Having survived the apocalypse of holiday zombies, our hero continues their quest.

In which resolutions are not made.
(Because aren't they made to be broken or something?)

Last year, around this time, I made a decision to get to know my recently acquired tarot deck, the Mary-el, with daily card readings. It worked, and with every passing week and month, I fell more in love with Marie White's artistry as well as her positive interpretations and applications of traditional and conventional meanings and associations.

I guess one could claim it was a resolution. If so, it's gotta be the very first time I've followed through for the entire year, to the very end. Sure there were days when my interpretations were little more than a few sentences. And I think that, somewhere along the way, I actually missed a couple days here and there. It's the intent and follow through that matters. Even when I faltered, I didn't give up. Mostly because it was something I was doing for myself, something I was interested in and moderately passionate about, and at the same time I was bettering myself, walking a bit further along my own spiritual path to enlightenment.

It was easier, I'll admit, than making a resolution to write three hundred fifty words a day (the equivalent of a page). It required no coherence and very little forethought. The image and its meaning did the work for me, I just recorded my thoughts. And now? Now I make time for it in the mornings, even if I don't get to do a written entry, even if it means I'm a couple minutes late getting to the day job at ass o'clock.

The discipline is something I know about myself. The dedication, well, that is something I intend to apply to my writing this year. One page each evening, of fiction. It doesn't have to be the same project every day. It doesn't even have to be an existing project. Just a page a day, to let the waters flow, to stimulate that aspect of my brain, in a regular and predictable schedule.

[The rest of my ramblings, along with hi-res photos, under the cut.]

Honing the Techniques.

wooden tarot, six card spread
Six card spread w/ flankers, The Wooden Tarot.

I have, I must admit, accumulated a substantive number of decks in the past year under the pretense of using them as writing tools. It's not untrue. I have found that certain characters and muses resonate with one deck more than another. It's about personal energy -- and encouraging muted aspects of myself to the fore in order to understand a character and their motivations or mindset with greater clarity.

Toward honing that technique, this year's daily tarot readings have expanded from a card pairing to a full six card spread read in triplets. The bracketing cards to the left and right in the pictured spread are customized placements: the "prominent personality" to the left, because I'm trying to get more comfortable with court cards, and the hidden aspect card to the right, from the bottom of the deck.

Also, instead of going a full year with the same deck -- in part because only the Mary-el is the Mary-el and no other deck in my possession has That Level of depth -- I'll be rotating the deck I use for my daily spreads each month.

This month it's the Wooden Deck, named such for its initial creation on veneer tiles. I've had this one for a few months, but the unique renaming of the suits kept throwing me off, making the journey of getting to know it just enough of a struggle to be annoying. Ordinarily I would hate that, but I've found a fresh appreciation for its unorthodox interpretations. Spending time with it this month will be fun, I can tell.

A Bigger Book

Today's daily tarot journal entry.

Larger spreads and more cards means I need more space than an inch or so in which to write. So I grabbed a daily planner that offers a full page for each day. Even on the weekends. (If you can't read that print and are interested in what it says, drop me a line and I'll send you a better pic. This one was taken with my mobile, at a rather steep angle.)

From now on, content of the newsletter I've been sending out for the past six months will be reflecting here at Haus of Rhi. Because it's been deathly quiet over here. And not everyone is on my newsletter, or wants to be. Because yes, I'm still a writer, and I haven't stopped writing, and I decided it would probably be prudent of me to continue maintaining the content here so that it doesn't look so much like I've dropped off the face of the world. There's that, and there's also the little niggling point that I don't have to bite my tongue so much anymore, now that my "Black" contract with Riptide has officially expired. So I'll be duplicating newsletter content, potentially in abridged form, going forward.

I think my other contract with them, for Hamm and Marc, has expired as well? Not entirely certain, but even if it doesn't until the end of this year, I have abandoned them as a publishing consideration, and now that Black is back in my hands, legally free and clear, I have zero regard for filtering myself beyond that level I maintain for the purposes of professionalism and public image. Which is to say, thank fuck I'm no longer limited to the options of lying to behave, or biting my tongue to avoid negative retaliation. Moving on, however, since moving forward is what my focus has been, is, and will continue to be.

Muses are Felines, Surely.

When I close my eyes, this is what Garthelle looks like. -Black

So Black will be attending an extended spiritual retreat over the next few months. In an effort to reconnect with his authentic self and rediscover who he truly is. After the debacle that was called an editing pass by Riptide, Black and I had a falling out of sorts. He was extremely displeased with how I handled the entire situation, and hasn't spoken with me very much lately.

Who am I kidding? It's been years since he deigned to even glance my direction. And I think that, if I want to tell Red's story the way it needs to be told, I need to rebuild this bridge with Black, reforge the link with this world and its rules and boundaries, first. Once I've done that, Red and Konaton will stop playing cat and mouse with me, haha, and their story will come out as it was originally intended.

Does this mean Black's rebirth? Yes, absolutely. Before the end of the year, at the latest. Best case scenario, the summer.