Yes, I’m still here.

I’ve been fighting off mental meltdown for the last couple of weeks. Okay, months. This weekend, we escaped to our camp in Confluence for a few days. With Hubby still unemployed the concept of weekend is a little vague. Sometimes it’s Saturday and Sunday. Sometimes it’s Friday through Monday. You see, I take my laptop with me, so ONE of us is still working.

I’m not complaining. Anything but. Because while I may be working, it’s only on one of my “jobs.” The one that also qualifies as my passion: writing.

Lately it’s come to my attention that my life has been out of balance (previously mentioned mental meltdown). While I enjoy teaching yoga, selling Avon, being an area rep for Pennwriters and president of our local Sisters in Crime chapter, the sum total of all my jobs and activities tend to steamroll over my attempts to write.

This must change. Otherwise that mental meltdown thing may just come to pass.

While I’ve been contemplating how to make sure I stay on track, others have apparently been thinking along the same lines.

On Facebook, my friend Ramona Long has created a new page: How Many Pages Did You Write Today? And since I don’t want to disappoint her, I must write so I can post my results.

As if that weren’t enough incentive, Jan Brogan over at Jungle Red Writers has come up with a Writing Challenge that strikes at my biggest time suck: the Internet. She has thrown down the gauntlet, proposing that all involved write one page each morning BEFORE logging onto the Internet. No email, no Facebook, no Twitter until AFTER that one page (or more) has been completed. Every day. Even weekends.

This will be no easy task for yours truly. I stumble to my office (about three steps from my bedroom) every morning, bleary eyed and fuzz brained. My email is what dusts away the cobwebs. If you’ve ever received an email from me at 5AM, you can probably attest to my lack of cohesive thought at that hour. Now, instead of clearing my head with email, I’ll be doing it with my manuscript? Scary.

But so far, so good. It’s only first draft stuff, after all. I find I’m surprising myself on the quality of the writing, though. My inner editor, who tends to over think things, doesn’t crawl out of bed until at least 10AM. So my characters are speaking their minds freely. And they seem to know the story and where it’s going better than I do.

Care to join me in the challenge? Click here to read up on it and to commit to writing first, Internet later. It’s only for six weeks. But who knows? By then it may be ingrained as a habit.

One can only hope.


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