the libraries, but sometimes it’s nice to have time to get through some of the other tasks on my list!

War for the Planet of the Apes

I’ve enjoyed the new Planet of the Apes film series. I was thinking about the next movie this morning. I couldn’t remember when it was coming out. Turns out, it’s a summer release. So still time!

I might have to draw Caesar for my sketch challenge.

Writing Challenge


I need to restart my 400-word challenge. I didn’t set aside time to write yesterday. That’s okay. I miss a day, I just try again. I’ll keep my weekly count, it just won’t go up this week. I was thinking of it as a streak, but I really just want to count the number of weeks in which I’ve written at least 400 words, 5 days out of the week. I’m trying to keep it going each week. I think I’ll note the previous streak so I can see the comparison.

Love They Might Be Giants!

Daily Sketch Challenge

Self-portrait sketchI tackled the sketch first thing after my walk this morning. It is too easy to fall prey to Predatory Procrastinator (one of my bad guys in SuperBetter parlance). E-mail, web pages, and other distractions can quickly eat up the few minutes I might have to work on a sketch. I try to do the key things I want to accomplish first thing in the day.

Daily Thoughts 97: IFLA

Author's Selfie I’m catching up on things today in the office. I’ll never ‘catch up’ in the sense that I won’t have anything to do (the job always has new opportunities). Librarians are poised to make more significant impacts as we move forward. I love that libraries are involved in the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

I need to spend more time with it!

The Sustainable Development Goals

I’d like to see us consider the goals when developing our next strategic plan.

Daily Sketch Challenge

Sketch of McCoyI didn’t spend much time on my sketch today—but I did it and that is what counts!

I want to find some time to spend longer on drawing. It isn’t always possible. I’m glad to at least spend a few minutes!

Daily Thoughts 96: Believer, 451, and International Women’s Day

Author's selfieI had the opportunity to spend the day out in the Oakville Timberland Library. It is a small community library, well-loved by community members. I enjoy these days when I get to spend time in the libraries.


I wore my 451 lapel pin today. It is from Operation 451.

451 graphic library bill of rights

Check out the site for more information, ideas of what to do, starting with Mission4.


I heard “Believer” from Imagine Dragons this morning for the first time. I’ll listen to it again!

Daily Sketch Challenge

Sketch of Kate WilliamsFor International Women’s Day, I sketched a strong, capable, smart, funny, and loving woman—Kate. I’ve been privileged to spend my life with her. I got caught up in the sketch and went a bit longer than normal.