Sunday, August 11, 2019

Many Distractions

One of many distractions

Late this afternoon, I finally returned home from the writers’ reunion I left for on Friday morning. I took more than a few side trips to get there. What should have been a little over a two-hour drive, took me five and a half, not to mention that I was an hour late leaving. I didn’t make quite as many stops coming home today, mostly the four-hour visit at my daughter’s house, but that was more important than anything else anyway.

Starting in 2010, I attended the Green Lake Writers’ Conference almost every year, until it came to an end a few years ago due to cost and decreased numbers of attendees. Earlier this year two of the women who had been quite involved in it decided to have a reunion of sorts. A day for anyone who was interested to return to Green Lake and renew those friendships as well as share writing tips and offer support.

I had a good time and hope that we do it again.

My weekly goals maybe suffered because of the time away, but it’s hard to measure some of the other more important stuff.

If you remember, green highlight is goal met, yellow highlight is goal worked on and red lettering is failure.

   1)    Write 1,000 words a week on my Work In Progress. I don’t know that this is even worth noting, but I only wrote an actual 33 words this week. I did a little bit of revising, though, after adding three complete chapters in the last few weeks and having to deal with the later chapter I had already written. So, I’m not going to beat myself up.
   2)    Post three times to my other blog, The Dino Chronicles. Posted three times
   3)    Continue tweaking my book proposal for “The Truth Beyond the River”. I still haven’t looked at it.  
   4)    Homelife. I’ve washed nine of the fourteen windows in our house so far. Might be a few weeks before I get back to them.
   5)    Bonus. The writers’ reunion I mentioned above gave me a lot of time to rethink my whole writing thing. Still not quite sure where I’m going to go with it, but the number one thing is to stop stressing about it and stop beating myself up about past mistakes and current inactivity. Maybe I’ll write something down in the next few weeks – like, my game plan or business plan. Or, I know – GOALS! Long-term ones. Just bouncing around ideas in my head.

Sunday, August 4, 2019

Day at a Time, Window at a Time


Here we are, already in the last month of summer. For those of you who survived the horrendous winter of 2018-2019, you know what it means to appreciate summer. And you fear what the weather will be like in another six months.

But we must take it a day at a time and be thankful for what balmy days we have left.

The first of July, I dedicated myself to three super easy and attainable goals for the rest of the year. I’m starting to feel pretty wimpy about that and feeling the need to push myself at least a little bit, as well as document that I do other things besides work the day job and sleep. With that said, I’ve done a tad of adding and tweaking.  

Here is my revised list of goals to achieve by the end of September. I’ve added some beloved color as well. If you remember last year, green highlight is goal met, yellow highlight is goal worked on and red lettering is failure.

   1)    Write 1,000 words a week on my Work In Progress. I wrote 977 words on my novel. Wow, should I add a random thirteen more words? Or just say, yup, goal met? I guess the green tells you my decision on that. Of course, I did write all those words for my blog, too, so I really did go well over 1,000.

   2)    Post three times to my other blog, The Dino Chronicle. Posted three times.  
   3)    Continue tweaking my book proposal for “The Truth Beyond the River”. I still haven’t looked at it.

   4)    Homelife. I’m working on getting all of the windows washed in my house. I’ve done four out of fourteen so far. In addition to the windows being washed, half the screens need to be replaced. It’s a long story, but we have had cat issues for ten months. Our remaining cat has decided to come and go as he pleases which means busting in and out of any of our screens he chooses. We’ve come up with a temporary solution to his misbehavior which is so redneck I don’t think I can share it with the world. In the meantime, Hubby is hard at work replacing screens in five of our windows. Should I start a list of goals for him as well?

I’m looking at that list, asking myself, why did you announce remarkable additions to your list, when you added one teeny weeny little thing? Because I am not going to jump into that overachiever hole again. Plus I have a busy week coming up again (I know, you’ve heard that before).

But really, we are short-handed at work this week, so I’ll put in even longer, more stressful hours than usual. Then Friday morning I am heading to a writers’ retreat. I’m pretty excited about that – hoping to get lots of writing done and become imbued with lots of inspiration.  

How about you? Finding inspiration in all the right places? Adding to your list of goals? Already dreading winter?

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Needing to Gather Ambition

From our ride yesterday 

Yet another week gone by in a blur. I put in some mighty long days at work this week, then was busy with housework on Friday, my day off. Yesterday, Hubby and I took my sister and her husband for a ride. She’s been wanting to go bumming with me, but I said we should take the guys with. Okay, her husband has terminal brain cancer and isn’t doing so hot. I understand her wanting to get away, but I think she – and us too – should do as much with him as we can while we can.

Other than that, not much going on. Here is my short, sweet list of goals through September.

     1)    Write 1,000 words a week on my Work In Progress. I wrote 709 words on my novel and another 642 words for my blog. Maybe I shouldn’t count the words on my blog, because that is really counted in #2, but, hey, I can make up the rules as I go along.  
     2)    Post three times to my other blog, The Dino Chronicle. Posted three times. 
    3)    Continue tweaking my book proposal for “The Truth Beyond the River”. I still haven’t looked at it.  

It sure seems like I did more than that, not even any bonus goals. Some day I have to gather up some ambition and get some stuff done. I’m hoping to wash at least a few windows today. We’ll see how that goes.

How about you? Getting any extra work done, either on your writing or around the house?   

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Back from Vacation


Hubby and I were camping all this past week. We didn’t have internet access so when I was on my laptop in the evenings, I was writing instead of aimlessly scrolling through Facebook posts or taking quizzes to see where I should retire or checking the ten-day weather forecast five times a day.

After a wonderful relaxing week of camping at a state park with electricity, running water and hot showers, I came home yesterday to no power. Everyone in the area (half the state, perhaps) lost electricity in horrendous storms Friday night. Not gonna complain that we were far enough north that the storms totally missed our little pop-up camper.

So I sat at home with no electricity, internet or running water most of the weekend. Luckily, I have a weird obsession of storing jugs of water for just such an occasion. We also have a gas stove, which will light with a match when there’s no power. So we live with a few inconveniences and praise God we bought a generator earlier this spring to keep our frig and freezer cold.

The electricity came back on shortly after noon, after being off for 40 hours! I am just now getting this posted, as I had so much to catch up on around the house.

Here is my short, sweet list of goals for the next three months.
   
   1)    Write 1,000 words a week on my Work In Progress. After I had written just over 300 words in chapter 9 of my latest novel, I realized that I really needed to add something. So I went back and added an entire new chapter 8 and rewrote most of chapter 9. Which means, I’m not really sure how many words I actually wrote, but my best guess is that it had to be at least 1,900. Yeah!
   2)    Post three times to my other blog, The Dino Chronicles. Not, but as already mentioned, I didn’t have internet access for an entire week. Yes, I could have written them ahead of time and scheduled them to post while I was away, but I’ve never had much luck with that. Too much to think about.  
   3)    Continue tweaking my book proposal for “The Truth Beyond the River”. I still haven’t looked at it.  

Sending prayers and thankful thoughts to all the linemen out there who have been working ‘round the clock to get everyone’s power back.  

How has your weather been this summer?  

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Happy as a Kid in the Cabbage Patch

Found this in the box of my sister's pictures. Yup, a kid in the cabbage patch. Remember 1985? 

I don’t know where the last week went. I was crazy-busy at work a couple days and quite a bit more laid back the others. As of five pm Thursday, I am on vacation for ten days and am actually surprised that I haven’t heard from anyone at work yet.

Yesterday, I was at a meeting for the professional organization I am a member of (see more on that below), but as I post this, I am a free bird. I need this vacation more than anyone can imagine. I feel like I’m getting it together after six and a half long miserable months. It will all be good.

Here is my short, sweet list of goals for the next three months.

   1)    Write 1,000 words a week on my Work In Progress. As of Friday morning, I didn’t see that this was going to happen this week. Friday evening, though, I had an epiphany and started writing a brand-new story which came out of the blue. Yesterday, I was at a meeting all morning and only had to participate in a few minutes of it. So I sat in the corner for the remaining three hours of the meeting, pretending to pay attention to what was going on, while I was really writing. And believe it or not, put down 994 words! I know, like I could just throw in six more words this morning and meet that goal, right? But I am happy as a kid in a cabbage patch with that number.
   2)    Post three times to my other blog, The Dino Chronicle. Posted there three times. I finished the story of my sister’s cancer on Friday and now am actually going to take a week-long break.
   3)    Continue tweaking my book proposal for “The Truth Beyond the River”. I haven’t looked at it, but I have time as I won’t send it out to the next agent on my list until September 18, unless I hear back sooner that the first agent rejected me. I suppose I should be ready for that, huh?
   4)    Bonus! At the meeting yesterday, someone asked to buy eight of my books! That came out of nowhere, so much so that I didn’t have any books with me! But I got an idea of how to get them to her.

That’s where I am and pretty satisfied with it. How about you? Charging into those goals? Or still mulling things over?

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Back in the Saddle

In the saddle, back in the mid-seventies, on my cousin's horse Shawn. Gotta love the socks. 

Monday I announced that I was back in the saddle and ready to rock this writing thing. Okay, that’s not what I wrote, and that’s not my intention. My intention, instead, is to be realistic, to take one baby footstep at a time, one second at a time.

I’ve accomplished very little as far as writing is concerned this year so far. Actually, I’ve accomplished very little in any regard. Those baby footsteps have been sloth-like in their rate. Anyway, here we are, halfway through the year and it’s time to get going.

That being said, here are my goals for the next three months, nothing earth-shattering, but hopefully attainable.

  1)    Write 1,000 words a week on my Work In Progress. At this point, I’m hoping that WIP is my latest novel, but I am going to be open to where the muse takes me. As long as I work on something which somewhere down the line has potential for publication.
  2)    Post three times to my other blog, The Dino Chronicles. The last few weeks I have been faithfully posting thrice weekly about my sister’s life and death. It’s been a bit depressing at times, but since last month marked the 20th year anniversary of her passing and in one week she would have turned 60, I wanted to honor her. Previous to that series, I had been slacking in even writing to that blog, so I really want to stick with it.  
  3)    Continue tweaking my book proposal for “The Truth Beyond the River.” I submitted it to a literary agent last week, but want it to be ready to go to the next agent on my list if this one turns it down.

And that’s all folks. No other weekly goals for this chick. I’m going to stop overextending myself, going to enjoy life and not sweat some long crazy list to accomplish.

Wishing you all the very best in meeting your goals as well.

Monday, July 1, 2019

I'm Back

The last time I posted here it was the first part of April. I had been struggling with my writing as well as life in general since the first of the year. I’d tried various things to get myself motivated, but as you can tell by the three months absence, nothing has worked. I won’t go into the sorry state of affairs that I have been living in the entire 2019. Oh, I shouldn’t be dramatic, but I can’t lie, it’s been a rough six months. I’ll give you just the most recent calamity.


I broke my foot on Memorial Day. Luckily it was nothing serious – I know, when is a broken bone ever not serious? But it didn’t require surgery, I was not encased in a cast, I was only non-weight bearing for a few weeks. And actually, it’s what pushed me around the corner.

I haven’t gone great guns and started writing ruthlessly. Last time I posted here, I said that I was going to write something every day. That didn’t come close to happening. But at least in recent weeks, the muse has returned to my head, has settled in and begun whispering to me “you can write”. In fact, last night, after I was cozy in bed, an idea for a short story popped in my head and I had to jump up and type the opening lines into my computer so I wouldn’t forget it.

Where does that leave me with goals for the next three months? Umm, it leaves me staring at the screen, my fingers resting gently on the keyboard.

I got nothing.

But I will keep at it. Hopefully in the next few days – or more likely weeks – I will come up with something I intend to complete by the end of September.

I am at least back and I’m not going anywhere.  

Just a few of the issues this year.
Basement flooded three times. 
Lost a tree. 
Lost a cat. Lost my smile. About lost my mind.