Friday, April 29, 2022

Success!

 I have started four books since the pandemic started, and I keep abandoning them to chase down new shiny ideas. I desperately want to type The End sometime this year, so I'm determined to stick with this book until it's finished. To help me with my goal, I participated in Camp NaNoWriMo this month, and I'm proud to say I met my goal of adding 20,000 words to my manuscript a day early!


Even though 20,000 words in a month may seem like nothing to some people, to me it feels really good to have made a goal instead of disappointing myself once again. Now I'm challenging myself to write another 20,000 words before we move (June 25th!), which may be a stretch as I'll be busy with the end-of-school events for my kids and the whole business of actually moving. But after my success this month, I'm excited to give it a try!

Even more exciting: I'm leaving for Storymakers in less than 2 weeks! I can't wait to see all my writing pals, roadtrip with my bestie, and learn more skills to improve my craft. It's going to be amazing!


Sunday, January 23, 2022

New Routines

I have had a plan for years. The thought of someday being able to achieve this plan has given me hope. "If I can just make it to... then I'll be able to... and my life will be perfect." 

As I mentioned in this post, I've been looking forward to having all three of my kids in school so I could have writing time during the day. I had August 2020 (when Amelia started kindergarten) circled on my mental calendar for years. But my kids did virtual school that semester, so I had to put daytime writing on hold.

January 2021. All three kids are back in in-person school. Writing is going awesomely.

February 2021. Sam breaks the TV and we decide to get him a paper route so he can work to pay it off. I now have to get up at 3:30am five days a week. I spend most days with brain fog. All my free time goes to planning the Whitney Awards gala.

May 2021. Whitney Awards are done, TV is paid off and paper route is over. Writing can resume.

June 2021. Kids are now home full-time during the day (thanks, whoever decided school would be off for three months straight!)

August 2021. Kids are back in school. Writing time during the day is now scheduled. I have word counts to make, time blocks to fill. And... writing is still not happening.

I've been frustrated for months because I just cannot seem to make writing during the day happen, not with any kind of consistency. If something comes up during the day, writing is the first thing to be tossed aside. If I can't make my word count, I feel worthless. I don't write at night anymore, because writing is meant to be done DURING THE DAY. That's what I've been looking forward to for years! I can't go back to writing at night!

On the other hand, I did write five books that way.

One of my friends tweeted the other day that all he did for writing that day was name a character. I happened to see the tweet at bedtime, and I thought, "Okay, I'll just get on for five minutes and plan a scene or decide on some character flaws." And before I knew it, I had a proper writing session that lasted over an hour.

I tried it again the next day. Same story. Bedtime, chores done, I got on just for five minutes, it turned into an hour. Nine pm is apparently when my brain wants to be creative. I've always been a night owl. I know this about myself. Yet I've spent the last year fighting it, then getting down on myself for not being able to create a new routine.

This week, I'm going back to my old habits. And I have to say, I'm really looking forward to my night writing sessions.