Asrai Devin- the Maven of Mischief

Putting the fun back in dysfunctional.

Category Archives: burnout

Enough, I am enough, you are enough. We can stop.

I’ve gotten myself into this frenzy of saving people from “wrong” choices.

It started with Yahoo Answers and it escalated to several Facebook groups.

People post something like

“My 18 month old is biting. Spanking and time outs aren’t working.”

And then I get annoyed, because spanking and time outs aren’t teaching tools. And I get anxiety about this person getting MY RIGHT answer and taking my advice.

I am making myself insane.

Also, I’ve taken to really being annoyed about the lack of tolerance shown by so many people in my personal non-writer Facebook. “God wants you to say Merry Christmas” and “Saying Happy Holidays is turning your back on Jesus.”

Tis the season for intolerance.

So, here is my plan. Block Yahoo Answers. Leave these crazy mom communities which seem so often to thrive on drama and infighting and the whole “mommy wars” thing and regain the energy I’m losing toward worrying about things that are not in my control. I will give up my good fight to someone else who has more energy and time than me.

What things are you losing energy to? Could you let go of some of those things and regain that energy?



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Get excited about your life

This is the culmination of a few things. First, my latest crush obsession with Eddie Redmayne . Second, trying to figure out my next novel, which I’ve started and crashed about three different times. Third, subsequent daydreaming linked to said crush and writing attempts. Fourth, (I keep adding on) my best friend is in the middle of falling in love. She and her boyfriend as just disgustingly cute about it all!! And last, a post by fellow WANA classmate/friend Kristy K. James, Why Can’t Life be Like a A Love Song?

I was having a lovely daydream the other day about a life different from my own. A life where the mundane things weren’t so mundane, where I was just excited about things and my partner.

And then I started thinking about my husband. I don’t want a new partner. I want him, we have future plans together, which is going to be legendary. But, in the meanwhile, we have to live day to day life and it can get boring and we get entrenched in the exhaustion of two kids, jobs, bills, and the constant threat of clutter taking over our lives. (My husband is perfect for me. I’m keeping him).

But the mundane crap is really a drag.

So it hit me. Why not feel excited about the mundane things? Why not do things for him and be happy I’m making him happy, instead of feeling a bit resentful? Why not be more present with him and with our kids? Why not feel more sexy? Why not put on a bit of an effort for him? Why not feel excited when I see him?

Some people might consider it fake or false to force excitement. You can call it fake it til you make it. I don’t think it is false. After a decade, I can’t expect to feel spontaneous excitement and flooding in my lady bits when he walks in the room like when we were first together. Doesn’t mean it would be false to dwell on it and get excited about him.

A lot of people had the wrong idea about how love should feel. I know I had wrong ideas.

I thought for ages it be as Kristy K James says:

Am I way off base here, or are the feelings expressed in this song the samefeelings that most every adult in the world wants to feel? The newness of love? The uncertainty? The hope? The knowledge that this is the one?

Maybe it’s not the wrong idea of how we should feel, but the idea that we should feel that day in and day out without putting out any effort ourselves.

So, bring up the excitement in your life with what you have. Put out an effort to make the people around you feel the way you want to feel, don’t wait for them to make you happy.


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FML: Too much to do


Damn it.

For readers who want more hockey- you are in luck. My brain figured out the next novel. I know it’s YA for everyone. because I get the feeling i”m going to love this one. (I know I say that EVERY TIME).

but at the same time, I have all these other awesome ideas I want to write.

I had this fairytale romance I started writing. It derailed, but I love the idea. The heroine is the daughter of a high ranking noble, set to marry a Prince, whom she’s never met, when she meets his illegitimate half-brother. I’m not sure where it derailed. This was a lesson I did with Holly Lisle‘s How to Think Sideways, I’ll have to pull out my notes and work through it. I love the idea.

I am mostly finished a May-December romance. And now the new hockey novel wants to run that way as well. I’ll try to resist.

I noticed that one thing I love to write about is a rekindled romance from the teenager years.  Maybe I never got over the boys I loved as a teenager. (Also, despite  wishing to write erotica, this last romance I wrote has ONE sex scene and it doesn’t even need to be in the book. I am writing less sex!!)

Back to the May-December, I-loved-you-since-I-was-a-teen that is not quite finished. When I write a novel I do the first draft and then I plot it out and look for holes. I think there may be holes, but now that I wrote the HEA my muse is washing her hands of the project.

I was going to force it a bit more, but I think I shall leave it sit for a few weeks, and I’ll go onto HOCKEY.

While I was looking up hot redheads, I stumbled on some gorgeous pictures of Eddie Redmayne. He’s taken up permanent residence my brain people. I’m sorry that you are tired of hearing about him, I am not tired of thinking about him.

I was trying to work his image into a story, and then my brain managed to morph it into a hockey novel. While you are waiting for that to get onto paper, I am going to release a new Corey Porter story. I forgot about this until I was cleaning up some files. I’ll hopefully run it through the editor and get it out shortly. I think you’ll be surprised. Like Where the Path Leads, it will be free on Smashwords. deets later.

There are a few other projects I’ve abandoned over the last few months, maybe years, that I’d like to see finished. Somedays I wish my brain had an off switch, or I had a nanny. If I had a nanny maybe I could get all this shit done.

Let me know what is up in your life.


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Stalled before I start

I am putting it off. I am waiting for the moment to be right. I am waiting for me to stop being scared. I am waiting for permission. I am waiting for my muse. I am waiting for a good night’s sleep and a day where my son isn’t whiny.

I am waiting to start my next novel.

I’ve got the basic pre-plan on file. And then i just write, but I haven’t started.

I think because I am not excited about this one yet. I want to write it, the hero needs a chance to redeem himself. And yet, I want to write about sexy encounters on the beach with men with freckles who kiss like a fantasy.

I want to write about heroines who think they might like to be literally tied down. And spanked for fun. Heroines who appreciate dominate men who have strict rules about behavior and decorum. And dress. And sex. Of limits tested and stretched further than you thought you could go.

I want to write about falling for the wrong person at the right time, or the right person at the wrong time. I want to write about taboo seductions and clandestine relationships that walk the fine line of hot and just plain wrong. (Nothing illegal this has been something I’ve wanted to write for years).

I want kisses and bodies brushing together, moaning and panting breath that meet between two bodies, mouths that suck and tease, fingers that caress and stroke and orgasms for everyone.  And people who roll over and say “I love you” even though they’ve only been dating for five days.

I want love at first sight and happily every afters forever more.

Maybe I should write those things instead. I think the muse and I will be much happier. I will come back to the hockey later. I’m still mad at the hero for his past.

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Vacation: Screaming, spitting and dancing edition


We got back from vacation and I have a ton of pictures to share. We drove across the entire province of Alberta (SK border to BC) then half way across BC and then straight down the middle (Prince George to Kamloops) made a stop between Revelstoke and Sicamous then returned home.

It was done in 6 hour driving chunks which were more like 8 hour with a two-year-old.

funny highlights:

When I FLIPPED the fuck out on my nephew because he grabbed a box of cookies from my hand and ran. I just lost it, because I was NOT in the mood to play chase a teenager for cookies. I’m the adult and he’s a child and I do not play “keep away” BS. There was screaming and swearing. It was BAD. I feel like an ass. I was an ass. I’ll never live it down. EVER.

Then we were all out on the porch and my in-laws are handing out cookies. But there are more children than cookies so my SIL says “Just throw the last two in the middle of the kids [in the back yard] and it will be like the Hunger Games.”

I had a mouthful of wine and I had this awesome image of the kids beating the crap out of each other for these cookies. So I ended up spitting my mouthful of wine all over my husband’s cousin who was beside me. That was not my fault however.

Between the however many of us there were, we drank 2 bottles of wine. Well most of 2 bottles, there was a big glass left when everyone had gone but us (we were staying at my in-laws). Five years ago, I got REALLY drunk at their house, so they were feeding me wine again. I get drunk really fast.

There was dancing and singing in the backyard. I was heading to the basement and singing “Don’t Feel Like Dancing” by the Scissor Sisters and trying to do the actions from the Just Dance 3. Good times. I think.

Then we played some cards and some jackass decided I should be score keeper. I usually am, but I was pretty drunk. So The names on the top say “ME”, “YOU” (husband), GRANDPA (Father in law), an actual name and then “my wonderful first born child”.

I wrote about 15,000 words while on “vacation”. I have two books back from two editors. One has a cover I worked very hard on and now hate that I have my cover artist. (She did Second Chance Romance for me last month LOVE LOVE LOVE- at an insanely reasonable price). But that’s the book AFTER the one I don’t have even have a title for. I tried to figure it out while we were driving, NOTHING.

So, that was the lowlights of my vacation. There is much to report. I have MANY mountain pictures if anyone needs pictures of mountains. I’m there. I’ll post some in the coming weeks. And I’m back on twitter and hopefully my blog will pick-up again. I haven’t heard from the lady I was baby-sitting for, so maybe she fired me. Whatevs.


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Simplify: Email

My first step of my simplifying and stretching my brain was to deal with my email. I had 77 unread emails in my personal account, 15 in a public account and 300+ in my Facebook/author/other public account.

Part of the problem is I am a sucker for those “sign up for our email list and we’ll send our ‘free’ 1,000 part course on how to blog and make twenty figures every decade.”  And then I leave them in my inbox, unread, marked unread in hopes that the unread status will guilt me into reading them and then the marketing starts and I wonder why I signed up for this list in the first place.

The second part of my massive e-mail collection was Facebook notifications. I belonged to a few groups that were set as notify me every time someone posts. Wana1011, I love everyone, but I the emails were burying me. Combined with all the emails I had skipped over, made for a very stressful email life. I would sometimes go weeks without checking email because it was too stressful.

I logged into my account, unsubscribed from all those email lists I didn’t read, and then I deleted all accompanying emails. The search function is your friend here.

Then I deleted all emails that were more older than 2011, except some files I had sent myself in 2006. really, really. Most of these were Freecycle(TM) related as I founded the group where we lived in 2005 and ran it until we moved last August. Good riddance.

I went into Facebook and went to each group and turned off notifications. On your home page, your groups are in the left frame, click on the group and then there is a little bar underneath the member pictures, one of the options is notifications. You can turn off or on notifications for this group.

I also went to that little arrow menu beside your profile and home link.

So it’s down arrow > Account settings > on the left Notifications and then you can choose what you want to be notified of and how.

That is all I’ve done so far. I kept Flylady notifications, even though I don’t read most of them but it keeps me on track. I don’t feel as bogged down when I check my email now. I feel happy, and I love deleting nonsense messages and making my inbox say 0 messages.

What do you do to simplify your email life? Or do you need to take some of the above steps to simplify?

Also check out the email project (also two, three and five are linked).

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Bouncing back from burn out

I’ve been feeling pretty tense latley about a lot of things. My inability to stick with a project for more than a few chapters. My bank statments. The edits on my newest book and also thinking about getting the previous ones done up properly. And having a two year old and a nine year old is exhausting. More so on the two year old side.

Plus I feel like we just moved and it’s been nearly a year!!

I was journalling and I wrote:

I am consantly spinning my wheels, doing busy work. I’ve lost my joy these past few months. I’m always trying to get ahead, to survive. Thereis no joy. I run around trying to keep everyone else happy and I indulge in escapsist crap trying to survive. No more escaping. More joy, more things that fill my Spirit.

I was pretty depressed when I started writing. But then i decided to do something about the lack of joy. I wrote down a bunch of things that sounded interesting to me. Things I was going to start doing more frequently and things I was going to stop doing.

I decided one thing, one day or week or hour at a time. So I’m going to make it a series. Dealing with burnout and my attempts to cope and eventually get my creative mojo back.

One thing,

one day at a time.

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