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Showing posts from August, 2006

Murphy's Law

I seem to have fallen victim to Murphy’s Law. I had my entire day scheduled with little in the way of free moments. Tomorrow, we leave for vacation. Four glorious days at Presque Isle on Lake Erie. Camping, biking, reading, eating out and, thanks to my laptop, working on my novel.

What I hadn’t counted on in my tight schedule today was my husband taking a bad step while putting the cap on the truck and twisting his ankle. All plans for the morning were cancelled. Instead, I drove hubby to the urgent care center a half hour away. I’ll have to sing the praises of this place in a future post. In and out in an hour sure beats a minimum of five hours in an emergency waiting room. The news was not good. He has a broken bone in his foot and needs to see the orthopedist. He is in a splint and on crutches with orders to NOT bear weight on it. Needless to say, the camping trip is on hold. Indefinitely.

If there is any good news here, it’s that we got an appointment with the man I consider to be t…

Training Your Muse

I hear so many writers complain that they aren’t getting any writing done because their muse isn’t showing up. Contemptuous beasts, these muses. They tease us and flirt with us, whispering beautiful prose in our ears one day and then crawling under a rock and refusing to come out no matter how hard we beckon and plead the next. So how’s a person supposed to get anything longer than flash fiction completed when the fickle muse refuses to play with us?

If your muse is present at this moment, stick your fingers in his (her?) ears, because he (she?) won’t want you to know about this. You can train your muse. Yes, it’s true. They may act like feral cats, but with some patience on your part, it is possible to have them behave and come when called.

Okay, so maybe I’m a little tongue-in-cheek today, but only a little.

Years ago I learned to meditate as part of my yoga practice. Meditation is hard! You sit and tell your brain to shut up so you can listen to the quiet. But spinning out thoughts is…

Let the Whining Begin

I’m never going to meet my goal in this Word Watchers Challenge.

Have any of the rest of you been singing this lament? Every day I look at my calendar, searching for an hour I could steal to work on my manuscript. Unfortunately, this week, it seems to be going the other way. Stuff comes up and I’m “borrowing” time designated for writing to tidy up the house because I have a friend coming for a visit on Wednesday for lunch. Tomorrow, I have to spend the morning taking my mom to a doctor’s appointment. Maybe I can take my laptop and get some work done in the waiting room. In the midst of preparing for company and going to doctor’s offices, I need to get the camper cleaned up and stocked for our upcoming vacation.

So, yes, I’m whining about too much to do and no time to write.

Okay, everyone who is taking part in this Word Watcher Challenge, time to leave a comment and let us know about your progress or lack of it. Feel free to whine. Or gloat.

As for me, I’m on page 82 (Goal: 150). Not bad,…

Writing Around Life

How is it that now that we’ve set these goals and given ourselves a deadline, that life starts exploding around us? Happens every time.

Doctors appointments crop up, major appliances go on the fritz, a new assignment comes up in our day job that requires hours of our precious writing time. Or it could be that old friend calls and invites us to lunch. How in the world are we supposed to meet our writing goals when life throws all these obstacles in our path?

I figure there are a number of ways to deal with this. If you’re already stressed to the max and ONE MORE THING is going to send you into a tailspin of depression, then by all means, blow off the deadline! That is, of course, assuming that you don’t currently have a contract for this novel and the deadline is self-imposed rather than editor imposed. I’m big on forgiving yourself. We tend to be very nice people who can forgive others in our lives, but turn around and beat the crap out of ourselves over some little thing. Let it go. Ma…

The Word Watchers Challenge

Back on August 1, I posted about my personal goal of reaching 150 pages by September tenth. Several of my writing friends latched onto the idea and “pledged” goals of their own. Before I quite knew what was happening, the Word Watchers Challenge was born.

Here’s how it goes: Leave a comment stating your writing goal to be reached by September tenth. It can be anything writing related from pages in a first draft, to revised or rewritten pages, to finishing a smaller writing project you’ve been putting off. One gal wants to get her character charts completed. That’s fine. As long as it’s something writing related.

No, you don’t have to post your writing efforts. You can, however, comment on your progress. Or lack thereof.

I’m keeping this as simple as possible. You don’t even have to come forward and post your goal. But it’s a lot easier to fudge on a promise that no one knows about. That’s why I put my intension in print two weeks ago. We’ll all hold each other’s feet to the proverbial f…

A Sad Twist

I’ve put off writing this post. Almost decided to write something different instead. Then decided I needed to write it. Consider this post as my therapy. Please bear with me.

I had planned on this post being about my weekend at the horse races. My friend had two horses from her barn running…DC on Saturday and Rocky on Sunday. I expected to able to write about an enjoyable couple of days trying to pick a few winners and cheering on the horses I know.

As a mystery writer, when I create a twist in my story that throws the reader for a loop, I feel quite smug and pleased with myself. I love it when a reader tells me, “I never saw that coming!” But sometimes life throws a twist at us that leaves us stunned and drained.

Saturday went pretty much as I’d hoped. My husband and I met up with our friends and tried unsuccessfully to pick some winners. I had my favorite snack (nachos). DC was in the last race and the nerves built to a fever pitch by post time. DC broke slow as is her habit and traile…

The Eyes Don't Have It

I would say that I recently celebrated my forty-seventh birthday, but “celebrating” isn’t really the right word. It came, it went. I received a few funny cards. My husband took me out to dinner. That about covers it.

I don’t feel like I’m getting older. Thanks largely, I suppose, to yoga, I don’t have any more aches or pains than I did ten years ago. If anything, I’m more flexible than I’ve ever been. Okay, I really don’t like the fact that my metabolism has slowed to a crawl and I have to work twice as hard and eat half as much and the numbers on the scales continue to creep upward. But what is beginning to bug me more than any of that is the conflict between my vision and modern technology.

Last week, my old handheld tape recorder died. Too much time left in the console of my sun-baked car, I suppose. So I splurged and bought a tiny digital recorder.

I like gadgets. At least, those that are useful to me. I haven’t ventured into the realm of I-Pods yet. I don’t even know what one is. Or…

Just Write

I have made a goal for myself in regards to my newest work in progress. I intend to have 150 pages completed by September tenth.

There. It’s in print for everyone to see.

The problem is, 150 pages by September tenth is totally unrealistic with everything that’s going on in my life. I spend four afternoons a week visiting my dad at the nursing home. I have to run my mom to her appointments and to shop. I have a program to prepare for one of my writers’ groups. I have a vacation trip to plan. Not to mention actually going on vacation.

The reason I picked September tenth is because that is the end of all my vacation time. Not that teaching yoga a couple nights a week takes much time away from writing, but it seems like, since I’m cutting back to one night a week during August, that I should have more time to write. Illusion. The three hours that I would be in class will not (most likely) be used instead to write. Read, yes. Write, no.

The reason I picked 150 pages is because I knew how unatt…