work news and name changes

Taking a quick break to write. I have so much going on right now. I am working from home today because The Soph had her first visit to the orthodontist. Um, hello? It’s like she turned 10 and now the Universe said it is now time for us to pay a crazy amount of money for braces. Her teeth better be BEAUTIFUL when all this is over or else this doctor owes me a car – or at least half a car. Lordee…

So I wish I could show you some of the illustrations from the project that has me working every night, but I can’t for a while. The buyers meeting is in July, my deadline is this Monday and I need to keep my head down and keep working to meet that deadline. I still have to finish 12 more of the illustrations and write the rest of the text. Meanwhile, in the land of jobs that give me a regular paycheck, they expect me to do THEIR work during work hours! Can you believe that?! I know! Me neither, so I get home, play with the kids if they are with me that week then get to work as soon as dinner is over. It is a crazy schedule, but it won’t last much longer. And in just over 2 weeks? HELLO PARIS!!! Yes, that is the carrot that is dangling in front of me so that I don’t fall down dead from exhaustion or don’t kill myself from TOO MUCH TO DO. I hear you don’t enjoy Paris all that much when you are dead. So ALIVE after all this is done is the goal here.

In agent news, I have some MAJOR publishing houses looking at my lil’ ol’ book RIGHT NOW. Like, right this second some editor of a big ol’ publishing house that I cannot mention, but may or may not rhyme with Flarper Bollins or say, Plimon and Bruwster could be perusing my text and illustrations and saying to themselves, “GENIUS! Pure, genius!! Let’s sign this chick up right now!!” And then my phone will ring… And then my phone will ring… Hmmm, not ringing… I’ll give it ten more minutes.

I also had a big decision to make this week involving my name. See, my last name Abeyta is not my name. I mean it is, but is my former married name. I kept it because 4, (or maybe 5? I can’t remember actually) years ago when the divorce began and then when it was final, the kids didn’t want me going back to my maiden name. They were sure it meant they weren’t going to be related to me anymore, so to make them feel safer, better, have the whole nasty situation be a teensy bit less traumatic than it already was, I kept my married name. But now, 4, (or is it 5?) years later I am about to have things published and produced. Many things. That will all have my name on it. MY name. And to tell you the truth? I just am not comfortable with Abeyta being on everything that is happening. I have worked my butt off for so many years and now that it seems things are finally taking off, using my ex husband’s name on all of it just feels, well, wrong. So I have been giving the issue a lot of thought. And when I got a call from the company I am working with on this huge project that could potentially be in many, many stores (knock on wood, crossing fingers, wishing on eyelashes) I was asked what name I would be putting on it. My maiden name, Nelson, was an option, but I wasn’t sure. Perhaps one day Best Boyfriend Ever might be Best Husband Ever and then would Michelle Nelson on everything make sense? But then using his name now seemed a bit, well, unlucky, and I don’t want to jinx anything if ya know what i mean… So finally after much thought and a bit of consultation with an artist friend of mine, I have decided to go with Michelle Lee. Lee is my middle name. So I am going to go by just my first and middle name from now on on all my professional works. Cool huh? I am just like Cher or Madonna now! Ok, maybe more like Cher Ann or Madonna Francine. But whatever. heh.

Soon I will change my website from abeytacreative to michellepaints.com. I will always keep this domain so that I don’t lose anyone that knows me by this. And michellelee.com is a real estate agent in California, so I can’t use that – unless she quits her job and wants to sell me her domain. How ’bout it Michelle Lee? Retiring soon? Please?

But Michelle Lee just feels right. It is just me. No last names to define who I was, or who I might be. Just me. And I like that. So from now on instead of being Michelle Abeyta and people being all surprised when they see me and I am NOT Hispanic, they can be all surprised when they see me and I am NOT Asian either. Cause ya know, I like to keep people guessing.

Ok, back to work!

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